So firstly transfers are coming up and I am almost done being trained... I will never have a moment on my mission where I am not being trained but for this specific and detailed training I only have 1 week left. I want to mention that I love my trainer, Sister Child's. She is my Sister. She is so deep in my heart and I am so blessed to have been with her for 12 weeks. I will miss her so very much if either of us are transferred. I really can't put it into words... But she is a dear friend to me and I plan to be close to her for the rest of my life.
As for other happenings this week I will just share some experiences.
We went to Tonto National Park this morning. It was beautiful and almost out of the mission so that was fun. One of the senior couples look us in our mission's 15 passenger van. It was like a big family vacation.
In exciting news, I had my First Baptism this week!!! It was amazing and the spirit was so strong. And in the area of tender mercies... Wanda, the woman who was baptized brought a few bunches of flowers and said, "Sister Zimmerman, these are for you to arrange... Do whatever you'd like to with them" and so I did just that and had quite a wonderful time. Heavenly Father knows me well. Also before she was baptized we gave her the jumpsuit that she would be baptized in and after she got dressed she came out crying and said "these are really tears of happiness, I promise." Also at a convert baptism the person who is baptized is invited to share their testimony of their conversion. She started out her testimony by saying "I have two sons ... And now I have two daughters"-pointing at us. She cried and just shared her love for the Savior and it was a touching experience for all... Especially the 25+ non-member family members that attended.
Our mission tour was this week and we were privileged to be visited and instructed by Elder Sitati. I can't even really describe how wonderful it was or sum the experience up in just one email but you'll never guessed what happened... We received a call from the mission office and they said, "Sisters, Elder Sitati has asked to visit 4 missionary apartments and yours will be one of those four. He will be there between and as for cleanliness... Well you know what we expect" so we went crazy and it took forever but it was probably the cleanest apartment this side of the Mississippi. So long story short, he came and the thing he liked most was... The colorful LDS quotes that mom and Elyssa and Anna made for me... He leaned over my desk and both President Jenkins and Elder Sitati looked closely at each one. So thank you mom and family so much. Your artwork is even appreciated by General authorities,
We put another person on date. She is 17 and her parents really hate the church but she met with us for the first lesson at the church and we invited her to be baptized. She said yes and the next day received personal revelation for the date that she needed to be baptized. She is amazing and we can't wait to continue teaching her and such.
We have another investigator who had a miracle this week. This woman we are teaching has some serious health concerns. One day she was feeling terribly bad and we asked her if she wanted a blessing. She said yes and we called some Elders to come and give her a blessing (Elders Paynter and Gilbert). We didn't tell the Elders much about her other than that she was struggling. It was a blessing of healing and basically ...Elder Gilbert or an Apostle could have given that blessing. Elder Gilbert said some things that were so specific and uniquely Taylor's to her in the blessing. The spirit was so strong.
We also went over to see this man who is having some trouble with some addictions and with the law but has to make a really big hard decision. We talked with him for a while, not thinking that much would come of it other than sharing a cool spiritual thought with him. We felt prompted to share the Mormon Message "Reclaimed" and without hesitation he knelt down holding his newborn baby and sobbed. We comforted him and were shocked that the spirit spoke so strongly to him. This had never happened before. We have been teaching him for quite some time and never had anything reach him as deeply as this did. Heavenly Father knows each of His children. He knows what they need and when they need it.
We had our 2nd ward's primary program this weekend. It was absolutely touching. The spirit was very present. The children sang this song... I didn't get all the lyrics but these are the ones sister Childs and I could remember.
Jesus walked upon the water
he calmed the angry seas
With his hands he healed a leper
he fed a thousand people with a loaf of two or bread.
He raised them from the dead
Jesus is a god of miracles
nothing is at all impossible to him
but I know this of all his miracles the most incredible
is the miracle that rescued me
Jesus bled and died to save me
a price that I could never pay alone
But he rose again
he gave me the greatest gift the world has ever known.
Yes I can be forgiven every time that I repent
and someday he will lift me up to live with him again
Jesus is a god of miracles
Nothing is at all impossible to him, but I know this... of all his
miracles the most incredible must be the miracle that rescues me.
And here is a little thought from Elder Sitati this week about LOVE
Think about the word Jesus Christ and think about what it is about, why do you feel the way you feel about Him? It's because he loves you. Because he loved you. Because he did not spare anything to be able to redeem you or help you to return to the Father. There is a lesson for us int that. The most powerful influence in life is love. If we love a member of our family regardless then we can bring him back, if we have been loving him regardless and he doesn't come back in ten years and it hasn't worked...then what? Whose time line are you working with? But let me give you some assurance--love him to the end. You do not know if you live this fast you don't know what will happen to him after you have lived. That powerful influence of love for him irrespective of his negative attitude one day will hit him and that is what will bring him back. Try not to frustrate yourself by laying artificial timelines. I have worked so hard for so long and nothing has happened...love him to the end and let the Lord do his work.