Hey all!this week flew by. it seems like I was here just a couple days ago doing the same thing! missionary work is weird in the fact that its all consuming, but it seems to take no time at all.
So, we went on exchanges this week with the other sisters, to look up some of the Branch's less active members. (A branch is like a ward in that it's a church congregation, but smaller in numbers.) It was a lot of fun, and we got to put some faces to the long list of names that haunt our rosters. We met a guy who hadn't been to church in years, but said that recently he'd thought about taking the steps back to activity. His remark was that whenever that happens missionaries magically show up on his doorstep. to which I laughed and said, "we come when we're called!" and it's so true. so many times we seem to just be in the right place in the right time to catch somebody, or to spread hope where it's needed. Sister Olson did a great job talking with him, and letting him come to the realization himself by talking about things what it was he needed to do. and the answer hasn't changed. we need to continually be building our faith by studying the scriptures, praying, and keeping Gods commandments, one of which is coming to church.
And then there was this one time when we got a new investigator because he decided to come to church on his own. I thought he was someone that the elders were working with, but no, he came to church all on his own. it turns out that he'd met missionaries in France, and actually attended church there in a branch for a while, but had moved to Newfoundland to go to graduate school ( and PHD it sounds like? His grad is in physics. He's amazing.) he had a French Book of Mormon once, but lost it some time during the five years since he's investigated. He loves the feeling he gets around church, and constantly talks about the feeling of tranquility that prevails. He's great. the spirit is working on him.
The greatest thing I learned this week though is that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is constantly working in our lives. Someone told me once that it is impossible to stand still in the Gospel, once you've entered the gate of Baptism you're either progressing, or regressing, and it all hangs on how much you do the little things, with real honest intent. Every time you do something that brings you closer to God you're using the atonement, every time you pray to know, every time you study, every time you turn toward god you're erasing that separation that sin creates. Of course, there are steps of repentance for a reason, but the way to stay on the path is in enduring, in keeping in remembrance those things that we need to be doing every day and every week, to continually change ourselves to be better. And I'm still not perfect, I've got a long way to go, but it's comforting to know that God will always be there for us, we need only to turn towards him.
I love you guys and I have to go!