Monday, June 5, 2017

Osgood, More Like OsBAD Schlatters

Email written: 6/5/17

This week was more of the same heat my back, take medicine, stretch, heat my back, stretch, ice my knees and rest. And our official unprofessional diagnosis is Osgood Schlatters disease, which basically has to do with your quad muscles and knee joint and its not complicated to treat, but it requires not walking a lot (something hard here) and rest and ice. The good news is that it won´t be long term.

It was frustrating because the ward really needs us. In the past few weeks, attendance has dropped down and the few who are there are losing their "fire" too. We have an amazing bishop and ward mission leader who are trying to do everything possible, and we want so bad to be able to help, but we have been really limited.
But even though we stayed home most of the week, we were still able to see some miracles. On Tuesday for the first time in 6 weeks, someone was home when they said they would be and they read their Book of Mormon! We were able to teach and at the end said "Of course I´ll get baptized when I find out it´s true" so finally after everything we have someone to teach! On Thursday, as I went to ice my knees, I looked out the balcony at the park that´s in front of our building. And like always there were people doing parkour, smoking (not always cigarettes) and some couples on dates. I didn't really think anything of it. Then I called the nurse a little later to ask what else I could do for my knee, and she gave me a few more ideas. We then went downstairs to visit the other elders to ask their opinions and I looked out on their balcony and recognized one of the guys who was with a girl.... It was Agustin!!! After a month and trying to get in touch with him, he just happens to be hanging out at the park right in front of our building! To make sure it was him, we called. And he answered! He said he had been working and studying but would come to church on Sunday. Then we realized he didn't have the best group of friends at the park and we could tell he didn't want to be with them. So then we had some of the members who are his friends send him uplifting messages. We watched as he read them and looked at his friends, explained something, and then got up AND LEFT!! He turned away from temptation!!! We were so happy to watch him make the right decision.

On Sunday the Bishop decided to "call on the powers of heaven" to help the ward progress again. And right as we said amen, an inactive family walked by the classroom! We had spent almost 6 months looking for this family and then a week and a half ago, we visited them for not even 10 minutes basically telling them to read the Book of Mormon. And following behind them was another less active recent convert who has been impossible to contact. The bishop was so happy and he looked at us and said "The miracles have already begun Elders!" And they have. Even though we didn't baptize in the month of May and it was filled to the brim of challenges and problems. it was still a month of growth! I realized sitting in sacrament meeting that if I learn from and find humor in what has happened, it will grow closer to Christ and have a valuable experience to learn from.

Something else very special is that during testimony meeting a member who after 13 years, became an official again, got up to share his testimony. When he got up he just stood there for a second feeling the pulpit and looking at everyone and he realized that it was something real for him to be able to bear his testimony again. It was so simple. He bore his testimony of the restoration, the Book of Mormon, and of Jesus Christ. And that´s what it all boils down to. A testimony of God and his plan of salvation for all of us and a testimony of the role of Jesus Christ changes our lives. I know that God loves all of us and that there really is a plan. I know Jesus Christ lives and is our savior. I know the Book of Mormon is true.

-Elder Steele

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