Monday, April 16, 2012

HIIIIIIII!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! - April 16, 2012

Hello family and hello all.
This week has been super crazy weird. It hailed Wednesday, snowed Saturday, and then was in the 60s/70s the rest of the week. Random.
We were working with a really great family who ended up dropping us this week right before the ward coordination meeting when we were going to talk about their progression and needs. Yeah. That was rough. But thankfully it's not my first rodeo, so I recovered faster. But it's still sad every time. You want these individuals and families to progress and have life more abundantly, but everyone has their agency!!!!!!!!! Ah. What's that French phrase? Say lah vee. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.
OH MY GOSH DAD JUST TELL ME THE STAKE CHANGES PLEASE!?!?!?!?! I have literally no one to tell.
Also, everyone has been like, "oh there have been a billion tornadoes in Austin. Is your family alive?" The first couple of times I brushed it off, but the next 40 times I was getting concerned. I mean you're emailing me so I assume you're fine, but what's the 411 on that? Just wondering.
Went to the chiropractor today (he's a member of our ward and didn't charge us anything) and that was nice to get adjusted. He took the knots out of my neck too which was awesome.
We had elk tacos this week at a recent convert's house. The couple was married and sealed to each other last year, and now that they have full custody of their kids they need to be sealed all together as well, but the Bishop wants them to go the temple a few more times before they go and get sealed. Their kids were baptized in the past few months (one was my first baptism, Kyle). It was really cool to teach the importance of families and the covenants that we make in the temple. We challenged them to go once a month which they said would be difficult, but that's why they have a billion friends in the ward to encourage and invite them :) But yeah they go hunting all the time and the 13-year-old girl Katie shot an elk last time. So we had elk tacos. And then I held a baby chick and it totally pooped in my hand. The first time we met the family, the zone leaders were passing them off to us with the boundary changes, and we met their goats and one of them bit Elder Nelson. This family is awesome. Kyle likes to show me all the antlers they find.
We visited a less-active member this week who had 6 giant poodles that bombarded us when we walked in the house. It was seriously the weirdest experience. We're just walking in the house and there's some barking, and then all of a sudden we're in the room but pinned to the wall by these giant poodles that are barking super loud and everything's echoing. Anyway. The couple was super nice and told us to come back again.
Chris and Ashleigh both received the Holy Ghost this Sunday by the laying on of hands. It was super spiritual and amazing. Elder Nelson performed Ashleigh's, and it was cool having the zone leaders there. Chris has a ton of LDS friends that are all doctors and so they were all in the circle for his.
Also have y'all met an Elder Burtoch there? He's apparently the son of a member of my stake presidency and is in the San Antonio mission. Just let me know!
Hey was Trenton's name read off at the stake conference after he received the Melchizedek Priesthood?! I was just thinking about that the other day and how awesome that is. Also, Kyle was ordained to the office of a deacon and received the Aaronic Priesthood this Sunday which was awesome because we got to be there too! So many ordinances!
Hey Mom - is Trenton's room converted into a sewing room yet?! Also, the little notecards you sent me are adorable. We use them for thank you notes and special thinking of you notes for ward members and investigators.
And Taylor I get a ton of compliments on my red shoes all the time. I'm thinking of running to Target soon and buying 3 pairs of them so I'll always have them for my mission. They're great in the snow too!
So yeah this week was pretty interesting. We're still desperate for new investigators and are out finding when we can. We have an interesting approach called house blessings which I think I've mentioned before which just really helps us focus on why we're want to meet more people - to serve them! As servants of Jesus Christ, we should be serving others! Which we are, but we need more opportunities. So we're able to touch more people as we approach it that way rather than "Hi we're missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ yadda yadda" which is all important and true, but the house blessing approach helps us continue to develop charity for all of God's children and a desire to do everything we can to help them and hopefully bring the Spirit into their lives!
District meetings are super amazing. So it's just the three of us; Elder Keele (DL) and his companion, Elder Hohman (from Georgie with the funniest accent ever!!!!!!); and the zone leaders, Elder Nelson and Elder Brame. So we share our goals and see the progress that's been made in our areas and then we have like an intense thought from Elder Keele which always gets our wheels churning and then practice teaching. This week we talked about house blessings and Elder Nelson talked about how he's got his "greenie fire" back (so that energy and enthusiasm you have coming straight from the MTC) and it made me so sad because I think I lost my greenie fire like day 2! Lame!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! House blessings have been difficult for me, especially as I work to balance like being a representative of Christ and the crazy lover of people with a billion hugs and sarcastic jokes. I think it's something I don't really understand still - like how to love people the way Christ would and just not really having friends anymore. It's super confusing, I know. And hopefully it didn't come off negative haha. Honestly the mission is just teaching me a lot of things, and I'm constantly being humbled by those things that I need to work on. There's a vision for Prescott that wer're only just tapping into!
Well this email is super long and hopefully not too pointless.
Love you all. Thanks for the emails. Like they uplift me so much. And sorry if I sound super condescending sometimes; I just get super excited about being a member missionary for the rest of my life and want to live vicariously through your efforts! Ha.
Also I was looking through the last conference issue of the Ensign and saw a billion pictures of missionaries in there, so I'm excited to pore over the next few when Trenton is in them :) Was he in the field by conference or not?
Okay sorry I'm seriously ending now. Thanks for all the letters and emails! I'm making picture postcards today and should hopefully be able to catch up a bit on all the people that are totally awesome and write me (like my wonderful second family the Andersons).
Sister Parks

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