Return: July 21, 2011

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas! December 21, 2010 - Lafayette, LA

Hello all!
Well, I am being transferred. I am being transferred to Lafayette, and I am SUPER excited. I'm really sad to be leaving here, but I know that it'll be good. I am going to be serving with Sister Aka (Awe-kah), and she is originally from the Ivory Coast in Africa! But her family now lives in Utah (if I'm not mistaken...we'll figure that out tomorrow I guess). But she is really neat. I met her at our Sister's Conference, and I'm just really excited to serve with her. She is a good missionary. Lafayette is a pretty big city, and we cover half of it. I believe the Zone Leader's are the other half. And our District Leader is a Spanish missionary, and they cover both of our areas. It's crazy! Ha, so Elder Rowan is getting transferred too, and guess what! He is going to Lafayette to be my District Leader again ha, ha! It's crazy, but it'll be a lot of fun. He is a really good missionary. But, our "living quarters" in Lafayette are SUPER nice. The ward mission leader is trying to sell a pretty nice town home, and he is letting the Sister's live there until it sells. So it's pretty nice. It has granite counter tops nice....ha, we just have to always keep it clean. But, I will send you pictures. Anyway. Ha, I can't believe that you and Dad got pulled over THREE times on your way home! That is crazy! Um, you better get it fixed! Ha, ha!
Well, I will now let you know what is going on with me! This week was pretty good. We did some knocking doors, some caroling, and let me tell you! Caroling sure softens people up for conversation. And it's pretty funny, because some people reject even a song! How sad is that. But what can you do I guess. But it was really neat... last night we had gone through all of our plans, and had no idea what we should do. I felt like we should go to the Richardson's (Sedonia lives there). Well we get there, and apparently Robert (a recent convert) has been pretty sick. In like the last month he has lost 25 pounds. Ha, he's a little bit bigger, so it's kind of good, but he's just been so sick, and that is not good! Well, we asked him if he wanted a priesthood blessing, and he said that he would. We called his home teacher Brother McKay, and it was really neat. Because he just dropped what he was doing to come and give him a blessing. Can I just say that I love that? I just think it's really neat to see how much he cares for this man, and how the priesthood really does edify both of them. He also brought Brother Donahue with him, and I just love them! I love the priesthood, and I have really come to love it so much more on my mission. The priesthood truly does edify others, but as I have seen men who righteously exercise their priesthood, I've seen it strengthen their testimonies, and the testimonies of those around them. It really is amazing.
Anyway, after that, I was talking to Sedonia for a little bit, and they knew that we had transfer calls that night. I asked her if I could have a picture with them, and she said "You think you're leaving don't you!" And it was like the Spirit just said "yes you are, you better say bye!" Man that sucked big time. It was really hard on Sedonia when Sister Clawson left, and now I am. It was just really neat for me to see that I have made a difference in her life. I have been able to help her faith in Jesus Christ grow. Even though she hasn't been reading every day or coming to church, I have definitely seen the "repentance wheels" turning in her pretty little head. She really does have that desire to change, and I am just so grateful I was able to witness that. There are so many times I wonder "what good am I doing here?" But then I have little moments like that. I love her so much, and I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to get to know her.
Ha, well funny story. So we find out on Tuesday night that Brian has to leave for Wednesday and Thursday for a job training because he got a new job. He still really wanted to be baptized on the 18th, but that would have meant teaching him 3 lessons on the 17th... in one lesson...TOO MUCH I SAY!!!!!! Well, it turns out that he kind of took his nephew's truck and went up to Missouri till Christmas for work! He still hasn't called to talk to us, but ha, I guess I'll find out about that someday! So Brian's baptism didn't happen. I swear, every time I tell you that someone is getting baptized in the weekend, it doesn't happen. I think I'm just not going to tell you anymore...I think I jinx it! Ha, ha!
One thing that I do know, is that Satan is super real. I don't know how people don't see that! Bah, some times I wish I could just like slap people across the face and say "WHY DON'T YOU GET IT! HE'S THERE AND HE IS DECIVING YOU!" Ha, I guess that would make me seem like a lunatic! I hate how big of a hold he has on people. They think "Oh, I can't live without my cigarette's." Or "I love the praise and worship and my church (that is the whole Thank you Jesus thing), why don't you do that at your church?" People get so hung up on little things, that it blocks what is really important. I think there is an article in this December Ensign that talks about that! It's the one that says "Fear Not" and has a beautiful picture of Mary. Well, it kind of reminds me of the pebble analogy. No...this I think was in conference...I don't know! But, you look at a pebble and up close it seems like a giant obstacle, but cast it on the ground, and man it is not that big of a deal. I swear our investigators like to hold the pebble's up to their eyes some becomes their excuse, and they don't want an eternal perspective. But we need it. What purpose does this life have if we don't have that eternal perspective! I mean seriously!!!! Granted, we all lose it sometimes...but I know that it is important to keep that eternal perspective.
Sorry if this letter is a bunch of babbling nonsense, but this is basically just what I'm thinking right now. I am so excited that I get to talk to you on Saturday, and I will be calling you tomorrow to let you know what is going on. I will also give you my new address. Dad, I will probably call your phone tomorrow. And you can let me know who's phone you want me to call on Christmas when I call tomorrow. I love you dearly and am grateful for my wonderful family! Thanks for all the Christmas cards everyone, and I love you all!
Sister Stacy Jo Earl

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