Monday, June 16, 2014

Time to OWN it

I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!! This. is. the. DREAM. LIFE. and honestly I feel like I am seeing more miracles than I have ever seen in my entire mission in these past few days. God is literally crafting the perfect end to this mission so that I come out stronger. NOTHING SHINES UNLESS IT BURNS FIRST. I am in love with this mission and these people and this place, I couldn't ask for more. Seriously. But, I just want to stay here forever. and ever. and ever. :)

Transfers happened! I AM SO EXCITED HAPPY AND PUMPED!!! GUESS WHAT?!  I literally can't stop smiling I am so happy!! This is going to be the BEST transfer EVER!!!  I am "Pink-washing" the Bella Vista ward! Pink washing is when President Riggs takes out the Elders that where serving in that area and he puts in sisters. I will be spending all of my time in downtown Arlington, preaching the gospel of the Lord. WHAT A BLAST AND BLESSING! I couldn't ask for a better way to end my mission. Re-starting an area and helping an area that has really been struggling to get some baptisms!! It's the dream!! My new companion is Hermana Moore, from Utah. She really is a wonderful young woman, and we are going to set this place ON FIRE. I literally asked President Riggs if I could open an area and it actually HAPPENED! YES! I will still be serving as a sister training leader, and also training Hermana Moore on how to be a sister training leader. She is a hoot and she is my dream team mate! I'm excited to work with her! 

So we are starting over from square one. IT IS AWESOME! God has given me a chance to start COMPLETELY over, and apply everything I've learned over the past 17 months. No investigators, no member relationships, no knowledge of the area...nothing, CLEAN SLATE. And now it's like I am able to apply everything that I have learned on my mission up to this point!! What an opportunity!!! It is a HUGE adventure and I can't explain to you how much FUN we are having. It's like going on a roller coaster and not knowing what is around the next corner and just taking it all in! It is such an adventure and seriously, we are relying on the Lord in every minute of everyday because we have no idea what we are doing, but God is literally helping us to climb mountains and see miracles. We are diving in HEAD FIRST and it has been an absolute blast to see and feel the strength of the Lord carrying me and my companion so that we will be able to have success and see miracles. Just when I think I can't, I kneel. And pray, and then God opens up like 10 windows of opportunity. I love seeing the ways that the Lord is perfect orchestrating this area and helping us to develop a love for these people. Honestly we have seen miracles after miracles. Bella Vista was the ward I served in for 2 weeks at the beginning of my time here in DC. So, I am able to recognize faces, but mostly we are just starting completely over and helping the members catch the vision. WE ARE CHARGED UP AND READY TO SET THIS PLACE ON FIRE!!!! I can't even wait to see what happens in this area over the next six weeks. It is like this nervous, stressful, intense feeling of urgency and happiness that I wish I could explain to you. All I know is that the Lord is guiding our every footstep. For that I am so grateful. Without the Lord I literally would be nothing. GROWTH NEVER HAPPENS INSIDE OF THE COMFORT ZONE---God is a God of growth and a God of change, so he is consistently throwing us out of our comfort zones, so that we can become the absolute best people that we possibly can be. That is what I asked for and that is what he is doing! I love it! 

TRANSFER VISION: TO OWN IT. Own the area. OWN the investigators. OWN the members. It is time to OWN it. Not a second to waste. :)

As we have been praying about what we could teach these people and what we could achieve this transfer, I got really excited. This truly will be the best transfer of my mission, because God has in store for us so many miracles and so many people that are ready to hear the gospel. I AM READY TO RUN!! I told Hermana Moore that I want her to send me home in an ambulance because I want to feel like I have given EVERYTHING to this work, and have completely submitted my will to the will of the father and have truly become ALL HIS. That is the beauty of a mission. Any one that is reading this and thinking about going on a mission, don't think is the best decision I have ever made. I have changed. My very nature has changed and I have morphed into someone who loves the gospel and loves life. But most importantly, I have gotten to know my Savior Jesus Christ. 

The first night here was like anxiously waiting a new Harry Potter movie. I AM SO SO SO SO SO SO stoked to be here. I have dreamed of doing this my entire mission!! As we sat there praying about what God's vision is for our area and this transfer, we called Danny Montoya. He is a member here in the ward that has truly changed my life and allowed me to see others through the eyes of my Savior Jesus Christ. I called him to tell him that we are back in the ward, and he began to cry. "The Lord sent you two to change our ward. We needed you back. What a miracle." Whoa. I can't stop smiling and it is starting to hurt. It is a beautiful thing. Can I just tell you that miracles are happening right and left? Listen to this.....

On our first full day here MIRACLES SPREAD like a wild zoo of amazing monkeys. We felt inspired to visit the Riley Family from El Salvador. Well, guess what? We called them ahead of time and we came to their house and they had an investigator there for us to teach!! WHAT A MIRACLE! Seriously! His name is Christian and he just came from El Salvador 2 days ago!!!!! BINGO! BONUS! Heavenly Father led us to a place that we would literally be able to teach a member-present lesson and get a new investigator! I just smiled. Turns out, Christian didn't want anything to do with God 2 years ago. But, after crossing the border and having to rely solely upon the merits of Jesus Christ, he has gained a desire to come closer to Christ. Whats more, is that he is the cousin of one of the ward members. He is one of the most prepared people that I have ever seen and we are SO excited to work with him. AND GET THIS!!! He came to church on Sunday, and He also came to the baptism afterwards! He loved it all! He went out and bought a suit, just to come to church! It looked really nice! We are going to teach him IN the member's house tonight! I know that he is going to get baptized in just a short amount of time! I am so stoked! We prayed to be led to the elect and see miracles, and God responded---the same day. God doesn't always work like that, but I know that all prayers always go answered in the exact way that they are supposed to be answered...if we just submit to His will. 

Another miracle! We were tracting some apartment complexes in Arlington and we were headed one way, when I felt super strongly to walk another way. So we went with haste! There at the top of the hill was a bunch of moms chatting. We started talking to them and explained who we are as representatives of the Lord Jesus Christ. They were all kind to us, but one of them, Vicky, was particularly interested. She started firing us with questions and she told us that she is a member of the church!!! WAHOOOO!! MIRACLE!! She said that she was baptized 20 years ago....and has always wanted to come back to the church, but hasn't been able to find it anywhere. What a miracle! She started to cry as she told us that her two small children are being raised without a spiritual guide, and she so desperately wants us to help them to have that. Her husband is not a member, so we will be baptizing him as well. :) What a miracle! God literally guided us to where we needed to be. 

ONE OF THE COOLEST MIRACLES I HAVE EVER SEEN ON MY MISSION: Benjamin. He is such a prepared child of God!! Get this: So we were walking down the street and there was a man at a bus stop--his name is Benjamin. We started talking about his life and why he is here. He was so interested. Suddenly, I was prompted to ask him, "If Jesus Christ was right here with you today, what would you ask Him?" His face became pensive. He asked, "How do I develop peace in this life?" PERFECT QUESTION OF THE SOUL! Since Preach my Gospel and the Book of Mormon have literally become my best friends here on the mission, I turned to Mosiah 2. THIS WAS A PERFECT EXAMPLE of how if we prepare ourselves, and treasure up the words of life continually, God will put the words that we need to say in our mouths so that we can help people come unto Jesus Christ. That is exactly what happened. I had no idea what to say, but suddenly I found myself turning to some obscure verse in the Book of Mosiah. There in the scripture it talked about how "finding peace comes from finding the path of eternal life"!!! WHAT?! AWESOME! We have that as missionaries. I wish you could have seen Benjamin's face after we read that to him. The Spirit of the Lord answered his question and filled his soul. Not only does he want to learn now but he wants us to come teach his ENTIRE family. Also---King BENJAMIN was the one who said the quote in the scriptures. Coincidence? I think not. God is so amazing, and his timing is absolutely perfect.

Also! That same day, we prayed to know what building to knock. A picture came into my mind. Whoa. We went there. We taught one of the most powerful first lessons that I had ever seen on my mission! One of them said, "What is the feeling of sheer joy and happiness?" We said, "That is the Spirit." He wants to get baptized. INCREDIBLE. 

I feel new. and all I crave is the Spirit. It is a beautiful thing. I am so grateful to be here right now. Christ is my strength and who I hope to give ALL my glory to. 

It has really been incredible to see some of these people that I haven't seen for over a year. It has caused me to do a LOT of reflecting upon the woman that I am becoming and the woman I still have yet to become. Seeing how my life has changed and how the lives of these people has changed is truly incredible. I am so grateful for the people that I have met and been able to see how they have been turning points for me and have allowed me to become more than I ever thought I could on my own! The Lord is helping me learn everyone's name quickly, and we are trying hard to get the members on board with us FIRST so that we can teach their friends and help them and train them to be better missionaries! I hope all of you are taking time to study preach my gospel and learn about how YOU are a missionary but the way you live and the way you act. 

Thank you so much for you love, support, emails and letters. God helps us to find out who we truly are and shows us what we can become. But He also shows us and helps us to see that everyone around us is also a child of God with infinite potential. Never forget WHO you are and WHAT you are. And remember, God only works with broken, humble things. He can't work with us if we are being too stubborn and hard of heart. But he can work with us if we are soft and broken. So, be a little more broken. It is cool what happens. WE ARE READY TO TAKE THIS AREA AND SET IT ON FIRE!!! it is well on its way! 


Hermana Weenig

Hermana Moore and I with a new family that we are teaching that is a part member family! AMAZING people!

 Campos clan, I love these guys.  Going to miss them!

I will also miss Hno. Delafuente, the best ward mission leader EVER!
We got in a car accident -- a man backed into us! SAD!

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