Monday, June 30, 2014

"cast about your eyes and begin to believe in the Son of God"

Talofa lava lo'u aiga!

On Monday we started teaching Alex and Brandon, the teenage sons of Ola and Maria. The whole family has been coming to church for several weeks. They are awesome. They have us for dinner every other Friday, and will have us over again for the 4th of July. 

Alex and Brandon are solid. After teaching them about prophets and the Savior and how Joseph Smith's prayer was answered, Alex said that he felt he and his family were like Joseph Smith. They have been going to many churches for many years. Now he wants to know which is the true church. He said:

I feel good knowing that I can pray to know for myself and get an answer.

Alex is older and makes sure they read the Book of Mormon together everyday. They are awesome! I wish I could explain all the awesome things they've said and done, but it's enough to say that their faith in the Savior is sincere.

Henrietta was baptized on Saturday! She was nervous but excited all week. Her family sang a musical number, and it was a great program. 

I was talking with a member this week and he told me about his own conversion story. He said that his baptism wasn't the point that he felt a change of heart. He had met with missionaries for several years and he remembered a night when he met with new Elders who were just placed in the ward. They asked him why he hadn't been baptized throughout the long time he had met with the missionaries. He had never been asked that question. he realized it was because he had never prayed to know that it's true. He was invited to pray right then. the invitation propelled truth into his heart, the Spirit worked in him, and before even beginning the prayer, he looked up and said he wanted to be baptized. he's one of my favorite people.

It amazes me to see how the Lord prepares people to receive His gospel. He knows us by name! He knows our heart!

We were referred to a woman named Koleka a few weeks ago. When we met her, she didn't have time to meet, but we were able to give her a Samoan copy of Book of Mormon at her doorstep and invite her to read. We met with her this week and learned she is only here for a few months. She has frequent treatments at the hospital and is lonely because she has little company and speaks little English.

To our surprise, she started reading the Book of Mormon! She told us that normally, back home, she probably wouldn't make the effort to read it. But with her current situation, she reads during her treatments and also during the day with all the time she has. She enjoys our company, especially in being able to speak in her own language. And she likes what she reads. 

I do not believe she is where she is by chance. Heavenly Father is in the details of our lives.

The Spirit taught me that this is true as two faithful sisters from one of our wards sang a duet in our Stake Conference this weekend. The Savior said:

My sheep hear my voice,

And I know them,

And they follow me.

Alofa atu,

Elder Judd


The Julander family.

Henrietta at her baptism.