Monday, January 27, 2014

This week absolutely flew by!

 Holy Cow! this week absolutely flew by. i can't believe it. It got to friday and i felt like it was tuesday still. i don't know where it went. I couldn't even believe it was Sunday yesterday. so weird. This week was just a wonderful week to do the work of the Lord. 
it's interesting because i go through cycles or patterns of life or work here. For a time i will be completely okay and fine with talking with everyone i see and other times i will get so nervous that i will come up with all the excuses in the world of why not to talk to them. None of which are valid because we are all children of God and need to live with him again someday to have complete happiness and it's my responsibility to share that with them right now. However, each time i come to understand the atonement a little bit more and feel the power of it in my life. I know that if christ did not suffer then there is no way we would be able to receive answers to our prayers. We would be able to receive help and guidance, or strength, support and comfort. all of those things come to us because Christ suffered for us. He did not just suffer for our sins, but all of our pain, sickness, temptations, sadness, mental disabilities, insecurities, and emotional problems as well. He understands every little or big thing that we go through because he's felt it the exact same way. it's truly humbling to know that the Savior did that for ME... for you...for everyone. What a blessing, what a miracle. I am so grateful for the help and strength that i receive each day as i ask for it through prayer in the name of Christ. He is my Savior, he has become my best friend, i love him. I know i couldn't do any of this without him because he keeps me going. He helps me realized i can't give up on people because He NEVER gave up on me. It's so humbling.
    So we have been teaching this family. Or the kids of the blair family. The mom is not interested and does not believe in God but she doesn't mind that we come over to teach the kids. So we planned for them to all come up to the VC and their mom was going to bring them up. But she ended up being asleep, so she couldn't. Malcolm the 13 yr old boy really wanted to come so we told him that we would arrange a ride. His sisters Cassandra(17), brittany(15)  and alexandria(12) were going to come as well. so we arranged for  bishop to go and pick them up. Which in the meantime he had received a prompting that morning that we were going to need him for something so he texted us and asked us if we had visited one of our investigators or if we were going to that day, and if not then he would. But he still felt like something was missing, like he was being prepared to be our ride. It was so neat. So when we called and asked him, he was so keen to help and do what the Lord asked. So when they came we found that only malcolm had come, he said his sisters weren't feeling to well and didn't want to come. We were so thrilled just to have him come though, even though we were disappointed his sisters didn't come i believe it was supposed to happen that way. We showed him around and talked to him about if he had prayed to know if the book of mormon was true. He said he did the night before but he didn't receive an answer. We asked him if he felt anything while he was praying about it and he said "ya, i felt like a spark of joy go throughout my whole body!" i just about jumped for joy! He received a very specific answer to his question. He began to get excited as well. We showed him around more and he was telling us how much he like what he was learning and that he believed it and would even be baptized. He didn't know what it meant to be baptized at that point but i know he was so sincere. He said his mom wouldn't let him and she thinks it's a dumb religion but he doesn't he "thinks it's awesome'. It was so cool to see how sincere he was. i love it. i was so happy that day!
    Our investigators from a few months back... Iri & vinnie. We have seen them around and stayed friends with them after they told us they don't want to learn more. However, we invited them to the Christmas lights and they came! they actually loved it and said they wanted to come back, We were able to catch up with them and they said that one of their goals this year is to start coming to church regularly. Which is really cool because when we were teaching them before they didn't see the need for organized religion and to attend church. The Lord has been preparing them and softening their hearts. I love it! So they came to the VC the other night and we showed them around and showed them God's plan and the temple and it was really neat. They are keen to learn more and they had tons of questions. Which some of them were answered in the lesson we taught them months ago, which goes to show that we didn't explain things very well! ha but it's all good, i hope we are better teachers now!!! ha 
    I am getting nervous for transfers this week but i know i will go where the Lord needs me. There is lots for me to learn! ha 
    Vicki, has really grown to love us! You can tell she trusts us, however, i believe she is still having a hard time trusting God. She just can't ask!!!  I wish she would because i know she would receive so much help and blessings!!! Please pray for her, her dad just went to the hospital for many problems. They are struggling. Her dad and her little girl both have cancer. she is a single mom and her mind is like scrambled eggs all of the time. I love her so much. 
    I will be sad to leave my area. i love my ward, it's become like a homeward to me. i would absolutely feel comfortable living in this ward! The people are so great and kind, it's wonderful. 
    Yesterday, we got a taste of what full time proselyting will be like. sunday after church we had a lunch/dinner around 3 and we were out the rest of the night with no breaks! it was so much fun, it was pouring rain! We were able to get 6 other lessons!! which is amazing because we barely get over that for an entire week!
    We taught an atheist last night, Shawn, who has become our new investigator. I am looking forward to teaching him again. He was saying his whole life he's just pushed it away with out trying to understand but as we taught him last night he was so sincere and trying to understand. He wants the happiness that we talk about and is willing to try it out so he can have that happiness. He prayed at the end of the lesson too! it was so cool. Pray for him as well. :) 
    The Lord is blessing us with so many people to teach and although many are slow movers and probably wont' be baptized for a while i have faith that they are in good hands and will get there:)
Well i love you all heaps. REMEMBER to look for the blessings that God has given  you. He truly is blessing you everyday!

many times people think that God isnt there because they have all of these problems and they aren't seeing the little ways he's blessing them. But remember that God is blessing you each day we just need to look for those blessings to see them and then we are grateful. 
*make a gratitude journal and you will see how much God truly is blessing you:) love yaz!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Some interesting things happened but very cool!

So this week was a good one.
some interesting things happened but very cool!
So we went to this recent converts house, she is very bold so sometimes its really scary to talk to her. And she started to tell us that she made a mistake in being baptized and she doesn't get anything from the scriptures anymore. She doesn't see the point in scriptures or going to church, and she feels like this kind of life isn't for her. sister Prince and i just sat there and didn't know what to do or say. We tried to talk to her about it but she would just throw out another reason why it wasn't for her. Sister Prince started to get upset and cry so she quickly stood up before they noticed and asked if she could go to the bathroom. And there i was in the room with this women, her recent convert of a month brother and her  NM mom. uh, i didn't know what to do so i started to be bold. It was really neat though because she's done something like this before and we aren't sure what to do and it gets awkward but this one was the worst. it's like she is the only right one and the way she thinks is the only right way. i don't know how to describe it. She's lovely just dont' know how to address her concerns. anyway, the spirit was leading me to say all these things and th spirit was really pretty strong. Usually when this happens it leaves. I am so grateful that it was guiding me with what to say. Nothing was working and then i just told her that we don't know or understand what it is she is going through, however, there is someone who does. Our savior jesus christ and our heavenly father. I bore my testimony to her of how if she turned to them for help, they would be able to help her and comfort her. At this point sister Prince came in and then asked her if she remembers the first time she received her testimony of the book of mormon. The lady said "you expect me to remember over 12 months ago?" and sister prince said, well my experience was over 8 years ago and i still remember. And then she started to cry, it was the spirit as well as sadness for this lady. This lady then dismissed her brother and mom and said she would like to have a word with us. sister Prince and i both freaked out inside.. what was going to happen. She comes closer and sits by us, she then began to cry. What was once a tough lady had now become a tender lady. She expresed to us how hard it has been for her to get along with her missionary gone. she thought she was doing ok but she's just having a hard time. Things aren't as exciting as they used to be and she doesn't feel as though she fits in the ward.
It was so sad to see her break down, but it was a perfect example of what it says in PMG about iceburgs. We only know the part of the iceburg sitting on top of the water when there is a much deeper and more massive chunk under the water. All those things she told us at first were just tiny compared to the real problem she was facing. When we share personal spiritual experiences with others and follow the spirit, we can truly help them how they  need to be helped. We can also help them open up. it was amazing and my testimony grew heaps.

So yes, Kristin Smith came and visited me at the VC. It was really cool to connect mine and Taylor's missions together. She is a really neat girl and we became pretty good friends in the hour that we visited. She's a great girl. And being a missionary is the best part because i helped her with some things and was hopefully able to build her faith. it was neat. She said she really needed what i shared and what we talked about. 

Sister Prince and i are getting along so well.. I love her heaps. I used to get annoyed at her all the time but now we just talk about it straight away and it goes away and we enjoy each other once again. I love it. we are now always laughing and doing the work with one heart and mind. She is a great companion, i would love to stay with her for my whole mission, however, i know i wouldn't learn much. She keeps me in the right way and keeps me going. Her hard work and diligence is a great example to me. I love that about her, everything about her. So many people think that we are twins or sisters. ha it's great!
Please continue to pray for my investigators One of them is vicki, she is in the picture below. Lovely lady. poor thing though, her 3 year old daughter and her dad, who is old and living with her both have cancer. she has 4 kids and it's struggling with all the stresses of life. I know that the gospel will bless her life and i think she see's it too. She was able to recognize an answer to her prayers, which was awesome. She grew up under circumstances where you were never allowed to ask for anything. So she has a hard time asking for anything in prayers. We finally were able to get her to ask one thing. It was that she wouldn't be as stressed. The day that she asked for that, she said she didn't have any stress and it was a normal stressful day. It's amazing to see that the Lord answers prayers. I know he does, but my favorite thing is when people recognize his answers.
Sister Prince and i gave talks in church this sunday.  It was great! i wasn't even nervous. I love how the Lord blesses me with that ability. I felt like the spirit spoke through me and it was great. I know a lot of hearts were touched from the talks given by us.

We went to wendy's today! finally! i love wendy's. I finally had a frosty! i 've been wanting one so badly! it was so good and worth $3! ha so expensive here!

Holy Cow!!! It's already Christmas!

Holy Cow!!! It's already Christmas, time sure flies by when you get older... and i'm only 20!! i can't imagine when i'm 40 or something!
So this week was pretty crazy. We have been doing temple lights tours and i am so exhausted from the constant, everynight tour giving. It is really exhausting! but all is well. I am enjoying it at the same time. It's amazing how much the Lord blesses you when you are on his errand. Even though we are in the VC the majority of the time we are still progressing well in our area. This week we've gotten two new investigators. Vicki and Yvonne. Yvonne is sister horsecrofts neighbor. She lives next to casey's old house. She was one of the ones who came to the missionary fireside and the ward activity and loved it. She wants to "become a member of the congregation"(that's what she expressed to bishop at one of those events). So that is really cool. She's really keen to learn more. She's searching for all the things that the gospel brings in life. Purpose, a greater hope for the future etc. Vicki, lives next to our WML house. When we left his house the other day, on a crap day, we stopped and talked to her as she was outside. We had a great talk and she allowed us back. She is searching for God again. I'm excited to continue to teach them and bless their lives.
Our ward is flourishing. Yesterday at church we were able to get 2 of our investigators there and 6 less actives. It was so amazing. I love to see the Lord's hand in the work, he certainly moves the work forward. We had to go to our less actives house, Dawn. We've been trying to get her there for ages and we'd always call her in the morning and she'd tell us she was too tired and didn't feel well. So this week we had talked about us coming over to help her get up and ready with her kid. She agreed. So we called her and she gave us the same excuse and i responded, "ok we'll be right there to help you get ready this morning to come to church." She agreed. ha it was awesome!! and she came and loved it, she really wants to change her life around,but is having a hard time doing it on her own. Please pray for her too. 
Other cool story for the week is the indian family we've been working with, the Madhavans. He's been less active for years because he was offended by being accused of doing something he didn't. It was a big deal. So he's been visited and fellowhsipped for many years. When we came over the first time he was sick in bed. He's had very bad health issues. But the next time he came out to visit with us and has been progressing very well since. It's amazing. We really do love them, they feed us often and tell us "if you ever need anything, just give us a call. and i MEAN it"(imagine this in a thick indian accent, i love it). we know he does(mean it)! But we went over the other day and taught him the word of wisdom. we were scared to do so, but we did it out of love and he felt it and said that we have changed his life. He's come to church 2 times now and said that he is coming back to church for good. It was so cool!!! we changed someones life. he needed us to come! others have been for years but the way we approached it and the way we showed our love changed their hearts:) such a neat experience. We are going there for Christmas dinner, i am excited! They prepare really good indian food for us all the time and they are planning on making our favorite!
So sister Davis, a sister in our flat, has pink eye we think. And last night at the VC, one of the new elderly couples filling in temporarily, sister Gordan came up to her and said " you know what really works for pink eye? breast milk. and there is a lady over there that just walked in that i'm sure would be happy to step into the other room and provide some for you". O my goodness, it was so funny! I mean come on, how awkard would it be to use someones breast milk for your eye. a stranger!! and how awkard would it be to be the other person who was like "uh...".  "would you mind if we used some of your brest milk for this sisters eye?!" ha such a funny story!! ha
So Chael is doing great! still progressing on getting baptized. We set him for January 11 this week. We go through a lot of hurdles but it's gonna work out! We are excited. Please pray for him and our new investigators. This week he told his friend about him being baptized and she tried to hard to convince him not to, he was sad because right now she is his only true friend, other than his new ones in the ward, and she's even turning her back on him . He's worried about telling his family now. He doesn't want to lose them and the only friend he has. His friend is not going to leave him but it's sad what he's going through. Also the night before church, his ex wife and her mom came over and took  his daughter away from him. For some reason they thought he wasn't taking care of her... they were drunk. It is sad. But he loves the commandments. It's so cool to see him accept them. We've had to be really patient with him, but it's worth it. The Lord is helping him and answering his prayers.
So cool experience. This week sister prince and i went into the temple for lunch. Temple food is always good. But since we can't do initiatory or a session then we are disappointed of course but we were able to sit right outside the chapel in a waiting area and just hear the hymns and fill the spirit of the temple. is was so nice!! I love the temple and i can't wait to go back in to it and actually do a session, it will be bliss.
So i'm trying to remember my funny stories but i can't.... i know sister prince and i laughed a lot this week so that was nice. we are really starting to grow close:) It's nice trusting and loving your companion. She is such a good missionary and i am learning so much from her. It's great. She really pushes me to be better.
Oh ok so this week i really wanted to grab some food before we did planning, so i asked sister prince if she had to go to the bathroom, because i wanted her to so i would have time to grab food without her saying we need to do planning! haha but she didn' she looked at me funny and said "do you need to go to the bathroom" and i looked at her and said "no". so we stared at eachother and she was so confused so i had to explain to her what i was doing. haha she laughed so hard! and now we use that as an inside joke all the time to just laugh at things. It is great! The mission is so much fun, i'm starting to get used to it and it's almost 1/3 done. i'll have been out 6 months by the end of January! That went by so fast, well at least i think so! i really love my ward, my bishop, my area, my companion and the sisters in my flat. i've gotten really close to sister Mclemore. She is great and i am so grateful that we have eachother. I learn a lot from her.
So when is taylor getting married? February? is that what i heard. That is neat, and really soon! Is it weird not having me home to decorate? How does the tree look? i'd love to see it.
Also i will be hopefully skyping on  your Christmas day at my normal email time. around 10 or11 or 12 here which would make it 4 or 5 in america... not sure. we might call first to make sure it's working. We will be doing it at the bishops house, i sure hope it goes through and that the internet is working. If not we will call you from his phone. His skype address is "wordgems" look it up and we'll probably do it from his if my account isn't working or if i have forgotten it, which is very possible. I am getting excited to skype. Remember i only have an hour, so please don't have so many people there, just our family:) i love you all and miss you and i wish you a merry Christmas!!! I"m closer to Christmas than you are! i call on boxing day( the day after Christas, it's a holiday here.)
I have been working on growing my testimony this week and one of the things i did was actually this morning. I took each commandment and wrote out the promised blessings of them and then wrote the blessings i've seen from each commandments in my life. It truly was a testimony builder to see that God does keep his promises. I love the commandments, obeying them brings me happiness, it give me a happy conscience, it also brings peace and the spirit into my life. So worth it. i love obeying my heavenly father. They are there to keep me save and protected and i have certainly seen that. I know that the church is true because i know that the book of mormon is true. I love the book of mormon. It truly brings a sense of peace into my life, it helps me with my attitude and brings the spirit into my life.
I hope we can all remember the true meaning of Christmas this year and think what can i give FOR  Christ.
Btw that reminded me, a lady bought our grocery's today. It was so humbling.:)
Also there is a man that plays his guitar outside the grocery store every day. So we started teaching him when we would see him on p-days. He was really excited about the gospel and actually has family that are members. They have been surprised and excited, he says, that he is reading the book of mormon. He says that he tell everyone about us, that we gave hima book of mormon and he feels that he is heading the right way. So many other churches come to him every day and try to convert him but he says that he used to listen and take there stuff but he doesn't anymore because he wants to conver to be a mormon. He loves it so far and we haven't even taught him much. He feels the spirit we bring he says. Its cool how we can change lives without even realizing it. I encourage you to give a book of mormon away this Christmas:) It can change someones life