Monday, August 7, 2017

August 7, 2017 Come to Know Him

Hey everyone!

We had another great week! Each week just seems to be flying by.

I love Lawrence's face in this picture! He's a sweet kid!

We were able to drive all the way from Alexandria out to Warrenton for Lawrence’s baptism last week! It was a special day! Elder Jones and I enjoyed teaching him for the 3 months that we were together. Whenever we taught him, we would play basketball in the driveway with him, and teach him at the same time. Every few minutes we take a break from shooting hoops and teach him some more. Over the course of our basketball lessons with him we covered all of the missionary discussions and baptismal interview questions. As time went on, he understood and grasped everything pretty well! His family has had their fair share of trials this year, but amidst it all, he and

Elder Smith, Elder Gleed, myself, and Elder Jones 
with Lawrence prior to his baptism!

his two older sisters and his mother eventually started coming back to church. (His Mom and sisters have been members of the church for a while, but Lawrence wasn't old enough to be baptized when his family joined the church years ago). At the baptism, I gave a brief talk about the Holy Ghost and Elder Jones spoke on baptism. It was a great evening, being there to congratulate him and support him and his family. It was fun seeing many of the awesome members that I grew to love in Warrenton. It feels like a family in that ward. (Shout out to Sister Goss! Thanks for the delicious homemade bread! I ate a bunch of it on the long drive back to Alexandria). Lawrence just turned 12, so he will be receiving the priesthood soon and be ordained a deacon!

Back in our area, Christian and Stephanie will be getting baptized this week! It's has been so fun

Here's our next door neighbor, Kadiatu! She's one of the nicest ladies ever! 
It was a cool experience meeting her, and she's been to church every week
 for the past month! She loves coming and she's so happy to
serve others by giving our investigator Peter rides to church

teaching them ever since I got transferred into this ward. I actually taught them a couple times prior to serving in this ward, when I used to come on exchanges here. So I've known them for a while and it's cool to see how much they've grown and how excited they are for this week! Christian turns 12 this week as well, so he will be preparing to get the Aaronic priesthood and start passing the sacrament at church.

Exchange with Elder Norton this week. He is one of the Zone Leaders
 now so he got to come on exchange here last week. We were in the MTC 
together (19 months ago?!) It was fun being with him for a day!
We are with a couple of kids in this picture
who love seeing us when we visit their parents.

All week long, we weren't able to get in contact with our investigator Otelia who came to church with us last Sunday. So yesterday at church we weren't expecting her to come, but all of the sudden she walked in! She's had a busy week moving to a new place nearby and has had a lot going on, but she told us she knew she needed to come to church again. She is so in tune with the spirit and feels it so much at church. She has had a lot of struggles in her life, especially the last couple of years with a lot of death in her family, but she has recognized the peace and the hope that the gospel has started to bring into her life in just the past few weeks that we have been teaching her. She's excited to come and watch Christian and Stephanie's baptism later this week and is even more excited for her own baptism in the future.

We had one Zone Conference this past week, and we have three this upcoming week. So it's going to be a busy week!

Elder Judkins mother took this picture of us
right before they took him away!

This transfer our mission has been focused on utilizing the Book of Mormon more effectively and more often in all aspects of our work. Whether it be in finding, teaching, working with members, or our own personal study, we have a big emphasis this month on the Book of Mormon. In Preach My Gospel Chapter 5 I love what it says about the Book of Mormon. Under the section "The Book of Mormon Testifies of Christ" it says that "A central purpose of the Book of Mormon is to convince all people that Jesus is the Christ (see title page of the Book of Mormon). It testifies of Christ by affirming the reality of His life, mission, and power. It teaches true doctrine concerning the Atonement--the foundation for the plan of salvation.... Those who know little or nothing about the Savior will come to know Him by reading, pondering, and praying about the Book of Mormon."
I love how it doesn't just say those who read, ponder, and pray about the Book of Mormon will come to know about the Savior. Instead, we are promised that we will come to know him as we read it, on a personal level. It's one thing to learn about Jesus Christ, but coming to know him is a whole different story. I'm grateful for the Book of Mormon, and for all that it has taught me about the life, mission, and power of Jesus Christ. But more importantly I am grateful for the chance I've had to continue come to know Him, each time I study and apply the things I learn.

I love you all so much! I hope you have a great week!

Elder Jeremy Duvall
Washington DC South Mission

 I love this picture of the temple!

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