Monday, July 28, 2014

Harvest Blessings and Meeting the Yano's friend

Happy Monday!!

Okay, first of all, that picture-thing you are all doing with hilarious. I'm in a public library trying not to laugh at all the different things I'm doing!! My favorites are playing cards with Gianni, (after seeing this one I had to use all the will power I have to stifle my laughter,) and going inner tubing with Ashley, Katie and Ryan! I look forward to seeing more things that I do while I'm on my mission!

Well, the big thing that happened this week was my third zone conference! This one was by far my favorite and most spiritual. President and Sister Alba and the AP's, Elders Balaich, Greenwood and Bettridge, (who has been my zone leader 4 out of my 6 transfers, so it's strange to think of him as an AP now.) I'm not really sure what was different about this zone conference that made it hit me so much harder than the others, but I took a lot more away from this one. One of the things they talked about was the Harvest Blessing, which is something new my mission is trying that has seen a lot of positive results in other missions. It's an inspired and special House Blessing. Normally when we bless a house, we just pray in a person's home and pray for the individuals in it. Now with the Harvest Blessing we have certain words we are asked to say, so it feels a lot more like an actual blessing, and then we proceed to pray for each individual and their specific needs. I learned about it last transfer, but they really reiterated it in zone conference. I haven't done it yet, so Elder Meiners and I really need to step our game up and make it happen. It really invites the spirit into a person's home in a way they have never felt it before.

So the work is going pretty well here, but we really only have two real investigators. L****** is one of them, who I have talked about before, but she came to dinner last night and I got to know her really well. Something really cool about her is she works as a makeup artist for a lot of different movies! Just to name a few: The 3 Prequels of Star Wars (she did the makeup for a lot of the alien characters), The Nightmare Before Christmas, Free Willy, (worked on the whale), Howard the Duck, Pirates of the Caribbean (made the Pirate ships and flags look authentic,) and the Incredible Hulk. Plus, she worked a lot of Arnold Schwarzenegger movies and they were pretty close throughout it. So I'm indirectly a pretty big deal now. L****** and I are probably going to go to the premiere of the new Star Wars, VIP section. The world is our oyster! :-) Our other investigator is T******, and she is just desperately wants to be a member of the church, but she just doesn't have the faith yet. It's weird - she believes in Jesus Christ and God, but she finds it hard to believe that she will ever see her family again after she dies. But she always finds herself attracted to the Church, so she wants us to pray that she will be able to believe what we teach her. I'm really excited to teach her some more!

Okay, so I was going to share the cool story of meeting Sis Kendall who is very close friends with the Yanos... but she took the liberty of doing that for me! But it was really cool meeting her! I introduced myself and where I was from to someone who walked into church with her yesterday, and after they left she came back and asked where I was from again. She then asked if I knew the Yanos and i think to myself, "No, sorry I don't know th-wait a minute, I actually do know them!" Missionaries around me find connections with so many people because everyone is from either Utah or Idaho! So I really enjoyed talking to her about a wonderful family who we both know! So that's my crazy encounter for the week!

Yesterday during Sacrament Meeting a lot of the Young Women gave talks because they just got back from Girls' Camp. They all talked about how great camp was and how much fun they had and how spiritual it was - all the usual stuff. But then one of them said something that really hit me. She was telling us something our bishop said to her while they were at camp. She said "Jesus Christ loves all of us so much, that despite all the pain and suffering he went through for us he would do it all again, even if it were just for one of us." That hit me like a freight train. I want to say how grateful I am for my brother and savior, who did what we couldn't do on our own purely out of love for us. I love Christ because he loved me first and did the unthinkable. He is my caring shepherd. I testify in his name, Jesus Christ, amen.

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