Tuesday, February 21, 2012

WOO HOO! A great week!

Baptism! WOO HOO!

At the visitor's center.

Ross has learned how to make lentil soup!

Holy smokes! This is my second to last e-mail on my mission! We had a jam packed week! Tons of things are going on right now! Our area just EXPLODED with work! We had 6 investigators come to church yesterday!
Earlier this week we had a mission leadership meeting with president. It was really nice and we learned lots of things we can improve on. Those are very humbling and motivating meetings. President Baker is really good at making us feel like we aren't doing enough, then he boosts us up and gets us excited to continue working hard. Then, last Wednesday, us departing missionaries had a "Departing Missionary Training" with President and Sister Baker. We talked about setting goals and keeping the mission spirit with us after the mission. They gave us lots of homework too! I'm currently working on my "90 Day Plan" for after I go home. We have to set really specific goals of things we are going to do when we go home in order to stay spiritually strong. President Baker is a genius. Then after that we went through the temple with President and Sister Baker, and we had a special chapel session with a member of the temple presidency, and I did my last session in the Los Angeles Temple during my mission. Then on Friday I went on exchanges with the Assistants. I went to their area, and we talked to a bunch of different kinds of people. They work in Santa Monica, fairly close to cousin Andrea's place! I looked for her name in their ward directory, but I believe she is in another ward. I was in Santa Monica 1st ward, and I think Andrea is in Santa Monica 2nd ward. It was the closest I have been to the beach since beach p-day last year!
On Thursday we had a lesson with a couple! They are doing great! The Lord has really been working miracles in him, because he told me that when I come back to visit Los Angeles he wants me to baptize him! We couldn't believe our ears! He used to bash with us and try to argue with us, and now he wants to be baptized! But wait, it only gets better! We went to the Visitors' Center with them and had a really nice tour by the sister missionaries. During the whole thing I wanted to invite him to be baptized on the 26th. So I finally invited him, and he said "No, wait just a minute. I will let you know when I'm ready to make that step." I didn't know what to say, because everybody was just watching us, waiting to see what he would say next. Then Elder Hernandez shared a little, and then one of the sister missionaries shared the conversion story of her father, and the Spirit came in and did something, because when we left the room, heturned to us and said "I'm getting baptized on the 26th, you have my word", then we shook on it! We couldn't believe it! He came to church again yesterday and loved it! His wife was also confirmed yesterday and she is as happy as ever.
We also went to the Visitors' Center yesterday with some young investigators and their family. They both came to church. Their but their mother is becoming active in the church again. The sisters took us on a tour around the temple and their mother really liked it. They won't be baptized this week, but we think one will be baptized very soon next transfer. The sad part is that I won't be here to see it, but at least it's going to happen.
Welp, that was our week. We have been finding some good new people to teach, so it looks like the elders will have a nice teaching pool next transfer. Thank you for all your prayers! They are really working! I hope you have a great week!
Love, Elder Watkins

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