It’s the Coolest Experience to see how the Gospel Changes People’s Lives

(Dec. 13, 2010) Sounds like festivities this Christmas and a lot of fun events going on with the family for the last time of this year! That will be fun for you all together and I will get to call.  I don’t know what time I will call but it will be good. All I have is 40 minutes on the phone so we will talk about important stuff. I can’t believe that the year is almost over! It is crazy because I always told myself that 2010 would be the full year that I serve the Lord. And I can’t believe that it is coming to an end!!!!! Blows my mind about how fast it goes. You’re right mom about my pattern of staying in areas for a long time…. yes I’m still here in the Tongan program as zone leader with Elder Kalamafoni. (Colby, his brother served in Chicago, I think he overlapped you just a little bit or at least was really close to you.) But it will be another 6 week adventure of me not knowing what is going on with the people. As for my plans for Christmas, I’m still unsure about what will be going on. We will see what we have to do. The traditional Christmas this year won’t be the same unfortunately and it will be awkward. We are trying to plan some sort of service opportunity but we will see if that goes through. I want to do like a food kitchen or something… not sure we will see.

This past week I had the coolest experience ever. A long time ago when I was back in Brentwood I went on an exchange my last week with another missionary. We were knocking some doors and we found this Muslim lady who said we could come back… Well since then the missionaries have been teaching her on and off and now as the zone leader in the Tongan program we have a district leader that we go on exchanges with that covers both a Tongan branch and an English ward out in Brentwood. Three weeks ago I went on exchanges with them and as we drove in this familiar neighborhood I told the elder I had tracted that house and the lady was super interested and asked if he had been teaching her. He said yeah, we are actually really close with setting a date with her. So I got all excited but then we didn’t get a chance to teach her that day on exchanges. So then I go on exchanges again with this companionship that serves out in Brentwood and they scheduled an appointment for the same day I was going to be there. So I was really excited. We got in and taught this family and the whole time I knew that I was part of finding them and it was just a really good feeling to see how the gospel changes lives. We read 2 Nephi 31 and had plans to commit to baptism and the spirit was so strong during the lesson that I committed her to baptism and she said yes and she is so excited to get baptized now. She has a son who is 9 as well and he wants to get baptized but isn’t allowed to (since he plans on going back to the middle east, they would kill him for becoming Christian) but she isn’t planning on going back so she can get baptized. Long story but it was awesome and then when I was leaving I asked her if she remembers how missionaries found her and she remembers a tall missionary and a short one that knocked on her door! That was me! I hope you followed that story but it was just a cool experience for me to be able to be part of that and to see how the gospel changes people’s lives.

I hope you all have a great week. Make a lot of memories and remember the true meaning of Christmas. This past week we also had a zone conference and it was a whole Christmas theme and it definitely opened my vision about what the true meaning of Christmas is. I love my Savior Jesus Christ and know that it is through him in which we can return to live with God. The true meaning of Christmas is to remember Christ and to follow his example in all aspects of our lives. Serve others and be charitable to others. I love you all and wish you farewell until next week!

Elder Johnson



~ by Susan Johnson on December 15, 2010.

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