Monday, May 25, 2015

5/25/2018...Olive Garden and A new Companion

What an amazing roller coaster ride of a week!! First off, let me tell you all a little more about a man we are teaching. We found him just a little while ago and all the obstacles before him and baptism had been swept down EXCEPT for his divorce papers going through so that he could marry his fiance and live the Law of Chastity. MIRACLE TIME! After our lesson with them earlier this week, they went to the court and unfortunately it was too busy for them to get through. He left a call back number and that was that. Then, about 20 min later, they called him back and told him that somehow, all the papers had been processed and he was legally divorced! WOW! That moment taught me that God is first and foremost, powerful, and that He can do anything. :) Our faith enables those miracles to be manifest in our own lives! :)

Also, I had an amazing personal study this past week! I started out by studying Mosiah 5. I eventually branched off on studying covenants. MY GOODNESS! What an amazing experience! It absolutely blew my mind! I know with all my soul that our covenants are SO powerful and that in a very real way, when we are baptized, partake of the sacrament, are given the priesthood and enter into the temple, we bind ourselves to God! That binding is beautiful! It enables us to more fully receive His blessings but at the same time, we step onto a tough playing field! That's why he gives us the Holy Ghost though! :) But, if we want to continually qualify for heaven's blessings, we've gotta work for it! We can't clock out when things get hard or give up! We've gotta endure and push push push push! We can do it though! I am 1000% dedicated to fulfilling my Father's will now! For the rest of eternity! :)

Also, I have officially been transferred! My new companion's name is Elder Jordan! He is from Delaware, likes basketball, he's been skydiving, has been out 11 months, he's got 5 siblings, all of them, along with his parents have served missions. He just came from Blackfoot and we are ready to go! We cover some of the 4 most amazing wards in Idaho Falls! the members are so wonderful and there is so much work here! We are up to our eyebrows in God's blessings! Also, our fellow missionaries in the Idaho Falls North Zone are doing very well too! We are preparing for a wonderful June! :)

Also, I got to have lunch at Olive Garden with an amazing member family from Pocatello! I love them! Also, Italian food is the best! Oh! Amazing experience time! So, there was a woman, Jennifer who waited our table. We got talking with her, she said that she was a member and that she would like us to come and teach her 8 year old daughter about the church! We told her we would make sure miracles contacted her! :) Then, 30 minutes later, while we were out contacting people, we ran into her again! She was taking her lunch break and we got to share a brief message of hope with her and set up a return appointment! She wants to start coming back to church too! It's like the stars aligned for us all to meet.... twice! Haha! We are seeing that so much in this area. Miracles are happening everyday! We are excited for the miracles that are to come!! :)

Overall, the CHURCH IS TRUE! I know that with all my soul! I know that God loves us as well and when we exercise faith and truly show Him that we love and adore Him, our lives are so happy. :) I invite everyone reading this to show God that you love Him TODAY but serving someone TODAY! I love you all! Bye!

5/18/2015...Hiking and A favorite place!!!

 Part of the amazing and wonderful Idaho Falls North Zone!
Conquering the "mountain!

5/18/2015..Scary Geese and Many Miracles!!!

First off, in our mission and I'm pretty sure worldwide, missionaries are not allowed to use headphones because they "isolate" you from your companion. So, Elder Fontes and I tried to find our way around that rule! Recently, we have been running what is called the Green Belt, basically just the ring of water that makes up the part of the Snake River directly in front of the Idaho Falls Temple. We tried to run right next to each other and both listen to a song in Portuguese using the same set of headphones, he having one and me having the other! That way, we weren't "isolated" from one another! We gave up shortly after starting because it was much too difficult. ;) But, on a different note, running the green belt has been SO much fun! Elder Fontes wants to start getting more lean so we have been running and "trying" to eat healthier. The running has been amazing! It's so fun to be out there super early in the morning, right as the sun is rising! Also, we get to dodge geese along the way! There are so many of them right on the river and I'm not going to lie, sometimes it's scary running so close to them! They hiss at you when you get to close to their little ones! Overall, that has been an awesome experience!

Alright, on a more spiritual note, let me tell you about Jon. We were driving along and saw the Andrews, an amazing member family in one of our wards, off to the right. We pulled over and they gave us a referral! As they were out contacting people, they ran into a couple. They told us that she was a member, not presently attending and her fiance was not a member but both we were very interested in being a part of the church! We were elated! We were soon able to meet them and they exceeded all expectations. He was in Hawaii previous to Idaho and was able to attend church 2 times and read from the Book of Mormon while he was there. They were praying and talking about a church to attend when they met the Andrews! AHHHH!! We have been able to teach them 3 times and we've only know them for three days and guess what! We have another apt for this evening and guess what! He has been saving money to pay tithing and guess what! He is going to be baptized on May 27th and guess what! Elder Fontes and I are being transferred!!! ;) We really are! This past week, we met him, another amazing individual that we have been able to take on a church tour and to a baptism and she wants to get baptized as well and also, 5 children that all are interested in learning and their families are very wonderful as well! All in all, we found 7 new investigators this past week and we are leaving on Wednesday! But, all is well in the kingdom! I feel SO good about the upcoming transfer! My new companion is going to be Elder Jordan. He is serving in a town called Blackfoot right now and we are going to work harder than we've ever worked before! The zone is doing SO amazing! The Lord's hand is amongst us without a doubt! We had an individual who was on date to be baptized in June move his baptism to this last Saturday and was baptized! Also, there was a girl that after watching Elder Bednar's Face to Face broadcast made then decision to be interviewed and baptized the very next day! She fulfilled all of the requirements and was baptized! Also, there was a girl that was baptized on Saturday that an elder and I one exchanges were able to find! She is 17 and after meeting with the missionaries for 2 weeks was baptized! WHOO! :) I know with all my heart and soul that Jesus is the Christ and that He loves each and every one of us. I know that God is real and that He is our Father. If we allow Him to be a part of our lives, we will find access to stores of happiness and joy that we never thought were available. He is eternal and will always care for us. :)

This past week was such a whirlwind of amazing events! I'm losing track of everything that I have mentioned and the things that I have forgotten. The bottom line is that things here in Idaho Falls are SO good. Spirits are high and smiles are large. :) I hope everyone is doing well and happy! My invitation is for everyone to have an amazing day and to help someone! I promise you that by helping someone, the day WILL be amazing! :) Love you all!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

5/11/2015..Fun at the Smiths and temple stamps!!!

 Skyping at the Smiths! While Elder Fontes was still on the line with his family, I was able to be a part of a lesson with Anton in spanish! I got to bear my testimony in portuguese! It was SO cool!!
There was a face painting/balloon animal making lady there and instead of painting our faces, she painted temples on our hands! Elder Fontes' is the Salt Lake Temple and mine is the Seattle, Washington Temple! They were amazing!


This past week was an amazing one AND to put the cherry on top, I'm updated AND writing in my journal so 20 years from now, I'll actually be able to remember these experiences! Haha! We had a roller coaster ride with one of our investigator. Her mom came to church this past Sunday and on Monday granted her the permission to be baptized. We set it up for this past Saturday and things were looking great for about a day and then her mom, got a hold of some anti-mormon material on the internet and went downhill VERY VERY fast. In the end, she completely withdrew permission and we were left standing there, dumbstruck to be honest. The only thing left to do is pray and seek the Lord's help and that is most definitely what we are doing. :) Other than that, we have started teaching a new family. They are so great! They were a referrel from a couple in one of our wards. We were able to teach them twice this past week and the ENTIRE family came to church! During one of our apts, the 8 year old girl, came up to us holding her Book of Mormon telling us that she wanted to go to church! It was so heart warming! Also, we had a zone fast for miracles this past Friday and as a result of the fast, 13 return appointments were set with new people/families, 2 baptismal dates were set with investigators and 13 or so lessons were taught. It was a miracle! :)

This past week was such a blur as well. Everything seems to be going by so fast. I pray that I am doing what the Lord wants me to do and I will be able to look back on these past couple months free of regrets. :) Oh! I was also able to give a talk on Sunday! I talked about the Atonement and specifically, the blessings that Christ's grace brings us. I identified 3 blessings, one of them being the opportunity we ALL will eventually have to stand before God, the second being that we can be forgiven of our sins and the third being that we can overcome our weaknesses. As we combine our efforts with Christ's miracles can and will happen. :) My invitation is for everyone to try and share Christ's grace with someone! Help someone come to know their Savior a little better by serving them, sharing the gospel with them or praying for them! Do your best and you will see the hand of the Lord working in your life and the lives of those around you! :) I love you all! Have a great week!

5/4/2015..Working and playing hard!!!

 Xielyr's Baptism!!! I found an amazing jump suit in the back fully equipped with a built in belt and a shirt pocket!!! ;)
 Playing on the grass outside the temple!!
Helping the Bargs paint their garage! :)

5/4/2015..Miracles abound!!!

Miracle #1- Xielyr was baptized!! It was such an amazing service! I had the wonderful privilege of performing his baptism! It was an experience that I'll carry with me forever! :) Also, 3 children, Harvey, Seraphine, and Joseph came!  We are praying SO hard for them! Please pray for them as well! :) After the baptism, we got to go get ice cream and I got to pet a baby cow! It was awesome! ;)

Miracle #2- I got to go on an amazing exchange with Elder Bradfield! It was very hot and we walked ALL DAY! Whoo! We did get to have a Cafe Rio style dinner though and THAT was awesome! We also found a new girl for them to start teaching! on the doorstep she told us that she wanted to be baptized when she was 8 but her dad wouldn't let her. She then told us that since then, he has changed his mind! Elder Bradfield asked her, "how old are you?" She said, "17." He then asked her if she still wanted to be baptized to which she responded, "Yes!" We asked her what would be holding her back and she said school is pretty busy. Of all the reasons in the book, that is not a hard one to overcome! Haha! She is going to be baptized on May 16th! :)

Miracle #3- We got to attend a baptism of a family in our zone! There were 4 individuals getting baptized, a mom and her three daughters. We were asked to teach the Restoration while they were all getting changed after they were baptized! There was a LA member in the audience, and 2 non-members that we knew of! It was SO powerful! While we recited the First Vision, the pianist played, "Joseph Smith's First Prayer" lightly. Oh man.... the spirit was so strong. While I was reciting His vision, I felt like I was having an out of body experience! I was entirely unaware of what I was saying! All I knew was that my mouth was moving and that the spirit was engulfing all of us! Man..... what an experience. :) I know with all my SOUL that Joseph Smith really was a prophet! Every fiber of my being and every cell in my body proclaims that testimony loud and proud! I believe it! :) The joy and happiness that that knowledge brings me is something I will treasure forever. :)

Miracle #4- I'm a missionary! It is such a privilege to serve the Lord! :) I pray that I can magnify this next month and a half and give it EVERYTHING THAT I'VE GOT! I know that the Lord will provide a way! There are a couple more miracles out there that I want to squeeze out of my mission! ;) I love you all! Have a fantastic week!!! :) INVITATION: Please go and serve someone this week! Make someone smile and take a minute to leap of your "road" and care for someone who has fallen off of theirs. :)