We had such an awesome week–the Lord is so good. Right as we set out Wednesday night we were able to find more people and teach some excellent lessons. That night we met with Julie and Odelia–new investigators we have been having some trouble meeting with because of their schedule. Well, we stopped by and finally found them! We had an amazing lesson together and when Sister Fansler recited the first vision, the whole atmosphere of the room changed. The kids were quiet and the TV seemed to turn off and it was just….light. It was amazing. And we’ve just been taking off from there! Trying to use every minute of Sister Fansler’s last cycle. If we have ten minutes, we’ll pull over and knock doors. And when we did that on Sunday, we knocked four doors and had two lessons, gave away three Books of Mormon and have three new investigators. WOW. Talk about blessings. As we’ve been running around trying to keep up with it all, the Lord blesses us–literally–immediately (Mosiah 2:24). He is so good.
Several people came to church, and Celin is looking good for her baptism at the end of the month. Maybe the biggest miracle of all, though, is Oscar and Christina. I will admit I’ve been a little harsh/pushy about the law of chastity. They hadn’t made any plans or goals or anything, and I want them to have the Spirit! Nothing too harsh, but definitely pressing some buttons and trying to persuade, convince, teach, and do anything I can to help them make a goal. They’ve made one!! It is for November, so I know that is a few months away, but I am so grateful that at least they have a goal. “From there we will either get married or separate and then get baptized.” It was so interesting how they worded that–“and then get baptized.” Baptism is not brushed to the side or overlooked–it is the reason they are getting married or separating. Their testimonies are so strong, and I am so grateful and excited to see them keep making these steps of faith (hello–marriage is a step of faith, right?) to get ready for baptism.
Today we went on a hike up Mt. Beacon–saw a big black snake and a snapping turtle. That was pretty cool. The snake came out of this big tree and tensed its body around the trunk as it slithered down and off to another tree. Hope there are no bird nests inside….but then again, “fish gotta swim, birds gotta eat.” I am pro-circle-of-life.
Hmm, when I found out I was receiving an English sister as a companion, won’t lie: I WAS BUMMED. They already sent me out of the city where I am in an English ward and half of our people are English and now I can’t even practice Spanish with my companion?! And what does that mean for teaching? I just teach alone? I…need someone to help me–I need a companion with whom I can teach.
Thursday and Friday were the trial days. I was basically solo-teaching. It was fine, but I felt bad on so many levels–that my companion was bored, that I was probably missing things, etc. But most of all that I needed to have a second witness (or a third–the Spirit is a witness). We talked about it on Saturday and Sister Fansler was so supportive of my teaching. She felt like I was doing a great job, but I still felt like there was a better way. We brainstormed and came up with this–I “teach” the principles and testify. And she testifies (in English). The spirit speaks all languages, right? He speaks to the heart. He comes to your heart and mind–not your ears. THAT IS THE BEST STRATEGY!! Our lessons were going well, but now they have an added layer of…something. I will teach a principle and then pause and stop and explain to Sisiter Fansler what we talked about and any questions they had, and then she testifies. It brings the spirit in so quickly and so powerfully. We are more united in our teachings, we are a stronger companionship. And…it works. Our investigators listen so much more closely as she speaks–trying to understand and learn. But as they listen intently and things quiet down (they always do when she opens her mouth) the Spirit testifies of truth. Celin grabbed her chest and said, “Is this the Holy Ghost?” yesterday after Sister Fansler shared her testimony. It brings it in and from there we teach and explain and converse more, and then testify again.
It is such a blessing. I am learning to slow down and testify more throughout the lesson. I am learning to stop and listen to and feel for the Spirit. The investigators listen with more purpose and more effort, and the Spirit teaches more. I feel so embarrassed that my first reaction was that we would be weaker in our teachings because of the language barrier.
On the contrary.
We are strong and united and it feels so good.
My heart is full! It has been a great week! I love you all so so much. Really.