Tuesday, June 17, 2014

June is Busting Out All Over 6.2.14

Dear Family,
I love hearing about your adventures!! It's so fun to hear about what you're doing! I am glad that everyone survived Gualala and that the weather cooperated. Truthfully, I was expecting to hear something about someone missing some eyebrows what with last years experiments with white gas. I'm glad everyone came back intact.
Where to start on this week?? Memorial day was awesome! We had a WONDERFUL ward picnic. There were a lot of faces I didn't recognize and I got to meet a lot of people. The ward did a great job and everyone had fun! I don't know who was more weirded out about us being in our P-Day clothes at a church function: the ward members or Sister Richardson. Either way it was great to enjoy the sun and have a ward picnic.
We had quite a busy week doing service. Everyone in Michigan has yard work that needs to be done and thankfully Mom and Dad taught me how to pull weeds and work in the yard. On Tuesday, we were out knocking on a street and came across a Romanian woman pruning her 8 foot tall bushes. She was 5'4". So we ran over and offered some help. She put us right to work! We spent the next hour pruning her bushes. It was so fun! I got to talk to her about Eastern Europe which was really enjoyable for me. She attends an Orthodox church out here and she's heard about Mormons. She wasn't too interested in learning more but we really enjoyed leaving a good impression. On Thursday we went out to a less active member's house and weeded her forest. Yes, FOREST. She has two acres of trees and wild things and we helped her weed out the garlic mustard that was growing there. Garlic mustard smells DELICIOUS. The more we plucked it, the more I wanted guacamole. I learned from that experience that service opens doors. And it's a great way to talk to people about church without staring them down haha. On Friday, we donned our work clothes again and walked to another house to do some service only that when we got there she had forgotten and wasn't there. So we called an older lady in our ward that lived by us and asked her if we could do some yard work for her. Thirty minutes later we were pulling maple tree seedlings from her flower beds. I wish I had had this zeal for yard work as a child! I think Mom would have appreciated it, too. Service is a great way to soften people and show our love for them. I read Elder Rasband's talk about "The Joyful Burden of Discipleship" and he puts it beautifully: "Focusing on serving our brothers and sisters can guide us to make divine decisions in our daily lives and prepares us to value and love what the Lord loves." You want to become more like Heavenly Father? Serve His children! Pure religion is service! (See James 1:27)
We started teaching a new woman this past week. Her name is Patricia. She's from Jamaica and her husband is from Africa. Pat was introduced to the Gospel by a member of our ward. Pat is an incredible, incredible woman. Her husband was diagnosed in February with Stage IV cancer. Sadly, they haven't been able to locate the source of the cancer because it is so widespread. I can't imagine what Pat and her family have been going through but Pat is nothing but love and charity for others. We taught Pat the Plan of Salvation and she loved that Heavenly Father has prepared three kingdoms for His children. She says it shows His love for us. Sister Richardson and I feel so blessed to be teaching her. She told us something that has really impressed me. She said, "The other women would say they are Christan but would do other things. With Lisa, she didn't have to tell me she was Christian because I saw the way she and her family lived." I hope that I can be that example one day. I am so grateful for members around the world who "preach the gospel always [and] use words when necessary". True to the Faith says, "The most powerful missionary message you can send is your own example of living a happy Latter-day Saint life." SO COOL. And now we have a solid investigator because of it! The only kink in this tale is that Pat's son Spencer who's an attorney-turning-doctor told her not to join anything before he gets a chance to talk to us. So please pray for us.
And if possible, we would appreciate it if you could pray for Sharrisse and her boyfriend Eugene. He called us yesterday and wasn't very happy with us. We asked if we could meet him on Thursday and we're hoping that he will let us continue to teach Sharrisse and the kids. We know how much this message can bless their lives and we know that Heavenly Father can produce miracles!
This week has been a good week and there's so much I wish I could tell you about. I have seen God help us in so many ways. He has been answering my prayers and we are seeing Him guide and direct us. It is a blessing to be an instrument in His hands. I love being apart of His work. He has allowed me to be a laborer in His vineyard for this the last time. What a blessing.
Thank you for all your emails, faith and prayers. They really mean a lot to me. I look forward to hearing from you next week! The church is true!
The Michiganary

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