Thursday, May 15, 2014

Week 7 ~ April 7, 2014

The highlight of my week was General Conference! I did not want it to end at all, I just wanted it to be October already so I could hear more! I love how President Monson began conference by mentioning the Gilbert, AZ cultural celebration and dedication. I was thinking of Reina the whole time because I remembered that she was a part of that. What a special experience. I will be able to see the Fort Lauderdale Temple dedication on May 4 so I'm really looking forward to that. I loved President Monson's counsel in the very beginning of conference to "Live true to the faith" he said to always remember and think about that. I feel like that was a huge theme to conference. Having complete Faith in Jesus Christ empowers us and motivates us to do better and strive to be like Jesus Christ. My favorite talk was Elder Bednar's talk all about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Atonement is real, and because of The Atonement, we can become better individuals, always progressing. Our weaknesses can become strengths because of the Atonement. His grace is sufficient. I can't wait to carefully review and study these talks again as President Monson encouraged us to do. I watched the first session of conference in the Orange Park Stake Center, and the second and Sunday sessions in members homes. 
After the final session of conference and dinner yesterday, we had about an hour to proselyte. The people on our plans either weren't home or weren't answering the door. We had one more person on our plans who we had met two weeks ago and committed to go to church. His name is Bobby. We decided to follow up with him. He answered the door, and we asked him how everything was going and he straight up told us he was coming to church next Sunday before we even mentioned anything! He asked the same to us and then turned to me and asked me why I was so happy. I simply could not hold in my excitement for how I felt when I watched General Conference and I shared my testimony of a living prophet called of God here on the Earth. He invited us to come back on Saturday so that he could learn more. That was such exciting news for us!

On Wednesday, Sister Call and I met a man named Marcello washing his car. We talked to him for awhile and invited him to learn more about the gospel of Jesus Christ. Not only did he invite us to come back and teach him and his wife, but another reason why he allowed us to come teach them was because he loved the missionaries he met when he lived in the Dominican Republic. I looked back at the things we did that day and everything that we did when led up to us finding Marcello. It was completely led by the Spirit. I know that if we put our Faith and Trust in God, miracles do happen.

I have been warned that this summer is going to be a hot one. Worst than last summer. I think I can deal with this because I'm used to 115 degree weather everyday for three months back in Tucson, but I don't think I have quite grasped that humidity is a killer in the summers. I just can't imagine it, but I will see. 

Little did I know that spaghetti would become one of my favorite meals in the mission field. We had dinner appointments in members homes every day of this week and 5/7 of the days, we were fed spaghetti and garlic bread. Each one of the spaghetti dinners was so unique. Not one tasted the same. Spaghetti sauce with deer meat, spaghetti sauce with garlic covered sausage, regular noodles, wheat noodles. I just learned that there are so many variations of some seriously good spaghetti. I didn't think I could consume so much spaghetti in a week, but hey it is now one of my favorite meals!

I am loving every second of my mission so far. I just want to soak up all that I can because time is flying by. It's already April! I cannot believe it. I have learned so much and have a greater love for the Book of Mormon than ever. Everything about the church hinges on the Book of Mormon. It is the keystone of our religion with Jesus Christ as the cornerstone. I do not know what I would do without the gospel in my life. I know it, I live it, I love it.

I love you all and continue to keep you in my prayers.

Love, Sister McCook


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