Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Joyeux Noël A Tous!
        Hope you all had a great week! We had some really special things happen this week! We had a Mission Christmas Devotional, which was really unique because all the missionaries from our mission were together. There was a very special and powerful spirit that was in the room. I had the privilege of singing in one of the last choirs, after singing the first two verses of Hark the Heralds Angels sing in French, followed by the whole mission gathering and singing. The spirit was so strong as we all sang our praises in celebration of Christ's birth. 
Dressing up for dinner with Jye!
       On Christmas eve we had dinner with a family in our ward whose tradition is to have what they call a Bethlehem dinner. We dressed up a little, and we ate by candles and ate typical food that would have been found at the time of Jesus. It was a very neat experience. 
 Christmas was great! The ward really just encircled us and made us feel very loved!  Our spiritual thought for Christmas really touched me. We talked about the gifts that the wise men brought to baby Jesus, and how they had really brought things of worth. We talked about  how God himself gave us the gift of Christ by sending him to the world to redeem us all. (John 3:16). Truly the best gift to the world. With infinite worth.  I feel like so often during this season we get distracted by the lights, bows and glitter that are so often associated with Christmas that we forget the true meaning of Christmas-Christ. So this year we challenged everyone to give a gift to the Savior- a gift that is of great worth just like the wise men. Perhaps its saying your sorry more, criticizing less,  forgiving, reading your scriptures everyday, going to the temple more often, spending more time with your family. Whatever it might be it is a gift that we can do for the Savior that can show our love and appreciation for the gift that he gave to us.
Blast from the past-part of my MTC District.
        Though Christmas a missionary can be a hard time-being away from your family I feel like I really got to feel and share the spirit of Christmas.  I will share my testimony with you that I Have come to know with out a shadow of a doubt that the true essence of the gospel is love. Everything was done because God loves us and he has our eternal welfare at hand.   I really felt that on Sunday when our investigator Glorie came. The spirit was so thick in the air that we could all feel it. God knows us individually and he wants us to get a step closer to him everyday. Love you all!
Picture for Mom's Birthday (December too).
Happy Birthday Sister Rawlings!
Mackenzie turned 21 on Sunday (12/13) , Brother and Sister Wong fed her dinner, with a cake and sent pictures!
Video of Birthday Singing!

Hey everyone!

        Where to start! Exchanges, Ward Christmas Party, p-day in Montreal, and so much more.
 Monday-We went down to Montreal with four of the sisters in our zone, we went to Old Port. We were hoping to get them their their first taste of Beaver Tails (aka..scone), but it was closed so we decided to all pitch in and go on a Carriage Ride through the old downtown of Montreal. It was absolutely beautiful:)       
We than had exchanges, where I got to go to La Salle and after un-exchanging Sister Schruch, everything started to get a little crazy.
  Exchanges Sister Olsen, Schurch, Me, Ferell
Montreal City Hall
The sisters had accidentally took our phone, it was freezing rain and everybody that we had planned to see was falling through so we started driving when suddenly I got this very strong impression that we needed to knock on this house that we had just passed. I pushed it aside thinking I was crazy, after all it was freezing rain and very wet outside but the impression came again. Knowing that I needed to follow the impression I told Sister Schruch and we turned around, re-found that street and than proceeded to go knock on the house. A teenager answered the door and we introduced ourselves and than started to share a bit of the new, "A Savior is born" initially his mom responded that they were not interested and they shut the door.
We stood there on the sidewalk thinking, okay what now. So we tried the house next to them...not home. When we saw a woman on the other side of the road.We walked up to her and started talking to her, she explained that she would be interested but she was busy walking to get her metro card re-filled. We asked if we could walk with her and she agreed. After explaining more she explained that in her country that she had met missionaries before. We talked about the Savior and than asked her if we could come
share the message with her and than she said, " Wait I think I talked to the elders the other day, this is no coincidence, you keep finding me."
We were able to testify that the Lord was very aware of her and that the message that we had could bless her family so much! 
      But the story does not end there, while walking with the woman we both saw a young man and had the impression to talk to him. While walking back to the car we saw him at the corner and started to talk to him, he told us that he liked basketball and I had this weird idea to ask him if he knew one of the young men in the ward who we had just had dinner with, who I also knew liked basketball. So I asked him if he knew the young man and Sister Schurch looked at me like, what are you doing? The odds of this young man knowing him in Montreal are extremely small, but after a minute he said, "Actually, yes I do." We were able to talk a little bit and have a wonderful conversation.  And to think that if I wouldn't have listened to the Spirit that would not of happened. We felt so blessed by the Lord for him to place two of his children who were willing to listen to in our paths. 
        It was such a testimony to me that while you may not know what these people need, the Lord does and he will guide you when you are willing to follow. 
        Overall it was a great week! Our ward party went extremely well, they put on the production of the nativity and I would say over 1/4 of the people there were not members! It a very uplifting, Christ-centered evening:) 
I love you all! I hope you all have a fabulous week!
Love Sister Rawlings