April 3, 2014
To Family & Friends,
I've been feeling a lot better, thank you. We've been running outside every day since the weather is FINALLY starting to get warmer (maybe that's why everyone 's getting sick). Monday was 65 degrees!! Don't worry, it's raining here too...I feel so close to you all :) Guess what?????? At sports, I was talking to Elder Coombs, who was wearing the same BYUI shirt I was. If that wasn't twin-like enough, after I said I was old, he said he was too then asked how old I was. 23, I say. He asked when my birthday was, puzzled. I tell him. He asks the year, freaking out a bit. I tell him...Then realize...NO WAY!! He runs to get his license "September 3, 1990" a Washington license. We freak out together. He claims he's 8 hours older, but I think we may have been separated at birth. I wasn't born with a twin, right?
I LOVED the Women's Broadcast!! There was a dessert social beforehand so a lot of people showed up to watch it at the church. The opening prayer and choir impressed me especially. I love how the topics were revolved around how women of any age can uplift and serve one another.
So, transfers are coming up and since I still don't know where I am going/addresses are, I'm going to have to invest in my own GPS. Since we are using Sister Anderson's right now, and I have a feeling she'll be leaving me shortly, I will have to buy one or...maybe, possibly, perhaps, sorta...you could send me one of ours......? If not just let me know :) Also, if you are sending me stuff, could I get some vitamins (multi)?
Thanks for the article!! I haven't read it yet but I'm going to. Today we went to the temple with Sister Lovelace, and it was so spiritually edifying, I can't even describe it. Know that you all were on my mind the whole time. Luckily the old new video was playing. Sis. Anderson hadn't seen it yet but she loved it! I am so happy she got to go to the temple. She's been waiting for almost a year since all of her companions had gone already. While there we saw Elder Hernandez and Elder Chang from our mission and they left notes by our tags. So we left them a note :) I love missionary kindnesses!
Remember Donna, the sad storied woman I met my first day? We stopped by her house the other day and her husband (the one who said he didn't believe in God and wouldn't give us the time of day) answered the door and told us she wasn't home because she was going through medication withdrawals, disappearing for hours at a time. But he let us talk and even PRAY with him at his door. I hope with all my heart that she will be able to get the help that she needs and that we will be able to contact her soon.
On Sunday, a miracle happened: Lamar, a former investigator who has struggled with depression and drinking for years, came to church!!! We were able to coordinate a ride with a member and he stayed for all three hours! We have been trying to get our investigators to church for FOREVER, but we haven't even met with him officially and he still wanted to come, thanks to the blessed, never-ceasing, member-missionary work of one Sister Cummins in our ward. Later, when we visited his home (at an appointment where he didn't show--again), his foster-mom Barb expressed that he loved the Priesthood Session and felt more at peace than he had in a while, because of all the hardships that their family was going through. I sure hope that we will be able to keep working with him and that he will be able to bear whatever challenges are placed on his shoulders right now.
This week when we met with Bob and Mac, Sis. Lovelace participated in the teaching and we were edified by her sweet testimony of the Book of Mormon. Bob has not fully committed to a baptismal date yet but he is still interested in learning more about the gospel.
We were able to teach Jorie and Nikki and Willy about the Word of Wisdom. Jorie is already living it and has committed to continue to live it. She is not pressed for baptism anytime soon, mainly because she wants to learn and be edified at her own pace. Nikki is still struggling with smoking but during our lesson she answered a lot of questions relating the importance of keeping the commandment. She understands she needs to but struggles with the willpower and she knows it. Willy struggles with smoking and coffee and expressed his desire to quit. We committed them to do the activity at the end of the pamphlet to help them quit.
When we visited Dee yesterday, I was able to get more of an insight into WHY she is so reserved about accepting the gospel and joining the church. She loves the Lord and her relationship with Him has grown, but her issues with trusting authority figures stem from experiences throughout her lifetime. I sincerely pray that she will find the strength and determination to develop her faith in the Word of God so that the Lord can manifest the truth of the gospel to her in a way in which she cannot deny any part of it.
We were able to invite Bob, Mac, Nikki and Willy, Sis. Vandenberg's nonmember son Ken (who Sister Anderson started grilling to come to church while I sat idly by and bit my tongue. I can only be so aggressive, as you all well know. But he was nice about it...in the borderline sarcastic-yet-I-will-throw-you-out-of-my-house-if-you keeping-asking kind of way. I think it is so funny that he went to four years of seminary, but hasn't been baptized because he still wants to drink. But that's a referral contacted. Woohoo! :), and Jorie to watch General Conference.
Funny, yet creepy story: At the library we ran into a (somewhat interesting) man who Elder Kimzee and Elder Wiscombe are working with and we talked to him about why he's not reading the Book of Mormon, Sister Anderson more than me, because I was talking with another investigator. He took the Book of Mormon and said he'd try again. We were so happy we called up the Elders and they told us that he just called them...and told them that Sis. Anderson was his soulmate. "On the plus-side, he set his own baptismal date and is reading the Book of Mormon." She says. Now we each have a creepy admirer, but at least hers isn't a 50 year-old drinker who lives at the Spanish Elders' apt..."Are all the Sisters this attractive?" he asked Elder Schvaneveldt after talking to me. (Ew) It's okay though; he's still a child of God.
Please pray for my need of humility and non-judgmentalness.
I love you all so much and I am so grateful for all of your prayers/emails/letters/packages!