This week was crazy! Lots of fun and lots of miracles!
On Tuesday I was able to go to Shelton on an exchange with Sister Palmer ( I served a transfer with her in Lacey ). All of our appointments fell through but that is just how exchanges go sometimes! We still had a great day in the Washington rain talking about our friends in Lacey. Sister Palmer is one of the sweetest people I know. She is the perfect example of always having a positive attitude. She helped me so much in the transfer that I had with her.
Wednesday morning Sister Julien and I drove up to Zions Camp for the Mission Leadership Council day. We were walked through the different elements in the ropes course and did a few of them to prepare for what we would be helping the other missionaries with the next day. Julien and I were put in charge of 3 different elements and had to come up with stories and rules for each element. It was so fun to be back at Zions Camp! Last year was a really neat experience for me- I was able to understand a lot of weaknesses I had, and this year I was able to see how I have overcome those weaknesses through my Savior, Jesus Christ.
Thursday we went back up to Zions Camp with the bottom half of the mission. We had two groups of sisters that we helped through the elements. It was a whole new experience for me to watch people struggle through these activities. I really feel like I have a better understanding of how our Heavenly Father feels as He is watching us struggle through life. “Learning comes in the Struggle” is the phrase that was running through my mind that whole day. This was a really humbling experience for me to see how my Heavenly Father really does have a better view of things than I do, and how it does pain Him to see me struggle, but He knows that we grow the most in the hardest times of our lives. He doesn’t love us less, He is never ignoring or forgetting us- He is simply allowing us to grow.
Friday I had the opportunity to go on an exchange with Sister Rea ( we were companions in the MTC ). She is an incredible missionary that I really look up to. I feel like I learned so much about missionary work and charity on that exchange. Sister Rea has charity. Charity is something that I’ve been striving my entire mission to have and I feel like I still have so far to go. Sister Rea truly sees each individual as a child of God and strives to help them feel the love of their Heavenly Father. We saw a lot of miracles that day: a less active is going to talk to the bishop and work towards the temple so she can have her family sealed for eternity, we found a new family who wants to learn about the gospel, and we had an incredible lesson with a man who is truly humble and willing to do whatever God wants him to do.
Saturday was one of the best days of my mission. I was able to attend the baptism of Lisa and Sophia Simmons. A few months ago (when I was serving in Lacey), we taught and baptized a 16 year old girl named Kari. She had a less active father and a mom and sister who were not members. I became very good friends with this family while I was in Lacey. Since I left, Kari’s dad has become active again, and her mom and sister received an answer that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the true church upon the earth. I was able to speak at their baptism and congratulate them for taking this step in becoming closer to being an eternal family. The two most important things to me are the gospel and my family. It was so exciting to see this family all sitting together, singing “Families Can Be Together Forever”. I’m especially grateful for Kari’s courage and example in helping her family get to this point.
That night was the Women’s Broadcast. It made me SO trunky for the temple!!! I’m grateful for the opportunity I had to be raised in this gospel. I’ve been able to prepare myself and make covenants with my Heavenly Father and see the blessings that they bring. There is peace, and blessings, and answers to be found in the temple. Do everything you can to go as much as possible.
Conference is THIS WEEKEND! I really hope that all of you will take the time to watch it. I know that if you watch it with a question in your heart, it will be answered. Either by what is said by the speakers, or the Holy Ghost. Please ACT on any promptings/answers you receive! Heavenly Father knows what you need and wants what is best for all of you. I know He loves you so much! And so do I! Have a great week 🙂
Sister Hailey Gehring