Sister Oldroyd and Sister Rokovitz
So here's about the week:
We left the house at 6 pm and the sky was just dancing with lightning! It was so cool! Then our phone freaks out with a tornado warning. We decided to brave it out and drive the 15 minutes to the church to tract around there. Five minutes down the road... Too much rain! Can't see the lines and the elders called us saying the tornado was spotted and it was about to touch down in downtown Clarksville.. The opposite way we were going. Campus was on lock down, yet somehow our Samoan YSA got off. Probably cause no one dared try to keep him there. He'd just squish them! We hydroplaned our way to the church and made it safely. Getting from the car to the church was like jumping in a pool! We were soaked!! Sinclair and Annalee were camped out there and they said Austin got stuck in Walmart. They were on lock down too. The tornado never hit, just crazy rain storms all night long with power lines down. The Zone shut down, but since we made it to the church, we still got to have FHE. I thought no one would come, but we had a great turn out! We had a waffle night and played a lot of games that resulted in laughing so hard. Brother Frogue was snorting watching us play! Good night!
Monday night we stayed up till 11:30 pm trying to figure out an exchange. We had planned one with the CV1 sisters but they asked to reschedule. (Again). They texted us and asked if we had really prayed about it. Ouch. Of course we did! So we stayed up stressing and praying and thinking. If we let them switch, we'd show them it doesn't matter and its according to what's best for them. If we don't let them, it's almost like we're trying to have power over them. We called the Zone leaders in the morning and asked their opinion. They said to just do it. We did. The only reason they wanted to stay was because of their dinner appointment. They both wanted enchiladas. The exchange was good. Awkward at first, but it turned out ok. It was hard to have to just make the decision, but we're the leaders and we had to trust that the Lord knew we would make the right decision.
We met a lot of really cool people. Oh and we saw Calvin! Finally! He disappeared for almost a month. He said he was just having trials and he didn't want to drag us down with him. We just talked him through it and really testified of the Atonement and God's love for us. It was a powerful lesson.
We met a couple cool people that couldn't even wait for us to talk about Joseph Smith before they were inviting themselves to church. That was a first.
And we taught Tori. We taught the Restoration outside and during the First Vision she interrupted and said "Wow! That's amazing!" Darn right it is. That lesson was cool! That whole night was good. Sister McDonald wrote down a lot of things she learned from the exchange. She even took pictures of our walls with our goals on them because she liked it so much. It turned out pretty good.
We had a pretty sweet District meeting. I learned a lot from the trainings. My companion gave a training on companion unity. It really helped us to sit down and focus on what we needed to do to be unified. I brought up that it bothered me to see little info in the records of teaching appointments and not real addresses on their pages. So we're working on keeping the area book really updated. She brought up that we need to be so strictly on time. So we're also working on that.
We taught Aaron more about the Book of Mormon and he is doing great! Let me give you a brief rundown of Aaron. He was found tracting and we invited him to church and activities but he was always busy and never home. Finally he came to an activity and then we taught him, but he just acted like a punk. The companion I had at the time asked if we could meet up one day and he texted back "no because I'm really attracted to you and I don't want to do anything stupid." Awkward. So we sent the elders over. They weren't really trying with him. Then Aaron just showed up at an activity. And our YSA loved him! So he came to church! We asked the elders to send his teaching record back to us. We've been teaching him a lot and his whole countenance has really changed. He even told us yesterday that he didn't really care about it the first time we taught him, but now he really cares about it. It's so amazing! And when we taught the Restoration he teared up and told us his mom passed away a year or two ago. Then when we taught the Plan of Salvation and we taught about the Spirit World, he loved it because we explained that his mom was there, learning about the gospel too just like him. He thought that was neat. He's so amazing! He is just prepared now.
Lastly we set up to meet with a member, Sean. We were going to implement a member missionary plan with him, but he brought his friend John with him. John is not a member but he's come to some activities before. So we sit down, and we are mentally communicating, freaking out what to do because we can't just talk about inviting friends in front of his friend! So Sister Oldroyd whips out the Bible and says we're going to read in Matthew about when Christ walks on water and having faith. We read it and talked about it. John was really talkative... And I don't think I've really heard more than 3 words out of him. I heard what his voice sounded like! It turned out alright... Sean looked a little confused about why we would have him travel across town to sit and read a chapter with us though.
Exchange #2 with Fort Campbell sisters. I stayed and Sister Peterson came with me. She's really chill and I'm so glad because all our afternoon plans cancelled. So we did finding and tracting for 4 hours! We did have two cool miracles though! First we were visiting Nick who we tracted into ages ago! I was going to contact him this last time and then drop him. He answered and I asked him if he was still interested and he said he wasn't positive because he hasn't had the chance to read the Book of Mormon. So I asked if he was on FB and he said yes and that I could add him and keep in touch with him easier on there! Miracle because I thought he wasn't interested.
Second we had a guy named Ruben Jr. in our area book. The sisters found him and he said he wasn't interested but his YSA age son would be. We tried back one time and asked for Ruben Jr... Well that's the dad. So I figured we would try one last time to figure out if he's interested and then pass him off to the elders. Someone opens the door and his name is Ruben. Ruben Jr is his dad. Ruben is YSA and was interested in activities. The miracle part was that he doesn't live there, but was just there for a bit feeding the dogs while his parents are out of town. Perfect timing! God is so good at what He does.
That night we taught Chris the Plan of Salvation. He hadn't really known much about it but this was the first time we had seen him since our great lesson. He's still set on the 25th but wants to really make sure it's right. At the end of the lesson we asked if he had comments or concerns, and he just pointed at the Spirit World and said softly "I like this." And then we all sat in silence.... For like a whole minute!! If you sit in silence for 10 seconds, it's awkward. 20 is maybe feeling the spirit, 30 is feeling the spirit, and a whole minute is like... SPIRIT PUNCH TO THE GUT TELLING YOU THIS IS THE TRUTH AND THE WHOLE TRUTH AND THE ONLY TRUTH!!! It was just amazing. After about 20 seconds I just sat there until someone else talked. I wasn't going to ruin that moment. He just sat back after that minute and said "yeah." Oh my - Chris. The perfect investigator.
We got back from our exchange and we had to book it to the church. I accidentally double booked us. So we ran to the church, taught Aaron, ran to another appointment who wasn't home, and then grabbed lunch at Wendy's and ate it on the way to our appointment with Calvin.
We taught Aaron the Plan of Salvation and that's the day he just liked the Spirit World because he knew where his mom was and that she was safe and learning just as he was. Oh we all teared up in that lesson.
With Calvin we read Alma 24 about the people of Ammon. We talked about what had happened the past 3 weeks and told him to just bury those weapons of war. He is going to think of something and then we're all going to bury our weapons at the next lesson. He liked that idea.
We did weekly planning this day instead of Friday since we were so busy. I had the most crippling migraine and I just couldn't focus. I laid on the floor for most of planning and Sister Oldroyd got me snacks and made sure I was still living. It was a long 3 hours!
Then we met with Austin, and he hung out with us the rest of the day! From 2:30 to 9:00. We did Facebook and then tracted for a couple hours and visited people and it was just fun! Safe from guns and got a ton of member present lessons. It was a great night.
We had a long day at church. Seven hours because we got there early, and then we had church and then we met with Aaron and then we went to another Sacrament meeting because we had another investigator there. (Her name is Emily. She was a referral from the elders and we’re teaching her because her husband is deployed. She is pretty golden. Her husband is a member and so is her brother-in-law.)
We hopped on Facebook and saw that the Nashville YSA was posting that David Archuleta went to church there today. And he will for a while because he is getting back on his feet there.
After church we had lunch and then we headed to the Orr's house for a ride to Madison. We got there and the whole mission was there. We were told to be there and to wear red or white. All matching. Christmas photo? We all were guessing the Prophet was coming or the mission was splitting. Nope. We're sitting there singing waiting for it to start and David Archuleta walks in. Every sister missionary in the room freaked out and started smiling and laughing. And me... -_- I was like... Cool ... He's a cool guy but not to be obsessed over.
So he gave a really good devotional. He sang a couple songs for us throughout it. The first one was Glorious which is my favorite EFY song. He sings it at the end of Meet the Mormons. He also sang Hark All Ye Nations and I'm Trying To Be Like Jesus. It was cool! And he talked about how much music has an impact on others and it brings the spirit so fast. It made me really think again about my music and the things I do with it. He did a question and answer and one elder asked for a hug... All the sisters were freaking out about the microphone to ask questions. He gave some good answers and strong testimony. He became human to me. He's just been an obsession of all the other girls around me in the world. He has struggles too. He was inactive at one point before the mission. He has had bumps and trials just like I have. It was really cool. And then he was in our Christmas picture.
You might need to click on the picture to see it bigger, but do you spy David Archuleta? There are about 4 rows of elders standing up on the stage down to the floor, then the sisters and a few elders are sitting down. If you look at the row right in front of the standing elders, about the middle of the row, next to President and Sister Andersen, you will see David Archuleta sitting next to Sister Andersen. (If you count six elders from the left on the front row, you can see me in the white blouse above that elder's head.)
It was fun to see all my companions. I finally saw Sister Schenk after forever! And a lot of the Nashville YSA were there! It was so cool! I died later with a migraine. And we went to bed.
I got to see Sister Frampton! (2 companions ago)
I loved seeing Sister Jarvis (my 2nd companion - 2nd from the left) and so many of the Nashville YSA from my first area.
This week has been really good. I've had just a great view of my mission and how wonderful it is! I love serving the Lord. This time is the greatest time on the face of the planet. I cannot express the desire I have to serve the Lord and spread His gospel to everyone. In the store today a lady let us go in front of her because she had SO much stuff. I thanked her as we left with a picture of Christ and she gave me a hug and wished us a good day. It made my day and helped me realize that there are so many Christlike people around us. It melted my heart and made me want to be kinder and more loving. I love this gospel so much!
I love my family too and I hope y'all have the best week ever. I wish you could be here to meet all the amazing people I meet. It's incredible. I love you!
P.S. I want you to meet John! [the photo]
He was in Walmart today. We were printing photos and I hear from behind me "Is Sister Weeks still around?" John was at the electronics computer behind me. I said no and that she left two weeks ago. He was bummed and said she'd always say hi and promised to give him a Book of Mormon but she never did. He explained that he was Catholic and loved collecting Bibles and reading. I asked if he wanted one and he said yes and proceeded to tell me when he worked. I told him I had a copy in my bag and he could have it if he wanted. He got real excited and so I pulled it out and he came to my photo stand and I told him that it was a very special copy because my Dad had put his testimony in it and sent it to me to give to him. He was very touched and said "Well you better sign it". So on the back side of where Dad wrote his testimony I wrote a little note saying how precious the book was to me and that it was all about Christ and had the words of eternal life. He was so happy to get it and even more happy to take a picture with me. He promised to read it and then he passed me a couple more times and he had that book tucked under his arm each time he walked by. Thank you Dad for sharing your testimony.