Wednesday, August 26, 2015

August 24, 2015

So, it's been a long week.  The stomach flu has been getting passed around, and it turns out we aren't immune, so we had to take it easy for a few days. But we are feeling much better now.

We had a fantastic Zone Conference on Wednesday, and I'm liking our new President and his wife more and more. Things seem to be picking up for the mission, especially because of walk-and-talk August. Miracles have come rolling in as people see us on the streets and stop to talk to us. We picked up two new investigators this week from it! Hooray for street contacting! For one of them, we were walking to an appointment and saw a lady sitting on a front step. We went up and talked to her, and were surprised when she responded that yeah, she would like to introduce her grandchildren to a church and wanted to come to ours. I was blown away because that kind of response almost never happens, but when it does, I can't help but look heavenward and thank Heavenly Father for yet another tender mercy and miracle.

Oh, and guess what?! As of tomorrow I will have officially been in Canada for 6 months!!!!!! 1/3 of the way there!!! I have no idea how that happened, it's totally flown by. Still feels like it's only been a couple of months... Strange to think I come home in one year. It seems like not that long, but at the same time, an eternity.

My greenie and I were talking about how every missionary has a "light switch," something that gets us excited to talk/teach/work. As she is working to figure out her own, I've been thinking a lot about mine. It's hard to put it into words, but I'd say my own spark has become the reason why I am still out here -- it's when you're talking to people and you can see it on their face when it finally clicks, when they finally see how the big picture works together and they recognize through the Spirit that it's all true, it's real. Their countenance changes, a light creeps in their eyes, and a smile of excitement fills their face. They are filled with hope and joy in finally knowing for themselves.

I love it out here, meeting new people and planting or harvesting gospel seeds. It's not until I've gotten a new sister's perspective to contrast my own that I've realized how much has changed in the last six months, and how much I love being a servant of the Lord. It is so ridiculously hard, and there are days that drag by, but it is totally 100% worth it.

As always, I love you all!!

Sister Patterson

Sunday, August 23, 2015

August 17, 2015

Hello again!

I hope you are all doing well, and enjoying the end of summer!

So, life totally threw me a curve ball. Guess who got a call to be a trainer?! Yup, yours truly is now training her own little greenie missionary... Or, as we say up here, I officially have a "daughter" in the mission! *shiver* It's sooo weird! I still feel too new and way under qualified! So, a big warm welcome to the greatest mission on earth to ..... Sister Tolbert!!!

(Literally though, it was super warm this week, we hit 36! mosquito's everywhere...) I was super sad to say goodbye to my old companion Sister Creech, but am excited to start a new adventure. Sister Tolbert is from Spanish Fork, Utah, and is one of 27 missionaries that just came out to the field! So now I will be in Prairie Winds until early November (most likely). I pray we see a lot of success between now and then...

The theme for this week seems to be trusting in and relying on the Lord.

Often, we seem to forget what the Lord promises us when we are trying to do the best we can to do what's right and keep our commitments to follow the Savior. I take great comfort in the scripture that says, " ... I will go before your face, I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." (D&C 84:88) I know that that is true; we have His support and love, the Lord is at our side. And He is bound to bless us when we obey. I know our Father in Heaven loves each one of us and that he is mindful of our every desire and effort. I know that one of the greatest gifts he has given us is the gift of the Holy Ghost, as it comforts, guides, and testifies according to our needs. We are not left to walk through life alone; He is there, and countless loved ones on the other side cheer us on. Stay strong, and press forward exercising faith enough to act. I promise that as you do, you will witness blessings pour down from heaven.

Lots of Love,
Sister Patterson

Sunday, August 9, 2015

August 3, 2015

Hey ya'll!

It's gonna be short today - and sorry for the inconsistency of emails. 
SO, life is crazy, but awesome! Thank you all for the birthday wishes!!! To celebrate we ended up going for sushi with some other missionaries and members. The best birthday present, though, came that evening when we were tracting and found a new investigator! :)

And I'm sure you heard about the "tornado" we had. We could see the spiral cloud forming, but luckily nothing really happened...

Our mission has an annual tradition of something called "Walk-And-Talk August," which is when we have to park our cars for the month (except for emergencies) and just walk, bike, bus, or hitchhike everywhere. :)  Great fun. we should change the words to the primary song to "missionaries sang as they walked and walked and walked and walked..." ;) Anyway, as the mission pulls together to increase street contacting and increase our numbers, we have seen miracles happen! Just the other day, another set of missionaries ran into someone downtown, passed them off to us, and in the first lesson that person not only agreed to be baptized, but referred us to some friends who were interested as well! Hooray!

To close, I just want to share something another missionary told me: "Obedience brings blessings, but strict obedience brings miracles." I can testify that that is very true; when we try to do good from day to day, we are able to receive those many blessings Heavenly Father rains down on us. But when we make a conscious dedicated effort to live the gospel of Jesus Christ and keeping those covenants we have made, we will see miracles come! He is aware of our every need and desire, he applauds even our small successes from day to  day, and He stands waiting to step in and help us.

According to President Uchtdorf: 
"Part of our challenge is, I think, that we imagine that God has all of His blessings locked in a huge cloud up in heaven, refusing to give them to us unless we comply with some strict, paternalistic requirements He has set up. But the commandments aren’t like that at all. In reality, Heavenly Father is constantly raining blessings upon us. It is our fear, doubt, and sin that, like an umbrella, block these blessings from reaching us.
"He is not waiting to love you until you have overcome your weaknesses and bad habits. He loves you today with a full understanding of your struggles. He is aware that you reach up to Him in heartfelt and hopeful prayer. He knows of the times you have held onto the fading light and believed—even in the midst of growing darkness. He knows of your sufferings. He knows of your remorse for the times you have fallen short or failed. And still He loves you.
"He loves you not only for who you are this very day, but also for the person of glory and light you have the potential and the desire to become." 
(General Women's Meeting September 2014)
I know that this is true, that He knows and loves each individual perfectly, and that we find greater hope and joy as we come closer to him.

I love you all!

Sister Patterson