Can I just tell you how lucky I feel to be here? I don't know why I got so blessed to have a mission be in Heavenly Father's plan for me, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Some nights when I lay in bed I get to ponder about the unique nature I have to be serving a mission; especially here in this area in the cradle where the history of the restoration took place, walking streets Joseph Smith walked, and even just serving at a time where the world is so dark so there is so much receptivity. People are really looking for something to bring them happiness. And it just so happens that the message I get to share can! Yes. Ha ha. I love telling people about how it’s made me happier. It’s a deeper happiness than eating a café rio salad or the rattley white roller coaster at lagoon. I didn’t even understand it until I got out here. But seeing the happiness develop in people who start living the gospel principles proves that this is really the way to gain happiness in this life and the life to come: To live the principles of the gospel. People complicate them way more than they are. Faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. The more and more I grow in my testimony of the Savior and this gospel, the happier I have been. I’m happier right now than ever. So I know it’s because of that. It’s been a great lesson to learn, that there really is no other way to gain happiness than getting to know Jesus Christ and living His gospel. I love this quote in PMG. It says, “These are not just steps to experience once in our lives; rather when repeated throughout life these principles become an increasingly rewarding pattern of living that will bring peace of conscience and enable [us] Heavenly Father’s children to return to His presence.” I just love that so much. It is a pattern of living. I’m just like our investigators, on this journey, trying to live it the best I can.
Yesterday was wonderful because Sister Hacking and my fast and prayers were being answered by Branch members. We fasted for Chad, that investigator I wrote about last week. He is having the hardest time accepting Jesus Christ as his “Savior” and not just a man who performed miracles. He explained that he can’t pray about the BOM yet because in the promise in Moroni 10:5 says to “ask with real intent, having faith in Christ”… he explained he has to first develop faith in Christ. He’s going to read the BOM with the challenge President Bulloch gave us missionaries because it has strengthened both mine and Sister Hacking’s testimonies of Christ and the Atonement being real and a necessary part of the plan. So, hopefully it will do the same for him. But what was really neat was that we fasted for him to start to gain a testimony of that. And you know how there is usually a theme during fast and testimony meetings? Well it seemed like it was on the Atonement. EVERY branch member bore testimony of how they have this relationship with Jesus Christ and how they came to have that. Sister Hacking and I were just in aw. Heavenly Father really does hear our prayers and recognizes our efforts. I hope it helped Chad.
I have more to say, but time is up!
We have such great investigators—Lisa, Vatsav, Praveen, Joey, Jimmy, Dah, and the list goes on! Joey and Jimmy are still on for their baptism (march 27th). I wish I could tell you about each of them because there are so many good spiritual experiences with all of them. I love this. I’ll write home.
I love each and every one of you!
Love, Sister Zwick
P.s.I just found out Brigham Young's family lived in Lansing (in the Elder's area) and his Mom's grave stone is ten minutes away. His home ward would've been the Ithaca ward! So cool!