Sorry this letter is overdue..the library was closed yesterday. Well transfers are tomorrow. AP Truman told us last week we were getting Sister Yuen back and we were stoked! The tri-force was gonna be back. To our dismay, that got changed. But me and Sister B are still here tearin it up in Bartlett. Well we'd like to think we're tearin it up. I think we are..it's a great area. It's a blessing to have the temple so close-I got to go yesterday. Anyone who is within 30 miles of the temple can go when the departing missionaries go. It was great to be there. Everyone was really happy. As I was there, I felt more than I have before how right it was to be there. That it really is true. Then after that, we played speed(the basketball one) with some other missionaries. We played with them a few weeks ago, and I told the elders that I used to beat the boys at speed but that was in the 8th grade. Well that time I didn't do so hot cause every time someone would get me out I would beg to stay in just a few more times. They would usually let me. Then when I actually did make some shots I would shout "yes! I'm still in!". Well I don't know what happened between that day and yesterday because yesterday I was nailing all my shots! Well, a lot of them. And I was beating the boys sometimes. They were like "Sister Wilde, why are you shooting so much better this time? Have you been doing missionary work lately or just playing basketball?" I'm not sure what was happening, but it rocked. I was just happy because you all know how athletically inclined I am....:) It was fun.
We had a breakthrough lesson with Sam and Steve last night. Things have been rough...Sam has been really sick. One day last week we went to their house to teach, but soon found that their temporal needs were more important to address at that time. It is true that sometimes you have to help people temporally before they can even begin to be open spiritually. The gospel isn't something you can just throw in peoples' faces. It takes caring about someone enough to learn who they are, what their needs are, and in what way you need to teach them. Anyway, we spent 5 hours cleaning their house. It seems like everything has been falling apart for them. But last night we walked in and there was a sense of peace I hadn't felt there in a long time. The house was straight, and they were all in a good mood. We began talking about women in the Book of Mormon because Sam had asked to learn about them. We talked of the mothers of the stripling warriors and how if they hadn't taught them and prayed for them, they wouldn't have been able to step up and defend their families. They knew it was important to rely on God and follow their leaders with exactness. We shared Alma 57:21 and I said that our mission president promised us that when we were obedient with exactness, miracles would happen. Sam said, "do you really believe that?" I was glad to be able to say that I knew that because I have seen it. Living the gospel of Jesus Christ will bring more blessings than anything else you can find in this world. We then went around the room and told miracles that we had seen that day. Everybody shared one, and I could see Steve's eyes opening- in a spiritual sense. He is really starting to understand. I said that my miracle was the peace and love I felt in their home that night. Steve said, "Really? You noticed that?" He could feel it too. It was like finally they stopped long enough to feel the Holy Ghost. I could almost see it calming them. They need it so badly. My love for that family has grown so much. I am praying that our love for them will continue to motivate them to make changes in their lives that will allow God to broaden their perspectives.
During the lesson, Sam was saying that she has a hard time wrapping her head around the prophet thing and the Book of Mormon. She said how she was raised to think that the bible was end all be all-the only book of scripture. Then Steve said, "hey can I share my testimony?" He told Sam..."a few days ago Sister Wilde made me read the Book of Mormon. I randomly opened the book and it fell to 2 Nephi 29. I read it and I was enlightened. It really hit the spot. It talks about how these people said they already had a bible and they didn't need another one." She opened it up and read the entire chapter out loud. The entire chapter! She was like "okay. I get it". She didn't say much, but I think that it made her think. It was really cool to see how Steve had received revelation through the Book of Mormon and then shared it with Sam. He knows he needs to get baptized! He just doesn't want to stop drinking beer.
On sunday, we got a new bishop in 2nd ward. It was a special sacrament meeting. Bishop Sturgell served for 6 years, and while he said he was relieved, he looked like he was about to cry. I could see in his eyes the immense love he had gained for everyone in the ward as he pleaded with them to keep the commandments. He said simply, "happiness comes from keeping the commandments". His voice had a quiet power and I could feel the Holy Ghost bringing that into my heart. Our new bishop is Bishop Hale. He is quite young and I imagine quite overwhelmed. He got up and just started crying. He said although he didn't know how he was going to do it, he knew it was right. Everyone could feel that it was. It was testimony meeting after that, and many people commented on how right it felt. God leads this church.
I realized the other day that it is now completely weird to remember that I have a first name. My name is Sister Wilde, and I really love that. It feels good to be a missionary. I think a lot of times, we don't realize what we have. We don't realize how much spiritual knowledge God has given us and that it needs to be shared. Just like we become more grateful as we express gratitude, we have more guidance and knowledge from the spirit when we share the knowledge we have already been given.
Hey. Thanks to everyone who reads my letters- it pretty much makes me feel like a million bucks. God lives even though we can't feel Him all the time. He doesn't want us to be miserable. When we choose to be as happy as we can, He helps us be more happy. He's pretty cool.
I really do love you all. I'd be nothing without you.
love sister wilde