Monday, December 15, 2014

Week 72 / The Gift that is Most Precious

Dear Family,

This week we had blue skies. It has been awhile since I have seen one, but there is something about looking at a blue sky that makes you happy. It got to me and made Sister Nydegger and I smile. It's been a lot warmer this week and I am really liking it.

We found many people this week through contacting on the streets and doing some knocking. We followed the spirit and went with names that we felt prompted to go see. I found a name a while back and felt good about it, but quickly forgot as there was things to do and other people to see. This last week again I ran into that same name. I didn't pull it out of the book, thinking I could get it later, but a prompting told me to go back and take it out. We made time to go see them this week and found out they were a super cool family. As soon as we were done with visiting them we turned around and a woman was coming into the house as we were walking out of it. The woman and I both stopped walking, we looked at each other and realized we had met before on the street. She is our age and dear friends with one of our investigators. It was crazy that when I first met her I was praying
that we would see her again because I felt really good about her and wanted to get in contact with her. Things were lining up and everything was connecting. We talked and got her phone number and I am excited to see what will happen next.

We did a church heavy duty cleaning on Saturday. It was fun to talk to the members and clean together. I feel our unification as a branch is getting stronger and I am really, and literally becoming best friends with these people. I am loving these people so much. They are incredible and always making my day so worthy to be here. We have a member here who we like to call Rad, he is a recent missionary and he is in love with ACDC. He is probably one of the coolest members ever and he has some great advice for us missionaries. He has been making us laugh all week and been super helpful to us missionaries and the branch. I really look up to his example and am glad he is in this Branch.

We did our 'free hot chocolate night' again yesterday and it went really well. Everyone was full of the Spirit and singing and we had some good contacts and laughs. One of our friends who is not a member of the church came to help out. He was such a good sport and helped us sing. Beforehand, him and I talked about the power of gifts. How we choose if we want to have others gifts for us or not. The gift someone gives can be joy, love, peace... It can be sorrow, hate, or anger, too. If we want it to affect us, we accept what others are giving and we become a part of what others give. We can control what we take and what we don't take. I feel a lot of times as humans we feel it's needed to take on the world and other's problems, we want to fix it, helping others by taking on their challenges. We want to swoop to their level and understand how they feel. We must realize to help them out of the hole we can't be in it as well and if we are, we need to work together to get out of it together. We can still have peace in scary times. We can still have joy is even the saddest of moments. It all depends on you and what you take in your life and what you don't. Whether you accept the gift or not. It is okay to sometimes take a gift and realize it's not exactly what you wanted. You can learn what you want and what you don't and as you start clearing your mind and as you begin to realize what gifts you want in your life... You begin to have clarity and you don't hurt... You can be a helper and a smiler to those in need of your company, or who is in need of a home, or a loving hug.

We have the power to choose. Gifts our beautiful and we receive plenty in each moment of each day. Each kind is something to look forward to whether it be a positive or a learning experience. The gift of Christ has been a major focus this week in our teaching. He has given us so many gifts that have been the major part in our lives. He has given us the power to change, to transform, the power to heal, to feel ultimate peace, to feel ultimate love... To be able to live, to feel God's power, to be happy, to be courageous to be fearless. He has given us so many gifts and He presents them to us in everyday situations. As I have been on my mission I have come to know that each of us have the power to have all the gifts God has for us. I have come to realize that while being out on my mission I learned how to be a courageous lion, to speak to anyone who walks in my path, to learn how to communicate, and invite. I hoped to become a missionary who could come home and tell these stories for years and years, that I would be some strong beast who could be a good hard worker member. To be a missionary to my kids. To bring others unto Christ and let them have the joy of this Gospel. All these things I have experienced and through my eyes and others you would think I have accomplished that  and I would not need anything more. But there is always more, always. I have received blessings in mounds, the most important thing that I have gained and one of the gifts that I have found wrapped within my heart is how my Heavenly Father sees me. What He sees me as. Or us. That I am something so special and precious to him. That I am a child of God. That I have a relationship with Him and Christ and that gives me all the qualities I need. God wants each one of us and He wants me... Out of all I am and things I could of done better, or things I didn't do exactly right... He still loves me... And wants me... And with that I have a gift to give back and that gift is my heart, might, and mind... My love to the Savior, my Redeemer, my King. I am grateful and humbled to have been able to learn so much, that I am comprehending more and more everyday just how much God loves us. I am honored to be serving a mission especially here in Celje. I am grateful for the members and my district for the support and love they share. I am grateful for a the member 'Rad' in this branch who has taught me to be me and simply follow the Spirit. I was having one of those days this week where I didn't think I was doing enough, or loving enough... He told me that God loves everything about me and is so happy and pleased at what I am doing. That the people here need me. It struck me hard and in that moment I knew the words he said were true. I know I am meant to be here at this time and to know that I will be loved as long as I have my Heavenly Father.... I will be loved. This quote has surpassed my skin and landed into my heart. It brought me comfort when I felt alone. ''God said you don't have to worry about love, as long as I am existing, you will be loved.'' I know this to be true. I know God is always giving His gift of love to the world and His children. That He is here with us. I know everyday we should be living this Christmas Spirit and realize the beauty it brings everyday that Christ was born, that he lived, and is still living, and he has saved each one of us.

Love you all and I am grateful for the support and love I get to be wrapped in everyday... Even across the ocean, I feel it. Have a wonderful week and all the best for this holiday season.

 Sister Cuthbert

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