We've still been teaching the Depuy's. They came to church again this Sunday and enjoyed fast and testimony meeting. In our lesson, we watched the conference talk by Elder Bednar titled "Come and See" which is a great talk geared towards nonmembers.
We also taught Lawrence twice this week! He's such an awesome kid! We're just working on helping the family get back to church, because that's the only thing keeping him from progressing towards baptism.
The first Saturday of every month our mission does a "car fast" where we go without using our car for the whole day. This saves the mission miles, helps us get more involved with members, and also helps us to get outside more and walk around. This is a bit difficult considering our ward is the largest in the mission, but it all worked out great! We enjoyed getting rides to a bunch of different places with different members of the ward.
Another sunset on one of the many farms
We had another exchange this week with one of the District leaders and his companion. I always enjoy doing exchanges! It's fun to interact with other missionaries and learn from one another as we go out proselyting and serving. Elder Jones and I have also been working on getting the priests in the ward to come out with us, to help them have positive missionary experiences, motivating them to continue preparing for their own missions. That's been pretty fun!
We were able to teach a lesson to a recent convert couple that just moved into our ward a couple weeks ago. They joined the church a couple years ago and are preparing to get endowed and sealed in the temple in a few months. We were able to teach them a lesson about the importance of having daily spiritual experiences There's a video titled "Daily Bread: Pattern" which is 1 of 3 videos by Elder Christofferson about this topic. In the video, he describes how the Lord created us in a way which requires us to have daily physical sustenance, food and water. He then describes how the need for daily spiritual sustenance is just as strong. The children of Israel coming out of Egypt lived off of manna for about 40 years, and the manna was provided by God, which taught them the importance of remembering Him. We can remember Jesus Christ every day as we pray and read the scriptures. Just like we can't eat one big meal and expect to be filled for the whole week or month, we can't have one big spiritual experience and then neglect to nourish ourselves spiritually throughout the week and month. It's something we need daily! These simple acts of faith will give us the spiritual sustenance we need to go throughout our lives. I know that as this couple does the little daily things that feed their spirits, that they'll be prepared to make it to the temple in a couple months!
Since today is March 6th, that marks 14 months since I entered the MTC! Where does time go?! In my Missionary Handbook that I carry around in my pocket everyday, I have written down a reminder to myself to "Work hard, make the most of every day, and have no regrets." I'm grateful for this reminder to myself. Although sometimes the days can get hard, this experience here won't last forever and I need to make the most of every day. I've recently thought about how it's human nature to always be thinking about the future (or dwelling on the past). Too often we will be looking forward to and waiting for what's next in our lives. If we spend so much time worrying about the future, we might fail to fully enjoy and cherish the here and now. At some point in the past, we all looked forward to where we are at, right now, and we need to remember that. For me, I've looked forward to my mission for my entire life leading up to it. So I can't afford to not be grateful and enjoy everyday, even when it gets difficult. No matter what stage of life we are in now, we've dreamt about and been excited for where we are today. So rather than constantly looking into the future, worrying about what the next step is, make the most of today and find joy in your current circumstances, whatever they may be! Look for the Lord's hand, because it's always there. Even if it's hard to find, He's there.
I love you all! Hope you have a great week!
Elder Jeremy Duvall
Washington DC South Mission