Monday, August 25, 2014

August 25

Dear Family,

Hello! How are you today? Healthy? Happy?  Seeing miracles?  I hope so!  My week here in York was quite eventful.  We've been going crazy getting things all situated for Hilda's baptism this Saturday!  It's amazing how much opposition is coming to Hilda!  Her family probably has to move this week, they had to start school, health issues... the list just keeps going!  But she has such great faith and knows how important her baptism is.  We sort of teach in spanglish... it's interesting but I think that we're understanding each other somewhat, so that's good!   Fortunately the spirit doesn't  need a translator so everyone can understand, that's one of my favorite miracles.

We also had zone conference this week and we focused on the Book of Mormon.  It was amazing.  One of the best zone conferences ever.  I don't usually cry a lot but the spirit was so strong I was like sobbing.. weird.  Did you realize how powerful the Book of Mormon truly is?  It's so fantastically life changing.  I was reading in Preach My Gospel in Chapter 5 (best chapter!)  and there are activities at the back (pg 112) one of the questions asks you to pinpoint a scripture in the Book of Mormon that has changed your life. Have you ever asked yourself that question?  I did during personal study and I had a hard time finding one moment, it's hard to think of when your life changed.  Do you have a life changing scripture?  Honestly the whole book has changed my life that's why it's hard.   One scripture I do recall as changing my life a bit was Alma 34:41, sometimes we don't really think that we have afflictions but life can be hard!  We get stressed a lot, but that scripture answered a question of my soul and was clear assurance that as I patiently worked through the challenge, I would one day find rest.  That's the purpose of the Book of Mormon, to speak to your soul.  How has the Book of Mormon answered questions of your soul?

So President Weston challenged us as a mission to read the Book of Mormon together!  We are starting it Today and the goal is to finish by December 8 (Christmas Zone Conference)  I wanted to invite you to read it with us too!  It's 5 pages a day, so not too bad!  I know that the power that comes as we all read from the book of Mormon is so real and can truly change our lives.  Are you up for the challenge?  

The rest of our week was really fantastic, we had an exchange with the Yankee Hill sisters and Sister Papavero came to York with me, that was cool to have a Full exchange finally(where one of us is in each area) we went to Adopt-a-pet and played with a blind dog, Joannie loves it when we give love to god's creatures. She's seriously like a dog missionary, I hope she continues to progress and read the book of Mormon!  We also went to Nebraska City this week, which is great! I really like Nebraska City, and the amazing miracle was feeling charity for the Sisters that are serving there.  I didn't know one of them very well (which is weird for me because I'm getting to the point that I feel like I know every one really well)  but I was struggling with loving her for some reason, so I prayed for  charity, and guess what!?  By the end of the exchange I loved her a lot.  We left smiling as we drove back to York.

Missionary work is so happy!  I hope you all are able to have a happy week!  Look for missionary opportunities, not because I told you to, or because you feel guilty if you don't, but because it makes you happy.  If you want something to smile about share a simple truth you know to be true with someone you love. I love you all so very much.  I'm grateful for your love and support! 

Love Always,

Sister McMaster

Sister Dumont... :) awkward face champions!

finding my favorite people at zone conference!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Te Amo en el Amor de Cristo

Best week of my life.

Happy life lovely family! How are you all doing today?  Wonderful I hope?  I love you all so much and I hope you know that this gospel is worth it.  Every sacrifice we make for it is worth it. The Lord loves us so much.

So this week I experienced joy.  This is something that you experience a lot in life but I have never felt such incredible joy as hearing Hilda and Rene (her husband)  do their best to tell Sister Beers and I in English that they know what the Holy Ghost feels like.  I literally just can't put it into words but I know that her strength will do so much for our sweet little Aurora branch.  She's solid and is set to be baptized on the 30th, We'll be seeing her this week with lots of members, I know that it will strengthen them so much!

We had a really busy week, Sister Beers and I trained in the Grand Island zone training and the Lincoln South zone training as well, and President showed up to the one in Lincoln so that was a pleasant surprise!  We talked about consecration, and how when we put our whole heart into the work we see with the eyes of God.  We literally see the miracles that he puts in our path because we aren't distracted by anything else.  It's exciting to invite other missionaries to commit to be more consecrated.  

After our training on consecration we got to drive with a member to Central City!  That's the other half of our area, (did I mention that York is just like a 10th of our area?).  Sister Carr and her family are like the most amazing people I have ever all need to meet them.  First of all she drove an hour to come pick us up for dinner, then we got to her house and we made homemade churros!  (totally delicious!)  and they told us about why they live in Central City.  (because it's literally in the middle of nowhere!)  They had no intention of living in Nebraska but really felt strongly that Heavenly Father needed them there.  They put their trust in the Lord and now they are such a strong part of the Branch serving humbly all along the way.  I'm so grateful for their example.  It's not always easy or convenient to trust the Lord, but man the blessings that come from doing so are so worth it.  Don't ever underestimate God's Love!  When you are obedient he pours out blessings, no questions asked!

So yes, A wonderful week In Nebraska.  I love Sister Beers and I love being a missionary. I'm grateful for all of you and I hope you continue to enjoy the miracle that Heavenly Father places in your paths.  Let me know about them! I always love to hear about your miracles too :)

Glad to hear everything with the Wedding went well this week! I prayed for all of you! I know that this is where I am supposed to be and I love it here with all my heart.  Good luck with school starting up!  Don't have too much fun getting smarter!

Love Always,

Sister McMaster

Just brushing my princess Honey :)

Sister Beers and I love the farm life!

This is Alma and Arron... they want to welcome Amy into their club! :)  Glad there are sweet goats all around the world :)

Monday, August 11, 2014

Miracles in York!

How are you all doing this fine day?? Lovely I hope?

So news here:  Transfers! Yikes how I hate this time of mission life... it's mega stressful...I kind of knew Sister Wrubell would be leaving (because she had been here for 10.5 months)  But I selfishly hoped she'd stay... but the Lord knows best and Sister Wrubell is off to Sioux city to work her magic there! And I get to work with Sister Beers!  Woot woot!  She's like a walking angel... so sweet and I'm excited to work with her.  She was just barely with Sister Schrader so that's kind of a cool fun fact.  

So I had one of the craziest lessons of my life this week.... ready to hear about it???

So there we were... trying to locate the yellow house where Hilda and her family live currently.... upon finding their sweet little house we were warmly invited into their home where Maria (the oldest daughter) excitedly told us she had made browinies for us!  So we sat on this little couch and were talking to Hilda and Her husband when Hilda interrupted and asked "When are you holding a baptismal service?, I'm ready to be baptized".  I've never had someone say this, I didn't know what to say! haha I stumbled through words and said, well I I guess on the 30th of August... blah!  Haha so we will probably move her date up but she's so determined to be baptized.  She's the sweetest woman I know.  And continued to tell us about how she's been able to feel the spirit so strongly and that she has really felt like this is the best thing for her right now.   Their situation right now is super crazy but she kept saying, I know that this is where I need to be.    I love her so much.  The branch is thrilled to have them and is so supportive of them as they prepare to be baptized.

Other adventures, we canned a lot of green beans with members this week... we ate a squash from Sarah's garden, we chased geese for a few moments... we found some lost sheep(not actually sheep... less active members who aren't on our records)  We are seeing so many miracles here in York.  I love it here!   We get to go to Grand Island, Central City, Aurora, and Lincoln this week!  Woot woot!  

Well I hope you all have a beautiful week, I know the Lord's hand is in this work.  I've been learning a lot about how consecrating our efforts truly allows us to be instruments in the Lord's hands.  I feel so blessed to be able to serve a mission.  I know it has changed my life and I am so grateful for the faith of the people I meet and the people that are at home.  You are all fantastic.  The church is true, don't forget it!  

Love Always,

Sister McMaster

masks with sister Wrubell... :)

I love my Sister Wrubell


Monday, August 4, 2014

Whale of a Tale...

Hello family that I love,

Did you celebrate Thomas's birthday? How is that crazy 16 year old kid doing?  Did you get the Corn??  I hope it didn't die! :)  

So this morning the geese were running wild, we had a horrible encounter with a cricket and a goat tried to eat my hair... phew!  But we also had really good studies and the book of Mormon is amazing.  I'm reading in 3 Nephi 28 and it's amazing.  It's the part about the 3  Nephites, they don't want to ever stop serving the Lord and because of their desire they will never taste of death.  Sister Gomez an amazing Sister that was in my first ever district told us this last week that this is her motto, she want's to be a three nephite missionary, a never ending missionary.  How cool is that?  I love this idea.  I don't live every day waiting for tomorrow, I love and serve today because today prepares me for eternity.  That's the eternal perspective family, we don't live for endings we live for eternal beginings. (I'm pretty sure President Uchtdorf said something like that...)  
  Really though I'm learning what it means to sacrifice your all for the work of the Lord, and then realizing as so many people have said before me that when you sacrifice your all, you realize that it is no sacrifice at all.  The love of our Father in Heaven is so strong that he blesses us with peace and joy and eternal happiness.  

This week was really really busy, which is good but also stressful and exhausting! But I loved it :)  We saw so many miracles.  We started off with an exchange in Columbus!  How sweet!  I haven't been to Columbus since my first transfer in Nebraska! Talk about a weird flash back!  It is such a cool place and the Sisters there are in a Zebra companionship (meaning one english and one spanish sister)  They are soooo cool and we saw tons of miracles.  We met some super interesting people and we ate fresh cucumbers!  Cool right?  

Wednesday we got to be back in York which was a tender mercy.  We worked as hard as we could and we got to teach Amber (a fantastic Recent Convert) about how she can receive her patriarchal blessing.  Sooo cool!

  So one of the hardest things to see as a missionary is when people struggle.  Dawn is a recent convert that has begun to struggle so much, it is sooo disheartening,  I have to remind myself that the reason we can have the happiest moments on our mission is because we encounter some terribly sad ones as well.  Her 4 kids are sooo spiritually in tune.  We are praying that she can bring her kids to church and partake of the fullness of Joy that she once desired.   I love her and her family so much, I'm grateful to learn to love people with all my heart. 

We Went to Grand Island, and Hastings for district meeting and mini exchanges...  then we drove to Omaha for Leadership council!  (phew we have lots of fun on our daily road trips... we were in the car for like 4 hours.... yay for license plate games and conference talks!)  

Leadership was amazing.  I felt so much peace and love.  Heavenly Father knew my spirit needed a hug and I got what I needed!  We talked all about Sacrifice (which is why it's on my mind today)  President invited us to think of 3 things we can sacrifice for the rest of our mission... so I'm thinking of things!  It is amazing that I am so much more willing to sacrifice now than I was when I first came on a mission.  I'm just ready to give all to the Lord, because I understand better that our Savior gave everything for us. My little desires are sooooo minimal and insignificant His will is the most important thing.  I pray that each of you as you pray are able to seek His will for you in your lives.

Well the church is true, I know Heavenly Father Loves you all so much.  Thank you for your faith and prayers.  Thanks for being my favorite people on the planet.  I hope you have a fantastic week and don't forget that I love you!

Love you forever!


Sister McMaster