If I could sum up this past week in two words it would be FREEZE-FREAKIN-ING. Literally so cold, it's been so crazy. The weather took a nose dive the past week, Ankeny has turned into a frozen tundra lol. The high on Tuesday was -13 degrees. It was so cold our car radio didn't spazzed out and stopped working, so we had no music for like 5 days. Then our car battery died and we jumped it. (Got to tell the member about my famous "Jumper Cables" story, shout out to Liv D!) and our radio started working again, blessings! We also had our first big snow storm, we got about 5 or 6 inches on Saturday. It was snowing all day it was crazy, but it didn't matter because we were inside the church watching a beautiful BAPTISM!
That's right, our awesome investigator Nicole entered into the waters of Baptism this past Saturday and it was too cool. Nicole is awesome I haven't talked very much about her recently, she's a super busy lady (she's a baker and the holidays are killer for her) so we only get to see her every so often. But she is really nice, her husband Shawn is a less active member and she's been meeting with the Missionaries off and on for the past 12 years. So she's been through a ton of missionaries but about a month ago she reached out to us and we decided to try and help her make the next step towards her savior by being baptized. We just really clicked with her and when we met with her she decided she wanted to finally be baptized and become united with her family. We are so excited for her and family to begin growing closer as a unit and become fully active members in the ward. We have seen a lot of growth in the Sherman family in the past few weeks and it's a true testimony builder to witness. Her baptism was great, even though the hot water went out half way through and she got baptized with half freezing water on a -10 degree day :).
I've really grown a testimony of working with members and just always having faith that the Lord will provide us with people to teach. Ankeny is such an interesting place to serve, the Ward is so great, and the members are so missionary minded, it's the dream ward. But the Area is just so hard to find people to teach, everyone is either a super rich and thinks they have everything they need, or they live in North DM and are super down trodden and hard to keep up with. But something I've learned is if we keep working hard everyday Heavenly Father is going to bless us for sacrificing our will to align with his. That's probably the most prominent lesson I've learned in my time in Ankeny is that when I want to do things my way, the baptisms and the lessons and the investigators don't come very easy if at all. But if I follow Heavenly Father's game plan the work goes so much better, and my experiences in Ankeny are a good example of that, when I first got here I thought I knew how to be a good missionary and I thought I had all of these great ideas to turn the Ankeny area around. But it wasn't until I scrapped all of those ideas and started relying on the spirit that we were able to baptize these 4 amazing people that we were led to by Heavenly Father.
More exciting news, we have another baptism this Saturday, my little bro Chris Brima is getting baptized! I'm super pumped for him he's the cutest kid ever, I can't wait to adopt black kids! (and live in Arizona where it's never -13 degrees!)
1 Nicole's Baptisim, I swear I was happier than I look. That was right before I sneezed hardcore.
2 Nicole and her Fellowshipper Bro. Black