Tuesday, June 24, 2014

7 Dayz of Blessin's

Hey all!
 
We shall heretofore call this week "7 Dayz of Blessin's". Seriously though, Heavenly Father was really good to us this week. There is a saying in our mission that obedience in the morning and diligence in the afternoon leads to miracles in the evening. I want to modify that to be obedience in your first transfer and diligence in your second and third lead to huge miracles in your fourth. After months of work and prayer, we saw some beautiful miracles this week.
The biggest blessing of the week was the new family we are teaching in Twin Knolls that I mentioned came to church last week with a member from Apache Junction.  The husband, wife, their three kids, and the husband's dad and brother all live in the same house, and they all sat in on the first lesson! The three kids and parents were the only ones at church yesterday, but we think the whole family will be on board eventually.  The whole time we taught them the Spirit was so strong! They said multiple times that what we were teaching were things they have always believed but they never had been able to find a church that taught those principles before. They have been so prepared by The Lord for us that it is amazing. I cried as we left their house because I was so happy that we have been blessed to be placed in their path. They are so humble and kind. They have Duck Dynasty beards too, so that is great. #7dayzofblessins
 
Remember the elder who is basically Uncle Si? Well he was just made my district leader at the new transfer this week, so this is going to be potentially the most entertaining six weeks of my life. We had some boundaries within our mission realigned so we are a part of a brand new zone called Sky River. I hate the name; it sounds like the name of a bad Japanese Anime show.
 
A family in our ward was supposed to feed us on Thursday night and they couldn't so they gave us a gift card to Smashburger. We were super pumped. Our excitement was increased when we found out that there was enough money on the gift card for shakes in addition to our meal! As we completed our order and handed over our gift card we were informed that someone in the restaurant had already paid for our meal! So we still have our gift card to use when we have an exceptionally frustrating or disappointing day. It was like a, call in the next ten minutes and get two Smashburger meals for the price of none kind of deal! #7dayzofblessins I do feel guilty a lot of the time about how spoiled we are here in Mesa.
 
Smashburger gift card!

Enough for shakes!
Someone picked up our tab!
 
We helped with an indexing relief society activity in Twin Knolls. We had a lot of fun; one lady even said that she wishes we had a later curfew so we could go with them to get pazookies on their girl's nights. These middle aged women just love us for some reason! I think we help them feel young.
 
We got new roommates; the days of a spotless apartment are over. A tripanionship moved in so there are FIVE of us in one apartment. We requested bunk beds so we could move our couch into our bedroom along with our desks so we can just bunker down in our room. It has worked out quite nicely! It's like a secret club house. I want to hang beads in our doorway.
 
 
We decided that we wanted to spice up Harry's lessons this week, so for one of them we did my cookie dough creation lesson (I'm going to have to trademark this lesson or something because word is getting out in the mission and people want to learn how to do it). Oh he just ate that lesson up! His fiancé even called us the next morning to tell us that he was still talking about it and that they sure do love us as their missionaries. The fiancé is finally starting to come out of a dark patch in her life and we feel like she is ready to take some steps in a more positive direction. We are really excited for her!  They also requested longer lessons because they feel gypped when they only get 50 minutes. We scheduled them a special super lesson on Saturday that lasted 75 minutes and they enjoyed that. I just really love them; they're such sweet people. They also gave me an American flag apron because I saw it in their kitchen and complimented it. They never use it and said I probably love America more than them so they insisted that I take it. I bet Barrack Obama himself doesn't even have an American flag apron! #7dayzofblessins
 
Whenever people ask me what kind of career I want to start after my mission I always say that I am interested in teaching, city administration, or writing but I'm not sure where the wind will take me yet. Sometimes I mention my desire to take over the world. My companion has started to end all career discussions that involve my political ambitions with #poppeforpresident. This really is going to be a grassroots campaign. She is starting about 25 years too early, but it's good to get the ball rolling I guess.
 
A family in the Thunder Mountain Ward asked us if we would teach the two children they have left at home the missionary discussions because they know we need people to teach and their son is Bryce's age and is gearing up to leave in a year for his mission. They're good kids and they're normal and fun to teach.
A member asked us to stop by the assisted living home her mom lives in occasionally just to visit her so she has some visitors other than family. We stopped by this week and chatted with her. She was kind of quiet until I told her about Sister Dumas tripping when she got off the top bunk of our bed the other night and at that point she lost it.  I've never seen a 96 year old woman laugh so hard! We also set up an appointment with the manager to talk about service opportunities there. He said there is definitely stuff we can do, and we are super excited for a few hours of each week to be filled with something meaningful! #7dayzofblessins.  We are getting better at finding creative ways to fill every hour of every day.
 
The custody battle rages on with the investigator the elders stole. We kind of backed down, a la the Bible story where the two women are fighting over the baby so the king is just going to cut it in half. We are the true mother so we handed over the baby and washed our hands of the whole issue. Our mission president called us in to talk everything threw with us and said we are doing the right thing and that it is a bad situation, but it will work out. Our bishop said that he still wants our ward to do the new member lessons with her, but we told him that he will have to initiate that because we feel strongly that we, as missionaries, need to sit back and let everything unfold so we don't seem pushy or overly eager for more lessons to increase our numbers (because the elders accused us of that already and told the investigator that that was all we were trying to do, though the bishop in their ward defended us and told the investigator that he didn't get that impression at all and that we were just caring girls who wanted to help her progress in the gospel...those elders are literally the scum of the earth. I have never met such rude and manipulative "servants of The Lord" in my life).
 
We met with a less active guy this week. By some miracle his daughter was over when we dropped by and she gave us the entire scoop on her dad.  She is active and she has a daughter on a mission right now so she knows all too well why we were visiting him. She was hilarious about the whole situation. He was embarrassed at how much she was sharing, so he just went inside and grabbed us some homemade frozen burritos to avoid the awkwardness! He is very kind. He and his wife own a Hawaiian reception business run out of their backyard so he invited us to an anniversary party next weekend so we can see their performances and what exactly they do. We are excited! The daughter is the lady who texted you a picture of Sister Dumas and I this week, mom.
 
Sometimes getting close to members is hard because they open up to you. We had three different women tell us this week about their marital problems and it is just so sad to hear. I'm grateful that they trust us and that we have a good relationship with them (and that all three women have become more active in the church since we have been meeting with them), but it breaks my heart to see such wonderful women struggling. It's hard too that we can't really offer advice, though I think just us letting them vent to us helps a great deal. It has also heightened my already high fear of marriage. If my mission has taught me anything, it is that you have to marry someone on the same level as you. If your spirituality, general life expectations, or important habits (such as work ethic, scripture study, church attendance, etc.) greatly differ, you will have problems. It's so sad how many people go inactive in the church because a spouse drags them down. Remind me of this if I ever start to fall for a scrub (cue 90's song by TLC..."Scrub, I don't want no scrub, scrub is a guy that can't get no love from me..." Until I typed that out I didn't realize how horrific the grammar was in that song #ebonics)
 
We went shopping today and we are getting our hair cut and eyebrows waxed later. We dubbed today personal grooming day. I found some great things at TJ Maxx. It is the best one I have ever shopped in! My biggest find was a Calvin Klein skirt for $15. I got a couple Michael Kors shirts as well for a good price! I love name brand steals!
 
This week has really been a faith building week for me. I've been able to recognize the blessings that come from diligence in The Lord's timing. For The first time I really believe that The Lord placed me in this exact area for a reason. It has been such a blessing to feel like a useful servant.
 
Peace and Blessin's,
 
Sister Poppe
  
Me 
Me, Sister Dumas, and my awesome cousin Jessica
who took us to lunch last week!