Thursday, February 19, 2015

February 16, 2015 ~ Week 52 (Week 7 Arlington)

Week 7 Arlington
Dear Family & Friends.

How were the holidays?!  I love holidays as a missionary, because it literally becomes the best day ever.  It seems like everything is
 happy, and serving one another, we get to be with the members, it's just all in all wonderful.  Valentine’s Day was the best day ever.

There were so many miracles this week.  I will share my two favorite ones.  We were driving into this apartment complex to go visit a family that had been on our minds.  I was in the driver's seat, Sister Murray in the passenger's seat.  In this apartment complex, I waved to a young
man in his 20s riding on his bike.  Went to park, and Sister Murray began to pray.  While she was praying, I hear a tapping on my window.  It was the young man.  I rolled down my window and he asked if we needed to talk to him.  I said no, we were just waving.  He noticed we were Sister Missionaries and said that a Sister previous to us use to come teach him months ago, but he could never get a hold of them again.  He said that he felt the Spirit whenever they came to teach him.  We said we would be happy to continue to teach him.  His name is Marc.  He asked if we could come back and teach him.  Sure enough, we had one free hour left in the evening and said we could come back at 8.  He agreed.  We went back and he had his family of 7 of there too! Even though they would not listen, they were very friendly and after seeing the example of their son, they will soon listen.  We taught him the first lesson and invited him to be baptized on March 14.  He offered to say the closing prayer at the end of the lesson and even told Heavenly
Father how excited he was to be baptized in March.  God is so aware of His children.
I have been waving and smiling at people for an entire year hoping that one day, that one person would stop and ask why, because you would be surprised not very many people go out of their
way to wave and say hello to every person they see.  I love what President Monson says about showing love towards others: "Love is expressed in many recognizable ways: a smile, a wave, a kind comment, a compliment.  Other expressions may be more subtle, such as showing interest in another’s activities, teaching a principle with kindness and patience, visiting one who is ill or homebound.  These words and actions and many others can communicate love."
Love—the Essence of the Gospel  .......Wave to everyone :)

I went to Dunn Ave. for a day this week as I was on a trade off with a Sister.  These two Sisters made such inspired plans for their evening.  They picked a street in their area where we could do one hour of inspired finding.  After knocking on quite a few doors with no success, we saw this beautiful, lit up home right across the street.  We decided to go over there and knock on the door. This couple opened the door and said come on in!  We were surprised as we walked in only later to find out that he is a member of the Church and she was not.  But we had no idea who they were.  We asked what ward they attend and they said Arlington Ward.  We had never seen each other before even though I had been there for 6 weeks.  Their names are Robert and Amanda. I was so thrilled to meet them.  It was interesting because Amanda and I just connected instantly. She said that I looked to familiar to her and the same...she looked so familiar to me.  Yet we had never seen each other before. The only thing that is holding her back from being baptized
is marriage.  We had a very powerful lesson about Eternal Marriage. This couple is now praying for a date to be married.  We shared personal experiences about our families and the temple that made her cry.  Mine was this: I can just remember when I was a young girl.  It seemed like monthly, but it was every so often they would pack all the kids up in car if there was no baby sitter, and take us to the temple.  While one of my parents would be in the temple, the other would take us in the visitor’s center.  We would also walk around the beautiful white Mesa temple.  But the one thing I will always remember is the example that my parents lead.  In taking me to the temple often when I was young, to let me walk around the outside of it and feel the
Spirit.  Their example will continue to touch my life as now, I will be attending the temple frequently when I return.

The Atonement of Jesus Christ is constantly on my mind; the aspect of the redeeming and enabling power of the Atonement.  The redeeming power of the Atonement turns the bad into the good (the sins we make, that are erased). The enabling power of the Atonement turns good people into better people.  I love the Savior. His Atonement is redeeming and enabling.  We can be transformed in the path of our own beautiful work in progress.  Come unto Christ, and you will find eternal life.

Love, Sister McCook

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