It is amazing to me to look back on this week and realize just how many Spanish speakers the Lord is leading us to. I wish there was a secret formula that I could jot down explaining how we found each person, but really it just came down to Divine Intervention each time. I am really realizing just how dependent I am on the Lord in every moment of every day during my missionary work.
WE ARE FINDING FAMILIES!!
I want to CRY I am so overjoyed!!
President McCombie, the West Stake President, asked us to commit each family we teach to pray for the future Cheney Branch. I know it is because of the faith of the members that we are seeing these miracles!
On Friday during our planning session for Saturday, Sister Walton and I decided that we were going to do all that we could to make that day a Super Saturday. We wrote down the name of every single person we wanted at Church and made sure each hour was crammed with making sure we invited them to Church. We woke up excited to get to work! This is when the miracles came! While running around inviting everyone to Church we found 18 Spanish speakers we have never met before! In this moment, I can still hardly believe it! 18!! This includes two families who just moved into the Spokane area and are excited to hear from us! When Sister Walton told our Ward Mission Leader about this she said, "I think we might have found more new Spanish speakers today then we have the rest of my mission! Ha ha, her statement may have been a little exaggerated, but the miracle is still so awe-inspiring! I am so so so grateful!!!
So this week we have been teaching our investigator Francisco! He is progressing so very well! He went to Temple Square three years ago and ever since, he has wanted to know more about the church and be part of it. (So many people I have met here in Spokane have been to Temple Square and it made an impression on them. It really helps to spark peoples interest!) When we first began teaching him, he was concerned about going to church so early in the morning and for so long. But Sis. Walton and myself and every member who has gone with us to teach him have been promising him there will be blessings he will receive from coming. Members are the BEST! During one of our lessons with him the amazing Hermana Burnette said, "Listen Francisco. You want to be baptized, you want Heavenly Father to give you the biggest blessings He can give you. You want to follow Him. I am here to tell you that you need to show him that you are serious about this! So, to show Him your faith, make plans now to come to Church. Pray to Him and tell Him that nothing will get in the way of you coming. And then go! It is worth it, so just do it."
Finally he committed to come! He wrote us the best text after we told him that Hermana Burnette and her family would be picking him up to go to Church. [PS, this is written exactly how he wrote it.] It said, "Ok, sister... just can U MAKE sure that I GET A WAKE UP CALL BY 7:30 AM please??? thank U..."
Bright and early (well, for him) we called and he got up! At his request, we also called him 10 minutes later to make sure he was really up! HE MADE IT!
After church he told us, "Three hours have never gone by so quickly in my life!"
And the miracle beyond belief is we had two other investigators at Church too!
Then yesterday, one of the Spanish speakers we met on Saturday invited us to come back to visit him and his family on Monday. By his family we thought he meant him and his wife and three of his children who are still living at home, but when we went by, his sister from Yakima was visiting with four other relatives! As we walked up to the door past the window we heard them talking to each other saying, "Wait, THEY speak Spanish?!" Ha ha... I love being able to understand another language!
Sister Walton and I keep on laughing about how funny our faces must have been when we walked into the full house! Hermana Walton and I need to learn how to brace ourselves better for Mission Miracles!! We pulled ourselves together and shared the Restoration. MY FAVORITE LESSON! Each person seemed to understand each point really well, the Spirit must have been teaching because they were all so prepared to listen! They asked really sincere questions. Like when we introduced the Book of Mormon, they said, "I've never heard of this book, which Prophets wrote it? Where did the Prophets come from? How can I get this Book?" Juan answered all our questions like a seasoned member! At the end of the lesson the grandmother asked us, "What day do you go to church!" Which we replied, "EL DOMINGO!" And she said, "That is perfect! That is the day I feel it should be!"
We walked out of the lesson and as soon as we walked a few houses down Hermana Walton and I gave each other the same look that seemed to say, "Wow, that just really happened, right?!?"
We are visiting his family again on Thursday!
I am just so overjoyed! This really has been such an amazing week. We are praying for BIG MIRACLES right now. We need our Savior every hour! Thank you everyone for being the BEST! LOVE YOU ALL! I am so humbled to be part of this work! If it was up to just my strength, none of this would happen! There isn't even a doubt about it.
Love, Hermana Phipps
PS ~ Francisco has set June 21st as his goal to be baptized!