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Monday, July 6, 2015

I am Directionally  Handicapped You Want To Make Something Of It - And Yes I Am Aware There Is A Red Line Under
Directionally !!!

Experience #1
We were blessed with the opportunity this week to come out teaching with Bishop E.  We were actually supposed to take him to a lesson with a member who wants his records removed.  But he either wasn't home, or wouldn't answer the door.  So we decided to take him to a member of the ward who was actually the bishop of the Danville Ward some years ago.  It was such a powerful lesson.  You see, Bishop G doesn't have the best memory.  But we went to visit him and talked about the story of the brother of Jared in the Book of Mormon and tied it in with faith and humility.  Bishop E was able to bear powerful testimony of this experience and it made all the difference.  We bore our testimonies, Bishop G complimented Bishop E on his knowledge of the scriptures, and we left.  But what was so amazing, is that Bishop G came up to us at church today and thanked us for coming over and meeting with him the other day.  HE REMEMBERED!!!  I couldn't believe it!  Heavenly Father works in miraculous ways!  I'm telling you!!! :)

Experience #2
We went to Eden for District Meeting on Wednesday.  When our member pulled up, we saw the zone leaders' car and immediately thought, "Uh oh.  This will be interesting."  BUT ELDER C ROCKED IT!!!  We had a great training on protecting our investigators from the things of this world, then we looked at the agenda.  I saw each of the companionships, and a room of the church.  Sister T and I were by the family history center.  We found out that the role plays for district meeting that day were going to be a mock church tour.  It was the best.  When we walked into the family history center, we just jumped right in.  We didn't falter.  We taught what family history is, why we do it, and even tied it into the plan of salvation.  The spirit that was felt in that room was remarkable.  I couldn't have dreamed of it going any better than it did!  We also got one of the easiest in my opinion.  The other rooms were: the baptismal font, the primary room, the gym, and the chapel.  It was really fun!  Oh, and for those who don't know, a church tour is when you take your investigators around the church and explain what each of the rooms is used for so that they will feel more comfortable coming to church.  They're great!

Experience #3
We had an amazing lesson with one of our investigators, S this week.  We went over and felt inspired to talk about the Book of Mormon with her before we go on with the rest of the lessons.  We showed her the Mormon Message, A Book of Mormon Story.  It was so inspired.  When she finished watching the video, she looked at us and just smiled.  She said, "That's it.  That's exactly how I feel about the Book of Mormon.  I do not have all the answers, but I know that I will soon."  We continued talking about the importance of it and what blessings she would see come from reading it and she slightly changed the subject.  She said, "You know?  I don't know what it is, but I just feel comfortable around the two of you.  And I don't even know you!  It's weird.  When you come over, I just can't wipe this stupid grin off my face."  And I just smiled.  This woman looks familiar to both of us and I looked familiar to her when we all first met.  If we were to guess, we might have known her before this life.  But we never know.  All we know is that we are here, at this time, to help her.  So me, being the occasional blonde that I am, replied, "You know, usually when people tell us that, I like to tell them that is the spirit touching their hearts."  We couldn't stop laughing after the appointment.  Seriously!  Who says it like that.  Sister T just looked at me as though she was saying, "Humble yourself, woman!  Humble yourself!"  I couldn't help but laugh.  Sometimes I just have to accept the fact that people may need to hear things a little differently.  And if not, that is still the story I am going with!  ;)

Experience #4
We also had the amazing opportunity to have dinner with the C's this week.  They are amazing.  Sister C's grandma is from Nicaragua, so most of her family is as well.  But they both actually grew up in Vernal.  Anyway, we went over to their house for dinner and she was actually at work later than she had planned, so she gave the recipe to Brother C and he made these amazing Nicaraguan tacos.  They were just a pan fried tortilla with shredded chicken, homemade salsa, and some herbs from their garden.  They also made this Spanish rice, but I couldn't have it because it had bell peppers in it.  Oh well.  We got talking and the subject of family history came up again.  They are so interested in family history that it blows me away.  So after dinner, we showed them the newer Mormon Message about family history that the church came out with.  They really enjoyed the video and it actually made Brother C remember this book that his grandmother had made.  He went to go get it so we could look at it.  She had made a book full of all of the ward members in the ward she was in, in Vernal.  It had pictures, stories, callings, testimonies, experiences, etc.  It was amazing.  And what was really neat is, Brother C's Grandmother's Bishop, was Sister C's Grandfather.  Isn't that neat how inter-connected everything is?  It amazed me!  Then we got a tour of their wonderful new house that they are working on renovating.  It is such a gorgeous home, but it is going to take a while to remodel with how busy they are.  But she told us her plans for each room and it is going to be GORGEOUS when it is complete.  We offered to help when they need it.  She said she would try to have us help if she could, but some of the paint they have to scrape off in order to repaint, has lead in it.  So we shall see.  But it really made my interior designer come out in me.  It was pretty funny.

Experience #5
We were able to go do service for a member in the ward this week, Brother and Sister T.  We got there, and on the porch I saw scrapers, sandpaper, and paint sticks.  So we walked in and she came out with us to get to work.  Our project for the day was to chip all the loose paint off of the porch and sand down all the hard edges so they could prime and repaint the porch.  Theirs is another house with quite a few projects they are working on.  Difference being, she has kids.  So we were able to help her in a major way that day.  We spent two hours in the broiling, humid sun, chipping away paint, sanding it down, and then we went in to have lunch.  We are hopefully going to get to come help her paint it sometime this week.  I made this an experience though because I got a real taste of humidity last week while we were doing it.  I was literally wiping pools of sweat off of my face.  It was ridiculous.  I have just given up on most makeup for the summer because it just melts off of my face.  I still do a couple of things, don't worry.  But not most things.  They don't stick.  And to make this day even better, we got home from doing service and had the bright idea to bike to our next appointment.  Luckily, the person lived right across the street from the elders and they happened to be home for lunch for a little bit.  So they kept our water bottles in their freezer to keep them cold.  It was funny though.  Elder B answered their door and all he said was, "Wow!  You two look a little warm!"  I just laughed because we looked so pathetic it wasn't even funny.  And the mosquitoes have been eating me alive, so his next comment was, "Ahhh.  You're allergic to them to?"  While he looked down at my legs.  I just nodded because you see, these are not just regular bites.  No!  These are full on WELTS!  Pictures attached!  It is ridiculous!  But hey, physical proof that I am doing my job right, huh?  ;)  At least now I know why the members all say June and July are the worst times to come back and visit.  :)

Experience #6
I made this next one an experience because it is amazing to me how quickly the Holy Ghost can change someone's heart.  We were teaching the Word of Wisdom lesson to our investigator, J the other day.  She was rather upset by the fact that we can't drink coffee or tea.  So I asked her if this commandment is something she could see herself complying with.  She said she didn't think so.  She saw no harm in it.  So we continued to talk about Joseph Smith, the revelation of the commandment and the importance of it.  By the end of it, she said she would think about it.  But Sister T was inspired to ask her if she would try living the Word of Wisdom for only one week.  Just to see how it would go.  She said that she would do that and let us know how she felt about it.  She then expressed some concerns or things that she had been going through and I brought up the strength that both members and non members can get from receiving a priesthood blessing.  So tonight we are going over with the C's to teach more about the priesthood and give her a blessing.  She is amazing.  Despite the things she is going through and the opinions of her family, she is willing to stand strong because she knows that this church and this gospel is what she needs right now in her life.  :)

Experience #7
Last night, we were able to have dinner with a newly-married couple in the ward, the C's.  We had an amazing dinner.  It was almost like an omelet with spinach, cheese, eggs, two different kinds of meats, etc., and tater tots.  Simplistic and sooooo good.  But the amazing thing was the message that we shared after dinner.  I felt inspired to show them the Mormon Message "Voice of the Spirit."   I love experiences like this.  I can really feel that even after my mission, this couple and I will be great friends because of the love and the bonds that are being built because of my mission.  I love them.

Experience #8
This one is shorter.  We walked out of our house one night this week after dinner and saw that it was pretty cloudy outside.  Sister T asked if we should just drive, but because we didn't have many miles I said, "No.  Let's walk.  If it starts raining, we will just turn around and come back."  Silly me.  Playing with the odds.  Well, we got what was coming to us.  We didn't even get 20 feet around the corner before we could hear it coming.  We looked over to the trees to our right and saw a WALL of rain headed straight for us.  And believe me when I say that we got DUMPED ON!  We were DRENCHED!  And we were wet the rest of the night!  But hey, it makes for a fun story... right?  ;)
We did get transfer news on Saturday.  I will be staying in Danville, VA.  Sister T is being transferred as well as Elder S and a few other elders in our district.  But I will be staying here.  Same address and everything.  So you can send the package whenever you would like to. :)  I haven't gotten news on whether or not I am training yet, but I will know for sure by tomorrow.  I take it though, that if they haven't told me by now, I am probably not training this transfer.  But we are getting a new mission president next week.  This is the last week with the Craven's.  That is going to be weird.  But a good weird.  We are all excited for the transition.  Well, maybe not ALL of us.  But I am, so you know.  ;)

I am still enjoying the district/zone.  We had a district activity planned last week, but it fell through.  So we all came to the church after getting snow cones and played basketball and "never have I ever."  It was really fun. 
I will let you know about the genealogy in another email.  :)

I will let you know how President Craven's last transfer meeting goes, how my new companion is, who she is, and how I am next week.  I CAN'T BELIEVE I AM TAKING OVER AN AREA!  I AM DIRECTIONALLY HANDICAPPED!  HOW AM I GOING TO DO IT!?  Hopefully I will be able to get our GPS working soon so that I won't be lost all of next transfer.  

I love you guys to NC and back!

Ash :)


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