Monday, March 16, 2015

Gators and Temple Tours

Okay, this week was saaweet! We are now teaching Orian who is Niki and Pamela Gessner's older brother. He is 14 and he is a stud. We have only met with him once this past week, but I'll update you on how this week goes! 

We also met with Julie this past week and we shared the Plan of Salvation lesson with her and it went really well, but we had a dinner appointment so we were crunched for time! 

There is a guy in our ward named Art and he had been less active for a while now but is back home living with his parents now, trying to clean up his life and he wants to start meeting with us. We saw him this week and we were just getting to know him and his brother and Art was explaining that he want to start coming back to church and learning more of the basic doctrines because it has been so long since he has been to church. I talked to him a lot about my past and how it was hard for me to start coming back to church after not going for a while, but that it was the best thing that I have ever done! I also gave him a heads up about how he would now be more of a priority for the adversary to work on him, but as long as he stays close to the scriptures and continues to communicate with his Father in Heaven, all would be fine. Then I shared one of my favorite scriptures Helaman 5:12 with him! The coolest thing about this is that the very next day he called us and he was like "YOU WERE RIGHT! As soon as I tried doing the right thing, my dads friend started giving me a bunch of grief for it!"  He called us asking for scriptures we could give him to share with this guy. So sweet! 

Thursday, we saw Brenda and we shared the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ lesson with her. Before we got started, she told us that she knows the Book of Mormon is true and that she wants to go through with her baptismal date for March 27th! Yeah, baby!! But what is even cooler is that she explain that her and Morgan's marriage has strengthened during this time that they have both been trying to come closer to Heavenly Father. I seriously was about to cry because I was so happy! Then we talked about the temple tours and we were set on getting a ride with them to go down to the temple on Sunday afternoon. 

Saturday, we got a curve ball thrown at us! The assistants to the President called us and they told us that President wanted Elder Christensen and I to participate in giving the tours on Sunday and that we needed to be at the temple Saturday afternoon to go through the script. I was like, "Whaaaa!!??" So we went down there that afternoon and we met two other companionships and the assistants and President Mortensen. He walked us through each station and then at the very end he was like okay lets role play this. I was so nervous! We each had to pick one of the 4 stations and then guide them through it. 

So on Sunday after church, we went back to the apartment and we looked over the script a couple of times and then we headed off to the temple early so we could role-play through it together. I started us out by the flagpole and gave a brief history of the temple and how it came about. It is one of 149 operating temples today and it was completed and dedicated as a house of the Lord in 2001. There was a man named Don Hand (a non-member) who owned the land that the temple is currently on and much of the surrounding land as well in the Champions Forest area. He had intended on building a high end senior facility center there. He woke up from a dream one night with a voice telling him to sell the land, and he responded, "What land?" The voice told him, "You know what land.  Sell it to the Church."  He woke up his wife and told her what had happened and that very next morning he received a call from President Hinckley and he said that he had felt inspired that the temple should be built there and asked if he would sell his land. That was the end of that! Don immediately knew that he needed to sell the land to the Church, so he did. You guys, the Lord was in the details of establishing His House.  

Elder Christensen the took us over by the fountain and he talked about the angel Moroni and how he is a fulfillment of the prophecy in the book of Revelations 14:7. He talked about when Moroni came to Joseph Smith and then briefly about the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Then I let us over to the north side of the temple and talked about how we make covenants or solemn promises to God in the temple. I talked about the question that has confused theologians for centuries about the meaning of John 3:5. Then I talked about those who have passed who have not had the opportunity to hear about the gospel and how they are taught in the spirit world, like in 1 Peter 3, much of what I talked about in my last email, actually! 

We then finished by going over to the temple entrance and Elder Christensen talked about how our families can be sealed for time and all eternity through the priesthood that was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith. 

The temple tours were really successful and there were many people who were there with baptismal dates or that set dates! We were really grateful for the opportunity we had to be a part of the tours! I was relieved after it was over though because I was a little nervous.  :) 

Anyways, we have to go now, but I love you all and hope you have a great week! 

Elder DeLuca

We were the last ones to leave! 

The temple is such a peaceful place. I love it!!! Have a great week!

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