I've got a few pictures to send to you, so let's start with that. The first two are of our district at the end of this past week's district meeting. Leave it to me to never leave a picture unspoiled, sorry mom! We did a second one (which cut off half of Elder Rivas' face) of what we called our "General Authority" picture. I don't think we'd cut it as GA's, but we had fun taking the picture! The third picture is of a husband and wife who were baptized this weekend, the Sengs. Elders White and McCarty taught them, but I had the opportunity to interview them for baptism. Kear, the husband, is solid. He has one of the strongest testimonies I've ever seen in anyone. Our interview together lasted well over an hour, much longer than I usually interview someone for baptism. He asked me after his baptism if I could step in for a quick picture with him and his family because he really appreciated meeting with me for the interview. So yup, that's the Sengs!
Well this week has had its ups and downs. Thursday was by far the worst day of my mission. I woke up at about 2:00 in the morning and started puking my guts out until about 7:00. It was terrible because it just kept coming and coming. Even when there was nothing left I still kept throwing up. Oh man it hurt. When I thought I had thrown everything up, then came the stomach bile. I'd go into greater detail but you get the picture. No bueno. I was sweating like crazy, pale, clammy, achy, and burst the blood vessels in my face. You can bet I stayed in all day. Sister Beck's exact words over the phone were, "You're grounded." I was in so much pain. It seemed like every muscle in my body was being punched by Elder Tameilau (a rather large Tongan Elder, for those of you who aren't up to date in my emails). I couldn't even lay on my bed and sleep because my back, shoulders and legs all hurt so bad. It was a terrible day. I'm grateful for the other Elders who gave me a blessing and then bought me some 7 Up. Sister Turville bought me some Gatorade, saltines and chicken soup. I don't know what we'd do without her. Friday I felt ten times better, but I stayed in just to be safe, still a little achy and dizzy. By Friday night I was losing my mind and had to get out of the apartment. I spent a good four to five hours just studying, a nap here and there, and listened to a few talks. I was finding every excuse I could to go outside, take the trash out, get the mail, anything. It was killing me to stay inside. It may have just been one of those 24-hour bugs because by Friday night I was pretty much back to normal. Mom and dad, don't worry, I'm back to full health and went back out to work first thing Saturday morning. I'm happy and healthy, but most important of all, busy. Doing nothing in that apartment for two days was not fun at all. Elder Malmberg and I were saying that we never realized how boring our days were before the mission when we sat around and whatnot. But yeah, happy and healthy again!
Alrighty so the work this past week. We met with J.J. on Tuesday and taught a great lesson on the Plan of Salvation. He's still set for baptism on the 9th and is looking forward to it. Yesterday we tried picking him up for church and he didn't wake up. I even banged on his bedroom window and nothing! We stopped by later and he repeatedly apologized for not waking up. He seemed pretty sincere about it and will be meeting with us again this week...or rather, Elder Malmberg and his new companion.
I got an interesting call this morning. President Beck called me at a little after 9:00 and said he had some news for me. Today we found out the news for transfers, who's going where and whatnot. President called and said that as the district leader I'll be receiving the call from the zone leaders about who's going to be transferred. He said that I'll find out the news later in the morning, but he wanted to call and tell that I will be transferred. As soon as he said that I felt this sinking feeling in my stomach. I didn't really want to believe it. He told me that the Lord had a special assignment for me, that of being a Zone Leader. So I'm going to be transferred, and my new companion will also be a zone leader, but I don't know who it will be or where I'll be going until I find out tomorrow at the transfer meeting. And yes my mailing address is still the same so don't hesitate to send more mail, hint hint!
I just now got the call from the zone leaders giving me the transfer news and everyone else in the district is staying except me. I'll be honest I'm pretty crushed about leaving the Garden Lakes and Villa de Paz wards. This is the only area I've known on my mission and I've become quite attached to it. After I hung up the phone with President Beck this morning I went into my room and said a quick prayer asking if this is what needs to happen. Immediately I already knew that it was what needed to happen. It ties back into my email last week about the hymn "I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go." Yeah, I'm a little upset about leaving, and although it's a little tough to grasp in the moment, I know the Lord has more in store for me wherever I go. And hey dad, now I can say that I've gone from an EQP at BYU to a DL in the MTC, to a DL and now a ZL in the APM!
I hope things are going well back home for everyone. Things are great down in Arizona. I'm curious to see how transfers tomorrow will go, but I know that President Beck is inspired about the needs of the mission. I trust him and I trust the Lord. I love you all and hope to hear from you very soon. Take care and be good.
Elder Eric James Turner
P.S. Shout out to Sis. Carattini, a sister in the Crystal Gardens ward down here who told me that her family was looking up info about the mission and came across my blog. She told me that they follow it, so I guess I have fans!
|General Authority pose|
|At the Sengs' baptism|