Monday, December 2, 2013

2 December 2013

Transfer calls were last night!!


I'm not leaving. Elder Gaspar and I are staying together here in Mesa. By the end of this transfer it'll be six months here. I'm ok with that. It's a little weird though since Elder Gaspar goes home in three weeks. We're suspecting we get a third missionary on Wednesday but it's all up in the air. President Toone has been asking a lot of zone leaders to change assignments to provide more support at other areas in the mission. We're not sure who changed but a bunch did.

Well I've officially finished the book of Job in the Old Testament! I'm working on reading the standard works in my last seven (SEVEN?!) months of my mission and it's about 6 pages a day. Easy. Job was a pretty cool book. It reads differently than the other ones in the Old Testament do. It was different than I had expected - I've read parts of it through the years, but I didn't expect Job to talk so much about his trials. For some reason I thought he had endured them all silently. Nevertheless it was a good experience and I gained some good insights on keeping an eternal perspective things while going through trials. On to Psalms! 

This past week I went on exchanges with a missionary in the zone. Their area, and district, had been struggling with teaching people and getting their OYMs. I put my Queen Creek OYM hat back on and went at it. In one hour we trippled their week's worth of OYMs and doubled their lessons taught. So much of the success of an OYM and a lesson on the street has to deal with those first thirty seconds.

So many missionaries start those contacts with, "Have you ever talked with LDS missionaries before?" Not even a hi. We talked about that and set some goals together. As the quality went up, so did the number. It was pretty cool to see.

After a while we were heading back to our car to move on to another area. We had a really cool experience. Here is what I wrote about it on my Facebook page:

Two days ago we were walking in an apartment complex. We were talking with as many people as possible and inviting all who would listen to come to the Christmas Lights at the Mesa Arizona Temple and Mesa Arizona Temple Visitors' Center!

As we were walking across the parking complex, I looked across a field and saw someone 150 yards away. Immediately I felt that we needed to talk to him. My first thought was, "Move on, that's too far. He'll be gone if you go that way. There's no reason to waste that time."

But again, the prompting to talk to him came back.

So we power walked 150 yards across the grass, hoping we would get to him before he got in his car.

"Hi, how's your day going?" He quickly replied, "Terribly."

Three minutes later we were sitting on a bench with him and teaching the message of the #restoration of the #gospel of #Jesus #Christ and he loved everything he heard.

God puts people in our paths for a reason. I also believe He puts us in their paths for a reason as well!

You can touch someone's life and all you have to do is cross your personal "150 yard field" to get to them. He will provide the words for you and He will prepare the hearts of those that you speak with.

I know that we can be instrument's in #God's hands. I know He loves us all and wants us ALL to be happy! If you're not happy, drop down on your knees and ask if He loves you.

I promise you He does.


The story took an interesting twist. Yesterday as we were at the Mesa temple lights, I got a text from those Elders. It read, "

Good thing we stopped ____. He was planning on taking his life.

I read that and thought for a moment, "God let me take a part in saving someone's life." If I hadn't followed that impression from the spirit, this man may or may not have taken his life. He is on a different path now; a better path. That was a humbling moment in my life.

We were seriously 150 yards away. And we had been a little more lazy, things could have gone completely different. Wow.

Yesterday I saw another miracle on Facebook. I posted it on the mission Facebook page since some people are losing faith in it as a proselyting tool. This is what happened:

I posted a status a week ago about someone's baptism. She liked it and shared it on a Christian page for me (someone who isn't a member.) Yesterday I got a message from someone saying she has loved what I've been posting. Within five minutes she said, "We need this in my country." The process to get her in contact with local missionaries has begun. She is prepared for the gospel. I wrote this on the mission Facebook page:

Next time you think what you're doing on Facebook isn't working, remember that people are reading what you type even if they don't "like," comment, or, "share," it right away!

Sometimes it takes time for your fruits to come forward. This person was touched by a post I made a week ago and initiated a conversation with me about it today! 

She is in the process of being referred to local missionaries. She's prepared for the gospel. There are tons of people on Facebook just like her for you to find them! Be proactive and productive and you'll see miracles!

It's also great idea to start Facebook hour with a prayer :)

 Fun stuff is happening. Everywhere.

We have a recent tradition here of having people send "Oh Yeah Moments" in via text of miracles that they see. We then send them out to everyone so we can all enjoy miracles we see daily. Yesterday, as a zone, we fasted for a miracle. Or two. Or three. For an hour straight we were getting text messages every few minutes from people seeing miracles. From one homeless man that was OYM'd, "I'm sorry I couldn't make it today! I will next week and can we meet this week?" From a set of missionaries, "Someone jogging past the church felt inspired to come inside and loved it!" From our own area, a whole FAMILY just showed up to church and loved it. 

Miracles are happening everywhere! President Toone told us to prepare for a spiritual Pentecost as the Christmas lights open and the Gilbert temple open house goes on. I'm glad I'm here for that! 

So yeah.

Yesterday we went to the Mesa temple lights. Super cool! You know what's cooler? I saw someone from EVERY area that I have served in! Even Yuma! The picture is of a very special man that I taught. I can't write all the details about it, but when I left he was working on baptism but had some things to work around. In the past 6 months he has gotten married, baptized, and the priesthood. He is amazing. He is proof that you can change and that your past doesn't need to hold you back.

We also found out that there are grapefruit trees around the property of the temple and they're free game! I had one this morning. "A holy grapefruit" for breakfast. Yum.

Anyway, all is well! Thanks for the letter family! I'll write back today!

Love you all!
Elder Johnson

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