Tuesday, March 27, 2012

March 25, 2012

Hello Family!!!

Well, it's been kind of a crazy first week in our new area. . . . I'm
loving it but it is SO different than any of the other wards that i
have served in. Good news though: WE SURVIVED!! Ha ha! SO, first
things first: My new companion's name is Sister Thompson. She is from
Garland Utah. (Up right by Brigham City.) She is a great missionary,
very enthusiastic and excited to be here! She is different than all of
my other companions, of course, but I am really learning to love her!
:) It's so funny, some days I feel like we are totally on the same
page and other times i wonder what in the world she is thinking!! Ha
ha, that's okay though, I'm sure she wonders the same things about me!
:) It has been really good for me to be the senior companion; i have
really have to step up my game! :) It's totally up to me to train her
well so that she can be a successful missionary for the next 18
months. . . she watches EVERYTHING i do! It's really funny when we go
contacting to hear my approaches come out of her mouth! (The funny
thing is that I totally did the exact same thing to Sister Burnham!)
When you hear someone else say it though, you realize how to say it
better! So, lots of improvement and learning experiences for me this
week! I don't know if any of this is making sense, but one of the many
things that i have learned this week, is humility and love! I can't do
this on my own and everything turns out way better when i leave it up
to the lord anyways! You would think that i would have learned that by
now. . . . maybe i have only learned part of it; AHHH!!!! There is SO
much to learn, so much to do and so much to become! Thank goodness i
don't have to do this on my own!! :)

I love the faith that a new missionary brings to an area, it's so
incredible! The elders left us with about 7 investigators that they
informed us were totally golden!! We were super excited! So far in the
last week we have only been able to meet with 3 of those golden
investigators! Ha ha, all of the ones who they told us the most about
won't call or text us back! LAME!!! But we aren't giving up! We have
been hard at work trying to get to know the ward a little, meeting
with the investigators that we can get in contact with and finding
LOTS of new people! I think that after talking to each one Sister
Thompson was like, "She was TOTALLY interested and totally golden! We
are SO going to baptize her!" I just smiled and agreed! How can you
argue with faith like that??

We have a really cool ward and most of the members are willing to
come to lessons with us when their schedules allow. We are trying to
find ways to get them more involved with missionary work and see if we
can get some referrals from them. I know we have to love people into
the work so that is something i am really trying to focus on. I took
lots of notes yesterday and I think i'm getting much better at
remembering names! We are going to try to meet with members this week
and do a little missionary motivation lesson to get them excited and
let them know we are here to work! Hopefully that will go over well. .
. any ideas would be great though! :)

So, with all of our investigators bailing on us this week, we have had
lots of time to go contacting on campus. Let's just say, WE LEARNED SO
MUCH!!! There is no better classroom than the real world and no better
teacher than experience. :) We learned that we have to just start
talking to people, not to act awkward cause then it will be, talk to
EVERYONE, relate to them as a person and let them know that we are
NORMAL ;), don't ask them if we can walk with them (They always so no!
Just start walking and talking! Ha ha.) Testifying is one of our most
powerful tools, and when we see someone that we want to talk walking
towards us, we turn around and walk with them! P.S. People that are
already sitting down are awesome!! AND they can't usually run away!!!
;) The elders are going to come contacting with us on Tuesday and we
are really excited to see what we can learn from them. We will take
any help that we can get! :)

We did have a really cool experience this week with one of our
investigators. Her name is Domonique. She is a student at EMU,
studying nursing. The elders had been teaching her for a few weeks and
then one of her friends died. Of course she had a really hard time
with that, but kept in contact with them through it all. She is one of
our investigators that we did meet with this week! So, we taught her a
review on the plan of salvation. It was so COOL! That morning as i
was studying i felt really prompted to testify of Christ's role in
every part of the plan and of his immense love for all of his
children. As we taught and testified a sweet spirit filled the room,
and we all were able to feel of his love in a very real and personal
way. Sister Thompson invited her to be baptized on the 14 of April and
she accepted!!! (For the new missionary training, the trainee gets to
invite everyone to be baptized! I love the training program, it is
truly inspired!) She was able to come to church yesterday and thanks
to the ward members was very welcomed and accepted! :) I think after
sacrament she had been introduced to more people than i had been!! HA
ha! They all took their time to be sure she felt welcomed and
comfortable and when they asked her if she would be there next week
she said, "Yes! I think so!" :) We are trying really hard to find her
friends and fellow shippers in the ward so that when she is baptized
in a few weeks she has a place to belong. It made me so grateful for
a world wide church family! It's so incredible to me that no matter
where we go in the whole world we can have the same organization, the
same unity and the same gospel! I love this gospel SO much!! :)

We are teaching a few Chinese investigators which has been another
huge learning process for me! We have a translator (Thank goodness!)
but they are so different! :) I feel like the Chinese people don;t
express themselves the same way that we do. They are more quiet and
observant. I feel like when we teach them we can use a lot of material
and won't overload them. They are super smart, but they really think
things through. Which is a good thing too! :)

Well family! It's been a crazy week, full of surprises, miracles and
lots and lots of tender mercies from a loving Heavenly Father! I KNOW
that this is truly his work! It has to be! There is NO way that a
bunch of 19 year old boys and 21 year old girls could do this on their
own. I am so grateful that God compensates for all of my weaknesses! I
am learning now more than ever to trust in him and know that he will
put me in the right place and help me to find the people that he has
prepared to accept his gospel! What a great and marvelous work to be a
part of!

I love you all SO much!! Thanks for all you do! :)

Lots and LOTS of love from Ann Arbor, Michigan! :)

Sister Bishop!

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