March 9, 2015
Dear Friends and Family,
I love you all so very much, and I also love Oakdale. It is a tough little place for a sensitive little guy like me, but it sure has taught me a lot about patience and a lot about miracles. It isn't as if the miracles are always big or spectacular, but rather that they are small and special, so often unseen or appreciated. We had 3 people in our branch non-member and member who were healed because of a priesthood blessing, and because of that, they came to church. It was so good to see for the 3rd week in a row the congregation felt full and wonderful. You wouldn't believe how much this little branch has grown, it makes me so happy! People are starting to come back and show up again, and get over sickness. The Lord truly is good. Treating his vineyard here with tender love is just what it needed.
So on Monday and Tuesday we had birthday parties like you all know, but the best thing about Tuesday was having district meeting with everyone there and afterwards we did this fun thing for the new year/springtime renewal. Sister Kay, our good Tongan missionary, does a thing similar to "burning the boats" of last year, but instead we write stuff on a balloon that we want to get over or let go of and then, we let go of the balloon! It was great, and Elder Olsen really liked it for his birthday lunch. He actually let his balloon go out in the middle of nowhere (we were trying to find a fire tower) on a dirt road, then we all went home. It was a real solemn and nice memory to have.
So an update on all our investigators: Our single older aged man who dips tobacco wants us to meet and answer questions for his girlfriend and we are still working on praying to find testimony and to stop chewing. Our vietnamese investigator has been sick, but she is progressing well. She will be baptized, it's now just when. Our young black man is learning really quickly despite his age and will also be baptized soon. Everything is doing good and we got referrals so we might have some more investigators here soon.
Church was the best this week, the Boswell sisters came and sang, and the older one gave a talk, we taught our young investigator, and we set up appointments for this next upcoming week. I hope you all a great day in Christ.
Most of what I learned comes from 1 Cor Ch. 13 on the perfect law of love, it is truly fulfilling all that the law requires of us, and it can perfect us.
-Elder Joshua Dean Rush