Minnesota Minneapolis Mission

Friday, June 14, 2013

Amazing Exchange

(What you are about to read is sort of a journal-entry-type letter.  We are only allowed to send letters on p-days, so I'll just kinda keep you updated on what's happening day to day until I send this on Monday:)

Mamacita and Family:)
Holy Cow I miss you all so much.  I think of all of you every second.  The mish has really made me appreciate you all so much more:)
It's rainy here all the time.  So many people are not interested in the message we have to share with them. It's super frustrating, but I keep telling myself they're not rejecting me or my companion...they are rejecting Christ's message.  It's pretty dang sad sometimes.

So, for the past couple of days a ton of our appointments have been falling through.  But when it reaches about 8pm, we're not as discouraged because miracles happen!
 For instance, on Sunday, literally no one came to answer their door, but at 8pm, we knock on a door, and a gal named Kataline invited us in and we stayed for a whole hour teaching her!  That is seriously so rare for something like that to happen.  We're going to continue teaching her, and hopefully more miracles will happen:)
Oh, and a side note: her husband is baptized.  An elder, by the name of Elder BEESON baptized him!! Weird, huh?

Monday night, same kind of thing was happening; appointments falling through and no interest in the message.  Then about 8pm I was suuuuuuper thirsty.  We stopped at a gas station to fill up my water bottle, and as I was looking for a water fountain, I made eye contact with an older man, dressed classy, smoking, sitting on a lazy boy in the back office and he motioned for me to come.  
He pointed to the water fountain, then we got talking.  I told him who we were, he told us who he was, and as about 5 minutes passed, he told us to pull up a chair and offered us orange juice.  We chatted for nearly an hour about everything! From polygamy to baptism, to prophets, to church, to word of wisdom, etc.  He literally had soooo many questions.  It was awesome.  His son is/was a Jehovah's Witness and supposedly "knows his Bible like the back of his hand." We  told him about the Book of Mormon and he is super interested in looking through it.  Anyway, the old man's name was Zuhair and told us that we are always welcome to come, especially if we are hungry or thirsty and they'd have food for us!  VERY nice people.

June 5th...yay!  I got sooo many letters today!  Perfect timing too because today was a rough day: 
White people scare me! 
Buzz would actually love Minnesota because there are lots of Africans. I LOVE them!  
I got letters from Mom and Dad, Grandma Gaye, Scott Gunther, Kailey Voucher, Matt Carlson and others! What a blessing.  

I went on my first exchange a couple of days ago! It was SO great!  I was companions with Sister K.  Sister K IS Hannah Peterson!  She talked like her, laughed like her..EVERYTHING was just like her!! It was soooo fun.  And to answer Dad's question: Sister K, is definitely the funniest person I've met here!
Anway..Sister K and I dropped by the H family's house.  We knock on the door and I hear a billion barks.  3 pit bulls :/ AHH! 

They were huge and they were jumping all over me and licking me like cray cray.  Sis. H is about mid 30's, has brown hair and her husband has lots of tats everywhere, gadges in his ears and a goatee.( you will soon learn here that looks can be deceiving)  We came to help them pack.  About two hours later, Brother H told me his life story.  Ready? I'll make it brief:
Brother H was just mean to everyone and everything.
He was a druggie and drug dealer.
He was in and out of prison and jail several times.
He told me a story about when he was on a train from Minnesota to Utah to go to work on some houses.  On the train with him was an 18 year old girl headed to BYU.  This girl was getting hit on by creepers on the train and was getting offered drugs.  Br. H protected her all the way from Minnesota to Utah. ( he beat up a few people who were treating her badly and helped her with her bags,etc.)
Well, once they got to Utah, they went their separate ways.  Later he got a letter from our church thanking him for protecting that gal all the way to Utah and gave him some money.  He sent the money back and told them it wasn't  big deal. 
Well, later he ended up meeting Sis. H. on some dating website.  Well, they met and totally hit it off and Brother H was introduced to Sis. H's mom.  Her mom was not fond of him.  They butted heads.  Sis H. wanted Br. H to meet her dad.  He was nervous to meet him because he didn't want to be treated badly or judged.  Well, Bro H met Sis. H's dad and it was not what he expected. Her father was sooo nice and accepting of Br. H. Later, Br. H found out he was a Mormon.  Because of Sis. H's father's kindness towards him, Br. H became interested in the church and wanted to be nice and caring like Sis. H's dad.  Long story short: 
-the missionaries met with them
-they got married
-they got baptized BY Sis. H's dad:) All this happened in February!  They have already been in the temple to do baptisms for the dead and are going to be sealed next February, so I'll still be here!  (They said they would invite me:)
Anyway, it is just SO neat to hear stories of people who made a complete 180 turn in their lives and it's amazing to hear that all that happened JUST because it started with kindness:)
Br. H speaks at firesides all the time and has given plenty of talks and is going to be speaking in stake conference soon.  Also, where are they moving to?  Shingle Creek!  My ward! Wahoo!

Anyway, that exchange was so great.  I  felt the spirit on that little 24 hour exchange! I love you all so much!
Sister Beeson

Monday, June 10, 2013

From the Land O Lakes!!

I just sent a huge hand written letter to y'all. Enjoy. 

To answer your questions....

Are you teaching tons?

Answer: We teach a decent amount! My first day was still my best out of all these days, but it's all good.

How many wards are you over?

Answer: I'm only over one ward... I think... haha Shingle Creek :) I'm getting to know everyone in the ward a little bit better and I've tried to pick out a family that could be my 'family' here... I have a couple in mind...So I love eating at members houses, it makes me feel soooo much less homesick surprisingly :)Oh, and ps, The Beeson family is one of a KIND. It took me until NOW to realize it.  I love our family. Honestly! I cannot believe how blessed I am and what I did to deserve to have Sam and Sarah be my parents with Buzz, Claire, Jack and Andy as my sibs. Oh, and Happy:)  You are a huge example, mom.  I've had the opportunity to clean tons of houses this week, and I've just remembered what you've taught me! I'm a better cleaner than I--or you may have thought :))

How far away are you from your mission home?
Answer:  About 30 min away

Are you on bikes EVERY day?! If so, do you like it?  Do you feel buff?:)

Answer:  I talked about this in my mega letter... Mom, I'm not on a bike. Haha every single one of your letters has asked that, and I finally worked up the courage to tell you that I'm not on a bike. :) CAR, BABY WHOO!!! But, we are sooo low on miles already this week because of exchanges (I elaborated in the letter) so we'll probs have to ride our bikes like next week. 

Have you gotten my mail yet?
Yes, got all your letters!!! It was like Christmas!! I got so many:):):)

Well, this week has been great-ish.

I'll start off talking about the Johnson Family. I believe I told them about you last email, but in all honesty I can't remember... My mind is so jumbled! Johnson's are a young African Family--cutest. We've been teaching them a ton and the only thing holding them back from getting baptized is because they've 'already BEEN baptized' so we would explain authority lesson after lesson, and eventually we just had them fast about it. Well, last week, we visited them and were just PRAYING they received the confirmation to be baptized. President Clements even came with us to this lesson (Intimidating!!!) I'll just skip to the fun stuff: We asked how their family fast went... They looked at each other and they said that Sunday night, they were sitting at opposite ends of the room, looked at each other and Sister J said ''We need to do this'' and Brother J said ''I was just going to say the same thing''... sounds super dramatic, haha but I love how the Spirit works! They both got that confirmation at the SAME TIME! It was soooo exciting!!! So we set up a baptism date and they're gonna get baptized at the end of this month! 

Well, fast forward to yesterday. We invited the Johnson's to church (They have poor church attendance and wouldn't be able to get baptized on the date we scheduled if they didn't come to church) Well, we were so confident that they were gonna be there because Sister J didn't have work and we followed up with them the night before and said they'd be there. THEY WEREN'T. UGH!!!!!  That instantly put Sister Mansfield and I in a funk. We showed up at their house after church and Brother J answered the door, we told them how disappointed we were!! He apologized and said they 'slept in and the girls braids weren't done'
 Anyway, there was a baptism that night and we were asking if they were still up for coming. Brother J couldn't because he had a meeting, but he said to call Sister J. 
The baptism that we were invited to is the COOLEST story. Basically there is this guy from Kenya who is a pastor of a church and runs a little orphanage. Well, he traveled to America to find ideas to run a better orphanage (so I heard, idk if that's true) well, he was in America for about a month until he ran into some missionaries, the missionaries did their thang, and he ended up getting baptized! The pastor in Kenya traveled back home and told his congregation that while he was in America, he found the truth and was baptized. He started teaching HIS congregation the TRUE Gospel of Jesus Christ! How amazing, right? Well, this pastor had a friend named Peter. He told Peter what had happened to him and Peter decided to go to America to find the missionaries! Within 2 weeks, Peter found missionaries who happened to be my zone leaders, they taught him, and THAT was the baptism we invited the Johnson's to!! 
Sister Mansfield and I really wanted to go, but we could only go if we had an investigator come with us, we called Sister Johnson a billion times. No answer. The baptism was about 20 min away, and it started at 7. At about 6:50 Sister Johnson called and was like, "Hayyyy! Got yo' message, and I wanna come to da bapteezim!" YESSS. We rushed to the baptism, and literally got there when the speaker said 'amen'. Perfect timing! We were able to see Peter get baptized! It was such an incredible experience. Sister J really seemed to enjoy it too, and we told her that we have to push her date a week back because she wasn't at church, but it's ok. It's a good thing because she doesn't seem to be TOTALLY for it; yet. The baptism definitely helped her see the importance and feel the Spirit. So it's been pretty good, still cloudy EVERYDAY. What the heck. So not Minnesota. 
Also, my Bishop called and asked for me to speak on Sunday. No biggie right? Well of course Sister Beeson gets assigned the topic 'The Abrahamic Covenant' So, if you all wanna try to write me a letter asap on any suggestions, that'd be highly appreciative. Something that I learned this week that has really been stuck in my mind was a scripture found in.... Mosiah..10..verse.. 17? Ah dang, I cant remember. But basically it says if you have faith there will be miracles. I have been soooo discouraged this past week (normal, I know) but enough to make me believe that because every door I knocked on doesn't want to hear the message, that NONE of the doors will want to. But after I read that scripture, it really helped me realize there are still people EVERYWHERE who need to hear the truth! That night, I got a letter from Sister Clements and it said basically everything I just said, FAITH will bring MIRACLES. The Lord is amazing! He knows exactly what I need to hear. 
Also, side note: She said ''You should sing in your lessons." Maybe I'll take her up on that challenge! I've been singing way more anyway lately. Sister Kirkham even asked me to do a singing musical number... eek... I'll give ya the det's on that later.Anyway, hard week. But I'm learning. It's all good. I feel your prayers. I love you all! I'm a missionary!! Who'da thunk?! Crazy :) I love this Gospel. I love YOU ALL!!!!! <3 <3 <3 Sister Eliza