Monday, December 9, 2013

It's Beginning to FEEL a lot like CHRISTmas!

Hello again everyone!

It seems like it was just yesterday that I was typing ya'll a letter! Well, here I am again! Another crazy and fun-filled week in the mission field.

I stress out wayyyy too easily ;)

It's been an exciting week. I am glad to inform you that we now have a phone AND a car!! So that takes a load off :) We're still getting things organized and getting to know all the members, less-active, and seeing out all of our referrals. Let's see...

I LOVE THE COUPLE WE LIVE WITH!!! I don't know whyyyy the Lord has decided to spoil me soooo much with these people we live with. This couple is the CUTEST and every morning we come upstairs to a fun little surprise. "Good morning sisters! Have a banana if you'd like!" or "Here is some coupons- lunch is on us!" They are the sweeeeeetest!

ANNND they have a treadmill. YAY!!! Our workouts have been the

It felt so good to drive this week. It's been about 5 months since I've driven, so it's a sweet sense of accomplishment:)

So our ward missionary is hilarious. I have a joke for ya'll. "Hey look! I guess a train has passed through here! See, you can still see it's tracks!"
Hahaha there are lots of trains through Lincoln and we laugh at the stupidest things:)

We TOTALLY followed the spirit from finding our first investigator in this area. His name is Evan and he and his wife know a lot about us already. They are SUPER smart and totally are loving the idea of learning more. We're excited to continue teaching them.

Crazy stats for ya'll too. Our ward has 573 members. HUGE!!!! And we get an average of 250 members arriving every week. We have LOTS of work to do!!!! And us with the awesome Elders in our ward are seriously going to do it:)

The Elders in our ward are the BEST. They're our zone leaders too and they're hilarious. Last night after the Christmas devo, they were jumping on the ramps and sliding down them, totally falling on their faces.... haha Ohhhhhh Elders. But they're incredible missionaries.

Speaking of which, WE HAD A HUGE SNOWFALL YESTERDAY... It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! It's super slick and Christmas is in the air!! I love it:) Everyone this time of year just seriously has Christ in their hearts. The people of Lincoln are some of the nicest and the members of our church in Lincoln are some of the strongest I have ever met. Our ward is FILLED with RM's-- both brothers and sisters and they all have such strong testimonies. EVERY sunday is just the biggest spiritual uplifter ever. Yesterday was incredible.

The elders had a family of investigators at church yesterday and I have never met anyone so prepared. The father was actively participating in gospel principles and was SO excited for the activities the ward has planned and he just felt the Holy Ghost SOOO strongly yesterday. We all did. It was AWESOME talking to him after church. All the sisters went out of their way to make the wife feel comfortable. Now you know what I mean when I said last week that this is every missionaries dream ward!!

They are ALLLL young families with TONS of kids. Our primary is overflowing!! It's sooooo much fun.

So funny story of the week... we were going around visiting the lesser active people of the ward and we came across this one couple that we wanted to visit. We called them up, stated that we were from "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints" and they told us to come over right away! We went in and had the NICEST visit with this elderly couple. She can't move around much and is getting bad with her memory, and he's SUPER tall (every in Lincoln is tall<3) and the sweetest man. They gave us ice cream, told us all about their kids. And said that "even though we aren't from their same church, they were super happy that we came to visit".... Sister Weber and I were wondering if they had forgotten they were baptized. Then later in the conversation, they started talking about the temple and the people from the ward that would come over to help them and kept saying, "we're Mormons! And you're from the church of latter day saints!"..... Finally we just came out and cleared up the air and said "We're Mormons too!" And then they FREAKED out and totally loved us 100000x more. They thought we were from a different church. Hahah it was the most confusing and most funny meeting. I love old people <3

We did a lot of walking on Saturday. We found out how many miles we have for the month, and had a little panic attack. We've already used a lot of miles trying to find our way around this huge area. So we decided to walk on Saturday and found out later that it was -5 degrees. It was cold! But now we can say that we're real missionaries ;) \

We went with a single woman member in her 30s out to Red Robin this week to meet one of her friends from college. It was the most fun dinner appointment I've been a part of. Her friend was sooooo funny and while we were eating, this woman and her two little girls came over to our table and said "hey sisters! My daughters just wanted to come say hi, they have never seen sister missionaries in Lincoln before!" And we got to talk with them. I totally felt famous and felt like a princess. It was the cutest thing ever.

Anyway, it's been an exciting week to say the least. It always is exciting:) We're still getting used to everything and figuring out what we are doing, but it's fun. Sister Weber is the BEST and she is already sooooo on top of it. I don't feel like I'm even training her!!

I hope you all had the chance to see the Christmas Devotional last night. Russel M. Nelsons talk was the sweetest thing ever!! (and did any of you notice the little boy that winked to the camera when the children were singing?" Us and the Elders totally laughed so hard in the chapel.) But it really started to get me in the mood of Christmas this year. I am determined to make this Christmas special since this time in my life, being on a mission, is the closest to the Savior I have ever been. Doing His work has caused me to get soooo much closer to my goal of KNOWING Him. He LIVES. And ONLY through Him can I receive the satisfying rest and peace that we all NEED in this world because of how crazy it is! The Savior is the way and I PROMISE you that by going to our church, by reading the Book of Mormon, and by praying to our Father in Heaven EVERY DAY, you will FEEL the Savior in your life. You will FEEL Him in your heart and He will give you rest. Matt 11:28-30

We all need rest, we all need His love and we all need Him.

I hope that you do all that you need to to feel Him with you this Holiday Season, I know that if you do that, that this Christmas will be a VERY special one to you. It's not about the gifts we give and receive from each other. It's about the gift that our Heavenly Father has given all of us-- which is His son, Jesus Christ.

I love you all! Know that I miss you every day, but I am so grateful for this decision to be out here on a mission that the Holy Ghost helped me to make. This will forever bless my life and the things I am experiencing has made my testimony so strong that I will never be able to deny that God and Jesus Christ live. Joseph Smith IS a prophet. "I know it, and I know that God knows it". I cannot deny it <3

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!! See ya'll next week :)
-Sister Checketts

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