Hola Familia!!!!First of all, HAPPY BIRTTHDAY Kimberly this week!! Wow I can't believe that you are 12! You will love young womens. It is the best!!!!!!!!!!!!! My advice to you is to always be kind to everyone in the young women group no matter what (and I'm sure that you already are). Also, participate in the lessons, because you'll learn more that way! So what are you going to do for you birthday? Are you going to have a cake? If so, what kind did you have? How has school been going? Way to be for earning your Faith in God award. That will be such a blessing in your life! So, now you can go to the temple? Are you going to go with the family? That would be so neat? Kimberly, the temple is amazing, and I think you will love it! You might feel a little nervous at first, but when you go just remember that you are in Heavenly Father's house. I'm sure that Mom, Katie,...etc would love to go with you as well. Also Todd, Trevor, Nate and everyone else! That is so exciting! What is your favorite thing about being 12? Do you feel any older? Happy Birthday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I love you!
11. Hard Worker
12. Good at school (math, spelling...etc.)
Ok, so Mom I love your haircut, it looks great! Todd, I also love the picture of you in uniform. Looking sharp! Do you like marching band? What's hard about it? What's good about it? What about school? Do you like 8th grade?
So, about the media focus, we learned the other day that we will be getting facebook eventually, but I'm not sure when. (Weird, because I've never hard one, and I never thought I'd have one on my mission :) I'm not exactly sure of the details are though, we have a zone conferenceso I'm not sure it we'll talk about it more then or not. So with winter clothing, I'm not exactly sure. My companion hasn't been here through a winter yet, either...but I'm thinking probably the end of September or the start of October. We can call the office this week, and I'll let you know for sure more next week! Is that ok? I have some warm stuff right now, so if it did get cold fast I think I'll be ok. Also, there are a bunch of coats from the other hermanas who used to live here that I could use if I wanted to.
My companion is from Alpine Utah. She came her about the start of January, but her Spanish is really good! She was one of the new missionaries as well who turned in their papers after the age change. She learned Spanish pretty much all here in the field, which is amazing! I feel so blessed to have a companion like her because she is very very good at connecting with the people and being able to speak with them. Speaking of which, it has been interesting because the people here really love to talk! But they talk so so fast! It's crazy, so sometimes we'll be in a lesson and I'm long far gone with what they're talking about...but I've learned how to just smile and nod and lend a listening ear (or more like someone they can know and trust I guess....) It's interesting, but I've decided that if for now my duty is to just be there to let them know that the Lord cares, then that's what I'll do. I can usually catch on to words here and there, and try and put the puzzle together. It's interesting, but fun! Almost like a weird twist on connect the dots! Afterwards I'll usually ask my companion what just happened, and then it all fits together. People have some really interesting and crazy lives... but I love being there with them.
At times I think of how much the gospel would bless their lives! If they could just see how much following the commandments could bless their life, but I guess they'll see the picture little by little. Like a sunrise, surely but slowly. Then I remember that maybe that's how Heavenly Father thinks of it for me as well. Maybe right now I can't see the whole picture, but the more I learn about the gospel,Spanish..etc...the more I'll come to appreciate and treasure the gospel.
Ok, so some funny experiences this week. It was really humid and really hot, and we went to go check up on a potential investigator. She works for Mary Kay, (so maybe this is why it was one her mind) but she asked us if we were allowed to were makeup! It was funny because we were wearing makeup right then...but I guess she couldn't tell.. We also had someone ask us again, yesterday.... We really do try to look nice in the morning and everything, but I guess just throughout the day, it wears off or something...oh well. :) It was funny, it gave us some good laughs.
I've been thinking about missionary work and what a unique time this is in my life. I don't think I'll ever have another time in my life where I go to peoples house, sit in their houses, eat their food (amazing, I love it by the way!! Mexican food is the best!), talk to them about their worries, the gospel, and try and help them to see the bigger picture, without even really knowing them before! I love it! It is the best!! I feel so blessed to serve a mission and to be serving others! Better yet, to be preaching the gospel to others! In Preach my Gospel, there is a quote by Joseph Smith which says "After all that has been said, the greatest and most important duty is to preach the Gospel."
It is so true! At times it is easy to forget why we are really here! I have seen the people who have the gospel in their lives and they have a foundation in their lives. I feel so sad for those who wander around, wondering where to go! Because Jesus Christ is there waiting for them to come unto him, but some of them just need a guide. One of the scriptures that I really love lately is Philippians. " I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me."
Ok family, I want to offer you a challenge.. :) Pray about someone you could give their name to the missionaries. I know that if we pray about it, Heavenly Father will help peoples faces, names, families come to our mind. They don't have to be your best friend, just someone you know. Can I tell you how much we love referrals, I think I would faint if a family came to me and gave us referrals, it would be heaven on earth. They're the best!!! Even better is when the member comes with you! I think it makes such a difference. (Sorry, I'm not trying to get on everyone's case, I hope it doesn't feel that way...I just know how much a blessing it would be to the missionaries)
Last night we got an interesting text from a less active member, she asked why is it that when they are trying to do the best good, or come back to church, is when she has the most temptations and trials. We are going to go over to her house tonight and talk to her about it. It reminds me of the first vision though, because right before Joseph prayed, satan tried to stop him because what Joseph was going to do was going to change the world for the better. (JSH-17) It also made me think off all the prophets in the scriptures, they all had trials, and their lives and I'm sure that they were tempted or couldn't see the results right in front of them (Abinidi), but if they just preserver then they are blessed so much. Also they bless others lives! It made me also think about putting on the whole armour of God (D and C 27: 15-18). I've been thinking about how important reading the scriptures and praying are. It's what keeps us going through those hard times. Heavenly Father will always support you, but satan never ever will. (Alma 34:39) I know that when we pray and read our scriptures we are holding on to the iron rod (1 Nefi ). Especiallly reading and praying when we don't feel like it, because that's when we need to the most.
I know that when we read and pray we receive many blessings. Remember to read the Book of Mormon daily!!!! ( I know that I say this probably every week, but it is something I need to work on, and I know that when I do I feel the blessings so much in my life)
I love you all!!!!!! I hope all is going well! How is baby William? How did the race go, Katie and Michael?
Keep the faith all!!! I love you all so much, thanks for all your support and love. It would be hard to do it without you, thanks for all you do!
Love, Hermana Israelsen