Monday, December 28, 2015

Week 41 Christmas & New Years

Hola mi gente :)

Family!! It was so so nice to talk to you. It was weird. As soon as I hung up the call, I felt a certain part of my heart just die (that sounds a little dramatic but it was noticeable). It was kind of shocking and a little sad... But when you think about it that's what a lot of people experience when loved ones die and they don't know about the plan of salvation and such. It helped me recognize the clear,
tangible joy that comes from eternal families :) I love you all.

We had an amazing Christmas! Full of caroling, snowflake making, tamales, menudo, present giving and receiving, and everything in between! It was a wonderful, warm Christmas full of miracles :)

We did get to notice that Christmas tends to bring out the worst in people... That made the week a little interesting, trying to put out fires, learning to forgive, all that good stuff. But in the spirit of
Christmas, Jesus Christ makes all of that possible :)

There are lots of amazing things happening in our area! One of which happened yesterday. Our investigator brought her kids to church and her mom tagged along for the first time too! She loved it. But the thing that hit me was the daughters. We helped out in primary so I got to sit next to them during sharing time. I asked what they thought about church. The 9 year old, Margarita, said, "my favorite part is eating the bread and water." "How come?" I asked. I expected her to say it was yummy or something... "I just feel a connection... A connection with the Holy Ghost." WOW. A 9 year old! We go to church for more than a regular old snack consisting of bread an water. There's something special there. It was really heartwarming.

It's about that time again... We get transfer calls this weekend and there's an incredibly high chance I'm on my way out. I know I said that 6 weeks ago... But this time it's pretty for sure... We'll see :)

Oh! Just a New Years resolution plug. Often when I make goals, they come from a place of discouragement: Oh my goodness, remember that time I was so mean to this person. Gosh, I wish I had had more patience. I need more patience. That's my goal.

Dieter F. Utchdorf this past general conference said the following that tweeked my perspective a little: "Sometimes we feel discouraged because we are not “more” of something--more spiritual, respected, intelligent, healthy, rich, friendly, or capable. Naturally, there is nothing wrong with wanting to improve. God created us to grow and progress. But... I learned in my life that we don’t need to be “more” of anything to start to become the person God intended us to become. God will take you as you are at this very moment and begin to work with you. All you need is a willing heart, a desire to believe, and trust in the Lord."

Goals are good. But if you're seeking more patience make sure you devote more time and faith to developing and cherishing the patience you already have instead of what you lack. God loves us for what we are now and what we have the potential to become. We will succeed with Him.

Anyways! I love you all so much! Thank you all for being you :)

¡Feliz Año Nuevo!
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Lund

Enviado desde mi iPad

There's this big tree in the center of Safford. After we went caroling with the other missionaries we went to the tree.... Only to find out there's a liiiiiiiittle hole you can climb through. So in case you were wondering what the inside of a Christmas tree looks like :)

From the half mission Christmas conference. Our Spanish people we never get to see :) ignore the awkwardness and dysfunctionality please :) 

Christmas Eve dinner with our favorite family and our favorite sisters :) they gave us 10 to-go boxes FULL of food! One entirely consisting of ham :) 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Week 40 "There are never coincidences with God"

Hola :)

This past week was FREEZING!!! We went on exchanges on the coldest day so far and I went to the one sister biking area in the mission (wootwooot). Luckily their bikes are broken so we just walked, rather than having ice cold wind blasting on your face with your skirt flying in the wind :) it was below 20 when we walked to the church for early morning basketball......... But yeah. The Tucson summer has turned me into a pansy. Everyone's a lil sniffly because of the cold, myself included.

There are so many miracles happening in our area though! The branch has been KILLING it with fellow shipping investigators and recent converts and that has made a huge difference.

One miracle that happened this week was how we found 2 new investigators! I'm stealing this from Hna B's journal to save time, but it was amazing!

"We tried a couple different less actives and decided on Hermana Wood. We had never met her before. We pull up and two guys our age come out and say Hermana wood isn't here and at that moment Hermana Vazquez, another less active and the sister of Hermana wood, pulls up and invites us inside. We learn that the guys are renting rooms from Hermana wood and are from Mexico. They are Joe and Marcus and we started talking a bit with them and discovered they're both very interested. It was incredible.

- They usually work today but miraculously had it off.
- They work with all Mormons, including some people from our branch
- Joe lived in Layton, Utah for a bit and knows a little about the church.
- Hermana Vazquez pulled up the moment we needed another woman there
in order to go into the house.
- Marcus shared a scripture from the bible in Hebrews 11 that I had
literally just read this morning.
- Hermana Lund on a whim grabbed two Books of Mormon from the car.

I have learned there are never coincidences with God. If He needs it to happen, He will make it happen, whether it is through you or another means."

I would like to echo the wise words of my compañera. Have faith :) Be happy :) God loves us and it will all be okay :)

I'm excited to talk to you all on Friday!!!

¡Feliz Navidad, mi gente!
Hermana Lund

Enviado desde mi iPad

These are from this morning. We went over to the sister's and they helped us try and take a Christmas picture with our sweaters... These were the results... Oh! And the horses got a little jealous so we involved them in the photo shoot too :) the one pic looks like I have horse ears..

Earlier this week with the Salvation Army.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Week 39 We Need Eachother

Hola :)

Well! This week was another crazy one.

For starters we had 3 birthdays in our district this week! For Elder H the elders dragged him out of bed, sang happy birthday on his porch, and we decorated their apartment and cleaned their kitchen while at a service project. Kind of funny. He came up to us later and thanked us sincerely for cleaning their kitchen, saying it was truly an answer to prayer :) Hahah

Then we had Hna B's birthday :) We went to starbucks, recruited the elders for decorating, and we also volunteered to ring the bell for the Salvation Army outside Walmart for a few hours in our matching christmas sweaters :) It was a blast! Community Service for the win! We finished off the day with dinner with our favorite family and a branch Christmas party :)

Oh! So I decided on Monday that I was going to make Hna B a scarf for her birthday because she's always cold. So we went to the store and I told her that it was a family tradition to knit scarves and stuff for the homeless around Christmas time (which is not a lie... shoutout goes to you, mom!). So for 2 days I just knit. During sports, during zone meetings, lulls in conversations. Hna B even agreed to do the driving so I could knit in the car. All for the homeless :) Hahah she was happy when she found out it was hers :)

Today is our district leader, Elder M's bday. We sent him on a scavenger hunt around Safford with clues for each of the Safford companionships. It ended at McDonalds and we all ate breakfast together :)

Spiritually, this week was a great one. We haven't had any investigators at sacrament meeting in a few months now... This past Sunday we had 4 :D The family that we've been teaching came with their 3 kids.

OH! Sidebar... We were asked to help with the Primary program.... We assumed it would be sitting with the kids to keep them quiet. Hna B ended up playing the piano and I conducted! .. Yuuuup. Those choristers that stand in the middle and wiggle their fingers and stand up the kids and tell em to smile and sing loud... Yuuup. That was me :) Hahaha it was fun though!

But anyways. Since Sunday was the Primary Program. Our investigator's little girls asked if they could participate in the program! Their first time at church and they got up there, smiled, pretended to know the words to the songs, and even got up and said some of the speaking parts. It was incredible!! They're so bold and they were so excited!

Honestly, God is so in charge. I feel like I say this all the time but this area has taught me that no matter what the situation, there will be a point where you hit a wall and just say, "God. I have no idea what to do." "I don't know" has become a common phrase.

This morning as I was studying, I came across the story of the Brother of Jared in the book of Ether. Jared asks his brother to pray that they will be able to understand each other, even though all their peers are no longer able to, due to their wickedness and the power of God. That prayer is answered. Next Jared asks his brother to pray their their friends may be able to continue to understand each other. God answers that prayer as well and allows their friends AND their friends' families to continue to communicate.

This was an example to me of the importance of being surrounded by good, faithful, spiritual friends and family. Jared was the one who provoked his brother to pray. And their friends and their friends' families were blessed simply because they were friends.

We need each other. Especially at Christmas time. When we hit those "I don't know" moments. We need people by our side who will remind us to pray. Reach out to others. Be a good friends. Help others do good. And who knows. Maybe one day someone will pray on your behalf and you will be blessed for your friendship.

I LOVE YOU ALL! Enjoy the Christmas season :) Hasta pronto
Hermana Lund

Hna B's birthday dinner with our favorite family, the Peñas. They are amazing!!!!!

Hna B was sick on Saturday and I ran out of things to do so I ended up trying to untangle the Christmas lights that had been left behind....3 hours later we found out they didn't even work. Always plug them in first, kids.

Hna B's birthday morning :) we kidnapped her and took her to Starbucks, her favorite! We forgot a blindfold so we got creative with a sweater...

Our Zone leader Elder Moore had to go home for medical reasons but we made him a shirt last pday :)

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 38 Nine Month Mark

Hola :)

No tengo mucho tiempo but I'll tell you a little bit about this week!

Every year they do a live nativity outside the temple. They have actors as Mary, Joseph, Angels etc with a donkey and sheep and it's amazing!!! We got to help out with all the parking (attractive orange
vests and everything) and then on Saturday our investigators came :D
it was an amazing addition to all the Christmas magic :)

We also had our mission-wide Spanish conference in Tucson! It was great to see everyone and get out of the valley for a day. I also got to see some recent converts which was really nice and rejuvenating. I didn't realize how much I missed Tucson. I also didn't realize how
much I'll miss this valley. 4 more weeks :)

The church is true. Read the Book of Mormon. Watch the Christmas special!

Oh, also casually hit my 9 month mark this past week. Time flies.
Halfway there :) / :(

I love you all so very much!
Hermana Lund