Tuesday, April 23, 2013

An Incredible Week!

This week was incredible and i cant wait to tell you about it! thank you again as always for your prayers! Prayer is REAL! it is amazing how Heavenly Father knows us each PERSONALLY. i love Him. and i am so grateful for the miracles and blessings he seems to pour on me each day.
so have i already said that this week was amazing?! haha it was so great. SO many miracles happened this week it was INSANE. so lets start.
Tuesday: So every transfer our Trail Center leaders do mini exchanges with the sisters, where they come with us to our area from 3-9. I was put with Sister Jasper, who is an INCREDIBLE missionary. She has been on her mission for a year, and has been a Trail Center leader for almost half of it. she is amazing. I was definitely nervous going with her, haha but right as we started planning for our lessons the spirit was so strong and i knew that it would be an amazing day. We started off by going and visiting a boy named Ruben. (sorry in advance if i have already told you about these people! the days are a blur here so i forget who i have written about!) Ruben is 9. His mom is a member and his dad isnt. it is so sad because his dad said that he could get baptized once he turned 9, but now that he is 9 his dad has still not let him get baptized. Ruben is amazing. the smartest 9 year old i have ever met. We did a little visual aid/example thing for him that he LOVED. You use pepper, water, and soap. The pepper represents sins, and then when you put the water on your finger the pepper all separates. anyway. kids love it. 
So we showed him that and he and his two other brothers thought it was the coolest thing ever. it made me excited to teach elementary school when i get back. i love teaching. ah it was so fun. So after we visited with Ruben, we went to a less actives house. They are the Freemans, and they are awesome. I had never met them, so we had no idea what to expect. They talked about how they want to come back to church and how the temple is there goal! we are going to start working with them this week, ah they are awesome! It was amazing because in this lesson, sister jasper and i were completely teaching by the spirit. she would say something that i was thinking, and i would say something that she was thinking. more than ever i could really feel like the spirit was completely teaching and i was just moving my mouth! ha it was incredible.
Friday: Today we had MORE exchanges! ha talk about stressful/exciting! I was with a sister named sister Jensen. Rewind a little bit: so in exchanges they come to MY area... so i had to know where everything was/where everyone lives/who everyone was because the sister i am with has never been there before! it is crazy, but really fun as well. and miracles happen! so with sister jensen we first visited sister webb. oh my goodness. that woman is COMPLETELY different. the atonement is AMAZING. 
She talked to us all about how she really felt prompted to read her scriptures the other day, and couldnt put them down so she read for a couple of HOURS! haha i seriously almost screamed. just 3 or 4 weeks ago she hadnt even read the scriptures in years. So she has been reading her scriptures every day, prays several times a day, AND she said "you know, i really feel like i need to be serving other people more. i told my husband that i am going to start cooking meals more and cleaning the house". my jaw dropped. she has really bad depression/health issues and so even getting out of her chair is a struggle. but seriously, the atonement of Jesus Christ can CHANGE you physically, spiritually, mentally, emotionally. you name it. ah it was amazing to see the difference in her.
After we visited sister webb, we went over to Ty and Troy's. I know i have told you about them but i cant remember what i have said. So we basically stopped teaching them about a week and a half ago because they werent progressing (going to church, reading scriptures, or keeping any of the commitments we had left them). But, we invited them to the baptism last week that we had and they came and LOVED it! i think i already told you that... haha but it was incredible and it was the game changer. 
So on exchanges on friday we visited them, and did the pepper, water, soap analogy trying to help Ty stay focused haha. she has super bad ADD so keeping her focused for two minutes is hard. BUT, as we taught the lesson, she was totally into it, answering every question, and even just thinking about it now is making me shocked! haha. Troy, her dad, had downloaded the LDS scriptures app on his phone and was in awe of it. They have been reading their scriptures EVERY NIGHT this week and PRAYING EVERY NIGHT!!!?! i literally almost screamed. haha. troy has started to really be a good example to his daughter and it has made the world of difference. It is incredible and amazing and ahhh. i love missionary work. ha. So even crazier though, is their friend Amanda was over at the house during the lesson, and now she wants to learn more because troy invited her! it was just one more testament of when we are converted (or even starting to be converted!) to the gospel, we want to share it. So now we are teaching Amanda. haha. miracles exist.
Saturday: We invited Troy, Ty, Amanda, and a member's family to come to the Trail Center to watch the Testaments. Amanda especially felt super uncomfortable at first, im sure just because the spirit is so strong in the trail center. But we watched the Testaments, and EVERYONE, mostly Amanda, were in tears at the end. The spirit was tangible and insane. I was able to bear testimony to them of the power of the atonement, and the reality and truthfulness of the book of mormon. Amanda LOVED the video and is wanting still to learn more. ahh. Also, tonight was so incredible because it really was so perfect to have a family of members there. Members at lessons make ALL the difference. seriously. the investigators are able to see a "normal" family (not missionaries haha) who are living the gospel and who are happy. i love having members do missionary work, and truly were the reason that everything went so well tonight. It was so awesome.
Sunday: where do i even begin with sunday?!? today was one of the best days of my mission so far. it is amazing because on a mission nothing is about you. ha. it is hard to adjust to, but at the same time i have loved it. Even church isnt about what you want and about helping yourself. i am on edge every sunday: worried about what the speakers will say because we have investigators there haha, or constantly checking the door to see if our investigators/less actives will come! it is always a stressful day, but ALWAYS the best day as well. So today. drum roll.... We had EVERY single one of our investigators AND less active members at church!!!?!?! hahaha i am tearing up just writing about it. the Lord is so good to us. There is nothing better than seeing an investigator or less active come through the doors of the church. because, you know that by having them at church they will come closer to christ.. and that is the best thing that anyone could do! So we had Ruben, HIS DAD!! (his dad decided that he wanted to check out the whole "mormon" thing?!?! haha that doesnt just happen...), Troy!, TY!, Sister webb, Sister Duncan (a less active we are working with right now who is trying to get back to the temple!), the Bains, the Meadows, and the Lakes Dad named Desmond (investigating the church). it was absolutely incredible.

i dont want you to think that i am telling you these things because it was what i did and i am proud.. because really it wasnt me AT ALL. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church on earth, and THAT is why these people came to church. The atonement of Jesus Christ makes us HAPPY. and that is why people want to change, and that is why they keep listening to sister whittaker and i teach them. This gospel is true. i cant say it enough.
Fun Facts:
1. there are thunder storms here every night! they are CRAZY (remember nauvoo?!) and i have grown to love them.
2. there are Black squirrels here. see pictures.
3. Check out the facebook page NOM-nebraska omaha mission. Our presidents wife/senior couples attach pictures and updates of the mission!
4. omaha nebraska is ranked 17th in the country for bed bugs! i didnt even know those existed, but they are a serious deal here. "dont let the bed bugs bite" is legit! yikes!

I am so grateful to be here. If i came home today i would be a completely better person than i was. i cant wait to see what the next 16 months bring. :)
i love you all so very much and miss you all. but this work is so great and i LOVE it!
Sister Lauren

 Amazing Black Squirrels that are everywhere

Having fun eating Ice Cream

No comments:

Post a Comment