Monday, January 20, 2014

My first week in Santa Maria!

Hello everyone!  It's great to be here to email all of you once again.  This week has been a trying week, but also a week full of miracles!  First things first, to clear things up, I'm follow-up training Elder Gaylor.  It's been kind of like a "white wash" though because he's only been here one transfer and we're still both figuring things out.  Elder Gaylor is a convert of 15 months!  He told me his story.  He's the only member in his family, his friend invited him to EFY and he felt the Spirit, and the missionaries came over and taught him and he got baptized!  Member missionary work, it's the greatest.  He said that he could just picture himself doing the same thing as the missionaries were doing, and so here he is!  He's freshly 18 years old, and he's really cool!

So, to describe Santa Maria, it's pretty cool.  There's an LDS, Lutheran, Baptist, Catholic, and Non-denominational Christian church on one street.  It's super crazy..As far as the actual missionary work goes, the people here are really prideful.  They think that they are well enough off and most of the time they don't hear us out, except for the miracles that I'm going to describe soon!  To be honest, I've never had as much rejection in one week than I've had this week, but that's OK!  I really can feel all of your prayers for strength and it's helping me a ton.  I'm learning not to get discouraged over it.  People have their agency, and it's just our job to invite them to learn more, to testify, and to help and serve them.  

It's really nice here in Santa Maria.  On Saturday it was 85 degrees outside, it's super weird!  I'm not used to this!  The members here are AWESOME.  So much love and support for us.  There's 4 missionaries in this ward, and we have the northern half of the ward.

So, miracle report time!  So this week, we had 3 AWESOME miracles!  My 2nd day here, we were going tracting, and I told Elder Gaylor to pict a street he wanted to tract. 

We were tracting down a street, and Elder Gaylor remembered a former investigator that lived at a certain house. We knocked on the door, and we had a 20 minute lesson with them on the doorstep. It had been about 4 months since they've been last seen, and the lady said that she wanted us to come by and keep studying with her, but it took a visit from us for her to realize it. It was a really cool experience, and they committed to come to church this upcoming week.

The next was when we were in the park contacting people, when we met a lady named Teresa. She talked about how there are so many distractions in the world today, and that she wanted to read the Bible, even though it was really hard. We explained to her that we could help her with that, and we talked with her about the Plan of Salvation. We gave her a pamphlet, and as I was bearing my testimony of it to her, tears streamed down her face. We got her address and phone number, and the other elders had a nice referral. Miracle for sure.

The last was just yesterday when we were going to go to an appointment with a member to see an investigator. As we were all walking towards the investigator's house, an older less-active lady and her son came outside. The son said, "Look who we have here!" It turns out the lady requested a blessing from her son, but the son was all by himself, so he was about to leave and go grab someone. We were able to go inside and assist with the blessing at the EXACT moment they came outside. God put us in their path.

There have been so many times this week where I've said, "The Church is true!"  We have been striving really hard to be EXACTLY obedient, and because of that, these three miracles occurred.  What a blessing that is.


  1. Tracy Monney:

    Elder Gaylor sounds amazing, just like Elder Harper! What a great pair. Love his enthusiasm and positive attitude. So happy for these miracles that he has helped make happen by his obedience and faith. Outstanding missionary! He looks so good too, very happy and healthy. Thanks for sharing.