It was great talkin to yall this past week. I was worried again that I would get homesick and cry a lot and be sad, but I wasn't. I totally held up! It was actually one of the happiest Christmases I've had in a long while. Not that the other ones weren't happy, but it was fun that it was a completely different Christmas than I've ever had. We got to go to the Danielson's house. They have 6 small children. I almost felt like I was with Jeremy and Chelle's family. :) Something about visiting with them was so special..there was just happiness in that house. When we left I looked around and then remembered that I was still in Bartlett. I felt like I had been transported somewhere else while I was with them! It was like a world of magic and wonder.
Well guess what! On Christmas night...it snowed! I never thought I would get my wish. I didn't even pray for snow because I didn't have enough faith that it would come. But it came. First time in 86 years that it snowed on Christmas! It was pretty cool. There wasn't a lot of snow, however, Little Rock had a blizzard. A foot of snow, ice, the whole thing. I was pretty jealous.
Last week we got to go to Midtown with some members and feed the homeless. It was quite the experience. We got there and began putting desserts on plates. I was havin a good time, getting in the groove of it...then the director guy said, "okay now go in that room and have a seat". We walk in the next room and find a whole crowd of people sitting down with the gospel music playing loudly. We didn't know we were going to need to sit through a 45 minute sermon before the lunch would be served. :) Which is fine with me..but it was just funny. It was good reflective time for me...the words fulness of the gospel kept coming to mind. After the sermon, the preacher came and we introduced ourselves. We told him what church we were from, and he said, "Oh that's great" and promptly walked away. He was super nice though, don't get me wrong. Its just funny sometimes the way people react to us. Anyway, then we got to serve them all lunch. I thought it was a great experience. Helped me get outside of myself, realize how spoiled rotten I am, and made me never want to complain ever again.
Sis B got the flu on Thursday. yaaaay. Today is the first day we have seen the sun. Needless to say, we were both going crazy. Here's a plus though- I practiced my drawing skills. My non-existent drawing skills. But hey, I'm workin on it. The fruit of my labors should come to you shortly. I also started memorizing more scriptures. I'm pretty much going to have the scriptures AND preach my gospel memorized by the time I get home. No big deal. We had a good time.
One thing I've been memorizing is "How to Begin Teaching" from PMG. This is a section that teaches missionaries the things they need to do upon first meeting someone. We need to be warm and genuine, show love, and help them to feel the spirit. I need to play the part of a southern belle :) Then it lists bullet points that we can share with these people to help them see how vital our message is. During our mission tour this past year, Bro. Donaldson (of the seventy?) said, "I would be surprised if 10 missionaries in the entire U.S. actually understand How to Begin Teaching." So, I've tried to focus on it. One of the points seems to be especially important to me right now. It says, "Each person we teach has personal challenges and concerns. No matter what your needs or concerns might be, the Savior and His teachings - the gospel, will help you". I've been thinking about that. It is true for every person. The key to fixing any problem is the Savior. All our losses really can and will be made up when we place our faith in Him. It creates a feeling of hope that cannot be described but only felt. It is my prayer that we will seek through prayer to feel this hope, learn who He is, and in that, find peace.
Well, I must go. We are having a district nerf gun fight at the church today.
I love you all. Stay true.
love sister wilde