Saturday, November 1, 2014

How Far is Heaven?


I'll admit there are some weeks, like today, where I just sit at this little white screen wondering what to write. So much happened this week and I can't imagine getting it all to fit within my little precious email time. It makes me think of back home when I would get home late from class or work or something and I felt like I had to tell you everything about my day in a matter of minutes. Yep this is the same thing, only my fingers don't move as fast and it's a week instead of just a day. So I'm sorry if today I bounce from topics. So much to share in so little time :)
I'll start with the miracles because well, that's the best part about being a missionary.
This was earlier in the week and we had just finished our assignment at EF desk (Eternal Families) and we were going to head downstairs but then remembered that we were all out of English Books of Mormon at the desk so we decided to walk over to West Gate to grab some to restock. Well on our way back I was carrying about 5 or 6 copies of the Book of Mormon, we said hello and walked past an older man and he stopped us and asked if we were carrying the Book of Mormon, he then went on to ask if he could have a copy. I wanted to about throw all of them at him to let him know they were all his I was that excited. That probably wouldn't have been the best approach. Thankfully I am a missionary and we don't act in that manner ;) We went ahead and talked with him about the Book of Mormon and how he found out about it. Turns out he just moved here from out of the country and was interested and wanted to learn more about the religion because he wasn't very familiar with it back home.And now we have a new investigator, crazy to think the Lord literally leads you to walk right into the people who are prepared for the gospel.
Another investigator we were able to get from chat this week. It was such an answer to prayer because recently we have only been getting trolls and antis on chats (the people who get online just to waist our time and then turn around and bash and yell at us). D, came online and explained that she had recently been able to invite Christ into her life and she was now studying the Bible. The hard thing was that there was a lot in it that she just didn't understand or was confused about. Which of course I completely understand, I feel like the Bible, without the Book of Mormon is a puzzle that is missing the middle pieces. She also shared with us that she had a fear of religion because she felt that men today interpret the Bible in their own ways and add in their own insights, but she was looking for some type of Bible study so that she could find out the truth for herself. her words were that she was 'thirsty for the truth'. Well the wonderful thing about the gospel is that we know exactly where the truth is. We were able to teach her the restoration and all about the Book of Mormon and it's purpose along side of the Bible. She accepted the invitation to read the Book of Mormon and to meet with us. We are calling her tomorrow to invite her to church and to meet with local missionaries.
The last miracle that I will share with you this week was Mich, she is a less active who was sitting on a bench at Temple Square. We stopped and starting talking with her, and I don't know if it was our smiles, the spirit, or everything all together but she just started opening up to us about some things. We wanted to show her God's Plan, she was hesitant at first but I can tell that the spirit told her that she needed to come with us. So we were able to take her through God's Plan and really have a lesson with her about the need to be patient for the Lord's promised blessings. I love being able to feel the spirit speak through me. I think that is one of my favorite things that I have learned to do since I have been out here. When we were evaluating afterwards we both shared how we knew that that entire lesson was done by the spirit. It was such a good experience for all of us. We asked if we could stay in contact to continue to help her with church and things and she was excited and so happy that we were able to do that. Yep we have the best mission ever.
We also almost got to teach an investigator lesson. So an investigator lesson is when a set of missionaries from a mission surrounding temple square wants to bring their investigator to have a tour. So we get to give them a lesson using the resources that we have on temple square. I was super excited, because of our crazy schedule we have only been able to have one so far. Well we were able to meet with the Elders and they shared with us about their investigators and what they were hoping would happen and what they wanted us to invite the investigators to do. Well when the Elders arrived they told us that their investigators was just finding a place to park and then they would be right in....a good 15 minutes later, we asked for about the third time if they were coming. The Elders called them and turns out that they went back home because they couldn't find a parking spot. Seriously so sad. I felt so bad for the elders, turns out this will be their third time rescheduling this lesson.
Though I didn't actually get to teach an investigator lesson I know I'll have a lot more opportunities to have them and I'm hoping that next transfer my schedule has a little more square time.
Thursday was outbound announcing day! Oh my goodness, the whole mission goes crazy. President let us know that because we have so many sisters coming and going, from the MTC/outbound/departing, that there is going to be a lot of changes this transfer. I do remember him saying the same thing last transfer, so I'm sure this is just a norm. I find out Monday morning who my next companion will be, my assignment/zone/district. So I am super excited, but wish I didn't have to wait till Monday. Oh and as for outbound, we did find out where my companion is going :D She has been called to serve in the New Jersey Morristown Mission. She leaves next week I cannot believe it. So crazy! We also learned that everyone in my apartment is leaving. Sister Bomgren and Sister Shih (Taiwan) are both going outbound and then Sister Yu (Hong Kong) is going home. So I have to figure out some exchanges for transfer day because they all leave early in the morning and I am unable to go to the airport with them. So right now our apartment is filled with suitcases and lots of boxes, and I'm just trying to stay out of the way.
Oh and before the outbound announcements were made President spoke to us on a few things that had been on his mind. They weren't related in any way so we just bounced from topic to topic. But one of the exciting, less spiritual things that he shared with us was that at Temple Square we do not celebrate Halloween. I'll admit, being a fan of that particular holiday I was a little sad for a second. However, he then shared with us that we will be closing the gates and the square at 5pm, as a mission we will have a big dinner together and then we will all get to go to the temple together. Yay. Best Halloween present ever, we get to go visit our Father's home.
So I do love you all and really appreciate all of the support. Something that I found in one of my personal studies was this poem that I absolutely love:
"How far is heaven?
It's not very far.
When you live close to God,
It's right where you are."

I really do love my mission, it really does teach you a lot of things, and I have really felt that as we strive to live close to God, to be like His Son, we really will live in a little piece of Heaven no matter where we are. I'll admit there are still days when I walk by the Temple and get so amazed that I get to serve near the Lord's house. Even better we get to visit often.

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