Can I just start out by saying...A;LGIJEOAIJ34GOAIWJ,LBXMV .,BMXDBFLUIAEWYGP9AWOIHEGLNKV,MDV;lkjd;lfkjhna;elrkhhg! Ah....I feel much better! It has been a rough week here in the wonderful city of Lafayette! But, we did meet some truly amazing people. This week Sister Aka and I made a goal to talk to everyone and try different things that we have been told to try, and while we did meet some very interesting people, we did not find any new investigators. Our numbers were the lowest I have had my entire mission. But! We did have some good things happen, and I will tell you about those so that I may focus on the positive.
Well this week, we had set up 8 different lessons for members to come out with us to, 5 of them happened, and one of them was with an investigator. But, on Monday night, Sister Strickland came out with us to teach a woman named Minnette, and she canceled, so we decided that we would go to the Trinder's a little bit earlier. So off we went to see the Trinder's! We went to the address that was located on the ward roster, and we ended up in a rather scary part of town. Apparently there used to be shootings there once a week...as we were driving, Sister Strickland hastily locked the doors or her wonderful Infiniti. We then proceeded to have a wonderful lesson with Sister Trinder and her son, and Sister Strickland was really able to connect with Sister Trinder, and it was REALLY neat. Man, I love how Heavenly Father works. They both really needed a friend.
On Tuesday Sister Istre was supposed to come out with us, but we didn't make it back from Zone Conference in time.
On Wednesday, we rode our bikes on over to the church after calling Espirit a couple of times hoping she would be there...we sat at the church for 30 minutes before we figured that she was not coming. We had just about left the church when we get a phone call saying she forgot about us...ug.
Thursday, Sister Awbrey came with us to see Kim...Oh Kim, Kim, Kim...Well, Kim I think is now officially avoiding us...she started smoking again, and forgot about our appointment that we had set up with her... After dinner, Sister Kulbeth came out with us to go and try some people, and oh my goodness! Coolest thing ever! So when I first got to Lafayette, Sister Aka and I went to go and tract in this appartment neighborhood, and we met a cool girl named Deandre, and we kept trying to get a hold of her because she seemed pretty receptive. After a while, we gave up. Well we decided on Thursday night that we would go try them again. We knock on the door, and she is not there. We start talking to her Dad, and we set up a time to come back, and he says "Y'all know we're Mormons right?".....WHAT!!!!! Ha, we all started laughing, and he invited us in, and we found out that they had lost everything in a fire and had been having trouble getting back on their feet and had been moving around a lot, but they had moved back to Lafayette, and wanted to start coming to church again. They have a 12 year old daughter who was not baptized, and she is cute. Her name is Jouree...I have no idea if that is how you are supposed to spell it. Anyway, hopefully we will start teaching the whole family again, and the daughter will be baptized. :D YAY! We also set some appointments up with some really cool people for this upcoming week, hopefully we will see more miracles this week!
On Friday we went with Sister Stewart to see Timmy...man he is so funny...and aggravating. I love going to teach Timmy. It's like teaching a little kid! He is just a sweet heart. He's aggravating though because he didn't come to church this week. :( Sad day. Hopefully we can help him with that then. But yeah...That night we had an appointment set up to go out with Sister Walker, and what do you know? Ten minutes before, she calls us 10 minutes before and cancels...All of our plans were far away, and now we were on bikes... Yay! So we were left to go finding and just did not know what to do...I guess poor planning on our part. We learned though!
On Saturday we had a really LONG but good lesson with a girl named Ermaine. Sister Aka and Sister Schulz and been teaching her for a good minute, and she decided that she wanted to start meeting with the missionaries again. Her biggest block right now is that she feels like God mislead her, and that she can't trust him. Any ideas on how to help her get over that...she feels that way because of a guy...she thought he was the one and that God gave her a sign letting her know, and then he up and left...she says why would God give me the sign and then take him away? We explained agency and how he chose poorly and what not, and it has been an adventure. I love Ermaine...she has a sensitive heart, and I think she REALLY just needs the gospel right now. Last night her Dad antied her, and she stood up to him and told him that we don't believe any of that! It was cool. I think she is close to knowing it is true, she just needs to feel the healing power of the atonement because she has had a lot of things happen to her, and the majority of them, are not her fault. She is amazing. We took Sister Walker with us to that appointment, and it was perfect. Man was it perfect. They just connected, and after we all left, they ended up talking that night, and they are now friends. It was a really cool lesson, and I am grateful that a member was there. She was able to say things that Sister Aka and I had no idea how to respond to. It was amazing.
On Sunday, Ian and Ermaine came to church! YIPEE!!!!!! It was pretty exciting! I think it was the perfect end to a week that wasn't super great, but had some pretty good little miracles in it! Yes, it was a rough week, but I know that it will all work out for the better, and that this week we will see some amazing miracles. We did what we were supposed to do, and I know that as we press forward with steadfast faith in Christ, that we will see miracles, and that Heavenly Father will bless us as we do our part. I know that this is hard work, but I know that it is part of the "refiner's fire". You have to go through the bad to know the good. I am grateful that we were able to see a miracle with Ermaine and also with the Malvo's (the family in the apartment neighborhood). I love being a missionary, and I'm excited for the new week and the opportunities that it hold's for change. Thank you so much for being a wonderful family, and if Taylor is reading this, HAPPY BIRTHDAY WOMAN! I LOVE YOU AND HOPE YOU ARE HAVING FUN IN CHINA! Hey, did she get her mission call yet? Thanks for being wonderful friends everyone. I'm grateful for the support you give, and I hope you know that I think y'all are the best. I know this church is true. I know that I have been called to represent the Lord her in the state of Louisiana. I know that I am called to share my testimony and do all I can to bring souls unto him despite my weaknesses. I mean think about it! The Lord allows these 19--27 year olds to go out and represent him when we are in some of our biggest weaknesses (especially with immaturity being thrown in there). I am grateful that he trusts me enough to go out and do this work, and for the help that he is giving me in overcoming my weaknesses. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior, and that without him, I would not be here. I love this gospel. I love my family, and I am so grateful that I get to spend eternity with you.
Tell Kelly and Lindsay CONGRATULATIONS and that I want a picture! Also tell Tucker and Jessica that as well! I love y'all so much and hope that all is well! You are the best!
Sister Stacy Jo Earl