Wednesday, September 11, 2013
26 August 2013
Yesterday was an obscenely stressful day.
One of the people we're teaching told us a week ago that she would be kicked out of her home tomorrow. She is 150% genuine. I'm not going to go into too much but we put it on the ward to take care of it and it stalled and nothing came of it. We finally had had enough of it and did all the phone calls to make things move again and yesterday it got all figured out.
I think the combination of stress and work got me sick. I came home with a fever of 101 and had the worst night sleep I've had since the MTC. I got up this morning planning on doing studies and got all ready, sat down to study, studied for 15 minutes then realized I was still too sick so I went back to sleep.
I had the really cool opportunity to do a baptismal interview this last week for a baptist preacher that is getting baptized into our church this weekend. We sat down and I knew instantly that he was prepared. We went through the questions and I invited him to share his testimony. He did so very powerfully. We talked after for a bit about the spirit and he told me of his conversion story. He was a car window panel salesman and going door to door knocking and trying to sell. He knocked one door and a woman answered and said, "I want you to do my car, my husbands car, and both my children's cars. But, first I want you to come inside and listen to a message about Jesus Christ!" He did. He left with a Book of Mormon but threw it away soon after. He said he felt so guilty for that and his soul was "racked with guilt." A few weeks later the missionaries knocked his door, he opened up, read the Book of Mormon, decided it was true, and is getting baptized next weekend!
And all of that started with a member boldly testifying. Are we taking the opportunities, formal and informal, to testify of the restored gospel to those we come in contact with?
He told us of the opposition his family is giving him but he said, "when you know, you know." What a great example he is of humility and faith.
This past week were interviews with President Toone. These were his first rounds of interviews since he started and they were great. We did a training while missionaries went into the interview room. I trained on love and Elder Harder (for his very last interview training) trained on teaching people, not lessons. The spirit was really powerful that day and everyone was involved in one way or another.
My interview with President Toone was pretty intense. He told me of the new responsibilities I'm going to have next transfer and some other things that have been on my mind a lot since then. It was an awesome experience. I just wish we had more than 15 minutes per interview.
And how could I wait until this point to write about our baptisms?!
What a great spirit that was there. The turnout was a little low but when President and Sister Toone showed up you could feel the excitement that entered the room. They're so genuine. Anyway, watching the first person get baptized was a humbling experience. She came out of the water pure smiles and walked very thoughtfully to the stairs where she waited to see the next person get baptized. She was all smiles for him as well. The second was super special because his older brother got to baptize him, a newly ordained priest. Way way cool.
Walking to teach a lesson this past week we bumped into a couple of men working on a car. We started a conversation but it was clear that none of them were interested. A few minutes later one of their friends walked to us and started talking to us. He was sincere and wanting to know what we did. So we taught, testified and invited. He has a baptismal date for September 14th now.
I looked at Elder Harder and said, "pretty crazy that we just put someone on date for after you go home..." He's hanging in there really well. The wards wouldn't stop talking about it at church yesterday though haha. "ONLY TWO WEEKS LEFT?!"
I feel like this last transfer I've become the best missionary I've ever been. Everything has kind of just clicked and it's all going really well.
Thanks Mom, Scott, Grandpa J, and Mark for the letters! Normally since it's week 5 of the 6 week transfer I would say send the letters to the mission home but President Toone told me I'm staying here another transfer.
Love you all lots!