Saturday, January 18, 2014
Hi there! It feels like I haven't talked to any of you for weeeeeks. Geeez, it's been quite the long 9 days. Yes, I got the package. SO nice. Loved it. We're out of lock down... it is a wonderful 30 degrees! HEAT WAVE. It's really like an 80 degree difference from last week.
Wellllll. I have been weirded out about how fast this time is flying. It's already January 13th! What in the world! I went through the temple a year ago! Wow. I am soaking up Eau Claire with Sister A.
Our investigators. Well. Some are good, some are not.
C, is getting baptized on Claire's birthday!!!!!!!!!!! What a wonderful day! She is SO solid. Satan is literally throwing opposition EVERYWHERE she goes, but she is so great, avoiding it all. :)
We had a miracle yesterday! After church, Sister A and I went tracting through some apartments, and the 3rd door we knocked was a cute young mom named D with an ADORABLE blue eyed girl. We introduced ourselves, and she heard of our church from some friends she's had over the years (a lot from Provo actually..) And she was AWESOME. Why? Because she asked question after question after question. That NEVER happens. For example...
"So, what is the difference with your church and other churches?"
"I've had boys come over before, are you forced to be here too?"
"Do you believe what you share with people, or are you just telling people because it's what you been brought up with?"
It was awesome, because it really made me think and renew/review my testimony of the gospel. Anyway, after like 3 minutes, she's just like, "Do you just wanna come in?" YESSSS.
We sat down, and she was expressing her feelings of how HORRIBLE of a year it has already been. She has had a couple of friends pass away and kept expressing her fear of this friend of hers who passed away and she was worried that he wouldn't see God because of the things he had done in his life. Well, fortunately, I had that HANDY Plan of Salvation Kit right on me, so I busted that puppy out, and we taught her the Plan of Salvation! She was in awe. She felt so much more at peace. She recognized the true mercy and love from God. The Spirit was really strong! She would again ask, "How do you know this?" She led us to perfect opportunities to testify of what we KNOW! :)
So, we kept chatting, and eventually our conversation turned toward the Restoration. That's right, two lessons in ONE, baby! She loved every bit of it. She accepted the invitation to be baptized without a hesitation. She kept telling us how miraculous it was that WE (being female missionaries) showed up when we DID (as she was going through her rough times). it was AMAZING! We have a return appointment with her this evening, so we are really excited. We have been PRAYING for a family, and I am confident that this family is someone that God has placed in our path. SO GRATEFUL! :)
Thank you for all your prayers and for the missionary experiences that you're having yourself. Keep going! Don't stop. It'll bring them the most joy, and YOU. Love you all!! :)
Hello, we received a text from our Mission President this morning saying that we aren't even allowed to go out on Monday... Schools are going to be canceled, and apparently missionary work will be as well. It's supposed to be 50 below or something like that, so THAT'S why you're getting an email from me today.How was California? How is everybody? How was New Years? How long were you all there? Sounds like FUN!
Soooo weird and wonderful being able to talk to you all a couple days ago. I loved that. It was hard, because for a big chunk of my mission, I have been trying to not think about home at all and focus on being here, but after talking to you all, it seemed to push me back to day one... I was sad after talking to you all, but the next day, it was fine again. :)
DRIVE safely to California and tell my lovely family hello! Ugh. JEALOUS. It is -13 plus wind chill today... brrr. It hurts to breathe!
I don't feel like I have much to say only because I talked to you on Wednesday, but we've had some good and bad things happen...
-our baptism on January 18th is canceled.
BUT another person we are teaching is doing awesome! She said she was up at 2 am and read 70 pages of the Book of Mormon! SHEESH. She rocks, and is continually CHANGING. Strengthens my testimony every time.
-C, our little friend has a date set for January 25 (Happy birthday to Claire!!--this baptism is for YOU;)) and she is progressing amazingly.
So, the work is moving forward here in Eau Claire. :)
On Saturday, Sister Anderson and I had some wonderful 4 hour tracting time in 45 DEGREE WEATHER! What the... people were breaking out the shorts and flip flops.
We were headed to knock on a door, when we noticed the garage door was open, and so we walked on over, and an older man told us we could come in. He was observing somebody else who was fixing his old truck. The man fixing the truck, came out from under it and introduced himself. We introduced ourselves, and they both have heard of our church. We asked them how, and the younger fellow who was working on the car said, "I study religion, I'm a Lutheran Pastor going on 20 years."
Well, we asked him what made him want to be a pastor, what the differences are in all the billion Lutheran churches here, and then we got talking on the Mormons.
He'd testify like crazy how he believes Jesus is the Savior and not a prophet over and over and over... I finally had to cut him off and say,
"Yes, He is. We believe that as well."
"Oh, you don't think He was a prophet?"
and then the subject of the Godhead/Trinity came up. He would tell us to really consider reading John how..."In the beginning the word was God..." ? I'm slaughtering that, but I'm sure you know the verse. I was so curious to see what he thought about Matthew when it talks about Christ being baptized (it clearly distinguishes the separation of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.) So I asked him, and he went on talking about how he studied Greek--annnnnd, that's when I zoned out....
He also told us to study Greek, and told us he has been studying Greek for 6 years. Basically, what I got out of this dude was that he was super proud of himself for all the schooling and studying he has had throughout the years. He'd also quote verses in the Bible and have to give us the reference.
I told him that I know that they are because of the experience Joseph Smith had in the 1820's... I showed him a little picture in the pamphlet, and testified annnnnd... that was all I could do I suppose. He seemed to look a little uncomfortable and cut the conversation really short after that...
Before I came out here, that was my BIGGEST fear--talking to pastors or priests or whatever, but I know that if all we do is testify of what WE know is true, the Spirit will back us up, and the fear will flee.
Joseph Smith's name will be heard for good and evil, BUT everyone will have the chance to hear about him... :)
I feel like I'm rambling on and nothing is making sense, but what I really got out of this week is how absolutely TRUE this gospel is. AHHH. I adore it. Aren't we so so so so so so soooooo blessed to have it? I can't imagine life without it.
Thanks for all being wonderful. Have fun in Cali. Soak up wealth and sun.