Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Monday, September 30, 2013 - Transfers

This Wednesday is transfers. It's incredible to believe how much time has flown by. In this next transfer, I will be hitting my one year mark. I am staying in the same place with Sister Huefner for at least the next 6 weeks. We will be losing a ward, but we won't know until transfers which ward that will be. I love all of our wards and I don't want to lose any of them. Whatever is the Lord's will, I will be okay with whatever the outcome. 

 Thank you for the birthday wishes I received this week from some of you. I had a nice 22nd birthday. It's weird to now say I'm 22 instead of 21. I'm so old compared to most of the other sisters who are all 19. Since we didn't have a dinner that night (the ward in charge of feeding us had a ward camp out) we decided to go to Texas Roadhouse. It was great and they sang to me and had to sit on a saddle. Never had that experience that's for sure. For P-Day last Monday our zone leaders had a bouncy house. Yes, a bouncy house. Another Elder and I had our birthday's this past week, so the zone leaders got a bouncy house. 22 years old and getting a bouncy house for the birthday. lol. We were shocked to say the least with they opened the gym doors. It was a great day though. We had cake and they sang to both of us. We also played basketball as a zone. Fun times for sure. 

This week we saw many miracles. Here's some of the highlights: One of which was a referral by a member. Her name is Ivonne and the text said to teach about the Plan of Salvation and eternal families. We went over to talk with her and she was so friendly! Her husband had walked out of the family and went back to Mexico a couple of years ago. She said she had had a lot of trials in her life. Currently she is out of a job and is looking for one. We said we could get her connected with an employment specialist in the ward to help her get a job. She was very appreciative.  We taught her a lesson that night about the plan of salvation and we related her to Nephi. The spirit was very strong. When we first started talking with her she said I'm Catholic, but by the end she agreed to hear more of what we had to say. I'm looking forward to teaching her more! 

We have still been teaching a lot of part-member families. It's been going well, but of course everyone has their particular challenges. We've been praying and praying to find new investigators so we can build up our teaching pool. I think this transfer we will start seeing the fruit of our labors. We weren't able to meet with Carl or Brad this week- our two investigators. We're trying to address their concerns and help them to progress. 

We do have fun and work hard. We run into a lot of crazies and oh so interesting people. Everyone is unique. The other day a less-active old man in one of our wards opened the door with just a towel on! We were like what the?! Really? Is that necessary? lol. Good thing there was a storm/security door, so I just closed that right up and then we couldn't see him any more. One of the most terrifying 3 seconds of my life. 

On Saturday was the Relief Society Broadcast and it was great to hear from the General Relief Society Presidency and President Monson. The talks were on keeping and making covenants. I can't wait for General Conference this weekend! What a blessing it is that we are able to hear from our prophet and apostles twice a year. They really do speak directly what the Lord would have us know. We can receive answers to our questions when we listen to them. I would encourage you to prepare some questions before General Conference and see what revelation you do receive. Before Elder Andersen came to our mission, President Nattress counseled us to draw a line in the middle of our piece of paper. One side for the notes from what he actually said and the other side for the revelation we received. I have started to do that with all of my notes that I take. It means so much more to me than just writing down what he exactly said. We must always strive to be obedient and worthy to receive that revelation. 

I'm happy to be here and all that comes with serving a mission. No one said it would be easy. I love the talk by Elder Holland, Missionary Work and the Atonement. He said, "I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy... The Atonement will carry the missionaries perhaps even more importantly than it will carry the investigators. When you struggle, when you are rejected, when you are spit upon and cast out and made a hiss and a byword, you are standing with the best life this world has ever known, the only pure and perfect life ever lived. You have reason to stand tall and be grateful that the Living Son of the Living God knows all about your sorrows and afflictions. The only way to salvation is through Gethsemane and on to Calvary. The only way to eternity is through Him葉he Way, the Truth, and the Life." Christ knows what we're all going through. He has already paved the way for us. He knows us individually. When life gets hard, just know you can use Christ's Atonement in your own life. I have a strong testimony of the Atonement and it's healing power. "God loved us so He sent His only Begotten Son." The love they have for us is incredible, it's sometimes incomprehensible. I love my Savior and my Redeemer. He carries all of us at some point or another in our lives. He just wants us to become who He knows we can become. We must align our will with God's. 


Sister Collins 

P.S. I forgot my camera cord, so I will send this week's pictures next week.