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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

I have never felt "the plan of redemption" work as immediate as it did that night .......

So...the Lord feels my time here in Wanneroo, after 6 months, is up.  I'm officially being transfered to Kwinana, with Sister L.........( I can't pronounce her last name yet, but she is from Samoa and I am so excited!). We will be in a biking area and summer is right on it's way, so it will be a fun adventure!  With all that said, I am absolutely heart broken to leave my companion....Heavenly Father has helped me feel ok about leaving this area, because I truly feel like I've accomplished what he needed me to, and I feel like I've tried my best...but as for my companion...ahhh....we already had a good cry this morning, and neither of us cry very often,  haha. It is going to be great to get to have the opportunity to love a new companion, but I know for sure that Sister Kanee will always be my "sister"...I don't even want to say much after that, cause I know I'm just going to cry. But you seriously have no idea how much the two of us have grown...we have learned HEAPS from each other and I will be eternally grateful for her!
Anyways, on the bright side- Karim and Parvonay are set to be baptised this week and President has given me permission to come back up for their baptism, which will be really great I am so excited for them! This week has been really, really good with them! They have been sooooo faithful to the Lord's commandments we teach them about! Karim has already finished the Book of Mormon 2x and he loves it, he knows it is true! Karim has so willingly gave up many bad habits, just so he can have the gospel and our Savior in his life more fully! Example#1- He was smoking a lot, we taught him about the word of wisdom, and he so willingly said he would stop...He then used nicotine patches for a couple of days, and hasn't had one since...he is amazing! Example #2 -  Him and Parvonay have grown up having 4 cups of tea per day, and were addicted to it (get headaches if they don't drink it), when we told them that they can't get baptised if they drink it they said, "ok, I will not have any more" and that is that. They are so willing to do what the Lord needs them to, and they are just such great examples to me of children of God who give up their will for the will of the Father. Example #3 -  We taught them about the Law of tithing (keep in mind they moved from Iran just a few months ago, and are currently just getting very little money from the government). Just after we taught them and committed them to start paying after they are baptized, Karim said so sweetly, "It's ok.  We will pay now." (in his sweet broken English). They are AMAZING, and I KNOW that they will be blessed so much for their faithfulness. It has helped me reflect on my own willingness to do whatever the Lord has I do it as easily (with no complaints) like Parvonay and Karim because I know it will bless me?! I sure hope so, but they truly are such special people!
This week has been really, really spiritual for me. I have felt the spirit more powerfully this week, than…I don’t know.  I think I always say that, but the spirit continually gets stronger and stronger and I am just so grateful for that! I have had some really good talks with my Father in Heaven as I have pleaded with him to rescue a few specific children of his (as I was hurting for them)...and wow...the power of prayer is REAL! I prayed with all the energy of my soul, and I have never felt "the plan of redemption" work as "immediate" as it did that night ...I know Christ can take away ANY of our pains, big or small. The minute we pray on bended knee, the Lord HEARS our cries, and will answer us and "WILL NOT LEAVE US COMFORTLESS". The atonement is real, and my testimony was strengthened in it even more this week!
Well cool we met Parvonay and Karim because we prayed about where to go, and ended up in their little complex, and met their nephew Aryan! (arie-ahn). He is 13 yr. old and has grown up here in Australia, and is just awesome! Well,  we started out teaching him, and his mom (Mandana), and then Parvonay and Karim came into the picture and Mandad and Aryn kind of slipped out (by their choice). Well last night we found out that Aryan's dad in Iran had died and their whole family was just broken! Well cool thing was, earlier that morning we had planned to teach them the plan of salvation. As we were able to teach this REAL, and absolutely gorgeous plan that God has for us, they were all in tears! (Time out: This week I have come to love the plan of salvation EVEN MORE- and many times while studying and sharing what I learned with my companion, was not even able to hold my emotions back, and just cried to my companion. I know it is the true plan that God DOES have for us and that our journey here on earth really is not the end!) -  Time in: Well as we taught this lesson to this family who had just lost their dad, my love for it grew even more and the spirit was just so strong.  Well,  after explaining to them the importance of following Christ in our everyday decisions (while here on earth) Aryan and Mandana straight up asked if they could be baptized with Karim and Parvonay on Saturday! hahahaha    We were like,  "yes of course you can be baptized, but we need to teach you a little more because this really is a very big step!" Ahhh.... it was just beautiful, and now, out of this family,  4 of them will be baptised members:)  What a beautiful thing this will be! Mandana and Aryan are going to be baptised on the 16th of November, so hopefully I'll be able to come back up for that as well because  I think that Karim is going to baptise them:)
The last thing I want to share with you, is how grateful I am for the knowledge I have that I am literally, a ”daughter of god”! We are teaching a lady named Jane who is in her late 50's. When we first met her she was NOT INTERESTED at all, but (the Aussies probably hate me for it, but I am very persistent) we were not going to let her shut the door right away! She wouldn't take a pamphlet, nor a picture of Christ at first, but as we shared A LITTLE more with her about the Plan of Salvation she was hooked, and ended up taking a plan of salvation pamphlet. Then she wasn't going to let us come back but we offered her service......she accepted, we went back, had a lesson, she came to general conference, we had another lesson and now we are roping her in ;) haha   She had no idea what was in store for her! jk...but seriously.   She is awesome and this week we were able to introduce to her the concept that we are truly "daughters of God". She LOVED this and totally ate it up! She has struggled with loving herself and she said that this knowledge brought so much peace and reassurance to her. We are helping lead her to the truth she once knew, and this will be a beautiful journey for her! I reckon she will be baptised next month, she doesn't know it yet, but with the spirit working this hard on her, it has to be done;)
We currently have 30 ish investigators and so we are staying sooo busy! The key we have to finding so many new investigators is we TALK WITH EVERYONE! Every time we go on exchanges with the Sisters, they always laugh at me because we will be driving down the street, and then I randomly slam on my brakes and say, "we need to go talk to them", or "We need to go knock on that door" haha. Ya,  it's funny, and I'm sure we look ridiculous, but our message is worth it! It's more important than the songs people are listening to in their headphones, or their "evening walk" they are on...any of is the most important thing and we cannot pass up an opportunity to share it with someone! A goal of mine is to not be an elevator who finds someone, works really,  really hard on them and only them, and helps them gets baptized, and then has to start over again with finding someone...but rather an escalator missionary who is constantly putting people on this journey towards baptism...God needs all his children back, and working with many of them is a true blessing and something I'm so grateful he has entrusted my companion and I with.  I am so grateful that my Heavenly Father has allowed me to work with many of his children here in Wanneroo....I have learned so much from the members, less actives, and non members we have worked with!   Miracles are showering all around and I  was only able to scrape the surface today! I hope you know that I love this work, I love my Father in Heaven, who has changed and softened the hearts of many people here in this part of the world, and I am eternally grateful for the people God puts in our lives, to learn from...I love being a missionary, and it sure is a "great day to be a missionary in Western Australia" haha ;) Have an awesome week, CHEERS!
Sister Diondra Ensign

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