Monday, September 15, 2014

Transfer 1, Week 3


It's been a pretty decent week.

I'm a little disappointed that not many of our investigators showed up to church. Don't they understand that church helps them build a relationship with God?

Last week, my companion and I took a selfie at the temple in Brampton, Ontario. It's literally right next to the chapel that we attend on Sundays. We also had Zone Conference for the missionaries and Stake Conference for all the members around here. I'll probably write a bit about those next week.

There's this investigator we've been teaching. Her name's Sobriety and she's from Guyana. She flagged us down, literally from a 5th-story balcony as we were walking past her building. Her life's a bit of a struggle. Her husband, Rohan, has cancer, arthritis, diabetes, and is mostly deaf. (No, they don't know ASL - I wish...) They came to Canada so that he could get chemotherapy. She's like the perfect housewife - she works very hard and keeps the house spotless. The thing is... she can't read.

So, the past two weeks, we've been teaching her English as a Second Language (ESL) on top of sharing brief messages about Jesus Christ.

Last week, we were struggling to get through the alphabet. We were teaching her the sounds for each letter, and we could barely make it from A to F. Then, out of nowhere, on Tuesday she could read! It was amazing! My companion and I just looked at each other, mouths open. Somehow, we got from barely being able to make out the sounds for each letter to being able to read nice, complicated sentences like "You can know for yourself that these things are true by asking your Heavenly Father in prayer." She could actually read that. Slowly, of course, but she could make sense of it. Whoa.

She later related to us that over the weekend, when her son and husband were out of the house, she knelt down in prayer on her balcony. She asked God sincerely, to the point of tears, for help in learning to read. After that experience, she could read. We asked her if she'd ever been able to read before. She responded in the negative. Wow.

It reminds me of some scripture verses I've been sharing a lot recently, found in the Book of Mormon. In Alma 7:11-13:

"And [Christ] shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people,

And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.

Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me."

From these verses, we understand that Christ's Atonement, or sacrifice, covers a lot more than just sin. A lot of times, we tend to think of it as just being a tool to allow us to repent of our sins. However, it covers all your pains, sicknesses, feelings of regret, guilt, or shame, that brief feeling that hurts you when someone says something that you don't appreciate, and really just about anything.

It even covers all the little mistakes you make when you're trying to learn something. Through Christ's Atonement, you can call down the powers of Heaven to help you improve at something, or in learning something new. That's what Sobriety did this week, and it was amazing.

Christ knew of these prophesies when he ministered among the Jews. He knew that he'd feel all these pains for every single person that ever walked the earth, was walking the earth, or would walk the earth. And he still made that sacrifice for us, because he loves us.

I know that He lives.

-Elder Crye

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