Also adding to the Superbowl feeling was my birthday! Ahh! I'm 25! I felt so much love this week! I received so many packages and cards and letters! You guys are amazing! If I knew you guys would have sent me this much, I would have gone on a mission years ago ;) Seriously though, I received way more this year than last. You guys spoil me too much- but I loved it :) I'll send some pictures. We had a meeting that day. But we were able to visit 2 less active families and our eternagator Jimmy (the ex-con who can get baptized when his probation ends in 3 years). He's so amazing you guys! I'm for sure coming back for his baptism in 2016 :)
Well, my comp is doing pretty good and we've been trying to stay as busy as we can. But we had a training or meeting every day this week. Monday was P-day, Tuesday she had a doctors appointment at LDS family services, Wednesday was Sister's conference (all the Sister missionaries in the mission got together and we had a fun day of learning and spiritual upliftment), Thursday was a specialized training by the A.P.'s, Friday was a zone training where our mission president came, Saturday and Sunday were conference. I'm surprised we saw any people with how much we were in town. But we actually taught one more lesson this week than last. On Wednesday night we went on splits with women in our ward. We sent around a sign up for Wednesday nights and have the whole month of October filled up! I'm so excited that we have so many people wanting to go out! We spent part of the time seeing people that we needed to see and the other part seeing their visiting teaching sisters... well that's what I did. The lady who went with Sister Dickerman didn't want to do that- she wanted to tract! haha. They came across a lady whose husband passed away recently and set up an appointment for us to come back on Saturday and teach her a lesson on the Plan of Salvation. Which leads to the most eventful part of our week. We went back on Saturday and taught the absolute worst lesson ever. Okay- a lot of lessons were learned from that lesson we taught her. Lesson #1 always prep your members beforehand. Our member was NOT comfortable with silence (aka when we allow time for the spirit to speak) so she just keep filling in the blanks with random and I mean non church doctrine random stuff. She goes off on what deja vu is, Columbus and other explorers, Christ having a rich uncle and traveling with him to China... are you getting the idea? Oh man. And this lady is a returned missionary! She just derailed the lesson (although to be fair the lesson should have ended way before she went off on that stuff). But lesson #2 was learned just before that happened- if the investigator isn't "prepared/ elect" or have an open mind and heart, just end the lesson and go. We come to find out like 1 minute in that she's happy with her Buddhist beliefs, thinks Jesus was just a good guy and there's no way he could have suffered for our sins, and doesn't want organized religion as apart of her life. At this point I'm thinking in my head well let's just share a quick thought, pray and leave- she isn't quite ready to accept our message. And I was prompted maybe 4 times during the lesson to just leave, the spirit wasn't testifying anything to her. I try to end our lesson maybe 3 of those times, but either my companion or the member cut me off and kept going. Lesson #3 teach to your investigators needs. She expressed an interest in the Book of Mormon and prophets. So I start leading into changing what we're talking about into a brief Restoration lesson. (Both Sister Dickerman and Sister Hyer wanted to teach the Plan of Salvation) Well, my comp had a different idea. She flat out says "We can come back another time to teach you about that, but we know you need to hear this message we prepared for you today." I felt like kicking something! I was so frustrated. In the beginning of the lesson I was praying in my heart for the spirit to be there and testify. When I knew it wasn't there and that we just needed to leave, I started praying for other people to shut up so I could just close the lesson and get out of there. I don't think Heavenly Father appreciated that prayer. haha! Well the lesson lasted 45 minutes but should have only lasted 5 or 6. One tender mercy during the lesson, was that she was interested in reading the BOM. I testified to her that by reading the Book of Mormon, I came to better know that Jesus Christ is my savior and that through him I can live with my family for all of eternity. I started crying when I shared this with her. Probably partly because I love and miss you guys so much, but mostly because as I said this, the Holy Ghost bore testimony of it to me so strongly that I couldn't help but cry! This gospel brings so much peace and joy and hope into my life and I want everyone to have that!
Right after the lesson we went to try and contact a potential investigator and this dog comes barreling at me full speed while the owners watched, he was not slowing down and was barking like mad. I thought he was gonna bite my leg off! I just yell at the dog, and the owners (who we've talked to before and aren't nice people) are like, "oh he's just saying hi." And they started laughing. I was so shaken up by that and just so absolutely frustrated with our day that when we got in the car I started to cry. Sister D wanted to know where we should go next, and I just tell her- I have no idea, I don't have the spirit- and I asked her to pray. While she's praying I get a prompting to go visit Dick, a man we dropped a few weeks back. We pull up and he's out front, way excited to see us! He'd done his reading and was wondering why it took us so long to come visit him again! We had a good lesson with him and will check up on him next week. Another tender mercy.
Well, those are the highlights for this week. I miss you all so much. Not much more happened. I love you all so much! Pray every single day! Continue growing and developing your relationship with God. He is our Heavenly Father. He loves us and wants to hear from you. He wants to help and bless you- but you need to ask for His help and blessings!
Keep praying for me and being great people!
Birthday Pumpkin Pie (from Jimmy and Cynda) and the red velvet cookies I made for everyone in my zone
Me with Jimmy (investigator) and Cynda (member)
blowing out my candles
Sister D and me
Our "fall colors" and the beautiful morning fog
Thanks for the birthday flowers, mom and dad!
One of my favorite views
Our "Fall Colors"
I Love 9 Mile!
Beautiful long roads
My love for "Friday Night Lights" coming out
our zone at a training with the AP's (Elder's Whiting, Chang and Oldham)
Sister Dickerman put this on the bathroom ceiling