So earlier this transfer S. Abad pointed out that I am the absolute worst at saying "Bless you" when someone sneezes...I just don't do it. I have no idea why. It is so bad that she will sneeze, look at me, and I'll say "Are you okay?" My brain does not connect that a sneeze=say bless you. It's a problem. So it has turned into her counting the number of times every day that I do not say it, and doing burpees at night according to how many I missed.
I am also trying to teach S. Abad Spanish, which has been really good because by teaching it, I am reviewing it and it is helping me retain some of it (which is good because I will be with S. Soza tomorrow and she will kill me if my Spanish is not up to par. haha)
But anyway, this week was AWESOME! We did a zone-wide exchange on Friday and I got to be with S. Haws, who is a boss. We had the craziest day ever but it was awesome. Then on Saturday we met with Joe, who we've been teaching the whole transfer. He has read almost all of the Book of Mormon and can't stop talking about how much more peace he has. We've been reminding him every lesson that he needs to get his own answer and he told us that he has! Then we told him at the end of our lesson that we wanted to take him on a temple tour sometime in the next week. (The temple is at the edge of our area. :D) His response: "Perfectly well. Why not today? Let's go. Right now." Us: ....."We need to leave for some other appointments, what about tonight?" Him: "Perfectly well. I'll tell you what I'm going to do. I'll take my grandkids to McDonald's and then buy you two some water to put in your car because you need water, and then we will go."
Needless to say, the next 3 hours were spent frantically trying to find a member that was willing to a temple tour with us so last minute. We prayed really hard and finally found someone that could do it, and at 7 we met the member and Joe at the temple. It was absolutely incredible and I was overwhelmed with gratitude for my mission. Joe has basically been teaching himself this weekend and is only wants to learn more. He looked at us and said "I understand. This (the temple) is your goal for me. It is a sacred place. It is my goal too. I will be here." The sun was setting behind the temple and it was beautiful. Moments like that remind me not only why I am on a mission, but also why I am on the earth.
But wait. It gets better. Joe came to church for the first time yesterday and it was fast and testimony meeting. We explained that to Joe and he said "I'll just sit here quietly and listen." It was one of those meetings with a lot of breaks as people hesitated going up, but then Joe turns to me and double checks the bishop's name. Then he stands. And walks to the front. And goes up to the pulpit. AND THEN HE SHARED HIS TESTIMONY AND ALL THAT HAS HAPPENED TO HIM THE PAST MONTH! It was one of the greatest moments of my mission so far. After he stood up, suddenly all the members wanted to share their testimony. haha. It was amazing.
Lastly, I wanted to share some scriptures I read this morning that hit me really hard. When I left on my mission, my stake president shared Alma 17 with me. It is about the sons of Mosiah leaving on their missions. In Alma 26 they all meet up again and talk about what has happened during the course of their mission. Ammon says in vs 3 that the greatest blessing they have been given is the chance to be instruments in the hands of God. Then he says:
5 Behold, the field was ripe, and blessed are ye, for ye didthrust in the sickle, and did reap with your might, yea, allthe day long did ye labor; and behold the number of your sheaves! And they shall be gathered into the garners, that they are not wasted.
6 Yea, they shall not be beaten down by the storm at the last day; yea, neither shall they be harrowed up by the whirlwinds; but when the storm cometh they shall be gathered together in their place, that the storm cannot penetrate to them; yea, neither shall they be driven with fierce winds whithersoever the enemy listeth to carry them.
7 But behold, they are in the hands of the Lord of the harvest, and they are his; and he will raise them up at the last day.
I loved these verses a lot because it is a promise that all those I care about will be cared for by the Lord. He will guide them and protect them in the same way that he guides and protects me. My job is to "labor all the day long" and His job is to "raise them up".
I love you all tons!! Have a good week!! I'm excited to see my family is 6 days! ;)
-Sister Bren Scadden