Monday, February 23, 2015

A Typical SoDak Week

This week, even though it's been a bit shorter than a usually email week, has had so much stuff packed into it, it's insane!! Sister McConkie and I have been staying super busy and we've been having some really cool experiences! 

But, first of all, I need a Nebraska Quarter to finish my SDRCM quarter collection. SO I would really appreciate it if someone could send me one!! I need to finish it before my mission ends. So calling all help for that!

Missionary's immune systems are definitely made stronger and are able to withstand a lot because we have been in so many germy situations this week!! We're always in the Parrot Welfare (haha Sister McConkie's not too into birds, so she kept joking about the bird flu), but this week we also cleaned this really dirty house that had dog feces everywhere and all the dog hair was stuck to it....we'll just leave the imagery at that. How did that happen? 3 dogs and 3 cats that aren't well trained at all, and her kids don't do anything to clean the house and she works full time...yeah. But legit in that place we thought we might get something or react weird to something in there because we didn't have any masks or gloves or anything. But it definitely looked a lot better when we left than when we got there, so that was great!!! And we didn't get any weird disease...yet. Hopefully it can stay that way, because it was not pleasant. I don't know how that family lives there. And then, we went and visited with a less active who is a dog trainer. She has TWENTY-SEVEN dogs of her own and is training 13 currently, so there are FORTY dogs are her place right now!!! FORTY!!!! What in the world?? But Tracy, the less active who we were visiting up there is so funny! She also has a whole bunch of sheep to effectively train her dogs to herd, so Sister McConkie and I got to hold a lamb that was only 24 hours old and to feed a lamb that is only 2 weeks old and SIster McConkie got to hold a chicken! Her house is always a party!! We're going back on Tuesday to help her tag and band her sheep! We'll have to like tackle them and stuff! That'll be fun!! Haha Tracy kept talking about how she needs to move to a place where there's not as many people, and she lives in Arpan. Arpan is a village of sorts, really just a cluster of houses, but all the houses are spread waaaaay apart, so there's only one neighbor of hers that you could see. DOn't know why she needs less neighbors than one, but she does!!! I'm just sooo glad I'm not allergic to animals, because it wouldn't work as a missionary, and definitely not in the places I've served. People here looove their pets....gross. 

Bobbie is doing awesome!!! We had a really cool experience this week with her daughter, Krystal, getting a priesthood blessing. Krystal was really sick and in a lot of pain, but the doctors said she was physically fine and the ER wouldn't take her because she wasn't a "true emergency" or something like that, so Bobbie was understandably stressed. We got a hold of the elders in time to have them come to give the blessing and it was an awesome experience!! Bobbie recognized immediately after the blessing Krystal started doing a little better. She could walk by herself and she was laughing a little bit. And she also recognized that the spirit was really strong, so that was awesome!! Her testimony of the priesthood and thus the restoration is increasing and growing without her even realizing it! We had a great lesson with her this week about faith and repentance and we talked about the power of the Book of Mormon a little bit and experimenting upon the word. She told us that her meeting with missionaries has been able to open her a lot to the "Mormons" and to open her to coming to Church. She had a bad experience with members in Utah, so she's been closed for a long time. But she said she'll come to church with us and give it a good, honest try! SO that was a HUGE breakthrough with her!! SHe is starting to come along so well!! And to help her to trust us more and to see where she's coming from, we went to church with her yesterday! She goes to the Connection Church, which is a non-denominational church, so that was exciting. Sister McConkie had never been to any other religion before, so it was fun to watch her. :) Church was actually pretty good and fairly accurate, I just kept feeling that something was missing. What was it? Oh yeah! The Restoration and the Book of Mormon! But it's great to know that there are good people in the world who know that Christ is their Savior and it is through His grace we are saved, after all we can do. We got to talk to the pastor afterwards and we had a good conversation with him. President Anderson gave all the missionary companionships in the mission a Bible Videos DVD, 50 scenes from the life of Jesus Christ. We're going to go back in a few weeks to meet with him and see how he likes the videos!! SO that was really cool.

Bill is getting there! We taught him the word of wisdom and it actually went fairly well. He is willing to live it, we just have to help him stop smoking, so we need to help him build up his motivation and confidence in himself, so we're going to keep making that a focus with him!! 

We've been able to get in with some less actives that I've never taught yet, and it's super cool because they're part member families!! The wives in both of the homes we were in last week are members, but their husbands are not, so that have some pretty great potential for us to teach! Especially Steve, the husband of Tracy (dog lady). SO we are way excited about that!! 

I love SIster McConkie so much!! She is awesome! It's been really fun to talk about some Bountiful native things. And she is just so cute and funny! We laugh all the time and are having all sorts of fun adventures and experiences. She;s a great teacher and she's a great person! We have a lot in common and she's keeping me focused and working my hardest! We're expecting miracles and already starting to see some!! The rest of this transfer is going to be awesome!!!!!

The scripture of this week is Alma 26:11-12. It reads: "...I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy , and I will rejoice in my God. Yea, I know that I am nothing ; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things ; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever." I love this scripture because Ammon, who is speaking at the time, is so humble!! He recognizes that he is weak, but God is strong, and so everything will work out in the end. All of us need to get this attitude. Can you imagine the impact if every person in your family/work/church group just realized this simple fact that "With God, nothing shall be impossible" (Luke 1:37)? It would have a hug impact!! Realizing where our true strength comes from leads to a strengthened relationship with our Heavenly Father and a solid view of who we truly are. Take some time this week and ponder about what you can do to understand better your relationship with Heavenly Father! I know you will learn something new that will help you!!

I love you all so much!! I am so grateful for this time I have to serve the Lord with all my heart, might, mind and strength as His full-time representative. :) This is His work, this is His Church!!
sister leslie.

Dressing up at the TriState Museum

The super gross suddenly salad we made ourselves because we didn't 
have anything else to make ourselves

Aren't we just the cutest?! 

The Geographical Center of the Nation picture that didn't make it on there last week...

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