Monday, September 8, 2014

Fasting Brings Miracles!

You know how there are too many deer  in Utah? Well here
they have gator hunts to thin out the gator population. We had dinner
with the Whalens (who adopted two girls from China! They remind me of
my beautiful cousins!) and they had this head on their mantle. It came
from a 400 pound gator Brother Whalen got!

Sister Stitt

These pictures just don't do this justice! There is a three inch
banana spider right behind us. You can hardly see it but it is
literally a foot from my face! I was disappointed you can't tell how
close I am or how big it is, but it is there! Welcome to Florida!
Biggest bugs around!

 Fasting truly brings miracles! We had a special mission fast last week  and after two months of trying reach a goal of five member presents in  a week we finally did it! And we went from 0 progressing investigators  to FOUR!!!  Miracles!

Another miracle was in getting the perfect member to a lesson with  Shaquana. Sister Arrant came with us for the first time and she was pretty nervous, but Shaquana told her she answered some of her  questions and wanted her to come back! It was just what Shaquana and Sister Arrant needed!

And we had dinner Tuesday through Saturday! That is a miracle too!  I  love spending time with the members!

While knocking doors in a trailer  park one night we knocked on a door  and a lovely black woman yelled through the door, "Whoooo is it?!?!"   She sounded super scary!  We said, "We are representatives of Jesus  Christ." Then she came to the window and said, "Sorry, I'm eating  dinner."  Haha, she turned out to be super nice, and her name is Lowla.   We will be going back to see her when she isn't eating dinner!

Saturday we had brunch with the Haynes before helping clean their floors. We haven't had many  service opportunities so finally we called  Sister Haynes and said we needed to do some service and asked what we  could do for her. The Moffetts picked us up from there for our lesson with Antoine. (Brother Moffett just got here from Ireland six weeks  ago!)  Antoine had a TON of questions, which would have been great if  his anti-Mormon friend wasn't there.  They both shot about every anti-Mormon question I've heard at us. Brother Moffett said he  noticed the friend had an anti-Mormon pamphlet in his Bible. No wonder   he had so many scriptures he tried to use to contradict what we  taught.  We were there for about 2 hours. It was ridiculous!  We were so grateful to have Brother and Sister Moffett there with their  scriptorian knowledge and amazing testimonies!  Antoine seems like he  genuinely accepts our answers so we are going to try to visit him one more time.  If it is the same situation we are going to have to move on.  It's like Samuel the Lamanite--when people are shooting  anti-arrows at you they don't listen with their hearts.

Sheree came to church this Sunday!  She says she can see the face of Jesus in the marble on the front of the building so she knows it is Christ's church.  We will keep working on how we gain a witness  through the Holy Ghost :)  But she is so sweet and is loving church!

Sister Stitt and I got to help teach the youth Sunday School class.  I  forgot how crazy teenagers can  be!  It was an adventure to say the least!  But we were able to have some really great discussions about  teaching the doctrine of eternal families.

One more miracle that really touched me. It would be appropriate to preface this story with the words of Ammon: "I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God." (Alma 26:11)  During fast and testimony meeting yesterday a sister in the ward stood up. Her baby was blessed that day. She told of how when she found out she was pregnant she decided to read the Book of Mormon before she had her baby. She said that when I played my flute in sacrament meeting and I got to her favorite hymn, How Great Thou Art, she looked down at the new baby in her arms and reflected on her experience reading the Book of Mormon, and now having a new son,  the spirit was overwhelming for her. I think it is amazing how sharing our talents  truly can strengthen and lift others. There is a reason each of us have been given talents and if we hide them under a bushel we may be  missing an opportunity to help someone else strengthen their testimony. Who would have thought that something as simple as a musical number by a sister who has hardly any time to practice could become a testimony building moment for another sister. I know music is a prayer unto God. It invites the spirit so strongly it can touch even the hardest of hearts.

Love all of you!
Sister Alyson Murray

P.S. Transfers are next week so I will email on Tuesday. And we are still doing apartment searching so I will let you know when we are moving!