Well this week was pretty CRAZY! President Toombs left on Saturday but the last time we saw him was on Tuesday. We all circled around him and sister toombs and pretty much had story time. We were able to ask him anything we wanted, and they talked about what their mission has meant to them. It was pretty surreal and a very unique experience. I've attached my last mission pic with President. WHAT A STUD.
On Wednesday we got to meet with Jimmy Brown, an investigator of ours, his wife is a less active member and he is 68 years old and has stage 4 cancer. Our relief society has been taking them meals and that's how we got in with them. About a month ago Jimmy told a sister in the ward that he wanted to be baptized while she was taking dinner over to them. Sister Berry and Sister Brown were both floored. She called us right away and we taught Jimmy the first lesson a few days later. For several weeks we tried to set up an appointment to come see them and every time it would fall through because of Jimmy's illness. We had talked to President Toombs about the situation and he said that Jimmy wouldn't have to attend church before being baptized. THAT NEVER HAPPENS. This past Wednesday we invited Jimmy to be baptized this Saturday, he accepted. In that lesson we taught him all of lesson 2 and 3. Two days later we taught him the last lesson which were all the commandments and he had our district leader interview him for baptism.He passed with flying colors. June 28th, 2014 Jimmy Brown was baptized. IT WAS BEAUTIFUL! Brother Warner, a member of the bishopric, baptized him. We got really worried because the Browns were running a little late to the baptism.... like 30 minutes late... and the font was draining so we had to try and fill it and shut the water off so we could all hear. When it was time for the actual baptism the water had drained again and it was only up to their knees. Brother Warner had to help Jimmy down the steps and help him kneel down, it made me cringe just because of how frail he is. He was baptized face down because the water was so low but it was the most amazing thing I had ever seen. A MIRACLE FOR SURE. We had a group of about 12 missionaries sing come thou fount and it was beautiful. The spirit was so strong! Sunday morning Jimmy made it to church with his wife Carol so he could be confirmed. We helped them in and sat down in the front row with them. Brother Warner confirmed Jimmy and it was so powerful, everyone in the meeting felt the spirit and it was so touching the hear the words that were said to him. He was told that when those tender moments happened and he'd have to say his goodbye's his words would be filled with the spirit and be able to touch the hearts of the ones he loved. Jimmy and Carol were able to partake of the sacrament following his confirmation, jimmy for the first time and carol for the first time in a long time. She leaned over to me and asked "Should I take it? I haven't done it in a long time." I said that of course she should and she responded that that's the reason everyone was there, to take of the sacrament. I told her that was right and that her Heavenly Father was so proud of her and Jimmy. After the meeting Brother Warner thanked us for letting him be a part of the baptism, he said that he felt so blessed and he was excited for this new addition into our ward and would like to accompany us the next time we visited the Browns. I've learned a whole awful lot from this whole experience. First: One is never too far in life to change themselves to be more in line with the Savior. Second, when people are involved in helping someone along their covenant path their testimony grows and they change as well as the person receiving the saving ordinances. And third, that the Lord knows the timing in which things need and must happen.
***Jimmy Brown and his family on their
baptism day. ***
A couple other neat things happened this week, we were able to see Cienna. She was a potential from when sister grenfell and i first got to east lake. A couple months ago we stopped by to try and see her and her mom answered the door. She was frazzled and said it wasn't a good time because they were in the middle of a family emergency. We tried stopping by a couple weeks later and no one was home. Finally on wednesday we stopped by again because another appointment had fallen through. Her mom answered again and said she was so happy we came back. We asked is Cienna was home and she said she wasn't but that she would be back later that night. She asked if we could come back and we said of course. Her mom proceeded to tell us that the family emergency that occurred was that Cienna had run away and they couldn't find her. She had come back the day before we stopped by. She was happy we came because she wants Cienna to have God in her life. We were able to meet with her later that night and she told us that she wanted to change, she wanted better friends, wanted to go a different direction with her life and make better choices. We are meeting with her again tonight with a young woman in our ward. We hope to have Cienna at mutual this week, as well as church and set with a baptismal date.
The Jones kids are doing as great as ever! This week we talked about missionary work! Austin has more recently decided to serve a mission and is excited every time we talk about it. Arthur's biggest concern was that he wouldn't be able to date.... we assured him that by the time he makes it to 18 he will think girls are gross anyways! HAHA! Troy's concern was that he didn't want to knock doors all day. We assured him that by the time he goes on his mission he will rarely if ever have to knock doors. It was a really great lesson and its been awesome to see this family grow.
We had an interesting lesson with the Lopez girls this week. Sister Lopez put scriptures on the end of some roasting sticks and had all of us take a stick, read the scripture, discuss what it meant and why it was important and then we could roast a marshmallow. It was a really cute idea. After we roasted marshmallows we talked about how we knew God was our loving heavenly father. We all circled around and said what we thought, it was really powerful to hear the girls bear their testimonies of who their Heavenly Father was to them. It was a beautiful night and the spirit was felt.
|The Lopez girls roasting marshmallows and reading scriptures.|
Sorry this e-mail didn't discuss too much of the week but it hit the highlights for sure! I love being a missionary and its crazy how fast the time flies when you are doing the Lord's work. Sometimes it can be really stressful and frustrating but moments like the ones that have happened this week make all the difference and lift your spirits higher than they've ever been before. There's no substitute for missionary work than work. When you're working you're happy and when you're happy the work moves swiftly. I love you so much dad! Hope all is well and stays well. XOXO
<3/ SISTER HOOPES