Wednesday, March 26, 2014

March 24, 2014

Hello! I hope all is well at home! I can't believe how time flies while serving a mission! I'm about to be finished with training! So crazy! It is amazing though! I love serving and I love the people here. You don't even begin to grasp the concept of loving the people you serve while preparing for a mission. It isn't until you get here that you truly understand. I feel like I've been here forever and that I've known these people my whole life. I love them so much!
Anyway, this week was great! We started riding bikes and had some fun experiences with that! The first night we rode our bikes, Sister Carlin's bike started having problems with the brakes. The brakes were stuck so going up hills felt like climbing Mount Everest. And it feel like climbing a mountain anyway. So she was exhausted. We finally decided at around 8:15 that we had better start walking home because there was no way we were going to get home on time. So we started walking and all of a sudden there was a woman walking next to us. She had gone to pick up her car, but the mechanic wasn't there and she was afraid to walk home alone in the dark, so when she saw two missionaries walking, she figured she would be safe if she walked with us. We got to talking and found out that her husband passed away about 5 months ago and she is having a really hard time coping with that. We were able to teach her about the Plan of Salvation and how we KNEW that she was going to see her husband again. It was an amazing experience and I know that meeting Pinky was the reason we were having bike problems. Heavenly Father watches out for each and every one of us! Luckily though, one of our other investigators was able to fix the bike the next day so Sister Carlin can actually ride now!
A few days ago we got home a few minutes early and we decided that we needed to stay out until 9 to be exactly obedient. We then met one of our neighbors that I had never seen before. She invited us into her apartment and we got talking about the gospel. She love understanding other religions and reads about them a lot. However, she had never heard of The Book of Mormon before. We were able to teach her a little bit about it and she committed to read it! It was amazing! She is coming with us to church next week!
This week has been absolutely amazing and I can't wait to share all of these wonderful experiences with everyone in person. Being a missionary is the greatest blessing in my life! I get to witness God's love every day, every moment! I love it so much! I know that Heavenly Father watches out for each of us, no matter what. He wants to help us, His arms are already extended towards us. All we need to do is ask.
I love you all!
Sister Keele
P.S....Happy birthday papa-san!
P.P.S...happy birthday c-town!! 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Captain's Log Month 3

Hello family!! How is everyone? I hope you are all well and safe after the earthquake this morning :) Tomorrow is my 3 month click day! So crazy that so much time has passed already! It is weird to me that there are missionaries who have been out for a shorter amount of time than me. And that soon I am going to be 2 transfers older than some missionaries. Crazy! Anyway, this week has been absolutely fantastic!
We had a new member fireside last night and Karen, who was baptized on Feb. 9th, got up and bore her testimony!! It was the sweetest thing! She is only 16 and is the only member in her family. She's actually from Long Beach and knows where we live! haha! It's a small world!
Also, the most exciting news is that we now have 3 progressing investigators! We would have more, but in my mission the investigator has to go to church in order to be progressing and we had 3 investigators at church! There is almost nothing more exciting than having people progress!
I don't know if I told you guys, but we volunteer at an adult home every other week. We went there this past Thursday and there is a new lady there. She is so young and from what I can gather about her, she lost her memories after being abused by her husband. It is so sad to see these people there who are so confused and it is by no fault of their own. I just can't wait to see these people in the next life and see how amazing they are. I love these people so much. There is an older couple there and everytime we go they are always sitting on the couch together holding hands. It is so cute!
We also met with a part-member family that we have been working with since I got here and we were able to understand many of the concerns that he has had. We also figured out that he has had missionaries teaching him for 20 years. That is a LONG time! But I know that Heavenly Father is continually preparing him to hear the gospel!
I don't have much else to report, but I love serving here! I absolutely LOVE being a missionary and being able to witness miracles every day! I know that I was called here for a reason and that when we are on the Lord's errand, we cannot fail! I hope that all of you are having the opportunity to come closer to our Father in Heaven every day and that if you don't know who He is, that you are searching Him out. He WILL answer our prayers.
I love you all!
Sister Keele

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

March 10, 2014 AMAZING

Hola Familia! How are you this week?! I have had an absolutely amazing week! There are several reasons why, but in case I run out of time, I'll tell you the biggest reason. Just keep in mind that an email will never do this story justice. I mentioned Isaiah last week in my email and said that I would tell you guys about him when I got home. But, the most amazing thing happened with him this week. So last Wednesday, we had to go get gas and for some reason, I felt like we needed to check the tire pressure. It was 10!! That is horrible! And we had checked it two weeks ago and it was 10 and we filled it up. So obviously, there was something wrong with our tire. So we called the car coordinator and he told us to take it in asap and get it fixed. So when we got to Les Schwab, there was a man stuck in between the door and the brick wall. A lady went to walk inside and because he didn't move when she said "excuse me," she SHOVED him out of the way. As the door was closing, he stumbled inside. When Sister Carlin and I got inside, he was clutching a pole in the middle of the shop repeating, "What? what...what...what..." The same girl that shoved him out of the way said, "Could you shut up?! No one wants to hear you!" This man was clearly on drugs and needed help, yet no one was helping him. He could barely stand up so we put a chair behind him, helped him sit down, and told the people to call 911. As we were waiting for the ambulance, I talked to him and got his name. His eyes were shaky and he was not aware of where he was. This was Isaiah. A police officer got there and told me to leave him alone and started laughing at him, along with everyone else. He called an ambulance and just stood there, waiting. I was devastated. How could everyone be treating this child of God like this? So what, he was on drugs. We all make mistakes. But he needed help. Not persecution. I started to cry. My heart was continuing to break for him every second we were there. Something in me was just connected to him in a way that I can't possibly explain. I could not get him out of my mind for the next week.
Then, the next Wednesday, our plans had fallen through and we decided to go see a potential we met my very first week here. We knocked twice, and no one came. All of a sudden, we saw two people walk past the house we were at. Without hesitation I pointed and said to Sister Carlin, "That's Isaiah!" We called his name, but no one turned around. So, like the stalkers that we are, we got in our car and went to find him as he had turned the corner. He and his friend had separated and we found him walking by himself. I jumped out of the car and said, "Are you Isaiah!?" He looked shocked and said, "Yeah....why?" I then freaked him out more by saying, "Were you in the hospital last week?" He looked even more freaked out and said, "Yeah...who are you?" I explained to him who I was and how I knew who he was. It was the most amazing experience. He told us that he had a really bad day that day and that he has been drifting away from God and so he turned to drugs. He explained that if he hadn't had medical attention when he did, he would have died. He said, "Out of all the people in the world, it was you two that helped me that day. And out of all the people in the world that were driving by me just now, it was you two. People that are spreading His word. That is not a coincidence." At that moment, I knew that I have been called to this mission for certain people. Isaiah being one of them.
I know that we are each called to be where we are in life, for a reason. God has a magnificent plan for us. And it is amazing when we realize even a part of that plan. I love you all! Have a great week!!

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Good Samaritan

Hello Family!! How are you guys this week? Life here has been exciting! I'll try to make this email make sense...But I can't promise that it will! :)
I have been thinking a lot this week about the Good Samaritan and how the Lord has told us to be like the Good Samaritan. There is so much around us and so many people around us. There are always people that are in need. We should be the ones to help those people even when people may think you are strange. We should be the ones that follow the example of our Savior Jesus Christ! We will be so blessed if we do! I would tell you the experience I had that prompted these thoughts, but I wouldn't be able to do it justice through an email. So remind me to tell you someday about Isaiah. :)
We have been working with a lot of members that are less-active and we have seen so much progress with them! They are starting to realize the importance of church and the sacrament!
Exciting news! We finally had an investigator come to church yesterday! Now she will hopefully commit to baptism!
Speaking of baptism! One of our investigators is committed to be baptized on April 5th! She is so great! I am so excited for her!
We also went on exchanges and our STL's told us that they are fading out tracting! So crazy!! It is so weird to not go tracting every day! But we are working with the member so much more! Our STL's from last transfer got white washed and so we have 2 new STL's from the other side of the mission. It's crazy, but I love them! We also got the AP's in our zone this transfer. Which is kind of weird too. But we are the biggest zone in the mission and we have the lowest numbers, so our speculation is that they are here to try and help us. LOL! But they are so great!
This week has been great in Tiffany Park! I have truly felt the love of my Savior! I know that He loves each and every one of us! He didn't just suffer and die for the righteous, He suffered and died for ALL of us! I know this because I have felt the Atonement in my life and I have felt it change me. You all can too. I know that as you pray with FAITH and with REAL INTENT, you can be healed.
I love you all! Have a great week!
Sister Keele