Sunday, January 24, 2016

Week 32: A Roller Coaster of a Week

Hello there!  This week has been a rollercoaster - lots of good moments and also some hard ones.  On Tuesday we went to the Griffin District Meeting.  We did a training on becoming converted members of the church, and it really hit me how we can always work on being more converted.  President Foote always talks about how none of us are ever going to become fully converted, and that we always need to be working on our conversion.  Luckily we have forever to work on it!  But anyway, the district meeting went great, and we rushed back from district meeting to have exchanges with the Fayetteville Sisters.

I spent the whole day with Sister Worsham, and since we blew like 40 miles going to and from district meeting, Sister Mason spent the day with us and drove us around!  We taught a lady who sits on her porch all day (literally) and sings gospel music!  She is so sweet and we talked to her about the Book of Mormon. We gave her one of those huge copies because her eyesight isn’t very good.  We also went and taught a lady who we have been teaching on and off for six months, and it was such an interesting lesson.  We have been trying for so long to get her to read the Book of Mormon, and we were so positive that she would, and when we got there she told us she gave it away to a friend... hopefully the friend will actually read it!  Ah! We gave her another one, and she said for sure this time she would read it... and then we went back on Sunday evening, and her husband yelled at us and told us to never come back - such an emotional roller coaster!  A mission has definitely taught me to number one, face rejection with a smile and number two, be patient with people.

Exchanges were fun because we had seven sisters total that stayed at our apartment that night!  It was like a slumber party, except we said a group prayer and went to bed at 10:30- definitely not what most 19 year old girls do, but it was awesome!  We taught Mary on Friday, and we are so sad that she isn’t living in our area anymore, but she will hopefully come back to visit often! She was telling us how she shared the B.O.M with her roommate and told her about the church! She is already such an awesome missionary and she isn't even a member! She amazes me! 

I am trying to think of any funny stories that happened this week.... last night we taught a lesson at a less active members home.  They have this little dog that came up and started licking my leg part way through the lesson, and it was all Sister Barrett and I could do to not burst out laughing, because I was trying to move it away without kicking it, while still maintaining my composure.  Everyone has dogs here and it can be pretty annoying!  OHHH!  We were finding on Saturday, and after finding no one on Friday it was so cool to knock on this lady’s door who had just moved in. She said, "Oh, I ordered a Book of Mormon and it came in the mail.  I just really felt like I needed to read it!  I've almost read the whole thing!"  We were so stunned!  We are so excited to start teaching her!  And another lady who welcomed us right in that day and was telling us about how it was the anniversary of her husband’s passing and how she had been given a Book of Mormon from a friend.  When we asked if we could come back and teach her she was so excited! It was a miracle day!  Have a great week!

Love Sister Hunter 


Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 31: I Guess it Does Get Cold in Georgia

Hello family!! I hope all is well in the freezing tundra that Utah has become!  It has gotten surprisingly cold here, too.  I keep forgetting that this place gets cold.  Sister Gubler and I went tracting on exchanges and I was all, "I'll be fine without a jacket!"  (famous last words)  I was trying to write down a guy’s number that we found and it took me like two minutes because my fingers were so cold!  Lesson learned: wear a jacket even if the sun is shining!  We had exchanges with the Griffin sisters this week.  It was a little crazy with all six of us in the apartment and figuring out everything with the cars and the bikes, but it all ended up working out!  Somehow it always does.  We had a goal to do a lot of finding, and between the two companionships we found four new investigators! 

The day they left we went over to spend time with Judy, and while we were with her she got the news that her husband had passed away at the hospital. I am grateful we were able to be there with her to comfort her, and I know that he is in a better place and not experiencing all the pain he had here on earth.  The Plan of Salvation really is such a wonderful thing.  His funeral was very nice.  It was the first time I had been to a funeral not held at the church, and it was really interesting.  The Relief Society put on a dinner at the church afterward and Judy is the only member in her family, so it was neat to show her family around the church.  Judy seems to be doing okay under the circumstances, but we are sad because she is moving in with her daughter and out of our ward boundaries.  Her husband had a lot of health issues probably related to poor lifestyle choices, but he told us that while he was serving in the Air Force he would recite the 23rd Psalm (The Lord is my Shepherd), whenever he was in a scary situation. When I think of him I will always remember that about him.

This week we were challenged to write out our testimony of the Atonement, and since I have left home my understanding of the Atonement has grown so much.  The Atonement is SO much more than for repenting of sins.  Christ felt every single pain, disappointment, and frustration we will ever feel.  I have felt its enabling power everyday, and Heavenly Father has helped me recognize it.  When I look back on different trials, I now see that I never could have done it on my own- Christ has been with me every step of the way!  The good news of the Gospel is that He will continue to be with me, and all of us, every step of the way.  When I feel anxious or worried about what is going to happen next I have to remember that.  When Elder Holland was here he said, "Christ promised that they were going to make it to the other side, so they ARE GOING TO MAKE IT TO THE OTHER SIDE!”  With Christ in our boat we will always make it to the other side, always, always, always!  Of course there will be rough water that will most likely get into the boat. It may feel like the boat is going to sink, but we have His promise that it will get to the other side- and that is a promise that we can cling to no matter what.  Another thing I have learned is that growth happens when we do hard things. I don't think I will ever fully be able to express how much I have learned on my mission or how much I am treasuring these experiences.  The good new is I still have a whole year left!  Have a great week! 

 One of the cute girls in our ward : a future Sister Missionary!

 With Judy at the church for a luncheon following her husband's funeral

 The sisters closest to the Mission Home get to help take down Christmas decorations!

 Exchanges with Sister Gubler

 Last picture with Mary before she heads off to school

Monday, January 4, 2016

Week 30: "These is my favorite!"

I am just going to share a few highlights and miracles of the week!  

We went out teaching with our mission Nurse, Sister Mason on Wednesday.  We visited a potential that the PTC sisters found for us. She is going through a lot of really hard things and we are excited to keep teaching her more about the gospel.  *That is one of my favorite things about being on a mission- helping people see that there is hope! One of my favorite scriptures has become Ether 12:4, hope is such a wonderful thing!  We spent most of the day with Sister Mason and she is so fun to be around, so it was a great day.  That night we went on splits with two sisters from our ward, and it was such a blast!  I feel so lucky that I get to meet so many amazing people.  I have loved serving in this area for so long because I have gotten to know the ward members so well. 

I forgot what day it was, but we stopped by a member’s, and after we finished talking to them they ran and got us a big tub of chocolate. It was toward the end of the day so I was pretty tired, and I got so excited to see all of that chocolate that I burst out, "These is my favorite!"  Then I paused, realizing how bad my English was, and we all couldn't stop laughing.  Good times!  We found a few new investigators as we were "finding" this week, which was super cool!  Every time I feel like giving up or like nothing is going to happen we always find people who are so prepared!  The story that I told last week of that member in our ward where we went into her house and then had to run out because she wasn't there, well, her husband had a stroke this week.  We have been going over to offer any help that we can, but it has been so hard to see him suffering.  We have been praying for them, and I know that whatever happens Heavenly Father is in charge.  I hope you have a great week! 

Love, Sister Hunter 


Week 29: 2016 Looks Peachy!

Merry Christmas from Peachtree City!  I hope that Christmas was as magical as it always is!  On Christmas day we were riding our bikes with the temperature in the upper 70's, so it was a very different Christmas than I am used to! We had SO much rain this past week and so much flooding!!  On Wednesday we had Zone Training which was SO awesome!  I feel like I am in the best mission in the world.  Probably every missionary says that, but it is true.  Sister Barrett and I were in 3 musicals numbers...haha, and we all know I have a horrible voice so that was an adventure!  Good thing they were group musical numbers.  The senior couples did a lot of the training, and I look up to them so much- we have awesome senior couples! We did car inspections in the rain which was an adventure!  After that we had the PTC sisters drop us off at an appointment.  This is a less active sister that we visit a lot and her husband isn't a member.  They are so sweet and have recently been having a lot of health issues, and we have just started coming in the back door because their two dogs bark really loud if we knock in the front.  So we walk in and the first thing we see is her oxygen tubes hanging on the door, so of course I  think the absolute worst and wonder if she is in the hospital or something.  We walk in  through the kitchen calling their names, and I peek into their room and her husband was asleep so I panic and turn around to get sister Barrett's attention.   The best part of this whole story is that she has a mouth full of cookies, and I am in a panic whispering, "We have to go, it is only J in there asleep!!..... are you really eating a cookie right now?"  Then we both burst out laughing, and ran on our tiptoes out of the house into the pouring rain to ride our bikes home!  We were biking in the POURING rain! It was one of those moments where I was like wow I am on a mission in Georgia, riding a bike in the pouring rain looking like a fool, yet we were laughing our heads off because it was so ridiculous! 

On Christmas day, after we went running in the morning in the rain, we came back and opened our Christmas packages!  After studies we went to a member’s house and ate breakfast.  We went caroling to their neighbors which was fun! We sang so much on Christmas!  We went caroling with two other member families too!  Singing is great though because it puts smiles on everyone’s faces. We had a cool experience finding this week.  We knocked on a lady’s door and she said that she was set in her religion, and when we asked if any of her neighbors could use a prayer she told us about R who was going through a really hard time.  Both his wife and his dog had passed away recently.   We went over to pray with him and he was talking about how he hasn't prayed in a really long time and that he wants to get back into that habit.  We are going back to see him this week.  It was just really cool to see how people watch out for each other and that his neighbor took the time to tell us about him.

A scripture that I read this morning that stood out to me was Alma 1:25.  I thought it was so applicable for our time.  A lot of the people in this chapter were being disobedient and wicked and verse 25 describes how the others reacted.  “Now this was a great trial to those that did stand fast in the faith; nevertheless, they were steadfast and immovable in keeping the commandments of God, and they bore with patience the persecution which was heaped upon them."  I really liked that because it shows that no matter what the world is doing , keeping the commandments will help us endure.  Enduring isn't always easy but it’s always worth it!  I can't wait to see all of the adventures that 2016 will bring!  Have a great week! 
Love, Sister Hunter 

 Having fun with fake snow Christmas morning

 Gathering with a member family Christmas morning