Monday, March 24, 2014

Letter 21 -- Elder Bednar!!!

Hello Family!

That is so fun that Brittany came down! What a fun surprise. Thanks for making it safe Birts! And little Archie is gorgeous!! Hahaha Garrett, Gavin is a little spitting image of you it is the cutest thing in the world! That picture of the two little tykes killed me! Jared is famous? I will have to see that video if it is allowed! Jason and Taryn HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!! That is so fun that you got to go skydiving! I will never do that.....

Sister Gillins and I just got in trouble in the library for proselyting - the man we talked to complained that we were trying to convert him. Hahaha woops. We just love talking to people alright?!?! Funny thing is the conversation was pretty much started by him and his friend. Silly people :)

So this week was pretty darn amazing. Sister Gillins hit standards this week which made us so happy since this is our second week together. Heavenly Father truly is blessing His children.

Greatest thing that happened this week is that on Friday night, Sister Gillins and I drove to Toronto to stay the night at some other sisters' apartment. Saturday morning, we got up, got dressed, drove to the Brampton Stake Center to spend 3 straight hours with Elder Bednar, and a member of the presiding Bishopric, and two members of the seventy (I know it's horrible I totally forgot their names). All I can say is OH MY GOODNESS. I have been diagnosed with a sickness since I've been on my mission called "Spiritual Headache". It usually happens at zone conferences and trainings - when the spirit is so strong and I cry so much that it just drains me. Well it was bad this time. Elder Bednar is the most magnificent teacher I have ever listened to in person (besides my daddy of course hehe). The thing that was so great about it, was it wasn't a three hour lecture of Elder Bednar talking and us sitting there listening. The whole purpose was to teach us how to teach by observing, listening, learning, and knowing. He engaged us the whole time. We were asked to study three of his talks in preparation for the past month, and so he would ask people in the congregation to stand up and say what they learned in their studies. He would then take that comment and focus his comments on that. It was amazing. The only regret I have is at the beginning, he told us to write on our "small plates" not our "large plates" and I took that to heart so much that I barely wrote a thing haha. My eyes hurt at the end of it all because I was just fixed on him and everything he was saying. It was miraculous. The ENTIRE mission was able to come (which is unreal here because of how big our mission is). We had lunch after and reminisced. We got a four generation picture with Sister Gillins, me, Sister Mendenhall, and Sister Raymer. It was great! That will be an experience that I will never forget. And it really opened my eyes to a new way of teaching. Now we just need to APPLY it!!

So G.... is getting baptized this Saturday :) We are SO EXCITED FOR HIM! As of last week, he wasn't doing well at all. He was depressed, unable and unwilling to keep commitments, not coming to church, complaining about things, doubts galore. Sister Gillins and I were working so hard on knowing what to do for him. On Monday night we met with him and based our lesson on some pieces in Elder Bednar's "Converted unto the Lord" talk. It was pretty much a throw down, intervention lesson. We told him straight up what the problem was, what he needed to do, what the outcome would be. There was no fluff in the conversation. The spirit was SO STRONG. Easily one of the most amazing lessons I have experienced on my mission. It really seemed to click in G...'s mind what he needed to do. He hasn't smoked or drank coffee since Tuesday, he has read from the Book of Mormon and prayed every day, and he came to church for the full block. At church he introduced himself and told everyone that he was being baptized on Saturday!! Woohoo!!! Please please please keep him in your prayers. He is doing so amazing right now and we can just SEE the happiness and the change taking place in him. It is amazing.

Sad news. K... lost his job unexpectedly. They layed him off on Tuesday night, he lost his phone because it was supplied by the company. So Wedensday he had to leave for Toronto by noon to go find another job. He bused over to the A...' and the P....' houses to say goodbye and called us to say goodbye, but we were studying and didn't answer it.  He loves this gospel and it has brought him so much happiness in ways he never would have guessed. I know God will continue to be there for him.

We have been teaching K... and P... right now. K... is golden. Let me tell you briefly about P.... From what we know about him, he hasn't had a Christmas outside of jail for 18 years, he has frozen almost to death on the ground in the winter, shot several times, beaten to the point that his heart has stopped beating. Ripped apart by dogs, stabbed multiple times, and mine and Sister Gillins favorite..... he can stare in the sun for five minutes without burning his eyes, and he can snort up pepper without sneezing. We came to know all this while teaching the first three lessons. How? It will always remain a mystery... haha and from what we can tell, it is all true because he has a nasty scar for every story. Why did we ask him to show us his scars? We didn't.. It was completely against our will.. Oh P... :)

Well that's all I have time for but miracles are happening here! I LOVE my companion so much. I LOVE this area. We WILL see miracles here. And we will keep working as hard as we can. Make it a great week and I love you!!!!!

Sister Bodine

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