Sending you a glimpse of my heart

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Since I have last emailed you my life has been INSANELY WONDERFUL. It has been crazy and hectic but beautiful and exciting. I don't want to bombard you with all the details (even though I really want to because none of it is recorded in my journal because of how hectic its been!), so I will just send snippet updates. And pictures. Lots and lots of pictures. Because a picture is worth a ton :) And so you can see all the people I have been so blessed to meet and serve with. Gah, I just love them all so much. 

1. YSA = Medicine for my Soul!
Adventures with the YSA Sisters!
Sister Sperry and I at a Hindu temple!
As you know, my companion Sister Webster went home last Monday. I got to spend all of Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday morning in the YSA Area with Sister Bailey and Sister Sperry. Those 2.5 days were definitely medicine for my soul. I love those two Sisters with all my heart. And even though I am their STL, I was super grateful they didn't treat me as such (aka act weird around me lol). Monday night we tag-teamed teaching one of the YSA's non-member boyfriend during a BOSS. Then we went to FHE with the YSA. Their branch president is bomb! He has a daughter who is going home the same time as me, so we kind of bonded over that. On Tuesday we knew adventures were ahead of us....and we were proved right! We got a phone call after one of our lessons and there was a Sister who just got home from her mission in Brazil but wasn't going to be released until 6pm that night. Her name is Sister Fuller. So we pretty much did DIVIDE and CONQUER. It was so great. Sister Sperry and I went to all the planned lessons and Sister Bailey and Sister Fuller went to contact a bunch of people. So great! Gah! Productivity is the best. I have also learned the special spirit YSA have when it comes to missionary work. Sperry and Bailey are the PERFECT Sisters for the YSA. And the YSA that come out to help us in the lessons are so powerful and caring towards their fellow YSA. They are so amazing. To you YSA, if you haven't gone out with the missionaries recently, please do. They need you.

We found a cake at the Fox Theatre. Score!
Us and Rose. She is leaving for her mission in the Philippines in a month!!!

2. Last Transfer Meeting

My MTC District. We hit 17 months! We've come so far :)
Well, I made it through without crying!! It was probably the best last transfer meeting I could ever ask for. Why? Well, A) I became a great-grandmother of THREE! Every single one of my grandbabies got called to train!!!!! I am SO PROUD :') And, B) This was the first transfer meeting where all the Filipinos in the mission were there. I am pretty much the Ate of Sister Gadi and Elder Abad haha. And they both got called to train too!!!!!!!!! Super excited for all of them :) It was also my 17th month mark and all the missionaries I came out with happened to be there. Reunion!! Oh, and some random missionary I don't know comes up to me and the following conversation happens:

Elder McKeen: Sister Limas, how many days did Jesus fast for?
Me: Uh...40?
Elder McKeen: Why is that significant?
Me: What?
Elder McKeen: Why is that significant to you?
Me: ...Err..... because we did a 40 day fast in Farmington?
Elder McKeen: No. How many days...
Elder McKeen: Hahaha you have 40 days left.
Me: Who are youuuuuu? 

What. The. Freak. Why are other people always counting the days for me? I only count the weeks, but that's only because I am doing the 12 week program right now for studies! People.

3. Last MLC
We had a special Mission Leaders Council to start off this transfer. Elder Sitati of the 70 joined our meeting and trained us. Here are some of his words of wisdom:

"The journey of life is meant to be lived together. Without your eternal companion, it's hard to reach your fullest magnitude.

"How do you change a Laman into a Nephi?"

"Radiate love. Let them be confident in the knowledge that you love them. If you have love you will move this mission to where it hasn't been. As you are prompted by the Spirit, if you are to influence anyone, love needs to be there. I've never met anyone who doesn't need love. Heavenly Father made us to crave love. Only the Spirit of the Lord can help us to love other people."

Leaving MLC was probably one of the hardest things I had to do. I couldn't help but keep going back inside and lingering and talking to my fellow missionaries. I knew I would have the opportunity to see them one last time at Mission Conference, but I knew since the whole mission was going to be there, it was going to be crazy busy and packed. Gah. I just feel so blessed that I've been able to serve with these fantastic Elders and Sisters!

Mission Leaders Council with Elder and Sister Sitati of the 70.

4. The Work
So because of the craziness of this week, we only really had Thursday and Saturday as our full days to proselyte. They have also been two of the best days I've had on the mission, teaching-wise. SO MANY MIRACLES! Sister Huppi, my new companion, is AMAZING. She is such a rock and powerhouse missionary. I have had an amazing past few days with her. She is one who truly relies on the Lord in all things. She is such an inspiration. Here are some of our miracles:

* Mark Rode, a media referral, WAS LEGIT. He so badly wants to learn! And he's been getting answers to his prayers since we've been meeting with him. WOO!

* Ciara Kerpernien is the daughter of my recent convert, Debbie Gray. When we first started meeting with Debbie, Ciara was not interested at all. She found church boring and found some of the YW weird. But Ciara has been noticing the difference in her mom since she got baptized. She sees how happy and at peace her mom is. And she wants it too. Ciara has been impressing me quite a bit the past couple weeks. She's coming to church, she's asking really good questions, she's sharing what she has learned with her friends at school, and she is excited to go to the youth temple trip in December! Which means getting baptized this transfer. At first Debbie seemed kind of leery about Ciara jumping in it too fast, but I think Debbie has been seeing the changes in her as well. THE GOSPEL IS AMAZING. THE ATONEMENT CHANGES PEOPLE! Setting a date for November 8th tonight!!!!! So excited!

* Awkward experience of the week: We street contacted this kid named Eric and gave him a Book of Mormon. After him we went to his neighbour and had a really good gospel-teaching door talk with him. When we were done, Eric is walking towards us asking if he can talk to us. He seemed a little disheveled and was talking way too fast. All I got was "feet", "massage", and then him putting his hands out signified "prayer" to me. So the way it connected in my brain was, "my feet hurt and I need a massage. Please?" And so I responded, "we can pray!" When everything calmed down a bit and he continued talking I realized he was telling us that he had a foot fettish and wanted to massage our feet. Sister Huppi and I were both stunned. Part of me wanted to laugh because this probably was the oddest thing someone has ever asked me my whole mission. But I could see he was pretty gittery and anxious about it. So I continued talking to him about prayer and how because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, the Lord can help us overcome our anxieties and weaknesses. So we each said a prayer. And he invited us back :) Boom. 

* We had an AMAZING lesson with Nicole Amelung. The Sisters were teaching her husband, John, and Nicole hated it. And them. But Nicole has been so receptive to us and wanting the gospel to help change her life. We invited her to be baptized at the beginning of the lesson (when we were doing How To Begin Teaching) and she said she already had been baptized. But as the lesson progressed and the Spirit filled the room so immensely, when we asked her again at the end, she said YES! She wants this for her and her husband so they work out their relationship. 

I know I'm being repetitive, but seriously, the gospel changes lives! It is so incredible how taking the steps of faith toward Jesus Christ changes your life forever! The Atonement is so real! And I'm so grateful I've been able to witness the power of the Atonement in so many lives. Seriously, who am I to be this lucky?

5. Mission Conference
I feel SO SO SO blessed that for my last transfer we had Mission Conference. This is the first time in MSLM History that the whole mission has been able to get together for Mission Conference. It was so exciting!!! It was a tender mercy for me because I got to say goodbye to all my favourite Elders and Sisters. Our group sang "Come Unto Christ" and thankfully I did not cry during that either. I was close to, but didn't :p My favourite lines from that song are:

"So let Him in and He will take away the pain. When you feel His love you'll never be the same"

"So let Him in and you'll remember who you are. He will mold your life and change your willing heart."

"Come unto Christ, come unto Him. And by His grace be made wholly again".

I'm surprised I didn't cry while singing. Those lines are so powerful and have been so true for me, especially throughout the last 17 months. How grateful I am for the Saviour and His Atoning sacrifice. It is only by Him and through Him that we can be changed. 

Oh, I realized I'm not going to get a Thanksgiving this year. American Thanksgiving is after I get home haha. But we Canadians gathered together for lunch during Conference to celebrate haha. 

At the end of conference I was really hoping President Morgan would let the departing missionaries bare their testimonies. But he didn't. Sadface. But as they were dismissing Elder and Sister Sitati, he told us to get up and stretch. While doing so he was talking about "Meet the Mormons" and then said, "and we're going to watch it here today. The chapel was suddenly filled with screams of excitement that kind of caught President of guard. IT WAS HILARIOUS. He got so red from laughing then finally mustered out, "I was not expecting that reaction". It was so great. And it was an AWESOME film!! Oh I just loved it! And I loved being able to sit together as a mission, having this little break, and being able to laugh together. Oh my heart. As we stood and sang "Now Let Us Rejoice" for our closing hymn, I took a deep breath as I looked at all the wonderful missionaries standing behind me. I love them all so much and I am so grateful for everything they have been to me.

My baby-girls: Sister Emily Craig and Sister Lindly Fernandez

But yeah that's a little piece of my heart for you :)

Oh, I also got my death papers in the mail this past week. Sister Huppi took it out of the mailbox and the moment I saw the church logo I was like O____O "oh no!" I ripped the top open, but I couldn't take the pages out. I chucked it onto my desk and said, "ain't nobody got time for that! We only have 20 minutes for lunch today and I can't deal with that right now!" Hahaha. Sister Huppi was super supportive in helping me open it the next day though. Le sigh.

The death papers. Sigh.

I hope you have a wonderfully, spiritually-filled week!
I love you all loads.
I will see you at 7:43pm in 5 weeks ;)
Sister Limas

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