Hey all you beautiful people!!
It's been a crazy-fast week. Good things, and hard things and interesting experiences! But what's new? It's the life of a missionary!
First off, hard things!
We can't ever get people here to church!! No one has a car or enough gas to get the church 30 miles away!! Most of the members in Red Oak are in leadership positions in the church and need to be to church super early (including us) and so the investigators that we want to bring don't have rides! Most of the people we are working with don't have cars period-- or cell phones -- or even often jobs ;) haha It's crazy:) So that's HARD! We had a family of 6 that we are working with that wanted to come to church yesterday, but they couldn't get rides.. it was so sad. So we have to figure out something...
We moved more people this week! I swear, I am going to be the BEST packer and mover whenever I have to move:) We've moved probably 6 families since I've been here and more planned to move in the next couple of weeks. This family that we moved this week is the one I mentioned above. Family of 6. We origianally started to teach the daugher, Lexi, and now her parents are becoming interested! We're going over to their house this next week to answer their questions and hopefully teach the Restoration!!!! But holy cow, when we moved, it was an experience:) They moved from the trailer park into a bigger home. And they had a major bug problem in the trailer. EEEEK They didn't have anything packed, so we were throwing everything in boxes and loading it out to the cars. We actually had a couple of members come over to help us and this family was SO APPRECIATIVE because NO ONE in the church that they had been attending even offered to help. And here we were, some random church that brought over people that were strangers to help them move. It was awesome:) They are so fun!
So you know that investigator that I mentioned in the last letter? The one who wanted nothing to do with mormons that we've been helping remodel her house? Well we were over there this last week painting the outsides of the house before the weather gets COMPLETELY horrible and we saw another miracle <3 She still doesn't EVER want to become a mormon, but she felt bad that we were always over their helping and not really fulfilling our purpose as missionaries by being there. (She has been on 6 "Christian missions" before) So Sister Carpenter said "Well, you could help us out more if you'll listen to what we REALLY beileve!" And she said "Okay!" YAY!! Later throughout the time we were there she was mentioning how her "spirit has been stiring" and she just has all these questions and concerns. She said she feels that she has a big decision that she needs to make, but she doesn't know what it is. Sister Carpenter and I were smiling so much inside:) The spirit has MOST DEFINATELY been working on her. She can't sleep at night and we can't tell her what we thought because she will NEVER become a mormon, but we know what's going on-- holy cow it's so exciting and I love her SO MUCH!!! I was dancing all night when we got back in. We just gotta be patient <3
So we've seen some SLIGHT progression this week and it totally makes me happy. I am not the first to admit that this area is HARD. Satan is EVERYWHERE around here-- enough so that it get's creepy. But it's a huge testimony builder to me that there are good people anywhere you go. The members here so SO AMAZING!!!! The people we live with- oh my gosh I love them SO MUCH!!!!! They remind me so much of my parents. It's a small ward here, like i've mentioned before, but the relationships we are gaining with these people will ALWAYS be here, and I have this feeling ( okay, maybe this HOPE, that I will spend the majority of my mission here. I hope I hope.
So sacrament was interesting yesterday.. okay, the first thing you gotta understand, this ward is SOOO very different than the wards at home. Not in the doctrine, OF COURSE, because the church is the same EVERYWHERE!! <3 And I love that, but it is soooo different in the casuality of everything. Haha Bishop is the craziest cat I ever did see. So we didn't have sacrament bread.. Bishop got up and was asking questions from the pulpit and we had to rearrange the whole sacrament schedule to do sacrament at the end. It was humerous. We have a family moving here that is from Nephi, UT and the whole ward is sooo giddy about it! The father of the family has been here for about a month and the rest of his family will be here right around Christmas. (i'm a little nervous as to what the high school girls in his family will do when they get out here at first) Haha but he's a good sport:) I'm so excited to bring my family down here after I get home so that they can just smile :) Anyway, I love it here- it's crazy:)
We had lots of less-active that came back to church yesterday! It was so exciting! There are still SO MANY that are so close, but I can't get discouraged. I know that we've been very blunt about things, and they still love us! They are just using that dang agency and being as stubborn as ever. But again-- patience.
I GOT MY HAIRCUT!!! FINALLY!!!! Happiest day ever:) No more dead ends and I am ONE happy girl:)
So sad day... the end of transfers this time is the DAY BEFORE Thanksgiving... :( I will probably end up staying, but Sister Carpenter is way nervous. How mean! To make us switch areas the day before thanksgiving... Well. We won't be in Red Oak anyway for thanksgiving or Christmas :(:( The family that we live with have a daughter & son-in-law that will be coming to stay for thanksgiving, and a 21 year old son who is currently going to BYU that will be coming back for Chrsitmas-- so we have to get kicked out and will have to go stay with other sisters in Glenwood or something... it's so sad :( But whatever. We'll make it work.
Annnnyway! I hope you all have a wonderful halloween!! We have zone conference this halloween so we will be traveling 3 hours to Sioux City and 3 hours back on wednesday/thursday. It'll be a FUN zone confernce on Halloween though-- I'm stoked. President surprised us and randomly showed up at our district meeting this last week. I love that man! SO INSPIRED. So anyway, this halloween will be awesome!! And we have to stay inside all Halloween night, so we'll be pigging out on candy and homade candy apples from a member <3 yay!!
Love you all!! I KNOW THE GOSPEL IS TRUE!!!! Heavenly Father has a plan for every single one of us!! We are all placed in this spot for a very specific reason and I promise you that if you look at every situation searching for the reasons Heavenly Father placed you there, you WILL find answers-- eventually. In His own timing. Just do the things you know you need to do, and if you need help knowing WHAT to do, pray and ask, and as long as you do these things, you will never be led astray. EVER. EVERYONE has a purpose in this life and I know SO MUCH that we can all recieve strength from the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He lives and He loves me-- I know He loves and knows you.
Have a great week!