I just want y'all to know that I am so very grateful for each and every one of you! For reals. So, from reading that, I understand that it is official that you will be moving to Colorado. Is the house going up for sale soon? When do you think you'll move? Man, I was really liking Arizona too ha, ha! Mom, you sound like you are shopping like crazy! Makes sense with how awesome you look! You should have a whole new wardrobe. And, I can't believe that you didn't buy the $1,098 sweater...I mean seriously... Ha, ha! But it sounds like things are going well. Thanksgiving should be fun! I love that TJ is coming again. I haven't heard much about him since I said bye! So that's good he's coming. Sister Choal and I were studying yesterday, and I had an epiphany and realized that Harry Potter 7 had come out on Friday...ha, we both had a little sad moment, but it's okay, we are over it and moving on. Was it good? Ha, anyway.... I hope that this year the Thanksgiving movie is as good as The Fantastic Mr. Fox!
Well, this week was actually really quite awesome. Ha, on Monday we had a lesson with Sedonia, and we thought we'd be all cute and creative to teach Keep the Sabbath Day Holy...so we got ice cream, and had different toppings so we could create an ice cream "Sunday". We had: hot fudge, caramel, pecan chips, cherries, ketchup, mustard, salt, pepper. Don't all of those sound wonderful?! The ketchup, mustard, salt and pepper all represented things that are not good to do on a Sunday. Like shopping, going to sporting events, etc. And the stuff that you actually put on a sundae were things that represented things that are good to do on Sunday. Like going to church, reading your scriptures, praying, participating in ward choir, etc. So we made 2 different kinds of "Sunday's" and we asked her which one she would like. Ha, she's pregnant and said she wouldn't mind the one with ketchup. It sounded really good! But, she ended up really wanting the other one, and so we made all of us one. After Sedonia finished eating it, she said "Yeah, I'm lactose-intolerant." WHAT! Ha, we felt really bad. I was scared it would like make her go into labor or something. She said it was worth it though. It was funny.
On Tuesday we had a CRAZY lesson with this family. Well it turned in to 2 different lessons. We had a lesson with Ryan and Beth, and we were able to talk about the Restoration of the gospel. And when we shared the first vision, everyone was silent, the Spirit came in, and it was AWESOME! We had just finished up talking when Ryan's dad, Don, starts asking all these questions. We had our ward mission leader with us, and he decided that he needed to answer his questions. Eventually he stopped because we had been there for 2 hours. But it was SO frustrating. I was having a really hard time listening to the Spirit. Don just kept on asking question after question, wouldn't wait for an answer, and when he would stop, we'd start to answer and he'd cut us off. It was like what we were saying would never be good enough and I wanted to smack him upside the head! He is sincere in his questions, and they are all questions that the restored gospel can answer, but he just needs to listen, and learn to listen to the Spirit. At one point I got tired of him cutting me off, so I just talked really loud and tried to bear my testimony. At least Ryan heard it, but man that was a hectic lesson. I felt bad I was contentious, but man! It was hard. But I love them all, they are a crazy family, we just need to teach them all separately.
So we have decided that it is time to drop Bettie. We love her to death, but she doesn't have a testimony, and she isn't progressing. It's a little bit hard, but we know that it is best. Sister Choal and I are kind of giving our area a make-over. We have a lot of finding to do, and a lot of trust to gain (from members and investigators).
Friday was a wonderful day. Man oh man was it! We went and met a woman named Kathy Cherry. She is really a neat lady and is struggling a little bit, but she is a member who is less-active, and she wants to start coming back. She isn't even on our records, but she has a sister in Idaho who was concerned about her and gave the Bishop a call. She was so excited to see us and let us right on in, and we got to know her and sang her a song. It was neat. After that we went to try and see a bunch of less-actives in the area because it was in the boonies and we never get out there. So it was good. We came back and we went and met Sister Whipple at Target because we got to go to the TEMPLE!!!!!! Can I tell you how wonderful the temple is? It is amazing. Janet Eschete is one of our recent converts, and it was her first time going to the temple for baptisms, so we were able to go :) It was so wonderful. I have been wanting to go to the temple so much, and it was so nice to be there. Janet was so excited, and ah! It was neat. Before we went to the temple, I had just been feeling this weight. And a little bit sad, but it was like the second I walked in there it was gone. Maybe it's because Satan's angels weren't there trying to bring me down, maybe it's because the weight of the salvation of the people in this area was not on my shoulder's at that moment, but I haven't felt that much peace in a while. It was amazing. We were able to do confirmations, and it was just really neat. I swear, at one point, it felt like grandpa was right there with me. It was quite amazing. We get to go back soon, and I am really excited.
Saturday was equally awesome! We went to try and find more people to teach, and we did not succeed, but!....we were able to go to a wedding and a baptism of a wonderful couple that the Spanish Elders were teaching. Their names are Sergio and Teresa. It was a little bit crazy, but it was beautiful. I didn't realize till after that the Spirit was really strong there, but we left, and I was just so happy for them and I was just feeling the Spirit. It was neat. The Stake President married them, and everything was in Spanish. I understood a word here, a word there, but for the most part, I understood SQUAT! Ha, but I didn't need to. It was just beautiful. It was funny because we were watching Sergio before they got up, and he looked absolutely terrified, but after they said "Si", they both just looked so happy and excited, and it was just amazing. They then took pictures with the Bride and Groom before they were baptized because the Bride was about to ruin her hair and make-up, but then they went to the baptism. It was short, sweet, in Spanish, and still amazing. Then we went to the reception where there was Spanish food GALORE! It was heavenly! I love Mexican food, can I just say? It was a little spicy, and I just ate way too much, but it was totally worth it. The cake was even a tres leches cake that looked like a wedding cake. Too bad I couldn't eat it, but oh well! Ha, it was just super good food, amazing ceremony and baptism and it was just cute! I loved it. Oh! After they were baptized, Sister Choal and I sang "Our Savior's Love" in Spanish, and it really brought the Spirit. Even the children went silent. It was really neat.
Sunday none of our investigators came to church, but Sergio and Teresa received the Gift of the Holy Ghost, and it was really neat to see them get up smiling and just so happy! I was excited for them. Can you believe that they were the first baptism I have seen my whole entire mission? Yeah. It was neat. It wasn't someone I had taught, but it felt like it after hearing the Elders talk about them and we helped come up with idea's for teaching them. It was pretty much amazing. Ha, okay I am done ranting about this. It was just awesome okay? :)
Anyway, we had a really wonderful week. It was much needed. I am excited for this Thanksgiving. We are spending it with the Rubert's family. They are seriously probably my favorite family in the ward. They are going through A LOT, and have so little, but they are kind enough to invite us to come for dinner. We are bringing desert, and I have no idea what we will make, but it's going to be delicious! I can assure you of that! I mean, I'm making it! Why wouldn't it be good ;)!!
Things are still going great with my companion. I love her dearly and we have a lot of fun! She's definitely helping me be me again, and I love it. She really is wonderful, and I am excited to be serving with her. I hope we can be companions for more than a transfer. Did you notice I have had a different companion every transfer? With the exception of Sister Jack, but Sister Holmes still came to join us. But it's crazy! I like it, but I hope for once that I don't have a change this transfer ha, especially with Christmas right around the corner from it. But I won't fret just yet. It's not for a couple weeks. So we will see what happens.
I am grateful that I have such and amazing family, and for all the laughs that you have given me over the years. I tell Sister Choal about y'all and she thinks we are crazy, but fun. I am grateful to be here serving the Lord. I am grateful for the Spirit and how it makes me feel. I am grateful that this gospel makes me so happy. I am grateful for my Savior and the sacrifice that he made for me. I am grateful that he lives now, and that one day we can all be together as a family, once again. I am grateful for all of you. I really am. Thanks for being such a wonderful family. Talk to you soon.
Sister Stacy Jo Earl