HELLO FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!
I love you all!!! :D
I'm not going to lie, this week was probably the hardest of my mission so far. I've learned that P-days kinda set the tone for the week, so please, unless someone is dying or dead, please dont tell me sad stuff or drama. Thanks!
So yeah, monday and tuesday were really rough, but I just reminded myself "Forget yourself and go to work" the Lord really taught me how important that is, and that focusing on others and my purpose and working hard cures a lot of problems :D One of my fave quotes is by Ab Lincoln that says..."To lighten anothers burdens, is to forget ones own" or something like that. That is soooo true!!! Thinking of others = happiness. Seeking your own happiness = sadness/being unfulfilled.
But by tuesday night around 6, me and sis pugh were feeling blue and things were not working out and there was lots of confusion,and we were just saying how much we just wanted ice cream and we went to Bishops house for a lesson that was no longer happening and Sister Sintay, his wife, said "do you girls want some ice cream?" then we she took us to DQ and got us frozen hot chocolate! SO GOOD!
Tender Mercy :D
Then on wed, we had interviews with Pres Ware and training, it was nice. I learned a bunch! and President thanked me for always having a cheerful smile and working hard! haha
We also did role plays and the thought came to my mind...."You know your theater kid on a mission when you say...just like in a show, when your in a lesson, dont think about what your going to say next, just listen, be in the moment and trust that you'll know what to say when its your turn" :D
Later that day it was still pretty rough, so we went next door to the Craigos, and Sis Craigo helped a bunch! Love her! They are the best! :D
on Friday I was reading in 1 Nephi 8 (i got a new Book of Mormon and each time I read it on my mish, im going to have a different focus and just highlight those things, right now its Jesus Christ/Atonement and Heavenly Father) but anyways, 1 Nephi 8:2 always makes me think of Les Mis and it was stuck in my head the rest of the day lol. #MissionaryTheaterNerdProbs
Then the Turners in our ward took us to Chinese for dinner! It was glorious!
On Saturday, we did a 2 hour exchange with Sisters Toomer and Camplese, so I got give my feet a break from tracting, it helped a lot, and it was nice to spend time with Sis Camplese who is also a convert from CA, so we have lots to talk about :D
We also met with an elderly woman in our ward who has been super depressed since her husband died and her whole life situation is just awful, but we taught her about the plan of salvation and the spirit was soooooooooooo strong!!!! It was really amazing! :D
Then we had Dinner with Bishop Sintay and his family. Sister Sintay called our families to get our favorite recipes then made them for us for dinner! It was sooo sweet and delicious! They are so sweet and the spirit is really strong in their home. Bishop works at the Temple, like really works there for his job and its so cool! We talked a lot about the importance of the temple and doing missionary work, it was awesome. I know that the temple really is worth any and all sacrifices :D
We get to go to the Temple next week!!!!! I'M SO EXCITED!!!! <3
Yesterday, was...interesting hahaha like, crazy. So crazy.
But the Sacrament was so powerful me, since it was such a hard week. I really foused on trying to turn things over to the Lord and recommit my whole self to His work. This is HIS work, not mine, I'm just a tool, but because of that, He is always there, I just need to get out of the way haha.
"Missionary work isnt easy, because Salvation isnt cheap" but every bit of this experience is important and matters. I know that Heavenly Father is working miracles in this area. I know that He uses trials to bless and refine us. I can always see His hand in this work, which includes me, He is working on me, making me better than I was, but its a long process haha, thank goodness I have eternity.
I love and miss you all, but I know this is where I need to be! and I wouldnt trade it for anything :D
Have a wonderful week and keep writing! A lot! Letters make me happy!! :D
Hello everyone!! Another wonderful week has just FLOWN by!!!!
Last week after emailing me, Sis Pugh (my comp), Sis Camplese & Toomer all went to Walmart to do our weekly shopping and had to call an ambulance for a woman who was losing oxygen in her tank, it was crazy! But I just kept talking to her and she calmed down and all went ok. If your going to lose oxygen, do it in front of 4 sister missionaries, haha you'll be taken care of :)
After that we went to Leslie Grove park for a zone activity! It was soooooooooooo pretty! I wanted to jump into the river and swim soooo bad! But I didnt lol, obedience brings blessings!
We went in for Sister Pughs MRI, to see if she really did tear her ACL and if she has to go home, but she didnt, so she isnt! Yay! I really believe its to do the fact that she got a blessing! Miracles! :D
After that we had district mtg....which was....interesting...lol. 2 Elders baptized a man that previous saturday who is very large and has lots of troubles and 3 people had to be in the font with him. But he did it! yay!
We went to a return appt. with a stay at home dad name Frank, we taught him about the restoration. He liked it and agreed with a lot, but hes a devout protestant and believes hardcore in the Trinity/God Blob...and said he doenst think he can every change that belief. But he also said that he is looking for truth....um, yeah, WE GOT THAT! :D So, we are hoping we can help him feel the spirit, so he can testify the truth to Him, since He is the real teacher, we can say as much as we want, read dozens of scriptures, but it all depends on him feeling the spirit confirm. Pray for him :)
Then, the BEST THING EVER!!!! BAY GOT BAPTIZED!!!!!!!!!!!! YEEEEE!!!!!! :D It was soooo powerful!!!!! The spirit was there in abundance! We also had 2 investigators, 2 inactives and 2 non members there! Yay! I know they all felt the spirit. Bay has just been glowing ever since :D Go watch the mormon message "Lifting Burdens" its sooo powerful! we shared it at the baptism and there wasnt a dry eye in sight :D The video reminds me that not only is Christ our Savior in the big sense, but he can also save us every single day, form our pains, temptations, anger, sadness, loneliness, whatever it may be, He is always there waiting to help carry our burdens with us, we just need to trust Him and hand it over :D
We had exchanges! I stayed in Richland with Hermana Gifford (a Sister Training Leader) she also did some theater, so we bonded pretty quickly. Since shes not from that area, I took lead on planning and our whole day, it was a little nerve wracking but went great! We taught a young woman named stevie who is amazing ! She knows a lot about the church and even went to girls camp like 4 times, we felt prompted to change our lesson to be about the Book of Mormon and it was amazing, the spirit was strong and she is going to read 3 Nephi 11 :D
Then we went by Bays just to say HI and she was still glowing!! So happy! :D
Then I felt very prompted to go see Ashley, (the one people have been telling us to drop) and it was sooooooooooooooooooooooooo powerful!!! Shes struggling a lot and we just testified to her that God is always there and the power of prayer to bring peace to our hearts :D we also testified a lot about the Book of Mormon and the strength and peace we can receive from reading it. She was definitely feeling the spirit and shared that she knows that she needs to keep trying to change, trust in Him and by trusting Him is when miracles happen. She is so special! :D
Then we met with Carol (inactive after some awful tragedy 13 years ago) I could tell she was really feeling the spirit at Bays baptism and wanted to go by and keep that feeling fresh in her mind. She opened up more than she ever has, about how she was so angry with God for what happened and its taken her years to not be mad at them anymore, but that she knows they are with her, but that she is not over it at all. I testified to her that Christ knows exactly how she feels and is always there for her, and of the healing power of His Atonement. We also testified about the Plan of Salvation and that families are eternal. She cried and said she knows everything we said is true <3 Its hard, because she knows its true on some level, but wont accept it, it breaks my heart. I KNOW that the Atonement of Jesus Christ can heal even the biggest wounds and that, like Corrie Ten Boom said, "There is no pit deep enough, that Gods love isnt deeper still"
After we went to Dinner with a part member family, 2 of the kids hate the church, one was home giving us the stink eye and refused to eat dinner with us, and the other came home when were sharing our spiritual thought and stormed passed us after seeing us and say "OH NO"....charming...lol. I was getting all east bay in my head...i needed to repent lol, But its so sad to see the mom, who is trying to hard just to live a good life and constantly be attacked :( Kids, be nice to your parents!
After we had a powerful lesson with Lesa & Kraig. We talked to them about the blessings of having a Christ Center Home, doing Family Home Evening and making Temple Attendance a priority. It was sooo powerful! Before leaving I shared Doctrine & Covenants 88:84 (everyone go read it!) and testified to them that Christ is ALWAYS with them, to lead and guide them, and that Angels truly are round about us to bare us up. They both teared and were just soo happy! It was amazzzzingggggg!!!
Definitely my favorite day on the mission so far!! SO MANY MIRACLES!! There are many every day that go both seen and unseen, but that was so just so powerful! As missionaries, we get a front row seat to the Atonement in action, changing peoples lives and hearts. How great is this calling!!! :D I feel soooo blessed to be able to do this!! :D
I also got 2 packages that day! From Lindsay and Laura! Thank you both sooo much!! :D
Weekly Planning day! which also means, lots of Sister Gresham and Sister Pugh bonding time.
She told me that all last transfer, whenever a Richardsons fart they say "I just pugh'd" or "I just did a pugh" LOL so bad, but sooo funny, it always made her sooo resembled! lol poor Sis Pugh.
Also, we were talking a lot about how emotional people always are about dumb stuff and how we just try to be chill and I said "yeahh, we should just go with the flow. ya know? Just flow....unless your in a stupid flow! Then change flows! You dont want to go flowing into sewage" LOL I was tired.
That night, Tim(a recent convert) and Robin (his wife, a return missionary) took us to Fro-yo after sharing a message with them about service, we watched the mormon message "Lessons I learned as a boy" its sooo powerful! go watch it! Service is the best <3 I learned while watching it, that we are all imperfect, but if we have our hearts turned toward others, God can and will use us as tools to bless the lives of others! <3 What a blessing! :D
Also, they are awesome and froyo is delicious! President Ware calls the secular music playing in publice places that we get to here is "a tender mercy" LOL. I love him! We have interviews this week and I am sooooooooooooooooooooo excited!! :D
All of our appts. fell thru that day :( so we went tracting, and NO ONE ANSWERED! bahhh!! I kept saying to Sister Pugh "WHY DONT PEOPLE WANT EARTHLY AND ETERNAL JOY??" lol it was rough, but we always have fun together. The Key I've learned to not hating tracting is to remember how important it is, and even when they say "no" that you are planting a seed, and helping Heavenly Father give everyone the chance, and also, when their mean, just learn to laugh it off, not in a rude, "we dont care about the way" cuz we need to care, but dont take it personally.
After all this we went to a Childs baptism, her name is Katie and I love her!! It was such a sweet baptism. She was so excited that we came and her little sister, Megan, is obsessed with me lol, and is 5 and asked if I can wear orange at her baptism. I had to break it to her that I wont be there in 3 years :( lol
BAYS CONFIRMATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAAAAAAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was sooooooooooooooooo wonderful!!!!!!
But first, we went over before church and showed her mormon messages about the priesthood to prepare her more for her confirmation. Her cat also had kittens, so I'm in Heaven whenever I go over lol.
But yeah, her confirmation was wonderful and brought me to tears. During sacrament I was reminded of the joy I feel from the Covenants I have made and how grateful I am for the righteous priesthood hoolders who baptized and confirmed me (Yay Mitchell Stanford and my Cousin Scott :D) Those covenants are not just essential for Eternity, but there are also essential to have real peace and joy in this life.
I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!! Some times things are hard, but mostly, pretty stinking amazing, even the hard times are amazing, because I know that they are for a purpose, I know that Heavenly Father is refining me. I often think about how all these experiences, good and bad, are helping me to become a better friend, daughter, teacher and someday co-worker (woohoo acting) but most importantly a better follower of christ and future wife and mother :D I know that He will always be refining me, we are all works in progress, but if we submit ourselves to Him, and dont fight him, a looooot more progress is made.
I love seeing miracles every day! The Gospel is soooo true! Our Heavenly Father loves all His children, I can feel it all the time :D