Winter disappeared until Saturday night and we had a bad storm that lasted through this morning. we got almost a foot of snow and church was cancelled as well and we spent the rest of the day after a lunch appointment stuck in the apartment by request of our mission president. This thing that doesn't happen in winters in the west called Snow drift and snow dunes make it not so fun to go outside in. Snow is in different depths and there are literally little sand dunes of snow everywhere, outside your door etc. that can be up to two feet or more deep. The wind is so powerful here that it just tosses snow everywhere including your face. I don't really appreciate that part of the storms.
Last week we found a new investigator named Ian. We were able to have 4 lessons with him in the span of a week and he has been so prepared by God and by listening to the Spirit that he will be baptized within the next 3 weeks. The Spirit is so strong in our lessons that everything he says is the voice of the Spirit through his words and everything we teach is what the Spirit wants us to say. It is so overwhelmingly powerful that both me and my companion are shaking and our muscles are really tense after the lessons are over. There is a reason that some people have been known to be transfigured before God showed them things. Our mortal frames cannot contain it. When missionaries (or really anyone) feel the Spirit working through them you get really tired. It literally wears you out. Everything out of Ian's mouth is the golden, perfect answer. He has lots of questions. He feels that the Truth is in and around all things and he can't believe that people are so blind that they cannot see it. We were on exchanges this past week with some sisters from Keokuk. Before me and Sister Muirbrook left the apartment to go so Ian, Hermana Loureiro looked at me and said, "I feel like Ian will connect a lot with Joseph Smith, you should take one of the Joseph Smith Pamphlets with you." So I trusted her judgment and grabbed some information we had on Joseph Smith. Right after we sat down to teach Ian at the Laundromat across from his house, Ian looked up at me and said, "you know, I really feel this connection with Joseph Smith... I can really relate to him and I want to learn as much as I can about him." When you are a good missionaries things like this will happen all the time and it just about sends you into shock. This Church is Christ's true church on Earth and he is involved with his work and we are his tools.
When church was cancelled we called and let Ian know that he couldn't come see the meeting. About an hour later he called us back and said, "I am dressed up anyways, I might as well go over and see what it's like there." The Argueta family all came and picked us up and we met Ian at the church and he was dressed up in a nice suit with a cane. He looked really classy. Someone who shows his respect to God by his appearance. We had an incredible lesson with Ian at the church. I have never taught someone like him on the mission. He is incredibly prepared and fully committed right now to this Gospel and he already received his answer from the Spirit that this is the True church. It is absolutely incredible. I am very grateful I was transferred to Mt Pleasant to be able to teach him and help him learn and grow in the Gospel. He isn't just a regular investigator that never understands that this church is the only true church 20 years later after baptism. He understands it right now. He has an incredible perspective on life and this world and has so much in store for him.
We are teaching a handful of other people, but we haven't been able to teach them as much as Ian. Members of the Mt Pleasant Branch are all wonderful. There is a good feeling here and I really love serving here. It is the perfect area to spend the last two transfers of my mission in Iowa. Grateful I was sent here. Completely inspired.
There are never coincidences in life. Never.
A random guy we were talking to last week told us that the federal government issued the destruction of all the "projects" in New York and Chicago and it has displaced a lot of lower class people who are trying to find new places to live. I don't have a way to confirm this as a missionary, but if it's true, it's a pretty historical event. A lot has been happening in this country and if you want to know what is going to happen and how to be prepared read the book of Mormon. People already lived in this country thousands of years ago and it the same things are repeating themselves here now.
"I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging for bread." (king David, psalms 37:25). A comfort to those that strictly obey all the commandments of God. Think about it for a minute. It's a great promise.
"...for when I am weak, then am I strong." (2 Cor. 12:10)
"I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all." (Ecclesiastes 9:11)