Monday, March 10, 2014

Spring is Almost Here!

Hello everyone!
Well the last week and a half has been crazy. Numerically we've been on the low side BUT we've still had quite a few successes. We've spent a lot of time doing service which has been awesome. The first day was actually over a week ago. We helped a non-member do some yard work to help her house get in order so she could sell it. That day, we had quite the breakfast of champions: muddy buddies and peanut butter chocolate Pop-Tarts. Yum!
This week we helped the same person on the day her house was supposed to be shown by the realtors. She had a pipe break in her bathroom and there was a good inch of water throughout a lot of her main floor. Luckily we had some members who were informed as well and had a shop-vac so we got everything dried, but all of the floors and some of the dry wall will still need to be replaced unfortunately.
The same day as the pipe-break, we helped a great new family move into our ward. They came from Nevada and they live about a minute from us!
Saturday our investigator, Cheyenne, got baptized! We've been meeting with her for several weeks and it was such a special occasion! Her whole family was there and the spirit was incredible! Of course I was bawling the entire time, but there really is nothing as sweet as watching someone who has truly accepted the gospel in it's entirety change their life and use it to influence those around them.
This week we also had a Zone Meeting and our mission president came! He took us and the sisters in the other ward out to lunch and that was awesome! Sometimes it is nice being a sister- we get so spoiled!

Yesterday night we had David Glen Hatch come and do a fireside in our little Terre Haute chapel! For those who don't know who he is, let's put it this way: he's a world class pianist, composer, arranger AND member of the church. I got to shake his hand, but I didn't get a picture since my camera wasn't on me. Go figure. It was a crazy cool experience to listen to him play. One of our investigators and her father came! She really enjoyed it and I hope she was able to feel the Spirit because it was strong! We have an appointment with her tomorrow, so we will be able to follow up some more on her experience. Maybe this will help her come to church again!

Last but certainly not least: I have a cold again. Oi! The day it finally warms up and is in the 60s I've got the sniffles and I've not been able to sleep for about the last week! >.< If I don't start feeling better in a day or two I want a refund on spring.
Sooooo as a missionary, of course it's my duty to encourage you all to create FAMILY MISSION PLANS! That's right: you and your spouse/children/siblings need to get a piece of paper and write down a family goal that you can work towards (reactivating a less-active family, inviting your non-member friends into your home to have dinner, finding referrals for the missionaries, etc.) and then create individual goals which will help you start having more gospel centered conversations. Think about it this way: how many of you can have a conversation with a non-member about family, school, work, hopes and aspirations? Well, have that conversation and then tie in how the gospel has helped you achieve those things. Simple, no?

Also! If you don't have one already, get yourself a Mormon.org profile! When you do that and you have a non-member friend/associate ask you questions, direct them there. You can pull up your profile to show them in a non-threatening way and once they get on, their curiosity will increase and they will start looking at other profiles and answers to questions or a myriad of sweet videos. There are tons of simple ways to help the Spirit touch our friends lives. let's do our part!

Love all!
Sister Ruth

The Buffet Restoration

Letter from March 3
 
Helloooo Utah! (And California!)

We got to go to a play for an investigator this week! It was so much fun :D It was a middle school production and a historical take on the Trojan war. It lasted around 30 minutes, but we were all busting up. Our investigator was of course, THE BEST! I wish I had been that cool when I was 11 :/
We've got another investigator on date for April 5th but this particular investigator has been on and off date a lot so hopefully things will work out this time around. He's almost 11. Anyone noticing a trend with the 10 and 11 year old kids we're working with? *Raises hand*
On Wednesday we helped a member clean their apartment because the mom is going out of town for a week or so for work and her parents are coming to help with the family. She is a super neat member. Typically she and her husband feed us twice a month and they have us and the elders over at the same time which is always a blast but a little crazy too! After we helped her she took us to a Japanese buffet and it was very delicious. I'm not sure if it was Japanese or not, but they had these green beans that they cooked in butter and garlic and something else. They were delicious! There was also a really weird looking fruit that I tried. It was white and almost looked like a plum or peach that had been pitted. Have no idea what it was, but it twas yummy!
Later that night another member took us out to eat and we ended up at Tepanyaki, which is another buffet. I finally got to try lobster! (Yes, I know, it was at a buffet so it was probably nowhere close to what it should have tasted like, but I still liked it!)
The highlight of our week has been some of the newest investigators we are meeting with. It's a couple that doesn't live too far from us. We've been trying to meet with the guy since I first got to Terre Haute and we were finally able to have our first two lessons with them this and last week! We taught the Restoration and when we finally got to the part about the Book of Mormon and pulled it out to show them their eyes lit up! They were so excited to read it! I'm convinced that it is 1) because they've been prepared by God and 2) because of the member we had come with us. Our Relief Society President really connected with the woman and she will be bringing her husband with her to the next lesson we have. I can't wait to teach them again!
Friday I got to train my district on the principle of the Restoration, focusing mostly on Joseph Smith and the First Vision. I had a blast doing it, which I never thought I'd say! One of my elders told me that I should have been a Baptist preacher in another life. Out here, I fully take that as a compliment!
Here's a thought for you based upon the Restoration. We know that Christ's ministry and atonement on the earth was the single most important act in human history, but what is the second? I would say the First Vision, but to really understand the First Vision, we need to understand the extenuating circumstances which affected Joseph Smith and ultimately led him to be in the time and place where he could receive and accept that wonderful revelation. I was able to do some research in the Joseph Smith History, Our Search for Happiness and Our Heritage about these circumstances and I'd encourage you all to do the same. When we come to understand the true importance behind the Restoration, it makes it all that more powerful when we testify of it to our family, friends and neighbors.
Share the gospel, people!

With lotsa love from the Hoosier State,
Sista Ruth

New Week!

 Letter from February 24, 2014
 
Meet my new companion! Sister London!
This week has been a teensy bit crazy! We had Zone Conference (and had 3 or 4 different zones from the surrounding area) in Bloomington. Our Mission President came along with his assistants, a counselor, his wife and pretty much all of the office staff. We did tons of trainings and learned a lot from car care to studying for ourselves in the Book of Mormon.
We have permission to read the Book of Mormon for 30 whole minutes every morning! Well... We were kinda admonished to do it, actually. It can be difficult to study it as much as we should with all that we have to study (Adjusting to Missionary Life, The First 12 Weeks (for those that are in training), Preach My Gospel, BoM, the Bible, pamphlets, Jesus the Christ, etc.). It's definitely getting easier to spend our studies wisely though! Just takes practice.
The baptism that we have coming up for an 11 year old girl got moved back a week, but that's only because the person she is having baptize her will be out of town for the normal day. Otherwise she is right on track!
This week we picked up an investigator again who had recently dropped us. I love her! We hadn't seen her for about a week and she sent us a text saying that she had found another church. We dropped in randomly just to check in on her a few days ago and she was still reading the Book of Mormon! We haven't been working with her for much more than a month and a half and she's already in 2 Nephi 8 all on her own! Let me tell ya, I'm excited. She still says she won't come to church or get baptized, but that'll change whether it's while I'm still here or not, she's diligently searching and I know that one of these days it will hit her that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.
The same day we picked up this investigator again we stopped by another former that I personally haven't been able to teach since we got into Terre Haute. Her family I believe is Pentecostal and she is 9 years old. She wants to learn from us so bad! She already took much of the discussions from the previous sisters and knows it's true and her mom said she could get baptized if she proved she was serious, but while we were talking to her mom about coming back another day the dad came out of a back room and started yelling at us. First time I've been yelled at and called a freak out here. It was honestly kind of funny, but of course we got out of there. I feel bad because that girl really wants to learn, but her parents are so non-supportive. Hopefully she'll remember what she's already learned and learn more when she gets older and on her own.
Today we went to Square Donut and they finally had a few glazed left! They're just about as good as Krispy Kreme. No joke! AND they're square :)
Not much else to report this week other than my companion and I missing our chance to potentially hold a tiger cub today for the sake of saving miles.  :'(
Hope y'alls have a good'un! ;)
Sister Ruth