Wednesday, October 31, 2012



Wow, I can't believe it's already P-day AGAIN! I feel like I was just emailing you the other day. Crazy! Thank you for all the letters that I got this week: The Fishers (loved the cereal!!! :) ), Barkdulls (thank you for the candy and the email from Elder Barkdull!), Sister Jan Steed, Elder Vance, Elder Reid ( would re-use the stickers hahaha dork), Johansen's (thank you for what you sent me, it really meant a lot), Elder Brownlow, Hermana Marroquin, and Sister Mitchell! Again, thank you all for always writing me. It makes my heart smile when I receive letters, they are always just what I need to start the week off great! Also, I heard that Spencer Murdock made the Harvest Park basketball team!! Congrats man! That is so cool! You'll have a blast! :) again, I don't have a lot of time to write so forgive me if it's short!

The other day we gave a tour for some Elders from the Arcadia mission. We were in the Christus room and as I was sharing my testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ....a bird LITERALLY flies into the window and falls straight down. It was a little baby bird but haha our faces definitely showed that something just went down. I couldn't help but start laughing and immediately Sister Merciales goes, "and.......that's why it's important that we don't procrastinate repentance being we never know when our time to return back to God will be!" After she said that, we all lost it. But, I brought everyone back together by testifying what she said was true and then connecting the atonement with it. So, it worked out but haha definitely a classic moment that I will never forget.

Our investigators are doing great! Sadly, Ernie did not get  baptized yesterday but...I know that he will one day. He is still drinking coffee so that's a no no and he finally told us his concerns in Joseph Smith, Thomas S. Monson, not knowing if he could really keep the Sabbath Day Holly and repentance. We are going to try and meet with him twice this week but he's busy this week for family issues and so we're hoping to meet with him at the end of the week. Deep down I think that once he gets these concerns's just a matter of having the desire to follow through with it. I mean, why else would he be willing to go to church every single Sunday and listen to the missionaries if he didn't think it was true! And that's the thing, he does! But, as we were doing role plays this week, we're thinking that we really need to focus on the Book of Mormon. If he has a strong testimony that it's true, he should know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. However, that wasn't the case for me when I was investigating the church, I knew it was true but couldn't believe that he could of translated it. The thing that got me was the Restoration movie and realizing, why would a man die for such a book as this? That's where Elder Holland's quote comes in that I love, "No wicked man could write such a book as this; and no good man would write it, unless it were true and he were commanded of God to do so." We are planning on showing him that clip from Elder Hollands talk so we are praying that the spirit can soften his heart and he can accept that it is true! I'm also planning on not eating candy, cookies, cake, etc anymore after October 31st. In PMG on the addiction and recovery section it talks about doing a challenge and giving something up and seeing how hard it is for an addict to give up alcohol or coffee or whatever it may be. So, I'm going to do it and hopefully it motivates him to do it along with me but with coffee!! It's going to be hard...because the holidays are coming up and people are already starting to bring in treats to us left and right but least it will prevent me from gaining any sort of holiday weight ;)

Stephen is still progressing for his baptismal date on the 11th. He is a very, very shy individual so it's been stressing me out lately on trying to figure out if he is feeling the spirit or not. We asked him yesterday if he has felt the spirit and he doesn't think he has. So, throughout the lesson when we would ask him how he was feeling, we would point of that the good feelings he was feeling was the spirit. His friend Corbet was there and we've noticed that he opens up more when he is present at lessons. He goes to the UCLA ward and he has been such a huge help for us in being active in Stephen's lessons! However, the answers that he gave us yesterday made us feel more confident that he is preparing himself to be ready. He knows this is a good thing and, shouldn't that be enough? I just need to trust in my investigators more and recognize that everyone is unique and responds to the message differently but because of that, it no way means that one who is super energetic about learning the gospel is more prepared then one who is quiet.

Christine is doing great! Sadly, she had to take her car in randomly on Saturday so she couldn't meet with us but we are having a lesson with her today after our VC shift! She too is progressing but we need to do better at explaining terms to her in a more simpler way. Because she doesn't have perfect English, she gets confused easily. However, she asks amazing questions that always bring the spirit in the room. She knows that the church is true because of the members she has known. She told us from the beginning that it was by the examples of others and the way that they live that she knew this was true. Isn't that a huge reminder to ourselves on the importance of ALWAYS being good examples! People are ALWAYS watching us, which is why it's important that we live what we preach!

There is so much more that I wish I can write about but there was an incident this morning that I need to express my feelings about. This morning I opened up my letters and one of them was from the Johansen family. I love getting letters from them so I have been excited to read it! When I opened it, I saw a picture of Jared. My mind immediately flashed back to the day when Jared passed away and talking to my daddy on the phone while I was at work. I had locked myself in the locker room bathroom and just cried. Although I wasn't extremely close to Jared, I was and still am amazed of the great example he was to me. He loved his family, his wife and Reese. He was a great dad. He was an amazing brother and son to two of my most favorite people in the world. I read the note that Bishop Johansen wrote to me and my eyes were filled with tears. Today we are teaching Christine about the Plan of Salvation. During our companionship study we decided to role play how we were going to teach it to Christine. Sister Merciales did the Atonement and the Spirit world but...kind of was brief about it. Instead of moving on to the next section of the Plan of Salvation I went back and re-taught what she just taught. It was a pretty bold move that I probably would never do in a real lesson but... I had to. I asked "Christine" questions about the atonement and what it means to her personally. I taught her how the Atonement is just so we can have a remission of our sins but that God sent His son, Jesus Christ, to pay for our sins, pains, sicknesses and sorrows. I then shared one of my favorite sections in the Doctrine and Covenants, section 137 verses 5-8. Here, Joseph Smith receives a revelation from God on what happens to those who die without hearing the gospel or without being baptized. This revelation brought great comfort to Joseph Smith because he was told that his beloved brother Alvin was damned because he died without being baptized. I looked up at Christine (Sister Merciales) and shared how I have a friend who has recently passed away and he and many others are in spirit prison teaching the gospel to those who still have the opportunity to receive the gospel and to live in the Celestial kingdom with God. Jared is doing the exact same thing I am doing at this very moment. Him and I, although on opposite sides of the veil, are doing the Lord's work. How grateful I am to know that because God loves us so much He has created this plan for us. How grateful am I to know that my grandma who passed away almost two years ago has the opportunity to accept the Gospel because of this great plan! God doesn't want just a few of His children to return back to Him, He wants all of us to return back to Him. I know, that with all of my heart that God loves us. I know that repentance is real. I know that by going to church every Sunday to partake of the bread and water is a way for us to renew our baptismal covenant with God. To be honest, I never understood it till yesterday. The Atonement is real. Only through the Atonement of Jesus Christ can we return back to our Heavenly Father. May we not procrastinate on repentance and do it now. If we need to talk to a bishop, just do it! Trust me, I know it's scary. I've been there. But it is oh, so worth it. The promises that God gives us are real IF we repent. I love this gospel. I love what it has taught me and what it continues to teach me every day. Have a wonderful week! I love you all!

Hermana Baeza

Cool story to read that Sister Baker (mission president's wife) shared to us at Zone Conference a few weeks back!
A man was sleeping at night in his cabin when suddenly his room filled
with light, and the Savior appeared. The Lord told the man he had work
for him to do, and showed him a large rock in front of his cabin.  The
Lord explained that the man was to push against the rock with all his
might.  This the man did, day after day. For many years he toiled from
sun up to sun down, his shoulders set squarely against the cold,
massive surface of the unmoving rock, pushing with all his might. Each
night the man returned to his cabin sore, and worn out, feeling that
his whole day had been spent in vain.  Since the man was showing signs
of discouragement, the Adversary decided to enter the picture by
placing thoughts into the man's weary mind: "You have been pushing
against that rock for a long time, and it hasn't budged. Why kill
yourself over this? You are never going to move it,"  Thus giving the
man the impression that the task was impossible and that he was a
failure. These thoughts discouraged and disheartened the man.  "Why
kill myself over this?" he thought. "I'll just put in my time, giving
just the minimum effort; and that will be good enough."
 And that is what he planned to do, until one day he decided to make
it a matter of prayer and take his troubled thoughts to the Lord.
"Lord," he said, "I have labored long and hard in your service,
putting all my strength to do that which you have asked. Yet, after
all this time, I have not even budged that rock by half a millimeter.
What is wrong? Why am I failing?"  The Lord responded compassionately,
"My friend, when I asked you to serve me and you accepted, I told you
that your task was to push against the rock with all your strength,
which you have done. Never once did I mention to you that I expected
you to move it. Your task was to push.  And now you come to me with
your strength spent, thinking that you have failed. But is that really
so? Look at yourself. Your arms are strong and muscled, your back is
sinewy and brown, your hands are callused from constant pressure, and
your legs have become massive and hard.  Through opposition you have
grown much, and your abilities now surpass that which you used to
have. Yet you haven't moved the rock. But your calling was to be
obedient and to push and to exercise your faith and trust in My
wisdom.  This you have done. I, my friend, will now move the rock."

No comments:

Post a Comment


Template by Suck My Lolly - Background Image by