Good morning!!!! Today we are emailing early because our zone is finally doing something FUN for Pday! We used to do something fun every week but this transfer, not so much :( And it makes me kinda sad. But the ZL's texted us this morning and said that we are having a two-zone Pday playing Dodgeball! So I'm totally stoked! So we gotta finish everything early! And our whole zone will be wearing our new Zone Tshirts so that will be even more fun!
Anyway, here's what happened this week:
On Monday the 8th we had a Family Home Evening lesson with Brother and Sister Wilson. Sister Davidson and I used to go to their house every Monday and have FHE but we hadn't been in a while. This lesson was really good! We talked about the commandments and following the prophet. And with General Conference having just happened, it was the perfect thing to talk about. It was a very good lesson! The Spirit was really strong there! I talked about my favorite talk, given by Elder Holland, and how it has helped me since he gave it. I love going over to the Wilson's because I always seem to cry during the lessons. And this time was no different. For some reason I just love to cry! It makes me feel a lot better. And I love Sister Wilson. She really cares for me and my situations. It's just nice to be able to have a mom away from home. She's amazing!
Then on Tuesday the 9th, we had another lesson with the Hoch's. This lesson was on the Atonement. We answered their questions about the Holy Ghost and the Godhead being seperate beings and then we got into the Atonement. It was really cool to see Sister Hoch grasp that concept. She asked a lot of questions about it and we did our best to answer them. We have another lesson with them tonight! So we're excited to see where this lesson takes us. We are hoping to get them on a church tour this week sometime! They are a really nice couple and they are very open but also have a firm belief in their faith, which is good that they are religious but hard when we teach them. But with the Spirit guiding us, it will all work out!
Then on Wednesday the 10th, we went to volunteer some service hours at the Let It Be Foundation here in Chino! They are a non-profit organization that help families who have children with life threatening illnesses, which usually means cancer. They got started because the Founder had a daughter who died of cancer and she just wanted to help other people as well. So we walked in and asked them if we could volunteer (Sister Barnard in the ward also volunteers there) and they put us right to work making homemade angels for a Christmas brunch they are having next week. It was so much fun! All the workers/volunteers there are amazing! We were only there for about three hours but we just love them all now! And the Founder came up to us and saw our tags and said that her biological brother is Mormon and so she got really excited and took a picture of us to send to her nephew who is preparing for his mission soon. She said he would probably freak out! It was so funny! So we are very excited to volunteer there every week! It's a great foundation and there are great people that work there!
Then on Thursday the 11th, right before we were going to go home for the night because it was too late/dark to go knock on doors, we felt like we needed to go see our investigator Sabrina. When we got there, we heard her through the doors "Oh my gosh! It's the Sisters!!" She was so excited to see us, and we were excited to see her as well (BTW mom, she was wearing footie pajamas with Disney characters from Walmart... Just a Bday/Christmas idea for you ;) So we went in and ended up talking to her for an hour. It was just so wonderful to talk to her! She told us that she had been having a rough couple days and that it was cool that we showed up. She recognized that Heavenly Father sent us there that night, just like He did on July 4th when we met her for the first time. She said that He always seems to know just when she needs a pick-me-up! It was just so cool to see that she recognizes the hand of the Lord in this! So was sat and talked about everything! But the main things we talked about was prayer and the Atonement. She said that she hasn't been praying for the last couple days because she doesn't feel like God really cares. But then, like I said above, she now recognizes that He does care about her because He sent us to her in a time of great need. And so we helped her realize the importance of prayer. We asked her if she would pray and read a couple verses in the scriptures that talk about what she's going through. And that led us to the Atonement. We talked about how no matter how alone she feels, Jesus Christ knows what she's going through and is always there for her. Needless to say, there were a few tears shed on Thursday night. But it was AMAZING!!! Going to Sabrina's house that night was just another miracle and reminder that Heavenly Father is watching out for His children. He does care about each and everyone of us. And like Sister Monroe said in her testimony on Sunday "God does not forget the one!" (Sabrina did come to church on Sunday so I hope that she took that from Sister Monroe's testimony and will remember it.)
Then Friday the 12th we were able to go to lunch with Cherryl! We were so excited! We, of course, went to The Habit. Sister Carrell had never been to The Habit so we were excited to take her there. And it was good like usual! I have been getting a salad there lately but I decided that I would splurdge and get me a nice juicy burger! And I'm so glad that I did! It was delicious! And we had such a fun time there! We just love being able to talk to Cherryl. She is an amazing person! And we just love to spend time with her. Sadly she is back in Vegas and Florida for the next two weeks and with transfers coming up this weekend, I'm sad because I don't know if I'll see her again until my farewell next September. I've now been in Chino Hills for coming on seven months and I don't know if I'm pushing my luck or not by staying here so long. I guess we'll see!
Then on Saturday the 13th we went to visit a lady we met about five weeks ago. Her son was a former investigator and we wanted to go back and see him and hopefully start teaching him again but he wasn't home when we went over. So we talked to his mom for a while and when we went back on Saturday, she was very open. We felt strongly that we needed to go see her and when we got there, we asked how she was doing and she told us that her son had gone off to basic training that week. Bingo! No wonder we felt like we needed to go see her! So we talked to her a little bit more and had a small gospel discussion (I can't really remember exactly what it was about but it was good.) And the last time we met her, Sister Carrell asked if she knew what the purpose of life was and she said she didn't really know. So we just told her that we as missionaries would be able to answer that question. She didn't have time then or really seem like she wanted to know right now but we asked if we could come back sometime and teach her. She didn't say no and she seemed pretty interested and so we will go back either this weekend or next weekend and hopefully get to talk to her. She has a strong faith and belief in God and she has a family that she loves so much that I just want to be able to help her come to know and understand the purpose of life and that her family can be together for eternity. We have this strong bond between the three of us, I feel, and I just want her to come to know that Heavenly Father does have a plan for her and her family!
Then on Sunday that 14th, right after sacrament, the Elders came over and gave Sabrina a blessing. We had mentioned a blessing to her on Thursday when we went over and she said she would really like one. And the blessing was amazing! Elder Yoshikawa gave her the blessing and it was the first time he had met Sabrina and they only talked for a couple minutes and the blessing was exactly what Sabrina needed! It was amazing! Just another witness to Sabrina, and myself, that God really does care!
Then that night we went to visit a guy named Tony and his wife, Jessica. Tony's sister joined the church about a year ago and Tony has been inactive since he was 17 years old and he wanted to take the missionary lessons again and have his wife take them as well. It's been hard getting ahold of him so we felt like we should just stop by their house. Well, Tony ended up not being there but we got to talk to his wife Jessica. It was nice to talk to her! She has a great light about her! I can just imagine an even greater light in her as we teach them and help her to come to know that what we have to teach is true and as her testimony grows. She seemed really happy that we stopped by and got to talk to her for a bit. It's yet another miracle that happened this week! We didn't know exactly what we should say or do but like the scriptures in Doctrine and Covenants chapter 33 verses 8-10 say, we "opened our mouths" and they really were filled! It was so incredible!
And the same thing happened that night with a lady who's husband is a member and he's been trying to get her to join the church for over 30 years. We felt like we needed to go see him and as we pulled up, she came outside. The miracle about that is that whenever missionaries, home teachers, or ward members come to their house, she stays in the back where we can't see her. So to pull up right as she came out of the house was just another miracle! Brother Curtain wasn't home that night so it was even more incredible that we were able to go on a night that he wasn't home and she came outside. Just amazing!
This week was just full of miracles! I have really seen the Lord's hand in all that we did this week. From the lesson with the Wilson's to the Let It Be foundation to finally getting to meet Sister Curtain, it was all done in the hands of our Lord! Sister Carrell and I really put our minds to all that we did this week and we saw miracles!
Now here's to another great week ahead! But also a tough one as transfer calls are this Saturday and every six weeks I start to wonder if I'm going to be transfered or not. The Carbon Canyon ward has really made me feel welcome these last 6 1/2 months and I have really grown to love them! I have seen so much change in the ward and in myself from being here. Sister Campbell told me this week that she and her family were talking about how much I have grown since being here. She said, "Even my husband and sons have recognized it." And that's not to gloat or anything but it just makes me feel good! It makes me feel like I really am growing and making a difference! Sometimes I feel like I'm not doing much but when a ward member that I have grown to love comes up to me and tells me these things, it makes me feel like I'm fullfilling my purpose as a missionary.
Love to all my family and friends! I can feel the prayers from each of you everyday! Thanks for everything you all do for me! And thanks to mom and Bekkah for sending my the conference package! :)
Love always, Sister Wheatley