Friday, January 8, 2016

Merry Christmas! Happy New year!‏

Hey Everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas! I hope that you all took some time to remember why we really celebrate Christmas! This was a great week! I have truly loved this Christmas season. There is a different feeling about it and I have truly enjoyed not being asked what I got for Christmas. That just as continues to remind me of why we really celebrate Christmas. I spent my day at our Ward Mission Leaders house playing games all day! It was a blast. I even got my Christmas nap in so that made me a happy camper. Talking with my family and friends was probably the highlight of the day though! It was so great! My companion and I ended the night with watching some bible videos about the Story of Christs birth and reading individually from the scriptures. I have to say, I really enjoyed reading my scriptures at the end of the day. I flipped open to the Nephite Christmas story and read that. There was so much peace and joy that filled my heart. I know that a little over 2000 years ago our Savior was born. It has been testified to me over and over again. It's a real story. It happened. He was born and because he was born we can live with our father in heaven again. What a beautiful thing. The day after Christmas I was able to go and witness Ruth's baptism. I don't remember how much I have told you about Ruth but she is amazing and inspiring. Ruth is a woman who I was teaching in my first area. She was living in a sober living house after she had decided to get her life together after years of abusing drugs and alcohol. When I met her she had an idea of what she already believed about where we were before this life and why we are here on earth. Her beliefs coincided 100% with what we believe as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She had a testimony of the restored truths of the gospel before she even knew about the gospel. It was amazing. It was so great that sometimes I had no idea what to say to here because she agreed wholeheartedly with everything that we said and I just wasn't used to that! After I left the area Ruth's daughter was baptized and Ruth was set with a date. She stopped smoking and overcame so much. She even shared her testimony in church on fast Sunday. She is a rockstar. Her baptism was amazing. So many missionaries worked together to help her come into the waters of baptism. Two of the elders that taught her I was in the mtc with. It was a really awesome experience. She bore her testimony at her baptism. She simply said in the beginning that her name was Ruth and that she knew this church was true. So simple yet so beautiful. I like her know that this church is true with every fiber of my being. There is no greater thing. Ruth will always have a special place in my heart. After her baptism the bishop spoke and he really touched my heart. He mentioned how when he was being taught by sisters that he loved them and that he tried so hard to find them again. After 46 years he found his sisters and he was able to gather her children and husband and tell them how great of a person and how strong their mother was. He was able to share the experience that their mother had given to him as a sister missionary. Missionary work isn't about the baptisms, it's about the conversion, it's about the lives that we are changing because with one person being baptized leads to their kids being baptized and then leads the, to being sealed in the temple for all time and eternity. What the bishop said helped me realize just how important it is for me to be in Vegas sharing the gospel. I hope that one day someone that I teach will be able to tell my kids about my missionary efforts. I really do love being a missionary. I don't think I have ever been happier. That doesn't mean that it is an easy work or that everything goes perfectly but witnessing people change and witnessing God working through me is powerful and so joyful. There is no where else I would rather be. I love you all. Also I is really weird to me that it is almost a new year and all of 2016 for me will be spent in the mission field. Crazy. The one who chooses the Son gets it all. 

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