I had a great week from exchanges to interviews. It was so wonderful to have that one on one time with President Collins and to seek comfort and advice from him. I know the things that we talked about were from the spirit and as I have applied those things, I have felt refreshed:) He is an amazing person that I'm very privileged to serve under. I also went on exchanges in North Vernon with Sister Williams. Oh my gosh we had so much fun. It was great to be with someone who feels the same way that I do about missionary work. Sister Williams is from Bountiful and she has been out for about 6 months. She is a hoot and we just had a blast. It is always fun going to another area for a day and just a breath of fresh air. It did feel so good to come back to my area though, I love it so very much. The ward and the those that we are working with, I just know without a doubt that the Lord needed me in Bloomington.
Transfer calls are next Monday, so I'm getting a little anxious about that because I don't want leave. Sister Freer and I have had some great times together and I'm grateful that we got to serve for two transfers together.
We have been working with a less active, Emily and her son, Jayden and they have been struggling for a long time. Emily is finally coming to church consistently and Jayden has been sitting in our lessons now. It has been a blessing from Heavenly Father to see the change in them. I was so happy yesterday in our lesson, because we got Jayden a children's Book of Mormon and he is excited to read from the Book of Mormon now and Emily has decided she wants to go to the gospel doctrine since they are learning about the Book of Mormon. They are excited about the gospel and it's wonderful. The gospel is true and living it truly does make one happy. It's so great!!!! I love it. Jayden said the prayer at the end of our lesson and it was the sweetest prayer and Emily got a little emotional. I can tell how much their relationship has changed because they are doing the small and simple things together.
We have been working with this cute little family that I adore. The dad is a member but hasn't been active for 15 years and so his wife and children aren't members. The dad, Uriah, came to church and wants this for his family. Last week we taught them the Plan of Salvation and Heather really wants her family to be eternal. We have been trying to think of ideas to get Tate, the four year old, more involved, because he is so hyper, adorable, but hyper. We brought a bunch of pictures for him to color but that worked for 2 minutes and then he wanted me to finish coloring for him:) They are a cute family!
Things our going well for us though. Michaela and Phillip are still doing good and working towards their baptism dates, Feb. 11 and Mar. 17. It got super duper cold last week and snowed, but now it's nice again, gloomy but still the snow is melting and it's supposed to be nice this week, so that was good to hear. I haven't had to break out my 5 layers of leggings yet....
Monday, January 9, 2012
We had a lesson with Sam last Tuesday and as I was racking my brain all day Monday and Tuesday morning, the Lord really helped me with a lesson for him that evening. In my personal study, I couldn't stop thinking about him and I was just pleading that the Spirit could help me and I knew that it would. I was directed towards the story of the Anti-Nephi-Lehis and felt pretty good about the story and that Sam could relate. I then thought of Alma the younger, and his beautiful account of the Atonement in his life. As I was reading I really felt the reality of the Atonement and that Sam needs to believe Christ. A song that is very dear to my heart and has given me a very spiritual experience, Nearer My God to Thee, came to my mind. We were able to get it in an instrumental format and when we went to Sam's we played it in the background while we each read the verses of Alma to ourselves. The spirit was there and I know we all felt it. It was very special and I will remember those feelings that I felt in that moment. I love Sam so very much and I worry about him often, as well as some other investigators we are working with. It kind of weighed me down yesterday because some of them were not at church yesterday and I just worry so much about how they are and what we can do. I know things will come with Sam, and that he has to make the decision to believe Christ. Hopefully as we help him build a testimony we can help feel the love of Heavenly Father. I just want this for him so much and I know Heavenly Father does too. When he told us the things that are holding him back I just cried because I couldn't imagine experiencing what he did. I know the Lord is going to help us.
Michaela is doing wonderful. We had her come to a baptism in the University ward and afterwards she met with us. We invited her a few days earlier to come and she wasn't sure if she could. On Saturday, the weather was wonderful and Sister Freer and I were walking out and about and we received a text from her saying she can come. The baptism started in 20 minutes and so we booked it to our car and of course once we started driving we hit every red light. We finally made it and she loved the baptism and the only way she could describe it was awesome:) She brought her little brother with her and while we were waiting for the two kids who got baptized to change, we were all sitting in the chapel and her little brother started playing with his tooth that was loose. All the sudden he starts bleeding a lot and so we walked out and he yanked out his tooth and oh my goodness, I kept running into the bathroom to get wads of tissue. It was a lovely adventure! She wants this for herself and is willing to do what it takes to continue to have the joy that she has been feeling. When we met with her a few weeks ago, the date February 11 kept coming to my mind, and so when we met with her on Saturday, we committed her to baptism on that date. She accepted it and she is understanding what the spirit feels like. I'm continually so proud of her and where she is going, it's been surreal to be a part of it. It's definitely a tender mercy that our church time is in the morning now because she can stay for all of church and now go to Young Womens. The Young Women leaders have been amazing with her and she is building support in the ward. Last week she wasn't able to come to our ward so she went to the later time in Clear Creek, and she told us that she was glad she went but it didn't feel the same, she is feeling more comfortable with the members in the ward.
The weather is still beautiful as ever and I'm loving it!!!!! We were tracting the other day and we started talking to this really nice guy. He told us that he was pretty familiar with our church but was open to hearing us out. Before we even talked about the Book of Mormon, he told us that his wife is native american and that they believe that Jesus Christ came to visit the Americas. Sister Freer and I got so excited and told him about the Book of Mormon and how it is a record of that story. He didn't want to read it but he was really nice about it. It was such a cool experience to hear him talk about that. His wife had heard stories growing up about that and it's just so great to know that Book of Mormon testifies of that truth. We are so blessed. We used part of the account of Jesus Christ coming to the Americas in a lesson with a less active family yesterday. We turned out all the lights and talked about how before He came the people were in darkness for three days and then they heard the voice of the Savior. We read those verses of Christ talking as it was dark and it was really comforting to hear those words from our Savior in darkness. It was a great lesson and helped us all continue to focus on the Savior and know that He is always asking us to come unto him.
We have a great week planned, we have interviews with President and Sister Collins and I'm going on exchanges to North Vernon, so lots of fun things ahead. Transfers are on January 25, and ugh I'm not looking forward to that. I love this area but the people have become like family and I love them so much!!!!! Sister Freer and I are pretty sure that one of us will be leaving so it will be hard but the Lord is in it.
Monday, January 2, 2012
Happy New Year!!!!!! Well we finally have our snow with a heavy dose of wind chill...blahhhh! It snowed a few days after Christmas and it snowed again today and the wind is awful:( It's been kind of a slow week, just with the holidays there weren't a lot of people home and so I know this week will be good though. Heavenly Father is definitely blessing me with memorization skills. President Collins has asked all of the missionaries to memorize a scripture once a week and we get a specific one each week, so that' been a good challenge.
Ugh, we had to drop Jim and that just broke my heart. I try not to take it hard but that is very hard for me because I really grew to love him and I had a lot of hope that he would change. Maybe too much hope. He just doesn't believe it's true. I know we did all we could for him but his heart just wasn't completly open, even though I felt as if he did have a true desire but I guess he just isn't ready now. He will accept it one day and I know he won't forget the countless times Sister Freer and I bore testimony. He's a good guy and I have loved teaching him and I will continue to hope for him.
We set our district baptism goal for January and for Highland we are going to strive to set two baptismal dates. We have set one with Phillip for March 17, he is working towards that but it is still a struggle to get him to church because of his work schedule. We are going to also work on setting a date with Michaela. She is a doll and is very self-motivated. Yesterday she didn't make to our ward and so she went to the other ward and we were so impressed with her determination to go to church because she knows it's important. I love her so much!
Yesterday, Sister Freer and I taught the gospel principles class and it was on temple work and family history. It was really neat to hear of experiences that people have had as they have done temple work for their family! I was just in awe the whole time. Dixie shared some cool experiences she had doing work for her family as well as Sam's family (he is the vietnam vet) and it got me excited to do work for our family and how crucial it is for us to do. We went over to the family history center to get familar with it so we can use it to help investigators, and I went and looked at our family names and it is something that I want to do more of.