Monday, March 28, 2016

God Hears Us - It's All Real

Hermana Reed needs surgery on Friday. Waiting to hear the plan.

Hello hello! Sorry today is a crazy day again. Sorry I didn't send a good email last week but, man this was a good week!
Spanish Chistoso (funny)

We had an awesome specialized zone conference earlier and I assume you don't care about all the details but I was amazed that all of our leaders taught an entire day of meetings JUST FOR ME. Haha, seriously though everything the zone leaders, sister training leaders, assistants, and president Wakolo said was exactly what I needed to hear. I am in one of those transition times where I got kind of comfortable with missionary work and it's time to stretch and grow again. I learned about the power of diligent fasting and prayer from president Wakolo. He said he would imagine that his missionaries fasted and prayed and fasted and prayed and acted on their faith by following the Spirit to say the things they needed for the Spirit to spark his conversion. The initial thing that caught his attention was the name of the church. If Christ had a church, what would it be called? The church of Jesus Christ! It's so simple yet so profound and I'm grateful for the missionaries that so diligently followed the Spirit so we could be touched by president Wakolo's testimony and conversion.


I also... ... ... ........ ENJOYED A ROLE PLAY. Hahahaha I do not like doing role plays because it's awkward but I got out of my comfort zone and received so much revelation for an investigator and a less active member. IT'S LIKE THEY'RE INSPIRED OR SOMETHING. President Wakolo asked us to do them everyday everyday everyday and as awkward as they are it really is the best way to receive revelation. And elder Hale is cool and decided we need to do district role plays every Monday for comp studies. So we go to the church Monday mornings now and work together to move this mountain! It's great. Anyway I wish I could explain better how awesome our leaders are and how even more awesome the Holy Ghost is.
Just finishing District Role Play

Something the assistants talked about at specialized was asking "heaven inspired questions." Avoiding the routine questions that may or may not be productive and asking questions that are sent from heaven-or the Holy Ghost- to help identify people's needs and to help them think about their own conversion. I needed this so much and it came just in time for us to have a great lesson with a new investigator. He is this big, muscle-y work out guy who I totally thought would brush us off, but he's actually really cool and very genuine. We started off just getting to know him and his background and then together sister Reed and I thought deeply about what he was saying and how the gospel and the experiences we have had can in a very real way, bless him and address his needs. We did our best to avoid asking questions that were yes or no, or that didn't make sense or that were looking for an obvious answer and tried to ask more about his views and purposes and about God and HIS views and purposes. We have yet to see him again but I know he got closer to Christ; he got one step closer to believing in God and believing that he is really listening.

He told us about feeling unsure if the stories in the Bible are real, if those miracles really happened. He also asked me after talking about God and his purpose and role in our lives, "So you actually believe that God is up there listening when you pray for him ...?" YES!! I was so happy to testify to an honest seeker of truth that yes, I know God is listening. There have been times in my life where I was unsure, I felt alone, I wanted immediate answers and I wasn't getting them. But I know right now that God is listening and wants to hear from us. He is the same yesterday and forever and helped those people out of bondage in the Old Testament, he called prophets to lead and guide the people, he sent his son Jesus Christ to atone for the sins of the world, and he is so aware of each person on the earth and is actively waiting and listening!! It's just so true. It made me go home and reflect on the miracles and tender mercies and blessings I have had in my life that because of my faith, I know God is real. I have been so blessed!! :)
Cici's Pizza with Roques

Sweet Sister Reed has been such a trooper this week! All week she has been hobbling around on crutches and is still willing and able to teach the gospel! We will find out soon what exactly the game plan is, but for now we are being so well taken care of by the Spanish branch and the English ward and all the missionaries. Seriously so many tender mercies. I'm so grateful for sister Reed and her diligence in still wanting to find people and teach and make good relationships with those in this area, despite the challenge of a torn ACL. Your prayers and support are felt and much appreciated! :)
Happy Easter sign from Mom

I of course have been thinking a lot about Jesus Christ and his Atonement, death, and resurrection. I love taking the sacrament but it was especially sweet on Easter! I read Alma 11:42-45 a lot this week and thought about why it was even necessary. I love in the hallelujah video that explains we need Jesus Christ so we can have a new life. I tried to apply that a lot this week, really repenting everyday and starting over new. I'm so grateful that I can repent everyday in preparation to partake of the sacrament and renew that sacred covenant, and be clean as though I had just been baptized. Cool right? It is all only possible because of the love of God which is in Jesus Christ.
Old watch. :(

New Walmart Special. Yay!

There were lots of funny and good things that happened this week, most notably: I broke my watch, we had a fun Easter breakfast with the Spanish branch, enjoyed the niƱos on their sugar highs, bought a new watch, have yet to buy new shoes to replace the ones I accidentally threw away ... (it's okay because now I have an excuse to not go running anymore. Aside from having an injured companion, of course), had an amazing breakfast/lunch with the Stokes and some other families in the ward, I have had a twitch in my eye for two days, and just had lunch with Hna Espinoza at Umami's-which is always a great time! And today we have dinner with the Davis' and I know she reads my blog so Hi Sister Davis! see you in a few! :)

Beautiful Tulips. Me, Sister Hilton, Hermana Roque (RS Pres) and Tina

New Easter dress worn backwards because I don't like the front neckline. But it was cute and so so cozy. :) I knew she wouldn't like the neckline but sent it to her anyway. Never guessed she would wear it backwards. Very Ashley of her.
I'm sorry this is a dull letter, I promise we are having fun and working hard and enjoying seeing lives change because of the gospel of Jesus Christ!!


Prepare yourselves, this will be a good one.

Keep serving, keep loving, keep Hermana Reed in your prayers and keep being awesome.

I love you!

Good Times ... Good Memories ... Mi Amiga (referring to when I broke my leg and we rode around on motorized shopping carts everywhere we went)

Awesome outdoor chalk thing that Grandma Stokes put up.

Awesome swing and rope thing also and Grandma Stokes

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