Wednesday, September 28, 2016
This week was SOLID. So to start, we had two pretty amazing things happen this weekend. On Saturday we went with Gwen and Jesus Gomez to the temple so that Jesus could get baptized for his father. The Spirit wasn't crazy overpowering to the point of tears during the baptism of his father but the Spirit was present. I felt peace and I literally couldn't stop smiling! (Jaja) It was awesome. He felt it as well and it was just a great experience for all of us. I know that baptism is a necessary step and that temples make it possible for ALL to have the opportunity to choose to follow Christ.
Another amazing experience happened Sunday evening as we went with a member and her non member husband up to the Hartford Temple Open House. It was incredible! That temple is small but the spirit is the same and the work is just as eternal. I'm so grateful to have been able to go with them as one day they will be sealed in the temple. I LOVE THE TEMPLE AND I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY.
Miracle: I have a goal to hand out at least one Book of Mormon every day for the rest of my time as a missionary. Well on Sunday I prayed in the morning for an opportunity to give a Book of Mormon away because I knew it was going to be a crazy busy day. Here is what happened: We studied, went straight to ward council meeting, immediately started church, went straight to have lunch at a members house, then went straight to the temple open house an hour and a half drive, went through the open house, drove back, went straight to the mission home to pick up Elder Wulff, and then had to go straight home because we were already late. AHHHHHH! How to give out a Book of Mormon with that?! Well... on the way driving home I prayed like crazy. I prayed that just one person would be put in my path and I promised that I would talk to them. We pulled up to the apartment and no one was there... we walked to the apartment, I walked slowly. I offered another prayer. William opened the door and I just paused in front of it for a couple of seconds because I couldn't get myself to go in. Just then, a woman walked out of the building with a bag of trash!!!!! Elder McBride said "Are you going to go in?" And I said "I NEED to give her a Book of Mormon. How?" And I began to think. I then ran inside, grabbed our bag of trash and put a Book of Mormon in my other hand and then ran out of the door! Elder Wulff began the conversation with her and then I explained the Book of Mormon and gave it to her. She was so nice and that was a straight up MIRACLE! I know that God answers prayers when we ask in faith and with intentions to do something after receiving the answer. I know that this is true. I have experienced it.
Love you all! This week is transfers, so we will see where the Lord needs me to be.
Us with Jesus and Gwen at the temple in Manhattan
At the Hartford Temple Open House
I bought a lobster for a Jamaican member who loves lobster but she hasn't had it in 17 years. So tonight we are having it with her.
Eating "Banku" a dish from Ghana and it was pretty good! Definitely the coolest/most interesting thing that I have had on my mission thus far (jajaja) good experience
Friday, September 23, 2016
It's been another great week here in New Rochelle, NY! We found (the Lord helped us find) some really cool and prepared people this week, so I'm pumped for that! The work is going great and I’m loving life!
Something that has been talked about recently by my mission president, President Smith, is recognizing spiritual distractions and getting rid of them. I have been thinking about this a lot lately as I have tried to think spiritually and focus on the work. So what is a spiritual distraction? It is anything that distracts you from the spirit or from your purpose whether you're a missionary or you're a child of God trying to achieve exaltation. It is important that we recognize things that distract us spiritually if we want to progress at the most efficient rate possible. It is amazing how many things can distract you! I had no clue until I started trying to recognize when I was distracted and then I noticed that it happens all of the time!
BUT, the cool thing has been being able to recognize the things
distracting me and then getting rid of them immediately by singing a primary song. I often sing "If the Savior Stood Beside Me" and I am then able to remember my purpose and refocus. I have seen the blessings of this and that's why I'm choosing to talk about it. This applies to all situations though, not just to me. Are you spiritually distracted by sports, work, or whatever to the point that you haven't gone to the temple in a long time? Are you distracted during your prayers at night? Are you distracted to the point that you aren't even praying at night?! If we can get rid of our spiritual distractions and focus on real life, eternal life, we can all live much happier. I know these things to be true. I have personally seen it in my life and I'm grateful for a Loving Heavenly Father who helps me recognize what I need to change and I'm grateful for Jesus Christ for helping me to make lasting changes.
Love you all! Have the best week ever!
Only one picture...
Sunday, September 18, 2016
September 14, 2016
This week was great! Every week is great! Every week isn't perfect nor easy, but it is always great!
I had a really funny experience in Harlem yesterday, but unfortunately it’s one I can’t share, well, one that I shouldn't share publicly, but I did tell my dad who probably told my mom who has probably shared it with some of her friends, so perhaps eventually you may hear it. jaja. Trust me it was funny. I love the people of Harlem.
So this week, I have been thinking a lot about goals and what mine are. As far as goals go, that is the reasoning behind the title of this email. My number one goal is to have an eternal family. I want that more than literally anything, to achieve this goal and to live with my current family (as well as my future spouse and kids) FOREVER because my family is the coolest, bestest family ever. I want to live with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I know that even though this goal of exaltation is big and may be intimidating, it is possible through obedience, repentance, and the living of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that it is possible. Because of this goal, every other goal that I make falls into place and every other action as well. When I go to make any choice I think "is this going to help me reach my goal(s)?" And this helps me keep the focus on why we are truly here on earth. We are here to learn and grow. We are here to make good choices so that we can be happy here on earth and achieve exaltation after this life. I know that being sealed in the temple is not only necessary for true eternal happiness but it is also a key for true peace and joy here on earth. And it is attainable and that's what's so cool about it.
Sorry if I share my testimony so much in these emails but I just want so badly for people to feel the spirit… I want so badly for people to set a goal, see their goal and to work towards it. That is what life is about.
I'm so grateful to be a missionary. We are seeing miracles in the work, and families are being united. I love life!
Love you all,
P.S. I apologize if you emailed me this week and I don't email back to you personally… My days are scheduled so tight, but I will try to email you in the next couple of weeks, but if I never respond please know I appreciate your emails, I care about you, I pray for you and I will be back before you know it and we can talk in person!
Photos of the week...
Massive pizza that I ate in the Bronx
This is Brother Somerset (who who had stopped going to church, but is now totally active) and his non-member wife and daughter who came to church today and we retook their wedding pictures!
This is the sweet view from the 40th floor of the building where I work out! The gym is on the top floor so we get to see this every time we get up early to work out!
A great motivator.
I love William!
Wednesday, September 7, 2016
Well I am a 20-year old and no longer a teenager. WEIRD. But seriously it was the best birthday ever. My birthday was on fast Sunday and the best gift was that 3 members that we have been working with shared their testimonies in sacrament meeting! One also blessed the sacrament for the first time and two others got their temple recommends! They have all changed so much recently and it was amazing to see them up there and feel the spirit as they testified. Super cool!
I have had a lot of spiritual experiences lately and it just becomes more and more real. The importance of this work intensifies in my heart each time that I realize the eternal importance of what I am doing. It is humbling to be a representative of Jesus Christ. It is humbling that a 20 year old and imperfect person is trusted to help people follow Christ. Sometimes it is overwhelming but I just have to remember Alma 37:6. The Book of Mormon brings comfort to a troubled soul!
I'm grateful to be here. Thank you to everyone that sent me stuff for my birthday and for those that emailed me! Some packages came without names on it so I can't really say thanks to those people... Love you though!
Always remember your spiritual experiences! Write them down. They are
real. God is our loving Heavenly Father! I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet and that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet.
Love you all,
Super cool gift from sister Honeycutt, a senior sister missionary. She is the best!
Driving down Manhattan
Close up of the painting from Sister Honeycutt.