If you've seen the Disney movie, "The Sword and the Stone" you might recollect the scene where the scruffy skinny man gallops to the castle to tell the chubby red-headed man that they are determining who will be the next king. He says, "Big News!" In his words, I have big news:
The Lord is preparing the people of Malone to enter into the Kingdom of God. The work is hastening at a hastened pace! Elder Hawkes and I are the lucky ones the Lord has chosen to harvest the exquisite joy!
Jim's baptism was miraculous. We were rushed to get back from a service project to fill the font in time before the service. We could have used another hour or so, because when Jim got in the water, it only filled to his knees. Luckily after a few tries, he was still able to be fully immersed in the water, and Jim remained calm and patient. It strengthened my testimony of the importance of baptism by immersion! Regardless, there was a good turn out and a couple of our investigators were in attendance! It was powerful to see Jim's glow after he returned in the Relief Society room after being remitted of his sins.
I had the opportunity to confirm Jim a member and help him receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost. It was a very spiritual experience for me, and very powerful to feel the promises fulfilled from the scriptures that the spirit would tell me all the things I should say. It's been a huge blessing to be able to feel the Lord's power work through me and to be able to mature with my the priesthood I've been entrusted with.
Dan Foster told us he's been praying about baptism and knows he needs to do it. He told us that he felt a strong spirit confirm that he should be baptized on the 3rd of October. We are so happy for him. It's amazing how the spirit "pricks" our hearts, no matter what our background is, and tells us all that we should do. He has already picked out some family members he wants to do temple work for as well as the hymns for his baptismal service. Hehe.
We prayed about a date that Deborah Reed would be able to prepare to be baptized on and we both felt September 13th would be good. She agreed and is now preparing for that day. She still loves the Book of Mormon and Geneology work. Family History work is a very effective missionary tool! Both Dan and Deborah have been coming to church weekly, church activities, service projects and to Jim's baptism. We had a big volleyball game at the Potsdam District Picnic and Dan, Elder Hawkes, and I played a heated match against President Wirthlin and others. Not sure who won.
On Sarturday, we were volunteers at an event with the Senior couple at the Almanzo Wilder Farm, the place where "The Little House on the Prarie" series was written. 'Twas why we were late filling the baptismal font.
Another miracle is that we now have a Branch Mission Leader! We are so excited to work more closely with him and receive his inspired aid. I have no clue how to work with a branch mission leader, so it will be a learning experience for me!
The Lord's work is hastening! Everywhere! I'm so grateful for my worthiness to be part of it day to day!
I love you all! You are in my thoughts and prayers.