On Tuesday the 4th, we drove to the mission home in Tallahassee where we would stay the night for a leadership conference the next day. That evening we had a classic fourth of July meal of hot dogs and hamburgers, played a game, and watched part of a seminar for new mission presidents. It was so good to be with those friends and with President and Sister Smith, who I have really come to love and admire. The next day we had our conference at the church building right next door; the point that stuck out to me the most was that when we are prepared, we allow the Spirit to work through us most effectively. "Success is where preparation and opportunity meet," and it is through the power of the Holy Ghost that we prepare ourselves with prayer, study, and willing hearts to act in faith on His promptings to do God's work. I'm so grateful for the gift of the Holy Ghost!
After the conference, we drove about 5 hours to Semmes, Alabama for an exchange with the sisters there. We stayed the night in the trailer they live in on the farm land of a member... they live on a farm! :D We woke up in the morning with horses outside that we went out to treat to some Top Rammen. The members who live in a house also on the large property invited us to come see the animals which they teach children about for a learning program. SO fun! We did weekly planning with the sisters, did some service at a community center, and headed back home.
A miracle from Saturday- I saw a Northrop street (last name of some of my cousins) and we pulled onto a side street (a cul de sac, nonetheless) so I could take a picture of it for my cousin. We got back in the car and circled the cul de sac to get back onto the main road. We passed a house where a man was out sitting on his porch. After a few moments, Sister Kirkham pulled the car over and voiced both of our thoughts that we needed to go back and talk to him. So we did- his name is Clifton and he was very kind and accepted a return appointment. There's something about cul de sacs, or there are just a lot of them in Fairhope!
The past few days have been a little hard because we haven't been able to get in contact with our investigator Tristian- we know she isn't the kind to ignore us. So we are praying for her, and trust it will all work out! I have learned a lot recently about trusting in God- to do so is an act of faith in Jesus Christ who frees us from doubt and fear. A quote from Elder Dallin H. Oaks from his talk "Sharing the Restored Gospel" October 2016 general conference: "Sharing the gospel is not a burden but a joy... [it] is not a program but an attitude of love and outreach to help those around us. It is also an opportunity to witness how we feel about the restored gospel of our Savior. " Have a blessed week!