10 March 2014

3/10/14 - The greatest sound I've ever heard is the sound of water running in the church

Honorable Mentions:
Sister Packie! My mama! (Mom, this means she trained me. I have not replaced you)
The Lolotai's! My Comp is from Hawai'i. She was really excited that I knew REAL Hawai'ians . (Do you put the apostrophe in Hawaiian?)
Sista Gowans!!! I LOVE your middle name. Also, I'm a creeper

This week has been crazy! We've worked really really hard this week. Which is good, because we're missionaries and such. That's always good to work hard when the Lord is your boss. But our efforts paid off. We hit the standard again. The Standard is a pain in the neck. But I get that we need to aim for something specific to improve. Now that we've been hitting the standard, we're shooting past it. That's fun. I love reaching goals and exceeding them. Even if I truly and sincerely HATE numbers.

Oh. Fun fact. On 16 March, I will have been a missionary for 8 months. Is that crazy? I'm almost halfway into my mission! (Except that I'm going to extend for 3 or 4 years. Don't give me that look, Gowans. I can't do 10 years! I want to read books that I don't need a dictionary to understand! And you're still planning my wedding... So eventually I need to go home for that.)

We had a baptism yesterday in one of the best services I've been to! It's such an evidence that being obedient and hard working will pay off. The ward was working hard to be obedient. WE were working hard to be obedient. We weren't finding anyone (which was really frustrating) and in walks a family that were just ready. The Lord blessed us and prepared a way for them to find the Gospel, even though we didn't find them. Anyway, he just walks into church a few weeks ago and says that he needed to go back to church and we came to find out, he wasn't baptized. They are just Golden and ready to follow the Savior. It's been a huge blessing to get to be a part of their journey!

He is baptizing his daughters on Friday and they are all going to the Temple on Saturday. What an incredible blessing! I am so excited to be able to be a missionary.

So I hear we're almost at war with Ukraine? Is that legit? Anyone stocking up on guns and food and building motes around their homes yet? For real though... What is happening? And something is going down in Venezuela? Missionaries are being recalled or something. Nuts. NOBODY WORRY! There is NO SEIGE IN SUN CITY! Whew. I knew the concern was there. But seeing how this community is like 80% old...
Pray for the people in those country's and the leadership there. The world needs help. Lots of it.

Let's see. Some adventures of this week.
President said we could be on bike! Why?. because he loves us. Also because we need to save some miles. So we're going to go buy my companion a bike today and me a helmet and lights and a lock and such. If you have fun bike accessories you don't want or need, this girl is becoming a biking missionary!

I tried a kumquat. Gross.
People decorate their lawns with plastic deer. Old people LOVE plastic deer. We counted 14 this week.

Also, people get little pebbles and pain them green for their lawn. That's funny stuff. Or Astro-turf. I am in a-whole-nother world out here, people.

I've basically become an expert of funeral's here. I've been in Sun City for like 8 weeks. We've have 3 funerals since I've been here. It's way sad. But really, at least it's not 3 funerals in like a YSA ward. That would be worse, I think. Am I a dirt bag for saying that? Probably. Nevertheless. There you have it.

Let's see. I love this work. I love the people. (I haven't sent anymore to the hospital)

My companion is GREAT! She's so much fun. She's Hawaiian. I said that before, but it's important enough to reiterate. Again and again. Sometimes I have random dance parties and she laughs and doesn't judge me to my face. That's about all I can ask She's a rockstar teacher. She tells it how it is, and I LOVE that. We're a pair, that's for sure. And we work hard at being obedient so that we can qualify for miracles. It's wonderful. I love my missionary life.

Apparently there are a new set of scriptures out? Are they awesome? Since when did they release a new set? That's crazy. I used to know things! Remember that? That was fun.

Well friends, family and townspeople. I love you. I'm grateful for you.

I'm grateful for your prayers and love.

Be good. Remember who you are. Make good choices.
Always choose the right. Unless you need to go left, then you should probably go left. (haha. Thanks Gowans!)

Love and Peace and Stuff!

3/3/14 -- The Library

Hi everyone and people.

We don't have much time, the Sun City Library booted us off the computer, because they don't want salvation... I mean, they hate the Celestial Kingdom. No! They are pals with Satan!

Okay, they computer system went down and they were too lazy to call the IT peeps. I almost called the Brother Unit to fix it. But I didn't. I was obedient and annoyed. So. we found another set of computers in public to borrow. Good times.

This week was a little nuts. We had rain. Apparently the locals here think it was Armageddon. Rest assured people who are not in Sun City... It was NOT Armageddon. We had steady rain. Not torrential down pours. No mudslides, or land slides or anything (in my area anyway). That said, the city did not plan for rain. So all the roads were flooded. Which was obnoxious. We couldn't do a whole lot of work. Because we literally couldn't go anywhere. Blasted rain. There was only one time I wasn't sure if the car would make it through the puddle. So we climbed out and trudged the waters to see how deep it was. People mocked. Whatever, we didn't drown.

That said, for the first time ever, this missionary hit the standard of excellence. 'BOUT TIME!!! AHHHH... That was way hard. But whatever we did it! This is going to be an awesome transfer. We have 3 people on date for this month with a bunch of other investigators who could totally be dunked soon.

We worked way hard. I tracted for the first time in 7.5 months. Good times. Met some fun people

Here's some news from home:  the work is progressing out there!! I pray for that all the time. And people are getting married! Wow. So much is happening.Thanks for telling me that you all are getting married, by the way.. You may now repent!


No but really. I wish I could be there. So I came up with a perfect solution. For all my folks getting hitched. Andrew, Seth, Sabrina, Wes. You may get a 3" picture cut out of me and hide them in all of your wedding pictures. And then send them to me so I can find them! Perfect!

Here are some excerpts from other people's emails because I'm out of time today: 

The weather here isn't too bad. People were kind of stressed, thinking this would be the "storm of the century." And maybe it was for them. It was a steady rain for a few days and the roads flooded. There was a little damage, a few little trees got toppled and some shrubbery got pruned... naturally... by the wind. haha. That's about it. Still, the people who built the city didn't build it for rain so most of the roads weren't passable. My area didn't have any land slides, and as far as I know my mission was unaffected. The whole area fasted for rain. We got it! Prayers are answered!

The Lord is so mindful of us and He fills our lives with Tender Mercies. Big ones and small ones. We have been working really hard here in Sun City, and when I got here, I was told "There is no work here. We just work with Less Active members." And that was hard to hear. We know that the Lord is hastening His work. Evidence of such is that right before I got into the mission field, the California Riverside Mission split. We lost about half of our missionaries. According to my zone leaders, the number of baptisms doubled AFTER we lost half of our missionaries. So with half of the army we had before, twice the work was being done.
Anyway, back to the story. Our purpose as missionaries is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them to receive the Restored Gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, Repentance, Baptism, Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost and Enduring to the End.

Our purpose is to Find, Teach and Baptize. And I wasn't down with not being able to do my job. So we've been working really hard. Talking to everyone that we see. Inviting everyone repent and be baptized. We've been working so hard. We haven't been seeing any results to our hard work. It's been hard. But two weeks ago a gentleman walked into church and said: "Bishop, I need to start getting back to church. My girls aren't baptized and my wife isn't a member." It turns out, he'd never been baptized. And they are Golden. We taught, prayed (and fasted), and invited them to be baptized. Dad is getting baptized this Sunday (5 pm, PST at th eStake Center in Sun City) and he will be baptizing his daughters the next Sunday!
We did ALL that we could. And the Lord prepared someone to come to us, even though we didn't find him.

The Lord is so aware of us. Aware of who needs us, and who we need. It is truly incredible to be a part of the missionary force of the Savior. This is truly His work. There's a Scripture in Exodus that I'm learning to love:
"Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will ashew to you to day ...
  The Lord shall afight for you, and ye shall hold your bpeace."

This is the Lord's work, and sometimes, we need to just let Him do some of the work. We do all we can, He will bless us for our efforts. Sometimes, it isn't in baptisms. Sometimes it's in patience, or a stronger capacity to love. But He blesses. He ALWAYS blesses.

Anyhow. I love you people. Very much
Smile. Doubt not, fear not.

Love you!

Sister Hall

2/24/14 Transfer #6: The transfer of Charity and Love

Hola Amigos, Familia and otras personas. (Loosly translated: Hey peeps)

So. out here in Sunny California, we're looking at some rain this week. Lots of it. (Hopefully not Colorado - style. I forgot to pack my floaties)

Honorable mentions:

the Schneider's
Sister Larsen!!

Well, this week was Jake week. Which is where no work actually gets done. That said, we had 23 lessons,
put 3 people on date to be baptized (March 23)

Not too bad for Jake Week.

Transfer news: my companion is being transferred to Mt Rubidoux where she will be in a trio. I think that'll be good for her. She needs a change of scenery. A change in companions. Just change.

I survived. I'll be staying here with Mama D, my wonderful home share and my new companion will be Sister Ni'ihau. She is from Hawai'i. She's apparently awesome. And that's exciting. I love awesome people. It should be fun.

Hmmm. I think that's it for transfer week but President Smart emailed this out this week to the missionaries and I love it, so I'm sharing it:

“If you think you are beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don't.
If you'd like to win, but think you can't
It's almost a cinch you won't.

If you think you'll lose, you've lost,
For out in the world we find
Success being with a fellow's will;
It's all in the state of mind.

Life's battles don't always go
To the stronger or faster man,
But soon or late the man who wins
Is the one who thinks he can.”

Our attitude makes all the difference. Whatever we choose, generally, is right. If we think the weather is bad, then we're right. If we think the weather is good, then we're right. We can't change the weather, but if we choose to make it an issue, either good or bad, then it is. The same is true of our area, our companion, our ward, our investigators, etc. Whatever it is, it's as good (or as bad) as you make it.

Choose to be happy. Choose to make the most of whatever opportunity (challenge) God's put in your path. The opportunity (challenge) won't change, but if you approach it with a positive attitude then the Lord will bless and strengthen you and your opportunity (challenge) will become easier and you will rise above whatever it is that otherwise would slow you down. Your opportunity (challenge) is all in how you choose to look at it.

This is going to be a good transfer. Work will happen.
In the Words of Joseph Smith:
The Standard of Truth has been Erected. No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing. Persecutions may rage. Mobs may combine. Armies may assemble. Calumny may defame. But the Truth of God will go forth boldly, Nobly and independent until it has penetrated every continent. Visited every Climb. Swept every country and sounded in every ear. Till the purposes of God have been accomplished and the Great Jehovah shall say, the work is done.

I love you. I'm extremely grateful for the love and support and encouragement I've received this transfer. It's really really meant the world to me. Who knew it was so needed on a mission? Weird.

The Pictures. Picture 1: My Valentine. His name is Kaden. He gave me a reese's. That's love.
PS. My stroke-y left eye fell out again. anyone know how to stop the left eye from stroking in pictures?

Picture two. Our zone of Sisters.

Picture 3: Sister Pyper and I. We were definitely meant to find each other. She's a forever friend. 

2/17/14 - Getting dropped by investigators ROCKS

Another week has come and gone!

Honorable Mentions:

Other Mumsie. 

Do you know how I know the Lord loves me? Hank Smith! Hank Smith CDs have come my way this week. If you don't know who Hank Smith is... REPENT SWINE!!! (haha. I'm funny)
No, but really. Hank Smith saved me this week. So thank you both!!!

Alright, onto the week... It was slow. Really slow. But that's fine... (It's not fine, the Lord is Hastening His work, not Slowing it... Awkward) 

But some adventures:

My Valentine this year is 5. He gave me his last Reese's. That's love. I took a picture, but I left my camera back in my room. Anyway, his name is Kaden and his family is working on being sealed together. Way cool. We'll get to go. :D!!!

Our District meeting was the epitome of teenage vernacular. Here are some fun quotes from our district training. "#GodisaBoss TM Elder Harris." and "#ProsbutnotlikeEeyore TM Hall" We were talking about HOW we can be a missionary and such. and that God does a lot of the work for us. And how if we teach, we need to teach happily. Nobody wants to be an Eeyore. 

Good times. 

We had interviews with President Smart. That was great times. We all cried. I got a blessing. I needed it. I can't imagine what it must be like to be a Mission President. Especially having to deal with a slew of 18 and 19 year olds... Yikes. And girls. Girls are drama and there are tears. And.... I'm glad I'll never be a mission president. and I hope I don't ever have to be a mission president's wife. 

That said, I LOVE President and Sister Smart. I just don't ever want to be in their shoes. Brave souls.... (President and Sister Smart, if you're reading this, for real. MAD PROPS! -which is teenage vernacular for, "you are WELL RESPECTED" - ) 

Uhm... I love things. I love people. The Work is swell. Scriptures are good. I love things like prayer. Testimony's are legit. 

I read this in Exodus this week: "Fear ye not, Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord. ... The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace. ... The Lord is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God"

Don't forget people of my life. The Lord will fight for you.He's got your back. For real, if He'll help me. He'll help you. 

So, I love you all. 
I'm grateful for you all.

Don't forget about the littlest missionary who could!!!

PS: Did you know that in the Civil War, they sent midgets into the front lines to go and bite knee caps? Someone told me that. I wonder in that's legit. If it is. I demand government compensation for the persecution of my people. 

Can someone look this up? 

Also. I still don't know who the voice of Joseph Smith was in the Restoration. Help!

2/10/14 - The week we killed a member

Honorable Mentions!
Mom! (Harry Potter stamps rule!)

This week in the Life of Sister Hall

Well, we had to call 911 for one of our members. We were eating at Coco's. (Do those exist in CO? I don't even remember... it's like Denny's but for old people) Anyway, we had walked there. But then I went to the bathroom. When I came out our member was coughing really hard and my companion told me that she was kinda choking and turned blue. By the time I was out there, she was just coughing, but pink. We started to walk toward the exit and she grabbed her chest and started breathing at a rate of 44. So we called an ambulance. They took her to some Kaiser place. (You know how I feel about Kaiser.... ...)
The next day she was home, and she has no recollection of the hospital or ambulance. No idea what happened. But.. that was an adventure. Sister Trillo did great during the whole thing. Afterward she freaked out and had a panic attack. 

Alex, or anyone else who loves me enough to answer. Who was the voice of Joseph Smith in the Restoration video? I think it might be Sylar/Spock. (I've been meaning to ask that for 7 months.. which reminds me! I've been a missionary for 7 months!!! Is that nuts?! That means I'm almost halfway done. That's crazy.)

Nobody told me that the Olympics were starting. Thanks for that. Repent... swine!!! 

Kidding. But for serious. Tell me how that goes. Like who wins and stuff. 


Okay. I need someone to look something up for me. In the Old Testament, they made a huge deal about Esau's twin chillin how one's hand came out and they tight a scarlet thread around it's wrist. What is the significance of the scarlet thread? (I would like a 300 word essay, double spaced... lies. I just want to know and I can't used Google)

We went to a SNF this week to see a former investigator. I had a flashback to Briarwood. I refused to take the elevator. Do you remember that one time that you had to balance in the elevator with the pram and stuff, Lance? Yeah. I took the stairs. He lived on the 5th floor. I got my Cardio. It smelled like my former life. Urine. and death. (Hey! Ian! remember that time you saw an orb when we picked up the corpse? Good times)

Here's my favorite quote this week:
Thoughts are mirrored in your eyes. Keep them Beautiful. 

I'm incredibly grateful for prayer this week and this transfer. I'm so grateful to be able to pray whenever and where ever. I've grown closer to my Savior this transfer than I've ever been any other time of my life. Tender Mercy

All my love and peace and stuff,
The Littlest Missionary who Could

PS. We trail blazed up a mountain today. Well. It was kind of a tall dirt hill. But what it REALLY was, was a tarantula mecca. If you don't hear from me. It's because we made them mad and they've destroyed me. *shudder* I really love tarantulas. Don't you worry. I did NOT try to step on any... I just picture Harry Potter Tarantulas. Yikes. 

PS. Harry Potter stamps rule. 

Shout out to Other Mumsie. for Hank! You are saving my life. 

2/3/14 - A week in Sun City

Honorary mentions:
Sister Pyper!!
Bishop Dixon. 

Alright. This week was Bomb! (That's teenage speak for, "This week was exquisite") 
Why, you may be asking yourself. Let me tell you. 

I got the Swine Flu! Yay!! Okay, so Monday last week I felt okay. Tuesday I woke up feeling a little unwell. Then after I ran on the Elliptical, I thought I was going to die. So I slept through studies. When I woke up, I was pretty sure death was going to make me his. So I asked Mama D if she was going out, to see if she'd pick me up some meds. In an hour, I had Gatorade, Apple Juice, Emergen-C and Zinc. I had a thermometer and and ordered to the top of my bunk bed. Where I went and slept for 3 days. I was so miserably sick. haha.

But I got better. My stomach doesn't feel like it's being wrung out. I don't feel like I'm chocking on elmers glue. I feel better!

Also, this week was great for the work (Really great, not sick-great) Sister Trillo rocked being a solo missionary and the ward stepped up to help a lot. We had a bunch of lessons. 

We also put 2 people on date for baptism! Being a missionary is pretty epic! I LOVE watching people change! In fact, one of the people we put on date knew Scott in MoVal, Small World! 

No other crazy adventures. I have not sprouted a tail or a snout yet, so maybe it was just the plain flu. I'll keep you posted on that . The Nurse said it was either Swine, original or Norwok. Norwalk? Whatever that one is. Yeah. Good times. 

This weeks Tender Mercy was going on Exchanges with our STLs. We got some serious missionary work done and Sister Boden helped brain storm ways for me to be a better missionary and a better companion. 

And we put two people on date for baptism!! I feel like a missionary!!! :D 

Love you!
Thank you for all your prayers and letters and emails,
They really do keep struggling missionaries going. 
Love and peace and things,

The Littlest Dibe who could