This week was very interesting. For example, last night we get a call from one of the district leaders in our zone that is supposed to report numbers on Sunday night. That means they need to call each companionship to get their numbers. This district leader could not get a hold of one of the companionships and it was about 9:35 at night. We are supposed to be home at 9:30 at the latest. so naturally we are a little worried and we tell the district leader that we will take care of it. We drive to the missionaries' house and look for them there. They are not home. We talk to the landlady and she said that they are always home by 9:30 -- by this time it is about 10:00 at night. We are supposed to report numbers to the APs at this time so we tell them that we have an issue with a companionship and we are trying to resolve it. We are sitting here in their house and waiting and waiting. This is not normal for this companionship. They are great missionaries. So we try calling them again and again. We talk and decide if it gets to be 10:30 we are going to call the mission president. At about 10:25 they come in. Now I want you to remember that missionaries normally really respect their leaders and the rules and when they saw our car outside they must have known how serious the issue was. (We are out of our apartment at the time that we are normally supposed to be in bed.) We sit down and talk to them and the first thing they say is "We are sorry, we know this is unacceptable to do this." (We are thinking yes we know that, but what were you doing?) The senior companion is actually training so the trainee really does not understand yet what is happening. Very interesting how the senior companion took full responsibility and the junior companion did not fully understand why he was doing that. (This showed me that they really do love each other.) We get their numbers from them and they look so scared.
I have never really been in a situation where I am the leader and am expected to correct behavior like this and also to have them so willing to do anything we ask of them. They told us the reason they were out so late (They got caught talking to lots of people and they left their phone in the suit jacket inside so they could not hear it. They also did not realize what time it was until they looked and noticed how dark it was.)
They were looking for a punishment and I did not really want to give them a punishment at all. I was just glad that everything was alright. We had no way of contacting them and no way of making sure they were ok. We asked them if they will do it again and they said no. We told them that we were not going to punish them. (Part of the reason is because they already realize how bad it was.) We then tell them good news that we have 2 of our investigators moving into their area and are getting baptized on Aug 23rd. We then leave with a prayer and a hug and tell them we are glad they are safe and that they know not to do this again.
The amazing part is the whole situation could have been completely different if they came in with a whole list of excuses and reasons why they were right, but they did not and it ended up being a good learning opportunity for them. They realized that us as their leaders don't want to punish them, especially when it was a mistake. They just learned that we love them and care for them.
I am glad that I get to be in this leadership responsibility because I get to show my love of missionaries so much more than in any other situations.
Other good story.
We had an amazing lesson with one of our investigator families. This was Monday night and we were going to eat dinner at their house but before that we get a text from the Dad and he tells us of his favorite scripture from the reading assignment we gave him. It was Alma 7:14. Read that verse. It is a good one that is talking about baptism. Then we run into the mom and son at Walmart. We just talk a little bit about stuff.
So when we went over to their house they start dinner and we have a plan to watch Elder Holland's talk "Lord I Believe." Before we start dinner the Mom asks her son, "Would you tell the missionaries what you told me at the store after they left" (little background information the boy is a little autistic so he does not talk very much when we come over). The boy said, "Ever since you started coming over to my house I feel God and Jesus in my life more then I ever had." That was so cool! So we have dinner and after we watch the talk. We ask them what they feel. They say, "He really knows what he is talking about, a very firm conviction that he has about Christ and this church." We say yes he does and he is an apostle. One to bear testimony of the truth. We ask them what they feel. Answer: "Happy and peaceful." They then ask some questions about church and such. We then ask them to be baptized and they look at us and all of them said yes! They are so excited to join this church. The Spirit was so strong there you could touch it. I was crying a lot, and they were tearing up as well. Even Elder Hammond, who I have never seen cry was starting to. Such a spirit driven lesson. One of the best on my mission.
I love being a missionary. So many things happen each day. I love it.
We have 10 people on date for baptism. The most I have ever had on my whole mission. They are not all solid, but all of them want to work towards being baptized. Yay! I love mission life.