Monday, December 26, 2016

Week 71

Hey everyone! 
Hope you had a great Christmas! 

So this week was fun and full of caroling. So on Monday, we were supposed to head to Billings because MLC in Helena was on Tuesday but it was cancelled because of bad weather, so we ended up going to a live nativity for 2nd ward instead and we were in it as wise men. 
We went to Ranchester and Dayton on Tuesday and contacted some people over there. 
On Wednesday, we taught a recent convert and one of our investigators on date and they were so awesome. I feel so lucky to be here to meet such awesome people who are ready to learn. We also went caroling with the other missionaries in Sheridan and did some service for those we stopped by- like haul wood. 
Thursday, we had a few more lessons and an active member lesson at night. I think some of my favorite parts of missionary work is teaching active members because they are so ready to learn simple truths of the gospel and do missionary work. Sometimes you have to get them excited about it but when they jump on the bandwagon, so many miracles happen and they start thinking of their friends and family who they love and need the gospel! 
Friday was a lot of traveling. We had zone training in Gillette (1.5 hours away) and it focused on repentance- how we can use it on our own lives and how to teach it to others. Then we had our ZLC, or zone leadership council, (for zone leaders, district leaders, and sister training leaders) and we Skyped in for the Wyoming West zone's ZLC after ours to discuss the needs of the sisters over there. Then from there we went to Ranchester and Dayton (2+ hours away from Gillette).
Saturday was Christmas Eve and it was AWESOME. In the morning, we replaced some elders who were ringing bells in front of Walmart for the Salvation Army because they were sick. That was never something I really wanted to do, but it was kind of fun and we got quite a bit of money! Then we visited one of the nursing homes here and saw some members in there. One was sick bad enough to where we had to dress up with isolation precautions- so we had to put on medical masks, a gown, gloves, and booties. She just loved our visit. She asked us to sing for her and we didn't have our iPads in the room with us to see lyrics, so we sang the best we could from memory and while wearing masks. It was interesting. Then multiple members had us over and one older member had us carol with her to multiple different places including the homeless shelter- which was so cool! I've never thought of that before. 
On Christmas, we Skyped home and had breakfast and dinner with some members. We went to sacrament in Ranchester and Sheridan and sang every Christmas hymn in the hymn book just at church alone. Then after church, we went caroling with the elders at another old folks home and it was so awesome because some residents were so happy when we came. We gave them cards and candy canes too. A snow storm hit and we got stuck in the snow (even in our truck on 4 wheel drive) and I had to shovel and push us out. All of the companionships in Sheridan got stuck at some point yesterday. So we had to hunker down indoors again. 
For a spiritual thought this week, I thought this just fit perfectly. It's an excerpt from an article in last year's December Ensign called "In Tune With the Christmas Spirit" and its about caroling! 
"At the beginning of our hospital visit, I had noticed that there were really only two gifted singers in our group. The rest of us did the best we could, and while we sounded decent, we were nothing spectacular. However, with each patient that we visited, the Spirit seemed to increase, and so did the quality of our voices...
I’m not sure why this small miracle occurred. Perhaps because we only desired the talent to make others happy, it was granted to us for a short time (see 1 Corinthians 14:1). I wasn’t the only one who noticed--another woman in our group commented on the way out, “I’m not a very good singer, but I always find that my voice improves when I do service like this.”
I definitely saw this happen throughout the week as we served people through song! Especially because they were about Christ! Heavenly Father helps us when we are in His service. 
Have a great week! 

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