Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Where Do I Even Begin?

Hermana Houghton and her new best friend, Carmen (4)

Dear Everyone,

Where do I even begin? This has been a crazy week - my last week as a trainee, and my last week with Sister Clayton :(
My district, doing awkward family photo pose. From left, Sister Ellett and Sister Johnson. Top row Elder Levy and Elder Doria. On the bench Elder Call and Elder Haddock. Then me and Sister Clayton.
For those who are wondering, yes, I will be training starting tomorrow. I will be staying in West Palm North, thankfully, but a whole new level of excitement is coming down the pipe!
Okay, updates on everybody. The original Daniel (who got baptized my second week here and is awesome and moved to Chicago) is back! He's in Boynton right now (about half an hour away), but we luckily got to see him yesterday before Sister Clayton leaves.
 Hyrum, and Daniel #2,
with Daniel's brother Brandon behind the fence
We also had a really great lesson with the other Daniel, whom I told you about a few weeks ago. We talked about repentance, and then wrote down some things we wanted to change in our lives to become more like Heavenly Father. We ripped them up (symbolizing repentance) and then burned them (aka baptism). The picture attached has Hyrum Vilorio (member) and Daniel watching the fire. This week we're going to start teaching Brandon (Daniel's 10-year-old brother who's behind the fence) and hopefully the rest of their family.
We had a great post-baptism lesson on the importance of the Book of Mormon with Emma.We also had a wonderful district training on the subject. The last two paragraphs of the introduction to the Book of Mormon are crucial. The Book of Mormon's role in our lives is basically to help us build a testimony of Jesus Christ as our Redeemer and to teach us how we can follow Him. Having a testimony of the Book of Mormon is really what allows us to 'build on the rock of our Redeemer!' I have seen this in my own life, and am ever so grateful for parents who helped me to build my testimony on the Book of Mormon - because I know it is true I will always have that to fall back on, no matter what else may try my faith.
Martin (6) Emma, HH,  Carmen (4) + amazing Natalie  (8)
Emma's family, HH, and Natalie,
including Gabriella (6 weeks)
Okay, back to Emma. She is amazing! Her baby was sick on Sunday so she couldn't go to the church for General Conference. She understands that she needs to keep the Sabbath Day holy and go to church, so she watched all of General Conference on TV... in English. She didn't understand it, but she understood the importance of obedience, the importance of keeping her covenants, and the importance of listening to a prophet's voice. She is a huge example to me. She has also shared the Joseph Smith story with the family that lives with her, and we are going to start teaching them as soon as they get their schedule worked out. We are already teaching their 8-year-old daughter Natalie, who has read the first three chapters of 1 Nephi on her own initiative! I feel confident that Emma's humility, faith, diligence, and obedience are going to bless her family immensely.
I absolutely loved General Conference . It was like Christmas - so much fun! And I swear there weren't so many things to learn before! I can't say I have a favorite talk, because there were so many! President Monson's stories, and Elder Holland's emotion, and Sister Dalton's conviction. I did really like Craig A. Cardon's talk... Also how much he resembles Elder Eyring.
Okay, a few other notes... I won't be sending a lot of mail this week because our mail is on hold for transfers, so I haven't gotten any from you this week - but I will try to respond to everything next week!
Also, this week my Book of Mormon reading was amazing! I was going through the war chapters, which really haven't done a lot for me in the past. But this time - wow! Helaman 1 was particularly great. I compared the Nephites' lands to my own testimony, and the Lamanites to Satan and the world. I got a LOT out of reading the chapter that way, and one of the concepts that I liked the most was about rebuilding our testimonies, or winning back our lands. It's cool to think that when we build up our testimony after it's been broken down by some trial, we're not just getting it back - we're weakening the forces that Satan can use against us next time. So awesome. It explains a lot about the nature of trials certainly.
The planning board--they keep busy!
Map of the "West Palm North" area--
"It's huge!"
So much more to write! But I'm out of time. I love you all! Keep my trainee in your prayers.
Hermana Houghton

No comments:

Post a Comment