So Sister Jenne emailed me separately and had me go back and take out any names from converts or investigators (apparently they aren't supposed to post names online.... which actually makes sense). So I did that and some of the past posts are a little confusing now. But yeah. So any brackets you see anywhere, that's why.
Here's our email!
"For the first time this week, I talked to a Ukrainian man all by myself without any help. I was on exchanges with a sister who does NOT speak any Russian whatsoever (except she knows how to say goodbye). Lemme tell you, that was a pretty scary prospect, knowing that I was going to be alone in talking to people! It worked out so well! It was so amazing how much God helped me. I could understand the basic jist of every single thing that was said, and I was able to reply and testify and bring the spirit into the conversations that I had with people. I was thinking a lot about how far my Russian has come over the last 5 months (I also hit 5 months this week, which is absolutely insane!). It's incredible to see the improvement in myself. And to recognize God's hand in everything. I believe that trusting Heavenly Father's plan is one of the hardest things that we will learn in this life. There are so many aspects of life. Ups and downs. It's so easy to blame the bad things on God and then take credit for all of the happy things that happen. Or give the credit to other people. Is that how things should be? Do we truly believe that God has a perfect plan for everything that happens in this life? Something that was created from the foundation of the world? That's an impossible concept to grasp! It's something that literally takes a lifetime of faith in our Savior to even begin to understand. My journey to discovering the mysteries of God has started with my mission! I challenge all of you to work on your journey today...because if it doesn't happen today, it probably won't happen tomorrow either!
We had a really long weekly planning session this week. Like 6 hours long. Quite a long time to be planning and setting goals and being inside on one of the only beautiful days of the week (of course). We were spending a lot of time using a GPS to figure out how to be effective in our routes every day. here's my metaphor for the week. So basically we went into the abyss of our GPS's abilities. And found some pretty cool features. There were a lot of features that weren't particularly helpful. And then OH WHAT JOY! We discovered something that will change GPS usage in Russian South forever. The "OPTIMIZE" button. There is a button that will optimize your route for you! Who would have known! (probably everyone except Sister Orr and I already knows this, but bear with me please)... The GPS will do everything for us, all we have to do is load in some addresses! The GPS is like a map of our lives. We can enter in destinations in our own order and time and then get to them eventually. The GPS has all of these tools that are meant to help us find our final destination, but sometimes we put in other addresses too and so there are stops along the way. Each stop could either be a positive or negative experience. The Atonement helps us to optimize our route. it works for us and makes each stop along the way happen in the nest way that will lead us to the final destination after this life. The gap between our own attempt at navigating life (what we can do) and what we need to do, is closed. All of the features like church, scriptures, and prayer hep us to have a personalized route, but the Atonement is the best way to have the most efficient guidance. We put forth as much effort as we can, but ultimately christ has to do all of the hardest work for us. We can type in as many addresses as we want, but without christ, we don't have the eternal and overall perspective which will cause a bunch of back-tracking and driving around in circles rather than following the straight and narrow path. Isn't the Atonement wonderful?
Also something I learned: When I was praying last night, I learned something! God gave us this body, our personality, our intelligence, our strengths, our weaknesses, and our spirit! Most importantly, we are who we are as his sons and daughters. When I am self-critical, I am criticizing one of God's creations! Me! He created me. I have to respect myself just as I respect god'd other creations. Find joy in myself as a daughter of God.This was revolutionary to me!
The spirit taught me some really important things this week! sorry for the crazy email. I'll include more funny stories next week when I have more time!
Love you all!
Sister Jenne had some really awesome insight this week. Hope y'all all enjoyed. STAY TUNEDDD :)