March 24, 2014
Well I am glad that you are enjoying your spring weather! We got snow last monday after I emailed you, and then we are supposed to get more tomorrow, so we shall see what happens. I am so done with the snow! I want spring already! It teases us and makes us think that it is coming, and then we get another snow storm. LAME! But I am excited for spring here in Maryland and Delaware :) I hear its pretty! And I need one of those springs!
Andrew is leaving?! Well tell him good luck from me, and tell him that the MTC is what you make it. Its one of my favorite places that I have ever been able to spend time. I would love to go back, so enjoy it while it lasts! It goes by way too fast in my opinion.
Im glad that Stuart was able to come in and stay the night with you guys and get to go to church with everyone. Glad that he made it safe, he sent me an email from Erin's so I am glad that he is able to spend some time with them as well. Hopefully he will be able to spend time with Griff and Kate or that they can help them move in and what not.
Glad Keiras track meet went well! She threw the farthest for AHS? Is this the first meet of the year? a PR is a great way to start out! Now just keep it up lil stupid!
I dont think I ever met Tammy in 23 but I am glad to hear of the missionary work there and how well it is going. Keep it up Hazeldale! Do you still have elders and sisters? Are you feeding them and keeping them busy?! I hope Hazeldale is the promise land there! haha. What mission is that? Is it Eugene? Or is there a Portland one?
Well it sounds like there is lots of stuff going on back home! Im glad :) It sounds like Garret got to Oki safely, and Keira is enjoying track! And Stuart got to Seattle, and Lindy and Clara are having fun playing with gma and gpa Strasser in Idaho for a little bit longer. It sounds like Clara has Leon wrapped around her finger, but I dont blame him. Im there too haha. I miss that little girl! And all of you. Are you going to do anything fun for spring break other than visiting Vernonia? Hopefully you just get some relaxing time in and what not. How are the apartments going? Are you full or are you doing a lot of turn overs?
Well this week in the life of sister Wilson was kinda stressful. We have our iPads which are a great tool and give us a lot of resources to be able to expand our teaching. We are able to use mormon messages which is great. I love being able to show a short movie or clip and teach a principle and invite the spirit to the lessons. In district meeting someone made the comment to the effect of "what would it be like to teach with a living Apostle of the Lord?" and guess what? I get to! Its an incredible feeling to be able to pull up a video such as Elder Hollands testimony of the Book of Mormon: Gods words never cease and then to be able to testify following that to help people to feel of how something as simple as a Book can change their whole life. Its truly amazing.
But with great tools comes great responsibility, in inputting all of the records of teaching that has been done since the area opened. So we are inputting all of the teaching records for the area and its been quite a few years. This is where the stress comes in, because we had a deadline for yesterday, and we didnt make it. So all week we have been trying to in put as much data as possible and singing 'I believe in miracles!' and while I still believe in miracles, the finishing of inputting data was not one that happened before the dead line.... so we HAVE to get it done this week and we still have over 30 records to input.... so it will be an adventure :) But all of the things we did on top of inputting data include but are not limited to:
Sister Lewis' 20th birthday! It was a party. We began by going on a run in the morning with a recent convert from the ward who has the same birthday, with her husband and a friend of theirs from the Starwars charity legion he is in. Its actually a pretty cool thing that he does, but Im running out of time to explain everything. So we went running with them, it was a 3 mile run/walk. Probably 2+ running, -1 walking, but man I am sooo sore! STILL! Its like the muscles in my legs are rotating who gets to hurt next... its less than preferable. And that was Saturday so it didnt help that we went to church the next day... literally all day. I will never complain about 3 hours of church again after this calling as a missionary! We started at 7:00am with ward council, 8:30am church, then 20 minutes to eat before going to the out reach program with the singles ward, then Singles ward at 2:30, then dinner at 6:00 and inputting info to the iPads until 8:30pm when we started planning since we report numbers to Salt Lake via iPads on Sunday night and we need wifi to do so.
So total time at church sitting in a meeting: 1 hour, 3 hours, 3 hours, 1 hour.... and that was mild compared to last week! We were at the church for 11.5 hours last week, so it was nice to have a break and get to leave the building for outreach this week.
Okay outreach, was really cool! So anyone who wanted to be a part of it came and met together. We had a prayer and then were divided into groups. Each group had different people to go and visit, then we left. I was paired with a girl named Leann. So we took off and went to the first girl, on the way Leann asked me what the out reach was for or what exactly we were supposed to do. So we talked about how the whole program is to reach out to the less actives members of the branch, or to those who we have not seen in a while, or others that we have been thinking about them. The whole point is to reach out and let people know we are thinking of them and want to have them come and join with us. The first girl had moved, and the phone number we had was wrong.
So we called the next girl and she said we could come over and gave us her address and off we went. It was truly a great experience, Leann had to make lots of arrangements to be at the out reach, with people to cover for her in Nursery in her home ward that she attends. But I am glad that she did because her and the second girl connected really well and quickly. Leann testified to her of the importance of taking care of ourselves spiritually as well as physically and emotionally and helped her know of the difference that spiritual goals made for her personally. It was great to see a member reaching out to another who they didnt know anything about when we walked into the house, and finding out that they have lots in common! They are going to become great friends I believe, and if nothing else happens, at least now they have each other to help one another, whether or not she comes to church or the activities, at least now she has another friend that can help her in a spiritual sense, and that will help her in all aspects of her life!
Its really cool :)
Then I went to the singles ward.... and it was kinda not the greatest. It was a loud, rowdy Sunday and exactly why I dont like singles wards. But I love these people and thats the hard part! Is that I see the benefits of going and being so spiritually uplifted that you WANT and NEED to come back to church to get that again next week. I am grateful for spiritually uplifting meetings in which I am able to 'recharge' and prepare for my week.
I think one of the most surprising things I have learned on my mission is that when you have Christ in your relationship, with anyone, you grow closer. When you involve God in your relationships with friends, family, loved ones etc. you grow closer together, faster and in ways you dont always consciously know. I was talking to Lindy about this, and how when you involve the spirit you dont get to know them on a temporal basis, you know the likes, the dislikes, where you came from, why you are the way you are. That takes time and interest and you can develop that in many ways, but when you involve the spirit, you grow to love each other more deeply than you thought you could.That is why a mission is so hard.
Its because you grow to love these people, more than they understand, more than you can express, and they grow to love you in the same way. That is why it is so hard when the missionaries switch. Which is the joy of the work. When you learn to love someone, you get so much joy out of it. And then you attempt to give them everything that means anything to you, the gospel. I am here to give people the understanding they need to know to develop with God the relationship that I have with my Heavenly Father. And then its up to them.
You can bring a horse to water, but you cant make him drink.
but you can make him thirsty.
I hope that I have been able to show someone, anyone somewhere how thirsty they truly are. How much they WANT what I have, a knowledge of Who I am and Whose I am, as a daughter of God. I know where I came from, why I am here and where I am going. I am going back to live with my Heavenly Father, to be with my family and my loved ones. Which includes those who I have met here. But in order to be there with them, they have to understand all of this for themselves and decide that they want the same things I do. To be with my family for eternity!
And when they realize everything that they can have, and how the spirit can help them, that is when they desire to follow the example of their Savior and Redeemer, Jesus The Christ, and desire to be baptized and to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost to be with them always.
There is nothing more that I want for every person I know and love, than for them to know what I know and to act as I have. In following their Savior so that they can be with their families for not just time here on Earth, but for all eternity.
Man, there is nothing like being a missionary. This is truly a once in a life time experience. Never have I lived so close to the spirit. That is part of the calling, to be able to have the spirit with you so influentially. To be able to help people realize the thirst they have for the truth and knowledge of Whose they are. I am so blessed and so lucky! There is nothing else to it!
Man do I love being a missionary! Not the easiest thing I have ever done.... but definitely worth every minute.
Love Sister Wilson