Monday, June 30, 2014

6-30-14 Bonus- Pictures!!!

w/ Sister Toombs
w/ President Toombs

The damage

6-30-14 HUMMUS DAY

  A member is taking us to Costco today!!  We are so excited!!   We had dinner with a family and they had this great hummus there!  They told us they got it at Costco and ever since we've wanted hummus, so hence...HUMMUS DAY!!  It's finally here. Sister Migao has had a count down on our wall ever since!  This might be short today. I don't have a ton of time to type.

Well it was a hard, but good week!  Tuesday we said one last goodbye to the Toombs :(  they walked around and hugged all of us, taking pictures with each one of us.  I will surely miss them.  We get to meet President and Sister Mendenhall tomorrow.

Saturday we got to do service at a really fun event.  It was called Sand in the City.  They bring in all of this beach sand and have sculptors come in and there is a big competition to see whose is the best.  Then they have a big box for the little kids to play in.  It was pretty neat.  I want to come back next year when this event is happening to be able to actually walk around and see all the neat things.  

Still having a blast with Sister Migao!! I am always laughing with her!!!  Our area is struggling a lot, but we are trying hard.  We really spent a lot of time this week thinking about our goals and what the Lord would have us set.  We are working hard to try and reach them!  I am so thankful for Sister Migao's example to me of faith, desire, and motivation.  It has really helped me to regain my desire.  When I found out that I was training, I was angry because I had been asking for someone to pull with me, to labor equally in the work, and I thought with training I wouldn't get that.  But I was so wrong.  Just goes to show I should trust the Lord better.  He really knows what he is doing and what we need.  Heard a cool quote going along with that: "If I really trust God, it doesn't matter what I don't understand."  I really liked that and reminded me to stop stressing out and put my faith in him.

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer and not roasting too much.  Love you guys so much!  Thanks for everything.  Love, Sister Grossman

Saturday, June 28, 2014

6-23-14 Doing the Work

Hello everyone!!
Things are going great!!  It's been a pretty tough week.  Lots of people dropping us (well almost), us dropping people, and lots and lots of finding with no success.  But that is ok.  It was a trial of our faith and I think our faith is still winning.
Wednesday was great because we got to go to the temple and didn't have to wake up at too ridiculous of an hour, just 5am.  I just love the temple and the many things you learn there.  It truly is the place we can be closest to God and to feel his love and guidance the strongest.  I heard the CO Springs Temple is opening up summer of 2015....guess I'll just have to come back out that summer :)
Thursday we had dinner with Christine.  She seemed a little abrasive but still friendly.  At the end of dinner, she finally brought up her concerns.  She doesn't like how much we were talking about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon.  Turns out she had a lot of people talking to her and I think some anti- talk.  She also doesn't feel like she is receiving an answer to her prayers yet.  Thankfully, she still wants to keep meeting and coming to church.  But she wants more time to think.  I am just grateful that she didn't drop us entirely.  

Friday we had to travel out to Aurora again for a trainers meeting.  President Toombs gave a great training as a lot of us were struggling with finding.  He said the elect live around the elect.
Then on Sunday we had an early morning meeting with Elder Rhodes, our area 70.  It was for our ward council/mission correlation.  He talked to us, but more specifically the members about finding.  He shared this quote:
I feel the Lord has placed, in a very natural way within our circles of friends and acquaintances, many persons who are ready to enter into his Church. We ask that you prayerfully identify those persons and then ask the Lord’s assistance in helping you introduce them to the gospel.  
and then asked everyone to think of the first name that popped into their heads.  One sister shared the name of her neighbor.  He taught everyone through her name.  He gave us three scriptures: Moroni 7:33, 10:23, 3 Ne 18:20.  It made it so simple.  If it is God's will, you have the faith to make it happen, you pray and ask for help with the willingness to act, then it will happen. He has promised that.  He had her pretend with a lady sitting next to her and she had such an incredible feeling with the spirit that it helped her to overcome her fears.  I think that fear is the biggest thing that stopped me when I was home.  We know that Satan brings us fear and this is one of his biggest tools.  It really spoke to me whether I am on a mission or at home, I can't let Satan win by letting my fear paralyze me.  The way he showed was also so casual, no pressure whatsoever, and you could tell it was purely motivated by love.  As long as they know we love them no matter what, then it will be fine.  Most people don't change without an invitation to do so and that is our job.  We are fortunate enough to be born into the gospel because God knew we could share it with others.  I just got so much out of the meeting with Elder Rhodes, I wanted to share how my testimony had grown.

I am still LOVING Sister Migao.  She is hilarious and is so good for me!!  She reminds me so much of me!  She finally let down her walls last night and opened up to me about the things she is struggling with.  I just love her.  Her faith, testimony, and desire are incredible and I am so grateful to have someone work with me, to even help me when I struggle.  I don't always have to be the put together and on top of it one.  She is so great and I am excited to see who she becomes out here.

Wow, I can not believe I am halfway now.  This is just such a strange thought. I don't feel like I have worked hard enough to be out for this long.  I still feel like I am pretty new to the field.  I wonder if I will feel that way to the day I go home.
Well I'm running short on time so I better get going.  Love you all so much!!  Thanks for everything.  I feel your prayers and they keep me going. I am so blessed because of them.  Love and Miss you!!
Sister Grossman

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

6-18-14 At the Half Way Mark!!

Well another week over and gone.  Poor Sister Migao, she had a rough fist week.  Unfortunately, we spent a lot of time finding and contacting people.  She learned first hand how much people really don't want to talk to us.  She asked me if it was normal to get dirty looks out in public.  I told her she would get used to it after a while and just smile at them instead.  She thought the hardest part was going to be teaching, but quickly learned that it is finding.  We spent about five hours tracting/contacting on Saturday with absolutely zero success.  I remember when I first got out here how hard that was, but now it is just second nature.  It is what we come to expect.  I guess it helps us to be happy when we do find that one person after 5 hours.  It is sad though, how many people reject the truth.  Our calling is to teach, not find.  It would be the best thing ever if we could just teach all day, everyday. One day (maybe during the millennium) we might get there haha.
Even though we didn't have a lot of success in finding, we were able to top our most lessons taught (from last transfer) this week so that was pretty neat for me.  The area is improving slowly.  Sister Migao is great in lessons.  She is a wonderful teacher and is really not afraid to speak.  Even though she is way better than I was when I came out here, it is cool to see just how much I have learned.  She is still unfamiliar and nervous with talking to people on their door; I get nervous sometimes, but it is neat to see the difference.  Or that I know how to contact people and what to say to get the conversation going.  Not that I am perfect, but generally I am pretty comfortable in those situations.
I really do like having her as a companion.  She is super snarky and makes me laugh all the time.  I didn't laugh as much all last transfer as I did this week.  I see a lot of the things that I struggled with in her.  Like controlling her emotions.  I use to get so discouraged when I didn't find anyone or when things happened.  Sometimes it still makes me upset, but not like it used to.
I don't know if I mentioned stake conference at all.  We had that a few weeks ago and it was awesome.  In the adult session, it was all about missionary work.  The stake president had them take out their phones and scroll through their contacts, they had to pick 3-7 names that they wanted to start to work on to invite to take the missionary discussions.  Then they had to role play with someone sitting next to them, not their spouse, about inviting them in a casual conversation to take the missionary discussions.  It was so great!!  It is so true that we all have someone placed in our circle of influence to help them come into the gospel.  So at dinner appointments, we have been following up on that.  Friday night we sat down with a family and helped them to create a game plan for each of the people on their list.  It was such a spiritual moment as we brainstormed how to help these people.
Christine is doing well!  She came to church this week.  Said it was different than most churches, but she liked it.  Sadly to say, her husband is very not interested.  A family invited them over for dinner and then we would have a lesson afterwards and he could have made it, but just decided he didn't want to come.  Christine was talking about her baptism and asked if he would come and he said, "it's your thing."  So he didn't say no, but he didn't say yes.  She is doing well on the progression though.  She is meeting with us twice a week and then we will be going over even more to help her read and understand the Book of Mormon.
Well not too much to tell.  Nothing too exciting happening.  Now that it is summer, bugs are coming out.  And being in the basement means lots of spiders.  Yuck!  I hope everyone is enjoying their summer!  The rain and scattered thunder storms keep it pretty cool out here so that is nice.  And it doesn't get dark until like 8:30; I love that!
Love you lots!!  Hope things are going well.  Talk to you next week.
Love, Sister Grossman

Sunday, June 15, 2014

5-27-14 The Forgotten Email

Hello everyone!
So sorry this will probably be a very short email today.  We only have an hour to email as we have an appointment to be at at 1:30 and the library didn't open until 12.  Meaning I have probably fifteen minutes to write.
Highlight of this week (with a little background info from last week):  We tracted into a lady named Christine a couple weeks ago.  Not this past week, but the one of my accident, we had a lesson with her.  It was awesome; we ended up staying and talking with her for 2 hours because she wanted us to keep teaching.  Everything she was talking about, her problems with other churches, her values and beliefs, aligned so well with ours!  We invited her to church and she said she wouldn't be able to make it this week because she was busy but she really wanted to come.  This week, we finished the first lesson with her and she aligned herself with Joseph Smith.  She loved it.  We gave her a Book of Mormon and she was excited to read it.  She agrees to pray about everything because she loves praying to God.  We also invited her to be baptized if she found out it was true.  Her response: "I've been wanting to be baptized, I just wasn't sure where" !! Score!  Our next step is to get her husband involved in the lessons.  She came with her sons to the Memorial Day breakfast our ward put on!  They did such an awesome job of talking with her and making her feel so welcome.  At the end she said she had a ton of fun.  She asked her son, Mark, if he would want to come to church here.  When he said yes, she said yeah, me too!  Such a blessing from the Lord.  I can really see how he has prepared her!

This week's weather has been crazy!!  Tons of rain, thunder and lightning. Buckets of rain coming down every night. We've had several tornado warnings go off.  Apparently there was one just a mile from our house, but we had the brilliant idea to drive up the mountain.  In all fairness to us, it wasn't storming when we left, just lightly drizzling like it had been all week.  As we were driving up it started storming really bad!!  Sheets of rain.  I guess storms freak Sister Hall out.  So the whole time, I'm loving it and she is scared .  I felt bad for her.  The next day, we were stuck at home for a little while because the hail was coming down so bad.  The streets were literally flooded with hail.  Everything looked so white, just like snow.  I tried to get pictures, but I wasn't fast enough.  I took all the crazy weather this week as a tender mercy from Heavenly Father since he knows I love storms!!
Well I guess this will be all for today.  Sorry it is so short AGAIN, but we have some exciting appointments today.  We are hoping they come out well.  Thanks for all the prayers on my behalf.  They have really helped.  Gives me strength to do the hard things.  I appreciate everyone and love you all!  Hopefully I get more time to talk next week!!  Love you, Sister Grossman

6-10-14 I'm Going To Be A "Mom"

That's right!  I'm a trainer now. (They call trainers "Moms and Dads" in missionary lingo)  What a story that is.  I don't have a lot of time since we only get an hour on Tuesdays.  
Well not too crazy of a week this week.  Had a great lesson with the Cannons, the referral from the Wrides.  They are doing great and we are teaching them about Joseph Smith tomorrow.  They loved the family proclamation and the message on prophets.
Wednesday we had to drive all the way out to Aurora for our huge Mission Conference.  It was so great!  President and Sister Toombs addressed us the whole two and a half hours.  It was great to hear their training and their words of experience.  I love them and will miss them so much.  They really taught me a great deal.  It was fun to see all of the missionaries too.  It was nice to see one of my old zone leaders again (he was my first one out here).  It was nice to talk with him and get his perspective on things.
Christine is doing well, still progressing and excited about baptism.  Still praying to have her husband's heart softened.
Friday night was when this all went down.  I thought I escaped having to train because I didn't receive a phone call.  It's like 10:10 and I get a call from my zone leader.  Here is our convo.
ZL: "Congratulations!!"
Me:  " What for?
ZL: "Oh don't pretend you don't know what I am talking about!"
Me: "No, I really don't know..."
ZL: "You're training!!"
Me: ", no I'm not..."
We went back and forth like this for ten minutes.  I literally thought he was joking until I called the APs.  "Uh yeah, we're looking at the board right now. ..You're training."  I wanted to cry and throw up.  I was not ok with this.  Thanks for the call President....  (apparently he had family in town and was going to tell me in the morning and the ZL didn't know that)
The next day I had to attend a trainers meeting.  Found out there was only one other trainer; only 2 come in this transfer, so unusual.  The other was an elder.  Still felt like throwing up.  Transfer doctrine happened that night.  President is stacking our zone.  He is bringing in a ton of legit missionaries to help out the work.  Only one companionship stayed the same, 17 changes overall, 3 areas being swept.  It is crazy!  Turns out Sister Hall got sent to Denver to be with my MTC comp Sister Swarbrick.  How strange.  Sunday we just spent the day mostly saying bye to people for Sister Hall.  I still felt like puking.  In fact, I almost did at dinner.  So that night I finally asked the elders for a blessing.  What an incredible experience that was.  I helped me so much and comforted me a lot.  Every time right before I get a blessing I think, no I don't need one, I'll just pray really hard.  But the elders are already there so I let them go ahead and then it turned out to be an amazing thing because the Lord tells me things and gives me feelings that I never would have received from praying.  He really emphasized just loving my new companion that I was getting. It was amazing, that night I was just overcome with love for her even though I didn't know her.  We stayed up until 2 that night getting Sister Hall packed.
Monday was crazy!  Had to drop Sister Hall off at ten and then hang around until 3:00 for the STLs to take me to the mission office. Since I was the only sister, they had to wait with me.  I felt bad, kind of ruined their p-day.  So I am panicking again just because it is getting closer and I was so nervous to meet her. When the APs asked me if I was ready, I just froze, I couldn't move.  Then I was hopping around in the hall and just as they said we are ready, I ran to the drinking fountain down the hall, about giving the APs a heart attack.  Her name is Sister Migao. (me-gow) (ow sounding like it does in 'now').  She is from San Diego, but is Samoan. She is 20, 21 in August.  Get this, studying athletic training!!!  haha how cool right?!  We are so alike in so many ways.  I love her.  She is already so strong and so great.  I look forward to working with her.  I just still wish I wasn't training. 
We had a lesson with Christine that night and then met with the bishop.  Poor girl, she was falling asleep the whole time, she was so tired.  I just wanted to get her home and let her rest.
Things are looking well.  Don't feel like I'm going to throw up anymore.  That's progress.  I will be seeing the Clarines tomorrow so that will be great too!!  Anyways, got to run.  We have a meeting to get to.  Love you all.  It was so great to hear from you this week.  Wish I could write more.  Going to be late.

Love, Sister Grossman

Sunday, June 8, 2014

6-2-14 The To-Be-Continued Part

It's been a crazy week!!  A very long week, but mostly good! Ok so continuing where I left off last week:
Tuesday we had two appointments we were really looking forward to.  Right after we left the library we went to meet with a former investigator named Scott.  The lesson was alright, we more got to know him, but he agreed to let us come back!  He sidetracked the conversation a lot when we brought up gospel things, trying to dodge the conversation.  Not quite sure how far we will get, but we are hopeful!  Right after that, we had a lesson I was really stressing for!  It was a referral from a member.  The first time we stopped by, we dragged the guy out of bed.  He was very sick and he told us to come back next week.  So when we came back, he agreed to let us come and share a message with his family.  Before the lesson, we were talking with the member, Sister Wride asking her if she had any advice for us or information about the family.  She said the husband was not as open as the wife.  When we told her he was the one who let us back, she was very surprised.  She said she feels he is looking for peace.  Sounds to me like a perfect fit with the gospel!  We showed up and the wife answered the door.  You could tell she had no idea what was going on so we told her we had an appointment with her family.  She had no idea but let us in anyways!!  We talked with her for 30 minutes before her husband showed up.  We didn't teach a whole lot, but we talked all about God and families.  She was so enthused; you could tell he threw up a few walls, but we didn't address them at all so he is kind of peeking over them.  They agreed to let us come back and continue to share our message!!  The next day Sister Wride was talking with her and she said she was just so excited to have a message in her home.  Sister Wride was so pumped that she was asking us, "ok what do I do?  Do I come with you?  Should I have her in my home?"  It was awesome.  We told her to have the lesson in her home would be great!  She asked if she should offer, or if we should. we said definitely her!  She was so excited to see it play out.  I am very excited for this family!
Thursday was Christine with Sister Lentz and Brother Rockwood (our ward mission leader).  She had a ton of questions and that should have been our first clue that we shouldn't move on yet, but unfortunately we just stuck with our plans and started on the plan of salvation.  I walked away feeling unsettled.  It was an ok lesson, but I don't think it was what we should have taught her.  Thankfully, we only got a couple principles in.  We talked afterwards and decided we needed to backtrack and watch the restoration video with her.  Then we would talk about what it means and the importance of baptism and the role of the Book of Mormon.  She is still so excited to be baptized!  And she is very excited to come to church next week, so excited that she is even bringing a nonmember friend with her.  I guess her friend was over at her house (she knew that she was meeting with us) and her friend was wearing a longer skirt and she said she felt like a Mormon!  Christine said then she might as well come to church with her!  The next day her friend showed up and said, "You know what!  I actually do want to come to church with you!"  We slightly freaked out when she told us that story!!  How awesome!!!   So prepared.  I keep seeing more and more things that the Lord has prepped her on.  She has a few tattoos and she mentioned how she regrets them so much and doesn't want to get anymore!  We just smiled like crazies! 
We had exchanges Friday afternoon to Saturday afternoon.  It was great to talk with Sister Hanshaw about the area and about Sister Hall.  She really helped me a lot, even if it was just to vent.  I told her how Sister Hall and I were talking and that I told her I needed her help because I wasn't strong enough to do this alone, to work this area alone.  That she needed to help me push.  Sister Hanshaw turned to me and said, "Sister Grossman, don't you see?  You have already been doing it yourself this whole transfer!"  I wanted to say, yeah but you don't know how much it hasn't been going good.  haha Things are doing better with Sister Hall.  I am still making her take the lead in almost everything.  All the planning, the deciding where to go.  I don't dump it all on her because Sister Hunt did that to me and it wasn't fun, but I do make her think it through before I chip in.  Or we will take turns while in the car picking people to go see.  She is becoming more confident and willing to step up.  It sure is helping a lot.
Now that the Elders have a core, we have really needed to rearrange boundaries in the ward.  We finally met with the bishop yesterday and walked away with a big surprise.  No boundaries!  Everything is fair game for both of us, we just have to communicate where we are working a little better.  I also loved it because our ward mission leader told the bishop, look the ward needs to step up with convert and returning member retention.  This is not my job and certainly not the missionaries job!  I could have hugged him.  Every missionary wants to say that! 
This weekend was stake conference and our stake president laid it out to the members how it should not be our (the missionaries) job to find people.  That is the job of the members.  He had them role play inviting a friend to take the missionary lessons and asked them to pull out their phones, open their contacts, and listen to the spirit to pick 3-7 names that they can begin to work on.  I loved it!! I've been thinking a lot about instruments lately and how God asks us to be an instrument in his hands.  (I thought of this in terms of a flute) I realized he puts it perfect in the top, but it is up to us whether he will let the melody come out the other side.  Are we only going to let part of it come out, or the whole song?  I related this to what our stake president was saying.  How it is nice to be the example and live it, but Heavenly Father is asking us to proclaim it also.  The scripture says be an example of the believers in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.  He wants us to open our mouths and invite people to come unto Christ.  I thought about this with instruments and thought he is so right.  With everything that Heavenly Father pours into us (blessing, testimony, holy ghost, eternal life, etc) and all we are going to do is live it?  It doesn't repay him!  To let the melody that he is giving us come out fully, we need to speak it also.  Open all of the keys, instead of refusing to use some of them.
I hope everyone is doing well and all set for summer!!!  Love you guys so much!  Talk to you next week!  Love, Sister Kleinerman   (a German guy in my ward told me I should be Sister Kleinerman instead of Grossman because Kleiner=small hahaha)