Soooo...this week was one of the best weeks of my mission! It was so good. Day to day we came home EXHAUSTED and so happy because so many amazing things happened. Basically I feel like this whole week led up to our activity last night, La Barra de Hierro. It was amazing! Let me just throw some shout outs to the people who made it all possible:
Papa Quezada for the MUSIC, Hermano Gonzalez for 100 feet of PVC pipe, Hermano Corona for becoming LEHI, Hermana Corona, Deysi, Los Plumas, and David for some BOMB classes, Danny for his support, marshmallows, and technology skills, Maribel for Oreo balls, six tired missionaries who put up 300 chairs, painted PVC pipe, had a load of patience, and made it all happen, and so, so, so many more people who came, participated, and found
So yes, activity summary...one of the members, Hermano Corona, dressed up as Lehi and told us about his vision of the Tree of Life, highlighting specifically four aspects: 1) the iron rod, 2) mists of darkness and great and spacious building, 3) helping others along the way, and 4) the tree of life. We divided those in attendance into four groups and had breakout classes about each of those topics and then regrouped. Each person in attendance was then able to experience the Iron Rod and arrive in the chapel where they found the Tree of Life and partook of the fruit and had time to meditate and listen to some beautiful music played by Hermano Quezada. They spirit was so strong!! It was especially neat to come to the end and just feel of the love and joy people had to have made it to the tree with their families. Everyone felt so united. It was beautiful.
We had another neat experience talking about the Book of Mormon at a service project this week. We've been working at the Rain Project and every couple weeks Toby comes and changes the fryer oil in the kitchen. He's met missionaries and heard a little about the church before. This last week we were talking to him about his family and his life and got to know him more, and after a bit he said, "You know, I actually have a question for you about John Smith and the gold plates. Where did they go?" So we explained the Restoration and the Book of Mormon and he totally got it! He took his supplies back out to his car then came back in and said, "One more question, is the Book of Mormon a continuation of the New Testament?" We explained that not exactly, it's actually another testament and it took place in the Americas. He said, "That makes SO MUCH SENSE. I've always wondered if that happened! That's so cool!" He had to run out and we were in the middle of cutting food, but he said that he'd come prepared with lots of questions next time. He's going to get baptized. :)
Reflecting on these experiences and the important role of the Book of Mormon in our conversion and ability to make it to the presence of God again, I am filled with gratitude. Just this morning as I read in the Book of Mormon I felt so much peace in my heart. I know that the Book of Mormon is true. It is the Iron Rod and it leads us to Christ and to obtain His grace. I love the statement and promise in the introduction of the Book of Mormon that says, "I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book." I know that is true because through the Book of Mormon I have come closer to my Father in Heaven.