"For if we had not come..."

Not long ago this verse penetrated my soul and I realized that we could relate to it because of our current service. It's been humbling to know that many things which have occurred here wouldn't have taken place had we not come. 

"For if we had not come up out of the land of Zarahemla, these our dearly beloved brethren, who have so dearly beloved us, would still have been racked with hatred against us, yea, and they would also have been strangers to God." - Alma 26:9

More than anything, we feel humbled to have been able to serve here amongst people we have grown to know and love. And, with so many of them, we have felt that we've known them forever. (and maybe we have)  :)

To be engaged in the work of the Lord is the most glorious thing we can imagine. Sure, it is very hard work. We sometimes get home after a long day, completely exhausted physically and emotionally, wondering how we're going to be able to do it again the next day. But, the next morning we are r…

10 Life Lessons Learned from Repairing Old Trailers

This past week we have been thinking about some life lessons we can learn from our repair of old, run-down trailers.  :)  Here are a few things we've discussed:

1. If you buy a $500.00 trailer, you'll end up with about $20,000 in problems.
Lesson:  Invest yourself in correct principles, don't settle for less. If you live 'cheaply', you'll have a lot of problems and challenges needing repair.

2. Leaks:
Lesson: When you see a leak and leave it it becomes an environment for decay and cockroaches.
Un-repented sin festers underneath. Best to fix now rather than later.

3. Cheap stuff has a 'facade' of looking nice in the store but underneath it will not last.
Lesson: Looks may be deceiving. It's what's inside that really counts.
There's a retired military couple in this area who, over a life-time, have purchased hand-made high-quality furnishings from their time spent in other countries. Those quality furnishings will outlast them. Plan for the futur…

Marriage is Forever - Not only until 'Death Do Us Part"

So, we're down to posting only about once-a-month. Sorry about that. And, this month Elder Hendricks is going to write the message home, soon. He's been so busy on a new project that he hasn't had the time yet. But, he plans to shortly.

In the meantime, I'll share a few things he probably won't, and he can add more later.

Today I received a sweet email from an Elder in this mission who was writing home (and includes us in his letters). He is one of our special missionaries who served here for a few months and we love him! I was so  touched by what he wrote that I wanted to share with the rest of you.

This is his message:
"Hey everyone!  So, something really awesome happened this week. There's a lot to this story, but the short version is this. The English missionaries in (a town in Alabama) referred us to a part member family in their ward, with a mom "S", a dad "J", and two small children. The mom is 'less active' and the dad i…

Happy, Sad, Mad Things

When my children were little, I'd help them write a few sentences in their journals each night at bedtime. It became one of the most wonderful times for me to learn how they were feeling about things. I'd ask "What was your happy thing today?, and sad, and mad'." It really helped me understand what they were going through and gave them a way to express themselves and learn about their own thoughts and feelings.

Thankfully, there weren't too many 'mad' things; and I don't have any of those to share here either, but....I will share a few happy and sad things from our past few weeks.

We've been very busy with the one trailer repair and are almost done. The bathroom and one bedroom are complete and today we're painting the other bedroom and will finish it up next week. It's been a huge undertaking but these people are very thankful and were truly in great need. So, that's made it all worthwhile. (Gratitude)

 Our English Class gra…

Mission Conference with Elder Holland

Words cannot describe the JOY and depth of spiritual understanding that we experienced recently with the visit of Elder Holland to our mission. He was accompanied by Elder Costa and Elder Parker (area authority).

We prepared ourselves spiritually and physically for this awaited day. We knew what a glorious and sacred opportunity was before us. We were fed beyond words and nurtured by the good word of God with messages particular to our mission, our area and our needs. We know that all of them were lead by the Spirit as to what to share. And, that all of us were 'edified and rejoiced together.'

Did I Ever Tell You The Story about The Shoe Shining Experience?

Years ago I served as a missionary in the Mexico, Torreon Mission. It was the greatest blessing and experience of my life. It was also very hard work and very humbling.

When I first arrived I was the only English-speaking sister in the Mission. All my companions were Mexican. (how I loved them!)

For several months I couldn't understand hardly anything and I was far from home and far from the culture and comforts that were familiar to me; and...I didn't have anyone I could talk to about all those things except for the Lord. And, I talked to Him a lot! He became my closest and dearest friend.

And, over time, I came to understand a lot of the language and to love and cherish the culture and the people Mission President. Oh, how I loved him!

On the last night of my mission, we gathered in the home of our beloved President Victor Cerda, who spoke with us and of his gratitude for our service.

He told us how he had been a shoe shine boy on the streets of Mexico City when he…

10 Things that have Happened since we last Wrote:

Hello Friends,
Here are a few things that have happened since our last post:

1. We're doing a new group on Sundays just for our hispanics. We have our own Sacrament Meeting, Sunday School and Relief Society Groups. It has been wonderful so far as these faithful members are now able to teach, and share, and pray, and lead the singing and give talks and bless the Sacrament in Spanish. It has been a great blessing and we pray they will continue to be strengthened and to strengthen one another.

2. English Classes continue. Most nights we have between 6-12 people and do either one or two classes. Transportation is a big challenge for many of them. That is one of the reasons they don't always come. But, when they do, it's great practice for them to learn and converse in English. We have a great time! (last week our topic was 'Ordering at a Restaurant' so we made a little restaurant and a sign "Uncle Mike's Cafe" and we brought hot dogs and salads and desser…