Monday, February 24, 2014
Big news!! So China finally agreed to letting the missionaries into their country and I have been selected as one to "pioneer" the China Mission!!! I will probably be going over in like a month! Just kidding! Since I barely talked to you on Wednesday so this letter may be a bit shorter. We went and saw Elder Judd’s grandparents, the Goodwin’s. They were very nice to us and his step grandma said no when we asked if we could teach the lessons to them but I think they will let us anyways, we have lots of ideas :) They of course want to see him often and hear him speak in church, say he needs "practice" teaching the lessons, stuff like that and eternal family's will hit home. Levi had an interview and it went pretty well, now it is just kind of the waiting process for the First Presidency to send the OK and 2 months really isn't bad at all. It was kinda cool cause in a lesson with them on Friday he said well I’m doing the stuff you have asked me to do so far but I feel like it hasn't been long enough for me to have "proven myself" to myself that I can live this and do this. So the two months should help see he can do this and live this life. We were able to give quite a few blessings this week; I love blessings and being able to see the priesthood involved in everyone. I will tell you a couple of the stories. We went to see a couple, the tuckers, nonmembers, she opened the door said my husband says were catholic and you can’t come in, then she got talking to us anyways and her dog had just died so instead of us going in she talked to us on the doorstep and we ended up giving her a blessing and she said she felt a lot better after it. It was neat. The best part was at the end she said next time my neighbor (neighbors are members) invites us to church i think i want to come! :) We went to see another nonmember couple who we saw once before and she said she was feeling really sick that day and gave her a blessing and they said they would come to church... but weren’t there on Sunday. We are still teaching Sky and Katelynn and there still going thru the custody battle. Please pray their mothers heart will be softened and they will be able to be baptized. Also we are still teaching Gwen we had a lesson on Saturday and went on a hike; we related all the things on the trail to things in the gospel. Please also pray she will have a desire to be baptized! Elder Judd is doing well; he's catching on quick and is become a great missionary! Scripture! Matt 5:14-16 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. I love you have a good week! Elder Stevenson
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Well where should I begin this week’s letter? We had transfers this week! I have a new companion, Elder Judd. He's from Cedar City in Utah and he got off the airplane yesterday! I'm excited, he's going to be a great missionary. I am still in the same area, in Pine. My companion actually has a grandpa who is living up here and I don't think he’s a member! Also as for Levi, we had a lesson with him this week and were talking and turns out he is on probation which means he has to get interviewed by the Mission President or one of his counselors and if that goes well they write a letter to the first presidency for permission, then in about 2 months we should get the ok. He has an interview tonight and I really feel all will go well, he has a desire to join our church and become a member and he keeps commitments and is a good person. We taught Levi several times over the last week, every Wednesday night we play basketball with the elders and some YM in the ward and a few nonmembers come and we invited Levi and he came last week and loved it! He said he has been praying for better friends and influences in his life and this was an answer to his prayers which was amazing :) It made me think about how often the Lord answers our prayers and how often miracles happen that we don't even notice and our day goes on like nothing happened. Because we pray to be able to help our area and people in it often and felt like we should invite him to basketball but if he never had of told us the background story we never would have even known! Two Sundays ago a less active that hasn't been to church in a couple years that we have been working with finally came to church! And loved it! And during the week she was talking to a friend/acquaintance that was excommunicated and brought him to church and we might be able to start working with him to! We are still working with Sky and Kate. Their mother still won’t give permission for baptism. Hopefully her heart will be softened soon. Gwen is also still slowly coming along; I think she’s going to be ready to get baptized soon. As for Mary and Rodger they are still kinda blowing us off they said to get back to them at the end of this week and maybe then we can meet with them.. Well have a wonderful week and don’t forget to share the gospel with someone :)
Scripture of the week: “Whosoever shall put their trust in God shall be supported in their trials, and their troubles, and their afflictions, and shall be lifted up at the last day.” Alma 36:3 Put your trust in God and he will help you thru whatever you may be going thru, big or small, ask for help, ask to learn from it and grow from a challenge or trial and it will make you stronger in time to come :)
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
So this week was CRAZY! It didn't really go like it was planned but it had its ups and downs. Here are some of the things that happened. We got to go to the Gilbert temple open house on Saturday morning and it was amazing! We went with Paul and Betsy Randall a part member family, her dads is the local Baptist preacher. And they really enjoyed it! The chandelier was 1600 lbs in the celestial room! pretty cool! So every trip to the valley takes more than half the day and that was one.. Then one day my companion had a doctor’s appointment for some stuff and we had to go down and that took all day but it was cool cause my comp and Elder Armitage’s comp both had appointments and so we took them down and then while they were seeing the doc we went back to the Beverly ward in Mesa where we served together and it was awesome!! We got to see the Hansen family and Karen and the boys and some other people and i was sooo happy! We had fun. Then yesterday a missionary got transferred unexpectedly and my comp and another missionary had to accompany him to the valley so when they came back up there would still be 2 together and so yesterday i wasn't in my area or with my comp so that's who was in that text you got mom. On Sunday we had a lesson with Levi! He is coming along great, still reading the book of Mormon and the restoration went over great! He wants to be baptized on the 22 of this month! I know missions aren't about the number of baptisms or anything but it feels so good to be able to have one coming up and be able to be able to see the reward of our work. This morning we taught seminary and it was really fun! We got to talk about being an influence on our family and friends and how they can be a missionary right now. Well, have a wonderful week!
Scripture of the week: I like this scripture because it of what it says at the very end, a change of heart. Repenting always sounds like such a hard word but really its as simple as putting our will with heavenly fathers will and just becoming a better person, the person the lords wants and needs us to become.
Monday, February 3, 2014
Like last week, this morning we went hiking, we went to a place called the Tonto natural land bridge. It was a huge arch thing with a creek in the middle, it was really cool.
We had a lesson with Gwen again this week and it was really good, she opened up to us and we had a good chat about how to make our lessons more fun (more crafts) and she wants to go on a hike.. All this hiking, I'm going crazy! And went over prayer with her and we thought she knew how to pray cause she previously said she did and then said she didn't and so we taught her and said we can only go on a hike if you say a prayer before well be able to be safe and no one will get hurt :) She said yes.
A little bad news...Sky and Katelynn, 2 of the girls we've been working with that are planning to be baptized on Feb 15. Well they are in foster care and living with active members but the parents still have parental rights even though they can’t see the kids and we ran into the girls mom at the church (thought she was in jail for abuse and drugs...) and she said I'm not going to let them get baptized until I have them all back under my roof and I can plan the baptism and a bunch of other selfish stuff, so then last night we figured out where she’s living and went and saw her and shared a little message and gave her a BOM and when she warms up a little more well bring it back up.
Stake conference was this week and it was really good! The Saturday night session was hastening the work and it was amazing! And the best part was after it was over one of our members from blue ridge branch we cover came up and said hello and introduced us to a guy named Levi and we started talking to him and he wants to learn about the church and he's been reading the BOM and loved stake conference and went through the Gilbert temple open house and I am so excited because I can definitely see him joining the church :) And the best part is he's over 18… He doesn't need parent consent!! ha-ha and then Sunday morning he came back for stake conference and enjoyed that as well! I am still sooo grateful and thankful we could be blessed with someone to work with and someone who wants to learn why he is here and his purpose in life and I am excited to start teaching him! This is going to be a good week!
We have started doing scripture text messages every day to everyone who has a phone and says we can send them to them and it is amazing, people are willing to let us send them to them even when they don’t want to hear the gospel and it really warms them right up and helps us get a lot more united with the members too.