Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Miracles happen!

January 20th, 2015

First off... CONGRATULATIONS to Jess and Tyler :) Can't wait to claim my title as bridesmaid! In comparison to that my week was lame.. Even though it was pretty good. So let's just get this bad boy rolling.
There was zone meeting on Tuesday and because I'm over the sisters from my old zone I went to their zone meeting. I have no idea who the missionaries are in my zone. Whatever, I guess someday we'll find out. Haha but I had to do a training on teaching skills and I just.. I don't know my role play of it was good but.. I had a rough go of the actual training aspect. Nothing says humble pie like stuttering over your words. But it was a really good experience. Public speaking has never really been a problem for me so I think Heavenly Father just wanted to remind me who gave me that spiritual gift. Haha. But it was really good. We were reminded of our purpose of missionaries the first being loving one another and treating people as children of God. I loved it. 
We got our new area up and moving this week. I was able to visit some of the members that I knew from before like the Morales and Mariana Lyra but also we got to visit the familia Avalos :) They remember me! Well for the most part haha. They all told me I don't look as fat anymore. Don't worry, hispanics do not have filters. The other Hermanas also took us to meet their investigators that we gained. These people are so prepared! It's awesome, they've done a great job at teaching them and helping them to know the purpose of our visits. That makes things so much easier when they know we're not just there to sit and chat. Flor, Antonio and Carmen are all really awesome and I can't wait to work with them more. 
We accidentally dropped in on a birthday party at the bishop's house and we got to meet some non members, that was cool! We stopped by a less active's house and they sat us down to eat and told us all the things they hated about the church. Including us. The elders handed us off a person to teach, she's really awesome, she's working towards her citizenship. She's passed the written test 3 times but she can't do the verbal test, so we're helping her with her pronunciation. She's super cute! 
We were able to watch the CES devotional from last week with the YSA's from the ward. It was really good! There was a part where it talked about doing things for the right reason and observing the whole situation of things. It was so good, I'll just send you the link :)
Yesterday we had a meeting with the leaders of the mission so we were on exchanges. Hermana Hull wanted me to meet someone that she thought that I knew. So we walked up to this door that I had never knocked before and knocked. The door opened and Angelica Rodriguez started jumping up and down and gave me this big hug and was kissing me on the cheeks and started crying saying "I lost touch with you, but I never want to do that again!" so then we went on to teach her a lesson and she said "If I wasn't catholic, I'd be mormon because of your example" ummm.. What? That was as she continually called me Madeline and tried to set me up with her nephew that's coming to visit them. It was a really cool experience because she remembered everything, and she still had a strong testimony of it. So I got bold, the spirit told me I had to be bold, so I was, I invited her to be baptized before I go in 3 weeks. And guess what. She said that as she starts to listen to the missionaries again she will be baptized. We then had to go, but she just gave me a giant hug and kissed my cheeks again and just wouldn't let go of my hand as we walked to the door. I miss this woman so much. My whole mission would be complete if she got baptized before I go. 
And yesterday, after working with the Cervantes for a long time they invited a friend to come listen to the discussion. It was well worth it after our dinner at Sam's club. haha. The spirit was so strong in that lesson. I almost started crying. 
Today Hermana Hull and I are going on exchanges again. Margarita is going through the temple and she wants me to be there.. Because I was the one that baptized her.. I can go :) So we're ending Pday early to go. Totally worth it. 
This week had all the great miracles I have been begging for for the past few weeks. Missionary work is so awesome. I love ya'll and hope you have a great week. Keep strong and carry on!

The alien word of wisdom breaker...

January 12th, 2015

So last week my email saved as a draft. I feel so loved that everyone emailed me anyways. Thanks :)
I'm just gonna get to the goods this week. I'm sick of the pleasantries so I'll just give you the highlights from this week. So on Wednesday we went to visit one of our less actives, Hermana Rosa (the crazy) and we were just chatting having a good time and as we were leaving she saw that we were on our bikes. She then asked us "Did you get your bikes from your planet?" "Our planet?" "Aren't you aliens?" "ummmm no.."

The next day we went to another Hermana's house and she fed us ice cream. After she had served us the ice cream I just was kinda like "hmmm... this tastes interesting" but I couldn't define what it was and then she came, sat down, took a taste and said "hermana, what is this taste?" and I said "I don't know but it tastes a little bit like coffee smells." Her eyes got HUGE and she went and got the ice cream container and asked me to read it and see if there was coffee.. I did.. there was coffee in it. I told her and she started freaking out she was like "oh my goodness I made the sister missionaries break the word of wisdom I'm going to be excommunicated!" and all this stuff, I told her it was fine cause it was in ignorance so it would be fine. 

I tell you that story to lead to the next one that includes me breaking the word of wisdom again. Hermana Lister came here for exchanges and we decided to go tracting. So we did and we met this lady who told us to come back in about 40 minutes so we could share with her and her husband. So we came back and this people.. They were pretty cool, laid back people. The woman is an artist and the husband was a musician. These people were hippies. I felt like I had stepped back in time when I was in their apartment. It was really weird. So they hear us out and we actually have a really good lesson with them, despite the fact that Hermana Lister and I struggled to teach in English a little bit. They told us we had a special hora about us, even though they thought we were British because he saw us on bikes in our "nice coats" haha.  They started to share with us some of their philosiphies and we left them with a Book of Mormon and they gave us "The Fellowship Bible: The bible of Love" or something they wife offered us some uncomfortably long "grace hugs"and then then brought out some brownies, we accepted, not thinking anything of it. We left that place laughing our heads off and laughing for the rest of the day. After lots of laughter and some unstraight thoughts, we came to the conclusion that we had some marijuana brownies. 

Then in that same complex we came across a guy that wanted us to free him from a demon but not right then, and so we tried just talking to him and he told us that we need to prove to him in the bible that God rids the good of demons if they ask Jesus people to do it for them.

This week our boundries changed, we're in a different zone :( and we gained a greater area. Guess what, it's part of the same area that I had when I was in H1. I guess it's safe to say Heavenly Father doesn't want me to be done over there yet. There's something I have to do for a few weeks... Baptize the world. Probably. So they disolved the spanish stake and just merged them with the English stakes. The whole world was balling their eyes out yesterday. It was crazy.

Also as a mission we're trying to reach 60 baptisms this month. So if you could pray specifically for that it'd be great. And that a few of those could be ours :) We've also been asked to make a sacrifice mine is thoughts of home. So stop making me think about it for the next few weeks okay? February you can make me as trunky as you want okay? Alright well I love you all and hope you have a great week. I know that the Lord is watching over each and everyone of you. I pray for you all and wish you the most success. I love you! Keep strong and carry on!
Hermana Groves 

Happy New Year!

January 5th, 2015

I need to stop putting off my group email until the last little while of my email. Sorry :) Let's see how detailed I can make this in the little time I have. 
Monday, nothing. Tuesday, we took a few young women out with us on our bikes. Not to toot my own horn, but I'm in awesome biking shape. They are not. So since I was leading the way I just thought we were all just breezing along. I look back and see that I'm sailing all on my own.. I thought I was pacing myself pretty slow too.. So that's a thing. We were able to visit one of the less active young women in the ward. I think it was really good, because they weren't even aware that she existed. But because I was used to timing things out based upon our speed we were super late for our next appointment and so the hermano (who this was our first time going to his house) was calling us and calling us asking where he could pick us up and telling us that it's not safe to be out on our bikes in the dark and all this stuff.. So.. we're not allowed to ride alone in the car with him without an adult female.. so I just stopped answering the phone. Whoops.. haha it was fine. No worries. He got over it. 
Wednesday New Years Eve came around, we had to be in our apartments by 8 so you know what we did? We took my usual holiday photo shoot (forgive us we kinda look like Kesha) and then we hit the hay. I think I was asleep by 9 15. Too bad Elder Jarvis called to ask about the Hermanas in his district at 10 20 (cause that's what district leaders do). So rude. Haha basically I told him he was lucky he was far away cause I was ready to punch some lights out. haha jk.
Friday we had MLC and we had this really long talk about confidenciality(spell check?) and then we were told some confidencial information that after next week I can share. For me it is really exciting so cowboy up for that. 
Friday we went to visit one of our investigators Maria. It was a rough go of it. We had a really strong lesson about the book of mormon then she said "I want you to come visit me every day. But I am not going to change. I will forever drink coffee, I will only read about the life of Jesus Christ. I won't read the Book of Mormon or go to church, I wasn't baptized 30 years ago and I'm not going to be baptized now" And I said "well Maria we'd love to come visit you every day but Maria our purpose as missionaries is to invite others to come unto Christ through faith in Him by being baptized so if you don't want to change, that's fine. But we can't come back to visit" she sat there for a minute and then said "My feelings didn't change, but disregard what I told you before and just come back." So we're just gonna feel that situation out. 
On Saturday we were able to contact a less active family named the Delgado's that I have never met before. We have an appointment with them this week. I'm so excited!
I don't have much more time but I want you all to know that I love you very much and that I hope you have a great week. The church is true!
Hermana Groves