WOW WOW WOW. This week has been absolutely crazy. We have officially made it into “winter” in Nebraska….the other day when we got in the car it said 0 degrees, and I’m pretty sure it just said that because the car doesn’t display negatives. Or wind chill. It is COLD and is definitely beginning to look a lot like Christmas. How in the world did that happen? Wasn’t it July yesterday? Seems like it. I got our family Christmas card yesterday (and didn’t appreciate seeing my release date on the page) but loved to see your beautiful faces smiling up at me! I’m also so grateful for the testimonies I have received so far. They have made me laugh and cry and I am so thankful to my Heavenly Father for letting me have such wonderful people in my life.
In the news department for the week….JACOB GOT BAPTIZED! I had the biggest tender mercy on Friday, when, as per usual, Sister Brough called me and said we were supposed to be putting on a concert at the Kanesville Tabernacle in a few hours. So, we threw stuff together and headed to the concert. It felt like going home because when I was serving in Loess Hills I lived right up the street from the Tabernacle! We were only 2 songs into our little concert when Jacob walked in! BEST SURPRISE EVER. I knew at that point that I wasn’t going to be able to make it to his baptism because I was on shift at the TC, so it was so good to get to talk to him and see how happy he was and how excited he was for his baptism! Sister Harris and Sister Jensen (my old companion, not my current companion) said that the baptism was incredible and that he was beaming all day.
In other news, WILLIAM IS GETTING BAPTIZED ON SATURDAY! Talk about white Christmas! He has changed so much, and he is SO prepared. Did I tell you how we found him? Our recent convert Johnney (pronounced John-ay) lived at the Open Door Mission (a shelter) before he was kicked out for being baptized. Don’t even get me started on how sad that part is. He invited one of his friends William from the shelter to his baptism, then he started the lessons, and has just instantly gained a testimony of the truthfulness of the gospel. He keeps saying that if he would have had the commandments his whole life, he would have been so much happier, and that now he can become the man that God wants him to be. We love him SO MUCH.
The most important part of our week, honestly, was all about Liz. Bishop Jevne gave us an address of a new move in to the ward and asked us to go find her. Sister Jensen was on splits with a member of our ward, so Sister Mahlstede and I went to find her. It was really dark and in a humble part of Omaha, and so when she saw two people walking up the street she started backing into her house until we called out and asked if her name was Liz. She came closer, and then started bawling and hugging us, telling us that us being there was an answer to her prayers. We walked into her house (in the basement) and found a completely unfinished basement with no carpet, no walls other than the support beams, and no water supply other than her shower, so she washes her dishes and everything else in the shower. She has four-year-old son named Ricky that is autistic, and has my same birthday, and we hit it off so well. I LOVE THAT KID. It is scary because it really isn't a good situation with her husband, so we are trying to do everything we can to help her in that regard.
We got a phone call Sunday morning that she couldn't come to church because Ricky got LICE. Hahaha Mahlstede and I just stared at each other for about 5 minutes straight with panic on our faces. Ha. Not really that long, but it felt like it. Luckily, Heavenly Father knew that was going to happen so He placed Sister Clements in our ward. She is a cosmetologist who also just happens to have a lice killing business. She went with us yesterday and taught us how to help her so we could get through Ricky and Liz's hair quicker. She was so busy but just dropped everything right away to come serve. That is the kind of ward I am serving in right now!!!! So blessed. So we learned how to get rid of lice and helped her do that, and then took her bedding and washed it so she would have clean bedding to sleep on that night with clean hair.
I love being a missionary. I love getting to serve in the ways the Savior would serve if He were here, especially at this Christmas season. The Spirit is so strong because it is His season, and I love the opportunity I have to share His good news.
I love you all!