Hey y'all! Hope all is well in Utah! I keep hearing about this crazy snow and I can't believe it! Here in Georgia it was 80 degrees on Saturday! People say come January it will be freezing and lots of ice storms! For now I am enjoying the leaves still falling and it staying in the 60's or 70's!(:
Tuesday was a wonderful day! I had my first Marietta zone meeting! We have a great zone and I am excited to be in a part of it! We had a great training on working with less active members. That is our next transfer focus. We read 3 nephi 18:32. We can't forget about the less actives. We are bringing salvation unto them, as well. Getting them to come to church is like getting them on date to renew their covenants. It is our job to minister to them, then the savior has the opportunity to heal them! We know not when they will return and repent but God does. We need to love them and treat them as our golden investigators. People don't care about what you know until they know how much you care. It is so important to love our brothers and sisters! We have been promised by the Lord through president Bennion, that as we focus on less actives we will find more people to baptize! We also talked about how each of us are here for a reason. I am so grateful to be serving in the Georgia Atlanta North mission and know I am here for a reason. As hard as it was to be emergency transferred I am already seeing so many blessings and know this is where I need to be. After zone meeting we had a couple great lessons! We had one with Jocelyn about services and the priesthood. The spirit was so strong and it was such a great lesson. I know that the priesthood power has been restored through Joseph Smith. I am so grateful for the power of the priesthood in my life and to serve with so many great, worthy young men.
Tuesday night we had exchanges! I spent the night and Wednesday with Sister Kafu in Hickory Flatt. It was a totally different part of the mission. Very country and very southern! For breakfast we stopped by a little stand and had fresh boiled peanuts and a pickle. The biggest pickle I have ever seen! It was delicious! We also had homemade peanut brittle that was fantastic! It was a great start to a wonderful day! We got to go help a woman named Scarlet. She is 72 and owns a farm! We got to help her feed the horses and the chickens! We had so much fun! I learned a lot about what it would be like to be a country girl! We shared the new Christmas video with her and she loved it! She is such a sweet woman and is now investigating the church! I am so excited for her. After that we had a great lesson with Angie on the word of wisdom. She is an amazing woman and the spirit was so strong! Her testimony is growing and it is so cool to see her make these changes in her life. She came to church this past Sunday and loved it! Just talking about it she started crying trying to describe the peace she felt. It was an incredible experience, and I am so grateful I was able to meet her and share my testimony with her! Sister Kafu is a fantastic missionary! She is from Sacramento California and has one more transfer to go! We had tons of fun and I learned so much from her! Hickory Flatt was a beautiful part of Georgia and I am so glad I got to see a glimpse of that part of the Lord's vineyard.
|exchanges with Sis Kafu in Hickory Flatt|
Thursday morning we went and volunteered at the food pantry! It was so much fun! After that we had lunch and a lesson with Jocelyn. She is doing so great and loving this gospel more and more each day. It is hard to watch the power of the adversary work on her but she is so strong! She is thinking about serving a mission! How cool is that?? She has such a powerful testimony and I know she would be an incredible missionary! After that we had a great lesson with Justin! He has come along away and is really starting to progress. He is the sweetest guy and has such a big heart! I love him so much and know he is definitely part of the reason I am here. We got to go help a less active with yard work and then he took us to dinner! His name is Mario and he has the cutest 3 year old boy! That night we had a really good lesson with Andrew and Alfie. The spirit was so strong and it was so cool! Andrew is working on being temple worthy and it is an everyday struggle for him but he has come so far. I am so proud of him! It was another great day!
Friday morning we had a lesson with Candice and then went to institute with her and Jocelyn. Institute was so great, I loved it! We studied Matthew 25, the parable of the 10 virgins. The bridegroom being Jesus Christ. We need to make sure that we have enough spiritual oil or light. Is your testimony and relationship with our savior is burning bright? V12 how well do you know Christ and how well does he know you? Are we spiritually ready now? We can't be running to get oil at the second. After Institute we did some contacting with Andrew and it was a lot of fun! Everyone is headed home and campus is closed for three weeks! It's going to be rough! :/ Then we went and met Ben who is amazing! He has been dating a girl and knows pretty much everything about the church. He is in Mosiah 17 and loves the Book of Mormon! He is going home for Christmas but I am so excited to start teaching him when he gets back!(: That evening we had a great lesson with Brandon on the importance of coming to church and feeding our spiritual bodies! We are hoping and praying he will come this Sunday!(:
Now comes the cherry on top! We had a devotional with the sisters of Georgia and Elder Holland! It was incredible! There are not even words. Elder Holland has no script or talk written he just talk to us. He was so real and I loved it.
Saturday we spent our morning with Jeffery R Holland! We came together as a mission joined with the Georgia Atlanta Mission and had a special devotional with Elder Holland. It was amazing! I got to sit by Sister (Riley) Christensen, which was way fun! We all lined up and got to each shake Elder Hollands hand!!! We all got to say hi, our name and where we are from. Sister Christensen when went after me and he said, "two bountiful girls, wow!" It was so cool! Elder Holland talked with us and explained that we are all diciples of Jesus Christ. Sometimes we ask, why is this so hard?? Because salvation is not a cheap experience. We can't expect to be disciples of Him and not go through some of what He went through. We have to feel that rejection and disappointment just as he did. But we are not to be discouraged because the best person who ever lived knows exactly how we feel. I love that! We are all God's investigators we can't expect them to read, study, pray and come to church if we are not doing that ourselves. The last half of the meeting it was like institute with Elder Holland he asked to get a white board and we all opened our scriptures. He called on us and we had an open discussion on John 3&4. Nicodemus and the woman at the well see two different people or investigators but they both deserve the gospel of Jesus Christ. We need to talk to everyone. It is not our choice who deserves the gospel of Jesus Christ and who doesn't. It was an incredible meeting and the spirit was so powerful. I know he is an apostle called of God. I am so grateful for the opportunity I had to hear his council and shake his hand. I will never forget this last weekend.
|Elder McKay Woodwell, Sister Hosman, and Sister Riley Christensen, all from the VV1 ward!|
|This is Rachael's childhood friend Lucas Whitmore, they haven't seen each other since his farewell in May|
|They were "Joy School" buddies when we lived on Bainbridge Island & have been like cousins ever since!|
|Sis Mathieson, her trainer ~ she was so happy to see her!|
Sunday we had our Christmas program! Campus is closing for the next three weeks and everyone is headed home for Christmas so they do their special Christmas program a little earlier. We had two of our investigators come and it was a beautiful program! There is something special about hymns, they bring the spirit in such a special way. I love this time of year and all the beautiful hymns that go along with it! The choir was a bit smaller then I am used to but they did great! President Murdock ended the meeting and something he said I had never thought of before. Mas means more so Christmas is just more Christ! I love that! We should remember Christ everyday but we have this special time of year to honor him and think about him just a little bit more. He gave us the greatest gift we could ever receive.
That night we went to dinner with Mrs. Donna. She is the one we work with at the Methodist food pantry. She is so sweet
an amazing cook! That night we went with them to their Christmas cantata! Their church is big and beautiful! There are different wings for nursery, youth and adults. They gave us a tour and it was very cool! The program was very impressive. Both their choir and orchestra were incredible snd lots of the Same songs. There just was something
missing. You could feel it. I am so grateful to have the knowledge of the fullness of the gospel in my life. And so honored to have this opportunity to share it with my brothers and sisters! After the cantata we had an amazing lesson with Jocelyn as always. She is doing so well and her testimony gets stronger everyday. She asked me and sister Blair to sing at her baptism and I can't wait!(:
I hope y'all are having a great Christmas season! I am so grateful for each one of you! Don't forget the reason for the season and ponder about what gift you are going to give to your savior this year. I love y'all! Have a blessed week!❤️
|I'm so glad her 12 days of Christmas arrived in time!|
|Just in time for Star Wars, teaching R2D2 on campus!|
|Just a guy on campus, Rachael loved his suit!|
|Sister Blair and Hosman|
|The Marietta Georgia Zone (Rachael on the right)|