Beware: this email is all over the place.
What in the world happened to this transfer?! It is already Monday of week 6. Which means it's the last week of the transfer. It is also May...how does this happen?! Time goes so fast.
I started something called, "My Plan." this last week. It is a program for returning missionaries. The first thing it tells you is, "Congratulations! You're almost a returned missionary!" Gee thanks. haha I am excited to see all of you though! It is just really weird. And this is the best thing ever. Plus I get to eat Mexican food every day and I just don't want to change that.
This week we saw such a huge miracle! We have an investigator who is married to a returning less-active. She took the missionary lessons like 3 years ago, but didn't want to get baptized. When we came into the area she had just started coming to church, and we began teaching her the lessons. We tried to set her with a baptismal date in May last week, but she wouldn't accept it because she wanted more time. The next time we went over we found out that she loooves coffee, so we asked if that was why she didn't think she could get baptized in May. She said that was one of the reasons. We still didn't know what else was keeping her from wanting to be baptized. But as we studied for our next lesson, we felt impressed to speak about the power of the atonement and how Christ can enable us to do things that we aren't able to do out of our own strength. We planned to share personal experiences. I ended up telling her this story of a time I was having a hard time forgiving someone, so I said a prayer telling Heavenly Father that I needed his help, and the next day I woke up and just felt completely at peace. I couldn't explain how, or where all of the feelings went - they just left. Jenny then began smiling and said, "You know - that's why I can't get baptized. Do you remember when I told you that I wanted to feel at peace before I got baptized? Well, I told my husband yesterday that I couldn't forgive this person, and that's why I couldn't get baptized." We then asked her if she had prayed about when she wants to be baptized and she said, "I want to be baptized when you said. On May 28th. Oh! And I didn't drink Coffee today - even when I passed it in Target. I just didn't look." :) It is so amazing to me how Heavenly Father prepares his children. This is an investigator who really understands that importance of the baptismal covenants she is going to make! She understands how sacred it is, and I am so amazed that she wants to make sure she is clean, ready, and prepared because she takes that step.
I was also so amazed at the testimony of the recent convert who they had come up in stake conference yesterday. She shared her experience of joining the church and said that she was reading the Book of Momron and praying every day. One day, she realized that she needed to overcome the anger she had towards her dad through the power of the atonement. She hadn't talked to him for months and decided to call him up the next day and talk. I feel like that testimony was meant just for our investigator! Good thing she's super awesome and came to stake conference to hear it!
Elder Richards ( I can't remember his first name) of the seventy also came to stake conference. It was so powerful. I felt like the overall theme was how Heavenly Father is an individual God. Which means he loves all of us and knows us each individually! Just about every speaker in the adult session and the Sunday session shared stories about God specifically showing his love to one of his children. I wish I had time to write all of them down. One of them though was of a girl who had recently gone through a divorce at BYU-Idaho and was really struggling to know if God really knew who she was. That day, she went in to Women's Health, and during that class, President Clark walked in, walked back out, and came back in with Elder Bednar. He stayed for an hour doing a "question and answer" thing with them. At the end, the girl was still wondering if God really knew who she was. Right before Elder Bednar left, he told them all, "Sisters - I want you to know that at 9:04 this morning, (I think that's the time they said...) I received the distinct impression that there was one of Heavenly Father's daughters here on the campus that needed to know they were loved. I told President Clark that we would start at the top of campus. We have been walking to every classroom, and president clark walks in to see what class it is, and then back out. We have repeated this until he told me we were at Women's Health! When he said this, the spirit rushed over me and I knew we had found the right place. If you don't think God is an individual God, you tell me why he would send an apostle all over BYU-I campus and to a small Women's Health class just to tell you he loves you."
This is also one of the first truths that is taught to us through the Restoration. When Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith in the sacred grove - they called him by his name. They answered HIS specific question. In the YSA broadcast yesterday it was said that Joseph learned more about the true character of our loving Heavenly Father more in those few moments that any religious person had since Christ was on the earth. This is the first truth that we speak of. For this reason, this transfer for our Hermanas, so have had the goal of making sticky note walls that have an evidence for every day of God's love for us! We decided to make ours in the shape of the plan of salvation. I will send a picture at the end.
This week during studies we talked a lot about the tongue of angles referred to in 2 Nephi 32:2-3. It hit me that we are such a small percentage of people in the world that have the gift of the holy ghost, and we therefore have the obligation to speak the words the holy ghost would speak! If people want to find voices of sarcasm or ridicule or belittlement - they can find it easy enough in the world. When we use that kind of language, we may be confirming a lie that Satan has been trying to tell to one of our brothers and sisters. So we, especially as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, who have made sacred covenants to take his name upon us, should be a voice that speaks the truth. What God would have us know about our divine nature.
One more story that is just super hilarious. So we called a potential investigator this last week that the Los Robles Hermanas had met, and he didn't answer. He called us back about 20 minutes later, and asked who we were! When we told him we were the missionaries he said, "Oh I'm busy! Can I call you back later?" hahahha I don't think he realized that he had called us that time... we laughed so hard. :)
I love you all! And so does Heavenly Father! Have a wonderful week and ILL TALK TO YA SUNDAY!
Con todo carino,
Hermana Trystan Ricks <3
|You are here!|
|Me starting my plan...|
Fun fact! Every Hermana that comes and sleeps in my bed likes to put potatoes in it. Today, by companion arranged my stuffed animals for me...