This blog chronicles Matthew Staib's progress as he serves an LDS mission over the course of twenty-four months.

You can also read his personal blog at different, defined.

Monday, April 8, 2013

A Great General Conference Weekend and Baptism

Dear everybody.

This week began very dumb. Very, very dumb. None of our appointments were home. Most of our back-ups failed. A good deal of our back-up back-ups failed. We ran around a lot, dropped a few investigators that only seemed to talk about wrestling, and rescheduled many appointments. On Tuesday I went on another exchange to Blytheville (which also covers Missouri), and the whole time I was sick. From Monday to Thursday, I got allergies. Bad. I'm mostly better now, but I've gone through buckets of tissues and have been coughing a bit. The weather has been splendid the past few days, though, so we're excited for the oncoming spring.

Friday we had the dinner with The Rings, Kristy, Will, Ashley and Daniel. It was so awesome. We had a delicious dinner of sloppy joes, chatted a bit, and then ended the night with a message of eternal families. The Rings led the Family Home Evening, and we only added our testimonies to it. We're so grateful to the Rings for doing that. The Kerns stayed about half an hour after we left. We hope we've given them a lot to think about.

Saturday and Sunday were Conference, of course. I've noticed that the Conference message were very bold. There wasn't much fluff. The Apostles are telling us to move on from feelings of inadequacy, get better, and spread the word. SPREAD IT WHEREVER YOU ARE. 

When Elder Bednar came to visit our mission, I remember he said, "Some of you are trying so hard to teach your wards and branches to do missionary work. You worry about your own work. We (the Apostles) will take care of the members." And that they did. I only heard the responsibilities of the full-time missionaries mentioned once, from what I recall. All other instances were referencing to the members. Of course, that's going to apply to me the moment this tag comes off. But I encourage everyone to do your part in being an example to others, as well as carrying passalong cards, copies of the Book of Mormon and other items. The end is nearing, and this is our final push.

The Kerns came to half a session of conference before going home and putting their son down for a nap, but we're glad they came. The messages they heard were awesome, so they had something to think about.

I watched the World Report between sessions, and you can imagine my delight when I saw that Lone Peak was the best high school basketball team in the NATION. It was fun to see TJ Haws in action. That family is remarkable. I wouldn't be where I am now if it wasn't for Tyler's leadership as my Deacon's, Teacher's AND Priest's quorum president.

The baptism was really good. Elder Whetten baptized both of them. They'll be confirmed next week. The entire family has been changed so much.

Zack Hopkins and Brianna Cope are baptized!

Also, because of all the new missionaries, the mission schedule has been altered slightly. I come home on October 8, so that means I come home exactly 6 months from today.

I'm really glad Michael is growing. As I watched the Priesthood session, all I could think of was him. And then it dawned on me, hey, I know a training video for him to learn from about how to be a teacher's quorum president, and how to plan for the quorum. It's a video that I was in myself!

The video is "Conducting Quorum Presidency Meeting". But Michael was on my thoughts a lot.

I'll end with this thought. 

Something that Elder Holland said stuck out to me. He shared a story how a young man came up to him and said, "Brother Holland, I don't know if I can say 'I know the church is true' yet. I believe it's true, but..." And then Elder Holland said he hugged the boy so hard the his eyes bulged out. Elder Holland then went on to say that believing is not to be diminished, and that it is still a precious treasure. It made me really think of what I believed, and what I knew. So now, I want to share what I KNOW.

I know God speaks to us. He has spoken to me, comforted me, and taught me. And He can speak to anyone if they have faith and ask with a sincere heart, as well as with the intent to act on the counsels given.

I know the Book of Mormon is true. It is a true record of people that received God's spirit just as I have. Whenever someone says they don't believe the Book of Mormon is true, I can feel the cries of those people -- the prophets, the apostles, the widows, the children, the men that fought to protect their families and religion -- I feel their sorrow as their gift to the world is rejected. The Book of Mormon was compiled at the price of many lives. We have a duty to hear the words of those that gave their lives for the cause of truth.

I can probably pull out a few more things, but those were the things that stuck out the most. I love this church. It's blessed me so much, and continues to bless me.

-Elder Staib

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