Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Best Birthday Ever!

Hola Familia!~
Elder Larkin was in my MTC Zone....pretty sure at least.  Ask him if he remembers me, and send me a picture of him to see if I recognize him.  There were quite a few elders in the district right under us that went to Kennewick.
So lately I've been feeling kinda down...don't know why...Stacey says it's stress, and she's prolly right.  I just don't know how to be less stressed when there are soles to save and you're trying so stinking hard to figure out what you can say that will help them realize that this is it and there is no other way save by Jesus Christ, and we're the only one's with the authority to baptize and perform other saving ordinances in His name.

Also I've just been thinking about how I'm not perfect, but it seems like all the really good missionaries there ever were, were perfect and they made no mistakes.  I know that's not true, but sometimes it seems like that.  I know that I can turn to Christ, that's what I've been doing... alot...and it does help.  I just hope that He'll be there for a long time yet!  I read Elder Hollands talk "And None Were With Him" from GC April 2009 this morning, and wow!  So good!  I remember I didn't really like it when he gave it, but since then it has brought so much more meaning now that I’m really learning about the Atonement.
I have realized recently that God really is in charge of this work.  There have been a few times when I'm about ready to give up on someone, or not go see them, then something happens and I end up with a renewed fire to teach them and baptize them.   This happens with less active members too.  I don't really see a need to go see them, but we do because all of our appointments have fallen through and it's not a good tracting time, and while at their home I see how much it would help their family to go visit them every other week or so.  I've really learned to follow God in all ways, His ways are the only ways.
Okay, my crazy week will be told by pictures.  So enjoy!  and read them from when I send them...
Thursday was Zone conference.  It was good, I got to see a lot of people who I haven't seen in awhile, Sister Daley and Sorenson, Elder Vicars, Shippen, Jankawiz...something like that .  It was cool.  Sister Doll told us that she's going to come down to Renssy to spend a day with us going to appointments and what not!  That'll be fun!
After Zone conference Elder Anderson went to go fill up our new Fusion with gas.  In the meantime, I called Kim, cuz he had called during zone conference.  So I called him and he said the words that I dreaded.  He wasn't going to be baptized.

I of course started crying.  I did't care that anyone saw me when they passed.  I talked to him for A LONG TIME about everything.  About how as missionaries we focus on the law because that's how we know they are ready for baptism, if they show their faith by living the law.  I shared with him the scripture in 2 Nephi 25:23, and told him that Satan was working on him.  I told him that when we are at war we want to know everything about our enemy, what their weaknesses are, what their goal is, what their plan is, so that we can be ready when they attack.  And are we not in a spiritual warfare?  Shouldn't we know everything about how Satan will attack us?  That was the Spirit speaking, because he didn't argue with me.  I know when the Spirit speaks because the people don't argue back or anything, it either makes sense or they got no ammo.  It's great!  My problem is that I want to speak by the power of the Holy Ghost ALL THE TIME.
In the end Kim said he would be baptized.  I was so spiritually exhausted!  Meetings from 9-3, now this phone I got up at 5 that morning so we could make it to Joliet on time...and I was driving in rain and traffic the whole way...Chicago traffic...sorry, I should count my blessings instead of naming off all the bad things...still I was EXHAUSTED!
We were the last missionaries there, and I asked President Doll to give me a blessing.  He talked with me a long time about these kind of experiences and gave me reassurance.  I still didn't feel it, and didn't until the next morning.  I was so worried that I hadn’t done the right thing in persuading Kim to be baptized.  What if he wasn't ready?  So Friday morning I prayed and prayed (we were supposed to meet with him that night).  I was so worried, but after awhile a calm came over me and I didn't want to get off my knees.  But I did, and the chapter I read in the BOM that morning was perfect for me at that time.
That night Elder Dearinger taught him more and interviewed Kim.  I think that really changed him and when we left he seemed ready for his baptism, and I didn't second guess myself.
The night ended fun with the elders stealing Sister Mondelli's shoe and "hiding" it on top of our car...dumb!  But whatever!
Then the next day Kim was baptized!  I gave the talk on baptism.  Don't really remember what I said...something about keeping our covenants.  People said it was good...but I'm not sure it was. 

After he was confirmed, oh man he was a different person!  He LOOKED different!  And he got a whole bunch of tithing slips!  It was awesome!  I was so excited for him!  It was the best birthday present ever!  Just the change in the way his eyes looked.  The Holy Ghost does wonders!  I saw a difference in Jose, and now Kim!
I really can't describe the joy I felt in watching Kim being confirmed, in talking with him afterwards and in watching him conversing with the members!  I loved it!

My 22nd birthday was the best!
A new car that runs so nice and smells so good!
The packages I received.  Saydi sent me the cutest elephant socks!  And the cake Sister Cameron made was amazing!  It had the cutest elephants on it!  Sister missionary elephants!  I'm the fat one sitting down :)  They made me wear a hat too...funny.  I have more pics don't worry.

That's Emma with me.  Just the feeling of that day was so good!  I couldn't have been happier!  I think Kim really made that day though.
You mentioned about the storms.  Mom, we have so many storms I don't remember them.  We went running in one on Monday...well when we left it was just sprinkling...we hardly got wet.  .6 miles down the road it started raining.  We turned around and 30 seconds later we were soaked, by the time we were 100ft from the apartment the wind started to pick up, and then the lightening and thunder.  A car by our apartment caught on was neat.
Sister Stacey made us pancakes that morning!  I LOVE her pancakes!  So yeah, good birthday! 
I love you all and thanks for helping to make my birthday wonderful! 
Good things are happening here!  3 on date!  :)
Sister Oslter

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