This has just been the best week ever ever ever! Okay maybe a slight exaggeration there, but not really!
Lets see...where to begin?!?!?!?
Monday was pretty normal. Tuesday, normal. (and by normal I mean of course a completely awesome day in the life of a missionary!!)Wednesday is when things started to get exciting! We first off had to have district meeting at 8 am in the morning. Which has been done before, but its always a struggle. 8 am is just too early to have to talk to Elders! haha. But it was a good meeting:) So then we went back home to do personal and companionship study. Then the Robbins came and picked us up to go to COSTCO!!! Sis. Nance needed a flu shot so the Robbins were kind enough to take us there. It was way weird. The last time I was in Costco was in Utah so it felt like I apparated back home for an hour and then apparated back! It was great though, the Robbins took us out to Chipotle after) Then after that we made some Pumpkin Chocolate Cookies to take around to less actives while we were waiting for our interview with President Vellinga. So every 3 months or so President Vellinga travels around and interviews every missionary in our mission (some 250 people in just 2 or 3 weeks...busy busy!) I love interviews but this time round has probably been my favorite one! We just had so much fun! I laughed and laughed, he was being so funny. And yet he took the time to seriously answer my questions and more importantly find my own answers to them! He was so encouraging and uplifting. There just isn't anything better than to hear from your mission president that he is proud of you and that you are doing an excellent job. I love my mission President! He is and always will be one of my role models for a consecrated life!
Well after that the day was almost over! Our appointment in our area canceled and since our area is a 35 minute drive away, we sometimes have to evaluate whether its worth the miles (we only have a certain amount allotted to us each month) to go all the way out there for such a short amount of time. So in the end by the time we were done eating dinner we decided to just go and brush up on some Family History (its something our mission president has been pushing us to do so we can use it more effectively as a proselyting tool) It was amazing! I FOUND SOMEONE! It can be hard to get started when you are just staring at your family tree and don't know where to begin, but I just prayed, picked a place and started researching the records to find more information about my Great great great Grandfather. Well I was initially trying to find out who his parents were but my search led me to discover one of their children who was missing from my tree! I was so excited! Now he can be baptized and confirmed and receive ordinances in the temple!!!! It was the most thrilling thing! I love Family History work! I am so excited to be able to get more into it when I am home! Its going to be my next mission I decided:)
So that was Wednesday. Thursday was really fun, we just did service all day! We raked SO MANY LEAVES for Sis. Hartman! Just piles and piles and piles and piles! Then we jumped in them of course! Don (her non-member husband) was like "how old are you??? 5???" haha...yup! We just HAD to. You can't rake up that many leaves and not jump in them!
After we finished she wanted to show us her creek, so we took a lovely little stroll down through the woods and across some pastures to see her creek, it was so beautiful! And the leaves were beautiful and the water and the rock and the grassy fields close by and all the trees and the sky and the CLOUDS! Oh the clouds were GORGEOUS! And it all was so breathtaking and It was one of those moments were I was immensely grateful to live on this beautiful earth. To be human and to be able to experience all the sights, sounds and smells of life. And I was grateful to be on a mission and to be able to share that intimate experience with a women I have only know for a matter of weeks!
Next we went to the Juhasz' for Dinner and service. She had us help her scrapbook and it was a blast! I think all of my crafty and artistic talents (if I ever had any) are now gone, gone, gone. But we slapped those pictures on the page and cut and pasted to our hearts content and it was so lovely!
Friday I went on Exchanges with Sis. Jenson. She came with me to our area and we had a perfect day! Usually on exchanges crazy things happen! Appointments cancel and Satan does everything he can to discourage you. And its all so that miracles can take place, the biggest miracles always happen on exchanges!! But this time our miracle was that our day just went so perfectly. Up until the last minute before planning I was stressing about what we would do the last hour of the day (its gets harder to be productive when its so dark outside. People in Ohio think that as soon as its dark you shouldn't be out knocking on their door, or bothering them in any way) But then it just all clicked. We had an appointment for every hour and the whole day nothing canceled! We just were able to teach really well together and had some really spiritual lessons with those we saw! The best one was by far our meeting with Ryan. He is the new investigator we are teaching (I told you about him last week) and he is AWESOME! The whole time as we taught the Restoration he was nodding his head and saying "that makes since" . Aw. it was so great! He is the most promising individual I have yet taught on my mission. He has such a sincere desire to find the truth and he recognizes that there is something special about this church! I felt really prompted to invite him to a baptism that was taking place the next day and at first he was just like "yeah, I will have to check my schedule". But then the next day we text him the address in the morning and asked if he was going to be able to make it and he said YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EEEEKKK!!!!!!!!!! I screamed and ran downstairs screaming "SISTER NAAAAAANNNCEE! HE'S COMING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I think I gave Sis. Jensen and Heckert a heart attack but I was just too excited! This is the first time on my mission that an investigator has come to see a baptism!!
So, Saturday pretty much ended up being the best day of my life! Ryan came to the Baptism and loved it and it was so special and so real and so simple and I know he felt the spirit. We were texting him later to set up our appointment for the next week and he text us back and said "Sister Nance and Sister Newren, you guys have been a real blessing. I was actually thanking God for your hospitality and the warmth of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints."
I about died! That was the sweetest text I have ever received! What a privilege it is to be able to teach this humble young man the Gospel and to help him know the truth that is going to change his life!!!!
After the baptism we were serving at sites and had just come back from a tour, starving, so we head into the kitchen and there, frozen mid-bite is our Stake President! haha, it was so funny, we were like "uhh...Hi President Haymond!" haha it just was so unexpected to see him in our kitchen! Well apparently he was there with the visiting area 70, Elder Dunnigan (not actually sure how to spell his name ps) . So of course they tell us to just come in and make our lunch. So we sat down with them and ate lunch together and told them all about all of the miracles that happened that week and it was so cool! Elder Dunnigan leans over to us, just as they were getting up to leave and says "Thank you Sisters, for being who you are, for coming on a mission. These are the last days! This is the final battle! (getting really emotional now, he continued) And you are on the front lines! Who do you think God would send to the front lines of this the most important battle?!?!? The.very. best. Thank you Thank you Thank you."
That night we had the adult session of our Stake Conference. It was so inspiring and amazing and wonderful and spiritual. They talked about Tithing and Fast offerings, our Stake President said "I promise you blessings beyond what you can understand temporally if you pay a generous fast offering"
They talked about building a sure foundation on solid ground. They talked about Faith and Family history etc etc!
The Sunday session was even better! Some of the best parts were....
"When we are baptized we covenant to come out of the world and "cease sustaining the kingdom of the Devil". We forsake the world and bind ourselves to Christ!"
"Let your Covenants define your daily priorities"
"Families are how we prepare for eternal life"
"God is our coach. He knows the game and all the best strategies, He made UP the game!!! Trust him. You may not understand why he is having you play a certain position, but he does."
"Anything associated with God will help us feel light"
"NEVER EVER EVER EVER let a day go by without reading something from the Book of Mormon, we can't afford it, no excuse is good enough to not read the Book of Mormon"
It was a wonderful week! Thank you so much for being who you are and for being such good examples to me! I love you all! And remember just because I only have a few months left doesn't mean you can stop writing me letters!!! :) Have a fabulous day! Smile, be happy! God is good!