It's July and another year has come and gone... This week has been really good overall. Despite bug bites, Benadryl, and the 4th of July many good and wonderful things happened!
I'm very excited for interviews with President Jenkins this week. Based on everything that I've seen, they sound like they're going to be good ones. :) I've been struggling to know what I need that we could talk about, but to be honest I'm doing great! I am excited to read the talk he posted on Facebook and to discuss it. Someone asked us the other day why we were so happy. I thought about it for half a second and told him that I was happy because I'm repenting! I see now the power and JOY that comes from repenting everyday. Even for the little things that may seem insignificant. I'm happy because of the gospel and my companions help me to live it more fully everyday! They help me learn and develop Christlike attributes and motivate me to try harder to live by them. I am happy. :) This is the happiest I've been in a long time and it's great!
I'm also working on my Personal Progress! It's exciting! To pass off one of the knowledge experiences we needed to lead music and what is a better place and time to do it than during Sacrament meeting! It was awesome to lead 40 people. I am not exaggerating when I say that almost everyone in the wards I serve in were gone. Even the entire bishopric in one of the wards was out of town! Not as intimidating I guess. :)
ED CAME TO CHURCH! He actually got work off and came! I wish you could see my face right now because I am SO HAPPY! He loved church! When we visited him later that evening he kept making comments that he could see himself going every week and learning and growing a lot. Up next is to get every Sunday off... We're praying extra hard with A LOT of faith so that can happen. We got to meet 3 out of the 4 daughters he has as well. They're super bright kids. I feel that as we continue to teach Ed that those girls will learn and feel something as well. Only 2 are baptism age, but they are going to be great potentials soon as well. I am just so excited for Ed! He is making leaps and bounds. He's progressing like crazy. If he could just get Sunday's off we would be baptizing this month. We'll keep praying for that miracle to happen. Most of his court stuff has passed and he's a lot calmer now and in a state of mind where he can really begin to learn the gospel. I am so excited!
So Ed is in Las Sendas and we have a super promising investigator in Stonebridge named Jessica . We haven't been able to meet with her yet. Her family is giving her a hard time for taking the lessons and keeping her super busy. BUT! We've found her Facebook and she agreed to be taught online! Yay! Her family will be leaving at the end of the month, but until then she can get her fill of the gospel via Facebook. After almost 4 years, Stonebridge WILL have a baptism. I have the faith that this can happen. I hope I'm doing enough so that the Lord can facilitate this miracle through me.
We've started to help families in the wards start their family mission plans! It's exciting! We've come up with a general outline of how we introduce the plans to families and it's interesting to see reactions. Some are really excited and throw both feet into the pool while others are hesitant and only put in a toe to test the waters. What is awesome is to feel the Spirit work within us to help individuals and families create a plan that pushes them but allows them to still be themselves.We were at dinner with some of our ward missionaries and they kept saying how they couldn't do missionary work because the one time they went over to their neighbors they weren't home. They thought that was it... they had done enough. It was neat to feel the Spirit put words in my mouth and share my own personal experiences about feeling absolutely inadequate and not cutout to be a missionary. By the end the family was excited to go out, do their plans, and reach their goals. I'm really excited to see the growth in missionary activity that will happen in the wards.
Adventure for the week! I was on exchanges with Sister Pulley and we were teaching the most prepared man you have ever met. Well, during the lesson I got a bug bite. From what kind of bug, I do not know, but I soon found out that I was allergic to that bug and my foot began to swell like a balloon. I got through the night ok, but the next day was terrible! It was on fire and itching like crazy. We called Sister Jenkins and she advised me to take Benadryl. I did that and I was a lost cause 40 minutes later... it was funny but in a pathetic way...haha. I can't remember a thing from those days.. haha...
Also! We're putting together a medley and we've enlisted the help of members! Sister Abplanalp has been so amazing and offered her extraordinary musical talents to help us! She's the best! BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE! So, I am IN LOVE with "Lamb of God" by Rob Gardner. I can quote the music like no other. Well, this member is good friends with Rob... I don't know how or when, but I will be his friend........... We practice his music in the car ALL THE TIME! We each have our own parts. I'm Peter! Yeah!
On the 4th of July we couldn't go proselyting, so we went to a members house and sang "Lamb of God" till it hurt. We also went to a block party that one of our ward mission leaders was hosting and we took lots of photos in his photo booth! It was a great day. I am so grateful that I live in a country and in a time where I can freely practice living a religion. I cannot even begin to describe my gratitude for this country. Because if we did not have it we would not have the restored gospel. Even though things may seem bleak with all the wrong that is floating around us, we have the most right thing: the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love it and I'm proud to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints!
P.S. It's officially monsoon season! We had an awesome storm last week and got caught in a Haboob (AKA dust storm)!!!