This week was simply wonderful.
We went down to Coffeen IL, to meet with Kylee's family (her mom, Sarah, and her brother Devan). The Halleman's were there with us too. Sarah had many questions about the church, but all she could really say to start off was, "I just don't get it" meaning church in general.She never really went to church growing up. She has a belief in Christ but that's all that it seems she knows. Then she asked the classic question: "Why are there so many different churches?" We explained that we have a message to share with her that would more than likely answer quite a lot of her questions and asked if we could share it. Can you guess what message we shared? When we finished talking about the restoration of the gospel with them, Sarah started asking new questions concerning heaven and hell... So she is obviously prepared. We asked them if we could continue teaching them more about the church and our beliefs and they said yes. So tomorrow we're going to do just that, and possibly eat turtle as well. We will also be inviting them to church (which will be huge because Kylee's dad hasn't been to church since he was 17) and to be baptized. Should be good.
I spent Thursday up in Springfield IL, for district meeting and exchanges. That's pretty much that. I'm really going to miss fireflies. They're just so cool! They serve no purpose other than to look at how cool they are. Yes, we have a loving God who is very aware of the small things. That was really random but oh well. Fireflies are awesome.
Okay. So Saturday. Saturday was the BEST! Mike Dobelman was baptized!!!!! I still get this ridiculous, goofy grin every time I think about it. It just makes me so happy! This guy has been in our teaching pool since before I even got here. And at that time, and for the longest time he has been determined that he would never actually become a "Mormon". Yet the whole time we knew the Spirit's peaceful prompt to ignore that statement. I was certain he would join the church some day. I dreamed I would see that day but for the longest time I was sure I would be long gone by then. I wish you could have been there for those couple lessons with him where everything came together and he knew God wanted him to join the church; that he needed to join. Gosh, the Spirit is so key to all of this. Everything I've done as a missionary would be for naught without that Spirit. I am so grateful for it. I am so grateful to have been blessed to be here to see this incredible man enter such a sacred covenant with his Father. Mike was just glowing! And Elder Anderson (my previous companion) got to come to it as well! It was unforgettable. Mike was confirmed yesterday. We know he's going to be a great contribution to the church here and wherever he is led.
Two down, one to go, and that would be Mason. His date was set four and a half months ago and it's finally arrived! This kid could have been baptized four months ago if you ask me, but we wanted the whole family to be on track with him and they have done just that. I can't say how proud I am of that family. They have greatly impressed me. I am eager for Saturday to see Bro. Smith baptize Mason. I know in a few years Mason's younger siblings will follow his example. I'm excited for that.
This truly is the best work on earth.
I have loved my mission. I love it with all my soul. I love these people. I love my companion. I love my job. Leaving this will be the hardest thing in my life. I love the gospel with all my life. I love my Savior and my Heavenly Father. I love my dear, eternal family. I have been so abundantly blessed. I am so grateful.
I love you guys so much.