Monday was a much needed P day for the Sisters. They really took time to actually relax and rest their bodies up for the week ahead. They were able to spend time that evening with a fun family who had them over for dinner. "They are the most hilarious family ever! Love them", Sister Tanner said. She is lucky to be surrounded by so many amazing families! They ended their day by visiting a few different people, and planning their trainings for the following day.
The Zone Training Meeting was on Tuesday! The Mission President's wife surprised everyone and showed up! Sister Tanner was so nervous since she was teaching, but she did wonderful! "We gave two different trainings. The first one was on consecration, and I can honestly say it's my favorite and best training I've given on my mission. It was totally led by the spirit and I felt like our Zone actually cared about what we were talking about. Afterward, I was thinking about how that is probably the last training I will be giving and so I was really happy that it was my favorite one! The other training we gave was on working with members and the importance of finding people to teach through members. It went really well", Sister Tanner said. After the Zone training, the Sisters went to work like crazy! They were able to contact so many people! It was amazing! Then, after an amazing dinner, they headed to the church to teach Young Women's Mutual night. They had a "YW SISTER MISH NIGHT!" Sister Tanner had the wonderful opportunity to tell them all about her decision to serve, and what Mission life is like for a girl. "It was so fun, and you could totally see the light go off for some girls now going to be thinking about serving. We had a blast with them", Sister Tanner said. She loves being able to work with the Young Women!
Wednesday was filled with lots of appointments! At one home, the lesson wasn't going exactly the way Sister Tanner had planned. She was a little bummed, but then she ended up meeting a completely different person while at this house! He was a super cool guy who is interested and wants to attend church! What a great ending to that visit! At the next lesson, Sister Tanner and Sister Reed helped the woman work on her family history. "She didn't think it was possible because all of her family is from Honduras, and they don't keep good records. She just thought it was impossible, but Sister Reed is a family history nut, so she figured it out", Sister Tanner said. How amazing it is that these Sisters are helping to connect others to their families. What a blessing! Later that day, Sister Tanner brought flowers to a woman in her ward. Her daughter had just had surgery, and they wanted to cheer her up. The sweet woman told them she is going to find some friends for them to teach! Sister Tanner was so excited about that! That evening, the Sisters taught a lesson at the church and then stayed for Institute after. "Always blows my mind! He is the best institute teacher ever", Sister Tanner said of her teacher.
Wisconsin finally reached fall weather on Thursday! Sister Tanner is so excited to wear sweaters and boots! Luckily, she will be leaving just as the harsh winter arrives! The Sisters had a great lesson with the recently baptized 10 year old that day. Sister Tanner had a fabulous idea to play "Duck, Duck, Goose" as part of her lesson. As she worked on her studies that morning, she kept trying to figure out why she felt the need to play that game with him! Then she realized she could use it to help teach the Restoration and the importance of prophets! So they played "Apostasy, Apostasy, PROPHET!" "The kids LOVED it! He is so smart and remembered the whole restoration and then for our closing prayer, he started it by saying, "Our Eternal Father"! What the heck! What 10 year old starts their prayers that way, especially when we 've never said that with them. He is so smart and is learning so much", Sister Tanner said. She loves this family and this young boy so much! Seeing him grow and progress so much in the gospel brings her so much happiness! After that amazing lesson, Sister Tanner rushed to a "Headquarter referral" lesson! It was a miracle referral! "She was probably my age and asked for a Bible. She is way cool and super open. We gave her a Book of Mormon too", Sister Tanner said. This young woman was definitely meant to learn about the gospel! She is so ready! Later that day, Sister Tanner met with one of her investigators. She was able to tell the Sisters that she is 5 days Coffee Free! "It's a miracle! She said she fasted on Sunday, and then on Monday she went to her coffee place and they were all out. So she just quit and hasn't drank any since! Heavenly Father works in mysterious ways! We have faith she can get baptized by the end of the year", Sister Tanner said. Fasting can bring us the clarity and the blessings we need to make a big decision or get through a trial in our life. The day ended with an amazing experience at their dinner appointment. They had dinner with a part member family, where the husband is not a member of the church. They used this dinner appointment to teach him another lesson. It went really well. Sister Tanner told him that if he decides to be baptized, that she will be there whenever it is. He told her that it's not about "if" but about "when"! She is so excited, and hopes that he makes that decision before she leaves in November! "What a happy day that will be! I think he really loves us because we are the first ones that haven't pushed him or bugged him about it. He knows we love them and that we will love him no matter what choice he makes. He told us he's been reading the Book of Mormon every day! Yay! We were so excited", Sister Tanner said!
Sister Tanner had exchanges on Friday with the Elkhorn Sisters. Sister Rousseau came to Kenosha to serve with her for the day. Together, they volunteered at the Shalom Center and then taught a few lessons. They even found a new investigator! They also were able to teach another part member family. The husband, who is not a member committed to read The Book of Mormon every day! This is huge for him! He always participates when they all read together, but has never showed a desire to do it on his own. This is a big step for him! The next appointment for the day was to contact a potential investigator. Sister Tanner went to ring the doorbell, and a 16 year old girl answered and explained that they had the wrong address number. She said, "You can come in and talk to us though!" "THIS NEVER HAPPENS! So we went in and her mom and brother were home too and the mom told us how she's been struggling to trust in God since her best friend died. So we taught the whole plan of Salvation to them and the power of The Book of Mormon. They all just sat there and listened and soaked it all in. MIRACLE! I can count on my hands the number of times strangers have let me in their house the first time I've met them. They are so prepared! I think the daughter is most interested than anyone, but the Mom is open to it too. We are so excited to start teaching them", Sister Tanner said! What an incredible experience!
On Saturday, Sister Tanner and Sister Reed were back together. They attended a productive correlation meeting that morning, and stayed for an 8 year old's baptism afterwards. It was very special! Afterwards, Sister Tanner had this strong prompting to go visit this specific less active family. So they went! They knocked on every door of the apartment complex, and no one answered. They started to walk back to their car, and a family all started walking out of one of the apartments. Sister Tanner saw them, and asked if they knew the family they were looking for. It was them! What a miracle! They were able to talk with them, and are going to visit them again this week. Sister Tanner is so in tune with the spirit to recognize these promptings! As amazing as this experience was, it didn't end there. Later that day, the Sisters were having dinner with a family in their ward. The daughter told them about an experience she had at school. She has an "I Did The Book of Mormon Challenge" shirt that she decided to wear to school. A random girl at her school came up to her and told her that she was Mormon too, but just hadn't been to church in a long time. Well, it turns out this girl is from the exact same family! This is the family from earlier! "God is so aware of all his children! Not a coincidence that we went to see them and their daughter just had this experience", Sister Tanner said. What an incredible faith building experience! That night, Sister Tanner practiced her song she is singing in Sacrament Meeting. She will be performing the last Sunday in September, which is her very last Sunday in Kenosha!
Sunday was a beautiful day in Kenosha! Sister Tanner had the opportunity to work with the Young Women again. She was asked on the spot to teach the Young Women about "Preach My Gospel". "We had no clue we were teaching, but we got up there and taught the coolest 45 minute lesson ever for them! It went really well! It was all the spirit, because we had nothing planned! We ended up talking to them about how PMG can help them feel more comfortable to invite their friends to church activities and to gain a stronger testimony themselves. We even did a roleplay! Me and Sister Reed were on the same page the whole time too! It was really good. We were so grateful Heavenly Father helped us know what to say", Sister Tanner said. These Young Women in Kenosha are so blessed to be taught by such strong Sister Missionaries! After church, Sister Tanner needed to stay for the ward after. During their sacrament meeting, she had a profound experience that made her think about how much she has changed this past year. "There was this really pretty, glam, young woman sitting in front of me, and it was the weirdest experience ever. It was like I was watching the person I used to be. She was on her phone on Facebook the whole meeting and kind of making rude comments about the musical performance by the ward choir, and just talking and totally distracting everyone she was sitting with. At first, I was just annoyed by her and I was quick to think, "Why did she even come to church if she's going to act like that"? Then the spirit taught me that that's how I used to be. Maybe not as extreme as her, but definitely similar. I thought about how I used to be and where this woman was now and where I am today. The only way I was able to get here is because of my mission. Then I thought about how sad it might be that I might still have been like that was it not for my decision to serve and for the Atonement changing me. I know Heavenly Father allowed me to have that experience for a reason. I know that I will be different and that I won't go back to being that person. I am so grateful for change and for those reflecting moments God let us have to help us know we are on the right track and to not retreat back to our old selves", Sister Tanner said.
Sister Tanner's Thoughts:
Alma 19:16 "And it came to pass that they did call on the name of the Lord, in their might, even until they had all fallen to the earth, save it were one of the Lamanitish women, whose name was Abish, she having been converted unto the Lord for many years, on account of a remarkable vision of her father."