Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Little bit of this and that...

It’s kind of painful to watch the different ways in which Satan tries to tear people down when they find something good. And true.

A family we’ve been teaching --- or trying to teach ----has had their life go absolutely nuts ever since meeting us. And in ways that we can’t really help with. We’re hoping to set up an appointment for this week because they still want to meet with us but life really wont let them right now. He’s been getting surgeries and her son got mad at his dad on the other side of the state and never wants to talk to him again so she’s had to be on the phone with lawyers and counselors and things. The latest is that she’s had to go to court to see if they can’t clean up the situation at all. 

We’re looking forward to being able to meet with a lot of people this week. It should be an awesome week.

OH!!!!! And I have been meaning to write about Chris!!!!! Sister Bruner and I met a guy named Chris in the Elder’s area a while back. He faced some real challenges when it came to baptism and had set the goal like 3 or 4 times. With a date! He said that it was weird that we stopped by. That he had “Just been thinking about going back to church”. We told him that we were his wake up call. That he needed to go back to church and he needed to track down the elders. Apparently he did!!!!!! Our Zone leaders let me know that he got baptized  a couple of weeks ago!!!! I was so happy!!!!!!!!! I loved him!!!!!

I guess you all probably figured out that I’m not leaving Liberty Lake unless it’s for Nauvoo.  Sister Salisbury and I are staying together!!! Yeah! Our District it getting rocked though. Two elders have gone home and we’re losing our district leader.  Or rather, I’m losing my district leader. (He’s going to be a zone leader of another Zone). Elder Bertoch has been my district leader my entire winter assignment minus two weeks. It’s going to be very weird to serve with out him and very hard to warm up to a new district leader.  I have a hard time warming up to people. This transfer is going to stretch me. I need to learn to trust people and I need to learn to do it in a short amount of time. It’s probably exactly what I need. It’ll be fine. We’re getting three new elders! Elder Trowbridge is stuck with us. Another weird thing will be being the oldest in the district. I will have been in the Liberty Lake District for 6 months, longer than anybody. I love it here. I love the people, I love the Gospel. I love the wards. I love this work!


It’s a short one today.


Love you all.

Sister Bailey.



After the trial of your faith, Weak thing shall be made strong.

That’s a promise. But it is only realized after all the hard stuff.

"So much for being Miserly" (Rachel Bailey)

This week was good. We found 2 people who seemed really ready to be taught. One was the easiest tracting experience ever. She knew an old guy once who was a member and he use to bring her “stuff to read” like the Ensign. When we asked if it would be okay if we came back and talk to her about the restoration and the hope the gospel brings us she was like “yeah that’d be so great!” With the response we usually get in Liberty Lake at a door step we were almost taken a back. It took a couple seconds to gather our thoughts and set up an appointment. The other contact loves baseball. We met him on one of the most fantastic days Liberty Lake has ever seen! The sun was shining and we had left our coats in the car because it had gotten so warm. He’s going out of town, but we’re excited to teach him when he gets back. He’s getting back around the first week of March and has a Book of Mormon that should keep him busy until then. We’re also hoping to see one of the families we’ve been teaching again. They’re back from Seattle.
We just heard from one of a our members that one of our investigators who refuses to be baptized “yet” is also refusing to read and pray because she already knows it’s true. That was frustrating.
We fasted this past Sunday with a family we’ve been helping become active in the church again. They fasted in order to “know where they need to be”. I know that if they were truly fasting for the right reasons that they will receive an answer. They just need to be willing to act on whatever answer they receive. And be ready to face the challenges to follow. It wont be easy, but it will be worth it. Eternity is hard. It’s AFTER the hardness that we see results. It’s just like anything else in life. Running is hard when you first start, but it’s not until you get past all the hardness that you get to see all the positives that come from it. We’re all holding our breath. Mostly we’re praying.
Sister Salisbury is still great.
Eric Sande is still the best. I love Sundays because no matter how the week goes, on Sunday I get to take the sacrament and I get to see Eric and be reminded of the good this gospel brings me and all those who have the courage and strength to stand against the Hell fire that tries to keep us from it. I have been thinking a lot about that lately. Those who have courage and those who don’t.  It’s our own stubbornness or fear that damns us really. It’s made me think about the spirit world a lot. Death doesn’t change who we are and I don’t think the resurrection does either. I think people will continue to think that their way was and is the right way forever. Those who feel sorry for the latter day saints here will feel sorry for the latter days saints in the world to come. They will still feel like we re foolish and still have a very small understanding of eternal things because that is what they are comfortable with. During the apostasy it seems like Satan had people re-write the “rules” for God. Man started to re-write how things work and expect[ed] God (and everyone else for that matter) to follow those “rules” that they had laid out. There really is One God, One Faith, and One baptism. There is God’s way and all other ways. If you choose another way than you choose another way but that doesn’t make it God’s way. He will let you do it. He will love you anyway. But it is not His way.
Something that President Baker said to us at a zone conference was “We don’t get what we deserve, we get what we ask for”
I have changed it this week to “We don’t get what we deserve, we get what we want” If you want to try eternity another way, that you will, if you want eternity God’s way than that is the way you will take. How does one differentiate between God’s way, man's way and their own way? Prayer. If you want to know what God want’s you to do, then ask Him! Don’t try to figure it out on your own or by the word  of man.
The Gospel is such a simple thing. I don’t know why people try to make it so abstract.
       This Sunday was really hard for me. I hit a brick wall. In one of our wards our gospel principles teacher is absolutely crazy. I don’t feel comfortable bringing investigators to his class. He teaches false doctrine, he tries to  complicate everything, he’s offensive, and he’s sarcastic to the point that it drives the spirit away. He talks fairly openly about experiences in the temple and sometimes quotes things said in the temple. I felt sick to my stomach after this past class. I really felt like I was going to puke. I left and went into the bathroom and cried. I prayed. I prayed so hard. I needed to know that He was in charge of all of this, I needed hope and support. I needed joy, not peace, not comfort, I needed joy right in the midst of confusion and loneliness. It was raining. As we set out to tract I was still shaking off the feeling of lividity (I just made up that word I think)  from the gospel principles teacher. I mulled things over. I began to see my choice. I was in the position I was in. I could chose to be happy or I could choose to stay where I was. Either way I was tracting for the next two hours in the rain. So the question was, happily or miserly? Happily. It was hard but the Lord blessed me with a song to hum, “There is sunshine in my soul”. With every note I hummed my mood lightened and my smile widened. And I know it was a blessing from the Lord because I haven’t heard or thought of that song in ages. It reminded me of the choices before me. It reminded me of why I am a missionary. It reminded me that no matter what had happened in my day, good or bad, the people, the children of God that I was going to testify to in the next two hours deserved so much more than a miser on their doorstep. Whether they liked it or not a representative of Jesus Christ was going to knock on their door. And unbeknownst to them it would be way better than the alternative --- A hungry, cold and wet 22 year old miser.
I know this gospel is true and I know the Lord Loves his children.

Sister Bailey.

Friday, February 12, 2010

JOY to the world, The gospel is true

So lots of snow in D.C. I hear? Everyone keeps trying to strike up conversations about the snow storms back home. Member and not member alike. I still can’t find a way to bridge that to the gospel. The best I’ve come up with is “Yeah, while we serve our missions we actually don’t watch the news or listen to the radio so we can be more focused on our work, which is the most important work in the world. Would it be important for you to…know whether God had called a prophet in our day?” Or any other question that focuses on more eternal things than the weather. Lindsey must be loving it! Being a senior in high school she doesn’t make up any of her snow days!
     It happened. One of our investigators moved. She’s in the Elders area now (Elder Denson and Elder Freckleton). She had disappeared for a while and then she called us yesterday so that we could call in the troops to help her get her stuff out of her apartment. We called the elders and told them about her. They should be meeting her today actually. Elders D & F are fantastic elders. It has been so good to have them be the ones to take our investigators. We know that they will be taken care of and be able to partake in the blessings of baptism.
     We are still doing a lot of finding, tracting, contacting etc. We taught a woman we tracted into this past week. She’s neat. She’s studying with us and the Buddhists. She wants us to meet with her daughter who has no religious background at all but believes there is a God and her husband, who use to be a Catholic, but doesn’t practice it anymore because he doesn’t believe everything is in the Bible. We’re excited to meet them. The Harrisons are back in town also and we are excited to start seeing them again. We are looking forward to meeting and teaching a woman that the Elders found on our last blitz. We’re meeting her tomorrow hopefully. Her family seemed fantastic and the elders said that she seemed anxious to have us back. We’re praying for her.
Liberty Lake is still truckin’ along.
     There were also women who are not members in relief society this Sunday. One is a long time attender whose husband is a member and one is Sister Lothian (our former investigator who is now being taught by the elders and can’t wait to be baptized). The other three can’t be counted as people we’re teaching yet, but they are fantastic and have been coming for the past two Sundays. Hopefully they will become investigators shortly. We need to get a hold of their friends who are members and find out what’s going on.
     Eric Sande is still the best. The thing about him is that he’s a strength to everyone! He’s the best and people notice it. People in the ward look up to him, the youth, the adults, myself. He is a beacon for all of us. You can see his testimony shine through his eyes.
     We are keeping our hopes high for February.
     The men in Liberty Lake are hard hearted and stiff-necked. They get mad at their wives for meeting with us and it’s been kind of frustrating. One of our investigators has basically stalled out because her husband wont let her come to church. A former investigator is planning on one day showing up to church whenever her husband decides to come with her. He refuses. It’s hard to watch both someone’s agency and, in a sense their eternity, be thwarted by someone they love.
     I know this gospel is true. I know that there is a plan for us put together by a loving Father in heaven and that that plan is centered on Jesus Christ and our agency. Following the commandments puts us in a position to use   that agency to obtain a fullness of joy. That fullness of joy cannot be had by any other means.
     We went to the temple today. It was awesome. I love the temple. I had this epiphany too! But as I tried to explain it to Sister Salisbury when I got the chance. I couldn’t really put it into words. It was a little disappointing. I am looking forward to going back and learning more. I love the temple. There is no place like it on earth. It should be and can be everyone’s goal.

Sister Bailey.


p.s. I just got a call from Our investigator who moved into the elders area. I cannot even begin to describe the joy that was pouring out of the phone. The move went SO WELL. She was so impressed with the men that showed up to help her (our Elders quorum). She said, "Sister Bailey, I have never seen so many people work so hard and be so happy doing it!!  Are all those guys with you?" I got so tell her that yes, all those guys are "with us". They are each members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and they are happy serving because they are blessed by the gospel. The gospel makes you happy.

I know that some of you may not fully understand, but that phone call was the sugar on top of missionary work. The gospel makes us happy. It gives us eternity. I love it! I love this work! Her joy is mine.

Thank you Mica Peak's Elders Quorum.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Least

Sister Salisbury is still great. She is still such a light! The wards are still loving her. We have high hopes for February. We are really excited about one of the new investigators that we found last week. She loves the gospel. She’s said yes to baptism twice already (we just have to get her a date to work towards), she’s praying everyday both morning and night, reading all her assignments, and she loves the Book o f Mormon and the gospel. She says it all makes so much sense. She has felt the spirit very strongly in her life and now that she knows how to identify what it is, she is very excited. She has a 5 year old boy. She is facing really hard things right now. It has become necessary for her to move and very quickly. She’s frantically searching for a new place. Her son is a cancer survivor and has his last check up to make sure he is still in remission. She has been so prepared to receive the gospel. We are hoping that she will move somewhere in the area but are ready to give her to what ever missionaries who will be teaching her if that is the case. We will miss her though! She has been so great.
We are still doing a lot of finding, tracting, contacting etc. I was actually just talking to my mission president’s wife about tracting. There is a little positive response, but I don’t think that we get a lot of baptisms from tracting, we get baptisms because of tracting. Meaning that when the Lord sees that we are really willing to work in order to find work, he will bless us and those we serve with. And besides, you meet some of the most interesting people! While tracting this week we ran into a woman who had no desire to listen to us at all. All I could think about as she turned us down was to offer service. Suddenly the words were spilling out of my mouth. She thought it was so sweet. We helped her daughter clean her room and then went back the next day to help her organize her pantry. She was so happy to see us. For now, she is a wonderful service opportunity and maybe in a year or so she will be a wonderful investigator. She’s the missionary’s new best friend.
I watched Eric Sande turn pink all through church on Sunday as he received compliment after compliment on his talk he gave. I loved it. I love missionary work. Sometimes it fills me up so much with joy I nearly have to nail my feet to the ground just to keep from hugging everyone in my reach; male, female, young, old; and telling them how wonderful the gospel is.
This past Sunday in church was fantastic! The spirit was so strong. It was on compassionate service. Brother Adkins’ (a member in the ward) talk really stuck with me. He centered his talk around the verse from the new testament where Christ talks about doing things “unto the least of these” and how when we serve “the least of these” we serve Him. He posed the question of, “Who is 'the least of these' ". He went on to talk about how each of us in this life take a turn being one of the least and shared a specific experience of his when he was “one of the least”. He bore his testimony of those who reached out to pull him up again and served with all their might and love in order to help him. He expressed the gratitude he has felt years later as he looks back for all those efforts that, at the time, may not have been appreciated. He taught that as we listen to the spirit and don’t suppress any generous thought, acting on all those things that “inviteth and inticeth to do good” that we can truly serve those who need us most, even when they may not think, or even we may not think they need it most. It made me reflect back on moments in my life when I have been the least, when I have taken my turn. It brought a smile to my face and a peace in my heart to remember all who labored on my behalf and all who ministered unto me in His place. I love you all. May God be with you.
Sister Bailey.