Monday, March 28, 2016

Tender Mercies and Priesthood Blessing turn my week around

Emailing with Sister Mailata
Happy Easter!! 

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter Sunday and pondered about the Savior and his resurrection. I am so grateful for Jesus Christ and for his unconditional love and his atonement. I learn and become more grateful for our Savior everyday as I see his hand and his love for each of us daily. He is truly amazing!! 

This week started off so slow and very hard for me. We were tracting pretty much all day and not finding any success and it was starting to get very frustrating. Things weren't going how I wanted them to and I didn't like that one bit. Haha. I wanted to just sit down and cry and give up once Thursday hit, but the Lord is great and changed my week and attitude as He put miracles and tender mercies in my path. (To be continued)

On Tuesday night, we had a Passover dinner with the Relief Society sisters. We had a good turnout. We had some less actives and people brought their friends. We had a lady in our ward and her husband, who is Jewish, do the whole ceremony/ritual (I don't know what to call it) for us. They condescend a lot, but it was fun to see and eat some of the things that they would. The guy doing it, would read all the prayers in Hebrew, - that was really cool. It was definitely a different experience and I really enjoyed it. 

On our way to the Passover dinner

Tender mercy number one-  we had Lisa's mom, Terri, call us and ask us to do service for her. We jumped at the opportunity and didn't even care what it was. Terri is living with Lisa and James because she was evicted out of her house and has some sickness which makes her very weak. She moved all of her stuff into a storage unit, but it was starting to get expensive and add up quick, so we took all of her stuff out of her storage unit and brought it into her shed at Lisa and James’ house. My arms haven't had that good of a work out in a long time. It was hard labor, but boy did I enjoy every second of it. It was so much fun to do service, get to know her and her life story a little more and take a break from tracting... Haha. We also helped brother Noe again this week. He is trying to fix up his house and we have been helping him with tons of yard work. His house looks SO much better already. It just really needed some attention. He had a trailer full of a ton, literally,it was a ton, of rocks and we shoveled all of those out into a wheel barrow and dumped it on his driveway. Let's just say my arms are huge now. Body builder, here I come... Sike.

Thursday, I pretty much had it. I was emotionally drained and frustrated. I felt like a chicken running around with my head cut off this week. We went to zone workshops and had 3 different workshops and they were so good. Tender mercy number two- all three of the workshops were EXACTLY what I needed. We learned how to help our investigators pray and the importance of it. Dan doesn't like praying with us, so this was revelation for him. The next was how to get our investigators to church. THIS WAS A BIG ONE WE NEEDED!!! It was so great. We haven't been able to get investigators to church, except James, so this was perfect for us. Then the last one was about planning and how we need to do better nightly plannings. I learned so much from this workshop and I am so so grateful that we were able to have them. After workshops, President Wilson pulled me aside and asked me how I was doing. I told him I was doing good. He didn't believe that for a second apparently and he then started talking about my area and companion. I think he could see I was struggling... This guy is amazing!!! We talked for a little and he gave me some advice. He then gave me a priesthood blessing. Wow, talk about big tender mercy. It was so amazing and powerful. I walked out of the room feeling so much more confident and my spirit so much higher. I am so grateful for President Wilson. He truly is called of God and he is so sweet. I am thankful for him and his willingness to talk and see if things are okay and be my therapist haha. I love him! 

We were asked to help with this GIANT Easter egg hunt on Saturday morning that one of the ward members was putting on. He had over 2 thousand or so eggs and was inviting his whole neighborhood and tons of ward members and less actives. We jumped at the opportunity because PERFECT missionary moment... But, we got a call from the mission secretary saying Sister Mailata had to go into Richmond to take an English test, I don't understand the whole thing, she doesn't give any details.  Thinking it's only going to be 30 minutes or less, we figured we could still go and help out at the Easter egg hunt. We had to be down to Richmond by 8 so she could get there and checked in. Elder and Sister Sopp picked us up about 7 and we were on our way. When we arrived at  the testing center, they told us the test will be 3-4 hours!! Ahh. So the Sopps and I had  3-4 hours of time to burn. We ended up going to the state capital and taking a tour, then we went to the James River and went across the bridge and then we went to the Hollywood Cemetery and saw where some governors and presidents were buried. It was really fun to go there and see so much history. Nate (Caplin) would LOVE Virginia!  It’s full of history. I'm sure he knows everything already, but being there and seeing it in person was awesome. And guess what? I even remembered some of it from his history class. Yes, I paid attention, sometimes.. Hehe. We then went and picked up Sister Mailata and drove home. We had power exchanges right when we got home. That’s when the stls (Sister Training Leaders) come to our area for a few hours in the day and we just go find people. So when we got home, they came and off we went. I went with Sister Patching and Sister Mailata went with Sister Schenck and Sister Madsen. We had about an hour and a half to tract. HOLY COW SO MANY MIRACLES!!!! The street we were on was amazing! Almost every house there was someone outside and we jumped on the opportunity quickly. We ended up finding two solid people and we were able to have a lesson with them!!! (Getting 2 lessons while tracting in Powhatan is a big deal). Sister Patching and I were pretty pumped.  When it was time to go home, we met up with the other sisters. They had THREE lessons. It was such a big miracle!! They said that everyone was outside as well. That definitely was such a good day to tract and have exchanges because we were able to get double the work done. It was such a big tender mercy and it definitely made my attitude sky rocket. I love it- it takes the littlest things for missionaries to be happy. :) But these were pretty big, for Powhatan. Haha 

The Captial Building:

With George Washington
In front of the Capital

James River

Hollywood Cemetery

Woman's broadcast was amazing! I loved every second of it. I loved how it talked about service a lot. We are trying to do a lot of service here and love the people in our area so we can get to know them and they can help us and be more motivated to do missionary work. We had Lisa and her mom also come with us which was really cool. 

Easter was great, it wasn’t too much of a different day besides the wonderful meaning of Jesus Christ and his resurrection. We had beautiful songs sung, and the choir, which I am in hahahahaha, even sang. I was embarrassed, it sounded awful. Ha but enough of that. Our dinner cancelled on us at the beginning of the week so the Murpheys, I love them so much, had us over with a few other families for lunch and wow it was so good. 

James is doing good. He is still trying to gain a Testimony for himself and prepare to set a date for baptism. Dan is still doing great and thinking about baptism and reading the Book of Mormon a lot. Not much has changed with them this week. 
Okay sorry for the long and rambling email. 

Funny story of the week: it was raining yesterday and pretty chilly. We were tracting last night and it was like a misty rain. We were walking up this driveway and Sister Mailata says, “holy it's humid out here”, I looked at her very oddly. I said,  “uhh, no hahaha, it's actually pretty cold and not humid at all.” She's asked, "it's not humid? Then what's this wet stuff in the air." I was trying not to laugh and said, “Sister, this is rain!” Hahaha, it was pretty funny. She said she obviously doesn't know what humidity is. Yeah... 
Scripture of the week: 1 Nephi 22:2- with General conference coming up, I have been studying about prophets. I love this scripture because it talks about how God has given us prophets so we can know of the things that He wants us to. I am grateful for the prophets that we have had and for their direction and guidance that they give to us.

I love y'all so much, have a wonderful week!!! 

Love Sister Brooks!

Virginia is so pretty in the Spring
Brother Noe and I match!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Surprise Text picture

This is a post submitted by Mom.

I received a special surprise text on Sunday afternoon.  Made my day!  The text was from Bro. David Noe.

This is the text picture I received. :)

This is the text message: 
 "This hooligan say hi!!  And she loves you!"

I replied a huge thank you to him and told him that we sure love that sweet hooligan!

He replied, "She is a handful. But she grows on ya."

Monday, March 21, 2016

Spiritual High!

Emailing at the library with Sister Mailata

Another Monday is here, I hope y’alls week was wonderful :)

This week has been pretty slow. We didn't have many appointments, we just mainly tracted all week. We didn't find much success either so that was a bummer. Hardly anyone was home and most of those who answered didn't have much interest in learning or finding out more. But, we didn't stop! 

We were actually let in once (it was a miracle!) We were contacting a less active but she ended up moving and there was a new family that lived there. The wife was so cute and was from Mexico. Her husband grew up learning about Mormons because his grandparents were super active in the church, but he just didn't have much of an interest. We showed the wife and kids the new Easter video. If you haven't seen it, you need to, it's so amazing! They loved it. We had a really good discussion about the atonement and how much Jesus Christ did for us and how much he truly loves us. This Easter video has been amazing and has helped us get people's attention more. 

Now to some of our investigators:

James is doing very well. We saw him Wednesday and had dinner with him and Lisa. We talked to him about how he is feeling and what his main concerns are. He said that he doesn't fully understand everything about Joseph Smith because the elders didn't explain much about him and he doesn't understand prophets too much either. So we are going to focus on those two points. He told us he has really been thinking about baptism and says he is almost there, he just needs to clarify these two things. We also had dinner with them at the Despain’s last night. We had a lesson at the Despain’s house after dinner. We started talking about what our favorite scripture was and the Despain’s son-in-law started talking about how he loved Enos 1. Lisa started reading it out loud and we discussed what was going on throughout that chapter. Everyone was making really good comments and you could see the wheels turning in Jame’s mind. Brother Despain started to explain that even though things are hard, if we put our faith and trust in the Lord, things will work out. If we truly love Him enough, we will put our habits or the things we are scared to give up to the side and rely on the Lord and know He will help us through all of our struggles. It was really good. He is so close!! 

Dan, the one the works at the dump/goodwill trailer has progressed SO MUCH!! He is an older gentleman. When Sister Squires first met him, he was really stand-offish, he says he is agnostic, meaning he doesn't believe in any religion and doesn't know if there is a "higher power" but he really wants to believe in one. He finally softened his heart and Sister Squires started teaching him and we continued to teach him and still are. He would read the assigned chapters we would leave with him, but he wouldn't read the Book of Mormon on his own. We challenged him to read it from the start about 3-4 weeks ago. He is now cruising through the Book of Mormon. He reads it every free chance he has at work and when we come to teach him, he will explain everything that is going on that he has read so far and if he has questions he will ask so he knows exactly what he is reading and understands it. He is doing so well. He never would pray about a question because he though prayer was just being thankful for things he had and he didn't want to sound "selfish."  But the past week we have encouraged him to pray with a specific question and then he will get his answer. We saw him on Saturday and he said he has started to pray with a certain question in mind. It was so cool to hear him say that. Every time we ask him about baptism, he says "well, it's still on the plate, it hasn't moved yet though." At least he is still thinking about it. He is a great guy.

We did some service for brother Noe this week. On Wednesday it was the high 70's and felt so good, but that dang humidity comes in. We did a lot of yard work for him and made his yard look so much better. It's fun being out and doing yard work again, don't worry dad, I'll help you when I get home, I'm pretty good now ;) and cleaning houses- you're welcome mom. Anyway, we were just putting all the tools in his garage when he asked if we wanted to go on a quick bike ride to cool off, so we jumped on the bikes and went down the street and cooled off. The wind felt so good. It got really cold this weekend... Boo, but once it warms up, we are going to use his bikes in the morning to work out. Yay! 

I'm a Pro!
I had mid mission this week, it's a meeting that you're invited to go to when you're almost to your halfway point in your mission. It went from Thursday morning to Friday afternoon. It was the sisters in my transfer and the transfer before me that went. President decided to do all sisters because there were 27 of us and there would have been only like 10 elders, so we just did sisters and it was so fun!! It was so fun being with the sisters I came out with and meeting and becoming friends with the other sisters. We had way too much fun. We stayed at the mission home Thursday night. Not very much sleep was involved, oops. We talked all about goals, how our mission has been so far, how we want our mission to be like for the last half of our mission and then heard really good trainings and had good discussions about the gospel.  It has made me find so many things I would like to change in what I have been doing and has made me want to work so much harder. The meeting really pumped me up. I learned so many things and I want to share it all with you, but here are some of my favorite things we talked about: the way we act and the habits that we are developing now and is shaping us for what we will be when we get home. If we are Obedient and work hard, we will do the same thing when we get home, but if we slack off and be disobedient and don't work hard, we will be that person when we get home. It makes me want to work so hard so I can be like that when I return home. I just want to be able to look back on my mission and know that I did everything I could and worked my hardest. I don't want to have any regrets! I'm going to try and work so so hard these next 9 months!!  We may at times be disappointed on how things are going or we aren't finding success, but if we work hard, we won't be disappointed in ourselves and it will strive to make us work and find success Harder. 

We were talking about the plan of salvation and how people are foreordained in the premortal world to do things. President Wilson mentions later that it's no coincidence that we are here in Virginia at this time. We have prepared ourselves throughout the premortal life and our earth life to be our here at this time and we are here for a specific reason. It's cool to know that I may be here to learn more from a certain companion, or I might be here for a certain person in Virginia. Heavenly Father has put us here for a reason!! That's so cool to me. It makes me wonder what I am here for and can't wait to look back and see the things I have learned.

I could go on all day about the amazing things I learned, but one thing that was really cool was when we were talking about the Holy Ghost and how he is always with us. We are so lucky to have someone guide, direct, comfort and help us. The Holy Ghost is always guiding and directing us, especially as missionaries, to find those who are searching or need the gospel. President explained how he doesn't like when people/missionaries say "I had the feeling I should do this, or say this or go there" and take the credit. It wasn't us at all, it was the Holy Ghost. When we say things like that, we are be prideful and want all the praise, but it really was the Holy Ghost prompting us to do things. Never take the credit, be thankful for the Holy Ghost and the help he gives to us continually. 
I'm so so thankful to be out here on a mission and serve the people and the Lord here in Virginia. I love it here and I am so blessed. There is nothing better than being a missionary. 

Scripture of the week: Enos 1:15- at the very end it says, if we ask in faith, believing we will receive it, we will. (If it's Gods will, of course)  It has helped my prayers be more sincere and has helped me practice and exercise my faith. I know that if we have that Faith and we ask with a sincere heart, God will help us in any way. 

I hope this week is amazing for y'all and know that Sister Brooks in Powhatan, Virginia loves you so much :) 

Love, Sister Brooks, who is on a spiritual high J

Mid Mission at the Mission Home:
From the Virginia Mission facebook page- a post from Sister Wilson:
We just completed a marvelous day and a half of Mid Mission Meeting with 27 Sisters!!!! So spiritual, fun, and motivating! Documented proof that we housed and fed 27 missionaries in the mission home! Fabulous servants of the Lord!

2 rounds of Lightening at lunch...1st and 2nd place winners of each!

 More pictures of Mid Mission at the mission home.  So fun!

Party in our room!
We always have to take awkward pictures.
Sister Johnson, she went to Dixie and I played football against her.
 I love her!  So apparently she tutored Chris in Chemistry.
My Favorite, Sister Fitt!

Random mission pictures:
Caught Bro. Noe taking a selfie ;)

Saw a Scooby Doo Van.  I thought of Dad!

Because taking pictures on the track is cool, I guess! :)

Zone P-day

Monday, March 14, 2016

Goodbye Sister Squires, Hello Sister Mailata!

Emailing at the library with my new companion, Sister Mailata
Hello my lovely family and friends!!

I hope y'all had a wonderful spring break! It's finally starting to feel like spring here. It has been in the 70's all week and it has felt so great!! 

Cat shirts that we bought.
Saying Goodbye to Sister Squires was very hard!
We had the dreadful transfers on Tuesday. Let's just say I hated every second of it. I seriously love Sister Squires and I am so thankful I was able to spend the transfer with her in Powhatan. She has taught me so much. I seriously bawled like a baby when we left each other. I don't know if anyone from now on will be able to top her ;) Maybe we can be together again sometime. Cross your fingers. 

My new companion is Sister Mailata. She is from Samoa and has been out for 13 months. English is her second language so sometimes it is hard to understand her. I'm sure she hears "what?!" all the time since she has been here. Everyone has said that multiple times including me. We get along fine but don’t know each other much yet. This transfer will be 7 weeks because the MTC decided to have the missionaries stay for 3 weeks instead of the 12 days, so it pushes is back a week. But it will be good, I'm am excited to get to know her better. 

This week has been pretty good. We had two amazing miracles and I am so excited to see how the next 6 weeks go with Charles and James. 

To start off with Charles... (Excommunicated guy)
We set an appointment to meet with him Tuesday right after transfers. He called us on the way home saying he wouldn't be able to make it and asked if we could please come the following morning, Wednesday morning. So we brought a member with us Wednesday morning and visited him. We started asking him what he remembers and knows about the restoration and he started to say he knew about Joseph Smith but he didn't think that he or the restoration was a big deal and didn't understand why the Mormons "worshiped" him. The member that was with us was so good for him. She explained how much Joseph Smith did for us and how we don't worship him, we just know that he was foreordained to restore the church Jesus Christ had when he was on the earth. She also told him that at one point in her life she found it hard to believe in Joseph Smith, but as she continued to read and pray, she felt so much peace and gained a testimony about him. It made him realize we aren't all perfect, members have doubts too. It made him feel a little more comfortable. We brought up 2 Nephi 3 and how Joseph in Egypt prophesies of Joseph Smith and how he would bring both good word and deed into the world. And of course he did! (This was my scripture last week and it totally fit in great with what he needed to know, ponderizing is the bomb) Charles loved how our member explained it all and helped him clear up many things for him and answer some of his questions. He told us his concern on how he would love to read the Book of Mormon but it is hard for him to understand everything. We suggested he studied with the seminary manual and he was very happy about that and said he would start to read again. He didn't come to church yesterday sadly, but we hope he will continue to progress and we can get everything straightened out. 

Okay James. I love him and Lisa. They seriously are the best. We went over and saw them on Friday night. We talked about the atonement and how Christ knows what we are going through because he has gone through it all. We talked about how the atonement isn't just about Christ dying for us on the cross but it is also him suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane and how he was resurrected. After the lesson, Lisa brought out her ice cream cake because it was her birthday on Thursday. We were just talking and enjoying cake when James, out of NO WHERE, says that he has been thinking a lot about baptism and how he feels like he is almost ready. Last Saturday, Sister Squires asked him on a scale of 1-10 where he was on being baptized. He said he was probably at a 5.1. He goes on to explain he is probably at a 6.5 now!! He jumped a whole 1.4 in one week! If he keeps progressing this quickly, he will be ready in no time. The look on Lisa's face was priceless. She had no idea and you could just see the happiest smile on her face. In church, we talked about the Holy Ghost and how it can be a constant companion for us after baptism. James was asking so many good questions and would answer a lot of the questions as well. He is doing so good! Everyone is getting really excited for him. 

Since it is warming up, we are getting more service opportunities! Sister Squires and I have been asking for a while for people to have us come do service for them because tracting all day gets tiring. Now that she is gone we are getting some... :( haha  Brother Noe had us do some yard work and we helped him get more gravel so we could fix his gravel driveway. Then Bishop and his wife had us come over and do some yard work, rake old leaves, plant flowers and put some pine needles down in their flower beds- can't remember the reason why hahaha. They are so sweet. They then fed us lunch and we admired their view. In their back yard they have a lake and they built a pretty dock and they have little chairs on it. They have tons of fishing poles and kayaks. It's so pretty! I told them when I come back, I'll definitely be using them. 

I'm excited, I'm able to go to mid mission this coming Thursday and Friday. It's a meeting the missionaries are able to go to with president and learn new things and set goals on how you want the rest of your mission to be like and how your mission has been so far. Time sure does fly. So I'll be able to spend time with the sisters I came out with and be at the mission home. I'll make sure to tell y'all all about it next week. I'm excited.

Scripture of the week: Amos 8:11- it talks about how there is going to be a famine in the land, not of hunger or thirst, but of the word of God. I hear from people how crazy the "real" world is and how they are scared for the future. It just makes me really grateful that we have the gospel of Jesus Christ on this earth. Because we do, we know that we will be okay. I am so grateful for this gospel and the wonderful time I have to go share it with those in Powhatan. Time sure does fly fast. I love being a missionary. 
I love y'all so much, have an amazing week!

Love Sister Brooks 

Sister Mailata and Me at our apartment

Monday, March 7, 2016

Pepper Spray- because Missionaries DO get chased by Dogs!

Emailing at the library with Sister Squires

Hola family and friends!! 

This week has been good and of course super adventurous. 

To start out with sad news- transfer calls were on Saturday.  It's seriously the most nerve racking thing ever. So we were going about our night and the call never came.  We had a meeting with our ward mission leader and we knew if we didn't get a call before the meeting, then we were safe. We never got the call before the meeting so we got pretty excited.  We didn't have cell service at his house, so when we got out we had a text from our sister training leaders to see if we got the call. We called them back and told them we didn't.  Well long story short, right after we got off the phone with them, we noticed we had a voice mail but didn't have any missed calls. We listened to the voice mail and it was President. President only calls of you're going to be a some type of leader or trainer. Instantly, we knew Sister Squires was going to be called as an STL (Sister Training Leader) because they are calling like 9-13 new ones because so many people are leaving and there are 13 new Hermanas coming in so they need almost all the Hermanas to train. So we called him back and he asked her to be an STL.  Right after she hung up, we just cried. Once we were home, we just cried more with each other. (I think we got a little attached to each other) I am so sad she is leaving, but she is going to be the best STL EVER!!!!! I am staying here and getting a new companion.  I'm scared. Haha, it will all be good though. Pray for me. 

Well this week has been really interesting. We had tons of appointments bail and cancel on us which resulted in us tracting like crazy.  What's new?  Haha,  we had all of our plans fall through on Wednesday, so we spent that whole day walking and tracting. After about 2 hours of tracting this neighborhood, we decided to change to a different scenery. We got to this sketchy neighborhood and started on our way.  Well, ALL the houses had dogs. People in Powhatan have crazy long gravel drive ways, so at each house, we started up our journey of the long driveways and dogs would always be standing there.  If you can already guess, the dogs would start running at us, we would panic and get chased. These dogs were big. We were so scared. I always thought it was a joke about missionaries being chased by dogs.... I'm here to say it's TRUE!!  Members in our ward gave us pepper spray last night because they know how sketchy the area is and how everyone has dogs, so we are going to have to whip those bad boys out soon. 

We were so frustrated all day because we didn't find any success by tracting.  We have tracted all day, we were tired and frustrated and just wanted to sit down and give up. But we know if we kept going and had faith, we would be lead and guided to someone.  We just kept telling ourselves we had to finish this street.  We got to the second to last door and this sweet lady named Donna answered the door. She let us right in.  We were so confused.  She even offered us water!! S he was busy and had to get paper work done, but she invited us to come back and talk with her. We were really happy and knew God put her in our path.  It definitely was a little tender mercy. 

Ok,  crazy story, so you remember the man we met at the dump and said he was a Mormon and then came to church last Sunday?  His name is Charles Pratt.  Well we didn't have any contact information for him so we weren't able to get a hold of him outside of church. Well, we were sitting in sacrament yesterday and we turned around and he was right there!  He came again!!!  After sacrament he came to gospel principles with us and told us he really needs to start coming regularly. Sunday school was starting and Elder Sopp is our gospel principles teacher. He was asking questions to Charles to get to know him and then Charles drops the bomb on us that he was excommunicated and explains how it happened.  About 15 years ago he was married to this crazy lady and she didn't like him going to church or anything because it was taking his time away from her and she hated Mormons.  So, behind his back, she wrote a letter to the church saying how he wants to leave and be excommunicated. She forged his signature. The bishop talked to him about it and he wouldn’t believe him that it wasn't him, so that day forward, he hasn't been to church.  After class we stayed and talked with him and Elder Sopp and he asked the question of "how can I be baptized again?  What do I need to do?"  He is really interested in coming back.  So we are going to go over this week and help him out a bit. He divorced his last wife and now lives with a girl and she isn't too fond of Mormons. So we will see how that goes. It are excited for him! 

It's finally starting to warm up this week!!  Yay. We helped brother Noe do some yard work earlier this week. There are sticks everywhere, duh cause there's trees everywhere!!! So we helped him pick up sticks so he can mow his lawn soon. There were so many sticks in his yard there was enough to have a big bon fire. So of course, we went over that night with s'more supplies and had a Bon fire with him. 

James, pretty much our only solid investigator, is doing so good. He is still on the fence about baptism because he is a little bit of a partier and doesn't "know" (or want) to live the life style of being LDS.  His wife, Lisa, is really helpful with him though. She also went off the deep end when she was around 16 and just started coming back to church regularly about a month ago because she got a calling to be the primary 2nd counselor. She doesn't drink or anything with him anymore and is being a really good example to him. We have been getting really close to them the past 3 weeks. They have a date night every Friday night and go out to eat and they invited us with them!!!  Woohoo date night!!!  We went to Texas Roadhouse. It was so good, it never disappoints me. We then helped them paint their room on Saturday. We like them a lot. They are way fun. 
Date night!  We had a wait at Texas Roadhouse, so we went to Best Buy
and saw weird technology stuff I haven't seen before.

We had a zone meeting this week and Sister Squires, another sister in our zone, Sister Fox, and I did a musical number. Sister Squires and I played the ukulele and we all sang. We made a little arrangement of Called To Serve. It went really well. 
Don't make fun of me- it was my first time.  I'm looking
 down because the notes are on my lap- ha ha.

At zone meeting, we talked a lot about the Savior’s life. I started studying a little more about it during my personal study. I started to think about how Jesus Christ went out and taught his gospel and how much he was rejected, spit upon and laughed at.  Now I think of all the times I am rejected by the people here because they don't want to hear our message and it really makes me think about the Savior and how much he really did try to help those around him and help us.  What I see is only a sliver of what happened to him. I think getting numerous doors shut on me is hard, but he had so much more. He was rejected over and over, mocked, back stabbed and then crucified. I'm so grateful for him and the life he lived and the example he was to everyone. It amazes me after everything that happened to him, he still asked Heavenly Father to forgive those who hurt him. It makes me really want to change my attitude when I go out and do his work. Instead of having a bad attitude or being sad when someone is mean to us or rejects us, I just need to know and remember how much Jesus Christ did for me and all of us and press forward with a good attitude. It's been a hard week for Sister Squires and I, but after thinking and learning about that, I have seen my attitude change a lot more when I am rejected. It’s so sad for those who do say no because they don't get to hear the gospel, but God has a plan for them, they will have an open heart and mind one day and will be able to accept it or not.  

Scripture of the week: 2 Nephi 3:24- prophesied of Joseph Smith and how wonderful he was. He would do good in both word and deed and be an instrument in God’s hand. And it came true!! I've also been really into studying Joseph Smith’s life the past 4 months and it amazes me how cool he was. I thought I knew a lot about Joseph Smith, but I learned that I didn't. It's been really cool to know more about the background and history of how the restoration occurred and to see all the events leading up to the restoration. This gospel really is so amazing!! 

I love y'all so so much. I hope you have a wonderful week!! 

Love Sister Brooks!