It's been of week of trials of our faith. We got the lowest number of total lessons that I have gotten my whole mission. We only had 10 total lessons. There were days when we went through all of our plans, backup plans, and backup backup plans, and nothing came from them. Also, I have been writing about M, the bishop's referral and how a couple weeks ago she was so excited and wanted to be baptized and have her husband learn too. Well, we hadn't heard from her in about a week and a half and we were pretty worried and knew something was up. We called a few times during the week and stopped by and left a sticky note on her door and such. But still nothing, until yesterday. She called us and said that she had talked to her husband and they felt like they were comfortable in the church they are in right now. They have friends and a way of life with the church they have now. She was very kind about it all and thanked us, and she said she felt guilty calling us to tell us that they weren't interested in learning more. It was really tough and the first time I have been "dropped" on my mission so far. But I just have this feeling inside that she knows that it is true and that this is just the beginning for her. I was strangely calm when I heard because the spirit whispered to me that she would be back. This is not the end. She felt it and wants it but needs to realize it. I still invited her to continue to read the Book of Mormon and to call us is she needed us ever. I'm not giving up on her. We did exchanges this week, so I went to Loveland and the sisters there are actually living with T! My 2nd or 3rd cousin! Crazy huh? The one that we ate dinner with that one night. So that was kinda fun. I loved being with Sister Cardon for a day. It was the first time that I have gotten to ride a bike on my mission:) I LOVE riding bikes, even in a skirt. So we rode around and did missionary work and I got sunburned but it was a great day!
The next day I was with Sister Christensen in Berthoud and that was probably one of the toughest days doing missionary work. That was a day when I literally tried EVERYTHING, and it felt like nothing happened. We stopped by potentials, less-actives, we tracted, I called a ton of people we have been trying to set up appointments with, and nothing. Until the end of the day, when a small little miracle happened, that I am so grateful for. I had felt prompted all day to go and visit a less-active but we knew she wasn't home until later at night, but we tracted up her street for a bit and then when we got to her house, she had just gotten home. We talked to her, I had met her before. She asked if we were going to the Relief Society activity that night and we said we were and she said that someone invited her but she didn't think she was going to go. We told her we would miss her and talked a bit longer and then headed off to the activity. We got to the activity and a few minutes later she walks into the church! Somehow she had decided to come that night. Small and simple things...even after alll the effort that I could put forth.
One of my biggest problems this week is wondering if I really am doing the best I can, or giving it my all, because I am not seeing anything come. So I start questioning if I am really doing my part. I feel like I really am giving it my all, but that is when Satan kicks in and starts telling me that it wasn't good enough. I know there is always more that I can do but how can I know if my best really is my best?
I got so down on Saturday night and felt like I needed a blessing or else I just was going to crash. Luckily our Zone Leaders go to the Berthoud building on Sundays for the YSA ward and so I was able to ask them for a blessing. Elder Petersen gave me a blessing and it brought the peace back into my heart that I had been missing. I am so grateful for the priesthood power and that I have been blessed to grow up in a home with that priesthood power.
Oh, speaking of the Relief Society activity, guess what?! It was an "Around the World" type activity and our ward mission leader's daughter served in Korea so she had made rice with Kimchi and Ho Duk ( Duck Do;)) I was soooo happy! I miss Korean food. Tender Mercy.
This week with the members that we have gotten to visit and teach, we have been inviting the members to read from Preach My Gospel and working with the Bishop to get copies to members who don't have their own. We really want to emphasize what Elder Ballard talked about.
So now that I have told you some struggles, I will tell you some miracles. There are ALWAYS miracles, even if you have to look extra hard for them sometimes. On Tuesday, we stopped by one of our potential investigators who we found while tracting a while ago. She is the one that grew up pentacostal and left that church recently and is trying to rebuild her relationship with God again from scratch. She is looking for God's truth. She is so in tune to the spirit and she has sooo many of the same beliefs and standards that we have. She seems so ready. We ended up having a really neat discussion about each member of the Godhead, our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost, and each of their roles. Then we taught her about Joseph Smith and the restoration and she accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon and said she would read it. She can't see how so many people claim to be Christian but aren't willing to put forth the effort to get to know our Savior and follow his example. She seems so ready, so we will see. We set up another time to come back today, but when we stopped by she had left a note for us saying that she was so sorry but couldn't meet with us because something came up but she wanted us to try again. She really is interested and it is amazing to see how the Lord has prepared her. Keep them in your prayers!
Another miracle of the week. Last week I talked about S, the less-active that we taught about the sacrament. She came to sacrament meeting this week, for the first time in about a year! It was so neat to have her there and she really felt the spirit strongly.
We also had the chance to do some service this week for a lady who was effected by the flood last year. She showed us her property and the damage is crazy! We helped her replant her yard and got to know her a bit more. She is a really neat lady.
We were able to go to the temple today with Sister A, Bishop's wife, she is such a neat lady! It was a really nice trip to the temple. The Denver Temple is beautiful. We went to lunch after and just had a really great time. The peace that I was able to feel in the temple was exactly what I needed and I felt my Heavenly Father's love for not only me but everyone that we are teaching right now in Berthoud. I didn't want to leave. I didn't want to go back into the world. It is nice being in a place where Satan can not enter.
I am excited this week to be able to have a holiday where our Savior is remembered so fully. While most think of Easter as celebrating Christ's death and resurrection, we are also remembering the most important event to ever occur. The Atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. Always remember the great sacrifice of our Savior and how much he went through for each of us. He loves us each and knows what we go through. I am so blessed to be able to have his name upon me everyday. To experience similar feelings that he did. I know I am coming to know my Savior personally, as I have taken his name upon me. I know each of you too can come to know him personally as you put his name on your heart. It's worth it.
I love you each! Hold on, even when you can't see the end. Good things are yet to come.