Monday, August 18, 2014

August 18, 2014

Dear Family,
It has been a great week! In all honesty, a lot of stuff fell through that I wish had not fallen through. A lot of the people we are teaching have not been progressing. They don't like to commit to things. So I'm not sure how much closer to Christ we were able o help them come. But, the great thing about the gospel is that we can pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and just try to be a little better this week! And that gives me hope and makes me happy. I have been studying about keeping the Sabbath Day holy, and President Eaton has counseled us to really focus on that with our investigators. My testimony of it has grown in just these few past weeks and I am so excited to share those blessings with our investigators. In the Doctrine and Covenants, we are told that if we keep the Sabbath Day holy we can be kept "unspotted from the world" and that "the fulness of the earth is yours." (D&C 59:9,16) What wonderful blessings! On my mission, I tend to let the Sabbath Day be like other days, because I still dress and act pretty much the same on every other day, so I am still trying to figure out how I can make it more special for the Lord. But I am so excited for when I go home to really make it a special day! I want those blessings of being unspotted from the world, to receive strength from temptation and to have more peace with me throughout the week! It seems to me that when we brake the gospel down and look at all the specific blessings we receive from keeping specific commandments, it's like opening gifts on Christmas morning, except all these gifts are free! The scriptures are filled with ways that we can be happy in this life with no temporal price. 2 Nephi 2:4 "And thou hast beheld in thy youth his glory; wherefore, thou art blessed even asthey unto whom he shall minister in the flesh; for the Spirit is the same, yesterday, today, and forever. And theway is prepared from the fall of man, and salvation is free."
This week we had a most fantastic lesson with a young family. They go to their church every week and the husband, Shayne, is more interested in talking than his wife, Vanessa. We had talked to Shayne a few times before, but this time we had a member with us and we asked if we could come in and we were able to teach the Restoration and the Spirit was so strong throughout the entire lesson! His two little girls were running around and laughing and playing the whole time, but I felt such a strong Spirit, I think because they are so committed to their family. The Spirit is strong when families are committed to living the gospel together. It's part of God's plan, so of course, He lets us know that by sending His Spirit! After that lesson I was so happy the rest of the night! I hope we can help them gain their own testimony of the things that we shared. I know that strong testimony comes, not from all the facts we know, but rather from the spiritual experiences that we have with our Heavenly Father, with His Spirit. John 15:26 "But when the Comforter is come, whom will send unto you from the Father, even theSpirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:"
Goodness, these time limits always get me! I'm a slow story writer! If you ever have any specific questions, let me know and I will try to write about them! I love you all so much!!!! Here is an awesome video you should check out this week "The Hope of God' Light."
I know that the Savior, Jesus Christ, lives. I know that He loves us and that He is aware of everything that we go through. I know that because He died for us, but then lived again, we will live again as well, and a way has been provided for us to be families forever. And I am so grateful.

Sister Mecate

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014

Dear Family,
Another week gone by. It's been a good one. We've been talking, teaching, and even helping someone sand down and old piano. It's been neat to have Sister Moore as my companion. It's interesting to see all the differences in her experience here in the states and in Brazil. I am so blessed to be able to serve in the states! I don't have to worry about walking an hour to get to church on Sunday's like Sister Moore had to do!
One really awesome experience we had this week was contacting at the local police and fire station open house. We thought it would be a good opportunity to get to talk to all those people! But we were nervous that we wouldn't be welcome there. So we thought we would ask one of the policeman if it was ok for us to talk with people. We were lucky to have picked the right one! He looked at us and said with real sincerity, "Of course!" Turns out, he was a member! We spent 2 and half hours talking to as many people as we could, and it was great fun. One instance that really stands out in my mind was of a man who told us he was firm in his beliefs but thanked us for approaching him to talk with him. My heart filled with gratitude as I realized that he realized that what we were doing is not always easy and he appreciated the discomforts we go through to share our beliefs. Another lady told us she was really interested in learning about family history work, and that she would call us. And we got to do a small act of service at the end by helping someone take down their tent. That day in particular made me happy. I tried to focus on not the things I did right or wrong that day, but on how many people I could love, and it brought a great satisfying peace at the end of the day.
The Lord is blessing us to find people who are truly prepared in heart. We met a girl last night who let us teach her the message of the Restoration sitting on the lawn at an apartment complex. She said she always likes to listen to people who teach about Jesus Christ. It turns out she is truly searching for peace and relief. Her prayer at the end, asking for forgiveness, invited a powerful and strong Spirit. She spoke to us after, with tears in her eyes, about how she truly felt something in her heart. Those kinds of moments make all the hard stuff worth it! I hope and pray that we can find others who are truly looking for the peace and relief that they can only find in their Savior, Jesus Christ.
I love you so much family! I am out of time, and I wanted to share a Bible Video, but I don't have time, so just go find a good one on Have a great week!
Sister Mecate

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August 5, 2014

Dear Family,
I love hearing about all the adventures you've had this summer. It just makes me happy to think about all the experiences we share in this life. I love you guys so much! I couldn't help but chuckle to myself when reading what Mom wrote about all the fun you guys had in Utah and at the Beach in San Clemente. One thing she didn't mention, Brooke and Cassady!, is the story about you both putting a live sand crab down my swimsuit and me almost killing you for it! I think you guys kept a 20 foot distance from me for the rest of the evening. But I certainly don't love you any less. AT least you both can't do anything to me while I'm away here in Washington! All the time we spend together as a family and all the communication we have are priceless to me! It's those things that prepare us for eternity. We better learn to get along down here, because eternity is a long time! I am so grateful to know that this life is not the end. Since our mission has really been focusing on family history for the last month, we have been trying to think of ways that we can talk to people about family history. As we were role playing in our companionship study yesterday, a new thought came to me! Even though our ancestors have passed away, we can develop "relationships" with them by doing family history, just like we develop relationships on earth by getting to know each other! When we get to the other side I hope I can know who many of my ancestors are by doing my family history work here on earth. Malachi 4:5-6
 ¶Behold, will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord:
 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the childrenand the heart of the children to their fathers, lest Icome and smite the earth with curse.
I want that Spirit of Elijah in my life, so I need to get my heart turning to my fathers!
So, this week is transfer week...and I have a new companion! I am sad to for Sister Evans-Bottoms to leave. I never really like endings. (President Uchtdorf says that we as human beings don't like endings, because we are made of the stuff of eternity!-"Grateful in Any Circumstances") But my new companion is great! Her name is Sister Moore. She actually is new to our mission, but is not a new missionary. She served in Brazil for 11 months, but had to come home for health reasons. So now she is finishing her mission here in the Washington Federal Way Mission! We haven't had much time together yet, but I feel that this will be a great transfer! She's had to make a lot of sacrifices to serve. Her heart is definitely in the work. And she is from Chambersburgh, Pennsylvania, PopPop and Grandmom!
I feel that the greatest success we have seen in this are so far is working with all the less active women. There are so many wonderful women in this ward who don't come to church for one reason or another. One sister had the hardest time saying goodbye to Sister Evans-Bottoms and it was the sweetest thing! She usually doesn't like to pray with us, but after Sister E-B said the closing prayer, she asked if she could say one more short prayer. She prayed with so much gratitude and for Sister E-B to be safe in her travels. And she was crying like she always does. She is just such a tender person!
Aaaah, I'm out of time again! I love you soooo much!
Sister Mecate