We have had one amazing week! I don't even know where to begin, so I guess I'll begin with the best. On Friday night we had a lesson with John and Jane [names changed]. Sister Fowler and I met John during my first week in the field. He is a really humble, innocent, and charitable man we met at the market in Christiana, where he works.
After getting in an accident in the past, John can no longer read, so we have been talking to him about the Gospel and reading from The Book of Mormon with him whenever we drop by the market to use the restroom. John's friend Jane also works at the market and John took her in when she was homeless and she has lived in his house with her own bedroom and bathroom for seven years.
The first time we went to their house to teach them, John told us that we were the first people, aside from Jane, who had entered his house in two years. On Friday we talked with John and Jane about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We read 2 Nephi 31 with them and discussed the different aspects of Christ's Gospel and what we must do to follow our Savior. I could definitely feel the Spirit throughout the lesson. Near the end of the lesson, Sister Fowler committed John and Jane to read/listen to The Book of Mormon (we got an audio version for John because he can't read) and pray about the things we have taught and also committed them to be baptized when they knew that it was true.
As we continued talking a little bit about John and Jane's lives, I began to feel the Spirit strongly prompting me to set a baptismal date with these two amazing children of God. As they continued to talk, the spiritual promptings grew stronger and stronger. I began searching my mind for an appropriate baptismal date and I was suddenly impressed to use January 19th. I had no idea what day of the week it was, which worried me a little bit, but as I thought about other dates, the Spirit just grew stronger to the point where my heart began racing and swelling and continued to prompt me to use the 19th and set the date.
When there was a break in the conversation, I told John and Jane that I knew that Heavenly Father was very proud of them for diligently searching for truth in The Book of Mormon and committing to follow the Savior's example and that the Spirit was prompting me to ask them if they would prepare to be baptized on January 19th. When they asked me what day of the week that was, I told them that I did not know and that January 19th was the date the Spirit was impressing upon my mind. After checking the calendar, we found out that January 19th was a Sunday.
I was a bit confused as to why the Spirit had prompted me so strongly to use this day, seeing that baptisms are usually held on Saturdays and then those who are baptized are confirmed during Sacrament Meeting the next day. However, I soon recognized a potential reason when both John and Jane agreed to prepare to be baptized on this date and told us that they would try to get the day off work that day. In the end, I don't think it will be practical for them to be baptized on Sunday January 19th, seeing that we like to keep the time between baptism and confirmation fairly short. However, I guess the Spirit might have just been preparing them to learn about keeping the Sabbath day holy when he impressed the date January 19th so distinctly in my mind. The Lord works in mysterious ways.
Well, this week I experienced my first two baptismal date settings in the field and now two of my companions and my investigators are now preparing to follow the example of the Savior by being baptized by someone holding the true Priesthood authority on the 19th of January. I had spiritual aftershock all of Friday night! When I asked Sister Fowler if you always felt this way after setting baptismal dates, she said yes. I told her that I can't wait to feel like this again. We ended up calling President that night and leaving him a "Miracle Message" that consisted of a lot of screaming for joy. :) He called us back later and wanted to hear the whole story.
We had an awesome Zone Conference/Christmas Devotional on Saturday with white elephant gifts and a tie/scarf exchange. During one of the trainings, I wrote down some quotes I really liked:
"Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult, once we truly understand and accept it, then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters...Life is a series of problems. Do we want to moan about them or solve them?...Problems call forth our courage and our wisdom. It is only because of problems that we grow mentally and spiritually. When we desire to encourage the growth of the human spirit, we challenge and encourage the human capacity to solve problems." (The Road Less Traveled, by Scott Packer)
On Thursday, we ran into a man named Billy [name changed] at Taco Bell who asked us where we worked when he saw our name tags. We told him we were missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He then pretty much told us his life story and how he felt that God wanted him here on the earth for a reason, seeing that he had nearly been killed three times but had survived (he was a soldier in Iraq for a while). We then felt prompted to invite him to the Institute class that night. He told us that he had been planning on going gambling, but our class about God and the scriptures sounded a lot better. He told us he would meet us there in an hour.
I'm sorry to say this, but I was really surprised and excited when he actually turned up after we gave him directions over the phone when he had a hard time finding the Church. Institute ended up being great. Billy participated a lot by asking the most questions and making the most comments out of all of those who were present. He told us that he would be pretty busy during the holidays but that he would like to meet up with us again. Exciting day!
Saturday night I found out that I am being transferred to Jamestown, TN in the McMinnville Zone. Sister Culp is off to Crossville, which is also in the McMinnville Zone, and Elder Olson, one of our Zone Leaders is also off to McMinnville. Transfers are tomorrow, so I have a lot of packing to do!
Te amo voces muito e eu estou muito animado por seus planos por Natal!
P.S. please stop praying for me to get my visa. It's all in the Lord's hands. If He wants me here, I'll be here as long as He wants me. I'll go where he wants me to go whenever he wants me to go.
Sister Dyer with a church member's dog
Sister Dyer's last Sunday in Christiana
Sister Dyer's missionary district celebrating Transfer Day at a Chinese restaurant
Missionaries in the District
Sister Dyer with her Mission President and his wife