Today preparation day which kind of threw us in a different direction to begin with. We had Mission Leadership Council which was as great as it always is. I had to give a talk and beforehand I was a little shaky. (y'all know how I get when I have to speak:) Luckily, there was no standing microphone that I could touch a million times. Just a clip on mic. :) But it surprisingly went really well. When President Craven had originally asked, he said it was going to be a talk. Then on the agenda for the meeting, it said training...so I kind of freaked because I hadn't prepared it as a training (who knew there was a difference right? there's a big one:) But it all went well and from my companion's opinion, it made sense so that's a good thing.
During MLC President Craven had us all turn to Acts chapter 10. We talked about the story of Cornelius and Peter. He highlighted how each of us has Cornelius experiences as missionaries and that we are lead to people and people are lead to us. He asked one of the Assistants to share a Cornelius experience he had had. It was powerful and then he walked over to us and handed Sister Jameson the mic and said, Sister Jameson, will you please share your Cornelius experience with us? She started from the very beginning and gave a brief summary of our experience with Steve. I hadn't heard her side of the entire situation but it was amazing. The night we went to Steve's house we had earlier been in a lesson with our Elders and an investigator of theirs who was GOLDEN. (one of those people you find one day and three weeks later they're baptized-that's what happened with her) She explained how during that lesson she prayed that we could find our golden investigator. Someone who just needed the gospel at this moment in time. That night Sister Jameson prayed for Steve, Steve prayed for us to find him, and we followed the Spirit. It truly was a Cornelius experience. God blessed us for our diligence and patience.
On Wednesday, there were two sister missionaries from the Temple Square mission that were flying in for their "outbound" that afternoon so Sister Jameson and I got to go to the airport and pick them up. Standing at the bottom of the escalator brought back every nervous feeling I felt the first day I was here and came down the same escalator to see President and Sister Craven at the bottom of the stairs. It amazed me at how much time has passed and how different of a person I've become since that day. Sister Shumway and Sister Whisler spent the rest of the evening with us. We took them to a dinner appointment and straight out to knock on some doors. It was fun to get a different perspective involved. The next day we took them to the mission office to be interviewed and get some paperwork taken care of and then we spent the rest of the day moving. it was quite a trip.
But among all the insanity of moving apartments, a little miracle occurred. We went into the office at our complex to sign some papers and get the actual lease for the housing coordinator. Sister Jameson and I were just sitting at the chairs while the cute office lady, Opal. (mid twenties-ish, super cute girl from SC and looks like she's a celeb) was working away on her computer. I decided to break the awkward silence and started asking her questions about herself. She told us she was originally from Myrtle Beach area and had been in Charlotte for about two years. We went back and forth with typical introductions and I asked her what brought her up to Charlotte. She spoke very softly and said, well I came up to be here with my sister who lived up here, but she passed away in February. She started to cry and kept working on all the paperwork. We continued to talk about other things related to moving and our apartment and then we were about to go and Sister Jameson said, Opal, have you ever met with missionaries before? She shook her head and Sister Jameson briefly explained how missionaries share a message about God's plan for families and about how she can be with her sister again. She started crying and pulled out a sticky note and asked us to write down our phone number and our names and handed us her info card. God will lead them to us and lead us to them. We just have to respond to the Spirit, open our mouths, and trust that God will provide us with the opportunity to share what we know.
WHOOOO. Life's a whirlwind. It's been the best and the hardest eight months of my life. I love being a missionary. I am learning so much everyday! I was reading in Mosiah 18 this morning about Alma baptizing in the Waters of Mormon and was amazed at what faith the people had. Such simple and willing faith in their Savior, Jesus Christ. They knew the truth, so they did what was asked of them. The covenanted with God to serve Him and obey Him. Like what dad was saying, the chose to follow their Savior. No one forced them to. Lately I've been praying for increased faith in my Savior. We don't have faith in an outcome, we have faith in our Savior, Jesus Christ. And as our faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement increases, we have a desire to change and repent and the process of applying the Doctrine of Christ in our life becomes the focus.
You're all in my prayers a million times;)
Sister (Carolina) Webber