â€œ herefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind and strengthâ€?
Called to Serve By: Hermana Sky Rodio
About the Author
On November 18, 2009 I received a beautiful white envelope from the office of the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. That was a day that I will never forget. I opened up my mission call on the Provo Temple grounds. I went there with my friends Jenna Miller and Andrea Morris. I was so excited! This was a day that I was looking forward to for so many years! It felt so surreal, but perfect. As I held two cell phones, I opened the envelope, pulled out my packet and call letter and read the first line. I was called to serve in the Arizona Mesa Mission. In the first paragraph it also included that I had also been called to serve in the Mesa Temple Visitorsâ€™ Center. As I read further it said that I would be speaking Spanish. When I remember that day my heart still fills with a feeling so peaceful and joyful that it is hard to describe. I knew that that was where my Heavenly Father wanted me to serve and at the period that was right in His timing. There were purposes for me to fulfill there and it felt so complete and right. I was beyond excited to be called as a representative of Jesus Christ! When I was younger I always wanted to serve a mission. I always loved the missionaries in our ward and I wanted to be just like them when I grew up. We were blessed with some amazing Elders who brought the Spirit into our home. We also had a period where we were very fortunate to have sister missionaries whose testimonies and examples I will never forget. On September 11, 2005 I received my Patriarchal blessing which solidified my decision and desire to serve a mission. It was very direct and promising in regards to a mission in my youth and later with my eternal companion. From that point it was my focus and goal. There were many who teased me about getting married and therefore serving a different kind of mission first, but I always just smiled and knew that I would be a full time missionary soon. It always seemed so far away, but my 21st birthday came quickly and it was the start to the best experience of my life! I met the most amazing people in Mesa. I am grateful for the missionaries that I was able to serve with and for the wonderful companions that I was blessed to learn from. There is nothing in the world that compares with being in the full-time service of our Heavenly King and being a representative of Jesus Christ! I witnessed so many miracles and tender mercies as I served as a missionary. My faith grew stronger and my desire to continually serve grew deeper. The people I taught and met mean the world to me. My life changed as I was able to devote all my time, heart, might, mind and strength to the most incredible cause. This book includes a few of many experiences that I passed through during my time in Mesa. I hope that anyone who reads it will be able to feel the Spirit and the pure love of Christ that comes from the Gospel. It truly is the greatest blessing in my life and beautifully and powerfully guides me in all that I do. Words cannot adequately express my deep love and commitment to my Heavenly Father I finally was beginning my life-long dream of being a sister missionary. and Savior Jesus Christ.
Called to Serve By: Hermana Sky Rodio
ÂŠCopyright December 2011 Skyler Rae Rodio Brigham Young University BYU Press Printing
Table of Contents
A Day in the Life of a Missionary
About the Author ii First week in the MTC 1 Terriâ€™s Passing 2 The End of the Beginning 3 First Week in Mesa 4 Second Transfer 5 Third Change 5 Back with Sister Ladd 6 Ellsworth Park 7 November Highlights 9 Sister Vause 10 Another Week in Ellsworth Park 12 Different Languages 13 English Speaking 14 Easter Pageant 16 Another Wonderful Week 17 Towards the End 19
A Day in the Life of a Missionary
First week in the MTC
I have been in the MTC about four days now and I absolutely love it! I have always been warned about the first few days and to hang on till Sunday, but I’m not too sure why because so far I have enjoyed every minute! The first day here I was escorted through lines to get my books, tags, handbook, and all those little loose ends. I was able to meet my district and companion. My district consists of 10 total missionaries. Four sisters and six elders. We all get along very well and have gotten to know each other well! We are all learning Spanish here in the MTC. Two of the elders are going to the MTC in Peru so they will only be here for 3 weeks. I love my new companion! She is incredible! We have enjoyed our time together so far! She too is just as excited to be a missionary! We are trying to live up every minute in the MTC by joining the choir, going to extra language helps, taking advantage of our study time and trying to make it to that 6am fitness class even though we really haven’t done that yet:) It is definitely in the plan! We have two teachers that come in each day and work on Gospel concepts with us along with Spanish! It has been so uplifting and exciting! I am a little ahead in Spanish right now, but as fast as the MTC goes that will probably only last a day:) It is so incredible seeing the blessings that come from serving the Lord! I feel like I am able to retain and understand so much already and I haven’t even been here a week! I have seen so many blessings in the past few days! I am so happy and excited for the times ahead! On Thursday night we met our Branch Presidency, which is a lot My companion Sister Dewitt and me outside the entrance to the MTC. like a Bishopric. I was asked to be the coordinating sister, which means I am supposed to attend Leadership council and be there to help the sisters in our branch/zone in any way that they need. I felt very blessed to be trusted with such a responsibility so soon in my mission and it made me happy to be asked to do this because I love working with the sisters that I am around! The atmosphere here is incredible! There are so many encouraging pictures and the other elders and sisters are so kind and considerate! The food here is wonderful! If it wasn’t for the 5 flights of stairs we have to climb several times a day you would probably have to worry about sending me more clothes;) The Elders let us sisters go to the front of the food line every time so I think I consume way too much at meal times:) Overall I am so happy to be here and I have had some very neat experiences that have strengthened my testimony and that have helped me to see what it takes to be a good missionary! I am so happy to be in the service of a loving Heavenly Father! Our purpose as missionaries is to invite others to come unto Christ by receiving 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! I was so overwhelmed with joy and happiness as a sister placed a black name tag on my collar that said Hermana Rodio La Inglesia de JesuCristo de Los Santos so los Ultimos Dias because it made me realize that I was finally fulfilling one of my greatest dreams and I am a representative of my Savior and Friend, Jesus Christ.
Arizona Mesa Mission
My thoughts and prayers have been with my dear family this week as we experienced a very close family member pass away. I have the Spirit so strongly in my work and I can feel the prayers and blessings coming from home. My heart was with my family today as they gathered in Utah for the funeral. I am so grateful to be part of this work because it makes me realize that even though I am away from my family for 18 months. . .I am able to help others be with their families forever. Today before making a very spiritual and peaceful trip to the temple I read in Alma 40:11–12. It reads, “Now, concerning the state of the soul between death and resurrection– behold, it has been made known unto me by an angel, that the spirits of all men, as soon as they are departed from this mortal body, yea, the spirits of all men, whether they be good or evil, are taken home to that God who gave them life. And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.” I absolutely loved this because it made me think of Terri. I love and appreciate her so much and I know that she will continue to help and support me while I am away along with Uncle Tony, Aunt Carol, Aunt Betty, and many others. The power and blessings that come from living the gospel are real! We are so lucky to be born in an age where the Church is restored in its fullness upon the earth, with Christ at the head. This week I had the neatest experience in the Training Resource Center. We met with a man named Napoleon and his neighbor Ryan. They both spoke Spanish and we contacted them that way, but then taught them in English. Ryan seemed like he was my age and he was neighbors with Napoleon, who had a very thick Spanish accent:) I loved it! We talked about eternal life and being able to be with our families forever if we follow in the ways of the Savior Jesus Christ. They were in the role of investigators of the Church and the questions they asked led to great discussion and the opportunity to bear testimony. The Spirit was so strong and I talked about how I just had a close family member die, but I knew that I would be able to see her again. We talked about Jesus Christ and how He loved us so much that He took our sins upon Himself so that we could return to the presence of God someday. We talked about how we are God’s children and how He wants the very best for us. We taught them how to pray and the Spirit was SOOOOO strong the entire time! Napoleon looked at us with our black nametags that have the name of Christ on it and he asked us why we put so much time into helping others with their salvation. It chocked me up to explain the love that I have for others and the love that I have for my Savior. I explained how happy and complete the Gospel makes me feel and how the principles bless every single aspect of my life. I know my Heavenly Father and Savior love me and I know that I can be with my family together forever someday!
“Those who walk in faith will feel their lives encompassed with the light and blessings of heaven. They will understand and know things that others cannot.” Joseph B. Wirthlin
I love being a missionary! I love being in the fulltime service of Jesus Christ! I know I was called by a prophet of God, even Thomas S. Monson and I testify of the beauty and comfort that the gospel brings to all those “who come unto Christ.” We live in such a wonderful time full of opportunities!
A Day in the Life of a Missionary
The End of the Beginning
My heart is so full as I write this day! I have had an amazing week, full of many miracles and outpouring of the Spirit! I cannot believe that I am leaving the MTC Tuesday morning! I land in Phoenix at 9:15 and begin my service in Mesa! I am so so excited! I love the MTC and am sad to leave behind what I have so loved, but after Visitors’ Center training this week, I am ready to teach and meet so many new people and have the opportunity to share my testimony with them! Let me tell you three highlights of my week. . .(It will be great being able to write a little more when I am in Mesa:)). On Tuesday night we had our MTC devotional and the speaker was Elder L.Tom Perry! He was remarkable! He bore a strong witness of the Book of Mormon and the power that it has! He told of how it truly contains the fullness of the Gospel and how it is another Testament of Jesus Christ! His words were powerful and inspiring and like always it is so neat being in the presence of an apostle of God! We first got seats pretty far back because if the time that our dinner ended, but as an answer to my prayers an usher raised his hand indicating just the right amount of seats 8 rows from the front! Such a blessing! Heavenly Father is so mindful of us!! I have seen that so much this week! Another miracle came this week when I ran into someone who I had been praying to find a way to get ahold of! When I worked at the doctor’s office this summer I met a wonderful man who came in often. He heard all my stories about deciding to go on a mission and when I left the office I got his number so I could call him when I got my call. I was thinking about him a lot here at the MTC and was so heartbroken because I didn’t even know where to have my mom look for the number. . .I truly wanted to get ahold of him and share the news of my mission and see how he was doing since he was serving a mission with his wife up in the SLC area. On Wednesday I was at lunch and he walked into the cafeteria with his beautiful wife! My heart soared as I ran up to greet them! It was such evidence to me of another tender mercy of the Lord! He is so mindful of us! What are the chances of it working out that way! It was definitely a heavenly blessing to see him at the MTC and to see his beautiful wife! He set such a positive example for me and I was able In the MTC I was preparing to teach people like Mackenzie that I never knew would be my lifelong friends. to get his email address in person:). I started training for the Visitors’ Center on Wednesday and in all honesty Wednesday and Thursday were some of the best and most meaningful days of my life! I LOVE it and feel so blessed to be called where I am! The Spirit was so strong and I felt so excited to go out and teach and work as a representative of the Lord! I wish I had longer to share my testimony and love for what I’m doing! It truly is so divine!! I get to go to the Salt Lake Visitors Center tomorrow for a few hours and last night I had one of the most meaningful and powerful experiences working in the TRC where we teach volunteers who act as investigators and members! This truly is His work and He is so mindful of us and our eternal salvation and happiness!!!
Arizona Mesa Mission I feel like I am walking on a cloud! I love the work and I love my Heavenly Father and Savior more than words can tell! This is Christ’s church and it is His and the Father’s entire work and glory to bring about our eternal life and exaltation! The Gospel is such a blessing and it is up to all of us to share and strengthen our fellow brothers and sister so they to can experience such happiness and peace! Till Mesa:).
First Week in Mesa
I am proud to report that I made it to Mesa and that I had the best week ever! I sure love being a missionary and I’m excited for the weeks and months that lie ahead! I will try to include as many details as I can so you can picture a little bit about what I am doing each day:) It was a highlight of my week to have the opportunity to talk to my mom and family! I am very grateful for them! I feel truly blessed to be doing what I am doing! I can feel the love and help of my Heavenly Father and Savior each and every day in all that I do! On Tuesday I had a really quick flight and when we stepped off the airplane I saw my Mission President, his wife, and the Assistants for the first time! It was so welcoming and pleasant being able to meet them and hear from them! My new companion (who I met a little later) is Hermana Lopez from Bolivia! I am excited to work with her and I know that my Spanish will improve since that is her native language and we are in a full Spanish area:) Almost everyday I serve in the Visitors’ Center:) We get to be there for half a day and the other half we are with our investigators in our area. Once a week we get a full day in the field, which is nice because there is a lot of work to be done! I love the meals with the members and the lessons that we teach because it is all in Spanish and I feel the Spirit so strongly as I see the Gospel start to bless the lives of others! I love serving in the Visitor’s Center because we get to associate and talk to a variety of people! We have great directors there! Elder and Sister White are a senior couple over the Visitors’ Center and they are such a delight! It is a beautiful place to be and I’m not going to lie. . .It’s nice having a break from the sun:).
President and Sister Bassett
It is only May and I can feel the difference, but I know I am going to love it!! The evenings are amazing and the sunsets are beautiful! We went straight to work this week! The day I came actually:) I love being busy and I love working with the Hispanic people in this area! They are so welcoming and patient! It has been such a delight! The first day in the field I was welcomed into a home by a sweet lady who gave me a big hug and kiss on the cheek! I thought that was so nice and I realized I would get a lot of that while I am here:) Handshakes from the men, but big hugs and kisses from the women! It is such a fun time! I feel the Spirit so strongly when I start to share my testimony and the words just come in Spanish! I have a long ways to go, but I am excited for the opportunity!
A Day in the Life of a Missionary This truly is the Lord’s work! I have seen His hand in it so many times already by the daily miracles that we see! Look for them in your lives! He truly loves and cares for us in ways that we cannot even imagine! I am grateful to be part of His work! I am excited for this new week! We are teaching a sweet family whose names are Marcello and Romina. They have two boys and are from Argentina:) We also have many appointments lined up with other investigators and people that we have met and contacted! It is sometimes hard, but I know that Heavenly Father answers our prayers and that he blesses the ones we are able to teach! Funny Story of the day: Today we had to take all of our gallon bottles to be filled with water at a place nearby and when I was filling up the second one I accidently moved it the wrong way and it sprayed the entire front part of my shirt and soaked it all the way through! My hair was wet as well:) My companion heard the noise and looked over and laughed, along with the man who was working at the shop:) I wasn’t too worried (a tad embarrassed:) though) because I am in Mesa and two minutes back to the car would take care of that problem;).
I am pretty sure that I am in Heaven. Sometimes it doesn’t look like Heaven and sometimes it doesn’t smell like Heaven, but it sure does feel like Heaven! It’s been a wonderful week! I love sharing the Gospel with others! Each day is such an adventure! Words cannot express how much I love being a missionary and how incredible it is to see the hand of the Lord in our lives! I had my first baptism this past weekend:). Of course I kind of came into it as I transferred to a new area, but the experience was incredible nonetheless! His name is Rogelio and I cannot even tell you the difference in his life and countenance from the time he was baptized! It has been the best week!
My first baptism. Rogelio was baptized during my second transfer.
I still serve at the Visitors’ Center for half of the day:) I met some amazing people this week! Many were so open and friendly and many of the members provided the numbers of their friends and family that we could call. That is always a blessing:) both for us and especially for the member who exercised that faith and love. It is such a delight working with so many people from a variety of backgrounds! My new companions are amazing! We laugh and talk the whole time that we are driving and walking! I love teaching with them and so far a triple has been such an added blessing! I have seen so many miracles in our days and I love being able to share and smile with two companions:)
I cannot believe that the summer is quickly going by and that we are already into August! When I think about time going fast I correct myself when I think of how much I have experienced and how many moments and growth I have witnessed. . .That is when it reminds me that I didn’t enter the MTC a month ago:) This change has been great! I love my new companions, Hermana Anthony and Hermana Ghan! We sure get a lot done and we have witnessed many miracles this week as we have taught the people in this area and as we have
Arizona Mesa Mission contacted people on the way to appointments! I have sort of become the designated driver because I just pull over anytime I see someone walking or working outside and we all jump out to talk to them! It truly is a blessing and a very fun daily adventure:) Every day here has just seemed to blend into a week of plain goodness:) We have found some more people to teach and I love being able to speak Spanish so much! This area is a little harder to work in because we don’t find as many Spanish speakers, but we find enough! The Spanish branch that I am now in is incredible! We always have many who are ready and willing to come out on lessons with us and we have many who are so kind and welcoming! I felt very blessed as I attended church this week because of the outstretched hands and warm hugs and kisses:) I had the opportunity to go to Primary because one of our investigators is 8 and wanted one of us to go with her:) It was awesome! All the kids probably thought I was so crazy as I sat on the little chairs and sang super loud during singing time:) It was fun and uplifting though! We can learn so much from our little ones! They truly are so close to our Savior and Heavenly Father! I love seeing how the Gospel blesses the lives of every single person that we come in contact with! This week I have worked on just always remembering to remind people of the love that the Savior has for them and the open arms that He extends to us all! It doesn’t matter what we go through, He is always there and He always is ready to lift and guide us as we give our will and heart to Him! The light that comes into the The Rodriquez Family was a very special part of my third area. eyes and countenances of those who begin to feel this love personally and who witness the feelings of the Spirit truly make every second of what I do worth it! I will never be able to thank or repay my Heavenly Father for giving me the greatest opportunity in the world– to serve a mission! I see and experience so much daily and it all goes back to being able to testify of the Savior and our Father’s Plan for us! I feel so blessed and want you to know how blessed you are and how important you are to your Heavenly Father! Always remember your divine heritage and potential and continually try to help and strengthen those around you with this same blessing! You will feel the difference in your days and the blessing that come from missionary work and service. I can promise you from personal experience that they are great:).
Back with Sister Ladd
Surprise! I got moved again!! I couldn’t believe it when I heard but it sure is another miracle in my life! I am back in my first area, which I have been thinking about a lot lately in terms of the people that are there, I am full field again:) and I am with my dearest Hermana Ladd! I am so excited! I have learned so much from being in a trio for 12 weeks but I am sure excited to be back to two:) The car in their area is currently out of commission so this week we will also be on bikes! I am so excited for this adventure and for the opportunity to work super hard with a companion that I adore and admire! It is going to be exciting! We have only been together for a few hours and it has already been amazing:) It is so neat when you have the chance to serve with someone who just loves people and missionary work as much as you:) Please stay tuned to next week for many exciting and uplifting adventures in the life of Hermana Sky Rodio, serving here in probably the hottest part of the nation, but loving it nonethe-
A Day in the Life of a Missionary less! (That still doesn’t mean that I’m not excited for cooler months though:)) With transfers and moving come tears as well. It was incredibly hard for me to say goodbye to so many of the people that I just love! We had over 6 lessons yesterday and it just was such a blessing for me to be able to share so many great moments with the dear people in my third area! Even though I was pretty sick for a lot of the transfer, I saw so many tender mercies and met so many people who will always be in my heart! I cannot express how much I saw the Lord’s hands in my days! Every day! My testimony was so strengthened through all that I went through last transfer! I am grateful for the little storms in our life, that ultimately make us incredibly strong in the end when we turn all that we have over to the Lord! Last night I was blessed to have some amazing lessons with some incredible people! Our fluent companion was sick so it was just two of us that aren’t as fluent:) but I felt the Lord loosen my tongue as I taught and testified! I have seen such a variety of people in my time here in Mesa so far and last night I just had a little clicking moment. . .I realized as I was teaching a very humble and prepared man that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter–Day Sister Ladd and I definetely were two peas in a pod! Saints has made all the difference in my life! My testimony is not rooted on what any man has said or done, although that does strengthen and assist in the lifelong pursuit of learning and growing, but it is rooted on the relationship that I have with my Heavenly Father. I know that He loves each one of His children and that He is very mindful of every single aspect of our lives! I know that my Savior lives and it is because of Him that I am here with a black nametag on my shirt, inviting others to come unto Christ. There are many things in the world that add smiles to our faces and I am so grateful for this special moments and memories:) I know that this thing that makes the difference for me and what makes me have this lasting happiness, peace, and love is the knowledge and power of the plan of salvation that is there for each of us in order to return home. This isn’t our natural place, although we do adapt pretty well:) We have so much in store! Seek Him and do those things that bring you closer to Him! It is so worth in in every way! I have felt His love and experienced so many blessing and miracles this week! Don’t get me wrong, it isn’t easy but when we are following Him the best that we can, it makes it a lot easier and bearable.
I love Conference weekend! I sure was uplifted and edified by the talks and counsel and guidance that we were given! It really is a blessing to be able to hear from a living prophet! We were very blessed to watch the first session from the Visitors’ Center on Saturday followed by the second session at the Stake Center right before the baptism of our investigator Jesus:) On Sunday it was so exciting and uplifting because we watched both sessions
Arizona Mesa Mission via the internet from two different investigator families homes! It was wonderful and the spirit was so strong! It was neat to see how the spirit filled their homes and answered many of their questions and strengthened their testimonies through the words that were spoken. One of the families had a cable to connect the computer to the TV so we got to see it on the big screen:) Gotta love technology these days:) Quick highlights from the week:) Jesus got baptized on Saturday and that sure was a special and spiritual event! He was so excited and has been truly ready to make this commitment with His Heavenly Father and Savior for so long! His testimony and desire to right and seek the Lord in all things sure are strong! Before his baptism we were able to meet with him just to go over some last minute things about the program the next day. At the end of our lesson he was looking in his bag when something neat happened. He always carries around this colorful, handmade, South American bag and he was pulling out everything that was in it looking for something. The things he pulled out really touched me because it was the things that meant a lot to him and that he carries with him everyday. He pulled out three of those glass blocks that have the laser sketching of something inside. He pulled out a harmonica, a little snail statue:) and other various items, each holding a special significance in his life. He then pulled out two bags of popcorn and when he did this we asked why he had those. He got very excited and in English (he always talks to us in Spanish) he said “oh I love popcorn” We all smiled and he just talked about how much he loved it so that night I think I purchased the most random baptism gift:) but Jesus was beyond excited on his special day when we gave him two boxes of popcorn:) It made me think of what we would carry in our bag if we were to include special little things that just mean a lot to us. I began thinking of what my bag might include and it made me smile thinking how unique we are all, but how we truly bless and uplift those who we know and come in contact with. A smile to a stranger or offering a quick helping hand really does make such a difference and is one of the greatest services we can do for our fellow brothers and sisters. It doesn’t have to be a huge front yard cleaning service project (although those are nice:) ) to lift someone’s burden or help them feel the love of the Savior. I cannot help but mention the weather here in crazy ol’ Mesa:) You probably don’t hear Many miracles came in Ellsworth Park from teaching the Franco Family.
“Missionary service is not easy, but it is infinitely worth it.” M.Russell Ballard
A Day in the Life of a Missionary much from me in this department because usually the forecast is hot with no chance of a cloud or super hot with maybe one little white wisp across the sky:) Last cute little smile, we had a very neat dinner at a sweet family’s home Sunday evening and when we were leaving their cute little two year old son shook our hands and then he grabbed my wrist and kissed it:) It was so precious. He did the same to my companion before reminding us to make sure we wore our helmets. It made my day:). This week after dinner after the baptism on Saturday we were peddling away from dinner when I noticed these big billowing clouds that looked like fire clouds. It was about 6 pm and we were on our way to an appointment when we stopped and talked to someone on the street. In minutes the wind started whirling and leaves and small particles and debris were flying all around. We looked back to where the once seemingly fire clouds were to see it got intensely darker and closer! We finished our contact quickly and peddled super fast to try and beat the approaching humongous dust storm!! By the time we got to the apartments we were headed towards there was lightning and the wind was just whipping by! As we began to leave after realizing our appointment was not there I got on my bike again and noticed my back tire seemed low. I felt it and low it certainly was. There was actually no air in it and it was disconnected from the rim. I am not sure when, how, where or why that happened but all I know is that there were Heavenly hands involved in the process because I don’t know how I survived that happening, going at the speed we were going to beat the storm. I feel very blessed and have an even stronger conviction of how much Heavenly Father watches out for His children! The weather was still crazy when some sisters picked us up. Another miracle was that earlier that morning, which was bright and sunny, I felt prompted to grab my glasses. I NEVER wear my glasses and that seemed so weird to me since I was only planning on taking notes that day, not even reading, but I went downstairs and through them in my bag anyway. Right when the dust started flying everywhere I realized what a blessing and special prompting that was as I reached in my bag and was able to put my glasses on to block anything from getting in my eyes. Heavenly Father truly is an active part of every moment of our lives and He looks out for us as His special children! Yesterday morning was bright and clear, but thunder and large clouds moved in during the afternoon and blessed us with rain:) The sky scape is still gorgeous today and it smells great! I think we might get a few drops today too. It funny in Mesa because the temperature drops significantly while it is raining but jumps right back up after:) Gotta love it! I am still sweating:).
We are serving in such a wonderful area! I love the people that we get to teach! This past week we were able to start teaching a sweet lady who has three adorable kiddos! We are excited to see their family progress! Daniella is so receptive to the Spirit and has such a light about her! We had a great visit with her! The Franco Family were all sick this week, but we are looking forward to seeing them this upcoming week! The kids are so fun to teach and they sure do remember a lot! The older boys often have to work when we come by, but we have been blessed with the opportunity to teach them at times and the lessons are always a treat! It is such a miracle to see when someone learns and recognizes more personally the love that their Savior has for them! I am so grateful to be part of this work and to be able to serve as a literal representative of the Savior. Yesterday during one of the testimonies at the Spanish Mission President’s Fireside, a man talked about how the Lord indeed speaks to the world again through His called servants. How blessed we are to have a living Prophet on the earth and to be able to share our testimony/ light with others so that they can feel that peace and love as well! We sang two songs yesterday at the fireside and I played the piano for another one. It was an uplifting evening! This upcoming weekend an investigator from our old area, who Sister Ladd and I both taught, is getting baptized! He has such a strong testimony and it has been so exciting to see him grow and learn! He comes to the Visitors’ Center often and we were actually able to see him after his baptismal interview as well! He is read-
Arizona Mesa Mission ing through the Book of Mormon for the second time and he is so excited to be able to be baptized! He always talks about how it has been the greatest change in his life and how he feels the love of the Lord and the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ every step of the way. He stands up for what he believes with his family and is just glowing every time we see him it seems. He is the one that I took the coffee maker from:). Christmas lights are about to begin! We get to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with the missionaries from the Visitors’ Center on Thursday! It is so sweet how many of our investigators and ward members have invited us to join them! I just love The Arizona Mesa Temple was absolutely beautiful! In November the grounds my new friends here! The lights on the were simply glowing! The Spirit is always strong close to the temple. temple grounds turn on Thursday night and Opening Ceremonies are on Friday night! We have received a lot of training and practice for this upcoming season! It will be SO busy and packed, but I am super excited! We will be at the Visitors’’ Center most evening, which will make it a challenge visiting all of our investigators, but I know that the Lord will bless our area greatly during this time! My goal is to continue to serve as diligently as I can and to continue to smile and share every chance that I get! I love my calling and am so grateful to be serving at the Visitors’ Center as well! It is such a great feeling to be so close to the temple and I just love the people that I have had a chance to meet throughout my days! It just makes me smile inside and out:) The lights here are unbelievable and in colors I didn’t even know were possible! It is gorgeous and the weather is not too bad either although I will need to invest in some cute sweaters/jacket or two and a scarf and mittens because it gets nippy standing outside! Daily we have continued to pray for the people in our area! There is so much work to be done and even though we peddle as fast as we can, there is still more:) I love the people here and am grateful to be a missionary at this time! I see so many tender mercies and miracles, in which I am truly grateful! This is probably the hardest thing I have ever done in my life, but at the same time it is the most rewarding! My Heavenly Father has blessed me with so many opportunities and experiences that have just made my heart jump for joy and gratitude! No matter what comes our way, we have so much to be grateful for! This is such a beautiful time of year to increase our gratitude and love for others and especially to remember our Savior and all that He has done for us! We should remember that always in fact, not just at Christmas time, but there sure is a special spirit around this time of year! Continue to shine your light and never forget how much you are loved and appreciated! Especially by me:).
I adore my companion! It sure has been fun being with somebody that I was a friend with before the mission! We are just always smiling, laughing, sharing and serving:) We have had so many miracles and tender experiences with the people in our area thus far! it has been incredible! We love being on bikes and look forward to all that lies ahead! Sister Vause is just incredible! She always makes me smile and she is just so sweet and loving! I love
A Day in the Life of a Missionary teaching with her and I love being able to feel the spirit that comes from her vibrant testimony! Yesterday was incredible:) We walked with one of our investigators to church and the whole day was just full of smiles and tender mercies. The people we are blessed to work with are such a blessing! We ate with our ward all week so that also was just a fun moment to share every day! I love the Hispanic people that we met with and I am so grateful for the members in this area! They are so supportive and loving! We had dinner with one sweet lady last night (who makes the BASOLUTE best Mexican food! She knows me well and always makes a lot:) It is funny because she comments about how she knows that Sister Vause and I had the most wonderful time serving together! We got to be very close bike buddies! It was miracle seeing how fast we made it places! I can eat a whole lot, what can I say, we are on bikes;)) and she just shared the sweetest thought after I read Mosiah 4:15 with her. I was intending the scripture/thought to be focused on her because she is such a role model and source of love for her family, but she turned it on us and it was one of the most touching experiences that I have had. She talked about our calling as missionaries and she talked about the service that we render in such a special way. I guess at times that we as missionaries forget how other people see us:) We just do what we are supposed to do each day and forget how much it makes a difference because it is just what we do. She talked about the Savior and His life on earth and how He went about doing good each and every day. When she mentioned Him walking as we did all day I just about broke into tears. We really are His representatives and words cannot describe my gratitude for this experience. it is something that I will treasure forever and it will be something that will forever make me appreciate even more the sacrifice of the Atonement, the Plan of Salvation, and the opportunity that we have to be with our families and friends forever if we live worthy of such blessings! A neat update with the Family Franco:) The sweet parents have four grown sons, who also have sweet little ones, and we have been so blessed to teach them. This week the beat thing took place. We met their only daughter and her children who just moved here from the Dominican Republic. She is absolutely beautiful inside and out and just glows! She is so kind and has been so excited for us to teach her! I am excited because it feels like the family circle teaching blessing is now complete having her here:) Please keep them in your prayers! Hilda’s family has also been a delight to visit and teach! She has two sons who are such sweet boys! We reenacted the battle of the Lamanites and the Nephites this week in teaching about obedience and following the
“In the service of the Lord, it is not where you serve but how.” David O. McKay
Arizona Mesa Mission Lord’s commandments. When we used a pillow fight to get the whole thing across I think it sunk in even more and made them smile as well:) I would smile seeing two girls in skirts on the floor because the Nephites defeated the Lamanites because of the help of the Lord and their great faith:) The Visitors’ Center is awesome! We have a new art exhibit which I love! It is 19 paintings from the Book of Mormon and the artist is incredible! It was great taking people from our area through it and talking to those who have come into the Visitors’ Center! We have seen so many miracles through the calls that we have made during the Christmas lights. Member referrals really make such a difference and I love hearing and seeing the excitement of friends and family as their loved ones invite them to learn a little more! We truly never know who the Lord is preparing to receive His word and the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! It is incredible! One last quick funny story:) Hermana Vause has her cosmetology license so she cut my hair this week! That sure was convenient and it is nice having a good, healthy trim! Funny part. . .She wanted one too. . .I did it for her!! That is right. . . she never trusts anyone to cut her hair because she says it is never how she wants it, but she had me do it! She would part it and then just tell me what to do! I was beyond nervous because she was just so confident that it would be great:) She at times would hold it out and then I would just trim away! It was fun and made me smile thinking that I cut the professionals hair:) That is companionship unity right there!
Another Week in Ellsworth Park
The power went out at Walmart this morning so my careful selection of fruit and food was to no avail. My companion got her food though on the emergency backup register system. We went to Fry’s afterwards and I found berries on super sale so I cannot complain right? Sometimes we have interesting things come our way, but it is good to be able to laugh and move on knowing that these things are just part of our earthly experience:). We had quite a few miracles this week, which always makes me so happy! Sister Vause was at Leadership Training this week so I was on exchanges with Sister Watrous, who is one of the English sisters in the same stake. We got a lot done in both areas, which was nice! I am so grateful for the love and support that we feel from the members in this area! We visited many of our investigators this week and our ward mission leader and his wife helped us out so much! On Tuesday evening the neatest thing happened. I was able to teach Romina and her family for several months in Ellsworth Park. They hold a We were running late for an very special place in my heart! She is getting baptized December 21, 2011.
A Day in the Life of a Missionary appointment and as we were biking I was trying hard to think of the best way for us to go. I felt like we should go one way and I planned it out in my mind, but when we got to the intersection I felt like we should go another way. The other way sure didn’t make sense, but we went anyway and then when we passed a street and I felt like we need to contact a referral on that street. I remember thinking that there was no way that we could because we were already late, but I quickly turned the wheel of my bike to contact Lalo on Jones Circle. There were two men outside and we asked for Lalo. He came around the other side of the truck and when he saw us he said “Que milagro” which means what a miracle. His smile was so big and ours were too! We truly had been directed by the spirit to stop by and he was waiting for us! The Lord truly prepares people to receive His Gospel and we are the instruments in His hands! May we ever be ready! We can be led even in the seemingly insignificant things. . .This morning I was looking for something and ran my fingers over a few extra dollars. I felt like I should take it but I quickly dismissed the thought thinking that I wouldn’t need it because I have our blue card and began looking for something again. The thought came to me again to take cash, but I thought that that was strange because we don’t buy groceries with cash ever and it doesn’t come from that account. If I had brought the cash I would have been able to get my groceries at Walmart:) Small, but we can receive promptings for anything! May we ever be in tune! We visited the amazing Alverez Family and the Parra Family this week:) We also had a great lesson with Luis and Angel about the plan of salvation using crayola on the ground:) We were able to visit Carmen twice, along with Romina, which was another miracle this week in being led to a place at a certain time. I so love the people that I serve with here! They are incredible! The Franco Family invited us over for dinner and I was able to try some of their food which I loved:) My belly wasn’t the hugest fan of it, but it was a great night:) Two dinners right after each other cannot hurt anyone right?;) I am so grateful for the time that I have here to share with such incredible people! I feel so blessed to be able to share my testimony each day and to meet so many of Heavenly Father’s beloved children in the Visitors’ Center and in our area! I love my Savior! I am so grateful to serve Him each and every day and I love being able to testify about Him to others! Hilda asked us this week what she needs to do to be baptized:) We have taught her that all along:) but now it is truly her desire and I have loved seeing the complete change in her! We watched the hour version of the restoration and life of Joseph Smith in her home last night and the Spirit was so strong! It was also very present as we talked about faith with a part member family using Ether 12:) Life doesn’t get any better than this:).
I have another reason why we should all learn different languages! This week in our gospel principles class we were learning about the Atonement. The way my ward mission leader described something was in a way that touched me and made me think even more about the sacrifice that our Savior made for us and the indescribable love that He has for us! The way something was described in Spanish hit me in such a special way and I realized that we can understand things in different ways in different languages and what a blessing it would be to continually study other languages so we could continue to learn about the principles of the Gospel in all kinds of ways! I hope that makes sense:) Bottom line is that I love speaking Spanish! Sunday was such a wonderful and uplifting day and night! I was able to give 3 tours in Spanish in the Visitors’ Center and each time the people were so incredible and I loved just testifying and talking! The language just came all day and it has a lot recently, of which I am so grateful! It feels such a part of me and I have loved being able to read the Book of Mormon in Spanish! I know that has been helped so much and I am so grateful for the help and strength that comes from the Lord in this great work! Easter Pageant in right around the corner! On Saturday there was a big gathering with all of the cast, families, and missionaries! It was so uplifting! Each family and member in the Pageant are set apart a missionary! We heard from
Arizona Mesa Mission 2 mission presidents, a man from the missionary department in Salt Lake and we as missionaries sang:). it was so incredible! I love how FAMILIES are who participate in the acting and putting on of this great pageant! It is the biggest outside pageant in the world:) I am so excited for the many people and teaching opportunities that we will have! I am excited to celebrate the life and resurrection of our Savior! He lives! He loves us! and I am beyond grateful to be one of His missionaries at this time! This is truly the greatest work and I love it with all of my heart, might, mind and strength!:). It has been a great week!
“Por tanto, debéis seguir adelante con firmeza en Cristo, teniendo un fulgor perfecto de esperanza y amor por Dios y por todos los hombres. Por tanto, si marcháis adelante, deleitándoos en la palabra de Cristo, y perseveráis hasta el fin, he aquí, así dice el Padre: Tendréis la vida eterna.” 2 Nefi 31:20
We were able to visit our dear friends in the area a lot and we were able to meet some new friends! I have loved the feeling that I have had in my heart! It is just so great being in the service of God! Angel came to church with Jose Luis and Jose Luis received the Melchezidek Priesthood! That was incredible to witness and it was a first for me! It was so special to be in the office with him and dear leaders who I have grown to love and appreciate so much! The people here mean so much to me! We had some great dinners, had some funny bike happenings, and loved just being missionaries! I confirmed a member referral in Panama this week:) That sure was a neat experience! The Gospel truly is being spread and shared all throughout the world and the Lord is preparing people everywhere! Something neat that one of our branch members talked about this week was a shift in mind process. He said how we so often get so caught up in just living that we forget the larger view and beauty in life. I loved reading in Alma Chapters 5 and 7 this week and I realized even more through everything that the Lord ds always by our side. He wants us to live each day to the FULLEST! We have so much to be grateful for and we have so much we can learn and develop in! As we shift our mind process like this dear man talked about, our opportunities and possibilities begin to become endless and so hopeful! The Lord wants us to be happy and experience the greatest joy in this life and the life to come! He shared Doctrine and Covenants 18:10 along with his thought. We are so blessed and uplifted as we spend our time looking for ways to lift and bless others! It is incredible how it works so perfectly!
I have so much to tell you!! I don’t even know where to begin or how far I will get, so I am just going to start and type away until my time is up! Hang on to your chairs, or wherever you read this book, because there is some pretty funny, crazy, and spiritual news ahead:) The first thing I can think of has to do with Oreos. This week I
A Day in the Life of a Missionary walked into the Visitors’ Center to put my stuff in my cubby and there were FOUR packs of double stuff oreos in there! That is intense! That will last me the rest of my mission! I couldn’t possibly think who would spend that much money on oreos for me! It definitely wasn’t a fellow missionary with our little budgets;) Maybe it was a senior couple. I am pretty close to them and one even calls me Sister Oreo every time he sees me:) I found a note in the bag from a dear man that I met in the Visitors’ Center during a presentation one day awhile back. He came in with his friend and hadn’t been to church for a while. He was pretty sad when he walked through God’s Plan for His Family, but at Sister Rosdal and I loved teaching Liliana and her son Joey. She glowed with the the end he was really uplifted and we all Spirit and the desire to follow God’s Plan. talked for quite some time. Anyone who knows me knows that I always use analogies to talk about everything! Maybe it is because I liked the word simile in school so I always use “like” or “as”:) anyway I don’t remember how, but I do remember comparing something to oreos:) Afterwards he asked me if I like oreos a lot and I said yes. He asked if I was a double stuff kind of kid and I said yes, but that everyone tries to steal my oreos! He promised to bring me some and he sure followed through with that promise! The thing that meant the most was not the oreos:) but that he singed the note Brother Atkisson:) He said that he is doing a lot better and that s the part that made my day! By putting brother that means he is active again:)! He gave a referral that night that ended up accepting missionaries! I was excited to call him back and tell him thank you! I love the people we meet in the Visitors’ Center! Now about being able to eat the oreo. . .not going to happen because I GOT TRANSFER AND AM NO LONGER ON BIKES!!! I was so bummed when I found out because I ADORE my area, companion, and bike, but I received the confirmation that this is where the Lord wants me to be. I needed that confirmation because for six weeks I will be teaching in English. I will still be speaking Spanish for the Pageant and in the Visitors’ Center, but my area will be in English. I felt like my heart was broken when I found out since I so love my mission language and the people that I get to talk to, but I know that there is a purpose and need for me in the area that I will be going to! It is hard to say goodbye to people that I have grown to love and treasure the past eight months, but I just committed them to come to the Visitors’ Center and I have had neat experiences with the goodbye and promises left! There have been a lot of tender mercies lately of which i am so grateful! My new companion will be Sister Rosdahl:).
“. . . be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you.” 1 Peter 3:15
The temple was incredible this week! I am so grateful that we had the chance to
Arizona Mesa Mission go! It made testifying about temples to my beloved Alverez and Garcia Family and my recent convert Rogelio a lot stronger having just gone:) I tried pig skin this week. . .that was interesting. . .I will miss the Mexican food of our branch so much! Not that part of the animal though;) I am so grateful for the members and people here! My Branch president grabbed my arm and said I couldn’t go when I told him:) I promised that I would be back so he finally let me go under that condition. It was really funny. I LOVED watching conference this past weekend! It was so inspiring and perfect to hear! I just soaked it up! We watched it at the Visitors’ Center in Saturday and in the stake center in Spanish on Sunday! I loved that! I couldn’t take notes very well because it was hard to write fast, but I loved being able to listen and understand in the language of my heart! Elder Scott translates his own talk and it was so powerful and emotional to hear him speak! e are so blessed to have a living prophet on the earth and other leaders who lead and guide us in the way that the Savior would want! I love the hymns and songs that are sang! I feel so uplifted and my vessel truly is overflowing! One last quick miracle. . .In the Visitors’ Center call center we get many calls after the hour of eight because the MTC and SLC ones are closed for the night! I love incoming calls and have had some neat experiences with them, but one in particular touched my heart forever this week. it was a young girl calling in from Arizona actually:) She goes to ASU and her name is Rachel. I said “Hello my name is Sky How can I help you?” and she responded “I want to find out how I can know about your church” We talked for awhile and she was just so sweet and truly intent on knowing more! She called in requesting the movie “Together Forever” so we talked about families and how the Gospel has truly touched and changed my life. I told her how it has shaped who I am and it is everything that I do and am. Toward the end she said, “Do you know a way that I can get a copy of the Mormon Bible?” I talked to her about the Book of Mormon:) Another testament of Jesus Christ and it was so neat! She said she wanted that more than anything! She said she wasn’t asking everyone how she could get one and she even went to the library to get it! I promised her one and a return phone call and then after a few more minutes we hung up. I left the call center literally dancing all the way home! The Lord is preparing people all over the world to receive and accept the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! How blessed we are to share! When I got home I was so sad looking at a box that had many copies of the Book of Mormon, realizing how many people there are who would do anything for a copy! May we always treasure our great gift of the scriptures and CONTINUALLY look for people to share it with! There are many members on the ASU campus and I just think of how many people we pass daily who truly desire to come closer to their Savior Jesus Christ! Let us give them the opportunity by opening our hearts and mouths and sharing the beautiful testimony that lies within!
What a week! I absolutely love the Arizona Mesa Temple Easter Pageant and am excited for the week ahead in preparation for Easter! What a special event that touches so many people and helps them feel the love that the Savior and Heavenly Father have for them! I add my testimony to that of many cast members and families. . .I know that He lives! I am grateful for my Savior and I am so grateful to be in His service at this time in my life! I love being able to share my testimony about Him and the love of God with others daily! Last night we were able to teach a whole family for the first time in their home! it was an incredible experience and even the cute little ones were paying attention and feeling the Spirit! The little boy Ashton was so quite and eager to hold up the picture of Christ on the front of the Restoration pamphlet for his whole family to see! I love to see how the Gospel blesses families! On the 30th Heidi will be getting baptized and it has been such a joy teaching her and her family! Her sister and mom are members and it is just a delight seeing their testimonies strengthened by the power and love of the Spirit and our Heavenly Father! We contacted Heather yesterday who was a referral from a young girl who delivers bread. She had a death in her family and it just meant so much to
A Day in the Life of a Missionary me to see her face light up as we told her that there was a message that we wanted to share that would bring her the hope she desired! We saw MANY miracles as people would be at home or come home right as we came by or how we were able to fit all that we needed to do in the short time before needing to be at the Visitors’ Center for the evening. The members in our area are so supportive and loving and the spirit and beauty of the gospel of Jesus Christ just radiates, as everyone is about doing good and reaching out a hand to help! It has been incredible to witness and my heart fills with joy and love when I think of how much my mission means Miracles happened daily at the Visitors’ Center during Easter Pageant. All of the to me because of my testimony that has been strengthened and because of the missionaries that served during this special season are gathered together here. people who will be in my heart forever! It is a miracle to see how the gospel changes the lives of individuals because they come to know their Savior and Heavenly King! Friday and Saturday nights meant the world to me as they were the evening that the pageant was performed in Spanish! I LOVED talking with the sweet people that came in and I treasured viewing the pageant each night in a language that I so love and can understand a little bit better than my first day in Mesa about a year ago:) I love being able to talk and converse with people in a different language! It seems to open up a whole new world of friends and possibilities! The people that come into the Visitors’ Center are so humble and kind! A man named Mannie was here with his friend who he met by dialing the wrong number and he accepted to have missionaries come over. His face lit up so much from the time that we first started talking and it was so neat to see how excited his friends was to see him learn and experience more! There have been so many miracles in the Visitors’ Center and I know that this week has many more in store!
Another Wonderful Week
We had another wonderful week! We have so much to do, but something that I have become so grateful for is how the Lord just makes it all work out as we serve diligently! The Visitors’ Center continues to be a joy! I love seeing all the people that come in to visit! We still have an amazing art exhibit with 19 paintings on the Book of Mormon by Walter Rane! It is incredible and I have come to just love his work so much! We have also been able to have powerful lessons here with the sweet people
“The intensity of our desire to share the gospel is a great indicator of the extent of our personal conversion.” Dallin H. Oaks
Arizona Mesa Mission from our area! We had a few fun service opportunities this week and great lessons to share! The members in our area are so supportive and eager to help and share! The only downside to the week was the finding of two, not just one, mean and ugly scorpions! I am not afraid of bugs, but scorpions just scare me to death so I was very uncomfortable because one was in a home that I was staying at for exchanges and the other is in our house as we speak! Other than that, life is great!:) I was able to teach a lesson in Spanish this week as we were invited to teach the mother of a sweet sister in our singles ward. It was great and she is coming to the Visitors’ Center this week! She has a very sweet spirit and desire to do what is right! Her daughter was so supportive and excited as well! I get to use my Spanish a lot and it is such a blessing to me to be able to have the opportunities to do so! God is so aware of us and guides us to the places we need to be if we are ever willing! I love the song “I’ll Go where You want Me to Go” so much because it reminds us of the covenants we have made with Him and the blessings that come from being an instrument in His hands! I love being a missionary! We were very edified and uplifted this week as we went to Zone Conference! Our Mission President and his wife are incredible and strengthen us so much! I am excited to incorporate all that I learned into our area and I know that we will see miracles by doing so! We continued to meet with Elizabeth this week and she and Joe Joe are going to be baptized this weekend! Her family means so much to me and it has been so My mission will always hold a very special place in my heart. My life was forever changed. neat to see the miracles that have come into their lives as they have embraced the Gospel of Jesus Christ! His love is so real and His reaching is so sure! All we have to do is knock:) We also saw Wayne this week and were able to commit him to reading the Book of Mormon from the beginning. A sweet member from his ward, Brother Moore, joined us and he shared a powerful testimony about the Priesthood and how the Gospel has changed his life. He is going back with us tomorrow. This week were able to see Sister Wilson, who I just love! She has been working on coming back to church and this weekend her sweet daughter was baptized. it was a very special day for the family! We have treasured going over and being able to be edified together as we talk about the Gospel! We also saw one of our amazing recent convert families:) The Perez family is amazing and we visited with them about the Articles of Faith and we were able to see “the Prodigal Son” at the Visitors’ Center, which was a very spiritual experience. They are so kind and eager to learn! The kids just make my day! Also this week we saw a cute couple from Jordan and Iran:) They are so sweet and always feed us when we come:) I love talking with them and sharing what we believe because their faith and morals are so high! I am just so grateful for the many people that we are able to meet here and for the miracles and tender mercies that we see daily! Yesterday we stopped to talk to a dear man who was
A Day in the Life of a Missionary lost and didn’t know where he was going. We gave him the directions he was seeking and then I gave him a card to come to the Visitors’ Center. It has a beautiful picture of the Christus on it and when he saw it he put his hand over his heart and said thank you. Tears swelled in his eyes and I reminded him that Jesus loved him very much. As we drove away I realized how we can’t always fix or settle every problem as we would like, but we can bring a ray of light into someone’s life that gives them that strength to keep moving forward! I love being a disciple of Christ because we are able to bear one another’s burdens and strength those who’s heads hang low. How great is our calling!
Towards the End
It sure was a wonderful week for us! We saw so many miracles and one of those was being able to be at the baptismal service of Elisabeth and Joe Joe! It was such a special day! They are a family that just means so much to me! It has been incredible seeing them progress and come closer to Christ! I am grateful for Elisabeth and her desires to do what it best, no matter what hardships her family are going through. She will be confirmed next weekend because she and her family were sick on Sunday. It was so neat seeing how confident she was in making that commitment with Heavenly Father and the Savior! It was incredible to witness! The day after we last talked:) I was able to go to Specialized Training for Spanish missionaries. it was given by our Mission president and his wife and there were other incredible speakers that came! I am so grateful for these types of trainings and how we are so edified and inspired in how to do better in our areas and work! The Spirit was very strong and I am so grateful for how He teaches us as well:) Learning from the Spirit is very fit for our assignments and situation. We are so blessed to be able to have the constant companionship of the Spirit! This week we also saw Wayne and they were lessons that meant so much to me! He is very intelligent and has gotten to the point where he is very intent to know and do! He has been reading the Book of Mormon and by doing so, many of his previous concerns that he has had for years have faded away. He has incredible questions and it is neat being able to have a lesson where you leave unaware of exactly what you said because it wasn’t from you really:) I feel so blessed being able to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord and I strive daily to live worthy of the Spirit so that I can be! We met with Casey this week for the first time and we were able to meet in Our pupose is to invite others to come unto Christ!
Arizona Mesa Mission the home of Sister Garry! Casey is her neighbor and we were able to teach about the Restoration. The Spirit was so strong and I felt so blessed to see how Casey was so open to learning and coming closer to Christ. She asked such great questions and committed to pray and read the Book of Mormon. She told us how she sees the strength that comes from LDS families around her and she wants that for her family! I could just feel how special she is to Heavenly Father and how he has prepared her to listen to the message that we share! It was an incredible day! I love the members in this area! They are so involved in missionary work and they are so eager to help! We met McKenzie this week who was a reference from one of the members in the Young Single Adults ward. She is so sweet and we are excited to sit down with her soon! I love meeting with the recent converts in this area! We visited with the Albrant family who are just so strong and you can feel the Spirit in their loving home! I feel so grateful for the opportunity to be able to serve amongst such faithful people who continue to learn and brighten the days of others with their testimonies! The LeCheminant family had is over for dinner on Sunday and they opened up their home yesterday for us to bring a girl that we are teaching over along with her mom and little brother! There is such a special spirit teaching in the home of members! I love it and see the vision that comes with it! It blessed everybody:) This week we also saw cute little Heidi and her very kind sister Veronica. We are working with their family for a date that Heidi can be baptized:) Her mom, sister, and brother are members. Last night and on Sunday night too, we met with the Perez family who are just so eager to learn and serve! As we walked around the temple one night during our lesson with them, the mom just expressed to me about how happy and excited she is to go through with her family soon! She talked about how they have been preparing to be sealed for time and all eternity and she was just glowing with happiness and the light of Christ! They are incredible! I am so grateful to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter–Day Saints! I am so thankful to be a missionary and to be serving here in Mesa Arizona. I feel like I have learned so much and am continuing to receive experiences and blessing that will bless my life forever. It sure isn’t always easy, but the hard times are what shape and mold us the most! I am grateful for a loving Father in Heaven who knows us so well and who loves us more than we can even imagine. I am grateful for my Savior and for His atoning Sacrifice, which makes it possible to repent and return home safely. He does for us what we cannot do for ourselves and each day He is a source of strength and love that makes me smile and press forward with faith. We have a living prophet on the earth, even President Thomas S. Monson, who leads and guides us and helps us come closer to Christ!
“I believe there is nothing in all the world that can compare with the joy that a man feels when he realizes that he has been the instrument in the hands of the living God of reaching some honest heart, inspiring in it a love of God and the desire to serve Him.” Heber J. Grant