It was a quick week with Pday being back to normal and on Monday once again. Nothing too crazy happened this week other than the return to the missionary routine. We had a lot of success in getting lessons in this week, twice we taught 8 lessons in a day! We also extended the invitation for 5 baptisms, and hope to have 8 bapt dates set for this transfer.
However, the low point of this week was hands down Sunday morning. We woke up all excited and left extra early to visit an investigator to make sure she was planning on going to church. After PEC though we were deeply grieved to find not only that investigator missing from the congregation but all of our investigators but one missing. It was probably the most devastating feeling yet on the mission. Just working and working so hard and feeling like these people we love are progressing and then having all of them abandon their faith when it came down to 9 o'clock on Sunday morning.
I can't even begin to fathom how Heavenly Father must feel looking down upon His children and watching them wander away in wickedness. For a small moment I could feel a portion of His anguish. To love these people so much and to know exactly what is best for them, but through agency, sit back and watch them make choices contrary to what they know is right.
The most saddening part was sitting there all sacrament meeting wondering what we could have done better to get our investigators to progress. It seems like we can get them to commit and admit what is right but when it comes down to making decisions, faith tends to waver. Faith is all talk and therefore absolutely nothing, until you have put those words into actions. I want to say Melvin J. Ballard said, "Every man meets the wall of faith at some point and there he must make his stand". It is so true that all of us have that "breaking point" or fork in the road. Most of our lives boil down to those kinds of moments. Regardless of our knowledge, talents, or strength we all meet our own Gethsemane.
When the 'Savior spoke out in absolute agony, "If it be possible let this cup pass from me". It was His final test. Would he press forward or would he choose the other path? I believe our lives are in a sense very similar, everything always comes down to the final choice. When questions arise, when our faith wavers, when persecution or pain is unbearable there are but two choices. We can either quit and give in to the power of the Adversary, or we can follow Christ's example and say, "Nevertheless not my will but thine, be done". Whether we know the purpose or the answer to our question or what is waiting for us on the other side is irrelevant. All the commandments of God are given for the purpose of seeing whether or not we will submit to the will of the Father.
That is one thing I have quickly learned in the Philippines. Is that whenever doubt arises in my mind, my faith wavers, or things are physically demanding and I wonder why I am doing this. The answer to all the above is the same, because it is His will. If we humble ourselves enough to recognize His wisdom is infinitely greater than ours, it won't matter what the reason for a commandment is. It won't matter if everything makes sense right now. That is the true purpose and test of our Earthly life. Not to simply to gain a body, but to see who can overcome that body and humbly submit to the will of One far greater than ourselves.
Hope all is great at home and next week when I log on I can hear all about another Seahawks victory! I remember last time I was at a Seahawks-Saints game there was an earthquake so I trust the 12th fan will be as rowdy as ever!
Elder Krueger T