Friday, February 14, 2014

Lovest Thou Me?

This week was good.  We taught some powerful lessons, had amazing exchanges, and a phenomenal no more strangers meeting.
Bryndee's planner...of course she has to decorate can not work with a boring planner!
Coolest lesson of the week:  Brad & Jerome.  Brad is someone we’ve been teaching a while, who was on date for baptism.  He was really excited, and started inviting Jerome to come and take the lessons with him.  Unfortunately it turns out the Brad is on probation, so it’s going to take him a little bit longer than expected to get baptized, and he is pretty upset about it.  So, we had this lesson set up, and we felt inspired to invite the Bishop of the Summerville 3rd ward, who is friends with Jerome.  We watched a Mormon message (men’s hearts shall fail them on…look it up) and talked about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Christ’s message of repentance, forgiveness, and peace was exactly what those two needed.  It was so cool to feel the Spirit rush in the room as an acting Bishop was able to explain the repentance process to Brad…way cool!  Member work is the best!!!
No more strangers/interviews with President were on Wednesday.  Interviews’ were amazing.  We went through the normal interview process (“How’s your family doing?  How’s your health?”  Etc…) and then he gave me a priesthood blessing.  It was very special and tender, and I bawled.  Then, President showed us all a clip from Elder Holland @ the MTC in 2011ish.  I don’t know if it’s on the Internet, but if it is look it up!  It’s amazing.  Elder Holland highlights the story of Peter in John 21.  Basically the Apostles are gathered together trying to figure out what to do with themselves after the amazing 3 years they just spent walking the footsteps of the Savior.  After some discussion Peter says in effect “well, it’s been a good run.  We’ve seen amazing things; we’ve touched some people…now I’m going fishing.”  And so he goes.  It says in Vs. 3 that “they went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.”  The Apostles, and especially Peter, had gone back to their boats as if nothing had changed, as if they were the same people that had occupied them before…and they got the same results.  So, that morning, a figure appears on the shore.  He calls out to them “children have ye any meat?”  Probably pretty tire and dejected from a night of hard work with little profit, they call back “no.”  The man tells them to try fishing on the other side of the boat, and a miracle is preformed.  John, who knew the Savior best, whispers to Peter “it is the Lord!” and sweet, excitable Peter, literally jumps without a seconds hesitation, and starts to swim to the Lord.  He then has a life changing experience.  If we remember Peter’s history, he seems to be a little unsure of himself.  He denied Jesus Christ three times.  He fell asleep as he suffered in Gethsemane.  He was rebuked for hastily cutting off a man’s ear.  But as Peter sat with the Savior, the Savior stops and asks him “Lovest thou me?” Peter, thinking it obvious “yea Lord, thou knowest that I love thee…” the Savior repeats his question two more times, admonishing Peter to feed his sheep.  He basically asks “do you love me more than your nets?  More than your boat?  More than it all?  Do you love me enough to leave it all behind and do what you can to help in my work?  Because that is what I am asking you to do.  I’m asking you to change, permanently, and to not go back!”
This experience changes Peter.  He goes from being afraid and insecure, to being so faithful that people would lay out their sick and afflicted on the streets, in hopes that the mere shadow of Peter would pass over them and they’d be healed.  He changed!
If you think about it, isn’t that what the Lord requires of us?  He wants us to leave ourselves behind and follow him?  He wants us to give up something good for something amazing and worthwhile?
Anyways…cool talk!  Elena spoke and bore her testimony (did I tell you that she originally got interested in the church from South Park?) and did an AMAZING job!  We were supposed to have a ton of investigators there, but nobody we had committed to come actually came…bummer!  Until half way though in wheels Chris and Dave!  Dave is n a wheelchair (results of a nasty fight a few years back) and we had knocked into him a few weeks ago.  His cousin Chris got the flier we left on the door, and they both showed!  Crazy!  They both liked it and we’re excited to keep teaching them. 
One last story:  I went on exchanges with Sister Roundy and Broadbent in Georgetown.  We met a lady named Belinda, who they’ve been teaching forever!!!! Anyways, we get towards the end of the lesson, and I was being pretty bold with her and she stopped me and said...  “You know I’m pretty sure we were friends in the pre-mortal life…there’s just something wonderful and familiar about you…like we were kindred spirits.  I’m going to have to read that chapter in the Book of Mormon you suggested…”  Whoa!  So cool!

Sister Broadbent, Sister Roundy, and Bryndee on exchanges.
Welp…that’s about it for this week…next week is gonna be insane (4 exchanges and transfer calls…whaat!?) but what else is new?

Bryndee lost her glasses and I had to send her new ones.  Just her (and mine) luck the frames were discontinued.  So I got to choose her new frames and hope they work...I think I did a pretty good job.  Bryndee doing some selfies showing off her new look!

Y’all have a blessed week!!!!
Sister Derrick

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