On the mission, each week is full of its ups and downs, as is life. This week in particular we seemed to be in the refiners fire for quite a while. I have been humbled through my experiences and brought closer to the Lord as I have sought Him through prayer.
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of this week we had appointments set for every hour all day. After finishing our studies, we left our house fueled with the Spirit and excitement to execute our plans in each lesson. With each appointment we had confirmed the day before, and with a few-the day of, just to make sure they would be there.
Heavenly Father had different plans because every single one of our appointments cancelled....again. This same experience happened last week. We would either be on the way to the appointment and they would call us to tell us they had to leave, or we would show up and they wouldn't be there. This happened for 3 days straight. By 4 o'clock in the afternoon on Wednesday I was running low on faith.
The Sister Training Leaders had called us to see if they could come stop by and get to know us a little bit. They recently had a new sister transferred to their area and they said they just wanted to get to know everyone. They showed up just as our last appointment had cancelled on us.
It was such a relief to see Hermana Weinstock again. She got out of the car, ran up to me and gave me a big hug. It was exactly what I needed. While the other sister was talking to my companion, she sincerely asked me, "Sister Childs, how are you?" The truth? I was worn down and felt like I had absolutely nothing left to give. I was trying my best in all aspects, but I wasn't seeing any "results". (I don't like that word...I feel like I'm on a football team or something) I felt like in my heart, I had been on my knees all day, begging for the help of Heavenly Father. I was tired. I looked at her and said, "I'm hanging on." She gave me another hug. I wanted to cry. She ran back to the car to grab something. When she returned she had a package of Gluten Free cookies in her hands. My heart was so full of gratitude. Heavenly Father had answered my prayers. She hugged me again. Through her I could feel Heavenly Father's love.
The Sister Training Leaders left and I couldn't help but cry as I walked down the street -cookies in hand. I just kept shaking my head at how blessed I am.
The next appointment we had was a dinner appointment with some members. We showed up exhausted from all of the walking. They had prepared a wonderful dinner, and had remembered that I was gluten free and had cooked everything accordingly. Another miracle. The conversation during dinner lead perfectly into a lesson about the Atonement (not what we had originally planned to teach). Hermana Carter and I both bore strong testimony of the Atonement and of the Savior's love. The spirit was so strong, everyone was crying.
The lesson came to a close and we were preparing to leave. We thanked them for the dinner and for the spirit that we felt in their home. But before we left the door, they ran into the kitchen to grab a "gift they had for us". They had filled 4 grocery bags full of food for us. Orange juice, bread, fruit, treats, deli meat, all from the organic food store so that I could eat it. With 4 hands full of bags and a kiss on the cheek from Hermana Martinez we were on our way home....once again tears rolling down our eyes.
I stand all amazed at the love I have felt from my Heavenly Father.
Many similar experiences have brought me to my knees many times during the day to ask for help, or to give gratitude. Through these experiences I have seen God's light. I have become soft in the Maker's hands.