Monday, April 22, 2013

A Lot of Ups and Downs

Hey, how's it going?

Well, it's pretty much the same in English and Russian (this is Drew's response to the question how watching General Conference in Russian compared to watching it in English), if they tell a story about something obscure then I might not know some of the details, but I get them from the context. The only bad part about watching it in Russian is the talks, especially the stories lose all of their humor and emotion.

This week was pretty good. We had a lot of ups and downs with investigators. They make us rejoice one day then pull our hair out the next.

P did really well and finally quit smoking, he has already been a whole week without smoking. Also, he finished the Book of Mormon. But he is going through a really tough time right now, because one of his friends committed suicide. And it put him in a really tough emotional state. Plus, we were going to do a baptismal interview with him on Saturday, but he got called into work. Then we were going to do it Sunday, but he got sick and didn't make it to that or to church. So we don't really know exactly what will happen this week with him. Obviously we are hoping and praying for the best.

We had a lesson with M this week. And we definitely agree with Mom and talked to him about that, how it won't be any easier to make that decision even after he gets the job. When we were studying and planning for the lesson I had a really interesting idea come to me about what we should teach, that was very unlike anything I have ever done in a lesson before. We prepared a lesson about damnation and what that word means. The Bible Dictionary gives some really good definitions about what it means. And we emphasized to him how one of the meanings is that your progress is stopped and that's why there are so many scriptures that say if you are not baptized you will be damned. Then we also talked about where much is given much is required, and made it clear that he may think he is a member but he isn't because he hasn't made that covenant. We also touched on sins of commission and sins of omission emphasizing that choosing not to be baptized is also a sin. Needless to say it was quite the interesting lesson and it went great. With the relationship that we already had we were able to present it in a way where he understood everything, but still felt our love and didn't get offended by anything that we said. He is making progress I think. We'll see what happens. It was just interesting how the Spirit prompted us to talk about this stuff, when it was really uncharacteristic of both Elder Batson and me.

We were also able to set a baptismal "goal" with V this week who is making good progress and isn't confident that he has received an answer yet, but is moving along nicely and changing a lot.

President and the assistants came out this weekend. I got to work a day with Elder McKay which was sweet. It's been really fun to go on exchanges with these missionaries that I had done exchanges with as an assistant, and now they are in leadership positions and you can see how much they have grown.

No other serious news or progress about any other investigators.

Ok well I guess that is it. Time has been flying by and I'm very grateful that we have a good little core of investigators to work with, this is a really good time on the mission. Have a good week. Love you Mom.

Elder Topham