Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Nov. 12, 2012 - Changes
Sister Joseph is my new companion! She is really awesome. I love her already. She is diligent, obedient and so funny! She is super good at being healthy (she is like a stick!) so I am hoping she rubs off on me a little ;)
On Sunday we had a speaker who basically talked about having joy in the journey. She talked about living with no regrets, and not letting 'being busy' get in the way of priorities (like family). Her talk really hit me. I have told you that I have been thinking about my mission being a little 'mini-life,' right? Being with Sister Tokunaga solidified that idea in my mind. She is DEFINITELY not looking forward to going home any time soon! She wants to extend her mission for as long as she can, and she doesn't want to back to 'real life.' It reminds me of when people get older and reminisce about the past. And how time goes by so slowly for kids (waiting for your next birthday takes FOREVER!) I noticed that on my mission. Time is going faster :( Instead of wanting the time to slow down or speed up, how many of us take the time to enjoy the moments? Sister Joseph and I found a scripture that we both really like. It is in D&C 59 (forgot the verses, sorry!) and it talks about how Heavenly Father made the earth and the creations for us to rejoice and gladden our hearts. I think that says so much about His character! He has given us so much! When do we take time to step away from the busyness and simply enjoy life? That is something I want to do: notice and enjoy the moment.
We are planning on having two baptisms this transfer, along with Thanksgiving, and three trips to Kirtland, so it is going to be a fun!
I don't have my pictures with me :( Next time.
Love you all so much!!!
Sister Mahrt
Nov. 6, 2012
This is the last full day I will have with Sister Tok :( We learned last night that she will be transferred. Most likely back to Kirtland.

We went to the zoo to celebrate her departure! It was funny, because at first some of us were dragging our feet, saying, "A zoo? Really?" As if we were too old for that sort of thing these days. Then when we get there, we started running around like little kids, giggling excitedly when the orangatan chewed on some sunflower seeds, jumping up and down when the tiger stood up and getting way overexcited about watching the gorillas stretch and look at us from their little nap-buckets. It was so much fun! I love the Toledo zone, and I am SO glad I get to stay at least one more transfer!

This week, we had the opportunity to witness a miracle.

Actually, it wasn't just this past week- it probably goes back a month, but it fully manifested itself on Sunday.

Remember the girl I told you about? The one who was an angry wall when we started teaching her, and then when we invited her to be baptized, she was so happy she almost cried? (I think I told you that story... if I didn't, let me know and I will have more details later)

Well, the other day we were in a lesson, and she was there. This lesson wasn't going well. The recipient is a teenager who has had a rough life, and... we'll just say she wasn't very happy to have been woken up from her nap. We were reading a talk with her, and she was devoutly ignoring and mocking us, and we were at a loss. Amid a particularly long moment of silence and awkwardness, our investigator piped up and said, "Can I share a story?" We gladly accepted, and sat back while she shared an extremely heartfelt and sincere testimony of how, in the last couple weeks, she has come to know that she really is of worth and loved by her Heavenly Father. It was incredible the spirit that she invited into that lesson, and the difference it made. By the end, there were almost no dry eyes in the room, and our frustrating lesson turned into one of the most powerful lessons I have been in on my mission. Then on Sunday, she went up and bore her testimony in sacrament! Very few people in the ward knew who she was, but, yet again, there were many people who were teary-eyed at the end of her testimony. Somehow, it got out to our stake, our zone, and even back to the mission president on how amazing this girl's testimony is.

I don't think I can say it enough- missionary work is incredible. Watching people's lives become happier through the gospel of Christ is one of the most miraculous circumstances to witness. The church is so, so true. I will never be able to deny that.