Monday, March 28, 2016

WEEK 38 Rohnert Park 3rd Ward/Rohnert Park Spanish Branch-  

Family and Friends,

I know with all the fullness of my heart that this week was a true
testament and lesson that The Lord was trying to instill upon me,
regarding the persistent efforts of work that are required to "achieve
the purpose" in which us missionaries have been tasked with. I don't
know if I could describe the amount of personal revelation and
promptings I received this past week, pertaining to the very simple
aspect of this calling. Work. I found very quickly that the antidote
to all sorts of pains, frustrations, and doubts are cured by that very
small four letter word that each and everyone of us often times hate
doing. Work was instituted from the very beginning of time as the
means by which we as children of God are to fulfill this earthly
stewardship. Work has been and always will be our divine heritage as
missionaries. With that being said - I couldn't be more grateful for
the example that has been set by the missionaries before me.

With a combined total of fifteen lessons this week, it's quite obvious
that the work here in Rohnert Park is progressing. Gloria from the
Spanish Branch has set a baptismal date for next Sunday. We've been
working closely with her and helping her progress. It's been so great
to see the rapid change in Gloria over these past couple months as
she's completely immersed herself in The Gospel. She knows it to be
true and her testimony of this church is unwavering.

On the flip side of this, Diane hasn't been doing so well. We went
over on Tuesday to visit with her and teach her the commandments, but
she was quick to turn us away. Her life has been absolutely hectic
lately and the adversary is making every possible means for our visits
to clash with her busy schedule. It really hurts me to see this slow
downhill fall that she's making. Reading the Book of Mormon is
becoming more of a hassle to her and she's having hard time making it
to church. As well, her husband is starting to interfere and that's
not an easy barrier to break. Unfortunately, we've come to a cross
road and are having to make the decision as to whether or not we are
going to have to drop her. More updates coming next week.

Our English Classes with Danny, Maritza and Floralba are still as
wonderful as ever. They've made it very apparent to us that they
aren't--in anyway shape or form-- interested in the church. This kinda
stinks as we thought it would be a perfect teaching opportunity, but
we can't go against their wishes. Who's to say that we can't watch
Mormon Messages with them though?! Hahaha that's been fun as we've
tried to sneak these videos into our lessons.

The majority of our week was spent doing service. Boy oh boy, was it a
learning process for me. I think it might be safe to say that I can
now fully manage, run, and raise a farm. Brother & Sister Ray have got
us hard at work in the mornings at their farm. I would be lying if I
said I didn't love it though. It's the most peaceful work in the
world. I love being out there on the farm! Along with serving these
two wonderful people, we spent the other half of our week setting up
for the ward activity titled "A Night in Venice". Twas the night where
all members of the ward came fancied up and prepared for a snazzy
night. From hanging lights, to setting up tables, and cooking food -
you might just want to hire us missionaries out for your next big
event?! :)

I also was privileged this week to have spoken in sacrament. Bishop
Cottrell gave me a weeks notice and asked that I might share some
thoughts on "Putting on the armour of God". I drew a ton of parallels
and told some stories about the amazing experiences I've had while
playing football. It made it quite easy to speak about, but I learned
a substantial amount regarding the preparations necessary (for us in
these latter days) to withstand the "fiery darts of the wicked".
[Ephesians 6:13-17]. Quite a good read. I would certainly recommend it
to those looking for further knowledge on preparing for these last
days thatve been foretold for thousands of years.

Goodness gracious we were slammed with work this week, but I wouldn't
have it be any different. We lay our heads down at night on our
pillows, and don't move until 6:30 AM the next morning. I guess
Heavenly Father has seen it fit to give us a couple weeks worth of
good nights rest. I couldn't be more thankful.

The Lord is marvelous. The Gospel is true. I love each and every one of you.


-Elder Schaefer

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