Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Week 51: Pokemon Go?

Drink Pictures are the new rage.
Does everyone and their cat and dog at home play the new Pok√©mon Go game? Ha ha, it sounds like the weirdest game. Someone said people have been walking in the middle of the road and doing dumb stuff like that. I can't complain too much! Everyone is outside more and so we are able to contact and talk to a lot more people!!! Every missionaries dream! 

Elle and Sister Leininger on their bunk beds.
This last week we have had so many blessings, sometimes I wonder if I deserve them all. Ariana and Diana are doing so well and they are some of my favorite people to! We had a lesson with them earlier in the week and Sister Merket came with us. We did the brownie Restoration! One of my favorite lessons! They both loved it, we previously had taught Diana the Restoration and the Book of Mormon but Ariana was a little behind. What was so cool is that Diana was helping us explain things to Ariana!! YES! Then we were going to have a lesson later in the week and they called to cancel! They had a pipe in their bathroom break and so they were clearing out the bottom room so a guy could come and fix it. We ran over and helped them move things and then we talked about the Book of Mormon after.

Sunset in Lynnwood
I have grown to have such a strong testimony on the Book of Mormon! If you are ever having a hard time you need to ask yourself if you are reading from it daily. Diana said that something was troubling her and so she grabbed the Book of Mormon and she flipped it open to a random page and just started to read. One of the versus she read gave her the answer she needed. I don't know how it answered her problem or question but it did. She loves the book and that Heavenly Father really does answer us! We were so happy she had that experience because now her testimony on it is growing even bigger. We talked to them about baptism. They are going to pray about it and when they get back from vacation we will go from there! 

Elders Klein and Coppieters. Sister Leininger and Elle
 Saturday we went chalking again and it was awesome! It was a lot more successful. We did it as a district and because there was a lot more of us some of us could draw and the others could talk to people! We met some cool YSA aged people and some families. I even got to play some basketball with some kids! 

Relief Society was really good yesterday, the lesson was on the talk titled, "Do I believe?" by Bonnie L. Oscarson (Click Here to Read This Talk). I loved that talk so much! Sometimes I think I forget the difference between knowing something and believing it. I also think that sometimes we are scared to ask questions, or sometimes questions are frowned upon. But how else do we learn unless we question things. I think the most important part is what happens after we question something. We have to take what we learn and decide we want to have a better understanding. It’s when we don't care to learn or act on the things we learn that we get into trouble.

I am so thankful for my testimony and for the church. I love you all so much and hope that you have the most amazing week ever!

Elle says, "Elder Howlette made me some GF bread! This is
what happens when you spend time in the MTC with someone!"

Sleepy Elle

Afternoon temp. in Lynnwood, Washington on Monday

New apartment

Lets have a plan and do it

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Week 50: I am Staying!!!

Free slurpee day at 7-11
This last week has been a good week for us. With President Bonham leaving and President Wilding coming in it was the very fist week that we didn't have any additional meetings. It was a little weird but it was really good because that meant we were going to be able to spend a lot of time in our area that we normally don't get to. The weather was nice, we got to go out and proselyte a lot....what more could you ask for. 

For P-Day we got to go to the Church and play basketball and other games with some of the missionaries in our Zone, this was a lot of fun. I came out on my mission competitive and well nothing has changed in that aspect. I found I couldn’t really run or jog because I would start to get competitive. So I kind of just walked all over. Very boring but it was a lot of fun! Still a struggle....maybe I will be able to fix it a little bit before I go home! 

Personal scripture study
We went to go and visit a Less Active member. We parked the car and started to walk when we passed a garage sale. So we stop in and just walked around because everyone who was there we had never met before. It was a lot of fun because we were able to talk to a lot of people and come to find out the family that was holding the garage sale knew the person that we wanted to go and see. They were very kind and told us some of the hard things that had been happening in the neighbors life. But what was cool is that when we had just showed up the man who was in charge knew who we were and was super kind.  Fast forward a couple of hours we decided that we were going to go and pick up trash on 164th so that people could see the "Mormons" out doing some good! As we were picking up trash we passed the same guy that was at the garage sale! It was so cool, he thought what we were doing was very kind and Christ like!!! Planting and Harvesting!

Cammy our investigator is going awesome! We were able to teach her about the Book of Mormon and she loved it. She has been though a lot in her life and when I say a lot she has been everywhere and done everything. What is cool is that she is just trying to fix her life and figure out her purpose and the things she is suppose to do! She is ready for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and I am so grateful that I get to spend this time teaching her!

I read a talk by Sherri Dew called "Will You Engage in the Wrestle?" (Click Here to read this talk). I love this talk so much! She talks about so many things. She says, "We can only bear witness of what we know. We can't testify of a wish or a hope or even a belief. We can express a hope, a wish, or a belief. But we cannot stand as a witness of Jesus Christ unless we can bear witness of Him. We can defend the faith only if we have faith." She goes on to talk about how we are here at this time because our Heavenly Father chose us to be here now. That there is work to do and we are the ones who are going to be able to do it. She shares a story of two girls who had questions and didn't know if the church was true. She asked the first girl if she wanted to have a testimony of these things. She said yes and Sister Dew and so many other people helped her with that. The second girl on the other hand didn't care to know if these things were true. She teaches that it is good to have questions but it is important to look for the answer to those questions by going to the right sources. She says, " Champion wrestlers tell me that it isn't necessarily the strongest wrestler who wins. It is the wrestler who know how to leverage his strength to over power his opponent. Spiritual wrestling leverages the strength of true doctrine to overpower our weaknesses, our wavering faith, and our lack of knowledge. Spiritual wrestlers are seekers. They are men and women of faith who want to understand more than they presently do and who are serious about increasing the light and knowledge in their lives.....Growing spiritually and reviving answers to our questions depends upon our ability to feel, hear, and understand the whispering of the Spirit. It is work engaging in a spiritual wrestle to learn to receive personal revelation, because we can only know what is true when the Spirit bears witness to our hearts and minds as only the Holy Ghost can. Revelation must include both, because intellect alone cannot produce a testimony. You cannot think your way to conversion, because you cannot convince your mind of something your heart does not feel." I could go on all day! I encourage you to all read it because it is amazing. You can find the whole talk on BYUI web page. 

I get to stay with Sister Leininger here in Alderswood. We will just be moving appartments! #missionarylife

I love you all and I hope that you have a great week! 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Week 49: So it's July and I'm Still Wearing Sweaters!

This last week was so awesome! At the time of everything that was happening I was so worried and I thought that nothing was going to go right. I look back now and realize that Heavenly Father had his hand in everything and that he made sure that everything went how it was supposed to. 

Monday with the 4th of July was awesome! We went bowling and out to eat and then later that night we went and had a BBQ with Diana and Ariana our investigators! It was awesome and a lot of fun. We were able to meet her husband and her oldest daughter. We spent the evening with them and about half way through they had some friends come and join us. By the end of the night and the time that we had to leave we were the only members there!!! It was so awesome, we shared a scripture with them before we left and said a prayer and they were all very nice about it and told us that we need to do this again! I count that for a win!

We were able to go and share the Book of Mormon with Diana the next day and she loved it. I think one of the biggest sellers is that it is about the Native American heritage...and well she is Native American. So it was really cool for her to be able to read about her people and she was telling us about how there are some Native American stories that pretty much talk about the Book of Mormon in a roundabout way...I thought that was really cool! 

We went and did a couple blitzes with some of the Sisters that we get to serve this last week and it was a lot of fun. They normally consist of us going door to door, but it is so much fun to be able to talk with them about all the cool things that happened and they are so much more excited to be able to go and visit those people. On the flip side of that we also had to go and help some companionship's with having a comp. inventory.... As effective as they are they are so awkward at the very beginning. They sit there and they don't want to voice their opinion in fear of hurting their companion’s feelings. I think the problem is that they wait until the very last straw and then the just blow and they still don't talk openly with their companion. Thinking that they can just wait it out. That is not true; the spirit is not with you when there is contention in a relationship. I think that this goes with friends, companions, husbands, wife’s...all of it. If you have a problem with someone PLEASE just talk it out and don't be dumb and let it just sit there. 

MLC was on Thursday and it was awesome! President and Sister Wilding are so amazing and they love us and have our and this mission’s best interest in mind. It has been so cool how the spirit every time I am with them testifies of that to me. I cannot deny the things that I know to be true. We learned about teaching repentance and we were really excited to be able to apply the things that we were learning. Sister Leininger and I were going to be able to apply it the very next day with Caesar. We taught it and it resulted in us dropping him....yep, Right now is just not his time but I am excited for him to be able to make convents with Heavenly Father one day! 

Saturday Ariana and Diana went to a baptism with us and it was amazing. We had an appointment set up with them for Thursday and it kept getting bumped back and finally she just canceled. We were so sad we were going to take Sister Merket was going to come with us. So we were working on our area book and we get a text from Diana that said, "We got back sooner than we thought. Would you still like to go to the baptism with us?" Well YES of course. We ran over to her house went to the baptism and they loved it. Then they came to church yesterday and they kept telling us how it was so much better than the Catholic and Presbyterian Church's that they have been to. They are so excited to come back and be a part of the ward and go to Activity Days and all of the other cool things that they church does!

I love the Church so much and am so grateful for all of the blessings that I have been able to recognize. I am grateful for Joseph Smith and the fact that he asked a question. I love that because he asked a question we are able to have the true church on the earth today. It also shows that it is okay for us to ask questions and always be learning something new. I have also been reading all of the General Conference talks from this last conference and one that I have liked a lot is 'Be thou Humble' everyone should read it!

Keep reading your scriptures and saying your prayers! I love you all so much, have a great week!

Friday, July 8, 2016

Week 48: Crazy! Still No Time!

Elle Celebrating her 20th birthday

This last week has been full of so many different things. We said goodbye to President and Sister Bonham and have been able to welcome President and Sister Wilding. I was a little apprehensive at first and was worried about getting a new Mission President half way through my mission. It was been such a good thing so far. We had the Rolling Conference for the Bonham’s Wednesday and said goodbye and we were all sad. 

Elle, Sister Wilding, and Sister Leininger

Thursday Sister Leininger and I got to meet Sister Wilding, she came out and worked with us on her fist night here. I felt so honored and was grateful that I had the chance to be one of the first people to meet her. She is so cute and is already an amazing missionary! She went and talked everyone that we saw and did so good in the lessons. I have a lot to learn from her.

On Friday and Saturday the Wildings went around the entire mission meeting all of the missionaries by zone. The Lynnwood Zone was on Saturday, our last one and it was amazing. I am so grateful that I am going to have the chance to be able to learn from two Mission Presidents and to be able to apply the things that they teach me.

Elle and Sister Deaver

Tuesday we had exchanges and I got to spend the time with Sister Deaver. She is a very good missionary and it is hard to be able to get her to open up and have a good conversation sometimes and so we just had fun and we were able to go and help her investigator Roberta (the one who wants my hair) with her garden. The Elders came and helped and that was awesome!

Elle at her birthday dinner with the Mergens.

I had an awesome Birthday and am so grateful for my Companion, the Members, President and Sister Wilding (who called me and sang happy birthday) and for my family. Everyone made it the best day ever and there were so many good surprises. For the last 11 months I have been thinking about everyone but myself and it was so weird for a couple of hours for it to be about me....I don't know how I feel about that. But it was truly a Birthday that I am never going to forget and might have been the best Birthday that I have had.

Happy Birthday Elle

Sunday was a nice surprise, Diana our investigator came to church and she was only able to stay for sacrament meeting but she loved it. She has seizures and she was starting to get the symptoms and so she had to leave and ended up going to the clinic. Luckily that didn't scare her away and she is planning on bringing her entire family next week.

Camy our other investigator is so amazing we had a miracle. We went to her house looking for her and she wasn't home so we thought we would go and try this other person that we have wanted to get a hold of and there was Camy, sitting on her couch! It was the weirdest thing in the world. We were able to teach her the first lesson, she wants to know more about the Book of Mormon and her purpose and life and what she is supposed to do. She has even had some Anti thrown at her and she told them they were wrong and that they should come listen with her so that they can get their facts right. She is amazing and I am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to meet her.

Elle and Roberts

The 4th was awesome we went to Buffalo Wild Wings, Bowling and the Mall and then wrote letters in our Moomoos! What more could you ask for! I love Lynnwood so much and don't want to be anywhere else!

I love you all and hope that you have a great week!-- 

Elle's birthday cake
A P-Day visit to Boeing
Sister Merket who helped Elle and Sister Meininger
Put together the BoHam's goodbye present from the mission
Elle's favorite gas station, see the name?
Yard art
P-day at Boeing
At Robert's with Elder Howell. Quabalio, and Sister Deaver
Elle and Roberta
Yard art
The Mergen's
Elle and Gentry Mergen's