Sunday, January 19, 2014

Letters from Temple Square!

Well I'm working on my Portuguese! My new companion is from Portugal, but she is teaching me how Brazilians speak so that I can talk with Nanern and Jamesy after the missions. It's great! Transfer week is always so crazy, so much moving and changes. I moved to the supppper nice apartments! We have the penthouse suites and one of the rooms has a BEAUTIFUL view of the Temple and Downtown SLC. We are on the other side of the building and have a great view of the mountains. Our whole back wall of our apartment is glass so I love just laying on the couch in the mornings and watching the sunrise. Seriously amazing! We also have 2 bathrooms in this apartment, which is really helpful with 6 sisters. We have awesome roommates too, Sister Barrett, Sister Fiquet, Sister Christensen and Sister Jin.
Picture that I just took with my new companion so that you could see her. haha
So my assignments for this transfer is Beehive, DAP (in charge of the apartment) and Sports coordinator! So I organize and run all the sports we play in the mornings, which means that I actually need to work out and not just "stretch." So this has been a good assignment for me, helps me be more consecrated. The sisters love playing basketball and volleyball, so that's what we do most of the time. I am doing so much better at not being competitive! But sometimes I just run laps around the gym instead. We have a church across the street that we have available to work out in the mornings, so grateful for that!

Beehive house is so cool! It's slow season, so we don't take too many tours, but in the back room they have a TC! So we are able to call and talk to our investigators. Miracles truly happen in the beehive house though. So many people just come for the history, but end up referring. They learn that there is so much more to Brigham Young than his 56 wives or 57 children. They learn that he was a great man and leader, that he was a man inspired of God. Brigham Young truly was a prophet, that had so much love for everyone around him. I love serving in the Beehive.

Sister Muli just got back from her outbound in the Salem, Oregon mission. She is seriously so hilarious! We are like 2 peas in a pod now. She has been telling me so many stories from back home, especially with some of the Elders there... Apparently I have a little fan club, hahaha. But she is as crazy and hilarious as ever, loving it back at the beautiful Square!
President and Sister Gillette! Only the 2 cutest people I know.

This week I have been thinking a lot about expectations. Expectations from other people, from myself and from God. I think that my biggest fear is not being able to fulfill people's expectations of me. I have always felt pressure to be the best at whatever I do, and if I'm not than I'm nothing. But with a mission full of amazing Sisters, you can't afford to think that way! I was making a list of what I assume people's expectations are for me, and boy were they tough! Then I was making a list of my expectations for myself, and they were a little bit more reasonable. But then I was making a list of God's expectations for me. And they are achievable. What does God want me to do, to be and to become? Heavenly Father wants me to work my hardest, he wants me to be diligent and faithful. He doesn't care if I'm a trainer, DL, ZL or AP. That doesn't matter to Him, so why should it matter to me? He wants me to be my best self, and to share what I know, He wants me to preach His Gospel and invite others to come unto Him. It would be a selfish mission if I lived everyday to one day be a great leader. This week was a mission changer for me, and I am glad I had this realization now, I don't want to go through my mission in vain.
Transfer day, and at the Temple Model!

My Last District! 

I love this Gospel. I am a witness of the truthfulness of the restoration. The spirit testifies of truth, and we are all entitled to the light of Christ, we ALL can know of Christ's reality and of the truthfulness of this Gospel for ourselves. We just have to have the desire to know. Sister Rodrigues is very smart, and has great analogy's! She would tell it a lot better, but I'll try. There is a story about a man that said to a famous philospher, "Give me all the knowledge you have." And the philosopher said okay and took the man's head and held it down in the water of a well. The man was struggling and trying to get air, and only at the last second did he let him up. The philosopher said "When you want this knowledge as much as you wanted air, THEN will you obtain this knowledge." I know that as we have the true, burning desire to know if something is true, THEN we will know. 

Trust me, I'm there! But I've just gotten really tan in this snow....

Hope you all have a great week! We get a new mission President this week, President Poulsen. Stay tuned next week for the update :)
Much love,
Sister Brock
p.s. We have 2 baptisms this week, and possibly 3 the following. And on the 26th, we're going to a local ward and speaking in Sacrament meeting! I'm so excitedddd!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Transfer 2 Week 7

Well today was transfer conference! Which, as you can imagine, is just a tear feast. A mission full of Sisters, who are leaving, being transferred, etc. Yeah the whole time everyone is just crying. But it is still so great! So Sister Gudiel is going outbound!!! And she is going to none other than Houston TX South, Spanish speaking!! That's where Elder Grasse is. And I know Brandon is in that general area, not sure exactly what mission. So watch out Houston! As for me.... drum roll... I am now with Sister Rodriguez from Portugal! I am so excited, she is pretty hard headed like me, so we are definitely going to learn a lot from each other. I'm also moving to the realllly nice apartments. So I'm super excited about that. My assignment this transfer is Beehive house, and I've really wanted that so this is going to be a great transfer. P-day is on Tuesday, so I won't email until a week from tomorrow

This week has gone by way too fast. Too many exciting and fun things happened this week. To start, one of my absolute favorite investigators, Thomas, got baptized on Saturday! He also received the Priesthood yesterday and is preparing for his Patriarchal blessing, melchizedek priesthood, and to go to the Temple!! He is literally the golden investigator (Recent convert now) that every missionary dreams of. We also finally got a hold of another investigator, Shawntay (yes she's a sassy black woman) and she said she got baptized on the 22nd!  She is unable to meet at her house with the missionaries now though because her roommate flashed the Elders... You could say I was trying so hard not to laugh when she told me that on the phone. But she is doing great and loves having the gift of the Holy Ghost! This transfer was full of blessings, the Spirit of Christ has the power to change hearts, and that's especially true during Christmas season! People are so willing and welcoming to the idea of coming unto Christ. We saw so many miracles this Christmas season. It's a bummer that the lights aren't on anymore, but we will just have to work even harder to get referrals and new investigators this transfer then. Luckily, in beehive house there is a TC room where when we don't have tours that we can teach our investigators. And boyyyy do I have a LOT of people to call. We took an investigator lesson this week (where local Elders bring their investigators and we teach them together on the square) and we got SO many referrals from them! I personally got almost 50. And with the end of the transfer coming, I got about 40 other referrals/investigators transferred to me. So I'm going to need a lot of TC time this transfer. I'm glad my new companion speaks some Spanish too because I have some Spanish inv. from Sister Gudiel and I that speak strictly Spanish, but she felt prompted that I needed to still teach them. Woo! Well this paragraph turned into my investigators... haha but I just love them, they are all so great!

For new years, we worked until 9 and then had a little celebration/devotional. We did a countdown until 10 (midnight on the East coast) and then all went home and passed out. That was the last night of Christmas lights, and I'm pretty sure I will never recover from Christmas season. So busy, so fun, so many miracles! But I am absolutely exhausted. I thought today for P-day I'd get to rest while Sister Gudiel packs up her stuff, but it looks like I am going to need to pack all of my stuff to move. Yahoo! 

On Thursday/Friday (Friday in my case), the mission got split and half of us went down to Provo! We took the Trax then Frontrunner and then an MTC bus came and took us to the Museum of Art at BYU! Wow. It was so amazing! There is an exhibit right now called Sacred Gifts, it is the art work of Christ from three different artists. One of my favorites too, Carl Bloch. I now see how much the original paints differ from copies. And boy do they have the power to move you! So we go to do that for a few hours, then we took a quick tour of BYU and went to the BYU bookstore. After that we went to a local church, where the youth prepared lunch for us! They were the sweetest, they served us and they were all just so cute! They said they sent you a picture, so I hope you got it. 

In one of my personal studies this week (we don't get them very often because we are so busy, usually only like 2 times a week, but more now that it's dead season) I was reading an article in the Liahona from November 2010, entitled "Charity Never Faileth" by President Monson. This article is amazing. He states.. "What if attitudes, deeds and spiritual inclinations were reflected in physical features?" What would I look like? I imagine that this is how our Heavenly Father sees us. He sees us for the person we truly are, our attitudes, deeds and spiritual inclinations. What kind of person am I? Not only what I allow people to see, but what I truly think and feel. Am I the kind of person that is beautiful to my father in Heaven? Another thing he said that stuck out to me was "May we recognize that each of us is doing her best to deal with the challenges which come her way, and may we strive to do our best to help out." I know that one of my biggest shortcomings is patience. I am not a patient person whatsoever. And unfortunately, I am not patient with people's imperfections, including my own! I need to remember that I am not perfect, so I can't expect others to be perfect. I have to accept peoples differences and learn to appreciate and love differences.  Because that is truly what makes people beautiful. "There is really no way we can know the heart, the intentions, or the circumstances of someone who might say or so something we find reason to criticize. Thus the commandment: 'Judge Not.'" There is no way that I can judge the background of any companion, investigator, or inactive. I need to be supportive and loving in all that I do, especially with my companion. I am a representative of Jesus Christ, and I need to help be the support to them, that He has been for me. And I'm going to leave you with one final quote from his talk, "Charity is having patience with someone who has let us down. It is resisting the impulse to become easily offended. It is accepting weaknesses and shortcomings. It is accepting people as they truly are." 

Inside the Assemble Hall - stain glass window

Her mission twin, Sister Gee from Seattle

I love this Gospel. And I love being a missionary. 
Go forth in faith my friends, this Gospel is true. I'm a witness and a testimony of the power the Gospel has to change lives. 

With love,
Sister Brock