I love Bountiful Utah with absolutely all of my being. It reminds me so much of Columbia. And I am SO incredibly happy that I will be staying for another transfer! 6 more weeks!
So I'll tell you a secret - I was a little worried that I'd leave. I actually knew last week that ONE of us would leave. Logic would say that I would be the one to be transferred since I have now been here for 3 transfers and Sister Alaiasa has only been here for 1. But nope. She's going to Mueller Park and I'm staying!!!!! (Don't feel sad for her - that's the stake that President Eyring lives in! If I ever leave Bountiful I really want to go to Mueller Park. :)
Yesterday I had an interesting thing happen. On Sunday mornings we have 20 minute correlation meetings with each individual ward mission leader. These meetings are back to back and usually pretty stressful - they never end on time, we're always running late, and it's HARD to try to get everything done and to make them feel like you really care about them individually when you're 10 minutes into the next meeting. Skills, I'm learning skills friends. :) During one of our correlation meetings with one of the twelve ward mission leaders in our stake, he decided to take the time to focus on how offended he was over something that he thought we did horribly wrong instead of on the missionary work. You know. In front of the senior missionary couple AND the two high-councilors in our stake. It was a little bit mortifying until I realized that they didn't blame us at all. Brother Eubank - who I respect a lot and who is very VERY eloquent in speech (much more than I am) - jumped right in to help smooth over the situation.
I somehow maintained my calm. I somehow managed to not yell at him for being so ridiculously prideful. I really REALLY wanted to tell him to suck it up and to get over himself. (He was upset that we invited someone other than him to a lesson with an investigator. Seriously?? You're the ward mission LEADER, not the only option we have for member present lessons...) But I didn't. I somehow managed to be in control of myself and my emotions and to handle the unfounded criticism like a responsible adult.
After he left though, the stress of the situation came out. His temper tantrum caused us to be 15 minutes late for the next meeting, which meant that we had one ward mission leader who had been standing out in the hall waiting, and another whose meeting was supposed to start in 5 minutes. I felt the anxiety hit though and started pacing after he left the room. You know, again, in front of everyone. Brother Eubank was so kind! He told me that I handled that situation really REALLY well (which meant a lot, coming from him...) and he basically reaffirmed that the claims were unfounded, but that I had to pull it together because, well, work. He and Brother Burningham made a quick executive decision - this day only - to take one of the ward mission leaders that had been waiting into another room to correlate and we would take the other. This way it didn't make us late for the REST of our meetings that day. The point is for them to correlate with the missionaries, but this was the best thing for this week. I was very grateful for that leadership and quick problem-solving! And I was able to pull it together again.
After our correlation meetings though, I asked our two high councilors for a blessing. Sundays are actually are most packed high-stress days (irony, right?) I was feeling okay about not being the one to blame for what that ward mission leader was accusing me of. But it had destroyed my calm enough that I knew I would need help to make it through the day. Blessings always bring such peace and calm and affirmation into my life! This one promised me that like Alma, my burdens would be made light. God wouldn't take them away, but I would be able to bare them with ease because of the atonement. What a wonderful promise! And it was absolutely true. I had so much strength and energy for the rest of the day, and it's bled into today as well! We had a wonderful event last night in our stake where 150-200 nativities were on display for people to come and see. It was so wonderful to see all of these depictions of the Christ-child! Such a wonderful Spirit in that room! We estimated that 1000 people showed up! It was an incredible experience - I never could have made it without the blessing though. :)
In case you missed it - I TOTALLY got a blessing from the weatherman! :) I'm working on that autograph for you Deborah! I was at a ward Christmas party on Saturday and ended up at a table with the current stake President, two former stake Presidents, and another weatherman (they're everywhere!). They said they'll make it happen! :D
Love you all! Have a great week!