Merry Christmas! The Pueblo Stake hosted a Nativity Night.  Elder Decoria and I went to find new investigators but somehow got roped (or should I say “robed”) into playing wise men in the live nativity set.  It was uncomfortable but we had a good time helping out.  None of our investigators made it out though which was a bummer.

Dad, I got a bottle cage for my bike in the mail the other day and I have no idea why.  Do you know how it got sent?  (I also got an issue of “Outdoor Magazine” in September addressed to me and my mission office.  Weird.  Anyone know where that came from?)

I heard they are making a remake of “True Grit”.  Let me know if it is any good.

Elder Decoria and I witnessed a mighty miracle last week.  We were at our third visit with our investigators Starlight and Ricardo talking with them about their baptism on the 12th.  We were having a hard time with it because Starlight had changed her stance since our last visit and was now obstinately refusing to be baptized because she had already been baptized into many different churches and she was satisfied with the first.  This in turn was causing Ricardo to refuse baptism as well since he did not want to be separated from Starlight spiritually by being baptized without her.  Elder Decoria and I threw everything we had at them, from the necessity of priesthood authority, to the blessings of temple marriage.  Nothing was working and the spirit was starting to leave as contention slipped in.  Starlight just kept telling us that even if it meant she couldn’t be happy in this life or the world to come, she knew she had been forgiven of her sins the first time she was baptized when she was 12 years old (70+ years ago) and that she would not let herself be pressured into making a mockery of the experience by being baptized again into another church as she had many times before.  The spirit whispered to us to ask Starlight more about her first baptism, and so we did.  As she told us more about the experience, we were intrigued when she told us that although she had forgotten the name of the church that the men who baptized her were from, she had received the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on off hands from them and that the church was “very strict” and would not let her drink coffee…  As we listened it became more and more clear that although Starlight was already a Mormon even though she didn’t know it.  She laughed when we told her, and the spirit immediately came rushing back into the room.  She told us that her already being baptized would explain why she had felt the spirit for the first time while taking the sacrament with us on Sunday.  We are now working on finding Starlight’s membership records and Ricardo is excited to work towards his own baptism so he and Starlight can go to the temple and be sealed together.  It is amazing to see the hand of God at work in the lives of his children.

It is also amazing what people let turn them off to the church.  100% of it is all rubbish.  What it all comes down to every time is praying and asking God if it is his way or not.  So what if you disagree with how God has decided to run his church and teach and administer the ordinances of salvation to his children.  He’s God and he loves us, and he knows the best way to do things.  Naturally everyone will have something that they don’t agree with or think doesn’t make sense, because no one except for our Savior can say that their will is perfectly in harmony with His perfect understanding, otherwise that person would, like Jesus Christ, be God!  Again it all comes down to praying with faith and real-intent and asking God if it is his will or not and acting upon the answer we receive whether it makes sense to us or not.  “For my ways, are not you ways.  Neither are my thoughts your thoughts”  God will always take care of us if we trust him.

Love you all!  Thank you for you’re thoughtful letters and pictures.  Godspeed!

-Elder Florence

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