Guess where I just came back from? THE OUTBACK!! Hahaha just kidding, our wonderful member Valissa took us to the Zoo!! The San Diego Zoo! She is such a saint and I just LOVE her!!! So that was soo fun and I'll defiantly be sending pictures soon!
But this week my life changed. How do I even begin. I guess I'll just start off by saying that we had a Mission Tour where one of the general authorities of our church comes and visits. So we had the privilege of having Elder Mervyn B. Arnold and his wife. He has changed my life, not just my mission, but my life. I don't even know how to express it, I just have a desire to live in a way that the spirit will always be with me. And when he came, I really came to know that God loves me and he is truly trying to express it to me in soo many ways!! So they split the mission tour up into 2 days so half the mission goes on the first day and the other half the next day. But on the first day we had Mission Leadership council after the first session. As we all walked in, boom SPIRIT. It got so serious so quickly, but a good serious! And honestly first impression of Elder Arnold was I was so intimidated. His eyes just STARE into your soul. Really though, and I remember he called on me to answer the simplest question ever but my eye sight started to go blury and I spit something out that I don't even remember!! Hahaha I can laugh at it now but wow, he is a man of God. And before we were about to close he stopped it and said, "I can feel some doubt in the room, we aren't leaving until all the doubt is cast out." HOW DID HE KNOW??? It was some intense stuff he was asking us to do and I know that only by the power of God he knew that. At one point he looked at me and my companion in the eyes and said, "I want all of you to know that you are worthy to be here." Instant tears, I knew that wasn't just coming from him, but it was coming from God. I couldn't help but to walk out of that meeting in tears! It was such a relief to hear that I was worthy. Not that I ever thought I wasn't, but doubt always creeps in and Elder Arnold came at the perfect timing!
And do you know what was also God sent that day? Before we headed off to MLC we were weekly planning and during our lunch I felt prompted we needed to go talk to someone on Midland rd. So we drive over and start walking, all of a sudden this car pulls over about 500 ft away and I see this woman jump out and start running to us yelling, "SISTERS!" Right as I heard the voice I knew it was SUZIE PILKINGTON!!!!! AHHHHHHH!!!!! One of my old and most dear companions!!!!! Man did it just boost me to see her and hug her and hold her tight! What a relief and a way God showed me that he knew I was there and he knew I needed love.
And throughout that day countless of people texted us saying how much we were appreciated and needed and we went to go buy dinner really quick before a power hour and a member hopped up and paid it for us! The little things, it really is the little things!
And then Thursday happened. So much revelation to be had! Elder Arnold talked about many things but he just made me want to be a better person, to be really strict on what I watch and listen to when I get home. To strictly obey the prophets counsel. And he and his wife just love each other so much, something to work for. But a cool moment was when I got to accompany Sister Carlson while she sang, "Consider the Lilies of the field." Beautiful, he then had her sing by herself and me play by myself. And let's get one thing straight I didn't have the melody at all but when a general authority tells you to play a verse by yourself you do it. Did I mess up? Yes. Was I embarrassed? NO. A great theme throughout the tour was to never be embarrassed, it rubbed off. Moral of the story, things can sound beautiful by themselves, but together, masterpieces happen! Just like us and the spirit, need to work together to create a masterpiece! But honestly I don't know how to write down everything what I learned but I did have the privilege of being interviewed one on one with him. That was very special and very sacred and something only the Zone Leaders and Sister Training leaders got to do. I go in and sit down and he just reads me from head to toe. It made me feel good but then he also told me something he was worried about for after the mission, a good concern to have, not one to worry about right now but I did not see it coming. He is a wise man and I defiantly took his counsel to heart!
And D&C 123:17, my new motto! Elder Arnold, he is a good man. And he came to our Stake Conference this weekend too! We were combined with PQ and it's where the official changes were made. Another spiritual journey and it was one where 3 of our investigators came!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOOOHOOOOOOO!!!!!This week was just full of tender mercies! Do you want to hear another one? On Friday as we were driving to our dinner appointment we got a call from Rodrigo. He told us that Mia was coming into town and that she wanted to meet with us!!!!!!! WHAT? CRAZINESS!! She was apparently in town for a funeral and came down just for an hour to see us! She is the sweetest girl ever and one of my dearest friends! I miss her a lot but I know it's where the Lord needs her. She has a rock solid testimony and it made me so happy to hear her say how much she loves this church! I love Mia Moore.
And I love having the spirit with me always. Last Tuesday we got to teach Sarah, who is awesome and she found the church she is going to in Missouri when she moves! Love her! We met with Jason and Nick who are just as genuine as ever! They went above and beyond their reading assignments and they met a ton of people on Sunday. We are going to see them again tonight and I am soo excited! :) They just fit right in!
|Nick and Jason with our member Tori.|
And then we have started teaching this YSA named Josh. He sadly does not have a home recently. But he is really good at feeling the spirit and is on the right track to getting back on his feet. He also came to church and loved it! Who wouldn't? It's such a great thing! We will see him again tonight. We may not be teaching a lot of people but everyone we are teaching is willing to keep commitments, to go above and beyond the commitments in fact and are just ready for the fullness of this gospel. I'm excited for them!!!!!
And my favorite person I gave The Book of Mormon to this week is Tom. We were at the Ramona Car Show contacting people and while my companion is trying to answer a mans questions I see this other guy sitting down next to him and start to talk to him. His eyes were so kind and when I gave him The Book of Mormon it shocked him a little but he was so honored! A very humble man. He wasn't quite ready for missionaries but he has the best gift God could ever give him!Another cool miracle happened when we were trying to contact a referral from some Sisters. And before we go over we try street contacting this guy who apparently is a member! We ask him if he knows his neighbor who is apparently interested in the gospel? He didn't but he brought out Sister Walker who did know them! She offered to go over with us. IT WAS AWESOME! We knock on the door and this woman sees us and kind of grumpily says hello but when she sees her neighbor she just lights up! We were looking for her son who wasn't home but Sister Walker asks her if she'd be interested in learning more about the gospel! AND THE MOM SAID YES!!!! So cool! She said she's at a point in her life where she needs change and she loves how happy Sister Walker is! So cool! We left her with a Book of Mormon and a commitment to read and pray about it. We are excited for the Family Ward Sisters to go over! :)
The spirit literally guides me where ever I go and if I feel as if I've missed something really important I turn around. It happened yesterday where we talked to a group of YSA and offered them service or asked if they knew anyone that needed any. They declined and made sure we didn't step over their property lines. As we walked away further and further I just regretted not telling them what we share. I asked my companion if she thought we should go back, she didn't. But as we kept walking further and further I knew we had to, so we did. And I knew that I would have to take the lead on it. We walk back and they are still there but they don't see us. I mustered all the courage that I had and blurted, "HELLO!" One guy came over and I didn't even know what to say so I just threw our the words, "We are missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we share a message about Jesus Christ." He then told us he wasn't interested but walking away I just felt this load lifted from me. I knew I had followed a prompting from God and I knew that I just got denied for my Savior Jesus Christ. What an honor. I would do it a thousand times more!I hope you all get to do it too! It's such a joy! I love you all but more importantly your Heavenly Father loves you!!! :)Love, Sister Whitcomb