Monday, February 29, 2016
We have an extra day! You know how we wish we had more time to do things? Well we have been given an extra 24 hours so go do something good for someone else :)
Missionary life is so full of wonderful things and full of blessings and miracles. I hope everyone has the desire to serve a mission and then goes. You will never regret it. I don't.
This week we went on two exchanges. The first one I was with Sister Edstrom! It was so fun :) We saw many tender mercies and talked to everyone. I think Im finally getting the whole "talk to everyone" deal. To preach the gospel to all people we have to talk to all people. We did and it was awesome. Then I was able to go to Windsor Lake with Hermana Barker. Its cool to see the gospel preached in Spanish. She does so well. We both served with Hermana Pinargote so we pretty much spent the whole time talked about how awesome she is. I love being able to go on exchanges with Sisters. Its such a blessing and a light to my life. I will forever be grateful that Heavenly Father called me to this assignment. On exchanges the sisters put our investigator Latracia on date. She loves the Book of Mormon and understands the need for it. She is awesome and is 17. She is just a sweetheart.
I gave a training at Fort Jackson prep. Ive been asked to give this training twice now and I feel like the worst person for the job. Its a topic that I feel like Im just not good in. Its always humbling because you have to dig deep to find what Heavenly Father wants others to learn. I love teaching the soldiers too. Its so neat! :)
This weeks theme for me was prayer. Prayer has always been a struggle for me throughout my life. But I studied from the Book of Mormon when Christ prays to the Father and its so interesting to see how the Son gives priority to the Father and to the commandment of prayer. It is so important and is our life line to the heavens. I know that He is always there.
Read this talk and see others how God does
God Be With You Until We Meet Again
Pictures of the temple, and Sister Simpson and I
Monday, February 22, 2016
Hola amigas y familia!
We all know how much I love the smell of camp fire smoke. The east coast does not have the same smell. EVER. Until Sister Simpson and I drove to the edge of our area (30 minutes which is a long distance for missionaries) and someone was burning something and it smelt like home. We looked at each other and got really happy and almost cried. We are ridiculous. Then we decided with the few minutes we had before dinner we would take creep photos in a cemetery in the middle of no where :)
This week was a week of hope. It was a week of faith. A week of love. We went on exchanges and I was with my long lost companion that I never had Sister Harvey. I was with her in Camden and it was a such a good exchange. I cant express the hope that was given to me during the exchange or what the exchange really meant to me. I needed the lesson learned.
A tender moment was with a woman named Rita. She is in charge of the warehouse and she is very nit picky with how things are stacked and where things are put. Lots of people will make comments about it. Well we went to leave and I gave her a hug and she just clung to me and she said how she was having such an off day and she needed hope. My entire outlook on judgement was again refined. We really don't know what people go through. It is never our place to judge.
We were able to visit the Clow's this week and I just love them. They always seem to be one of the missionaries favorites and its true. We had Stake Conference this week and they came. It was so good! I love Stake Conference and I never want to miss one again. I don't see how I never really attended before my mission. There is so much to be learned. Elder Mund's from the Seventy talked about missionary work. The thing that struck me the most was the the members are here to help us, but we are here to help them. Missionaries all over the world are called to an area to find the elect. That is done THROUGH the members. Members are the ones who do the finding so the missionaries can do the teaching and then everyone can take part in the baptizing. Its a beautiful thing and it was nailed at the meeting. He did a role play in the meeting about how you can link everything back to the gospel. It was amazing! Really we can bring the gospel into any conversation without being pushy and overbearing.
Im so grateful for the Sacrament. That is something my testimony has soared on my missionary. I knew it was important before and the why but on my mission I KNOW the importance. When Saturday night comes around Im so ready to start over. From this scripture, I bear testimony on the reality of the sacrament. In 3 Nephi 7:24 it talks about how "there were none who were brought unto repentance who were not baptized with water." Repentance is incomplete without baptism. BUT then think about it, one of the main purposes of the Sacrament is to renew our baptismal covenant. So the same applies. Repentance is incomplete without the weekly renewal through the sacrament. That is why Sunday worship is so vital. The purpose of this life is to repent. We cannot do that without the sacrament.
This week was a solid week. Time goes by too fast. One last thing I wish to share that I learned from this week. I want you all to know how grateful I am for Sister Simpson. There is a reason we go two by two and I want you all to know that I am blessed to serve with her.
This is a really good talk that I invite you all to read. In the world we live in we need to understand this. Don't cry at the end.
God Be With You Until We Meet Again
Monday, February 8, 2016
Dear loved ones,
A new week, a new transfer! It's good. I love my mission so much. So the new sisters in my apartment are Sister Edstrom and Sister Lewis! I'm glad to be living with Sister Edstrom again and in mission language I'm a great grandma! So that's exciting. We have new sisters all over our zone and we are excited to start over and meet more wonderful sisters!
This week, I have learned several lessons. Everything that I have learned on my mission would have taken me decades to learn if I hadn't come. First lesson of the week was when we saw Pam. Pam is an investigator who has a 5 year old granddaughter named Gracie. We shared a video with the song " I am a Child of God" and the spirit was so strong. This little girl has never heard the song before and when the third verse started, she hummed and started singing with it. Children are so innocent and powerful and know so much more than we think. I love how much faith they have. They don't need evidence, they just believe. There is a reason why Christ said we will not inherit the kingdom of heaven unless we become as a child. Then a cute moment of the lesson was Gracie's conversation that went like this.
Gracie: My brother is about 22 miles away.
Me: Where does he live?
Pam: More like 22 hours away.
We all just started laughing. I love kids.
We also saw Sister Phipps again. I really judged her for something she isn't. She is such a kind old lady. Every time we see her, I just love her even more.
Over our last few meetings and trainings I took these notes. 1) A covenant with God can never be broken unless you break it. He is bound. 2) When you pray, they are answered with tests. Trials are given for our refinement.
Something I've studied much this week was faith. Faith is the essence of all things. So I was pondering the 13 articles of faith given by Joseph Smith. These 13 statements in a nutshell are what member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe. I started pondering some of the statements made and tried to see if I wasn't a member any objections that I might have. Then I reflected on the title "Articles of FAITH" To believe these things one must have faith. Certain commandments we are given, one must have faith that God has called a prophet once again to the earth who gives us those commandments. To know the Book of Mormon is the word of God, one must have faith that God can reveal further written doctrine and so forth. Faith is the base of all things. As we have faith and stay true even when our faith is tested, we will come to know that God is the same yesterday, today and forever and we are divine beings having a mortal experience. We come to know that it is by obedience to Gods commandments that blessings are predicated. I know God lives. I know that Christ is my Savior and enables me to do far more than I can ever do alone. Faith is a principle of power. We must act. We must look if faith to see if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true. To that I testify that it is.
God Be With You Until We Meet Again
Monday, February 1, 2016
Its crazy to see that Ive been here in Hopkins for 4 months now and I get to spend another transfer here. Sister Simpson will remain my companion! Yay! She is the first companion that I have had that for more than 2 transfers! We have another 7 week transfer so it is gonna be so much fun! We are losing pretty much the majority of our sisters this transfer so we get to start fresh. Real fresh because they are transferring the two sisters we live with and we are getting two new sisters.
We also had our Zone Conference with Elder Nielson of the Seventy! He is awesome! The meeting was just so good and we sung at it and it was just great! We also had a special MLC with him. After that meeting, I cant even express the magnified love I have for President and Sister Turner. They are amazing and I needed them at this time in my life. I wasn't called to South Carolina but I was called to be under the direction of the Turners. Such a blessing! During Zone Conference, we talked about the Redeeming Power and Enabling Power of the Atonement. It was awesome because most people know that Christ redeems us but there is so much more to the enabling part that consists of daily obedience. I found where my bridge wasn't connecting and I have now found myself understanding a little more of the enabling power.
This week had so much going on. We had our last exchange for the transfer and so many lessons learned this week. I learned again that we need to give people the benefit of the doubt. There was a lady that I met at the beginning of this area and she was very rude and just not nice. Well we felt last week that we needed to see them. I was too excited about it because of the past experience but we went. She was so nice! We had such a good visit and we just laughed. She is such a grandma and it was great. So lesson one of the week: Give people the benefit of the doubt no matter what. Next we went to see Sister Hopson who we have been trying to get to come back to church and to invite her grand kids. Well we were getting to know her better and there was such a powerful spirit in the room as she was expressing gratitude for the Savior. There was so much silence and we were taught so much. We went to Fort Jackson and it was a great day. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to serve on Fort Jackson. Teaching soldiers and being able to be bold and just invite is so awesome!
I cant remember is I told you this weeks ago but something Sister Simpson and I focused on this transfer was changing our nature through Christ. We all chose a Christlike attribute to focus on and work towards. Mine was virtue. I learned a plethora of becoming a more virtuous person. The cherry on top of it all was when I got a priesthood blessing yesterday. He had no idea of my intentions of being more virtuous. Before my blessing, he said something concerning virtue that was an answer to my prayer. I'm so grateful for priesthood leaders.
My testimony this week is this. Repentance is real. Being virtuous contains the willingness to change through repentance and the Atonement. Making an conscious effort to use the Atonement daily changes you. I love my Savior and this is His gospel.
God Be With You Until We Meet Again