It still baffles me how fast these weeks fly by...I swear I'm breaking mission rules because it seems like I'm on the computer emailing every day!
This week went pretty well! Elder Gruwell and I went on exchanges with a couple of other missionaries in the district, and it was awesome! I went with Elder Campbell to his area. He's from Rexburg, ID and he's an absolute fireball. ;) He's been out for just about 3 months now, and I was an am impressed with his amazing "greenie fire". As we talked after we turned out the lights, it was great to be able to ask him about his family, his goals, how his mission is going, and just overall getting to know him and showing love for him. We taught a guy named Juan Gomez who basically believes in everything that we do. He talked about a "restoration of the primitive church" and "authority needed to baptize". Hopefully they have success with him!
On Friday, President Felix held a zone conference here in Santa Maria. We first went over a few updates/reminders, and discussed a few rules. We heard that temple trips that take longer than 2 and a half hours to travel there will not be approved...so basically anyone can go except for the people in Santa Maria. :( Missionaries in the northern part of the mission can now go to the Fresno Temple, but it's still too far away for people here to go there. So, unfortunately we will not be going to the temple next week...Oh well.
It was great as we were able to read and learn more about "The Living Christ" document that the church has produced. We read and listened to stories of Apostles who have received a witness of Christ--including Boyd K. Packer of this last General Conference. We then each individually had the chance to bear testimony and to tell what we learned from that zone conference. We finished the meeting by singing "I Believe in Christ", and I felt the Spirit radiate through my body like electricity. So powerful.
But here's the funny part of the story: While we have our zone conferences, our vehicles get examined by the office staff. So before we go in, we leave our set of keys on the driver's seat and roll the window down. When they're done, they leave the keys on the seat and lock the doors (because we have 2 sets). Well, Elder Gruwell forgot his set of keys at the apartment, so we had to get a ride and drive all the way there and back to grab them (luckily it was held here in town...) When we got back, I found out that I or somebody left our lights on, so the battery was dead. The missionaries who drove us back also jumped our car for us too...true life savers. ;)
On Sunday, it was the Santa Maria Stake Conference. President and Sister Felix spoke, and while President talked, he asked all the missionaries to stand up and recite with him, "Our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ, by helping them receive the restored Gospel, through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end." It was really powerful, and many people were in tears.
Not much new happening with the investigators..but Barb and her daughter Diamond went on a church tour with us this week! I was on exchanges with Elder Campbell when they did it, but I heard that it was a big success! A member came with them too, so that's good.
In conclusion, I am so thankful for the influence of the Holy Ghost. I have been able to feel his promptings many times this week, and I am so thankful that I have learned how to better recognize that on my mission. These feelings cannot be felt in any other way, so that just means to me that I know undoubtedly that this church is true. "Everything that inviteth and enticeth to do good is inspired of God". I love you all!
P.S. Here I am looking like "Eezma" from "Emperor's New Groove"