Friday, January 13, 2017

Blessings and miracles and miracles and blessings

Wow it's been a great week and a half. I don't even know where to begin..

S. and M.!! Last week on Monday we had a lesson scheduled with them. M. ended up having strep but we didn't want to give up that easily. We went to a member's house and had a lesson over facetime! It was kinda silly but it was great. We talked about the priesthood and prophets and stuff. M. requested a blessing. Thursday we went over with a few people from the ward to give her a blessing and it went great! Spirit was strong and they're starting to get their priorities figured out. Then Sunday..S. CAME TO CHURCH! Holy moly this was so exciting, it was the first time an investigator has been to church since I got to Powell... finally after two transfers it happened! Hallelujah! M. was still not feeling well and was pretty nervous, but S. said she is working on her to get her to come next week. S. had a great experience and felt the spirit so strong and cried during the whole testimony meeting. Yay! They will be coming to the relief society activity tonight and we will have another lesson tomorrow probably. Slowly but surely, they're progressing! They won't be ready for baptism on the 21st but we'll try to set a new date this week. Hoping for Feb 4th!

L!!!!!! So a few weeks ago we biked to this one LOONG street that's kinda been a joke that we talk about tracting all the time. We were there for quite a few hours and met J. She was headed out the door but she let us in for a second to hear what we had to say. She was fascinated by the restoration and asked us to come back a few days later. We went back for the return appointment and she was SO excited to see us.  She let us in and it seemed like she was a member already. She remembered that we shared something that stood out to her. As we taught the restoration, the spirit was so strong. She had many great questions that showed her understanding and desire to learn. She said she wants these things to be true and be baptized and come to church. She is SOLID. She said her family usually isn't interested in "people like us" but when we knocked and talked for a few minutes the first time, she felt the spirit so strongly and was prompted to listen to what we have to say. Such a tender mercy, I'm thankful for the spirit! She's out of town this week but will hopefully be at church this Sunday. Another cool tender mercy that ties in with J. We had dinner with a member last week and their daughter doesn't have any girls in her age group and feels kind of alone. We told them that we would find an 11 year old who can be her friend. At our return appointment with J, we found out her daughter is 11!!!. We told the family and they were so excited that their faith is helping! 

Okay this story is sick. So remember back in the middle of December when we biked a butt ton to save miles and stuff? Well it paid off. On Monday we got a text from this dude we met while we were biking. He was walking his parents dog and actually let us out of the gated community we were kinda stuck in. We introduced ourselves and he said we could call him Brother B. We talked for just a second and gave him our card. So Tuesday. A month minus a day later, B texts us. He said "Hi! I met you whole walking my parents dog before Christmas. I was wondering how long you'd be here? -B." we FREAKED OUT and responded saying hi and there will always be missionaries and asked what we could do for him. He said "My Christmas was great, thank you. I don't need anything, but I have an open mind and since you were riding bikes in the freezing weather I thought I'd might like to hear what you had to say?" THEN WE SET UP A LESSON AND HE CAME TO THE CHURCH AND IT WAS SO GREAT. He wants to know that this is true. He's going to read the Book of Mormon and come to church. Now the sad thing is he actually lives in Delaware so we had to refer him to the elders there.. tender mercy, we were in a trio for a few hours with one of the Delaware sisters while her companion was in a trainer meeting! She was able to meet him and get him the church address and everything he needed for Delaware. Sad that we had to refer him but so awesome that biking pays off. I want to bike everywhere now!!!!

So R. is this FUNNY FUNNY old man that I adore. Haha he's great. We met him tracting before Christmas and showed him the light the world video. He loves it and we were sure he'd want a return appointment. He ended up saying no and we were bummed. Last week we had a YW with us and we tried back. He was pumped to see us and let us in. We taught the restoration and he loved every part of it. He was so excited to have the Book of Mormon! At the end, we taught him how to pray. We told him he could ask Heavenly Father any question he wants. The things he asked in his prayer went like this: how much is it going to snow tomorrow? Is the Book of Mormon true? .. that's it! Haha it was so funny. We had a lesson with him last night and he did his "homework" of reading in the Book of Mormon. Oh yeah he showed us his "man cave" and it is the most OSU stuff I've seen in my life. Will take a picture next time! We taught the plan of salvation with some awesome members and he loved it. His wife recently passed away so this hit home for him. We asked questions throughout and at the end asked what questions he had. He sat for a second then said "what's me homework??" He loved he Book of Mormon and is just the coolest haha. Working on getting him to come to church. 

Some other missionaries tracted this guy. He was just a potential in our area Book so we followed up with him. He played pro soccer for REAL salt lake for 2 years and met with missionaries there!! He was busy at the time but we have a return appointment for tomorrow. Yay! I guess he plays for a team in Columbus now? Somebody look him up?

We've been making progress with quite a few less actives in the ward! One came to church last week that hasn't been in ages. We invite her every time we see her but we never knew she actually would come! She was there and it surprised us both haha. Another couple is awesome. They used to be pretty active but the wife got a weird disease thing that makes her really tired always. They stopped coming. We would meet with her every once in a while but her husband would never be there. We finally got him to come to a lesson and it was great. They're working in getting back to church! One more. We were going to challenge him to read he Book of Mormon, but right before we did he told us about a goal he set to read a chapter of the Book of Mormon daily. He bore his testimony of it and it was so awesome we didn't even know what to do!!

Friday I hit my 6 month mark!! Woot woot! I can't believe I've been a missionary for over six months. Feels good! Sad that I have less than a year left though.. time goes by real quick when you're having fun. 

Last week was COLD. idk how I'll survive this winter. I already caught a cold and have been dying. People we talk to before they shut the door in our face say "stay warm" and I'm like.. we will, maybe if you let us in your home we'd be warm!! Haha whatever, people are funny. We have enough hand warmers to heat an army so we're set.

There's this awesome member who joined a few years ago. We did service for her on Monday and helped clean out her basement. There was a bunch of dust and I sneezed at least 400 times in the 3 hours we were there. Haha. She is also super duper into biking and my bike was having troubles. I asked her to take a look at it and she replaced the breaks and has been going a major tune up. She's awesome and says it makes her feel like a hero :')

Life is good. I'm pumped about the work. Had interviews and loved it. Learning lots. Church is true. Joseph Smith was the prophet of the restoration. Thomas S Monson is God's prophet today. Powell is awesome and way fun still. I think I'll just stay the rest of my mission. Sister Flora is still my home girl and we're having loads of fun. I've been so blessed with companions my whole mission.

Yay just got transfer news and we're staying!!!!!!!!!!!! Wahoo!! Longest time in an area. 

Love you all.

Sister Barnes

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