Sunday, October 19, 2014

10-13-14 Off to the Mighty Aurora

No I didn't make that up.  Each Zone has it's own nickname.)
Hello All!
We had another great week this week!
- After fhe, Stephen, the member we pulled out the giant stumps for, wanted to take us out for ice cream with his nonmember girlfriend.  She has been taking the discussions in another ward and calls herself Mormon, but has held off on baptism.  We found out that she had been thinking lately that she didn't want to do it anymore, that it wasn't for her.  We talked to her for a while and then parted ways.  Got a text from Stephen the next morning saying that because of our talk she wanted to get baptized that Saturday!  Blew our minds.  I bet that was the best phone call of those missionaries lives.  We were so happy.
- Had an awesome lesson on patriarchal blessings with Kate (the recent convert) and Aaron (the returning member who's girlfriend called us).  Elder Osborne and his companion were actually at that lesson so there were four missionaries teaching it.
- We met with Jake again!  Without even asking him to, Nate invited him to be baptized on Nov 16 which he agreed to as long as he got an answer!  It was awesome! Best member present ever!
- Michael, our Chinese investigator, brought one of his friends to our lesson who wanted to learn more!
- Spent about 5 hours getting our car fixed.  No I didn't break it :)  The brakes were terrible and the alignment needed adjusted.    But we got to have CafĂ© Rio for lunch :) the only one in the mission!  Normally it is outside of our stake.  But it was next to the car place so we went for lunch!
- Transfer doctrine is in! I am now in Aurora, usually referred to as the ghetto of the mission! My areas keep getting sketchier and sketchier haha. Super excited!  So sad to leave Maplewood, I really wanted to stay.  But I am excited for this new area!  I am serving in the Buckley ward and my companion is Sister Bracey.  She is 19, has only been out for 12 weeks (or 2 transfers), she just finished her training program.  But she is super fun and I think we are going to have an awesome time.
- Sunday we took Sister Meteer to the mission home!  Man it was so hard to say goodbye to her!  It was also great to see some of my friends who are going home.  Just really got me thinking about me going home.  I only have four transfers left.  Kind of freaked me out a little bit...
Man I have just been so happy lately.  Despite all of the struggles and trials that have been going, the Lord has truly blessed me to be happy and grateful.  I really love being a missionary; I love getting to share what I love with people and watch how He can change their lives.  I have seen many miracles out here, big and small.  It makes me sad to think I will have to give this up in 6 months.  It is hard to be out here, but it is something that I love.  I love you all and hope your week will be spectacular!

Sister Grossman

10-6-14 And then there were 4

Just thought I would mix it up a little.  Hope everyone had an awesome week and enjoyed Conference!  I certainly walked away with an action items list.  I think if we don't then we really missed the whole point of it, being to help us change and come closer to God's will and purpose for us.  So I am going to try to find those things Heavenly Father wants me to change on.
Man what a great week it was!!
- Had zone p-day on Monday!  As we were playing soccer it started raining, which then turned into huge pieces of hail!  We kept playing until it really started pouring down, hurt pretty bad!  So we tried to take shelter under the pavilion but it was just blowing sideways so it didn't do much good.  We were all soaked and freezing.  But we had a great time.
- Amazing week for work!  The standard of excellence is 20 lessons and we got 19 with our 20th canceling (dang Satan) last minute!  It was so awesome just to be able to talk to that many people about the gospel.  Sarah (the LA we found my first day here) is doing so well.  Every lesson is just one break through after another.  Our new investigator that we got last week, Jake (the one our Elders Quorum president brought to church), is doing great also and has agreed to baptism when he finds out it is true.  Found a new investigator late last night and she agreed she would be baptized too if she got an answer. 
- Finally got our Chinese investigator to commit to a baptismal date!  We didn't find out until Sunday night so it was just the cherry on the rest of the week! October 26!
-  Meet the Mormons was amazing!!  I want to challenge everyone take one nonmember with them to see it (and if you aren't planning on seeing it, do it anyway haha).  You didn't feel like you were being lectured about Mormons the whole time.  It was really well done.  Almost like extended "I'm a Mormon" videos, but with faith and church woven in more.  Just inspiring stories that show great people. Please please go see it!  I loved it.  President even bought popcorn and drinks for us!
-Things are going great with our little trio.  Sister Meteer is amazing and we are having so much fun!  It is really nice to have a third person to ease the tension.  And it is not like normal trios where one person is isolated (although sometimes we both get frustrated with Sister Cannon but we just move on and try to pull her in more), but we all just have fun and laugh together.  Lessons are still awkward with 3 people teaching, but it is nice to have an extra back up if the words are tied in your mouth.
-General Conference was stellar!  I wish I wasn't so tired and I could have listened more, but that's what we have the Ensign for right?  But what I did get out of it was so good!  Really helped to direct my path more.  What was everyone's favorite thing they learned?
- Apparently we now have a 4 occupants in our apartment.  Sitting on the couch early Sunday morning and saw a little black object dart across the room and go under the couch WHICH I HAPPENED TO BE SITTING ON!!  I realized the only thing it could have been was a mouse.  We tore apart the apartment but could not find it anywhere.  So we set out some bait food to make sure I wasn't going crazy and left for the day.  We got home and the spoon it had been sitting on was gone!  Then they thought, "well maybe we didn't leave the spoon out"  so I for sure thought I was going crazy.  But then, I flipped the couch and found it hidden in there, food gone!  Sure enough, we have a mouse.  Haven't named him yet, or decided what we were going to do about him.  Stay tuned.
Transfers are coming this week!  Can't believe it flew by so fast.  Having Sister Meteer here and helping her prepare for home has really showed me how little time I have left here.  I really want to make the most of it.  So just remember I might not be on Monday and if I am, I might be a little late.  or we'll just see you on Tuesday!  

Sunday, October 5, 2014

9-29-14 The Three Musketeers

Well it has been a crazy week full of surprises!!
- the zoo was so fun!!  It was Sister Lee's first time! so it was cool to see her excitement. although the ostriches weren't out so that was sad :(
- doctors appt went well.  Gave me a prescription to go get the blood work done.  Since it is feeling better right now, she just said to call if I start having problems again. 
- had some pretty great lessons this week with members and less actives.
- Got a phone call from the APs this week announcing that the church would like us to be able to use the new movie "Meet the Mormons" in our finding.  So we get to watch it!!!  Salt Lake City sent an advanced copy to our mission president and we will be watching it on Wednesday!!  We are all so stoked.  I heard that you can go somewhere and request it to be played in your theaters near you.  So go do it!!  And get your friends to!  If they get enough requests, they will out it in all the theaters in that area.  and then go watch it!! With someone who isn't a member!  They were originally going to just use this in visitors centers, then they got some awesome feedback saying people wanted to go to their church now.  It's an awesome nonthreatening way to help your friends understand what you believe.
- went on exchanges and it was so fun!  We had such a blast!
- Saturday about 20 missionaries helped set up for a Down Syndrome walk they were having.  It was great to be able to see so many friends!  We had a ton of fun working with the people there.
- I thought the General Women's Meeting was great!!  I learned so much and I just felt my testimony of the temple growing.  I would love to hear something everyone learned from the session!
- Had a zone fireside after the women's session. It was really great as we heard from a week old RM who served in Milan, Italy.  Great to hear his experiences and thoughts.
- Saturday afternoon came a huge surprise!!  Are you ready??  We were getting another sister added to our companionship.  That's right, we are a trio now!  Her name is Sister Meteer, she trained my MTC comp and she goes home at the end of this transfer.  No we weren't on the verge of killing each other, (we've been doing pretty good lately!)  her companion was going home 2 weeks early, so she needed a place to kick it.  We are the closest companionship that has living room (and President thought it would be a good idea anyways.)
- Sunday during sacrament sister Meteer was delivered.  She is so awesome and I think will be a really great help for our companionship.  I am excited to see how this turns out.  Plus now that we have 3 women together, we can go into single guys homes to teach without needing an extra person! 
- Sunday our elders quorum president (who is very inexpressive) walked up to us before church and said, "Sisters, I brought a nonmember to church today and we would like to meet with you after church." and then walked away.  Of course we were stoked; we dream of that!  It was awesome and now he is an investigator!!  It was such a great lesson with him.  The first half of our week is pretty busy so we are excited!  Hopefully it goes great!
- best part about being in singles ward, we are expected to be at all the activities: fhe, institute, volleyball, socials!  We went to a social last night and it was great just to be able to be with so many members of the ward.  Ended up having a super spiritual conversation with a brother who didn't see why he was important.  Lately I have been able to feel just how vital each and everyone one of us is to the Lord's plan.  If you don't feel you are or aren't sure of your purpose, pray to the Lord to know you are and then turn to the scriptures for the answers.  He will show you!
I love you all and hope you have a great week!  Sorry for a short one today!
Love, Sister Grossman 

9-22-14 Meet Denver

Hope  everyone has had a great week.  Our weather has been pretty bipolar, going rainy, to really warm, to really cold.  Today is pretty rainy, but hopefully it clears up because we are going to the zoo!  Super excited!  The week:
- We had another good lesson with Tiara, but then we got another text message in the week saying that she probably wouldn't be back for a while but thanks for everything and God Bless.  We were really disappointed, but I'm just so worried for her.  I wonder what happened that she doesn't feel she can come back. 
- Attached I put a picture of our dinner that night.  Yep, it was a picnic in front a giant cow sculpture.  Most interesting dinner I have had and will probably ever have out here!!
- Guess I haven't talked a lot about the area yet.  Denver is so fun.  There is actually more than white people here!  Lots of Russians, Blacks, and Middle Easterners.  The traffic/roads are terrible, the parking is horrendous, and the air smells like pot.  It's so fun!  Definitely different than other areas, except for maybe Aurora, they might be kind of similar.  I swear if I tried to avoid every giant, gaping hole in the road I would get pulled over for drunk driving.  There are chunks of the road missing.  People here are a lot more diverse and it provides good entertainment sometimes.  I heard for the first time that we are all Jesus and we are all the devil, we are all one.  Kind of strange...
-  Temple Wednesday morning!  Some Elders I am good friends with had a member telling them a lot of the symbolism in the temple and they shared with me.  So cool!!  Even though I can't remember half of it because they told me so much.  I just love the temple and the peace it brings.
- After a meeting we had on Wednesday, we got a phone call from a girl named Ann.  We knew immediately that this was the nonmember girlfriend of a member we had been working with on missionary work.  She said she had a Book of Mormon (and had read some of it!), had been to, and wanted to learn a little more!!  It was so awesome!  Unfortunately, she is over YSA age so we have to pass her off, but it was still such a cool miracle!!
That's about it for the week.  Some bad and some good.  Kind of up and down.  But overall it was still good.  Not too much else to share.  Sister Lee is actually in my zone and she is coming to the zoo too!  It is amazing what a little time and distance can do.  We are really good friends now.  She was on exchanges with the STLs one night and came over to our apartment.  It was so good to just sit and catch up with her and compare stories and experiences.  It is so weird to know I am 2/3 done.  Not quite sure what to think.
Love you all and hope you have a great week!

Love, Sister Grossman

9-15-14 Catch up from last week

Hi all!!
Sorry or not writing last week!  I'll try and cram 2 weeks worth of stuff in here.  Just kidding, it won't be too hard...I think.
We're teaching this awesome less active, Tiara.  She is struggling a lot.  It was amazing to see in just my second lesson with her how she had previously been very closed off, in our second lesson she started to open up.  She was crying saying her life was falling apart.  I just wanted to hug her, I felt so bad for her.  She is a convert with no family support and is going through quite a few hard things.
That is almost how it is with most of the people we are teaching; I love them so much.   I'm really seeing the Lord's mercy in helping me to love this ward.
Ok a neat experience.  Late at night last Saturday, we were visiting a less active in a very sketchy neighborhood that I'm pretty sure is a regular meeting ground for drug deals. (don't worry grandpa, my pepper spray was in hand!)  We are walking and this older gentleman sitting on his steps starts talking to us.  Nothing much, he just said hi and then God Bless.  So sweet!  The Spirit just told us to stop and talk to this man.  So we did.  His name is Clinton and he can't walk, but he can ride a bike.  So as we were conversing with him we asked if he would show us to building 2 since this apartment complex is ridiculous (it has 2 of every number and # 5 is next to 13 which is next to 27).  So he hopped on his bike and rode us over.  Instead of taking us to building two, he took us to where a member of our ward, Kenton, lives.  Kenton had just told us about Clinton, how they are good friends, and that he has been sharing the gospel with him.  So we talked to Clinton a little bit about the church and gave him a book of Mormon.  We invited him to church and then knocked on Kenton's door to see if he would give him a ride.  Clinton said he wanted to bring his roommate too!  That's fine, the more the merrier!  So as we walked away (to actually go find building 2) we walked past Clinton's place again.  There was another man standing where Clinton had been.  We talked with him, turns out he is his "roommate" (temporarily sleeping on his floor) Jesric.  We started talking about the gospel and you could literally see the hunger in his eyes for that.  We gave him a Book of Mormon, told him to read it tonight to keep the good spirit he felt, and then invited him to church in the morning.  Well we never found out what happened Sunday morning, but somehow Jesric wasn't on Clinton's floor anymore.  I guess Clinton hadn't been feeling too good, but Jesric showed up!  It was fast and testimony meeting and he got up...  We were so nervous that he would start talking about the things he spoke about the night before such as getting thrown in jail, kid taken away, drugs and alcohol, etc.  It almost started to go there, but God hears prayers and he took the reins.  It didn't turn out too bad.  Afterwards he were talking to him.  He said he laid awake all night just thinking of everything we said.  He looked at me and told me he came because of me.  As he explained it, I knew he meant because of the light of Christ (although he didn't know that was the source of the light) that he was able to see in my eyes and how he wants that so bad.  It was something incredible to hear.  Again I could see how bad he wanted it.  Later in the week, we were searching for the same less active and ran into Clinton and Jesric again.  Jesric seemed really torn up.  Almost a little crazy.  I think he wanted it so bad, but didn't think he could make the necessary changes.  I think he thinks he is too far gone.  It was so sad.  I was in tears as I tried to express my testimony to him that it doesn't matter where he thinks he is at, he is never too far from God's reach.  We had an appointment with him on Saturday to hand off to the family ward Sisters (we were also bringing a member who had been addicted to Crystal Meth for years), but he never showed.  He has no phone and no address so we have no idea how to find him.  We keep getting different stories from everyone as to where he is.  I just keep praying that he will remember the feelings he felt and follow them.
Last big news: we had mission tour on Saturday and was visited by Elder and Sister Lawrence from the 70.  Sister Lawrence talked all about the House of Israel and the Abrahamic Covenant!  It was so awesome!!  Those were things I had been thinking about for a while so it was awesome to be taught on it.  Than Elder Lawrence talked to us.  It was mostly calling us to repentance for not being very obedient, but he did it in such a loving way.  It was very humbling, but at the same time filling with love.
Since I didn't write last week: my companion is pretty rough but we are making it through.  This week was a little better, at least no big fights or anything. We are going with some other sisters to the 16th St mall today!  It has lots of pianos outside that anyone can just sit down and play on. Pretty excited.
Love you all!!  Have a great week!

Love Sister Grossman