Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Beautiful Spring in Georgia!

Spring pictures at Bethel Gardens (assisted living place that we sing at).

Aren't the flowers in GA beautiful?

More Spring pictures! :)

We had a friend visit our backyard! It was AWESOME! We were only a few feet away from it, and it just sat there staring at us. I think he was showing off. ;)

We went to the temple again with a recent convert, "M"! It was an amazing experience. I got to bring my family names and it was powerful. It was amazing to think about how I am being a missionary for my family, too, as I do these names in the temple. I am helping my family to progress in the gospel!

Guess what we found in our backyard? King snakes! Three of them! This is only one of them, but we found three on our way to our apartment. Don't worry, they are safe. They kill poisonous snakes. This one was eating a lizard. It was actually quite fascinating to watch. And disgusting at the same time. I know, you probably think I'm weird. ;)

Hike with a beautiful new friend!

This is Christian, our amazingly beautiful recent convert! We went on a hike with her this morning and it was lots of fun! :)

The fun of selfies! I finally didn't feel awkward doing them. Sister Barry's rubbing off on me! ;)

Both of us were wearing our GA tees. It was a blast!

Historical ruins of an old watermill that we saw on our hike. It was really awesome!

Fun times!

This is what happens when Sister Barry gets ahold of sticky things like bandaids, stickers, and tape. ;)

Sister Barry and I did painting at a ward member's home. Sister Barry wouldn't let me paint her. So instead I became the Avatar and her hand turned into a person! ;)

Sister Barry made me Marshallese Ramen! It was delicious! This is REAL ramen, not the cheap kind. It was made with rice noodles, chicken bullion, and chicken (plus a few other things). Yumness!

Monday, April 25, 2016

There is Sunshine in My Soul Today!

Monday, 25 April 2016

Dear family and friends,

Though transfers are rapidly approaching, there is still sunshine to be found all around! I am so thankful for the amazing time that I have had with my companion, Sister Barry. She has taught me so much. It will be bittersweet saying goodbye, but really, it won't be goodbye. It is always, "see you later". :)
I look forward to the joys that this next transfer brings. I know that it may not be easy, but it will definitely be worth it!

Christian, a recent convert, has been doing so well. She is progressing and blossoming into a more confident, faithful individual! I love seeing the joy that this gospel brings. It builds faith. It strengthens. It gives us hope. This gospel is truly amazing!

​Now we've started teaching Christian's son, Robby. She has set such an amazing example for him! Robby is really shy, and as we've gotten to know him better, he's begun to open up. He is already growing into a more confident individual, and I am so excited to see how the gospel helps him to grow!

I testify that this gospel is true. It does bless lives. It is a blessing and gift from our loving Father in heaven! He lives, and He loves us. He listens to our prayers. He answers them in His time. Turn to Him in your times of need and He will bless you. He loves you!

My invitation for you this week is to reach out to someone who is struggling. Pray for Father to guide you to the person that needs your help. Pray in faith and then follow the Spirit's guidance. I promise you that you can and you will bless others' lives as you do so! 

You are all so amazing! Keep smiling! Spread sunshine!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Heaven Is Cheering You On!

Monday, 18 April 2016

Dear family and friends,

Y'all are amazing! I just wanted to remind you of that again. :)

Here's an update that I gave my mission president, President Foote.

I have been really thankful for General Conference talks lately. Elder Holland's talk really hit me and answered a lot of my prayers. As I've pondered on his words, I have been blessed with more confidence and peace. Sometimes I struggle with the adversary making me feel worthless and have a lack of confidence in myself. I feel a lack of motivation to get up and do the work that I have been called to do. All the amazing conferences happening have helped me to build up my faith and testimony of the joys of serving, and they have given me the desire to get up and go to work. 

Something that I've been pondering on a lot is the importance of love. Sister Foote reminded me of the sacrifice that less-active members or investigators make to attend church. It is a big step to take. It can be life-changing. To help them make this step, we must reach out in love. Love them for who they are. Look at them through God's eyes. Like you said in your letter, Elder Holland said that "heaven is cheering us on". As we seek to love all those that we serve, they will be more willing to take those steps towards eternal life. Our loving Father is there for us every step of the way. He will guide us and help us to become who He wants us to become. He will guide us to those who are seeking for the truth if we are humble and willing to reach out in love and service.

I know that we can love. We can see others through our Father's eyes. I testify that God truly is our loving Heavenly Father. I know that missionary life is not easy, but I also know that with our Father's help and strength, and alongside our Savior, we can bring others to Christ. We can be who our Father wants us to be!​"

My invitation to you this week is to read your favorite conference talk. Ponderize it! Take the time to think about what you learned from it and apply it to your life. I testify that you will see miracles from it. You will be filled with peace and the strength to endure to the end!

Keep smiling and have a blessed day.​ I love y'all!

Friday, April 15, 2016

I Like to Look for Rainbows...

Monday, 11 April 2016

Dear family and friends,

With baptisms come great storms. This past week was challenging and at the same time so amazing. We visited with Christian every day this past week to help her prepare for her baptism. The lessons went so well, and she progressed quickly. She was so prepared! 

We felt a LOT of pressure from the adversary as Christian's baptism neared. It was hard to combat his fiery darts. He threw everything at us--health problems, sleeping in too late, getting to bed way past curfew, sadness, gloomy weather, frustrations, stress, and many other things. But through it all, we still remained faithful. We knew that as we relied on Christ to help us, He would be our Shield and Protection. As long as we had on His armor, we would be protected. And we were. Along with Father's guidance, our Savior helped us through the adversary's storms. We were able to conquer and emerge stronger than we were before!

And then, the ray of sunshine, the calm after the storm. Christian was baptized on Saturday! It was a beautiful baptism. Everything went so well. Christian glowed. She literally radiated the light of Christ. Her whole persona was absolutely incredible! That day will be something that I treasure in my heart always.

My invitation to you this week is to keep moving forward. Turn to our Savior and He will bless you. He will give you the strength to continue on. I can testify of that! He can and He WILL!

Y'all are so amazing. Keep smiling. Life is an amazing miracle from our Father in heaven! Enjoy every minute of it!

I love you!

April Fool's!

Spring is here! Happy (late) Easter!

Weekly planning outside. We set up a blanket on the grass and enjoyed the beautiful spring weather.
The next morning, both of us had cold-like symptoms. Even though we didn't notice it while we were outside, the pollen had attacked us and we had allergy issues! It's crazy how much pollen is here in GA...

I hads an cut on mine thumb. Minion stickers make things a lot more fun!

APRIL FOOLS! We pranked the elders... and had LOTS of fun with it! We "TP'd" their front door. Note the play on words. We cut out paper teepees and wrote on them "You've been TP'd... April Fools! Yaas!" 


...We saran-wrapped their front porch. 

Okay, so it wasn't a mean prank. We had fun with it and made it easy to clean up. ;)

Sunday Sister Selfies! :) We decided to take them in the bamboo that grows near our house. Did I mention that bamboo grows everywhere here?

Life Is Beautiful!

Monday, 4 April 2016

Dear family and friends,

What a week this has been! Miracles and hardships. Through Christ we have conquered, and through Christ we have become better individuals! I am so thankful for General Conference and the incredible opportunity we had to hear from a living prophet who is called of God, and also from the many inspired speakers who were also called of God.

What an incredible blessing it is to be serving the Lord! Each of us can reach out to others in love and service as we seek to. God will guide us to the people who stand in need of comfort. That is one of the covenants we make at baptism, to comfort those who stand in need of comfort.

Speaking of baptisms...
One of our amazing investigators (which I am sure I have talked about before), Christian L, is getting baptized this Saturday! I am so thrilled for her--she is taking a big step in her life, and she has done so well in progressing towards it! The Lord has truly blessed her as she has sought to do His will and stay on the path that He desires for her.

My invitation to you this week is to ponder on General Conference, and seek to apply what you've learned from it. If you haven't watched all the sessions, I would encourage you to do so. They will bring spiritual strength and the peace that you need to continue pressing forward. 

You are all so amazing! Keep smiling! I love you!

Friday, April 1, 2016

Open Your Eyes

Monday, 28 March 2016

Dear family and friends,

This week has been so amazing! We've had our ups and downs as usual, but we have seen so many miracles! 

Here are just a few that I shared with my mission president:

Each Monday, there has been the same man at the library that we greet every time we go to email. He is always there, and he always gives us a big smile. Last Monday, I gave him a #Hallelujah card and invited him to watch the video. When I saw him today, I asked him if he had watched the video and he said he did and that he really enjoyed it. We started to talk a bit about Easter, and eventually I asked if he would be interested in learning more. He said that he would! So now we have a return appointment with him this Wednesday! 

It is amazing what can happen, even on Preparation days, when we open our eyes to those around us. God is always placing people in our paths so that we can help them to come unto Christ. He is aware of each step we take, and He will guide us in the directions that He wants us to be.

This past week, we were finally able to contact some people over the phone that we had lost contact with! Tiffany Z, one of the women we were able to contact, was really excited to meet with us. After our first visit this past week, we were able to get a return appointment! She is excited to continue letting us practice teaching the 5 lessons. 
I testify that the 5 lessons approach does work! People are searching for ways to serve. Many people love helping others. They greatly appreciate it when they feel needed. As we reach out to others and ask for their help, they are more open to us sharing more, and they are touched by the Spirit!

​​Update on the weather: Everything is turning green and beautiful! Spring is in the air... and so is pollen. Pollen in GA is everywhere. It coats everything, blows around (making the air look like yellow fog), and gives us allergies. ;) But despite the pollen, everything is so beautiful!

My invitation to you this week is to open your eyes and enjoy God's creations! They are everywhere. Nature is a beautiful gift from God--take the time to appreciate it! I testify that you will begin to be more thankful for the life that God has blessed you with. You will also be filled with more happiness as you look for the good. :)

Keep smiling, and have a blessed day! I love y'all!