Salutations! (Did anyone else think of Charlotte's Web?)
So last P-day, I got a lot of articles on unhealthy perfectionism, anxiety, grace, shyness, and sections of Believing Christ from Sister Harding (our Mission President’s wife) that she wants me and Sister J. to read. Well, I didn't think we had THAT many issues, we just were getting headaches, and couldn't sleep very well!
But I learned a lot as I read through many of those pages. I learned that perfectionism is a journey, not a place that one can get to quickly. I have been telling myself unrealistically that I need to be the perfect missionary, when in reality the expectations I've been giving myself are impossible to achieve in the first place. I've been learning that my best is good enough, the Atonement makes up for the rest of it, and our Heavenly Father doesn't expect us to be perfect, as long as we're striving to progress and never be idle.
On P-day, I needed to buy stamps, (I bought DISNEY STAMPS!) and it wasn't raining when we left. Then by the time we got out of the post office, it was raining pretty hard, and we didn't have an umbrella! I turned to Sister J. and asked if she wanted to go to Krispy Kreme (we've been craving it ever since I got here 2 months ago) and we decided to go on an impromptu rainy day adventure! So we walked two blocks or so, and walked home in the pouring rain. We didn't have hoods and we took pictures with our Krispy Kreme hats, and wet hair. They didn't turn out too well, but oh well!
Each and every week, I love Sister J. more and more. She really is one of my best friends. Earlier on this week we just had hours and hours of deep conversations, and what we learned about our past and how we've progressed. Companionship inventory wasn't a big deal in the past because we don't have any issues in general, but we started to talk about our strengths and weaknesses, and it helps both of us on what we're doing good on, and what we need to improve on. I learned that knowing what your strengths are is important, so we can continue to develop them and KEEP them as strengths. Then sometimes we notice others weaknesses, and we can help each other on those. Every weakness really does come out on a mission! But anyway, we call each other 'Sister Sudman' as our companionship name. How lovely, haha!
Speaking of weaknesses, I'm going to include trials and afflictions. In 1st Nephi 18:16 Nephi talks about how he prayed to our Heavenly Father and didn't complain about being bound from his brothers. He thanked our Heavenly Father about ALL things, even the bad. Sister J. (another sister missionary in our district) showed us this scripture and challenged us to pray and give thanks for our trials, because it helps us to become closer to Him by relying on Him more, by learning to be more Christ-like, and so on and so on. So I challenge YOU to do that as well! It was weird at first, but I honestly love it because now I know what I can continue to work on each day.
Sister J. and I are no longer teaching M. and N, and we're absolutely devastated. M. called us that she's at her Mom's house, and will be staying there for who knows how long. M. and N. were living together, and we had the suspicion that he was physically abusive, but didn't have solid proof. We knew he was verbally abusive, and that's why we only went to their apartment once, and have only taught her at the church. She had to escape the apartment and call the police and go to the hospital because of the injuries he gave her. He got angry at her because she cancelled the appointment we had with her that night because she was feeling very sick. N. ended up in jail, but we've heard from M. that he has friends sending him money to bail him out. So we are going to refer her to other missionaries so she can continue to progress. If he gets out, the church leaders told us to stay away from his apartment area, not answer his phone calls, and not be at the church by ourselves because he knows where the church is. Sister J. and I wrote out our testimony witness in case we have to go to court. Missionaries aren't supposed to get involved with public affairs that we cannot follow up with, but considering this is an abusive case, we may get special permission to do so in the future. Let’s hope not!
Sister B. has to get her gall bladder out on the 28th. Brother B. was able to go to church, but Sister B. couldn't because she was in so much pain. I'm started to wonder if she's EVER going to get baptized. But I know she will, eventually. Heavenly Father knows the entire picture! I just need to learn to be more patient
L. was baptized on Saturday, and it was amazing! I was so excited and I even cried when she was confirmed a member of the church, and received the Holy Ghost. I've been sick with the cold/'flu for the past week, and the four of us sister missionaries did a musical number. Sister B. and W. didn't know I was sick when they offered us, but thankfully no one could tell I was sick when we performed not once but twice! Once when not one but FOUR people were changing back into their regular clothes, and then once everyone was back in their seats. I was dying because my ears were so congested and I couldn't tell what I sounded like. But it all worked out in the end! L. said that she feels different, and that she's happy. I know she's going to love this ward.
|January 17, 2014--A very special day for Sister L!|
Speaking of the ward, this ward is amazing. I absolutely love this ward, and it's so important for missionaries to get the trust of the auxiliary leaders. They are so appreciative that we're doing less active work, and I'm so excited that the rest of our missionary district now has all of the less active paperwork to go visit them! Unfortunately we didn't finish all of the paperwork Monday night, but since we're only giving each companionship a zip code at a time, it's all right that it's not all done. At church three people told me I had a fever because I was hot the entire time at church, and I didn't even want my cardigan on (I always have a cardigan on). So, yay! I have a fever, I have no idea if I have a cold or the flu! We went on splits after church, and Sister W. watched over me while Sister J. went with Sister B. to check up on some of our potentials.
Also the random pictures that I sent, we had a really long day earlier this week and Sister J. was SO tired, she just got on the table and slumped over. It was the funniest thing ever so I couldn't help but take pictures. Then she wanted to be Superman and I just had to take a picture of that too! I wanted to imitate her, but the table wasn't big enough for me so I had to use the counter. Who says missionaries can't have fun?!
|Sister J is beyond exhausted.|
|However, when the camera is going she's energized and "mild manner Sister J. turns into... Superman!|
|Of course, Sister Sudweeks wants to show off her super hero powers, also! (In a side note, look at how clean their kitchen is!)|
I love this work, I love the ward, I love the church, I pretty much love everything right now, and I'm so glad that I'm here right now. I'm so glad that I decided to serve a mission!