Monday, June 18, 2012

Mission Tan Lines

I feel like there is always so much to say, but don't know how to put everything into words! I can't even believe that I've almost been here for a month. This is already going by way too fast; especially my time with some of the sisters going home this transfer. It is crazy how close we've all gotten.

 So many amazing things have happened this week. 

Miracle #1: When I was in the referral center this week, I was making phone calls to those who have self-referred themselves during our tours, and I usually start my calls in chronological order of when they referred. So I was going down to the last person I called, but stopped at a name, who had self-referred only a week ago. I dialed her number, and sure enough she answered. I asked how she enjoyed her time at the Laie Visitor's center, then mentioned how she had marked on her comment card that she wanted to learn more about eternal families. She then interrupted and said, "Oh, the missionaries actually already stopped by yesterday! The thing is, they set an appointment with us for today, and my husband was in an accident so we're in the hospital right now.  ...but we really want to them to come teach us!!" Bah, I was so happy!!! Even more so, because they are from Honolulu, whereas, a lot of our tours are with people from another country. I asked if she had their number, or vice versa...She said she didn't even know their names, just that  they were two skinny white boys, hahah!! She then said how she was really bummed that the missionaries had no way of knowing that they would not be home for the length of time her husband was in the hospital. So sure enough, with the help of the senior couples in the mission home, we were able to figure out who those Elders were, as well as give them a call with the family's number to get them another appointment set up!! It was AMAZINGGGG!

Miracle #2: During one of our Tram tours from the PCC (Polynesian Cultural Center) a couple was just standing in the "Prophets corner," where visitors can listen to the testimonies of our living Prophet and Apostles today. Applying my training from companionship study, I walked up to them, and started conversation about where they were from, what brought them here, so on and so forth. Well, we ended up talking about the gospel of Jesus Christ restored upon the earth, and then the wife just comes out and says, "So, I was actually baptized about 11 years ago, but haven't really been to church in a really long time. But the thing is I really want to, and my son has been pushing me to go! Also, my husband here is not a member, but being here just reminded me of how much this gospel can really bless our lives, and he wants to learn more about it for himself." Hah, golden. So I asked if he had a copy of the Book of Mormon, he said he had not, but would love one. So together we marched up to the front desk and got him one! He and his wife then referred themselves to have the missionaries come teach him the gospel. It was so neat. Also, just a side note...Devan, they're from Panhandle of Florida! So they live where your mission is/was. So, next week I get to call them and confirm they want the missionaries over, then send   their address over to the missionaries serving in their area! Pretty cool stuff.

Miracle #3: Hermana Rodriguez and I have an investigator, but have been really nervous about him because he didn't want to meet with us without his girlfriend being there. Unfortunately she was out of town for the past two weeks. BUT, we set an appointment with them for the day after she got back, and that was this past Wednesday! It was pretty much the best thing that has ever happened to me. He speaks little English, is about 45 years-old, from the Philippines, and is just so humble, and so kind! So we finished teaching him the restoration, and asked how he felt about it. He said that he felt really happy inside, and felt like as he has put Jesus Christ as the center of his life, he has really felt His love for him. We loved that, and bore testimony that when we have that love of Christ in our lives, that no matter what trials we go through, no matter our losses, we will always have the promise and blessing of eternal life. He then said that he has definitely been able to see that in his life! So then, I looked at Hermana, then looked at him, and asked him that if he continued to apply the principles we have taught him, and as he gains a testimony of this gospel for himself, if he would want to follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by the proper authority of God?....ahh, I will never forget the look on his face! He was just beaming, with a big grin on his face, and said, "yes, definitely!" We were so happy for him, and explained how much this decision will bless his life!! We set a date for June 30th, and he accepted. We asked him how he felt? He said that he has never felt happier, and that he knew this was right! He could not stop smiling, it was so cute!! I am so excited for him, and how blessed I know his life will be because of this decision.

It has truly been an amazing week, yet again. I am so grateful to be a part of this work, as I have been able to see the joy this gospel can bring into our lives. Life is definitely not easy, and can bring us some difficult trials, but that is the greatest thing about the gospel, is that, even if I had nothing else but my testimony and knowledge of the true and living God, and His plan for each of us, that would be enough. I have met some amazing people here, who have gone through harder times than I plan to see in my own life. They are a living testimony of the truthfulness of this gospel. I love it, and I love Heavenly Father. I love knowing that we are all children of God, and that He knows each of us personally. We can know this for ourselves by simply getting down on our knees, having a sincere heart, with the desire to know, and asking God for ourselves! I know that Heavenly Father will help you see the love He has for you, as long as we are willing to act upon those blessings. I am so grateful to be here, and am even grateful for the wonderful tan lines I have on my arms, legs and feet, that help remind me of the marks that this gospel has left in my life!  I love you all, and am so grateful for your prayers!! Can't wait to here from ya'll next week!! Mahalo!

Word of the week: Pulani= white person

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