Well this week was absolutely amazing. To start out I thought I would relate to you all the experience I had in the Referral Center this last week. First off the Referral Center, for those that do not know, is where missionaries have the ability to talk to potential investigators on the phone. I have gone a total of three times since being here with the most recent one bring success. I got on the phone with a lady in Texas who ordered a Book of Mormon and got the opportunity to bear my testimony to her. She readily accepted it and I ask her to commit to reading the Book of Mormon. I have plans to call her this coming Saturday to check up on the commitment and even set up a time to teach her on the phone with my companion. I also talked to a 15 year old guy in Maryland whose read the Book of Mormon and told me he believes it is true. He has actually been seeing the missionaries with his parents. However, when I called him, he hadn't seen the missionaries for a couple weeks. So I asked him to read some sections of the Book of Mormon and then I am calling him back this coming Saturday to see how it went. I am going to either get the missionaries back there for him because he really wants to learn more, or I am going to teach him on the phone with my companion. This two success, as I call them, have opened my eyes to just how amazing going about missionary work is. I could feel confidence and knowledge come to me that wouldn't have been there without the guidance of the Spirit. I love the RC and will look forward to every and any opportunity I have to go! I feel the Spirit there so strongly and I so happy to be given this chance to teach even before actually entering the field!!
My RC experience hasn't been the only highlight however! My week of missionaries to report are the first ones to be able to go to the Provo temple since it closed for repair and deep cleaning. I am so grateful to the opportunities to go through sessions of the temple and have found so much strength from my time there. I'm certainly happy for my dad and all the times we went together this summer. It is such a blessing to have temples and to receive the blessings of attendance. God really loves us and temples are a great showing of his love.
I have also grown to know of God's love for me personally to an even greater extent this last week. I have been trying so hard to learn the gospel to the extent to where I can teach while also trying to learn Spanish that I often find myself disappointed when I miss a goal or am finding a Spanish grammar concept super difficult. However, as I pray to Heavenly Father, I have felt his love for me and had some pretty amazing experiences. One that I would like to detail would be after a certain day where I was so put down with how things went that day. I said a prayer and fervently ask the Lord to help me get through this and continue with a good attitude. After I finished my prayer, a simple thought came to my mind, read your patriarchal blessing. Having received that distinct prompting I went and pulled it out. I then had one of the most uplifting event in my life. My patriarchal blessing had elements within that really helped me realize my potential. After prayerfully studying the blessing, I realized that I had no need to be discouraged. Since then, I have had opportunities to be discouraged but then I just remember what was in my blessing.
Well, I have to go but I wanted everyone to know how much I have appreciated your letters you sent me. Thanks so much for all the prayers and love.
Elder Ethan Janis