Sunday, January 30, 2011

LOST: One Leather Journal

A few years ago I decided to turn my life around from the path I was taking. I changed things for the better and eventually after a few years decided to volunteer as a missionary for my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I felt like I needed to go and serve my brothers and sisters in the world and share the peace that I had found after living in such chaos. I sent in my paperwork into the church headquarters and about a week or two later was commissioned to move to Pennsylvania for a two year term where I would teach, preach, and serve the community.

It looks just like this!

Before I left, my older brother Jim gave me a leather bound journal.
 It was brown and the leather was really hard almost like plywood, and he said the leather over time would become really soft when it was worn in. Jim told me that it was for people who were close to me to write about their belief in God and Jesus Christ and what caused them to believe, we call it their "testimonies" of the truth.

So I had my entire family write in this "testimony journal" and it was sent to me after I moved to PA. It made me feel really good to read my family's words and I could feel the feelings of the Holy Spirit as described in Galatians 5 about their stories and beliefs. During my 2-year stay in Pennsylvania I gained a lot of friends, some that I served a long side with, some people that I taught, and some that served us in the congregations. I filled about 3/4 of the entire journal which was pretty thick. Most of the people also wrote their addresses and phone numbers for staying in touch too. I loved to go back and read and have warm feelings of love from these people and God come into my heart.

A few years ago I traveled back to PA to visit some old friend and see the sights that I missed and return to some that I had already seen. I traveled out there with two close friends and we had a blast! We went from town to town spanning into New York State and all the way down to Maryland. It was a lot of fun to see my old friends faces and feel the same feelings I felt as a missionary. I truly loved the land and the people.

Well I brought the testimony journal to get some extra people that I may have missed while serving there. You can see where this is going, I lost it! I can't remember where I left it. I can remember packing my bags and leaving it out of the suitcases and that is all I can remember. I don't know if I lost it on the plane, in the rental car, or at someone's house.

I have prayed and prayed to find this journal with no success so far. I am really hoping for a miracle that it will return because it means a great deal to me. I know that God can perform miracles and maybe someday I will share some stories with you about some answered prayers. I have seen some really special things in my life and I know that God is there and that He hears and answers our prayers.
Maybe that journal is sitting somewhere in a land fill because it got thrown out or perhaps it is sitting on someone's book shelf not knowing how to return it to me. Maybe someone who doesn't believe in God picked it up and read it and felt inspired to pray - who knows where that journal is. It would be great if I had it for my enjoyment but maybe it is doing some good out there somewhere. Someday, however, I hope it returns home to me. I would like to add more people's testimonies and feel it's words warm my soul again.

So calling all cars...calling all cars! My testimony journal is lost and want to find it! If you would like to say a prayer or two that it returns to me that would be much appreciated. I hope it will return home someday, but if not, I will be satisfied with just the memory of the book and remember dear friends and their witnesses that God is real. If you have it though....GIVE IT BACK!



  1. I hope you find it. That is a really sad thing to lose. But I know that miracles can happen. I lost my wedding ring but had it recovered quite miraculously. I wrote the story on my blog.

  2. Joe!! What a great post. Sad that you lost it, love that you have hope that it is doing someone, somewhere good. I have the same hope!! Your "Calling All Cars!!!" comment totally reminded me of Brother Dressler!!! You are awesome!!