Blessings this week: There was a training meeting for the trainers in the mission for three days. It was in Manchester (which is a journey for us) so we packed bags and stayed with the Sisters in Manchester South. The Sister are...drum roll please...Sister Hulet and Sister Low! I was such a JOY to see Sister Low again and rejoice together in how we have both grown. The really amazing part of the experience is that while our trainers were in meetings those three days there were four of us new sisters that were turned loose on Manchester! We basically did street contacting for seven hours each of those days and it was SO hard. And I LOVED it! I think it is the first time that I have really felt that I was thrashing the field : ) We just let the rubber hit the road and stopped everyone! People in Manchester are in general more willing to talk than in Lancaster, so in that sense it was a break.
The best, best, best was that on the third day Sister Gallozo (she is from Spain and was in the MTC with me) and I actually found someone that was really waiting for us! It was the first Divine Appointment I've had (that I can be SURE of). Ann is about sixty and she was just sitting on a bench looking lonely. When we asked her what it would mean to her to be able to be with her family after death she looked at us and said, "Well, that would be the most wonderful thing, wouldn't it?" I almost fell over. NO ONE says that. It came out that most of her family members (husband and children included) have died. She has attended many churches but felt something has been missing. We bore testimony to her of the restoration and then the two of us taught her the first lesson right on that bench. When we recited the first vision we waited for a long time for her to open her eyes. I asked her how she felt and her face just broke into this HUGE smile. She said she felt happy and relaxed for the first time in years. We testified of the power of the Spirit in confirming truth and she said she knew that the Book of Mormon had to be true. We invited her to be baptized in four weeks and she said yes. (No, I'm not making this up!) After setting up a follow-up appointment we told her the Book of Mormon was hers to keep and she kissed it. I promised her that this marks the beginning of a new life for her. I am SO sad that I can't teach her, but I know that Sister Low and Sister Hulet will be just what she needs and I feel privileged to have been the first one to share with her the wonderful light of the gospel. I know that it was a gift to me from the Lord and I will always remember it.
Another miracle: Last week, Sister Anderson and I taught a street lesson in Lancaster (the only one since I've been out). Andrew was not touched immediately but he came to church. It was there that he really felt the Spirit and our next lesson was incredible. He is so comforted that he will be able to see his mother again after this life. He's had a rough go of it, and after making some changes and meeting with us even just twice, he is SO much happier. He just decided on Saturday to get baptized on September 25. I know. I'm being so blessed. I know. No really, I know. I feel so privileged to witness his conversion. He is amazing. He's taking to the gospel like a fish to water. You can see this light come on when we teach him a new principle and then he just expounds on it, like he has known it forever. The Plan of Salvation becomes more real to me every day. What I mean by that is that it has become so clear that those we are teaching have already known these things before. It has become so clear that working with the Savior is the ONLY way for each of us to fulfill our earthly purpose. It has become so clear to me that Heavenly Father loves each of his children desperately and want them back, and that is painful.