hey you guuuuys,
this week has been outrageous, and the Lord really does love us. A lot of time has been taken out of our proselyting time but because of the importance of these other things (zone conf. and the likes) we have been able to redouble our efforts in all other aspects. It has been cool. Our numbers are almost the same as normal weeks if not a little higher than last week, well, our member present lessons have been knida weak, but that is going to change here pretty quickly. It is interesting that the Lord helps us out. One thing we have been working really hard on is trying to get more new investigators. So i, under the influence of the Spirit, because it was too smart to be just me, asked one of our recent converts if he had any family in the area. he did, so we got their information. we went to see them and found five new investigators and taught five people about the restoration in a half an hour. WOW!! I wish that would happen more often. So now i think i am going to ask everyone if they have any family nearby or just anything to get new referrals because it is easier to find someone who has a connection to the gospel and teach them than finding our own people to teach, which is not always fruitful.
Sister Martinez is teaching me alot, things i don't even think she is trying to teach me. I just have learned how to be a better me, though that is hard sometimes. But, in zone conf. i learned that the Spirit works with me in different ways than i thought. I do not need big outbursts of emotions or the chills, i just need the confidence the Spirit brings, which is good for me so then i can move forward. That is important informtion for me to know. she is a little rough around the edges, but one thing i learned is just because she is alsways on the defense doesn't mean i need to be as well. i just need to love her at all times. most of the time we get along really well, but sometimes she drives me up the wall and that is when i go to bed early and hope and pray 'that the sun'll come out tomorrow.'
the really big news--we had two baptisms yesterday; Wilson and Ovidio. After their baptism they shared their testimonies with everyone. We haven't been working with them that long, but they are solid. ONe of them bore their testimony on Joseph Smith and his role as a prophet who restored the gospel of Jesus Christ. The other bore his testimony that he had never felt happier in all of his life. Great!!! That is what you want to hear after every baptism. It is so amazing to see lives change. We have a pretty cool job.
One of their friends, Victor, was supposed to be baptized, but saturday afternoon came around and he decided it was too soon for him. it was a little heart-breaking because when that is said then you never know what is going to happen. sister martinez and i bore testimony about the correctness of this decision, and then left it at that, telling him the only way he would feel ready was through reading and praying. he came to the baptism and afterwards i turned to him and told him that the next one it would be him. he smiled and said, yes, i know, i'm getting baptized next sunday, i already told hna. martinez. so, in less than one day he received his answer. that is cool. that is the converting power of the spirit. we are excited to see his life change and join his friends among the members of this church.
some cool facts about the templ that i learned during zone conf. we are probably going to get a 2-40 sized temple, or two endowment rooms that seat fourty, it is mid-sized. one thing that president said was that the heavens were opened that weekend for us and "our will aligned with the will of the father's" that day. that was cool to hear. also, he said that 20 minutes before the sat. afternoon session Pres. Eyring called to congratulate us on getting a temple. Pres. Eyring also said that the Lord is watching Ft. Lauderdale and He knows our mission and the missionaries there and He is blessing our efforts here. I know that we hear that a lot, that the Lord loves His missionaries, but when a prophet says that the lord loves you as a distinct group, that is some strong power. Also, pres. said that it was pretty cool because Pres. Eyring started crying when he was on the phone, and Pres. Hale cries all the time, so here were two grown men crying, twenty minutes before conference. the cool thing is, a prophet was calling us 20 min. before conf. he could have done a myriad of other things, yet he was calling us, little old South Florida to talk about a temple. now our prayers have turned to those in the development process so that the site and the political work can get done in a mannerly time. prayers are always needed and prayers are always answered.
another cool fact is that our mission is #1 in the world when it comes to doubling our baptisms from last year. so, last month we got 61 baptisms for the month as a mission. last year we only had 30 or so. we are doubling our baptisms. and we are going to do it again. with the temple will come even more success. how fun!!
i think that is it for now.
love love love-
ps-kacey, you have a birthday card sitting here in FL but there is no address for you so it is going to sit here until i get a letter from you. Tori, you too are under condemnation because you have been in school long enough to be able to write me a little note. you two better watch your backs for a lack of blessings from FL.