Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Conclusions and Miracles

Hello friends and family!

I'm currently emailing you from inside west Ed! Woo! It's a blast!

I don't have much time to email but this week has been a blast though! I found out that next week we might be in Jasper! Soooo that's exciting! Hopefully it all works out!

So many cool experiences ...gah! I don't have time to share them all!

I've done some reflection lately. Here are some conclusions!

I am realizing that I'm now recognizing specific character flaws I have and am working on fixing them, not just beating myself up about everything. So it's been nice, a lot more constructive and less

Man, I've been able to just love myself so much more lately! I'm the happiest I've been my whole life! I'm just worried about wasting the last 6 months. It's definitely a fear I have. I need to work hard to
overcome that!

 I've just really loved my mission so far and I'm excited to continue to work hard. We discussed Mormon 9:15 with a dinner appointment yesterday and asked about miracles they've seen in their lives and the husband talked about how the world is really a miracle! We live on a ball that spins perfectly around the sun with another ball spinning perfectly around it and we are alive and sustained because of the ball. Some people say there are no miracles? How crazy! God is unchanging... everyday is a miracle! We also talked about how one of the biggest miracles to see is someone's life changing because the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Now that's truly a miracle!

It's usually not big things but the things that happen!

Some miracles I've seen this week.... We were tracting (proselyting) one day because we were early to a lesson and we needed to use a washroom, so we started walking in the direction of a member's home when we see two Mandarin Elders from a different area of town.  So we walk over to them and ask what they're doing here and they say they're just going to teach a Cantonese investigator that we know. So they call the Sister that's supposed to be meeting them there and she can't go.  They ask if we have some time to sit in on the lesson to help out.   It was just one of those perfect timing little miracles!

Another right place at the right time miracle was feeling like we should stop by a less active member's place.  They didn't answer, so we called and they said they were moving the next morning and really needed some help, We went over and helped where we could! It was awesome!

 I think one of my favourite moments this week was seeing a recent convert on Sunday! She is the sweetest and the best and I love her to pieces! I met Kayla my very first Sunday on my mission over one year ago and she was baptized my very last Saturday in that area back in February! I hadn't seen her since so it was such a sweet reunion! She's doing so so good! Ah! I think the best part is the love you have for everyone! You can't fit love for so many people in your tiny little heart!

That's all I have for this week!

Sister Baker ❤️

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Teaching Professor Snape and Beavertails

Well, this week's been good, as always! I'm always able to learn so so much!

We've been able to meet a lot of the members this week, which has been super duper awesome because I've been here a while and still know hardly any of them! We've been able to share the "Pray, Look, Speak" initiative with them all too! So that's been good. Have I mentioned that initiative yet anywhere? Yes, no, maybe? Well President asked us to share the initiative with all the members. It's to pray for missionary opportunities, look around us for the ones that happen around us each day and to open our mouths and speak up when we see them, to reach out and use gospel words and just do it. And then also to role-play with them, some common missionary opportunities we often have. It's been good!

We met with this super funny less active member and she was telling us about this guy from Ethiopia she's kind of dating.  Someone called in the middle of our lesson and when she hung up we asked if it was her boyfriend and she said "Well... Him". It was too funny! She's always hilarious!

We ran around all day Thursday! We went LRT stop contacting and ended up talking to someone who wanted to bash a bit. So we had to run like three blocks to get back to our car because we were late to a dinner appointment! Then after dinner, we got Beavertails! I've missed them! It was a way nice treat! We did more running that day too as we were late to another member appointment at the end of the night. So we got in some good exercise that day!

On Saturday, we contacted some new investigators and potentials and taught some older ones, so those were all super neat things! We had an awesome dinner... waffles for dinner, for starters, and  also the family we were with were the funniest playing the "Pray, Look, Speak" role play game we had. One of the kids was role playing a patient in a dentist's office waiting room and the dad was a member patient. He said, "You know it's important to keep your teeth clean, but it's also important to keep your Spirit clean" and the son replied (impersonating Snape), "Why would I want a clean soul, when I could have a dark soul... Avadakadabra!" It was historical! Best role plays with that family, ever! They were all so funny!

On Sunday we had lots of church, like usual, and I learned a lot from one of the youth speakers. He spoke on forgiveness. I forget all the details though! I left my journal at home so I'll give it to you next week!

Yesterday we did a lot of running around too but we had homemade Café Rio for dinner. It was delicious!

That's about it for my week....sorry nothing too exciting happened!

I read a really good blog post called "Finding Self Worth In a Selfie World" and it was awesome! So read that if you want some self confidence! Also, I started reading Jesus the Christ, and it's awesome! So read that if you'd like too!

Hope y'all have a good week! Love you all!

Sister Baker

The Edmonton Alberta Temple

Thursday, August 18, 2016

I Don't Even Know Man... Dentures!

Hello friends and family!

This week sped right on by! I'm not even entirely sure what all happened!

On Wednesday we had a zone conference, the first one with President Pattison, and we had some really awesome trainings all around! Quick rundown of some things I've learned:

- We are constantly climbing a mountain with a big pack on. Our pack is constantly getting lighter. We are eating the food, drinking the water, etc. But at times it may seem like it's getting heavier. That's perspective. Put the pack down for a minute, look from where you came, and then shoulder the pack and keep going.

- Success comes from trying, but it's fulfilling when you actually reach your goals.

- Strong missionaries - they didn't come like that, they became like that.

- Love motivates us. Don't talk idly of anyone. Love everyone. If we love, the fear of finding will be cast out.

- You are tenderizing God's people if they are feeling the Spirit and love. They will become sufficiently consumable by the Spirit.

-Love breaks down walls and takes away their fear.

-In many situations you jump off a diving board. Sometimes you hit the cement and sometimes you slide into the water.

- Learn to be powerful from the podium.

- Goals are stars to steer by and not sticks to beat yourself with.

- Do your goals drive you in accomplishing your purpose?

- In the absence of a burning bush, get to appointments on time. And if you're not, warn others you'll be late

- If obedience seems to hold us back, seems to be a weight, we're looking at it all wrong.

That's about the just of the spiritual stuff from it I think! It was ready good though! We were asked to prepare two talks and two people would randomly be chosen to give talks. And that morning, Sister
Bischoff says "I don't actually think I'll be picked"....but I knew she would, and she was picked. She got most of her talk from the talk "Glimpses of Heaven" and it was really good.  Heaven is all around us.  We just need to recognize it for what it is. How have you seen heaven in your life?

On Thursday we went to a lesson with a member and the Spanish/ French Elders. We taught about the Plan of Salvation in "frenglish". That was fun!  While I understood quite a bit of the French, I only spoke in English.  There were a lot of us anyways! Haha! I love going out with the language Elders to appointments! I really hope to learn some other languages more proficiently!

Friday was my one year mark, and man, I have learned so much! Part of me thinks I've been a missionary forever and part of me thinks that it was just yesterday that I arrived in the MTC, so that's
conflicting! But I've learned so much, my testimony has grown a lot and I know that this time will mean so, so much for the rest of my life! I know that serving a mission is the very best thing I could be doing at this moment. I know that love is the best motivator for missionary work and that through Christ's Atonement, we can truly love everyone we meet! Heavenly Father loves each of us so much, and He is so willing and ready to help us overcome our shortfalls, and I have many! I am so, so glad I've been able to serve the Lord for a year and I'm glad to have had time to reflect back on the past year. I hope to work as diligently as possible for the next six months!

 Which brings me to the title.... Yesterday we finally got to teach a man who kept telling us to come back when the weather was nice. He's a decently elderly, probably in his late 80's or early 90's, German man with some hearing issues. We taught outside his home and answered some of the questions he had about the differences between our church and Catholicism. He's Catholic. So we taught him a bit about prophets and Heavenly Father. He seemed to be really curious and the lesson was going well.  He suddenly interrupted and said, "I'll never get dentures. My son hates it. He wants me to get them, but I won't." So we expected him to parallel it with how he won't ever change his religion, but he didn't. He just talked to us more about dentures, about his adventures, and then told us we were very good teachers and he wanted to learn more and come to church! So it was a neat
experience. We still aren't positive about what happened but hopefully we'll help him any way we can!

That's been our week in a nutshell! Hope you learn something new this week!

Love you all!

Sister Baker ❤️❤️

Thursday, August 11, 2016

One Year! How'd This Happen?

Kumusta friends and family!
Wow!  Hard to believe I've been out on the mission for a year now!

Hope that you are all having a wonderful week! I know that I sure have! It's been really fun to help the Elders out since the areas combined, it's nice to have another set in the two wards we cover.

On Tuesday night we got a message from a sister who had set up a sewing service project with some less active memebers and us.  She told us that we would be meeting at the church instead of her home...

Well, on Wednesday, we had transfers, and well... other people had transfers at our chapel, which is the Stake centre beside the temple. So it was a little crazy.  Lots of missionaries everywhere! And we just stayed in the nursery room with those helping and sewed baby blankets and reusable hygiene projects. It was fun! Also on Wednesday we got to participate in a youth service meeting for the city. Then we got to go to a Mandarin lesson!

We had a great week and I'm out of time so have a good week!

Bye! Love you all!

Sister Baker

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

S'More Dragon Bites Please!

Hello friends and family!

Well, I'm not feeling super email-y, and I'm running out of computer time!

So I'll give you all a day by day run through!

S'more dip... I'm in heaven!

 Tuesday, nothing that exciting happened.  We had a fun gospel night with a Brother and he talked about the Book of Mormon and how he's read it so so many times, each with a new purpose.  I appreciated that, because reading it with a purpose is the best!

Wednesday, we had a bajillion lessons all day, and ran from place to place!

Thursday was more of the same! Except we did go out to Mucho Burrito with some members, and that was "muy delicioso!"

Friday we did our weekly planning, and we got to eat yummy Navajo tacos and make donuts! We talked about the Priesthood with a less active member and talked about how the Priesthood never leaves him. He already has it. All he needs to do is to live worthily of its power!

Saturday nothing too exciting happened. We did get to have a lesson with a cute less active Mandarin couple, where we helped them learn English too! That was super fun! We talked about Doctrine and Covenants 18:3-4 and how important the scriptures are!

"And if you know that they are true, behold, I give unto you a commandment, that you rely upon the things which are written;
For in them are all things written concerning the foundation of my church, my gospel, and my rock."

Sunday we still had all the church stuff, like usual! Then we had a delicious dinner and played a fishers of men game. :)

Yesterday was Heritage Days where we got to volunteer with the local food bank, handing out maps of the festival and collecting food bank donations! That was fun! We ran around like maniacs on our break though to try to see everything! We saw these Chinese dragons and one posed for pictures. Then he literally charged me and bit my hand! Those "teeth" are strong! But it was super fun! We saw a lot! I can't wait to come back for it next year!

We also got transfer calls on Monday and we are staying together here! But there's no longer a set of Elders in each ward, but one set over both wards just like us! So that was a bit of a change!

That was about it! I'm so happy to be serving out here! My testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ has grown so much and I know it will continue to do so!
Hope you all have a fabulous week!

Love from Sister Baker!