Time for another Big Email!
The past few weeks have been incredibly, wonderfully busy. Our area has exploded with investigators and members, others to meet and invite to come unto Christ.
One insight I have had recently is the fact that we, as the Lord's servants, just need to be ready to act. Like the individual muscle cells in a muscle, we just need to be charged and ready for action at any time. God never forces others to learn about or accept the Gospel, but He is primed and waiting with bated breath for them to take one of the opportunities He places in their path. We as members and missionaries of this Church provide many of these opportunities. The point is, if we are God's Hands, or Instruments in them, we can measure our effectiveness by how prepared we are to act, pounce on opportunities to love, live, and share this gospel message. due to others agency, we will not always have people to teach, people ready to accept the Gospel, but if we are ready for them, God is pleased with us.
In my running experience, I related this idea with the feeling of tenseness on the starting line. It's one of the scariest, most exhilarating feelings I've felt. That moment before the gun goes off and you start running. God wants us all to be prepared and waiting with the same tautness for every opportunity to invite others to come unto Christ. Sometimes that requires waiting for longer than we think we should have to wait for the gun to go off. But that kind of active waiting, combined with the preparation of hours of exercise previously, is precisely what God is doing, and what He wants us, His Instruments, to do as well. The urgency of the work is immense. We cannot afford to not be ready.
Well, I guess the gun has gone off to start the race for several of God's children here in Anyang city. We are meeting with an old man (Mr. Ryu) who has a sincere desire to be a good christian and help his adult children come back to that life, as well. He struggles to accept the Book of Mormon, but he has a very good impression of our missionaries from his attendance of our English classes. He has been meeting with us to discuss Gospel truths everyfor a few weeks.
We are also meeting with another man who attends another church, but is considering changing religions because of an inconsistency of doctrine.
We meet another man and his wife who runs a restaurant nearby our house. They've attended the Catholic church for their whole lives, but recently he has been wondering what it really means to live a life of faith. He has had contact with the missionaries for about a year, and is impressed with their diligent service with no recompense. He also has been meeting with us to discuss restored truth and the motivation for our service.
Along with these and other people we are meeting with has come the opportunity for me to study and prepare especially for them. I've heard about how study directed to others' needs my whole mission, but I have never applied it like I have recently. In other aspects of missionary work, as well, my life has been full of "a-ha" moments lately. "So THIS is what it means..." Sometimes I feel bad about not figuring things out until this late in my mission, but then I realize that God is mostly concerned with the direction of our progression, and our diligence and willingness to continue learning. I have needed a few wake-up calls up to now, but I am continuing to increase that desire. Being in this eternal work of progression is so FUN!!! I never want to stop!
Thanks to all of you, for your prayers, thoughts, love, words, support. I have been blessed to be surrounded with great examples of people happily, faithfully living the Gospel. It helps me get back on course when I make a mistake.
God loves us and all His Children, and He is eager to lift and bless us. Sometimes His methods may not make sense to us, but they always work out in the end.
Love you all! Have another great week!
Elder Derek Wilcox