Date

June 18, 2018

Area

Evansville

Companion

Sister Rachel Pankey

Hey bird, why you gotta be like that??

Hey y'all!!

Ready to hear a miracle?? Okay here ya go...

Yesterday, we felt a strong impression to go visit a man named Mark who had visited with sisters 2 years ago. We showed up at Mark's door, and it was quite awkward. He didn't really seem like he wanted to talk, and so we were trying to get some information and figure out his interest level without being annoying, pushy or a burden. Sister Pankey could see more into the house than I could, and saw a woman laying on the couch inside. She asked the woman her name, and she hollered back, "no name!" Alright, we could tell she wasn't up for talking. As we continued trying to keep a conversation going with Mark, all of a sudden the woman told Mark he should let us in. We were shocked.

So now we're inside the house, still talking to Mark. The woman got up from the couch and walked into the dining room, looking for some Advil, totally uninterested in us. Mark was telling us how life has been pretty hard for him lately. I asked him, if his life was centered on Jesus Christ, would he be able to get through these difficult times. Then, "no name" piped in and said, "oh yeah! That's what I keep telling him." Now all 4 of us started having a conversation about Jesus Christ and his gospel. It was going good and the woman was warming up to us so we asked what her name was. She told us it was Julie.

Julie expressed to us her frustration about religion and how she doesn't know where the truth is at. I asked her if she had ever pondered the question, of why there are so many churches. She said, "yes all the time! We've been talking about that all afternoon. I was just praying to God asking him if I should become a Buddhist! I don't know where to go."

Sister Pankey was able to share of her personal search for the truth and it really helped bring the spirit into their home.

We both felt very prompted to share a video about Jesus Christ's original church. The video addressed some of Julie's concerns but new concerns came from the video. She couldn't swallow the idea of a prophet. From this point, she was respectful for us being there for Mark, but she wasn't interested in learning more for herself.

As we kept talking about the restoration with Mark, Julie kept piping in and we were able to have a very good lesson with them both. And words can't even fully express all that was going on and the powerful spirit that was present in our lesson with Mark and Julie.

We were able to bear testimony of Jesus Christ and his sacrifice. We testifed of the healing power that can come into our lives as we access the enabling power of Jesus Christ's atonement. Now, Mark and Julie are in tears and are opening up to us about seriously all the hardships they have faced the last 10 years. They have felt very abandoned by God and couldn't see how he could even love them. Every single concern and heartache they expressed to us, had an answer tied back to the restoration, we were able to point them back to the Savior and the Book of Mormon. You could see and feel the holes in their hearts being filled.

Julie looked me straight in the eye and asked me how I could only be 20 years old and have such a strong testimony of Jesus Christ. I know that as we seek after the Savior and make him apart of our lives, we will come to know him more and see miracles unfold in our lives. And I know because the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth, I can come to know him even more.

As I poured my heart out to Mark and Julie about the love Heavenly Father does have for them and the truth that is there waiting for them to discover, Julie asked me how I feel the spirit. I explained to her how I have a warmness in my heart and how it just makes sense, it feels right. I asked her how she feels the spirit. She said it's usually the same everytime and as soon as you shared your testimony with me, I felt it again. Alright, now listen to this! She said, "I can literally feel my hardness melting away and I want to hear more." Incredible!! We were able to witness, firsthand, the spirit soften Julie's heart! Right before our eyes!!

She shared with us how she was just praying to God 3 hours before we got there, saying that she was going to give up on Christianity. She was done. There was no way she could keep going. And she testified to us that she KNOWS there was no coincidence that we showed up when we did.

Mark and Julie are deeply loved by our Heavenly Father. All of us are. God knows our individual needs perfectly and will always send the help we need. Always. I can testify of that.

One of my favorite things Julie said at the end was that she couldn't believe she was actually giving us her phone number so we could talk more. Haha from "no name" to best friends. Before we left their home, we were all able to have a kneeling prayer together and all express our love to God that we were able to find one another. We are more than thrilled to see Mark and Julie again!!

Amazing things happened this week and for the sake of time and length, I'll leave y'all with a funny story...

We were doing a district service day in Mt. Vernon and as Sister Wilcox and I were helping pick up dog poop in the backyard, a dang bird flew by and pooped on BOTH of us!! It was horribly hilarious. Oh the good times in Mt. Vernon😂😂

Love youinns,
Sister Lauren Ashlee Ludwig

Pictures:
District service for the win!!




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