Monday, March 24, 2014

Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself.

Hello again! ANOTHER week gone by! SO FAST!!!! Can you believe I'm almost at my half-way mark?? WOAH. Blows my mind.
This week has been hard. I'm just going to lay that right out there. Missions are not all daisy's and sunshine (especially since winter has decided to visit again). And this week has been hard. One thing is for sure "sometimes our hardest battles are fought between the walls of our own hearts".
So there are so many people here that I love so much. People that I would never have thought that I would be so close with-- I LOVE THEM. It's just so hard when people choose not to do what they KNOW they should be doing. Heartbreaking. To feel the blessings that our Heavenly Father gives to me-- knowing that they could get the blessings too if they just put ACTION behind their thoughts. Laziness-- is of the devil.
So there is this fun couple-- the ones that got married a few weeks back. He isn't a member and she is less-active. Turns out his mom HATES Mormons-- and for some strange reason still has legal guardianship over her 30 year old son. She got the court involved and now he IN NO WAY can have any connection to the church. We were over at their apartment explaining to them that we can't see them anymore because bishop advised us not to, and while we were there, his mother called. He made us go in the hallway and was like "don't say a word!" Haha it was funny-- I felt like I was hiding in the Holocaust. His wife is so sad that we can't see them at their house anymore. She met us at the church last night to give us pictures from their wedding that we took and to talk to us. I just love them.
Had a cool experience this week. Going to try a LA on the list and turns out they got kicked out a few months back. We found this out by talking to their neighbor, Dusty-- he's getting married this week to his girlfriend that's been living with him. Had a way awesome experience with him while he was out smoking (EVERYONE SMOKES). He's interested and wants their family to go to some church! It was cold thought, so as we left he yelled "please come back! Come back again!" So we're going by tomorrow to drop off a wedding card and hopefully get on good terms with his fiancé too! YAY. He's totally prepared and now they'll be married!
The members we live with are so funny.... their an older couple and every night when we walk down to our room, Bro Flack is sitting in his chair eating Neapolitan ice cream and watching Disney Channel-- it's his FAVORITE. So cute. haha :) Sister Flack is out of town for these last two days, so guess what?? You're right! We moved in with the Holmes Lake sisters (again) back into the crappy apartment :P We get to go back home today though, but it's always fun getting to stay with them.
Did lots of service this week and totally have a new best friend in the ward. Her name is Helga. She's AMAZING!!! We helped her twice this week raking up all these crazy leaves in her yard. SO MANY LEAVES. She just told us her whole conversion story and she has the strongest testimony. Her husband is a graphic designer and has done all these AWESOME comics. It's the best! So doing service with her this week was DEFINATLY a highlight, and I definitely got emotional with her as well because so much of what she said was a direct answer to so many prayers lately. I love Helga forever. And we're having dinner with them this week-- my heart just smiled.
I gave my training this last week. I had the COOLEST studies while I was preparing for it!! I learned so much about "gaining knowledge" and then I was pumped to give this training to all the elders in our district. But I got up there and totally made a fool of myself. Darn elders-- no one really participated and I just was rambling the whole time. Ughhhhhh that was bad.... I was kinda disappointed in myself for not living up to the AWESOME insights Father had given me to prepare for it. I guess the training was more for ME than anyone else... anyway. Whatever.
So Amy had quite the learning experience this week! We set her up for LDS singles this last week and she had been talking to this guy--- we went over for a lesson with her and she broke down crying saying that she think she messed up. Turns out this guys was a TOTAL FRAUD and had tricked her into sending his "daughter" $500...... She felt HORRIBLE. She prayed sooo sooo hard and then got a call from the money place saying that it wasn't able to go through and that they'd be sending the money back to her. She was SO RELIEVED!!!! She just kept saying how GOOOOOOOD  Heavenly Father is. She then asked us how the Holy Ghost speaks to her and we were able to help her understand the feelings and warnings that the Holy Ghost gave her to warn her that that wasn't a good idea. She totally gets in now and KNOWS that Heavenly Father gave her this experience to help her learn and understand. It was so cool and she got ALL the money back. Dang creepers on the internet that mess with innocent people.... we were so upset with that, but it all worked out and Father really does protect and warn us of ANYTHING that isn't right.
We had this other cool experience this week too. So I might have mentioned our Potential Investigator named Bear-- and his fiancé Bonnie. We found them last week and then there was a former investigator that lives in their same apartment complex that we BY A MIRACLE found. Well we walked over to their apartment one night this last week and found Bear out on the steps. We talked with him, he asked us to sit down and answer some of his questions. While we were talking to him, Crerena, the former investigators came out to smoke and also sat down with us. It had felt like FOREVER since we had last taught a lesson, and so HEAVENLY FATHER IS SOOOO GOOOD!!!!!! Sister Weber taught Crerena right there on the steps and I taught Bear. WE TAUGHT 2 LESSONS AT ONCE!!!! It was amazing!! Bear was explaining how he just wants to learn how to conquer his temper and he wants to find a church that he can continue to learn in. I was teaching him all about the restoration, and prophets, and how the atonement can help him with EVERYTHING he was explaining, and right then and there, I soft-set him for baptism!!!! Sister Weber on the other hand was talking to Crerena and Crerena was explaining how she just wanted to learn all about the church. She already has a pretty solit testimony and understanding of much of the basic principles of the church and just didn't get baptized before because the Elders were disobedient.. :( But here were 2 people that Heavenly Father just by a miracles placed into our paths. It was so exciting. Here we were sitting on the steps of this apartment on this busy road with lots of cars driving past, teaching 2 awesome people 2 different lessons. <3 GOOD NIGHT.
Another highlight? We went to the temple this week <3 <3 I LOVE THE TEMPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Awesome inspiration and comfort that came to me while we were sitting there. President was able to go through with us this time and it was SO GOOD to see him. While there, he came up to each of us individually to see how we were doing. I'd be struggling all week and when he came to me, he thanked me for getting Mahoney up and running and then apologized for moving me around SO MUCH (he always apologizes to me for that) But then said "I PROMISE it will happen again"... WHAT DOES THAT MEAN??? He always messes with my head!! Transfers are in a week and a half. I'm going crazy :P Ohhhh President--- how I love thee. :) Hahah
One of my past young women leaders stopped by Lincoln yesterday to attend church. So I got to see Shelise Lowe! YAY! That was exciting :)
Don't be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ-- even if you are told to hide in the hallway and "not make a sound"-- stand tall and proud of the knowledge you have of knowing the RESTORED gospel.
So we did see many miracles this week and it was over-all successful. It's just hard to stay positive and keep going sometimes. But just know how IMPORTANT it is to know that in order to love others MORE, you need to love yourself. It's a commandment, and we are all children of the most powerful being in the universe and he loves and is aware of each one of us. YOU ARE IMPORTANT, and never forget that.
(Stacey Park-- your letter was an answer to a prayer, thank you.)
I LOVE YOU ALL!!!! So very much!!!
I hope you all have an amazing week <3
-Sister Checketts

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