Monday, September 29, 2014

Truth and Diligence

Area: Converse
Companion: Sister Sarah Felix 

Hi ya'll!

First of all, Chris, congratulations on becoming a glorified lunch lady! Now you can save money for a mission! I bet you're the best glorified lunch lady they have. ;) And I really appreciate the third companion [A coin Chris sent her]. Ha ha! I'll keep it forever. That's really cool that you're collecting coins.

I can't tell you how amazing it is to be a missionary! These past couple weeks have been incredible, I barely know where to start. I can definitely say that I know more than ever that this church is true. IT"S TRUE!!! This is so much bigger than here and now. This is about eternity and God's love for his children. Sister Felix is absolutely amazing. Her and I have so much in common. We are one in purpose and vision in doing the Lord's work, and we also have so much fun together. She is an amazing companion, teacher, and friend. She strives to be exactly obedient and I learn so well from her because she leads by example. She really knows how to put herself in other people's shoes. Especially investigators and less active members. She is sympathetic, compassionate, and diligent. We strengthen one another in all things. She is evidence that the Lord knows and grants the desires of my heart. She came right when I needed her. As her and I have been seeking the spirit by exact obedience, we have truly seen miracle. There is so much work to be done here and amazing things are beginning to happen.

First, one of our investigators, [C], is progressing! He's reading the Book of Mormon seriously and praying. Once he starts coming to church we can try setting him with a baptismal date again. I asked him in our first lesson and he declined. But we have great hopes for him. He has amazing potential.

We stopped by the home of potential investigators. the [B] family. They are husband and wife, and ministers of another church. They're very spiritual and have a lot of questions about the Book of Mormon. We showed up at a tricky time, but we asked if there was anything we could do. Sister [B] was teaching home school at the time we showed up and her husband wasn't home. She asked us to come in and give the children an inspirational message. We of course accepted, but Sister Felix and I briefly looked at each other with the thought, "What in the world are we going to say to these kids?" We followed the spirit and introduced ourselves as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We talked a little bit about who the missionaries are, and how we help others. We told them that they can be missionaries too in a different way. By being a friend to someone and telling them about Jesus Christ's love for them. Sister [B] then asked if they could pray with us before we left. They gathered in a circle to join hands. For the kids sake, everyone put their right foot in the circle to create unity. A young man proceeded to offer the prayer. It was really interesting. His prayer was enthusiastic and soulful. I'm not really sure how to describe it. He prayed for us and our safety. The thought came into my mind to ask them if we could pray for them too. When he ended I sincerely thanked him and told him that his prayer was really touching. I then asked if we could offer a prayer for them. They were very willing, and began to join hands. We demonstrated that we kneel out of respect and fold our arms to keep them still. As I began to offer up a prayer, the environment changed. The spirit filled the whole room as we quietly offered a humble prayer. Not one of excitement or soulful emotion, but of communing with our Father in Heaven. The difference in feeling was very evident. The spirit was so strong! Everyone felt it. This is probably the most powerful experience I've had so far on my mission.

We had zone conference a few days ago and got to see the film, "Meet the Mormons" IT IS SO AMAZING!!!! Go and see it! And share it with friends. I can't even describe in words how great it is. We left feeling on fire to share the gospel. This film left us with a greater understanding that we are all a part of God's family.

I've been learning a lot about diligence. Diligence, as quoted in Preach My Gospel, is "steady, consistent, earnest, energetic effort in doing the Lord's work." When we are diligent, we are filled with joy and peace that we are engaged in the greatest work, the Lord's work. We were sent here to proclaim His gospel. When we diligently do so, it is the greatest feeling. I love being a missionary!! My relationship with God is growing so much and the love he gives me for his children is a driving force.

I love you all, and encourage you to keep looking for those missionary opportunities. As you pray and ask God, he will show you. Have the courage to act. I look forward to hearing about the opportunities you find.

Sister Record


A Converse water tower

When I was gathering my things to leave for Zone conference last Friday,
this lizard popped out from under my things! I told Sister Felix
 to hurry and come see. We caught it and had fun taking pictures
and releasing it back into the wild (next to the parking lot).

The lizard

Monday, September 22, 2014

A New Companion

Area: Converse
Previous Companion: Sister Kaitlin Johnston
New Companion: Sister Sarah Felix


1. What is your companion's name?
Sister Sarah Felix

2. Where is she from?
Seattle, Washington

3. Have you tried the "power hour" idea Lorielle shared with you before you left? If so, can you share what happened?
I have not tried the "power hour" idea yet. I really want to. I'll definitely be discussing that with Sister Felix and finding ways to do it.

4. Where have you seen the greatest growth in yourself?
Applying the principles in Preach my Gospel and relying on the promises is where I am seeing the most growth. I still have so much to learn, but I've come a long way since I first got here. Preach my Gospel is a handbook for missionary work. Implementing the principles is much harder than I thought it would be. It takes tremendous effort and relying on the Lord. It is designed to help us grow and become the missionary the Lord has intended for us to become.

I encourage everyone, as you look for missionary opportunities, to study Preach my Gospel. It will open your eyes, and inspire you with thoughts and ideas of how you can be an active participant in the work of salvation. Remember, who is the work of salvation for? It is for every single one of Heavenly Father's children. Whether they are of a different faith than us, non-religious, less active in our faith, or an active member of our faith. The Lord wants everyone to come closer to him. Visiting teaching, home teaching, family history work, sharing declarations of truth on social media or otherwise, being friendly to neighbors, and building up our own families are all some ways that we can be anxiously engaged. There are many other ways. Pray, and ask Heavenly Father for opportunities to serve his children, and have the courage to act on the prompting when it comes. If you miss an opportunity, don't miss the next. So I suppose another thing I've grown tremendously in in my conviction in this work. This is Jesus Christ's church. It is His work. And we ALL have a part to play. It doesn't matter how simple. Most of the time, those small things are really the big things. "Through small and simple things are great things brought to pass."

5. What miracles have you seen this week?
I've definitely seen some miracles this week. One of them is receiving the companion that I did. Sister Felix is evidence that Heavenly Father knows my heart. She is an incredible missionary! Her and I get along great. I know we're going to work really well together.

I talked about some others in my audio update. :) Miracles are beginning to happen in Converse! Obedience is the key. As companions are unified in their vision and commitment to the Lord, and are exactly obedient together, amazing things happen! :)
Man, sorry I couldn't get the audio update to send. It was too big! I don't have a whole lot of time to write an update. I'll have to give you a better update next week. I love all ya'll!

A mission is the best! :)

Guess what! Sister Pito, my MTC companion, is a trainer now!! I didn't even know that was possible! She's still finishing her own training. She is SO AWESOME!! I love her so much, and I hope we're companions again. She is an incredible missionary, and is going to be an amazing trainer.

Sorry the update didn't work this week. It's been a good week, and I'll be sure to give a really good update next week.

Sister Record


Sister [L], Sister Johnston and Sister Record, Braiding hair

Goforth and Serve! Sister Johnston and Sister Record

Sister Record, Sister [K] and Sister Johnston

Sister Record and Sister Johnston

Sister [C], Sister Record, Brother [C] and Sister Johnston

Sister Johnston, Sister [A] Sister Record, little doggy

[S] and [M], Sister Record and Sister Johnston

Saying good bye to Sister Johnston

The [M] Family

Sister Johnston and Sister Record saying good bye at transfers

Sister Felix and I after transfer meeting

Pictures at San Antonio temple

A random frog... Had a lot of fun with that. :)

Sister Felix and the frog

Sister Felix, but no princes yet!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Transfers Coming

Area: Converse
Companion: Sister Kaitlin Johnston

Hey there!

We got transfer calls yesterday. Drum roll... I am staying in Converse and Sister Johnston is being transferred. We both saw that coming. I'm glad I'll be staying in Converse. Transfers won't actually happen until this Thursday. That's where we'll find out where Sister Johnston is going and who our new companions are.

Yesterday was such a great day! I really felt the spirit as I partook of the sacrament. I gained a new understanding of my roll as a missionary. [P], one of our investigators who I've talked about before, came to church for the first time! It was a surprise because he missed sacrament meeting (first hour), and showed up to Sunday School. We got him hooked up with Brother [B] and he went to third hour too! He really enjoyed it and wants to come back. Now we just need to get him to come to the whole thing. We're setting him with a new baptismal date this week.

After church we rushed over to [M] house. His family is also investigating, though haven't been progressing much lately. We talked to him for a while on his porch because his wife was asleep. He talked about his realization that Jesus Christ could visit whoever and wherever he wanted, including the America's because He is the son of God. We asked him what that tells him about the Book of Mormon. He said, "that it's true!".

After eating dinner at the bishop's house, we taught the [R] family. The two younger kids got baptized a couple months ago. But the rest of the family haven't yet. We had a lesson on the Plan of Salvation using the pictures in the pamphlet. The spirit was so strong! Particularly when we discussed the atonement. We had a member with us, Brother [R] who we asked to explain what happened in the Garden of Gethsemane. It was inspired. He explained it exactly the way they needed to hear it. [G] was very thoughtful about it. She had thought that what he did for us was only on the cross. We testified that not only did he suffer on the cross, but he suffered for all our sins, pains, sicknesses, weaknesses, and so forth in the Garden of Gethsemane. He took upon him the pains of every single person so that he could know exactly how we feel and how to help us. It was so neat to see this family's faces light up as they began to gain a deeper understanding of Christ and the Plan of Salvation. Which is God's plan for us to be happy and make it back to him.

Something that I am gaining a strong conviction of is short and powerful statements of truth. It just hit me one day that I should not be worrying about trying to explain exactly why something is the way it is. Truth is truth. There is real power in it. Because it is an eternal truth, that very truth will speak for itself. The spirit will bear witness, and the person will feel it. Whether they choose to except it or not. By simply and lovingly testifying, we do all we can. It is then up to the person to accept.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints is Jesus Christ's restored gospel. He is at the head of this great organization and leads the church through a living prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. President Monson is a prophet of God. The Priesthood is God's power given to man to act in His name, and it is on the Earth. This authority is found in His true and living church. God loves me and he loves you. He wants us to communicate with him through prayer.

Those are a couple examples of statements of truth. Family, (and anyone who wants to) Will you think of a restored truth such as God is our loving Heavenly Father, or families can live together forever, and write it down? Then write down how it has blessed your life, and how you came to know that it is true and share it in a testimony meeting, with a neighbor or friend from work or school? There is power in doing so. Tell me about it next week! I will nag until I hear something. :) I don't care how simple it is.

I love you all!


Sister Record
All in! :D

Monday, September 8, 2014

Hurrah for Israel!

Area: Converse
Companion: Sister Kaitlin Johnston

Hurrah for Israel!

Those words sum up pretty well my feelings of why I'm here and what I'm striving for as a missionary. When Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball left to serve a mission, they were deathly ill and leaving behind their families who were also deathly ill. And yet, they stood in the back of that wagon and shouted, "Hurrah for Israel!" What does that mean to you? To me it illustrates the value of sacrifice and the need to be anxiously and selflessly engaged in the Lord's work.

Sister Turpin and Sister Record
This week I had my first exchange. Sister Katie Turpin, our sister training leader came to converse with me, and Sister Johnston went to Windcrest. Sister Turpin has incredible energy and love for the work that rubs off on everyone she talks to. I had a really great experience and was able to share some new insights with Sister Johnston when she came back. I realized the importance of short and powerful lessons. Texans can talk! It's wonderful. They love to share thoughts about their life and tell us everything about them in the moment we meet them. I love it. But sometimes we need to redirect the conversation so that they understand our purpose. We can better serve those we are teaching when we keep it brief and to the point. 30 minutes max unless otherwise directed. By doing that we also have more time to see more people. I am coming to better understand my purpose as a missionary every day. Which is "to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end."

This morning I was reading the words of Isaiah in 2 Nephi. I'm coming to love Isaiah! I am blown away by how much I understand what he's saying. A lot of it applies so directly to missionary work, it's awesome! 2 Nephi 8:12-16, 24-25 particularly spoke to me. It was really motivating and encouraging. I invite ya'll to read it and apply it to yourselves.

We went to my first mission, other than the Alamo last P-day. It was really neat.

Not a whole lot really happened this week, so this is kind of a brief update. But I remembered pictures! I'm so glad to be here serving the Lord and His children. I know that this is His work. I love you all! God bless!

Sister Record :)


Sister Breakall, Sister Record and Sister Jackson
This is Sister Breakall on the left and Sister Jackson on the right. They're the head sister training leaders. They were helping with all the new missionaries coming in when I got here. This picture was taken at a zone meeting a couple weeks ago. They are both amazing missionaries!

A cool cloud formation! Texas sky is so pretty.
Annelise and Sister Annelise Record
This girl's name is Annelise! Her Dad is brothers with Ammon and Melody Martin from my YSA ward! I had so much fun talking to them. I didn't even know that Ammon and Melody had family in the San Antonio area! Ya'll never told me. :)

Texas Crazy Hair!
I debated whether or not to send ya'll this picture. Ha ha! But I had to show you my crazy Texas hair. It is pretty untamed in this humidity. I never know what to do with it. I'm thinking about cutting it.

Sister Record and Sister Johnston
Ha ha! Sister Johnston and I at the San Jose mission being random. I didn't know what a mission was at first, and I'm still hazy on the idea, but it's like the Alamo. I'm sure I'll learn more about the historical significance of these places.

Visiting the San Jose Mission in San Antonio Texas with Sister Annelise Record, Sister Kaitlin Johnston, Sister Kara Beckstead, Sister Brooke Medina and Sister Kara Swenson.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Overwhelmed to Enthusiastic

Area: Converse
CompanionSister Kaitlin Johnston

How are all ya'll?

(I still have a hard time saying "all ya'll". Apparently ya'll is singular and "all ya'll" is plural. I just can't wrap my mind around that! Ha ha.)

I had my first zone meeting this week. It was so awesome, I took like 5 pages of notes. President Slaughter came and had interviews. I was really excited to have some one-on-one time with him. I also experienced my first baptism. One for a man in another ward and one in our ward that was preparing before I got here.

We had a few "spice up" moments this week. I got peed on by a dog during a lesson. Ha ha! It was actually really funny. Luckily it wasn't on my clothes, just my leg. The dog got kicked out, and we cleaned it up pretty fast. Also, we spontaneously went to McDonald's for a snack and a bee flew in our car at the drive-up window. It was so funny because we spazzed out and had to go pull over so we could get it out of the car. It was quite an adventure trying to get it out. Good times...

Missionary work is so rewarding because we have so many opportunities to serve and to grow. Here is a part of the letter I sent to President Slaughter this week describing one of those growing moments.

Dear President Slaughter,

I have to admit, I had a couple of 80% in days this week. One night I felt totally overwhelmed and didn't know how in the world I would do this for a year and a half when I have so many weaknesses. I didn't feel good enough to be here. Of course, I know those thoughts are not true, but I was just letting all the hard get to me. Luckily that didn't last long. Sister Johnston and I talked, and she knocked some sense into me. She reminded me of all the good things I do and that it's normal to feel overwhelmed. Later that day I prayed. And it's amazing what happened after that. My attitude completely turned around. I began repeating our mission purpose over and over in my head and got super excited again. There are moments of discouragement. But that's part of life and certainly part of a mission. The Savior knows how to succor us and lift our burdens. One vital thing I got from that trial is how some people must feel when they get ready to make the huge decision of getting baptized and becoming a new member. It pricked my heart to think that some may wonder if they're really good enough to be a part of such a cause and if they are adequate. Of course they are! The Lord does not expect perfection. He requires simple faith. I totally understand how they feel! As a missionary I occasionally have felt that, but with this new perspective, I have greater confidence in myself and know that the Lord qualifies me. It is through Jesus Christ that I can overcome weaknesses and become an instrument in His hands. I am so grateful for this strengthening of faith that the Lord gave me because I have learned some vital things, feel closer to my savior, and can better relate with the people who may be facing similar things.

Also, miracles never cease! When we have faith and confidence, we are constantly finding people. The Lord truly does lead us to those He is preparing.

Jesus Christ is our Savior. It is only through Him that we can become not only better than we are, but the best we can be. We cannot do it any other way. He paid the price so we can be cleansed from sin, and gain victory over death. The atonement is real. God hears and answers prayers. I feel him listening to me and know he is there. Faith is the first principle of the gospel. It is beautifully simple and a requirement for us to come to know Jesus Christ and serve Him. This work is His work! The Church is true! The scriptures are awesome! In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. :)

I'm so glad to be a missionary! What a wonderful opportunity to serve and grow. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else at this time in my life. I know I'm exactly where the Lord wants me to be.

I love you all! And I'm still waiting to hear back about those missionary experiences. Take your time, and continue to pray. No matter how simple, I want to hear. :)

Talk to you next Monday! :D

Sister Record

P.S. I forgot my camera today! I'm sorry... I promise I'll send more pictures. Just keep nudging me about it. I have some from this week that I'll give to you next. :)