Monday, March 17, 2014

8 months!

     Well today is my 8 month mark. Thank you everyone for reminding me how close I am to being halfway done haha. I can't believe I only have 10 months left. Gotta get working!

     This week was incredible! So many things happening. We taught 19 key indicator lessons and found 3 new  investigators! We had interviews with our mission president on Monday so P-day was Tuesday last week (I'm sure I mentioned that in my last letter) But that always seems to make the next week go by so fast. While we were at a youth activity we saw Bozhi, the 15 year old who came over from Bulgaria last year. She said she wanted to learn more about what we believe. So we found a Bulgarian Book of Mormon and will be teaching her this next week. It'll be an adventure I'm sure because her English is very limited. On Wednesday we had a jam packed day. We went around trying to contact a bunch of referrals and former investigators and we met with Chris again (I talked about him in October/ November ish) He's always really interested when we meet with him but then he flakes out. So we taught him a lesson, he asked when he could be baptized and if he could take a tour of our church. We were supposed to take him this morning but he flaked out again... so we'll see if it goes anywhere this time. I'm hopeful, but being realistic as well. Who am I to judge what may be going on in his life that's preventing him from committing more fully? We also taught Austin that night at the Johnson's. We showed him the movie "Finding Faith in Christ" and he bore this incredible testimony about Christ and how He helps him in his life. So Sister Riddle invited him to be baptized on the 29th of March and he said yes! Miracle! He has been so hesitant for months but now he's finally ready. Well we were worried about what his grandparents might say because all along they've kind of been the ones saying to him that he's not ready and putting those thoughts in his head. So we fasted on Friday because we were meeting with the Ackaret's Friday night. Austin wasn't there when we went over- he was on a scout camp out. But the grandparents out of no where while we were teaching said "So, Austin has decided he's going to be baptized?" And I just confidently look to him and say "He has! Isn't that great?!" And they say....... "Yeah! We're happy for him. I guess he finally feels ready. But we have a problem with the date he picked" My heart dropped. I thought they were going to say it's too soon. But it turns out it's their daughters birthday that day and there's a ton of family stuff going on that day. So we're working on what day might work better. So we're going to see if Friday the 29th works. That'll be my birthday present to Breanne this year ;)

     Alright, ready for another miracle? We taught Russ on Thursday and started out with following up on  his reading assignment we'd given him. We left him with 2nd Nephi 9 and he says "I'm scared." And we go "Why are you scared?" And he says, "Because I know that I have to be baptized if I want to live with God again." So we talked a little bit about baptism as a commandment, but then talked about the Atonement. We talked about how Christ suffering and dying for us allows us to be able to return to live with God, but that in return he's asked us to do a few things; like have faith in him, repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. We shared a few parts of Brad Wilcox's talk "his Grace is Sufficient" (An incredible talk that I challenge everyone to read this week- even if you've already read it before) During the whole lesson you could just tell that he finally wanted it. He finally understood why he needed to be baptized and wanted it! His whole demeanor was different than any of the other lessons. At the end of the lesson we asked him if he would be baptized so that he could fully access the Atonement and all Christ has done for him. And he said yes! So he's going to be baptized on the 30th of March! We are having it right after church on Sunday and he'll be confirmed there right after. He doesn't want a lot of people there. He's not comfortable with the spotlight. Plus, he was already a member before (but took his name off the records) so he doesn't want to draw a lot of attention to himself. Can I tell you how incredible this man is? He joined the church in his 70's to try to save his marriage but didn't have a testimony of the church at all. So after the divorce he took his name off and wanted nothing to do with the church. Now he's in his late 60's and is sincerely seeking for the truth. He's made HUGE changes in his life and is so at peace with things because of the things he's learned in the Book of Mormon and what we've taught him. He has a real testimony of this himself now and is being baptized for the right reasons. I feel so blessed that God allows me to witness the change that it can make in other people's lives. This gospel and church are true- I know it with my whole heart! 

     So later that night we were driving to go on exchanges for the next day and Sister Riddle and I were talking about the people we're working with and how blessed we are. And then I said something along the lines of how happy it must make God that we're out here and helping people to make changes in their lives that are bringing them closer to Him and taking steps that will lead them back to Him. The spirit hit me so strong right then and just confirmed what I had said. I couldn't help myself, I started crying. I know that God is so proud of me and all of the missionaries (and anyone else) who are helping to bring his children back to Him again!

     Oh man! Another dog incident this week. We were teaching a lesson to our new investigator Joe (who's done some time, but is really nice!) And he has a pit bull who while we were teaching, literally jumped on my back and just kept his paws on my shoulders for a solid minute. This man didn't even tell his dog to get down! So I tried to act like nothing was happening and kept teaching. Later in the lesson his dog and cat got in a fight next to my companion. I swear Satan possesses animals when we're around!

     Exchanges were good. I went with a sister who really needs some help though. Her studying is ineffective and her teaching/ people skills are lacking (and she's been out longer than me). So it was kind of difficult. It's hard to be a leader and have to figure out how to correct people, but also build them up. It's REALLY tough to find that balance. The one thing I hate about being a Sister Training Leader is having to give people constructive feedback. I can crack the whip and put people back in line if they're being disobedient, or train in meetings all day. But that part is hard. Anyone have ideas for how to do that?

     Alright. Enough about me and my week. I'm sure I left a bunch of stuff out, but that was the most prominent stuff this week. Look on my blog if you want to see pictures. I took a bunch this week. I love you all so much and can really feel your prayers! Keep the faith!

-Sister Megan Metcalf
map at a members house

the falls all opened up

9 Mile falls

 Bulgarian BOM

twinner skirts with Maddi Merrill in my ward

dog hair from pit bull lesson!

 Emus, llamas, and alpacas on exchanges in Greenbluff

I spilled tomato soup while at dinner at a the Tenny's

 at the falls

In Reardon, Washington

 The sky after the rain storm

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