It’s been another week full of challenges and lessons to try and learn.
I forgot to share last week that I was able to meet Myriam (who was baptized last January). She was visiting Salt Lake City & of course stopped by Temple Square to meet me. She’s sooooo sweet. Wrote me the most tender card. She’s thinking about serving a mission! Wooohooo. Talked to her bishop about it and everything.
Carlos was able to participate in the Cultural Celebration for the dedication of the Phoenix AZ Temple. His brother Ricardo (the one he baptized) even got a high five from President Monson. Pretty cool!
From my journal on Sunday:
I got to attend John’s baptism. Sister Marsh & I met him together our first time in the Swahili ward. He’s so sweet & awesome. I was very grateful to be able to go and see my Swahili family again! I always LOVE it there. Every time I see someone enter the waters of baptism my heart feels so peaceful. President said as John was lifted out of the water “That’s a happy sound.” It just strengthens my testimony in the priesthood and the power that is held in the Church.
I truly do know that we have the authority to baptize in the way that is approved by God. I know Heavenly Father is so proud of John and his decision to enter in the waters of baptism to become a member of Gods true church here on earth. The spirit was ever so present as he made this essential step. Sister Burton gave the talk on the Holy Ghost and at the end she read a letter Peter (John's friend that is serving a mission now) wrote to John. It made my eyes get all watery. The love that is in that ward is so strong. Peter bore his testimony about how much God loved John and how grateful he was that John decided to be baptized. He talked about how he has never regretted the decision he’s made to be baptized with Gods authority. I was so grateful that President also came to the baptism, I thought that was really sweet of him to take out time from his busy day to come and support John. He truly does care for his Sisters so much and always goes out of his way to make sure we know it and to make sure we know that he’s proud of the work we’re doing.
We also got to attend Savior of The World. I love that production so much. If any of you have the opportunity to go, you should. It builds my testimony on the Savior every time as it teaches us of the most monumental times of his life, his birth & resurrection. It is literally like living scripture. It touches on so many principles of the gospel, obedience, love, service. I am grateful to be a disciple of my Savior Jesus Christ.
For Relief Society this week Clayton Christensen came and spoke to us. If you don’t know who that is. So check this out: In 2011 in a poll of thousands of executives, consultants and business school professors, Christensen was named as the most influential business thinker in the world. He’s also the author of “The Power of Everyday Missionaries” (great book, highly recommend it!). Anyways, as you can see it was an amazing privilege to have him come speak to us. Another evidence of how much President Poulsen LOVES us (he’s got the hook ups). He spoke to us about how important it is for a society to have religion at it's base because then everything falls into place. He also talked about how essential the Book of Mormon is in answering our investigators questions! The spirit was soooo strong and it was a really good meeting. His wife also spoke and something she said really hit me "I am grateful to have married someone who never left the mission field" because Brother Christensen is so missionary centered in every thing he does. That's definitely a goal for me!
I mentioned that there was some “awfuls” to my week. Well, without getting into too much detail and sharing too much personal information. Things have been more than tough with Sister Jarrett. She’s struggling REALLY bad with depression and some other issues. I’ll be totally honest, it’s really hard for me. Negativity and pessimism is like the DEVIL to me. Those truly are the tools he uses against us. I’m learning that those things over take everything, literally consume you. Really they do… our thoughts, our desires, and when those things are affected it goes into our actions. So I’m just trying to do what I can with trying to teach her obedience out of love for our Savior not just because “we’re supposed to”. And trying to give her crazy motivation since she only has 3 weeks left of her mission. I found a quote the other day and it really resonated with me
“On this mortal journey we must never think that our choices affect only us.” –Larry S. Kacher.
Especially as a missionary when you’re surrounded by someone 24/7 except in the shower (that’s celestial time for sure). I know that I’m never supposed to let someone else determine my happiness, but it’s hard to just go about missionary work on your own when your companion is on their own planet. So like I said, learning and growing every day. Sister Hansen doesn't have patience for irrational thinking and actions! Haha. Trying to learn it though.
There’s my week full of Lovelies and Awfuls. At least I’m still always able to see things I’m thankful for. Let’s all remember what great blessings we’ve been given this week with Thanksgiving coming up… even though I know we all go through some awfuls every once in a while there’s ALWAYS something to be thankful for.
Love you all,