My Dear Family and Friends,
A few weeks ago, Sister Izatt and I were contacting out in the city center, and I looked down an alleyway and said, "Sister Izatt, what's down there?" She didn't reply, because she whipped to the side and yelled, "Excuse me!" to a man that had just passed. I turned, knowing what she was up to, and we began to introduce ourselves as missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was a very sharp-looking man, a family man, a good, faithful Catholic. The contact was short, as he responded to our offer to visit very positively, and said, "Perhaps you can come over tomorrow! I think it would be good for the kids. I'll talk to my wife about it tonight." The next day we called, and they said that indeed, we could come over. The husband came to pick us up in his car, and we brought Sister Nye along with us. We found out quickly, as he spoke to Sister Nye, that the husband speaks flawless English and is a very, very educated man. He took us up to his home, which he built himself, passing the chapel his family attends, which he also helped build. When we walked in, we saw a family of 5 beautiful children, and his wife, who was just as beautiful. You could feel the Spirit of the Lord in that home - they were truly a family built on principles of the gospel.
The father had us sit on the couch, and he pulled up chairs for his entire family to sit down. He introduced us to his children, saying, "Children, these are the Mormons. We don't know anything about them, and so we are going to listen to their message today so we can learn some more." They all sat reverently and willingly. (I was, at that time, praying my HEART out that the Spirit would come into our minds and our mouths, that we might teach the beautiful message of the restoration with the power and spirit that the message and the family deserves!)
We began with prayer, and the lesson began. We taught them about God, about prophets, about the ministry of Jesus Christ. We spoke of the great apostasy, and the repercussions of that time of darkness. Sister Izatt beautifully told the story of Joseph Smith, and I told them about the restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ. Sister Nye bore her testimony in English as the father translated for the family. The most special moment of the lesson was when the husband leaned back in his chair, so overwhelmed by what we had just told him. He said over and over again, "I've never heard anything about this..." His wife leaned over during another time in the lesson, and said, "I feel something," as she wiped a tear from her eyes.
That lesson with that family was one of the most incredible, spiritual moments of my entire mission. I felt so privileged to be a part of it. We left them with a Book of Mormon, and the wife was espeically excited to read. We will be returning to their home again this Friday, to continue to share the message with this beautiful family. I'll tell you what happens, when I see you next :)
I have now come to the end of my journey as a full-time missionary of the Lord. However, I find great joy in the fact that the work load does not go down when I return. I love working for the Lord! It is the greatest work, and He is the most wonderful leader, example, and counselor. I love all the spiritual adventures misssionary work has allowed me to have. I have learned how precious and fragile my testimony is on my mission. I have learned how to take care of it, and tend to it. I have learned that there are times where you can hit plateaus with your testimony. I have learned that the Lord will allow you to feel forsaken for periods of time, so that you may make the difficult decision of whether you will turn away, or continue to feel through the dark, so that you may reach Him again,and find that light switch.
A lesson I am very grateful for: I have learned what a testimony is made of, and what it is not made of. I have learned that I DO have a testimony of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I have learned that it has the ability to fade and sometimes disappear. I have learned that I can never take it for granted. I will work on it every day for the rest of my being, because I have learned what it truly means to ENDURE TO THE END as a true disciple of Jesus Christ.
Sestra Lucy Brimhall