I am leaving Santa Barbara and going to Camarillo with Hermana Huey! We're whitewashing!! :) I'll be in the famous Oxnard 5th ward! YAY! Super excited! :) :) :)
BUT! I am going to miss Santa Barbara so much! It has been such a blessing to serve here. We are always told that we serve in certain areas for specific reasons at a specific time with and for specific people. I definitely feel like that has been true here. I feel blessed to have been an instrument in the Lord's hands. I also feel very blessed to have been tinkered with by other instruments of the Lord. There are so many amazing people here and my heart will miss them a lot! But my heart already loves the souls of Camarillo. So God will feel the empty space pretty quick. :)
Some cool miracles this week. On Friday morning we had a missed call and voicemail from an unknown number. We listened to the voicemail and it said something like this:
"Hello! I want to come to church! Where is your church located? When are the services?"
(Okay, fine, that's a summary...)
So we called the number and it was a man named Erik Perez. He has a drinking problem, but he's tired of running to alcohol to fix his problems and instead wants to run to God. COOL! We couldn't figure out how he got
Other miracle. Friday night, wow Friday was just a really good day... Friday night we had a lesson with Elida. She was invited by a member friend to the Father's day party a few weeks ago and ended up coming to church the next week and then to another Relief Society activity. So we met with her on Friday and she basically told us her whole life story, which is SUPER SAD! She's had a really hard life. And then she got to the part where she came to the Father's day activity. She said something like this:
"When I got the activity at the church, you two welcomed me, and it was like two angels with the face of Christ welcoming me into heaven. I feel like I am talking to God when I talk to you. Thank you for being my angels."
(Again, a summary...)
It's been a very special week in a very special area. To top it all off, Jacob, Presidente Mendoza's grandson, got baptized on Saturday! He's such a cutie. I'm in love with him and his little brothers. Okay, really I'm in love with the entire Mendoza family. :)
So one of the biggest things I have learned serving here the last few months is the importance of our purpose as missionaries. We are here to help others come unto Christ. For me, it can be easy to be overwhelmed by the struggles and trials that others present to us as they search for help. I have found myself thinking again and again, "I can't help all these people with all their difficulties on my own!" But what's amazing is that I don't have to. None of us do. We come unto Christ to find relief from feelings of guilt, shame, sin, and trial, and so much more. I have found myself coming unto Christ and choosing to rely on Him in my moments of difficulty, and it has helped me to gain a greater perspective of how to help others. People come unto us to find relief, and we offer that relief though our Savior. We have to help them come unto Him because we cannot help them on our own. But if they can come unto Christ, He will help them to find answers to their questions, comfort in times of trial, and inspiration to grow and become so much more that they could ever be on their own. I know that this is true because I have seen it in my own life again and again and again. I am so grateful for my Savior and for the opportunity to represent Him during the hastening of His work.
Have a great week!