At the beginning of the week, I took Sister Roberts to a cider mill for P-Day! There were a lot of couples there and we didn’t want to interrupt their date and ask them to take pictures of us, so you will see a lot of awkward selfies. They had a little restaurant there where you could get lunch and they had CIDER SLUSHIES! We bought an assortment of pumpkin and apple cider donuts to go.
That evening we were door knocking and met a man named Marco. He came out on the porch and talked to us for about 15 minutes. He said the missionaries used to come teach him 10 years ago, and one day during their lessons, he had a question and they said they would get back to him and they never came back! We answered some questions about the Book of Mormon and he offered us some water. His wife locked him out of the house which was pretty hilarious for us, but awkward for him.
As we made our way to the car at the end of the evening, we saw an older man, and two adults lounging on their porch. I waved and walked towards them. The two adults motioned that they were deaf. What I would give for the gift of tongues (or hands) in that moment. The older man explained that the had just moved from Texas. They believed in God but not in religion. We explained that we had at least 3 ASL interpreters in our congregation. That perked their interest, so we gave them the address to the church building. They didn’t show up Sunday, but we had learned how to say “Nice to meet you” and I hope left with a good impression of Mormons. 🙂
Tuesday evening we visited Devin with a member we had prayed about to take. We briefly taught the Restoration and showed him the movie for it. Then we gave him a Book of Mormon with our testimonies and favorite verse highlighted in it. Then, we committed him to baptism. It was a lot. But we had prayed about everything when planning. He said he would think about baptism after he read the Book of Mormon and didn’t want to meet with us until after he read it.
Wednesday was District Meeting and we played Jeopardy! I really like our District Leader. He’s cool, yet humble. After lunch, we had trade offs. I was super nervous. I was with the Sister Training Leader for 24 hours. We door knocked for 3 hours.
Thursday, she did this evaluation with me. It went well, but at the end she challenged me to 5 minutes of cardio a day. I said yeah. Now I do 100 jumping jacks in the morning. 30 minutes later when we were having lunch, she was trying to get to know me and asked if I played any sports in high school. “Obviously not since I don’t even do cardio in the morning.” She laughed.
We switched back soon after that and I was happy to be back with Sister Roberts. We tried something new when door knocking and said “We’re here to share the Restoration of the Gospel”, which literally translates into “the bringing back of the good news,” which I think sounds so cheerful. That evening, a lady from our ward gave this presentation about the creation of the galaxies. I think she’s a professor. It was mind blowing and she did such a great job.
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday weren’t too eventful, but I do have some general things I’d like to share.
I haven’t been depressed once while on my mission. I’ve been sad, anxious, frustrated, homesick, etc., but not full on depressed. I think it’s because I’m fully enriched in the service of others and don’t have time to think or feel sorry for myself. It’s a great feeling. I also want my brother to know how much seminary has helped me on my mission. Like, holy cow. I wish I had tried to memorize more scripture masteries and kept the reference cards. However, I am grateful for what I did remember and keep.
I got 3 of our less actives to come to church on SUNDAY! Sister Roberts said that they haven’t been to church in at least 10 years. I think it’s because I call them up and just tell them where they’re going to be on Sunday, and no one is going to judge you for yadda yadda. They’re older ladies, so they know they’re not doing anything else. My companion says she’s grateful for my boldness.
My mission has also made me more enthusiastic about the scriptures. I have a stronger appreciation for them. We visited this less active lady who is going blind, and she literally cannot read the scriptures, yet she has a hungry desire to. So when we visit her, we read to her. When she first asked us to read a chapter, I realized that I take these precious words for granted and one day I will not have a choice to read them. What an eye opening experience.
We’re told as missionaries that the area we’re serving in is a part of God’s garden. I realized this week as we’ve lost some investigators, that the missionaries of the Grand Rapids area have a hard part of God’s garden to till. I’ve heard that in the winter, it’s so cold that people don’t even want to open their doors. Sister Roberts and I spent and hour last night trying to brainstorm of how we could find people to teach for an hour and a half today. Elder Gregory recommended going to the corner and crying 😀 I said “let’s just pray.” So after we go shopping today, we will be praying for an hour and a half. Let’s hope we receive some answers soon.
I love you all and my prayers are with you. Have a wonderful week. And as the many people we come into contact with say, “God bless.”
Love, Sister Harrison