October 7, 2013 by sisterrachelknecht
Dear family and friends,
Well, I have learned a lot this past week. I wish someone could just record my mission for me and y’all could watch an update every week. You’d probably know more than you want to, actually.
Before I get into my thoughts about General Conference, I’ll recap the week, in bullet point form
- Awesome lessons with Gilberta. She is seriously so eager to learn. We went to finish teaching her the restoration and she said “espere, voy a recoger mi librito”. She went and got her Book of Mormon and pamphlet, and remembered everything we talked about last week. She just soaks everything in. We extended the baptismal commitment, and she was eager to accept, but still has some questions and concerns, of course. She’s wonderful. We watched “The Restoration” with her too, even though we could only watch it in English. She was babysitting a lot of her nieces and nephews, as well as her own children, so she brought them all into the room to watch it. Her eyes were glued to the tv, and I helped translate some of it for her. Wow. I’m so excited to see her again!
- Lesson with Joslin and Will, a young couple with two adorable boys. We taught them the restoration and Joseph Smith’s story just hit home with them; they could relate to it in their own ways. The Spirit was so strong.
- Exchanges with the other sister trainer leader, Sister Davis. She’s awesome. Seriously, we get along really well. Mission Leader Conference tomorrow at the mission home. Which I’m nervous for, but excited too.
- Lesson with Stormy, who we found trying to contact past investigators. She has a 2 year old son Kaden, he’s a doll. She is so prepared for the gospel, and wants to be baptized.
- And Zitlally, who gave the most sincere prayer this past week, thanking Heavenly Father for the happiness that she’s felt. I love teaching girls who are the same age as me, to see what their lives can become through the gospel. She was able to make it to the last session of General Conference with us, and she loved Elder Nelson’s talk. I did too. It was perfect for her.
- And various other contacts and so on and lots of “y’all” and “do what?” and lots of crazy rain off and on (thank you for the rain coat! It’s perfect! And my new boots are perfect!). It was a good week, and we got to have dinner at a lot of sweet families’ houses. The next step in life (marriage and kids) is so scary to me, but I can’t wait. Obviously I can actually, for 9 months.
Fall is in the air, and I love it. Sister Kepler and I kept saying that this past Conference weekend was so surreal, because it definitely was. This time last year, I had made the decision to serve a mission, (whoever was with me that weekend can attest that I was alllll over the place with emotions). And I’ll forever be grateful for it. Conference, rain, the smell of fall, and now I’m here in Tennessee as a full-time missionary. Life is so sweet.
I definitely know that I am not a perfect missionary, but I am learning how to humble myself and let the Lord mold me. I’m learning to let go of my own will, to “leave behind things of this world for a better”. And I’m so excited to live what I learned in Conference (it will not be easy, it will not be painless, I’ll probably cry a lot and you’ll have to hear about it in my emails, BUT, it’ll be worth so much more than all of that). This had to be my favorite conference. I wasn’t expecting to hear any of the things that were said, but they were perfect. I feel like they answered so many questions I didn’t know I had. All the talks were so personal for everyone. And bullet points again of a few of my favorites (maybe not exactly what they said, but what I learned)
- Elder Dube: the duality of looking forward. Not letting the past keep us from moving forward, either because we think we have done enough, or because mistakes of the past are overshadowing the future. He’s a great speaker, my eyes were glued. And I loved that he said we can reach our full potential as we focus and unite in our common goal as followers of Christ.
- President Uchtdorf: there is room for you here in the church. We are not perfect. We only need the desire to be better, repent, and follow the Savior, regardless of circumstances. We need everyone’s unique personalities and perspectives.
- Elder Holland: “we are infinitely more than our afflictions and limitations”. One day through the Resurrection, we will be made whole.
- President Eyring: the story about his mom and dad. Wasn’t that great?
- Elder Oaks: courage not to compromise our standards
- Elder Maynes: price of spiritual endurance is dedication, self-discipline, and perseverance
- Elder Scott: I loved this one. Facing the short and long term consequences of sin, but rebellion is different than weakness. The Lord will strengthen us in our weaknesses.
- President Monson: “shall I falter or shall I finish?”
- Elder Nelson: the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of change, becoming a master over our natural man, which is true liberty
Okay, I have so many more things that I loved. But I’ll have to wait until I get the Ensign! Oh family, I love you and I am so excited for eternity with you! And for Baby Berry this week! Please give him a kiss for me. So grateful for you!
Love love love,
Hermana Rachel Knecht