Monday, May 23, 2011

A week of special experiences!

A wonderful email from Emily today.  If you are wanting to read a great missionary experience then this is the letter for you.  I am so grateful for the amazing experiences that Emily is having and for the growth she is seeing.  Thank your for your continued prayers ... they are being heard and answered.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Dear Mom,

Wow there is so much to tell you in such a little time! Today I don't have much time on the computer cause we had a pretty crazy morning and so basically we just have an hour to do our emailing. Well a whole lot happened this week! Wednesday was so cool because we got to see Elder Gaverette from the Seventy! That was really cool! He had neat things to say to us missionaries to really help us get involved in the work and to do our best to get the members involved as well. It was a neat program and it was all done by the Spirit. President Moldenhauer asked six missionaries to go up and talk about the Doctrine of Christ or a principle from Preach My Gospel. I didn't get picked but Elder Walker did and he used one of my favorite scriptures that I had debated on using for my missionary plague. It's Moroni 7:33 and I loved how Elder Walker applied it to missionary work. He said we need to have faith that we can do all things and that the Lord is going to direct our path and help us out so much. I reflected on that because that is me on my mission right now. I'm using so much faith and doing so much of relying on the Lord and the Lord is really helping me do things that I never thought I could do in my life; I am going out and spreading the gospel and coming out of my shy bubble shell.

Sister Black also got picked and I just love the scripture that she shared and it is one I'm really starting to love so much! It's Helaman 5:12! It talks about the foundation that we need in life so that when the adversary is beating upon us we can be super strong and be able to overcome those trials that are set before us! It was a really neat meeting. And mom, I just loved Sister Moldenhauer's talk on prayer! She said in her talk that she really pondered about what subject to talk to us about because she feels responsible for us and she wants to help us! I really listened closely to her talk and it was so powerful. She told of how we need to pray earnestly and not say our prayers likes it's a list to go through and be done with it! It makes me remember a quote from Preach My Gospel that I would like to share with you! It's from President Gordon B. Hinckley!

"The trouble with most of our prayers is that we give them as if we were picking up the telephone and ordering groceries -- we place our order and hang up. We need to meditate, contemplate, think of what we are praying about and for and then speak to the Lord as one man speaketh to another."

Isn't that quote so true? I learned so much from this quote; sometimes in prayers we say it and then we just get up and get going on with life and we don't sit or kneel or ponder about what we said in the prayer but just go on with our daily habits and don't listen to what the Lord wants us to here. We really need to take the time in our prayers to really talk to our Heavenly Father because He is the one who created us and He is the one who is always there with open arms to help us and He sent his Beloved Son to atone for our sins. Heavenly Father wants us to talk to Him and He wants to respond to us, but how can He if we get up really quickly after our prayer! It's a really cool thing that I have been learning about lately.

So back to Sister Moldenhauers talk (I kinda went off on that.) Her talk really touched my heart and I needed to hear the stories she shared about prayer and how we need to be more earnest in our prayers as missionaries because all we have is Him to help us to find His children. She didn't share the quote that I shared with you; I thought of that quote. After her talk I was so touched by the Spirit and it was truly an answer to my prayers of how I can really, really be closer to my Heavenly Father and get through the struggles I am going through as a missionary. I just need to have those heartfelt prayers. Sister Moldenhauer was looking right at me after her talk (well for one thing I was in the front so I couldn't hide me crying like a baby), but she came and gave me a really BIG HUG!!! She whispered in my ear, “It's gonna be okay, you can do this” and she said, “I love you so much!!!” That was so dear and tender to me! I love President and Sister Moldenhauer so much and I'm gonna miss them so much! I don't know how I'm gonna make it. But from her powerful talk on prayer, the most powerful one I've ever heard in a while, I know I can make it through the changes that are coming! : ) Prayer is powerful; never doubt that your prayers aren’t being heard!

Another neat experience this week … the girls and I went tracking and on Tuesday we met this boy on the street and he pointed out where he lived so we wouldn't knock on his door. Well us, not really paying much attention, knocked on the door and he answered. Sister Black asked to talk to his mom. Well the mom came to the door but said she had a bad migraine and asked if we could come back later. We said sure. So on Saturday a lot of the things that we had planned weren't working out and Sister Black suggested we go see that lady. I suggested we first try a less active and then we will see about visiting her. Well we tried the less active and she wasn't home. I too then had the feeling that we needed to go back and see the lady so I told the girls, “Let’s go!” So we drove over to her home and knocked on the door. She answered the door but she did not look good at all; she looked tired and upset and there were just a lot of things that weren't going well in her life! She said, “I have a question to ask you guys”, and she asked if we are a church that is of man or of God; something along those terms. We told her we were not a man made church and that we have direction from God through Prophets. Her face lit up a bit and she just started to asked more questions and then just broke down and told us of how unhappy she was and how she feels judged in the home and that her family isn’t doing well. For real mom, the Spirit really took over for those 45 minutes that we were there. I just opened my mouth and I told her we had come to share a wonderful message about Jesus Christ and of how the Gospel has been restored upon the earth and that it is for families. I said some other things and the same with Sister Black; she said wonderful things and she and I went back and forth. Sister Henson was there and I know she felt the Spirit too. She didn't say much but that is okay, her time will come when she has learned and studied lots like Sister Black and me and she is going to have these experiences of opening up her mouth and she is gonna be amazed of what is coming out of her mouth! And mom I got to recite Joseph Smith's First Vision and I could tell by the look in the lady’s eyes that she was really listening and the Spirit was so strong. I just had tears rolling down my cheeks as I recited the First Vision and I just took my time saying it. Afterwards I testified that God does hear and answers prayers and that Joseph Smith saw God the Father and his Son Jesus Christ! It was so awesome! Then she gave me the biggest hug ever!! She just hugged me so tight and long and I was prompted that things are gonna be okay and not to worry. She was just so happy to hear these truths that we were teaching and testifying about. We then gave her a Book of Mormon and told her where it came from and we shared some things from the Book of Mormon and of Moroni's promise in Moroni 10:3-5. She loved those verses and she cried when she read them. And at the beginning she had asked us how we baptize in the church; then at the end we committed her to baptism and she said yes! And we told her the adversary is gonna work hard on her because he doesn't want her to be happy and he doesn't want this for her. I testified to her to have faith and to really rely on the Lord right now and that things are gonna work out but she needs to do her part and rely on Him. She said she was gonna come to church. It was just a wonderful experience we had with her on Saturday.

After our awesome lesson where the Spirit was totally teaching the whole time we called President Moldenhauer and we told him everything. I loved what he said; he told us to be BOLD and to let them know why we are really here and to TEACH and to TESTIFY and to have us remember for ourselves our purpose!

Well the next day came and the sad news was she didn't make it to church but she still has time to come to church and we are for sure gonna see her soon this week! But that teaching experience was so amazing and the things that I said, it was like a shocker for that to happen! I just couldn't believe the experience that I had of really teaching with power and to have the Spirit to really help me out in that lesson! It was just so wonderful! I just loved it! It makes me so happy to have these experiences and to really have my testimony grow stronger everyday from going out and teaching testifying about the truths that are upon this earth and of how the Gospel of Jesus Christ has really been restored! It's so wonderful and it's so awesome that I'm becoming converted more and more in the Gospel and how I'm for sure never gonna leave the church ever!

Well I'm glad the family had a good time for Dad's birthday! I hope he did fun stuff! Well I got through all the 45 letters and pictures from my Hump Day Package! I love them all! They were so encouraging and so powerful from so many of my dear loved ones and dearest closet family friends! Thank you for the wonderful support and the love and all the wonderful prayers! I know the Lord is hearing them because I can for sure tell you that He is helping me every day! :)

Well mom I got to go but I love you and I hope you have a great week! And that is super cool you got to see Sister Killpack and Sister Wirtz. I miss those girls lots! They are truly special spirits! Every missionary I come in contact with are very special and dear to me and have helped me in a way that I can't explain! Well can't wait to hear from ya! I love you and you’re the Best Mom!!!!

Love Your Favorite Missionary!
Sister Hawkins!

I think she is becoming a Texan!  What do you think?

Sister Black and Sister Hawkins pretending to be non-members
so Sister Hendson could practice her "door approach".

Sister Black doing my hair!

Sister Black, Elder Walker, Sister Hawkins

Sister Henson, Sister Hawkins, Sister Black --- The Awesome Trio!

Another visit to the boxing gym

I think Sister Henson is getting the hang of it!

I love you Mom!

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