My driver's liscence turned up this week! . . . Now if La hermana o El Preisdente Mendoza give me another chance to drive, I'll be able to take it.
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This week has been somewhat tough, but also has been full of great spiritual experiences. President Mendoza has taught us that there are three factors that affect someone's decision to accept the Restored Gospel: their agency, the quality of our teaching (which includes a lot, such as personal study and worthiness of the Spirit), and opposition from the enemy of all righteousness. My companion and I are doing everything we can to have the best quality of teaching, but our enemy is also doing everything he can.
Unfortunately, everyone we were teaching has used their agency to make decisions that cause the to leave our teaching pool. (Luis, Amner, and Axel, the boys from the family of five we found a few weeks ago, will be baptized soon, but in a different area—they moved. Everyone else stopped progressing or asked us not to come back.)
But my companion and I haven’t lost hope, and the Lord has blessed us. This week we have found several of His chosen, prepared children.
One day we were tracting when we saw a house with three huge "holy death" statues in front. ["Holy Death" is depicted as a skeleton in a robe. Her worshippers typically come from the criminal element in Mexico. -- eds.] Remembering that President Mendoza has told us to knock on every door, we ignored our fear and knocked. A young man answered, and didn't let us in, but let us teach him on his doorstep. When we came to our return appointment the following day, he wasn’t there, but we met his mom and sister, who invited us in. We felt inspired and changed the first lesson to focus on baptism. At the end, we challenged them, and they accepted baptismal dates in the first lesson! In our return appointments, I continue to be amazed by their willingness to learn and to follow the Savior.
Another day we had prayed about which street to tract and felt prompted to knock all the doors of Rio Panuco. Several of the people in that street let us in, and we found many great people, but one in particular. Her name is Karla. The first time we knocked, no one answered, we knocked again, but once again nothing, so we started walking away when we heard the door open and came back quickly. We met Karla, a 24-year-old who lives with her husband and baby son. She invited us into her patio, and we began to teach her the first lesson.
It was a powerful lesson. She told us that she has attended several churches, but that none of them seem to be completely true. When we taught about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon, she listened carefully, but expressed a lot of doubt. But when we talked about prayer and the Holy Ghost, sharing our testimonies, her doubt seemed to lesson and her interest increase.
She then told us something very special. She said that she had been praying that God would send her someone to guide her to the right path for her life. In that moment, I felt the Spirit very strongly. I told her that we had felt inspired to tract her street that day, and that the Lord had sent us there to find her. I testified of our message, and invited her to pray and ask for herself. Her eyes were watery and my own cheeks were wet as I finished. Tomorrow we have our second lesson with her. I have faith that she will have read and prayed and received an answer.
I think I have mentioned before that here in Mexico, one often hears slow-moving cars with loudspeakers announcing that the driver buys or sells certain products. Yesterday [Sunday], the peace of the sacrament was interrupted by the sound of a truck driving slowly past, announcing that he was buying old metal and broken-down appliances.
At first, I was annoyed at the interruption. But then I began to think about the situation.
For most people, there is absolutely nothing of value in old rusty scraps of metal and refrigerators that no longer cool or washing machines that no longer wash. But someone sees in them enough worth to strap a loud speaker to his car, and spend the time and gas driving through the streets offering to spend his own money to buy them.
We are all like those scraps of metal. To most, it seems like we have no purpose -- there is nothing of worth in us. But there is someone who sees us differently, Someone who sees in us enough worth to take our sins and weaknesses upon Himself, freely paying with His own blood to ransom us. He did this so that he could take us and pass us through the refiner's fire and make us into something new, something wonderful.
Our Savior bought us all with an expensive price, in order to make us clean and new. I know that He truly lives and loves us all.