Two very wonderful things happened today: I went to the temple and I got In-N-Out*. But mostly, I went to the temple. Which is why I'm emailing y'all on Tuuuuesday and not Moooonday. Cuz we had to switch our pdays to accommodate temple tripness.
It was probably one of the best (if not THE best) temple experience so far. We went with an elder companionship and a member couple from our ward. I think this was the first time that I went to the temple with a question (well, several questions) and was able to talk them out. When it was time to head back into the Promised Land**doing regular pday stuff seemed so mediocre (that includes emailing). I wasn't anxious to get back to do things, I wasn't antsy to talk to y'all (no offense). And that's because the temple does this thing where it unhooks you from everything unimportant (things that seem important to us and the world) and lets you focus in on everything necessary for Salvation.
This kind of perspective-paradigm shift happens a lot with the gospel of Jesus Christ.*** Briana, our newest convert (and by the way, the first convert baptism for Lantana), has had the rough time we told her she would. She's been kicked out of her room to make way for her sister who's moving back... and who hasn't been the greatest of moral supports. And while we were talking, Sister Heap and I got a little nervous because we were worried she wasn't shake-proof in the gospel. Well shame on us, cuz she is. Every time she'd express a concern, she'd say "But my testimony is fine!! I still know it's true! I'm not going anywhere!" and then proceed to bear testimony of what she knew was true. Her head is screwed on so straight.
And it's because gospel of Jesus Christ, what a surprise. Whoulda thunkit?!****
On the good ship companion*****, we've been experiencing a couple of paradigm shifts too that, strangely enough, require some gospel of Jesus Christ. We got a call from President last night. He said Sister Heap is off to white wash Hudson Oaks and be the newest Sister Training leader for the Weatherford/Fort Worth zones. I'm staying behind in Lantana to be President's "eyes and ears" (his words, not mine) and will be teaming up with a sister who's going home really soon. Odds are I might kill****** her. President was aware of that and said he's placed her with me because he needed "someone who was so committed to their mission" to keep her from getting trunkie. Again, his words, not mine.
At the end of his phone call, he said "Thank you sisters for being who you are so that I can trust you with this." This left me to reflect... what exactly does the Lord trust me to do? Maybe He trusts me to be a Sister Training Leader, but He clearly has other things in mind.
Now, I've been trying to change lives since May. But I didn't realize that some of them might already be baptized by the time I get there. On this temple trip, I found that my purpose (be it mission, Lantana area specifically, or what have you) is with the members, specifically the youth.
We******* FINALLY got Dakota Starnes at church and he was better behaved than I ever have been in church.... We got Briana baptized and set on track for the temple. And we have inspired the youth to get excited for their missions. I didn't realize the full impact of this until we were talking with the member (her name is Sister McIntyre) during the car ride. She's the Young Women's president... and has a very keen sense of what has happened to the youth.
It must feel good to write down over 9000 on your key indicators for baptized and confirmed... I'm sure Mosiah's sons really enjoyed reporting those numbers. And it must've really been hard for Abinidi's mission to be so statistically unrewarding. But without Abinidi, there would have been no Alma. And Alma takes up 62 chapters of the Book of Mormon, so that means something. I'm sure Abinidi NOW can see the effect of his contributions and service, but at the time, there's something about fiery death that's a little thankless. But if tech theatre has taught me anything, it's that it's the people you don't see that run the show. So I'm wayyy okay with helping every single one of the Lantana young men (and a vast majority of the Young Women, if I have anything to say about it) go on missions. Best job ever.
Thanks mom and dad. Y'all had the most thankless job EVER of being MY parents. But those lectures finally sunk in!!
Love, Sister Gunson
* In-N-Out tastes just as good in Texas as it does in California.
** Fort Worth and Dallas missions are in a heated rivalry. And they have the temple on their turf.....
*** It's designed for that, by the way.
**** us, mostly. Couple apostles, over 15 million members.... whatevs.
***** companion-ship. Get it? It's funny because it's not actually funny, Sister Gunson just thinks she's funny.
****** killing= When a missionary goes home, they die. Their ending companion is the killer.
******* We, being the holy ghost and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Janet's note to those friends who haven't read the Book of Mormon and don't know what Hannah's talking about when she refers to Alma and Mosiah and Abinadi....Well, I was going to give a quick recap of their stories but on second (and better) thought--just go read the books of Mosiah and Alma in the copy of the Book of Mormon that I gave you. You'll love it, I promise!!!!!!!! Then get back with me and tell me what you think! Seriously. You know I love this book. Find out why!