Monday, January 24, 2011

The Truth of All Things (Jan. 24, 2011)

Hey everyone!
Let me first apologize, I have pictures to email home but I forgot my memory card adapter on my desk. Photos will have to wait until next week. Sorry again about that. Dad, I asked Elder Malmberg about Joseph P. Malmberg from Logan. He said he's not sure, but it's possible because there aren't too many Malmbergs in Cache Valley. He did say, however, that there are Malmbergs related to him that are buried in Clarkston cemetery, so I think it's very possible!
This past week was good, pretty normal week, really. We spent a lot of time tracting, unfortunately we had several of those "nobody in the whole neighborhood is home" days. Hey, it happens! We pretty much just hit the streets and talked to everyone we could. We had one appointment with Phyllis that went well. She doesn't remember a whole lot about the Restoration. I don't blame her, it was October when we taught it to her. She had a lot of questions that her family members have been feeding her. We answered all of them, and she was pretty satisfied with the answers. 
My favorite question to answer was this: Phyllis' sister told her that Mormons believe that all blacks are going to hell. I said, "Phyllis, what do you think the answer is?" She said, "Well, I dunno. Because I keep thinking to myself 'If I'm going to hell anyways, then why do these two nice boys keep coming by to see me?'" We all laughed, and I smiled and said, "So what do you think?"
"I don't think it's true," to which I responded, "Good, because it's not."
That was pretty funny, and then we got into the lesson. She had issues with the fact that God continues to call prophets. We bore powerful testimonies about the prophet Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. At the end, she said, "I guess I just have to find out for myself and read the book." By the time we came by the next day, she had read through 1 Nephi 12! I was pretty impressed. I love hearing when people read the Book of Mormon and enjoy it.
Stephanie and Jared are doing great, and are still set for baptism on the 12th. Johnathon, Stephanie tells me, is losing more and more interest every day. It breaks my heart to hear that. Every time we see Stephanie and Jared, the two of them tell us how much they enjoyed reading the Book of Mormon together. It just makes me so sad. Here is a loved son of God who is being withheld from the joy of the knowledge of the restored gospel because of false things other people are telling him about it. He says he wants to know if it's true, but he turns to the wisdom and traditions of man. I know that there is no way in this world for anyone to come to know of spiritual truths except through sincere prayer, and the witness of the Holy Ghost. It's the only way. He may come around, and it may not be for a while. We're still praying for their family, because Stephanie tells me how much she wants Johnathon to come to church. We taught Stephanie a wonderful lesson this week about keeping the commandments. She's so excited to be baptized. She's been asking people in the ward to come to her baptism. She loves reading the scriptures, and so does Jared. It's wonderful to see. I just hope and pray that Johnathon's heart will be softened.
We had a really good zone conference this week. It was on "The Divine Companionship," and having the Holy Ghost in our companionship. I heard a great quote by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, saying "At the end of the day, ask yourself this: Was the Holy Ghost the senior companion today? Was the Holy Ghost the junior companion today? Was the Holy Ghost even in our companionship today?" We aren't privileged to physically have God the Father in our lessons, nor are we privileged to have Jesus Christ with us as we teach. We are, however, able to have the Holy Ghost, the third member of the Godhead, in our lessons to bear witness of eternal truths to the hearts of those who are looking for it. I love that. The Holy Ghost is the only way that the lessons cease to become ours and become His. I love that.
I love you all and pray for you. I hope things are going well back home. Things are always getting better down in good old Avondale, Arizona. I'll be sure to keep you all posted on everything that's going on. Oh and dad, gimme a little while to decide on a scripture for the plaque, I'll get that to you as soon as I can. Write back soon, take care and be good.
Much love,
Elder Eric James Turner

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