This week... this week has been a bundle of fun! Nothing too amazing happening, but a lot of really neat and small experiences!
First of all, it is awesome to read about how you all are doing at home. And since Mathew is there, I might as well throw in a shout out to him. HEY! There. Shout outed. Anyways, it sounds like you all had a pretty fun week! And Jameson, I haven't died! I am still alive. Don't you worry! :) (Jameson tells everyone that his brother Jaxon died on his mission...because he isn't coming home! Jaxon's picture is on the wall in our chapel and he walked passed it one day with Bryan, Bryan asked him who that was - pointing to the picture - and Jameson said "that's my brother Jaxon, but he died on his mission"...poor kid! He's going to be super confused when Emerson leaves too!)
I should probably tell you if you haven't found out yet. I meant to tell you last week, but I spent close to $100 a couple weeks ago on some souvenir clothing. (Mom said I could I swear!) But yeah. Some really cool Solvang stuff!
So. This week, we have been trying to get out and work as much as possible, without over doing it on my ankle! It's definitely weird and not fun to have to take a lot of breaks, when you want to be out there and doing all you can, but I gotta take care of myself! We had interviews with President and Sister Felix on Tuesday, and that was good as always!
Let's see, some cool experiences. So, on P-Day last week, everyone came down to Solvang to explore, and we were walking back to our cars, and a former investigator named Jenny stopped us on the street. It was funny, because I have never met her before, but she saw our group of missionaries and started talking to us and said she had studied with a couple of Elders, and I have no idea why but I immediately asked "Are you Jenny?" Definitely the Spirit in work there. She was surprised that I knew who she was, and she needs help moving next week! So that was really neat. Another cool thing that happened. We have been trying to contact this girl who the Hermanas started teaching and passed off to us, but she is never home. Anyways, we were about to go contact her, and we stepped out of the car and this lady stops us on the street and we had an hour discussion about the Restoration and Prophets for an hour! Needless to say, we needed a break after that. Standing for a long time KILLS my ankle real bad. But it was super cool!
I went on exchanges with Elder Bradley this week again! It was a good time, as always. Not much really happened that day! We had a super awesome discussion with Christie that night, talking about the Gospel of Jesus Christ! It was spirit-filled, and she is so ready to be baptized. Just needs to realize that for herself.
Rick and Vanessa are doing well. We can't meet with them much, they all got sick and Vanessa's stitches are coming out. So they are basically going through the wringer. Rick is getting some kind of surgery on Thursday, and so we are going to give him a blessing (once we get permission) and try and give Vanessa one too. They are going strong, they know that the Church is true and they want to be married and baptized. So we are excited to see where all of this goes once everything gets back to normal for them in the next week or two.
The funeral on Saturday was really nice. We went to an episcopal church (let me tell you... it was the weirdest feeling ever..) and it was a really great and uplifting service. Gary and Mary appreciated us being there, and we will be trying by again this next week. Hopefully this can work out. They really will be blessed from the amazing message of the Plan of Salvation and Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know I have. It was interesting to hear another pastor speak, and to be able to see the difference in tone and doctrine from him. He spoke a lot about Jesus suffering on the cross, not one word about the Garden of Gethsemane. Elder Hubbard and I were talking afterwards, and we came to the conclusion that we didn't really feel the Spirit when he was up there. Nevertheless, it was an amazing service, and definitely an opportunity I probably won't get again on my mission, to hear a sermon from a pastor in another church! Super cool.
Then, Sunday was Solvang's Ward Conference, and that was cool! Reminded me of the times in Chilliwack. Always such a busy day. Elder Hubbard and I got to help out with the Sacrament, and that was cool. A lot of talk about becoming better, and inviting the Spirit more into our lives. Recognizing not only when the Spirit is with us, but when the Spirit leaves us. I have been trying to focus a lot more on the Spirit as of late, and it's been amazing! We have to realize that we learn nothing until the Spirit reveals things to us in our minds AND or hearts! THAT is when we know truth for a surety. That is when we become converted. That is the Spirit of Revelation. Not one or the other, or else the scripture (Doctrine and Covenants 8:2-3) would say mind or hearts! True conversion is giving our heart, might, mind, and strength to the Lord, and we cannot do that if we only feel something is true or only think it is true! Having one witness is good enough to keep moving forward in our discipleship, but once we have that second witness, once that law of witnesses is fulfilled, we can truly become converted!
I have studied a lot about patience this past week too, and found a really awesome quote from President Uchtdorf in his talk "Continue in Patience:"
"Patience is a godly attribute that can heal souls, unlock treasures of knowledge and understanding, and transform ordinary men and women into saints and angels."
Angels are real. Let me tell you that! No way could I do the work I am doing, no way could I contribute the way I have been, without angels. Fun fact, from Alma 30- 2 Nephi 25, angels are mentioned 96 times. Interesting. The Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and it mentions angels so many times. Remember Emerson and Hudson, the Priesthood you have holds the keys to the ministering of what? Angels. Maybe study out what that means. Because once you begin to realize the miracles that happen due to those angelic ministering, your prayers will become more meaningful, and your life will become brighter and brighter.
Anyways. I love you all! Hope you have an amazing week, and I am going to try not to stress out with transfer calls coming!
PS. No Bat sighting yet. We are working on it. :)