Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Happy Turkey Day!!

Hello everyone! So this past week has been awesome! My companion and I are on FIRE! We've been able to have 18 lessons a week and a baptism every week.we're really hoping Logan and his family feel better by this Saturday :( they are all sick! 

So I want to tell you about 2 new investigators that made my day. 
Sister Jolley- We met with her and on our 1st visits we just get to know them and share a little gospel here and there. She and her husband were homeless for a while and just got an apt. Her husband is a Vietnam War Veteran and has since then fell away from the church. But! He wants to get active again and she wants God in her life. She already is trying to quit smoking. They are so funny and are so lovey :) he said he wants her to quit so she can be around longer.. he's 14 yrs older than her but I'm rootin for them ha. At the end, we asked her to be baptized in December. She said she wasn't ready. We told her we would get her ready and that we know she can do it. She said if she knows it's true she will! Sweet! 

Sister Hernandez- LOVED. She welcomed us in and explained that she had referred herself by mormon.org. She was close to baptism but was on drugs so she and her husband went to jail. Her family is Catholic but she has always felt like this is the truth. After getting out of jail, she went to a halfway house and would attend church. She received a blessing one day and described it as an experience like nothing else. She motioned upward with her hands by her chest and described it as feeling so " light". We told her it was the Holy Ghost :) we later extended the invite to be baptized and she said YES! Woohoo! We  were  so excited and I thought I was going to fall over and die... We've just been having such a great time. The work is moving! 

Last night we had FHE with an active member family to show them what their son is teaching on his mission. I had the opportunity to share the 1st vision. As I told of Joseph's experience, I was overwhelmed and started to cry. This lesson is amazing. My testimony continues to grow each day. 

Alek's baptism was great! This was a HUGE event for their family. They've had missionaries for 7 years... Brother Ruiz ( father) is really coming around and softening his heart and guess what... He is moving to ARIZONA next week! He's going to work at the Williams Field Airport and is looking at homes in Queen Creek and on Power and Guadeloupe! Mom- he said he will find you but you may need to find him :) so cool right?! 

I've been learning a lot about the family and the Gospel. Without one, you can't have the other. Heavenly Father, with all his wisdom and understanding, see's it fit that a family made up of a woman and man legally married and their posterity is the BEST unit for mankind to have joy. My landlord ( Grandpa Gladwell ) told me of this principle. Joy is the greatest we can achieve. You can have pleasure and happiness and everything else but without a family and the Gospel, you can never reach true joy. 2 nephi 2:25 replace be and are with the word exist. We exist to have joy! The scriptures carry such spiritual truths and they are vital to our joy. 

" make scripture reading a part of your regular routine, and the blessings will follow. There is in the scriptures a voice of warning, but there is also great nourishment... If the language of the scriptures at first seems strange to you, keep reading. Soon you will come to recognize the beauty and power found on those pages." -Elder Packer 

I'm so thankful for my family, the gospel of Jesus Christ, My savior, and the scriptures. I'm grateful for a lot more than that but those are most important. I hope all of you are grateful for our Heavenly Father's wonderful gifts he has given us and to not take them for granted! We have them for a reason and we are extremely blessed. 

Love you all and hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! I'll be up at Snow Basin for lunch ( spelling?) with my Grandpa and Grandma Gladwell as well as their family. :) I'll be thinking and missing you!!! 

LOVE, Sister Gietz :) 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

My head is going to explode..

I'm sorry I didn't get to write last week! They didn't even give us an option and I've been so busy I can't write. I try for a few minutes a night but it's so hard :( not complaining.. just wish I had a voice recorder for my journal so I would have more time! Okay so my trainer/companion is Sister Kuwahara ( spoken like so: Koo-wah-holla!) yeah. She's from Japan and has been out 6 months! Her English is pretty good but she does have a heavy accent. Some investigators have a hard time with it (mostly the one's in the care center) heck I have a hard time with it sometimes! But she's good :) she is very obedient and hard core. It took a while to break her shell but she's coming around. She told me openly that she didn't get along with her last comp very well but was happy when she got me. She always says nice things about me to the ward members and other important people :) she says she doesn't even have to train me... NOT TRUE. Haha it's been a crazy week. The 1st day I was out we had to move Sister K's stuff to a new place. We live with the nicest people in the world that spoil us. They are the Gladwell's and I love them! We had 5 lessons my very 1st day! Ahhhhh! I survived though :) it slowed down after that. Right now we have a couple baptisms! 1. Aleks Ruiz is 14 and getting baptized this Saturday!!! We're so happy because he's wanted to for so long but his Dad is a Baptist and didn't want him to. Now that Aleks has shown him he really wants it by going to church by himself every week, attending seminary, reading the BOM and praying, he has said YES! We teach him and his family but he's the only one right now that has permission. 2. Brother Paris. LOVE this guy. He's Muslim and is quite the character! He's wanted to be baptized but he's the oldest in his family, has to take care of them but can't return to Iran ( I think..) if he does. So happy for him! He's married to a member and has been married to 2 other LDS women. He's super funny and I love his family. He's getting baptized Dec 3 which is their wedding anniversary!  3. Logan he is 10 and his parents are inactive. He has ADHD but is super cute. 
So we were teaching Bro. Ferguson about the Word of Wisdom... again.. He said he would try his hardest to quit. The moment we walked out, we looked through the huge windows and he puts a cigarette in his mouth. Ha! Seriously? Grr... 
Yesterday was ROUGH. After eating lunch we get a phone call.. "Are you coming to lunch?" Oh... NO! "Yes we'll be right there!" I wanted to die. Thankfully it was just a HUGE salad and tapioca pudding. Haha it was such a grandma meal :) I laughed. Then, a couple hours later we had dinner. I was so scared as I looked down at my bowl with zucchini and spinach. "Please please help me to eat this..." It was surprisingly delicious! Then after brownies and ice cream I wanted to die. You'd be so surprised and proud of me... :) I ate guacamole the other night. Haha just with a few chips but this lady was authentic and it was pretty good but still not a total fan. 

Last night we met with a women named Debra. She found us at church and got our number so we could talk to her brother who's on drugs... Well we ended up talking to her for forever and I'm pretty sure she was talking 50000 words a minute.. Poor Sister K.... It was hard for her. It was hard for me too. She has lots and lots of burdens because of her family and their problems with drugs. Drugs are so stupid. :( it breaks my heart. Sister K wasn't able to relate and so it wasn't affecting her as much but I could see the pain in her eyes and the trama that it has caused. I could go on and on about this but I wont. Satan is so jealous of us and so he attacks the family and the body. Why do you think we have the Word of Wisdom and The Law of Chastity? Our bodies are gifts! Treat them with respect because they are temples! 
I'm so glad that I have the gospel in my life and know that it is how we can truly be happy. I want to help everyone and anyone but I can't do it alone and neither can all the missionaries! We need the members to extend a loving hand and fellowship! That is the most effective way we can spread the gospel and help people know the truth! We are children of God and everyone needs to know that. Okay okay I'll stop it ;) 
Sister Gietz 
Brother Gladwell (homeowner) calls me Sister Geeks haha he's hilarious. This morning he gave us some great insights to the Book of Mormon and how it was transcribe

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

I'm ALIVE!!!

Hello hello! Oh my goodness what should I tell you?! Everything? There's a lot... I'll do my best though with the time I have. So my P-day is Wednesday, if you didn't figure by now.. but in the field it is on Tuesday's. Thank you for all the letters and emails I have gotten. I love hearing from you!!!
So my companion's name is Sister Hadden and she's from Desert Hot Springs, California and is 21! She went to BYUI and has her Bachelors in Accounting. She is an awesome Seester and I love her! We've been having tons of fun :)
It started out kind of rough for us, but after we talked and fasted Sunday we've become best friends! We're similar in a lot of ways, with things we like and such, but when it comes to emotionally... We take things differently. I'm the cry baby who's sensitive as a baby's bottom and she's a rock! Tears don't escape her eyelids. It's amazing. Our favorite thing to do is... get ready for it... SIIIIIIING!!! That was me singing like an old lady. Yes, I've been able to open up my little mouth and sing sing sing. Our district rocks too! We have a bunch of choir kids and only one tone-deaf Elder, so we sing as much as we can to bring in the Spirit. If you're wondering what I do all day it's kind of like this: Wake up, get ready, study, eat, class, teach, study, eat, class, teach, study, eat, study, plan, go to bed. They have us on an intense schedule! My companion keeps me on track and thankfully isn't directionally challenged like I am. There's a reason we're together! Ha hmm what else.. My district has 2 Elder companionships and a trio of Sisters and then us! And we're all going to Ogden together! We also have 3 other Elders in our zone going too! We get to wake up super duper early next Tuesday and get on the Frontrunner at 6:20 AM!!!! We're all upset we're not leaving on Wednesday because L. Tom Perry will be speaking in the devotional next Tuesday night.. Bummed. But still in happy spirits of course! Last night we had a devo with one of the 70 with the last name of.. Zwacks? Something like that. It was AMAZING and the Spirit was so strong! I felt the love of my Savior so much, and also the love of President Monson.
We are kept super busy, but it is awesome! Oh and Sister Hadden and I have been called to be the Sister Training Leaders for the new missionaries coming in today! We are so excited!!! We bought some stuff to decorate their door all cute and make them feel welcome :) can you tell I love it here? Cause I ABSOLUTELY DO!!!!!!! The MTC is a little peace of heaven on Earth.. Seriously. I have been able to feel the Spirit so much, be extremely happy and energized and it's the best! Whoever said that they didn't like the MTC must have gone to the wrong campus cause this place is great! I can't believe I'm leaving in a week..
So we are teaching 2 people right now! One is our PI (progressing investigator) named "Eduardo" and he's role-played by one of our teachers named Brother Neilson. Eduardo is someone from his mission who he taught in Cali and who is struggling with some things in life. We have been able to teach him The Restoration and only got to The Plan of Salvation for a couple minutes because he had to go. But our TRC (an investigator who volunteers to be taught by us missionaries. Whether they are a member, convert, or non-member is unknown and will never be known to us) is who I want to tell you about... Her name is Joy Cepull and she is from Orem Utah. She grew up with many LDS families and has sad stories of the discrimination that she faced as a non-member. She had questions at a young age and still today her mind buzzes with the troubling questions of her soul. She enjoys nature and is huge about finding God through it and not in a church building (she's a naturalist and doesn't like organized religion). So the first day we met with her, she unleashed these questions, which were answerable, but all over the place. I was overwhelmed with trying to help her see her answers and trying to soften her hardened heart. My mind was troubled but excited. I took Conner's advice with his Stick of Ephraim ;) and sought to find the answers. She asked such things like: "Why did Adam partake of the fruit if he was perfect?", "Are there other worlds with life on them? Alternate Universes? Because I believe there is." and so on and so on... ugh. The next day, we decided we needed to find out why on Earth she was meeting with us because our message is of Christ and if she doesn't want to hear about that then.. that's unfortunate. She told us that she wants to know what the big hype about Christ was and why we need him. Okay, we can work with that! I was able to testify to her and show her the answers we had found for her and she was AMAZED. She said no one had answered them for her. PEOPLE! THE BOOK OF MORMON HAS THE ANSWERS. FIND THEM!!! I left her a few scriptures and my testimony and we left feeling on top of the world. I really don't think she is a member but if she is, she knows how to act! I could go on and on about her and her way of thinking and questions but I need to share other stuff! However, The Book of Mormon is the word of God and can answer all questions of the soul. Jesus is the Christ and he died for our sins. I have a challenge for all of you (this was a class activity that I greatly enjoyed and increased my testimony with). In Preach my Gospel, go to the back of lesson 2: The Plan of Salvation. You will see summarized lesson plans. Find the Medium lesson plan. With each sentence apply how the Atonement made this possible. EACH SENTENCE you can apply Christ and His Atonement. Mind Blown. We need Christ and my love for him has grown so much. I didn't realize how much I could learn in a week but it is astonishing. Sister Hadden and I had a little time yesterday on the computers and went to LDS.org. We started to watch The Life of Jesus Christ Bible Videos. Please... watch them if you haven't already. The one with Mary the Morther of Christ and Let All Children Come unto Me... oh my. We were crying in the computer lab haha! To see how Christ looks upon and feels about the children... Wow. Watch it. Please WATCH IT. 

Sunday night we watched a devo by Elder Bednar that was given at the MTC 2 years ago. They continue to play it every sunday... can you imagine why? Because it is one of the most fantastic talks I have ever heard in my life that has forever changed me. You will not be able to find it because it was a MTC devo but if you can.. you rock and should watch it. It is on The Character of Christ. The concept of charity never had rang so clear to my ears than that night. My understanding of my character increased and the need to "turn outward and resist the natural man" stung my heart. How selfish I have been all these years took root and instantly.. I wanted to become more like the Savior. I wish I had my notes in front of me but I can just tell you that the Spirit was extremely strong. Our district wants to watch it again this Sunday so I will probably get even more insight! So excited.
Okay, I need to go finish my laundry.. We've got lots to do! I need to clean.. eeks. I'm doing well and hoping you are all as well! Next time, I'll have my journal next to me so this goes easier haha it's hard to remember everything and deciding what to tell you. By the way.. Food is BOMB. I have salads and wraps all the time! I thought I would possibly lose some weight maybe but these cookies are to die for... they balance each other out though right?! :P
LOVE YOUUUUUUUUU!!! Maybe if I have more time I can write some more. If not, I'll talk to you next week and hopefully squeeze in a letter sometime.... Okay, got to goooo! I love youuuuu!

P.S. I have a few addresses but not everyone's... can you make sure whoever wants this gets it? Thanks!
Sister Gietz