Sunday, June 3, 2012

Hug A Convert Day

I love the Middle Aged Mormon Man Blog. He has declared the first Sunday of every June, International Hug A Convert Day. Of course, today, I hugged Ron!!!! I know, as Latter Day Saints, we are all converts, but Ron converted as an adult and was not baptized at 8 years of age. His conversion has blessed countless lives and I could devote many posts to this blessing. We have many dear friends who converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ as adults and their examples of faith and commitment continue to strengthen me and make me want to be a better person.
Yesterday, I met some new converts who reminded me of the precious gift the gospel of Jesus Christ is to me.
We went on a Youth Temple Trip with the Palm Beach Ward. We are not technically members of the Palm Beach Ward (yet) but have been attending there and participating in all of their activities (more on this another day). All the youth rode in a 15 passenger van with the Bishop and another husband and wife leader. The Bishop asked Ron and me to drive a car filled with 5 women-all converts-4 of the  are recent converts. One of the converts was baptized last Sunday. The Bishop wanted us to spend some time teaching and answering questions regarding the temple experience.
We were happy to have the assignment and loaded up the car.
Well, when the car ride is 3 hours and not everyone knows each other....what do you talk about? (I know... that is not usually difficult for me to figure out)
Before we could teach and answer questions regarding the temple, it was important to get to know a little bit about each person and their experience with attending the temple. As we would soon find out, 4 of the women were attending the temple for the first time and one had a very negative experience on a temple trip about a year ago. It ended up being important to know about her experience at one point in the day.
As it turned out, Ron took the lead and played a type of "20 questions" game with each passenger. He asked them to share a little bit about themselves and finally, to share their conversion story.
Our backgrounds could not have been more diverse, but we all had the common ground in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
It was a FABULOUS experience to hear their sincere testimonies of Jesus Christ and of their gratitude for finding the gospel.
I needed that beautiful reminder of how precious the gospel is.
I needed those amazing women to share their love for the missionaries who taught them the passion they have for living the gospel.
It was clear to me t.hat we were the students and they were our teachers.
When I got home last night and saw that today was "International Hug A Convert Day", I realized I had celebrated early...I hugged each one of them last night as we ended our journey.

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