"Much of the major growth that is coming to the Church in the last days will come because many of the good women of the world (in whom there is often such an inner sense of spirituality) will be drawn to the Church in large numbers. This will happen to the degree that the women of the Church reflect righteousness and articulateness in their lives and to the degree that the women of the Church are seen as distinct and different--in happy ways--from the women of the world... Thus it will be that female exemplars of the Church will be a significant force in both the numerical and spiritual growth of the Church in the last days" President Spencer W. Kimball

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Empire State of Mind?...

So we went to the Empire State building today and boy is that building soooo highhhhh. Great views of New York for sure! We didn't get to go all the way to the top, however we got to see some great aerials of the Big Apple. I still cant believe sometimes that I live here. I get the "behind the scenes" look at what this city is all about. Of course not in a way that the locals do who have the ability to go any- and everywhere or even the tourists, but I do get to experience it on the personal level.

What do you mean by that? You are just a missionary!... Double duh! What I mean is we talk to more people here than people who have lived here for years. It is not just your superficial "hey, how you doin'?" (not assuming that is what everyone is about around here) but we actually get to know the people who are around us, which in reality is getting to know the city.

There are such sweet spirits here in New York. People who have come here for all sorts of reasons, or who have grown up here for generations call this place home. It is an amazing dynamic. It really helps me to realize how this Gospel is not just a cookie cutter, one-size-fits-all church. Everyone brings their own life to the sacrament table and finds that the principles that govern them in the spiritual sense put every worry at ease and help them build more fulfilling lives.

This last week we had a lesson with such an amazing girl that we stumbled upon; such an intellect and so driven! She was asking us questions about the hows and whys of Mormons, questions stemmed from her brief readings of The Book of Mormon as well as some principles that she had learned from some member friends she had experienced in the past. The questions being asked were predominately in regards to the spirit and knowledge. For example, "How could you have all this (as she points to a nearby bookshelf full of books) and still make the claims of this (The Book of Mormon) being the most 'correct' book?" and "How do you account for the Spirit?"

As I bore my testimony to her I realized something that I hadn't fully enveloped in the past. I opened my Book of Mormon and read 3 Nephi 17:5-7. As I did so I could feel the presence of the Savior...really. I let her know that the Bible gives a great layout of what the Savior did, but who was he? These verses single-handedly helped me FEEL who he is, and recognize that he does indeed live. I continued on without answering her question about accounting for the spirit, there was no need because she felt it too. I let her know that all the knowledge that I have and continue to obtain is in direct correlation to the writings of "this book". I assured her that the things that she has experienced and knows are all a part of our progression on this earth. I couldn't have left a lesson feeling more blessed for the testimony that I have than I did that day.

I know it. That's all there is to it. The invitation still stands for all those who are still wondering to learn more. If anything, knowledge is power :) Anyways, I just love you all so much. Life is moving fast here in New York, a "New York minute" if you will. I've got to take a moment to slow down and cherish what I have. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to recall and do that. Again I love you love you, and so it is...

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


...sorry bout last week, I was kicked off the computer, hehe.

Anyways, I am doing great out here. The weather is heating up for real! I think it is around 94 degrees today with some scattered thunder showers, aka walking in the rain cause there is no point in having an umbrella, ella, ella, eh eh eh. But its nice because the heat sticks around and dries our clothes off quickly.

So what has been going on? The Forth of July just passed! Oh heavens, everyone knows how much I love the 4th and it was such an amazing day. I have to tell you, if you are ever thinking of visiting New York when the city is ALIVE dont bother with New Years, come on the 4th. It is 100 times better and the weather is nicer. Nonetheless, we had the best contacting opportunities because everyone was out on the streets being lively and having a great time. Central Park doubles as the entertainment arena for anything and everything, especially for BBQing, and oh it smelled so good. Also the best seating in the house for the fireworks is your own roof. Yes, we went Fiddler on the Roof style and hiked up to the roof of our building where we saw a great fireworks display a couple blocks away. The best part was seeing Sister Nalawas see fireworks for the first time. She doesn't get displays like that very often in Vanuatu (off the coast of Fiji), and her excitement is like a child's; so pure.

In other news the work has been good. A TBC from the last area I was in is the baptism was postponed until this weekend, so that will be happening with Sister Fuimaono and her new companion Sister T. In my new area we have a baptism coming up real soon too, which Im really excited about. I always think that this work is so fascinating in that it continues regardless of wherever we go. It really builds my testimony in knowing that 1. the Lord has gone before us to prepare the work and 2. it cannot be frustrated. Whether a switch of companions, ward change or even an area switch the work will continue forward. The reality is the Spirit is the true teacher here. He has testified to us all of the light and knowledge of the gospel and it is up to us to respond. In Helaman 14:30, I gathered this week that the Lord will not force our hand to do anything. We have the tools necessary to make well decisions. In Doctrine & Covenants the Lord informs us to study it out what we want to do then to pray whether it be right, receiving a confirmation in our hearts and in our minds. This leads us to figure that we have the ability to know of our own accord if what we want to do is right and then we can pray to confirm whether what we though is right indeed is right for us by the edifying "burning in our bosom". Its fail proof and another amazing aspect of the Gospel that I thoroughly enjoy.

I just continue to have faith that the Lord is not an innocent bystander. That he is "all in" on this investment. He will not lead us astray. I just love this work! It has helped me so much to see how helpful we can be in answering other's prayers. I know this is where Im supposed to be. I know he Church is true. I love you all, and so it is...