Monday, July 30, 2012

A Later E-mail...

Hello loved ones!!!
How are you?!?! I hope you have had a wonderful week! This email is coming a tad later in the day so I hope you didn't think I was not going to email haha. The reason for this is because we had a zone outing this morning. The outing was called flour ball...yeah not my kinda thing haha. It involves filling pantyhose up with flour and then throwing these creations at each other. I didn't play the whole time because 1) it was so hot and 2) the elders get really intense. So I decided to observe and sit in the shade. I felt like a mom but oh well. It was fun to see the other elders today!! We drove to Joplin for that so we had to get up super early this morning. It was a fun trip though. But because of that I don't have time to really write letters today. I need to catch up on a few and am getting behind but I will work on it :) I am so blessed with wonderful friends and family who write me!!
Thanks for the packages mom and Ciara!! it is hard cause I write this email before I get home and see the mail. But I got those last P-day. Thanks for the healthy snacks Ciara :) Really though haha I need that. I also love the Disney pic with Corey!! I sure loved that trip.
I hope Ciara had a good birthday week. Are you all getting excited for the Spring Creek partay?! I sure hope so! Take some pictures for me :)
Well let's see about this week....
We tracted...A LOT. We are in the process of finding people. Tracting is exhausted but sometimes that's all it comes down to. We are trying other finding ideas but some days we just knock doors. It is hard but we have been blessed to find a few families who say to come on back. So we will see how that goes. When we tract though I really wish you could witness it. Some people we encounter are just so fascinating. Sister Boone and I also have our hair up in messy buns cause that is the only way to cope with the weather. I feel bad sometimes for our appearance at the door haha.
We have had a few dinner appointments this week with members and we have shared the Restoration with them. I love teaching it to members because it helps them remember when they came to know that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that the church is true. This also helps them think of some people they can share the gospel with in their own life. It is so weird that I am a missionary who gives an "after dinner thought." Still hasn't hit me I guess!
We are working on getting the members to help. It is a big struggle in this area. We are blessed with a few who help us all the time but we could use more. I hope I remember this when I am older so I can help the future missionaries in my ward. I never realized before how big of a role members are in the work.
We had interviews with the mission president this past Thursday. He came to our District Meeting in Pittsburg and interviewed us all. It was nice to meet with him again. I can't say how grateful I am to have him as my president! He is amazing!! One thing that he helped me realize was that this is the Lord's mission, not mine. I am working on trying to really make that my mindset because I know that all of this is His work and I am just his instrument. It was really good to get some counsel from him again! I think Heavenly Father knew I would need to see him a lot for extra help haha. Sister Boone says we normally don't see the president this often at all so it has been a blessing to me. Oh random but he said that his brother is one of the stake presidents in Elko. So I am guessing the other stake? Anyways his last name is Shumway too so that was cool.
There was a baptism Saturday for an 8 year old girl in our ward named Jenna. I love this girl!! Her family is moving this week and we are really sad. I will put up a picture with her. It was a wonderful service. It made me think back on my baptism. I don't remember a lot but I remember the feeling I had. This was the same little girl who asked me if missions were fun :)
Sister Watts was the one I mentioned last week who we set a date...We moved it to August 18th cause of some ward conference conflicts. Sister Boone and I have been back and forth with her about if she is ready or not but this week we had a lesson and the spirit was definitely there! We both felt the same confirmation that she is ready. We are looking forward to it and hope things continue to go well.
We fasted as a Zone on Saturday for miracles in our zone because the work has been up and down the past few months. We fasted for a loooong time cause our dinner appt got moved down haha but I felt strength thinking about all the elders who were fasting too. We will be looking for the miracles :)
EVERYONE here smokes or chews tobacco. We teach the Word of Wisdom all the time and that is a big struggle for recent converts to continue to live. We use this program to help them stop. I feel like a motivational speaker as we do it with them cause it is pretty scripted but we try to personalize it.
We had a wonderful teaching experience last night!! We are teaching a part member family. The husband is a non-member. We went to have dinner and they were so kind. The mom says that they always treat the missionaries as if Christ were coming to their home. They don't have a lot but they gave their best. I was so humbled to see how kind they were and how much they truly admire missionaries. Brother and Sis Vance (parents of Jenna) came over to be at the lesson. The spirit was so strong!! They added their testimonies of forever families and how the gospel has blessed their life. After their testimonies, Sis Boone was like "Invite him..." I was nervous but I felt it too. I invited him to baptism and he said yes. We are working towards Sept 1st. It will come up here soon, but he is so prepared, so willing and has an open heart. This was a miracle to meet this family and we are so excited to continue to help him work towards Sept 1st.
I gotta wrap this up but I will give a bullet point version of random things I want to tell ya:
- everyone says "windahs" not windows
- I see cardinals all the time. They are so pretty. I am used to gray pigeons in Vegas
- the sunsets are the best. I look forward to them every day! the sky turns orange
- Everyone says was instead of using the past tense were haha
- I saw an armadillo!!
- I am getting crazy sister missionary shoe tan good
- John Deere stuff is everywhere. always think of Corey!
- We went to an Amish market this week...They have 22 lb watermelons. They were HUGE. The amish children were adorable.
- The bug bites are getting crazy. I got one on my face so sadly it looks like a pimple. not cute.
Alright family well I love you a ton. Have a wonderful week up in the SC! Be safe and know that I love you and am so grateful for all of your love and support. Until next Monday!!
Sister Magness
1st - we used your subway card :)
2nd - Jenna's baptism. sorry for the glasses glare!
3rd - beautiful sky early this morning
4th - gross pic after flour ball today
PS - Sis Boone's bday is this month. Any ideas on how to surprise someone even though they are always with you? haha send some bday ideas.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Strong As A Bullfrog

Hello my dear family and friends!!
How are my favorite people in the whole world?! I hope the subject title has intrigued you to read this email even more. It was a good but crazy week. I hope you had a good week. Grandpa and Corey, how were your birthdays?! I hope you got my card!! Ciara your birthday is coming up. Woo hoo!! Any plans? July is a good month for the Magness family. Any fun Pioneer Day celebrations? Haha I didn't even realize it was this weekend until they all spoke about pioneers in church. I sure miss the good ol' GV Stake breakfast. Also do the Olympics start soon?! I think the 27th right? I feel so lost in the world. The only songs that get stuck in my head now are hymns. Maybe that's a good thing :)
Well, thanks for all the love you sent my way this week. I know I always say thank you but I feel so blessed everyday. To everyone who sends me mail, I just want to give them a hug so know that I love you. Mrs. Jessie Webb requested a shout out so here it is. Happy Family Home Evening to you and Michael. Hope you got my letter!
Oh and Karee - Thank you for the chocolate and sweet note. You are awesome!! (hope you read this haha)
Well like I said this week was a little crazy. Crazier than the car incident. How could we top that one off? Well its possible. So last prep day after we rested, wrote letters, etc. we went out with one of our missionaries, Sister Polk who is 93 years old. She always comes with us to our lessons and she is such a help with missionary work. Well we were going out to a lesson and walking up to the steps...(you probably know where this is going). I am right behind her, helping her up and before I know it she is face first on the concrete. Yep, she fell. We got her sitting up and she had a huge gash in her forehead with a lot of blood. I think I said 10 mental prayers from when she fell to when we got to the hospital. The man we were going to teach came out and was just staring. We kept asking if he had paper towels or anything to stop the blood but he didn't respond. So I found some tissues in the purse and we booked it to the ER. We spent the rest of the evening at the hospital, she just got a couple stitches and she is fine but we felt horrible. Much worse than a broken car. She is doing well but it added some craziness to the start of the week. Sister Boone said she has never had random crazy things like this her entire mission. I am starting off great haha.
Oh and Sister Polk kept saying, "I am as strong as a bullfrog." Over and over haha. So that's a good motto I guess? Bullfrogs must be strong. She is a tough lady though. No tears. And after we left the hospital she was just like, let's go to the lesson! We didn't since it was already past our time but she has a strong spirit.
We had an RS activity this week and our progressing investigator was there. It was a good activity for her to get to know more women in the ward. They had Christmas in July. So we ate a big Christmas dinner and sewed sponges? I have no sewing skills and that was evident. Sorry mom, but it was embarrassing. I gotta work on that :) Our investigator, Sis Watts really loved it though!! She actually said yes to baptism this past week!! We have asked a lot but she always says she isn't ready so when we asked this past week I was expecting the same answer. But she surprised us and said yes! A good feeling comes when they say yes haha. First time I experienced that. BUT she has some memory problems cause she is older. So we need to make sure she is really ready to make the committment. We will see when it happens but she has the desire.
We met a wonderful part member family this week. The Renz family. They are awesome!! We hadn't seen them because they don't like missionaries in their home, don't like visiting teachers, etc. etc. but we went. And what do you know? She let us right on in and then invited us over for dinner the next evening. It was a miracle. We shared 3 Ne 17:7-8 about how Christ can heal us and can heal anything we have - physical, emotional pain, etc. She is dealing with breast cancer so it really helped her. She said her faith was increased. We are excited to keep visiting her and her family.
During our weekly planning this week (every Thurs for about 5 hours!!) Sister Boone and I reflected on our blessings we received from Pres Shumway. We both have noticed a difference in how our week has been. We have seen little miracles from Heavenly Father and are noticing them each day. That blessing really gave each of us strength.
We had Zone Meeting this past Friday in Carthage. It is about 20 minutes from Joplin. It was good to see my zone again!! We talked about how to have more success in the areas and working on goals. Our whole zone gets on our knees for prayer at 10:20 pm every night to have unity and pray for success. I will let you know how that goes!
Oh I ate at Braum's after the meeting - thought of OKC and Ciara and Corey's Oklahoma adventures.
Mom thanks for the lesson inside the learner article from the Ensign. Sister Boone and I loved it!! I will definitely see how I can use it.The Ensign is just great.
Tracting this week gave some good experiences. We found a woman's home who we talked to at the laundromat a couple weeks ago who we wanted to find again. And we found her home! Not a coincidence. I also had my first Bible belt experience. A man came out of his house before we even knocked and rattled off 15 scriptures. We just simply testified and he said he would pray for us because we were so lost. Hmm...interesting. Look forward to more haha.
Had a ward activity this week. Sis Boone and I were in charge of pioneer games. We did the pull stick game from Joseph's time and 3 legged race. Who knows if that is pioneer but it worked.
Saturday was a really good day!! Dad that was the day I got your card about having a spiritual experience THIS day and it happened. We taught a man and his wife who we have tried to contact for a month (since I have been here). They both were home which never happened and we testified of the B of M and they are very interested. We are so grateful and look forward to teaching more with them. We pray each day that they are reading cause we feel like they are prepared!!
I could go on and on with random things that happen but I gotta wrap this up. Things are getting better. A mission is way harder than I thought, BUT I am learning so much and am noticing Heavenly Father's hand in this work each and every day. It is a blessing to be here, even in the small town of Nevada, MO :)
Have a wonderful week!! I love you so much. I pray for you often. Thanks for all of your love!!
Until next week,
Love Sister Magness
PS - sorry no pics!! I totally spaced it this week and didn't take any. I will next week!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Hello, Hello!

Hello my dear family!!
How are you this week?! Thank you for all of the love you send. Thank you for the emails and the letters. Mom, thanks for sending the pizza hut and subway. That's about as fancy as Nevada gets, but we will put them to use. Ciara, I got your letter today with the pictures. Thank you!! I love seeing what's going on in your lives :) Corey thanks for the letter. It came JUST in time. Trust me. You gave great advice. Nat and Kas, thanks for your BYU letters. I just am so grateful for mail. I know I always say that but it really does help!
Happy almost Birthday Corey and Grandpa!! I have cards coming your way but they won't be sent until today so they will be after the 17th...sorry!! But know that I am thinking about you. Are you doing anything fun? Ciara yours is coming up too! I hope you all have fun birthday plans.
Mom, you keep asking what could go in a package? I sent some ideas last letter. Hope you got that :) Umm the hymns made easy we have that? If so maybe send it on over. If you can't find it, no worries. I am the only one who "plays" the piano in my district. I need the easy version haha. Maybe a new journal? I am almost done with my first one. Oh and Ciara sent flavor packets for water bottles. I love those!! But I really don't need anything. You keep me taken care of.
We got a car last Tuesday!! They were on top of that quick. We found out today that our old car actually is just getting totaled (sp?). There is no way to fix it. So we are using one of the elders' for now. Poor guys, they had to give up their car for us sisters. We were grateful though!!
We had district meeting on Wednesday. We drive to Pittsburg, Kansas for DM. A member took us out there. We have to work with members a lot for rides because the area is so big. Do you do that in SC, dad? How does it work out? Sometimes it is really hard to find a ride, and then our miles just trickle away. Anyways, I love my district!! There are just 6 of us. Both of the elders are in Kansas. The elders made brownies for a treat but didn't put eggs in them. Then they baked it again with eggs and there were pieces of fried egg. I didn't eat it haha.
We have had some dinners with the members this week. One of them lives up in a place called Butler about 30 min from Nevada. They are an awesome family. Their little daughter is getting baptized in a few weeks. She is a sweetie. She turned to me during dinner and said, "Sister Magness, is it fun being a missionary?" I honestly didn't know how to answer that one haha. That was after a hard day, but I just put a smile on and said it sure is! She said, "Well good, because I want to go on a mission. It's the first goal I have." That really helped me re-focus and try to be that good example on my mission.
We have had a better week with teaching. We have some new investigators in fact. One of them is a part member family. The dad is not a member, but his wife is. We started with the first lesson. He wants to be that example for his family and go to church, but he has some doubts still. He has a little ways to go but he is wonderful! I can just picture that cute family at the temple :) We teach a lot of single moms in this area. Most are less actives who are trying to come back to church. I really admire all of their hard work. That is one tough job, especially as they do it alone. They always express how grateful they are that we stop by and just visit with them. I don't realize how much a visit means to some people, but it really does help. We also met another part member couple, but that lesson was a tough one. He is very religious and when we taught the restoration he was so hung up on the authority part. He thinks it never left. We were just going in circles. I gotta study up on that. People really know their stuff here...reality check! Haha it is good though. It helps my study times be more productive when I really have to look for an answer to an investigator's concern.
So, this past Friday we found out at the last minute that we had to go to Joplin for a trainer/trainee training. It was supposed to be tomorrow but got moved to Friday. Before I share my experience, I just have to say that we drove through where the tornado hit and it is crazy! A lot of homes are still being built up. The Stake Center was completely destroyed but is almost done and will open again in October.
Anyways, so we walk into training, which I thought would be done by zone leaders or district leaders, but President Shumway was there! I was so relieved to see him. The day before was companionship inventory and it was a rough one haha. We are both really trying to work on differences - I feel the stress of being trained, she feels the stress of training, we are completely different, etc. So I was feeling the stress and hard feelings from the day before, but when I saw him I was relieved. Training went well but the whole time I was just praying that he would interview us or ask us how we were because I wanted to talk to him about how these few weeks have been. Training was up and no interviews were taking place. I thought, oh well just keep hanging in there. Before we were about to leave my companion asked him if she could get a blessing. I was like, wait what? Haha we can do that?! I would've asked too. He said of course. We were all three sitting there and he was just speaking with her about what she needs, etc. Then he stops, turns to me and says, "Sister Magness, how are YOU doing?" I of course, just start to cry. All of my feelings just came out and I knew that my prayers from earlier were being answered. He said, "How about you receive a blessing too?" I agreed of course. The blessing was just what I needed and was a wonderful spiritual experience. He blessed me with feelings of peace and comfort. That the feelings I were experiencing are just a result of this being a new experience. He promised me that all the expectations I had for a mission will come to pass, if I just have faith. He expressed how much Heavenly Father loves me....that he is allowing these experiences to happen because He knows I can make it through. He promised that I am in this area for a reason and just need the faith to find people. It was a wonderful blessing and I am so grateful that Heavenly Father answered my prayers. I know that the training was not moved to Friday on accident. My companion and I both needed that. I have noticed in just these few days that things are looking better. We have just had more faith, more joy and more optimism. I am grateful for that experience Heavenly Father allowed me to have.
Well, I love you all...a lot. I sure miss you! Know that I am grateful for all of your support. Have a wonderful week.
I love you all the way from MO,
Sister Magness

PS - the pictures are just of my apt, and then the other one is of me smiling with our artwork...we drew the Plan of Salvation at a few parks this week and left our number. No one has called haha but hopefully they see it!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Round 2 in Nevada

Hello, hello! I always get so excited to email you. How was your 4th?! I hope it was good. I missed the homemade lemon ice cream a little too much :) I hope you made it! I was able to go to a bbq in the ward for a bit, get some snow cones, and then do missionary work. It was a pretty good day, but I didn't see any fireworks, just heard them.
Thank you SO much for all of the love!! I am so blessed with the best support system. I really think I have the best family in the world. Pretty sure I have the best friends too. Thank you Ashley and Joy for your letters, and all that candy. That will last probably a week haha. Thank you Joyce for your letters too! You are the best missionary supporter. Thanks for the emails. My computer time is limited so I print and read them later but I look forward to it! Andrew, thanks for the pictures, I am excited to look at them. I briefly saw a picture of the cutest baby so I can't wait haha.
Thanks for the packages!! Mom and dad, I loved it. The slip works great. I love the address stickers and the stamps!! They made me so happy!! Thanks for all the extra goodies in there too.
Ciara, I got your package. Very creative!! I was so proud. It was funny cause everything I needed that was on my list to buy today was in there. Chapstick, thank you cards, tissues, etc. No joke I was like she is in tune! Very cute.
Letters always come at the right time and say what I need to hear at that time, so thank you. Heavenly Father blesses me with uplifting words in your letters. Keep doing what your doing because it helps :)
Oh also, Monster's University?!?! I was so happy!! Next summer? Keep me posted on that.
Okay so exciting/weird/unfortunate story of the week. So yesterday after church we came back made lunch and just as I sat down about to enjoy a little meal I heard the loudest crashing sound. Then I hear someone yelling and calling 911. Right as I am getting up to see what is going on, our neighbor comes over and says umm you need to go outside. Right then I had a feeling that said, It's your car. Haha sooo we go outside and the entire back of our car is completely smashed in. We have no trunk, the bumber is lying on the road, and there is no longer a back windshield. An older woman was driving the other car. She wasn't hurt thankfully. She easily could've been. So all afternoon we were talking with the police, our zone leaders, the mission president, and the driving coordinator. And we currently don't have a car. Which makes life hard because our area is huge and we had plans this week to go to other towns outside of Nevada, but we will see what happens. Members are helping us out the next couple of days and we do a lot of walking. I am just grateful that no one got hurt! It was an unexpected Sunday afternoon activity though.
This week we gave service at a place where elderly people can come and enjoy lunch and music. The hostess is named Ruby and she is 93 years old!! I thought she was 75. She looks so much younger and moves around so well!! We also go teach lessons with a member who is 94. I asked what her trick was and she just said never stop moving. She said she is only 94 and just gettin' started. Haha a lot of people here live to be pretty old. Very impressive!
I had Zone Conference/Meet the President last Friday in Springfield. We had to get up around 5:30 to be able to arrive on time because the drive is about 2 hours. It was such a good day!! Our mission president is so great. I love him and his wife!! They are so kind and very excited to be here. They have 2 kids that still are at home so they came out too. I admire them giving up what they had at home to be here. I think that would be hard just picking up in high school and going to a new place.
President Shumway talked a lot about moving forward. He mentioned how we can't look back at the past and we just need to focus on the mission now. He shared a lot of scriptures that focused on all the verbs that come with missionary work such as go, run, continually, press forward, etc. None of the verbs ever imply stopping or taking it easy. He said that we should be exhausted when we come home from our missions because we never stopped going. He also talked about how at the end of our missions we should be able to say to ourselves and to the Savior, "I did it." I completed this mission. I did it and gave it my all... I am working each day even now to be able to say that, one day at a time.
Zone Conference truly was wonderful and I am glad they are a part of the mission. It gives all of us a chance to be instructed and gain some motivation! I saw some elders from my district in the MTC so that was fun too.
Random, but the night I got the Subway card from you was the same day we ate their for lunch. So it will be put to use in the near future :)
The Nevada area is pretty interesting to say the least. People here don't like living here. People always say they already have their religion and don't want to hear it. We are trying to put a little happiness in this small town!! Our work is just focusing on how we can help less actives, because there are a lot. We are praying hard to find more people. I am learning a lot of patience I guess :)
I learn the most in my personal study. I expected to just come to the field and have these crazy spiritual experiences, but I am learning the most in my quiet alone time with the scriptures. I have focused a lot on Alma 26 where he says, "This is the blessing...I am an instrument in the Lord's hands." I try to look at each day and take in the blessing it is to be a missionary. I know that before I know it, I will be headed back to all of you and wondering where the time has gone. I am trying to figure out my purpose in Nevada and what the Lord has in mind for these people. Sister Boone and I just pray a lot all day, every day.
I can leave you with a funny thing that was told to me yesterday (no joke)...Someone asked me if I was a 17 year old Amish girl. That was a fun conversation. I thought I brought some up to date clothes to the mission, but maybe I need to re-evaluate my wardrobe?
Oh and you keep asking about the weather. It is really humid and really hot, but Vegas prepared me. Yeah it is different heat, but it is okay. Everyone here says it is the hottest summer they have had in years. Woo hoo!! I am just getting used to being sticky and putting my hair up.
Well, I love you so much. I hope you know that!! I am so grateful for the prayers and letters I receive. Have a wonderful week. I am praying for you each day as well. Until next week from Nevada...
Sister Magness 
P.S. The pictures....
First one is us getting snow cones - ignore the humid look
Second is my comp and I at ZC with other sisters
Third is me saying thank you for packages :)
And last, the car. Sad, sad.
Love you!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Happy Almost 4th!!

Hello dear family!!
Wow, I missed being able to email last week. Even though we talked, I didn't have time to really tell you what was going on/it was 4 in the morning. I am currently in the tiniest library I have ever seen trying to type so fast. I will try to put some pictures on this too. I have to email my mission president too and try to figure out how to print the emails you sent so we will see how this goes.
How are all of you?!! Hearing your voices was the BEST. Even though it did make me a little sad, but gave me strength to get on the tiny tiny plane that headed to Tulsa. So thank you for answering!! I tried to call grandpa and grandma, but I ran out of minutes so send them my love and let them know I tried.
Leaving the MTC was harder than I thought. I felt so safe and good there because it felt like home. I was right by BYU and I could go to the temple that I have gone to the past 3 years so it felt okay. It was really hard leaving. As we were driving out at 3 am, we passed places I love to eat at, old apartments and dorms, the Marriott Center, etc. It really hit me then that I was actually going on a mission. I enjoyed going to the temple before I left!! I will sure miss it. Everyone here is so excited about the Kansas City Temple being open now. It is about an hour and a half away from me. That's it!! But I can't go cause it is in another mission. Sad day. Let's see, I saw Jarrett and Andrea a lot at the MTC. So nice to see faces from home! Both of them are doing great! I will miss singing in the MTC choir. I got to relive my choir nerd days each Sunday and Tuesday. I met my mission President. He is awesome and I love his wife. He is hilarious but also really intense. He just really cares about missionary work and I am excited to get to know them more.
So I got to Tulsa last Monday around 10:30 am. President Merkley and his wife were waiting for us at the airport. There were 14 of us missionaries traveling together. We went to the mission home, which is beautiful!! Red brick and all (Ciara and Mom you would love it). We ate lunch and dinner there, had interviews with the President, had a testimony meeting, and found out our assignments. My companion from the MTC is staying in Oklahoma and I found out I was headed to Nevada, MO. So fun fact - it is not pronounced how us Nevadans say Nevada. It is pronounced Nuh - vay - duh. Hard to get used to. Anyways, I spent the night at the mission home and Tuesday morning went in a van with 15 elders and we headed to our areas. This mission is so big that they do "loops" for transfers. Usually missions have everyone meet in the same area but we all meet in various spots. I was on the north loop and was dropped off in Joplin. I met my companion there. Her name is Sister Boone. She is from Paige, AZ. She has been out 15 months so this will probably be her last area. She is so sweet. She has the softest voice in the world. I have to ask her to repeat stuff a lot so I feel bad haha. But she is a great example and I am blessed with a good trainer.
Oh random but on my drive to Joplin I saw the largest McDonald's in the world. I can cross that off my list of things to do in life.
Once we got to Nevada, we went to lunch with the member who picked me up. And by lunch I mean Chinese food at 10 am. That was a weird experience. Great way to start off one of the craziest days of my life. They are sweet members though who love the missionaries.
Our apartment is 100 years old. No joke. The missionaries have lived here for 20 years. It is cool though cause it is so old. Don't worry mom, it isn't as scary as it sounds. We have nice neighbors and it is in a cute little part of town.
Tracting is an interesting experience. So we have had some great successes and then we have some not so good experiences. People have said don't you ever come back to my house again and then slam the door. Is it bad that I chuckle after that happens? It helps me stay positive! I just didn't know people really do that but yep they do. Some people laugh at us, but then others say they admire what we do. They will go on how they don't see their church going from door to door. In general people are really nice here. BUT everyone goes to church. They already have their religion and don't want to hear what we have to say. So we gotta work on that. We tracted into a lady this week though that blew my mind. We just got to know her and she started talking about her beliefs and literally rambled about the Plan of Salvation for 10 minutes. She said everything we know to be true! It was one of those moments where I wanted to just look at my companion and be like did this just happen? But we kept our cool and then shared how that is what our church believes. She says she wants to go back to church but doesn't know which one. So we are planning on teaching her. We will see how it goes, but it is cool to see how God works with certain people for a while to prepare them.
We have had some good lessons this week, but some get cancelled too. I didn't realize how important it is to have faith and just stay positive as a missionary. I am really working on that and trying to figure out exactly what Heavenly Father needs me to do in Nevada, MO. It is the smallest town I have ever been too (yes even smaller than Elko/SC). I wonder sometimes what I am doing out here in the middle of nowhere. I know people are prepared here we just need to find them!!
There are nice members here but the ward is really small. We cover a huge area!! Some of our towns are 2 hours away from us so the members drive in. Our ward is very old however. We spend a lot of time visting less actives who need the motivation to come because they live far away or have bad health. It is cool seeing how a simple visit from us really makes their day. I do love the people here, but I am still getting used to their way of life! I feel like I am in a foreign mission some days.
Some funny things to share:
- Our Ward Mission Leader calls us girls and baby....we have to remind him to say sisters. He is a good leader though and loves the work!
- People here think Harry Potter is evil. Woops.
- People paint their dogs nails.
- The accents are real. Can't understand what people say half the time.
- Current bug bite count: 12
There are some points during the day where I just laugh cause I wonder how I got here. But I am glad to be serving. The field is harder than I expected but the Lord is teaching me a lot.
I have had some experiences this week where I have really felt the love the Savior has for these people. This area has a lot of poverty and people have some really really hard circumstances. As we visit with them, I can just feel that the Savior cares for them and is aware of their needs. I have to remind myself that it is my job to let them know that. To let them know that He cares.
Well, I gotta wrap this up. There is not much to do in Nevada so I will write letters later today. Oh and Ciara I got your letter...thank you!! I miss the dear elders daily haha.
I love you SO much. I pray for you each day. Know that I miss you but I am trying to work hard. Thank you for your support. Have a good 4th!!!
Until next Monday,
Love Sister Magness
Okay I just tried photos but it is being weird. I will try again next week or send the card to you. I love you!! Just picture me in the middle of MO :)