I’m so excited to tell you about this past week! We had some really awesome experiences here in Coffs Harbour. Starting on Tuesday we drove about 40 minutes to a place called Arrawarra and had a devotional with a group of Tongans. (They are here working in the blueberry fields until May.) Then on Saturday was our African Culture Night that I mentioned before. It was so cool to experience two different cultures this past week! I love getting to learn more about other countries and their culture.
For the devotional with the Tongans our theme was “Because of the atonement…” We had multiple members share what the atonement has done for them personally. Ah it was so cool! Out of the 40 Tongans only a couple are members so we were so excited to share our testimonies with them. Thankfully some sisters from Grafton were able to come down and explain what the atonement is in Tongan. It was such a tender mercy because we weren’t expecting how little English the group of Tongans would know. Something I will never forget is singing “I Stand All Amazed,” for them. I truly know that Jesus Christ did come and atone for each and every one of us. As I looked in their faces during that song I felt the individual love the Savior has for all of them. There aren’t quite words to describe it but it is something I will never forget.
I got to close by sharing what the atonement of Jesus Christ has done for me & I wanted to share how it has given me peace. I have relied more on the Atonement in these past couple months than I ever have before. I’m so thankful for the peace I have found through Christ. Peace that all things will work out. Peace that we are never alone. Peace that there is someone who understands & cares. More than anything I love the hope the Atonement gives us. When we have lost hope we have truly lost everything.
There is a less active in our branch that Sister Shelley & I visit every week that just asked us to stop coming. It was so sad because we love this woman so much! I consider her to my dear friend and it is hard to see her so sad. I don’t know everything that is going on in her life but I can see that she has lost all hope. It breaks my heart that she has lost sight of what is in store for all those that follow Jesus Christ. The good news is we are here to help remind people!
I missed you all heaps this week and at times it got to be discouraging. But I know the Savior was with me the entire time and all is well when we are striving to do what the Lord has asked of us. In reading about the Stripling Warriors, Heavenly Father reminded me of an important lesson. And that is: when we are righteous we are quite literally saved. Just as the Sons of Helaman were all saved from death we are also saved from a spiritual death. What I needed to be reminded of was that there is going to be “wounds.”
25 And it came to pass that there were two hundred, out of my two thousand and sixty, who had fainted because of the loss of blood; nevertheless, according to the goodness of God, and to our great astonishment, and also the joy of our whole army, there was not one soul of them who did perish; yea, and neither was there one soul among them who had not received many wounds.
Some times we focus on the “wounds” if you will instead of the miracle which God has already performed by sending His Son to redeem mankind. I am thankful I get to be here and share with these wonderful people the peace Jesus Christ offers and the hope He brings. It truly is an honor! I’m thankful for the hard days that bring me closer to my Father in Heaven.
Oh! Another quick story. One of the members we heart attacked last week left her hearts on her door & a sales person that came to her door asked about them & the scriptures that we wrote on them, which led the member to share the gospel with her & give her a Book of Mormon! Member missionary work has got to be the most exciting thing ever!! I was so proud of her & you could see how happy sharing the gospel made her. There are opportunities all around us to share our testimonies. Sometimes it is when we least expect it:)
I love you so much!! Thank you for all your support and encouragement. I truly felt you here with me. Have a great week!!
Your Sister Denney:)
“I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me,
Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me.
I tremble to know that for me he was crucified,
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died.”
p.s. I cut my hair mum! We were waiting to leave for church yesterday morning so Sister Shelley cut it for me on our balcony. I still don’t know what got into me but the deed is done!