I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful! We had such a blast with our district. It turned out to be a full blown Thanksgiving meal! We talked about gratitude in our meeting, and as we went around talking about what we are grateful for, we realized we are all grateful for the same things. And it was all centered around the gospel. I am truly so so grateful to be a missionary at this special time of year.
We have had a blast sharing the new Light the World video with people. It brings the Spirit every single time I watch it. On Saturday, we went to Churchill Square to go contacting, and surprisingly, almost no one was there! But there was one man who had his art work on display. I had met him once before, so I decided to go say hi. There was a protesting group next to him in a prayer circle. It turns out that he was there to paint them! He is what he describes as a activist artist, and he promotes equality for all people, regardless of if he agrees or not. We showed the Light the World video to him, and he loved it! It was exactly the message he wanted to portray. All of us can serve one another, regardless of our views or opinions. I think that is what I love most about this initiative is that it literally applies to everyone. Whether or not we believe in Christ, I would like to think that everyone has a desire to be a decent human being. And finding ways to serve people around us enlarges our souls! We feel so much joy as we help those around us! Ah, I just love this initiative so much! I know it's going to bring miracles all over the world.
This weekend was Stake Conference, and the entire conference was centered on missionary work and the temple. I was just blown away at the enthusiasm and drive of our leaders to share the gospel. One specific talk that stood out to me was from President L, who is actually from Cherry Grove. He was the first talk of the Sunday session, and he expressed so much gratitude for the missionaries who knocked on his mother's door in England just before he was born. The emotion he showed as he expressed his gratitude was just inspiring! He then addressed all of the missionaries in the congregation and said, "thank you for what you do. You don't realize the effect you are having on those around you." I needed to hear that so badly! I've struggled the past few weeks with feeling like I'm not making a difference. I know that I've been helping people, but I haven't been able to see someone I've taught enter the waters of baptism, and I really want to experience that. But him saying that made me realize that I'm not here just to see someone in a baptismal font, I'm here to help families be together forever, no matter how long it takes. It's not about me and what I want to experience here, it's about what they choose and how I can help them achieve true joy.
Well everyone, I have been so great at writing nice, long emails every single week. But it's just not happening this week. Hahha I'm sorry! I had to finish my school application! But just know that I have a testimony of this gospel! And I have a deep love for my Savior. Everything I have and hold dear is because of Him.
Have a great week, and I'll email you on Monday because WE'RE GOING TO JASPER!!
Love you all so much!
Sister Bethany Christensen