When Will Austin Be Home?

  • Austin left on his mission:
    4 years, 2 months, 1 day, 7 hours, 26 minutes, 53 seconds ago

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What’s the Matter With Kids These Days???

 

Elder Austin Rushton and Companion

Elder Austin Rushton and Companion

This past week was….well….fun. That’s the key to missionary work, though: just have fun with it; everything will work out!

There seems to be a lot of willingness to receive us here in White City, and teaching people is a breeze, but getting them to church is a real task. Everyone will commit, and no one will follow through. And
if getting investigators to come is difficult, trying to coerce less-actives to come to church is a real chore! So we take it one step at a time, and keep inviting them to come to things. Maybe one day
they will!

We got to talk to a guy we put on date for baptism awhile ago this week. He sounded like he really had thought about it, and wants to be baptized, so read through all of the interview questions so he’d know what it took to be baptized. He really just needs to come to church and he’ll be good to go!

I could talk more about my other investigators, but it’s kind of just the same old stories there that I always tell, and there’s really nothing too new to report! I will simply say that we’ve started teaching a few new people, are still at 15-20 lessons per week, and will likely have a baptism in the next month or two.

One passage of scripture that really struck me this week is found in Alma 50:12. It says, “Thus Moroni, with his armies, which did increase daily because of the assurance of protection which his works did bring forth unto them, did seek to cut off the strength and the power of the Lamanites from off the lands of their possessions, that they should have no power upon the lands of their possession.” What stood out to me was the principle that, by increasing the “assurance of protection”, more people joined in the cause of freedom. I think that applies a lot in missionary work and life in general. Typically, if people don’t feel like they’re at risk to lose something–their lives or possessions–by participating in a task, they feel more inclined to join in. Obviously we face a lot of opposition in the church, so there’s always a risk, but if we can minimize that risk as much as possible by making people feel safe, I think we’ll find a lot more people are willing to take the steps necessary to support the cause of truth. This, I think, is the principle my own dad was trying to teach me when he told me that, in order to get people to do what you know they need to do, you have to make it easy for them. Ain’t it the truth!?

I encounter a lot of excuse-making people in my life. They’ll try to place blame on others for a situation they find displeasing, rather than asking, “What can I do?” One particular behavior I’ve noticed on my mission (and none of you future missionaries better do this) is for missionaries, investigators, and members to blame others for lack of progress by saying things like, “they just won’t commit,” “they just need a stronger father figure,” “she’s just not strong enough to get out of her situation,” and perhaps the root of the problem, “There’s just nothing else we can do.” I would argue that there is ALWAYS something you can do. If we forget that, we’ll likely end up choosing to do nothing, which rarely will help a situation move forward.

 

Keeping that in mind, if we apply Alma 50:12, we find the solution to each of these excuses. Ask yourself this question, “How can I help make [task] easier for [person]?” This is the epitome of unselfish service and the core of missionary work and will yield results! Every person on this earth is capable of making good decisions when they have enough information–this is the lesson to be learned from the war in heaven–and so if we can just provide people the means they need to make a good decision, they will make it! Granted, some will refuse the information necessary, but I believe the vast majority will not, so long as we help them recognize that it is a good decision in itself to listen. This gives me a lot of hope for people, and makes me not want to give up on anyone. No one is a lost cause, I think. This is probably why I never drop any investigators!

Okay, enough preaching, I know all of you probably just find it annoying :)

So how is everyone? It seems like I rarely get letters anymore! Of course, having been out almost a year, I suppose that’s to be expected! I’ll tell ya, it’s weird to see all the people two years younger than I am graduating. I can’t help but think, “You can’t graduate, you’re too young!” But then I remember that I’m 20 now….weird.

Alright everybody, that’s it for this week. I hope you all had a happy Mother’s Day, and I’ll talk to you all again soon!

Elder Rushton – Missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

 

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