Monday, March 17, 2014

Great "small" Experience

My Family,

     So this week I just want to share a small experience that I had this week while street contacting. Elder Yellowhorse and I were in downtown San Francisco at one of the BART stations in our area. We like to do street contacting at Powell Station because it is always full of people walking to work, shopping, or waiting to get on the famous San Francisco Rail Cars. We are just across the street from the station, and we posted ourselves on either side of the side walk and started to contact people. Usually with how busy people are in the city, we just try to invite them to visit mormon.org and offer them a pass-a-long card. Sometimes longer conversations develop and we have the opportunity to share more about the Restoration and ask them for their personal information and if they would like to receive visits from the missionaries. Usually we get the cold shoulder, or the "sorry no thank you", or just a straight "no". But this last Wednesday afternoon things were going well. We had passed out a few cards and had been talked too by some members visiting San Francisco. Its always great to talk to members and tell them where we're from and how the work is going in San Francisco. One sister that we saw that morning said, " Oh! I'm so happy to see missionaries in San Francisco! I thought they didn't let you guys in this area?!" haha I let her know that yes a few years ago they used to not let us proselyte in certain parts of downtown, but now all of the city is open to us. She was happy to see us in the city talking to people and it really uplifts us to see members in San Francisco. A lot of people ask us why we get sent to San Francisco and we say, "Because we're needed here, and this is were the Lord wants us." After a few more minutes on the sidewalk, I continued to watch people walk by and looked for those that I could offer a card to or start a conversation with. I noticed a woman walking my way and she glanced at me for a moment. Usually people just stare at our name tags or at what we are wearing, but this woman looked me in the eyes for a few seconds. I knew and felt that I needed to try to talk to her. As she started to walk by me, I said, "Excuse me miss, could I give you a card about Jesus Christ?" She stopped walking and told me that she was actually a member. She asked me where I was from and we talked a little bit about ourselves and the usual greeting with members. As the conversation started to end I assumed that she would just tell me "Good luck and keep up the good work!", but she paused and asked me a very sincere question. "Elder Mora, what to you think about the Atonement?" I was surprised at her question, and wondered why she would ask me about the Atonement on the street in front of a huge shopping center with thousands of people going from one place to another. But I could tell from the sound of her voice and the look in her eyes, that she really needed someone to share what they thought about the Atonement. And this is roughly what I said, "Well that's a very good question. I don't get the opportunity to teach in English very often, so thank you for asking me this question. For me personally the Atonement is what allows me to not only receive forgiveness for my sins, but gives me the capacity to be better than I was before. It strengthens us and helps us to be the kind of person that we are continually striving to become. I know that without the Atonement, Heavenly Father's plan for us would not work, we would not be able to change and become better than we are now." As I was bearing my testimony to her, this sweet sister, with whatever struggles and trials going on in her life, started to cry. I could feel the Spirit testifying to her through my words that we can always rely on the Atonement in our lives no matter what. I was so grateful and humble to be able to help her in whatever way that I did, either with helping her to know that God loves her or that we shouldn't be afraid to turn to the Atonement for comfort. I asked her if there was anything else that I could do for her, and she quietly replied, "No, thank you. You've done enough with what you've said." I told her what a pleasure it was to meet her and how much joy it gives missionaries to see members, and the support and encouragement that they give us. The sad thing is that I can't even remember her name, but I know that I was able to help her feel the Spirit. I am so grateful for this opportunity that the Lord gave to me to help one of his daughters. I can't explain exactly how I know it, but I know that the Lord is conscience of me and loves me, and that he allowed me to have that special experience. 
   I just want everyone back home to know that I am doing great. I haven't been having what most people think is success on the mission, like baptisms or tons of investigators, but I've come to learn that a successful missionary is one who is committed to his or her purpose. And our purpose is to invite people to Christ. I have been doing my best and I still feel like I'm being as successful as I can be right now. Thank you for all of your prayers. I pray for you all daily as well. Les amo muchisimo. 

Elder Mora
3/17/14

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