Hope you are all doing well. Hope your trip to Hawaii was nice. Happy Birthday Dad! Hope you have a good day.
This week was really good. We saw a lot of miracles and my testimony has grown so much.
To start off... we had a few lessons with Donna this week (the older lady who has had missionaries for a few years now). The week started off with her disliking the Plan of Salvation (I didn't even know that was possible) and having a lot of questions that she couldn't even really seem to form. We had another lesson set up with a fellowship couple for Saturday. So then on Friday night Sister Salabao and I were on splits. Both people that we had had down for me and Sister Kearney to visit fell through. So I wasn't sure what to do but I said a prayer and then felt like we should call Donna. It was pretty late for her and she was getting ready for bed but she said that we could come over. It was just a quick visit. She hadn't read the Plan of Salvation pamphlet that we left for her from last time to read and pray about. Anyway, we shared Alma 7:11-12 and talked about the Atonement. The Spirit was strong. She felt it. And she said she would read the pamphlet that night right after we left.
So now fast forward to Saturday with Sister Salabao and the Gartens. She had read the pamphlet and highlighted questions that she had or things she was confused about. We had a really good lesson with her. And she accepted the baptismal invitation!!!!!! This is a huge deal. She didn't accept a date to work towards yet. But still such a miracle. Just last week she was saying that she wouldn't be baptized. The Spirit really does soften hearts of testify of truth when people allow it to. There's still a lot we'll have to work through with her. But as we rely on the Holy Ghost and the power of the Atonement and exercise faith I know that Donna can be prepared for baptism. I love her so much and I just want her to accept the gospel in her life and receive so many blessings.
So another miracles that happened this week. That restored my faith in humanity just a little bit. We were tracting. And I think I've mentioned this before but sometimes I am just completely shocked at how rude people are. There are just some really mean people out there that have no manners. I'm so grateful that you guys raised me to have manners. Anyway, every night from 5 to 7 we tract and most of the time it's just rejection after rejection. And usually rude rejection. But we met this little family that were probably some of the nicest people I've ever met in my life. They are very active in their own church but they've served around Mormon missionaries before. They've both done a bunch of humanitarian work and served as missionaries through their own organizations. It was really cold and rainy outside so they invited us to come back after we were done in that area for some hot chocolate if we needed to warm up. So we went back later and had hot chocolate with them. They were so nice. Very Christlike. It's funny because a lot of the time it's the people that say they're Christian that are the rudest to us. But they were so sweet. They invited us to come back and have hot chocolate anytime we wanted. I just truly felt God's love that night for them. I want to be able to teach them the gospel. So they can be an eternal family. There are just so many blessings from living the gospel that I want everyone to have!
One last amazing experience that I had this week that strengthened my testimony so much. We had a mini Zone Conference. President Choi was talking to us about the Atonement. We read from the Bible and then watched the Bible Videos that went along with the scriptures we were reading (Oh my! So good!) We had just read and watched the video of Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane when President Choi asked each zone how obedient we were. He gave us a 95%. But then he asked about that other five percent. Then he had our zone come up to the front. There are 22 missionaries in our zone. Our Zone Leader was supposed to represent Christ and he had to take those five sins from each missionary and do a push up for each one. President Choi had each missionary say their name and count to five as Elder Holman did the push ups. I can't even explain the Spirit that was present. It was just so powerful. When Elder Holman first started it was really easy for him. But with each missionary it became a little bit harder. I was one of the last missionaries to go. So when it came to me and I said my name I had to count really slowly. He was shaking and red and I thought he might not be able to do it. But he kept going. As I was counting I reflected and realized that I commit way more than five sins a day. And that Jesus Christ suffered for every single of them. We can't even begin to comprehend His suffering. We can't make sense of it. But He loved us unworthy and undeserving creatures enough to take every pain and sin we've ever felt. Christ suffered specifically for Veronica White. Every sin and pain that I've ever felt. Every time I've ever felt lonely. Every feeling of inadequacy that I have. Christ has felt all of it. I am never alone. It was so painful for Him that He bled from every pore. That it caused him to quake and that He asked Heavenly Father if the cup could pass from Him. But He knew what He had to do and He was willing to do it. Watching Elder Holman struggle was painful. And I think about how painful it is to watch someone you love suffer. Like when Mom had kidney stones or Bruce right after his surgery or many other instances. You just wish that you could take the pain away for them. You love them. And now I imagine our Heavenly Father who loves with a more perfect and pure love than we ever could. How painful it must have been to watch His perfect son, Jesus Christ, in pure agony. It would have been so hard. But He loved you and me, each one of us, enough that He wants us to return to live with Him again. And the only way was for there to be an Atonement performed. I am so grateful for the Atonement. I know that it is real and that there's power as we apply the Atonement in our life and repent.
I'm so grateful for the restored gospel that allows us to partake of the Sacrament every week through the authorized Priesthood power of God. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are real. They love us. They live. This gospel is true! I love the gospel! And I love you.
Sister Veronica White