On Tuesday and Wednesday, we went on exchanges!! I absolutely love exchanges and I love being able to work with the other sisters to improve! I went to work in Stratford with Sister Taylor, who is from Riverton! She is so amazing. She is so kind and loving to literally every person that she meets. I don't know if I am being totally facetious saying this, but I imagine that Sister Taylor is a lot like what Heavenly Mother is like.
One cool as experience that we had while on exchanges goes something like this: in our planning on Tuesday night, I felt impressed to pray that we would be able to be the answer to someone else's prayer that next day. Sister Taylor thought it was really cool, but to be honest, I didn't really think anything of it. So, we started planning! We had planned to do some service at a place called Pioneer Village at 10, and then we would visit some people after that. After planning finished the night went on as normal! Then the next day after we had had companionship study closing prayer, Sister Taylor looks at me and says, "I think that we need to change our plans and visit the people we planned after Pioneer Village, first." So, I rolled with it because obviously it was from the Spirit! And boy, oh boy, was it from the Spirit. (:
We went to visit a couple who aren't dating, but they're living together (it's weird, welcome to New Zealand!), Thelma and Richard and we taught them a pretty cool lesson about faith! We each chose a scripture about faith and drew pictures to correspond and Thelma's photo was pretty interesting. (: Look up Alma 32:28 and try to figure out what she drew...but in order to do that you must think much like a dirty old lady. Sister Taylor and I were in fits of laughter. But then Thelma asked us to go and pick up her suitcase that she had left at one of the shops. So, Sister Taylor and I head off to do that. After we had come out of the shop with her suitcase, we saw a lady walking down the street and we walked down to talk to her. Her name was Sarah. And we learned that she was a less active member of the church living down in Patea, where there isn't a branch, they have to travel to Hawera. And heaps of people don't have transportation here and she just ended up going less active because she could never get to church. And then she said this, "I was sitting down there in the Laundromat praying that I would run into some church people and then I just felt like I needed to walk out here! Can you say a prayer with me?" So, I was able to say a prayer for her and we got her address to send down to the Hawera Sisters. Then we walked back over to our car and Sister Taylor says to me, "Sister Pearce, guess what we just did?" And I'm a little bit slow, but fortunately I was able to get this one and I said, "We just answered someone's prayer." What a testimony builder that was! We were able to answer someone's prayer. But guess what else that means? It means that our Loving Heavenly Father answers prayers as well. My testimony is so strong on the power of prayer. Holy cow. I love prayer!
Okay, if you thought the lesson we had with Gwen last week was amazing, it was. And this week we had an equally amazing lesson with her! We started at the very beginning because it's a very good place to start (movie reference(:) and began teaching the Restoration. Holy cow, the Spirit was really strong. We got to the Book of Mormon and we asked her if she had prayed to know if it was true yet, and she told us about how when the Elders first met her and gave her a Book of Mormon that she was a little bit skeptical, but then she said, "But as I've been reading it, I've been able to find answers to a lot of my questions and at this point, I am sure that it's true." I just about fell over. The Spirit was cutable in the room. Is cuttable a word? Well, it is now. (: And then we asked for her feedback about church on Sunday and she told us how it was weird that we don't pass around a collection tray and asked us about it. Normally, we wait until the commandments to teach about tithing, but for some reason the Spirit prompted us to talk about it then. So, we began to teach her about tithing and Sister Perry pulled out the Malachi scripture and then Gwen says, "Oh, I don't have a problem paying tithing, I was just curious how your church did it." At that point I had fallen over in my brain. NOBODY EVER SAYS THAT! Golden. That's all I have to say. Golden.
And then one last awesome event from the week and then I'll sort out some photos. (:
Saturday night, Sister Fisher and Sister Taylor put on a Interfaith devotional, Easter, music thingy. It was amazing. I was able to play 3 different times. First I played the duet of My Heavenly Father Loves Me with Sister Cardall, then I accompanied a brother who sand I Stand All Amazed, and then my favourite thing of all, I got to accompany Sister Thalman and Sister Chudleigh while they sang "Because." That is the most amazing song I have ever heard. I don't know who it's by or what, but I do know that that is now my most favourite church song ever. (: It was such an amazing night! And so many non-members were there. It was awesome. (: In between the musical numbers they played the Bible Videos portraying from when Christ was born until He was resurrected and it was so powerful! Holy moly. (: I love the gospel!!
7183-> One of our less active members, Wendy. (:
7166-> A cool as Water Wheel that used to be the power source for the lodge.
I love you all so very much and I am so grateful for my testimony of the gospel! Doctrine and Covenants 50:24 "That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day."
Another email had these photos:
7173-> The greeness! It's awesome. (:
1030910-> Me and Sister Clarkson and Baby Boots.