HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! It`s 2012! I can`t believe it. It seems like just yesterday I was ringing in 2010. It`s crazy how quickly time flies. I also can`t believe that in 2 days I would have been in Canada for 3 months already. Most days it feels like I can`t keep up. Sometimes the days seem long, but the weeks are so short and then by the time you realize a week has past the month is over and a transfer is coming to a close. I love the fact that most missionaries and even members think I`ve been out longer than I have. Makes my self esteem feel good. :) Also, thanks for looking up that information about Innisfail for me Dad. Innisfail= "Isle of Destiny" eh? That's pretty sweet.
Because of the crazy schedule last week I didn`t get to write a lot about the previous week. I wanted to specifically write about the 26th. The day was definately hard. I got a transfer call first thing in the moring telling me I was transfering to the smallest and furthest Sister`s area in the mission. I was so sad. That coupled with the year anniversary of Mom`s death made that day very hard. I found myself mad for the first time in a long time. (I think I allowed myself to be mad about transfers so that I wouldn`t start crying about Mom). I decided to make a Cinnamon Twist for my Zone to keep my mind off everything.
I was excited to take my cinnamon twist to the Elders at the church. Once I got there, I set it on the stage and went to the kitchen to find a knife and some plates. Just as I was walking back into the gym the basketball landed exactly on the uncovered cinnamon twist. Serious? I'm surprised I didn't just start crying right then and there (that was a miracle in and of itself). The rest of the day continued, still down in the dumps. I tried to brighten up for our lesson that evening with our new investigator Jenny. We started teaching her the week of Christmas. She is a member referral and 16 years old. Super solid girl. Anyway, we were scheduled to teach her that night about the Plan of Salvation. As we started into the lesson it went really well, but I wasn't quite my happy self yet. Then as we talked about the Spirit World she asked, "When a loved one dies do you think they can be around you still and you can feel their presence?" Sister Jones sat back and looked at me, waiting for me to answer. "I believe that yes you can." The room got quiet for a moment and I could feel the Spirit feel my heart and the room. "It's no coincidence that we are teaching you the Plan of Salvation today." I paused. "A year ago, today actually, my Mother passed away from an unexpected brain anuerysm. Since her death I have felt her with me often. I have felt her next to me sometimes when I pray. I have felt her comforting me when I'm down or discouraged. I know our loved ones are still here and that they love us just as much as they did before. And most of all, I know we will see them again and that we can live with our families forever." The spirit was so strong. We testified of the Plan of Salvation and invited her to be baptized. She said yes! She is scheduled to be baptized on February 4th. I am so grateful I got the opportunity to testify of life after death exactly a year after my Mom passed away. Even though the day was hard and some days are still hard, I wouldn't have wanted to be any other place in the world than in that home in Beaumont, Alberta, Canada testifying that we will see our loved ones again and that families are forever!
That's why I'm serving a mission. This is Christ's Church once again established on the earth. We will see our loved ones again, of that I am certain. The Book of Mormon is true. We do have a prophet on the earth today, President Thomas S. Monson, who leads and guides us.
I have been pondering a lot about Alma 5:14 " ... Have ye received His image in your countenances? Have ye experienced this mighty change of hearts?" With the new year I think now is a very appropriate time to ask yourself, 'When others look at me do they see the Savior?' If not, change something now in your life so that you can have that mighty change of heart and become more like your Savior. Then, take your goals to our Heavenly Father in prayer and I know He will help you accomplish them.
I love you all to Innisfail and back (and believe me, that is a long way ;)
Sister Leanna Thompson