Tuesday, September 3, 2013

hei, hei, hei,

Work is going slow in the Kaibab area, but nevertheless the week has been full of tender mercies. Next weekend we are having our mission wide conference in Salina, UT. I am super duper exited, even though we are leaving at FIVE in the morning to load up in a bus full of missionaries, I am still excited. You heard me correctly, 5 AM! I have a hard time waking up at six, probably because I know I am heading to the track to run a few laps. I've been good at exercising in the morning, believe it or not.  We have been preparing for this mission conference by studying and applying a Christlike Attribute each week. On top of that we are to be very tidy, in our homes, cars, appearance and thoughts. We are also studying three talks by Elder David A. Bednar, I am praying and crossing my fingers that he is going to be the Apostle that will be speaking to us. I have what I like to call a spiritual crush on him, he is just so fantastic, a spiritual bomb!

I was studying 'Converted unto the Lord' this morning. It was about the difference between a testimony and conversion. As I was pondering this talk this morning, I was thinking about how I feel like my testimony isn't that strong. A Testimony is the building block the foundation of a conversion. Conversion when you have a mighty change in heart, you change your thought, your will, your desires to be aligned with the will of the Lord. That you will be able to give up an unrighteous desires and turn them into righteous desires. As I was reflecting back to the past twenty months that I have been a member of the church, I realize that some of my actions seem bizarre and random. But as I take a step back and see how I ended up here and what my life could have been and what it is now, I know that it is because I was being guided. There are somethings I wish I would have done differently, I wish that I would have been trying to become more Christlike, think about my actions more and aligned my will with the Lord. I wish I was more of an integral person, I wish I was more outgoing, more spiritually in-tuned and had more self-mastery. Sometimes I wish things would have ended up differently, but I know that they were stepping blocks to make me think about myself and my character. It is helping me shape myself into someone better, someone that God would be proud of. Who I in return would be proud of. I meet a lot of people, and I have wonderful influences in my life that I see and I pick the things I like in each person and try in incorporate it into my own life.

I ran out of pages in my journal this week and it would be another week until I get the one I ordered from the local bookstore.  I am really good at keeping a journal, well... until lately. I will be sending my current one home in a couple of weeks, make sure to read all of the good stuff.

Wednesday, we went and spoke at New Beginnings for the Young Women's program, it was neat because I felt like I was not a convert anymore but I have been a member my whole life. I finished three values in my personal progress so I received three ribbons for my scriptures, they look really good in my scriptures. The wards here are small with large boundaries. We have a lot of less-active members here, we are working one by one on reactivating them and helping them remember the joy they receive from the gospel. The gospel makes me so happy! Seriously, if it wasn't for constant communication with my Heavenly Father through prayer, ability to read the scriptures everyday and singing hymns of praise, I don't know if I could get through the day! While I was reading about that talk from the previous paragraphs I was thinking about what would happen if I because a less-active, well one, before you get scared I don't see that happen. But in the smallest atom of possibility I was thinking about the consequences and what I would do. That's why I came to the conclusion it couldn't happen. I would be so miserable. Ahh! I can't even imagine, but when I was trying to this morning, I was thinking about what my life would be like. I realized that I wouldn't have that spirit of joy in me. I wouldn't be able to have this smile that is constantly plastered on my face. I am just so happy all of the time. I know it is because of the gospel! You should try it sometime! At least try to pray, if you don't know how, ask me, I can teach you!

Oh, I lassoed a dog. We were contacting a referral in a single wider trailer, (details necessary, not doggin' on anyone's living situations(get it, doggin')), the dogs were very unsanitary, I wanted to get them a bathe. They looked like they were hoarders a small path way led up the the porch. I was trying to stay away from the dogs because they were so dirty, they ended up not being home so we opened the gate to return back to our car. Well, one of the dogs escaped, I went after the dog, it first started out walking then ending up running full sprint when it realized it was free. My companion was trying to close the gate, I was chasing the dog in the mud; it was raining previously that morning. The dog was too fast for me, so I took my purse off my shoulder and threw it at the dog. I missed but it stopped and looked at me. I tried to herd it back to the gate but it didn't budge, I ended up picking it up and taking it back. It was one of those moments where you wish you had a video of it.

On Thursday, we visited a part-member family, if anything phrase doesn't make sense, make sure you email me and ask me. The husband isn't a member but is nice, so that is always a treat. Well, I guess he likes us and didn't like the previous missionaries, that what they told their visiting teacher. It makes me feel good to hear that someone likes me! I mean, I think I am a hoot and pretty dang' cool but that's probably it. That morning was our weekly district training meeting in Hurricane, we ended up role-playing on how to use the scriptures to address someones concern. We got the most ridiculous situation, the woman believed that Jesus is an elephant.... We were like WHAT?! We have the most interesting people here in Southern Utah, we tried our best, but it was definitely a different situation.

This weekend was a yearly festival for Kanab called Western Legends, it is to honor all of the old western movies that were filmed here. We went contacting all Saturday, I got a nice little sun burn and a great ring tan. We contacted a lot of people, we also ended up talking to a lot of members. It was like every other person we walked into was a member of the Church. It was neat though, we couldn't go tracting because, every one and anyone in town was here. So if you were driving through town, I'm sure you saw me. My companion and I found a map of Kanab down my the tourism building, we stopped prayed and picked out five streets to go tracting in, we matched up three. Tomorrow we are going to go tracting in these neighborhoods, hopefully we will have success.

A couple of months ago, way back in May I spoke at a youth missionary fireside. I posed a challenge and asked all of the youth to give a Book of Mormon away to a less-active member or a non-member with their testimony in it. After taught one of the classes we taught yesterday this super cute girl comes up to me and told me that she did it! It was so cool! She was way excited about it and so was I. The person she gave that Book of Mormon to is now enrolled in seminary and we will be meeting with her this upcoming week! Miracles. Miracles.

We have a family of four girls getting baptized in the upcoming weeks, during their lesson last night it was super spiritual. The mom, stepped up and voice her concerns to the girls and I told them what I hoped for them and how much I loved them. I am so excited because they are sincerely trying to become closer to Christ. They get so excited when they talk about something they learned from Sunday School or from the scriptures. I love and adore them. I am hoping I will be here for the baptism, I remember the day I knocked on their door in April. The grandfather was passing away and they invited us to come back in a couple of weeks. We went there in the middle of May and they said it was like an answer to their prayers. SO COOL!

GREG!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Realized his testimony last Sunday! We have a deal where we are both going to bear our testimonies this upcoming fast Sunday! It was a wonderful lesson, he is now going to work on receiving the priesthood. We went over on our normal Thursday evening and he was like "oh yeah, I finally realized I have a testimony..." WHHHAT! I was so in shock I just stared at him... He is just so great. I don't want to brag but something he said to me made me so joyous, he said that if it wasn't for me he wouldn't have quit chewing and he probably wouldn't continue meeting with us. He said I give the right amount of push, but it is with love! I love being a missionary. I love the confidence and the words to say that God gives me. I love being able to be a mouthpiece and instruament in His hands! GOD LOVES ME! He loves you. I love you and I love God!

Life is great. I love you all and miss you dearly. I hope you all have a wonderful upcoming week.

Sister Emily Roth

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