Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Greatest Gift

I have a lot of thoughts going through my head right now.  But Christmas is getting very close and I have been thinking a lot about home and all the Christmas traditions I will be missing this year, and a part of me is sad about this, but I am so excited to be here and share Christmas with my new mission family in Philly. 

I received a card from my sister yesterday and she so gladly wrote me a whole card filled of Christmas memories and traditions that I am missing this year.  I was laughing pretty hard at the silly things we have done, or gifts we have gotten, but I was also so grateful for some of things she mentioned. 

One of our favorite Christmas traditions as a kid was to act out the Nativity Scene every Christmas Eve at our Grandpa's house.  I remember being so excited every year to get to participate with all of my cousins and play an angel, or Mary, or sometimes a sheep or wisemen.  It didn't really matter we just liked to have a part.  My sister also mentioned that I am missing the 4 million nativity scenes that my mom has collected and placed all over our house. (And we're not kidding when we say she has a million.)  I was thinking about how each Christmas every shelf, table, and wall space is covered with nativity scenes.  I have my favorites but I love that when you walk in our home you cannot forget what Christmas is really about.  We are celebrating the birth of our Savior.

In that humble setting over 2000 years ago Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem.  I am so grateful for this time of year to really focus on the gift the Lord has given me.  I know that He died for me and that He Lives.  It really is amazing to reflect and think without the Savior we cannot find true joy.  I am so grateful, for the life He lived and gave, because that truly is the greatest gift of all.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Devoted Sisters


Yesterday was my younger sister Taylor's birthday. As I was thinking about her and this Christmas season I was reminded of two Christmases ago when her and I watched the classic film "White Christmas" for the first time because we had a friend who loved to sing the "Sister's Song" to us.  It's a funny jingle and the memory of me and my sister joking about that song made me laugh.  I also wanted to let her know that I love her and am so grateful to have such a devoted sister!  :)

I also have been reflecting a lot on the Christmas season and how everyone around tends to show more love this time of year.  I wish the way people acted at Christmas time would continue even after the holidays.  We are all brothers and sisters.  We are all children of God.  He loves us so much and I know that our Heavenly Father does not like to see us fight, disagree, and argue one with another.

I am especially grateful for the Christmas season because it appears that more people are following what is said in John 13:34, "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another."

Let's spread the Christmas love and extend it for the entire year.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Miracles!  It's really hard for me to not want to turn this blog into a journal of miracles or funny stories.  But I just had to share this experience we had today. 

So we had an appointment fall through and so we had to do some rearranging in our schedule for the day.  After some prayer and pondering we ended up driving to an area we felt we should go to, but had no idea really where we were going.  So I saw a street sign that said "Houston"  And I said to my companions, "Houston we have a Problem!"  We just laughed and then we decided that we were where we needed to be.  So we stopped and started knocking a few doors.  No one interested.  So after a few doors, we see a man walking across the street. 

We flagged him down to talk to him, and come to find out, he just moved here, and used to meet with missionaries!  We set up an appointment and gave him a Book of Mormon.  It was a miracle!  Each day little things like this happen in missionary work and I realize that the Lord's Hand is in this work.

And the best part about this contact; was the man's name.  His name was Success!  And truly meeting him was a success!  I am so grateful the Lord answers prayers and leads us to where we need to be.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

City of Brotherly Love

Philadelphia is known as the "City of Brotherly Love" but since we're sisters, we consider it the "City of Sisterly Love."  Cliche I know.   

So yesterday we had the opportunity to take some of our preparation day and go down into the city and site see.  It was freezing, and even snowed for a bit, but when we passed by Love Park and this statue I couldn't help but be so happy. 

I was thinking how much I love life and other people.  And then started thinking about how much I am loved.  I love my family, my friends, my companions, all the sister missionaries, all missionaries for that matter, I just love the whole world, even the people I haven't met, and even the people that love to slam doors in my face. 

As we passed by the "Love" statue I really was grateful in my heart for the love of our Savior and our Heavenly Father.  It's a blessing to know that no matter what happens in life, that we can always rely on the love of Jesus Christ.  It is infinite and unconditional.  He will always love us, no matter what we do.  Christ is the constant source for our happiness.  Everything good comes from Him. 

Last summer I was an EFY counselor for 8 weeks and after each week at EFY my family would ask, "How was your week?"  And I always responded with, "The best ever!"  I really felt that way.  Life was good; I was happy.  This has kind of transferred into my mission.  Each week when I email home I express how each week it just gets better and better. I guess I didn't realize I was doing this until I got a letter from my mom recently.  She said, "Have the best week ever.  But I know you will cause you always do."  

It hit me that each week is the best week ever.  I have so much to be happy about.  I know that the Savior knows and loves me and everyone of us.  Sure bad things happen and things go wrong, but each day is still the best day ever, and each week the best week ever.  We all have so much to be happy about.  At the end of the day all that really matters is that we know the Savior lives and loves us!