Monday, July 20, 2015

April 13th 2015

So Sister Migao is now in a cast. Her ankle hadn't healed at all so they made it completely immobile. But they told her that she can still walk on it as much as she wants to. It will be in the cast for 4 weeks and then back to the boot for 6 more weeks and then she has physical therapy. It seems to be in more pain than it was before. She still doesnt sleep... Like at all! I stayed up one night this week because i wanted to see just how much sleep she got. She didnt sleep until the sun came up. she fell asleep finally at 6 am. 

So last week i took this stress test for adjusting to missionary life and it said that i was in the red. which is the worst stress point. I feel like i am always in the red though. my entire life i have been in the red. So it didnt really phase me that it is that bad. Seems pretty normal to me haha! 

We got a car on Friday! that has helped a lot. This week, we had 3 days where we couldnt do anything because it hurt her too much to walk on her ankle and we also needed to give it some time to rest and heal a bit. So we literally sat in our apartment for 3 days. Doing nothing. So the car has definitely helped us to get out and do missionary work. 

We havnt found a new investigator yet but we were able to get in contact with a past investigator Pattie and she wants to pick back up on the lessons this week. That is good! and she was telling us that she should have just gotten baptized and not waited. (Fingers crossed that she will get baptized!!!)

Well that has been my week.

Bbbuuuuuttttt, I am getting through it! I still wear a smile everyday. And we are getting a lot of support from our leaders and our ward. I have really tried to get to know the STLs better and they have been helping a lot. When we were stuck inside for 3 days, they came and talked with us and made it better than it would have been. The work is picking up and hopefully this week we do much better. 

Saturday we had a follow up trainers meeting. So i got to see the Elders again! Elder Bluhm wasnt there because he is on fire and had 2 more baptisms (They are numbers 7 & 8 since he has been out). But it was a lot of fun getting to see the other 2 again. We get to go to the temple on Wednesday. I need it! Dont know what we will be doing though because im not sure that a purple cast is in the color scheme of things there. But i am still really excited to go there and just be in The Lords house.  I am hoping to get to see the Elders this time! 

Also we are planning on taking Michelle and Kevin to dinner on Tuesday and go see the temple. (Yes mom they are married). Last week was crazy for everyone, not just us. So it didnt happen again. 

This week is going to be much better! Much much better! 

I hope you all have a most wonderful week as well! 

Sister Smithson

April 6th 2015

My two favorite holidays were this weekend; Easter and General Conference. Weren't they just wonderful? I really love hearing from the General Authorities every 6 months. I love hearing the Lords guidance and council through them. 

This week we were supposed to go with Kevin and Michelle to dinner and take a walk around the temple grounds. Michelle loves the idea of eternal marriage and through talking with them they have set that to be their goal. to one day soon get to go through the temple to be sealed for time and all eternity. We haven't been able to make the dinner work yet but next week should be better. 

Since we baptized our teaching pool last week, we are starting from the beginning. Tracting, trying to get member referrals, service, etc. It has been a rough week because we did not teach very many lessons. 

There really inst too much to talk about this week. Today i have been out in the field for 50 days and it has been 62 days since i entered the MTC. Just a couple of cool facts for y'all. 

So today as we were shopping, we walked down our favorite aisle in Walmart and almost cried! This picture will hopefully explain to you our sadness. (If you start to cry as well then i feel your pain!) Inline image 1
(This is the best Ice Cream i have ever had!) 
Moment of silence....................................................................................

(That's a tear)....................................................................................

Well i will leave you with a last thought. I Love this gospel. I am so glad that i get to help others learn of their love for it. I am so grateful for God's love for me and for working through my quiet, shy self. I was in a members home last night and had the opportunity to give lesson 1(The Restoration) (unplanned) to a non-member. For the first half of the lesson i said absolutely nothing. It was almost like i forgot how to teach the lesson (Very likely). When i finally did start talking, one of the members gasped and was really surprised that i was talking (I had hardly spoken since getting to the house)... t'was quite funny. When the topic of Christs ministry on the Earth came, I began to speak and it was like i couldn't stop. The words just filled my heart and overflowed out through my mouth to those in the room. And after i got through the Restoration portion, I became silent again. But as i testified of Christ's Atonement and everlasting love for us, for me, I could feel his love more than i could put into words. He loves me. He loves each of us. And he is desperately trying to find those who are lost. If we just open our mouths and testify of him, He will be able to find his lost sheep. 

I love you!!! Have a most wonderful week!

Sister Smithson

March 30th 2015

For the past few weeks, my zone has been serving at a food bank near by. It was a lot of fun and we met so many awesome people that work there. It is at a christian church but is not associated with the church. We served every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday morning. This Tuesday, a few of us showed up and the doors were locked (They are never locked) so we knocked and one of the owners, Frank, opened the door and asked what we wanted. We told him that we were there to help and he said that they were not able to accept our help anymore. Luckily Elder and Sister Nelson (The old missionary couple) were there and wanted to talk to the pastor that told us not to come back.  When we talked with the pasture, he said that they were very grateful for our service but the reason that we couldn't help anymore was because of our name tags. It was crushing to have the opportunity to serve Got by serving others be taken away from me because of who i am and what i believe. The news of what happened ended up spreading to all the missionaries (My plan to stay hidden and unknown by most missionaries didn't exactly happen. Most people know my name now because we were the main companionship involved with the meeting with the pastor other than the Nelsons). 

So The rest of the week was alright. We didn't have any service and hardly any lessons. We did finish teaching both Megan and Kevin though! 

Saturday! That was a great day :) So we had a car because it was crazy and busy so the STLs lent us their car for the day. It was weird getting to drive a car after 2 months, but it was really nice to have! We got a lot done that morning and late afternoon. So at 1:00 we had a baptism for Megan and Kevin. There were so many people that were there! Half of them were missionaries and non-members. I gave the talk on baptism and i was scared out of my mind. What made it worse was that right as i was about to start my talk, President and Sister Mendenhall walk in.... O_O   I honestly wanted to cry because i was so scared to talk. At first i was struggling hardcore with even getting my words out, BUT... i lived through it and everyone, especially the hardcore Catholics and the other non-members, told me how wonderful it was and how they could tell it was really from my heart and lead by the spirit. so i guess it was a good thing that i spoke.  One of the members, Megan's friend Ali (The one who introduced her to us), came up to me after the meeting and said that she was trying her hardest not to cry (because she didn't want to mess up her makeup) so her and her husband started counting the number of times i said the word "um" ... they counted 26... .   

Megan was baptized first  and then Kevin and we noticed that the water was not filled very high so it was hard but both of them made it with only one try.  The joy that i felt as they walked into the font - "dont know if im elated or gassy, but im somewhere in that zone" (Anna from Frozen). and when they came out of the water -"They were perfect. They were perfection!" (Olan Rogers [Idk what video] I changed the words slightly) But seriously i can't describe the feelings of joy that i had during those few minutes. 

As we were waiting for them to come back into the room, we sang songs about Christ. When Kevin walked in we were singing Praise to the Man and i got so emotional. Images and memories from the beginning flashed through my mind. The first time i met him, the first lesson with him, the first time he came to church, the last lesson, his interview for baptism, when he walked in the room in his white jumpsuit, his steps into the font, and then coming out of the water.  The same images came to my mind when i saw Megan walk in. They have come so far from that first day! They have really changed and i got to be a part of those changes. I got to see and feel the Lord work through me to reach them.  Sister Nelson gave the talk on the Holy Ghost and she would ask us all questions and the non-members were the main people answering and it was really cool! So something different happened. Usually they would get confirmed on Sunday at church but they got confirmed after the talk because one of the guys confirming wouldnt be there on Sunday but it was really a cool experience.  Speaking of Sunday, during the sacrament, I was reading the hymn we had just sung and i looked up at the perfect moment just as Sister Thaler was passing the bread to Megan. Megan, with a huge smile on her face, was able to partake of the sacrament finally. She has wanted to partake of it ever since we started teaching her. In the first lesson she practically told us that she wanted to be baptized and wanted it to be on March 28th so that by Easter she could partake of the sacrament. Of course General Conference ends up being on Easter so that isnt going to happen, but she was just filled with joy! 

So we did not watch the Womens Conference on Saturday. Megan was having a social at her house at 6 so we went there and talked with her parents and her non-member friends instead.  we will hopefully watch the meeting this week with the Nelsons because they didnt watch it either. 

So we got to find out who was being transferred Saturday night. and honestly i was super nervous and scared. In the past, trainers and greenies have been transferred after only the first 6 weeks so there was a possibility that one would leave. Also 8 areas got closed today and we were sure that ours would be one of them because it  is so small. Luckily we are both staying in this area! i think that the two baptisms on Saturday helped with the decision in keeping us here :) 

Man, This was a great weekend! 

Now we are starting from 0. We dont have and investigators, potentials or even referrals. We are going to be doing a lot of tracting (something that i haven't really don't at all yet) but it will be good for us. 

I Love you all! Have a most wonderful week and a great holiday weekend with Conference! Oh also have a great holiday weekend with Easter. HAPPY CONFERENCE AND HAPPY EASTER!

Sister Smithson

March 23rd 2015


I can hardly see my keyboard right now. My eyes are full of tears. This week (I think on Friday) I had a dream. I was out proselyting with my comp (It wasnt Sister Migao just a random person) and a man came up to us and we were talking. Things happened and he got really angry with us. But right before he was about to rip up the BOM we had given to him, he got this horrific look on his face. He was looking slightly above our heads and was wide eyes and white. He slowly backed up and then started running into his home. I was confused so as he backed up i looked behind me and saw an angel standing right between me and my comp. When i saw her face, I instantly knew that it was Madisen. There was no doubt. The reason i am crying right now is because in my dream, she looked exactly how you just described her. I know her smile mom. And it is beautiful, she is beautiful. 

This week was pretty good! We had a Sisters Conference on Tuesday and it was really long but really good. One Wednesday we got to go to the temple. It was amazing and i definitely missed it. Afterwards we went to Deseret Book and when we got there, the place was filled with missionaries! Thursday was a pretty good day also. We had a Zone meeting which lasted forever. Before it started, Sister Migao and I went and set up the tables and chairs and brought some snacks for everyone. The snacks helped with the meeting being so long. but it was pretty good anyways! 

On Saturday morning, we got a very sad voicemail. Pattie called us and said that she wasnt going to continue taking the lessons. She hasnt been putting her all into them and since she is moving to Cali for 6 months there is a lot going on. So i was in a mode of depression for a little bit that morning. I never thought that it would pain me so much to have someone that i love and care for reject the gospel. Especially when they have a testimony of it and know that it is true. It was a rough morning for me but i was able to get past it and get back to work. 

Kevin is doing wonderful! We committed him to stop smoking and he and his wife are struggling but they are doing it! I cant imagine how hard that must be for them. But when you know that it is the right thing to do, you do it without question. They were at church again this week and met many more people! I think that they are starting to feel more comfortable here. 

Megan is, as always, doing fantastic! We decided this week that she isnt a golden investigator. She is platinum! She pretty much teaches us the lessons when we visit with her. She has been so prepared for this!! 

They are both getting baptized on Saturday and i am overjoyed! Seeing how far they have come from when they first met with us is amazing. The gospel is so true and i have seen God's love work in their lives every time i see them! 

Since being out i have grow a strong love and appreciation for the 10 commandments and other commandments we have been given. I think of the word "Commandment" and substitute it for the word "Way". I am no longer following rules, but i am now following God's way. and as i follow his way, i become more like him and grow closer to him. It makes the commandments much more meaningful and personal.

This week is going to be a good one!! I love you! 

Sister Smithson

March 16th 2015

It is crazy how I have been in the field for a month now. 

So this week was a good one. Sister Migao has a boot to walk in and her ankle is starting to heal. She refuses to get a car (we have been offered quite a few cars this week and she continues to say no). It seems that every week something has happened that makes going to work every day hard. The first week we were both sick, the second week, neither of us could sleep, the third week my comp messes up her ankle, and last week we had more issues with the ankle and both had evil tension headaches for a few days. Despite the trials we are still going and working and much as possible. and we are being blessed for it. 

We had a lot of opportunities for service this week. We found a food bank and the entire zone has started serving there. Thursday morning we had a blast at it. I am starting to get to know my district and zone a little bit better. i am still learning the names which is awkward because they all know my name yet i have no clue of what theirs is. There were a couple of days that we were walking and there were people moving in to the apartments near us. so we offered to help and even got the Elders in our district to come and help us out. walking up and down 3 flights of stairs for 30 minutes while carrying heavy boxes and furniture 2 days in a row is some crazy exercise. but it was so much fun and was great help to the people. 

So my investigators are doing great! Megan is progressing so fast and is already super knowledgeable about the church. This week she went with her friend to Deseret Book and bought a quad and got her name engraved on it (there is no turning back now). She is so excited for her baptism. she already has invited a bunch of friends and family and has asked a family friend in our ward to baptize her. She is getting baptized on March 28th. Kevin is also getting baptized then. He isnt progressing as much as Megan is but he is working on it. He is working to stop smoking. He really is doing great.
So this week we found out that our investigator Pattie is moving to CA for 6 months in April. She had a baptism date for the 28th as well but is not going to make it. she hasnt come to church yet and we are trying to figure out what to do with her. We are going to continue to teach her until she moves but we are praying for her as well. There is a possibility that she wont be moving because her husband might get laid off, but they arent sure yet. 

It has been a pretty good week! it has warmed up here for now. everyone keeps saying that there will be another big storm or two before mothers day. Most of the snow has melted so we are praying that there isnt more coming. Mainly because of Sister Migaos ankle. Snow and ice makes it really hard to walk in a boot. 

I think this week is spring break for the girls... i hope they have loads of fun! 

I love you all and i hope you have a wonderful week! 

Sister Smithson

March 9th 2015

Trials are everywhere! I have gone through so many while being on my mission. But i am thankful for them. They help me grow in so many ways.

So the beginning of the week was full and we worked really hard. then came thursday... Thursday we had 2 lessons with our investigators. Pattie cancelled on us again so that was sad. So we had a great lesson with our new investigator, Megan. She has been to church a couple of times already so she knows a little bit about the church and what we believe. She is now on date for baptism for the 28th of March. She practically asked to be baptized. When i asked her about it she said that she thought it would be really cool to be able to take the sacrament on Easter. She is so awesome and ready to learn. After we met with Megan we went to District meeting. It had started at one and we knew that we would be late so we let our district leader know. we showed up almost an hour late because of the lesson with Megan. (They fed us lunch as well). What we were able to hear of the lesson was really good. ii actually learned a lot from the 20 minutes that we were there for. Right when it ended, we had a lesson with Kevin so we ran out of there to head over to meet with him and Michelle. We were really nervous to teach him this lesson because he had mentioned before that all he ever hears about when talking with members is about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith. Well, that was what this lesson was about... so i was real nervous. But it actually went really well! He enjoyed it and we helped him understand why we have the Book of Mormon and how it works with the Bible. When we got out of our lesson, we checked the phone and had 20 missed calls from the AP, 5 missed calls from our zone leaders, and 2 missed calls from our Sister Training Leaders, 2 voicemails and 3 texts. We flipped! Sister Migao was scared to call them back because she thought that something was wrong. It turned out that we were supposed to take our car to a church building around 3 to give it to some other elders. We were never told when or where to take the car so we had no idea! We had to drive an hour to get to the building... we felt so bad that we made them wait 2 hours!  So after we got back to our apartment, we ate dinner (We had to cancel our dinner appointment because of the car situation) and then we started to walk to a members home. About halfway there, Sister Migao slipped on some ice (It was dark and she didnt see it) and she sprained her ankle.

For the next couple of days she would limp around on it in hope that it would heal pretty fast. On Saturday at Stake Conference, the mission doctor (He is the old missionary serving in the same ward as us) he took a look at her ankle and it was really swollen and was way too much pain for a normal sprained ankle. so we went to his daughters house (she lives in the stake) and she gave Sister Migao and ice pack and called her neighbor who is a really good orthopedic doctor that Elder Nelson has worked with before. So he came over and checked out her ankle and thought it could be broken. so he gave her some crutches and told her to stay off her ankle until Monday. \

The weekend was tough because Sister Migao couldnt walk very much or very fast. So if we could get rides to appointments and church meetings we were able go get out of the house, but since we no longer had the car, we couldnt go many other places. She also had shooting pains through her leg that makes it impossible for her to sleep. So she rested and i studied most of the day on Saturday and Sunday. I was for a while able to go on exchanges with one of the STLs for a couple of hours and that was fun. 

This morning Elder and Sister Nelson took us to Brother Riley's (The doctor from Saturday night) office in Golden to get some x-rays. Luckily the ankle did not break. She tore the Deltoid ligament that was connected to the Medial Malleolus. so it is just a really really really bad sprain. She got a boot so she no longer has to hobble around on the crutches. 

It has been an interesting couple of days. I am sure that the Aps, and Zone Leaders think that we just really didnt want to give up the car and would do anything to get it back... even tear a ligament in an ankle. Haha but that is definitely not why that happened. 

I am loving it here... I love my companion, the ward, and the work. Despite the difficulties we have had, it has been great and we have been blessed. 

Love you all!

Sister Smithson

March 2nd 2015

Wow what a week! I was still sick for the first half but quickly got over it. I am still trying to get sleep at night, the NyQuil was helping for a while but now that i am no longer sick i need to find something else to help me. despite my sleepiness and sickness, i tried my hardest to work and serve and teach, and in the end it really paid off. 

This week we were finally able to meet with a couple of our investigators, Pattie and Kevin. We met Kevin on Friday. His wife, Michelle, is really inactive. And she is crazy... but not in a bad way. She gets distracted very easily and lead the conversation in 50 different places. Kevin, however was very focused. He has met with the missionaries before but he was not as ready or prepared then. He is really focused and determined to follow through with it this time and i feel like he is really prepared. during the lesson, despite all of Michelle's distractions, I extended my first baptism invite!! Honestly i wasn't too nervous for it. it kind of just happened and felt right.  What was even better is that he said that he would get baptized on March 21st! I am so happy and excited for him finally taking control of his life and making the changes necessary for baptism. Both Kevin and Michelle came to church yesterday and stayed for all 3 hours. They said that it was really long but i think that they enjoyed it a lot. 

On Saturday we were able to meet with Pattie again. We taught her the first lesson and the spirit was SO STRONG!  For the second time in 24 hours, i extended the invitation of baptism. And again for a second time, the answer was yes! It is wonderful how the Lord works in preparing these people to hear and accept this gospel. She did not, however, come to church. :(  so we no longer have a set date for her. it was originally the 21st but since she didn't come to church we have to move it. Right before i got on to email she called us and was asking us about how many people she can invite to her baptism and if there will be room enough for a lot of people. It has only been two days and she is already telling her friends and family about it! 

At church we met Megan. She has come with her friend once before to church and wants to begin the missionary discussions. We have a time set to meet with her this week. She is awesome and we just connected automatically. I am so happy to get to teach her and see her progression. 

I SHOVELED MY FIRST DRIVEWAY! (and might i add, it was horrible.) i don't know how people can do it so much here. It is tiring and useless. we shoveled it, went inside and taught a 10 minute lesson, and when we came back outside it started to snow again and the driveway was exactly as it was before we shoveled it. It was fun getting to do some service though. 

Speaking of service... on Thursday night, we were driving from an appointment and we passed the Spanish Elders car. The night before we had challenged a part member family to choose someone in their family and do a kind deed for them. The father turned the challenge on us and asked us to do the same thing with some other missionaries. So this was a perfect opportunity. we pulled over, wrote little encouraging notes on some sticky notes and put them on the windows. then we got some of our hot-hands and put them on the windshield. Not too sure how long they had been inside, we went tried to visit some less active members and on our way back, we saw the elders come out of the house and walk to their car. So we pulled over to watch what would happen. it wasn't too interesting... they just saw the notes and the hot-hands, got in their car, and left. No matter what the outcome, service always brings great feelings into your heart. We don't get many opportunities to do service for the community here but we have got to serve our ward members and fellow missionaries quite a bit and it is so wonderful. 

On Friday a strange thing happened. Sister Migao's Dad and Sister took us to dinner. (Yes we had permission from the mission president).  They were in town for her sisters volleyball tournament. Her dad is not a member so President Mendenhall thought it would be a good idea for him to see Sister Migao and how she has changed.  It was mainly for him but i could tell that she needed it too. 

Saturday morning i got to see the Elders from the MTC again! I was missing them a lot... it was awesome to be back with them and get to talk about how our missions are going. They are doing great, as suspected, and one has already had two baptisms. 

Well it has been a great week... i am ready for what the new one has in store :) 

Love to all!

Sister Smithson

p.s. Thank you Mom and Sister Curry for the letter and Ali for the package!! Have a wonderful day!