Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Joyful Reunion

NC Charlotte Mission Tour Conference was held Wednesday and Thursday this week. 
Our visiting General Authority was Elder Larry Wilson of the Seventy, and his wife, Lynda.

Tony Parker, the Area Seventy for Southeastern United States
a favorite speaker of ours  joined us for Thursday's Conference 
and Friday training at the Mission Office for MLC (Missionary Leadership Conference)

I've been so excited for the past several weeks knowing that the Wilsons would be here!
Larry and Lynda are longtime friends from our days in the Alamo I Ward in California.
Larry was our Bishop and Stake President, Area Authority and then General Authority. 
He and his family have had a lasting influence for good 
on the Cuellar family and now the Urban family!

The conference was wonderful, full of great counsel and direction. 
Elder Wilson said, "The Book of Mormon, combined with the Spirit 
is the most powerful tool of conversion to the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
He taught us to read the Book of Mormon with those we teach 
so that we can address their concerns and questions, 
share our personal experiences with them, 
teach them how to apply the scriptures to their lives 
 and help them recognize the feelings of the Spirit.

President and Sister Wilson with us in the Mission Office.

Tom and I and Elder and Sister Hunt were invited to dinner Thursday night 
at the Mission Home with Elder Parker and
President and Sister Craven and Sister and Elder Wilson

Elder Parker with his family(photo from 
I was sad that I didn't get a photo of him at the Conference.

Elder Parker asked the question, "Are we teachable?" 
I've pondered that question. "Am I teachable?"....
He was really asking, 
"Do we recognize revelation and are we then willing to apply it to our lives?
It's a great question to ask ourselves, isn't it?!

One of the fun experiences at the conference was when Elder Wilson 
asked each of the districts of missionaries to prepare a "Trailer" 
(like a movie trailer that entices people to want to see it). 
The topic was 1 Nephi 3 when Nephi and his brothers were instructed
 to return to Jerusalem to obtain the brass plates. 
The missionaries were given free reign to use their imaginations. 
The only rule was that all must participate.
  They were given 15 minutes to prepare.
Results were amazing! Oh, it was so much fun!
Wouldn't that be a great FHE or youth activity?! 
Or better yet, High Priests or Relief Society!

I loved the time we had to spend with the Wilsons! 
It had been over 10 years since I had seen them last 
but the memories and the love have not faded. 
They just became sweeter.

Saturday,, we finally took a bed and desk to Gastonia.

We were greeted with glasses of juice in the parking lot
and warm Krispy Kreme donuts in their apartment.

We love the missionaries!

Today we had our first walk in many weeks 
even with the overcast skies and threat of rain.
It was a little cooler and less humid than usual, 
a perfect day for a walk.

Elder Urban even suggested it! 
I wasn't at all surprised when he wanted to stop and see, 
up close and personal, 
what changes were happening in the neighborhood. 

Look at that big grin! He's like a little boy in a toy shop!

 Some fall decorations on our favorite street, Middle Acres.

The beef steer are still hanging out. Why do we want our pictures with the steer? Hmmm...

There's a new calf.

We made it to the end of the road and started back, just enjoying being outside.
Pointing the camera up to look at the cloudy sky, I felt the first raindrop.

 Looking down the road for the nearest protection, 
we had to walk in the rain for a couple of blocks to reach a barn.

Yes, we got wet but the rain didn't dampen our spirits and we actually had fun!

You can see the water running off the barn

What a perfect end to a perfect week!

I received these photos from my brother, Gary today in an email. 
Has it been a year since we attended the wedding
 of our nephew Josh and his beautiful bride, Y? 
Last September Tom and I took my sweet mom to Washington 
to be with Gary's family for this very special occasion and meet Y's family.
It was a joyous time! 
Our mission call was waiting for us when we got home.

I miss my mom.

In Sacrament Meeting this morning, Brother King, a high counselor from our Stake,
 spoke about the "Load we each carry". He told a story from a talk
 given by Elder Bednar in April's General Conference this year.
It's worth reading again or listening to if you'd like.
Here's the link to the talk.

How grateful I am that three weeks from today we will be able to watch, listen to, 
and/or read the words of our Prophet, Apostles and leaders at General Conference!
And as a bonus, the Music from MoTab is always incredible!

Sending our love to Y'all!

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