Humid Cold is a lot different that Dry Cold!!!! I am so cold! It's supposed to be the coldest winter they have had in the south for over a decade. Maybe I WILL have snow for Christmas!
I have seen lots of tender mercies this week!! Our investigators are feeling the power of the true restored gospel.
One of the couples we teach - Ben and Tracie live in some hard circumstances. I love watching the members want to get involved. Someone overheard that they didn't have any food, and what do you know.... we get a call to come over to their house and they gave us 3 giant brown bags full of food from their food storage to take to them. They were SO grateful.
When they came to church last week they were amazed that there wasn't an offering tray passed around.... They showed us that they had scraped up some change. (and we know they don't have any money.) That simple tender mercy of them being ready to offer EVERYTHING they had amazed me. Ben and Tracie also told us that they want to quit smoking which is pretty impressive and amazing! We didn't even hint that that might better their lives. They somehow found enough money to pay their rent which was a miracle because they were about to get evicted! The Lord blesses us when we accept his gospel!
They have told us that they feel like they're getting a second chance at life! And are so grateful for this gospel that allows them to do that!
We had a wonderful P-day last week with our friend Miss Cherry. She's a member and comes to lots of our appointments with us so that we can have member contribution in our lessons. She LOVES and takes care of us because she knows what it was like to be a missionary! She served in New Zealand when she was 21! I love her more than words can describe! She has one of the most golden hearts i've ever seen and she is ALWAYS helping us when she's not taking care of her very sick husband.
We had ZDM (zone development meeting) this week with all the missionaries serving in the Shreveport area and it was AMAZING! (I got to play the piano for the meeting!)
We have some really flippin awesome Zone Leaders.
They told us a story of Cortez. When he came to conquer a land, they got off the ships prepared for battle. Cortez told his men to "BURN THE SHIPS" so that they had no chance of going home. That way - when they fought - they had no option but to be focused on their work ahead and to do what they came to do! They encouraged us to "burn our ships" and be fully engaged in this missionary work and let go of whatever is holding us back so that we can really live up to our potential!
I am going to be the best missionary I can be!!
I may have disappointments... but I am going to have NO regrets.
Missionaries are always looking for ways to serve people. Whether it's helping them tie a quilt, helpling people move, or jumping someone's car :) I love helping people and Sister McGrath, Sister Dagupan and I always try to make sure we have a "kind deed of the day!"
We met a man this week claiming that he was Satan. (Don't worry mom!) He was SO wasted! He opened the door of his rotting trailor half naked and almost fell out as he did. He asked if we wanted to see his book of spells........... and as we tried to talk to him, he was just ignoring us and couldn't focus on what we were saying. He told Sister D that she looked like an Indian (even though she's phillipeno) and she told him that the Book of Mormon is actually a record of the ancestors of the people that are among the Native Americans. We testified that the Book of Mormon is much like the Bible - the dealings of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas, where-as the Bible is the record of the people of Jerusalem. But the situation just wasn't getting any better. We left him with a prayer and went on our way!
My Aunt Nancy wrote me a card this week. She said she was a friend named Barbara Houston in Shreveport and that she hoped I get to meet her! Funny thing is - we are at the Houston's ALL the time because President Houston is is the 1st counselor in our mission presidency. It's a small world!!!! We helped Barbara tie a quilt that same day I got that letter from Nancy! We know them very well and it's funny how the Lord blessed me with this tender mercy this week.
We also got to visit the Lewis's again this week. I shared with them the story in Mark where the woman touches Jesus's clothes and is healed because "her faith made her whole." We also shared the story from Enos in the Book of Mormon whose story is very similar.
We told sister Lewis that we know she can get through her trials. We asked her: what this trial has taught you?
Sister Lewis wrote out in the air that she didn't know, but she knew before she developed her disease that she would have it. The Spirit told her in the hallways of her house early one morning. She said that the spirit tells her lots of things.
It was an amazing moment to watch her write these words in the air. We sang the hymn "I need Thee every hour" to her and she afterwards, she started to cry, and spelled
"Thank you for letting me bear my testimony."
We realized that she doesn't get to do that very often. and we cried with this amazing woman and hugged her as the pain of her disease and sadness of not being able to communicate very well streamed down her face.
I told her than in the pre-mortal existence she must have volunteered to be one of the ones to take the hardest trials. Heavenly Father knows her pain and loves her so much.
The best moment of my week was our lesson with Bill!
We met with him on Saturday evening with Pres. Kitley and Sister Kitley (LOVE MEMBER PRESENT LESSONS) Bill had gone on lds.org and had even watched 'The Best Two Years' twice! (A hilarious movie about Mormon Missionaries in Holland)
Bill had read quite a bit of the Book of Mormon, AND the doctrine and covenants which he loves because it pertains a little more to our day.
The spirit was so strong, and when Sister D popped the question of if he wanted to get baptized, he said:
"I wondered when you were going to ask me that!" with a smile :)
He accepted! And is so happy.
It's so beautiful to see the gospel change people's lives. Before - Bill was searching for knowledge. He is now "hungry" for the gospel, and I love seeing him at church soaking every word up. He has changed his life around and we can see the gospel lighting up every aspect of his life!
What a light in the darkness this gospel is.
Scripture of the week: Mosiah 2:41
Awkward moment of the week: Sister Dagupan and I found this sign and we got SO excited because we are both always quoting the kids TV show Arthur! Yes.... we are immature!
(Nadene is D.W.'s imaginary friend.)