Sorry I missed you yesterday. Since it was president’s day all the libraries were closed. Everything is Pittsburgh is going great. The work is moving along. We are finding lots to teach. It snowed pretty much everyday last week. I wear tons of layers in order to stay warm. Today was actually really warm. It got to 42 which was glorious. The sun never felt so good. I literally stood there and basked in it while we waited for a bus. I was glad to see the snow finally melting. Pittsburgh doesn’t have a very good drainage system for the streets so there is a lot of water everywhere. But I can deal with it as long as it’s not snow.
A really neat experience happened this past week. We were at a bus stop and I looked over to my left and saw this woman sitting on a bench. I thought I should go talk to her, but then she pulled out a phone and started talking to someone so I pushed it off. I turn the other way and talk to Sister Stokes for a little bit. I turn around and the lady is standing next to me and she asks if we are nuns. (little tangent: everyone here thinks we are nuns because our tags say sister. No body really knows about our church which is really weird.) I start talking to her about our church and then all of a sudden I’m giving her a Book of Mormon and telling her to read it. I told her to start at the introduction. She accepts it and says she is really excited to start reading it. We get her information and then she hopped on a bus. We call her and set an appointment with her, but then we find out she is out of our area and she lives in the elder’s area. We had to turn her over to the elders to teach, but we called her and told her. We asked if she had read any of it. She said yes! She had read the whole introduction and that she felt like it all made since. She felt that the Book of Mormon was just a continuation of the bible. She felt like the bible just ends and that it doesn’t answer all her questions. We told her that the Book of Mormon goes hand in hand with the Bible and that it can answer the questions of our souls. I know the Book of Mormon restores certain truths that were lost from the Bible. The Book of Mormon was preserved so that we could have these truths restored to us in these days. I know the Book of Mormon answers questions if we are willing to put in the effort to read and then to ask God.
Another cool experience happen today. Our phone decided to stop working last night. It won’t turn on at all. This makes it really difficult for us because we rely heavily on our phone for appointments and calling the buses to get routes. We were both really worried that we wouldn’t make it to our appointments or be able to confirm our appointments without a phone. We said a prayer asking that everything would work out. We decided to just head out to the bus stop and just go with it. Well on our way we ended up running into a sister from our ward. She was coming to our apartment to drop cake and ice cream off for Sister Stokes since yesterday was her birthday. Crazy thing is is that she almost took a different route to our house. Luckily she didn’t. She let us use her phone to call and figure things out to get a new one. Then she lent us her phone for the rest of the day. It was seriously a testament to me that God is aware of us and that he will take care of us. Everything worked out perfectly.
Oh and something else that was awesome happened today. It was just a really good day haha. We had a lesson today with three older women. Before the lesson we changed our lesson plan. We were a little nervous about how it was going to go so we decided to role play it at a bus stop. The lesson was on faith. During the role play I was the investigators and Sister Stokes was the missionary. She asked me why faith was important. I was directed by the spirit to say that without faith we have nothing. I kid you not during the lesson when we asked that question one of the investigators said that exact phrase. We also role played asking them to be baptized. Sister Stokes played the investigators and I the missionary. She felt that one of them would say no and that it was because she had already been baptized so why would she need to do it again. During the lesson this exact thing happened. The investigator she thought would say that said that. We didn’t even know much about this lady. I was seriously so amazed when the things we role played happened during our lesson. I could say after our lesson, but God is awesome and he truly knows each of us. During the role play we were truly guided by the spirit to know what our investigators concerns would be.
We taught T again last week and it went really well. We taught her the last half of the plan of salvation and she is progressing really well. She feeds us really well too. She made this amazing barbeque chicken. I ate so much. Luckily I walk everywhere. We had a really spiritual experience with her. As you know she has a son who is autistic. He is higher functioning but he still is slower at learning. She was worried that he wouldn’t understand what he needed to do in order to return to live with God. I cried… and bore testimony to her that God would take care of it. As long she taught M what he needed to know and helped him learn and grow that Jesus Christ would make up the difference. I said that Christ’s grace is sufficient. She started crying too. It was just a great lesson.
Oh Sister Stokes’ birthday was yesterday. She turned 20. Since it was p-day we had a member take us shopping and then the member took us out to lunch for her birthday. She took us to steak n shake which is so good. We then went to the church where we planned a little birthday party for her with other missionaries. We had cake and a little sign. We played dodgeball for a couple of hours. It was tons of fun.
I love being on a mission. I know it is where I am suppose to be. Everyday my testimony is strengthened in the gospel. The more I share it, the more it grows. I challenge all of you to share the gospel with someone you know or even a stranger. I’ve realized that the gospel brings me so much joy and all I want to do is share it. Not everybody is ready to accept it but we should at least try and plant a little seed. It may sprout into something in the future.
Another neat experience was that while we were teaching a recent convert at her apartment we left the community room door open. Apparently someone who lived in the building was listening because the next morning while our convert W was waiting to be picked up for church the lady was there and she told her that she really liked what we were saying and that she agreed. She really liked that we talked about the Book of Mormon completing the Bible. It answers a lot of questions that the Bible doesn’t. W is going to invite her to our next lesson to see if she wants to learn more. You can find people everywhere to teach even when you aren’t looking!
Missionary work is so much fun. Lots of hard work but worth every minute of it. I love Pittsburgh and I love the people here.
Love you all!