|Endure to the End!|
The following morning, Saturday, July 18th, the elders came to pick up the car from us and when we went outside to meet them we saw some of the damage from the storm from the night before. This huge tree split in two and came crashing down. We figured it would probably be our only time to be able to carve something into a tree without getting in trouble out here so we ran back upstairs and grabbed some kitchen knives and went to work. The funny part of this story is the fact that once we were done and went to go back inside someone had shut the door we had propped open so we were left locked outside of our apartment building early on a Saturday morning. Don't worry we were only out there for almost two hours... yeah... we learned our lesson... don't EVER leave without the keys!
|Locked out and waiting... and waiting... and waiting...|
That afternoon our ward was able to go to the St. Paul Temple. Us missionaries were able to go and do an endowment session and then after we got to go and help the ward with confirmations. It was neat to be able to be there with so many members from the ward. Afterwords, we had a dinner for the ward at the church building right next to the temple and then the Temple President came and spoke to us for a little bit about the importance of temples.
|The St. Paul Temple|
Sunday, the 19th, Iris came to church and we had a wonderful sacrament meeting. The talks were focused on pioneers, but they specifically talked about how WE are modern day pioneers. It was so cool to hear Iris express how she felt like a modern day pioneer for her family. It is true though, we each are a modern day pioneer in some way. Check out the video #IAmAPioneer
That evening, we had a President's Fireside and guess who spoke?! None other than my very favorite Kathy! And oh man was so great! She was getting everyone to bust up laughing! It was so wonderful to be able to see Kathy and so many other people from back in Minnetonka. I sure love my Minnetonka folk!
|Reunited... Sister Parke, Kathy, and me!|
On Monday, July 20th, we started the day off by going to "People Serving People" with the elders. We were able to serve lunch to some of the homeless in Minneapolis. We saw some of our favorite kids, but unfortunately we weren't able to play with them afterwords today.
|This is how I roll... at People Serving People ;)|
That afternoon, we met with Iris and talked more about her baptism. She had talked with her parents and they had some concerns (as most parents do) and just wanted to make sure she knew what she was getting into before she jumped into being baptized. We had a wonderful lesson and were able to talk about faith to move forward. We promised her that her parents will be able to support her by her baptismal date if she continues to keep them involved with what she is learning. So Iris has set the goal of getting baptized on August 15th and is going to move forward towards that day. We are so proud of Iris and her progress!
That night for FHE the ward went out to play softball. Sister S. and I ended up going out with Elder and Sister Higbee. The Higbees and us were able to have a great little heart to heart about somethings that have been weighing on our minds. let me tell you, those two are so full of wisdom! Our ward is sure lucky to have them around! I wish everyone had people like the Higbees they could turn to. I personally want to thank the Higbees for all their love and support!
Tuesday, the 21st, we met with Iris again. We had given her some reading assignments from the BOM so today we were able to go over those. We studied about when Aaron teaches King Lamoni's Father (in Alma 22) and King Lamoni's Father is willing to give up ALL his sins to KNOW God! This is one of my most favorite stories from the scriptures! I love his faith and desire to know God.
We did some contacting this afternoon and we met the most interesting kid, Cole from Homer, Alaska. He was quite the character to say the least. After spending just a few minutes with him I have decided to put Homer, Alaska on my list of places to visit. Cole explained it as this this tiny community of about 40 people who do everything together. They garden together, they eat dinner together, and they even give thanks at the end of the day together. Who doesn't want to check out that little community up there?! It sounds like a little piece of Heaven if you ask me.
Tonight, the Higbees were teaching institute so we were all about joining in on their class. It was nice to be able to sit in on a religion class. I love being about to see all of these young single adults come together in the evening to learn and grow in the gospel! The strength of the members is just incredible!
On Wednesday, July 22nd, we did more contacting around campus and we actually bumped into one of our neighbors from our apartment building. We were able to talk to him for a bit and left him with the challenge to pray and come to church this Sunday. Hopefully, he will come with our other neighbor Ague. We're crossing our fingers!
We got together with Dixon later that day. Dixon has had so many crazy things thrown at him since the day he decided to be baptized. It's very clear Satan doesn't want him to get baptized, but Dixon isn't letting anything get in his way! We ended up having the elders join us so they could give Dixon a Priesthood blessing. Dixon is tough and he is TOTALLY relying on the Lord—I have NO doubt Heavenly Father is so proud of Dixon and all he is doing! Talk about a modern day pioneer!
To help release some stress Dixon challenged me to another ping-pong game and again... I won. Poor Dixon—he just can't beat me ;) Don't worry Dixon—one day ;)
We went to visit Jenna on Thursday, July 23rd. It had been awhile since we visited her. She is doing good. There are some other sister missionaries that live down the hall from her in her apartment building so they have kinda taken her under their wing and she has been going to the family ward with them. It was good to see Jenna. I miss that girl! We had to check in with her and remind her of her goal of finishing the BOM by the end of the year. She hadn't been reading the last little while, but she committed to pick it back up again. Yay! You can do it Jenna!
Tonight we helped Dixon get moved out of his place. For a couple of days there Dixon didn't know where he was going to be living, but he kept relying on the Lord and BAM guess what?! God took care of him! Dixon ended up getting the perfect set up! Patience is something I struggle with, but I am starting to see that no matter what everything always works out! Heavenly Father has a plan! We simply have to trust Him and exercise our faith and patience!
Friday, July 24th, we went to FMSC with our zone in the morning and then in the afternoon the Higbees took us and Dixon to the temple. It was Dixon's first time to go to the temple! He instantly fell in love with it! He couldn't stop talking about the wonderful spirit that he felt simply walking around the temple. The five of us read from the scriptures and prayed together. It was a special time to simply reflect outside of the Lord's House. I am so grateful we have a temple so close here in St. Paul. I look forward for the day when Dixon will be able to enter inside and receive more of the blessings the temple has to offer!
|We sure love Dixon!|
|Sister Steadman and me... gosh I love this girl!|
Brad invited us over to his place tonight to join in on his Mom's birthday celebration. They had cooked up a TON of Indian and Jamaican food! This meal was nothing short of a feast! It was a good thing there were a lot of people because there was enough food to feed an army! People don't mess around out here when it comes to their food! Their motto is, "Go BIG or go HOME!"
Sister Steadman ended the night off by getting stuff ready for the ward talent show that is coming up. We are working on our own little part for the show... I don't want to give anything away, but let me just say... it's HILARIOUS!!! The ward is in for a treat that is for sure!
Scripture of the week: Isaiah 40:31
|Theo and Uffda... or should I say G.I Joe and G.I. Jane?!|
Yeah we have some tough teddies!
|Just hanging out with the ELDERS!!!|
|Is my tie straight?!|
|"Elder" Larson, at "his" best ;)|
|This is in honor of our favorite Elder Heaps and Elder Koster from the MTC!|
We sure miss those guys!
|Have I mentioned that the misquotes here are BIG and BLOODY?! Nasty huh?!|
|Thanks for the surprise package Sister Petersen! I loved it!|