Companion: Sister Sarah Felix
My heart is so full right now! We have seen so many miracles this week. Before I share the miracles we've seen, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude. Mom and Dad, I am deeply grateful for your sacrifice and for your love. Thank you for loving us enough to push through the mighty whirlwinds to teach us the important things. Family home evening, family scripture study and prayer, attending church together and loving one another has truly made our home a sacred place. Thank you for loving us unconditionally, for believing in us and supporting us. Your confidence in me has given me courage and strength during the times that test my faith. I have greater confidence in myself and in the savior because of your examples.
Mom, I am grateful for your example of selfless service. You have opened up your heart and your home again and again to loved ones struggling. I will always remember and follow the pattern of love you have shown. Thank you for trusting the Lord and relying on him to strengthen you, especially in the times when you had nothing left. You're example of endurance and perseverance is something I am eternally grateful for. Thank you for loving me and for listening to me. Thank you for teaching me how to be a woman of faith. I am reminded of the words to a primary song: "I see my Mother kneeling with my family each day. I hear the words she whispers as she bows her head to pray. Her plea to the Father quiets all my fears. And I am thankful, love is spoken here." These words are the words of my heart. Mom, I love you and am so grateful that you are my Mother. Love is indeed spoken in our home and family.
Dad, thank you for being a faithful and worthy priesthood holder, and for treating my Mother as the Queen that she is. Your respect and love for her has left a lasting impression that I am eternally grateful for. You have taught me the sacredness of marriage and what kind of man I am looking for. Thank you for baptizing me and giving me the gift of the Holy Ghost. Thank you for listening to me when I talk. I know that my thoughts and feelings are important to you because you turn away from your own interests and even work to give me your full attention. Family is important to you, and you have provided well both temporally and spiritually. You are indeed a loving provider, our gentle friend, and a faithful Father. Thank you for your constant support and encouragement.
Lorielle, Jason, Chris, and Eric, I am grateful for your individual gifts and talents that have helped me grow and learn. We are a family, and I know we were meant to be together for eternity. How thankful I am for each of you. I love you all so much!
I also want to thank all of my friends for your support and for your examples. I can't name all of you here, but each of you are important to me and have shaped me in some way.
Now for the miracles that have happened this week... Wow. We have been so blessed! We are finding SO MANY people. Sister Felix and I have been growing and learning so much together. As we set goals and make plans, strive to be exactly obedient, and apply the principles in chapter 9 of Preach My gospel, we are finding people and seeing miracles. We received a media referral on Thursday and contacted her a couple hours after receiving it. She only requested a bible, but we ended up teaching her the Restoration. We also taught her how to pray and introduced her to the Book of Mormon, inviting her to read and ask God. The spirit was super strong as we taught her. She connected really well with the questions Joseph Smith had. We invited her to be baptized, and she said, "Yes Ma'am". (They say Ma'am and Sir a lot in Texas.) She accepted! And she has two girls that we will also be teaching. We're seeing her again tomorrow with her family!
We've been teaching the [G] family for a couple months now. They almost cancelled one of our lessons because their electricity was going to be turned off. We said we'd bring a flashlight and she agreed. But then we thought it might be kind of difficult to teach a lesson in the dark, so we invited them to meet us at the church instead. They agreed, which was a little surprising. The lesson was a turning point for [E]. It was good for all three of them, but especially [E]. It was sort of an interactive lesson on the Sabbath day. We did a church tour and when we got to the primary room they noticed the pictures of all the prophets of this dispensation. There was a picture of President Monson too. We told them that he is our current prophet. She was in awe. All of a sudden things clicked for her. It was so awesome! And they came to church on Sunday! They have a stronger desire to learn and understand.
We also had an amazing lesson with [S]. We talked about the sacrament, and had him read the sacrament prayers. He felt the importance of the sacrament as we read and talked. It was really neat.
On Saturday we met a young mom named [J]. We were looking for her brother who we had taught before, but he wasn't home. Initially we would have left. I have to be honest, at this point in the day I was pretty tired and didn't want to try as hard as I should have. Luckily the Lord is patient with our mistakes. The words, "Can we come in and share more of this message with you" came out of my mouth. In other words, I didn't really want to say that, but the spirit helped me say it anyways. Everything changed after that. She let us in and we taught her the Restoration. Sister Felix bore powerful testimony. The spirit was so strong in that room. This woman looked torn apart emotionally. I began to testify that the peace she was feeling from this message is God's love for her, and that Jesus Christ is perfectly aware of her heartaches and joys and that He is the one she can look up to. She began to cry as the spirit helped me know what to say. She said she was having a bad day and really needed that. It was amazing. She's soft spoken and seems to have gone through a lot. We saw her again Sunday morning and will see her again tomorrow.
On Sunday a woman we met a couple weeks ago came to church unexpectedly for the first time. We haven't even taught her yet because it's been hard to get a hold of her. But there she was, at church on her own! The joy I felt from the week, her being there, and the [G]'s making so much progress and being at church, was beyond anything I have ever felt. It's moment's like that that make it all worth it. The joy I felt then and still feel now is consuming. Meaning that the sorrow and pain I've felt don't even matter. I can hardly remember the discouraging moments. And there's a lot of them. But it doesn't even matter because this is why I'm here, to bring souls unto Christ.
In sacrament meeting Sister Felix and I sang with two other sister's. We sang Joseph Smith's First Prayer to the tune of Come thou Fount. It was such a sweet experience that really brought the spirit. One of the things I wanted before my mission was to become more comfortable with sharing my voice. That is a tender mercy that the Lord is definitely blessing me with. Sister Felix and I sing in the car all the time, every day together, And I wasn't even nervous to sing in sacrament meeting. Probably because I was on cloud nine with how happy I felt.
On Saturday we experienced a flash flood. It was fairly minor, but still potentially dangerous. Sister Felix and I were teaching a lesson when it hit. We got outside and stepped through ankle deep flowing water to get to the car. When we got in the car Sister Felix asked me to offer a prayer. Before leaving we prayed that we would arrive home safely. We were calm and cheerful because we knew that the Lord would protect us. And he did. It was a really cool experience. I know that the Lord is with us where ever we go.
Once again, thank you for your support and prayers. It is great to be a missionary!