This week has been a week of trial and a week of mighty miracles. I am truly grateful for the love that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have not only for me but for all of the people of this world. I have seen how much God our Heavenly Father does move in mysterious ways to bring us to our heavenly goal and home!
I think every missionary encounters a transfer where life is just a little bit tougher than normal. I have been struggling a bit and my companions have truly been exactly what I need right now. In a nutshell I have had a growing anxiety of going to Brazil, especially after my mission president asked all visa waiters to discontinue language study. I feel under prepared and scared of what it will be like when I get there and I know that it will be a definite change in my life. Don't get me wrong, I still want to go and I know that Heavenly Father has called me here and there for specific reasons. That doesn't mean that I haven't had to acknowledge fear of the unknown world of Brazil.
But Christ in His infinite grace and mercy has provided companions and other people in my life that have made my life easier. The love that I have felt this transfer has been great and I know that Heavenly Father knew that I would be facing this trial and provided a way for me to face it with friends at my side. I have been taught a lot about patience, love, and charity this transfer and I know that Heavenly Father has a greater purpose for me learning these attributes than I can see right now.
Missionaries are truly privy to miracles in their lives and in the lives of others. My new and dear friend Donna was baptized on Saturday night by her son. Entering the waters of baptism is a beautiful and precious moment in anyone's life. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has put Donna in my life. I feel that she has taught me more than I have taught her about the Gospel. Last Wednesday, we committed her to reading the Book of Mormon in it's entirety. When we saw her Friday night, she was 20 pages away from finishing it. She had decided to read it all the way through from the beginning in 2 days! She was finished with the Book of Mormon by the time she was baptized Saturday night. She has also read the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price all the way through as well. It truly is a blessing to have Donna in my life!
I had the opportunity to talk to Donna after Church on Sunday and she shared a very tender moment with me. She had said that she has felt so much love and forgiveness in joining the Church. She also said that she really didn't like the Christmas season because of tragedies in her life, but she was looking forward to this Christmas. Not only can the Gospel of Jesus Christ bring healing and forgiveness, but it brings hope and a renewal of life!
I testify that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer! He is our Guide, our Friend, and our Brother. I know that as we turn to Him and let the healing powers of His atonement enter into our hearts and souls, that we can truly change and become more like Him! He brings the hope that every human desires to have in their lives. He brings love and kindness.
God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.
Ye fearful Saints, fresh courage take;
The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings on your head.
His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding ev'ry hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.
Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan his works in vain;
God is his own interpreter,
And he will make it plain.
God truly does work in mysterious ways! I know that even though we go through trials and sometimes we even suffer, we are promised by Him bounteous blessings. As we enter this Christmas season let's not forget what and who it is really about! Remember the Savior in your times of trials and He will be standing right beside you!
Remember the Lord loves You and the Church is True!
I will be staying here in Washington, PA for another transfer. Sister Cohen will be here until December 27 when she goes home and Sister Manwill and I will finish off the transfer in a duo! I am excited to stay in this ward and learn and grow here. I know Heavenly Father is keeping me here for a reason, and I hope that I can fulfill my purpose!
The walk elders who just got here last transfer are being taken out and so are the Wanysburg elders who were our DL and comp. They are shutting down the Wanynsburg branch and they are being assmilated into the surrounding wards. And the walk elders are going who knows where. Elder Doyle has been called as a district leader and Elder green ( a visa waiter) is being thrown around like the rest of us waiting on the Lord's timetable and learning patience for our President.
I can't wait to talk to y'all on Christmas!!!! (around here they say y'inz, but I don't like it)
LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!!!!
The Strapazzons breed dogs on the side. These puppies are 2 weeks old! They are so cute! They literally were the size of my hand and I have small hands!