From: Jessica McKay <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: White Shirts and Snow Fences
Date: October 28, 2013 10:56:09 AM MDT
Wow! Have I ever mentioned how much I love this area? We had 80 people at our baptismal service on Saturday! Our branch president was hesitant to have baptisms on Saturday because all in the past they have been on Sundays right after church and the person would have to wait a week to be confirmed, but it made it easier for branch members to attend. But we did our best to get the word out and make sure all the members of the branch knew there was a baptism (we split up the directory between all the missionaries and personally called and invited everyone on the list), and with members and family and investigators we had the largest turnout ever for a baptism. It was amazing. With four people being baptized, it made quite the unique and exciting experience. I was so happy because I was able to teach and get to know all of them. Raychelle was such a trooper through this entire week. She has been doing poorly with her health lately, but with the help of the Lord, examples in the scriptures, and priesthood blessings, she made it to her baptism and confirmation the next day! Her confirmation blessing was really amazing. That sweet lady has a lot left to accomplish before her mortal life is through. She’s going to do great things. Gloria and Layla were on cloud 9 during the whole service. Layla kept saying, “I want to get in the water, I just want to get in the water!” She was so excited. And Gloria had waited a long time for this day. Their whole family came to support their decision, even though none of them are members. President and Sister Bell came for the baptism and church the next day too. Guess how many people our little branch had at church? 167…did I say little?
We taught Jan and Sam again at the branch president’s home. What an amazing couple. They are helping and strengthening eachother. It’s a testimony to me just how supportive spouses can be to eachother. They’ve been married for a year and are just as much in love today as the day of their wedding. In fact, it’s really neat for me to see them because they remind me of Doug and Lauren in a lot of ways. We taught them the restoration and asked Jan if he believed Joseph Smith was a prophet. He said, “Yes.” and Sam adds, “We talk a lot.” They are the most prepared couple ever. Sam said that Jan was the one who brought her back to the church, and they are working towards the temple to be sealed for eternity. With that being said, of course we asked Jan if he wanted to be baptized. He said, “Yes, How can I schedule an appointment?” Haha! It was the sweetest thing ever. So we set a date for his baptism. They both came to church on Sunday. Sam was wearing a dress (she hates dresses) and Jan had on a white shirt and tie.
We biked to Oklahoma this last week…just to say we did. We actually had a dinner appointment in Tyrone, Oklahoma on Monday night, so we set out early on our bikes and made it all the way there. And then on Friday we helped some people build a snow fence. They were working in a field and we hollered at them, “Podemos ayudar?” They said yes, so we got to try. Here’s what you do. You stand holding the steel post perpendicular to the ground, another worker tells you if it’s straight or not, and you move it inch by inch to get it where it needs to be. Then a giant tractor comes and slowly squishes you…well not really, but you feel like you’re going to be squished because the pole is just barely taller than you and the tractor’s shovel comes down and pushes the pole into the ground. It was awesome.
I was studying about spiritual gifts today in personal study because the gift of tongues is a gift of the spirit, right? Well I was led to D&C 11:8-10 “…Thou hast a gift, or thou shalt have a gift if thou wilt desire of me in faith, with an honest heart, believing in the power of Jesus Christ, or in my power which speaketh unto thee;” I wanted to know more about what it meant to have an honest heart, so I cross referenced it to Luke 8:15 which says, “But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.” So I learned that yes, if I desire in faith and believe in Christ, I will recieve the gift of tongues, but also that I must have an honest heart that will keep the things I’m learning and eventually, with patience, will bring forth fruit. I just need to be more patient. Eventually the language will come. The whole chapter enlightened me this morning. It’s wonderful how the scriptures really can apply to us so personally.
Love you all! Sister McKay
(Back) Elders Hulse & Eliason, David, Gloria, Layla, Raychelle, (Front) Sisters Nash & Torres, Sisters McKay & Hunter.
Presidents…I mean Sisters…McKay and Hunter, the mighty bycicles, and the border of Oklahoma. All in a day’s work.
P.S. Dad, are you a watcher of Duck Dynasty?