So this week I learned that you should ALWAYS listen to the inspiration of your leaders. President Scott sent out an email last week ago with 5 things he wanted missionaries to focus on- setting baptismal dates, having kneeling prayers, summarizing the lesson before and after you teach, planning ahead of time, and praying that we would acheive our goal for number of baptisms in June. I read it, thought that's all good stuff, and didn't think about it much because in my mind we do all that. Then at district meeting we went through and talked about them all, and challenged us to focus on them, so we started really trying to do everything President said. I realized I actually do NONE of those things the way we're supposed to, which was pretty embarrassing for me. And we did everything he listed out in a first lesson with our new investigator, Tara, and who knew? It WORKED! We set a baptismal date and have a standing appointment with her wice a week every week until that date. It was like the ideal lesson, like something off the district, it was crazy. Then the one day we dropped the ball on the planning aspect (President talked about making sure you're thinking multiple days in advance and planning with lead time- and on Saturday we forgot to do our reminder calls about church and day light savings until 8 at night) we saw the fruits of that as well- only 1 out of the 4 people we were expecting at church came. So I have a testimony of the inspiration of our leaders, and the importance of following them! This next week is going to be a really intense week of making sure we do all those things every day and don't drop the ball again so I can make it a habit to be that diligent.
Another cool inspiration from my great mission president- there's missions where missionaries have began offering to leave blessings on homes as a finding method and had a lot of success with it, so President asked us to begin doing so. (Sisters and Elders do it, they just say they do it with the authority of the priesthood and we don't.) To be honest, I was a little hesitant about it because if I thought it was awkward asking strangers for their numbers so we can teach them the gospel it's only because I hadn't had the super awkward experience of asking people if we could come into their house and pray to bless it. But finally we sucked it up and started doing it when tracting, and once again, lo and behold it works! We've been able to go in to one home and pray for a blessing and we have an appointment to go back to another home this week. The couple we said a blessing for wasn't interested, but it was still really cool because they're very religious and normally would have shut the door on us but we got to go in and talk to them and explain what we do and pray with them! So who knows, that may have made the difference for missionaries in the future. And we have a really good feeling for the family we're going back to see.
So life in Owen Sound pretty much rocks right now. It's weird because when we first came up here, one of the sisters we were replacing told us about how this ward was basically family to her and I remember trying to to think about how crazy that sounded, and trying not to think about how I knew I would never feel that way here. And now, I'm in love with this area, there are families in the ward who are almost family at this point, which is CRAZY considering most of them I only see at church! I could happily spend my whole mission in this area! And the people I teach are becoming a part of me, it's not even funny how much I worry and think about them. Who knew I'd get so attached to a random little spot in Canada?
One last cool thing- one of the members yesterday told us that at the last ward temple trip, they were told that Owen Sound would one day have a temple because their members were so faithful in attending the Toronto temple. Owen Sound only has 22,000 people in it! And it's way out of the way, it would not be a good place to put one for surrounding areas to use. Just goes to show you receive temples due to faith and it's something decided by the wisdom of the Lord, not the logic of man.
I started to chastise you for my pathetic inbox this week, but I realized Mom sent me an email as I wrote this so you're forgiven. Glad you're enjoying spring break- here it's referred to as March break, because it is NOT spring yet. (it is coming though- the geese are coming back and I didn't have to wear a coat today, just a sweater and scarf! And the sun has been out 3 days in a row! I'm ridiculously happy.) Hope you enjoy Utah, say hello to everyone for me. I think I'm going to try to everyone send some packages soon, maybe some Easter packages, but no promises. Love you all, talk to ya later. Have a great, warm, allergy free week!
Pictures of the week:
2-25-12: The snow banks after 1 day of snow.
Super secret snow shoveling agents!
So excited to tract in the snow! (the snow on the windsheild has all collected in just the time it took for us to get out of the car and walk to the other side...
It was a CRAZY snow storm! It was hard to walk straight with the wind.)