Oh my GHOSTness! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!
Ok, that joke was just a CATastrophe.
Oh no! WITCH one was worse?
I can't decide... BOOth are just bad....
Ok, I'm done. I can SCAREcely stand myself...
Hehe ok, for reals. I'm done.
How are my favorite people?? I hope you all are doing well! I cannot believe it is already Halloween. We aren't allowed to proselyte tonight, so Sister Rook and I get to spend some time at a pumpkin patch with one of our members and her non member family. We cannot wait!
This week has been a hoot! I love being on a mission, really I do! We have seen so many miracles and we have found so much joy in just getting out and doing the work.
We met with Kelly and Dave this week and Kelly told us that she is ready and wants to be baptized. AHHHH!!!! Dave said he was still praying about us, but that he would let us know. Well the next day they took us out to a Mexican restaurant for dinner and as we walked in Dave told us we were celebrating! We asked him what we were celebrating and he told us that he wants to be baptized! I think I fainted. Haha I really don't remember what happened the rest of the night, but Sister Rook and I were on cloud 309. They are trying to figure out some family stuff, so they aren't set for a date yet, but hopefully it will be before this transfer is up. They are so ready and so willing to change. Dave came to church yesterday with a clean shaven face and new clothes. He told us that he felt like he needed to clean up to come to church to show Heavenly Father he was ready to clean up his life. Kelly was so proud, and so excited. You could not wipe the smile off her face for anything! It's incredible how something so simple shows such a big change of heart. Man I love them! Keep them in your prayers because they need it. (Side note: I finally have pictures with them, haha so I will attach them!)
Also Phyllis' husband Richard came to the Trunk or Treat with her! (I will also attach a picture of that) Oh my goodness he loved it! We had several less active members, non-members, and some investigators there, and it was a total success! Many of the less active members even came to church yesterday, and loved it! It was so happy. The spirit was very strong during the meeting, and I am just so grateful that Heavenly Father has allowed me to learn from and grow with so many incredible people. NEBRASKA IS THE BEST PLACE IN THE WORLD! And if anyone disagrees I will fight you, along with all the die hard Husker fans I have met, and you will not stand a chance...haha
This week we also found a new investigator. It was around 8:30 one night and all of our plans fell through, so we drove to this street, pulled over, and said a very simple prayer. We told Heavenly Father that we were willing to go where he wanted us to go, and we asked to see a miracle. Not even two seconds after we were getting out of our car, Karl walked out of his garage and we taught him the Restoration. He said he is looking for truth and that He knows Heavenly Father sent us to him. We gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon and he has been reading it since, and he loves it! He has been out of town, but hopefully we will get to see him again this week with a member. He is just INCREDIBLE and so prepared.
I think about a billion funny things happened this week, but I cannot remember any of them...so I apologize.
But fun fact, I have completely gotten over my fear of spiders; however, I have developed a new fear. Crickets. They are all over the place here and I swear they are just waiting to attack me.
So this week Sister Rook and I had to clean our car, which we are supposed to do every week, but we aren't very good at that! Haha. Anyway, we pulled up to the window, paid our $7, and sat back while the exterior of our car was shampooed, rinsed, and dried. As we were driving out of the car wash we noticed a whole row of coin-operated vacuums just waiting to be used. I turned around and looked at the interior of our car...it was SO messy! I could not believe I hadn't noticed how much filth and grime had accumulated over the past few weeks. So Sister Rook and I pulled over and got out some of our precious quarters and started vacuuming.
Well, as I was vacuuming I watched several cars pull into the car wash, get their car cleaned, and drive away. I was amazed at how many cars came in and out, and not a single one stopped to clean the interior of their car! I began to ponder upon this, but then the vacuum timer ran out, so I quickly refocused on the task at hand and we went on our way. However, as I was studying this morning I came upon a verse that took me back to that experience. Alma 60:23 counsels us that we should "remember that God has said that the inward vessel shall be cleansed first, and then shall the outer vessel be cleansed also." I thought about all of those cars that pulled out of the car wash with a clean and shiny exterior but, most likely, a dirty interior. I thought about how comfortable I had become in such a dirty car, simply because I had gotten used to it.
How often do we go through the motions, and spiritually "clean our cars" (go to church, partake of the sacrament, repent, etc.) but refuse to take the time to really inspect and clean out our interiors. How often do we focus on our outward appearance, on how happy and cohesive our family seems, on how beautiful and decorative our house may be, on how athletically inclined and scholastically accomplished our children are, or how shiny our car is? And in comparison, how often do we recognize the filth and grime that has piled up within us, the faults in our character that need cleaning! I know that I am guilty of that. SO guilty of that! There are some things that I have gotten so used to, so comfortable with, that I don't take the time to change them or to fix them.
That verse in Alma reminds us that the quality of our life isn't based upon our outward appearance and cannot be improved by simply going through the motions of the gospel, but the quality of our lives depends upon the quality of our character, and our real intent in changing and becoming. As we strive to truly improve those things within ourselves, as we strive to deeply clean the "inward vessel", then the Lord promises us that our "outer vessel" will be cleansed also. As we try to become more like Christ, then our lives are happier, our joys are richer, and the quality of the way we live increases. Isn't it funny what the spirit can teach you as you are cleaning a dirty Ford Fusion? This week I challenge each of you (myself included) to pray for courage in recognizing the spiritual dirt and grime within you that you may have become comfortable with, then take a step of faith and start cleaning.
Love you all to the full moon and back!!
- Sister Bengtzen