Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy 2014! 1/6/14

WARNING. It’s gonna be a long one. Thanks for loving (hopefully!) my madness.
MOM you completed our mission’s BofM challenge in just over a month!!! Wow! You’re seriously the greatest mama. I love you! BACHAN + JICHAN thank you for your sweet oranges off the tree. I cried as I opened up that package and smelled the citrusy memories of San Jose! That was so thoughtful. BLAKE you went to the temple! The most incredible + beautiful place, huh? You were in my thought all Saturday. LILY, you’re Sister Checketts tomorrow in D.C.  whaaat?! So proud of you. Missions are life’s greatest miracle. I love my Lost Mountain ward family. Sister Heinhold took us to lunch one day and the Carnell’s the next. So much love! SO happy! Just love shout outs all around! This week rocked.
Firstly, IT IS SNOWING. IN GEOEGIA! SNOW COMING FROM THE SKIES!!! The low is 2 degrees today. LOL, right? immadie. Alright anyway, we saw so many miracles in the work this week! We’ve been teaching a man named Jonathon and he joyfully tells all that the Lord led him to His church. As we’ve taught him with less-active team ups, they’ve come back to church and rediscovered their testimony. Jonathon came to church on Sunday and if I didn’t know better, I would have thought he had been a part of the ward all his life. The members loved him in and he said it was “coming home.” Our lessons with Jonathon teach me so much. I’ve realized that you can tell you are teaching by the spirit that when the words that come out of your very own mouth teach you so much and make sense like it has never before.
We had mission council at the mission home this week and can I just day that the leadership team here in GAM blow me away. With President and Sister Harding leading us, under the direction from Above (obviously) (most inspired people I’ve ever known), I receive such strength and motivation! We got to watch “Ephraim’s Rescue” and break down some of the incredible quotes and apply them to missionary work. ITS AMAZING. If you haven’t seen it yet, drop what you’re doing and watch it. It’s that good. I’m trying to develop faith like Ephraim Hanks.
I had the total privilege of serving at the Bishop’s store house. It was seriously the coolest couple hours! To see the degree of charity exploding from the walls, it was no question that Jesus Christ was behind this “Costco” of free food for those in need in the metro Atlanta area. The Church is incredible! It was such so wonderful to feel a portion of what the Savior felt as He served and loved.

Silly shenanigans. So we went to visit Gracie, the really old lady. She’ll be turning 84 at the end of this month and her health has been declining a lot. She loves what we teach her and knows the church is true, but in her condition… it just makes the whole baptizing thing hard. Anyway, we went over to check in on her and see how she was doing/ offer a priesthood blessing to help bring her some comfort as she gets ready to pass on to the next life. Like.. she really is dying.  We read some scriptures and talk about her life and some of her accomplishments and then she says to us in her slow, drawn out southern accent.. “I told the Lord…. I was okay to go..” as she says this she’s on the couch sitting and she slowly says it and moves her head to look up. After she said it she just went quiet… eyes slightly open.. still… OHMYGOSH NOT EVEN KIDDING YOU! WE THOUGHT SHE DIED ON US AS WE WERE THERE! We shared a panicked look with each other and had a mini freak out.. then whattdya know.. Miss Gracie started moving and talking again. Haha! Oh man. We laugh about that all the time now. What do you do if that really happened? Call 911?
Next story…we’re teaching O.J. and his sister in law, they’re Muslim from West Africa. We’re there with a member and as we are testifying, O.J. cuts Sister Maney off and asks me how old I am and if I was married. He then guesses that I AM 28 YEARS OLD AND PROPOSES TO ME. Asked me if I can be his bride! Not even kidding. The member answered for me and we quickly clarified our purpose as missionaries. Yikes!
2014 begun with a bang! I couldn’t feel more thankful for this marvelous time when the work is hastening and the Lord is sending miracles full force! I love this work because it’s true and as I get to witness it change lives for the best, and my heart gets to change too! Love you all!
Happy are we!

Sister Avery Miyahara

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