Sunday, September 6, 2015

Life's been crazy

Well Monday is here and I don't know exactly how to sum up this week... crazy? stressful? overwhelming? trying? exhausting? I'll be honest and say D) all of the above

These were the highlights of the week:
On Monday we had family home evening with the Austins. They have a foreign exchange student from Norway living with them this year. She is so sweet and so receptive to the gospel! She's actually taking seminary and studying the Old Testament this year. She had some questions about temples and we explained what they are and why they are important. She asked some really good questions and we invited her to have some more lessons with us to learn more about what we believe and she was open to that. We told her we would get her a Norweigan Book of Mormon and she was excited! Later in the week Sister Thumstedter were talking about how we want to teach the Restoration next and we found out that the Restoration movie has Norweigan subtitles! That was pretty sweet! We had planned to watch it with them yesterday but they had to cancel, so hopefully we can reschedule for this week! 

On Wednesday we went to visit this sister in the ward. She and her husband are inactive and they're pretty newly wed and they have a one year old son. We had a great conversation with her and got to know her pretty well. She's super sweet. We sat there for a while just talking and I didn't know how to bring up the gospel our how we hadn't seen them at church. It took me some time to get the courage and I prayed to know what I should say because I knew it was a sensitive subject. I finally just asked "Have you and your husband been to the temple yet?" and she opened right up and explained their current situation. She is more ready than her husband, he isn't ready to go to church right now but she's struggling to come on her own. We told her we know that her example will have a huge impact on her husband and will help them on their way to the temple. We invited her to come to church and said that we would love to sit by her. She really appreciated it. She didn't come this week but I hope we can help her gain the courage to attend next week. I'm so grateful that I myself gained the courage to ask a simple question so we could help her progress. 

We saw Heather this week! We dropped off some cookies and asked if we could come visit her. She said she would be busy but that we could come next (this) week. I hope we can find the right opportunity to share the gospel with her.

We were able to get some flyers together for the service project! On Thursday we were on exchanges and guess what?! Sister Thomas is my STL again. I think that Thursday was our like 20th exchange together and that's only slightly exaggerating. We have got on exchanges so much together. She's up in New Mexico now! We had a great day. We went tracting with the service flyers. We actually stopped at the Lutheran church to see if any of the members there would be interested in cleaning up the community with us. We were able to talk to the pastor. He was very nice and said he would see what he can do. He told us that he stopped at our booth that we had on the 24th of July and requested a visit so we called and chastised the Elders haha and told them to visit him. On the Marque (sp?) outside their church it actually says "We believe in Moroni 8:18" so that's pretty cool! That scriptures says: For I know that God is not a partial God, neither a changeable being; but he is unchangeable from all eternity to all eternity. 

Also on exchanges we saw Brother Holladay... He's not really progressing :( He knows what he needs to do just needs to act. In the lesson we had he said "I know I need to for my family and for my wife" I said Brother Holladay the most important reason is for your personal salvation. I think we need to drop him soon because he's not making or keeping commitments. It's so sad to see him... trapped in addiction... We can't stray from the path.. we need to correct ourselves as soon as possible or we can get so old and forgetful that it's very difficult change.

It was neat to do an exchange with Sister Thomas again. We started doing exchanges together when I was in my second transfer. Now almost a year later we were able to reflect on how much we've learned and grown. 

One of the greatest miracles of the week was that Brent came to all three hours of church yesterday! He hasn't done that in over 30 years.

We're still experiencing troubles with the bikes. I think in the last two weeks we've had 8 flat tires. As soon as one is fixed another is flat. There's a bunch of other trials we're experiencing but I won't go into all that. A mission is hard. It is is trying, stressful at times, and it's exhausting. I'm so exhausted- I didn't realize how much biking all day would wear me out. I'm trying to juggle a lot right now. But I'm so grateful for this experience. I have learned and grown so much. Looking back I am so grateful for the changes I've made this past year and the missionary I've become. The above successes made this week worth it. This work is so rewarding. I feel so blessed to serve here and I love my mission so much! 

Thank you all for the love, support and encouragement!

Lots of love,
Sister Richards

Sister Call and I decked out our place with ensign pictures and I took this picture cause sister Sweeney wanted to see how we decorated our apts and I thought I'd share. 

We have so much love for this guy. Brent's doing so well!

Nasty web and spider at Gary's house... Ew

Sister Thomas and I - exchanges!

I don't know their reasoning... But pretty cool

At the service project I went to get my sunglasses out of my backpack and they snapped in half :(

At the service project I went to get my sunglasses out of my backpack and they snapped in half :(

At zone conference I got to see these pretty sisters! Love them

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