December 30, 2013
Kirkham Family (aka the best family in the world!!),
Wow. What a treat to be able to Skype, talk and see you guys on Christmas day! That was so awesome. You guys all look so great! That was the best Christmas present ever and it won't ever be forgotten. I hope that the rest of your Christmas went well :)
This past week was still very productive in our missionary work although we had Christmas. We were very blessed! We are still teaching Jesse and Meradith and have scheduled a baptismal date with both of them for January! I have a feeling that we will need to push the date back to help them be fully prepared but things are still looking up for them. We had jokingly been telling Jesse that he needs to talk to his manager to change his shifts so that he has Sunday off... and if he is able to get it off then it's a sign from God that he needs to go to church! ... and guess what happened? He got Sunday off! haha!
On Christmas Eve we went over to the Steflick's home for Christmas Eve dinner. They are the sweetest family. They had us over for Thanksgiving as well! We were spoiled with having the bishop's smoked turkey... mmm mmm!!! Christmas morning, I Skyped you guys!!!! =D best 40 minutes ever! haha You could probably see the commotion going on in the background at the end of the call, but some people came over to join us at the Kidd's home for a Christmas lunch/dinner. We had fun meeting the Kidd's neighbors, and then the Kidd's wanted to watch the movie, “Joy to the World,” and sing some Christmas hymns. It was a good way to try and make it feel like Christmas, but in reality, it really just felt like another day ;) It's all good though! I really am so grateful for the opportunity for being able to spread the word of God on Christmas. What an amazing opportunity! Later that day we met with some single, lonely members of the ward and sang some Christmas hymns to a member in the nursing home. It was a sweet experience to see her face light up when we came. No one had been to visit her on Christmas and we were so grateful that we were able to see her. No better way to be spending that special day.
Christmas night, the Sister Training Leaders came for exchanges and I went to Deltona for the next day. Surprisingly that was only the second time that I have left my area for exchanges. I learned a lot about how to work more effectively with members and enjoyed getting to know Sister Low (the STL) more. We have so much in common! Not to mention that we were born a day apart ;) I love her! During the exchange, we went to a member's home for dinner. She is a sweet lady that is very excited about missionary work. During the closing prayer that she gave, she prayed for practically everything including genealogy work. As she was thanking Heavenly Father for genealogy she said, "We are SO blessed to do the work for our great, great, great, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, greats, etc." (I think you get the idea)! hahahaha every time she said another "great" she would get more emotional too. It was a very sweet prayer... but it was soo funny. Sister Low and I were trying so hard not to laugh.
Saturday, we had two baptisms in the ward!! The elders had a baptism at 3:00 p.m. and then we had Dakota's baptism at 5:00 p.m. Dakota's family wanted him to have a separate baptismal service. They were both very sweet services. Dakota was smiling ear to ear after the baptism and he said that he felt so good. :) Cool thing: Dakota's uncle had been baptized 13 years ago, (December 2000- same year that Dakota was born,) in the same font that Dakota was baptized in! Crazy! So cool though. The spirit was very strong that night. The next morning Brother Westcott confirmed Dakota a member of the church and conferred the Holy Ghost. It was such a sweet blessing. In the blessing, Dakota was promised to be an example to his family, and that he would be able to fulfill a full time mission. My eyes filled up with tears with the thought that not only had we been able to help Dakota, but if Dakota stays strong, he will in turn be able to help so many others! It's just a chain reaction! The gospel is so true and so perfect. :)
Last night we had the most spiritual member lesson that I have had on the mission. We were over at the first counselor in the bishopric's home. We had each person take a turn talking about what they know to be true and what they love about the gospel. After we helped them recognize that the Spirit was there as we had heard truth. We then helped them see that it's through the humble testimonies of those that share the Gospel that the Spirit will touch the hearts of others testifying and expounding on their words. You don't have to have eloquent words to share what you love and know!! It's in your heart, if you just have enough courage to START talking and open your mouth to share it with others, the Spirit WILL help you. This is the Lord's work, He is not going to abandon you when you are helping Him with HIS work. So don't be scared :) Be happy! Be Loving! Be an example! Share the simple truths that you love about the Gospel. Don't be afraid of reaching out in love to those around you. The Lord will be there with you :)
Well, I better get off. Once again, I was so excited and so happy to Skype you guys!! I hope you had a merry rest of your Christmas and that you enjoy the New Year!! I'm so excited and so ready for the year 2014. There are so many GREAT things that are awaiting each one of us... up to the very end of the year ;) Wow. This will be a year to never forget :) I love you guys. Remember, never be afraid to share something that means so much to you and that you know would only do good to others around you. You will be blessed as you do so!!
I LOVE YOU! I'LL SEE YOU THIS YEAR (and two days)!!! haha :) HAPPY 2014!!!!