Tuesday, September 1, 2015

An Instrument in the Lord's Hands

Well, I don't know where it went...but this week was sure great!  The members here have been working so great with us this past week.  They have been giving us several references of people that they know and love and accompany us to the appointments with them.  It has been awesome!  There is such a difference between a lesson with a member present than a lesson without.  There is a part in Preach my Gospel that says, "The ideal solution is when members invite others to be taught and our present for the teaching.  When members do this, more people are baptized and remain active in the church.  It is very true, there is a higher level of success in the work when we work with the members!

We also have been focussing a lot on re-activating less actives lately.  There is a story that we have used to motivate us and the members to work on a re-activation and never give up.  The story talks about an inactive young man who used to surf.  He would pend his time on Sundays surfing instead of going to church.  However, the ward assigned a member to reactivate him and bring him back to church.  Here is the story......

As a member of the branch presidency in Fortaleza, Brazil, Brother Marques with the other 
priesthood leaders developed a plan to reactivate those who were less active in his branch. One of those who was less active was a young man by the name of Fernando Araujo. 
Recently I spoke to Fernando, and he told me of his experience:
“I became involved in surfing competitions on Sunday mornings and stopped going to my
Church meetings. One Sunday morning Brother Marques knocked on my door and asked 
my nonmember mother if he could talk to me. When she told him I was sleeping, he asked 
permission to wake me. He said to me,‘Fernando, you are late for church!’ Not listening to 
my excuses, he took me to church.
“The next Sunday the same thing happened, so on the third Sunday I decided to leave early to avoid him. As I opened the gate I found him sitting in his car, reading the scriptures. 
When he saw me he said, ‘Good! You are up early.Today we will go and find another young man!’ I appealed to my agency, but he said, ‘We can talk about that later.’
“After eight Sundays I could not get rid of him, so I decided to sleep at a friend’s house. 
I was at the beach the next morning when I saw a man dressed in a suit and tie walking 
towards me. When I saw that it was Brother Marques, I ran into the water. All of a sudden, I felt someone’s hand on my shoulder. It was Brother Marques, in water up to his chest! He 
took me by the hand and said, ‘You are late! Let’s go.’ When I argued that I didn’t have any clothes to wear, he replied, ‘They are in the car.’
“That day as we walked out of the ocean, I was touched by Brother Marques’s sincere love and worry for me. He truly understood the Savior’s words: ‘I will seek that which was lost, 
and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and 
will strengthen that which was sick’ (Ezek.34:16). Brother Marques didn’t just give me a ride to church the quorum made sure I remained active. They planned activities that made me 
feel needed and wanted, I received a calling, and the quorum members became my 
Following his reactivation, Brother Araujo went on a full time mission and has served as 
bishop, stake president, mission president, and regional representative. His widowed 
mother, three sisters, and several cousins have also entered the waters of baptism.

I love you guys!

Love, Hermana Paine

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