March 3, 2014
Wow. Let me just start off by saying I am so overwhelmed by the amazing things that have happened this week. So many sweet moments!! Here were the highlights:
-Remembering Nichole--a miracle! A few weeks ago, we were sitting in Snyder Hall and I had this memory come to my mind of when I served in this ward before and we would sit in Snyder Hall and teach a less-active named Nichole. I suddenly realized we hadn't heard from or seen Nichole in so long, so we went home that night and gave her a call. She was so happy to hear from us and we scheduled an appointment to meet with her the next week. We looked on the ward list to find out where she lived and we couldn't find her ANYWHERE! It turns out, her records never got transferred here for some reason and so no one was visiting her or reaching out in any way. She said one day she was wondering why she hadn't heard from missionaries in so long and then we called her that very night. We met with her and she is coming back to church after spring break! It was really cool to see Heavenly Father's hand in things. And I was so happy to be back in this ward at this time--Heavenly Father definitely directed that! Nichole never would have been found otherwise!
-Rita got baptized this past weekend. It was such a sweet experience and I was so grateful for the miracle of finding her at the library. I gave the talk on the Holy Ghost and it made me reflect on how amazing the Holy Ghost truly is. I decided to share what the Holy Ghost has helped me with in my life by making a little acrostic poem:
The talk went really well except the part at the beginning when I started to share my poem and I said, "So Spirit is spelled S-P-I-R-T." Oh boy. Everyone laughed and I quickly corrected myself but I think I had some new color in my face for the rest of the talk :)
-Going to Brother Ericson's funeral was bittersweet. I don't know how much I have told you about Brother Ericson's past, but he used to be a Catholic priest up until he was 50 years old or so. He was so devoted to his faith, and when the missionaries came, he loved how the gospel helped him increase and improve that faith. He converted to the gospel, was baptized, and left his old profession behind. He didn't have any family left, so the missionaries became his family. For years, missionaries have visited his house and had gospel-centered conversations. He LOVED missionaries so much. Everyone who served in the Williamston ward really loved visits with Brother Ericson. Missionaries were the only people who could drop by his place unannounced at any time of the day. His funeral was really beautiful. We found out he donated all of his money and possessions to the MTC, which really touched us. Also, all of the pallbearers were missionaries, so it was a really tender experience. I am so grateful to have met Brother Ericson; he left a lasting impact on my life.
-Bishop Solomon taught us something sweet this week I thought I would share. We have been talking a lot about visiting and home teaching in our ward these past few weeks and how much they truly correlate with missionary work. Regardless of our callings or our positions, we each have a divine duty as disciples of Christ to "feed His sheep." Bishop Solomon related the story of David and Goliath to this commission. David felt confident he could conquer Goliath, but only because he had tended to his father's sheep in the past. He was able to protect and love them, and because he was doing that, he was not worried about the big problem facing him. Bishop promised everyone in that room if we take time to tend to the Father's sheep, we will be able to conquer the Goliaths in our own lives. I can promise that is true. I have never felt happier in my life than right now. And I know it is because I am focusing on others and how I can make them happy. The own big problems of my life suddenly don't seem so big when I am on my knees pleading for the welfare of others. Try it in your own lives. What a difference it will make!
-On a more unrelated note, it was pretty nippy this week. As we were PCing, Sister Smith looked over at me and busted up laughing. It turned out my cheek muscles froze. Whenever I tried to smile or laugh, my face looked SO weird. It looked like I had just returned from the dentist with a numb mouth. We had a grand time. But it will be in the 30s this week! Woo!
Love you all!