This has been one crazy week! First off the wind has been such a crazy thing out here. We are in a valley surrounded by canyons and the wind just blows and blows and blows. Being on bike is so hard when you are riding against the wind! It just doesn't matter how hard you pedal you don't get very far. Grr. At the same time though it gives us a nice cool breeze when we aren't riding and keeps us cool. I did get sunburned pretty badly. I am not sure why though. It has been just as windy and sunny the last 3 days as it was the day I got too much sun. The members of the ward noticed fairly quickly and offered to get me some sunscreen. One of the members said that the UV Rays change so that may be why I got burned. So I will be lotioning up everyday!!!!!
Yesterday was Stake Conference and we were blessed to have President and Sister Hall with us. My favorite talk was from Sister Hall. Our stake is really awesome at missionary work and each stake conference has several talks just for missionary work. She said, "Get caught being a Mormon, in fact to a real doozy and get caught reading the Book of Mormon." It is so true. It would be so much easier for us to resist temptation if people know who we are. If they knew we were Mormon and don't do certain things the temptations wouldn't be in front of us as much as they currently are. It was a great talk. We had 2 families show up for church (in total 5 investigators)! It was amazing to have so many visitors.
We had interviews with President Hall this week and it was a real life saver for me. I was struggling so bad the day we had them. President Hall offered me some very simple advice to being a trainer. He said to stop thinking like a trainer and think of Sister Peatross and I as 2 missionaries learning together and working together. He also told me of the sweet experience he had when assigning me to this new area. He knew he had to open a new English Sisters area, and then he knew he needed to place a sister in there who was just coming out of training. He then stopped and was like, That's crazy!!!!! That would be so hard for the Sister. I don't think that would be a good idea. President Hall then said the spirit over came him and told him that "Yes! and it needs to be Sister Cottrell." So here I am opening a new area, on bike with no clue how to get around and training and fighting the wind that blows so hard!
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We had a baptism of a recent converts two younger siblings. The reason I say this is such a miracle is because the Mom almost called off the entire thing earlier in the week. There was originally to be 3 siblings baptized. However, one of the girls attitude and behavior hadn't improved with the lessons and coming to church. Her mom said that it was affecting the other children and causing them to act up, as hard as they tried to avoid those situations. All the issues had caused the mom to reconsider her decision. I am so grateful for the spirit. If it wasn't for the spirit those children wouldn't have gotten baptized. That night when we were getting the dreadful news I felt an eternal sadness overcome me. I knew right then and there that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ were mourning for the lose of 2 children not being able to make it "home." Now, the opportunity would probably have come again if we hadn't been able to come to a decision with the mom but it still made me sad. The tears I cried that night in front of their family were not just my own. I felt prompted to share my thoughts about repentance. I know that through sharing my own experiences of repentance and the sacrament the spirit was able to soften the mothers heart. When I had finished sharing those experiences everyone had tears in their eyes. So the baptism was a miracle last night. I know that their lives will be blessed for their decisions to enter into the fold of God.
We also saw a lot of different miracles through out the week in just trying to contact people and being placed to talk to others instead. It has been a great week and even though biking is hard I am still loving it. WHAT A WEEK!!!!! I am excited to see what the Lord has in store for us this week. I encourage you all to take Sister Halls advice and get caught being a Mormon. Its the best missionary work you could ever do!
Have a wonderful week. Until next time!
HOORAH FOR ISRAEL!!!!