tree X two
Brothers and Sisters, the day dawn is breaking, the world is awaking! The clouds of night's darkness are fleeing away. The worldwide commotion, from ocean to ocean now heralds the time of the beautiful day!!!!
And here's my favourite part!! THIS sunrise is happening EVERYWHERE. It's like a solar eclipse, but BETTER. This week while I was exercising one morning the most BEAUTIFUL sunrise appeared right there in the sky, right in front of my sweaty face. Naturally I told Shawn-T to hold his horses and took some pictures of it then just stood there in awe. Then my phone started blowing up as the sisters in the relief society chat started sharing their respective pictures of the godsent sunrise. And you know what? You can bet your bottom dollar that all the sisters that DIDN'T see the sunrise defintely had the potential to, they were just...asleep! or busy! Or working! But does that mean the sunrise wasn't gracing their skies as well? If they took the time to walk outside, would they have been greeted by dismal skies while the rest of us got to enjoy this fuscia fusion of a godly masterpiece? NO SIREE and it would be foolish to think so.
Can I tell you the secret?? Isn't it the exact same with the light of the gospel? With the joys of missionary work? With the dawn of HOPE riding upon Jesus Christ's chariot and His glorious angel's wings? Isn't it there for EVERYONE to experience so long as we're willing to put in the work?
Then WHY pray tell, do some of us see the sunrise while others do not? Is it possible that, as President Nelson has warned, some of us are "sleeping through the restoration?" Let's not do that.
"oh, but Sister Allen, while the sun was rising for you in Ireland, it was pitch black --midnight, even -- here in Utah!"
"Oh, but Sister Allen, we can't experience the joys Ammon described in Alma 26 that come from missionary work because we haven't been set apart as missionaries!"
"Oh, but Sister Allen..." yourself! I say unto you, NAY! "BLESSED be the name of my God, who has been mindful of us, wanderers in a strange land."
Now, my brethren! (and sisters) "We see that God is mindful of every people, whatsoever land they may be in; yea, he numbereth his people, and his bowels of mercy are over all the earth."
"Now, THIS is my joy, and my great thanksgiving (newsflash: doesn't exist here); yea, and I will give thanks unto my God forever." (Alma 26:36-37)
I omitted the amen at the end of that verse because I'm not done yet. "His bowels of mercy are over all the earth"?
Can't we read that as, "His sun (Son) shines over all the earth?" Zion isn't reduced to a geographical location. Not anymore and not yet, anyways. Therefore, he really IS mindful of every people and every land. The field really IS white already to harvest in your own backyard, not just across the Atlantic sea! And let me tell you THE BEST part: there are two sister missionaries, Sister Cross and Sister Wood, serving in the St. George North Stake at this very moment. You know what makes that EXTRA special? Sister Wood's older sister was my trainer in Scotland!!! We were companions one year ago!!! Isn't the world a little place? You'd think we really are standing in the same white field watching the same sunrise.
They need your help! Do you have any idea how important members are in this the mightiest work of the Lord and the JOYS and sunshine that await you as you labour in his vineyard? I didn't, not for the longest time.
Something simple I invite you to do is pray for the missionaries! It makes the hugest difference, promise!
You can ask my mom for their number in case you want to welcome Sister Wood to the ward or offer to teach with them! Haha. (Honestly thank you for all I know you are already do to support them!!)
Preach My Gospel promises, "The Lord will reward and richy bless you as you humbly and prayerfully serve Him. More happiness awaits you than you have ever experienced as your labour among His children."
That promise isn't just reserved for the God's full time missionaries, it's opened to everyone willing to play their simple part in this beautiful work!
You know, I only came out here because Jesus Christ made me SO happy and I wanted other people to experience that joy too. It would be rude of me to tell you how happy it's been making me and our friends without inviting each of you to experience it yourself! Not every moment, or even every day is a happy one. Far, far from it. But I do believe it's been worth it to experience even a fraction of the heart brimming joy that Ammon speaks of in Alma 26. And I just want each of you to be able to feel it too. That's all.
We had a mission conference this week, with Elder Kopischke and his wife from the European Area Presidency. We spoke deeply of the importance of families and prayer. I really do believe that we can do the impossible through Jesus Christ. I really do believe that when we put our families and exaltation first, everything else will fall into place. I really do believe that families can be together forever.
Elder Kopsichke has given two amazing conference talks about "Being accepted before the Lord" and member missionary work. You should check them out!
When we taught our friends Joao and Grazi this week, they told us that they called their extended family back in Brazil who are members and told them that they are getting baptized and they just cried and cried together. We could tell it was a turning point for them in their conversion. Family really is what it's all about, isn't it?
We have other friends, Akshay, Wilson, Peter, and others, that are so touched by the concept of eternal families that they are willing to lay aside their old ways and the traditions of their fathers and pursue this eternal path. I am so proud of them.
Please pray that baptisms are legal again soon!
I also made brownies this week even though we were out of flour, sugar, eggs, and butter and they actually turned out pretty good. Remember? God can help us do the impossible! I hope that rings true with what you know. And if you don't know, you can find out real quick by setting some goals that are just out of reach and asking God to help you with them!
Ok remind me to tell you about Renan next week. He is SO FUNNY. We meet with him three times a week on his request -- twice to talk about the Book of Mormon and once to help him translate the novel he's writing into English. He is the love of our lives oh my GOODNESS.
Ok it officially takes more scrolls to get to the bottom of this letter than it does to get to the bottom of the list of missionaries in this mission now.We're less than 2/3 of what we were when I arrived in the mission! Dropping like flies! Exciting!
praying 4 u!
ps. Sister Yates made me a flower crown and I CRIED