|Me, Very Sickly:(|
This week, I got the flu or some strange San Franciscan disease, and was barfing up anything in my poor little tummy between lessons. I got 2 hours of sleep one night because I was getting weird bloody noses, and by Saturday night I was so weak that I could hardly walk up the stairs to my apartment because I couldn't eat all week. It was very interesting. I decided to never be sick again. My companion got a little frustrated with me, because I refused to stay inside. Hello. There are people to teach.
Regardless, this week was just oh so wonderful. I'll start with John:) We taught him four lessons this week AND he came to church again, which makes me so so happy! He came to the Visitors Center in Oakland with us and cried during the Joseph Smith movie. We had the most amazing lesson with him while sitting on a cement block in some random park because his car was getting fixed:) Oh, missionary work. We taught him a lesson about obedience. My wonderful companion asked him: John, have you been praying about if you should be baptized on July 27th?
|At the Visitor's Center|
We have been praying a lot to know what his concern is, and how we can help him. He believes everything we say, he just won't commit. So we decided to get to the bottom of it this lesson! He laughed and said he hadn't prayed about it. I was so overwhelmed by the Spirit and I opened my mouth and out it came! Out came his concern, right out of my mouth!
"John, and you afraid to pray because you know what the answer will be?"
He was a little bit surprised, but said: "Yeah, yeah I think that is it."
Sister Olsen: "John, will you pray right now to know if you need to be baptized on July 27th? Ask God specifically, He will answer you."
So there we knelt on the cement, and John offered up maybe the most sincere prayer I've ever heard: "Lord, help me understand. Lord, help me know. Should I be baptized on July 27th?"
It was silent for a very long time, even minutes. The Spirit was strong, and I was almost in tears by the end of it. He finally said "amen" quietly. He knows what his answer is, I think. He just is scared, which I understand. We have been praying every prayer that we say that the Lord will help him feel at peace about the things he is learning.
There is a wonderful family in our ward who doesn't come too often anymore due to their two children, both who have severe muscular dystrophy. This week I decided to ask if they would like me to come over and help the sweet girl play the piano. So now I'm teaching her piano a little bit every week, before we leave them with a message about the peace of Jesus Christ:) It was one of the best parts of my week.
Adam is a very special kid. He is intelligent and extremely in tune to the Spirit. This week he told us that he was trying and trying to open a jar of jelly, but he couldn't because it was too tight. He said a silent prayer and the next time he tried, the jar cap was so loose that it just came off:) You know, I wish I had faith like him.
We are still teaching the Enriquez family! They are one of a kind, and all six of them are interested:) They are coming to church on Sunday, and I have faith that they will never miss again.
San Francisco is extremely hilly, for all those of you who haven't seen "The Princess Diaries." We were driving up a huge hill/mountain this week and came to a stop sign. There was a young man about our age running up it who arrived at the stop sign at about the same time we did. He looked at us and smiled and got in race start position. We rolled the window down, one, two, three GO, and our race began. Car versus sprinter, we were laughing and laughing. (He was dying and sweating and I kinda wanted to get out and actually race him, but remembered that I wear skirts every day of my life.) We waited for him at the top of the hill, and we are actually going to teach him tonight:) He is fron Bagdad and has never heard of mormons. I'm thrilled about it all:) Finding people is so fun.
This week we realized from a very awkward confrontation that a former investigator really wasn't interested at all in the church, but in me. I WAS SO MAD. He has called us about 20 times in the last three days. STALKER #2. I honestly haven't been this upset at someone in a really long time. He was extremely rude to my companion. Don't you dare talk to her that way. I had to seriously bite my tongue, because he was cornering me, the twit! People.
Saturday was exhausting, and I was struggling through having no food and still puking up any water that was in me. We had seven lessons to teach that day. But, my day was absolutely made by our new friend Betty. We knocked on only one door on this street before going to our next appointment, and this big black lady answers the door. She grew up the preacher's daughter, and sings in a gospel choir. She said that she never answers the door, but when she heard us knock, something told her: "It's ok, go get the door." She talked about her husband passing and cried to us and laughed with us. We talked about eternal families. She was loud and her laugh is enough to make ANYONE'S day. She told us: "WELL MY GOSH YOU GIRLS BETTA COME BACK! Anytime I see my lil girls on my porch, I'll be answerin this door! OHHHHHHHHH just look at you and your cute lil smilin faces!!!!!! YOU GIRLS JUST DONE MADE MY DAY!!" I smiled for a solid half hour after leaving her house:)
I have a deep respect for other religions. I believe that God hears all the prayers of His children, and I believe that it really comes down to what is in our individual hearts. Betty has a good heart. Betty has a golden heart. She knows all her neighbors and prays for them all and just, just loves people. She made me want to be better, and I can hardly wait to go see her again:)
We found 2 new investigators this week and continue to teach over 20 lessons a week. It is very fun, and very busy. One of the investigators is from a part-member family. He expressed to us that someone, (years ago,) had said something that offended him, and that he's been walking with a thorn in his foot since then. I said: "Josue, we would like to invite you to bend over and take out that thorn. That has GOT to be getting seriously old. We're going to come teach you if you don't mind." NEW INVESTIGATOR, YES!
Yesterday we were talking to an appointment when we came across a woman, 50 or so, with her head down. We stopped and asked her how she was. We were a little persistent, and she started crying. "Girls, I have cancer. I've got cancer. I found out Friday and I can't tell my husband and I don't know what to do."
This woman has been abused since age 4, on her own since age 8. Seriously, she told us things that made me cringe. (I was praying for forgiveness for being a weenie about having an upset stomach.) She told us that she couldn't remember the last time she actually talked to someone. We sat down, one of us on each side of her, and put our arms around her and just listened. She kept telling us how beautiful we were and she just kept saying: "Thank you, thank you, thank you. I'm just a little scared. Just don't know what to do." We read her John 16:33 about Christ overcoming the world and I prayed for her, fervently. Please bless our new friend, dear Lord.
And I really really meant that prayer. She said she couldn't remember the last time she had a friend. We told her now she had two, and that she always had the Lord. She just hugged us and cried and said: "I love you, I love you girls, I love you." She is hopefully coming to dinner with us tonight. Oh, I love her.
I have a testimony of this gospel, of the Book of Mormon, and of Jesus Christ as our Savior. He is doing this work by our side.