Because of this week I understand now more than ever how Heavenly Father helps us over come opposistion; When we ask for His help to work around obstacles, He will not instantly remove the problem for us. Rather He will give us the inspiration to know what to do and then we need to move forward with faith and ACT. It would have been really easy for me to just give into the opposition and just stay in with Sister Lee this whole week but something compelled me to try and keep trying to find a way to still go out and work. There was no way I could go home with the thought that I had done nothing the last week of my mission. It was not easy but it was possible. Now that I look back, I can see clearly the tender mercies of the Lord and how He supported both me and my companion in one of our hardest weeks. Here is just a glimpse of what those tender mercies were:
Sunday night and Monday we made calls to people in the ward asking if could watch after Sister Lee or come out teaching with me on splits. Our plans for me to go teach an investigator with a member Monday evening fell through and we weren't able to do any proselyting after P-day had ended. Monday night things looked a bit bleak. We had planned our next day with out any certainty that any of it would happen. While Sister Lee had members willing to look after her in their home, I still had no one to be my companion. To be honest, I was so frustrated and angry that things were they way they were. I knew the only place I could turn for peace would be to Heavenly Father through prayer. That night I poured out my soul to my Father in Heaven pleading for His help and that someone in the ward would be able to come out teaching with me. I went to bed with an overwhelming feeling of peace. Something told me to take it one day at a time and that everything would work out. Tuesday morning that prayer was answered. One of the YSA we had texted the night before, Athalia, texted back saying she could come out with me! Athalia is in her first year at Uni and was free after 12pm until 5pm both days I needed someone which worked out perfectly. Suzanna, another YSA in the ward who is preparing for a mission, was also able to come teaching with me one evening. I will be forever grateful for their help as I chose to sprint to the end, obstacles and all.
We went to the GP Tuesday morning for Sister Lee. The Doctor prescribed her antispasmodics for her stomach pains. They worked slowly, but surely.
Tuesday was the first time Athalia had ever gone street contacting with the missionaries and she was so pro. Tuesday was a really great day and we found 2 new investigators and found a bunch of potiential investigators. The next day wasn't as easy but that is how missionary work is. Even after the change in responses from the people while we street contacted the next day she came out with me, Athalia still loved it. She told me that this experience has really changed the way she looks at missionary work and now she is thinking about going on a mission!
Thursday, Sister Lee still felt unable to go out and work and we had no one lined up to go out with me. We kept our commitment to help out at a funeral in the ward that day and then for the rest of the day we were in the flat for a while and to do weekly planning. Miraculously, we still had opportunities to share the gospel that day. At the funeral, we talked to the neighbor of the lady that passed away and shared a little bit about our beliefs. Not too long after we got in the flat, the Electrician came to install new heaters and we were able to have a really great gospel conversation with him. Before he left we handed him a Plan of Salvation pamphlet and invited him to learn more. He said he was interested just really busy. No worries! The seed has been planted.
Friday Sister Lee at last looked well and was ready to go out and see how she felt being out and working. It felt so good to be back with my companion and to work hard until the end of the day.
Jun now has a date for baptism. Oh how my joy is full! It has been a journey and a half helping her through her trial of doubt and uncertainty. We weren't sure we were going to be able to teach her this week since Sister Lee wasn't feeling so well and the only time we could see Jun were the late evenings when no one was available to go on splits with me. We came home one night around 7:30pm and called Jun and taught her a lesson over the phone. It was that night we invited her to get a Priesthood blessing to help her. On Friday, the day Sister Lee finally well enough to go out, Jun got a Priesthood blessing from Brother Evans. The Spirit in the room after the blessing was soo strong. Jun was like ''wow..I fell so much peace!'' We had a short lesson and at the end we invited Jun to be baptized on the 20th of December. She is willing to work towards that date. I may not be able to be there physically but I will definitely be there in Spirit (or Skype if possible).
We taught Diana again a few times this week. She is such a sweetheart! While I was on splits with Athalia, Diana told us she had read the restoration pamphlet and so we asked her if there were any questions she had and boy, did she have some deep ones! One of the questions she asked was how she could come closer to Heavenly Father like Jesus Christ. I felt prompted to teach her about following the example of Jesus Christ by being baptized. we invited Diana to be baptized to which she replied ''she has already been baptized.'' We of course explained the importance of the Priesthood and I felt that in the next lesson we needed to teach her about the Gift of the Holy Ghost which comes after baptism making it complete. She really opened up to us in next lesson with us and told us how after she had meet us she received a message from God that told her she needed to accept the things we would share. When we followed up on her thoughts about being baptized she told us she was open to the idea of being baptized again. Hallelujah! She is so prepared! Since she lives in Preston and is there on the weekends we are going to pass her on to the Preston Sisters.
A tender mercy of Sister Lee being ill last Monday was that I started deep cleaning the flat and doing the cleaning that needs to be done each transfer. Now that we are whitewashing and have a long list of to-dos before everything is ready for the new Sister it is nice that most of the cleaning is already done.
This really has been the longest marathon of my life! During a long run, sometimes you get so tired you feel like you just want to die and for the race to be over already but when you finish you feel like you are on top of the world. That is the best way I can describe it. My soul feels satisfied with my work and I know I have tried my best and worked the hardest I could. I know that Heavenly Father is pleased with my mission. There is nothing I want more than to please Him and do His will. This is now the quest for the rest of my life. I want to return to His presence and be able to dwell there with my family and those I have meet and taught on my mission. There is nothing I want more.
I have built friendships here on my mission that I know will last forever.
I know that the work I have done here will have no end. The seeds I have planted will continue to grow forever. I, like a small pebble thrown into the river, have caused ripples and waves in the oceans of eternity.
I love my mission, challenges and all. I love my Savior. I love my Heavenly Father. I will always be grateful for this sacred opportunity to wear a badge with my Savior's name on it.