Monday, November 3, 2014

You Know You're in Atlanta When There Are Miracles Everywhere!

                                                             xili, yo. BAPTISM!

                               Luckily, our Halloween costumes never made it out the door.

Hey y'all!
This has been quite the eventful week! First of all, mom, I was thinking about when my SD card gets too full of pictures.. What do I do? Could you maybe send a USB thing? Also, thank you everyone for your emails! It's so nice to hear how everyone is doing (:
Well, I guess I'll just do this in chronological order.  Last monday, we carved pumpkins! Haha we could only afford one, so we shared it (: Of course, we had to carve baptism into it, so we did the characters 'xili' which means baptism.  It looks sweet! We're spreading the gospel into people's subconscious minds. Take that, Barnesvillians! We also went to El Mariachi with the ward, and we had a total miracle! Bishop Allred came up to us and was pretty much like, "here's a baptism!" Haha her name is Lucille, and she's 90! She's been coming to church for a while, and everyone just thought she was already a member, but she really wants to be baptized! So we're pretty much just going to go through all the lessons and then get her in the water! Easy enough, right? But that was definitely a miracle, especially since our stake has a goal of 50 baptisms by the end of the year, which is about one per companionship.  Totally doable!

          Sister Facer: now available in all 50 states and Taiwan. I finally got my English badge!

Speaking of miracles, He even sends simple ones, just for us.  That night, we stopped home real quick to grab something, then went out and locked the door, but we couldn't get the key out! We were literally trying for 15 minutes, then ended up calling the emergency maintenance people, but that took another good 30 minutes so our night was kind of over by then. Darn it.  I kept getting the feeling that we weren't supposed to go out that night for some reason.  Even though I don't know why, I'm glad that Heavenly Father did what He needed to do to keep us safe.
The other night, I had a dream about Avery, and that she was speaking Chinese! I really hope that's not her first language... I also had a dream that Brigham helped me get this nasty bug out of my hand.  Haha I just hope you guys all know that I still think about (or dream about) and pray for each one of you (:
This weeks lessons were soo good! I'll start with the best.  West is progressing really well! We've even got Melissa involved, and this last lesson we got Jake (her son - about my age) to start praying. They've have had it pretty rough, and I'm pretty sure that Heavenly Father sent them to live with West so they could hear our message.  We've had such good lessons with them though! So we started with the restoration again for Melissa (West had already been through all the lessons when I got here) and she wanted more of a clarification, so we watched the Joseph Smith restoration movie.  It was so good! They all said they felt the chills, especially when Joseph saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.  We helped them recognize that that's the spirit, and later we asked Melissa to be baptized.  She totally wants to! And West just barely stopped smoking (after smoking like 4 packs a day so he could be baptized! He even wants to move his date up a week! Man they're just so awesome! They are totally one reason why I'm out here.  Every time I leave I can't help but think, "I just love being a missionary!" It's so awesome.

                            Adam, quite the classic country boy with his grass bookmark. 
                                           He's making great progress though!

Another investigator, Adam (also about my age), has really been through some changes since he's started talking with us.  He's also had a rougher life, but we're slowly helping him see how the gospel can help him.  I just love seeing how much it already has helped him! 
One day we stopped by Sis. Henry's house ( a less active) just to see how she was doing.  It amazes me how Heavenly Father helps us have just perfect timing.  Her dog had just died (yes, the 19 year old putrid-smelling arthritic dog I talked about last week) , and now she's home all alone. Poor old lady.  I do feel a little bad, but I'm at least glad that we were with him in his last days.. kind of-- haha. But we talked a little bit about the plan of salvation, and reminded her of her baptism day, so that was good.  It's all a work in progress. 
We had the opportunity to go to a baptism this week! It was from the elders, but they're in the ward so we still got to go.  The girl being baptized was named Lisa, and she's so awesome! We invited West and Melissa to go, so they could see what it would be like for them, and West was able to come. He said it pumped him up so much for his baptism! I totally wish everyone was excited about the gospel as he was! I don't know how you can help people do that, though.  Because really, the conversion all happens when we're not there. 

                                                             We love the temple!

On friday, we got to go to the temple! It was so amazing, especially to walk into the celestial room of the Atlanta temple, and see all the missionaries in our zone looking up at me.  It was just a testimony to me that we are all called of God.  Man, I just love the temple! It was really nice to be back.  With the temple comes zone training, almost all day. It was super good though! and it was cool to actually talk to the elders in the car ride home in the tooth fairy (our big red 12 seater van) and share stories.  We also got to go to women's conference! It was with the stake, and we also had 4 investigators come! It was so awesome! We talked a lot about Alma 5, like have ye received Christ's image in your countenance, and you've received a witness, but can ye feel so now? I took much better notes than it sounds like, but it was just a really good experience!
Haha so we rode up with Sis Wolleson and Sis Goggins from our ward, and they were a hoot.  She is definitely one of a kind (:

                                          We shop at the same sister missionary stores...

We went to Shira's baby shower (also in our ward) because she was afraid no one would show up.  Turns out a lot of pepole were there, but we got a new investigator out of it so I didn't feel too bad for going.  Her name is Linda, and she lives right next to Shira, and even recognized me from the few times that we've visited her.  She seems super interested though, so we'll definitely stop by some time this week! 
                      Shira is the only pregnant lady I know who can still wear leather pants

On sunday night, we always have dinner with the Blockers, but this was our last dinner with them since they're moving this week :( They're the type of family that the missionaries can go to for everything and anything.  I totally want to be that family! And they have kids my age, so they're just fun to be around. Not to mention that southern momma (: So as we were driving back from their house to another investigator's house, we pulled up by the curb.  Pretty much everywhere, there's either no curb, or a 'ramp' type curb that you just drive up onto.  But not this one! It had the biggest curb I've ever seen! Haha so apparently Sister Watts didn't see that, and she drove up onto the curb and popped the tire.  It sounded real bad! Luckily, that's all that was done, though. So we called the Blockers to come help us change the tire.  I never learned myself because I just never thought it would happen.  

                             My first flat tire.. and yes, that white part at the bottom is a hole

Now, the one time when I didn't have my dad to call, it happens! Funny how that works.. But Heavenly Father came through, and provided another miracle! While we were waiting for the Blocker's to come, being the girls that we are, we really had to go to the bathroom.  So we went to a random house and asked them if we could use theirs.  The girls name was Amy, and she had two kids. Score! A family! and she was totally interested in learning more! So we're going to bring her cookies soon to thank her for letting us her her house, and maybe a Book of Mormon (: having a small bladder finally paid off! BUT. I'm not done.  This morning we drove over to pep boys to get a new tire and while we were waiting, Mark, one of the employees was just chillin in a chair right next to us.  We got talking, and he hasn't been to church in a while but really wants to start going again.  Then, wait for it. His family walks in! wife and two kids! What do you know! He ended up giving us his address and phone number, and we're definitely talking to him again.  Whoo hoo! It's amazing how Heavenly Father's plan is so different than ours, and it's just plain better! That was just such a testimony to me that He knows what's best, even when it seems like things aren't going our way.  
                                             Soo, we thought this was real. But it wasn't
                               I FINALLY found an Asian!! Sister Cheng is even from Taipei!

Haha so we've been coming up with a list.  You know you're in Georgia when:
no median lanes, only U turns
Carl's Jr is called Hardy's
roads are surrounded by trees
road kill everywhere
train trakcs by every road
no sidewalks, park on the lawn
golden sunsets
random bodies of water
chirk down every street
fried everything
no understanding of the priesthood
Jesus apparel
lack of high school graduates
everyone smokes
bugs of every kind (cockroaches!)
every soda is called 'coke'
prayer circles
wretched-smelling houses
"have a blessed day"
"it's been a minute"
Sis. Goggins... 'nuff said.
church hats
-knock on the door- "WHO IS IT?"

Mission tips #1 know your scripture mastery and HOW TO APPLY IT
#2 laugh whenever possible

Well, that's all for now.  I love you all so much, and thank you for your prayers.  Keep the faith, and have a blessed week!

Sister Facer

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