What a week!!! I loved it.
As you might have heard, Shemorlly was baptized this week! I am so proud of her and the decision she made. As Sister Layton and I were preparing her for baptism it felt like a lot of obstacles were being thrown in our way. It was a big learning experience. A while back, one of my good friends told me, "God gives his hardest battles to his strongest soldiers". That has stuck with me ever since I heard it. I have also learned while on my mission that as we chose to follow God, it is not always an easy path. Sometimes it is the more difficult path, but for anyone that is living the gospel you know that it is always worth it. More blessings come into your life and you are happier. It isn't a worldly happiness but a spiritual happiness knowing that you are doing exactly what you Heavenly Father wants you to do. A couple weeks ago at church the lesson in Relief Society really stuck out to me. It was based on the principle of Agency. After hearing the lesson I committed myself to always choose the harder right rather than the easier wrong. That is how we show our Faith; through our trials.
Shemorlly's baptism was beautiful! Her step-father, Brother Chris Vincent, had the opportunity to baptize her. Tyra, a member (and one of Shemorlly's friends) gave a talk as well as Shemorlly's brother Shemon. They both did awesome! Then, Sister Layton and Elder Kujanpaa sang Come thou Fount and I accompanied them on the piano. Sunday was Shemorlly's 21st birthday and she was confirmed a member of the church by Roger (one of the coolest people eva). Talk about getting the best birthday present ever! One that never gets old, needs replacing, or an upgrade.
Shemorlly is so sweet and got me a birthday present :) She is such a great person and I have learned a lot from being around her here in Grenada.
We were able to see our investigator Donalee a few times this week. Yesterday we were able to take the new senior couple (the Mills) with us as well. That was a huge blessing! I felt the spirit so strongly during the lesson and they were a huge help in having Donalee open up more and in finding more of her concerns. She is on the track to baptism but doesn't want to move to fast towards it.
Friday was Sister Layton's birthday!! :) Now we are both 20! #unity.
I made her a birthday ting for dessert and we ate it at Institute on Thursday with everyone that showed up.
We visited Joycelyn a lot this week which is always awesome. She calls Sister Layton and I her "dudes". It is hilarious. She is so sassy! Her granddaughter, Zania, decided she wanted to be a missionary for a bit and went to one of our lessons for Donalee's with us. She is so cute.
So at sports night and P-days we normally play basketball for part of it. Somehow I got the nick-name beef stew along the way.... We were shopping today after sports and we found a can of Beef stew at the store. Needless to say, we were dying in the isle.
Saturday we spent a lot of the day preparing for the baptism and stopping by people.
I have been studying the atonement a lot recently. Last week, in the email President Herrington sent out to all of us missionaries he included a quote from Elder Kim B. Clark:
"There is no sin, no guilt, no shame, no fear, no loneliness, no heartache, no loss, no depression, no sadness, no terror, no pain, no challenge, no weakness that Jesus Christ has not experienced and overcome.
If you turn to Christ and repent of your sins, He will forgive you and cleanse you and change your heart. This is the redeeming power of the Atonement. If you turn to Christ when you face challenges and need capacity beyond your own, He can strengthen you and magnify your capacity. This is the strengthening power of the Atonement."
I love this quote. We are not perfect. I am not perfect. Everyone makes mistakes every day. This is why we have the Atonement. It is there for a reason. As missionaries we teach others how to access the power of the Atonement and let it work in their lives. We don't preach principles that we aren't willing to follow as well.
The Atonement has changed me throughout the duration of my mission. Every day, as I allow it to work in my life, I draw closer to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. The Atonement is amazing!
One of my favorite examples of the power of the Atonement in the Book of Mormon is found in Alma 36:17-19. I love reading about Alma's own experience with the atonement.
Anyways, I love you so much! I hope you have a fantastic week.
Sister Breana Stewart