Hello from Omaha!
What a wonderful, humbling, beautiful week.
It was transfers this week, and thankfully i am still serving in Ralston La Vista! i absolutely love this ward, and i have found friends here that i know i will have forever. it is wonderful.
I do, however, have a new companion. It was definitely unexpected, and i was super sad to have sister Barton leave, but i am so incredibly grateful to now be serving with Sister Hamilton. She has been out a transfer longer than i have, she is from Layton Utah, and is one of the most amazing missionaries in the mission. i feel so honored to serve with her, i dont know how i got so lucky!
We are both now serving as the sister training leaders for the fully proselyting sisters, which is a huge, humbling, overwhelming responsibility. I am so grateful that the Lord trusts me, even when i feel so weak. I cannot wait to learn from the sisters i will be serving, and i know i will learn a LOT this transfer! sharp rocks at the bottom? bring it on :)
Thank you grandma Bonnie for the package! i hung grandpa's bicycle ornament on our tree at the trail center, so i get to look at every day :) it is a little piece of home that only i know about... ha it is wonderful! thank you again. and i put the fuzzy socks on right as i opened the package! they are perfect!! love you!
This was a great week, and i loved Thanksgiving!
We had lunch with that referral, Laura, that i told you about last week. She is a hoot. We laughed and talked and ate for a few hours, and i loved hearing her crazy stories. She is a friend of the Saufley's, and it is amazing to see what a huge influence there example has played on her life. Just through their membership in the church, Laura has totally dived in to learning all that she can about the church... and it is all because she respects the Saufley's so much, and "wonders" why they are so happy! We, as members of the church, are always being watched by others, and i am so grateful for those faithful members that leave such a great impact on others lives!
We had dinner with Latoya (non-member), her mother Elaine (member), and Latoya's three boys. They are from Georgia, and man. did we eat good! haha i have never seen so much food in my life. it was so much fun.. and it was a miracle. It has been so amazing to see how open Latoya has gotten, and how comfortable she now is with us and the church. She still isnt ready to completely jump in, but she is definitely a lot closer than she was a few months ago! i love seeing little baby steps of progress. i know she will eventually join, and it is fun to help her start out her journey to do so. her son, Lamont, who by the way has been attending seminary every day!, came to church on sunday! MIRACLE. i almost cried. great things are happening in their family.
So this week i have been thinking a lot about the pioneers. i think about them all the time, haha but ESPECIALLY this week. we had an incredible training on Saturday, where we were taken "on tour" around the gallery at the Trail Center by some of the sisters/senior couples. Something stuck out to me so strongly, and i wanted to share with you what i learned:
We were standing by the handcart, and Elder and Sister Williams were giving this part of the tour. They talked about the pioneers walking through the snow, barefoot, during the Christmas season. and it hit me SO hard that these pioneers didnt have anything. They didnt have shoes, coats, hats, gloves, sweatshirts, their families!.. ANYTHING. All that they had were their testimonies of the Savior, Jesus Christ. what were they thinking about that Christmas? were they thinking about the newest and greatest gadget they wanted? were they thinking about how many gifts they would receive? no. Their thoughts were solely on the Savior. They knew the real meaning of Christmas. they knew it so well that they were willing to DIE for the greatest gift we have ever received.. the Savior's gift of the atonement. I want to be like the pioneer's this Christmas. I hope you all can join with me, as we celebrate the true reason for the season.
there is my soap box for you. ha.
The past few weeks have been so wonderful at the Trail Center! there have been so many non members that have come in to see the gingerbread, and then have come upstairs to take a tour! i have seen countless miracles.. it is so exciting!
i took a tour just a few days ago with a couple, who were members, and they had brought another couple, who were not members (yet... the woman is getting baptized this saturday). It was amazing to see that 1. this member couple were being such great missionaries! and 2. that the non member couple were so touched by the pioneers story, that they left crying. i absolutely love to see that the influence of the pioneers can bless so many lives, and that one life can change the lives of hundreds! Just sharing the sacrifices of say Amy Porter, a pioneer mother who died at Winter Quarters, can bring the spirit strong enough to inspire someone to be baptized. ah. i love the pioneers. and i feel so blessed to serve at the Trail Center.
I love you all! I know that Christ lives, and i know that this is His church.. His ONLY church that has His authority and priesthood.
see a wonderful week this week!
Here are some fun pics :) Happy 9 months pregnant pictures! haha