Ahh, it's been a pretty astonishing week, that's for sure! I'll just give a recap including miracles and highlights!
We helped RA, a recent convert, get excited about doing baptisms for the dead! Hopefully we will be able to get her there soon! That would be awesome.
After dinner on Tuesday, we went to contact an old referral. While walking up to his house, I saw a hispanic lady walking around her house. I ran up to her and gave her a pass-along card with a picture of Christ on the front. I used my memorized spanish contact to try to converse with her. She spoke a little broken english, so Sister Durrant and I were able to communicate. The sweet lady just kept kissing the card and saying, "I love you Jesus." She started to cry, so we asked what was wrong. She ended up explaining that her husband died 3 years ago, she has very little money, and she has lupus, high cholesterol, and diabetes. She works hard cleaning houses to maintain her home. Her family are all in Mexico right now. We just assured her the Christ loves her and we could send missionaries who spoke more Spanish. She readily agreed to that. As we were walking away, she called out, "You are my angels!" My heart melted. I felt so blessed to have been able to talk with her briefly. The referral ended up having moved, but I know that we were led there for a reason.
We also saw KR. We were worried about the lesson because we had tried to coordinate to teach her at a member's house so the kids wouldn't be distracting, but everything had fallen through. We fervently prayed that it would go well. So we walked in, and KR told us that both her kids were asleep! Wow! That was a HUGE miracle. We taught her the restoration and the Spirit was definitely present. At the end, KR said, "It's over already? That was a good lesson!"
Thursday we had a wonderful zone conference with President and Sister Taylor and the Assistants. We just discussed the Spirit and it's importance in our work. I had a total booyah moment during the conference though. So over the past couple of weeks, I've really been thinking about my mission vision and how it didn't quite cover everything that I wanted it to anymore. While President and Sister Taylor were talking about the Spirit -- how it allows us to shine and to rise up -- I was definitely inspired to write some thoughts in my journal which led to me editing and improving my mission vision. I wrote, "I want to be filled with the Spirit. I want Christ's light to SHINE through me. I want to BE BRILLIANT." Here's another cool part: I recently bought a new study journal. On the front there are light bulbs and the words, "Be Brilliant." I realized that it was definitely inspired that I bought this journal to help remind me of my vision as I study everyday. So, my new vision is BE BRILLIANT with some subcategories of Arise & Shine and Reflect Love. I felt so empowered and that the Lord had definitely answered my prayer.
On Saturday we met with our investigator, ST. He is dating a member of the Garland 1st ward. His parents have been asking him a lot of questions and giving him a bit of grief for the things that he has been learning. Before the lesson, we had planned on briefly going over the articles of faith, then giving ST one of the pass-along cards to share with his dad. After we told ST what the articles of faith are, he said, "I could totally show these to my dad!" It was awesome; he extended our invitation to himself.
Can I just say how much I love my companion, Sister Durrant!? She is so happy, positive, intune, diligent, and fun. Oh boy, I love her! Heavenly Father has been so good to me on my mission.
My Sabbath day was wonderful! We were able to attend Ward Council, and it was definitely a privilege to be in attendance. I am so amazed on how inspired the organization of the church is. Ward Councils are definitely inspired. Then sacrament meeting in Garland 1st was amazing. There were 4 young men who reported on the experiences they had on their 2 week adventures/hike. They drew some amazing parallels between their hike and life. Here are some highlights: We must pray for guidance and direction to stay on the path. "Prayer is one of the most precious gifts God gives to men." Never let an earthly circumstance dull your spirituality. Some skills that are useful while hiking and also in life: perseverance, optimism, unity. The journey may be long, but the finish will be sweet, and we can all make it.
It's been a wonderful week! I look forward to the adventures that this week brings!
ARISE AND SHINE. D&C 115: 5.
Sister Gretchen Julie Gilbert