Monday, March 10, 2014

Week 2 - Love and Book of Mormon answers

This week has been AMAZING. I have so much that I am so excited to tell you about. It really has just been incredible. :) So we got on the plane heading for Chicago, which was one of the craziest things I have ever ever done. I have been saying "I am going to Chicago" for five months now but to actually be on the plane heading there was absolutely surreal. Getting off the plane and seeing the AP's and President and Sister Woodburry was so exciting. I loved it. They were so sweet to us and were so excited to see all of us coming. It was the coolest feeling to step out of the airport and to finally be on MY mission grounds. I MADE IT. :) And I am so excited to be here.

After we got all of our bags all situated and everything loaded into a van, we all hopped on a train with a bran new Book of Mormon in hand and went to go find people. I met this sweet black woman who was so kind to me. We talked for about 10 minutes and just got to be sweet friends she opened up to be a lot and we just laughed and had an amazing talk. After we had talked for awhile she asked me about my name tag and why I was here. So I told her I was a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She said What is that?? I was totally taken off guard. I am definitely not in Utah any more. :) So I told her about the church and about the Book of Mormon. Even though we were on a loud train with people all around, I had her undivided attention and I testified to her that I knew that the Book of Mormon was true and that it would bring her closer to God. I could feel the spirit there and I saw her countenance change when I testified to her. It was amazing. I gave her a copy before she got of the train, she gave me a hug and said thank you as she left. It was such a special moment for me. I loved it. :) 

After we got off the train we went and walked around Chicago. It is BEAUTIFUL. Oh my goodness. I absolutely love the City. It was super busy and exciting. I loved getting to be in the city is was too cool. :) 
That night at the mission home we had the famous Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. It was super yummy and was fun to finally be eating the real Chicago Pizza in Chicago. It was so cool. :) 

They next morning we woke up and ate breakfast at the mission home, got our iPads set up, and then went to meet our new trainer. Oh it was so exciting. My companions name is Sister Hansen. She is awesome she knows so many things and I am trying so hard to learn from her. She has been out for 9 months so she has a lot of experience. I have learned a lot from her. :) She wants to be a writer one day, so she has an incredible imagination. Its really fun to talk to her about all of her stories and things that she wants to do when she gets home. 

So. I am serving in a little town called LaPorte Indiana. I love it here. The first night I was here we went over and met one of our Investigators, M****. M**** is amazing and I feel so blessed to get to work with her. She is about 42 and she has two kids, K**** and A****. M**** has custody of K****'s 2 year old daughter E**** who is absolutely adorable. They are being evicted on Friday, So we worked really hard this week to help find them an apartment where they can live after this week. So pray that everything with that will work out alright. When I first met M**** she had just had a really hard day and she was feeling really overwhelmed. We just sat there and listened to her talk and tell us how she was feeling. As she talked I felt so much love for her. I love her so much and care so much about her, but I know that I cant even begin to comprehend how much our Heavenly Father loves her and cares about her. But the love that I felt for her when I first met her was such a tender mercy and was so powerful for me. As we have taught her she has progressed so much, it has been so amazing to see. We asked her to say the closing prayer during one of the lessons we taught her the other day and she basically said that she knew what we were saying was true and that she was grateful to have the missionaries in her life because she knew that this is what Heavenly Father wants her to do. It was really special. :) M**** has been smoking for 30 years so we are trying to help her quit that habit, it has definitely been hard and will continue to be hard to break a habit that is so addictive but I know that through the power of the Atonement we can do anything. We went over there the other day and read with her parts of 1st Nephi chapter 17. I testified to her that just as Heavenly Father helped Nephi build a boat he could help her quit smoking. It was so amazing and she is really committed to quit and to be baptized. :) Her baptism date is set for March 22nd and I am so excited for her. :) She came to church yesterday which was awesome and she had an amazing experience you could just see the light in her eyes as she continues to learn and grow closer to her Father in Heaven, its been amazing. :) She told us after church that she was actually really nervous to come to church because she wasn't going to know anyone and she was worried about feeling out of place. So she got our her Book of Mormon and started reading so she could find comfort and the strength to be able to come to church. She told us that after she read a few chapters her worries and concerns about going to church were completely gone and she didnt feel worried anymore. It was so amazing to sit there and hear her tell us this story. 1-It was just a total testimony to me that the Book of Mormon is true and that we can find answers to our questions and concerns if we read it. 2-That is an example of true conversion. It wasn't just us giving M*** a commitment and then her following through with it. It was her really needing an answer, and her knowing where to go to find it. She received that revelation all on her own. It was so amazing. :) She is so special and I love getting to work with M****. :) 

Sister V (Ward Member)
The members here are amazing. Seriously they are so involved with the missionaries and are constantly looking for ways that they can serve us and help us. My ward has about 75 members that are active and that come every week and they are all so amazing. I loved getting to meet them Yesterday at church and being able to start forming friendships with them. :) There is a lot of less active work to be done out here, so we are focusing on helping them a lot right now. 

I have loved being out here and getting to serve these people. I have learned so much in the last week and I am so grateful for this amazing experience. I have learned more than ever how to completely rely on Heavenly Father. He loves all of us and is aware of us. I would not have been able to make it through this week with out His support and His love for me. I love getting to be a missionary and for this opportunity that I get to serve him more fully. :) 

Thank you for all the support and love from back home I appreciate it and cherish it more than you know. :) 

Love Sister Watts. :)
Selfie in the apartment

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