Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas is a Special Time

Kia Ora,
Wow, what a week! it's been a good one!
So we had Christmas mission conference down in Hamilton where we had it last year, but this year they had build onto the camp ground. There was actually shade to sit under and building to sit in. It was so nice and beautiful.
During the conference I learned so many things about scripture study and the importance of doing so. The more we appreciate and live the more God is willing to give us. He is amazing. It was so good to see and catch up with all my mission buddies, especially sister Prince and sister Samataua! man I love those two! I was so glad that we had a conference before I went home, I didn't know if I was going to see sister Samataua again... especially if I didn't see her before I came home. We were in like shock being around each other again, it was so fun! so many laughs. and it was awesome because during lunch we look over and see brother and sister Stanford walking on over!! they had come to the temple and  heart all the missionaries were at the camp and they came and saw us!! it as awesome! love them! What an awesome day!
Man we had a miracle this week, or rather a few miracles.
So John is set to be baptized on the 27 of December but he has been having some doubts . But at church yesterday he was able to get his questions answered and is feeling a lot better. That is so good. The baptism is still on! so that is good!
Another miracle. so our investigator dane has been taking the lessons for over a month now, nearly two and we haven't seen much progress. He invited us to go to some Christmas lights with him and his kids and mom and we agreed to go. that single event changed everything. He began to trust us and see that we truly cared about him, that's how we perceive it anyway. You know that we are not just there to share a message.. it was so cool! he came to church the very next day!!! first time!!! and he prayed for the first time in our lesson ! it was so cool! such a miracle! we are going to spend some of Christmas eve with him and his kids, playing soccer and other games! We are so excited for them!
So it's been a great week!
I love to see the miracles when we exercise our faith. some things that I have learnt lately is that we must show them that we love them if they don't feel it they won't care what we have to say. 
Hope you have a good week and a Merry Christmas! Talk to you soon!
Christmas is a special time, but we shouldn't wait until Christmas to remember the saviour in our lives. I want to share some words from a song with you. A sister missionary sang this at the conference and I loved it and asked for the song.
Do you have room?
" they journeyed far, a weary pair, they sought for shelter from the cold night air.
some place where she could lay her head, where she could give her babe a quiet bed.
was there no room? no corner there? in all the town  a spot someone could spare?
was there no soul come to their aid? a stable bare was where the family stayed.
do you have room for the saviour and do you seek him a new? have you a place for the one who lived and died for you? are you as humble as a shepherd boy, or as wise as men of old? would you have come that night? would you have sought the light? do you have room?
a star arose, a wondrous light, a sign from God this was the Holy night.
And yet so few would go to see the babe who came to rescue you and me.
This child divine is now a king, the gift of life to all the world he brings. And all mankind he saves from doom. but on that night for him there was no room.
do you have room for the saviour and do you seek him a new? have you a place for the one who lived and died for you? are you as humble as a shepherd boy, or as wise as men of old? would you have come that night? would you have sought the light? do you have room?
Isn't that a beautiful song? I love the meaning that it has behind it. do we have room for the Saviour in our lives. Do we truly understand what he means? or are we going to let him pass by as the innkeepers of old and say there is no room.
I encourage you to make room for the Saviour, no matter how busy your life may be. He has done everything for you and it would only do you good to make room for the saviour.
I love you
sister Bird

He is the Gift

Time is FLYING by!
Oh my goodness. 
We had an interesting week. It was pretty slow because my companion got sick so we stayed home for one day of the week.
I think my favourite part of the week was Sunday. This Sunday evening we had a special "come and see fireside". It is specially designed for investigators and less actives. It was so good!!! 
We were asked to sing at the fireside, so we sang "i feel my saviours love", i was so nervous i could feel my face going red but because we sang it brought one of our investigators there. So that was good. She is so cute, because she is so proud of us when we sing. It touches her and touches me that she cares so much. She's like a mum in that sense, supporting us and loving us and being proud of us for our achievements:) We've been trying to help her recognize and feel the spirit and she said when we sang she felt the love of what we were singing, i tried telling her that maybe it was the spirit. the talks later on in the meeting touched on answers to prayer and how we can receive the answers to our prayers when we act in faith not standing still. 
The speakers were Yuri, a man who just recently came back to church, and Tui Birch, a man who just got baptised. They are brother-in-laws. There story is a miracle story.  It's been beautiful to see their whole family come back to church and join the church after many years. 
The following speakers after the beautiful ward choir sang a wonderful rendition of "Joseph Smiths first prayer" was the mission presidents counsellor and his wife. President and Sister Higgins. They spoke so powerfully and beautifully on things that i needed to hear as well as my investigators. wow. As i said before it was mentioned how we can receive answers to our prayers. 1. Through dreams 2. Through the ones we love and trust 3. through prayer. that was his wife and then one of the things that stuck out to me that president higgins said was that our lives are kind of like a gps on a phone. If you are standing still it can't tell you how to get to your destination, it won't say go left, right, turn around etc but you must be moving in order for it to tell you where to go. This is related to faith, how can we receive answers to our prayers if we are being dormant and not moving. It was so good.
John Stewart, the man i talked about last week came to church and to the fireside. He is doing great and i really believe that he will be baptized. He is solid as and really soaking it all up, he wants to know everything.
Please pray for these people John Stewart, John slater, Maree, Daniel and Cindy, Dane, Molly, Tata.
I have been praying that i will have one more baptism before i go home and the Lord has blessed me with my desire. There is a little girl who just turned 9 that is a daughter of a recent convert of a year. Annaliese is her name and she wants to be baptized asap. So we have scheduled for the 20 of December. Please pray that it will all work out and be a good experience!
i Love you all and i am so grateful for this wonderful opportunity that i have had to serve a mission. I have learned so much but most importantly i have learned that my father in  heaven lives. He loves us, he knows us and i know it! I love him for what he has so graciously done by giving us his son Jesus Christ as our gift for Christmas.
We are doing something called the "He is the Gift" initiative. If you have not watched it yet please go and discover the gift for yourself, embrace it and then share it. the world needs to know about the wonderful gift of our saviour Jesus Christ.
love you
sister Bird

Can You Believe It's December Already?

Kia Ora!
wow, can you believe that it is December already? wait .....for you its not!!!! hahaha until tomorrow!
Man this week has been great and full of miracles! I want to share one in particular...
On Saturday we were contacting some of our potential investigators and when we had finished we were getting ready to head to our appointment. Sister Finau said we should go through the park at the end of the road, which we had never been before. We didn't even know if it would be a shortcut but she was truly inspired...This is where we met John (smith) ha jokes. Stewart. John stewart. He is really searching. he had so many questions as we taught him about the restoration. He really seemed to understand. When we finished we invited him to church and he told us that it was no coincidence that he came to the park that day. He doesn't even live in our area and he wasn't even planning on coming to the park with his family and to top it off we never go that way. The Lord is aware of his children and if we are listening we can be there to help them. He came to church yesterday and he so enjoyed it. He loved the classes and that anyone can share rather just listen and accept what is being said. It was so cool to hear him say again that it was no coincidence that we met him. He is really searching. He said he'll see us there next week. So cool! Huge blessing!
Also Maree came to church. We are trying to work really hard with her to receive her answer about God existing, because she is not too sure if she will continue the lessons after I leave. I am pleased that she came to church though. She's coming along:) She is such a lovely lady and I know that we will stay in touch through out our lives. Please pray for her that she will be able to recognize her answer!
so Yesterday was a special sacrament meeting all focussed on the Saviour. My companion and I sung the prelude music. We were so nervous, but apparently it was the best we had ever sung it together. I feel it really brought the spirit. You could tell everyone was listening intently because even the children were quiet and taking a break on making themselves heard. haha
Lyrics to the song we sang
Jesus Climbed the hill to the garden still
his steps were heavy and slow.
Love and prayer took him there
to the place only he could go.
 {Gethsemane, Jesus loves me, so he went willingly
to Gethsemane}
He felt all that was sad, wicked or bad
all the pain we would ever know.
While his friends were asleep he fought to keep
his promise made long ago.
{Gethsemane, Jesus loves me, so he went willingly
to Gethsemane}
The hardest thing that ever was done
the greatest pain that ever was known
the biggest battle that ever was known
this was done by Jesus. the fight was won by Jesus

{Gethsemane, Jesus loves me, so he gave his gift to me in Gethsemane}

It was so beautiful! 

I love being a missionary. It has been the greatest thing that I could ever have done. I am not ready to come home but really I am! ha its confusing. I am really gonna miss teaching with power and authority, serving others always, teaching the gospel, riding bikes in a skirt, having an awesome companion, feeling the spirit so strong, studying for 2 hours a day! man the mission is the BEST! It certainly has given me the best foundation for the rest of my life!
love you
sister BIrd

Monday, November 17, 2014

I KNOW God Loves Me


Hello hello... kia ora!
I really got to get into the habit of saying kia ora... I still haven't and I want to bring it home.
So sister holmes is gone... :( its so sad! I really miss her and I can tell that sister Finau does too. But it was a good week. We were able to find 2 new investigators. Dane. and magnolia.

Dane is 30 years old and is a solo dad. It's really fun teaching him though because he enjoys learning and is open to the concept of God but he's never really known for himself. He has had many opportunities to explore it but we are lucky because now he's chosen to. Just by a single invitation to learn more. This week we taught him more about prayer and how to pray. Its something that is really foreign to him, but we also focussed on the desire he needs to have in order to receive an answer and get something out of meeting with us. So please pray for him this week that he will hold onto the desire that he does have and be able to receive and answer as his desire grows. he also needs help recognizing the answers that he receives. he is great!!
The next one is magnolia. she is 15 and is a daughter of a recent convert of about a year. Magnolia is very humble and obedient. She has come to believe in God through coming to church. So this week we invited her to pray daily for herself so that she can come to know God for herself. she seems excited about it:) She also wants to be baptized... she decided her birthday the 23 January. I am kind of hoping that it will move up, I would love to be here for her baptism.:) She is lovely. Pray for her that she will remember to keep her commitments and recognize her answers please:)

Molly is doing alright. She is lovely. I just love molly. I wish I could be here for her baptism too but I think it might take longer.
I really am trying hard to give my last month and a half my best. its so incredibly hard to stay focusses but I am trying the best I can.
We had a really neat experience this week that confirmed to me the reality of God and his love for us. ok so you all know how hard I am on myself in trying to improve myself.. so sister holmes wanted a blessing and so we called the elders over. They gave her a blessing and they said exactly what she needed with answers to personal things that she had been worrying about. it was amazing. Then sister Finau decided to get one. The same thing happened for her but with different circumstances. I then decided that I would have a blessing although I felt fine at the time and didn't feel I needed one. I sat down and elder Gutke pronounced the most beautiful blessing of council that I have ever received. He had no idea what I was facing inside but at that moment I knew that God was hearing my prayers, I knew without a doubt that he was real. 
Wow, 3 different people with three completely different yet so personal blessings. Heavenly father told me through that blessing that he was proud of my progress but changing was going to take longer than what I had hoped. He told me not to worry about anything here or back home because he had prepared everything for me and it was ready for me. it was the coolest blessing. I am so thoroughly convinced even more of the power of God and his reality and love not only for me but for all of his children.
I know He lives. I KNOW he loves me! He really does hear me. I am so grateful that I have this knowledge and that I know my heavenly father personally and that he knows me and loves me even with my imperfections.
I am so filled with love and gratitude:)
have a GREAT week!
love you
sister Bird


oh ya and our car got hit this week. We were parked walking around and we come back and it had been hit in the back wheel. The other car was thrashed. They veered off the road when checking their phone. (don't text or call and drive).
so this is the elders that came to help

crazy day!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

I Love Being a Missionary

Kia Ora!
Molly paki is doing great. She really enjoyed church this Sunday! and after our class she said that she felt hopeful about being able to quite smoking and get baptized! so that is great! she has her ups and down days as we all do!
This week we set expectations with a lot of people. Our investigators weren't progressing so we sat down with them and told them our purpose and if they want to continue learning then this is where we saw it going etc.
We did this with an investigator, we told him why we were there and if he wanted us to keep coming then this is what we needed him to do.  The spirit was really strong and it was great to feel him soften and accept it. such a neat experience.
I love being a missionary and working hard. It brings so much joy and satisfaction. Man what a great opportunity and blessing I've been given to participate in such work.
love you all!
Have a great week:)
love sister BIrd

Halloween in NZ

Kia Ora whanau! (Whanau is pronounced fonoe and means family in maori)
Well well well, What a week I have to tell you about. It really has been great!
first off I will tell you of the funny things that have happened. So sacrament meeting this week was crazy. Fast and testimony meeting. We had an area fast where everyone fasted for 3 purposes. 1. to increase our personal faith in Jesus Christ 2.  to be guided to identify a new opportunity to hasten the work. 3. for someone that we could invite to a special sacrament meeting at the end of the month. It really was a great spiritual experience to be united in fasting for a great cause. However, fast and testimony meeting was interesting. It started off with a man who always shares his testimony of fast Sunday. He is very bold, loud and passionate about the gospel and especially the importance of keeping the commandments. Then he was followed by an older lady who is roughly the same as him. However, she spouts off memorized scripture with it! then she is followed by a recent convert from last year. 
Molly is doing great, she really enjoyed church and is progressing well. I received a prompting from the spirit that if we involve her with members as much as we can and have them give her support that she will be baptized sooner. that was cool! so we are trying really hard. she has a smoking problem. please pray for her. She is wonderful!
Another fun experience that we had this week was on Halloween. NZ is just embracing Halloween, so they don't really celebrate it and most don't like it. But the ward had a trunk and treat activity. My companions and I wanted to go so we were trying to think of something that we could do all well. One of the members invited us over for a picnic lunch and she gave us a bunch of random stuff in which helped us out heaps. About and hour and a half before it started we ran to sister prestons to find an appropriate costume. We came out with cowboy hats! This sparked all the ideas. We ended up making signs that said " I mustache you a question" and "WANTED for your eternal salvation" and then we made mustaches and put them on what we had, paint brushes to hold in front of our mouths. Whenever people would come over they had to answer a question about the gospel in which if they didn't know the answer would have to find it in a pamphlet. We turned this into a fun finding activity. handing out pamphlets!! Hopefully the parents read it!! ha It was great! What a fun night!
also last Monday we hiked the Mount. Its like a 'mountain' about 15 minute drive from where we live. So beautiful!
So this morning I studied about the millennium. Man I am so glad that I did because now I  understand it so much better. It is definitely a time to look forward too. Satan wont be on the earth and we will still have an opportunity to have children. It will be way easier to raise them in righteousness. what a beautiful experience that would be.
heavenly father certainly loves his children. I am so grateful to be apart of His gospel and to know him. He is amazing! I am so grateful that I have this short time to be a missionary, I have never done anything so amazing and rewarding in my life.
I love you all!
love sister BIrd

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What a great week I had!

Well what a great week I had.
Some good things happened this week and some interesting things. My companion and I got a call on Wednesday to leave what we were doing and drive immediately to Whakatane and pick up the sisters over there. They were getting ET (emergency transferred), so we had to drive and hour to get them, wait an hour or so for them to finish packing and then drive them back to Tauranga. It was a long day of travel and we were exhausted.
Tata is doing great. He came to church on Sunday all dressed in a suit. It's so nice to see him dressed up . We visited him last night after church and he seemed fine but then he opened up to us and he told us how he is struggling.  Honestly I think the only thing that is getting him through and keeping him strong is that he reads the book of Mormon for 30 minutes everyday and prays  hard out. He feels better when he does that but he is still struggling. He asks the question "why me" why am I different than my other family members who are good people and who finished their schooling. He just feels lost and I think satan is working hard on him. He is so cool, you all would love him. We really enjoy our time with him, he is hilarious and has become one of our best friends.
 Please pray for him.
So good news is that our investigator Maree came to church this sunday. She is great. She really just came to support us because we might be leaving soon. ( tranfers are next week) But it was great that she came. she is a spiritual lady and believes in angels and stuff. But since we have been meeting with her and being her friend and teaching her she has really grown. She is starting to believe. We taught her the restoration this week and she said that she would like to know if that is true. So that is cool. Now we just got to help her recognize her answer. Please pray for her!

So yesterday we went finding on the beach for a bit. It was actually really fun and seemed pretty natural to talk to people at the beach:) plus we never get to go to the beach because we are busy with missionary work. but this is a good way to see it and do the work:)
last night we straightened my companions hair and I wore it. look how good it looks on me:) ha so funny, I look so young!
We also had dinner at the prestons:) I love being there. they are so great! I am really gonna miss them.
Last night I was pondering about tata and all of these people that I have grown to love. I thought about how I will be home in 3 months and how I won't be able to stop in whenever I want. In fact I won't be able to at all. this made me really sad.... I love it here. I love these people, I love doing what I do. Being on the Lords errand is the best thing ever. It brings so much joy. I am certainly going to miss it.
love you all:)
sister Bird