Monday, June 16, 2014

An email from Sister Allen

Heyooo. Happy 12 months to me! 

I hit my year mark this week! 6 months from today I will be home! December 16th. Time is unreal. It is flying by. Thursday we went with Daydre, our favorite person in the YSA ward, and got some frozen yogurt at Jon and Bons, a local favorite. 

I know I've said this before, but Sherry and Michael are looking good for this Saturday! All of the kinks have been worked out and if everything goes as planned, Saturday will be the big day. PRAY for them. Saturday night we got a text from Sherry telling us that not only would her, Michael, and Emily be joining us at church, but also her ex husband Troy. It went about as well as we could have hoped. I ended up teaching him the whole restoration on my own after sacrament meeting in the pews. I saw Sister Curtis look over and there I was just rolling out the first vision. I wanted him to know what this church is really about and that it is a good thing for Michael. He seemed to like it, but still has some misconceptions. He'll just have to get over it, because Michael is getting baptiiizzeddd! 

Last night we were over at Margo's house. She is our new investigator that has a baptism date for July 19th. Her fiancĂ© is named Sunny and is a total gangster/skater guy...but he's 50. Ex tattoo artist, soul patch on his bottom lip, shaved head, walks like a thug, yet skinny as a twig. I love it. They're all talking about their wedding and hanging out at the local park with their homeless friends who they pray with. We are going to the park Thursday to meet up with them and their
"crew". That's literally what she calls it...."my crew". You would think Margo is a little under the influence because she has a slur/southern accent. Plus her eyes are half closed a bunch of the
time due to a seizure problem. But I am literally obsessed with her. She just loves Jesus. She
loves mormons and has wanted to be one for years. She came to church today and thinks this is the best ward she has been to. Oh, and I can't forget that they have a hawk living in the spare bedroom. Yes, a hawk.

Sister Curtis and I are pleading with the Lord to find new people to teach. Every time we get out of the car, we have made a goal to not get back into the car until we find one person to talk to. Friday night we went to contact a referral. Sadly the referral wasn't home. Sister Curtis started walking back towards the car and just as she was hitting the unlock button on the keys, I remembered that we needed to find someone to talk to before we even thought about getting back in that car. We walked down one of the driveways and knocked on the first door we saw. The screen was open and a man named Chris came to the door. He was shirtless and across his chest was a big tattoo that said, "Disciple". We talked to him for a while and taught him a snippit of the Restoration as his dog was peeing on Sister Curtis' foot...haha. He is super awesome and has three kids. We asked him if we could come back and he was totally open to us coming around again. I know that because we have committed to Heavenly Father that we are going to talk to someone every time we get out of the car, that he will bless us with someone to find. I am so grateful that we followed the spirit and were able to talk with Chris.

Every second week of the month we have zone meeting. The Zone Leaders and us prepare topics on a certain subject from Missionary Leadership Council. This week we had the topic of Faith Filled Finding. We found this awesome story in Alma 31 that was a great story of faith! This is when Alma and his brethren are going to convert the Apostate Zoramites. The Zoramites are really wicked, prideful people.They deny Christ and only pray to God when they are up on their Rameumptom. Alma is so distraught because of the wickedness of these people and PLEADS with God for strength to convert them. Alma 31:34-38 reads"O Lord, wilt thou grant unto us that we may have success in bringing them again unto thee in Christ. Behold, O Lord, their souls are precious, and many of them are our brethren; therefore, give unto us, O Lord, power and wisdom that we may bring these, our brethren, again unto thee. Now it came to pass that when Alma had said these words, that he clapped his hands upon all them who were with him. And behold, as he clapped his hands upon them, they were filled with the Holy Spirit. And after that they did separate themselves one from another, taking no thought for themselves what they should eat, or what they should drink, or what they should put on. And the Lord provided for them that they should hunger not, neither should they thirst; yea, and he also gave them strength, that they should suffer no manner of afflictions, save it were swallowed up in the joy of Christ. Now this was according to the prayer of Alma; and this because he prayed in faith." I feel like Alma. I recognize the worldly ways of the people here in Chico and know that if I plead enough with the Lord that anything is possible. 

"Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some dont come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come." -Elder Holland

"Miracles are to build your faith, not for your faith to be built upon." -Sister Curtis

Love you all! Have a great week. :)


Sister Allen

ps. shout out to Ciera who is hopefully getting her mission call this week!! Woohooo!! ill keep my eyes peeled on Facebook for the big announcement. :)

Monday, June 2, 2014

Have YOU received His image in your countenance?

Hey Everyone!! Hope you all are doing well. :) We had a great, busy
week out here in Chico. Miracles are gonna start stackin up.

Sister Curtis is seriously amazing! She is so perfect for this area
and exactly what I needed. She is such a lover. Really one of the most
kind, genuine people that I have ever met. I feel so grateful to be
her companion. She is helping me become more christlike, express my
feelings more, and helping me remain positive. I really love her. I
just keep praying that I will be able to teach her as much as she is
teaching me!

I had an AMAZING birthday thanks to all of you! I was so spoiled and
felt so much loved. I was completely overwhelmed with gratitude as I
thought about each of you and the time you spent to send packages,
write emails, send letters, and wish me happy birthday! Sister Curtis
made me nutella toast for breakfast and she gave me a sweet note, blew
up balloons, and took me out to lunch at my favorite taco truck! So
nice. I got a call from Sister Byrne and Sister Giani singing Happy
Birthday, birthday wish from Sister Weston, and a nice birthday song
from one of the senior missionaries in the mission office. That night
we had dinner with the Mattsons. I knew there was going to be a cake,
but it turned out to be a whole party! They decorated their whole
house with a happy birthday banner, balloons, we all wore party hats.
It was seriously so nice of them. The Lugos joined us for chocolate
cake and ice cream. I felt so special. I am so incredibly grateful for
every single one of you! Thank you for thinking of me. Im 21!

Yesterday in singles ward we had an awesome lesson in relief society.
I felt like it was aimed at me the entire time. The sister giving the
lesson kept saying, I dont know why I feel like I should share this
talk, but I felt like it would be perfect for today. Welp, it was. It
was perfect for me. Over the past few months, my mom always tells me
that I look so happy and that I am just "glowing". Yesterday, I found
out why she thinks this. :) We discussed the talk "Remember Who You
Are!" By Elaine Dalton. The world tells us to "Live it up", "Try
everything", and "Experiment and be happy." The Lord tells us: "Walk
in the paths of virtue", "lay aside the things of this world" and
"cleave unto your covenants." Virtue and pure beauty comes from: being
well educated, enduring trials with optimism, trust, strength, and
courage, hard work, gospel knowledge, and complete devotion to our
families and The Lord. "Deep Beauty" shines from the inside out.
Spiritual attractiveness is earned from being moral and chaste. It is
earned through faith, repentance, and honoring covenants. "If you live
close to God and His infinite grace-you wont have to tell, it will
show in your face." When we are worthy of the companionship of the
Holy Ghost, you are confident and your inner beauty shines. I believe
that one of the reasons mom has noticed a difference in me, is because
I am set apart and filled with the Holy Ghost. I have received His
image in MY countenance. I am focused and dedicated to becoming like
my Savior. I thought of chapter 5 in Alma this week as I was
reflecting on how I have become more like my Savior this past year.
Alma 5 is when Alma is testifying to the people. He asks them really
thought provoking questions that are a good evaluation of where we
stand on the path to eternal life. Alma asks a lot of questions that
we can ask ourselves. "Have ye been spiritually born of God?" "Have ye
experienced this mighty change of heart?" "Do ye exercise faith in the
redemption of Him who created you?" "Can ye imagine to yourselves the
voice of The Lord, saying unto you, in that day: Come unto me...your
works have been the works of righteousness upon the face of the
earth?" "Can ye look up to God at that day with a pure heart and clean
hands? I say unto you, can you look up, having the image of God
engraven upon your countenances?" Ask yourself. Can you? Do you? Have
you been changed? Verses 26-28, 33 are also good to reflect on. I
would invite you all to read Alma 5 this week. Ask yourself if you
have received the image of His countenance. If not, change now. See
yourself as God sees you. Dont compromise your divine inheritance. I
am so grateful that I have become so converted to The Lord, that even
other people can see it in my countenance. I am so grateful for my
Savior and His perfect example.

Also, read D&C 25: 2, 10, 13, 15 and tell me you dont love those
scriptures! Awesome, right!?

Sadly, Sherry didn't make it to her baptism date this week. We pushed
it back to the 14th due to some word of wisdom issues. She is still
doing well and dedicated to be baptized. When, is the issue.

Thank you again for all the love and support! You all rock!

muchas gracias. i love you and miss you all!


Sister Allen