Hey!V. our investigator got baptized this week! He is one of those people who I meet and say, wow, this is a miracle that fell from the skies. He is an middle aged man with two sons, one has been baptized already, and I am so happy Elder Sanchez and I got to teach him, the whole process was just a blessing. He, since the beginning, had a sincere desire to change his life; he focused a lot on the concept of repentance, and he stayed very strong in staying diligent and committed throughout the teaching process.
One of the poignant moments in our teaching occurred after we taught V. the word of wisdom, and a week and a couple days remained until the baptism. That night Elder Sanchez and I asked him if he would stop smoking one week before the baptism, at least. When I asked if he thought that would be possible to quit smoking by then, he surprised me by speaking in english to me, saying, ''Jones, it's not a question, I have to.'' His response took me back, because he felt so strongly about baptism that he really pushed aside any other thoughts of failure, worry, or fear. Vianney fulfilled his promise, and his baptism was a really powerful event. I got to give a little talk on baptism, and elder Sanchez carried out the ordinance. We felt so happy that he got baptized and got to be a part of this really important part of his life.Today, we followed our classic prep-day routine. We wake up a little early, work out, eat breakfast (we shook things up with pancakes this morning), study, make a shopping list, go shopping, carry 80 pounds worth of groceries to the bus stop, get back home, put everything in the fridge, help the other elders finish cleaning, eat a bowl of Muesli cereal for lunch, go out and tackle the france-wide SOLDES (sales), then finally come in to send emails. Pretty good day. I took some funny pictures today, and I'm really enjoying myself here. I feel like Heavenly Father is really trying to make me happy, and I am feeling happier in general.
The mission is really good, I encourage anyone who can go and feels like they should to go. The whole experience is like trying to describe a cool travel location to someone who's never been. You just gotta go, and see what happens - it'll be good! As simple as a mission seems, there's a lot of unexpected, for good or bad, and the good thing is all the learning you do and all the hard things you go through benefit other people and you. Prepare yourself and I'll exhort all of you to go out of your way to be kinder to everyone. The gospel is true!
|Elder Stucki, Taylor, Jones, and Sanchez|