Saturday, March 21, 2015

Twilight hours (March 15)

The end is drawing near, and yet.... SHE'LL BE RIGHT MATE!!!!!

G'day g'day!! Hope you've all had a fantastic week these past 7 days, I know I have and we've been so blessed with some experiences and meeting some fantastic people and having the joy of knowing we are doing what is right and what matters most.

Sometimes I feel like Nephi  "And I was led by the Spirit, not knowing before hand the things which I should do."

I love that. I have felt so blessed this past week to have had some experiences that encompass and bring to life the reality of that Scripture found in 1 Nephi 4:6. I probably failed the actually word for word quote but all good. 

I don't know if I ever relayed this experience but a few weeks ago the other Elders reset the lock combination on their bike lock and couldn't figure out what to do to fix it. They left their bikes at the local Macas (McDonalds for you American speaking folks. ;) ) Early one morning instead of doing our exercises we drove to where the bikes were and tried to figure it out. My wonderful companion, after many attempts by us to unlock the bikes, offered this simple solution:

"Let's say a prayer." I felt a bit silly about it at first, but then thought that it's a good idea. So there we were, outside the Macas, four soldiers of Jesus Christ, arms folded, heaps bowed, offering a simple prayer to God. Many would think, "what is that going to do?"

I testify of His reality. He hears our simple prayers.

We closed our plea to God and got back to work! Every good prayer requires action.

After some attempts the lock was still not budging and our minds became a little discouraged. Did He help us? Why isn't it working?

One of the Elders said, " I'm pretty sure I just reset it by mistake... but only two of the numbers." 

Instantly a simple thought came to mind to try to twist the last 2 numbers over to a certain set of numbers. I can't remember the exact numbers... but *click* the lock opened.

You may think that God doesn't hear your pleas, but He does. I learned a valuable lesson. I can do all things in Christ, who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

I'm grateful that God hears us!

Next, we were blessed with meeting a woman by the name of Shauna. She told us to come back the next day but due to some unfortunate circumstances, namely us Elders being slack as with our poor planning, missed out...

We went back on the Saturday morning hoping to have some redemption. WE DID! She came to the door after a couple knocks and we had a great conversation with her. She expressed how she used to get smashed every week, 4 days out of the 7, and that her life was not what she wanted it to be. She gave birth to her first  and only son, and her life changed. Nothing was for her anymore, but all for him. 

We talked to her, and felt inspired to share with her about the Plan that God has given to us. We each have a  role, and He has given us families to live in, and a way of life that protects us and helps us become better people. This is called the Gospel, or teachings, of Jesus Christ. Hence, why He refers Himself as "The way." He makes it possible.

The Spirit burned in our chests, or at least it did in mine and I KNOW she felt it too! Her eyes were open, not just her eye lips uncovering the eye balls, but her eyes were open. Her heart felt and her ears heard the truth that underlined the words uttered by missionaries called of God. She said she wants to learn more, to gain hope, and have this understanding. We;re going back soon.

I love this work! I love serving. I love being weak and useless... but being turned into someone better because I CHOOSE TO BE! God wants me to grow, and in His power I can do so, but only if we choose it to be. The wonderful gift we have been given.

Hope you all can forgive me for ranting on, but it meant a lot to me.

Another little, (forgive me for the terminology mum) tender mercy was Sunday Sacrament meeting. RACHEL AND JASE HOWE CAME TO CHURCH TOGETHER FOR THE FIRST TIME IN AGES!!!!!!! WOO!!! We sat next to them and it was great to see them. I feel a great love for these two. They're truly my brother and sister. They always give us stuff too... which makes them even better. <--- Jokes, but if you read this know we love the eSHots.

Well the time is far spent, there is little remaining. The final descent is here. 1 week remaining. WOO! 

Love you all!

-Elder Sargeant

Our stake had an epic athletics day and we got to attend. Wish I could attach it all but here we go: 

Monday, March 9, 2015

If not me, who? If not now, when? (March 8)

"If not me, who? If not now, when?"

I was asked these two questions by my companion the other day, and they hit me like a bag of bricks. I was stunned. He didn't ask them to me directly to answer, but we were talking about the week and what we could do better to go out and smash it. 

It's amazing to see how the things people can say to us can truly impact who we are the and choices we make! 

This last week was a great week for us. It was filled with many adventures, and other such missionary things that make life well, the life of a missionary.

For example, we've had about 2 meetings every week for the past FOREVER it seems, but each meeting is another boost of confidence to go out and to share with the people of Australia the Gospel! I LOVE IT. The best part of the meetings is...definitely the food! Sister Maxwell, the Mission President's wife, cooked us CAFE RIO STYLE BURRITOS!!!! She made home made ranch, the green kind, that you find at Cafe Rio. 

Some heads up, we were able to go out and teach Loia and his family again. He's doing well. There always seem to be opposition in the lives of those who are trying to do right, and he is a perfect example. He lost his job, and is looking for a new one, and is struggling to make the changes he wants to make.

We sat down with him on Sunday morning before church and shared with him about how he can overcome those burdens and about what he wants to accomplish. He always expresses to us his desires to come to church and change, and he was able to commit to it! The Spirit was so strong that morning as he was able to let us know of his desires. As we shared scriptures out of the Book of Mormon, he just looked at the ground in a deep thought and said, I know what I need to do. He committed to be baptised on 11th of APRIL!!! WOO!!!!! Amazing!!!

Well, the adventures never stop here in Cranbourne. We had a activity with the Ward around the theme of "Step Up." <--- Everything ties together.

Time to step up!

Have a great week! Times up! Love ya all heaps!

-Elder Dane Sargeant

The last photo at the mission home with my companion after MLC meeting

Sunday, March 1, 2015

A Week of MADNESS (March 1)

yad'g lla! Siht keew sah neeb emosewa!!!
G'day all! This week has been awesome!!!

I'll just jump straight into it since I don't have much time. 

First of all, thank you for all the prayers on behalf of our investigators. You can see the amazing impact it is having on them and helping us to find more people to be taught! Loia and Clem didn't come to church again, but it's because their family is in town and it's the last week before the family returns home to NZ. They will be coming and enjoying the blessings waiting for them.

Loia has been reading the Book of Mormon and has a sincere desire to learn more. YOu can see it every time we come by that he yearns for the Spirit. I'm not sure if he realizes it or not but he does. You can see it in his eyes as he listens, speaks, and asks us questions. He's a cool Samoan man.

So, the highlight of the week was when we were able to have Elder Bednar come to speak to us as a mission!!! Goodness me the spirit was strong as and I was personally able to learn a thing or two. My favourite part was just at the end when he said "I love you all." 

Those words seemed to enter into our hearts and minds with a power that only comes from sincerity. Love is a powerful feeling, and an even more powerful motivation. I love feeling love!

I wish I could go into detail about what went down at the conference, but let I'll let you know the key players involved.

Elder David A. Bednar and his wife. Elder Robbins of the Presidency of the Seventy and his wife, and Elder Halek and his wife of the Area Presidency.
They all asked us questions, answered our questions, and just made it all down to earth. Two of my favourite parts are these quotes that we heard:

1) " A person rarely rises above the stature he/she carves out for him/herself as a missionary on his/her mission." -Elder Robbins.

2) Elder Bednar said, " You don't have to have an Apostle of the Lord come for you to have experiences like this. You have the Holy Ghost and the Scriptures. That's all you need. I have the same scriptures as you. I wasn't given one with a cheat sheet in the back when I was called."

^ I thought this one was particularly good. He's a funny man. He understands how people feel, and he addresses it really well.

Well, time is far spent. It was a great week. Keep Loia and Clem in your prayers please! They need all the faith and prayers possible. They're so close!!

With Love,

Elder Sargeant