This week I made it up a half mile hill that we have to ride up to go from the MRT station to our apartment! Yeah! That was an accomplishment- the past two times I had to get off and walk up half way through. But this last time I was determined to make it so I just put my bike in the lowest gear and powered all the way up. :D And as I told Jared last week, I am actually getting tan, which is a new experience for me since I have never been anything but white white white. Kinda fun.
|evidence of a actual tan...for nicole, that is|
Tuesday I had one of the strangest experiences I've had since coming out on my mission. We had set up with a less active member who lives up in the mountains to go help her pull weeds. On the way up, she called and said she wasn't feeling well, but would still like us to come and help clean the inside of her house instead. We got there, and there was blood everywhere, literally everywhere- on the floor, on the table, on the chairs. We asked her what happened and she said that her friend who was staying with her cut his hand two days earlier. We went into the room and there was dried blood all over him, his clothes, his hand. We tried to convince him that he needed to go to the hospital, but he said he was fine. We called the elders because we wanted to get some priesthood holders to come up there with us. While we waited for them, we sang some hymns and then put on some gloves and started helping clean up all the blood. Pretty gross. The elders came and gave them both priesthood blessings. From the moment they opened the container of oil, the spirit and power of the priesthood was so strong. They ended up teaching the guy the first lesson, and he said a prayer. The less active member insisted on us staying for dinner (yep, you can bet I was a little sketched out about eating food that was prepared in a house with blood and bugs and dirt everywhere, but I did it, even when I had to pick little bugs out of the rice). The atmosphere there when we left was SO much different from when we got there. It's amazing what the Spirit can do. And the guy with the bloody hand showed up at church yesterday, wearing clean clothes. So that was cool. And neither of us is sick from the food, which is also cool.
On Thursday we had temple tour training and then temple square tours. My favorite part of temple tour training is always President Day's part. He is an amazing man- so loving and kind and full of the spirit. We are so lucky to have him and Sis Day leading us. We had two tours scheduled with other missionaries' investigators- one of which was to a really nice Muslim guy. It was really weird and kind of hard to do a tour in English! A young man who was recently baptized brought his friend in to do a tour, and his friend had lots of questions about Christ, the Atonement, repentance and forgiveness. We talked a lot about that and how because of Jesus Christ we can be clean from sin. We invited him to be baptized, and he accepted! Twice later on during the tour, he said, "I really want to be baptized." He is excited to meet with the missionaries in the area that he lives. Go member missionary work!
We are meeting with an awesome investigator named X DX. He has a baptismal date set for the 23rd of this month. When we met with him this past week, he bore a really powerful testimony about how every time he has a doubt or a question, God resolves it through the Book of Mormon or something we say. He is super prepared and we will be teaching him lesson 5 and going over the baptismal interview questions this week so he can have his baptismal interview the beginning of next week!
Last night, we had set up to meet with a new investigator. The plan was to meet up at a 7-11 and then go to her house. As we got on our bikes to ride to the appointment, I had a really bad feeling and the most overwhelming thought that we should not go with her to her house. She was already at the 7-11 when we arrived, so we gave her a Book of Mormon and told her that we something had come up and we couldn't meet with her. I don't know why I had that feeling, but I am so incredibly grateful for the Spirit to warn us of danger and to protect us.
Honestly, there have been times this week when I have loved being a missionary and times when I wonder how on earth I am going to make it through the next year because I am just so exhausted all the time and a year seems like a really long time. I am trying really hard to love every day and enjoy the experience. Thank you for all of your support and encouragement. I love you and pray for you every day!