Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Have I done any good? Service, sincerity, and the Atonement

COLUMBIA, Md. — Well, here we go. Starting off yet another week. Week 6 of the transfer. Yikes! :) Transfers are next week. If I don’t have my visa by next week I will be lucky enough to spend my 5th transfer here in Columbia, Maryland! 

This week has flown by (most do for me here on a mission). We had tons going on this week. Lots of activities, service opportunities, church, normal lessons and mission conference. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you about everything, because that would just take forever and a day and I don’t think I can type fast enough for that. SO I will tell you bits and pieces of my week. All summed up ... It was wonderful!

When you get bored in companionship study, you balance books on your head while studying your language.
We started the week off with Elder Carlson (of the 70) and his wife coming for a mission tour and having mission conference with us. WOW! What a powerful speaker and motivator he is. I got so many wonderful insights and I just love personal revelation. I am sure every single one of us missionaries there got something different from his message, but all directed to us personally by the Spirit! 

I was going to tell you about some of my favorite parts and what he said, but like a silly girl, I left my notebook in the car :/ bummer. But I will try next week to bring it and share some of his thoughts. But yes... just fabulous!

Saturday we started the morning off my doing service! Yep... I am going to say it again. I LOVE service! It was kind of funny because the whole time I was just thinking about Mom and Brittany. The reason why? Because I was stuck inside cleaning when I wanted to be outside: P 

I wanted to rake leaves and help with the outdoors stuff, but we were asked to help in the kitchen. Good thing my mama and sis taught me how to clean real good because I spent the next hour or so on hands and knees scrubbing the tile. Feels good to get down and do some service. If you want to feel good and happy in your life (which I would assume you all do) GO SERVE SOMEONE!

Saturday night we had an activity with our investigators and some people in our branch. Marcos, our branch mission leader, thought it would be good for our branch to know our investigators. So each investigator was invited to a member’s home for dinner to chat and get to know each other. Then after, we all met up at the church to watch a movie (Finding Faith in Christ) and have dessert.

It went soooooo well! Our investigators came and loved it. They loved the branch and seemed to have a great time. Well, even better, they came to church on Sunday. It’s amazing what a little love and friendship can do.

Every Tuesday, we have our District meeting. As part of it, we go around sharing our miracles of the week. We see soooo many miracles in the Gospel. So since today is Tuesday, I would like to share Hermana Crotzer and my miracle of the week. The Riveras :) 

Oh if you could only see my face right now. I just can’t stop smiling. I have been working with these girls since I got here. Their Mom is a less active of many years. She was baptized when she was 9 and fell away at age 11. Anyways, our goal has been to really get them involved in the branch and Young Women’s. Well let me tell you — it worked. 

This week, we forgot to remind the girls about mutual but guess what? They went, even without us reminding them. Then on Saturday, they went to the dinner and movie activity at the church. And to top it all off, they came to church and stayed for all 3 hours on Sunday! Bah! 

I have been here a long time for sure. And I am not sure why I am still here, but I know this family has got to be one of the reasons! I need them, and they need me. The oldest daughter we are inviting to baptism and setting a date for hopefully this month. :) I love seeing miracles.

What happens when you serve in a stateside Spanish mission: country pride for all sorts of countries.
One of my favorite things about serving a mission is watching people change. I get to watch people change and use the Atonement of Jesus Christ all the time. It has helped me to understand the importance of the Atonement and why we all need to use it daily. If you don’t have a testimony of your Savior and what He did for you personally, I beg you to go pray! Go pray and ask for the confirmation. I testify that God lives, He loves us. He gave us a plan to return. Central to that plan is Jesus Christ. I know He died for me personally and you all as well. This Gospel is real. It takes work but it is worth it! God promises us all He has if we follow our Savior Jesus Christ.

This letter is getting long, so I will stop now. I hope you all know how much I love being a missionary. No matter whether it is here in Maryland, down in Argentina, or back home in Utah, once a missionary, always a missionary. Go out and find your missionary moment.

Love you with all my heart! Have a great week!
Con Amor,
-Hermana Newman :)

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