Monday, December 10, 2012

Day 75: For my soul delighteth!

Queridos Chaparitos,
You can know when I'm up to date in my journal writing when I know how many days I've been on my mission. I don't count the days to be trunky but I just like to look through to see how far I've come and what I've learned. It's cool to look back on day 5 or 7 in the MTC when I felt like I was there forever! I've been in Moses Lake for nearly 2 months and I can hardly believe it. This is my home. I love it here so much. I love my wards and the people and the work. This is exactly where I'm supposed to be right now.
And I am having the best time of my life. Seriously. Sister Tippetts and I were best friends in heaven and then we decided to serve in the same wonderful mission together and we get to be best friends on earth again. It's so wonderful and fun and enjoyable to serve and work with her! She's like my Becky Jones on the mission. We aren't exactly the same but we balance each other well and we are both super funny. Even in the tough times and the sad stuff, it's nice to have Sister Tippetts by my side to lift me up and help me learn. I seriously love it so much. I don't want this transfer to ever end. Sister Tippetts was saying how we always seem to be with our favorite companions for the least amount of time and the hard companions for the longest so we have a feeling this companionship won't get to last too long. It's just too good to be true. But it will be such a wonderful Christmas.
Elder Ballard explained that missionaries need to have 20 quality, gospel conversations per day, outside of lessons being taught. When I first heard that I thought it would be easy because we talk to everyone all the time. But a quality conversation means that we are talking and teaching of Christ and extending invitations to people to learn more. Since we are in a car all the time, it's kind of hard to find people to talk to. Ideally, we want to talk to 140 people a week but for most of the missionaries here we've been excited if we talk to 30 or so. Sister Tippetts is awesome though because she really had the fire for QGCs and wanted to meet our goal of 140. And so we worked our tails off. The first three days we hit 20 each day but Thursday was a little tough because it's our planning day and we are inside until about 3 or 4 (yuck! I would rather spend all day tracting that sitting inside planning!) but our final total for the whole week was 104 people! And we had 11 new investigators and 28 lessons! I don't want you to think that we focus a lot on our numbers because really we try to focus on people, but it was an exciting week. We met a lot of our goals and even though there were tough times too, we just saw so many blessings from the Lord. It was an incredible week of miracles! And the miracles didn't just come from talking to all the people. I'm not sure if we really had any new investigators from the QGCs but somehow, because we were trying so hard, and showing diligence to the Lord, he blessed us in other ways. There is definitely power in QGCs and showing diligence and dedication to the work!
Jonathan is getting baptized this upcoming Saturday! So all the Avilas will be baptized before Christmas! I'm so excited for their family. And Jonathan's dad, Genaro will be performing the baptism and using his new Priesthood authority! All of the branch are recent converts of some degree and it's exciting to see them grow in the gospel. I really love the branch. The all work so hard and do all they know how to do to. Purest hearts, sweetest intentions. I want to come home and serve in Spanish branches forever.
The 6th Ward feels like home to me. I feel like I'm home every time we visit different families here. I feel like it's home with the bishop and our ward mission leader and with the primary president and elder's quorum president. I can't express all my love really. It's just so good to be serving here! We have the best ward council in the 6th ward. We started teaching a young, single mom, Brittney and she accepted a baptism date for Jan 5th! It's pretty exciting because the 6th ward hasn't had a convert baptism since April. The members are so good and they really want to help in missionary work, but it's so hard to find people to teach. It's easy in Spanish because people will let you into their humble homes no problem. Pasanse! They tell us. But English families, who do well and have nice families, don't really want to hear our message. But Brittney moved into the extra room of the home of one of our former investigators/less-active families and so it just all came together perfectly for us to teach her. She really wants to learn more and come unto Christ and feel His love in her life. She is so great. She came to our Christmas party and now the ward wants to do everything possible to help her reach her goal. It's really cool to be a part of a ward council that is so dispuesto a servir!
Well, there is always more to say, but not enough time.
I love being a missionary! I love the gospel of Jesus Christ. I know He is my Savior. He is the reason for the season. It's so joyous to be a missionary because we are always thinking of Christ and how we can be more like Him. There is nothing sweeter, truly.
Happy week!
Le quiero muchisimo!
Hermana Em

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