Sunday, May 5, 2013

Everything...even the small things...Matter.(SENT April 22)

Wow! SO we got transfer news! Oh boy it was soo painful waiting for it to come! We were waiting and anticipating it all day Saturday and then finally at like 10pm that night we get a text from our zone leaders telling us that transfer news was going to be postponed because was down so they couldn't check their email with the updates. OH MY GOSH. Literally the anticipation was killing me! Sister Remington and I had absolutely no idea what was going to happen. I kind of had a gut feeling that I would be transferred, but at the same time I really felt like I would be staying. So conflicting! Anyways, so we wait ALL day Sunday and then finally at about 9:40pm or so our district leader calls and... still no transfer news! We were kind of upset. haha! But, we waited a little longer and Sister Christiansen was so sweet and was super anxious to hear the news as well so we were all waiting and talking. Just hangin out in our jammies waiting for the call and then FINALLY with 5 minutes till curfew we get the call! And the verdict is.... I am being transferred! It is funny because I am just moving to an area a few blocks from where I live and I will most likely be serving in the Christiansen's ward now! But my new companion is Sister Avila from Texas. I am super excited! I actually didn't cry this time! haha No but I really learned from these last few transfers to start praying early for a confirmation to know that whatever the transfer news may be that I will know that it's right. So when I heard that I was leaving I was just filled with so much peace! I love Sister Avila! I know her pretty well from the VC. We will be crazy busy though since she is one of the VC trainers. We will still have a car- yay! And ya I will still be in the VC :) I am just really hoping I can stay in until the fall!! This is Sister Avila's last transfer so it will be interesting to see what happens in the future. Anyways, so ya that was exciting! I am going to miss everybody so much! I really bonded with the members here and we had found so many investigators! I feel like I always get moved right when things really start picking up. darn it! We will be having a baptism this nest weekend in my new area so that will be interesting... this will be the first baptism I've been to where I haven't really taught them... 

So last night I was on shift here at the center and it was really slow so I just started talking with the senior couple over at back greet- the Livingstons. I am so sad because they are finished with their mission now! Last night was their last shift :( But anyways, so I started asking them what was one of the greatest lessons they have learned from their time serving here. I really liked Elder Livingston's response. He said that he had never realized before what kind of an impact we all have upon one another. You never know what little thing you say to someone will touch their hearts and cause them to change. He went on to say how truly fragile we all are and that we need to be more sensitive to each other. I loved that! I have really seen that a ton on my mission as well- in both positive and negative situations. We never know what kind of impact our actions may have on the course of peoples lives. He then went on and told me a story about this one man that came into the visitors center with his wife who had just been baptized. One of the Sisters had gone over to talk with them and they asked the man if he himself had been baptized. He said no and the sister then just flat out told him you need to be baptized. Time went on and the sister never thought anything of that conversation... until one day a few months later that same man and his wife came into the visitors center again, sought out that particular sister and told her that he had been baptized. He said that when she told him that he needed to be baptized that it really stuck with him and he couldn't get the thought of it out of his head. He then began meeting with missionaries and received the confirmation for himself that this was something that he needed to do. Miracle! 

Another story kind of like that- so I was on shift... I think it was Thursday? Well I saw Sister Demille and Sister Slater talking with a young couple. When the couple left I asked them what was going on and Sister Demille told me this awesome story:
So it was back in December (or maybe January). This same guy and same girl had come into the Visitors Center for their first date- awkward. So Sister Demille went and started the Joseph Smith movie for them and at the end she gave the girl a Book of Mormon. Then the couple left and Sister Demille didn't think anything of it. Well a few months later that girl came back to the vistors center and told Sister Demille that she was going to be getting baptized! It turns out that after the couple had left they went out to the temple grounds and just read from the Book of Mormon together for like 2 hours! She knew that it was true and she knew that she wanted to be baptized. So cool! But the story gets even better! So, a little while longer passes (in fact this part is what happened this past week!) and the couple comes back into the Visitors Center again and talk with Sister Demille. This time they tell her that they are getting married in 2 months and that they will be getting sealed in the temple next February (year after baptism)!!! Isn't that just a great story! I love missionary work! I love all the miracles that we get to see everyday. And the thing is that all of you can see these miracles as well- you just have to keep your eyes open. Look for those little ways to reach out. You never know what kind of an impact your words or actions may have upon the life of one of Gods children. 

So anyways, back to my discussion with the Livingston's... So Elder Livingston then asked me what the greatest lesson or lessons have been that I have learned so far on my mission. I thought about it for a second and I came up with 3 things.
1) Everything-even the small things matter.
2) Heavenly Father knows us and loves us perfectly. He knows what we need.
3) Because of the atonement of Jesus Christ, people CAN change
There is not one moment in our lives that goes wasted. Even the ordinary and seemingly mundane tasks that seem to be getting us no where- they have their purpose and it is up to us to find the good. I am so grateful for my mission! Just the thought of possibly having not experienced this amazing life changing adventure is so frightening! I am so grateful that Heavenly Father prepared me and guided me here. I absolutely love my life! I have no regrets and I look forward to the future with so much hope. Even though there is so much bad and evil in the world, I know that there is so much good and righteousness as well. I was sooooo sad when I heard about all the things in Boston and Texas this week. Why do people use their agency to do such bad things?? I am so grateful to know that we do have someone who loves us so much that is watching out for us. I am comforted in knowing that Heavenly Father has a plan.

Anyways family,I love you all soo much! Sorry I guess I didn't even really write about this week... this week was amazing! I love all of our investigators and all of the other people that we get to teach and serve. I will miss them so much, but I am also so grateful for the adventure and progression that lies ahead. Oh that reminds me, I really liked what one sister said in Relief Society yesterday. She said, "The only person you can compare yourself to is who you were yesterday.". I know that it is so easy to fall into that trap of this person is so much better than me and yaddayaddyadda. Especially I see a lot of sister's (meaning the ones I serve with) get that way too. But I loved what this sister said and I know that it's so true! We will never ever feel at peace with ourselves, our lives, accomplishments, etc. if we are always comparing ourselves to others. That was another great lesson I learned this week. I also love the quote by Pres. Uchtodrf which says, "Humility is not thinking less of yourself; humility is thinking less about yourself. It is all a balance :) But basically if we love others then we will be happy.
Anyways, now I am really ending this email.

Hope you guys have a great week!! Love you all sooo much!!
Sister Hamstead