Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July 21

oh my goodness this week has been crazy!!! hopefully I will remember everything as I am writing. first off the transfer call came! I am going to Casper, Wyoming. My new companions name is Sister Bently. what is crazy is that Sister Maisey is getting transferred too! she is going to Gillette, Wyoming. They have decided to send a second set of Elders to the area. so we are running around like crazy people packing and cleaning our house and our car and getting everything ready to leave tomorrow. The ward was not too happy to hear that they are loosing their Sisters but we just keep reminding them that transfers are inspired of the Lord! Plus there aren't as many sisters in the mission as there used to be so I think that some areas are shutting down. It was funny though because one of the woman in our ward has been wanting us to teach her husband and he is slowly progressing to the point that he was going to start taking the lessons but he isn't super comfortable with the elders so she was super sad that we are leaving. She joked that she was going to kidnap us and leave us in her basement so that we could teach her husband :) She's like can't you just see it! national news two sister missionaries go missing! we were laughing pretty hard. but all joking aside I feel like her husband will get there someday. I told everyone they will just have to pray for sisters to come back!!!

in other news I found out this past week that I might be allergic to peanut butter. worst thing that I ever did hear. for the past month or so I have been having these really weird feelings and I get sick and I get super tired and just weird stuff but I had no idea what it was so I just pushed through it because eventually it would pass and I would be fine. Well the other night I finally called the mission nurse and she told me that what I was explaining was an allergic reaction. and that the most likely culprit is peanut butter. which peanut butter is basically like my favorite food. I eat it with pretty much everything!!! so now I have to stop :( and I have to keep a journal of what I eat and see how different things make me feel until we can figure out what it is exactly that is causing everything. so it's been a little crazy with all of that happening!

we also had Htoo Say Paw one of the recent converts in our area who went to girls camp this past week. She is 13 and I love her! she's the cutest girl. She always makes me smile. We are pretty much best friends. :) she got sick the morning that she was supposed to leave though so she couldn't leave then. but there was someone else going up to camp a few days later so she got to go with them and stay for 2 nights. it was an adventure figuring everything out! but she went and had a really great time.

Last week in district meeting we were challenged to give away 2 Book of Mormons this past week. Sister Maisey and I really wanted to! but like I said our week was kinda of crazy with just random stuff coming up left and right! but we placed one on Tuesday when we went out contacting and tracting and then on Friday night we found a miracle. We had finished dinner and we were trying to decide what we wanted to go do. We had planned tracting and contacting. We stood outside and felt like we should walk towards one of our recent converts houses. So we went off that way. We walked for a while and none of the houses felt right to tract into. We got to a park and Sister Maisey's like well let's go talk to people at the park. Keep in mind that every time we have gone to this park to contact people the only people we manage to find are people who don't speak English and pre-teens/teenagers. but we decided to go. as we are walking we are almost to the other end of the park when this man says Hello to us. Before I even know what was happening I turned to him and started talking to him. We bore testimony of the restoration and talked to him about the Book of Mormon. He told us that he has been going through a lot of hardship recently and that he was looking to become more religious. He then asked us if we know a certain member of the church. the certain member happened to be our ward mission leader! (who happened to be who we had just had dinner with ) he told us that they were good friends. So he already had a built in fellow shipper! we gave him the Book of Mormon and committed him to read Alma 7 about the Atonement. He told us that he would. As we walked away it was just one of those moments that was so awe inspiring. to know that the Lord hear our prayers and led us right to someone who needed the comfort and support of the Gospel and give us the opportunity to bear testimony to him and introduce him to the message of the restoration. I really hope that when the Elders get here that they can work with our ward mission leader to start teaching his friend!!

oh! so we had zone training meeting this past week too and they church has come out with some pretty cool changes! they have made some adjustments to preach my gospel. There are 5 lessons in preach my gospel that are taught to people. 4 of them were to be taught before baptism and one after. Well they have changed it so that all 5 lessons will be taught before someone can be baptized. Which I think is super helpful. Because lesson 5 is the Law's and Ordinances. So it's where you talk about the Priesthood and Auxiliaries, missionary work. Celestial marriage, service in the church. family history work and the temple. This way teaching people about those things before  they are baptized will help them to see what the real result of them joining the church will be. It's not just to get baptized, it's to be an enduring member. It's to make it to the temple. To have an eternal family. To receive all of the ordinances necessary for us to return to live with Heavenly Father again someday. so that was cool to hear about!

We also talked a lot in Zone training meeting about family history work! which at first a lot of the missionaries were like really? how is that supposed to help us? we have been told that our work(right now as full time missionaries)  is for the living not the dead. But it was super awesome!!!!! we talked about the doctrine behind family history work and about the Spirit of Elijah. there are many people in the world today who are being effected by the spirit of Elijah and they don't even know it! The Spirit of Elijah is what prompts people to want to know more about their ancestors. There are many people out there who do family history work, who want to be connected to their families. but they don't know why. well we do know why!!! they have that desire because families are central to the plan of salvation. Because having an eternal family Is the only way back to Heavenly Father. It's because families are divinely ordained. so as missionaries we need to search for those people who are being affected by the spirit of Elijah and help them to understand why they are having these desires. They also showed a video by president Eyring that was super powerful. In it he talks about our ancestors who are on the other side of the veil and how they are looking to us for help. How we are their hope. at one point he talks about how when we come face to face with them someday we want to be able to have them look at us with a look of happiness and gratitude and not a look of disappointment. But the one part of what he said that really hit me was that we are their hope. We faithful members of the church. the ones who understand the plan of salvation and why we have temples. We that have the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We are their hope.

ok. I don't think that I have anything else to write about from this week. like I said things are a little crazy! but I am excited for what is ahead. I know that the Lord is with me always. He reminds me of that day after day after day. Often times I have to tell myself that there are people out there who have things a lot worse than I do! and that there are faithful members of the church who have gone through trials much worse than mine! Especially I  like to consider on the suffering of our Savior as He performed the Atonement. There is a verse in Doctrine and Covenants about it that always hits me. It's when the Prophet Joseph Smith is in liberty jail. The Lord speaks to Joseph about all of these horrible things that could come upon him and that he should know that if they do come that they would be for his good. and then the next verse is the one that always gets me. It says something to the effect of "the Son of Man has descended below it all. Art thou greater than He?" our Savior lived the perfect life. He loves everyone perfectly. and yet he was crucified. He went though so much. More than we can even comprehend. He descended below the depths of Hell. are we greater than He? no. so we will be asked to face hard times. but the beauty of the Atonement is to know that He will be next to us helping us along as we are called to face them. He did it along. and because He did, we don't have to.

well my dear family and friends I had better get going! Lot's to do on this crazy p day! but I love you all so much!!! thank you for the prayers and the love and the support!!!

Love you!!!

Love always your favorite sister missionary
Sister Boudreaux

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

July 14

Okay so this week my email might be a little bit shorter. This past weekend there was a crazy storm that came through and I guess it caused some damage to the library so it's closed. So we are emailing really fast from the church! So not as much time to reply :) what's funny is that the storm came through on Saturday morning between 5 and 6 am. it rained like 3 to 4 inches here in town. People had flooding. I guess the lightening was crazy bright. I slept through the whole thing :) Sister Maisey work up. She thought the lightening was me taking pictures of her. I woke up and just thought it had rained a little! then we started to hear the crazy stories. It was pretty funny. What can I say I love my sleep! it's important to me :)
So this past week we finally found a new investigator!!!!! we are super excited. They were a referral from our bishop. They are a family here in town and we met the Grandmother this past week. We shared the Restoration with her and the spirit was super strong! She told us that she is excited to read from the Book of Mormon. we have an appointment to go back and see her again tomorrow! so we are excited about that.

This is also the last week of the transfer! CRAZY!! I can't believe it! This transfer has gone so incredibly fast!!! it will be exciting to see what happens. I am trying to think if anything else crazy has happened this past week. It was a pretty typical week. We got in to visit a lot of the people that we usually see. We have for sure felt the hand of the Lord helping us along :)

Oh I got to speak in church yesterday! I was asked to give a talk on chapter one of Preach My Gospel, My Purpose as a missionary. It was really nice to get to study that chapter and look for ways that I could explain what my purpose as a missionary is to the ward here. It was also interesting because they have decided to start having Elder Zaw (he is the karen elder serving here) translate the talks so that the karen members can understand more about what is going on in church. It was a new experience to have to pause every so often so he could translate. you know me I talk a million miles a minute! so it took some good self control :)  I really enjoyed the talk.I talked about our purpose. in Preach My Gospel it states that "our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through Faith in Jesus Christ and His atonement, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. (in the MTC they make you stand and recite your purpose so that you have it ingrained in your head!)  I used some of the paragraph's in Preach My Gospel in my talk as well.. Specifically how it talks about why the Gospel is essential. It puts it really well. Basically it says that the purpose of the gospel is to help us be clean enough to return and live in the Celestrial Kingdom. The second half of my talk I focused on the first part of our purpose, inviting others to come unto Christ. I shared the song Come Unto Christ, the mutual theme for the year. I think it was one of those experiences where the talk was really for me more than anyone else. it just helped me to remember why I am here. and what I am doing. That through all of my actions, words, and deeds I should be inviting other people to come closer to the Savior.

okay well I had better get going! I can't think of anything else exciting that happened this past week to write home about. but I love you all oodles and oodles!!!

Love always your favorite sister missionary
Sister Boudreaux

Saturday, July 12, 2014

July 7

I can't believe that it is already time to write home again! It feels like I was just here writing to you all. This past week went by so incredibly fast! Last Monday we went out to DeSmet SD which just so happens to be the home of Laura Ingels Wilder :) We met the Sisters from Brookings there and went and saw some of the different buildings and stuff. I have never read the books or seen the TV show so it wasn't super exciting for me but maybe when I come home I will read them and it will mean more. :) It was fun to spend some time with the other sisters doing something fun. We actually met in DeSmet so that we could go on exchanges. I was in Brookings with Sister Jensen. We came out together so it was really fun to get to be temporary companions. This transfer is actually one of the first times that we have seen each other since we got to the mission field so it was fun to catch up and get to hear each others stories from our different area's and such.

The rest of the week was pretty typical. Lot's of faith filled tracting! :) We may not have found any new investigators recently but it has been a really great experience to get to open our mouths in anyway that we can to testify. In the Book of Mormon it talks about raising a voice of warning! we are doing our best to do that here in Huron. I know that there are people who are ready to receive the gospel here! We are just still searching for them. I know that the work we have been doing is making a positive impact on the community. And there really are tender mercies of the Lord everywhere helping us to know that we are doing His will and His work. As long as we can go to bed at night knowing that we did our best that day that is all that matters!! :)

The 4th of July was tons of fun! so much better than last years :) President gave approval for us to watch the parades and the fireworks! so that gave us a few more things to do in our pretty empty day. Although I do have to say that parades in small towns are NOTHING like the parades back home. The one in Huron was so quiet. like no one yelled anything, no music really. It was a little different. but the big thing out here is the candy. We got to go out to Wessington Springs and watch the parade out there too with the Bishop and his family. Oh my goodness they got SO much candy!! their parade was a little more lively :) they were fun to watch. The next part of the day might have been my favorite part of the 4th. two words. turtle. racing. Everyone in the community catches a turtle and they race them on the 4th of July! The kids race them and they do it in 3 age groups. We named the White's turtle speedy. He did really well. :) we raced for all 3 of the age groups and qualified in each one to race for the grand champion. After the races we drove with the whites out to the lake to set him free back out into the wild :) while we were there we got to talk with a few different people in the community too which was good for the work! After we let speedy go we had dinner and then fireworks! all in all it was a fun day. we got to be out in the community here in Huron and out in Wessington Springs. The more we are seen the better! we also got to visit with a woman in our ward who has been really sick recently. It was good to spend some time with her and just feel the special spirit that she has with her in her home. She has some of the strongest faith of anyone that I have ever met! She is a truly special woman.

Yesterday we were able to show the Mormon's Next Door presentation to our ward. It's the presentation we saw about a month ago in Zone Training Meeting that is all about who we are as LDS people and how what we believe correlates with how we live our lives. It's really cool.  We were going to have one of the Elder's read it with me while Sister Maisey clicked the buttons on the prezi but then the Elder got pretty sick. So I read all 19 pages of it myself! which was okay :) when I got done one of the older men in our ward told me that he wished he could read as well as I can :) it was a very nice complement! We are excited to see how maybe this tool can help our members as they are working to share the gospel with their friends and neighbors.

Other than that I can't think of much else that has happened recently. Things are going good! Life just keeps going forward faster than I would have ever imagined. It was so good to see the pictures of all the grandkids! they are all getting soooo big!!!!! I love and miss them and all of you tons and tons!!! I know that the moment that I get to be with all of you will be an amazing one. and I know that the harder I work now the better that moment will be. Yesterday as I was sitting pondering during the sacrament the spirit just hit me so hard with the fact that my family loves me. I have always known that but they witness I received yesterday was so powerful. I bore my testimony yesterday about how important families are. I know that I would not still be here on my mission if not for the love and support of my family. I know you are all excited for me to come home and I am excited too. but I am so much more excited to get to serve with all of my heart until that day comes. I love you all so much!! I feel your prayers and love!!! You mean more to me than you will ever know!! Thank you again.

Love always your favorite sister missionary,
Sister Boudreaux
 Happy 4th of July!
Speedy the turtle.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

June 30

Hello! so this past week was kinda of boring. I don't have any super exciting things to send home. But it was good. Well it was a little hard. but still good! the hard weeks seem to be the ones that you learn the most from. and I learned that you just keep going!!! It was actually pretty amazing this past week we have been sharing the scripture from D&C 84:88 with people about how angels are all around us to help us and lift us up. Well this past Friday night I was really having a hard time. I took a few minutes to myself to just pray. and after I finished praying I realized that our Sister Training Leader Sister Jensen was supposed to be calling us. As she did call and talk with us it was amazing to see that she was the angel that Heavenly Father sent to me that day. She was just able to help me talk things through. As we talked I just had the strongest spiritual impression that the reason that I work so hard and keep trying even when I want to quit is because the work that I am doing is true. It's because the Gospel is true. I know that with all of my heart. Is it hard? Ya!!! but is it worth it? YA!!! Life is never going to be easy. It was never designed to be easy. But we always have the choice to be happy. and to learn from things. This morning Sister Maisey and I were talking about things we have learned from our missions. and I just realized that one of the most important things that I have gained from my mission is an itty bitty little taste of what our Savior must have gone through. To understand what it's like to be rejected by people when they really have no idea who I am and what they are really rejecting. to know that the sorrow that I feel for these people and for the world are nothing compared to what He felt. To know that as hard as it is for me to forgive and move on that that is exactly what He did! The world teaches us to be bitter and seek revenge. to make things "fair" well we were never told that it would be that way. But we were promised that all that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Is it hard to live a life as a dedicated follower of Christ, especially in the world that we live? Ya it is. but it's the only way back to our Father in Heaven. Christ and His example are the ONLY way. There is no other way. Is it hard? of course. it's going to take everything that we have. everything that we are. to make it back there again someday. God askes that we give our whole soul to Him. and He promises that if we do He will give us greater joy than we can ever imagine. I don't want to get to the judgement bar of God and have Him look at me and tell me that I could have become more. that I didn't reach my full potential. That is one of my biggest fears. But as we know we must have faith not fear!!! so I continue to trust in the Lord. I have faith in the pattern of the gospel. Faith that if I strive every single day to do my best that it will all turn out okay in the end. :) I guess that's what I have learned on my mission and just something that has really hit me this past week.

Yesterday we had a cool experience. we had just finished dinner and prayed to know where to go. We had thought about tracting and so we prayed to see if that was the right thing. A less active of ours came to mind but we hadn't really been in to see her for a while. But it felt right! so we went to her apartment. we get there and she is in the shower. so we leave and as we are walking away I am just so confused by this prompting. It was to go and go now! and then we went and she was in the shower? wouldn't the spirit have told us to wait until she get's out? but then as we were walking across the parking lot this lady stops us and is like oh I didn't know there were girl missionaries. Which is actually something I have heard a lot on my mission. so I figure she is just another person who has talked with Elder's in the past sometime. eh wrong! come to find out she is a member! she just moved back to Huron this past week. We were able to go up with her right then and meet her and her boyfriend (who is not a member) it was really cool! she's a cute girl! she joined the church about 8 years ago here in Huron. I am excited to get to know her better. She even invited us over for dinner this weekend! :) Just a tender mercy of the Lord. If we are wiling to listen to the promptings that He sends us  He will lead us to where we need to be when we need to be there. :) so what I learned is don't question! just act :) ( I have learned this lesson a lot as a missionary... it's an important one!! )

well other than that life is pretty much the same old same old. Remember the story about how I fell on my face running last Oct? I still have a really funny looking pink mark on my knee. One of the girls in the ward saw it yesterday when I moved my skirt and she asked what it was. oh ya know I just fall on my face on a regular basis. :) but it does make people smile when I talk to them about it so I guess it all turned out okay :)

That's something else that I have learned about being a missionary and really about life. you have to laugh!! if you can't laugh then you will never make it through. I was talking with Sister Anderson (President Andersons wife) and she just told me she loved how happy I am. I told her that life is too short to be grumpy all the time! she laughed and said that is true!

This week feels like it was the longest week of my mission and yet it went by SO fast! it's crazy. but good things are happening here! and amazing things are coming! I can feel it!!!! I love you all so much!! sorry for a totally random letter. my brain just feels like it's not fully functioning today. hopefully next weeks will be a little bit better :)

LOVE YOU!!!!!!

Love always,
Sister Boudreaux :)