God Loves You :)

Hi everyone!

We had a beautiful week! It was pretty crazy actually haha. For one thing, we had to help our investigator get all ready for baptism on Saturday, and also she’s moving soon so we were helping her pack and clean a ton, and on top of all that we ran out of our allotted miles so we were basically walking everywhere in 90 degree weather!

So yes Debbie was baptized! She’s amazing!:) It was a whirlwind leading up to her baptism, let me tell you. It was kind of a weird situation because she’s moving, plus when we came into the area, she had two weeks to get ready for baptism and still had to be taught everything. And she had to overcome smoking! But she was so set on being baptized on the 30th, and she knew the Lord would help her. And He did. Honestly, it has been so humbling to see this miracle in her life. She is so changed from when I met her. There’s just this light about her now, and she is so much happier. She’s good friends with her neighbor, who likes to tell people what their auras look like, and he says hers is bright white now! (In fact, he said he might have to try this whole thing out, so Debbie brought him to church yesterday for her confirmation and it was awesome:D)

Another amazing thing was that the mission president interviewed her, and she felt the Spirit so strongly from it that she asked us if he could baptize her! We looked at her blankly and then kind of hemmed and hawed and said we would ask but he is a very busy man after all and we’ve never heard of him baptizing anybody. BUT we asked him and he said he would love to!! So President Mendenhall himself baptized her. He said in his two years as mission president, he’s only had one other opportunity to do this.

This morning in personal study, I was reading about Moses (both in the Bible and in the Pearl of Great Price). And it was really touching to see how God interacts with Moses.

3 And God spake unto Moses, saying: Behold, I am theLord God Almighty, and Endless is my name; for I am without beginning of days or end of years; and is not this endless?

4 And, behold, thou art my son.

6 And I have a work for thee, Moses, my son; and thou art in the similitude of Mine Only Begotten; and mine Only Begotten is and shall be the Savior.

How incredible would that be? Here Moses is,and we know that he already feels pretty overwhelmed and not sure what he’s supposed to be doing, and God speaks to him and tells that he is of divine origin. He is a son of God, in the similitude of the Savior. And he has a work to do.

The first thing we teach people when we meet them is that God is our loving Heavenly Father. He knows us and cares about us on a personal level, and He knows our divine potential as His children. I really love that. A lot of people today don’t have that knowledge. And many more know it but don’t really know it. And it is so important that we have that knowledge and truly believe it because that’s the only way we will reach our potential and the fullness of joy that our Father has in store for us.

I think Debbie is really the reason I’ve been thinking about all of this. Two and a half weeks ago, she didn’t know too much about the gospel but she believed that God loved her and wanted her to do His work. That is what motivated her to do everything she needed to do so she could be baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. And because of that, she has been baptized and received the gift of the Holy Ghost and is becoming more and more Christlike every day. And she’s so excited to keep going:)

It makes me think about how I need to continue to have those changes in myself as well. Heavenly Father has done everything for me, most importantly sending His Only Begotten Son to make it possible for me to grow and change and become the person I want to be, the person He knows I can be. So I need to do everything I can to live up to my divine potential so I can live with my Heavenly Father and my family for time and all eternity:)

This opportunity to share this truth with those around me is the most amazing experience of my life. I know that the restored gospel of Jesus Christ shows us how to live in the way that will help us reach this potential and have these wonderful blessings. And the only way it works is when we learn to use the Atonement of our Savior.

I hope you all see Heavenly Father’s love for you! He knows you and loves you and believes in you:)

Love,

Sister Stratford

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