Monday, December 9, 2013

From Lexi's posting of December 2nd...a week late, sorry.

Guess what? I am writing this email first, before all others, because I never seem to have time for this one.  It is so hard to remember everything that happens each week, even things that I think, "I'll never forget that." Time really is different on a mission.  Christmas is tomorrow and summer is in a week! (Which is actually really awesome because I love summer)

This week has been really great though.  JD got baptized and confirmed! We asked his mom how she felt, and she said, "Blessed." There were many of his friends there to support him, and one of his greatest friends was able to baptize him.  To think that it would never would have happened if we hadn't received and followed a prompting a few weeks ago.  JD is an awesome kid who really has so much faith.  His prayers are some of the most hilarious and sincere and honest prayers I have ever heard.  Haha. We laugh every time.  I am so glad Heavenly Father has a sense of humor :)

HAPPY THANKSGIVING everyone! Our Thanksgiving was spent at Sienna's house and the Lochridges and the Bishops.  We were full.  Sienna is one of the most wonderful people I know.  She is not a member of the church and her husband is in Korea in the service, and she has four kids.  She is an AMAZING mom, and she loves her family so much.  She and her kids have questions about God and want us to come over and teach them.  They have welcomed us into their home and let us teach and love their family.  The oldest boy (9) and Sienna want to be baptized, but she wants to wait until her husband is around.  She asked us for a Book of Mormon that she can send to him in his Christmas package.  I know God prepares people to hear and accept His message.  I don't know when Sienna's family will be ready, but they have great faith and love for the gospel.  There have been so many miracles with her and her family.  

The other night we stopped by because it was two of her daughters' birthdays.  They are the sweetest.  Verah had all her little friends over for a sleepover and Sienna's friend was on the couch- her friend, Randy, who we met a few weeks ago and helped move out of her house.  After moving, she asked us if we had a book, so we had given her a Book of Mormon and talked about the Plan of Salvation with her.  So, we were able to sit and chat with Randy and everyone else there.  Verah loves to pray, so she came up to us three times and asked if she could pray.  We said sure! She got all her friends together and said two prayers while we were there.  

We ended up staying at Sienna's for a while because our appointments had cancelled, and we both felt like we should stay.  We are so used to running around and teaching that when we get a moment to just enjoy a party, we feel like we have to be teaching or something.  Haha.  So we stayed, and guess what? Heavenly Father gave us the opportunity to teach Randy! We ended up sharing a mormon message, answering her questions, and inviting her to read the Book of Mormon.  The Spirit was strong, and we will be seeing her again.  Also, another miracle- Sienna's mom and stepdad are members of the church.  Her mom converted a few years ago and married Wes who is recently active in the church again.  Wes joined our conversation and was able to testify of the gospel as well.  Members are amazing in the work.  They truly help people come unto Christ even when they feel inadequate or like their lives are not worth sharing.  I have felt that same way at times.  I have felt like I don't have experiences and skills that are going to help anyone, but I am learning that God gives everyone different experiences and traits and talents for a reason.  If we all had similar experiences, we could not share anything with others.  

I read this scripture this morning:
1 Nephi 13:37

"And blessed are they who shall seek to bring forth my Zion at that day, for they shall have the gift and the power of the Holy Ghost; and if they endure unto the end they shall be lifted up at the last day, and shall be saved in the everlasting kingdom of the Lamb; and whoso shall publish peace, yea, and tidings of great joy, how beautiful upon the mountains shall they be."

How blessed I feel to be able to have the gospel to share with others.  Peace and great joy, that's what I get to bring to people all day every day, for the rest of my life! 

I have a great testimony of God's love for His children.  I know that His hand is in all that I do every day.  Sometimes it can seem like I am just driving to people's houses, making phone calls, and eating dinner, haha, but then God's hand is revealed as we continue to try.  I know that He places people in our lives who needed help preparing to receive the gospel and who are prepared to receive the gospel.  He loves everyone so much and He will trust us to bless the lives of His children if we are willing.  

K, so now I know why I don't write this email first...BECAUSE I WILL NEVER STOP WRITING :)  

Dillon is still the greatest place I have ever lived.  Oh! I went to the Big Hole this week again and Nate and Hilary are doing awesome.  We rode out with the Olsen's who also came with us to Nate and Hilary's, and they gave so much to the lesson.  Their testimonies and love.  Hilary's mom was there and asked for a Book of Mormon and wants to change her life as Hilary has.  She has talked to Hilary since and has already been reading the Book of Mormon and likes it a lot! Hilary is already a missionary, bringing the gospel to her family, and it is bringing her and her family so much joy.  It is so joyful knowing that you can change your life and start again.  And it is all possible because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  I am grateful for the Atonement and for the opportunity to see it change people's lives.  

After the lesson, we went to the Olsen's who live in a National Forest in a log cabin.  We could see the Idaho border from their home.  They are the most amazing, kind people.  Brother Olsen is a literal mountain man.  Literally.  He rides his horse from his house to the Grand Canyon, living off the land, eating pine cones and sleeping in buffalo skin.  They love buffalo meat so they buy a buffalo each year and let it go on their property and go hunt it with friends.  I think Chase would be best friends with him :) Self-reliance at its best.  

Thank you for your prayers and letters.  I am grateful every day for the people I have in my life who have blessed my life so much.  Have a wonderful week! 

Keep the faith,
Sister Hixson

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