SHout out to all the Mothers! Hope you had a great Mother's Day full of happy children and clean houses. :) If you haven't had a chance yet, please check out the Mother's Day video the Church put out, "It Was Mom" (motherhood.mormon.org). It is powerful! You will love it!
The big reveal is below in the pictures.....Sister Manning and I both got haircuts! Our motto for this transfer is "Go Big or Go Home, and we can't go home, so go BIG." It works out quite nicely. SO we cut our hair. Which is nice also for the wind problem here because the wind gets really ANNOYING, especially when you have hair blowing all over everywhere. You start to feel kinda like Cutting It. Which doesn't look very professional. Or feel very nice.
We met with Ashley this week again on Tuesday and had a great lesson teaching her about prophets. The Spirit also guided us to put Ashley on date, so we were able to put her on date for May 31, which is awesome!! She is SO excited and happy. As soon as we went into the invitation for the baptismal date, her face started beaming brighter and brighter, which is awesome. She is coming to Girl's Camp AND Trek, so it will be awesome! She loves the girls in the ward and they are good to her. We are also so excited for her! She is a great example to her family and will do many great things in her life as she continues to keep her covenants kept and her faith strong. :) She is even standing up for the Church already! On the bus, some friends were mocking the Mormons and how they were still polygamist. So Ashley texted us and then we called her and talked to her about why polygamy happened, when it stopped and all that. We gave her the scriptures to look up on her phone, and she explained it all very well to him. It was great! She's not even baptized and she's not afraid of standing up for her beliefs, even when she doesn't quite understand them yet.
I have now reached the lowest number of lessons I've ever had in a week, but also the most contacts I've ever gotten in a week. Most of our appointments fell through this week, so we got a lot of tracting in. We didn't have snow this week (knock on wood), but we did go tracting in freezing rain, intense wind, and 20 degree weather. It was quite the experience. We didn't have a whole ton of success, but we did get a couple really solid potentials. Our most promising potential is a mother named Hannah. She currently is reading the Book of Mormon and we have an appointment to go back on Saturday and teach her more about how we got the Book of Mormon. It was really cool. When we were doing our approach on her doorstep, when explaining the Book of Mormon, we simply said something like, "The Book of Mormon is Another Testament that Jesus is the Christ, and it is a record of the ancient inhabitants on this continent, in the same time period of the Bible." Hannah then told us that the thought had never occurred to her before that people lived on this side of the world at that time, because they are never specifically mentioned in the Bible. She says it makes sense that there were, though. She is a modern day Joseph Smith story, she has that sincere desire to know which church is right but is overwhelmed by all the churches claiming to be Christ's church. We are excited to work with her more. :)
Obviously, one of the highlights was when I got to Skype with my awesome family! It's crazy how we haven't seen each other for 5 months, yet it feels like no time at all when I'm talking to them! It made for an awesome Mother's Day. :)
Oh yeah, for all those who are interested, Sister Manning and I were on TV! If you look up KX News in Minot, and then search "Stake Split, May 4, 2014" or something the story should come up. We weren't in a cameo or anything, but we were still in it! Check it out and tell me what you think!
We are starting this new initiative with a lot of the members in the ward to follow up with the commitments made at Stake Conference. The 4 commitments extended were 1, to pray and ponder for missionary experiences. 2, Visit the Hastening the Work website and read Handbook 2, Chapter 5. 3, Read and study Preach My Gospel. 4, Think of someone who could benefit from making or renewing gospel covenants and open your mouth, do something to reach out to them. I know that these were given to our stake up here, but they apply to you as well! Doing these things will help you to become more missionary minded and to help hasten God's work. And remember: Hastening the Work isn't just missionary work. It also includes family history and temple work and all other aspects of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. YOU are needed by God to help this work progress! He can't do it alone. Us missionaries can't do it alone. Yes, there are 83,000 missionaries which is awesome. But there are 15 MILLION members! Can you imagine what would happen if every member reached out to just ONE person? It would be incomprehensible the joy and unity that would come into our lives and hearts. SO, what are YOU waiting for?
I love you all! Thank you for your prayers and thoughts and missionary work!
The family we ate and skyped at yesterday for Mother's Day, the Costabile family. SIster Costablie is an interior designer, can you tell? Notice the wall and photo arrangement in the picture. I love it! Totally doing it someday!