Friday, October 24, 2014

"The Time is Far Spent"

Dear Family, 

How are all of you? I have decided that my theme song for this week is "The Time is Far Spent," next week is "God Be with You til We Meet Again," and the week after that is "America the Beautiful." (There's more where that came from, brace yourselves for corny missionary humor. Awkward.) 

Anyway...HAPPY BIRTHDAY EMILY. My gorgeous sister has a big birthday.  Also clear the roads, she's gonna start learning how to drive. YIKES! (Me relearning how to drive is probably a scarier prospect though. haha) 

This week in the Book of Mormon I really enjoyed studying Alma 26 and 29...where Ammon and Alma are rejoicing in the Lord and full to the brim with gratitude for their missions. I feel like I have that in common with them. As I have been reflecting a bit on my mission, I know that I am still so far from perfect, but somehow the Lord has been able to use me as an instrument in His hands for furthuring His eternal plan and purposes, even if only a little bit. I have learned so much. I have learned so much about how to learn the gospel and live it. I am so grateful for the experiences I've had, the people I've met, and the growth I have personally had as a missionary and servant of my Savior, and for the change I have seen in those around me through the gospel and Atonement of Jesus Christ. I don't want this to end, but I know there is a time and season to all things. 

This week we continued working on finding the less actives in our area. We contacted Brother Paul last week and taught him twice this week. We held one of our appointments with him at the church, which was perfect for some instant fellowshipping. The only thing that has been holding him back for the last 5 years has been shyness. But he is friends already with so many of the members. Paul and Glen came to church this week. Yay!!! Elder Sessions always reminds us that we need to view the rescue with just as much value as baptisms. A returned or a converted soul are just the same to the Lord, He wants us all to progress forward in faith on the path He has prepared. 

Last Wednesday, Sister Ribelin and I had an awesome day on exchanges. We had a treasure hunt in Madrangca for the less actives on our list, and actually found some solid investigators, like Renz, who has at least 10 piercings, and was so excited to look up :) In the evening we taught Kitkit, and found out that her grandma was going to take her to Manila for two weeks. Including the week of her baptism. I felt like I hit a brick wall. Seriously??? My last chance to see one of my investigators reach the waters of baptism is being taken away? What? No no no no no. Sister Ribelin suggested that we fast as a household for Kitkit. So we did. All four of us fasted that Kitkit will be baptized on Oct. 30 and that she woud somehow not go to Manila. And it happened! Simple as that! Her grandma decided it would cost to much and not be worth it to take Kitkit along for the trip. I am so grateful for the power of fasting. And I am thankful that Heavenly Father knows us so perfectly and individually. I don't think I could've gotten through that one without Sister Ribelin. And we didn't even know, but Oct. 30 is Kitkit's father's birthday. Perfect! I know that everything about my mission has been prepared by the Lord. His hand is in everything. And the closer I am to Him the more I notice it. It is amazing. 

The S family is still doing great. Geraldine read through the whole children's Book of Mormon Stories in one night. And they have been praying for answers. Hernie and Chonna are doing great as well. We taught them about Tithing last night. And Brother Hernie finally made it through all 3 hours of church here in San Jose. :) I am so excited for this area. 

I love you all and I hope you all have a great week. Seek Him and you'll see the miracles that follow. 

Love, Sister Winward

Sister Cassie Winward

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