Hello my sweet family,
Wow what a week you had! Youth Conference sounds incredible. I've realized just how blessed we are to have these kinds of activities. Ones where we get to be edified, have our testimonies strengthened, and have so much fun at the same time. This church is so good. We're blessed to live somewhere where the church is so strong.
My favorite lesson of the week was with a referral we contacted. We spent quite sometime trying to find where he lived, we were only given the general area. And so after asking every person we saw if they knew an Alcris we were finally pointed in the right direction. and to my delight it was straight through a rice field. Sister Sabiano kept laughing at me because I wouldn't stop talking about how beautiful the rice fields were.. breathtaking.
Alcris lives with a lot of relatives, I was having a hard time following everyone's relations.. but we ended up teaching to four cousins. They were all single adult age. We began the lesson, giving a brief summary of our message, getting to know them, and their religious background, and setting their expectations. We asked if they had any questions and they specifically asked me why I joined the church. I explained that I was born into the church, but I shared with them my experience of gaining my own personal testimony. I told them exactly why I'm on a mission. I told them how much the gospel means to me, how much it has blessed my life. The spirit that was in the lesson that evening is one I'll never forget. Our lesson turned into a big discussion and I felt that we were able to teach and testify to Alcris's needs, to Katherine's needs, to Victor's needs, and to Christian's needs specifically. We have the most unique, special, life changing message. We know the full truth, and there is nothing sweeter than sharing it with others.
Last night we were heading to a lesson when we ran into three members in our ward. They're all in the relief society and they had just finished visiting less actives. They were so excited to see us and to turn back around and show us where the less actives lived and introduce us to them and so we could set return appointments.
As we walked and talked and laughed with these sweet women I felt like I was walking with my mom, Heidi Allsop, and Julie Winters :) I smiled the entire time.
I was talking to Sister Morrell earlier this week, expressing my frustration with the language- and how bad I am at it... when she reminded me that I've only been here a few weeks. And so we talked about all that I've learned and all that I know for only being here few weeks, she does a good job at making me feel better.
I felt good about my talk yesterday, its funny how talks don't really phase you as a missionary. -- because that's what you do everyday. Its such a tender mercy.. I wasn't even nervous :) I really enjoy speaking to be honest.
It is getting so hot, when we come home from lunch we just lie on the kitchen floor in front of the fan. There is never any relief from the heat. We just stick our faces in the freezer. So strange to think that there is snow at home :)
Men walk around with their shirts up all day. It makes me giggle, their shirts are all folded up and resting on their rice bellies.
Well family, I hope you feel of my love everyday. Thank you for the constant love and support you show me.
There is no greater blessing than being a missionary.
I know with all my heart that we have the full truth. That the gospel has been restored through our beloved prophet Joseph Smith. I know that He truly saw the Father and His Son.
I know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is our Savior, our loving Redeemer. And only through Him can we be forgiven, find mercy, and experience true peace and happiness.
He atoned for all of our sins and all of our heartbreak. His grace is sufficient. No matter who we are, or what we've done. He has made it possible to return home to our Father in heaven. Where we can live in eternal happiness. All we have to do is act upon this gospel. To show our faith everyday. We get to change and be better everyday. As we act. It isn't a one time, I'm baptized, kind of thing.. its an everyday conversion. It is changing and applying the Atonement in our lives everyday. It is getting to know our Savior better everyday.
I love this gospel and the person it is helping me become. Without it I truly am nothing.
The gospel is true and I love you!
Love you Always,