Monday, December 15, 2014

The Elect are prepared and waiting

Hey family!
This past week has been incredible! We have recently fasted as a mission, with the wards included, for baptisms. That we might be able to find the elect and baptized 100 people this month. Its been incredible to see all the miracles that are coming as we all put our faith into one large bucket that is dispensed out to the area of this mission. People are finding their way to the truth! That is exactly what it is. Plain truth that makes complete sense. That is what JJ and LaVaughnda said the last time we met with them for a lesson.
"The truth that was brought back by Joseph Smith completes and perfects everything. There is so much more in the Mormon church than any other church. All the other churches compared to the truth is like a snack compared to a thanksgiving dinner." It truly has been incredible to see their progression as they continue to learn more. Ever since the beginning of meeting with JJ and LaVaughnda I've been impressed with how much they knew. They are well versed in the bible and have a strong relationship with God. I think there is a word for that..... ELECT!! It's been amazing.
Saturday morning the alarm goes off. And Boom! I'm out of bed ready to take on the world. The thought that was going through my head was, " we have an exciting day ahead of us and it's got to be perfect!" All day Elder Aguirre and I prepared everything. Made sure everything was set up and the font was filled. Funny thing about that actually. When we were filling the font we had to get a huge pot from the kitchen and fill it will hot water to fill the font. So we were carrying this huge bucket of water down the hallways to the font because it wasn't going to be filled in time. Luckily that ended up working out and the everything was ready.
The service started out great and the talk was even better. Then it was time for the baptism and as we stood up the nerves kind of set in but it wasn't really nerves. It was excitement. As we approached the doors you could just feel the Spirit growing stronger and stronger. Elder Aguirre stepped into the font first and then JJ followed. Elder Aguirre raised his hand and the prayer was uttered. Everything seemed to go in slow motion. Where for a split second I could feel the love that our Heavenly Father has for these two children of His. I've been with them as they overcame challenges and prepared themselves. All this hard work, I felt like I could feel their relief, or how everything that they had done was worth every second. Now it was my turn to go down. I went down into the font and looked at the crowd, smiled, then guided LaVaughnda down. As she was walking across to get into position she looked at her son Henry. As I thought about it she really is doing this not only for her but for her children. To give her son more than what she has. To give him that opportunity of enjoying this light and love that she felt there at that moment. She grabbed my arm, I uttered the prayer and it was done. At this moment of my mission I had not felt the Spirit so strong until that moment.
Miracles are continuing to happen around the world. Hearing from Cody Savage and other amazing missionary friends I can tell that the Lord is hastening His work. It's evident. I've never seen such prepared missionaries coming into the mission as I do now. I know that this is the Lord's work and that miracles do happen. That everything happens for a reason. I know that God loves us and is watching over us continually. I know that it is by putting the teaching of Jesus Christ to the test that we can know of these things. Not only does it bring purpose to our lives but peace and happiness. Moroni 10:32-33
Shoutout to my Main woman Brynn! Thanks for the delicious candy and the awesome tie. Its the best one i have! Thank you! You are having a boy this time! I am betting money on it! Sorry for kicking off the thing on your knee all those years ago and ruining your dress. Haha classic
I will be skyping at 11am our time so i think that is 12 for you guys? see you soon!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

JJ, LaVaughnda and Josh The Gospel is Amazing!


This past week has been great! We were able to have our Christmas party with the whole mission and it was awesome. I was able to see a lot of my old companions and the one elder from my MTC district. It's pretty funny because it's only Elder Peterson and I that will depart. I don't want to think about that though!

The work is going great in the YSA and Cascade Park wards! We have been working with JJ and LaVaughnda pretty much all this week as we prepared them for their baptism interview this weekend. It's been incredible to see their faith as they accept to live commandments and make commitments and change. They literally radiate the spirit. With every family there is one elect person that accepts the message because they have been prepared and that is JJ. Everything we taught him rang true and he can't put down the material we give him. He continues to amaze us with his faith. His wife Lavaughnda is also incredible! She knows that this is what will be the best thing for her family. She knows she needs it for her son and he little family.

The gospel it truly amazing. Everything about it just continues to blow my mind. Currently I am studying a lot of the general conference talks and one that we have been asked to study is why do we serve. It's been interesting to ponder on the reasoning behind why I serve. In the talk it mentions how we all serve for various reasons and he lists them from a lesser to a greater reason. The first is for an earthly reward, second, a good companionship or go co workers, third, fear of punishment, fourth, loyalty, fifth, hope for an eternal reward, and fifth is the pure love of Christ or charity. This really helps me to determine why I serve and or how I need to change. As we work our way to true discipleship the why behind our service works its way past any type of reward and is directly a result of our love for other individuals. 

Just today we had this awesome experience with our investigator Josh. He has been taught everything and is still stuggling on the faith side of things. He is so smart so it is hard for him. The last time we went over we left him with president uchtdorfs talk on receiving a testimony of truth and light and it was perfect! Josh loved the analogies that he used to describe the way we receive spiritual light. We keyed in on how we must be using the right tools to receive the answers we are looking for. With that in mind our member, Bro Brown, talked a little bit about how he had this question for about a year and he never quite figured it out until one day when boom! Everything makes complete sense. He then looked back and could see that he slowly had been prepared to receive this answer. I love that because that is how God works. He answers us according to our understanding until we can receive the complete truth. (2 Nephi 31:3) and as we continue to be diligent and show our desire to know God, he will continue to show us things until what once seemed hazy or dim becomes clear and apparent (D&C 50:24).

I know that this is true and that this is the work of the lord. It's incredible to see how many peoples live change for the sake of the gospel as they come to an understanding of who they really are. Everything that seems unobtainable is lost when we are indulged into the gospel. 
Love you guys!
E. Archibald 

  Elder Matthew Archibald
13608 NE 72nd St
Unit B 14
Vancouver, WA  98682