On January 27, 2012 I SHOOK THE HAND OF ELDER JEFFREY R. HOLLAND!!!!! He came to visit our mission because of the whole mission president fiasco and he wanted to see how our mission was holding up! They welcomed him to our mission conference and said that he wanted to meet each of us individually! So one by one, we met him and he asked where we were from. I asked if he remembered my MTC song and he DID! :) Elder Holland has the most BEAUTIFUL BABY BLUE EYES IVE EVER SEEN that penetrate your soul.
After we all sat down, he stood up and said "I just interviewed all of you. I wanted to look into each of your eyes to see how your spirits were." He then explained that he needed to know if he should give an encouraging talk or rebuke us for goofing off when president left. So! He asked to meet us one by one and he told us that all of us "passed" that interview! He was very happy with our efforts and he knew that all of us in this mission were continuing forward with the work! And let me tell you! What a relief to feel that nobody needed rebuking! He said "if I had felt that some of you didnt understand what you were doing, I would have gone ballistic!" We dont want to see a ballistic Holland....
Then. He gave the most. beautiful. amazing. sermon. ever. Here are my favorite quotes that I wanted to share with you:
"to walk away from all of this after your mission is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE!!" (Yes, he yelled it at us. There is nothing better than being yelled at by an apostle. I now understand why they call him Jeffrey "the Bulldog" Holland. He sounds like a vicious bark when he yells. I loved it.)
"Sister Holland has got AVON LADIES more persistent than you guys!"
"You are God's investigators. He wants for you what you want for your investigators!"
"The road to salvation always goes THROUGH Gethsemane."
"We won't be on the cross, but we ARE supposed to be at the foot of it!"
"When you get home, you dont go "back to real life!" THIS IS AS "REAL LIFE" AS IT GETS!!" (Also yelled to us. Loved it. He explained that when we go home, we shouldnt go back to old habits/ pre-mission mistakes or be any less than the missionaries we are now.)
Its amazing how that man can speak and yell and boldly proclaim the gospel with so much love. I felt SO MUCH LOVE from him. Okay everybody, here's the best part. As he was wrapping up his talk, he MADE A PROPHECY!!! ABOUT OUR MISSION!! He said that these next few months in the Sacramento mission will be LEGENDARY with missionary work! He said the numbers we see in the next few months will make a dent in the HISTORY of the Sacramento mission, so much so that the missionaries in the next generation will STILL be talking about it far after we have left!! OH MY GOODNESS!!!! An apostle of the Lord just told all of us that in the next few months we will see more success than we have in a long time! It was so amazing. I cant even speak about it I just start geeking out. Its hard to put into words.
I dont even know what else to write about it. It was awesome. I just stutter.
Gladys Knight did four concerts here in Sacramento (that Holland attended) and our mission is going to get THOUSANDS of referrals. People could write their names and addresses after the concert if they wanted missionaries or a Book of Mormon. There is an excitement here that is like a powerful energy. Like Aunt Arlene balled it up in her hands and blasted it to every missionary here. We have to take things to the edge and boldly challenge people to accept the gospel! I have to step it up. We have to find these people and do our part to help that prophecy happen!!
Other not-as-important news:
-I picked up a worm the other day that wasnt a worm. it was a small snake. go me.
-We had a temple tour for all our recent converts and I love Anne more than anything. She looked at me and said "Are all temples THIS beautiful!?" Yes, Anne. They are. And they all have the same spirit, too. She was in awe. (Okay, that one was important!)
I love you all. The Lord loves you all. I am never again washing my right hand.