September 14, 2015
Dear Mom, Dad, Aubrey and all my Family & Friends,
How's it going y'all? I'm glad that everyone is doing alright in good ole Spokane, Washington. Some of the members here in the Flatwoods Branch also watched the BYU vs Boise game, so we are aware of the results. Man, it looked and sounded like a good game! Go BYU Cougars!
Well, this week was definitely a good week for missionary work. I already mentioned my experience to my mission president, so I will just share with you what I wrote to him:
"My report for the work here in the Flatwoods area was that this was definitely our best week so far. We met and taught with most of current investigators and less-actives and contacted our media referrals! We even attempted to contact a couple of the in-active male members that our branch president wanted us to find. The good news is that we know where they are now. The bad news is that neither of them talked to us in person, but instead had someone else talk to us. To make the long story short, one of them has asked us to not contact them again and the other had an angry neighbor that wanted to us to leave immediately. It's always discouraging when we get these kinds of reactions but that's the way the cookie crumbles I guess. Oh well, I'm glad that we at least tried though.
On a more positive note, we did have an amazing teaching experience with one of our media referrals! His name is E and he attends the Glennville University. He has had a rough life due to his parents being in-active members and being mistreated by some other people. As we were talking with him, I immediately felt inspired by the Holy Ghost to have him read Alma 14: 10-11. This helped him to answer his questions about why bad things happen to good people. What made it more interesting was that I just read that chapter during my personal studies on that same day! The moral of the story is that personal studies, especially in the Book of Mormon, really do make an impact on the people that we teach. It was amazing!
Before I close, I want to share with you this insight. Have you seen the "12 Steps to Change" video series on the mormonchannel.org website? If you haven't, I highly recommend you do because they are amazing and the spirit is always strong as you watch them. I know that the 12 Steps of the Addiction Recovery Program are truly inspired by God. I also personally believe that the twelfth step can also apply to us as missionaries where it says: "Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, share this message with others and practice these principles in all you do." Each of us as missionaries has had, at one point or another, a spiritual awakening because of the Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. As a result, we are now responsible in sharing this message with others and living the principles in our own lives as well. I hope this makes sense."
I also hope that you will watch the "12 Steps to Change" video series as well. The 12 Steps of the Addiction Recovery program are truly inspired by God and I believe that we can apply these principles in our own lives as well, whether we are missionaries or members. It is my personal testimony that Heavenly Father does reaches out to all of His children, no matter how far they have strayed from the path to Him. I leave that with you in the name of our Savior Jesus Christ, amen.
I love you all and miss you all. Hurrah for Israel!
Elder Michael Alley