This week. Where to even begin. Some of the most spiritual moments of my entire life, with very few exceptions.
We celebrated Pioneer Day- we got to attend the Parade, because Salt Lake City pretty much shuts down for it. It was just a neat opportunity to share with visitors this week about our heritage. We already do that a lot- using the inspired history of Temple Square to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but Pioneer Day gave it that extra umph of "Well why would so many people sacrifice so much to come to this little desert?"
We met some AMAZING families this week who were just such an example to me for how I want to parent my children (don't get your pantyhose in a bunch, I know I have great examples in all of you). One father in particular, after I bore testimony about eternal families and the Savior in the Beehive house (Brigham Young's home- we take tours through it), there was a moment of silence and then he asked his children, "Do you feel that? Notice how you feel right now. That's the Spirit." And I just thought it was neat that he took the time to teach his children that, so that they can grow up learning to recognize what the spirit feels like. This family had two deaf children, and were just so Christlike. (yep, got to take my first ASL tour, thank you exchanges) And there were families like that ALL DAY. Which was unusual.
Okay. An insanely spiritual experience for me this week, that you probably have to have been directly involved in, but I'm gonna try to share. Ah I can't really go into too great of detail, but I'm gonna do my best to convey what went down. No, that's too hard. Basically, I was led to this man and was just kinda talking with him, found out he's a member, so I asked him how the gospel has blessed his life. He talked about it being a solid foundation. So we read Helaman 5:12 together, and I felt prompted to ask him if he'd experienced any whirlwinds or storms lately. At that point, there was just a change in the environment, if that even makes sense. And after a couple minutes he opened up about some of his struggles in recent years, how he'd lost his wife, and is dealing with the loneliness. We both got pretty emotional, there was a tender spirit, and I shared Matthew 27:46 with him (don't even worry, I read the scriptures, and I make everyone else read them with me) and OH WOW IT WAS AMAZING I was just COMPLETELY OVERCOME with love for this man, that was not my own. I have NO doubt about how much Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father love this man, and it was the most spectacular thing for me to be able to feel that.
Sister Lytle and I got to take a HUGE group of young Christians from Fullerton on a tour- they were so good. They had so many questions and were so attentive. (you gotta understand, USUALLY when young non-LDS people come to the Square, it's to harass us). The conversation pretty much stuck around the Restoration, and it was just a good experience. Gotta love my locals :) A couple of the boys reminded me of ma boy Blake, so obviously I took an immediate liking to them.
I got to see the Smiths (love you Mama Shells!) last week, Miss Kenzie looks fabulous. As does Annie. I can't even believe they're both already home and I'm just on the up and up haha. Both those girls just radiate the Light of Christ, and I LOVE IT.
Blah blah blah there are so many neat experiences I want to share but it's too long and I just don't have time, so tough. BUT I did meet this couple who were celebrating their 71st anniversary together (new life goal?). They married in 1944, she was 18, he was 20, right before he was shipped of to fight in the Battle of the Bulge!! He told me a bit about that experience- losing so many brothers- and just about their lives in general. This couple is INCREDIBLE. I asked them what their secret was (as we like to ask most married couples- we get some good answers from time to time). He said to be faithful. Be faithful to God, be faithful to your spouse. Ah I just relished the opportunity to shake hands with one of our heroes, you know? And his sweet wife. They are just so good.
We had Zone Conference yesterday- SO good. President talked a lot about Daniel 2- King Nebuchadnezzar's dream? With the idol made of gold and silver and brass and iron, with feet of iron mixed with clay? He talked about how the clay made the iron weak, and how we need to get rid of our clay, which is achieved through the refiner's fire. And how obedience is the price we pay to get rid of the clay. Ah that's my attempt at putting his whole presentation into just a few words, but hopefully you can get an idea of the concept. It was beautiful. He also talked about good character, and quoted Hyrum W Smith (not Joseph's brother), "Character is the ability to carry out a decision long after the emotion of making the decision has passed." So good, right? Sister Lytle and I were part of the training at the conference- I was a huge grump all leading up to it, but we prepared well, and God blessed us, and everything went smoothly.
Life is good, because God is good. Momma, I'm happy, I'm healthy, and I think I have everything I need.
I love you so much. God's love for His children is SO REAL. I just wish EVERYONE would turn to Christ, and feel it for themselves. It is by far the most incredible thing I've ever experienced.
Make good and choose happiness!
Love always, Sister Chamberlin
PS have fun at Lake Powell! Be so safe, and know that I'm thinking of you! (and that sweet paradise).