Sunday, October 18, 2015

Interviews complete! Visit from our girls!

This week we completed all of our interviews with the Calgary Zones--so we are finished for another quarter.  We really enjoy the interview process because it gives us such a great time to be one on one with the missionaries.  Actually, Steve always gets one on one--and sometimes I do, but sometimes I have 3 or 4 or 5 out with me, depending on if they had to car pool, of if they are going to hold district meetings right after.  But I enjoy getting to be with them in smaller groups or individually.  We discuss a lot of things together in that time!  They want to know how we met, how long we dated, how we knew we wanted to marry each other!  They also talk to me about their families, which I always like to hear.  They talk to me about being homesick, about their area they are working in, about the people they are teaching, and we discuss lots of things like how to work more effectively in the ward council, or how to engage members more.  I like to ask them what they love about being a missionary, and so much of the time I get the same one or two answers or both.  They say they love seeing what the gospel does for someone who has never had see the joy it brings, and to see their face light up when something they have taught really resonates with someone and the spirit touches them.  They also say that they love how much their own testimonies have grown and how they are changing and growing closer to the Savior.  I just love to hear that.  Because at the end of their mission, the person we want most converted is the missionary. We want them to go home being built on the sure foundation of Jesus Christ and committed to being a true disciple throughout their lives.  When we were in interviews with our Calgary West Zone I told them that Steve and I had to speak in a branch in about 6 weeks and they want us to speak to their youth and parents and try to get them excited to prepare for missions.  They said some of the youth are preparing to go, but others, as well as their families are struggling in the gospel.  So, I asked this group of missionaries what they would say, and how would they talk to this group.  It was amazing to hear their insights. It was also very special to have many of them tell how they personally made the decision to serve a mission, and how it had to be their own decision--and not to go just to please their parents.  Many of them also said that these youth need to know that missions are fun.  One of our zone leaders told me how he was so surprised at how fun a mission was.  He said that although it is the hardest work ever, it was also so much fun, and he was so grateful for the wonderful friends he had met and knows that now his best friends will be elders he has met from his mission.  When I hear things like this my heart just soars.  I just love these missionaries.  We just love these missionaries!
This week was also very fun because our two girls, Les and Steph and their babies came to visit for a few days.  It was so fun to pick them up on Wednesday afternoon and hug them and snuggle those babies.  We all shed tears when we hugged at the airport!
We were able to take them into Banff one day and show them around a little bit, and then on Friday they came to our 'retraining meeting' with us and met our missionaries there--it was fun for us to show them to our missionaries, and we were also excited to 'show off' our missionaries to them! We also visited the Spruce Meadows Equestrian Park and were able to see a horse jumping competition which none of us had ever seen in person.  It was a beautiful fall day and the weather was gorgeous.
We also took them with us to a convert baptism down in Okotoks of a 17 year old girl named Haleigh Guenther.  She was such a darling girl, and so excited to be getting baptized.  She was taught by Elders McNeil and Kelly.  Her whole family was there, including her grandparents.  And even though they aren't members of the LDS church, they were excited for her and for this step she was making.
They are Christian, and believe in Christ and in the scriptures and it was fun to see how proud they were of her.
We had such a great time being together.  We ate way too much, laughed a lot, and probably my favorite parts of our time together was just laying on the bed or out in the family room talking.  I am so grateful for our wonderful children and for their love and support while we serve.  We couldn't do it without them.  We feel their prayers for us and are so grateful for their testimonies and faith.  They are amazing people and we love each one of them--and when I say children, I am meaning our in-law
children, too.  We are sooooo thankful for the spouses of each of our children. We have been so blessed!
Steve hugging Les and Steph for the first time in 3 1/2 months!

Grandpa with Beck-first time seeing each other  since he was 6 weeks old!

Steve with Wyatt in pack, Steph, Les with Beck in Banff

Our little hike by the Bow River in Banff

Bow River Falls

Les w/ Beck, Lori, Steph w/ Wyatt at Spruce Meadows Equestrian Park

Our last snuggle with Beck & Wyatt before we had to leave for a stake conference

1 comment:

  1. That was so much fun!! I can't wait to come back and visit you guys :)