Tuesday, August 13, 2013

This Place is On Fire!

I love love love love love being a missionary. This place is on fire. Literally. A raging fire of mountain fires!!!! Like I don't even know what to do with myself. We have scheduled appointments booked out all day all the way till THIS COMING SATURDAY!!! Can you believe it? Besides being super stressed and trying to finish training Sister Wilcox before the transfer, LIFE IS GREAT! The Lord has literally been blessing us so much and has been helping us to grow and become into the women and missionaries that we need to be.  I have been studying faith a lot...and am starting to see first hand the power that faith actually has. Really, truly NOTHING is impossible if you have faith and if you are willing to act upon that faith. I wanted to first give a shout out to everyone who sent me stuff for my birthday! I actually kind of forgot that it was even my birthday...and then--mail! THANK YOU!!! Thanks for supporting me and making it such a special day. I consider you to be the COOLEST family and friends in the world! I hope someday I will be as magnificent as all of you are. Thank you for your service and kindness.
But, guess what?! JACQUELINE JIMMENEZ IS NOW BAPTIZED AND CONFIRMED A MEMBER OF THE CHURCH!!!! I seriously could not ask for a better birthday present than that!!! Jacqueline and her husband where a referral from the ward members. When we started teaching her, I thought that her husband would get baptized before she would. But, she felt the Spirit. She felt the love from the ward. She felt wanted. and she KNOWS that the Gospel is the only way that we can truly be happy in our lives. Now, she is baptized, and her husband will probably be there in the water in a couple of weeks (he has got to give up the smokes first). But we were so excited for them! The day of Jackie's baptism was probably the craziest day of my life! We decided to reactive the Rojas family by taking them out on splits with us and it has
Elder Ross (who baptized Jacqueline), Jacqueline and her family and Sister Wilcox!
worked! They are now faithful members and came to the baptism on Saturday! What joy it was to see them there! When we were asking Jackie who she would like to baptize her, she asked me to do it....hahahaha so, we had to review the lesson about the proper priesthood authority. So instead of baptizing her, she asked me to speak about Baptism. I told a story about a friend and I went and got really gross and muddy and wanted to be clean again so we jumped in a spring lake. The feeling of cleanliness is incredible, and I am so So SO SO happy that Jackie got to experience that first hand, but SPIRITUALLY...which is like 10 times cooler anyways. And guess what? We all get to do that every week during Sacrament...that is why it is so important to go to church! Anyways we helped Jackie get all ready for her baptism and walked her into the dressing room before going into the font. She told us that she was a little nervous but excited. We prayed. Then we watched her go under the water and start her life over again. SHE BECAME NEW. SHE STARTED A NEW LIFE. And when she came back up from the water she was literally glowing. She was so happy. I was standing there at the font stairs and I was literally in such a warm spiritual place and in a daze of happiness (good thing I didn't fall into the font!) that I didn't realize that I didn't have a towel for her. Oops. Nice going Sister Weenig, golden star for you! So we used other dry baptismal clothes....whoops! After she was changed and all she had asked my companion and I to sing. We had prepared the song "Mas cerca Dios De Ti" (Nearer my God to Thee) a'capella with harmonies (SHOUT OUT TO NOTEWORTHY!) And while we were singing Jackie started crying (either because it was really bad or that someone had just cut onions). Then Jackie bore her testimony. POWERFUL. I will never forget it. She said that this will change her and her family forever. She kept thanking us, but we didn't do anything. She said that she knows for a fact that the Gospel is true and that she knows that she is a daughter of God. I couldn't stop smiling. Actually, I was smiling so much my cheeks almost died of muscle strain. Her husband and two little kids where there. As I looked at them something struck me. I looked over and saw all of them dressed in white, entering the temple to be sealed for eternity. I KNOW that they will. And I hope I am around on my mission still to see it all happen! WHAT AN INCREDIBLE DAY! Jackie has paved the way for her entire family! and I am so excited for her!
Sacrament meeting of amazing. and stress. Story time. 4 of our investigators came to church yesterday and 5 less actives that we have been working with came to church. WHAT?! can you even believe it!? We didn't even know who to sit by, there is only two of us! The ward was so kind and open to our investigators and took them right under their wing! Jackie was confirmed a member of the church and then right after the meeting introduced us to two of her friends that want to hear the missionaries and be baptized!!!! WOW!!!! I couldn't even believe it! But what was even more amazing is that all of them but one stayed for ALL THREE hours of church! It was so much fun!!! Being a missionary, church is really stressful---especially when you have investigators coming. Coordinating rides for them, making sure someone of their same age, country and gender is there to greet them, sit by them and make sure that they are understanding and enjoying there experience at church. No big deal...it isn't like there whole salvation is on the line or anything.....ha ha. Anyways what an amazing week! Apparently our zone had 25 people at church on Sunday and our zone leaders almost past out!
This 40 days of fasting is killer, but a its like a chocolate covered onion. It is literally refining everything that I am horrible at out of my life but it isn't exactly fun. I am craving to develop more Christ like attributes. I have discovered that the promise in Ether 12 that if we "come unto Christ, He will show you your weakness" is really true. and sometimes the truth ain't pretty. But I know I invited all of you to try it as well and want to invite you again! Things that have always been so hard are getting a little easier every single day! Prayer really does work and Heavenly Father really will help us make ALL of our weaknesses become strengths.
Member missionary work is the greatest thing that happened to missionaries. and missionary work. If you are a member of the church and you are reading this---guess what? You are a full time missionary. WE NEED YOU! We have been working hard to get members present with us for every lesson and for every time that we even go out and tract or whatever it is, and it makes ALL the difference!!! Go help the missionaries! They need you!! :) I am falling more and more in love with the people here, especially the members. Working with them makes lessons so much more powerful and gives the investigators a chance to connect on a deep level with someone other than 2 gringas!
Miracles all over the place! Birthday miracles. They happen. Especially when you forget it is your birthday. And I seriously don't even think I deserve the amazing day that I got. But I have decided and know that got really is so aware of us and wants us to feel loved and special....even on our birthdays. So I woke up to my wonderful companion who had put up a birthday sign and cupcakes. What. My favorite---red velvet nonetheless. (she is the coolest companion ever.) Then we got a call from the mission president. He sang happy birthday to me! How nice! And then--the kicker. He was like you have something amazing awaiting you in the office, "get in here now before it is all gone!" So we drove to the office! There stood a fruit
bouquet sent from my dearest friend Candice Ann Clawson and her family! It was so delicious! Since our mail has been down for a couple of weeks there was also other packages from my wonderful family and letters from friends! I can't thank you all enough. It made the day super special. But then, guess what? I was driving us home and I got lost. I look like 398409384039 wrong turns and started to get really frustrated with the situation. We had a lesson set up to go over and the knock the door of one of our member's friends and we were late! But I have learned something, the Lord has timing for everything. If we had been on time, we would not have found Juan! Juan is an investigator we have been searching for forever and because we came when we did we were able to catch him out walking on the street! We got to teach him a lesson and now he is committed to baptism! WA HOO!! Miracle. Then we rushed down to Danilo's house. His little son's Leo's birthday was on the 7th as well so be brought him cupcakes and got to teach his dad.They literally have nothing. His dad had nothing to give him on his birthday and I felt horrible. But when he saw the cupcakes we brought him his little face lit up. Miracle. Then we rushed over to Stella, Jorge and Julia's house to teach them a quick lesson before we had to head out to Jackie's baptismal interview. We taught them the power of prayer. They have changed so much and they are reading the scriptures and wanting to know more. They are an amazing family. I can't wait to see them get baptized. So we extended a baptismal date to them for the 7th of September....and....THEY ACCEPTED!!! We were bouncing off the walls! Then, if that wasn't enough, they went to the back room and pulled out a tres leches cake for my birthday! THEY ARE THE GREATEST PEOPLE EVER! They even had a happy birthday sign on it. They told us the reason that they did it, was because they know that we are servants of the Lord and "don't ever get tocelebrate birthdays." It meant the world to me. As we ate cake, I thought about them and their service that they had given to a total stranger. Do we ever stop to serve the strangers in our life? That made such a HUGE impact on me. On a day that was just a regular day of work, they had made it so special and changed my whole day. I am so grateful for them and their example! The Lord watches out for His missionaries. Then we rushed to the church for Jackie's baptismal interview and she passed with flying colors!! Man, it was a great day. But actually it is just the greatest work in the world. Serving the Lord is the greatest thing in the world and I have never been so happy in my entire life. :)
Thanks for all your support and love. I love you so much and pray for you always. Never forget that faith can move mountains. (Alma 32:21). Set your goals high, and then rely on the Lord to help you achieve them! He will. I know He will. He has carried me. He will carry you. He is still carrying me, and I can't do this without Him.
Thanks again for everything!

Love, your biggest fan,
Hermana Weenig

 For p-day we went to the Potomac river for a gaunt and got to see all the cool docks and stuff just right across from Washington D.C.

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