Wow. Well, I don't think it is possible to describe the feelings of gratitude I feel for being able to experience this last week. It has been one of the most uplifting and inspiring experiences of my mission. And it all began with John.
|John Hutchen's Baptism|
John Hutchens is a gentle giant that was found by my companion and a very green missionary (2 days out) while tracting on September 5. He opened the door, hear Elder Cowden stammer out "We're missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ," and he let them in. After sitting through almost daily lessons, while taking care of his wife on hospice the entire time, he felt the Spirit, and was baptized on Sunday. He is 75 years old, and is already sharing the gospel with his family, so that now his daughter and granddaughter are investigating, and he is the most humble, quiet, powerful man I have ever met. The change that has happened in him has been incredible, going from being so scared to pray with us he would shake, to offering incredible prayers where you can feel he is talking to a close friend and Father. He didn't have a bad life before, but the increase of joy in his life is so evident. It is so sweet I start to choke up as I think of it.
|Missionaries on a fun rope swing|
I promise that each one of us can feel that change, just as John did. He has changed his heart, and thus he is happy. We can repent, change our hearts and desires to align them with God's, and be happy. I know this is true. I cannot say that strongly enough.
I love you all so very, very much.