First amazing thing of the week is that this Sunday something incredible happened. So if you can remember back to one of my letters in December, I mentioned a less active that we were working with, I have spent the last 12 weeks working with him. He is 55 years old and came to church the first time since he was 12 in December. Ever since then, we have been working with him and keeping him coming to church. He has been consistently coming to church for the last 12 weeks and last Sunday in gospel principles he asked if he could help out in any way. Our ward mission leader told him he could teach part of the lesson the next week. So during the week he was preparing for a five minute portion of the lesson. He also met with the bishop during the week. Then on Sunday, he had the entire lesson prepared and he had been called to serve as a ward family history specialist and he asked me if I would confer the Aaronic Priesthood upon him and ordain him to the office of a priest.
I was completely blown away that he wanted me to do it and I was so happy to see him come so far and go from completely less active to completely active and serving in the ward in 12 weeks. I gave him one of my ties because he has really made a lasting impression on me. I really do know that the gospel has helped him turn his life around. It was so cool seeing the joy on his face as he received the priesthood and was set apart. He will be one that I always remember from my mission. Incredible experience... I need you to send me my priesthood lineage so that I can hand a copy of that off to him. He will want to have that, and it would be a nice thing to have with me on my mission.
Second amazing thing that also happened yesterday (on Sunday), I went up to give my testimony and shared what was in my heart. Then at the very end of the meeting the last person to bare testimony was a youth 17 turning 18. He gets up and say how much I have helped him and how much he looks up to me. As he was standing up there saying this, I saw myself before my mission and how the missionaries were probably my closest friends as they came in and out of the wards. It is amazing to me to know that I have been one of those missionaries for him. He is one of my favorite people in the ward. His family is honestly the Maxwell family of the Irvington ward. That's probably why I see myself in him so much. He got on Facebook and sent me a friend request so if you could get on my Facebook and accept him he would appreciate that. (his last request) He changed his profile picture to an awesome picture of me and him. You got to check it out.
This area has been a huge testimony builder for me. I know that if an area like this can change so dramatically from when I first got here to what it is now, I know that all of my areas can be like that. I am doing everything I can to be as obedient as possible so that the Lord can bless me as much as He wants to. I have fallen in love with the scriptures because of the guidance and understanding that they have given me. It is amazing to be a part of this hastening of the work. I hope that all of you feel the same way because we are all part of the work.
It has been an amazing week and a lot of work has been done. Just a thought, if you could send me a couple more ties in the next package whenever that is, (Not requesting immediate package) because I gave three away this week, I am searching for some more good ones. I just don't want to run out of ties.
I love you all so much and I look forward to this hour of emailing every week. Be safe and build that family unity!
Love, Elder Maxwell