Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

How are you all doing!?  Getting ready for Thanksgiving??  I have been so thrilled to be a missionary during this time of remembering all that we need to be grateful for. 
I am somewhat at a loss of things to write about (probably because I should never go to the computers on an empty stomach) but do not worry, as they always and forever will, miracles have happened.  
Sister Call and I have been working on being EXACTLY obedient.  It's hard!  We do our very best to be where we are supposed to be at all the right times and more often then not we see miracles happen when we do this.   We had a day that we had planned less then we should have and were sort of beating ourselves up when we had a thought to go talk to a man we had briefly met a few weeks back, his name is Don.  He was home and was so sweet, he seems very lonely.  His wife passed away a few months ago and  we can see how the gospel would bless his life.    We talked to him and set up a time when we can teach him more about the Book of Mormon, we were feeling really good thinking we found our miracle for the hour, when we walked out the door of the appartment complex and held the door open to a freezing woman (did I mention it's freezing here?  oh yeah it is.)  She was scurrying in when she looked at us and said "What ward do you go to?" we told her, and asked her what ward she attended.  She told us she had moved a few months ago from Arizona and hadn't been able to go to church yet.  So we very lovingly invited her and were thrilled that she showed up on Sunday!  Coincidence?  I think not.  It was cool that Heavenly Father helped us be in  a place that we would run into her.
We also had a really cool experience with a golden investigator!  You've been waiting for this right?  His name is Josh and he went on and found the bishop's phone number, called him and said "What do  I need to wear to attend your services?"  Sweet right!?  We had a lesson with him last week and it was awesome.  He is so prepared to change and to progress.  It is amazing to realize that there are people out there like Josh.  Only downside of this story is that our Area is so small that he doesn't live in our ward boundaries, So we had to transfer him over to the Elders in the other ward. We have a tendency of finding fabulous investigators for other missionaries.   Still working on maintaining our own. 
Well, I want you all to know how grateful I am for each one of you.  Especially during Thanksgiving I hope you all take a good moment to remember your Savior.  Remember to be grateful to him.   I have loved to be a missionary because I get to dedicate every waking moment to his service.  I love getting to know him better and feeling his love more powerfully each day.  I have also learned to have more faith as I pray.   Praying intently is an incredible thing to do.  I was studying the story in Mosiah 24 about the people of Alma that were in bondage.  They had such great faith that they prayed with all of their hearts.  They had no doubts that the Lord would provide a way for them.  They never doubted the power of prayer.   The best part is that they were right on target.  Heavenly Father was so aware of their needs, he knew exactly that they were suffering and struggling and he eased their burdens, and helped them to feel comforted.  How often do we each need that comfort and yet we forget to pray with all of our heart?   I have met a fair amount of people that fight getting help from the Lord.  How often is that my own struggle?   Do we realize that there isn't anything that he doesn't understand?    I have been thinking a lot about this lately.   Prayer is our connection to our dear Father in Heaven, and we have the opportunity to speak to him through a gracious Savior.  Do we show enough gratitude for this? 
I know that I could demonstrate more gratitude to my Savior.   My commitment to you lovely family is that you go out of your way to show gratitude to your Savior.  Don't doubt or underestimate your actions.  He knows your hearts and he will shower you with blessings as you do so.  I hope you all know that I love you all so dearly, I am so grateful to be a member of the Church, I am so grateful to have the Book of Mormon,  I know that it is a miracle that it is available to us today!  What a beautiful plan this is. 
Have a Terrific week!  Eats lots of Turkey, don't worry we're being fed twice so we'll be feeling fat and happy just as you all will be I hope :)    Love you!
Sister McMaster

Monday, November 18, 2013

Long time no talk!

Has it been forever?  Yup it sure feels like it!  Man have the past two weeks been crazy!   Ever heard of exchanges?  They make you crazy!  Actually they're just a little bit spiritually exhausting.  So last monday the libraries were closed then tuesday we had an exchange so we couldn't use computers then, then on wednesday we had a Zone Training that lasted forever... and then we had a million appointments thursday then another exchange Friday... and bam it was mondayagain... So here I am!  
So time is mega short today because all of you wrote me novels that I loved :)  I really love all of you so much and I really appreciate all the lovely messages you send me and I wish I had more time to individually respond to each of you.  Alas you all will just need to be satisfied with this one boring e-mail.
So Thanksgiving coming up makes everyone happier, Mom you are so right, I love that the spirit of Gratitude really touches peoples hearts no matter what faith they might be. 
I just want to share one quick experience from this week: We went up to Red Oak, Iowa for a day  and it was crazy!  It was literally like hick town hillbilly land.... Haha  I was with Sister Checketts for a day which was fun because we were in the same MTC district, so we're like family!  We went with a member to a little baby sized town (probably like organic lime sized but less cute then the gummie bear Nat and Tan have)  called Hamburg..... said like Ham-Burg... not said with any fancy german accent or anything... but they literally have nothing there... one gas station... not even any hamburgers!  But we were hunting down a member that Sister Checketts had never met and we went to the first address and the man was angry and told us she now lived 8 blocks this way and 2 that way... so we went to find that house and had no luck so we just started asking people on the street if they knew this lady... and like 60% of the time they knew her or a relative or something.  It was really funny I just couldn't help but laugh out loud as we were treasure hunting for people in Hamburg Iowa.     What did I learn from this you are probably asking?   Good question really, but I did learn that the gospel changes people's lives, it honestly makes them so happy.  It is incredible to see this light fill their lives.  The Lord works in mysterious ways and he will never give up on us.   He will send missionaries to hunt you down in crazy little towns because he loves each one of his children so perfectly. 

I love this gospel.  And I love each of you!   Thanks for you support, keep being incredible! 
Love you to the moon and space!
Sister McMaster

Monday, November 4, 2013

Afternoon from Bellevue!

Hello Family of Mine!

So it was a really fantastic week, full of miracles as the best of weeks are.  I love the people here, I was worried I wouldn't love them but I really do.  They are fantastic and very sweet. Just this afternoon we got to help a lady can apples!  It was a lot of fun making applesauce and such, that's why I'm e-mailing so late, because she really needed some hands, so we volunteered :)   
So Sister Call and I had to give a training this week, yikes! It was awful actually, let's be real I won't lie to you and say it was amazing because well it wasn't! haha.   I didn't realize how big zone conference was!  then when we were in the gym with 60 other missionaries and President Weston was turning the time over to sister call and I, I was like.... YIKeS!    Unfortunately it was after lunch and all the missionaries were sleepy and tired and me jumping up and down trying to excite them only makes me look awkward but it was okay.  Sister Call doesn't think we'll ever be asked to train again which I am okay with! :)
We also had a surprise temple trip this week which was fabulous.  I love going to the temple, such a blessing to have temples so close to home.  We are so blessed.  I know that it was a tender mercy that we got to go to the temple.  It is so cool to be reminded of our important purpose on this earth to return to live with our father in heaven.  That was something I needed to be reminded of.  It has been interesting having stewardship over sisters and trying to help them, and going on exchanges with them.  I really love it.  Heavenly father loves to remind me to stop thinking about myself and serve someone else.  That's a lesson I am sure I will continue to learn throughout life.  
So we have an investigator named Lynn, she's fantastic.  We took her to the trail center this week which is always a very powerful experience.  She is a funny lady though, she likes to ask all kinds of questions about everything.  It has really helped me realize the value of the Book of Mormon.  It is evidence that all of these things are true.  When you know that it is the word of God then you don't have to question everything else.  Everything just falls into place.  I am so grateful that the Book of Mormon is something our family has always read and valued.  I love remembering reading it when we were little at the breakfast table.  I remember being so tempted to simply read the cereal box in front of me and tune out dad reading, but things stood out to me then.  I remember him saying "give ear..." and thinking that was funny.... you know little things like that.  But really never underestimate the power of opening the Book of Mormon.  It invites the spirit like nothing else.  Whatever challenges you might have remember that the Book of Mormon will be the best peace you can ever ask for. 
I am so grateful for you family!  I can't even tell you how much I love you but you are all so fantastic!  Are you thinking of things you are grateful for?  I hope so I love that November is a month to remember what we're grateful for.  What blessings are you seeing in life each day??  Tell me about your miracles!  Mine are getting boring I fear... I'll work on sprucing up these e-mails sorry to bore you.
Love you All!  Keep choosing the right!
Love Always,
Sister McMaster