Tuesday, September 8, 2015

La-la-la-labor Day

This week absolutely flew by! But at the same time I feel like this week was a year long! So many things happened. 

Monday we had our  #blandis exchange which was really good but also really bad because it made me wish that #blandis was a real thing...
It was just so easy and fun. We talked to like everyone on the streets and it was just normal and triple testifying was something that is just out of this world. I'd forgotten how good of a missionary Hermana Landa is. She is amazing for reals. She is one of my best friends in this whole world, and I know that she's had a hard mission and that she feels like she just needs a break. 


Anyway. The #blandis exchange was fabulous. We walked all over the streets of Lancaster PA. We OYMed, we got rejected, we laughed, and we found a lot of success. 

Monday night as we entered into hour 1 of #teamblandis we were walking out of a dinner appointment and I got this prompting to go check up on a LA sister who had been in New York all week the week before, and since she didn't have a phone, we hadn't heard from her. She was home when we knocked on the door, and so was her nonmember husband, Ramon! We had set a goal in one of our companionship studies, that if we had a chance, we were going to invite him to sit down and have a lesson, so I did not mince words. I reminded him that he had told us in the past that he wanted to learn, and that we'd love to sit down with him and have a lesson. So he sat down! And we had a great lesson and the spirit was amazing! He said that he would be baptized and we were like crying. So that was awesome. 

The Tuesday we were coming up on the 11th hour of the #blandis exchange and we were on our way to the church and we were saying hola to every hispanic person we saw, but then all of a sudden this one guy got super excited that we were speaking in Spanish, and we told him about how we were missionaries and we were learning so we could preach the gospel. Then we started talking about the Book of Mormon and told him what it was and that Christ's church had been restored to the earth. He said, "I've been looking for this. This is the best thing that I've heard all day." It was so amazing. We set a return appointment so we could come back the next day, and we brought a member with us to fellowship him. The lesson was amazing. His wife even came in mid lesson and started listening and accepted a Book of Mormon and was super interested. He had so many great questions and everything made so much sense to him. We had a kneeling prayer with him at the end of the lesson and invited him to ask if the things that we had taught were true. He just said, "I already know that they're true." I was like freaking out!! Who is this guy!! He accepted a baptismal date for late September but he wasn't able to make it out to church, so we're gonna have to push it back a little bit which made me sad! But he is still going to get there, and hopefully with his wife as well.

Also on Tuesday we were walking, trying to contact some less active families that no one has ever met, and this guy was walking behind us and all the sudden Hermana Landa just whoops around and says, "Can I share a book with you?" It was crazy, this gospel conversation broke out and turned into this great street lesson. At first he said, "Well I'll take the book but it will just go on top of all my other bibles back at home." But then Hermana Landa smacked down with, "Well why would you do that? If God sent you a text message to your phone right now, wouldn't you want to open it and know what it says? Well this is God's message for you, and if you don't read it, you will never know." I was just like stunned into silence, and so was the guy. So he promised to read it, and we wrote our number in the front, not thinking he was too interested. 
A couple of days later we get this text from a random number that says "Hello. My name is Lewis. We met on Prince Street. You gave me a book to read. I had a few questions." We started freaking out! It was so amazing! So we're meeting with him tonight, and we're really hoping that he read the book! I can't wait to see what happens. 

A few more amazing stories from throughout the week....
On Thursday morning we were walking to our weekly service and this lady stopped us and started complaining about how rude people are, and all the sudden she just started crying and we just testified to her that God loves her and knows she is there. She said she really needed to hear it. She told us her name was Misse and she'd be interested in meeting with us. We called her that night and she was so surprised to hear from us! She said, "I didn't think you guys actually cared." Hopefully we will see her today as well! Stay tuned.

We were able to do service for Hermana Carcamo this week to finish painting her house. It was so fun, I love painting. We were laughing and joking with her and each other. Then her husband came out - I've never met him! Him and Elder Andrade started talking and really hit it off. They bonded over the what's happening with the mafia in Mexico, and it was so amazing. I was really happy because I don't know if Hermano Carcamo has talked to anyone from the church in a really long time! Then they paid for us to go out to lunch at Olive Garden! I was so happy! 

Last but not least we have David. 

We had a lesson with him last night and he just stopped us mid lesson and said, "You guys. I just got goosebumps. The Holy Ghost is here right now, can you feel that?" Then we took that opportunity to invite him to be baptized and he said that he would, but he needed to be sure about everything first. The only problem with David is that he doesn't have ANY time. He works 7-7 every single day of the week. So we are praying for him that something changes with his job! We know how amazing and prepared he is for this gospel! When we were teaching about priesthood authority, he TOTALLY just got it - he compared it to like a doctor that goes to college for years and then gets that degree and they have the RIGHT and like the certification to perform surgeries or write prescriptions because they had been certified to do so. It was so cool. He said an amazing prayer thanking the Lord for, "sending his servants to preach the good word" and asking for help to be faithful in studying the scriptures... guys. He is golden. 

It was just such a good week all in all. 
The funny thing is that for like 2 days straight we were just cooped up in the apartment. Sister Canseco had to go to the ER one day... THAT was an adventure. 
She woke up with a swollen eye and a headache in the back of her head. I told her to take a nap and drink some water...hahahaha. This is why I'm not a doctor. When we called Sister Johnson about it, she called the mission doctor and he told us to go to the ER right away. So we called the Lanc elders and they drove us to the hospital. We were there for a whole like 45 minutes was all, I think. The ER doctor rolled his eyes and seemed super annoyed that we were there. He said it was nothing, gave her an advil and some ointment for her eye and then we went home. Sister Johnson was so annoyed with him haha it was funny. 
Sister Canseco didn't start feeling better until we had to drop her off at a members house because we needed to go teach a lesson and she still wasn't feeling better. Hermana Martinez told her that she was stressed. She gave her some medicine, we started icing and heating her neck, and Hermana Martinez gave us like this massage stick thing that we did on her back and her neck and head and she is all better now. 
I would be stressed if I had to be Hermana Bills' companion, too!! hahaha. 

Yesterday was such a good day. We had a huge branch party at a park and played football and frisbee and beach volleyball and sang songs on the ukulele and guitar and had a bbq with the best food in the world and I was the happiest person alive. It was so fun we had like 70+ people show up! It was an awesome success. 
Then we had dinner with some members in the Lancaster ward and they taught us how to eat crabs and it was so fun and hilarious and we even ate the eyeballs! I felt like survivor man.

But anyway, that's pretty much it for this week. It was super awesome and really fun and, as usual, full of laughs and happy moments! 
I am thankful for the positive example that each of you are in my life! I am so grateful to have you all and for the way you support me and help me out!


Hermana Bills