Elder Eric Johnson
2516 Normandy Dr. SE Apt. 304-C
Grand Rapids, MI 49506

Please send letters or packages by First class or Priority Mail via U.S.P.S. so they can be forwarded to him.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

27 November 2017


We meet with the Francos like three times a week. It's pretty great. We've had a series of really good lessons with them and they are progressing decently. Unfortunately, December 23 won't be met. Marco wants to be baptized but there are some things we have to work on and they have to work on before baptism that will likely take some more time than we have so they took themselves off date. We were able to talk about everything going on and set some goals to keep them progressing. On another day we went over to learn how to make tortillas and horchata. First off they both turned out so good. The members and the people we work with keep their recipes under lock and key, although "recipe" is a pretty loose term. Cooking here is more like "a little this and a little of that" with zero measurements, I took loose notes. The tortillas were pretty hard, probably took me about 10 tries to get the pressed masa from tortilla press to grill, the darn thing kept tearing. They also gifted us a tortilla press. We have already put it to good use. 

Tuesday was good. I had a good trade off with Elder Rencher. They have an investigator getting baptized who is finally getting baptized. She is so awesome. I remember my very first trade off when I met her and thought she was a member. Her situation didn't allow her to be baptized but after many months of working hard she was able to get away from a bad situation that wouldn't allow her to be baptized. The interview process is really simple. There are a set of defined questions that are designed to make sure the person who wants to be baptized understands what they are doing and are willing to live according to the standards by which they promise to live by. President Brennan came to give the interview and I "translated". It was pretty great. We walked into the bishop's little office and President Brennan just asked me to do the interview, he added a few questions and then we closed in prayer. All went smoothly.  

Friday the church launched "Light the World". I'm really impressed with how it has turned out. I wasn't in the loop last year but apparently it's pretty similar. The basic premise is that you do some type of service every day leading up to Christmas to help people remember why we celebrate Christmas and get people in the true spirit of Christmas. It's based on 25 different things Christ said or taught and the video the church put up is stellar. 

Unfortunately the Westons return home on the fourth. They spoke in church on Sunday and it was really good. They are both such good examples. They definitely make me want to serve a senior mission when I'm old. Elder Weston shared an insight that I liked in his talk, he said that church is a tool and the gospel is the way of life. A lot of people tell us that the either don't believe in religion but believe in God or don't believe in organized religion. Their point makes a little sense if the only reason you go to church is to study the bible and or go to some social gathering. The sacrament is why we go to church. It's the way we can recharge our spiritual batteries for the week and receive forgiveness for the sins from the previous week and recommit to be a little bit better the next week. We then take what we learn in church and apply it in the coming week. Application of the gospel is crucial. If you don't apply it, it is of no worth. Alma 41 makes an interesting point on application. 

My Book of Mormon reading has been going pretty well. I'm coming up at the end of the Book of Alma. I don't think I've read through the war chapters so fast. There is no doubt that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. It's super awesome. No one can dictate a book of this level or close in under 90 days (or at all) while having other responsibilities like raising a family, protecting said family from mobs, moving from state to state and other crazy stuff like that. Aside from the confirmation of the spirit of its truth there is no other explanation for such a book. Yes, it's different from the Bible. No Revelation 22:19 is not referring to the still uncompiled Bible, and yes God can reveal more of his word and has through living day prophets and the Book of Mormon. Read it and study it daily. It's pretty good. 


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