So much happened this week but there is so little time to write!
It was great that the Relief Society President referred us to a part member family where the Mom was inactive. She needed help with some cleaning because she just had knee surgery. We went by on Christmas Eve, and cleaned for a few hours to help her get ready for Christmas. Sister V. opened up more, and she mentioned how she wants to raise her children in righteousness, and come back to church. When the President and one of her counselors were over to put up the tree, she wasn't too interested in coming back, but was okay with her children going. Before we left she told us that we could come back anytime, and we're hoping that we can start teaching her kids because they haven't been baptized yet. :)
Later on Christmas Eve, we went out with the senior couple, the Lamph's- and went Christmas caroling to many less actives, investigators, and part member families. The Lamph's are returning home in February, and they wanted us to meet many of them so we could gradually gain their trust and visit them after they go home. There were many tears as we sung, and some families told us it was exactly what they needed on Christmas Eve. Our voices were tired as we sung to a dozen or so families, but it was worth it.
On Christmas Day we had brunch with Ap. and her entire family. It was chaotic with all of the kids running around, but it was great being able to teach the Restoration to the entire family. We realized that Da. came halfway through when we were teaching the Restoration to Ap., so she never learned the beginning part of it! It was a good review for the entire family, and it was one of my favorite Christmas mornings ever. :)
I also got to Skype with my beautiful family, and I loved seeing all of their faces, and seeing how much my nieces, Kayla and Marie have grown! It was such a sight to see, and it was fun seeing the pictures that my Dad took as we were Skyping each other.
On Christmas evening, we felt prompted to go to M.'s house. M. was the potential where we prayed with him, and the next day he got a job promotion and recognized that it was because of the blessing we left on his home. The last time we talked to him, we accidentally woke him up because his work schedule got switched from day to night. He told us in a voice mail that he'd call us so we didn't catch each other at the wrong time. We realized that we probably should have responded to him with that, but we didn't want to call him and wake him up. (We missed his call because we were giving service.) M. may have thought we got offended, but we didn't! So when we went to his house M. was sleeping, yet we met his wife L. We sung Silent Night that brought the spirit in, and gave her a "He Is The Gift" card. She told us that M. mentioned us to her, and she'll tell him we stopped by. We really hope that he calls us so we can teach both of them.
We were out tracting this neighborhood, and this ravenous dog was charging right at us and we instantly were paralyzed with fear. Sister Stewart TOTALLY ran behind me, and I was two milliseconds away from running away in absolute terror. I'm so grateful that the dog had an invisible fence so he couldn't get off the property, since I seriously thought we were going to get attacked from that rottweiler. Another interesting experience we had tracting was this old man said that we could talk to him after we found out what the thieves names were that were crucified with Jesus Christ. I remembered Barnabas was released, so I thought that the names of the thieves were in there SOMEWHERE. Unfortunately not, we had the masters of the Bible check for us, and there is no reference anywhere to their names. He just wanted us gone, how rude! :(
|Sometimes as we tract we find other interesting creatures. Here's Phillip the Armadillo.|
So here's a funny story. At the beginning of this month, Sister Stewart and I were talking about how we didn't care what we had to do, we were going to baptize this month. Sister Turberville's daughter Gracie just previously had tried to baptize her pet cat Scooter, in the toilet. We even remarked, "I don't care what we have to do, we'll even baptize a cat if we have to!" So I suppose I was lying, because we didn't baptize a cat. (Although we really wanted to give our cat earrings to Da. to wear on her baptism so we could say we baptized a cat.) But Da. was baptized on Saturday! It was a beautiful baptism, and Ca. is getting baptized this Saturday as well. The spirit was there, and Da. received a beautiful blessing as she received the Gift of the Holy Ghost. It talked about how she needs to continue her education, receive her endowment, marry in the temple, be an example to her family, and having such a sweet spirit. I'm surprised I didn't get teary eyed. :')
|Da.'s Baptism Day-December 27, 2014|
|Shortly before Da. was baptized.|
|Da. and a few of the family members that supported her.|
It's pretty exciting since we're tracting into member's relatives, and friends. Na. E. was one of them, and now we've tracted into a recent convert's Mom/grandma, and a less actives cousin who needs rides to church (her cousin has a car and could definitely pick her up.) So we're very excited for this upcoming week! Instant friends! :D
|This is the Nativity that Na. E. gave to us. We love her thoughtful gift. The pictures on the wall are the ones Da. drew for us. We love those, also!|
It was such a sad tale, Sister Stewart was strongly prompted to go to go to this one house, and we met this girl named H. Right when we asked if we could pray with her, she began to tear up and say yes. I was prompted to pray about how Heavenly Father loves her, He watches over her continually, about how the Atonement is real. We could hear her cry during the prayer, and the spirit was so strong as we were talking to her, and testifying to her about the restored gospel. She told us that she was most definitely going to watch the He Is The Gift video, and we could just tell that she needed the gospel. Right when I was going to describe more about the Book of Mormon, someone came from her house and dragged her away, taking her inside. She was remarking, "But... but... but.... Have a great day." and waved at us. We were so upset, and it makes me sad that her friend didn't want H. to partake of the gospel.
One of the things that I've loved recently is that I've been reading Jesus The Christ, and I've really been able to learn more about his life, and have been able to have my relationship with him grow stronger because of it. I invite y'all to really study our Savior's life, and to always remember that He has felt what we're going through, and to draw strength from Him and His Atonement.
P.S. We got a huge amount of candy and sweets for Christmas! Let's just say, we're sharing the wealth! Thanks everyone for making our Christmas "extra-sweet!"