Monday, October 17, 2011

October 17, 2011 HOLA!

So this week was lame and then awesome!
We didn't end up teaching the homeless man last week, which we were relieved about.  He was only 'interested' so that the kind man in our ward (Brother Hunt) that took him in would keep feeding him and letting him use his tv. Bro. Hunt's daughter was visiting him this weekend and told the guy that he needed to leave because he was taking advantage of Brother Hunt.  Not nice!  So yeah they told us not to come teach him.
On Tuesday we had our first real lesson with Ilene and she really believes the story of Joseph Smith.  And we asked her to read the Book of Mormon and she wants to.  We told her to pray about it to know if it's true and she said she will.  Then I asked her if she got the confirmation that it is true and that the Lord was leading her to our church if she would join and she said she'd probably have to work on that one. SO STRANGE.  If it's true, and this is the Lord's church, why wouldn't you follow the prompting of His spirit and join?  I guess some people are just a little more stubborn.  But she didn't say no, which was great!  I think she's very open and we'll see what happens after we teach her the plan of salvation this week.
On Thursday we met with Janice, one of the families I think I've mentioned before.  We were hoping to get the lessons going, but as soon as we brought up the Book of Mormon she said the Bible is perfect, she's never felt like it was missing anything, to beware of false churches, no thank you.  We even explained that the Bible supports the Book of Mormon and the Book of Mormon supports the Bible, but she wouldn't hear it.  But she was still nice about it.  Maybe some day she'll be more open.  She wants to come and use the family history center here, so we'll meet with her and kind of show her how to do that.  
Saturday was AWESOME.  There is a less active man that has given us a couple referrals and we met one of them Saturday night.  Her name is Jackie.  She's a very delightful woman who has a thirst for knowledge.  She brought up religion and started asking about our church within two minutes and said she's always wanted to find out what latter day saints believe but never had the chance to sit down and talk with one.  Then she went on to say that she loves the bible, but feels like it's missing stuff.  So she is always looking for the 'missing pieces'.  When we gave her a Book of Mormon she opened it up right there and started reading.  She invited us to come back on Wednesday.  She said she loved having us there because we were able to answer a lot of the questions that she had.  YEY
And then yesterday we had dinner at our ward mission leader's house and he and his wife made pumpkin shaped sugar cookies for us to frost.  It made me feel a little more at home, to do something I would do at home.  If that makes sense.  But it was fun.  They let us borrow a couple Halloween decorations and so now our house is a little less boring. 
This was a great week.  This has been so much fun being able to serve the Lord and meet new people.  I have gained a testimony of the Savior's love for everyone.  I can feel it every single time I talk with someone.  And I love them too, because the Savior loves them. 
Well that's it for today!  Have a lovely week!
-Sister Stacey
Thank you for the letters!  I love love love getting mail.  I FINALLY heard from Mandy and Lindsey, so now I don't feel like people are missing.  I have not gotten your package yet. :(  I sent you a couple letters last week too, but I suppose you have not gotten them yet.
My heard broke as I read about Rocky.  I'm thankful that you didn't wait to have him put to sleep.  And I'm glad that he had a good life with us.  I'm just sad that I don't even have pictures of him.  I'll have to get some from Kevin.  That's all I can say or else I'll start weeping.
We left a message for a semi less-active family we havent seen in a while.

They are obsessed with Disneyland, so the message has been written on Mickey mouse shaped
paint chips we got from home depot. 

Decorating sugar cookies at the ward mission leader's home.

I love you!  Have a fantastic week!  Brother Sinclair, my ward mission leader, might email you some pictures.  :)

October 10, 2011

Hey everyone!
     This week was pretty great!  On Wednesday it was cold and rainy all day.  So basically I loved it.  We also got a temple trip!  It was raining even more down the hill than it was in the desert.  I didn't bring a jacket, which was dumb.  We got lost on the way there.  I, in my head, knew we were supposed to keep going east at a junction we got to, and my companion went west.  Maybe I should have said something.  Oh well.  We got there eventually.  We missed the session we were supposed to be at, so they let us to initiatories until the next one.  So it was okay because we got to do more work.  The Redlands temple is so pretty inside.  They have an awesome stained glass window behind the entrance desk.  When we got outside it was still raining and everything was just wet.  But we got some really cool pictures out of it.  The fountain outside of it is really cool.  The top only had one drain, representing Jesus Christ, the second had three, representing the first presidency, and the third had 12, for the quorum of the twelve apostles.  I thought it was cool. And then we had Cafe Rio on the way home. :)
     On Thursday Elder Packer, President Packer's son, came for a mission tour.  We had an all day zone conference which was so awesome.  We were warned beforehand that he would call on 'several' of us to give talks sponateously.  As you can imagine I was not calm inside.  Several ended up being three, and I wasn't one of them, although I was sure I would have been.  It was Elder Packer the older who visited your mission, right dad?  When he asked you to give a seven minute talk?  Well in my head it seemed like it was.  So I figured fate brought these two men's children together, and also knowing that history has a tendency to repeat itself, I was sure that I would be called upon.  It was destiny.  Glad to be wrong.  But he gave us some really awesome advice.  After they gave us flu shots, which is funny because I was just saying earlier that day that I wish they would give us flu shots. Then that evening we had another appointment cancel.  That seems to be happening to us a lot.  Oh well.  I don't let it bother me.
     On Saturday night we visited Sister Flores, one of the less-active members we visit, and she said she would be at church the next day, and she was!  It was so amazing to walk into sacrament meeting and see her sitting there.  I'm pretty sure I couldn't stop smiling like the whole time.  She even stayed for all three hours!  She said she shared her testimony in relief society.  I wish I could have been in there to see it, but I wasn't because Sister Rimington and I had to teach the high priests.  That was actually kind of fun.  We gave a lesson on missionary work, of course, and gave them suggestions on what they could do to help us.  I think they really liked it.
     And then tonight we're teaching a homeless man.  That is literally all we know about him.  Hopefully I'll have more to say next week.
     I had a couple experiences this week of following promptings.  On Wednesday night we were not sure of where to go or what to do because all of our plans were not working out.  When we were planning the night before I felt like we needed to go see an investigator named Ilene, who I had only briefly met once before, but my companion said she doesn't want us coming by at night.  So I let it drop.  So when all of our plans fell through I had the thought again to go see her.  So we drove over there and her lights were on, but my companion still wasn't sure.  We sat there for a little bit thinking about it and decided to pray about where to go and what to do.  We decided to stay there and knock on her door, even though it was 8 pm and definitely dark.  She was so excited to see us and we talked to her for over an hour and we'll be seeing her again tomorrow night.  She even said she might prefer if we came later anyway because it's usually a better time for her.  Funny how that worked out.  And then a couple nights ago I felt like we should go see Sister Mroz, a less active member that is really hard to get ahold of, so we did, and she was home!  She said she tried watching conference but the internet was bad so she was only able to watch one talk. I remember when I was listening to conference that there was one talk that she really needed to hear, and it was the one she happened to watch.  I thought that was pretty cool.  She's really busy all the time, so we're trying to help her see that it's really important to make time for church.  I'll let you know how that goes.
     Well that's about it for last week.  It was busy in some ways, and slow in others.  But it still went by really fast.  I can't believe I'm done with my first transfer.  And today marks two months since I left home.  WHAT.  Where does time go.
     Well I love you all and I'll talk to you again next week.
     Love, Sister Stacey
O.K. the fingers.  I accidentally super glued my fingers together and I COULD NOT pull them apart.
It felt better to have them taped together instead of them feeling stuck together, if that makes sense.
I got them apart before the end of the day.  Thank goodness!

The Redlands Temple was so beautiful in the rain!

The fountain I described in my letter.

 I am fully aware that the camera did not focus on the rose very well.
Plus also I know there was a spot of water on the camera. 

These are all pictues of my temple trip.  It was a grand day.

October 3, 2011

This week was so grand!  We've been trying really hard to find people to teach, investigators, less-active members, and active members.  It's been so fun getting to know different people. 
We visited Sister Mroz, a less-active member of our ward.  We asked her what is keeping her from church and she really opened up to us and told us why she won't go.  We're so excited because now we know how to help her come back because we know what things to teach her.  She enjoys church though, so I think she'll go back one day.
We also visited Sister Burroughs, who I just love.  I guess she's been less active for a while, but she seems like she's finally ready to come back.  She has had pneumonia for a month though, so once she's all better we'll see what happens.  We shared the talk from President Uchtdorf from the Relief Society broadcast.  She loved it.  She really felt the spirit and I think she really knows that she needs to go to church and she wants to go back.  She brought it up this time, not us!  YEY
We had some appointments to teach those families I talked about last time.  At least I think I mentioned both of them.  Maybe I didn't.  In case I didn't, there was Kenya and her family and Janice and her family.  Anyway, those appointments fell through.  It's okay though, because they still want to meet with us.  They told us to call them a little later in the week to reschedule.  I really like these families.  We also met up with a potential investigator named Judy who says she 'wants to go back to God, but wants to do it the right way.'  She just got a new job and already asked for Sundays off, and she hasn't even had any lessons yet!
This week was really awesome, and was made even better with general conference.  I have always liked conference, but being a missionary I loved it.  I could not get enough and I'm sad that I have to wait another six months to hear more.
My testimony has grown so much in the last eight weeks.  Especially my testimony of the Book of Mormon.  I love that book.  I love studying from it.  I love teaching from it.  There is a power that comes from the Book of Mormon.  It is the most unique book, because it comes with a promise.  ALL who read it and ponder it and sincerely pray to know if it is true will receive the witness that it is.  I have done this, and I know that it is true.
I love all of you!  Thanks for your letters!
Love, Sister Stacey
PS MOM I heard from you, dad, Michelle, and Matt.  I got your package.  I love that you're keeping me supplied with fruit snack types!  This way I just spend money on healthy food and I've really been able to conserve money.  WOOHOO!  Another skill that I'm glad I have learned now-budgeting!