To start off, I am loving Plymouth! Last Sunday we had a snowstorm, so we only had Sacrament Meeting, which means that yesterday was my first official Sunday here. I'm still getting used to how there's not as many people, but again we are only 5 people--not priesthood holders--5 people away from becoming a ward! Some families are moving away soon so we are all trying to act on everything quickly! March will be, as I like to call it, "March Missionary Madness" month. It will begin with the Branch joining in for a fast this Sunday to hasten the work of Salvation here, and then there will be workshops, classes, and events revolved around how to pick up the work and spread the gospel here in the Plymouth branch.
Sister Nielson and I seem to have a lot in common, except that she loves the spiciest foods which can make my face turn purple, and she doesn't like ice cream, which I have an addiction for. However, we both have a passion for Chipotle. Just sayin'. Other than that, I am continually learning from her example. She has a strong testimony and desire to give her all. I look up to how much she loves each person here and strives to meet their spiritual needs. We also began doing "appreciations" every night here as well, which brings us closer together. However, here's the thing... we both feel she may be leaving during an upcoming transfer; it's crazy--I feel the Lord is quickening my memory with who the members are here and what their needs are and how to help. Who knows what will happen and all I can do is try my best to take it one step at a time.
Well, speaking of our companionship, Sister Nielson and I came closer as a "Zion companionship" this week. I was getting over my cold and then she started to have a tidious cough with sputum. (I'm good now, so don't worry) but before I knew it, I started to not feel so great myself. After our lesson with one of our investigators about prophets (it went very well), we hurried over to East Coast Grill to meet up for dinner with our Branch President. Holy Smokes, talk about some of the best seafood I've ever had! I've never had lobster mac and cheese before then, but it was divine.
Ha, aside from that tangent, I began to feel more weak to the point where every step required much effort. After dinner we hurried to another lesson, but by that point I couldn't tell if I was fighting a fever or why it was harder to breathe.
So, the next day, we mostly slept--I don't remember ever being that exhausted or dizzy in a while. Over the next couple of days, I slowly started to feel better. Sister Nielson was very understanding and helped out as much as she could. On Saturday, I woke up feeling much better--I even pulled out an Insanity workout and was willing to stop it if it became overwhelming, but I felt fine! It was still very difficult (ha--that's Insanity for ya :) ), but I was able to complete the 40 minute workout. I couldn't help but feel immensely grateful. Since then my lungs haven't felt so tight and I've had much more energy. (Sister Nielson is also feeling much better.)
I hope this story doesn't seem too dramatic, but the reason why I'm sharing it is because over the mission I've discovered how as I may fight a nasty bug every now and then, I can feel the physical power of prayers being sent. Honestly, even Sister Patterson noticed how there seemed to be a physical force around us as a protection against further harm for my health, as there were a lot of sickness going around. Along with my incredible family's prayers, which play one of the largest reasons for this, I don't know who exactly is sending them, but one thing is for sure--the Lord is hearing and answering them. I'm not telling this to plead for prayers--not at all. But the reason I'm telling this is because I am immensely grateful for all of your thoughtfulness and extended love.
Here are a couple more CF-related tender mercies:
-I found out our Branch Mission Leader is a respiratory therapist. Coincidence? Not at all!
-There's a family we ate dinner with last night, and as soon as Sister Nielson said we had to leave to get back for treatment, their 16 year old son asked what it was, so I began to describe how I put on a vest that inflates to shake up gunk in my lungs. He piped up "Do you have Cystic Fibrosis?" It turns out their family has some friends with CF and they go to the walk every year for them.
The work is going well here and our investigators are doing well. We have a busy week ahead with Zone Conference, more lessons, more of helping people move, service opportunities, another CF appointment at Boston Children's (another mini lesson with Brandon?? :) ) and possibly a temple trip with some recent converts. Although we still had some great lessons last week, I'm looking forward to being able to do more this week.
I know the Lord is watching out for each of you. Always know how much he loves you and listens to and will answer your prayers.
Here is one of my all time fav scriptures that stands out right now:
"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my own strength I am weak; therefore, I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land , for which we will praise his name forever." -Alma 26:12
Love love love you!!