Sunday, October 5, 2014

SUPER Week! Month 7

Hello again! This week I hit my 7 month mark... that's wild! Wild because I still have so much time, and wild because I don't have enough time! 
This pday was really fun, we went with Hannah and Ella (recent converts) to Metropolis. AKA Superman capital of the world! I also got to try Dip&Dots for the first time :) (ice cream?)

We spent that evening biking around and seeing investigators. As we were riding, some kid yelled at us something about saving the environment by riding bikes. Then his friend shouts out: "TWO HOT GIRLS ON BIKES, SAVING THE UNIVERSE!" I stopped and told them to be respectful, and then gave them a picture of Jesus. lol. Two hot girls on bikes saving the universe.... I think that is going to be Sister Smith's and my motto this transfer ;)

Sandwiched in-between such an exciting week was our district meeting. I finally have a picture of everyone that I can show you! 
Man, I feel so lucky to be out here. Let me explain to you what a typical hour of my day consists of. I'll use the example of what happened this past Thursday: We hopped on our bikes, but didn't get far because we stopped to talk to some guys mowing the church's lawn. One was from England and has a great accent. We invited them to church, and then headed out to a recent converts house. We had to mountain bike down a seriously scary trail, but we made it out okay.
Then we arrived at the recent convert's house. It was super hot outside, but we couldn't go in because he is the only one home. SO he grabbed some pillows to sit on, some ice water, and we proceeded to go to the shady side of his apartment complex. While getting situated I saw a family moving in next door, so I ran over and offered to help them. They declined, so I returned over to Sister Smith and we began our lesson.  I was sitting on a pillow, leaning up against a fence and listening to a talk by President Monson. It was so beautiful outside, and we all took notes of the things the spirit taught us. Afterwards, we talked about it and helped to prepare this recent convert for his surgery tomorrow. 
He was optimistic, and even though his foot was getting cut off on Friday, he found lots of comfort in the words of President Monson. We said a closing prayer and then headed to our next appointment. 
Isn't that just so sweet?! I mean, who does that?! I guess missionaries do! :D

Oh but wait, this all gets better. Friday was the day I'd been waiting for for half of a year now. It was the day I got to go to the temple! For those of you who don't know, temples are the most sacred place on earth. They are a place where earth and heaven meet and where we feel close to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. On our way to it, I began to worry that maybe I wasn't worthy to enter such a holy place. I thought about all of the different mistakes I had made, and began to pray earnestly for forgiveness. When we got to the temple I got butterflies. Before going in, I walked around the outside of the temple for a few minutes. Heavenly Father gently reminded me that no one is perfect, and despite my faults, I have done all that He has asked of me to be able to enter His Home on earth. What a blessing that our Father in Heaven is so merciful!! At the end of my time in the temple, I sat in a room called the celestial room. It is the most beautiful place in the whole temple. The Celestial room represents what living with Heavenly Father will be like. I was able to visit quietly with each of the sisters in my zone, and Heavenly Father helped me to see how important loving each of them is. Love is what we naturally crave. It's what motivates us. It's what brings confidence and joy. In the temple that day, I felt so much love. It was wonderful :). 

Speaking of love, one of the greatest things is seeing Heavenly Father show others His love, through you. On Saturday we called a member to see if she could do us a favor. As soon as she picked up the phone and merrily greeted us, I found myself asking her how she was feeling and what we could do to help her. She began to cry, asking us how we knew. We were at her house in 10 minutes, serving her and making her burden light. She told us she couldn't believe Heavenly Father loved her enough to send us in this time of trial she was having, she was so grateful we listened to the spirit and came. I had no idea this Sister needed our help, but God did!
Another instance of this is with another Sister who is the busiest woman on the planet. She is finishing up her degree in engineering, has 4 kids, is going through a nasty divorce, and constantly is sharing the gospel and magnifying her calling. We often feel bad for imposing on her with missionary work, until one day she looked at us with tears in her eyes and said, "Life may be hard right now, but this (missionary work with us) is the happy part." 

It reminds me of the new Mormon message "you never know". 
you never know video

In Paducah every year they do what's called "BBQ on the River". Our ward mission leader took us for lunch on Saturday! I got to have my first ever fried Oreo. I can happily tell you my life has changed forever, lol. The streets were beautiful, it was so fun! Plus, Heavenly Father put someone in our path who wanted a Book of Mormon!Lastly, was Sunday. Upon taking the sacrament this week (bread and water) I recall reflecting again on how merciful our Savior is, in letting us each week become clean from our sins and given a renewal of our spirits. At the temple, I was reminded that I was worthy, and in taking the sacrament I again knew I was worthy. Not meaning that I was perfect or free of fault, but meaning that I had a desire to improve (repent). The sacrament is a catalyst for personal repentance and improvement. What a loving God we have to give us such a thing! 

Just like my experience at the temple, with the sisters of our ward, and with the sacrament, I am just in awe at how merciful the Savior is, and how much love he has for us. I feel It when I pray, when I sing, when I teach, and when I see Him work through me.

Don't forget to pray for your missionaries by name this week! 

Sister Hochstrasser 

Write to me!
Sister Jennifer Hochstrasser
Tennessee Nashville Mission
105 West Park Drive Suite 190
Brentwood, TN  37027

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