Monday, February 15, 2016

Mon, Feb 15, 2016 2:11 pm One year of blessings.

 Dear family and friends,

I want to start my letter off with talking about my experience in Vancouver, my last area. This is something I have been pondering about for a long time now. I questioned God so many times..."why is it so hard? Why do we go out and do the same thing every day? How come none of our miracles are complete?" Hermana Polanco and I asked ourselves these questions many many times, but despite that, we went out and worked every single day. Was it hard? Absolutely. But I know now more than ever the goodness of our God. I felt that when I left Vancouver that I hadn't really made a difference. We worked so hard, but didn't see much come from it. That time for me was a trial of my faith, but I endured and enjoyed to the end. I have been praying about my experience there ever since I arrived in Surrey. I just wanted to feel good about it and know that all I did there was not in vain. So there have been so many answers and miracles that God has given to me to help me know that my time there was effective and worth it. I was pondering about it one day, and the Mormon message came to my mind about the current bush and the gardener. In the video, the current bush was growing so well...that's like me..I felt like I was a missionary on fire in Surrey and Sidney. Even though the bush was growing so well, the gardener saw it fit to cut down the bush....that's what I felt like going to Vancouver...that God had cut me down. But we learn in this video that the gardener knows best, and that he cut the bush down so it could grow bigger and stronger and more beautiful. Like the gardener, God knows it all. He cut me down, knowing it was exactly what I needed. I needed this trial of faith so that now I can have stronger faith. He cut me down to allow me to grow, flourish, and become a stronger disciple of Jesus Christ. And I have done just that. God consecrated the work I did there. Nothing was in vain. All of it was for Him. Hermana Polanco has been writing me every week and telling me about the miracles and success that her and Hermana Kartchner are having in Vancouver. They are teaching and meeting with people we found. They are doing amazing things there. I love that there are so many miracles happening here in Surrey, in Vancouver, and in Sidney. I'm grateful that I decided to serve a mission. Best decision of my life.

So this week! guess is that she is going to have her baby on my one year mark. That's whole year of being a missionary for our Heavenly Father! I can hardly believe it! I feel so blessed. Rosa told us that her desires to be baptized are growing. We asked her and Raul what their goals are for their family and I absolutely know that the gospel can help them with those righteous goals that they have. It was really neat, in our last lesson with them we all wrote down our testimonies of Jesus Christ. Rosa's testimony was so beautiful. She said that when she belonged to the Catholic church, she still knew Jesus Christ and He has never changed for her. The only thing that has changed is the love that she feels and has for Him. I love visiting Rosa and Raul because their home is so filled with the Spirit. It is so peaceful. Sister Cendreda was telling me that it is because they are about to have a baby and so they are so close to Heaven! I love that.

With Rosa and her "trouble" that is coming soon!! 

So Colombia. She was going to come to stake conference yesterday, but then everyone told us that their wouldn't be Spanish translation so it didn't work. But when we got there...guess what...there was translation. We were pretty bummed out that she could have had a really spiritual experience. But...theres next week! We were able to meet with her and teach her the gospel of Jesus Christ! Its amazing...she always has baptism on her mind and is the one who brings it up. The Spirit was so strong in that lesson and she is going to pray to see if she should be baptized on March 13! I hope that all of you will pray for her!!! She is such a miracle for me. God is so good.

Familia Rodriguez! 

Stake conference was such an uplifting experience. It wasn't a normal stake conference because it was a broadcast that only some parts of the world would watch for their stake conference. There were two talks that really stood out to me. The first was by James J. Hamula of the 70. He talked about how crazy and scary the world is today. But he reminded us all of how many times Jesus told us to "fear not". He asked us, "So how did we not have fear?" He then gave 3 answers. 
1-Keep your sight on Jesus Christ. I love this because if you are looking at the world and are so tuned in with what is happening, you're going to have fear. But if we look to Christ in all things, we will have faith and hope. 
2-Trust in the Savior and His power of Salvation. We must remember that Christ has overcome the world. We must believe that absolutely ALL will be mended through His Atonement. 
3-Support the church and the leaders of the church. I know that the prophet and apostles are called of God. What they teach is straight from God. They teach the truth and we can trust their words. You should all read Luke's my ponderizing scripture this week! The second talk that I absolutely loved was by Dale G. Renlund one of the 12 apostles. He taught the importance of teaching the restoration to all. I felt so strongly as he spoke that he is an apostle of God. He witnesses to the world that Jesus Christ lives and that this is truly his church. So powerful.

We were able to find a few new investigators this week...Lidia and Carolyne! I will tel you more about them next week! 

Well, it has definitely been a year of blessings for me and my family. This mission is the best thing I have ever done. I love my mission. I was reading in PMG this morning and it says that "our attitude towards our mission experience is a reflection of our love toward God." I realized that I really love my Heavenly Father. He has blessed me so much. I love my mission and I love that I have been able to meet and love so many of God's children. I pray that you all are doing well and that you pray for God's work to continue to hasten. I hope that you are all reading the scriptures every day, praying everyday, and going to the church every week, and going to the temple every week. God asks a lot of us. But I decided from a young age to do the things that matter most...I pray that you will all make that choice too!

Hermana Hoth

WHY??   Haha...we have no idea...I was just trying not to be by it in the picture...i can't believe she took that. she's obsessed with pics!

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