Monday, May 19, 2014

Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair!


                        The Mother's Day party Mariachi band surprise!

Greetings from Texas everyone! I'm glad to hear that you are all doing well! Jake and Erin, I can already tell your baby is going to be the cutest little guy ever. I'm soooo excited!!! Sounds like everyone is managing to stay super busy, and I feel ya, the weeks are just flying by. But I am embracing the time while I have it!
This week I was told for about the eighth time that I look like Rapunzel from Tangled. Instead of greeting me as Hermana Hoj, someone said "Hello Rapunzel." haha so that was funny. I think Hermana Burnham was the first one to tell me that and from that point multiple people have said the same thing. haha sorry that was random but I thought I'd tell ya'll anyways.

THIS WEEK HAS BEEN AWESOME! There have been ups and downs, but mostly ups and the Lord is blessing us tremendously. M and J (the twins) went to mutual and came to church this last week!!! YAY!!!!!! Seriously makes me soooo happy!! They are so awesome and I am so grateful that we get to know them! Some other news that is kind of sad, yet happy at the same time is that A moved so we won't be seeing her anymore. It's good because she left the guy she was living with to stay with her aunt because she realized she wasn't happy there with him. So I'm so sad because I won't get to see her anymore, but I am also happy that she will be able to feel better about her life. 

But the big miracle of the week...On Saturday our zone decided to make a goal to extend as many baptismal dates as possible to help us reach our goals, and the Lord is so amazing!!!!!! We had a member with us to visit an investigator and we were planning on extending the baptismal commitment to him. We knock on his door, and no answer. He wasn't home. We were thinking for a moment and decided to try an former investigator that we had dropped awhile back. As we walk up to the door it was open, and she was sitting there with two men who ended up being her sons. One is visiting from Mexico and the other lives a few streets over from his mom. We began talking with them and they had some really interesting questions. The one from Mexico was pretty much doing all the talking, but he was amazed that there are so many youth all over that are willing to sacrifice time for the Lord and help other people. (He said that he sees missionaries walking around in Mexico all the time) We began teaching them the Restoration, and gave them pamphlets to look at. They wanted to stop talking for a minute after we explained the story of Joseph Smith and read it from the folleto themselves. After the lesson Hna Baxter and I were talking and realized that both of us were praying and praying and praying that the Spirit would touch them and that they would know that it was true. We looked over at the other brother (Jose) as he was wiping tears away from his eyes. The Spirit was so strong and you could tell they felt so peaceful. With our goal to set as many baptismal dates as possible I said to myself "There is no way that I am leaving here without extending a baptismal invitation." Hna Baxter and I looked at each other and we knew that the Spirit was strong and that it was the right moment to extend the invitation. We asked them if they would be baptized after they knew these things were true, and Jose said yes!! The other brother will be here for 3 weeks and then go back to Mexico, but he told us that he wants missionaries to come visit him there! Can you say, MIRACLE!?!?! The Lord is so good and he truly is putting those prepared people in our path. Please keep them in your prayers and ask for them to have the Spirit testify to their hearts.

Lastly, yesterday I was given the opportunity to speak in church on the importance of a personal testimony. I found out Saturday night right before bed, so I said a prayer to help me know what it was that I needed to say and went to bed trusting that the Lord would help me out. The next thing I knew, I was awake with ideas flooding my mind so I got up and started writing. I shared examples from the Book of Mormon of people who were great examples of faith and when confronted with trials they didn't deny what they knew to be true. (Go read these because I don't have time to expand on them all) The first was Jacob 7:5, Abinadi in Mosiah 17:9-10, Moroni 1:2-3, and Joseph Smith History 1:25. Such good scriptures! I shared my experience of choosing not to play games on Sundays and how I have seen my life blessed because of that. It truly is in those trying moments that we are able to gain for ourselves a personal testimony. How important it is to have a testimony that is strong, one that cannot be shaken!!! I love the gospel and I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!!

Have a stellar week, love you all!!!

Hermana Hoj

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