Monday, December 26, 2016

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Emailing at the church with Sister Wastlund

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

     It was so fun to see and talk with y'all yesterday. I sure do love y'all so much!  This week has been incredible. I LOVE being a missionary everyday but being a missionary during Christmas is absolutely amazing. I am so extremely blessed. I am so grateful I was able to spend one more Christmas on the mission. 

      We had our Christmas conference this Tuesday. It was so awesome!! Our whole mission got together. It was so fun to see my friends again and make more friends! The mission has truly given me so many blessings and meeting so many wonderful people has been one of those blessings. I have gained so many friendships, I absolutely love it. Our mission was just introduced to using iMessage, Skype and FaceTime to interact with our investigators. We are able to Skype members in to lessons and Skype our investigators to try to make daily contact with them.  It's going to be such a huge blessing. I am glad I was able to be a part of it for a little bit. Because it's such a big thing, we were able to have 3 people Skype in our conference. The first one was someone from Salt Lake missionary department. He gave us some training on how we can better use Skype and daily contact out investigators. The second one was Justin Anderson; he is University of Virginia’s football recruiter. He is helping coach with Bronco. It was super cool to hear from him and have him help motivate us. Then the best of all, President and Sister Wilson (previous mission president and wife) skyped in. AWESOME! It was so fun to see them. I sure do love and miss them so much. The rest of the conference was so great. We had over an hour worth of musical numbers. We and four other sisters in our zone, performed. It was such a fun day full of the wonderful spirit of Christmas.
President and Sister Wilson

With Sister Mooney


Hermana Sanchez 

Sissy

Hermana Stewart (she's from Dixie) 


Christmas Conference with the whole misson

video


     Our investigators Brian and Justin are doing so well. We have been able to see them a lot this week. We had a skype lesson with them and have been able to meet with them as well. We talked about the Plan of Salvation in one lesson and they LOVED it. They were asking so many questions and they loved how God has mapped it out so wonderfully and beautifully for us. I love being able to see the light bulb moments in people's minds and to see the peace and comfort the Plan of Salvation can give to them. 

     I love Christmas as a missionary. It seriously is the best time to be called as a missionary. Being able to have Jesus Christ the complete center and focus on Christmas is absolutely amazing. To see the love that our Heavenly Father has for each of His children is breath taking. Sometimes it's so hard for me to comprehend. I love these people so much, but He loves them 1000 times more! We are so lucky/blessed to have someone who loves us no matter what. Even with all of our faults! 

     We have been able to go caroling a lot this week. We went with the elders to an assisted living place. They LOVED us. Even though we didn't sound very good, they wanted us to keep singing. I think they liked the company as well. We were able to meet so many wonderful people and hear some amazing stories. Two ladies fell in love with one of the elders. One even danced with him. It was such a fun night. We then went to downtown Harrisonburg and sang in the "square" it was fun. I love being a missionary! 






    I am so excited; I am able to go to the temple tomorrow!! The only time we get to go is when we are returning home, so I've been waiting 17 months for this!! I can't wait. It's going to be a blast. I'm sure I'll have tons of pictures for y'all next week. 

    There's not too much to say this week. I talked to the family yesterday and told them a lot already! Next week I'll make up for it.. haha 

Scripture of the week: Luke 23:34- we have been talking a lot about forgiveness this week with investigators and recent converts. My favorite story of forgiveness is when Jesus Christ is on the cross and he forgives those who have done him wrong and have hurt him. His example is incredible. Sometimes it's easy to hold grudges and be mad at people. We just need to know that being mad at someone isn't going to get us anywhere. It's only going to bring us down. How do we expect God to forgive us if we can't forgive others? 

I love y'all so so so much. Have such a wonderful last week without me See you next week.


Sister Brooks :) 


Sisters in our Zone


Harrisonburg 2nd missionaries





Christmas Dinner :)



 Skyping with my wonderful family on Christmas Day.  
Best present ever!
My View:








My Family's view:







Merry Christmas!


Zone P-day. 
We had these things called miracle berries. 
They make sour things taste sweet. 
We ate straight lemons. It was so cool!! 


Monday, December 19, 2016

My heart is so full!

Emailing at the church.
Picture is with Sister Wastlund, Sister Anderson, and Elder Richter

Happy Monday!! 

      I hope y'all have an amazing Christmas break! Just think, once it’s over, I'll be home.  So crazy weird!!! This week has been good, way too good. I think my phrase for this transfer has been "My heart is so full." I say that way too much. But it’s true. We are seeing so many miracles.  Being a missionary is beyond amazing and the best thing I could ever do in my whole life, and my life is just too good; so so good. Everything is falling perfectly in place. 

     Let me tell you about Bryan and Justin. We had FHE on Monday and a recent convert was walking to the church and saw his neighbor, Bryan, sitting outside his apartment and asked him if he wanted to come to FHE.. He didn't have anything better, so he came with him. I was talking with him and asking if we could come over and he said yes but turned to me and said, "well I'm not religious at all and don't even know I believe in God, I'm not too interested but y'all can still come over." We set an appointment and left it at that. I was very hesitant going into the lesson. He clearly stated that he wasn't religious and didn't seem interested.... But we had the faith and went in. We got there and invited his little brother Justin to join in with us and he had no hesitation and sat down. Within 2 minutes of talking with them, my heart changed. Wow, the spirit was there- Very strongly. We talked a lot about Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and how much they love us. I could just feel the love that they had for these two. How much God wanted them to find him and be happy. As we were talking and sharing experiences, Bryan just started crying. I know they both felt the love Heavenly Father had for them. We invited them to pray and ask God if He was there and if He loved them. We asked if we could come by and they both got real excited and said we could come back whenever we wanted. (Miracle right there in itself) We went back a day later and they both prayed and asked God their questions. Justin felt a little something and Bryan said after saying his prayer, his next day was so amazing. He said he knows that had to be from God. It was so so so amazing. Justin's girlfriend was also there and sat in on the lesson and seemed to really like it. We then met with just Bryan on Saturday and did a church tour with him. He loved it! He was going to come to church Sunday, but something came up... be he is always so excited to meet with us again.  
Bryan and his daughter

        Audrey is another cool miracle. She lives with a member and the member is so amazing at sharing the gospel with her. She is so loving and wants to do everything she can to help her learn more. We set an appointment to see Audrey and went over this week. She even made us lunch. :) We talked to her a lot about the Book of Mormon and how we can find peace as we read it. Audrey knows a lot about the church and knows she wants to become a Mormon one day; she just needs to read and really pray to know for herself.  We are hopefully going over sometime soon to have a little brunch with them :) 

       We had Return and Report on Friday. We went to downtown Richmond (Chippy and VCU campus). It was for all the trainers and trainees. President and Sister Smith gave us some really good trainings and continued to pump us up for the last 2 weeks of the transfer. (I can't believe the transfer is more than half way over). It was so fun to be in Richmond again and of course see Sissy Fitt. I seriously love her to death. She truly is my bestest friend. We were able to go hit the streets and go to campus and go contacting for about an hour and a half. I'VE MISSED IT. I forgot how bold and brave I could be. Haha but it was such a good day. We then drove two hours back to our area and had a wonderful ward Christmas party to end the night.
Sister Perry and I went out at Return and Report 







      We have a Christmas conference tomorrow (Tuesday the 20th). Our whole entire mission is getting together!! I am so excited for it. There will be lots of musical numbers and the sisters in our zone are singing, so it should be fun. I am way excited. We will be driving down with the Hermanas... ROAD TRIP! Haha I am so excited for this Christmas time. I hope y'all have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! I can't wait to see y'all. 

      There is a recent convert named Michelle and her husband, Carl, isn't a member. We decided to be really bold with him and ask him if he would want to listen to the discussions. He sits in sometimes so we decided to be really up front with him. So we did on Sunday. We sat him down and asked if he would be interested in us coming by to teach HIM and come to church. He looked at us and was like yes, I would actually really like to learn. So we will be coming by to teach him how. We are super excited!

Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 17:14, I have been studying a lot about Jesus Christ and His life and what an example He was. We were able to teach in Relief Society all about His example that He set for us. I love this scripture because it prophesies in the Book of Mormon about Mary and the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ!  I am so grateful for this season, for the birth of Jesus Christ and the chance we have to follow His example and help those around us that are in need. 

I love y'all so much. I hope everyone remembers the reason for this season.- to remember the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. This is the best time of the year. 


Love, Sister Brooks :)
Book Fair



Why not eat big cookies during a lesson?

We went on an adventure in the church and found this. 


I love Dixie!

Katrina, literally the coolest member.
She was baptized 4 months ago and comes out with us all the time. 
Our 12 days of Christmas. THANK YOU MOM!



Our cute new CTR rings. (Thanks mom! again) 

Our cute Christmas Tree!


video
Fun times on P-day!  Christmas Music Video :)