This week was an interesting one. We were biking less and less with it being hard on Sister Wright, she had some health issues this week, and spent most of the time in bed. This meant a couple straight days of being in our little apartment. She seems to be doing better, and continues to build her energy, but we still have to come to the apartment and let her rest frequently. She's a trooper. I always felt like the morning study time was never enough, so I have had a chance to study A LOT with her being out of commission. I study, write a letter to a less active or investigator, study some more, write in my journal, study some more, make some interesting food for Sister Wright, study some more, and when I feel that I'm about to go stir-crazy, I drop into push-ups and scream President Hank's oft-quotes "TENACITY RRRRGGGHHH" (of course I scream it in my head so as not to wake my comp)....then I study some more. I've been learning a lot, and the spirit has been a great help when we do go out, that references and stories just come to my head that can strengthen the people we talk to.
President and Sister Hanks were aware of the situation and came to visit a few days ago. They are such powerful people! They do not waste a second. They were kind enough to bring us sustenance and then President Hanks said that he wanted to speak to me in the other room. My 6'6 mission president sat on the floor of our tiny apartment bedroom and just kind of glanced at our bedframes...side story, Sister Wright was sick of laying in the same room all day, so I decided that we would have a sleepover which entailed putting our mattresses on the floor in another room and watching Mormon messages while indulging in a bit of ice cream--gotta enjoy the little things as a missionary...I started to explain, but President Hanks kind of just looked at me and just stopped and we got to important stuff. I was dumbfounded at the level to which he knows and trusts me. He told me his reasoning in giving me this assignment and assured me that I am doing missionary work staying in the apartment all day and serving Sister Wright. He loves his wife, as I asked him questions, it was cute to hear him often say, "Oh, shoot, I'm still working on that, but Liz, she's fantastic at that." I also love that his wife's name is Liz. She is amazing and did wonders for Sister Wright in their chat. President Hanks gave Sister Wright a blessing before he left which was a huge strength for her. They are just amazing people. I'm super blessed to be called to serve under them.
I've gotten to play the piano a lot which has been awesome. I played the organ for Sacrament meeting yesterday, and accompanied two special musical numbers, and a few members from the ward joined the other sister missionaries and ourselves to perform for a nursing home. They are the sweetest people alive, and begged us to come back and sing and play for them again. It was great, we will probably do it again. Music is a powerful tool. I love the hymns, it is such a miracle to have the hymn book.
The times that we have been out, we have been approached by some people wanting us to pray with them or pray for their loved ones who are struggling. I think it a miracle that despite Sister Wright and I being so young, people of all faiths see our nametags and representatives of Jesus Christ. While they are still not interested in our message for themselves, they trust that our prayers can help them. People often comment at how they can sense that we love the Savior and love our work. Enthusiasm does wonders. We are getting members of the ward excited about missionary work. Last Monday we had an FHE with a family and did role-plays with them and committed them all to share their testimony with a friend. They are great. :)
Our investigators are struggling. Kevin has ceased returning our calls/texts, and Satan is working pretty hard with our other too. Cathy is having lots of struggles, but she remains faithful. I met PJ today, our other investigator who has a crazy background, but has SUCH AN INCREDIBLY STRONG SPIRIT. She is amazing and after some struggles is finally able to meet with us again. I am blessed to be able to work with these people.
I haven't had a lot of Southern food since I've been here. Which is probably a good thing. The RS president did give us bean and bacon soup. Amazing. A Japanese family in the ward fed us fried shrimp. Likewise amazing. We cook for ourselves for the most part, and we try to be pretty healthy...in fact, last Monday I stepped on Sister Wright's scale and was surprised to see it read 15-20 pounds over my normal fluctuating range. I didn't feel like I had gained that much weight, and was pretty scared that it took me less than a month to become overweight, especially when I was being diligent about my fitness/exercise. I started getting up even earlier to work out and started counting calories. Several days later when I weighed myself, I was again surprised to see it read UNDER my normal fluctuating range, I talked to Sister Wright and she said that she had to fix the needle because it got moved somehow while we were cleaning. I confirmed with another scale...I haven't gained any weight, in fact, I've lost a few pounds out here. Huge relief. Hahaha.
Love y'all so much!
Read the scriptures. A lot. They're awesome. Keep sharing with friends. Do your home/visiting teaching--we could spend a lot more time finding if members were diligent about that.
Thanks for the writing and the support, you're always in my prayers,