I have been called as a Missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to serve in the Alaska Anchorage Mission for 18 months (Jul 2016 - Jan 2018). This blog is a compilation of the weekly letters I send home which contain my experiences, thoughts, and feelings in the mission field.
This week has flown by. We live most of the time from Monday to Monday just because it is like our "break" from missionary work, yet we still are missionaries and need to take opportunities even on Mondays to share the gospel. Here are some highlights from the week:
Change Up P-Day: So we get a text from the elders saying we are going to have our p-day fun outside at the park. We thought we were going to do something different, but when we get there they were playing basketball ! We go outside to play basketball ?! \ We can do that in the church ! So we played lightning/knock-out and a game of basketball before some of us just threw around a football. One of the Samoan elders stepped on my foot so I've had a bruise on my foot all week. At least it didn't hurt while I walked.
Pizza Hut: We haven't had a district meeting in over three weeks because of transfers, and then we were supposed to have zone meeting, but received an email from President saying they are disbanded due to the zone conferences taking place every transfer. We didn't have it the week following because we had zone conference so we finally had it this past week. It was good. I didn't realize how much I missed them. Sister Williams and I went to Pizza Hut afterwards for lunch and this guy named Dean started talking to us about Church. He works for the military and has been up here in Alaska for about 3 years. He said he attended our church a couple of times down in Texas. Before we really began talking to him I got the feeling that his interest wasn't really the church, but that the fact we were girls. This became more apparent as he asked us if we are allowed to date on our missions. He said he would come to church this Sunday, but he never showed. At least I feel good that we took the opportunity to share the gospel with someone while at lunch.
Temple: I am so glad we had the opportunity to go to the temple this week. I love going to the temple ! I feel the spirit so strongly, and I am the best version of myself the rest of the day. I have been thinking a lot more and more about my plans after the mission and if my idea to teach seminary and institute is the right course for me to follow. I prayed about it more in the temple, but didn't feel like I got a strong answer either way. Every time I think about it, though, I feel good about it and get more excited to go into that profession.
Spider: So one morning we were finishing our exercise and Sister Williams is about to go take a shower when she almost stepped on this quarter-sized spider! She wanted me to kill it and I was like heck no! I grabbed one of her shoes and it didn't die when I put the shoe on it, so I left and made Sister Williams do it. I just played around on the Ukulele while she videoed herself killing the spider. Eventually she got a can of hair spray to kill it. Alaska is crawling around with a ton of spiders now that the snow is gone. The mosquitos are out too. The joke is that the Alaskan state bird is the mosquito. If that is the case than the Alaskan state animal is the spider. I am just glad I haven't seen any bees yet. They are the worst.
Kemalie and Jamie: They are both the grandchildren of the Henson's in our ward. We had a lesson with them after dinner on Friday. We played a game with them and then showed them the diagram of the Plan of Salvation. It was a bit interesting that the game we played kinda had principles of the Plan of Salvation in it. It was a lot of fun and I think the kids understood what they could. We might have to reteach that some time later though. We invited both to church but only Jamie came.
Life is a Football Game: On our way to appointments/visiting people we listen to music in the car. Sister Williams was sent her mother's IPod so we thumbed through some of the music and found talks by John Bytheway, Brad Wilcox, and this guy named Tony Dunn. We listened to one of them and it was hilarious! We then tried listening to more from Tony Dunn and found this talk called Life is a Football Game. I have heard the Plan of Salvation be compared to a sport before, but never in as much detail as this guy goes into. He is a great speaker as well that just makes you laugh the whole time through. He explains that our time here on earth is playing the game, but life after death is the homecoming party. We don't want to have us be there by ourselves. A party is no fun without people at the party. We are here out on missions to be the "recruiters" to have people play on our team and be there for the homecoming party in the afterlife. I hope that I be with a lot of my family members, if not all and the friends I have made a long the way there after we get through this tough life.