Hello friends and family!
We’ve had so many happy days at the PRS! I love being a missionary!
This week we took some super fun tours!! One of them was to two groups
of people, one group was 4 members of the church from Utah, and the
other was a couple from Alaska visiting the other couple from
Montrose. I was super nervous about combining the groups but it turned
out to be great!! The couple from Alaska had some friends who were
members of the church and they had so many questions, it was great!
When we were in the kitchen of the Hale home we were talking about the
gold plates and the woman from Alaska asked about the translation
process. We talked about it and then walked to the Smith home and
explained it more and talked about the breast plate and spectacles and
the seer stone. After we were done explaining the translation process
the woman from Montrose says, “So Joseph didn’t even need to look at
the plates to translate? Wow.” It was so cool to see the Spirit
working in them and testifying the truth to them. After the tour we
took them to see the chapel and talked a little bit more about the
church. We got onto the subject of temples and making covenants with
God. After that we started talking about the Book of Mormon. One of
the women said, “Well, maybe you just need more help than we do
because you have a whole other book of scripture.” I was trying so
hard not to laugh! It was so funny! But you know, I do need a lot of
help and I’m so grateful for the Book of Mormon to give me that help!
On Sunday we had stake conference. We sang The Lord is my Shepherd for
one of the musical numbers. It was so fun! Afterwards President and
Sister Anderson spoke and Sister Anderson put so lovely how I think
everyone should talk about our singing here. She said that we have
been given amazing gifts from the Spirit to help others feel the
Spirit and she hopes we recognize that and that we thank our Father in
Heaven for blessing us. I loved that because it’s true! The Spirit
gives us gifts so we can help others feel the Spirit!
On Monday evening President Cooper (from the stake presidency) pulled
up to the site with his wife and daughter. He came in and told us that
there was a woman who came up to the bishop in one of the Scranton
wards after stake conference and told him that because of our singing
at stake conference she felt prompted by the Spirit that she needs to
serve a mission! It was a miracle from the Lord that she received an
answer to a prayer and is beginning to prepare to serve Him!
President Cooper’s daughter, Kimberly, also had some questions for us.
She asked us how we had decided to serve a mission and/or what answer
we had received. It got us all thinking and as I thought back to two
years ago when I was trying to decide if I should serve a mission.
Along with other experiences, one stood out to me specifically while
we were talking to Kimberly.
In my last semester of seminary one day I walked into the room and a
friend’s older brother was standing in our classroom. He had just
returned from his mission a few months prior and had come to say hi to
some of his seminary teachers. My teacher invited him to stay and he
agreed and then talked to all of us at the end of class. I remember
him sharing his testimony and encouraging all of us to serve missions.
He said some things to the boys in the room, then he looked at all the
sisters and said, “Sisters, you don’t have to serve a mission. But I
know that if you prepare yourself as though you were going to serve a
mission, whether you go or stay, your preparation will not be in
vain.” I remember at the time this really stood out so me and from
then I decided that I was going to change my life and prepare myself
in such a way that I would be ready to serve a mission. Little did I
know that that preparation wouldn’t stop and I would actually serve
the Lord full time, but I’m so grateful that happened. I told Kimberly
this experience and felt the Spirit remind me that I have my own
agency to choose what I’m going to do with my life, but if I am always
preparing to do as the Savior did, I will know what the Lord wants me
to do and my preparation will not be in vain.
I know the same can be said for everyone. Any preparation we make
today to come closer to the Savior and to do as God would have us do,
will not be done in vain. The Lord wants to help and bless us, when we
come closer to Him he is able to bless us more.
I hope you have a wonderful week! I love you to the moon and back!