If I had to describe this week in three words I would say, buffets, temple, and less-active-miracles
Monday: We went father's day shopping and Elder Barry needed new shirts because all of his are ripping so we shopped all day! well all of pday. Then we had dinner with the Alcantara's. They are a family from the Dominican Republic. Super super cool family. And they took us out to eat to..... Golden Corral! oh man. So we went to go get our plate of food and guess who is there!?? Latasha from the North! she is this sassy lady that we did service for in the north. It was so crazy to see her there. She recognized both Elder Barry and I. We had a sweet little reunion and then went back to stuffing our faces.
Tuesday: We had an awesome lesson with Leticia in the morning. She said she was going to pray about the Book of Mormon. She is pretty catholic, but has a pure curiosity about Mormons. We met with Reyna! It had been forever and it was soo good to see her again. So she told us that she had been praying to know what to do when we knocked on her door. #prayersareanswered We talked to her and she told us that that evening she was going to talk to her boyfriend. The one she used to live with. She told us that she has two options. #1 live with him again (which means break the law of chastity) and stay her in Oklahoma, or #2 Move to Atlanta to take a job over there. The only problem is that the job is at a bar. She would be a bartender. We explained to her that she needs to remember to put God first in her life and the rest would work out. I think the hardest thing was not knowing what option was better. We told her to go to heavenly Father. We said a prayer and then parted ways. As of today we haven't been able to contact Reyna. So I am praying that she made the right choice. I love her so much that hearing her struggles made me cry.
Wednesday: We scored a free pizza from Dominoes for lunch!! YES! and Wednesday evening our Relief Society President took us out with her to go visit a bunch of sisters in the branch that aren't coming to church. It was very very insightful for us to go with her and help her. We learned that we need to teach her and probably the whole relief society how to do visiting teaching. It was a huge eye opener for me.
Thursday: We had an awesome awesome awesome lesson with the Gomez family. Well just the parents. They are the parents of Irvin who was baptized about a month and a half ago. The last time we visited with them we asked them to read 3 Nephi 12. They said they did it! YES! and when we asked them to read the next one the mom, Yesika asked, can we start from the beginning? Then the dad, Aldolfo said, yeah we want to read the whole thing together. I freaked out inside!!!!! and tried to calmly say of course!!! Their kids get back on the 25th. I am so excited because now that the parents are on board the whole family is going to be on board! I am so pumped.
Friday: Miracle! A super less active member, hno Cabello called us and asked us if we were free tonight. We said we will be! And we went over. We had an awesome lesson with him. he also fed us tacos, so I was happy :) Then we headed over to Yukon because we were sleeping over there because...... JAVIER GONZALES WAS GOING THROUGH THE TEMPLE IN THE MORNING!!!
Saturday! Went to the temple and got to see all my Stillwater people! Javier Gonzales is preparing to leave for his mission to Arcadia, California mission in July. The best part of all of it is that after he received his endowment he was sealed to his parents. I can't explain the spirit that entered the room when that ordinance took place. I never realized how real eternal families are until that point. I am so grateful for an eternal family. But I got to see the Gonzales family, the Fox family, Hermano Johnson, and all the missionaries that served in the group. After the temple they took everyone to Fuze the nicest buffet I have been to in my entire life. It was mind blowing! I said a bittersweet goodbye to everyone from Stillwater. Hermana James included. I love them all so much. So we went back to the south and Hermana Applegate donated blood. I wasn't going to step close to that needle, so I helped man the front desk and greeted people as they came in. then we went to the one and only Taste of China!!! buffet round number 3! Yup
Sunday: We were able to visit with two members that I have never met before! the Jurado family and hermano Jose Bautsita. When we visited the Jurado's hermana was in tears the whole time. You could just tell that she had been craving the spirit and when she was able to feel it again she cried. Jose Bautsita was hilarious! He is this funny old bald man from Mexico. and we talked and talked and talked. His friend was at his house when we came by and he is actually super interested to learn about the gospel. Oh I forgot to mention that I gave a talk in church on Sunday. It went well.
So on Thursday we had Zone conference. President trained about obedience and the blessings that come from it. There are so many. He shared a quote that has changed how I see obedience. I want to share it with yall.
"Obedience to God can be the very highest expression of independence. Just think of giving to him the one thing, the one gift, that he would never take. Think of giving him the one thing that he would never wrest form you.... obedience -- that which God will never take by force -- He will accept when freely given. And He will then return to you freedom that you can hardly dream of -- the freedom to feel and to know. The freedom to do, and the freedom to BE, at least a thousand fold more than we were." -- Boyd K. Packer
I know this is true. At the end of each zone conference all the missionaries who are leaving the mission before the next zone conference are called up to give their testimony. My stomach dropped to the floor when they called my name. It was a weird moment. I am so grateful for this time I have had to serve and I am even more grateful that I still have a little while longer to do the work of the Lord. There is nothing better than this. nothing harder, but nothing more rewarding. I'm grateful for a Heavenly Father that has supported me and helped me through everything. and I am even more grateful that he send me the best earthly father on the planet! Thanks dad for all that you do for me. I love you so much!!!
Brother Johnson and part of the Gonzales family
The Gonzales family. Now an eternal family
The missionary crew that came to the temple
Me and Hermana James!!
driving up to the temple with part of the stilly crew!!!!
I barely managed to get over and take a quick picture with my comp as she was donating blood. Then I ran back to the front desk because I can't do needles or blood!