First of all, shout out to my lovely, darling, sassy, gangsta, Lady Gaga grandmother who celebrated her 83rd birthday yesterday!!!! :))) Seriously, whose grandma wants to go to a Lady Gaga concert?? And ends up liking it?! You are the best, Grammy! I love you to the stars and back. :)
Also, a shoutout to my wonderful sister, Ashley who located an On the Border mexican restaurant in Korea! Oh man, am I ever envious! Attention: anyone who would like to air-lift me a Cafe Rio salad is more than welcome to do so. :)
(Sister Cutler makes Cafe Rio salads for missionary leadership council (MLC) so if I am ever a sister training leader I will get to partake :P)
I had a pleasant week this week. We were able to see some investigators that we haven't seen in a while, which was neat. I don't have a whole lot to report on, actually. My companion and I are catching a cold so I have been downing lots of vitamin C. I will not get sick, I won't! :P I'm trying not to be Sister Hacking Cough but hey, sometimes it just sneaks up on you. We may have to start exercising inside soon because it is getting cold! Also, some craziness has happened with one of the families we are teaching. This is one of those stories that will have to wait 10 months when I get home, but let's just say I am basically an unpaid social worker on my mission! :P
This week I also had the wonderful opportunity to create a fun lesson about the Holy Ghost using the Ghost Blitz game my wonderful brother, Kyle, gave me. :) It was fun! I found scriptures to describe the various roles of the Holy Ghost (Moses 6:61) as it pertains to the various objects in the game: a chair ( The "comforter" John 14:26), a book (Joseph Smith History 1:11-12 "if any man lack wisdom" ), and a green bottle (Mosiah 18:10, the spirit can be "poured out"). Then we got to play the game with the Paredes family and it got a little crazy but it was lots of fun! :) I share the scriptures because I had it written in my planner which is conveniently right next to me.
One thing I really enjoy doing each week is helping out at the Salvation Army. We get to help make the food and serve it, which makes me feel like a lunch lady. I may have discovered a secret talent for displaying desserts. And making spanish rice. They have been successful. Marcus, the nice guy in charge, has told me he thinks his job is in danger. Ha! It was fun this week. We had a Mexican food theme and we get to have some too, of course. :)
I also got to see Meet the Mormons this week! Our mission president and his wife brought it with them to zone training and we got to watch it. (Our mission is divided into zones of missionaries. Ours is the Appleton 2 Zone. Every transfer of 6 weeks we have a "training" by the leaders. The zone leaders get trained by the mission president who gets trained by the members of the 70 who are leaders of the church :)) I really enjoyed the movie! I especially enjoyed the clip from the Simpsons at the beginning. Homer opens the door and sees two aliens and says "Oh, great. Mormons." Bahaha. I thought it was very well-done and no, not preachy in the slightest. It has a broad appeal. In fact, it has been so successful that it has been shown in Green Bay AND Appleton and I have heard that it was ranked #9 out of all the movies in theaters right now. Exciting! :)
Whenever missionaries get trained we are given lots of comittments, much like we would give to investigators (reading the scriptures, praying, come to church, etc.). Well, at zone training, they committed us to record one reason why we love the Book of Mormon each day and share it with someone. So, I want to share a few of those with you. There are many but I will share a few today. :)
(I actually finished the Book of Mormon this week because I was already almost done with it before we started over again as a mission. It was amazing! I had gone through and highlighted all the references to Christ in one color, all his actions in another color and all his attributes in another and underlined when He speaks. It was amazing to see that almost every single page was full of colors because it is all about Christ. I have learned much about Christ from doing this!) As I mentioned before, this time we are highlighting references on Christ's nature and how to access power from His atonement. I have read this book I don't know how many times but it is always so cool to read looking for something specific. :)
I love the Book of Mormon because it provides so many great reasons to be happy! (see 2 Nephi 1:15 and 2 Nephi 11:5, "My soul delighteth in his grace and in his justice and power, and mercy in the great and eternal plan of deliverance") Truly these are some great reasons! :) I have found it interesting just how much the Lord wants us to be happy. He says it over and over again, so it must be pretty important. We are instructed to "not hang down our heads" (2 Nephi 10:20), "let our hearts rejoice" (2 Nephi 9:52), "cheer up [our] hearts and remember that [we] are free to act for [our]selves- to choose the way of everlasting death or the way of eternal life " (2 Nephi 10:23). There are many more examples! The word of God has a great tendency to invite happiness. :) I know it lifts me when I feel down. Let us remember to rejoice and be happy!
I also love it because I've found that I'm able to gain constructive insights specific for the challenges I face and that people I teach are facing. When I read I feel like parts of it were written specifically for me at this time in my life. Anyone can do this. You just have to read with a specific purpose in the back of your mind as you read. And praying for guidance, of course. I have learned that makes all the difference in having meaningful scripture study. Anyway, I had never been much of a fan of Isaiah, for it can be hard to understand, but 2 Nephi 7 and 8 (in which the prophet Nephi quotes from Isaiah) are amazing! I came across scriptures that have become near and dear to me as I've been on my mission (2 Nephi 7:6-8 and basically the whole chapter!, 1 Nephi 21: 3-5). I also love 2 Nephi 8:7 because when we have these truths written in our hearts, when we allow God to write them there, we need never fear. I apologize for being long-winded here, this won't happen every email, ( I certainly don't write blog posts like Kyle! No competition there :)) but I thoroughly enjoyed reading 2 Nephi 9 as well. Here we are reminded that "to be spiritually-minded is life eternal" (2 Nephi 9:39), to "shake off the chains" in our lives and "come unto that God who is the rock of your salvation" (2 Nephi 9:45), and that "the righteous...love the truth and are not shaken" (2 Nephi 9:40). There is some great counsel in here. Also, shoutout to 2 Nephi 9:49, I think it is awesome. :)
Okay, phew, just a bit of missionary excitement there. I love what I'm doing out here. I know that this work is true! I love you, and hope you have a happy and exciting week! :)
Sister Lacey Woods