Hello from California!
This week was Week 6 of the transfer and there is a culture in our mission to expect miracles, and that expectation was definitely met!
After a lesson with the Jablonowski family, we were driving back to our apartment and decided to drive the long way home. As we were driving, we saw a couple taking a night walk. We pulled a little bit in front of them and jumped out the car super fast. We walked up to them and asked if they would like a gift, a Book of Mormon. They quickly said yes and we shared with them 3 Nephi 11! The conversation was pretty quick but they mentioned how they had been searching more for Jesus Christ. The Lord put us right where we needed to be that night to answer the prayers of others!
Another situation on another night was with a Jewish lady walking her dogs! We pulled up and jumped out and came right up to her offering her an copy. We got into a long conversation on Jesus Christ visiting ancient America and His ministry here. She was so interested in receiving answers to the questions she has always had about Mormon’s and our doctrine. She asked them all and we gave her the answers! She was most surprised at the fact we drive cars… I guess she got us confused with Amish people. It is amazing what happens when you take the time to seek out those ready to receive the gospel!
The focus of the transfer has been using the Book of Mormon in every situation and have given 31 out! We are so blessed to have the word of God flowing into our lives with the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and modern revelation from authorized prophets and apostles.
Elder Peterson in our district had to go home early from his mission on Friday… He had some medical and other issues that President Felix saw it best for him to have an early release. Elder Shumway joined Elder Kelly and I for 4 days until transfer day! It was really nice because we got to have to use the car for 4 days straight rather than switching off every other day, haha.
We had an awesome experience with one of their potential investigators, Ron the cowboy.
Ron has 6 burros and 3 horses in his backyard that he let us go feed and pet. They let us get up real close to them and everything! One of the horses started to eat Elder Kelly’s shirt which he didn’t enjoy too much. Ron’s son died 12 years ago from a drunk driver and the experience is still pretty fresh to Ron. As we were talking we got to bring up the resurrection from the Plan of Salvation. We testified of the truth that he will see his son again one day and how there are covenants that can made here on Earth to bind families together for all eternity. The Spirit was very strong in that moment and it was a major break through for Ron’s conversion!
Update on Jenne Bryce! She committed to be baptized! She shared with us this week in her lesson that she has been smoking for 81 years of her life!!! She doesn’t have any medical issues from it so at first she didn’t see why it was so bad. We explained the blessings of the Word of Wisdom and how we can receive the Spirit stronger and receive answers of the questions we have for God. This week she quit cold turkey from smoking! She said how each time she had a temptation she would say a prayer and read the Book of Mormon for strength. It is so powerful to witness one of God’s children start to recognize and feel His strength within the gospel!
To finish off this email I came across a great quote from our prophet Thomas S. Monson. “We become examples of the believers by living the gospel of Jesus Christ in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith and in purity. As we do so, our light will shine for others to see.” As we press on in our mortal life, our actions mean everything. It is those actions that either bring us closer to God or farther, there is no neutral ground. My challenge to everyone reading this is to reflect on your life and select one thing that is keeping you from feeling God’s love more fully. After you select it, write on a Post-it note or put it into your phone and work on eliminating that thing as a whole. I promise you that the through Christ Atonement, you can overcome all things that you yield up to God! We can improve little by little each day walking in total faith and trust.
Transfer results! I will be staying in Thousand Oaks 3rd ward with Elder Kelly for another 6 weeks! He is my first companion to have for 2 transfers. I will still be a district leader and within our district we are getting 3 new missionaries! Cant wait for all the great things that lie ahead!
Pictures! Horses from Ron, Elder Kelly and I found a swing, and our tri-pan!
Till next week!
Elder Austin Morgan
2455 Vista Wood Cir
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362