Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving Miracles in the Pakkret Branch

Date: Mon, 26 Nov 2012 11:55:

Subject: Miracles.

Dear Family,
I couldn't have imagined as I e-mailed you last week the miracles that the Lord was going to pour out upon us this week. And it is all because of faith.  It's by faith that He extends His mercy and love to us and blesses us. 

Now with that, I will share with you one of the most amazing things that has happened to me on my mission. 

So, we had this investigator, Sister Ning.  She had been learning since Elder Patterson was a new missionary, over a year and a half ago. She had learned much about the gospel, but hadn't been baptized yet. We found out that she actually lived in our area. So we took up the teaching where the last missionaries left off. 

We set a goal last week, that she should be baptized this week. We planned on a Sunday baptism.  All week, we tried and couldn't meet with her. The lessons we had planned and the interview didn't look like they were going to happen. Then, on Friday we had an appointment. She had to cancel it in the end. But, she moved our appointment to Saturday evening. 
Elder Patterson and I still hadn't given up hope. We decided that what could really help her make the decision to be baptized, would be to focus on the temple. The Pakkret branch is planning to go to the temple next year in December. 
As we got into the lesson, we asked her how her reading was going. She talked about how she had read through Mosiah that morning. I asked, "Don't you love King Benjamin?" Then we proceeded to talk about his angelic sermon. We then pointed out the significance of the sermon being given at the temple. We talked with her a little bit about the importance of the temple. And how baptism was necessary.  It wasn't anything new for her, it was just reaffirming things she knew. 

We then talked about baptism, and her interview. We said that we had prayed and felt that the interview could be done before church on Sunday. She agreed, but then when we talked about the baptism being on Sunday as well, she seemed hesitant. She was really determined to be baptized in December. 

But we had prayed, set a goal and felt that it was supposed to happen yesterday. We prayed in our hearts, and prayed more. We talked with her. 

We said, "Sister, we have something that we want you to do."

 She said, "kneel and pray about it."  That was amazing! She knew exactly what she needed to do! 

So, we scheduled the interview.

There is something about preparation that opens the door for things to happen. Elder Patterson and I are firm believers in that. So, on the way home, we called her fellowshippers and asked them to prepare talks for the baptismal service tomorrow. 

Then I said to Elder Patterson, "Pack your backpack."  He got his extra clothes but we didn't stop praying. We were full of faith that this baptism was right and was going to happen.

We got up the next morning with all of our stuff and headed to the church. Sister Ning showed up and started the interview. Elder Patterson and I looked at each other and said, "We need to fill up the font." So we did. 

The interview ended and she passed! I was really feeling my faith increasing so much! Then we asked if she had gotten her own answer about when to be baptized.  She said the first of December. 
My heart dropped a little, but my faith brought it back up. We talked a little more and asked why. She wasn't sure, so we challenged her during sacrament to search for the answer. During sacrament, the Branch President got up and was talking about how the branch was having an amazing year.  He said that 39 people had been baptized since January, and the goal was 40. but we would be extending that goal out to 45.  

After the meeting we asked her if she got an answer and she said yes.  But she still wanted to go pray again and confirm it. So, she said, "Give me an hour and I'll tell you."

About 20 minutes later she called. We we're in a meeting so we had to wait. But after it was over, we called her back.

She said, "Elder, I got my answer.  I need to be baptized today. But, my uncle just got in an accident. I'm now at the hospital with him."

 At that point,  the question wasn't whether we were lacking faith or what we hadn't done right.  We felt we had done all within our power. The question became what does the Lord want us to learn? We felt that it was to accept His will and not try to force things in the last minute.  But at the same time we wanted to keep our faith strong because we knew that with faith, all things are possible. 
We decided we were going to take that lesson to heart. We knew that in His own time, His purposes would be brought to pass. Then at about 4:30 we got a phone call. It was Ning. She said she wanted to be baptized that night at 6:00.
 We said, "Done."
 We went to the branch president and told him that Sister Ning wanted to be baptized. 

He asked, "When?" "6:00" was our answer. 

He said "Today?" 
"Yes, today." we confirmed.

He then excitedly said, "FILL UP THE FONT!"  

He was so excited!! It was amazing! Then she showed up in her own baptismal outfit that she had bought a while ago. And Sister Ning was baptized. It was amazing! It was a true miracle. 

I testify that Heavenly Father is a God of Miracles, and operates today according to our faith. Jesus Christ lives, and loves us. I love you all and encourage you to press forward in faith! --


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