Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Patience, Positivity, Persistence

Happy days!
Oh what joy fills my heart. And thanks Dad for the video of Kayla opening her mission call! How crazy is that? I'm so proud of her and it definitely brought tears to my eyes! :)
But I love SanDiego, it also brings tears to my eyes.
Soooo Tuesday evening, we saw the amazing STACEY!!!! She's the coolest purple haired friend/investigator I've ever known! So prepared, even though she's in a lot of pain she's the happiest person I know! Super willing to live all the commandments and on Sunday I got to sit next to her. And guess what, she stayed all three hours!!!!! WOOOOHOOOO!!!
She usually just stays the first hour because it's usually too painful but she was so persistent. So she stayed, and even though some members gave a tight hug, too tight for her, she had a smile on her face the whole time! And man, it was a spiritual Sunday. Perfect for her!
Then I stayed in Santee on Wednesday on an exchange with Sister Chang! (pronounced Jong)
She's the cutest, she is from Taiwan and was serving there for three months till her VISA came and then she went to the MTC and it's her first transfer here!
She's with Sister Vernier, those two are awesome! It was another BOOM BOOM BOOM day!
It was the first day we were trying the booth. So we've been working with the institute director, there's an institute building right in our church parking lot, and it's right across from Grossmont college. Tons of traffic flows through here, and I'm sure as most of you know from previous emails, they are mostly nonmembers. We've even added a couple of investigators through it!
So we have set up the booth to do our power hour and have seen cool miracles! Sent a couple of referrals, got a couple peoples' numbers to learn more and gave away a few copies of the Book of Mormon!

It's the most fun I've had finding on a mission, and it's been so fun because Eddie has been doing it with us! He's the coolest; great guy. He just walks up to people, tells them what we are doing and why we are here and then asks if they want to meet with us. Coolest guy ever.

We've done it three times thus far, it won't last too long because the semester is almost over and summer is coming BUT we will use it while we can!
Sister Chang and I also did service for our investigator Jeannie. We planted flowers for her. We found out she's moving. :( But we talked to her a little bit about the church. Unfortunately we didn't get to sit down with her. But she's still super awesome and sweet. Then we ran off to a lesson for Vanessa! I've never seen someone get so into family history so fast. She puts me to shame. She probably puts most people I know to shame. (Except you Mim, of course.) She's put in generations and generations with pictures and pictures! She said she's become addicted. :) I love her! She is bringing four male and four female names to the temple this Thursday!!!!!! We get to go with her!!!!! I'M SO EXCITED!!!!!!!!! :)
And also we just met with her again yesterday and her little boy Sebastian sat in! He was participating and we gave him a children's Book of Mormon and Vanessa said they would read it together! YAYAYAYYYYYY!!
Also we invited Vanessa's brother to church. He said he's been thinking about it for a while and that he will! YAYYYYY!!!
But anyway, back to Wednesday. :)
We attended an institute class in hopes that people from the booth we invited would show up and a former investigator Julio showed up! WOOT WOOT!!! I can't wait for next week!
Now Thursday. We again were booting it at the institute! It was quite fun! Lots of seeds planted. Everything is still in the process of blooming but I will for sure let you know when it happens! So we were supposed to meet with our investigator Tina, but she cancelled. So her sister Debbie, a former investigator came instead! It was a beautiful day so we had the lesson at a park.
Debbie in the park
I love God's creations, especially the ones that provide nice shade. :)
It was cool to hear Debbie is attending church in the MCRD (Marine Corps Recruits). And yes, it is LDS. She's not quite ready to meet frequently with us but we can see the Lord is preparing her!
Then we met with a recent convert, DJ, he has neon green hair and is proud of it. Great guy, he moved from El Cajon area and during the lesson he had questions about dating. I totally gave that one to Sister Purcell. Take the reins! ;)
Then we had one of our favorite dinner appointments with the Whitlocks. I love them! Also get nuggets of knowledge from them. And they love doing missionary work, that's all we talk about so it's awesome!
We then met a less active YSA, so hard and so sad. But never anything to give up on. God loves them and so do we.
Friday, our district took on the jungle. Last week we street contacted someone named Dalina, she wants to come back to church. And she and her siblings that she lives with are disabled and so their yard hasn't been taken care of in many moons. So our district went over to help. So imagine these little plants that are supposed to stay very little, like cactus or aloe vera plant type things. They made me feel like ants, they were so big! I have no idea how that worked but we worked there for a couple of hours and it looked like we did nothing. Oh boy. Here we go! :)
We met with Jake Jake, YSA recent convert. Great guy. He makes me chuckle.
Then we met with Gail! Gail has not come to church yet so we really cracked down on that. So we did and it went really well. Did she come to church? Almost. But during the lesson Gail really opened up to us about her fears for baptism, and we were able to resolve them through the spirit. Can't do anything without the spirit. Then at the end we had her pray for a baptismal date, when she should be baptized. And she said she felt like May 28th. THAT'S WHAT I FELT TOO DURING THE PRAYER. The spirit rocks. She deserves the world, she just needs to see that so she will do some thing to get here.
We also met with Doug and Julie. My FAVORITE PEOPLE EVER! Doug had just gotten back from a funeral in Hawaii for a loved one. It was cool to hear him talk about the temple and how he felt at peace and he let go of burdens. I'm glad Julie heard it too. Julie just rocks. I love her a lot.
Then that night we were walking out of the church from a no-show appointment and there were these two guys walking back from class. One of them we had talked to at the booth earlier and gave him a Book of Mormon. He was reading it! He couldn't set up a time to meet with us but I have high hopes for him!
Saturday we met with Stacey again. She calls us "The Lovelies." I always feel very lovely in her home and it still smells like Christmas! :) We added a former investigator! Junior Ragland! A nine year old part member family! They just randomly reached out to us and the Mom and Junior met us at the church and Junior remembered a lot of what we taught last even though it was a while ago. He wants to be baptized! We taught the Plan of Salvation and Junior was really involved; very mature nine year old. He wants to be baptized on June 4th!!!! WOOT WOOT!!! Santee is just AWESOME!!! Now we just have to work really hard to make all these baptisms happen!
Sunday, definitely not a dry eye Sunday. Sacrament meeting was especially sacred for me as I reflected on my time here in Santee. I just want it to go on forever. I've never cried over an area, Santee must have something special. And I know it's the people. I love them all!
Also, not only did Stacey come to church, but a former investigator, who I have never taught, Rose Acebedo walked into church with members of our ward! Before Relief Society she tapped on Sister Purcell's shoulder and said "Um, excuse me Sister, I need to finish my lessons with you so I can get baptized?" So sweet. So we set up a time right after church to have Rose be taught in the Thornburg home. We had no idea how it would go, we heard a couple of things about Rose but besides that knew nothing about her. She announced to the whole Relief Society that she wanted to get baptized so we knew setting her with a date might be what the spirit wanted us to do. We said a very sincere prayer before that lesson. Walked in, it went great. We really asked inspired questions to be able to get to know her and hear her testimony. She loves the church. She's getting baptized on May 21st. WOOOHOOOOOOOOO!!! The Lord is truly blessing us! :)
Patience, Positivity, Persistence. My motto. :)
Monday, always a good day. Especially because it was my favorite Ginger Sister Missionary's birthday! HAPPY BIRTHDAY SISTER BENTLEY ARBON!!!!! You're the coolest. And we had a cool day in your honor!
President Schmitt had asked Sister Purcell and I to give training at a new missionary meeting. We talked about setting goals and purposeful planning. We just turned to the scriptures. If you want to see a man who can set goals and make plans? 1 Nephi 3-4. Nephi's the man. He's an awesome goal setter and plan maker! As well as Christ, Jacob 5. Boom. I love the scriptures!! And giving training makes me a better missionary so I'm grateful.
We also attended another institute class because Brother Price, the director, told us someone had walked into the institute asking for a parking pass and he told him he would have to take a class. So he signed up. His name is Max. We showed up to see if Max would show up and he did! And he brought a friend, Natalie!
Brother Price is so good and during the class he had us split up and discuss something so he put the two missionaries with the two nonmembers. Pretty cool. I was with Max discussing scripture and Sister Purcell was with Natalie. Afterwards Sister Purcell told me Natalie wants to come to church! All because of beatitudes! Sweet.
We then had the senior missionary luncheon, always a treat. And a nonmember came! Referral for the San Diego elders! We taught Eddie, a good guy. Progressing and growing in the gospel so well and is the best branch missionary EVER! And that night our back up plans ran out so we prayed where to go. Prompted to go to YSA FHE and we ended up talking to a nonmember and Stephanie, our investigator who we passed off to Alpine was there and we got to talk there too. The spirit cares and if you ask he will tell. It's just up to us to decide, and I'm glad I choose the right. My decisions determine my destiny.
Transfers are next week, who knows what will happen! I just love Santee and I love Sister Purcell!

Sister Whitcomb

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Celestial Navigation

We went onto the USS Midway today!!!!!! Thanks to our wonderful ward mission leader, Brother Larson. He's the best!!
I wore my NCIS shirt by accident but I got so many comments on it as I was walking through the ship. It's like they all thought I was police for the Navy or something? ;) It was a huge ship, and they gave you headphones to listen to cool audio. It was awesome.
We were able to go with a YSA who just got off her mission from the Colombus Ohio mission! :) So fun!
It was really fun, a cool Navy Aircraft Carrier ship that has been docked and is now a museum!
On the ship they use something called Celestial Navigation, and they can only use it if it's not cloudy... Make your own fun metaphor. :)
 Keeping the tour missionary-appropriate

Tuesday we met with Eddie. Great bloke. AND THEN we found out he was asked to speak at the MISSION PRESIDENT'S DEVOTIONAL THAT SUNDAY!!! So this past one. I GOT SOOO EXCITED!!! Those devotionals ROCK, the spirit is so strong and I love being a part of the music. I did get to accompany the choir and Sister Carlson sang with an Elder. The classic, Come Thou Font. Good stuff. The spirit was so strong, so many sacrificed and humbling experiences in those recent converts' testimonies. And one of my favorite parts was when Eddie goes "I DARE you if you haven't already, to be baptized and take another lesson with the missionaries."
Good on ya Eddie! :) Such a great missionary. :)
Eddie the superstar
And our investigator Stacey was also there! I love her! She sat right up front, she was beaming. She was also crying, but who wasn't, because the spirit was so strong! Even the Schmitts' two youngest kids sang! So cute! Great Devotional, right in Santee!
At the devotional with Vanessa, Stacey and the cute Sister Littlefield
Then on Wednesday we went on exchanges with the Chula Vista Sisters. I joined Sister Hendrix in Chula Vista and Sister Purcell stayed with Sister Bossell in Santee.

Chulas awesome, nice and ghetto at the same time. We met with a couple of their investigators, went out with their Relief Society President and invited a ton of people to the devotional! Back in Santee....... THE SISTERS ROCKED IT!!!! Remember when we had power hour at the Whitlocks? And remember when they referred us to their neighbors for service? Well, they went to service and the woman, Jeannie, saw how hard they were working and let them in. She sat them down and from her side table pulled out a copy of The Book of Mormon and said "Okay. Tell me about this book."
SO COOL!!! She is now an investigator!! WOOT WOOT!!!!!!!
Member work is real! And it is awesome! And also the sisters met with the Institute director at Grossmont. We are going to set up a booth and get the flow of traffic from Grossmont College to the institute parking lot. A lot of nonmembers! Should be GREAT!!
Thursday we finished weekly planning! WOOHOOO!!!!!
We also did service for a surprise less active and met her nonmember daughter. Sweet. We are going back to see them next week. Stay tuned for Grace and Kim. :)
Friday was a BOOM BOOM BOOM appointment day! We met with Jake and helped him have a desire to have a family! Coolest change ever. We were able to do district service at the Raabs home, a member. Tried to make a difference; service is always so good. And we've been running into a lot of opportunities! :)
We taught Gail the law of chastity. Depressing lesson. All I can say is that I'm so grateful for my life and for the things I've been raised with. I'm not always sure why Heavenly Father has blessed me but I am sure grateful and I'm going to do whatever I can to help Gail. She had to get rid of her furniture so she's trying to scramble for something else. We were driving the next day and what do we see on the side of the road? A coffee table with a free sign on it. Win! Thanks Heavenly Father for blessing my friend Gail! She's a pal. :)
Then we did a pass off lesson for Stephanie. Since she's getting married and she moved to Alpine. Off to the Alpine Elders she went, they will take good care of her. :)
Then we taught Doug. He rocks! Julie was unfortunately sick but we did get to see her on Sunday! AND GUESS WHAT???? SHE WAS MADE THE FIRST COUNSELOR IN THE LAUREL PRESIDENCY!!!!
Yeeeeeaaahhhhhh!!!!!!!! :) :) :) :)
Love that girl. But we were able to teach Doug in a member's home which automatically has the spirit. It rocks. Host a lesson! Do it for the Lord! :)
Then we taught some little ones and we were able to help focus them with the piano and chocolate chip cookies. Works wonders.
Saturday we had our first outing at Phils BBQ. Good place, you should check it out someday. :)
We also met up with Eddie to help him formulate his talk and help him practice for the devotional. We had him even go up to the mic and practice what he was going to have to say. The spirit was missing as he was trying to practice and he didn't really know what to say or do. So I had a prompting to go up there and pretend to be a recent convert and bear my testimony. Who did I choose to be? My Dad. It was really cool, trying to see it from my dad's perspective and trying to imagine what his testimony started out to be.
Dad, you have a lot of faith and you always have the spirit. Thanks for your great example. Love you.
Eddie then nailed it. Thanks spirit.
We also met with a part member family, always nice to know the ward better and bring the spirit to their home. We also taught Stacey and we taught her with the woman who lives in Arizona who originally gave the referral! So cool! :) It was awesome, Stacey accepted everything we taught and is just pumped about the gospel! Who wouldn't be? :)
And she also gave us cake and said we were adopted. Done deal, their was cake. ;)
And one of our wonderful members, Sister Leavitt, was able to give Gail a ride to witness a baptism for the Lakeside Elders. Baptisms are always awesome and I'm glad Gail got to see one! :)
Sunday was a spiritual blast, with two wards, a mission presidents devotional, and just missionary work in general. How can you go wrong? You can't. And Stacey came to church! :)
So not only did we do all that, we set up a time to do more service for a woman who has had ties in the past with the church. God is good and putting prepared people in our paths. All we have had to do was open our mouths and talk to them about the gospel. I love it.
Monday, sunny day, hot day. High temp of 104 degrees! Woof. But it was good, we were able to do some service for an older woman in the ward who can't come to church so it was awesome getting to know her! :)
I love service, everyone needs to do it everyday in some shape or form!
Only right way to do your day.
We were able to have FHE at our ward mission leader's home. Gail was supposed to come but didn't. Ah Gail. But it was an awesome lesson and an awesome time to help and get to know the Larsons. Then we went to YSA FHE quickly and tried to promote institute so more YSA will come and hopefully eventually bring their friends! Got some people to help us out with the table we are trying out on. Good eventful night of using our members and talking to their friends they brought! It's awesome.
This life is so great and I'm so happy. I hope all of you are too!
Love you all!
You all rock!
Sister Whitcomb

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Sugar is sweet but SanDiego is SWEETER!

The only time to practice, at dinner.
Oh what a BEAUTIFUL week!
Oh my goodness, I now get to experience Spring time in San Diego!
IT'S THE BEST!! Ah. I'm the luckiest person alive. I got the golden mission, golden mission president, golden companions, golden areas, golden members, golden investigators, the list could go on and on! I literally am grateful for every minute of my mission! It rocks.
And so does Santee!! SANTEES ON FIRE!!!! We added three new investigators last week!!! Wooohoooooooooo!!!! But anyways, here we go:
Tuesday evening. LITERALLY MADE MY MISSION. Stacey English is the golden referral I've been waiting for my WHOLE mission! (Which will be 11 months tomorrow, AHHHH!!!)
I might have mentioned it in the last email but the zone leaders in another area gave us a referral from a member in their ward. Then that same day Sister Schmitt called us and said she had a referral for us, same person! She asked if she could come, so of course we said yes! (Can't say no to the mission president, and especially not the mission president's wife!) We also invited one of our members to go, she's the sweetest, Sister Carlson. (Not my MTC companion;)) And Stacey also wanted a priesthood blessing, so we tried to get one, but then Stacey called and said someone named Alex Morgan was coming to give her one and she said he was a member, sweet.
So we go there, knock on the door, and we hear a feeble voice telling us to come in. We open the door, there is a small woman just sitting on the couch covered in a blanket, crying. Sobbing. We come in and sit down. She tells us she is in so much physical pain, she had chronic arthritis. And she just wants help, physically and spiritually.
As we were getting to know her, superwoman, I mean Sister Schmitt, busts through the door with soup and cornbread and some pastry. She just busts in with the spirit and does her doctor evaluation, physically and spiritually, and it turns out our Alex Morgan was actually Sister Schmitt, aka Alexis Schmitt. Funny Moment! Then we asked her what she was expecting from our visits and she goes, "Well to become a member of your church."
ALRIGHT!!!! She is sooo prepared, she dated a member, she works with members, and her boss is a bishop! SO COOL! Super spiritual Restoration, best one I've ever had on my mission!
And when we gave her a copy of The Book of Mormon she was so excited! It was sweet! And she told us later on that the first night she fell asleep holding The Book of Mormon. She's so cute! And when Sister Purcell invited her to be baptized she said yes mid sentence! May 7th!!!!!!!!!!!!!
SHE'S GOING TO BE BAPTIZED!!!! Ah that's going to be the best birthday ever!
That's right, I'm turning the big 2-0 on May 5th!!! WOOT WOOT!!But everyone should put Stacey's baptism on their calendar because she is literally the COOLEST!!!!
And then at the end of the lesson Brother Carlson and Jacobson, our two counselors in the bishopric were able to give her a blessing. And let me just tell you, we went to go see her again on Friday, woof. I've never seen someone physically change so much!
When we went back, her hair and make up were done, she was smiling, she opened the door before we knocked, she was walking around! Don't get me wrong, she was still in a lot of pain, but something just changed in her. Her attitude and her spirit was different. And she told us she knew it was from the blessing and from The Book of Mormon. She brought the huge large print that we gave her to her doctor's appointment and she said three or four people stopped her and asked her if she was joining, she always responded yes and then they said you will never meet a nicer group of people! OH!
And then by the end she would say "Well you should join then!"
OH SHE ROCKS! She makes me laugh, smile and cry! She's the best! She wasn't sure if she was going to be physically able to come to church on Sunday, but we got her a ride AND SHE CAME TO CHURCH!!! Ohhhhhh my heart was happy as she walked through the doors!! She looked so cute and she had a big smile on her face, even though she told us later she had never been in so much pain. She has so much faith and such a strong determination! She got to meet the Bishop and the Relief Society President!
And then we saw her again on Monday and she basically remembered everyone's' names and what Relief Society was! (She could only stay for the sacrament) She's just the coolest and then when we met with her again yesterday she had so many questions and she said she LOVED IT! She loved all the children, she loved the music, the testimonies, everyone she met, and she loved that she felt safe! Oh she's so cool. And I'll never stop saying that! She asked why there weren't that many youth even though there is a big high school on our boundaries. I told her it was because they weren't members and she then says "Well it's because I haven't been there yet to talk with them!!" AHHHHH, I love her. Also she said she was in the DMV and she was getting frustrated with someone and she then thought how her sisters would react adn how they would be loving. SHE SAYS WE ARE HER SISTERS!!! YAYYYYYYYYY!! :)
Needless to say Stacey is one of my favorite people and definitely made my mission! I can't wait for May 7th!
PS Her house smells like Christmas. It's always Christmas at Stacey's house! :)
Thankfully we did get our car back. On Wednesday we were able to go on an exchange with the Hillsdale/Jamul Sisters! THAT'S MY MISSION HOME! My first area--love that place!
I had the fortunate opportunity to go on an exchange with Sister Stussi! (Sister Wardinsky's trainee!!:))
Exchanges with Sister Stussi and Sister Guest
She's a Temple Square sister and she's from Switzerland. She's awesome! We were able to meet with Eddie who is the coolest and best missionary ever! We asked him at the end who he might know who needs the gospel. He started looking through his contacts list and said he had a couple of names he needed to pray about! OH! He rocks and he also rocked our coordination meeting with our Branch Mission leader! We have been really trying to find YSA and we will soon go on Grossmont campus with a great display! Basically spear-headed by Eddie! He's the greatest!
We also met with Vanessa who I love sooo much! She's doing awesome, she's doing family history and she got permission from her parents to bring her grandparents' names to the temple!!!
 Vanessa and her sons

YAYYYY!!! And she also was able to bring her Mom to the Spanish Branch on Sunday! DOUBLE YAYYYYYY!!! Ah, I love her. She's doing awesome and is already so involved! Bringing sisters in need dinner, wanting to go support people at the Temple, she's awesome!
Much love for her!
 We were at exchanges today with none other than Sister Carlson!!
Love her :)

Thursday: Gail. What a sweetheart. She continues to call us her angels. One of my favorite lines she told us was as we were going to work in the rain, "Now you two be careful, don't you know sugar melts in the rain!" Oh we died! It was so funny! But she's doing good. She is very sick, still. But she was able to receive a blessing! She's getting there; she's working on living some of the commandments. We've been calling her every morning to help her remember to live them. She loves it! She said that sometimes it's hard for her to get up and live, but she knows that every morning we will be calling, and she's waiting for us to call her! I love her.
But she was still too sick to come to church on Sunday, that was super sad. Hard for me, we will now have to move her baptismal date. But have no fear! Gail even said she knows she's still alive on this earth to fulfill her purpose, and part of that purpose is baptism! Love her.
We also weekly planned, planned for zone meeting, and we had dinner with the Whitlocks! Cutest people. And they gave us marriage advice. Classic. :)
We then had power hour, prayed with some members kids and we were in the right place at the right time! We saw a woman get out of her truck, asked her if she knew of any people who needed some service we could help out. And she told us she was moving, and she actually accepted our help! We came back the next day, she said we were the only people to help her besides her sister. She's a single mom with a 14 year old boy. Myra and Isaiah.
Sister Purcell came back the next day while we were on exchanges and added them!!
Myra said she had called her Mormon friend and talked to her about us. Sweet. All good things, all good things!
Friday: INTERVIEWS WITH PRESIDENT SCHMITT!!! He is the man. And he also took a selfie with me to send to my family.
And he wanted me to say (and I quote) "I love these missionaries, your missionaries, and the work is good in San Diego."
President Schmitt with the Sisters of Santee!
He rocks. He helped me out with some member work. He rocks! And I sure do know that he loves and appreciates me; he tells it to me every time. And I sure do love and appreciate him! AND GUESS WHAT?!? HE TOLD US THAT ELDER JEFFREY R HOLLAND IS COMING TO OUR MISSION AT THE END OF MAY!!!
Ahh, excitement can not be contained!
I am for sure preparing now before Elder Holland shakes my hand and looks into my soul. Thank goodness for repentance. ;)
We then went to power hour at the Whitlocks and he directed us to two of his neighbors houses, walked us over, and got us some service opportunities! Sweet! We also gave someone a Book of Mormon on their street.
'Twas a good hour of power!
Then we had district meeting, always good.
We then met Doug and Julie. Love them, lots. Doug said he listened to General Conference at work and Julie might be starting seminary soon! Sweet!
Doug also told us that they say family prayer in the morning with all his kids and every time they say amen Julie always says with a loud voice, "AMEN!" She rocks! I love her!
Saturday: Exchanges with Sister Starr!!!!! In Tierra Santa!!!!!!!
Exchanges with Sister Starr and Sister Lao!
Tierra Santa is full of military folks, all over! So many people to talk to! And Sister Starr rocks at it! :) She shines super bright! ;)
We had an interesting moment where we street contacted these two people and they thought they would show us a scene from The Book of Mormon Musical. They thought we would like it. But we decided to talk about the actual book with them instead. They said they would pray about it too after they read it! Sweet.
Sunday: Stacey and Stephanie came to church!! We met with our branch president, went into a primary class to talk about missionary work and fasted that we would be able to add a family and invite three new people to be baptized this week. Yeah! Game Day.
We went to a break the fast with some of the older sisters in the Grossmont ward. One of them tried to set me up with her grandson. Ah awkward moments where you don't know how to react. Good times. We had an AWESOME power hour where I just felt prompted to knock on a lot of doors. Sister Purcell called it my spidery senses. Where I would walk by a house, then stare at it and then walk up to it. AND WE SAW A MILAGRO FROM IT! We knocked on the door, a YSA opened and was interested in hearing more and set an appointment! YAY!! And we invited him to be baptized! Taylor's cool. His appointment fell through but we will meet with him soon! :)
Monday: main even was Stacy. Which I already told you about.
She's awesome. We also did some training at zone meeting about follow up. It's important, in all aspects of life. You all should read M. Russell Ballard's general conference talk that's called "Following up." It's awesome. Missionary work is awesome!
We also found a secret less active! Gonna do some service for her on Thursday! The work is GREAT!!
The field is white and is being harvested! Come join in on the fun!
You can get a tan while you're at it. ;)
Well, at least in sunny San Diego. :)
I just really love you all.
His mission has expanded my love for everyone. My heart will burst, but I'll just keep loving everybody!
I'm cheering for all of you!
Sister Whitcomb
 Some members moved in and we taught them a lesson and they gave us roses!
 Aren't they beautiful?

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

my calling in life

Man oh man. Where to start. I JUST LOVE WHERE I AM!!! I love being a missionary, I love the people I serve with, I love my companions, members, recent converts, leaders, investigators, people I meet on the street!!! EVERYONE! It's cool to see what a calling of a missionary can do to you. ALSO CONGRATS TO AMANDA FOR GETTING YOUR MISSION CALL TO MEXICO!!! That's so exciting and I am so proud of you and I know you will make the best missionary EVER! :)
Thankfully on Tuesday we got our car back. And for PDay we also played some good American baseball.
Was I very good? No. But did I enjoy myself and especially the weather? Yes.
It was also the Boston Red Sox Home Opener. Coincidence? I think not.
We were able to drive to an appointment to see Netta. She's doing so good and we did service again with her on Friday where she baked treats for people and delivered it to them. She's a golden soul!
Then on Wednesday we literally talked to EVERYONE. We've seen a lot of people. And this week for some reason I felt extra motivated to talk to everyone. So we chased some people down, even if it did mean we had to cross four lanes of traffic. Worth it.
We shared the Hallelujah video a lot! It was awesome, but of course people have agency. During our studies we really focused on The Book of Mormon and how we need to center it on everything we do. EVERYTHING. And so we have been. We taught a little about it in District meeting, we've been role playing with it, and we've been street contacting with it! We gave out a lot of Books this week. So cool. One guy we were street contacting tried to walk by saying, "I'll talk to you when you can show me another book, besides the Bible, that testifies of Jesus Christ."
Oh sir, it is your lucky day. So he took a copy and said he would read it. Sweet.
When it rains, it pours.
Wednesday was also the day we had our last lesson with Vanessa as an investigator!!!!! It was awesome. She's awesome and her baptism was even more awesome. EXPLOSIVE to say the least. :) More to come on that day...
THEN ON THURSDAY WE SET GAIL WITH A BAPTISMAL DATE OF APRIL 30!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh it was the coolest thing ever! We brought an older member with us and we just started following up with her and her Easter and how she liked the womens' broadcast. She said she LOVED it and she was telling EVERYONE about it. She rocks. And then she goes on to say that as she is telling her friends, so many of them go "Oh Gail, you need to join that church." WHAT?!?!? SO COOOOOOLLLLLL!!! :)
Ah, so we invited her there and we set a goal of April 30th. :)
She's just the cutest but she's very sick. Please keep her in your prayers. We dropped off some different soups, homemade, this morning with a box of tissues and a picture of Christ. Love that lady. And when we saw her she was listening to General Conference! Oh she's so cool.
We've been having great power hours, great seed planting. We weekly planned, and saw Tina and Debbie. Interesting to say the least. Debbie refuses to be baptized and Tina wants to look into it more. They are a pair. And I love them both. And then we met with a returning less active, Daniel. What a good guy with a tender heart. Good man, good man.
Friday can only be described as "scoop and shimmy." Oh Netta, she's a funny one. While we were talking about doing service, we talked about her getting married in the temple. Since she wants to get married soon to her nonmember boyfriend. So she said she would read the Book of Mormon with him on the Temple grounds. How cute is that? Cute.
We had a cool experience in Lakeside where we started street contacting this man and he asked if I had been baptized, and how he could be baptized. So cool. An awesome referral for the Lakeside Elders! I love how I get to be a part of peoples' journeys even in little ways like that! It's awesome. :)
Before Gail got sick, we had her follow us to go to a member's home for dinner. Sister Moreau had invited her over. It was so cool! They got along very well and helped her get excited about her baptism! Oh, makes me happy! :)
Then that same night we were able to have another really spiritual tender lesson with Stephanie. Daniel can testify like a boss. OH AND WE HAD OUR FIRST COORDINATION MEETING WITH EDDIE THERE!!! He's just the coolest. :) Eddie's one of my favorites! :)
Woof. This weekend was the best but also the fastest! General conference. My favorites, were Elder Neil L. Andersen, Donald A Hallstrom, Mervyn B Arnold, M. Russell Ballard, Patrick Kearon and of course Jeffrey R Holland. But do you want to hear something sad? As the opening song on Sunday was happening, we had a BLACKOUT. The power totally went out all the way up to Poway! But thankfully kind members exist and one was at the stake center.
General Conference with the best members ever!
They invited us all over to catch the rest of the session. So we missed President Monson's talk and Sister Oscarson's talk. Sad day. But it's okay because technology is a blessing! I will read it soon, hopefully, and I'm sure he will be one of my favorites too!
Probably the biggest (conference) prompting I got was that my calling in life is to make a difference to the children who don't feel God's love. The strongest prompting I've ever received. And I'm excited to fulfill it. 
Sister Purcell and I also did comp inventory, she started crying. She said I was the most consecrated companion she's ever had.  She's the sweetest, love her.
We also finally saw John Stevenson, a recent convert in Grossmont. He's doing okay, and he knows the atonement is real.
Waffle Bar!
BECAUSE: conference, a member fed us a waffle bar lunch, and VANESSA GOT BAPTIZED!!!!!!!!
Ah, right after conference ended, we had her service.
 We LOVE Vanessa!
 And they do too!

She is the cutest! And it was the coolest baptismal service. Sisters Pilkington and Stewart, now Lexi and Suzie were able to skype in, with permission from President. Coolest thing!
Love them!
Wifi was struggling though, sorry sisters! But it was awesome.
Her cousins from L.A. who introduced her to the church were there and gave stellar talks. SO many NONMEMBERS were there as well. Vanessa's parents, brother, nieces and nephews, aunts and uncles, cousins. And all nonmembers! Good thing our restoration presentation was the BEST!!!
We used the TV and showed pictures of our families, a powerful little video of Christ, pictures with music and a video about The Book of Mormon. Boom. Instant spirit. :)
We came to find out that Vanessa's brother went through the Mormon Batallion and accepted a Book of Mormon, and a Mormon Battalion sister has been teaching him online and he said that he had listened in on our lessons and he loves it! FAMILIES CAN BE TOGETHER FOREVER! And I'm so excited for her family! :)
That same night we handed out a ton of Books of Mormon, watched the Hallelujah video with people on the street and we even got a few people to tear up. Good night. Good night.
Then Monday, we once again were left without a car. We had to bring it to the dealership this time for a cracked turbo. I promise you I don't race the car. I have no idea what happened. Sigh. The Lord has a plan! And the car had to stay overnight.
Thankfully we had MLC (Missionary Leadership Council) and we got the Monks, our senior missionary couple, to drop us off and we were inspired by President Schmitt.
And I always love seeing Sister Carlson.
We are totally soul sisters.
Some Elders walked up to us and said they had a referral from a member in their ward. They just got off the phone with the potential investigator, Stacy. She was in tears apparently, and said she wanted to be a member of our church. So we called her right away. She was still crying and just said how she wanted a new start, so we have an appointment with her today!!!
And guess what? We learned she is the Schmitts' friend and they are the ones who introduced the gospel to her! So they are coming with us tonight!! (No pressure:))
Then we used our members for rides after MLC and walked a lot. It was awesome.
We talked to a lot of people, shared the Hallelujah video, saw some more tears, all good things.
Then we had dinner with a part member family. It was hectic at a crazy restaurant. All we could do was talk about The Book of Mormon, commit her to read it, and tell her we will stop by sometime this week. She's cool, cute family, great potential. We are excited for her!
Then we had to run because our ride was here to drop us off at our Family Home Evening with the Carlsons, a family in the Grossmont ward. Great night, great member missionaries. Inspiring.
Then we met with a recent convert, DJ, who just moved into the branch. Greenest hair I've ever seen. But coolest conversion story, very spiritual man and he really wants his mom to have this. We helped him set a goal. He's cool. I love this area.
And I truly love this work.
I love the trials I face that make me stronger.
I love the people I've met and I know I've met them before.
It's the coolest.
And I'm also grateful I get to be together forever with my family. I know that sentence gets said a lot but it couldn't be more true.
I love it and I love all of you.
Keep following the Savior's light. He and I love you!
Sister Whitcomb