Monday, September 30, 2013

Hey hey hey familia!
The week are zooming by! California is a great place to be and I am learning a lot. Sorry, there is especially not a lot of time this week for emails, but just know I love the work, I love Sister Cusick, and I love the Lord! Things are going well.
Our mission goal for the month of September was 40 baptisms. We found out today that we reached 38! We know that all of our many prayers do not go unanswered and that we could not have found that many without the help of the Lord. The goal for October is also 40 so we will be working extra hard again to try to reach this goal.
One of our zone goals is also to search out and find people wearing a specific color each week. It is kindof fun to keep our eyes out for this throughout the week. We can better recognize those who are prepared. This week was pink and we actually found a new investigator this week through it. Our zone leaders are the best.
One thing that I have really learned this week through teaching and through my studies is how connected everything in the gospel is. Everything relates back to Christ and is all so interwoved and interrelated. Things such as faith, hope, and charity. Or repentence, faith, and prayer. Everything builds upon each other and testifies of the other truths that are in the gospel. How cool is that?! I can have faith that the entirety of the gospel is true because all of the pieces fit together and point to the Savior. I love my Redeemer Jesus Christ and know that He is the Son of God. Because of Him, everything we do as missionaries will be worth it. I am working to see all of the people I teach and talk to as he does, and it makes a huge difference. The work is great! Every day is a great day as a missionary.
Sister Marchant
Hello President Castro!******
It has been a great week. Thank you so much for your council and love at Mission President Interviews. I felt the Spirit so strong throughout the hours we were being trained by you and the Sister Training Leaders. We have such great leaders in this mission and I am always rejuvinated and encouraged when I hear from all of them. Thank you so much for believing in us and supporting us through all of our efforts. Together we can do miracles for the Lord!
Every week seems to go faster and faster. I cannot believe it is already Preparation Day again! The days are zooming by.
This week we taught our investigator Leonard, Lauren, Paul, the Ruiz family, and a recent convert, Sister Johnston.
Leonard is doing well. We had a lesson planned with him earlier in the week that fell through. We came back later in the week to visit him again. It was a miracle that we found him because we actually had to change our plans a little bit and visited him later than planned. He was not home but we saw him walking home from work as we were leaving his trailer park. I know that God is in this work because we would not have found him if we had done what we wanted to do originally! We had a great lesson with him and planned another one where we will teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ later on next week. We asked him how he was feeling about his baptism that is planned for a few weeks and he said he hasn't received a firm answer yet but that he is very willing to pray and ponder on it this week. He has a good heart and I know that the power of the gospel can really bless his life.
We met Lauren while knocking last week. She has been through some rough times and right now has an unstable relationship with her family. We taught her the Restoration this week and she had a lot of sincere questions. She has not been very religious for a long time but now has realized that she needs God's help in her life and is willing to come to Him. I can tell she has real intent and really wants to become better. We think she can go really far, but the only problem is that she is moving to Las Vegas next week. We exchanged phone numbers and will hopefully be able to refer her to missionaries in her new area when we find out exactly where she will be living.
We taught Paul a lesson on prayer again this week. He is having some bad pressure from his family to stop meeting with us and is wavering on his testimony. He will not tell us much, but he did pray this week and is still searching for answers. Paul has been taught a long time and we might drop him after our next lesson if he will not act or keep his commitments. This week Sister Johnston came to our lesson. She was a HUGE help and really related to him so much better than we could. I have really seen the power of member-present lessons this week. They can make all the difference.
We finally met the Ruiz family! Wahoo! They are so great. There was actually a wrong address listed in our area book and they were not returning calls, so we had trouble finding where they lived. But this week we decided to knock around close to where their address was listed and we knocked into them! They are such a kind and happy family. Rihanna (17) is excited about the gospel and really wants to learn more. Paul and Sandy (dad and mom) and their sons Gabe and Noah are also willing to hear our message and I think they could become progressing investigators very soon. We will be praying a lot for them this week. We are teaching a lesson on following the prophet and inviting them to come to General Conference this weekend. I think this could really be a turning point in their understanding and acceptance of the gospel. We also found a member couple to come with us to their lesson this week who we think will be a really great fit for them. Our Heavenly Father is helping make it possible for us to meet and teach his prepared children. I have really come to know that everyone we teach is important to Him.
We have started to create a very trusting relationship with Sister Johnston. She has been through just about everything difficult possible in this life, but now has a true desire to repent and change. I love hearing her extremely strong testimony of the truth of this gospel and of the Holy Ghost. She can recognize the promptings of the Holy Ghost strongly in her life and is striving with all of her heart to come closer to God. She came to the Relief Society Broadcast last Saturday and is excited to come to General Conference this week. She is also planning on officially quitting smoking again this weekend. I know this will be extremely difficult for her, but I also know that huge blessings come from following the prophet and keeping the commandments. I believe that this weekend will be a weekend of miracles for her and for all of our investigators who are touched and taught by the messages of Conference.
Speaking of which, I have never been more excited to go to General Conference in my life! After teaching about the Restoration of modern-day revelation and prophets for the past month, hearing the words of our prophet and apostles means so much more to me. I never want to miss a session of Conference for as long as live, for I now appreciate a lot more the importance of their words and how much they can bless our lives. This Church and the Gospel of Jesus Christ is inspired and directed by God Himself. I know we will be greatly strengthened this weekend.
Thank you President!
Sister Marchant

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