Monday, August 18, 2014

#58 August 18, 2014

Dearest Beloved People,

I think that one thing that I have been learning on my mission and continue to learn a lot is the power of setting good goals. About a week and a half ago we set 2 goals with our district leaders that would be implemented into our zone. One of those goals was that each companionship would have a new baptismal date every week. This has been a difficult thing for us as a zone, and it is super important, so we decided on a way that we could help the missionaries move forward. For us as a companionship, it really pushed us to want seek for those that are ready to hear the message of the Restoration, and then to present the message in such a way as to help them understand the importance of this sacred covenant and then invite them to act. We have been more bold and smarter in how we have worked. Goals make a difference.

This past week we have been able to meet some pretty cool people. We had a meeting with this pastor from Nigeria which was kinda crazy. We met this lady about two weeks ago who told us we should, so we sat down and had a discussion with him. He was such a great guy and a huge believer in Jesus Christ and does all that he can to follow promptings from the Holy Ghost -- so he is doing pretty good in my book. However, as we explained some of what we believed and listened to what he had to say, it was sad to see that his strong faith and testimony was rooted in an incomplete foundation. He had a ton of really good stuff, but there was just something missing in there. We often times will have someone ask us why we are spreading the message we are. They tell us that Christ came, he taught, and that was the end. However, whenever I think about it, I am reassured of the fact that; yes, Christ did come, He did teach, and then He left. But the love endures and the words of our Lord are continually directed towards us. We do not add to the words that He said, but rather embrace the doctrines that He continues to preach through those called to be His prophets. The Restoration changed the world and leads us to the One that saved it.

There was a baptism on Friday which two of our investigators told us they were going to try to make it to. They ended up not being able to. That was a shame. So we ended up street contacting in that time. While we were out there in that period of time, I was able to talk many people, but in particular these two girls. They both seemed interested and so I told them we would call them up that night to try to set something up for the next day. That night we called them and set up times with both of them (one of them said no at first, so I asked her if she would like to learn some English, she said that she knew we also wanted to share our message, but agreed to come and learn some English as well as about our message - point for the home team!). The next day we were able to have a great lesson with one of them (right after we put her on a baptismal date we found out that she lived in 4th ward, always a hear-wrenching experience) and then another great lesson with the other, both of whom came to church the next day in their respective wards. Sometimes-- a lot of times, we don't get what we think is best for the plan of God to move forward. However, He always has a plan that is much better.

A quick shout out to my home boys going to band camp this week! I am so glad that in my life I have had the opportunity to grow older and move on to new and wonderful experiences, but band camp is one of them that I would gladly go back and re-live. It is the bomb. Brigham, when Mr. Derees gets down on you for not being perfect (he got at me a lot for talking too much and the such), don' t talk back, just try to humbly take it and change. That was a great learning experience for me. Grant, don't let the older people in the band let you think you aren't cool, because that would be ridiculous. Yell loudly, because that is what all the cool people do.

Well that's about it. Love you guys at least 28 and it's always growing.

Elder Ostergaard

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