Friday, October 24, 2014

A big birthday wish come true!

Aloha Family!!

Fall is officially here!  There are leaves falling everywhere and temple square is so beautiful!!  There is one tree by the tabernacle that is a beautiful bright yellow.  I have started wearing sweaters again too. :)

So on Temple Square because our ward is made up of the Sister Missionaries, we are the ones who give the talks.  You only talk once during your mission and it is at the end of your mission.  You are given a topic by President Harmon (1st councilor) and it is usually pretty inspired.  The sister speaks and shares all of their hard won wisdom and it is usually very powerful.  Well guess what?  I am speaking on Sunday.  This is the weirdest thing ever!!  I never thought that I would be the one on the stand speaking!! ekk!  anyway. I have prayed a lot and what I should say just came to me when I wrote my talk on Tuesday.  I hope that everything goes well.  I don't have the paper with the topic on it with me but it is something like this: In one who is wholly converted, desire for things contrary to the gospel of Jesus Christ has actually died, and substituted therefor is a love of God with a fixed and controlling determination to keep his commandments. Latter-Day Saints who are wholly converted dedicate their lives to service and simply "press on".  So I am going to be speaking about conversion and what it will lead us to do.  I hope that the spirit will be here

Today is my last p-day with sis Magidson!  And her last p-day on her mission!  How did this transfer go by so fast?!  I have no idea!  We were talking about it, and we feel like we have only had about 3 weeks together... not 6!!  I have learned so much from her about humility, charity, kindness, being kind to my own self, time management (I have improved so much! but I still have a ways to go), her love for the gospel and so much more.  I love her so much and I miss her so so much!!  It is funny because she is so logical but also so kind and worried about others.

This past Monday was Sister Magidson's b-day!  She is now 24 years old!  :)  I tired really hard to make it a really special day for her. :)  When we were in west gate, I sent out a text to the whole mission telling them to call or come by to tell her happy birthday. haha!!  Literally almost everyone came and sang to her or called in or something!  It was so great!  Then her two of her collage friends came by and surprised her with a big birthday present.  I worked with another sister to make it a surprise.  We went out for dinner at a hamburger and shake place.  The day before, I had given our roommates money to get some things for a surprise party for when we came home from the square. :)  We had brownies, ice cream, and those birthday oreos!  It was so much fun!  I used up the last of the balloons from my birthday and we got to use the candles and the birthday sign too!  :)  It was an awesome day!

We have been working on preparing for our last zone training meeting for the transfer.  It will be this Saturday and I think it will be really good.  We actually finished it this morning.  We are focusing on conversion and how that leads to joy in missionary work and the desire to do what Heavenly Father asks us to do as missionaries and as his children.  I feel really good about it. :)

This week we have had to drop many of our investigators.  Mark and Nicola (the couple that was working to quit smoking and had a baptismal date) dropped us.  They said that they didn't really want to quit smoking and this was not a good time for them. It was really sad.  We also got a hold of an investigator that Sister Magidson had transferred to her and he was anti and not willing to pray to Heavenly Father to know if what we were sharing was true.  We told him that we can't help him unless he goes to God and asks him.  It was interesting because if you really listen to an anti, they make no sense at all!  He told us that we needed to re-evaluate what we were doing, and I told him that I don't need to do that because I have prayed and asked God if this is true and I know that it is.  I invited him to pray and to ask God because that is the ONLY way that he is going to know for himself.  We then said goodbye and dropped him. :)  The gospel is true!

Another really exciting thing that happened this last week, is that Kent got baptized!!!  I will send you pictures!  He really is converted and is so excited to serve in a calling.  I am so so very happy for him!  Today, we sent him a card and a temple recommend holder (we also sent one to Ledix) that way he can have a good place to put his recommend and understand how important the temple is.  I am so happy for Kent!  "How great shall your joy be if you shall bring save it be one soul unto me."  That statement is so true!  My heart is so full that the Lord used me as an instrument to help him to make this covenant.  I am so glad that he made this choice to come closer to his Heavenly Father.  

Now I have something super excited to share wit you!!!  Do you remember when I saw the whole quorum of the Apostles when they leave the temple from their weekly meeting about a year ago?  Well, Sister Magidson asked me if we could try to see them as her birthday present.  We tried last week, but only I saw Elder Bednar.  We were talking to a security officer and Sister Magidson did not notice him.  I had prayed that we would be able to see the apostles and the prophet this week.  It was all that Sister Magidson really wanted so I really wanted her to see them.  We went to mail the cards for Kent and Ledix and went through the Church Office Building garage (that is where the apostles travel from building to building on the church campus).  We were coming back from the post office, and I thought that we were going to miss them.  I was okay with it, because I had asked the Lord to make it his will.  Well we were about to leave the garage into the tunnel that leads us to the square when the sister security officer asked us to stay at the side of the hallway.  She told us to stay there and we would "get a good show".  Well we obediently stood by the wall and out wheeled the PROPHET!!!  A security officer was wheeling him in a wheelchair!  He spoke to us too!!  He said, "Hello sisters! On my right and on my left!"  (the female security officer was on his other side) All I could do was choke out a huge smile and a hello!  But it didn't stop there!!  Next came a golf cart with President EYRING and President UCHTDORF on it!  This time, I got out a greeting and said "good morning!"  They waved and said "Hello Sisters!"  So much happiness!!  After that, the security officer gave us the okay to continue on. :)  We looked down the tunnel that goes to the temple and saw many more Apostles coming.  I saw Elder Anderson for sure.  We went into the tunnel that goes to temple square and squeaked and hugged each other.  :D  I thought that I was going to die of happiness!  I love President Monson and the Apostles so much!  They are such an amazing example to me!!  I am still in shock about this whole thing!!  I can't believe that we were able to see President Monson, President Eyring, and President Uchtdorf!!  ekk!!  So much happiness!  The spirit was so strong!  I know that these men are called by God to lead and guide the church.  I know that they really are Apostles of Jesus Christ and that they lead and guide us the way that Christ himself would if he was here on the earth.  I am so very grateful for this knowledge, it is proof to me that Heavenly Father loves us.

Love Always,
Sister Stephen

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