Dear Family and Friends
The highlight of this past week was going to the temple with our good friends from the branch. Janene is fighting two kinds of cancer and has only been given about a year to live even with chemo but is the strongest most positive person I know. She said that if she could make the drive to Louisville and a 4 hour chemo session 3 days a week she could surely make the drive to Louisville for a temple session that lasted less than two hours and would build her up so much more than the chemicals ever could. She has a tracheotomy so can’t talk and it is challenging to read her lips to carry on a conversations but I loved every minute I got to spend with her. She was pretty worn out by the time we enjoyed the temple session and had a great lunch at Olive Garden and she slept the hour and a half home but her smile was so worth it. She has so much trust in our Heavenly Father that she just radiates goodness. I suppose she has her down, depressed days but she never shows it to any of us. When I find myself getting discouraged or annoyed or bothered by things happening in my life I just have to think of Janene and her great example. She is the primary president in our tiny branch and although we only have 5 kids in primary she tries to be there and help whenever she can. So often she can only come for Sacrament Meeting and then has to leave but the kids know her and love her because she loves them. I want to be more like her.
The other thing that has brought us joy is that our one young man-who comes from a less active family and we are working so hard with-is going to the temple this weekend to do baptisms for the dead. When we went to his house last week and told him about it he was very excited. He came to church this week to have an interview and is so proud of that first recommend. He also passed the sacrament for the first time and I was as proud of him as if he were my grandson. He will be the reason this family comes back into activity. His spirit will be felt in their home. They live 20 miles from town so he has to depend on his parents to bring him to church and that will help them to come back. The spirit truly is what converts people and not people converting people. We have seen that with the couple who were baptized a couple of months ago. Once the missionaries left who taught them they slipped away and have not been back to church. They are again separated. Jerad wants to come back and is meeting with the Elders a little so hopefully he will again feel the spirit and want to be a part of that again. Jerad was the stronger of the two from the beginning and seemed to feel the spirit more and not just love the missionaries. It has really shown us how important the branch members are in someone’s retention. Without that fellowship from the members it too often is about the missionaries and not about the gospel itself or it is the newness of all they have to learn past the first lessons that make or break a true conversion. As members we all need to step up and do our part or the missionaries are working twice as hard doing that which we should be doing.
I know that the gospel is true and is where we can find true happiness. I know that our Heavenly Father loves each of us and our Savior suffered for us that we would not have to suffer for our sins if we would repent. I am so grateful for a young boy who had a question and was bold enough to ask and received such a wonderful answer and that because of Joseph Smith, I can have my questions answered as well. The gospel brings me great joy and I want that for all the people especially at this time in this part of the world that I have come to love.
Love to all
Elder and Sister Fullmer
Mom and dad
Grandpa and Grandma
Evan and Trudy