There is a funny story to accompany my email today. It goes as such:
Tuesday night after ward council we went with the Relief Society president to visit a few less actives. At the house of the less actives were these 2 non-members that had came home with the mom towards the end of the visit. One was a man and a lady both in their 50s. I went to hug the less active daughter and mother and then next in line was the man. I reached out my hand to shake his and he stood up to give me a hug. I quickly told him that we don't hug men because I did not know what else to say to politely turn down his approaching hug and he was like ''You do now!'' and hugged me anyways. It all happened so quickly. Haha. The thoughts that were going through my mind as he was still going in for the hug was ''well.. l mise well just let him hug me because the alternative to fight my way out of it won't be very dignified.'' I awkwardly stood there with my arms at my side as he hugged me. We got in the car afterwards and had a good laugh about it. Emma, the Relief Society President, jokingly said she would tell the whole ward that ''Sister Jordan hugs men.'' haha. An awkward moment always makes a good story
The Chinese work is still picking up its pace. The other day we street contacted this Chinese student that has met the Sisters here before and still is not interested but might come to the Chinese activity. I asked him if he had any friends that would be interested and he referred us to his friend, Chang, that lived near the university. The funny part is this referral lives in the same house as one of the members in the ward. It was funny knocking on the door and seeing a familiar face answer. Chang is super kind and we taught him how to pray. We will set up a return appointment for this week. And then there is Da Wei, the Chinese man that moved from Rhyl 3 days before we met him. We went by the takeaway he works and had a nice visit with him. He desires to find greater happiness in his life and we explained how Heavenly Father has designed a plan to bring to pass just that. One last miracle regarding the Chinese work is on Monday night we said a prayer to find a new investigator and then a Chinese man with a suitcase came walking down the street. He was in a hurry and we only had time to quickly swap numbers and give him a pamphlet but I know he was a direct answer to that prayer.
General conference was a great spiritual feast. My prayers leading up to this past weekend included me asking the Lord to help me think of questions to bring to conference so that I could be ready to learn what he wanted me to this weekend. I was amazed at how every single question was answered and in the depth that they were as well. One of the questions I had was ''how can I help our investigators attend church?'' It seemed like half of conference talked about the importance of the sacrament and how to get the most out of attending that meeting. I loved the talk by Elder Eduardo Gavarret which talked about following the voice of the Lord and always being willing to do what He askes with a ''yes, Lord. I will'' attitude. I am really trying to apply that to my life and aligning my will to His.
Application of this in real life is that I may be training my last transfer. Sister Klemm and I were on the phone with President this morning and he asked us if we are ready to train next transfer. In my head I was like ''no.. not really!'' haha but I am trying to do what ever the Lord wants me to do and go where ever he wants me to go my last transfer. He told us with 35 new Sisters coming in he wants us ''his most seasoned and experienced Sisters'' to train. He is going to pray about it and wants us to be too. As much as I would love for things to just stay the way they are now because they are going so well, I am preparing myself to say ''Yes, Lord. I will.''
We invited everyone we talked to this past week to come to General Conference. The only person that came was our investigator, Garry, whom we have not been able to meet with in awhile because he has been so busy with work. We saw him in the library and promised that if he came he would receive guidance from the Lord for his life. And he did! He attended the Priesthood session that was being rebroadcasted at the chapel at 10am. We found this all out when one of the members from that ward that has fellowshipped at Garry's lessons told us that Garry had been and that he introduced him to the brethren that were in attendance.
Our dated investigator, Richard, is going great. We gave him 2 Nephi 9 as a reading assignment in one of the lessons earlier in the week. This chapter answers the question of the soul of ''what does Jesus Christ expect of me?'' Now, Richard is great at keeping his commitment to read the Book of Mormon and the following lesson we asked ''So, what answer did you get as you read 2 Nephi 9?'' He said the answer he got was that Christ needed him to be strong and help others. He is incredible. We taught him follow the prophet to prepare him for General Conference and the Word of Wisdom to prepare him for baptism. He has been wanting to give up smoking for awhile now and he seemed very grateful to have the spiritual tolls to do it now. Sadly, Richard was sick this weekend and wasn't feeling well enough to come watch General Conference.
I was able to present my ''Adopt-an-investigator'' idea at Ward Council this week. It went really well. Bishop gave the Ward Council his endorsement and commented on how great he thought this idea was. This is the exact direction he wants the ward to go in with the members being more involved in missionary work. Now to start putting it into action..
HUGE miracle in the making:
Remember how I wrote last week how we boldly testified and invited our investigator Samilda to pray to know if this church is true? Well she did. On a follow up visit this week she invited us in to tell us how she had prayed and had a dream where her grandfather appeared to her. Her grandfather did not say anything to her in the dream. She called her aunty to get her opinon on what the dream meant (note: her husband, family, and pastor are against her changing churches..). Her aunty just told her it probably means she should not join the church. Now we all know that 1) ''don't join the church'' is not an answer to whether or not the church is true and 2) that our family in the spirit world are learning about the gospel and can lead us to the gospel here on earth. We explained to Samilda that the veil is very thin and her Grandfather appearing to her in a dream is way more significant. I kept praying in my heart that the Lord would help us think of a scripture to share with her. I was lead to Omni 1:26. Samilda read it and afterwards we asked her what more she can do to receive and answer. On her own she decided she needed to fast. So we fasted with her on Friday. Samilda is making great spiritual progress despite the opposition that is against her. What happens next is to be continued... Please keep her in your prayers!
President and Sister Ulrich have made every missionary an Atonement study book with great talks and scriptures on the Atonement that they want us to study over the next month. Today was the first day and I had the chance to reflect on how I have been able to apply the Atonement in my life. I came to the conclusion that it takes trust and courage to confess and forsake our sins. We must trust the Lord's promise of forgiveness and peace for our mistakes if we repent and we must have the courage to confess them. The eternal consequence of our choice to repent and the joy of forgiveness paired with the weight of guilt lifted off our shoulders will far out weigh what it might cost to make things right in our lives. I encourage you all to reflect on what the Atonement means to you.