March 16, 2015

Hearts and MIracles

My mom asked me today why missionaries talk so much about miracles. I hadn't ever really thought about it before, but it's true, when missionaries write home, we write about miracles. I don't know if this is a conscious action or if it naturally happens because we are surrounded by so many each day.

When we talk about miracles, however, they are rarely grand acts that most people associate with the word miracle. For us, in all simplicity, a miracle is a change of heart.

This week, we saw a miracle in Keanu, our 15 year old young man who has been following the lessons for about six months. He told us that he prayed during school when he had a problem with his teachers and was disrespectful. He then said he was going to apologize... Can you see the miracle?... Six months ago, he didn't know how to pray, but this week, he not only said the words, but he prayed in faith to Heavenly Father for help.... He also opened up during the lesson and asked for advice on how he can better express his feelings and concerns to his parents. Later, during the closing prayer, he prayed for the courage to talk to his parents... Can you see the miracle?

Or we could tell you about Clarissa (name changed), a single mother of three children, who lived a rough life for many years with an abusive husband. She lives in a "home of welcoming" that belongs to a member in our secteur. The member set up a lesson with the missionaries and on March 28, Clarissa is going to be baptized because she has seen that a life with Jesus Christ at the center is a life of peace and happiness and she wants that life.

The least often recounted miracles, however, are those that missionaries experience within themselves.

It's not easy spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with a companion, but as missionaries, that is something we accept to do as part of our call. As you can imagine, habits and behaviors start to grate on nerves and tension can build. For a few weeks, I have the opportunity to spend almost all hours of every day with three companions. For the most part, it's a lot of fun and life is joyful. There are only some hard moments when I (pridefully stubborn and stubbornly prideful) want to do things my way, or not do them at all. This impedes the Spirit and the work does not progress forward... This week, I've felt the Lord working in my heart, to make it meek and lowly. It's hard and oh boy, does my pride put up a fight, but I am so grateful as He breaks it down, because as my nature is being changed to be more like Him, we are then able to go help others change their lives, through Him.

I would like to bear my testimony of the miracle of missionary work. Heavenly Father's hand works in the life of each one of His children, if we only could see how much. He loves His children and because He loves us, He gave His Son to die for us, so that through Him, we might live again. And it's possible for all of us, so let's let the Lord work mighty miracles in us. Today.

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