From: Jessica McKay <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Purposes and Turtle Tricks
Date: January 6, 2014 10:16:31 AM MST
What a week. We taught 32 lessons this week, and half of them were lessons with a member present and participating. We have such amazing members in our ward! And we had an awesome planning session. I’ve learned some cool tricks to keep us really goal oriented and on track, and we’re constantly thinking about our investigators and members because of it. So this week, we invited Alfred to be baptized and he said yes, but he wanted to wait for the rest of his family to be there…Whaaaa? We didn’t even know he had anyone else. But he has another 4 year old daughter and a fiance in California! So, plans are he’s going to buy a house, move his family out here, get married, and then get baptized! We’re pretty excited for him. His daughter Stephanie is going to be baptized February 1. Also, our friend Emily just got engaged over the break and she’s getting married in June! Everyone’s getting married and it’s the coolest thing ever.
Alfred’s mom, Esperanza is one of the members of our ward and she is hilarious. Somehow the cat got out of the bag and we found out that she was a magician and had a whole bunch of magic tricks up her sleeve. So, we made plans to come over for dinner and she agreed to show us her magic tricks. There was one where she had her magic bag and a little toy turtle. She has a cute accent so at the beginning of the trick she said, “Ok, who’s afraid of toitles?” We looked at eachother, “Toitles? Oh! Turtles.” Haha! So I said I wasn’t and she gave me a little toy turtle. Then she had me put it in the magic bag and blow on it, and then she pulled out the turtle again and put it in my hands. But this time, it was MOVING! I started giggling uncontrollably saying, “It’s alive! It’s alive!” I found it unbelievably funny and laughed hysterically for a whole 5 minutes straight. So of course I had to take a picture. And I look a little crazy because I was honestly going crazy inside. It was hilarious.
We were finally able to teach Debbie about the restoration and she loved it! We’ve been visiting her for a long time, but haven’t been able to really teach her, so Saturday was the day. She didn’t come to church though because she’s getting over the flu and it really hit here hard. We also found 4 new investigators this week. Three of them are part of a family of 5 who came to the nativity and really liked it. The other one is Jackie, who was Rachelle’s daughter. We met her just after Raychelle passed away and have known her for a while, but she wasn’t really interested in the gospel and it wasn’t the best time for her. But this last week, I was thinking about her constantly and felt impressed to text her and let her know that she meant a lot to us and that we wanted to share the message we had with her. She was to special to hold off sharing it any longer. She texted us back and said she’d been thinking a lot about us too, and that we could come over on Tuesday, which is tomorrow! Please pray for that appointment and for Jackie. She’s amazing and deserves all the happiness the gospel can bring. It has been amazing to see how the Lord continues to move his work forward. I’m finally beginning to see that I was called to serve a mission for a reason. Don’t misunderstand me, I knew I was called for a reason, but I haven’t really been able to see it as clearly as I am starting to see it now. We were visiting people with Jan and Sam the other day and we stopped by this sweet lady named JoAnne. She was at Raychelle’s funeral and we’d found her before when I was dumb and forgot a big coat, so she let me borrow hers for a few days until I could return it. So we stopped by to wish her a belated Merry Christmas, and she was so excited. She may not be totally interested in the gospel yet, but she told Jan and Sam as she pointed to me, “This one has touched a lot of lives in our community.” And then she looked at me with a perplexed expression on her face, “She’s made an impact on a lot of people, including me.” I honestly have no idea what I did to make an impression on her, but I can see that the Lord puts us in the perfect position to influence other people for good. Jan and Sami were so excited to come out with us and we were just as excited to have them with us. To see just how far they’ve come and the places they’ll go together with the Savior in their lives now is simple beautiful. He proudly told JoAnne with a huge smile on his face, “I was baptized about two weeks ago.” JoAnne congratulated him on his new and beautiful life ahead. Jan blessed the sacrament on Sunday and they both told us that they’d shared the gospel with his dad, and he actually listened. We gave him a Book of Mormon about a month ago, and for the first time, after the night they talked, there was a crease in its spine the next morning. I love being a missionary. Every night when I pray and ask what I still need to do, I always feel that there are still a few more things I need to do here before it will be my time to work in another area. The Lord has plans that we cannot see, but we can do if we listen to the Spirit. One of the impressions I received is that we need to do another musical fireside like we planned in Andover, but this time it will be about the restoration. So, we are planning it for January 26 (it was going to be February 2…but that’s the super bowl…not going to compete with the NFL). Also, I am teaching guitar lessons to a cute 9 year old girl every Sunday. She is one of the daughters in a family who isn’t active, and honestly, we just want to be their friends. So, it looks like music is a very powerful tool, and I will be forever grateful for the 6-stringed birthday present I received this year. Guess what, I really was supposed to serve in the Kansas Wichita Mission! In addition, I’m glad I had the experience because I learned a lot and was able to help in a lot of areas, but I’m also glad that my time of being a sister training leader is finished and now I can go back to the beautiful simplicity of missionary work. This is the life 🙂
I bore my testimony on Sunday about our purpose in life and that everyone has one and the simple truth that God loves us and wants us to have happiness in this life (veeeeery slowly because our friend Tatianna brought someone from France and his english is very…inexperienced. He couldn’t really understand any of the other testimonies because they were speaking too fast). It’s true isn’t it?
Obviously, the first picture is mah behby toitle and then the last picture my cute new companion and I. We took this at the zone training we had this week. It was so fun! I got to see Sister Hunter and the Williams and Sister Fuller, and all the other elders and sisters I haven’t been able to see or talk to because I’m not a sister training leader anymore. It was the greatest.
Hope you all have a wonderful week! I know I will 🙂
Love, Hermana McKay
I included a picture of me on Christmas opening the other present Mom and Dad got for me…because you didn’t know what it looked like haha. So, here it is!