Monday, November 2, 2015

letter from Alyssa - Nov. 2, 2015

Some random stuff from the week, it may be a little scattered because it wasn't so eventful as the week before but there was still some pretty great stuff.

Monday we carved pumpkins with the zone, I got creative and so this is what I did (see pic attached). I have the seeds to roast soon.

We taught Liz for the first time Monday night, the Restoration lesson went so so well. She accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon and said she would read it and pray about it. We asked her if she had any questions at the end, she said the only one she had was "do you believe in some sort of after life?" I was blown away by the question. We explained that the next thing we have to teach her is the Plan of Salvation, and that we didn't know her schedule but we could either teach her about it then and there or set another time. She said "could we please talk about it now?" So we taught her the first 2 lessons all in one. And it was wonderful. She prayed aloud at the end and we are teaching her in about an hour and a half after we email. Her friend is coming to join in, we're waiting to hear back. She (Liz) also said she would teach her parents what we taught her so they could sit in on this lesson today! We are hoping to commit her to baptism.

Sandy (one of our potentials) moved, but we helped her and she's in contact with that ward and the missionaries there now. But the Elders may start teaching another guy that helped who was a friend of Sandy's! He was really nice and interested in what missionaries do.

It was Allie's birthday Friday (less-active, part-member family) so we stopped by and brought her flowers. She loved it, we visited for just a few minutes and met her dad who was visiting (he's very active in the church still). It was really good.

We helped the Collins family's kids get into their Halloween costumes Friday and they all came to the trunk-or-treat! Even Leslie! Her oldest son told her that he wants her to be Mormon. He's also registered in scouting now and all sorts of great things are happening. She's getting a new medicine today that will help tremendously with her chemo so we will start teaching her family probably next week or so. They had sooo much fun.

Tiffany also came with her kids and her husband to the trunk-or-treat. She has been less-active for a long time and had a few word of wisdom problems, but she came to church yesterday and bore her testimony in sacrament meeting! The ward has wrapped their arms around her and she is coming back into activity with her family.

The Trunk-or-Treat was so fun. SO FUN! There were quite a few non-member friends we get to follow up with, and the night was an overall success. Sister Ward and I went around practicing names and helping the best we could with all of it.

Sister Spice (YW Pres) is taking us out for breakfast on Friday with Cambria. I haven't met Cambria, but I know she has cancer and can't come to church because she can't be in certain public places (is what I've been told) but she loves food and so Sister Spice is helping us get to know her this way.

Sister Pingree is the new Relief Society President, and we LOVE her! RS Presidents and Sister Missionaries are like peanut butter and jelly. But she is so so awesome, she had surgery on her ankle and leg and knee so she is on crutches and that's not stopping her at all. The 3 of us are working together and we're seeing a lot of sisters coming back or responding who haven't in so long.

Several members, especialy those we know well, have come to us excited about the missionary work and astounded at the returning less-actives and the opportunities to teach in many ways. We have a bunch of referrals, appointments, and continue to work hard. It's one thing to see miracles, it's another to see that the members see them too and recognize how it is all according to their faith!

I have opportunity after opportunity to use the piano. Last week we went to visit Eileen and Bernice. Bernice is 90 and Eileen is her less-active daughter who is married to a non-member. They just got a brand new medium grand black Steinway and sons piano, it is gorgeous. After visiting a little with Bernice, I started playing for her and Max (Eileen's husband) came around the corner to listen (I didn't see him at first, and he never sits in on messages or visits really). Eileen and Shafiq (their son) eventually came out on their own too and we ended up having a really enjoyable conversation altogether!
Bishop Hobbins has set up a dinner at his place with him, his wife, Lori, Dennis, and Sister Ward and I. He said no lesson but wants me to play piano for them after dinner, hopefully this will open doors and help Lori with her anxiety.
I've been asked to continue doing a lot for the music committee, and I have 4 different missionaries to accompany with about 2-3hrs a week to practice (and it's usually about 1-2 because we get so busy). The Lord has been enhancing my abilities and teaching me many lessons through this experience, even in small ways, especially when it comes to how I decide to prepare with the little time I have.
Many people ask me to play, and oftentimes I turn it into a missionary opportunity for them, it's been really neat to see how The Lord can work through me specifically, just like He does with other specific individuals in extraordinary ways.

This ward is amazing. I wish I could spend my entire mission here. But I don't have to think about leaving this ward yet! Still got time. Anyway, about the ward, I'm finding myself getting excited for every single dinner. Not because I know it'll be good food (it always is) but because I see the name and I know them, and they are aweomse. Every one of them! And not only those that sign up on the calendar. But I've come to realize that I've come to know and love being with everyone in this ward. It is so fun and gets me excited to go work hard and serve. Speaking of which, I've said it a few times and I'll say it again, we are so so busy. :D Sometimes it's rough but overall it's the best feeling ever. We got a text saying it was daylight savings the other night, but I couldn't sleep past 5:30 (mostly because I've been so used to the schedule I'm on) and I still had a lot to do in that extra hour.

Yesterday we sat in Sunday School with the youth, and we'll probably do that more often when we don't have investigators in gospel principles since they have most of the referrals and they're also just so amazing and awesome and amazing. It's a lot of fun to work with them honestly. And we got stuck teaching their class next sunday.

On Halloween we had an early curfew since we can't be out past dark that night. People will dress like us and there's a lot of things that can go wrong if we're out. So the zone had a movie party in our p-day clothes at the Stake Center, we watched the Best 2 Years. I picked up on a lot more jokes haha. And half the missionaries there hadn't seen it so it was like watching it for the first time again, so fun. And now it's November! whoa.

Ty this is for you... it's not the best but it's pretty good.
There's an Elder (Elder Benton) who has the same birthday as me but he's exactly a year older. As one of my music committee assignments, I had to call a bunch of missionaries and have them prepare a piece for a rehearsal for stuff. After leaving messages I told them to text me if they needed an arrangement to use because I have several options. Elder Benton texted me Wednesday after that and said -
- Sister Shumway!!! Happy half Birthday! :D Do you happen to have the song I Stand All Amazed?
- Haha happy half birthday Elder Benton!! Yes I have a really good one... [gave him info]
[figured out how to correlate music stuff and yeah]
-Okay thanks again! We'll work it out! Til then Happy Halloween!!! P.S. Why couldn't the skeleton go to the dance? Because had no body to go with! It's okay though he only spent a little time skullking :D
- Or he didn't have the guts to ask any of the girls to dance! Happy Halloween!!!
- Hahahahahahaha that's pretty good! You get to wear the pun-kin crown.

.........get it?
I thought of you :]

Here is my ponderizing scripture this week, I got it from my roommate Virginia from last Fall semester at BYUI (she's been emailing me:)
"Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for The Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest."

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