Monday, November 21, 2016

Know ye not that ye are in the hand of God?


Lots of miracles to share this week so buckle your seat belts boys and girls cause it's gonna be good!

Okay this is the saddest part of the email today. We received transfer news... and sister Colbert will be transferred this week to the Citrus Heights Stake. Man am I going to miss her like crazy. She has been the best companion that I could have asked for for these past 2 transfers and I love her so much! I will be staying in the area (Solomon & Candlelight Park YSA) and will be joined by sister Godfrey. I don't know much about her because she has only been out for a few transfers but she seems like fun so let's go change the world!

The Most Golden... Like 24 Karat 
This week God just blew us out of the water... I didn't even know what to do.
Let me explain--So a few weeks ago a couple came to church in the Solomon Ward and stayed for the whole 3 hours (Solomon Ward is the Ward that is so hard to find people to teach in and hasn't had a baptism for years so this was BIG)! The Sunday school class (gospel principles) is supposed to be a simplified class for all investigators and recent converts and such to learn the gospel and feel comfortable... but this week, much to our chagrin, many of the class members debated details of the 2nd coming and exactly where Zion, the new Jerusalem, would be built. It was a train wreck... but God is still watching out for us and so after the class sister Colbert and I stuck around to talk with them. We figured we would have to apologize for the class and explain some things about the doctrine the 2nd coming and how Mormons are truly a peculiar people ha ha ha. We went up to them thinking that they would just run right out of the church and never come back but to our surprise they introduced themselves to us as Sarah and Dustin and asked right then and there if we could come over, have dinner, and share a lesson with them... so yeah... that happened and we tried not to jump for joy in excitement until we got out to our car at which point we screamed like crazy and said a prayer of gratitude thanking Heavenly Father for this miracle.

Flash forward to our dinner and lesson... so that night we stepped inside their humble apartment and prayed over the food. As we talked we learned that Dustin and Sarah have come to Arizona escaping a life of addictions and sorrow. They have given up so many bad habits and have already changed so many things in their life which has brought them happiness... but as they told us this Sarah said "even through all the changes we have made together I still feel like there is something missing. I didn't know what it was for a long time but I feel like what you ladies have is the missing piece". (Insert chocking on food here ha ha ha) Then Dustin talked about how he didn't understand how most churches believe that there shouldn't be prophets and apostles like in the time of Christ. He said "I don't understand why we don't have a prophet like in the time of Christ. Isn't God the same all the time? Why would he take that away? We need a prophet now more than ever."
Okay soon can imagine at this point sister Colbert and I are literally choking on every bite of food trying to answer their questions and trying to eat as fast as we can so we can share the message of the Restoration with them. It was crazy. I sat there at the table with a prayer in my heart that God would use me as a tool to speak exactly the words that He would say if He were the one in the room teaching them... and because we have the spirit with us we didn't even do the teaching at all...The spirit filled the room as soon as we began the lesson and every word was brought by the spirit.

This lesson was straight up "The District" style! I sat there thinking..."someone should be filming this right now" ha ha! They asked wonderful questions and at the end we invited them to read and pray and be baptized by the priesthood authority of God. Sarah turned to Dustin and said "I believe all of it... yes! We'll be baptized. I know that it's what we really need." Dustin had already been reading the Book of Mormon and was so ready to learn more. Sarah said the closing prayer and said "God, please bring these ladies back as often as you can because they have what we need"
Okay so yeah... that was kind of the highlight of this week... God is so good!

And He Just Walked Into Church
Another Solomon Ward miracle for you- all these investigators that we have in the Solomon Ward have literally just walked into the church and we just have to say "Hi, can we teach you?" And they say "yes" and then blessings fall from heaven!

Kwame was the miracle walk-in this week. Kwame has no connections to the church other than a class that he is taking at the University of Phoenix called "History of Mormonism". Yeah, a pretty inspired class if I do say so myself. He has met Mormons before and they helped him out quite a bit in his life so when the teacher of his class suggested that all the students go to our church and see how we worship he thought that was a good idea. Kwame looked a little out of place considering that he is about 6"6', 300 pounds, and black and the majority of the Solomon Ward is white and about 95 years old ha ha! He enjoyed all 3 hours of church and then we set up a time to visit with him. During our lesson this week the spirit was so present. To keep things short he said at the end "I have studied so much about Mormons and I completely believe that Joseph Smith saw God and Jesus Christ and that the Book of Mormon is true. Why would it not be true? ... so I just need to read and pray to really know if I should follow this, right?" And we said "yes" and will follow up with his reading this week!
Wow, crazy right?

So Maybe We're Terrible

We got a call from President Townsend this week who told us that Lance got permission from the First Presidency to be baptized on December 17th. It was such a quick response and we couldn't even believe it. We were so excited for him and set up a lesson with him that night to share the news.

Okay something that needs to be understood is that Lance is a jokester. He always fakes us out and send us dumb texts and such...he's 19 and acts like he's 15 and that causes problems sometimes. So we decided along with out Ward mission leader, Jake, to fake him out and tell him that he didn't get permission.

That night at the Visitors' Center we sat down to have our lesson and said a prayer to begin. I am a terrible liar along with sister Colbert so we left the dirty work to Jake to tell him that he didn't get permission. Jake said "so Lance, you know how we are waiting to get permission for you to baptized... well we got a letter back stating that it's going to be quite a while before you can get baptized. We're really sorry man!" After that you could tell that he was crushed and looked like he was going to cry. (Lance is an emotional guy so this wasn't too unexpected) but we asked him to read a scripture to bring him some comfort. The scripture we had him read was 2 Nephi 9:34 which goes "Wo unto the liar, for he shall be thrust down to hell." He read the scripture and we all laughed and told him the truth and he was so excited. He said "are you kidding me? I was about to just walk right out of here say "see you at church on Sunday I can't do this tonight" Oh my gosh, I'm going to get you sisters so bad. Just watch out."

Lance was so excited to hear that he got permission!
So anyways... maybe we're terrible, but it's all good and we're so excited for his baptism on the 17th of December.

He Is Always There
"we must not give up, but, instead, reach out to God’s awaiting arm of mercy, which is outstretched “all the day long.” (Jacob 5:47; Jacob 6:4; 2 Ne. 28:32; Morm. 5:11.) Unlike us, God has no restrictive office hours."

Thank goodness we don't have to set an appointment or be on a waiting list for God's help. I know that He is always there! I know that because I have reached out to my Heavenly Father more times than I can count and He has never let me down. Sometimes His answer to my plea is "wait a little longer" or "I'm here" or "not now" but He is always there!

A Work of Art
I received this quote from my friend Elder Andreason serving a mission in Finland in response to my email last week. I love it! I certainly feel that we are all this way! Thanks for the quote Elder Andreason!

"You can be simultaneously a masterpiece and a work in progress."

A little Testimony

Of all the things I could be thankful for this week I wish to share my gratitude for a God that knows our weaknesses and still uses us to do His work. I am so grateful that our Heavenly Father loves us, hears our prayers, blesses us with tender mercies, plans a path of Joy for us to follow, and never gives up on us... even when we do!

There is nothing more that I would want to be doing than sharing God's plan to the world this Thanksgiving. I consider it my privilege and blessing to have this sacred opportunity. My mission has changed my life and will bless me forever. I love the Lord!
Happy Thanksgiving
Sister Zimmerman

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