This week was a rough one. More than half of our lessons feel through, Sister Cloward was sick most of the week, and the worst of all, Ken started smoking again. So he no longer has a baptism date.
Satan is the worst.
First, Ken. He had a family tragedy this week, so it's sort of understandable that he relapsed. It's just so disappointing. Because he has to have stopped smoking at least 2 weeks before he is baptized we have to change the date. Right now we haven't set a new date yet. I want to wait until he has completely quit before we set another one. A baptism date is meant to be a goal for the investigator to work towards. It's not going to work if there's no motivation to make it, if they know that they can just keep pushing it back. And it's just so frustrating to me how Satan can have so much power over people. I can't blame people when they relapse with things like smoking - I've never had to give it up so I don't know how hard it is. I just want to help them understand that they can't blame their relapse on their surroundings or allow themselves to even consider starting again when it gets too rough.
And that goes for everything, not just smoking. When someone has something to overcome or accomplish they need to start with the belief that they will not fail. That it's not acceptable to fail. Rationalization is of the devil. Maybe a little harsh there, but seriously.
If someone can manage to stay strong through the hard times, how much easier will it be to stay strong in the good times? It goes with everything! Quitting smoking, reading the scriptures, going to church, paying tithing, etc.
And lets face it. Life is hard. If we keep waiting for the easy times to come to make any changes, we're never going to actually change. Because life will never be easy enough. Change is hard. People don't like doing hard things.
This is another thing that I've realized this week. Change is hard. I kind of feel like I've been fighting against change for a while. I decided to go on a mission because I wasn't happy with where I was, with who I was. I wanted to change and become better.
Yet, I think I've been fighting against it my whole mission so far. I'm worried about changing because I'm worried that if I change, I'll lose who I am. I won't be the same person I've always been. So instead of changing for the better, I've been changing for the worse.
This isn't a stagnant world or a stagnant gospel. If you're not moving forward, you're moving backward. We can never stay in the same place. It's not possible.
So we might as well just suck it up and accept it.
That's my project for the week. And hopefully it'll last for longer than just this week. I want to accept change. I want to allow the Lord to change me. I need to stop being so stubborn and accept it.
I hate giving up.
Then again, I guess it's not really giving up. Right? It's more of just giving in. Letting the Lord take over.
Which is still hard.
But missions are supposed to be hard. And I've never been a quitter.
So much self-reflection this week you guys. Sorry if you feel like you're reading my diary or something. To be honest, you kind of are. But it's all good.
I can't believe this is the beginning of week 6 of this transfer! We'll find out on Saturday if Sister Cloward and I are staying together for another transfer or if either of us is leaving.
I really hope that we stay together. I love Augusta. The people here are wonderful. And I really like Sister Cloward. We have our differences, but we get along well. I feel like I've grown more with her as a companion than anyone else so far.
And I would really like to have a companion for more than 6 weeks.
But I guess we'll see what happens on Saturday.
Love you all. Don't quit. Ever.
Sister Lindsey Berg
P.S. Have I mentioned that Augusta is the capitol of Maine? Well here's a picture of me in front of the Capitol building. Enjoy.