Monday, March 31, 2014

"How great shall be your JOY" (Bayley)

SO MUCH JOY.
This week, guys.
This. Week.
So many miracles.  So many joys.  I don't even know what to do with myself.  But guuurrrllll let me tell you - God is GOOD.
Here's why.
Joy #1
We had 5 investigators at church yesterday.  FIVE.  You will hear about each and every one of them in due time, but the best part of it was that we sicced (siced? syced? sic-ced?  whatever) members on them PRONTO and so every one of them had members at their sides the whole time to help them feel comfortable and understand what was going on.  But seriously, to have 5 people at church was such an amazing MIRACLE.  It doesn't matter that two of them followed us there so as to not get lost the first time driving...and so of course I got lost on the way to church (doh!) and it doesn't matter that in the middle of sacrament meeting Sister Crump and I had to run out and steal toys from the nursery because their baby was crying, and also one of them had to take smoke breaks, and that doesn't matter either because you know what?  THEY CAME TO CHURCH! 
Joy #2
Blanca and Agapito.  This would be the couple I accidentally got lost having them follow us to church :D but that's okay.  Blanca and Agapito are AMAZING.  We found Blanca a while ago, just a street contact (which means she was standing outside and we just went up to her and were all..."Hi. Missionaries. Church. Come over?" and then she actually did let us come back) and she has always been super awesome, and this week we started teaching her husband, Agapito, as well.  As we shared the Joseph Smith story with Agapito, he began to cry and told us how he had had a dream two years ago in which God had come to him and told him he needed to leave some old habits behind for his family, and that the way God had spoken to Joseph Smith was exactly how God had spoken to him.  What's more, as I recited Joseph Smith history with them, I could envision them and their 3 boys being sealed in the temple, and it was such an amazing moment.  How wonderful that God lets us be part of this great work of creating eternal families!
Joy #3
So as a Sister Training Leader, I get to go on exchanges with the other sisters in my district, and so this week I got to go to La Porte with dear Sister Martin.  Here's what I found there: A HIDDEN BEACH (don't worry - we're gonna go pday that up today) (and by hidden beach I mean it's just a normal beach that nobody ever told me existed like RIGHT THERE) where we ate Subway for lunch.  So much joy in beach picnics, and also in pretty biking trails.  I love the opportunity I have to get to serve with these sisters and work in their areas - even if it means being out of precious Pasadena for a day.
Joy #4
Another gator we had at church yesterday was Gabriel.  Let me tell you about how we met Gabriel - it's a little unreal.  We had just left an appointment and were unlocking our bikes, when this guy just walks up to us and asks how we're doing.  Sister Crump and I kind of looked at each other thinking "this is a little weird..." but you know that's probably how we make people feel ALL THE TIME so it's all good.  We talked for a little bit and introduced ourselves as missionaries, and after a little small talk Gabriel asks "so - what's the news?"  Sister Crump and I look at each other again, and I finally say "um, the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored!" to which Gabriel goes "oh wow - that is *very* good news.  What church are you from?  I would like to go."
Seriously.
This is real life.
That actually happened.
And seriously, if that could happen everyday to missionaries everywhere, that would just be great.  Usually we have to go hunt people down and stalk them to get them to let us teach them - and you wouldn't believe the lengths we go to to get them to come to church.  So a guy just coming up to us and telling us he wants to come to church and wants us to teach him more?  Yeah.  I'll take that.
He came to church, stayed the whole 3 hours, stayed for a lesson afterwards, and then a baptismal service after that.  Even better, up to this point, he's been a Jehovah's Witness...but that'll change soon.  He's preparing for his own baptism the end of next month.
Joy #5
During our Hour of Power this week (for which I was super sick - there's another miracle: didn't barf all over a door contact.  That would be the day) we were talking to this guy all about Jesus and whatnot, and he goes "have you guys seen that movie?  What's it called..."  Now, as a missionary I am not exactly well versed in current pop culture, but I do know that apparently there is this new movie called Son of God that recently came out, and the only reason I know about it is because seriously EVERYONE and their dog ask us if we've seen it.  And so when he asked us "have you guys seen that movie?" we sort of sighed and Sister Crump offered "Son of God?" because that's the movie EVERYONE asks us if we've seen, but the guy was all "no, no, not that one - um...Machine Gun Preacher."  
Haha!
Yup, we had to say no to that one as well.  But apparently we should look into it, it's a great movie about missionary work.  Or so we hear.
Joy #6
This week we also had quite the experience with the Book of Mormon.  Don't we always?  We had an investigator call us and tell us we needed to come over because he'd been reading and had some big questions.  When we hear things like that, it's either really good, or really *not* good.  So we went over that night, and he explained to us how he was confused because there seemed to be a lot missing from the BOM, and he couldn't find all the answers, and God wasn't answering any of his questions and he just felt a bit abandoned and like he didn't know enough.  As we listened, the phrase "line upon line, precept upon precept" came to my mind, and I remembered that that morning I had read that verse in 2 Nephi 28 as part of our mission wide reading of the Book of Mormon, that has us reading a chapter every day (and so that day's chapter had been 28).  I pulled it out and asked Bro Waltz to read it.  As he did so, he responded that that verse answered him directly - that he would learn little by little.  He then asked me about how I had found that scripture - and said "you knew that I was going to ask you these exact questions, didn't you, so you had that scripture all ready?" to which I responded honestly that I had had no idea what questions he was going to ask, and that in fact I had read that scripture this morning as part of a reading program that had been prearranged months earlier for us to read that exact chapter on that exact day.  After I said that, Bro Waltz sat there for a long time and finally started to tear up and said "and I didn't even think He knew my name."  The whole experience was amazing to me - that God answered his son's prayers and demonstrated His love for this son in such an incredible way.  And to think - if we hadn't been doing what we were supposed to do when it came to our daily reading and were even just a chapter off, we would not have had that amazing opportunity to see the way that God works.  Lessons of the mission: EXACT OBEDIENCE MAKES A DIFFERENCE.  True story.
Joy #7
And perhaps, one of my favoritest joys of this week came from little Malachi, a 6 year old boy who is basically my favorite.  While listening to "I am a Child of God" being sung at the women's broadcast (where he was with his mom) he leans over to me and whispers: "even old people are childs of God."
Can't say much more than that.
I love you all!  I hope your week has been as joy filled as mine, and that you'll always remember the most important things in life: the gospel, family, and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.
Love,
Sister Bayley Enright

A missionary car with a CTR license plate - best thing evah

Hermana Duffin. She loves Doctor Who. We're friends. And Hermana McCormick is creepin' in the background.

Malachi, Sister Crump and Me

Pelican mail box in La Porte

With Sister Martin at the Hidden Beach!



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