Monday, January 27, 2014

6 More Weeks in Murrieta

Things are still going great here in Murrieta. It has reached the end of my first transfer here and I am Loving it. Saturday we received our transfers calls and luckily Elder W and I will be teaming up for another 6 weeks together. It is pretty crazy! Elder W will have been here for 7 1/2 month by the time the transfer is over which is unusual.
J is going strong right now. She has a continued interest in learn more about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. She is still on track to be baptized on February 15. However we are probably going to hand her off to the YSA branch so that she will have more fellow shippers. It is really sad but it is something we must do.
The J's are doing great. C was baptized last week and now she is working with her husband to achieve her goal of having an eternal family. She has got her family praying together. She has even got A to pray. It is really cool to see his heart slowly soften over time. In our last lesson however Christine didn't want us to talk about his baptismal date because he feels pressure. He was supposed to be baptized in 2 weeks on February 8. However we are going to slow down a bit. I believe he will be baptized soon.
M is still slowly progressing. He is still trying to figure out if there is a God or not. Right now we are just taking baby steps with him. Luckily he came to church and  is making an extra effort to keep the commandment and do what we ask. We had a long conversation with him about why he wasn't receiving any answers to his prayers. We found out that he had been getting answers but said he has tried to ignore them and pretend they didn't happen. Because he was afraid of changing his ways and worried he was not cut out to be a Mormon.
Love Elder Paget

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Everday Missionary

Another Crazy week has come and gone. We had a great baptism for Christine. Every thing is going great! We are having a lot of success right now. But I learned something cool over this last week that I wanted to share.
It hit me yesterday why exactly not only full time missionaries, but why members are needed to step up to Hasten the Work of Salvation. Of course members play a crucial role in the conversion of investigators through fellow shipping, and showing that they are loved. Members are also asked to do their own missionary work by inviting, and testifying of what they know to be true. By doing this members hasten the work and have an opportunity to bring many souls unto him. However on Saturday, I realized yet another reason why it is so important that ever single member of the church paint a missionary badge on their heart.
In the adult session of stake conference they showed a video where Clayton Christensen was sharing his experience of how he realized he wasn't feeling the spirit as strongly as he would like in his life. While ponder the reasons why he remembered his experience as a missionary and how he felt the the spirit at all times. Clayton wondered why he felt the presence of the Holy Ghost in his life stronger on his mission then he did now. He talked to one of his friends and his friend explained it to him like this.
Imagine a battle, a war that is raging. Now imagine that you have the most advanced weapons. Who are you going to give them to? Are you going to give them to the cooks, or the truck drivers? Or maybe even those who run the behind the seances? No you are going to give your most advanced lethal weapons to those fighting in the trenches on the front lines. You want them to be able to stop the opposing force. Clayton realized that in order to feel the spirit more abundantly in his life and to feel it at full strength he had to be on the front lines. He had to be an Everyday Missionary.
Now there is a real war going on. It is between the forces of Good and Evil. In this on going battle God will only give the most advanced weapons to those on the front lines. Those 80,000 Missionaries that have been assembled as the Army of Helaman to bring the world his truth. That are fighting day in and day out. Now the most technically advanced weapon in our vast arsenal is the spirit.
Everyone that is a member is on the front lines whether we realize it or not. We all have the Holy Ghost but are we using it most effectively? Is it the most advanced version? Unfortunately it is not if we are not constantly reaching out to those around us and inviting them to receive the blessing of the fullness of the Gospel. It is not if we are not and Everyday Missionary.
Boyd K Packer said recently about the future that things will not get easier. In fact it will get harder. Satan is giving us all that he has. When he starts throwing his counterfeits, temptations, and fiery darts our way. Will we be able to withstand all of his blows? We might be able to now but we will surly fall in the future if we don't have the spirit with us at all times, have our faith in all things, and be able to stand for the truth in all places. We must be Everyday Missionaries each and Every one of us. Not only to Hasten the Work of Salvation, but to have the full effect of the spirit. So that we can speak with the tongue of Angels and be strong, standing united against the Evils of this world. As Elder Neilson said, "If you are not a full time missionary with a missionary badge pinned to your coat. Now is the time to paint one on your heart." If you have not done it already I would urge you to do it today. He has asked us to do it now. Not tomorrow or when we turn 18 or 19. The time is now to be an everyday missionary. 
Love Elder Paget 

More Murrieta Miracles

The Miracles in Murrieta continue. Elder W and I have been taking our training that we have received in the Zone Training meeting and putting it in action. We have seen numerous miracles by Boldly inviting our investigators to be baptized. This last week we have set 2 new baptismal dates and have plans to extend the invitation to 3 more this week.
A finally accepted to be baptised. On Friday we had a lesson with C and A Johnson. We taught them the gospel of Jesus Christ. A had previously not been interested but had been sitting in on the lessons. In the last lesson we had with him he showed some interest and really started to pay close attention when we taught about the Restoration. We had been skeptical whether we should invite him to be baptized in our next lesson. We didn't want to seem pushy and put a lot of pressure on him. We didn't want to ruin C's chances of having an Eternal Family. However we knew that there might not ever be another opportunity for him to accept the gospel. We felt inspired we should read Mosiah 18:8-10 with him when teaching him about baptism. It says:
8 And it came to pass that he said unto them: Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; 
9 Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn ; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the...
10 Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you? 
Then we asked him "A will you follow the example of Jesus Christ, and be baptised by someone holding the Priesthood Authority of God?" His response shocked both of us, but it shocked his wife even more when he said. " When?" We then responded " We will be holding a baptismal service on February 8. Will you prepare yourself to be baptized on that date?" Then after conversing for a few minutes of resolving his concerns that he didn't know enough yet. We promised him that he would be ready to be baptised February 8. Then A said " Why not?" It has be amazing to see such a great turn around in his life and finally decide to follow Jesus Christ example.
Then yesterday we taught J a 19 year old Lady who came to church with a member last week. She had been dating Brother J's son and had been over to their house a few time while having family home evening and wanted to learn more. We taught her the restoration with Brother J because his son J was away at the Air Force Acadamy for training. We taught about how Jesus Christ set up his church and after he died. Over time his apostles were killed off, and that Authority to act in Christ name was taken from the earth. But thanks to a young 14 year old boy named Joseph Smith who was searching for truth. That Christ Church had once again been restored. We recited the first Vision and the spirit was unbelievably strong. We asked her how she felt. However she couldn't talk because she was speechless. We testified of the spirit and how that it was confirming what we taught was true. Then we asked her to be baptized. She got very emotional and started to cry and the mustered up the words through her tears to tell us "Yes!" Not only that was a miracle but what came after truly testified to me that we are instruments in Gods hands. We told her that we would be holding a baptismal service on February 15, and asked her if she would prepare her self to be baptised on that date. She said yes. We testified that we had prayed for the day that she should be baptised and that she would be ready. Then we found out that that just happend to be the same weekend that J, Brother J's son, would be home from the Air Force Acadamy. We knew at that moment that it was not simply a coinscience but we had truly been inspired by God.
Everything else is going great right now in the Murrieta Ward. I thank God for allowing us as missionaries to be instruments in his hands. I am so grateful to be found worthy in the eyes of God to be able to have such a great opportunity to bring my brothers and sisters back to him. I testify that the Church is True.
Love Elder Paget

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Murietta Miracles

Well once again I never cease to be amazed as a missionary. This week was another testament that the Lord truly works in mysterious ways, he is hastening his work at his own due time, and that time is NOW. I can't even begin to tell you how blessed Elder W and I have been serving here in the Murrieta Ward. But I hope that this letter will shed some light on the Miracles that have have witnessed and experienced this week.
We have seen many miracles at church. Over the last few weeks 2 different people have walked into church wanting to learn more. The first lady's name was M. M's husband is a less active member of our church, and she wanted to see what our church was all about. We were able to talk with her and found out that unfortunately she didn't live in our ward boundaries. So we had to pass her off the the Cole Canyon Elders. Luckily though as soon as we were able to pass her off, the Lord blessed us by sending someone else. J came to church yesterday with her friends parents, who had been teaching her a little about the church. She had a few questions and instead of her friend and his parents answering them they felt like it would be better for us to answer them so that we would be able to start teaching her. So during Sunday School we answered her questions and taught her the Plan of Salvation. She understood it all and loved it, and says she will be back next Sunday to learn more. Luckily she was already taught about the restoration and has already started to read the Book of Mormon. She is almost half way through 1 Nephi now and is enjoying it.
Last week A the husband of one of our investigators, sat in on a lesson we had on the Plan of Salvation. This week he is now officially one of our investigators. He participated and sat in on when teaching him the Restoration. He is very interested now and making his way closer to the waters of baptism. We are hoping that A will be baptized on the same day as his wife C, on January 18. We have not asked him yet but will sometime this week in our next lesson. We feel that he can be ready for that date. It is pretty soon, but we think it would be great if they could be baptised on the same day, and something that they could both look forward to.
M was supposed to be baptized this Saturday, however he is going to be busy and he is not quite ready yet. So we are going to reschedule for January 25. We meet with him everyday to help him along the way. However, recently he has not been reading or praying so he has not received and answer about the truthfulness of the Gospel. We helped him to realize this last night and he is now committed to do it everyday up to his baptism.
A funny thing this week was that we were over at M's home and his Mom gave us some cake. After eating one slice, I though to my self that it tasted kind of funny, but I didn't say anything because I didn't want to be rude. That is when M's mom told us that it was rum cake. but not to worry because all the alcohol was cooked out, and offered us another piece. I said I was good, but she gave me another anyway. Again I didn't want to be rude so I ate it. After finishing the second piece of cake I realized I could taste the Alcohol in it. I turned to Elder W, and he wasn't feeling good. He was feeling light headed, and couldn't really balance. He somehow got drunk off the rum cake, or rum sponge is a better way to put it. I was fine, but Elder W was hammered. So we decided to that he couldn't bike and that we needed a ride home. So M gave us a ride back. It was pretty funny I didn't know could get drunk off of rum cake but Elder W is convinced that that was the case.
Love Elder Paget