Monday, April 21, 2014

21 April 2014

Phoenix, AZ city


You'll never guess who was sick again.
Before I came to South Phoenix I had been sick three times. Since I have come to South Phoenix I have been sick three more times! Ridiculous! But I'm basically all better now. I only missed three hours of proselyting which was lame but I'm almost entirely back now.
I'm going to write backwards for this week. Let's start with Easter?
As a zone we started Easter Sunday with a fast for miracles. Each companionship sought specific ones. Ours was that the hearts of the men who are keeping the families we are teaching back could be softened.
This is our last Easter in the mission and Elder Myler came up with a brilliant idea to make it memorable. It started at 4:15 am when the alarm went off. We all rolled out of bed and by 4:50 were on the road to the summit of South Mountain. At 5:30 we arrived at the top. South Mountain overlooks all of Phoenix. It's a stunning sight in the early morning light, or lack thereof.
Our plan was to park our car facing towards the east to see the sunrise. While we waited and while it happened we sat in silence listening to the "Lamb of God" CD. It's a beautiful musical of the Jesus' life. Brilliant. Everyone needs to listen to it. The words come straight out of the New Testament and it's a touching rendition.
So we sat and waited. And we listened. And we felt.
Minute by minute caravans of Christian youth groups arrived at the top of the mountain. From our viewpoint there were groups standing and sitting, reading the scriptures and singing quietly. For a couple of hours that was the holiest place in this city of millions. There was a sacred silence that fell over everything as the sun peaked its head over the mountains. It was a sight, scene, and sound that I'll never forget.
The second that the first rays of sunlight hit the sky the song, "I Am the Resurrection" came on. It could not have been timed better.
Once the 83 minute CD was finished we reluctantly turned the car around and symbolically drove back into "the world."
We were able to go to the Easter Pageant again this week! We went with three girls we are teaching (10-14). They loved it and conveniently already knew a bunch of the ward girls from school! Perfect. Their mother has never given the girls permission to get baptized but we were miraculously able to get her approval this week!
This week we continued our dropfest. In two weeks we have dropped (stopped visiting due to lack of effort on their part) over 20 people. It has been great. Every time we drop someone who is doing nothing we have another x minutes to find someone who will do something.
And that got me thinking. Doesn't God 'drop' us as well? When we sin He withdraws the spirit. Isn't that all dropping an investigator does - removing their ability to feel the Holy Ghost for a time? And isn't that the best motivator to seek it again? Just a thought.
This last week we received a new sister who was reassigned from Ecuador. Our zone is now complete and we're excited to get everything moving again!
And now for what I believe was the greatest miracle of all from our zone fast: one of my Facebook investigators got baptized!! He never told me that he was on date but I got a wonderful message from him yesterday saying that he had been baptized the day before! It included the best picture that I have ever seen in my life.
Miracles happen everyday if you qualify for them! I have never once fasted on my mission without a miracle happening somewhere and to someone.
I hope everyone else was able to have as great an Easter as mine! I did miss the chocolate though haha.
With love,
Elder Johnson

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