Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Weekly

Hey everyone :). 

You know how grits are like a thing of the South? Well, I got through my whole mission not touching them. Until this week. I had no idea what it was but it's basically mashed up corn. Looks like a thick cream of wheat. I had some for breakfast at a restaurant and it was really bland. Then we went out to dinner that night and the specialty was Tuscan grits. So, I got them. My life changed. 

They were organic stone ground grits with Italian chicken, fresh bruschetta, basil pesto, in a reduced balsamic (aka boiled out the vinegar). Topped with Parmesan. It was to die for! Who knew grits could be so high class?! Oh and the place was selling real 'coon hats. So of course we had to model them for ya'll. Hehe ;) 

Okay so miracle teaching moments have been happening! I love training because I love watching people I love reach their potential, and Sister Gale is just rocking it! 

We had an experience with Doug that blew my mind. We were sitting in a lesson with him and the Bishop and his wife. We were teaching Doug and it reached a point where I really knew we needed to ask Doug this specific question. It got silent, and I was just waiting to say this question, but the spirit restrained me and I didn't know why!
Meanwhile, Sister Gale is sitting in this silence with me and the spirit is constraining her to talk. She has no idea what she's even supposed to say, but she just kept thinking "open your mouth". SO, in the words or Nephi, she "was led by the spirit not knowing beforehand the things which [she] should [say]. Nevertheless [she] went forth" (1st Nephi 4:6)
So as I'm sure you've now assumed, she totally asked Doug the question I knew he was needing to be asked! 
Sister Gale later said it just came out as soon as she started talking, she didn't even realize what she was saying until after. The question really helped Doug apply what we had taught and prepare him to make a commitment. 

Open your mouths and they shall be filled, and you shall become even as Nephi of old, who journeyed from Jerusalem in the wilderness. (D&C 33:8) 

I remember reading in The Power of the Everyday Missionary by Clay Christensen and he gave a pretty sweet analogy. So basically, when you're in a war, who gets the big guns- the guys in the front lines or the guys in the back? Well, Clay had been feeling a lull in the spirit since his mission, and although he was rocking his calling as some kind of clerk and reading his scriptures, he wasn't getting that high he wanted. Until that is, he started opening his mouth! As soon as we open our mouths to share the gospel we are putting ourselves on the front lines. The ultimate battle ground. the Lord immediately places his greatest weapons in our laps and our artillery load is enough to give us the resources we need. I have seen over and over again the difference between the members who do missionary work, and the ones who don't. It doesn't take a special person to share the gospel, but sharing the gospel sure does shape you into a better person. 

While teaching Randy about the pre-earth life, he explained to us how he studied it out a lot and still doesn't think we existed before this time. From his studies he concluded that God has always known OF us, that's how he chose us to be prophets and so on, but he never personally knew us. I found myself sharing Jeremiah 1:5 with him for the second time, 
5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.
but then I coupled it with John 15:16,
16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
Pointing out that there is a huge difference between being "chosen" and being ordained (one can be a thought, the other you have to be there for) and Christ specifically said he ordained us before this life. It was like a bolt of truth had stuck everyone of us, I had never even thought of that concept before. It was very cool to see the spirit work. 

Okay, crazy story. I tried emailing Sister Gale something and instead of her missionary account coming up, her home account did! We were puzzled as to how that got in my contact, until we put 2 and 2 together. Before my mission Sister Gale had found my blog, emailed me, and asked for advice! When I replied to her, she showed it to her mom and by my response her mom made the comment that she and I would make excellent friends.
Flash forward and I'm her trainer! Hahaha 

So... Elderly people run this town. And we got invited by one of them to the rotary club meeting. We went, and I actually had no clue what all was involved to be a Rotarian but it actually was quite surprising to see all these wealthy business people giving of their time and money to help strengthen the community. I realized that if I want to make a substantive difference in society, I'm really going to have to push to reach my potential. Let's face it, the bigger your name the bigger your game. When I go home I want to make sure to keep a bigger perspective than just the day to day work. I want to aspire. President Spencer W. Kimball said, “We become more substantive as we serve others--indeed, it is easier to ‘find’ ourselves because there is so much more of us to find!” If I want to be able to give to others, it's important I make sure I have so,etching of myself to give! And it doesn't necessarily mean monetarily, but socially and emotionally and especially spiritually. I need to better myself not for myself, for therein lies linear growth. But for others, because that brings an exponential increase :). 

So I got all the info for coming home. I'll fly in by 12:50 to Seattle on Wednesday the 9th. Elder Lovell is my temporary companion. So funny, because we were friends before the mission and then served with each other throughout the mission, now we fly home! Small world! Haha. I'm trying to stay positive about it all, since I'm pretty sad about entering real life. 

I know I don't have much time left, but an email or letter would still mean a lot!


Sister Jennifer Hochstrasser 

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