Christianity & Communism

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Kids, this week was GREAT. Not because we baptized anyone or even got  a baptismal date, BUT because I think I’m fiiiiinaaaallyyyyyy figuring out this missionary thing. I think I’ve finally figured out what it  takes to get the results you want.

One of my favorite parts of this week was when we all drove to Lake  City to have a conference with the Lake City Zone & P&S Craig✨

It was the best. Partly because Sister Craig & I were wearing the same  shoes. The other partly because I had already received 2/4 trainings  we got (how long have I been here…?) AND THEY WERE EXACTLY WHAT I  NEEDED. ugh. Thank you Heavenly Father to restoring divine revelation  to the earth. I think my favorite part was Sister Craig’s training on  Pres Uchtdorf’s Oct 2014 address titles, “Receiving a Testimony of  Light & Truth.” I would encourage you to read it. The basis of the  training was, “just because you can’t explain why elephants are in the  Book of Mormon doesn’t mean it’s not true!”  It was clearly great. I just want to be on an eternal spiritual  trajectory & that isn’t possible if we stop doing the things to renew  our testimony daily, i.e. Daily scripture study, prayer, taking the sacrament each week.

“The more we incline our hearts and minds toward God, the more Heavenly light distills upon our souls. And each time we willingly and earnestly seek that light, we indicate to God our readiness to receive  more light. Gradually, things that before seemed hazy, dark, and  remote become clear, bright, and familiar to us.  By the same token, if we remove ourselves from the light of the  gospel, our own light begins to dim–not in a day or a week but  gradually over time–until we look back and can’t quite understand why  we had ever believed the gospel was true. Our previous knowledge might  even seem foolish to us because what once was so clear has again  become blurred, hazy, and distant.”

My other favorite part of the week happened on Saturday. The elders in  our Ward had an investigator who got baptized! She is so cute & wrote  a 6 1/2 page testimony of her experience with the gospel. She really  is a changed person. Our investigator Sunil came to the baptism. (He’s  the one who came on the church tour) He’s 39. From Trinidad. He owns a  condo & a car & has a job. He’s met a lot of people in the ward. He’s  really progressing. He’s reading the Book of Mormon right now to prove  it right. He loves Joseph smith & totally understands the priesthood.  I think. We invited him to be baptized (because we’re inviting  everyone now) & he said he would be if he came to know God was real.  He prayed at the end of our last lesson & prayed that he would find  truth & be able to recognize it. Today he texted us & said he thinks  he received an answer to his prayer!! We are so excited to meet with  him again. He needs the church & the church needs him.

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I got to go on a trade off with Sister Yolos this week which was such  a tender mercy. We just hung out on UF campus all day & talked to 1  million people, most of which seemed to be Jewish. We had a lesson  that night with a young man from China who wants to be baptized  soooooo bad but he knows someday he will have to go back to China &  all the Christians he knows there can’t get jobs or wives. His parents  will not let him take the lessons anymore. He is so sad. & that made  me so sad. God bless America. It may not be perfect, but it’s  waaaayyyyy better than it could be.

I love the gospel! & I love you! Florida is beautiful this time of  year & I wish you could be here to experience it with me.

Have a blessed week!

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#ChurchTown

I am so happy.

But sad.

Sister Miller is gone from me.

Sister Breckenridge too.

 

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& the best District Leader I ever had has deserted us for Lake City.

 

But. I have sister Rickenbacker. She’s the best. Her mom is from Taiwan & converted when Sister R was 5. She’s already fed me so many Asian foods. She’s from the Bay Area & has a brother currently serving in the Billings, Montana mission!! Not in Billings, though….he’s
actually in Gillette, Wyoming.

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Anyway.

WE HAD AN AMAZING MIRACLE HAPPEN THIS WEEK.

Do you remember a couple weeks ago when I talked about a man named Laurence that had met with the missionaries about 4 years ago? Well, we met with him again this week. The spirit was SO strong & we basically told him that we have met him again for a reason & it’s
because Heavenly Father needs him on His side. He knows the church is true.

AND HE CAME TO CHURCHHHHHHHHHH💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼💃🏼
Ohmygooooooosh it was the best day in the whole world. The whole Ward was fasting for missionary work & so this what all the testimonies were about. I was able to bear testimony about how much I know praying for missionary experiences works due to experiences I had back when I was working at the hotel. Sunday school was about the creation & he is such a deep thinker & loved every single thing about it. To top it all off, Max & sister Bowring got called to be Ward missionaries!!!

Please pray that Laurence’s family situations will smooth out so he can get baptized like he wanted to all that time ago.

The church is true!
Go Broncos!
Go Gators!

Sister Aure

Florida winter is Utah summer

 

lol Sis B just reminded me that one time we were hanging out with  President & he said if anyone stole his pen, he would kill them. Then  he said, “haha, just kidding. …kind of.” & walked away. Ahhhhmannnnn. I love being a missionary. & I love being companions  with Sister Breckenridge which is a bummer because she’s getting her  first transfer this week!!! On Wednesday she will go to the Deep Creek  Ward in Lake City & I will be getting Sister Rickenbacker. She came  out with Sister B & is Asian. That’s all I know about her. I just get cute baby companions lately!

Highlights of this week include Sister Coutts getting engaged!!! U GO GRL!!!❤️❤️🎉🎉🎉😘‼️‼️‼️ now you get to go to the  best part of the celestial kingdom. Congrats.

Also, it’s been so cold that the leaves are finally turning colors. I got a Florida fall!! …in January!!

On Wednesday our district went to the thrift store with us that we  often do service at. It was lotso fun & I love thrift stores. One of  the elders asked me, “is this where you get all your flower jackets?”  While holding up a really ugly flowery shrug. I need to reevaluate
what I’m wearing, I guess.

After that we had another lesson with Sherry. Probs the last lesson  with Sherry. We ended up reading the “prophets” section out of preach my gospel we were so out of ideas of how to help her understand. By the end, she said, “you know, your church is a lot like my church, but harder. Like more is expected. But I think it’s also better.”  You’re right, Sherry. God’s commandments are a little harder to follow  than “have faith in Jesus Christ & you will be saved”. But we, as members of the LDS church, are not just trying to get “saved”, we are  striving everyday for exhalation & to be perfect even as Christ is. So  yeah. We have to try a little harder, but the reward is so much  greater. & everyone can have that. If they want it.

Elder Christofferson says it best in his October 2014 address titled,  “Free Forever to Act for Themselves”.  “Misunderstanding God’s justice and mercy is one thing; denying God’s
existence or supremacy is another, but either will result in our  achieving less–sometimes far less–than our full, divine potential. A  God who makes no demands is the functional equivalent of a God who  does not exist. A world without God, the living God who establishes  moral laws to govern and perfect His children, is also a world without  ultimate truth or justice. It is a world where moral relativism reigns  supreme.”

Anyway. I just wish people would pay a little more for the really  yummy Ben & Jerry’s then settle for the frost bitten gallon of vanilla  ice cream at the front of the store that’s on sale.

Too far???¿¿

We met a lot of neat, promising people this week. I will keep you  updated on any progress there.

On Friday I had a Dr’s apt in JAX & I cried when we drove over the St  John’s bridge because I felt like I was coming home. I love that city.  & I love Sister Randle❤️❤️❤️❤️, Sister  Nufer👏🏻👋🏻👍🏻👊🏻✊🏻✌🏻️👌🏻✋🏻👐🏻💪🏻🙏🏼☝🏻️👆🏻👇🏻👈🏻👉🏻🖐🏻🤘🏻🖖🏻,  & Laura👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽👸🏽 who met us for lunch at Panera  bread. We also stopped by Celestial Farms to give Sis Bowring a tour.

3 noteworthy miracles happened this week: 1. Sis B & I completed a 5k complete with jump roping & hurdles &  other crazy things & didn’t come in last place.  2. We prayed all week that a miracle would happen & that ANYONE would  come to church. A less active family of 3 that the Ward has been  working with since I got here came for the first time in over a year.  3. A less active family of 4 we have been working with since i got  here & have been seeing no progress with, made a huge jump of  progression on Sunday during a lesson about family history & temple  work.

There was a missionary farewell on Sunday & the four of us gv2  missionaries sang Called to Serve. After that, the bishop gave a  powerful talk on how much better the Ward can be doing at missionary work. He challenged everyone to fast next week for missionary  opportunities. I am excited to see the work that happens as these  great members exercise their faith.

Can’t wait to share miracles with you next week! I’m not allowed to  suggest to you to fast about missionary work in your own life this  Sunday, but I wouldn’t be disappointed if you did.

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Sis A