Tuesday, August 2, 2011

August 2, 2011

            Well this past week has been crazy. The Lord has truly prepared people for a long time, and it is amazing to see a lot of hard work on the part of missionaries and members finally coming to fruit. So first, the Schäfer family. I don't remember what I told you about them, but pretty much the dad, Herr Schäfer, was a self referral through the internet, we called him and he wanted to come to church, so he came 2 Sundays ago, and then we met with him for the first time on Wednesday. I don't know if there is a more prepared person in the entire world. He is super religious, he wakes up at 5 every morning so that he can study the bible, and now his study includes the Book of Mormon and the Gospel Principles book. He had already read through 1 Nephi 17, and had read like half the Gospel Principles book. He used to be Evangelish, but he left the Evangelish church because he didn't agree with their teachings. He is a web designer and LOVES the church website. He told us that he left his old church and was searching for new churches that matched his ideas better. The first website he found was the church’s website, and he watched all of the mormon messages ads, and they totally blew him away. They were better then even his ideas of what was right. He also watched the new Joseph Smith movie, which made teaching the first lesson really easy. He read tons of stuff on the website, including about the Word of Wisdom. He had quit smoking 20 years earlier, but he drank coffee every morning. He didn’t understand why the church would prohibit coffee, so he decided to try giving it up. Apparently he got a bad headache, felt achy and such, and he realized that coffee was addictive, so he stopped drinking it, all on his own, before we had even met with him. Totally crazy. I couldn't believe it. He accepted everything, loves the idea of modern revelation, and yesterday we met again and taught the plan of salvation. He was unable to come to church last Sunday because he wife had the car, so instead he printed off the kid activities from the Liahona and did them with his children. Our only concern is that his wife doesn't participate in our lessons. She says she doesn't like to sit and talk about stuff, and her husband will just tell her about it afterwards, so she does stuff in other parts of the house. We are hoping we can start meeting with the entire family soon because that would be great, so any prayers for family Schäfer would be great.
            We have also been blessed to see Andreas completely change his life around. We had a great lesson with him and the branch president last Wednesday, and Andreas really wants to change his life. It is amazing how the spirit can change people. When we first met he wasn't interested, didn’t believe in God, thought Christ was just a man, and we just live out of the Book of Mormon and that he didn't want that style of life. Now he has already started to call the church, “our church”. He refers to the ward as his brothers and sisters, and he wants to learn how to recognize the Holy Ghost better. His entire life has changed, and in only 2 weeks. He told us yesterday that he is going to a drug rehab tomorrow for 2 weeks, because he really wants to live according to God's commandments so that he can be baptized. We are driving up with him tomorrow to the rehab clinic, and we are making plans for when we will pick him up so that he won't have any chance to fall back into drugs. His is allowed to call 3 times a week in rehab and we have already made plans so that we can call and have lessons over the phone. It is truly amazing how the work is progressing.

            We are still supporting Christina, but she is still having a hard time. Both Elder Bagley and I feel that Christina has a lot of deep psychological issues that simply can’t be resolved in a few weeks. It will take time, but according to the Lord's time table she will progress as she is healed through the atonement. We are still doing everything we can to support her and to stress the importance of daily reading in the Book of Mormon and praying. If there is anything that can help Christina, it is the Holy Ghost, and we know that as long as Christina is reading, praying and coming to church then she will continue to be blessed and make progress.

            Well life in Wiener Neustadt is awesome. We are doing great. Thanks so much mom for all of the love, and for the letters. Sorry I don't write enough, but don't worry, I am doing fine, and the Lord is taking care of me. I know that the Church is true. I know that it was restored through the prophet Joseph Smith. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints is the Lord's kingdom on the earth. The key is that it is on the earth, and like all other things here on the earth, it is not perfect. As Wilford Woodruff said, "God's church was perfect until he let man join it." hahaha that one is for you mom :)  I know that Jesus is the Christ, that He suffered for my sins, and that one day He will return in power and great glory, and in that day every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that Jesus is the Christ. I know that that day will soon come, and I am grateful that I have the opportunity to prepare the world for that occasion. I love you and have a superb week.
Elder Terry

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