Monday, December 23, 2013

Hello everyone! What an exciting week it has been! I was really excited to meet my new companion, Sister Smith because I heard she was great. The last week of being with her has confirmed that she definitely is. Sister Smith is from Grants Pass, Oregon (which is really funny because we have a mutual friend). She is 20 years old and has four brothers, is also a black belt in Taekwondo. Don't know how my last two companions have been black belts.... maybe God wants me to learn Taekwondo? :) 
Sister Smith is very sweet and I love how forward she is. She's not afraid to tell you how it is, which is AWESOME. I love it when people are like that. She's gorgeous and a total tom-boy. Super humble and full of the spirit. We have a lot of similar interests and basically hit it off the first day. Then after figuring out how we know each other through our mutual friend we bonded a ton. We live in such a small world. 

Getting to this new area didn't start out very happy though. In fact it was pretty scary. Upon arriving we found out that Sister Smith's previous companion had a head full of lice. That's right. LICE. The worst part about it was that they didn't know she had it for TWO WHOLE TRANSFERS! That's like three months of bugs living on your scalp. Apparently she was really itchy but didn't say anything to Sister Smith till one day a bug fell out of her head. Sister Smith checked her head and found lots and lots of lice and eggs. Uhh.. just talking about it makes me queasy. I found out that I have a phobia of things happening like this. I teared up a couple times when ever we would talk about it because it freaked me out so much. 
So they didn't find it till two nights before I got transferred in. So when I got there they had everything packed up and she had just sprayed the beds and couch with RID stuff. Walking into that apartment I immediately began cleaning vigorously. Oh I was so freaked out. I vacuumed every square inch of that apartment. And wiped everything down. It took me a couple of days to finally unpack. But luckily I never got lice and our apartment is now totally lice-free. But MAN that was scary! 

So I am serving at the University of Missouri in Colombia, Missouri. The collage is also known as Mizzou. It's a pretty big school and their mascot is a tiger, which is pretty sweet. I am currently the senior companion of the companionship and am follow-up training Sister Smith. We live close to campus in a funny little apartment that is actually in the basement of a frat house. Good thing I am really good at sleeping and hopefully won't have too much trouble with it being really loud upstairs when the students come back. Mizzou is a really big party school. 

The first two days were full of cleaning and organizing. Sister Smith just finished being trained but didn't know how to use the area book... So we went over that and did some updating. We got to meet the Branch President who is really awesome. But for last Sunday and this Sunday our YSA Branch will not be meeting for church because everyone is out of town. It's really strange to come to an area where you don't have your own ward for the first two weeks. We went to church at another ward and I found my friends sister that looks exactly like her. It was really weird but I was glad I went to that ward. I loved hearing the Christmas music and being able to reflect on the gift of Christ. 

We got to meet with an investigator named Jamie. She's from St. Louis and is dating a guy in Utah. She is Catholic but believes absolutely everything she has been taught. If she hadn't left town to go see her boyfriend in Utah we totally would have had her get baptized this weekend. But her time will come. I am so excited for her to have the gospel in her life. 

We got a new investigator named Natalie who is a school teacher at an elementary school. She's has a strong faith in Christ and considers herself Lutheran but is really open to other religions. She already had a Book of Mormon and had a lot of good questions. She said that when she comes to know that these things are true for herself, she will be baptized. I'm really excited for her to come back into town so we can teach her again. 

For Christmas we have some pretty exciting plans, which is awesome because I thought we'd be staying in our basement apartment. Christmas Eve we are free to do what we want (within mission rules) from 5 p.m. to all of Christmas day! We are allowed to watch DISNEY MOVIES! And I am soooooo happy about that! That was something I was really hoping for. Tuesday night our zone will be playing sports at the stake center and Christmas morning will be spent at a members home. We'll go over there for breakfast and then have lunch at someone else' house. We will watch movies and skype our families and eat lots of food. :) I am pretty excited. 

Great news is that Jerry (my investigator in my last area) got baptized this last weekend! I'm so proud of him and hope that their family will do all they can to go to the temple in a year from now. 

I'm running out of time but I want all of you to know that I have a testimony of Christ as our Savior. I love him so much and I am so grateful that he came to this world to pass through all the things we must pass through in order for us to gain eternal life. I know that the only way to true happiness is through living this gospel and doing all we can to be like Christ. The Church is true and I love all of you! Have a very Merry Christmas!!!!

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