Well this week has blown in with a snow storm that white washed to whole town!
The weather also dropped from 30 degrees to 9 degrees :P Gotta love Minnesota! The roads have been fun to drive on haha my companion is glad that I'm the one driving seeing she's from Arizona and never driven in the snow before. She was happy though because she hasn't had a real snowy winter yet! Now she gets one and wants to go out and shovel everyones driveway!
Man, this week seems to have gone by so fast. Last Monday we went bowling with our district and that was fun (: we also had our volleyball night and it just ended up being us missionaries, Megan, and one of our investigators show up. We ended up playing basketball and playing with play dough and eating fruit snacks and animal crackers from the nursery, it was actually really fun! She also told us she really wants to be baptized!! (and no, it was not because we have play dough and fruit snacks) We are super excited for her!
We've had some really great lessons this week. Most of the lessons, were actually lessons that I learned. That's one thing that I really love about a mission. You are by no means the only person teaching. In fact, you do very little of the teaching. It's kind of cool how it works.
God is teaching you, while you teach others what God teaches you, and then the people you are teaching are teaching you at the same time and they don't even know that they are teaching you valuable life lessons! It's one giant circle of teaching and learning.
I've learned that I am very very grateful for the opportunity to serve a mission. Although I still don't know everything, and won't ever know everything in my lifetime, I've learned so many quality life lessons from others that have changed my whole perspective on how I want to live life in the future. And forever for that matter.
I've learned that I've been blessed with so many things that I've taken for granted and now I really treasure them. The gospel of Jesus Christ for example. I've grown up my whole life with the gospel of Jesus Christ. And I didn't realize what I had until I saw the difficulties of life without it. I want everyone to have what I have in life because it truly does bring joy into the hearts of every human soul. I love this gospel because it makes me happy. true happiness is what everyone searches for in life. And all of us have the freedom to choose our own degree of happiness based on our choices. We can learn to make good choices, in fact I think that is a big part of life, learning to make more of the good choices, and less of the bad. As soon as we figure out what the good choices are it's like a light bulb moment and you think to yourself, "I knew this all along, I just never thought it would actually make me happy."
Living a missionary lifestyle kind of did that for me. After a year and a half of living missionary standards, breaking away from the world for a while helped me take a step back, take a breather, and reevaluate the way I live my life. That was kind of a shock for me because I thought I was doing alright in life. And I was, life was alright.
But nothing compared to how I've lived my life the last year and a half. True, living the gospel of Jesus Christ is challenging, it is not the easiest pathway to take in this world, you will make mistakes. It stretches you, pushes you FAR out of your comfort zone, and you do things that the world doesn't necessarily deem to be the "in thing" to do. There has been no greater strength and learning in my life than the last year and a half being a missionary. Having the things, people, and comforts that I love around me gone.
I thought about what is really important in life. And everything that I love, I mean truly deeply love, when it all boiled down, was Heavenly Father, and my family. And by family I don't just mean my mom and dad and brothers and sisters back home in Utah, although I do love them so much more than I ever thought. I also mean the people I've met here, and those back home. I really love them and want them to have the joy which comes through living the gospel. It's not because I want them to become "Mormon." That isn't what makes me happy. I know plenty of Mormons who don't live the gospel and aren't happy. Having the title Mormon does not automatically make your life perfect and full of nothing but good.
Knowing what I know AND LIVING the gospel because I am a member of the restored church of Jesus Christ is what makes me happy. And I want that for everyone. And I'm not afraid to show everyone, member and non member alike that this is what has brought me happiness. And I don't ever want to lose that because of fear or unpopularity or whatever else it may be.
I love this gospel and it's a part of me that cannot be separated from who I am as a person, because there is no difference. I am who I am because I am a child of God and I know it and I will live it, and forever love it. And I love everyone else the same. We are all children of God and we all deserve to know that. I've promised to live my life as an example of Jesus Christ and I will always strive to live up to that promise. It doesn't end after we are baptized or after we are a missionary. That's what I love about this gospel, you never have a limit to progression, or a limit to happiness or joy. "We are made of the stuff of eternity!"
Love you all! have a grrreeeaaattt week!
Love Sister Ficklin
haha my comp.