Monday, January 5, 2015

Happy New Year!

Dear Family and Friends,

Aah can you believe it's 2015?! I am so excited for this New Year - I get to be a representative of Christ ALL YEAR LONG! How cool is that?! I hope you all had fun New Year's celebrations and are setting some goals to help you become closer to your Savior(:

So good news, it FINALLY snowed! In my opinion Madison looks a whole lot prettier with a fresh layer of snow on the ground(: Unfortunately with the snow came the nasty freezing cold... ha today it was -8 when we left the apartment, so that's fun. Haha Sister King and I just bundle up and look like complete fools, but at least we're warm(:

Change Ups in the District:
Exchanges happened this week so on Tuesday we said goodbye to Elders Gifford, Humble, and Powell. We all went out for lunch together at Buffalo Wild Wings - ha it was a blast! I love being in Madison where we are so close to so many other missionaries! I learn so much from their testimonies and examples. Then on New Years Eve the Durtschi's invited all the missionaries over for dinner so we got to meet the new Elders - Elders Hernandez, Marsh, and Sullivan. They all seem really nice. I am just SOO grateful Sister King and I get to stay together for another transfer! She is such a hard worker and has a strong testimony of the Savior. I learn so much from her everyday and we get along super well. Plus she is a boss at managing the bussing schedule so she keeps us out of the cold as much as possible which is a huge blessing! I am going to struggle navigating the area when she leaves!

Ether 12:4:
This week we contacted a referral from Sister Durschi - she had met this lady at a card class she hosted and had given her a copy of the Book of Mormon. Turns out when we stopped by to talk to Jeanne, she had read the ENTIRE Book of Mormon in a matter of days. Hold on let's just appreciate this for a minute... SHE READ THE ENTIRE BOOK OF MORMON IN LIKE THREE DAYS! Ah we had a really good discussion with her about the Book of Mormon and she said she knows it is true because it is all about faith. Ether 12:4 popped into my mind so we shared it with her and she liked it so much she went to mark it in her copy of the BOM and that was right where her bookmarker was! She took that as a huge sign and wants to take the discussions now. So cool! Sister Durtschi invited her over for dinner on Wednesday and after we had a really good lesson - shared Moroni 10:3-5 and challenged her to pray and ask if this is true. I can't wait for our appointment this week!

WoW Down LoC to Go:
We met with Ishmeal a few times this week to teach him more about the Book of Mormon, read with him, and teach the Word of Wisdom! He was having a hard time understanding the BOM in English so we had the Spanish Elders read with him in a member's home and that went really well. He seriously is SO prepared - I am so excited for him to be baptized in a few weeks! He agreed to live the Word of Wisdom and is already contributing so much to the ward! AH Ishmeal is awesome(:

Our recent convert Shay introduced us to her friend Amanda this week and now we are going to start teaching her! The moment I met Amanda her face just seemed so familiar to me! It was crazy because I'd never seen her before, but then after Sister King told me she had felt the same way - ah so cool. Amanda is 19 and has been through a lot, but she has seen how the gospel has blessed Shay's life and that is what she wants! We had a great lesson with her about the Book of Mormon and how reading from it brings so much peace and happiness into our lives. I am really excited to start teaching her!

Happy 6 Months:
This past week I hit my 6 month mark and that has caused me to have a bit of a 6 month crisis! Ha I have one year left on my mission and I want to work really hard and make the most of it! More than anything I want to become the missionary Heavenly Father wants me to become and prepare for the future! In setting some New Years Resolutions I reread Elder Holland's 'Remember Lot's Wife' talk that I have raved about before and the thing that stood out to me was just the fact that faith is always pointed toward the future. Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ we can be changed, we can BECOME better, we can reach our divine potential if we just allow Christ's atonement to work in our lives. I'm far from perfect, but with Christ's help I can progress and become better - I am looking forward to the New Year and hope you are too!

There is a lot going on here in Madison, so much work to do! I am getting better at talking with people and teaching from the scriptures. I just learn so much each day and am grateful for this opportunity to learn and grow. Thanks for all the prayers and encouragement - it means the world and really helps me make it through hard days! Hope you all have a great week! Love you!

Sister Kelley(:
At the Durtschi's with our sparkling apple juice!

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