Friday, November 15, 2013

From October 28, 2013

Hello dear friends.  Guess what? Guess what?  Guess what?!!  Beatrice got baptized!!!!!!!  Who is Beatrice?! Well I'll tell you. One of my investigators?  No.  One of my old investigators?!  Also no. She was a woman who got baptized into the Spanish branch on Saturday.  I found out about it this morning and that's why I'm all bouncy about it.  'Cause I do have a connection to her.  I totally randomly knocked on her door when we were looking for a less-active member on the records who apparently had moved.  Beatrice said "Not only am I not that person, but I totally don't speak English either!"  I replied "Well, we're missionaries and I'll try to speak Portuguese which I really don't speak well enough for you to understand.  Here's what's going to happen--other guys in white shirts and worse ties are going to show up at your door and save your soul."  And then that actually happened! I referred her to the Spanish Elders and presto, 7 weeks later she entered into the covenant of baptism by the proper priesthood authority of God.  Moral of the story: you never know who is going to accept the gospel so try to talk to everyone, even when you are linguistically incapable of doing so! 
So that's my fun, exciting, fact/news/thing pre-blurb  Email.  Enjoy.
And then the rest of my letter . . .
First, a gospel insight on divinity, carnality, and mortality as they relate to the fall and the Atonement.  That's right: personal study yesterday was a blast.  Basically, the price of divinity for mortality was the mortality of divinity.  I could go on for days.  It's something worth studying. It's like the coolest thing ever!  Oh my goodness like I can't even explain it to you but for the 5th time on my mission I finally think I understand more about the Atonement.  Which means I really probably don't but I'm getting closer!  And if you really want a deep swim, study "blood" and what its significance is.  Wow.  
Okay so here's what's up.  The end of Joseph Smith history, where Oliver Cowdery has his little blurb is the coolest blurb of scripture ever!  Page 59 in the Book of Mormon. He talks about seeing while others rest upon uncertainty, he speaks of fiction and deception fleeing, of doubt sinking no more to rise.  It's truly inspiring.  And it comes back to a simple and fundamental attribute that too often we dismiss or misunderstand: reverence.  It is easy to get caught up in the mundane things we do as missionaries.  Knocking on empty doors, even teaching lessons.  It's easy to lose the vision of the grandeur and majesty of God.  Because truly, it is so glorious and so important.
We are children of a loving Heavenly Father and heirs of divinity if we will give up carnality by embracing our internal potential for divinity.  And there is so much glory to be had, so much power and miracles to be seen.  They are everywhere.  And they are real.  And when we recognize our smallness and fall to our knees in humility, we come to understand that the work and the glory is worthy of reverence and that everything we do should be done in worthiness and in reverence.  Something to consider.  Think covenants.
The week was one of some real ups and downs.  Tuesday was basically the worst day ever.  Our planning died and our time was ineffective.  And that is the worst feeling in the world: feeling ineffective and like you are wasting time.  And we went contacting on a college campus.  Which let me just say is SUPER WEIRD.  It's like... I don't even know.  They're all your age and it just feels like college and there's no reverence and it's a fascinating experience.  But ya' just have to talk to them.  Ya' just do.  And when you do, it all turns out all right.  Tuesday was bad with all the appointments falling through and stuff.  Then on Wednesday we had a mission tour from Elder Teh of the 70.  What a stud.  That was a spiritual feast. 
And then we met T.  He is amazing.  He was a referral.  And he's a miracle.  We knock on the door and he's like "Yeah, come in" and we go in and he loves hockey and he's turning his life around and we're like "Hey, want to be baptized?" and he says "Yeah, I really do" and we say "Great!  Let's do that!" and he just GETS it.  So he's fantastic.  And loves hockey. 
Our investigators all started progressing this week though so that's awesome.  Not all of them are ready to accept a baptismal date but they are sincerely seeking and it's amazing to watch.  We also had a lesson with a man, C, who has been investigating for a very long time.  And I felt like I needed to promise him an answer THAT NIGHT if he did a few simple steps.  No word yet on if he did them but we are praying for him. 
We've also had lessons this week where people have decided to live the word of wisdom.  Gone with the coffee, gone with the tobacco, gone with it all.  It's truly humbling to see people change their lives pursuant to following Jesus Christ. 
We have met a lot of really prepared people and we are just trying to help them see how prepared they are.  I'm grateful for all of you and I'm grateful to be here.  The church really is true.  There is no way to get around it, whichever way you try.  And if you haven't sincerely checked it out, you're missing the purpose of your life.  So, you know, get on that.  Live the gospel.  Share the gospel.  Be reverent.  And seek to understand.  As Hebrews 11 tells us, through FAITH we understand.  So try to understand, read your scriptures, and recognize that God wants a relationship with you even more than you want a relationship with Him.  Don't deny Him or short him on that.

Every happiness to you all.

Elder Molinaro

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