Thursday, July 28, 2016

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer

Hi everybody. How goes things?
This week has been much faster paced than last week which is really nice. Both Sister Hill and I prayed that we would be busy and would you look at that? God answered our prayers. So nice :)

We had lots of good ole teaching appointments which were awesome. Our friends Bao and Seng are just chugging along at light speed and progressing to the top (aka eternal life). It's so cool. And they're trying to bring their family with them. They made sure they came to church yesterday even tho they were the only ones from their family there. Unfortunately church was only 30 minutes long because the power went out earlier that day and so the AC wasn't working and half the lights were out. Then in the middle of the sacrament all of the lights just shut off. So they just had the primary kids sing and "postponed" church until next week. But you know, at least we got the sacrament :)

Hey guess what?! Okay, I know most of this stuff is only really exciting for me, but there was a part member family I was teaching back in Greenville: Annie and Chris. And Annie emailed me last week and said that she is getting baptized this Saturday!! So exciting! 

Well..let's see what did I learn about this week? I have continued to learn about God's will and having joy amidst every day trials and mundane tasks. We had a really good DDM on Tuesday and one of the sisters gave a training on Diligence. It was really interesting because before she gave it she just asked us to be really open to the spirit so it could teach us. And diligence is always something that I've felt that I've been pretty good at, at least while on my mission. I feel like I've been pretty steady, consistent and hard working. But along with those 3 characteristics of diligence, it includes energetic effort. And once again the spirit confirmed to me that as we are working and striving to do His will, He wants us to be happy within doing His work. I dunno why, but my brain likes to tell me that because things are hard or because I'm on a mission or because this life is a time of testing, that things just need to be hard. But you know what? "Adam fell that men might be, and men are that they might have joy" God's purpose for us is to have joy. In this life and in the life to come. I will always reflect on President Uchtdorf's talk from October 2015 general conference and his parable of great aunt rose. And as we talk about having faith in the future and looking forward to happiness in eternity, we must remember that part of eternity is right now. And God wants us to enjoy life and He wants us to be happy. I don't know why I always forget about that part, must be Satan. I always knew that humility wasn't weakness but I guess some part of me thought it was because you are submitting your will to the Lord and trusting whatever He has in store. But I think the greatest part of humility is trusting that the Lord is working everything together for your good, to help you be happy in this moment. God really does love us, His object isn't to have us suffer, although suffering happens. He offers us hope, and peace and faith amidst the suffering of the world. That's something I'm trying to internalize. I hope you have had an easier time applying that in yalls lives, but I encourage you to continue to do it. And continue to know and strive to know, that God is love. Perfect and everlasting.
I love y'all and I hope you all have a bright shiny week! Keep up the good work. You all inspire and bless my life so much! :)

Until next time,

Sister Johanson

The pictures are not too good, but I hope you get the jist of how cool I am ;)

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