Tuesday, November 6, 2012

November 1st miracles

Hello family,
I am glad Halloween was fun for most of you! Send more pics, my companion thought Lizzie and Gavin were beautiful children! Halloween for missionaries here was "Happy Haunted Housecleaning" and it was from 6-9 at night. We finally got to get rid of stuff left behind by old missionaries. Oh man, especially sisters leave bath products that stain shelves and old clothes and blankets that hang out in bags, etc. We also found rice STILL in the rice cooker!! It was green and smelled horrible! :p Also our shelf with all our pamphlets and books was crazy, so it felt soooo good to finally get organized and sanitized! We felt like our apartment was now ready to feel the Holy Ghost better. But before Halloween, I went on my first exchange!
I got to travel to a city called San Mateo, which is a spanish area right by San Francisco! I was with one of the mission's sister trainers, Sister Croft. It was such a great experience! Of course she took me tracting right away, which was what I needed. She helped me out sooo much with her advice and experience. She said I was a good luck charm because almost every door we knocked, people talked to us. I told her it was cause I was blonde. Of course most people were talking in Spanish so I just stood there and caught bits and pieces of "Catolica" haha.  But we went to an apartment complex and talked to some English people so I did get some practice, and we got invites to come back! When I went to a lesson, she explained to the investigator that I didn't speak Spanish, so she asked me a question or asked me to bear my testimony and then she translated, so that was pretty cool, although I didn't get to use my Spanish testimony I had practiced. The members we took with us were so nice, calling me "an angel" and giving us tamales! Also, the fact that the Giants won the World Series is a huge deal around here. San Mateo had Giants shirts on sale in the street and San Francisco had a parade for them that everyone was watching. I got to stay in the sister trainers apartment and see all the full proslyting sisters names and areas so I found out where the other English places are that I could go to. But overall, Sister Croft taught me a lot and my companion learned a lot from her exchange as well, so we came out pumped and ready to be better missionaries!
So November 1 was a day full of miracles. First of all, our morning appointment with our Korean investigator got cancelled, but we were already at the library where she likes to meet so we decided to just contact in the park next to it. It was my turn to approach, and the first person I talked to was a guy living with his friend and looking for a job and looking to get closer to God. We told him about the Book of Mormon and if he wanted to learn more about it, etc. He said he didn't have a place to meet, he didn't want to meet at the library, but how about our church?! Of course! Then we contacted a guy that actually recognized us from our street display day. He didn't want to learn more, but said he would go the visitor's center. Then we went to go knock on a former investigator's door, and there were professional carpet cleaners cleaning everything out, so clearly he had moved. Sad, but we decided to knock on some doors around the complex anyways. A college student answered the door. He lives with his parents there who are Catholic, but he is not a practicing one. We gave him an invite to mormon.org and asked if he wanted a Book of Mormon that we could drop off the next day, adn he said yes! The day after we did come back, and he had actually looked at the website! He said that it was cool we were Christians and then accepted the Book of Mormon. We are meeting with him this next week. Then we went to our Mongolian couple investigators, Zaya and Peter. The language barrier is hard, but they want to learn more about following Jesus Christ. We were concerned for the husband's understanding, becasue he seems embarrassed sometimes. But later his wife told us he had read all the pamphlets and was researching Jesus Christ. Oh and while I had been on exchanges, Zaya said she wanted to be baptized on November 25! This is good progress for them, but we are struggling getting them to church. Even reminder after reminder and they said they were coming and they still havent. Then after dinner we went to go to another former's apartment, but her roommate answered the door. After talking with him a little bit, he came outside and talked about how he was actually looking for a church, and his name is Emmanuel! He wanted us to come back, but then he didn't know when. So I thought well if he's looking for a church, he should come to ours! So I invtied him and he said that would actually be perfect! THEN we went to our forever investigator's house, and during the lesson, I felt the Spirit so strong after we talked about following the prophet (and watching a video about President Monson), obedience, and baptism is a commandment. I started getting frustrated with her joking around, and turned on the bold missionary switch. I said that it was not the missionaries asking her to be baptized, it was the Lord, and I started testifying of the Savior, and it was like nothing I had experienced before. I looked her straight in the eye and I can't even remeber what I said but you could feel the Spirit almost tangibly, and everything was dead silent. She finally said that she did want baptism and that she would change (word of wisdom habits) once she got that testimony. That is what we had been looking for, was for her to say it from her own mouth that she would change. So now we are helping her get her answer. And can I just say, her member daughter has been reading the scriptures and watching lds videos with her now, and she is praying, and cutting dramatically down on her word of wisdom. Everytime we saw her it was different. She had us over for dinner and had cleaned her house and made a really nice dinner, and we could feel the Spirit in her home again.
All of those lesson and contacts were on November 1st and I was so excited I couldn't sleep that night. If I could feel like that everyday out here....I know that is a rare day, but one I will treasure! Since then some of those appointments got dropped or people didn't show for church, but we have more exciting things happening this week! Namely our next door neighbor family is really prepared and eager to hear from missionaries! Sorry I forgot my cord again, but I will send some great pictures next week. I LOVE YOU ALL! Share the gospel with someone this week. Turn a comment into an invitation.
Lots of love,
Sister Martin

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