Friday, October 23, 2015

Board Week

This week is what is called 'board week', which means Steve is working on the transfer board to determine who is being transferred where, who is going to train the new missionaries coming in, who will be new zone leaders, or district leaders and sister trainer leaders.  There is a lot of prayer that goes into this process...trying to determine what the Lord wants for our missionaries.  You can go in to it thinking 'logically', but that doesn't really work.  You have to go into it completely dependent upon the spirit and seeking divine guidance.  Steve will begin to 'settle in' on things, and feel the way it should go.  And it usually takes a week or two or sometimes even three to realize just how much he was guided.  He will begin to hear things such as, 'I love my new companion, they have helped me so much.'  or 'I have never worked so well with someone', and other comments that help you know the Lord's hand was in it.  It is really quite amazing.
We have also been to a district meeting, in our Calgary Zone, which is always fun to attend.  It is great to see our missionaries teach and train each other.  This week the training was on 'Praying with Faith', and I loved hearing them share their thoughts on how to improve their prayers and make them more sincere and meaningful.  Afterwards, one of the elders, Elder Adams, served homade bread!  With honey!  
We also met with all of our Mandarin speaking elders to discuss their needs and challenges and see how we could help them.  This is a great bunch of elders, and it was so good to spend time with them determining how things could go better and how we could help them, and how they can help each other.  Elder Shumway had given me a couple of phrases in Mandarin (I had asked him for them), so I could practice them and say them to the elders when we met.  I learned to say 'Hello, how are you?'
I was pretty proud of myself to master that!  It truly is the gift of tongues for these young elders to learn that difficult language.
Steve and I went over our schedule of speaking assignments for the next while and we are speaking at either a fireside or Stake Conference almost every weekend for the next 6-8 weeks.  We also spoke last week at the Calgary West Stake Conference.  I have really learned to trust Heavenly Father in what to say.  If I am diligent in studying my scriptures and pondering about it, I am always given what I should say in each meeting.  I am gaining confidence knowing that if I do my part, and am truly seeking the spirit, Heavenly Father will do His part and help me.  He always pulls through.  I just have to trust Him.
Our Mandarin speaking elders..left to right
Elders Whitney, Thomas, Smith, Shumway,Yang, Reetz, Schenk, Butler
missing:  Elders Abunuwara and Fong (they had to leave early for district meeting)

On Friday of this week we also hold our New Trainers meeting.  This meeting is where all the missionaries who are going to train the brand new missionaries coming from the MTC meet.  We train with them about their responsibilities as trainers for about 1 1/2 hours.  Being assigned to be a trainer is perhaps the most important assignment for a missionary.  We rely on them to set the best example of obedience and hard work, and to take this new missionary through the 12 Week Program so he or she can be confident in the work.  We have so much trust in them that they will teach this new missionary how to be a great missionary.  They really set the stage for the new missionary.
On Saturday we are going to Medicine Hat for a baptism there.  We will spend the night there and then meet with the Stake President on Sunday morning before traveling to Raymond to speak at a fireside Sunday evening.  The High Counselor over the fireside from Raymond invited us to their home for a bite to eat, and then he is going to drive us around the town and teach us of the history of Raymond.  We are looking forward to that!  After the fireside we will drive back up to Calgary (about a 2 hr. and 40 min. ride).  So, it will be a late night getting back.
We are both thankful we are finally feeling better.  We have both had horrible colds with coughs--Steve's lasted about 2 1/2 weeks and mine for about 12 days.  It is hard to do all that is required when you are feeling so crummy.  So we are both now feeling great, able to exercise again, and have energy!  All of our missionaries have been asked to go get their flu shots for the season, and we need to get ours as well.

At Costco in Canada you find hockey helmets and sticks!

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