Thursday, October 30, 2014

October 27, 2014 - Lilburn

Unfortunately I forgot my journal and I don't have that much time left, so I'll try my best to remember some of the highlights that have happened this past week. Last Wednesday my companion and I went to visit a less-active member with an active member. The less-active member lives in an assisted living center and can't get to Church very often because of physical difficulties. As we pulled up to the center we noticed that the less-active Sister was waiting outside. We visited with her outside and while we were doing so her friend came up to us and decided to sit with us and enjoy the weather. We were able to read from the Book of Mormon with them and after reading we found out that the less-active member's friend is Jewish and has been wanting to learn more about Jesus Christ. We were able to get her phone number, apartment number, and will be calling her today to set up an appointment. The member that went with us was really excited and wants to come out with us whenever we go to teach the less-active member's friend. I really love seeing how our Father in Heaven works. The next day we were able to help at the Joseph's Network Seminar and it was really wonderful giving service. There was a break between the seminar for the people there to get refreshments and while they were doing so, my companion and I noticed a woman who was sitting by herself. We decided to sit with her and as we were talking with her we found out that she was the only Catholic person at the Seminar and that she was expecting more to show up. She expressed gratitude for us coming over and sitting with her and I know that, that one act of sitting with this woman planted a seed within her heart. I'm so grateful to be a missionary and to see the Lord's work everyday. Everyone always says that there are so many blessing that come with being a missionary and I have to say that seeing the Lord's work everyday is, in and of itself, one of the greatest blessings. 

And in other news:
1) It's another transfer and my training is (finally) up so I'm getting a new companion this Wednesday and her name is Sister B and everyone says that she is super nice (YAY!!!).
2) Our apartment flooded BIG TIME last Saturday.....oh man it was SO BAD!!! In the apartment above us their dishwasher hose broke so we woke up to 3 inches of water and a downpour of water from the ceiling.....Luckily! The water didn't get to our closets (thank goodness) and most of our things were pretty protected. But besides the closets, a corner of our bedroom, and a corner of our study everything else was soaked with disgusting, smelly pipe water......Our apartment smells SOOOO BAD!!!!! The people that came to clean up the water said that we got hit way worse than the apartment above us. They would clean up the water and in seconds it would be soaked with water again from the walls not to mention a strip of the ceiling fell down. They had to take all of the padding out from the carpet and placed three huge fans and a de-humidifier in our apartment. It's been crazy!! The last couple of nights we've been staying at the Mission Home and today the damage control will come to our apartment to see if everything has dried so that they can put in new carpet. When we've gone to check on our apartment and get things for the Mission Home it has just REEKED!! Everything inside smells terrible which means all though our things didn't get damaged by water e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. smells. But life goes on and at least we can say that we had an adventure. haha :)

I love ya'll soooooooooo MUCH-OOOO!! Hope ya'll have a wonderful week and remember that you've always got someone in Georgia praying for you, all of ya'll!

Lots of love (from your favorite Sister Missionary),
Sister Rice

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 20, 2014 - Lilburn

This week has been crazy...but awesome! :) Sooo Monday we had plans to meet with a new investigator in the evening but found out that three Sisters from a different Zone were stranded because their car stopped working. They couldn't be taken back to their apartment because it was too far from the Mission Office, where they needed to get a new car in the morning, and so it looked like we were going to house them that night and the next morning. As plans were being made we decided to cancel our appointment only to find out that the plans for the Sister Missionary "sleep over" fell through because they realized it would be smarter to have them stay at the Mission Home was a crazy night. Luckily! We had rescheduled to meet the investigator the next day and when we met with her we found out that she had a migraine hit her in the evening so she would've had to cancel on us anyway. It's kind of funny how the Lord works. It just goes to show that: 1) everything happens for a reason...whether we see that reason immediately or over time and 2) trusting in the Lord always provides a way for everything to work out in the end. Wednesday was an incredible day! In the morning my companion and I had stopped to see one of our investigators, and drop off a Spanish Book of Mormon. She wasn't there unfortunately...But! we saw ADORABLE kittens and stayed with them for a little while. It turns out the kittens were a blessing in disguise because when we were done with the kittens our investigator drove up to her home and was super excited to see us! She happily accepted the Book of Mormon and said her daughter had been asking about us everyday since the first time we met! Again it just goes to show that "everything good [really] is of God"! Afterwards we tracted for 2 hours straight and met some of the most incredible and prepared people!! One of the people we met was a Muslim woman. It was awesome because usually when we meet someone who's Muslim they immediately turn us down or tell us, in a sly but forward way, that we're wrong and need to convert to their faith haha so you can imagine our joy when we met this woman. :) She was super nice and immediately let us in to her home! After tracting we met with one of our younger investigators that we hadn't met with in a while and found out that in the time we hadn't been able to meet with her she had progressed pretty far on her own!! Then after her we met with E... It had been a while since we met with her at her home because she's been crazy busy but we finally were able to meet with her and we discovered that she has been reading the Book of Mormon a lot and that she's even had some "Missionary Moments" of her own!! She also said that she took the PSAT and when she had to fill out what religion she is she said that she really wanted to put Mormon but since she wasn't baptized yet she didn't think she should so she put Catholic... :D Man I love her so much!!!! 
Oh! and then we went to dinner and were able to really help one of the Sister's in our ward. Afterwards we visited with a less-active member and she was just awesome! Our meeting with her went really well! Thursday we met with one of our younger investigators and we finished watching the "Finding Faith in Christ" video with her....our lesson afterwards was super powerful. The Spirit was so strong and we were able to discuss some really important things. Friday - We went on splits with a couple members from our ward and....I don't have that much time left so to sum it all up our Father in Heaven provided a way for everything to work out not only in one moment but in a much bigger way as the week ended. As Sundayrolled around the corner and the week came to a close we met several others who were prepared for the Gospel. In other news we taught the Relief Society meeting at Church and put on a musical fireside for members and investigators. My companion, four elders, and I sang harmony to "Be Still My Soul" and it was beautiful. :) It's so incredible to see how our Father in Heaven blesses us when we trust in Him. I know that our Savior Jesus Christ is always beside us and when we feel that our burdens become to heavy to bear He's there to help us carry the weight. I love ya'll soooooooooooo MUCH-OOOOO!!! Hope ya'll have a wonderful week!!!!
Lots of love (from your favorite Sister Missionary),

Sister Rice

October 14, 2014 - Lilburn

Thank you so much for your thoughts on obedience and coming unto Christ, that was really interesting!! I love the analogy! Sorry you didn't get an email yesterday, our P-Day this week was moved to Tuesday because of the holiday, so just a heads up...whenever there is a holiday, P-Day will be on Tuesday. Sorry, again, about that!! This week, like usual, has been chalk-full of miracles, but before I get onto the miracles I have to apologize for writing such small emails each week. I'm not very good at writing (2 Nephi 33:1) nor am I very good at remembering sometimes, but thankfully the Lord has promised to turn our weaknesses into strengths. Also I decided it would be easier to remember what's happened if I take my journal with me when I write haha. :)

Last Friday a ward member asked my companion and I to help her set up a tent/booth for a craft fair. We happily accepted and as we were serving her we noticed there were a lot of other people that needed help. As soon as we had finished up with her we were able to go to the people in charge of the fair and offer our services. They were surprised that we would want to help but loved that we were willing and so they put us to work. We worked with many people, some of whom that really needed assistance. Such as one woman who has asthma and an injured ankle. She had expected help from her friends only to find that they didn't show up, leaving her with a very big task at hand. Or another woman who had a very large load to carry and not many people to help her, and each time everyone was surprised at first that we would help but very grateful in the end. It felt so good to serve other people and to be there for them when others had fallen through. I know that we were softening hearts. By the end of our service the people in charge of the fair were very thankful and as we were talking with them we discovered that they had a lot more work to do the next morning. We offered to come the next morning and they heartily accepted. The next morning we served just as many people as the day before, if not more, and by the end of our service everyone gave us great big hugs and told us that we were angels and answers to their prayers. I know our Father in Heaven is very happy when we serve our brothers and sisters.

I also know that when we do our Father in Heaven's will we will be blessed in abundance. The same day we helped the people at the fair in the morning we went to go see two potential investigators that we had tracted into a little while ago. As my companion and I walked up to their apartment complex we were surprised to see one of our other potential investigators standing outside her apartment with her elderly mother. They were taking a break from cleaning their home when we walked up to them. At first we were talking to them about life, kind of digging for more information on their beliefs and so forth and we discovered a lot of really helpful things about them. As we continued to talk, they both opened up to us more and the elderly mother told us that every night she asks God why bad things have to happen and honestly I kind of got a little excited because I knew that we had the answer. We talked to her about the Plan of Happiness and she listened very intently. By the end of our visit both women wanted us to meet with them again. The incredible fact is that both of them are Catholic New York-ers and according to my companion Catholic New York-ers are never that open to learning about other religions. I know that Heavenly Father put us in her path so that we could answer her question. Heavenly Father loves all of His children and I know that because I witness it every day. 

 I love ya'll sooooooooooooo much-ooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hope you have a wonderful week!!!!!!

Lots of love (from your favorite Sister Missionary),
Sister Rice

Fun Fact(s) about Georgia: 
1) There are usually only one sidewalk on a road - so in other words one side of a road has a sidewalk and the other doesn't hahaha it's weird :)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

2 months down! 16 more to go! -Lilburn

This past week has gone by, yet again, in a blurr, but we did have some neat miracles! My companion and I are team teaching an investigator with the YSA Elders, her name is Nini and we try to talk with her everyday. Usually if she calls us and we don't answer we try to call her back in the next hour or so and everything works out, but one day we missed her call and no matter how many times we tried to call her back we couldn't get to her. We wanted to talk with her but we couldn't go visit with her because we needed to save miles (we can only go a certain amount of miles in a month) so we went about our day as usual. When the evening rolled around the plans we had made fell through. We decided to go to the Church and come up with a plan. As we were sitting in the parking lot of the church we noticed the YSA Elders over by the YSA building. We needed to talk with them so we decided we'd head over. When we talked with them we discovered N was inside the building for Institute! We were able to stay with her for the class and later discovered that she had a very hard day and needed some comfort, which we were able to give her. The next day we had planned on meeting with N at her place only to discover that she wasn't there, which was a bummer. So we decided to go to a little shopping center parking lot and make plans. OF COURSE, N was sitting right outside at the Sonic waiting for her food! We had a very good meeting with her and overall everything worked out.
Wasn't General Conference amazing?! I can't wait to have a hard copy of the talks in my hand next month, it will be so nice to study them and learn even more! What were some things that stuck out to ya'll? I would love to read your thoughts. :) Some of my favorite talks were President Monson (of course haha), Elder Scotts, Elder Bednar, Tad R. Callister, and Larry S. Kacher. There were tons of other talks that I loved as well!
Life in Georgia has definitely gotten cooler! They're predicting this Winter will be another cold one and I don't doubt it! Other than that missionary work keeps moving forward. Well I don't have too much time now, so I'll end with some of my thoughts from Conference. Families are important to the Lord and as the world is becoming darker the adversary is working even harder to destroy them. As we strengthen our lives with prayer, scripture study, family home evening, and the Temple we will find peace in a world that seems so dark. Listen to the Prophet, heed his council. We will be protected and prepared if and as we do. The challenges we face in this life aren't easy, there were never meant to be, but through the Atonement burdens can be made light and we are able to endure with a positive attitude towards life. Remember, our Savior is the Prince of Peace. He is waiting, come unto Him. I know that our Savior lives. He is waiting for us. Come unto Him.
Remember I love ya'll so muchoooo!! :) You're always in my prayers.
Lots of love (from your favorite Sister Missionary),
Sister Rice :)