|Sister Staker doing weekly planning|
Now to talk about what happened this week... Monday the 15th was a pretty good day. It was a little hard though because in our minds we were on Pday but we still had to work. So during the day we went to see Aunty Pam, our investigator. It was a very good talk that we had with her. She's not being baptized right away but we talked about when she would be baptized and she feels like it will come by the end of the year. So as much as we would love to see her baptized, we have to respect her decision and just keep teaching her. Then after about an hour, her daughter Amanda came home and she has a baptimal date for June 8th so we talked to her for about an hour. It was so nice because we are usually with the Hyer's with Pam and Amanda and we felt like if we could just talk to the two of them alone, they might open up a little more. And I don't know, I feel like they did. So it was just really nice to talk to them alone.
Then later that night we had FHE with the Hyer's and Pam and Amanda. It was a very good lesson about the 10 commandments. It was shorter than usual but it was tons of fun!
|Doing weekly planning outside and I found a spider on me.... IT WAS NASTY!|
Then Tuesday the 16th was, as you know, PDAY/TEMPLE DAY!!!! I was so excited to go to the LA Temple. I had only been to the Redlands Temple, which is pretty, but I was so dang happy to go to LA. And it was gorgeous!!! I loved it! I really learned tons of new things and really felt the Spirit. The only not so cool thing is that we had to wake up SUPER EARLY so we could be to the temple by 5:30 for the 6am session. But it was for sure worth it!
Then Wednesday the 17th was a very.... good and hard day! I don't like hard days! It started out by having a Sisters Meeting in Arcadia! That was so wonderful! I can't explain how awesome it was! I learned so dang much. It was weird though because we had SO MANY Sisters. Last year when we had a Sisters Meeting we were able to meet in the Primary room and this year we had to meet in the Cultral Hall. But it was fun! The Spirit was so strong and like I said, a lot was learned!
Then that afternoon we had a lesson with our new investigator, Rick. He has lots of questions and we were going into the lesson to teach him the Restoration. We prayed about it and thought this would answer some of his questions. But to be honest, he hardly let us speak. We'd start to say something and then he'd interrupt and start asking questions that weren't really relevent. So it was hard. I can understand that he wants those questions answered but it's hard to teach when he has so much knowledge and he won't really let the Spirit teach him. So we didn't get far in the lesson before we had to leave. And it was also hard because I would be in the middle of a sentence or I would have just asked a question and my companion would interrupt. She's so cute and has such a love for the gospel and just wants to share it with others. Something we learn as missionaries is to let there be silence in lessons and I asked this really important question and he was thinking and started to answer when she cut in really fast. I can't lie, I was not very happy with that. But that's something that I took with me to help as she is in her first 12 weeks and me being her trainer. But I do love her and she's a great missionary! She said some great things in the lesson! But we left the lesson and were late for our coordination meeting/dinner appointment at the YSA ward mission leaders house. I was already not happy with how our lesson with Rick went and being late to our meeting didn't make me any happier.
|In the car: Sisters Sokolowski, Harker, Staker, Wheatley|
After our meeting, we tried to go visit some people but I just wasn't feeling the Spirit. I prayed and took deep breaths and tried to focus and do missionary work but I couldn't. Then all of a sudden one of the Sister Trainers, Sister Harker, called needing to know where a good half way point would be between Glendora/Covina and Diamond Bar/Chino Hills and since I have served in these areas she called to ask me. And I'm glad she did! I talked to her for a few minutes and she asked how our day went and so I told her what happened. Well, after talking to me for a bit, she finally told me that there are those days when we just can't do anymore and that President told her once that it's ok to go get an ice cream or smoothie or whatever she wants and to go talk to a "ward mom" for a bit. So she gave me permission to do the same. And so we did. (But we couldn't get ahold of a "ward mom" so I didn't get to have that good convesation I wanted...) I'm not supposed to have sugar anymore (I talked to a nurse about some things that have been going on when I have dessert and she said to stay away from it) but sometimes I just need it! And that was one of those times! So we went to Wendy's and got ourselves Frosty's. I was so happy! I got an Oreo one :) And then we decided since it was 8:30pm to just go home and call it an early night.
One thing that did make my day though was when I needed to ask the Elders a question so I called them and they answered the phone with a funny "WHAT?!?" and I said something like "Fine, it's been a rough day and I didn't want to talk to you anyways..." But I continued on to ask them the question and then all of a sudden it was silent on the other end. I looked at the phone and they had hung up haha At first I was mad but then I realized how funny it was. They called me back and we couldn't stop laughing. So I guess that those two things, the ZL's hanging up on me and Sister Harker calling me to ask directions, even though they were small, they were tender mercies from the Lord after a rough evening.
|At the LA Visitor's Center (L to R): Bro and Sis Fredericks, Rachel, Sister Staker, Sisters Sokolowski and Harker, Elders Stocks and Durfey|
Well, not much happened on Thursday but Friday the 19th started out pretty funny! So... Thursday night we went to contact a former investigator for the singles ward but she wasn't there. As we were walking out, Sister Staker said, "Let's go knock on this door." (We had gone past it once before and she wanted to go but it was too late...) So we went. This 15 year old freshman boy came to the door and Sister Staker took the lead in talking to him. She shared a scripture with him and we had a good conversation and then we gave him our number and we were just going to tell the Spanish speaking Elders to go by another time. Well, Friday morning we got ready to start our weekly planning and we get this text from the 15 year old kid... "Hi. I was just wondering what the difference is between Mormons and Christians?" And so we gave him a simple but good expaination. He wrote back and said, "ok thanks! Are you the one with the pretty eyes?" WHAT THE DANG?!?!?! Ok, I don't want to sound mean but we laughed so hard! It was hilarious!!! And we didn't know what exactly to say right off the top of our heads without sounding rude so we were brainstorming what to say and not even two minutes later we get another text from him that asks, "are you in school?" UMMMM.... We hurried and wrote back something like "we are missionaries and we are here to teach about Christ. We can send Spanish speaking missionaries over to you if you would like but we are not here to flirt." And then we never got a text back. We were in shock the rest of the day. We didn't expect something like that to come from a 15 year old boy. Took us by surprise! But to be honest... I think Sister Staker is the one he is talking about ;)
Then that night we went to dinner at Sister Edginton's and as we were about to leave, Sister Edginton "Jr." came home and asked if we had any plans for the rest of the night. We told her not really and she asked if we could go over to the Bennett's and help them pack. Umm yes!! I had told Sister Bennett to call us three weeks ago if she needed help with their move and she never did. But Sister Edginton was able to see that she was in desperate need of help (her husbands new job is near San Fran and he was driving home Friday night so he wasn't able to be there.) There were a ton of members of the Elders quorum over there helping but we did small stuff while they did big stuff. It was fun! Especially because we were doing it in skirts so it was funny! But we were able to pack just about everything up that needed to be done that night and then the Elders quorum was going to go back the next morning and finish what was left. I'm just glad that we were able to help.
Not much happened on Saturday the 20th but we were finally able to have a recent convert lesson with Mackenzie and we talked to her about missionary work, especially within her own family, eternal marriage and the priesthood. It was a good lesson. We are just so happy that Mackenzie has such a strong testimony of the gospel and that she knows what she wants and the importance of it. She's amazing!
Then that night the YSA ward had a BBQ/Pool Party at President O'Bryant's house to jump start ward conference for next week (usually the BBQ would be this Saturday but we have Mormon Helping Hands so they wanted to do this before...) It was tons of fun! We had Tritip! Oh baby! It was delicious!! Sister Beck had told me earlier that morning that we were "having exactly what we had at the mission christmas party" so I knew what it was and I was looking forward to it all day! And it did not disappoint :) And it was fun to interact with the YSA members. I was just a little bummed though because everyone went to the spa after dinner and we couldn't go :( That's the only sad part about being a missionary... No spa trips haha But I survived! Maybe I'll just have to accidently shut off the water of our house sometime and have to use the pool to bathe... LOL ;)
Well, Sunday the 21st was a good day! All SIX hours of church was amazing! After PEC in the family ward, we had a church tour with Rick. We had Brother Benson come on the tour and it was a.... good tour? Again, he asked many questions that were hard to explain in a quick 15 minute tour before church started. And then he came to sacrament meeting with us and he was really closely paying attention to the whole service. It was super crazy though because guess what the talks were on this week.... The Great Apostasy and The Restoration!!! I don't ever remember those being normal subjects to talk on so the fact they were the topics yesterday was amazing! It's exactly what Rick needed to hear (in our opinion...) But after the service, more questions and not enough time... So we have a meeting with him on Wednesday but we are thinking that we might have to drop him. He's a very nice guy but we aren't really sure what he wants from meeting with us. In some ways it feels like he just wants to bash with us and in other ways we feel like he's sincere... So we aren't positive just yet... We are constantly praying for guidance on this one. But I think we're leaning more towards dropping him which is sad but we can't waste our time if he doesn't want it and we don't want to waste his time either.
|Sister Staker and I in front of LA Temple|
Then after the family ward (we finally got to go to all three hours because the YSA ward PEC got cancelled!) we went to the YSA ward. It was a wonderful meeting. Again, the talks were on the Great Apostasy and Restoration. Then at the end of sacrament meeting, Bishop Ferrell got up to give an announcement and he said, "I just want to make sure that everyone who's here today will be here next week for ward conference. Some major changes are happening next week and we want everyone to be here. And if there's anyone who used to be in the ward that is still around, we'd really like them to come too." I looked out at the congregation and a couple people just started crying. I even almost started crying. Then I looked over at the Bishopric and Brother Bell was crying! The Bishopric is being released next week! I obviously have only been in the ward for 4 months but gosh, I have grown to love the Bishopric and I'm going to cry next week when they are released. It's just sad. But now the speculations begin... Who's going to be the new Bishop of the Single's Ward??????
Well, we ended church a little early and had a baptism for a girl named Hailey (she was taught by the Elders.) It was such a wonderful baptism. The Spirit was so strong! Hailey was shaking so much and I asked her after, "was it worth it?" And she said yes. It was so cute! She was so happy!
Well, now everyone here is making fun of me for being on so long. Sorry I take so long on the computer.......... I feel bad but this is my journal.... Oh well, I'll just be done now.
Thanks to everyone who wrote me letters the last couple weeks (Ariel, Mark and Marta, Bekkah, and Michelle Gren.)
Gotta run and finish doing some major cleaning in our house.
Sister Rachel Wheatley