Monday, June 30, 2014

Let Me See Your Halo!

Happy Monday!

So much has happened this week, and I absolutely love it! We had FHE with the Richard's family with a member and his son who are coming back into activity.  We had a lesson about how we should build our foundation with good things, and to always gain our testimony.

Helaman 5:12

This picture was taken by the Richard's two year old son.  He's a cutie!

I forgot to explain a picture from last week's email. Rebecca is a young woman who wants to go on a mission, and she comes out with us on team ups all the time. We were sitting on a little itty, bitty baby bench, and I just had to take a picture with her because she's the best!

Brother G. took us out to IHOP for lunch, and he is such a great guy. It's so cool that he's coming to at least sacrament now after being less active for ten years. He's kinda like a grandpa who spoils us.

A delicious lunch!

E. (our 11 year old investigator) is doing great, and he is so set for the twelfth of July. We get
to see him almost every day, and he's progressing so much! I hope that his family sees how much he has changed since he's started to attend church. His older brother is LDS but he isn't active at all
whatsoever. He moved back home two weeks ago so now his girlfriend S. and their baby are there a lot. S. has been coming out of the apartment and listening every now and then when we're over, so we're wondering if she's would want to be taught as well. We gave her a Plan of Salvation pamphlet, and she was flipping through it as we left. E. told us WAIT! so we turned around. He gave us a nickel saying, "This is your tip, go buy yourself a steak dinner." E. says
the funniest things!

We went out tracting a few streets, and we didn't realized that Fayetteville has some old fashioned South here! We have a song on one of our CDs that sounds pretty country (but still appropriate) and we blasted it with the windows rolled down as we drove by tractors and old fashioned houses. We may or may not have stopped to take a few pictures along the way. A lot of our investigators aren't contacting us anymore, so we're just finding more and more people each day.

Knock knock...anybody home?
Sister Warner--enjoying time on the verandah

We went and volunteered at the Hope Memory Center again, and two elderly woman kept telling me that I had beautiful teeth, and that I had such a pretty 'dress' on over and over again. We played a card
game with them. Each of them got seven giant cards faced up all in a line, and then Sister Warner and I had a normal deck. We called out the card, and whoever had it got to place it face down on the table.
Whoever won, got a little prize, although everyone won. We played that game at least 4 times, and I got a bit sick of calling out cards- I always have to pause before I say it's a spade or a club. But I was
more than happy to call out cards than having to play balloon tennis, my anxiety would have gone way up if I had to deal with those balloons. Tender mercies. :)

(A note from her mother:  Sister Sudweeks has a real fear about balloons!  It started when she was four years old and her older sister had a birthday party where people sat on balloons and popped them.  She even looked up her fear later in life.  It's called globophobia or the fear of balloons.  Needless to say, we won't be greeting her at the airport with balloons when she comes home from her mission!)

We went tracting and we knocked on one door and met J. who has four kids. She's a spiritualist, so we prayed for her and left the Savior's peace and blessings. She told us that we could come back anytime, and so we have an appointment with her tonight. It was originally yesterday, but we then met her husband T. who was just driving up saying that they thought we were joking. But they told us that it would be perfect tonight. Hopefully all goes well! :) The funny part was that after we prayed with her she ran back inside shouting that she has something for us. We were a bit nervous that it was some anti-Mormon literature, or something from her church. But it ended up being halos- part of her business because everyone needs to remember gratitude and love. Sister Warner and I have pictures with them on, but my camera died so everyone will just have to wait a week to get them. :)

I figured I'd make E.'s paragraph two instead of one long one. :P We taught E. not once,not twice, but at least three times before he prayed out loud for us. He's told us that he prays in his head, so it might have been his first prayer out loud too! :) We taught him the Ten Commandments, Keep the Sabbath Day Holy, and Word of Wisdom this week as well. He was so bummed about how he's drank black tea all his life. He had questions like, "Can we eat popcorn? How about white bread?" He
was talking about how his brother eats all of his food, and so he confessed, "I cut a hole in the middle of my mattress to hide my pineapple juice." I really hope that his Mom doesn't find out! He told
us that he knows that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God, which is why he tried to throw away his Mom's tea after we left. She wouldn't let him though. E. even brought his five year old friend to church, and told him that he can come with him every week. What a great missionary!

I felt we were inspired to go see one of our potentials from a month ago. Her daughter ended up answering the door, and she has some LDS friends. N. straight out declared that she has no issue in reading the Book of Mormon if it's like the Bible. She accepted a copy along with a Restoration pamphlet. N. calls herself a floater because she's gone to so many churches and how it doesn't feel quite right, or she doesn't agree with some of the doctrine. They're going out of town, but we got her number so we can see her sometime next week! :)

President Harding had a mission conference call with us before we Weekly Plan on Thursday. He told us that when he was at a mission president's conference last year and an apostle told him that the
missionaries that they have in their mission right now are the honorable, good, and choice spirits that are mentioned in Abraham 3:23. Talk about a self confidence booster right there! :)

S. is doing absolutely amazing, but G. her grandmother hasn't progressed. and now she's back to where she was before. S's four younger sisters just moved in last week, and we taught them about the Doctrine of Christ in 2nd Nephi 31. They all want to be baptized, but G. didn't take them to church so their date has to be pushed back a week! We were hoping that they'd get baptized the same day S. would, but one has to go to church at least two times before they get baptized. S. told us that she prayed if this is what Heavenly Father wanted her to do, and if the church was true- and she got an answer that it is! I was so excited, and she just glows now because she reads the
Book of Mormon every night before she goes to bed. What a miracle!

These past few weeks I've been struggling with the fact that I think I'm not working hard enough, or not doing enough, being obedient enough, and so on. In Atlanta it was so easy to talk to people right
and left thanks to MARTA- but being in a car and when we knock on doors most people are usually at work it's hard sometimes to even talk to ten people a day. Where in Atlanta people were so receptive, it's a miracle if someone talks to us for more than 30 seconds. I am so grateful that we had interviews with President Harding so we could express our concerns to him. He was telling me that I was being really hard on myself, and that when our Heavenly Father is tearing us down to create us into the potential that He can see us become, it can REALLY hurt.He sees that I've changed a lot since I've been here, and I'm grateful to be able to look towards Christ's life and how much he went through so
I can look at mine in comparison to see that what I'm going through isn't all that bad. One of the members in the ward sends a quote of the day to everyone and I've been writing them down in my planner so I can always look up. One of my favorites is "One of the happiest moments is when you find the courage to let go of what you can't change." President told me I should just focus on what I can influence and change, and then let God do the rest and accept his timing and plan.

I hope that everyone has an spectacular 4th of July, and to watch some fireworks for me!

-Sister Sudweeks

The saddest sight for a missionary to see is a CLOSED post office!

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