We did get to teach Doris this week! Hopefully I'll be able to see her one more time before I leave on Wednesday. It was an awesome lesson on the Restoration. She's so hard of hearing and I'm usually so quiet, I felt like I was yelling, but afterward Sister Leavitt just told me I was talking like a normal person. So I think she got most of it, but she'll probably have to be retaught the beginning. She did promise to try to start reading the BoM and to pray about the things we're teaching her. I can feel her incredible faith and trust in God - she trusts Him for everything! She has the faith of a child in how much she trusts Him, it's really incredible. I know she can get an answer because her heart is softening. She told us we couldn't convert her overnight because she's a deep thinker - but she didn't say we couldn't convert her at all! :D We'll get her!
Her best line, talking about how much she loved Hillary Clinton: "She is an amazing woman, really. That Bill though. She should'a just killed him and called it an accident. I think God would understand!" and then she did her little laugh. She's so wonderful, I'm going to miss her. Sometimes I think about moving to Norman just for her. :)
We also met the Whalens this week. They live clear out by lake Thunderbird which is the END of our area! It was a road trip just getting out to them! They're in their late 60s/early70s and they live on quite a bit of land out there. They're both retired and it sounds like they just love spending time with their grand kids. It's hard to explain, but the Spirit was so abundant in their home. It was cluttered with books and photographs and trinkets, and it was just wonderful. It felt similar to the log home. :) ALSO I almost teared up when Sister Whalen mentioned her love for reading - especially Harry Potter. She said the last 400 pages of the last book is a section she's read so many times just because of how touching it is, with Hagrid carrying Harry through the forest and things. It was so happy. I felt like we were kindred spirits. :)
Gabriel got baptized on Saturday! It was quite the baptism. :) Gabriel asked Elder Ravsten to baptize him. They got into the water and I looked over and though, "Is the water usually that shallow?" yeahhhhhhh... no! :) The first time his hand was sticking up, the second time his knee, so they tried having him let his knees go under but then his toes stuck out. Fourth time's a charm, right? The fourth time, Gabriel sat down in the water with his legs out straight, and Elder Ravsten got on his knees and dunked him. Gabriel's hand almost stuck out again, but E. Ravsten caught it and pushed it under the water. It was more of a slap, really. :D It was awesome. He was so happy and excited! Afterward he showed us the millions of LDS apps he downloaded (like memorizing temples and general authorities and stuff) it was so awesome. :)
We also had an incredible lesson with the Jingozians on Thursday. We taught the first half of the Plan of Salvation. Jes soaked it right up - She's such a deep thinker. She loves math and nature and appreciates so much all of God's creations. The Spirit taught so strongly. We were talking for a bit, and Chris was swearing a bit...well, a lot, and we mentioned that we should say a prayer. The prayer brought the Spirit into the room strongly and after that Chris didn't swear. I thought that was a little miracle. But even more so, I could truly understand and feel what Jes was feeling during the lesson. She's so maternal. It's in her nature to want to nurture and do things right. As I was teaching, the Spirit emphasized to her through me the significance of the understanding that the fall of Adam and Eve is a wonderful thing, and part of God's plan. It made so much sense to her - especially the understanding that without the fall, they couldn't have had children, or know misery or joy.
We also discovered their need for clothes, especially warm ones, and church clothes too! They want to come, but they want to feel comfortable and not out of place. We announced their sizes and need in Relief Society, and later we were talking about it at dinner with the K family. They both jumped up and got a coat, shirt and tie, and a box full of food for them. This is considering they are poor college students with two children - they had a budget posted on their fridge that was to the dollars and cents, and they STILL gave all they could. It was incredible. When we got in the car, Sister Leavitt and I just cried. On the way out, Sister K mentioned that they'd been in a hard place before too, that they were doing the best financially they ever had. And the Jingozians received it so graciously. The gospel and the true love of Christ is just so apparent.
We also had an amazing lesson with Annie this week. She's so solid! Her testimony of the gospel is incredible. She's asked us to teach her more about the Bible so we taught her from Matt. 19. I had an incredible experience in which the Spirit testified to Annie AND me about coming to know the Savior. I shared that to know the Savior, we have to spend the time learning about Him. I know that when the time comes to meet Him face to face, if we have come to know Him, we will recognize Him, and even His voice, and we will know Him as our Brother and not as a stranger. Jesus Christ did die for us, and He lives for us now. It is ONLY through Him and His Atonement that we can return to live with Heavenly Father and ONLY through this gospel that we can reach our full potential. But it's a simple path! We've been given everything we need and a promise that Heavenly Father will be with us always. I know it's true. I love this gospel and I'm so grateful for all that God gives us every day.
I love you!
p.s. After church, I finally got to see the Zukas' new baby boy, Henry! He's just like a week old. Brother Zukas was holding him in the hall. He's such a beautiful baby! I just wanted to hold him so badly that I started to cry. (Bro. Zukas: "Oh, I can't believe you're actually crying!") Finally I just asked if I could just smell his head, and dad said yes! SO I JUST SMELLED HIS LITTLE BABYS HEAD AND CRIED SOME MORE. It was wonderful and ridiculous. The no-holding-babies-rule is so ridiculous. :)
p.p.s. Transfer doctrine deets: So I'm going to be in a trio with Sister.... I can't remember, and a new missionary! But apparently Anadarko is like just a small Native American Branch. Which is crazy because my dad kept talking about how he just felt very strongly that I'd be serving with Native Americans on my mish. For everyone else: Sisters L are staying here and getting Sister Ott, Elder Tripp will be staying here with his new trainee (first time training!), E Mierau is going to Altus with E Burdette (who came out with me! He'll put that E Mierau to work... heehee), E Buhler is staying here with a new comp, and Elder Winterton is coming out to Anadarko with me to be my DL! Oh and AP Fee is no longer an AP - but guess who is? E. Ravsten! Transfers are so dramatic. :)