I can't believe that this is my last letter home. I don't know where this time has gone and what has all happened. This has been a crazy week and so much has happened.
I really can't begin to describe my feelings. I feel as though it's all surreal and that nothing is really changing...that I'm just being transferred and life as it is will continue on. I keep telling myself that I'm really going home and that this is going to end...but I don't believe it.
Saturday was awesome! I was on an exchange with Sister Stewart and we had a blast. I was up in Naches, and so it was fabulous. We had a great companionship study and everything went well. We got to see a lot of people and we did some street contacting. I even exposed her to a Mexican bakery and how you OYM a Spanish person. Haha. She was so great. And then we had dinner at my mail man's house...who lives in her ward. We swapped back that night and it was fantastic to just be there with Sisters Kendell, Stewart and Holmes.
Sunday, it was so great to be in church twice. I love doing that and I will miss being in church for 9 hours a day. The ward was fantastic! The choir sang and Bishop DeGooyer gave an awesome talk about how the Savior helps us when we feel our life is ending. It's so true though. And we ate dinner with a couple families in the branch. Sister Kendell got really sick and we went to a part member family's home. But we had a great lesson with them and the elders. It was just a great Easter. Sister Kendell and I also wore our dresses. [See attached pictures]
Monday, I swear our world almost collapsed on us. Heather was unhappy and so we went and tried to help her. She's so strong, it's ridiculous. She's got her foundation built upon the Savior and I know she's not moving. It's such a great feeling to know that. It stinks that I'll have to leave her...but she's leaving before me. She's headed down to Utah on the 28th, so I'll have to say goodbye to her on Wednesday. The Sister in Naches had a crisis. Sister Stewart is going home...actually today she flies home. Salt Lake thought it would be a good idea for her to go home because she's having health issues. But I'm sure she'll be back and kicking. She's an awesome missionary and is in good spirits. But her and Sister Holmes were a mess yesterday, so we took them some happy hour from Sonic. It felt good to do some service for them and help cheer them up. We slid down the banister at the Prests...also a picture attached of that. We made some movies of that as well, so I'll be happy to show you them next week. We also had a great exchange last night. We went to a less-active's house. She's recently divorced and living with her parents. Well, Troy, the 6 year old is SO smart! We were talking about families and he was telling us about how we're here to learn to be like Jesus. And as we were talking about that and how we learn from our families, he started to say something about how when we make good decisions, we'll live with Jesus. Then he goes 'But my dad is making bad decisions so he'll live with Satan.' Oh my gosh, Sister Kendell and I had to hold in our laughter. Oh my gosh! It was just ...I couldn't believe it. They were so embarrased, but it was fun. But he's so smart. The whole situation is sad, but I love that family with ALL my heart and soul!
I sent a few boxes home today. They should get there in a few days. You can just put them in my room. They're heavy and have my more precious things [books, etc.] and so I'll just deal with it when I get home! =)
I am so grateful for this time I've had to be a missionary. I KNOW that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true. With every fiber of my being, I know that. I know God lives and loves us. He has sent us here for a purpose and is very aware of our lives. I know He makes us instruments in His hands, if we let Him. I know that we have a prophet. He speaks to God and receives that revelation for us. I know Joseph Smith was a prophet and ushered in the great Restoration. I know the Book of Mormon is the world of God and the most correct of any books. It WILL bring us closer to our Savior. I am so grateful for my eternal family and I can't express the amount of love I have for my Savior. He lives and God's plan of happiness is for me individually as it is for us as a whole.
I love you! I can't say that enough. My heart breaks at the thought of leaving and not coming back. At not having this time to be a missionary. But I know that I have been blessed. I know that God loves us. And I know that He helps us in every aspect of our lives. I am so in debt to Him. I love my mission more than I can say.
Don't doubt that I am excited to see all of your faces on Tuesday. My heart rejoices at that. I am so ready to see you all again. Gall, I'm such a baby. Crying all the time. Ha. Anyways, enjoy this week. I love you all! I will see you soon.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
We had some really great things happen this last week. People are progressing and the work is moving along nicely. We've got two people who are getting baptized in May. I'm so excited for them, even though I won't be here to see it. But, they're making way and doing awesome!
We've got zone p-day today. It's crazy how fast this transfer has gone. I don't know. I'm trying my hardest to stay focused and sometimes, it's really hard. Mainly because people keep asking me about home. And my good friend Elder Reeve is a walking countdown for me. Never fails. If I see him or if we talk on the phone, it's always a 'Oh, so how many weeks? 2?' Which I don't mind, but I guess the constant reminder is just saddening.
Sister Kendell and I are doing great. We've been working and I just feel exhausted writing this email. Like, I said, I don't even know what we all did this week, but I do know that we've seen hearts change and miracles happen. Prayers have been answered.
It's interesting, as a missionary, I feel like I can sense more people's problems than before. But, it happens. Pregnant people and marriages falling apart. I've learned so much about it and about myself and about everything. Things that will help me with my future life.
I've meet some really cool people this week. We've eaten dinner with them and I just, I love them. We ate with a hilarious couple last night. She's my age and has a 6 month old baby...I couldn't believe it. It shocks me to know that I really am in the world, but not at the same time. Our worlds aren't the same and that's really interesting for me to see sometimes.
The Mitchells are fabulous! I love living with them and feel so blessed to be in their home.
Some llamas followed us while we were tracting/walking. It was great. I sure do love them.
Haha, I feel sad that this email is lame. Haha. But, it by no means I love you all less. Things are going fantastically and I love my mission. I can't believe that it's almost over for me. Where does the time go? I honestly have zero idea.
But I love you all! And thank you for the support you've given to me.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Things are going fabulous here! So much to tell in so little time. I'm amazing each week at how fast the time goes and how little of it I have to write to you and to tell you all the amazing things that have happened each week!
Things are beautiful here and moving along so well! I had my last Zone Conference yesterday and it was awesome. I didn't even cry when I bore my testimony for the last time in front of my fellow missionaries. It's just been amazing and I am so glad for this experience, even though it's coming to an end faster than I'd like.
Last week for p-day, we flew kites. I know I told you that last week...maybe...but it was a lot of fun and afterwards, when we played football, I threw a touchdown. I pretty much felt like Aaron Rogers. Haha. Not. But, I'm so glad that my zone is amazing!
Speaking of amazing zones, my zone is doing this AMAZING thing called a scavanger hunt. It's where we have a list of things and when we go tracting and find these things, we check them off and the district who has the most wins. We're so excited!
Oh, before I forget. I'm not sure how much luggage is costing these days, but would you mind transferring some money, if it's not in my checking already, to my card so I can get my luggage home. Sister Wilson said that you should have my flight plans already and even though I don't, I just want to make sure I have my ends covered. Oh did you get my Easter card?
We had an interesting encounter with one of our less actives and her dolls. We went over to take her some pictures and she set up all her dolls and made us take pictures with them. It was really funny and Sister Kendell and I almost wet ourselves. Oh, it was just so great.
Things are progressing awesomely with our investigators! I've enjoyed serving them and just being with them. They teach me more than I teach them, I swear. Never ceases to amaze me at how much I learn.
I've been reading the Book of Mormon and I've come to have an everlasting/extreme love for it. I can't believe how much our relationship has grown. =)
We had a fabulous lesson on Thursday with a 13 year old on the Law of Chastity. It was hilarious. We were talking and it and he goes 'Well, you don't have to do that stuff after you get married. You can wait like a month or a week or something.' It was just funny. And he is a sponge. He absorbs everything. You know he's learning when he asks God in his prayers to help keep him sexually pure.
My little Heather is doing FANTASTIC! So great! She's dating someone and is just...wow! So happy. She bore her testimony on Sunday and made me cry. She's doing so awesome and I'm so glad I was able to play a baby part in helping her come to Christ.
I absolutely love being a missionary. It's amazing! And I am so grateful for all the things my Heavenly Father has give to me.
I've also learned the power of music. It's amazing and changes and softens the hardest of hearts! Things really do happen for a reason and when the Spirit is there, we can work miracles!
Oh, I also taught seminary with my companion on Friday. It was good. I miss seminary but I definitely could have gone without the PDA that I saw. Seriously, little couples all over, just all over each other. It was so disrespectful!
Anyways, I love you! Thank you for all the support you give. And sorry this letter is all over. But you're the best! Thank you, THANK YOU!
P.S. I made my first balloon animal yesterday. =)
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Things here have been fantastic! It's been a week of miracles and I couldn't ask for anything better. Sister Kendell was sick this past week and that kind of slowed things down, but it's amazing to see how the Lord compensates for what we lack. We're expected to teach 20 lessons a week. We were down on Thursday and I went out on Friday for a little bit with an exchange. And yet, at the end of the week, we'd taught like 19 lessons. I don't know how that happened, but it did and I'm grateful.
But like I said, it's just been a week of miracles, and they continue! All the amazing things that God does for us...I can't even begin to say how grateful I am. And I know that He answers prayers...even immediately. And I know that He directs us through the Spirit.
I don't have a ton of time to say what I want. It would surely take hours and hours to talk of all the miracles that have happened this week. But, yesterday, there were sooo many miracles, I can't even tell you! We started off studying and what not. And I'd lost my CD case with the movies we carry around in it. I had had it, but didn't know where I put it. The last place I'd saw it was in the car in the back window. So, I prayed and I just asked to find it...I'd already been looking for it for a week or so. During lunch, I said another prayer right before I went out to search. I opened up the car, all the doors, trunk, etc., and the first place I checked - the back window - there it was. And I know it wasn't there previously because that was one of the places Sister Kendell and I had both check during the week.
All of our appointments cancelled and instead of being down about it, we were excited because we knew that we were supposed to do something else. A member exchange came with us and we had decided to go see a less-active that had been living in our ward for 3 years, but no one knew. So, we went over with the member, and the less active was so touched that we were there. This member even knew her grandmother, who had passed on that this woman was really close to. And on top of everything, she's having a baby in a few weeks and we offered the support of the ward and Relief Society. It was amazing to see her countenance change and I know it wouldn't have happened, except that specific member was with us. It's no coincidence that she couldn't do it that night and had to come with us in the afternoon.
Afterwards, we had a lesson with an eternigator - who is progressing now - and a different member who has been her fellowshipper since the beginning. And as we talked about the Plan of Salvation and got to Adam and Eve, this lady basically attacked us and the Book of Mormon saying it didn't make sense - we had read out of 2 Nephi 2. And the spirit of contention was there. Well, my companion bears a strong testimony and the member we were with shared an amazing experience, that not only cleared things up for her about Adam and Eve, but also magnified the Spirit of God. I know members are IMPORTANT!
There are other miracles that happened yesterday, but those are some of the big ones. I know the Lord is directing His work always and that we are just His servants, trying to live up to the name that we carry on our chest.
Things have been going awesome. I know I already said that, but it's just been great! General Conference was FANTASTIC! I can't say more than that. There are no words! I had all my questions answered and I feel like the whole conference was directed towards me. It's amazing and such a testimony builder to me that WE HAVE LIVING PROPHETS! I know that! With all my heart and I cannot deny that. There were some things that I was taught by the Spirit that I don't necessarily ... that I don't think I'm ready for, but I know that the Lord is preparing me in that aspect of my life. I know that He will support me in all that I do and help make me the person I need to be.
I'm so grateful to be a missionary. As my time ticks on, I just want to find the pause button and stop it so I can live in this amazing time forever. But I know and I'm at peace with what I've done yet this far. But my work isn't done and there are still people that I need to see and teach. And I know that. By no means am I slowing down or cutting the race short.
I love you all and I am so excited to hear from you each week! I hope the snow goes away. The weather in Yakima is beautiful and as you can see, the Mitchells have daffodil growing ALL OVER their yard! I love it! Someday, I want to be like the Mitchells! =)
And also, you can see that Hna. Kendell and I are matchy matchy with our crimped hair and oh, I LOVE GENERAL CONFERENCE! AND BEING A MISSIONARY!
You guys are THE best! Keep on being amazing and listening to the Spirit! He's the ultimate GPS. =)
Con mucho amor de Washington,Hna. Pleshek