Sorry to group email yall this week. I'm so tired. I need to take a pday from pdays but the elders won't let me. They say that if I rest on pday (take a 3 hour nap like I want to) I'll wake up just as tired and it won't help. And they insist that we have to party and do tons of stuff together every pday or else we aren't unified. Ugh. So over it. Just let me take a nap without feeling guilty for once. Elder Crane and I are still working some things out...
Anywho...thanks for all the updates! I can't believe yall are going snowmobiling in Yellowstone! So awesome! Take tons of pictures/video so I can see how it was. I really want to go do that some day!
Mom- Thanks for all the happy bits! I loved reading them! They made me smile so big! :D And also, opening up the valentine's envelopes every morning is so fun. Everything you sent has been amazing and I freakin loved all the notes and cards from friends and families from home that I love so much. My favorite little gift that you sent so far was the wipes - to "wipe your love" on me with-- hahahahhahaha. Seriously, that was so funny! Also, I got the package from Deseret Book with all the pictures and books and CD - thank you thank you thank you! So great! That picture of Peter and the Savior gets me every time.
Dad- Thanks for sharing what you learned from ward conference. I truly love President Heller and Bishop Miller. They are so inspired. It's funny that you talked about weaknesses - I was just studying that this morning. In Jacob 4:6-7 Jacob is talking about the amazing things we can accomplish through the power of Christ, while at the same time the Lord gives us weaknesses so we can stay close to him and continue to to do amazing things. It was a really cool insight that I had never found before, and I'm having a hard time explaining over email right now, sorry. Hopefully you can read the verses and make sense of what I was trying to say :)
So updates from the Bayou-
-Mission Leader Council this last wednesday with President and Sister Wall and the assistants. We were trained on what President wants to focus on for the last 5 months of his mission, based on what we learned from Elder Perkins at Zone Conference. We are working on finding, urgency, and purpose. On Friday, me and Sister Recksiek and the zone leaders instructed the missionaries in our zone about the various topics, with a focus on confidence - President Wall said that the biggest/best thing we can do for our missionaries is to help build their confidence. And so for my portion (we broke the zone into four groups and each of us leaders took ten minutes with each group, instructing on a different aspect of confidence, and then rotated around to each of the groups. It was cool!) I focused on confidence in your talents and gifts. I have learned that the Lord has given each os us talents, gifts, and unique abilites/interests, and that if we deny these talents it is like denying blessings, and who would ever want to do that? So I had each mission take a piece of colored paper and gave them markers to draw things that are unique about themselves or talents that they have, etc. And then in D&C 8:4, it says that applying unto our gifts will protect us from our enemies. If a missionary's greatest enemies are fear and lack of confidence, then we should apply our gifts to overcome that. i told stories of real life experiences when a missionary used his or her individual gifts/talents/interests to contact people, conect with an investigator, or help someone feel loved. And basically I tried to teach that God doesn't want us to be robots, He wants us to be the best version of our selves so that He can use each of us to bring forth His purposes. I learned a ton about myself and how I can have more confidence, and I felt confident (through the holy ghost) as I instructed other missionaries on this topic. Hopefully it made a difference for them. I know it did for me! :)
Ok, gotta run, but thank you so much for all your love and support! You two mean the world to me - you are the best parents and cheerleaders I could ask for! I pray for you guys and I'm so thankful that I get to be with you for eternity!