Submitted by Michael Manning :
My name is Michael Manning. I served in the Guayaquil South mission of Ecuador from June 1993 to November 1994. The following story has helped strengthen my testimony. I hope it might do the same for others.
In October of 1994 I was serving in the Centenario ward of the Centenario Stake in Ecuador. My companion, Elder Lee Marchant, and I had recently seen some great people come into the Church. At this time I hyperextended my knee playing "indoor". It was pretty swollen so we went to the "Clinica Kennedy" to get it checked. A rhuematic infection was discovered and I had to be sent home to the United States. I was devastated! I couldn't understand why this was happening. Before leaving I received a blessing from President Aulestia. I knew that everything would be fine.
After being home for about ten days I was cleared physically and reassigned to the New York New York North mission. I was extremely happy about being able to continue serving as a full-time missionary. In a few months, I was serving in the South Bronx with Elder Tueller. We found a lady from Ecuador named Amada. During our first visit she asked me a number of times where she had seen me before, but I had no idea. By our second visit she remembered where it had been. She described a scene in Ecuador to me that I could clearly recall. She told me about the last two investigators I had worked with in Ecuador, what they looked like, what they were wearing that day, and the type of day it was that she saw us. It was the day they were baptized and the day she left for the U.S. She said she didn't know why, but she felt prompted to pay close attention to how I looked.
Amanda received all six missionary discussions and was soon baptized. >From the time I found out I was to be sent home until I met Amada, I had no idea why I was going through what I was. I am still amazed by how the Lord used the circumstances to bring Amada to the waters of baptism, and help me realize that His work is done is mysterious ways as to the understanding of men.