Monday, August 25, 2014

Beware of Pride and Choose To Be Humble

LUIS GILLON, Argentina: This week was great! Argentina is throwing us for a loop and playing pranks with the weather! Seriously! All last week I was in skirts to my knees without tights. Today?!?!  Tights, long skirts, coat, scarf, boots.  It's
Carne Asada with the Savedera Family. I was in Heaven
winter again, folks! Never again will it be summer in the life of Hermana Newman ;)

How was your week? I hope fabulous! What missionary moments did you have? I had a lot of great experiences this week doing contacts. We have a few new investigators and some other potentials. I love sharing the Gospel, and there are lots of ways to share it, too! I love teaching lessons the most, of course, but this week Heavenly Father had other plans for us.
Ice Cream on P-day? Yummy

He (Heavenly Father) wanted us out on the streets, and not in the houses. Hermana Mills and I decided to set some goals to talk to people on the buses and trains and at the bus stops and stations. Usually, we talk to everyone, but sometimes it is hard because seriously the buses and trains get packed like a can of sardines.  I am not even exaggerating! However,  we set it as a goal and did it!

I was making some nursing phone calls waiting for the bus to come when my awesome companion sees Jesus on someone’s shirt and blurts out, "Is that Jesus?¨ I couldn’t help but laugh and look over to find my companion making a conversation with a complete stranger and sharing the Gospel. Well, then of course after, I am on the look out for my opportunity to share, and lo and behold the bus comes and here is my opportunity!

Missionaries like to be silly too.

There was one seat left and my companion let me take it. So I casually leaned over and started talking to the lady beside me. I think she was startled that this white girl was keeping up the conversation with her but she was happy to talk and wanted to learn more! Of  course, it was a quick thing because we were on the bus and had to get off, but we got her information and I am praying something comes of it in the next couple of the weeks. 

Moral of this silly story: EVERYONE can share the gospel.

You don’t have to be a full-time missionary to share the gospel. You can share it on the bus, at work, at the store, the gym... Everywhere! Just pray for your courage to get out of your bubble and go do it! Don’t just read this email and think,  "good idea". I DARE everyone reading this letter this week to go share the Gospel and if you did it... I expect an email with the story.:) I am excited to hear about the miracles we all have. 

Another story about less-actives. This one is a quickie... We are still working with the pilot plan here until December. It is being tested here and in 5 other missions in South America. Anyway, we are working with getting the less actives reactivated and them sharing the Gospel with their friends. We have seen some huge improvements. Every week I swear, I see someone new at church an it makes me just want to die of excitement. 

We had one this week tell us how she knew she needed a change and did what she knew would be best: coming back to church. She did, and she is loving every second of it.  She just got an assignment and is hanging in there strong.

If you have someone in your ward who did not come to church this week I invite you to go visit them this week! Take your time and tell them how much we need them and love them and miss them! It’s the truth and they need to hear it from a loving friend who cares! 

I read a talk this week I want to share with you and then I will let you go because I have written a lot. It is about Pride. Its called BEWARE OF PRIDE by Ezra Taft Benson. 

"Pride affects all of us at various times and in various degrees. Now you can see why the building in Lehi’s dream that represents the pride of the world was large and spacious and great was the multitude that did enter into it. (See 1 Ne. 8:26, 331 Ne. 11:35–36.)
"Pride is the universal sin, the great vice. Yes, pride is the universal sin, the great vice.
"The antidote for pride is humility—meekness, submissiveness. (See Alma 7:23.) It is the broken heart and contrite spirit." (See 3 Ne. 9:203 Ne. 12:19D&C 20:37D&C 59:8Ps. 34:18Isa. 57:15Isa. 66:2.) 
"God will have a humble people. Either we can choose to be humble or we can be compelled to be humble. Alma said, 'Blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to be humble.'"(Alma 32:16.)
Let us choose to be humble.
I hope that this week we can all be a little more humble. All be a little more Christ like and help those in need. I know you are all awesome, but we should always be striving for more, right? Let's do it together! Let's conquer this nasty poision of pride. Drop it and pick up the Christlike humility we all need to return with Him again. 

Love you with all my heart! Have a fabulous week! I know I sure will. Don’t take life too seriously. Remember to laugh, smile, and have fun! That’s what God wants for us: Happiness! 

Until next week!
Chau chau

-Hermana Newman :) 
 P.S. I Hope you enjoyed the pictures. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Sleep-praying and what makes you beautiful

LUIS GUILLON, Argentina — Happy Tuesday Family! Yesterday was ferriado (holiday) so we weren’t able to use the cyber to get on the Internet. So here I am on this fine Tuesday emailing you are. 

Can I just say how in love with the weather I am right now? I know technically it is still winter here, but something weird is happening and I feel like it is spring. We have had some BEAUTIFUL days lately. I haven’t had to wear tights or a sweater for like 3 days. Awesome!! :)

Any of you who know me well, know that I am a weirdo and have a tendency to sleep walk and talk and sometimes text, right? Well, I have added something knew to the list. I have started sleep praying! Yes, I am telling the truth. This transfer, I have done it waaay too many times to even count. A lot of times, Hermana Mills is the one who wakes up and finds me out of my bed, on my knees just praying away. It’s kind of funny. The first couple of times she thought I just needed to pray, but then she soon found out I was doing it in my sleep so she decided to wake me up. I am always so embarrassed when she finds me but we get a kick out of it and start laughing in the middle of the night... Yep still the same crazy Sara Newman ;)

Another story, not so funny, but I am SOOO grateful I went to Young Women’s. I have never had to lead so many hymns in my life. I remember always dreading learning it in Young Women’s, but now I am soo grateful I know how. So a big THANK YOU to all my leaders!

We went on exchanges this week again. It was great. I was back on the bike. WOOO! I love bikes and skirts. It was a great exchange and I learned a lot. But it was a new experience for me because this companionship was having a lot of problems and often yell at each other. They don’t work in unity and don’t want to be together. It broke my heart to see that because honestly I have never personally experienced that. It made me really think about how blessed I am and be very grateful for my great companions. I love them all and would do anything for them! I am especially grateful that Hermana Mills and me are still companions. I learn so much from her daily!

Random... I had my first REAL Argentine asado! And yes... Its as good as they say :) It was divine. I now understand why they are carnivores here ;)

Okay on to my week. It was great, but a little hard. We had tons of appointments but they all fell through. We did a TON of contacting on the street and are searching for new people but aren’t having too much luck with it. But don’t worry: I have faith we will find some this week :) On a very happy note, I am excited to say WOOOOOOO I am soo happy for the Familia Velasquez. They are still as awesome as ever and are progressing great. They have their interview this week. Keep them in your prayers as always, please.

I have some quotes for you this week from my lovely companion. I don’t want you to be weirded out because they are both about beauty. But she shared them with me this week because we were having a not so pretty week physically haha. Let me explain. I KNOW we are daughters of God, so physical aspect doesn’t matter, but this week I just was feeling a little extra not so pretty and sometimes as a girl, that is hard. I have never had Eczema on my face but it hit me hard this week all over my face. Of course I have bags under my eyes from working hard as well. Zits from stress, chubby from the food.... let's just say it wasn’t my best week. BUT no worries — all is well because I know who the real me is and I know that these things come and go. Don’t worry I am not entirely hideous, only just for about a week. lol But let me share this quote that Hermana Mills shared with me. I think we can use it as women, but people in general too.

My dear sisters, I have simple faith. I believe that as you are faithful and diligent in keeping the commandments of God, as you draw closer to Him in faith, hope and charity things will work our together for your good. I believe that as you immerse yourselves in the works of our Father's as you create beauty and as you are compassionate to others- God will encircle you in the arms of His Love... As spirit daughters of Heavenly Father, happiness is your heritage! You are chosen daughters of our Heavenly Father and through the things you create and by your compassionate service, you are a great power for good! You will make the world a better place. Lift up your chin, walk tall, God loves you!
-President Dieter F. Uchtdorf


"The only beauty you have to cultivate is Christ’s. If you can be beautiful like He was beautiful, you won't have to worry about your physical appearance. Men who saw no beauty in our Savior may also not see your beauty. But men of Christ, acquainted with His grief, will come to you and say 'She is the most beautiful of all.'"

Okay fam bam. That’s about it for this week. But I just want to let you know: 
  • yes, I have bags under my eyes,
  • sometimes I get tired
  • my complexion is not perfect
  • sometimes my clothes are silly
But I AM A MISSIONARY OF GOD. I am here for a reason. I know my place. I am called by his divine authority, and I wouldn’t change any of it! This is the best feeling I have ever had giving it my all and serving others. Yes, it is great that we can be beautiful physically but do you know what really makes us all BEAUTIFUL? THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST¡ That’s what makes us beautiful and different. I testify of all that with all of my heart. Go share that beauty with someone else this week

Love your guts,

=Hermana Newman :)

Monday, August 11, 2014

Always improving

LUIS GILLON, Argentina — FAMILY OF MINE WHOM I LOVE SO MUCH!!!! How are you!?!? I hope you had another fabulous week. I know I sure did! It has been a little crazy but great.

I would like to tell you how my morning started off today. A lady from our ward came over and taught us how to stretch out and then gave us massages.... I WAS IN HEAVEN! How blessed are we?!?  Gotta love tender mercies of the Lord ;)

We had a great week with lots of miracles. I would just like to tell you one, not that numbers matter, but this made me so happy to see on Sunday. We had 103 people attending sacrament meeting, eight of them being less active members and four of them being investigators! WOOO! Miracles. We haven’t had that many people come to church in a while. I love seeing people come to church and feel the Spirit. The Familia Velasquez is continuing to progress and are getting ready for their baptism in 2 weeks! WOOO!

Hermanas Newman y Mills with the Velasquez family.

I sent a million and five pictures and that took up a lot of my time to write this email so I will make this another quick one. But I just wanted to share an experience I had a couple weeks ago. I don’t know why but I forgot to share this.

We have interviews with President every 3 months. We always talk about how we are doing, if we are still worthy and what goals we want to make. I made previous goals to finish reading The Book of Mormon in Spanish and be writing in my journal daily before our next interviews. Well, interviews came around, and I found myself improved, but I had not completed my goal. I have two lessons I learned from this experience, but let me finish the story first.

President looked at me with his usual smile on his face and asked me how I was doing and the normal stuff. I replied that life was great and I loved serving here. He soon got to the goals part. He looked at me and simply asked, ¨How are your goals going? ¨ I sheepishly said that I hadn’t completed them. I told him that I was sad that I had to tell them that I didn’t do them. How sad it was to tell my mission president that I hadn’t completed my goals! I was horrified. Well, my mission president, being the awesome man he is, chuckled and said, ¨Hermana Newman, I didn’t say you had to be perfect at your goals. But... did you at least improve?" I told him that I had and that I was almost done with the Book of Mormon, just had a little bit left to go. With a big grin on his face he said, ¨Well that I am happy with, hermana. That is the point. To always be improving!"

Sara and her companion doing some planning. Without power. Again.
I learned two lessons from this. First (if we take this true story and just change the mission president for the Lord), I learned how loving and merciful the Lord is. He takes imperfect people like me, loves me, helps me to feel good, and gives me encouragement to keep going and be better! He doesn’t expect us to be perfect — he just expects us to improve daily! That’s the beauty of it! And the cool thing is, He is there every step of the way. We don’t have to wait 3 months to have the interview. We can just get down and pray to our Heavenly Father and he and His Son will help us.

Second, I learned something about preparedness. Now don’t get me wrong, I tried my hardest to accomplish my goals, but yes, I did fall. But during the meeting with president, I just looked at him and said, ¨President, I am having a hard time telling you I didn’t complete my goals. I never want to have to tell my Savior I didn’t complete them. ¨ As I sat there and looked into his eyes I KNEW that from that day on, I had to try harder and do better. I am aware I cannot be perfect, but I can be better and I can be prepared. I can be prepared for that day when I see my Savior's face. I want to be ready with a big smile on my face ready to say to Him, ¨I did it. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, and I have kept the faith!¨

Idaho-born Hermana Newman representing the Beehive State in Argentina.
This story might not make a lot of sense or matter to some of you. But it was a big wake up call to me. We can always be doing better. We should be pushing ourselves to be better. If you are comfortable in where you are right now, GET UP and do something. If we are comfortable, we are not progressing. Remember: ¨Ripe things rot, green things grow.¨ Do what you have to do to grow. It will not be easy, but it will be the best thing we can do. We are all in this together. We are here to help the Kingdom grow!

Have a great week. Make miracles happen. Go be those instruments of the Lord. Write me next week and tell me about the missionary moments you have or miracles you see! Love you with all my heart!

- Hermana Newman :)

Monday, August 4, 2014

The fourth missionary and the ease of the Restored Gospel

LUIS GILLON, Argentina — I don’t want to say it but here it goes again.... FELIZ AGOSTO! 

Yes, like always, weird to say another month and transfer has whizzed by! I don’t think I will understand time my whole life. I guess I will stop trying to understand it and just go with the flow ;) 

Sunrise in Argentina.
How are you all doing? I was super surprised and got some extra awesome emails from my family this week. THANKS! I loved hearing how you are doing and hearing about your families. I miss you all like crazy! Hermana Mills and I talk about you all the time. We are working hard as ever and trying to find more families to bring this happiness of the Gospel to!

This week was great. We had our own Capilla Abierta (Open House) this week here in Luis Guillon. It was awesome. I sent a few pictures of it, so I hope you can see them. It was a big success. We had active members, less active members, investigators and contacts off the street there. It was fun to see the ward come together in unity for this great cause. The capilla abierta is to invite people to come and see what we believe and do in the Church. All of the auxiliaries do a room to explain that part of the church and then us sisters do a tour with short explanations of the charlas (what is that word... bah.... lesson. Nope.. discussions sorry) and then the Christus with the audio. It's nothing like Temple Square, but it's all we have available here and it is amazing. I love that I get to be part of it because I can always feel the Spirit SO strong.

Hermanas Newman y Mills with the elder at the Capilla Abierta.
We are still working with the Valasquez family, and they are progressing well. Still keep them in your prayers, please! I will try and send a picture next week of them. They are great little family. I think they are about Nick and Juli's age, and with two kids. They came to the open house this week and loved it! Everyone thought they were members, which was funny when she said she wasn’t, everyone was so suprised. They still have their date for the 30th, but Satan is a stinker and she is having problems with her work now.

We had a meeting this week with the Zone Leaders, President and his wife, and the Sister Training Leaders this week. It was GREAT! I love working with the girls and learning from them, but also I love going to meetings and hearing from President. He is a very smart and inspired man, that is for sure! We felt the Spirit lots, and it gave us a good way to start the week off again.

Hermana Newman shows off postre celestial (heavenly dessert).
This week has been crazy with temperatures. It was freezing and I have been wearing tights for a month or so straight now, but we had a random heat flash and I was dying! Good thing I won't be here for summer or I think I might melt again!

I read a talk this week called the Fourth Missionary. I remembered it from the MTC (one of my teachers told me to read it) I had Brittany send it to me last week. This week, I am nothing but smiles. It is AMAZING to say the least. It is for missionaries and what kind of missionaries we can be. It’s hard to explain here over email but its great and I learned a lot. I think we can all apply it as members, too though. 

Hermana Newman with all her companions, except her trainer, who is serving in Salta, Argentina.

What kind of members are we? The best (#4) or are we just getting by or even being disobedient?  (#1) I invite you to all read it. It looks long, but it’s a fast read and well worth your time, I promise. It helped me realize I am doing great as a missionary and person but of course I have got to keep it up and keep getting better and being that person that God needs me to be! I am working hard at it everyday. 

One quote I loved and want to share is very short and sweet... ¨Life is hard, not the gospel. ¨ 

How true that is. The Gospel is not hard, it's what makes life good and helps us return back with Him. I'm going to share this video with you because it is powerful and better than what I could ever try to say or express! This just gave me the chills and I felt the Spirit soooo strong. This is what I mean when I shared the quote, ¨LIFE IS HARD, NOT THE GOSPEL.¨ He is there for us ALWAYS.

Make sure you are doing what you need to be doing. Do the small things daily. I PROMISE they make a difference! Be that person that you need to be but most important, who God needs you to be!

Love you with all my heart! Have a good week! Tear it up! Hugs and kisses to you all! 

Chau Chau

-Hermana Newman :)