MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! (And week 24)

Merry Merry Christmas everyone!!! 🙂

The holidays are upon us! People are giving us things like CRAZY! And it is AWESOME! I love being a missionary for two reasons: We’re serving the Lord and also, the ward members love us! I hope it’s like this when I go home *cough cough hint hint to the Severance ward 😉 * I’m just kidding. 😀 Those aren’t the only reasons I love it. It’s just that every day is awesome, even when you’re exhausted and nothing is going right. That’s when you stop and think and take time to see the blessings throughout the day that you wouldn’t have seen/looked for if you’d had everything go right. It’s great! 🙂

Last week we had Zone Interviews/Meeting. Which means we got to have an interview with the mission president. Wow. President Stoker is so amazing. I absolutely love him and his wife and I’m so glad and extremely blessed to know them and be able to work with them! He truly cares about each of the missionaries in the mission and you can see it in his face and the way he talks with you. He and Sister Stoker got each of us a temple recommend holder that has the third verse of Called to Serve printed inside it with the Boston Temple in the background and on the front is a picture of the Joseph Smith Memorial with the mission name on it. That was awesome! 

Zone Meeting was wonderful! I got so much out of it! It was about obedience and how when we’re disobedient, it’s because we’re distracted, then we try to justify things and make it okay when really, it’s not. It was a really interesting lesson and I loved it! 

Oh! Before I forget: Ray. He’s the SWEETEST man ever! To refresh your memory: We’ve been teaching him for six or so months. He’s a slow learner, but he’s progressing SO much and he’s understanding everything we teach him. He asks questions if he doesn’t get it and he has such a desire to learn and understand! This week, we taught him about baptism and the Holy Ghost. He understood it really well and we committed him to work towards a baptismal date of February 1, 2014!!!! HUZZAH!!!! And it’s totally going to happen because he really wants to do it. And he believes this is the Lord’s church and that the Book of Mormon is true. Oh man! I’m so happy and excited and extremely grateful to the Lord for His blessings! 🙂 That’s our most wonderful news for the week!

We also had a great experience with Cheryl Bastarache. We talked about the Book of Mormon and praying about it. She is truly doing this to know if it’s the Lord’s word or not. She’s so sincere and it’s wonderful! She came to church yesterday, too (AWESOME) and shared with us that’s really searching for the answer because she did pray and she wants to know. The Sunday School lesson was PERFECT for her, too. Isn’t it amazing how much the Lord watches out for each of us? I love it!
This week we did a lot of bonding and building trust with the members. We had so much fun with Sister Hutchinson, the Ladieu’s and the Melby’s. Sister Hutchinson and the Ladieu’s… Boy oh boy! We had a TON of laughs and really got to know each other. It was wonderful! 🙂 I love both of those families! And the Melby’s. We went caroling with them last night and threw a few snowballs. I LOVE snowball fights (it wasn’t really a fight) and I love to go caroling and see all the wonderful smiles that it brings to people’s faces. It warmed my heart and was really just an amazing experience. 🙂
My studies this week have been really good. I love to study the scriptures and all the other materials we’ve been given! I decided that I want to be a “Preach My Gospel” missionary – meaning I basically know PMG REALLY well and use it in my teaching and the rest of my life. So I started at the beginning last week. I’m really trying to use a study journal more so that I can really get a lot more out of my studies. I’m also taking the time to answer the questions and really study the scriptures that are given and ponder them. So I’ve been working on Chapter 1 (page 1) for the last few days. It’s going to take me a LONG time to get through the whole book, but when I do, it’s going to really cool to look back and see all the progress I’ve made. I want each of you to start using a study journal if you don’t already. Really stop and think about what you’re reading. Ask yourself questions to try to apply it in your life. Then, as you go about the day, actually apply it! If the Spirit tells you to, share one thing that you really enjoyed about your studies with your spouse, with a friend, on Facebook, wherever. But share one thing with someone. Even if it’s short and is something as simple as “Wow. The Lord really is amazing, isn’t He?” That could spark an entire conversation, or it may not. Whatever you choose to share, do your best to go by the Spirit. Blessings and miracles will come as you strive more and more to do as the Savior has done. 🙂
I hope you all are still thinking of three things you’d like to give the Savior for Christmas! I’ll tell you mine next week (if I remember) and I want you all to let me know yours, too!
I sure hope you each have a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful WONDERFUL week! Love you all!
Love,
Sister Mayle
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