28 April 2014
Esta semana estuvo bonita a pesar de que.... los 6 investigadores que nos dijeron que iban a ir a la capilla no llegaron... suele pasar... Híjoles!! (This week was good in spite of the fact that 6 investigators that told us they would come to church didn’t come.) It's all good though because L. came and she seems like she really likes church. She has found a group of friends and they always stay after church rattling off Mayan discussions... I really want to learn that language!
Yesterday in church the counselors of President Garcia came to visit the branch and because a member didn't prepare a talk, Elder Z. asked me to give one... Oh boy. I talked a bit about Grandma Brinkerhoff and her conversion story and then told them all about what Dad told me. (When Grandma grabbed Sean before he went into the MTC and showed him the flags [that represented her grandsons' missions]) It was kind of a President Eyring talk because I just jumped into the story. I like that style and it works a lot better than any other way here because people here like stories better than long sermons. I told them of the impact they can have in being good members and trying to share the gospel because if it weren't for Grandma and my other ancestors I probably wouldn't be in a tiny church in Mexico right now. It was good and I really felt the Spirit.
So... the story of Elder Crook and I in Pomuch: We went to go and teach a guy that he and his companion had found the week before but because he wasn't home, the member we were with said that we could go visit his cousin, even though she is a pastor of another church. We got to her house and she was with another visiting pastor from another church and they gladly let us in. You should have seen the face of the other pastor; he is an older guy and he looked at us like fresh meat to pick apart.
We sat down, sang a hymn, said the prayer and then the older man, S., said to us, "Jovenes, (young ones) if you can prove to me that your message is true using the Bible... I'll join your church. Mark my word." I kind of laughed and told him that our job wasn't to convince; something that didn't convince him that much. We talked a bit about the plan of salvation with focus on direct revelation from modern-day prophets and when the member we were with pulled out a scripture from the Book of Mormon, S. practically screamed at him, asking what book he was reading from. We then went into the argument about the bible being sufficient; with S. pulling out every scripture known to 21- month missionaries (I even gave him a couple others as well).
The member we were with must have been on the right page with the Spirit because he whipped out a scripture I just didn't have the guts to whip out. ... He started reading from 2 Nefi 29 and read the parts where it talks about "o necio," (fool) and talks about the people that scream they already have a Bible and don't need another. The pastor kind of stayed shocked for a bit but then went on to share more scriptures to prove to us that we were completely wrong. I asked him to take a pause for a moment and just bore to him my testimony of the divinity of the Book of Mormon and the way I had received an answer. He shot right back saying that it wasn't true at all and out of nowhere, literally nowhere because I usually keep it cool in lessons I said "are you telling me that God lied to me?" Boom.... Complete silence and R., the other pastora (female pastor) looked at S. as if to tell him to stop talking and listen. He tried to explain himself more but we told him that we were only there to invite him to draw closer to Christ and not to argue, so we closed the lesson quickly and went on to the next appointment. I don't know why, but I love talking to really educated pastores (pastors) because it just strengthens my testimony, if anything. Would Joseph Smith ever have thought that his name would be known in a remote pueblo called Pomuch?
I really do have a testimony of the truthfulness of this work. God is merciful by letting whiny servants like me take part and try to make a difference. I am grateful for the Savior and his love he shows me daily and ultimately for his infinite sacrifice. I might as well be called Thomas for how often I doubt but "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me."
I love you guys so much!!! Keep on keepin’ on!
"She's so tiny!" This is L., a convert from Calkini that I was able to interview. She wanted me to be in the picture too with Elders R. and Z."