Wherefore, he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together.

Doctrine and Covenants 50:22

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Missionary Miracles September 6, 2014

Conference was AMAZING!! I’m glad we got to share that experience together of being in the same session even though I didn't see you, Mom and Dad. I had to respond quickly when Caleb said "do you want to tell me what balcony your parents are in? I was like NO! but tell them I love them ;)  It was amazing and so fun to see him and James. I also saw John Lane and Maggie Thature from BYU, that was fun. 

So the reason we got to go to that session was because of a conference miracle of accompanying a WHOLE FAMILY who are all sorts of places in the gospel. They were so excited to go and our Zone Leaders had two extra tickets for that session with them so we planned to meet them their. Unfortunately Satan is working hard on them and they weren’t able to make it and called to tell us just upon arriving at the conference center. It was really sad but the two girls  were at least able to watch it on TV the next morning. This family really is amazing, and their 11-year-old daughter Anabel will be my first investigator baptized on my mission! The mom and dad, Gina and Nacho (yes, his name is Nacho, he's just that cool) are not members, but after Anabel, all their kids are.

Their son Angelo was baptized about 6 years ago, but has been in active pretty much ever since. Their daughter Jasmine (17) was baptized just before I came into the area and is doing AWESOME! It was at her baptism that Anabel felt the spirit so strongly and let Sister Britton and Gilmore know that she wanted to be baptized, too! She is sooo sweet and progressing so well. Agh, she is just so filled with light, I love teaching children! We have really clicked, her baptism is next weekend and she asked me to give the talk on baptism!

There have been so many miracles in her lessons these last couple of weeks. The first miracle is that her brother, Angelo, sat in on one of the lessons a couple weeks ago. He was just on the computer in the same room, but as the lesson progressed he slowly turned around and became fully engaged, at the end he gave the most beautiful prayer! He is really excited for Anabel and has been talking to her about coming back to church! Last week we were planning out the baptism with Anabel and telling her all the things she needed to ask people to do, and as we were listing some of the things Angelo VOLUNTEERED to give the talk on the Holy Ghost!!!

Another miracle is about the mom Gina. She's not a member but has been more supportive than her husband concerning her kids being in the church. She is proud of them and wants to be an example to them. We didn't know she smoked, but she happened to sit in on the lesson for Anabel about the Word of Wisdom! She expressed how she has been praying for a long time for strength to help her quit smoking and drinking - for her kids’ sakes! She is going to do the missionary 7-day-quit-smoking program and we are hoping from there we can start teaching her!!

Nacho is a little more hesitant but that’s where miracle #3 comes in, Nacho tries really hard not to like us, but he actually loves us. He has been struggling with feeling like his family is leaving him out and not respecting him as the head of the house. When we went to drop off the conference tickets for the kids and Gina, he poured out his heart to us and we were able to say a prayer with him and comfort him and then get a ticket for him as well! He was really grateful for us. The Lord is preparing their hearts and I know the gospel will bless their family. Gina and Nacho keep having disagreements though, which is making it hard. Please pray for their relationship to strengthen with each other so we can help strengthen them in Jesus Christ! So many talks from conference made me think of them, I pray we can help them hear those messages since they weren’t able to make it! 

We asked the ward YW president, Sister Ricks, to invite Jasmine and Anabel to watch with her family at her house Sunday morning. Later we got a text from Sister Ricks that said Jasmine told her they weren't coming because their mom decided to make breakfast for the family so they could watch ALL TOGETHER! It was amazing that that was even a thought, even though Gina and her husband ended up getting in a fight and not watching, Anabel and Jasmine still got to watch and they loved it! And Gina asked us to pray for her and her husband, so we know good things are going to happen. The Lord is preparing them!

Here are a couple more miracles I remembered: Kris Black, is a lady in her fifties who decided to remove her records from the Church back in her twenties. She has her doctorate in theology and did her dissertation on the LDS religion and has just decided to be re-baptized!!!!

Also, we just got in the door of a potential investigator who we have been praying about for weeks! She invited us to come back on Tuesday! So many miracles! 

We have three people who are considered investigators: one is Anabel, one I haven't met, yet, because she is so dang hard to get a hold of, and the other is Dr. Quinn who is an 80-plus-year-old retired botany professor, who introduces him self as an "advanced thinker" and a "agnostic atheist". He LOVES learning but has no interest in actually practicing what we teach him. He is so sweet and we are really sad that we're going to have to drop him as an investigator because he doesn't follow his commitments. He is also "close to perfection" so he doesn't feel he needs to. HE IS A CRACK UP! But, please also pray for him that his heart will be softened and he will recognize the need for the atonement and the plan of happiness. We are still searching for new investigators so hopefully I will have more to report on soon - (hopefully Gina and Nacho!)  OH! Martha is hopefully soon going to be a progressing investigator who I guess was dropped a while ago. She is single lady in her fifties who suffers from PTSD. She has lots of mental and depression problems, but is considering her spiritual journey. We have been serving her since she broke her shoulder and loves hearing our messages, it really helps her calm down. Oh, love her to death. She has these crazy episodes some times but always loves us, so she keeps life exciting and a little funny. ;)  

Sister Britton continues to be the best trainer ever! We are so alike. Also, she is a foodie just like our family so that’s dangerous, together we are working on temperance. She said she is grateful for me because I’m the first person she has met on her mission who doesn't think its weird to put jam on grilled cheese and apples on pizza. We are soul sisters – haha – also, she has 8 months left so she will be home for Thanksgiving 2015. I often talk about our Thanksgiving meals - so don't be surprised when she shows up next Thanks giving. ;)

Back to General Conference: I LOVED Elder Scott’s, Elder Bednar’s, and Elder Kacher’s talk! I agree, there was so much inspiration in this session and it gave me lots of comfort and answers to things and people I have been praying for. Oh, Elder Bednar is perfection. That was a talk I’m sure ALL MISSIONARIES were praying for. When he got us and said I’m going to speak directly to people who are not members of the church, I was like, YESSSS!!!!!! So Im sure we will be using that lots!

When I was preparing for conference I was hoping to get clear direction on how to balance strengthening my testimony for myself and focusing on my investigators as I teach. I leaned they go HAND IN HAND and it's ok to focus on my own testimony, especially as a new missionary, because as I do, my desire to share will grow and as I share, my testimony will grow. Its scary to be a missionary. A focus we have in our mission is to invite people to be baptized in the FIRST LESSON! It's crazy but I know it works and that my fear to invite God’s children the first time I meet them will disappear and strengthen my own testimony and come to better understand the effect it has in my life. I know any fears we have to be missionaries in every stage of our life will become small as we recognize our purpose in life and the effect the gospel has in directing us personally! Not only will our fear disappear, but we will be EAGER to share it with EVERYONE!

Thanks for your testimony and your prayers! I would love to hear some of your favorite insights and quotes from conference! Actually, I would love to hear EVERYONE’S insights and conference! Tell everyone to comment on my blog or Facebook or Instagram about their favorites! Oh, and that they should share their favorites also with someone needing love and encouragement... let us ALL press on in the work of the Lord!  (:

Have a beautiful week!! (: LOVE YOU!!

Love Sister Hatch!

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