Thursday, August 14, 2014

Thanks mom, another tear jerker in the library! But It was so good and what I needed to hear this week. Thank you mom! You are amazing and always know just what to say. And thank you for telling me the names of our missionaries, Elder Johnson and Elder Critchfield. I want to write them a letter when I get home and thank them for their service so they know how far reaching their missions were. Its amazing the blessings that we have in our lives! How did we get so lucky?
Also I wanted to ask, I am familiar with the story of how your family found the church but not as familiar with how dads family found the church. Do you know? And do you happen to know the names of those missionaries? Or I guess I could ask Lori, not sure how old she was when they found the church and if she would know or not. But I thought I would ask you first and see what you knew. Dont know why I havent asked more sooner, I guess I just always tell the story of how Grandpa told the missionaries they had to finish the football game first and then he would listen. 

I am so glad that Garret was able to come home and see so many people and that he really does have some great friends. I love that boy so much, I dont think he even knows how much I respect and admire him and the choices that he is making. He is a great example to me, and I agree with you. I am excited to know that the next time he comes home I will be able to see him! And I wont have to just hear about it through email haha. But I am glad that they were able to enjoy so much time together. That he was able to go to the wedding and hang out with the guys, and TP people haha. And that he was able to spend some time with David and Deanna. Weird to think that they are empty nesters now! I didnt even connect that until now... WEIRD! 

Well thank you for telling me that you got the letter, and yes flying home to PDX :) It will be weird, coming out with 30 missionaries and then flying home MAYBE with my MTC companion, I think she is flying home to Alaska through PDX, it all depends on how the office staff books it. But it would be really neat to be able to at least fly home with the two of us since everyone else will be going to Utah. Hopefully we can all fly the first leg together. Who knows. Did they give you the date? And the beach sounds wonderful, and we shall leave it at that :) Excpet of course salt water taffy and cannon beach gotta be in there. Okay requests over.
And yes, PLEASE keep me updated on Stuart and Lindy, thats kinda a big deal! 

Anyhow. Well the life of Sister Wilson this week. It was honestly kind of a rough one. But we got through it and the miracles make it all worth it!

We were BUSY! And lots of travel. We went on two exchanges this week with sisters, one of which was our farthest sisters, about an hour and a half one way down to Westchester. But it was good because we linked the exchange back to our Zone Training meeting, so we only drove to the chapel and not all the way back down to their apartment. Then we did a portion of the training at the zone training meeting. It was a zone filled with sisters! 5 sets of sisters and 3 sets of elders. The Zone Leaders did most of the trianing but they asked us to do a portion since we are the sister training leaders for 4/5 of their sisters. It was fun, we talked about how to work better with members and how to build relationships with them while still being representatives of our Savior Jesus Christ. It was good to get the input from all the missionaries we were there with, but they were not super participative. 
This week was the first week that I got a little taste of kick back for being a sister trianing leader. It was interesting, since Ive been serving for 4 months now and not had a negative reaction from anyone. But this zone was a little bit older and some of the sisters that we came out with. And I think because this calling is so new missionaries still dont know how to react to us, use us and work with us, so we get a little bit of kick back some times. But I think it also helped that I served in the zone where I was first called to be a STL, so I knew and had worked with and been around many of the sisters that we covered. And now I am over no one I have worked with before, so there is more awkwardness working here. Anyhow, it was an interesting experience to have some of the sisters I came out with kinda avoid us at the training because we were STL and apparently we cant be friends any more. I tried to be friendly and kind and reach out but I still gave them some space so it wasnt over whelming. That experience was probably the time on my mission that I have felt the most inadequate for my calling as a missionary, and then on top of that as a STL. I was grateful for Sister Sagers since we came out together we were treated similarly and had similar frustrations. So we talked together and I read a talk about leadership and the sacrifices that others have made that are greater than the rebuff that I received and decided my life is still pretty great all things considered. So I let that one go.

Then we had more exchanges, lots of travel and it felt like we were a giant circus act juggling our area, the ward members, the investigators, the less actives we are working with, the recent converts we are working with, the sisters we are over, the goals we had together, the planning that needed to happen and all of the travel in between that can feel like a waste of time while being our saving grace allowing us a few minutes of down time. And guess what? A few of those balls got thrown up in the air and a few of them fell on the ground this week. And I learned a lot. 
I realized that there are many aspects to the calling of a missionary, and there are many more aspects added upon when you are called as a sister training leader, and then realizing just how stressful it was to be opening an area on top of that. There are a lot of things required. And I felt like we were trying to keep them all afloat, and I realized this week that I am not called to keep them all afloat. I am called to do my best and to learn what I need to hand over to the Lord and have Him watch over for it until I am able to swap with Him. It was a very stretching week for me! But it was so good!
We kinda failed at our zone focus, we were tracking the number of new people we talked to each day, and because we had SO much travel time our numbers were quite low and making us realize how bad our finding has been, which is why we do not have investigators which is adding to our stress. But we decided Saturday night as we were going to bed feeling pretty miserable about the week in general, that we would try our best tomorrow and see what happens. 
And Sunday was awesome! 

Oh it started out as an adventure, we had a woman show up to church, told us her crazy life story, was trying to give us money and begging us to baptize her. We told her we didnt want her money and got her information so we could set up an appointment to teach her after the church services. Well it was kind of a shocker just because, I guessI have learned many times that I should not expect everyone to have people skills.... but I still do. So lets just say there was a lot of talking during the Sacrament meeting, a lot of pointing, a lot of body language to communicate sincere listening and a lot of explaining this is quiet time. Then she left and decided to come back for the ward after us... I think she lives in that ward anyways so yeah.. that was an adventure. 

Then after church we went to choir, its tiny! We make up a third of the women in the choir my companion and I so they are very grateful that we come and participate. Then we decided to go walk around and just talk to people. And this was the miracle part! It was a Sunday afternoon/evening and EVERYONE was out with a dog or a lawn mower so we talked to triple the people we had been able to all week. It was awesome! So we were feeling a lot better about our week. 
Then we had dinner with a part member family and one of their daughters who has been coming to church for a few months and who just got back from girls camp asked us if we could start the baptism lessons for her like her step siblings did. She told us that she wants to be baptized and was asking us questions about how school and missions and everything worked. It was a tender mercy for us to know that the Lord works in mysterious ways. 
The ward has been asking us to go over and get to know them and try to teach this daughter, but with summer and everything it was just not working out. Well this past week was girls camp and she had some great experiences that helped her realize how much she does want this. We are so excited to teach her! And so excited for her and her family. They are pretty amazing people! And all three of the women are going to do personal progress together! They are fantastic. 

Anyhow. A mission? Its a blast. Its hard, and makes you work. Stretches you in ways you didnt think you could be stretched and then builds you in ways you didnt know you needed. Its such a blessing, and after the miracles I see what I have learned or was supposed to learn, I know that this is where I need to be and what I need to be doing. 

Man. Life is good. Hard, long, stressful and man there is a lot of juggling out here, but I am grateful to learn that the Savior is helping me keep all the balls in the air. What a blesisng that is! (I cant single handedly ruin something!)

Well that is all for this week. Miracles, abound! And blessings make it worth it. The gospel is true! And we know all about it :) How lucky are we!

Love you all! Thank you for your love and support, and thanks for the boxes mom, I didnt realize I asked for that much stuff... and candy is good :) SO thank you, we definitely did a hi-five in the library after reading that :) haha. 


Sister Wilson

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