Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Yes, it is true. This is my last complete day as a full time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
These past 18 months have flown but at the same time have changed my life.
There is so much I could say in this last email, but I think I will just send some pictures of this past week and end with my testimony.
As a representative of Jesus Christ, I testify that He lives. He is my Savior and Redeemer and friend. I know that my Heavenly Father knows me by name and He knows the needs of each and every one of His children. There are no coincidences! He knows exactly what we need and when we need it— even if we don’t recognize that that is what we need. He sees us with our full potential and gives us opportunities and experiences to help us get there.
I know that the Book of Mormon is true and that it is the word and power of God. It has changed my life. It is how He communicates with us and I am a witness that He has repeatedly communicated with me through personal revelation from that book. I testify that it will help us in anything in our lives as long as we read and apply it everyday.
I also know that this is the only true and living Church today because it contains the fullness of the everlasting Gospel and proper priesthood authority. Christ Himself leads this Church and He restored it through the prophet Joseph Smith. This is the Lord’s work and He is hastening it as we speak. I know that He sends angels to lift us up and I know that because I have felt them here with me. God knows what He is doing and what each of His children needs and uses His missionaries as instruments in His hands to accomplish those purposes. The Spirit guides us everyday and helps us discern their needs. I know that the gift of tongues is real!! I also witness that the Atonement is infinite and repentance is real. Through Christ we can truly be made clean again. It won’t be easy, but Salvation was not a cheap experience. Why would it ever be easy for us if it was never easy for Him? We need to use the irreplaceable gift of the Atonement everyday of our lives.
I love this Gospel and my Savior with my whole heart and I have seen countless miracles throughout my entire mission for which I am eternally grateful. I know that obedience brings blessings and exact obedience brings miracles. We cannot forget to live the basic doctrines and principles of the Gospel! Daily prayer and scripture study and weekly church attendance should be the foundation of our lives and testimonies. Faith without works is dead! And I know that we can endure to the end because the Savior is always at our side.
I have loved serving in the Utah Salt Lake City South mission and I love the people here so so so much. Eighteen months ago I wouldn’t have imagined saying that, but this mission has truly shaped me into the person that my Heavenly Father wants me to become and I am so happy and so grateful for that. I am now excited to use what I have learned and apply it to my future life!
I testify that these things are true and do so in the name of my Savior Jesus Christ, amen.
at 1:08:00 PM
Tuesday, March 13, 2018
It has been such an incredible and beautiful week! It finally feels like real Spring! And we are praying that it stays that way but who knows with Utah.
We had three baptisms this week!! It was three sisters: Alyssa, Jaysie, and Saphira— ages 14, 11, and 9. We are so proud of them and we know that the Lord is too!
An awesome miracle we saw from that baptism was that the parents of these three girls were there and they felt the Spirit so strong! The mom even bore her testimony and was crying almost the whole time. The dad also felt the Spirit and wants to meet with us on Thursday to start taking the lessons himself! It was amazing to literally watch their hearts soften— we had been praying for that all week. We know that now is the time for them as well and we hope to help them progress towards baptism! Unfortunately they do have a lot of habits to change, but we know that they can do anything through Christ. We all can!
Another couple fun facts about this week: I held a pet snake and we watched Elder Rasband’s grandson open his mission call! The snake is the pet of one of our recent converts, and Elder Rasband’s grandson is going to Melbourne, Australia to speak Mandarin Chinese!
One of the greatest privileges I have had on my mission is to be so close to the temple— actually three of them! The temple is so amazing and we are so excited to start giving tours at the Jordan River Temple Open House!! This week we were given a training on what we need to do for it. We will be giving the video presentation at the beginning of the tour and then we will also be at the end of the tour to answer questions and talk to people! So on Friday we got to go through the tour ourselves and it is GORGEOUS. Wow, such a beautiful temple. Especially when we entered the Celestial Room and everyone was making noise with their little shoe covers but then once that noise stopped a huge wave of peace came over me and I could feel God’s love in that room. It is hard to explain, but the peace that comes from the temple is incomparable and undeniable.
Also Sister Linda K. Burton and her husband are in charge of heading the volunteers and tours and everything so they are the ones that gave us the training so I got to meet them both as well! They are amazing and called of God.
Everyone should go through that open house!!! Bring your friends! It goes from March 17-April 28. Tickets are free and are found online at http://templeopenhouse.lds.org. This week is VIP week for temple tours (apostles and quorum of the 70) and we get to give tours on Wednesday and all day Saturday!! I’m so pumped :))
Anyway, I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week!!
at 12:58:00 PM
Thursday, March 8, 2018
I hope you all are having a great day! It is a GORGEOUS Spring day today and we started it off at the Draper Temple!! So basically it’s the best day ever. I’ll attach some pics!
This week was awesome.
We saw some very inspired miracles!! First of all, we were able to find two new investigators in one day last week! It was awesome! The first investigator was nice and very receptive but we feel that it will be a long conversion process because she is from India and has deep cultural and religious roots. She wants to learn more though so we are excited to introduce her to her Savior, Jesus Christ.
The second new investigator was the amazing miracle! He is a 12 year-old boy named Justin who isn’t baptized but his whole family is and they have been trying to baptize him ever since his parents got divorced a couple years ago. We have been trying to contact him since we got to the area!! Well, it was Wednesday night and as we were crossing the parking lot of an apartment complex with our bikes, a member from one of our wards pulled over and yelled, “sisters! I just dropped off Justin from our young men’s activity! Go knock on the door really quick, they might answer now!” We literally ran up the stairs to their apartment and knocked and they let us in!! We had a quick lesson with them and his mother brought up the fact that they want to get him baptized. !! Unfortunately, they want to wait until the summer for his baptism so that his family can be there to support, but hopefully it will be sooner than that. Justin is so prepared and loves going to church and Young Men’s!
God is so good, y’all. We see miracles everyday! This week I also loved reading from Alma about the Sons of Mosiah. I love the conversion stories of King Lamoni and King Lamoni’s father! Sometimes I wish that people here could just fall to the ground until they wake up a changed, repentant person but patience is good too I guess. Anyway, I love how humble and patient Ammon and Aaron and the others were through their trails and that with patience, boldness, and love they came out on top. Something else that really stood out to me was that King Lamoni’s father was so receptive all because of the seed that Ammon and the Spirit had planted in his heart! Sometimes in missionary work it is hard to have hope that the hard-hearted will change, but we never know how much of a difference we truly make with those little seeds!
GUESS WHAT we will have 3 baptisms this weekend!!! We are so excited. I think I told y’all about them before, but it’s a nonmember couple with three daughters and all three girls are getting baptized on Saturday! They are so solid and so fun. This week we taught them all of the commandments in one lesson which was interesting because they get distracted easily and it was a lot to cover but they actually did a really good job of paying attention! Except for when their dog threw up twice right in front of my feet lol...... but it didn’t get on me and it was a quick clean up so that’s good haha. Reminded me of Buckeye. <3
Sister Downs and I are having a blast and killin’ it everyday!! I can’t remember if I ever told you about her but she’s from Georgia and always on fire!! She is seriously such an awesome missionary and she loves food, Star Wars, LOTR, and chocolate so we obviously get along real well <3
We love this stake and everyone in it! We had dinner with our Stake President on Sunday and Elder Rasband wasn’t there but his daughter (our stake president’s wife) was so that was awesome! She served her mission in Detroit so we talked about Michigan! They are such an amazing family.
Anyway I hope you all have a great week! We start training for the Jordan River Temple Open House on Friday and we are so excited!!!!! It goes from March 17- April 28 (I think)!
LOVE YOU ALL!!!!