We had an experience that was so incredible.
We were teaching the family of Luis as our last lesson of the day a couple of days ago. We have been having great lessons with them. We had wrapped up and were ready to go home for the day. When his Mom said to his dad that they need to go get gas to cook, and he needed to take a big gas tank down to a place where you can exchange it. Without thinking I grabbed it, threw it on my shoulder and said lets go. We headed out and started walking with Luis, his dad and little sister. It was just about 9 and time for us to get in our house, and usually when its about that time, all I can think about is running to get home. But for some reason, that feeling wasn't there, and I just felt, "just keep going." We were walking and walking, realistically not knowing where we were going with them, but for some reason it didn't matter.
We arrived at this big metal door, knocked and Luis's dad went in. We were standing outside and going to wait, then all of a sudden all three of us ( Luis, Elder Thomson, and I) looked at each other, and with out saying anything walked in. As I walked in, I looked over to see a place that looked like a little restaurant type of place, with about 8 really drunk men, but I didn't think anything of it.
As we stood there waiting, I felt a hand on my shoulder and a voice say, Elder. I looked over to see a pretty drunk man, as he said, "Don't you Elders go in there." My companion and I knew that he was a member because he referred to us as elder, Everyone else calls us brothers. When my companion walked over by me he asked him if he was a member. He said yes, Looked down painfully, and said I have been 38 years in the church.... And was a bishop from 2009 to 2012. It hit us like a ton of bricks, and we felt such a sorrow that I have never felt. We talked to him for a little bit to find out where he is from, and he broke down and said he never wanted to be like this or in this spot. Then he asked, who Luis and his family were. We told him investigators, and that Luis was baptized about a week ago, He looked at Luis, and broke down crying like a little kid pointing his finger saying, "THIS IS THE TRUE CHURCH OF CHRIST, This is the truth, I am here for personal problems, Don't you leave this church. And these two men are men of God". He looked at me and fell into my arms and said, You have angels walking with you, remember that!!! I have never felt anything like that in my life. We testified with everything we had that he can get back to where he was, that he needs to for all those people of the ward we work with that look up to him and need him. Then Luis walked up to him, and I
in one of the most rewarding things I have seen, and gave him a loving hug, and said "Bishop, you can do it, you keep fighting you are going to do it...". My companion looked at him and said, Bishop we are leaving, but not without you, lets go get you a taxi and leave this place forever. He agreed and we flagged down a taxi outside, gave the driver some money , and told him to get him home safely... we got his number and will be visiting him soon.
It was one of the more touching, experiences of my mission. I learned so much from this experience, that it doesn't matter who we are, what we are, or have been, the devil will work on us harder and harder. It doesn't matter if we are an an ex missionary, stake president, or bishop, the devil will find our weakness, whether it is loosing our temper, fighting with our family, Whatever, he will pick at it until he gets us. But if we are built on the rock of Jesus Christ we will ALWAYS come out on top!!
Love you All.