"Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question - Unto what were ye ordained? To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth."
-D&C 50:13-14

Monday, July 25, 2011

Happy 24th of July

Hey family! Happy 24th!

Okay, so although my Pioneer Days celebration didn't include a giant inflatable water slide, it was still pretty good. Ha it looks like you all had a blast. The pictures of Mom and Grandma going down that slide are priceless. I'm pretty sure the people in the library think I'm a big creep now because I kept laughing at my computer screen, but that's okay. It was worth it.

Now I have to tell ya, this was an awesome week for us here. We've continued working with Andrea, and she's still on for her baptismal date this Thursday! We weren't able to meet with her too often this week which made me a little nervous because she's working on quitting smoking, but things have gone really well. We were able to get over there and have a lesson in the middle of the week and taught about some of the commandment, particularly the Word of Wisdom. Andrea has been trying to quit smoking for quite a while now, and up until now she just hasn't been able to kick it. Finally, she has decided that now is the time she's going to give it up. She hasn't smoked for about a week now, and we're so proud of her. It's great because she's doing everything she can to give it up, and so she has been walking around with a big pack of chewing gum and she's constantly keeping herself busy. Yesterday at our lesson we were talking about the Holy Ghost, and she told us that even feeling the promptings of the Spirit in her life have saved her from so much, and so she can't even imagine having the gift of the Holy Ghost with her at all times. President Summerhays is coming down tonight to interview her, and if all goes well Andrea will be baptized this Thursday at 7. Please keep her in your prayers.

We have also worked with Bill pretty intensively. We've been able to meet with him a couple of times this week, and discussed the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He and his wife are really funny, and have been a blast to teach. As we've continued to meet they have both been able to express a big change in their lives. Bill told us that he has felt the Spirit a lot more throughout his day, and that as he continues to learn about the gospel his criticism and questions are being replaced by faith and understanding. He came to church for all 3 meetings yesterday, and told us that it truely was the highlight of his day. Bill feels like he's ready to take the step of baptism, so this Saturday he will be getting baptized! We will be meeting with him a lot this week to keep him on track, but I'm sure he will be able to go through with it. We are so excited for he and Andrea, and it's amazing to see how it has all come together like this.

So earlier this week I got a phone call from Elder Moffett telling me that Paige has decided to get baptized! She's leaving for Massachusettes at the end of summer, and she knew that she needed to take that step before she leaves. Also, she decided to get baptized in the gulf and asked if I would be a witness. I was so excited about it, and fortunately I was able to find a ride over at 6 am. When someone gets beptized in the ocean the service has to be early enough that people aren't there on the beach already. But we got over there, and it was an awesome service. We met at the Seminole church and had the talks, and then we all drove over to Reddington Beach. It was a beautiful morning and being able to be out there in the water as a witness was an incredible experience.
I feel so blessed being here and having all of these experiences. All of these things happening are continued witnesses that the gospel is true and the work is moving forward. I love being able to serve the people here and you all as well.

Have a great week!

Elder Kade Bartschi

Kade, Elder Moffet and his companion

Paige's baptism at Reddington Beach

President’s Letter

Dear Sisters and Elders,

We have completed our interviews. Thank you for your labors! There is a remarkable spirit of unity and commitment in the mission. You are the best! This work is not easy. Each day seems to be emotionally demanding, mentally taxing, and physically challenging if we are giving it all of our heart, mind and strength as the Lord requires. Isn’t it beautiful? I arose this morning knowing that there would be needs and demands that I could not meet on my own. I felt my inadequacy to meet those demands. I knelt and prayed that His enabling power would be with me as I attempted to accomplish His purposes. As I sought for His strength, I felt a beautiful sense of gratitude that He was allowing me to handle the difficult challenges of this day. I am confident that the demands, and opportunities of this day will be met with the quiet miraculous strength of His enabling power. This is His work. This life is His work. His grace (or enabling power) is available in our daily walk. The circumstances in our lives will almost always be demanding. Most days will stretch us physically, emotionally and mentally. We must access His grace day by day. In that way our daily demands (our yoke and our burden) are made easy and light. We are able to submit cheerfully to all that day requires of us. His spirit attends us and the fruit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, faith, meekness, and temperance. What a wonderful life we live if the enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ lives in us. Elder David A. Bednar bears witness:

As you and I come to understand and employ the enabling power of the Atonement in our personal lives, we will pray and seek for strength to change our circumstances rather than praying for our circumstances to be changed. We will become agents who “act” rather than objects that are “acted upon” 2 Nephi 2:14.

I invite you all to access the enabling power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ now in your present circumstances. Do not fuss and worry about your present circumstances and pray for things to change. Get up, go do, work hard and pray that God will strengthen you in the midst of these circumstances. I promise you He will strengthen you so that you may do and become much, much more than you could do and become in your own strength. You will eventually learn to say and believe “Come what may and love it.” I love you and feel great confidence in your ability to access the great enabling power that will allow you in all circumstances to go forward In The Strength of The Lord.”

I love this work. I love His enabling power. I love and believe in you.

President Summerhays

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