Thursday, February 5, 2015

PADUCAH



Well everyone, I just want to take this time to tell you all how much I LOVE Paducah. Next week I'll hit 6 months in this town, and it couldn't have been any better.

Thanks to everyone who reached out to me on my birthday week :)!  Dinner with the Nordstrom family was a treat, they gave me a gorgeous figurine of a girl praying. I also was given this super cute "happy jar" from Kyla, my good friend in the ward. Many others helped to make it a great day as well.
      The next day I woke up soooo sick feeling, not too excited about the exchange I'd have to go on. But I knew Heavenly Father would give me the strength to do it, and he totally did! Hermana Eastwood and I had the happiest time! She is spanish speaking serving here in Paducah, she said it was really strange speaking English all the time with me! hahaha
I sure have come to love old Paduchah, Kentucky. On our way to Lisa's lesson the other day we almost hit a raccoon, and a few miles later we almost slammed into a possum. Apparently it's the missions tradition to kick one, but then President Andersen sent out an email to all of us and put a stop to that one. I didn't even get to try... 
       It's okay though, I have much better things to do. Did you know the National Quilt Museum is here in Paducah? (yes, that's a thing)
     This was probably the fastest month of my life. There was a point where I wasn't super happy, and Sister Curtis stopped me and called me out on it and we fixed it. I'm so grateful for her being bold about how our companionship is doing and what not. I also am really glad I'm humble enough to listen and correct, because I probably wouldn't be as good at it the beginning of my mission. I'm not perfect, but Heavenly Father is helping to mold me more and more. :) I feel like the theme of my mission has been "changed by grace" hahaha. 
Basically, I just want to take some time to tell you about why I love this place so much. Aside from all the road kill, It's one of the most lively 
places. Everyone here is just so nice and willing to listen. I've also learned soooo much about grace, humility, charity, and correction. I've also learned how to teach on the spot, like this Saturday when we did a whole presentation on scriptures study for the Stake Women's Conference and we only had that morning to prepare! (Thank you chapter 2 of Preach My Gospel).
     Oh and guess what else happened this week?? We went up to Metropolis Illinois to see a less active family and they took us out in their ATV to go mudding!! It was soooo fun!

     And of course the best part of that is that they came back to church for their first time in a year this past Sunday, and got up during testimony meeting to bare their testimonies and personally thank us for not giving up on them. The people here are just the sweetest. 
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     I also really love working with Sister Curtis. She is my third companion in Paducah, and they've all been really different from each other. This next week is the last of the transfer, and  I am so determined to make it the best. I've been praying really hard to have complete charity for her. I did that at the beginning of my time here so I could love the people and it totally worked, so I figure Heavenly Father would also answer my prayer so
     I could more fully love her. It can be hard trying to introduce someone to a whole new area, but I think one thing that was interesting is at one point in our lessons it suddenly didn't really matter to me if I didn't understand where the lesson was going or if one of us was doing most of the talking or not enough. All I wanted was for her and I to be involved as much as possible because I know that when we are equally yoked the Spirit can be there, and that we BOTH are called to be here working side by side with the Savior.
Sunday was a day of miracles in the Paducah Ward. So many less actives and investigators came!! It warms my heart to see all the change that's taken place here. :) 
Black, white, or redneck this place has my heart.
Next week will be really interesting for us all, because I will probably be getting transferred. The guess is that I'm going to Nashville with my MTC companion. We shall see! 

With Love,  Sister Hochstrasser
Write to me at my mission home since I'll be moving!!!

Sister Jennifer Hochstrasser
Tennessee Nashville Mission
105 WEST PARK DR STE #190
BRENTWOOD, TN  37027

                                               Or DEARELDER.COM :)

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