Thursday, October 20, 2016

Blessed are they who suffer October 17 2016

deer my friends
The rollercoaster that is missionary life is always indescribable, but I will do my best. 
This week many a miracle has happened, as usual. we got 6 referrals. and 4 were people who requested a Bible. The other two were from our dear ward members. One was from a less active member who we have been trying to meet with but scheduling keeps not working out. She was talking with us in the church kitchen about her neighbor and it started out as a referral and then she told us she didn't feel equipped to help her neighbor because she wasn't sure of her own testimony at times. tears were shed and she told us that she would like to start meeting with us again. so double miracle whammy. The second referral we got is from an all-star missionary member named sister Duede who is who I aspire to be. she is always calling us up and telling us about how she gave a card to someone at a park or invited someone to church or how her grandma is taking discussions (??!?!?) she is so great. She invited a friend from her home school support group to church. This lady has been having a really hard time in her life and sister Duede recognized that she could use the gospel. So she invited her to church and talked about it and got her friend really excited. And Sister Duede got really excited as well, she is always doing missionary work but often doesn't see any of the results from her efforts. anyways, she couldn't come to church that week, but was planning on coming the next week and planning to meet the missionaries at sister Duedes home and the whole shabang. Sister Duede gets a text the day before the appointment is set up and her friend tells her that she is so excited to meet us tomorrow! and then..
an hour before our appointment Sister Duede's friend comes into her house. and takes her kids (side note sister Duede was babysitting her kids while her friend was looking for a job) and tells her all these bad things about how Sister Duede is a bad person and Mormons are terrible and she couldn't believe she let her kids over to her house and all of this stuff. So, she obviously read or heard some things that were untrue about mormons.. We get to sister Duedes house, she explains what just happened while we are sitting with her on her porch. and then she is crying. and she asks us why? Why does this keep happening? Why? When I do everything right (which she did) why doesn't it go well? What is the point? Why do I even keep trying if nobody listens? and the same thing keeps happening over and over? Why. Why should I keep doing missionary work? 
And I saw myself 8 months ago. When all of our investigators dropped us in one day. When I taught a grand total of 3 lessons my first transfer. When we taught Bunch, who was and is GOLDEN, and he still couldn't get baptized. When nobody would listen to us and all we ever did was tract. and we talked to 50 people IN ONE DAY. and none of them were interested. Why? What is the point.
And I remembered a couple of scriptures that Sister Smith shared with me after a particularly hard week
matthew 5 
10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
 11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Alma 56 
16 Yea, and they were depressed in body as well as in spirit, for they had fought valiantly by day and toiled by night to maintain their cities; and thus they had suffered great afflictions of every kind.
 17 And now they were determined to conquer in this place or die; therefore you may well suppose that this little force which I brought with me, yea, those sons of mine, gave them great hopes and much joy.
and all I could think to tell her is that we are blessed when we suffer. When strangers reject us or our friends reject us or our family rejects us. We are blessed. And we are in good company. because "and so persecuted they the prophets which were before you" BLESSED ARE THEY WHO SUFFER FOR MY SAKE.
I'm not really sure if that helped her at all. or even comforted her really.. because all I said was you are blessed because of this suffering. But 8 months ago in that moment it really helped me. It got me PUMPED. I was excited and ready to suffer for Jesus Christ's sake and for God's sake and for the Gospel's sake
So do you stop doing missionary work? NO

Alma 26 
 27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success.

35 Now have we not reason to rejoice? Yea, I say unto you, there never were men that had so great reason to rejoice as we, since the world began;


rant over.
for now. 
I have been thinking a lot about Satan. Which is weird to say. But I'll explain. Sister Corbett and I have been talking and studying a lot about faith. And the miracles it brings. and we were teaching a lesson about faith to a couple in our ward and we discussed specifically when Jesus is walking on water and Peter joins with him but then he starts sinking when he sees the storms around him. and then Sister McDonald related it to current times and said
"and you look around, and see all the obstacles and things, and you start to get overwhelmed and think to yourself "oh, I can't do this, what was I thinking?" and thats when you fall, because of course you cant do this! No one can! But through Jesus Christ, you can!" and it kind of whacked me upside the head and gave me a reality check. I have been feeling overwhelmed lately, and very inadequate. I was and am, already very aware of my inadequacies, but I had forgotten that they don't matter. It isn't me who has to do all of this work. It is God who does it through me. I just have to be willing and open, and allow Him to work through me. He doesn't ask us to do it all, He asks us to let Him do it for us. And we do that by having faith and relying on Him instead of ourselves. And Satan tries to get us to forget that. And we start to get prideful and think that we are supposed to rely on ourselves rather than God and then we run around being really ineffective and are confused about why. 
Missionary work is great everyone. and it is worth it. The ups are worth the downs.
On Sunday four new people came to church. One of them requested a Bible earlier that week, so we delivered it to him along with a Book of Mormon. And then we invited him to church. and then he came. and he brought his friends

🍂Sister Madsen🍂
also while driving home through the corn fields after a dinner appointment I hit a deer.
it was awful. 

Signs of Freeport 
Signs of fall

Signs that La'shay took my iPad

Signs that I hit my 8 month mark and Sister Corbett hit her 1 month mark!

Gang signs Just kidding I didn't want to die. But we did find a wall with graffiti. And nothing was the same

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