So it has been another fantastic week as a missionary! It started out with sister Ketring and I both being sick with the colds directly from Lucifer himself, which is always exciting. I prayed really really hard that I would be better by wednesday so I could make pies, and God worked things out. We spent Tuesday in bed recovering so by Wednesday we were ready to go. Wednesday was quite possibly the most fun day of my entire mission so far. We rode to Nampa with Sister Real (one of our favorite missionary moms) and got lunch at Jimmy Johns (hallelujah for a delicious sandwich!) she is hilarious so that was great. Then we went to the mission home and Sister Cannon took us to WinCo to shop for pie ingredients. WinCo is the best grocery store on the face of the planet. I have probably mentioned that before, but it is just really awesome. Can you say bulk bins of EVERYTHING? It is great. So after almost forgetting the Crisco and running back through the isles while Sis. Cannon waited at the register, we headed back to the mission home to get baking. Apples and pumpkin filling were coming out of our ears! Every once in a while President would pop in to tell us how good it smelled and tell us a story. About 7 hours an 19 pies later we were all exhausted, covered in flour/shorting, and starving. President took the three of us baking queens out for dinner at Olive Garden, which was extremely nice and delicious. We went back to the mission home and crashed. I just have to tell you haw amazing President and Sister Cannon are. I love them SO much. They really are like replacement parents while I am here in Idaho, and they really would do anything for us. Also, they are hilarious. I feel like we are best friends with them. I guess pie wins over everyone (thanks for teaching me that, President Clason!). Anyways, our zone conference on Thursday was phenomenal. It was a fast and feast (hence all of the pies). The theme was recognizing and understanding the spirit. President told a story about "The Box and the Pearl" and understanding that what we think is importand may just be a decorative box, but the most treasured things are hidden inside. Ie. A fun zone conference would be the box and the spiritual knowledge to be gained would be the pearl. I loved that as I feel it applies to pretty much everything in life. We also played some really fun team building games and had a fantastic training on washing our hands. It was lovely. Afterwards we had a really nice testimony meeting and then broke our fast with a beautiful Thanksgiving feast! It was delicious and everyone loved our pies. That night I went home with Sister Robinson and got to spend the next in night in Emmett. It was really fun, I love exchanges! Saturday was an amazing day as well. Two of my favorite people were baptized! WE headed down to Nyssa first thing for Glen Hunt's baptism. Remember Glen? No? Look back a few months and read my entry about all of the chewing tobacco. He is awesome. He had such a neat spirit about him and was pretty excited to be "water boarded" as he calls it. It was beautiful! It was also fun to see some old familiar faces. It felt like coming home. We sped back to Weiser after his baptism to make it to Malinda's baptism. SHe was absolutely exuberant and filled with the spirit. President and Sister Cannon came to her service and said they have never seen anyone so prepared to enter the waters of baptism. She is amazing! It has truely been one of the most rewarding weeks of my whole mission. This is a great work and I am so privileged to be part of it. I feel like my family is just growing and growing. I love and miss you all every day but I would die if I weren't here.
> Love you!!
> Sister Baker
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Things here in Weiser are going well. We had Jamie, Rex, and Malinda at church yesterday which was wonderful. We are so excited for Malinda to be baptized this coming Saturday. She is very strong and has a beautiful testimony of the gospel. Her husband left her this past weekend and she is going through some really rough things at the moment. She has not lost one ounce of her faith through this trial and is more ready than ever to enter the waters of baptism. It is crazy how hard the adversary works on people when they are trying to do whats right. I am always so proud to see investigators withstand his firey darts and continue to stand on the Lord's side of the line.
In other news, we held a fireside for new members last night, to which only 4 recent converts showed up. Luckily we had representation from each of the bishoprics (except for 1) and all od our ward mission leaders present so it made things look a little more full. We were excited to have Bailey there though. She is a recent convert/recently less-active member whom we have been having a hard time catching up with. She really felt the spirit and was touched by the speakers. Therefore, it was a success! We are doing our best to increase member involvement and ward activities. We are making progress slowly but surely. Just in time for me to most likely be transferred in two weeks... We will see what the Lord has in store.
Before I close I would like to give a shoutout to some people who need to be thanked for some unsung good deeds. First I would like to thank the two Elders who served in Roseburg, Oregon around 2001. You left a lasting impression on one of our investigators which helped prepare her to receive the restored gospel. Really this thank you is to all of the missionaries out there who feel like they have not had success with a particular person, or in a particular area, or on their mission at all. Every little thing you do makes a difference. Every person you talk/talked to leaves an impression. You are/were/will be successful. This is the Lord's work and we are His instruments. It matters. You matter. So, THANK YOU! I would also like to thank my mother for teaching me how to keep a house. I know I was a total pill about it growing up, but now I am really glad that I know how to scrub a bathroom and do dishes and vacuum. It is important. So, THANK YOU!! I am so grateful for each of the people who have made even the smallest impact on me-who have helped me to become the person/missionary/child of God that I am trying to become. I love you!
Monday, November 4, 2013
This week has been good but not extremely eventful. Everyone is doing well. Malinda and Rex are still progressing towards baptism but Jamie is having a harder time. She did not make it to church this week which made us really sad. We are struggling to find new people to teach right now and are trying to help the ward members get involved. One thing we are trying to get going is an adult institute class once a week. What kinds of things are going on in your stake to help the members get involved in missionary work?
Sorry I don't have much of anything exciting to report on this week. Most weeks are pretty much the same with subtle changes. This coming week should be interesting though. I will be attending my first Mission Leadership Council meeting tomorrow. I am excited to be involved in this! It is always neat to be involved in those kinds of things. I really love President Cannon and the other Zone Leaders are great, so it should be really fun/productive. We also have a zone training meeting and will be going on exchanges with the Enterprise sisters. We have Zone Conference next week and will be doing a fast and feast for thanksgiving.
The work continues to progress and we continue to diligently serve (even when things are a little slow). I love serving my Savior and learning more how to be like Him each day. This Gospel is TRUE.
This week has been an extremely rewarding week as a missionary. Sometimes we just keep going and wonder if we are really doing any good and every once in a while we are blessed to see the fruits of our labor. Anyways, I am really grateful to be doing the Lord's work in this part of his vineyard.
Last week started out a bit rough, but by Tuesday or Wednesday things started to look up. We went on Exchanges Wednesday night to Thursday with the Parma sisters. I got to go home for a day :). I was able to see Viola and hear of her continuing conversion. She never ceases to amaze me. I was able to spend the day with sister Dijkwel from the Netherlands. She is amazing! She has been in the field for two weeks and has a beautiful testimony and ability to teach and share the gospel. She is also super positive, which I love since I have been trying to improve my ability to be optimistic. She taught me so much in just 24 hours!
When I returned to Weiser on Thursday I found that Sister Ketring and Sister Poynter had been able to commit one of the less active sisters we have been working with, Lacy, to come to the Relief Society activity that night. Score! She came and loved it. On Friday we got to go on a fun adventure with President and Sister Cannon. We had a mission leadership training in Baker city (kinda weird that I go to those now) so President offered to pick us up to save on miles. The sunrise/fog that morning was gorgeous so he and sister Cannon kept stopping to take pictures which made me laugh but was pretty cool. We had the meeting on helping other missionaries cope with stress (I wish I had someone to help me with that sometimes...) It was great and I learned a lot. After the meeting, President had to go up to La Grande for an interview, so we got to join him for the beautiful drive. Fall is a magical season! He took us to lunch and told us all kinds of stories. We really got to know He and Sister Cannon on a more personal level. He even told a few off color jokes. It was awesome. When we finally returned form our journey, we met up with Malinda Turner for her baptismal interview. She rocked it. She came out of the room and declared "I am never drinking coffee again!" She updated us on Sunday and had said she forgot and accidentally drank some on Saturday and was absolutely sick the rest of the day and she was done for good. We are so immensely proud of her and how far she has come.
This weekend we also discovered that Bob Green (See emails from July) one of my favorite recent converts is staying in the rehabilitation center/rest home here in Weiser. He is not very old but suffers from a rare form of gout (hey mom, remember when that nurse asked me if I had gout? Lol it is really no laughing matter). We went to go see him and as soon as we walked into his room he began to cry. He bore his testimony of the Gospel and told me how much I mean to him. He told me that I have no Idea how perfect our timing was when we came to his door and offered to weed his yard. He bore powerful testimony of the Lord's timing. I love him so much. He is frail in body but grows ever stronger in spirit.
After visiting with Brother Green, we went to see Jamie. Jamie has been wanting to be baptized but has not been able to keep any commitments, including coming to church. When we saw her this weekend her countenance had completely changed. She told us how after praying to be able to feed her family, a ward member showed up at her door with food. She received the witness that she needed to start acting on her faith. She was in church yesterday with her husband and son in toe. They stayed all three hours and absolutely loved it! Malinda and Rex were also at church yesterday. We are so proud of each of these people who are preparing themselves for baptism.
A quick update on Ian and Virginia: We have transferred Ian to the YSA elders in Ontario and from what we here he is doing well. Virginia has been out of town for the past week and a half visiting her daughter in Mexico where it is warm. We miss her like crazy! Life is going well. The Lord is ever mindful. I love you.