Monday, February 24, 2014

Email from Sister Allen

what an uplifting week.

Hello everybody. Still no word on Sister Byrnes visa and the six week
transfer ends this week, so she might be here for another six weeks.

Gerald made it! He made it in to the water this week. It was really a
great /unique experience. I guess it had been a while since brother
Stoddard had baptized  someone and so he kinda did it
backwards...after two attempts and five priesthood brethren trying to
turn him around the right way, they just let him baptize the way he
was doing it. It was a bit hilarious and every time I think about it,
I cry from laughing so hard. But what matters is that Gerald was
baptized by a worthy priesthood holder. It doesn't matter which way
you stand, as long as that right hand is up, and those sacred words
are said correctly, you're good. I'll have to give you all the whole
story in about 10 months. It definitely was one to remember. Gerald is
so happy though. He came back to his seat beaming with a huge smile on
his face after receiving the Holy Ghost and feels great!

Sister Byrne and I attended the temple this week. What an awesome
experience that was! I feel so blessed to even have the opportunity to
go to the temple while on my mission. I realized Thursday how special
it is to be a missionary, set apart, and able to go to the temple. The
spirit is just so strong. I went to the temple with two questions this
week and received answers to both. The first being "what I could do to
help hasten the work more in our area?" As I prayed, I heard a clear
voice in my mind saying "keep doing what you are doing". Definitely
wasn't the answer I was looking for, haha. But I have listened and
decided to just keep going out there, working hard, knocking doors,
and something will happen in His time.

After the baptism on Saturday we went tracting around the trailer
park. We didn't get to finish it the last time, so we went back to
knock the rest of the trailers. The first door we knocked, we met a
man named Adam. He is training to be a firefighter and has a wife and
5year old daughter. He said he had talked to other missionaries before
and invited us to come back next Wednesday to discuss the Book of
Mormon. We gave him a copy and invited him to read from it before we
come back. New investigator number one! The second trailer we knocked
on, this super nice man named Tom answered. He said that he didn't
have time to talk with us right now, but that Tuesday we could come
back and talk with him and his wife. As we left he told us that him
and his wife have been "looking for a new church to attend". What!? We
just might know where a church is....hah. New investigator number two.
After the trailer park, we didn't have much time before our dinner
appointment, so we decided to quickly try and contact Sunny who is one
of our referrals. She wasn't home sadly, but we looked down the road
and there was one of the former investigators we have been trying to
contact. Nancy is this sweet older woman who just loves the
missionaries. She was outside with a woman (who we later found out was
Sunny) and we were able to talk with both of them about what we do as
missionaries and our daily schedule. They thought it was pretty
interesting and Nancy invited us back on Wednesday night for a lesson.
New investigator number three!! We are so excited to go back and feel
really good about this opportunity. Just like Heavenly Father told me
"keep doing what you're doing", we have seen miracles! Hard work,
diligence, and persistence pay off.

We had an amazing zone conference up in Auburn on Wednesday with
President Weston and 60 of the other local missionaries. The
conference really helped me get a spiritual reboot and I feel even
more desire to do my part in this part of the Lords vineyard to share
the gospel. We talked a lot about recommitting ourselves and that it's
not bad to be a "cookie cutter" missionary. Heavenly Father wants us
to succeed and be exactly obedient. I left that meeting with the
desire to recommit myself to my mission. To recommit myself to let His
will be done. I trust that Heavenly Father knows what he's doing and
that he will help me have the best, most effective mission possible.
"Thy will be done"

The meeting on Wednesday also helped me realize how important it is
for me to seriously take on the challenge of talking to 20 people a
day about the gospel. This has been one of the things I have struggled
with most on my mission. Just stopping random people on the street and
having a gospel discussion, but I know that it must be done in order
to double our baptisms. I have been praying and praying that Heavenly
Father will help me open my mouth and that I will just be confident.
We were walking down Sunknoll Dr. and we had reached the end of the
street. There was a man in his garage running on the treadmill with
his music blasting. The first time we walked by, he waved and said
something like, "not interested. running." So we walked on. Then I
just told myself, "you know what sister allen, you just gotta do it.
who cares if he's running? That is not a good enough excuse to not
have an eternal family or happiness from the gospel." So I turned
right back around, walked right up that mans driveway with a pass
along card in my hand, and yelling over the loud music said, "hi, I
know you're running. But we're the sister missionaries from the church
of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Here's our number. We love to
serve and share messages about Christ that could really strengthen
you." He took the card, kept on running, and I walked away. Seed
planted. Mission accomplished. Well sorta, I could have been more
persistent, but I was just proud of myself for getting up there and
talking to him. Haha. It'll get better with more practice. The secret
to talking to people....there is none. You JUST DO IT. After that
experience I feel even more pumped up and courageous to stop anyone
and share the gospel. It's been a great feeling.

I was reading in the end of Helamen this morning and thought of the
following three points:

1. If the nephites and Lamanites were never warned or prophecies to
about the coming of Christ, then they would all have no hope. They
would have had no real purpose to life or anything to look forward to.
God loved them and wanted them to know they could be with him again
too. It just makes sense that Christ would also come to the Americas.

2. Helamen 15 v. 15-17---The Nephites have been warned, they know how
to repent and what they need to prosper, yet they don't do it. Remind
me of less actives...They know the truth and still have their
testimonies, but don't allow themselves to progress. What a sad day
that will be when they stand in front of God and he says "I gave you
everything to succeed and you did nothing with it. I gave you so many
chances. I sent the missionaries to your house this many times. I gave
you all these reasons to come back and you didn't. Because of your
choices and your decisions, I'm sorry but, you don't get to be with
me. " Talk about eternity filled with regret! Why do people do that to
themselves? Pride!!

3. Helamen 16:23 --No matter how many times/chances God gives them to
believe, they still don't but he never stops giving them the chance.
They could believe all that you tell them, but Satan will get them
hung up on one little thing that doesn't matter. He is so deceiving
and cunning. People don't realize how much is at stake with the
decisions we make. An eternity is a long time.

I hope that everyone is doing well this week!! I love you all.

Thanks always for the continuous love and support. I have grown so
much this week!!

Love you long time,

Sister allen

Sent from my iPad

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