Monday, April 7, 2014

Faith in Every Footstep

This week God decided it was time for me to step up my game a little bit and grow. AKA- trials.
The beginning of this week Sister Pinkston and I were just NOT progressing, and neither were our investigators! Our lessons were confusing, the spirit wasn't there, we were blanking on what to do and I was getting SO frustrated. After a particularly hard day, I finally just knelt down and prayed to my Heavenly Father for some serious help. I knew that Jesus Christ had felt my every struggle, and that because He suffered for me, He knew how to help me. I prayed to be able to draw on the enabling power of the atonement. After a few tears and a mini pep talk, I got up off my knees and decided that I would face the day with a smile- no matter what happened.

On this day, we were especially lost because our all day meeting had been cancelled due to tornado warnings everywhere. We had absolutely NO plans now. We spent a good 3 hours doing our weekly planning, but every time we came back to what we were going to do that day, we drew a blank. Finally, it was time to leave and get to work but we still had no clue what we were going to do. We drove out to the country side (the middle of nowhere) and started walking around trying to find people. Knocking doors isn't fun... but I was determined to make it a good day. LUCKILY, God liked this plan of mine and blessed us with amazing weather. Every door that was shut in our face came with some sort of optimistic way for us to look at it. I don't know what it was, but it felt like nothing could tear me down. As my mood lifted, so did our success. We eventually got to a part of the country where we met three different people with some very open hearts and homes. We called one just the other day to schedule an appointment to go back and teach her, and she told us she had thought about us everyday since we had come!! There was just a pleasant feeling in the air that day. Sister Pinkston later said it was the best day of knocking she's had on her whole mission! I learned that even when I don't have a plan or I don't know what I'm doing, God does. If I put my trust in Him, walking by faith, He will direct my path. He did it that day, and I know He will continue to do so everyday if I but exercise faith in every footstep.
We ran into this old phone booth, I just couldn't NOT check it out!

Okay so I have a secret... I actually am not a fan of southern food. It's too hearty and gritty. How embarrassing! LOL. What I am a fan of though is general conference this week! I could feast on THAT all day everyday! If you didn't get a chance to feast on the words of the prophet and apostles definitely go to and do so. I loved when Elder Ballard talked about member missionary work. If you or your family don't already own a copy of Preach My Gospel then get one!! I definitely plan to study it alongside the Book of Mormon with my own family someday.

Speaking of the Book of Mormon, I had a chance to start it over this week. I didn't even make it to the first chapter in the book before I could feel the spirit testify to me that it was all true. I wish I could describe the feeling. It's just kind of an excitement in my soul. An anxiousness to learn the truth, and an enlightenment. For me, the Book of Mormon is how God witnesses that everything I know is true. If you are struggling to know for yourself what is right, what your purpose is, or any other soul searching question- the Book of Mormon is your gateway to receiving divine revelation and answers from God. I know that because I know the Book of Mormon is true. I also know that wherever there is truth, there the Spirit of the Lord is also. We will WANT to change our lives to bring them in closer harmony with the Saviors teachings. God loves His children.

I can testify of that because this past Friday, none of our appointments worked out and we were at a loss. With an hour left before curfew, we felt inspired to go see a lady named Lisa. She has her own church, and isn't interested in hearing our truth, but she usually lets us in anyway. On our way to her house, I told my companion that we  needed to make sure she knew that God loved her. While we focused our lesson around this point, tears filled Lisa's eyes and she told us how down she had been feeling lately. It was a great testimony to me that while I had taken this women for granted since she wasn't interested in our message, God hadn't. He loves His children no matter what their choices are or if they want to hear His great message.

I guess I still have time for something funny. Hmmm... I think last nights episode was probably the best. We were at the table making a recording of the day and planning for the next, when Sister Pinkston froze in fear. On the ceiling stood the most terrifying spider we had ever seen. It was probably the size of my thumb nail...and if you squinted just right, you could see little legs jutting out from it's brown body. In other words, this was about to be an AWESOME show. Sister Pinkston ran to grab her "spider killer" (I found this to be a rolled up magazine her family had provided her with as a joke) and she preceded to grab a chair and prepare for battle. It probably took a good 10-15 minutes of her slapping the wall with her great weapon of choice, screaming, running away, and then sheepishly returning when she found that she actually hadn't hit it at all before we had much success. I suppose I could have done it for her and saved a lot of time, but I was enjoying myself too much ;). Luckily, I'm a good pep talker, and together we were able to conquer this spider and her great fear. This morning she woke up telling me that she felt ready to take on the world, "one spider at a time". HAHA, aw man. I LOVE my companion.
Sister Pinkston trying to kill the spider
Never take for granted the small things in life, like killing spiders, because really those are what bring us the best memories. When we are down, the Lord will lift us up. Like a child learning to walk, we must have faith that our Father will catch us if we mess up. Even if we do fall, we must believe that He will be the one to pick up back up as we continue stumbling our way through life. I love this great work and I love the little things that make it all worth it. I love you all and thank you to pieces for taking the time to write me and to read my blog!

Your friend,
 Sister Jennifer Hochstrasser

Tennessee Nashville Mission
105 West Park Drive Suite 190
Brentwood, TN  37027

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