Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Windows of Heaven

January 27, 2014

Hello everyone, this past week has been absolutely incredible. BUSY! But there have been so many miracles and so many evidences that Heavenly Father is guiding the work here.

 I think last week I said that we started teaching a woman named Rosa. This week we have been able to see her four times and taught her three lessons. Monday we stopped by to apologize for stopping by at a time when she wasn't there on Saturday, she let us in and then we read a little from the Bible with her. We made sure she understood that Heavenly Father loves her. We were back on Tuesday to review what she knows about prophets. We used an analogy with a pencil to show that prophets are the direct connection with God to guide us when we cannot see the way. That God speaks to us through His prophets. We were surprised when her daughter stayed in the room and was actually actively participating in the lesson. At one point while we were sitting there teaching two of her older sons walked into the house. We were both surprised that they stood at the door listening for a while. They eventually moved into the kitchen but were still listening to us. Then two more men walked in (one was her son and the other was a friend). They too stopped and listened and even took a seat to listen to us. We hadn't planned on teaching as much as we did, but we knew we couldn't stop because so many people were listening. It was something I have never experienced. The Spirit was so strong as we told them that the message that we have to share is the joy and knowledge that God has again called a prophet to lead His people. We left that house with a strong Spirit. We committed them to watch the Restoration DVD.

When we went back on Thursday, she was really upset about something that had happened. Both Sister Brown and I were a little unsure about what she was saying. Probably because she was saying a few words that should never be repeated. Her daughter was there again and was upset as well. After a few phone calls, we started teaching a lesson. We started out talking about how Job had to suffer through a lot of trials (partly because that is what her Bible was open to and partly because we had no idea why she was so upset). Then because the Book of Mormon is so important, we shared the story of Nephi's brothers wanting to kill him. We talked about how we all have trials and none of us have perfect families yet He still loves us and knows our problems. We had a few interruptions during this lesson as well, including a friend coming over. The friend plopped right down and started listening to our discussion. Once again it turned into a lesson about prophets and dispensations. After the lesson the friend told us that she is actually looking for a new church and wanted to know the address of our church building. 

I am just amazed by the way that Heavenly Father is putting these people in our path. There is no other way to describe it other than His hand really is guiding the work here.

Like Cristofer, the man that approached us on the street. We had asked a member to come with us to visit him, but the member didn't realize that we needed his wife to come with us as well. So the member went in to teach Cristofer, or at least tell him about the church. Saturday we took Sister Fernandez (a member who is recently coming back to the church, and who wants us to start working with her husband) out with us to go visit with Cristofer. We didn't have an appointment, but on a snowy Saturday afternoon he didn't have anything to do. He welcomed us into his house and right away asked if we were the church that didn't permit eating meat. We reassured him that we did. He might have been a little drunk, but he sure had some questions and when we started to talk about the Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ, he listened intently.... or so I thought. When I was done talking he said, "that's amazing." (only in Spanish) and then went on to explain that he was really surprised that a "gringa" like myself could speak Spanish so well. He was amazed by that and then went on to talk about how my companion had to be from Argentina or Italy but that she could not possibly be American. He even went as far to say that Sister Fernandez looked more American that Sister Brown. It was very interesting. The topic of religion came up again and we were able to tell more about the Restoration and this time he listened. I have no doubt that he felt the Spirit. He wasn't able to come to church yesterday, but he will. After the lesson, Sister Fernandez told us that she can see him being a very strong priesthood leader. I can see it too. Once he feels the Spirit at church and he learns more about the purpose of life, he will gain a personal testimony for himself. It is going to be really neat to watch.

Another neat experience was with the Zuniga family. The Nashua elders had told us about them a few weeks ago, but we had a hard time catching them at a good time. But this week we were able to have a nice visit with Sister Zuniga. Saturday morning we were at the church waiting for people to come for the English class. As we were getting ready to leave, we ran into Sister Gustafson wo told us that there was going to be a stake activity for the youth and that we were welcome to come. The only reason why I felt we could justify attending was if we had a non-member come. I started thinking about everyone that we know trying to think of a young woman. We even texted all the young women in the ward to see if they were coming and if they might be bringing a friend. We thought of Carrie's daughter, but quickly found out she was working. Then we thought of the Zuniga girl. She is 15. It was a long shot, especially with such short notice (one hour), but she agreed to come. We didn't stay the whole time, partly because we didn't need to. The young women are amazing and reached out to her and made sure she felt welcomed. She really enjoyed the activity which was introducing the new year's theme. She and her family, including her eight year old brother, less-active mom, non-member step-dad and his friend, were all at church on Sunday. The friends seemed interested in learning more about the church and should be coming next week. 

I know that all of these people have been prepared by God. That they are ready to hear the Gospel being taught to them in their own language. What a wonderful time to be here when a Spanish congregation will be starting. Where they will be able to come and feel the Spirit bare witness of what we know is true. 

I love you all!
Hermana K. Brown

Ps. To update on Carrie, she is doing really well. We had dinner with her and her daughter this past Friday. I was unsure how her daughter would react to us being there because of what Carrie has told us about her, but she was totally fine. She has a few Mormon friends and doesn't seem to want to know anything about the Church, but she was more than happy to talk to us. I was really happy when she agreed to come upstairs with us to help organize Carrie's closet. From what I have heard, they don't have the best relationship, but I know that the Gospel of Jesus Christ blesses families. It can fix those rocky relationships and I know it is doing something in that home.

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