"Make no small plans: This is the vision I have for the South. I believe that one day the South will baptize more people into the church than all other English speaking missions in the world together....We will see the time when we will baptize hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands...In your day you will see a million members of the church in the South. There will be temples plural in the Southern States. What a great call you have to serve with these marvelous people." President Spencer W. Kimball

Sunday, October 5, 2014

FROM PH: Sheep

"All we like sheep"
Sent Date: Sunday, October 5, 2014
Author: President Hansen
Dear Elders and Sisters,
General Conference was so great! I am always inspired when I get to learn from the General Authorities of the Church. I go away feeling like the Lord is at the head of this great work and that because He is at the head, He will guide us to those who are prepared to receive this message. I also feel like the leaders of the Church and the members around the world are praying for the success of the labors that we are involved in. I feel the influence of the prayers of the thousands of members who are anxious to see us succeed. The other day, Elder Bluth was talking about the shepherd who left the 99 to search out the lost sheep. (Matt. 18:12) That is what we are all about. He is searching for the one. Are we part of that search? He then referred me to Isaiah 53:6 which says, "all we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way..." We are all the lost sheep that Christ must rescue. Our most important convert on our missions is ourselves. We must be changed and transformed to follow the Lord.

As we contact people this week remember that we must always edify and uplift, not argue or bash. Strive to have the spirit and to leave its influence in every home we visit. We are recovering the lambs of His fold.

Sister Hansen and I got to spend some time with about thirty two of the Baton Rouge Zone missionaries over the week-end, which made us so thankful to be serving with you. We love each of you. We feel like the more we know you the more we love each of you. Sometimes we know your weaknesses and imperfections, like you know ours, but that only helps us to love you more.

-----He was having some struggles with his neighbor lately and said, "I hope y'all have got something to help me with that for today." So, we started into the lesson we prepared with Elder _____ taking the lead as we had planned. Honestly, I don't remember much of what we talked about, but after only 5 or 10 minutes into our lesson, Chris started tearing up. He said, "How do y'all know? Every time y'all are over here, what you have applies directly to my life, things you couldn't possibly know about. How do y'all do it?" The Spirit was very strong and we explained to him that although we don't know everything, Heavenly Father does and he guides us to share what is needed.

-----They have a full house and one of her grandsons wants to be baptized! He's 11, but his dad doesn't want him to do it until he's 18. Even she (member grandmother) was telling us that she wasn't sure if he was ready to make such a big commitment, so we just told her we could start teaching him the lessons and see if he keeps the commitments we leave with him (like reading scriptures and stuff like that) and told her that's partly how we tell when someone's ready for baptism.

-----The one man (that we passed on the street) said, "What kind of scripture ya got? So we pulled out the Book of Mormon and taught them about that too. I told him, "I can only give this to you if you'll actually read it, because it's a very special book." And he promised to read it. It was super amazing. This morning I was wondering if they were just playing us, but then we got a text from the guy, Derrick, that said he's reading the book and he wants to discuss it when we come back on Thursday. Man, I just got the missionary fire all over again and I felt like I was fresh out of the MTC.

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