Monday, January 26, 2015

I'm Staying!! (12-1-2014)

Family :) I am staying here in Fairfield :) Hooray! That means I will be here at least another two transfers since Elder Belliston goes home in January. It will be the longest I have served in one area and I am so stoked because this ward is absolutely amazing. And I love the people so much! I think most of all I just love the feeling that is here. The missionary work is blossoming and the zone that I have had the chance to be a leader of is full of some of the best missionaries this world has ever seen. I'm sure of that. And I love them so much. They are all super stellar and have been so diligent in sharing the testimony that God has given them of His son Jesus Christ. They aren't afraid, because they know it's true. This week our lessons were low. We taught 9 all together when we are usually around 17 or so. But the blessings this week have just been so intense. And I couldn't ask for more. 
To start off, we had the privilege of finding a brand new couple to teach this week. Since February of this year, the missionaries in this area have found at least one new investigator a week. And Elder Brooks and I were able to keep that streak going due to the hand of the Lord and Elder Belliston and I have as well. But this week was rough. We were super busy and didn't have time to knock a single door. We went to both district meetings and Thanksgiving kind of got in our way of proselyting and so last night we were just desperate to find someone new to teach. But, we had two meetings in Iowa City to go to right after church and then a dinner with the Bishop and an investigator named Virgilia at 7. So we were booked! But amazingly we got out of the Bishop's house by 8:30 and were out knocking some apartments. Well, we knocked and knocked and knocked but no one really came. And we had five minutes before 9 oclock when we had to be inside. (The rule is you have to be in by 9 unless you are in an appointment, in which case you can stay out till 9:30) so we needed someone to let us in quick! Well we finished knocking an apartment complex and decided that we would go kocnk some houses right next door since we didn't really have time to drive somewhere. So, we headed away from the complex to try a couple of doors, and we just look ed at each other and said "Where are we supposed to be?" And then the name of a potential investigator that Elder Brooks and I had found like 2 months ago popped in my head. And we hadn't seen her for that long either... So who knows? maybe she won't be interested still. But we only have five minutes! Well, it felt right so we decided to go. We pulled up to the apartment complex and Sammy's windows were dark. But we tried anyways. And sure enough she let us in! And her boyfriend was there and we taught him as well. The Lord gave us two new investigators last night instead of one because we exercised our faith. It was amazing. We got of there and Elder Belliston and I just kept saying over and over again, that was so cool! What just happened? And things like that. Holy Cow. The Spirit was so strong. And we were pumped. I know that the Lord guides us in this work. And when we have righteous desires and work hard to share what we have, the Lord provides a way. 
Another miracle: Virgilia has been progressing very nicely. And we had a lesson with her last Tuesday about the Plan of Salvation. And it was amazing. She start to remember the pre-mortal and life with God. And she remembered hearing about the plan. Oh man! It was incredible! That lesson was insane. We just felt the Spirit so strong! And so did she! At the end she started talking about her kids serving missions and sharing the gospel and about how excited she was for her baptism. Well, later in the week she told her mom about her baptism. And her mom said she was fine with her being baptized as long as she did her research. And she did. On you tube! The worst place to research the truth about the Book of Mormon and the temple! aha. So at church on Sunday she has tons of questions. Racism against African Americans and the Priesthood. Polygamy. Becoming Gods and Goddesses. Free Masonry and the temple. Anyways, it was a great lesson! She really responded with a wonderful spirit. There was no contention she just really wanted to know what was true and what wasn't. So we explained everything as best as we could and separated fact from fiction. It was awesome! And the Spirit was so strong. Her biggest concern was that her daughter (who is half black) would be growing up in a chair where she couldn't blossom because of racism. And I had the opportunity to bare wonderful testimony of what the church has done for my family, specifically about being sealed in a wonderful interracial family with my main man Tony. And the Spirit was so strong. Tony isn't any different than any of the other kids at church because he looks different. And I love him. He is my brother. The Spirit was strong. Just as it has always been around him, and with things pertaining to his salvation. The day he was sealed to our family. his adoption. And his soon to be baptism :) How amazing. I love this gospel because of what it has done for my family. In no other faith could there have been Priesthood Authority exercised so that Anthony could become a Wardle forever. I love this Gospel and I love all of you so much. 

I love you all! 
Elder Caleb James Wardle

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