Thursday, June 20, 2013

Mission Log: 17 June 2013

meet the branch
Well, I’m training a new companion and we got doubled-in to a new area. Basically we’re both a little confused, but we’re happy. The branch where we are working is full of people who love the gospel and want to serve others around them. I love people with big hearts, they make me feel all kinds of loved and motivate me to be better.
We met an older woman this week who was just baptized at the beginning of the year. She loves the gospel. The first thing she told us is how glad she is that the missionaries taught her how to pray. She told us how she had always wanted to feel closer to God but that she didn’t know how. When the missionaries taught her how to pray her life changed. She doesn’t feel as lonely or forgotten. She knows that she has a Heavenly Father who loves and watches over her and she is eager to share her joy with everyone. She turned 82 yesterday and I’ve never met anyone who looks so happy and content with their life.
There is so much to learn from the people around us. If we open our ears and our hearts we will realize that we are surrounded by our brothers and sisters and that they can help us, comfort us, and encourage us. I am so grateful for the testimony of prayer that this sweet woman shared with me, she changed my life and she probably didn’t even realize—she was just talking about things that make her happy.

Mission Log: 10 June 2013

I love senior missionaries because they take care of important things, like making sure that we celebrate national donut day!
There is an abundance of stray underwear on the streets in this state!
Martha being stubborn and not taking pictures
New Jersey Morristown Mission

Guillermo is so cool!

I don’t even know what to say about this week.
There was a lot of rain. I went to a lot of meetings.
I felt the Spirit. I think that’s probably the most important thing I can say about my week. There are a lot of changes going on in the mission, but also in my life individually and it was nice to feel the peace and calm that come from the companionship of the Holy Ghost. This morning I sat in my room and sang “Be Still My Soul” to myself. I have a picture of Christ that I look at while I study the scriptures and I just looked at the picture while I sang and then I found this scripture:
“And thus we see that the commandments of God must be fulfilled. And if it so be that the children of men keep the commandments of God he doth nourish them, and strengthen them, and provide means whereby they can accomplish the thing which he has commanded them; wherefore, he did provide means for us while we did sojourn in the wilderness.” (1 Nephi 17:3, the Book of Mormon)
I trust God to take care of me. I trust Him enough to be obedient and to choose to be happy. His plan has always shown to be way better than mine and I am grateful for opportunity after opportunity to learn how to be humble and by so doing learn how to be happy.
Tomorrow brings a new area, a new companion, and lots of new responsibility. Sounds like an adventure to me. 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Mission Log: 3 June 2013

^^the most awkward mustache picture ever taken, ever!! Also not the caution tape in the background. Seriously so much awkward!
^^more awkward ^^
^^This is a the most random little deli, and I love it!!^^

I live a charmed life! I love being a missionary in the NJMM. Sometimes I think I’m way too small to feel all the joy and love that is available to me, so it just comes bursting out of me and hopefully it blesses the lives of others because it is sure blessing mine.
Miracles are real; I think Heavenly Father is more willing to bless us than I ever dreamed. I’ve noticed that if I follow promptings from the Spirit that come as I pray that everything tends to work out. I know what to say and where to go. Investigators are able to come to church. We find the team-up we need. The Spirit is felt, and that’s really the most important thing. As much as possible I’m trying to diminish myself and magnify Christ and the Spirit who testifies of Him, His Father, and the truthfulness of the gospel. I am just the mouthpiece…and occasionally I’m a cheerleader for my companions and my investigators. It’s fun.
My companions are some of the most incredible women I have ever met. I'm impressed by their faith and their dedication to the work.
We are teaching 4 little girls. I think I sent you a picture of them last week. Last week they weren’t able to attend church, even though we had arranged a ride and everything for them. It broke my heart. But this week they came! It was such a miracle. I was sitting there in sacrament meeting feeling more like a mom than a missionary. I was playing the dot game with a 13 year old on my left and I had a 6 year old on my right grabbing my face with her hands and ripping up papers and putting them in my lap. All the while testimony meeting was going on. It was one of the most incredible testimony meetings of my life. I wasn’t able to focus on every word that was said, but I caught pieces of truth that touched my heart: “I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.” “God is our loving Heavenly Father.” “Joseph Smith was called as a prophet and the church of Jesus Christ was restored through him.” “I know God hears and answers my prayers.” “The gospel has blessed my family.”
Little, simple sentences but they meant so much to me. Then I looked down at these sweet girls whose lives have been harder in 13 years or less than mine has in 23 and my heart was just so full. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for blessing me with a family who loves me, who supports and encourages me. What a rarity and what an incredible privilege. I’m so grateful that I get to testify to people every day that the gospel can help them have happiness and unity in their home. I love telling people that all wounds can heal through the atonement of Jesus Christ.

Really, God just wants us to be happy. Everything He has ever done and anything He ever will do is to bring about the greatest measure of joy possible for His children. I am convinced that there is no challenge, no disappointment, no achievement, no triumph that is not perfectly calculated to teach us the things that we must know to become the people God intends us to be SO THAT WE CAN BE HAPPY! I look forward to eternal joy as the result of obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
All my love,