Yes, I have time to explain how president called me! Typically the Saturday before transfers president Toone makes a phone call to the assistant he's assigning to be an assistant and you would have about 30 minutes to get everything packed so you could get to the office and start training. I never thought I would be called as an assistant especially this late in my mission.
Saturday came and went with no phone call which i was expecting. Transfer calls came on Wednesday night and the current assistants called to let us know what was happening in the zone. Elder Belnap and I were both being transferred and we were shocked! Because president hadn't called either of us we assumed there would be no leadership change and we'd both be zone leaders somewhere else in the mission (president will call anytime someone is being called to serve in any leadership capacity the missionary is not currently serving in: Trainer, district leader, or zone leader).
The next morning was transfers and we arrived a little early to pick some things up in the mission office. President Toone was in and when I walked in he grabbed my arm and said, "Elder Janis, do you have a moment you can meet with me in my office?" "Oh boy", I thought. "I'm in trouble!" I of course told him I was actually busy picking things up and didn't have time to meet with him in his office. That's probably why he was holding my arm so I couldn't say no.
It was kind of like when Nephi who is large in stature "seize[d] upon [Zoram], and held him, that he should not flee." My agency seemed to be held in the hand of my 7 foot tall mission president. In his office he told me that he wanted me to serve as an assistant. He explained that in a way it was a demonstration of lord sealing my mission with a stamp of approval. He went on to explain that he wanted me to get out on as many exchanges as possible. After that he told me not to say anything about it to anyone until he announced it at transfers.
The most surprised person besides me was probably elder Belnap since we had just been companions and so he was ticked I hadn't said anything to him about it! I told him that I had only known for an hour and wasn't supposed to say anything about it! It's been chaos since the assignment but I'm really enjoying it!!
This week we were so busy! We got out on exchanges into Maricopa and Tempe South. While in Maricopa the elders were pretty lost as to what to do since they didn't have a lot of people to teach. They asked what I would do if they had already visited everyone in the area book, worked brought lists from bishop, and visited every member of the ward. I suggested we tract. So we did! And it rocked!
We found a part member family who's records weren't in the ward and we found two new investigators.
One house we went to was outrageous though. The floor matt said "GO AWAY" and then peep hole had been converted into a video camera. We knocked anyways. Then the owner spoke through a speaker on the camera. He said, "who is it?" We replied, "the missionaries!" He responded back, "can you read?" We answered in the affirmative that we indeed had the ability. He then yelled at us, "Then BEAT IT!". No use pushing it so we left.
That evening we visited the bishop of the ward who said, "Elders, you guys are blowing up my Facebook page!" Super confused we asked him what he meant. He pulled up his Facebook and showed us a neighborhood group page of the development we had been tracking in earlier that day.
The guy who was so rude to us had posted a picture of us on his front porch from his camera with a caption about how ticked he gets when people bother him. The entire community then jumped on the post and everyone was sharing their thoughts, most of them positive, about the LDS missionaries. One lady even said we had knocked on her door and when she looked at us through the peep hole she was intimidated and didn't open the door. The bishop sent her a personal messaging apologizing and introduced himself as the bishop of the local congregation. She replied back that she would really like us to visit but would appreciate a message in advance to let her know we were coming.
We also went to the Mesa temple Easter pageant this week! It was awesome! I actually saw David and Chelsie Barwick!
General Conference was so inspiring and up lifting. I am so grateful for modern prophets. I was hit with a greater determination to turn my whole will over to God. It really is the only intelligent thing to do.
I love you all! Have a great week!
Love Elder Janis