Hey family!! I sure love being a missionary! Even if it is hard and more or less the biggest roller coaster I've ever been on. haha! Sister Bowles and I have some exciting things up ourselves to help get the ward members more involved in missionary work. There are so many ways to do missionary work. It isn't just talking to somebody about church stuff. You can invite people to church activities, to church when you are giving a talk. There are SO MANY THINGS! :D Something I have learned while on a mission is that the full-time missionaries need the help of the members in finding people to teach. This work WILL NOT go forward as fast as it needs to without the members and the full-time missionaries working together in unity.
Dad, maybe for FHE y'all can have a lesson based from the finding chapter of preach my gospel, with an emphasis on the importance of members. There is such joy that comes from sharing the gospel. People may or may not accept the gospel, but you don't know until you share it with them. :D
This week has been great! We had six less active people at church yesterday!!!! It filled Sister Bowles and I with joy! I have learned that working with the less active people is just as important as working with the investigators, and active members of the church. Our purpose as missionaries is to build peoples faith.
We have been working with two less active Sisters and they are on their way back to the temple! I can't describe how happy Sister Bowles and I were when we heard this news. They are wonderful Sisters!
Working with less active members has also taught me how important visiting teaching is! I now understand how important it is. One of these Sisters had a great visit with her visiting teacher and us and the next Sunday came back to church after 5 years of not going and now is in the process of getting her temple recommend. :D During that visit Sister Bowles and I hardly said a word. Her visiting teacher really did the talking. She spoke by the Spirit and really connected with this sister. She was bold with her, but full of love and kindness. I have such a testimony of visiting teaching and I will not ever take it for granted ever again. I love you very much mom! I'm so thankful for all the prayers you say in my behalf. I am so grateful for the emails you send to me each week. :D I love to read them. I just wish I had more time to write more. So much happens during the week, its hard to keep track of everything. Have a great week! I sure love you!
Dad: Are you serving in the Village Ward with Bishop Huff?
I sure am! Bishop Huff is awesome!
Dad: So do you meet at the chapel on 5020 NW 63rd ST?
Dad: What are some of the street names you have tracted on and the major street numbers from this week? Yes, I would like to google earth stalk you again. For example if you tracted by the chapel, you might say tracted on 5000 NW 63rd street. This does not give away the location of investigators or anything, but lets me see the area.
We've tracted on Andover Court and in apartment complexes just east of us. It's hard for me to remember where I've tracted. We haven't spend more than 2 or 3 hours a day tracting on a particular road. We ride our bikes to and from places a lot and stop and talk to people on our way to wherever we're going (like appointments or the library).
I am hesitant to tell you this, but it is a neat experience. I just don't want you to worry. I do want you to know I am being protected. The south part of our area is pretty ghetto. Everything from about 15th street down to Reno (end of our area) is a place we don't go if its dark. And we don't do much tracting down in that area.
The other day we had to go to 4th street. It was around 4 in the afternoon. As we drove down there to check on a referral, Sister Bowles and I felt very uneasy. We did contact the referral and they were not interested so we went to check on a less active in the area. As we pulled up to the house we both sat there. Sister Bowles said she just felt sick to her stomach about going to see the less active right now. I was also feeling uncomfortable and uneasy with the idea. So we left. As soon as we were out of the area we both felt like we could breath easy again. I know the Spirit was guiding us and protecting us. So like I said, please don't worry about me, but I did want to share that with everybody.
Also, the church is actually out of our area. Our area from east to west is May Avenue to Western Avenue. Our North to South Boundry is Coffee Creek to Reno avenue, more or less. :)
Eric: What did you not expect this week?
Eric, Something I didn't expect this week was to learn how important it is for members of the church to do missionary work. The missionaries have A LOT more success in finding and baptizing people when members of the church share the gospel with their friends and family and then invite them to have the missionaries teach them than if missionaries were to knock on a person's door. I also learned how important it is to really love others, even if they seem different. Not everybody chooses the right, but we still need to show them the same love that Jesus does.
Mom: Is there anything you need us to send to you or that you are missing?
Are you sending back my microSD card? Also, if you are going to Jenni's wedding, could you take a picture of them coming out of the temple. I would love to see a picture. :D Also, another towel would be nice. Tell Chris he can respond to my letter in an email if he wants.
Love, Sister Record