Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Week 46: Guymon is now Holy Ground :)

Last week had a miraculous start and continued to be miraculous all the way through so of course that was wonderful!!

I can't believe I forgot this last week, but Happy Anniversary to the cutest couple I know, my Mommy and Daddy! Hope you are enjoying your time in Hawaii!!

Thank you to the Sorensen Family for your Easter package! I finally got it from Garden City and I loved it :) I can't believe Shay is going to be 8....I...I just can't believe it. Thank you to Shay and Ashley for the letters :)

So one of the greatest miracles of my mission happened on Monday night. We had a super great start to the Pday missionary work beginning with calling a member to have a member lesson - which was suuuper awkward, neither of us had ever done that before, but it turned out to be something that the member really needed to hear - then having a successful lesson with a less active, then we felt like we needed to go contact an investigator who isn't really progressing. So we did and her sister-in-law, Roseann, opened the door. She tells us that Sherry, who we meant to visit, was sleeping. Then Roseann just starts talking, and keeps talking, about her life, about her struggles, about her worries, everything. Just spilling it all out saying "I don't even know why I'm telling you all of this! For some dumb reason I trust you girls!" She never let us inside, but she stepped outside and kept talking! Expressing her concerns about religion and feelings towards God and just kept going! We testified of Jesus Christ, of His love and His power. We asked if she believed God sent us to her. She said yes, and she knows she is supposed to learn something from us - "you weren't sent here to talk to Sherry, you were sent here to talk to me!" :) We invited her to read the Book of Mormon and be baptized. Miraculously, she had been talking to her kids about getting baptized the other day! She accepted to be baptized on May 16th :) She is awesome. She is looking for answers and she will find them as she continues to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it.
Sister Rosell and I were floored. She was testifiying to us at the end of the visit about how much she needs us right now and how she knows this is God reaching out to her and we were just bawling - we could not believe the miracle. After 3 weeks of just short glimmers of light and so much darkness, finally Heavenly Father released the flood light :) We just hugged and cried all the way home, on bikes, in the rain. We are soooo grateful :) Then we found out she doesn't live in our area....or even our mission.....haha BUT! We worked it all out and we're allowed to teach her and she can be baptized in Guymon!!

The next day we had a follow up lesson with her, where she asked so many questions and introduced us to her friend Melissa who wanted to meet with us after Roseann told her all about our meeting the day prior. She is now preparing to be baptized on May 16th as well! Miracles happen when the people we teach KNOW without a doubt we are representatives of the Lord, Jesus Christ :)

Miracles continued to follow as we found a few new families to teach who are all looking for a church and looking for truth. A family we met Friday, who let us come back Saturday, attended church on Sunday and also invited members of their family to come too! So that was super awesome :) We have several progressing investigators and lots of progressing less active members. The work is moving forward here in Guymon, Oklahoma!!!

This week we also did SO MUCH SERVICE. Oh my word, so much service. It was awesome! We met with a few different people in the community who could point us towards the service opportunities and we are so excited to get involved! This weekend is Pioneer Days in Guymon - probably just as big of a deal as Gold Rush Days is in Wickenburg, everything revolves around it - so we are helping a bit with that, we wish we could help more, but our little trip to Wichita this weekend to hear Elder Holland kinda threw a wrench in that! Of COURSE we are so stoked beyond comparison to hear and see Elder Holland in the flesh, but we are also bummed we are missing that SOLID opportunity to meet SO many people and tell them about our message about Jesus Christ :)
This week for service, Sister Rosell and I did the concession stand during the Guymon Community Theatre's show for Pioneer Days! It took us back to our performing days and it was so much fun :) We also were able to show the love of Christ to someone in desperate need as we helped them around their house. I just love ministering - when people think there's no hope, I am so grateful that I can testify of Jesus Christ and bring that hope back :)

It was a crazy week, with so much walking, so much serving, and so many miracles!!
This week is going to be even better as we prepare to hear an apostle of the Lord speak. I hope and pray I will be prepared to receive the revelation the Lord needs me to receive in order to help the Guymon Branch and my investigators reach their potential and also to know what I need to do to become a better servant of Him :)

I love you all so so much!
I hope you have such an awesome week!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway


Sister Rosell and I!

Serving at the GCT!!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Week 45: Dynamite Guymonite

I cracked up when Elder Shurtleff, a senior missionary, said that this week! haha I thought it was so clever and creative so I had to share it with you!

Thank you to Rizek for the letter this week! I appreciate it so much!
And thank you to everyone else for all of your prayers and your love :)

This week, was a little tough, with some obstacles and trials coming up, but Sister Rosell and I are keeping the faith up and our discouragement low :) We know Heavenly Father is just preparing us for a miracle - it's coming, and it's coming big! We just gotta keep working diligently, being exactly obedient, and inviting all to come unto Christ :) We had a great week, nonetheless with many less actives coming to church who hadn't been for a lonnng time and lots of spiritual experiences!

I will share a couple of those spiritual experiences with you!

So earlier this week, I think it was Wednesday, we visited a member of the branch named John who has muscular dystrophy. His story is so cool. Missionaries were teaching him, he wanted to be baptized, but because of his health he was not able to be baptized himself. So I'm not sure exactly what or how it happened, but someone else got baptized for him! Like as proxy! Very cool story. Anyway, we went to go visit him, and he can't really respond back to us so we and the Elders were just chatting with him. Sister Rosell shared her favorite scripture about how although we are weak, we can be made strong in the strength of the Lord. After she shared that scripture, I testified of the Savior and the Atonement to this man about how Jesus Christ can transform us and uplift us. After I finished, we sat in silence and I just looked at John, this man who is bedridden for life, yet knows his Savior and the power of the resurrection...and I just started to cry. The Spirit was so strong in John's little room in the nursing home. It was one of those moments when you know Jesus Christ lives and He is real. I am so blessed to be able to testify of Him every single day :)

Next really awesome experience was one of those times when you know the Lord put you in the right place at exactly the right time. We were walking down the street and there was a young man walking down the same street with us! So of course we called out to him and started talking to him and getting to know him- his name is Michael. Turns out...he had gotten out of jail THAT DAY and wanted to turn his life around. We testified of the redeeming power of Jesus Christ and read a couple verses with him in the Book of Mormon. He loved all of it, so we set up a time for all of us to meet with the Elders the next day. When we went the next day, he was leaving town - we had met him on the ONE DAY he was in Guymon. The Elders gave him a Priesthood blessing of comfort and counsel. Although we only knew Michael for one day, it was awesome to see the Gospel bring light to his life and bring him closer to Jesus Christ :)

Next AWESOME thing that happened was the Elders had a baptism!! The Elders in Liberal, KS were teaching this old fellow named Pete for quite some time and he had the desire to be baptized, then he moved to Guymon! The Elders visited him on Tuesday and he was ready to be baptized that same weekend! Just this past Saturday! (Kiki and Starry anyone? haha! Miracle baptisms!!) Anyway, so Pete is an older gentleman, so it wasn't possible for him to be baptized in the regular baptismal font. The baptism was held...wait for it....in the YMCA pool!! It was so awesome. I loved smelling that chlorine, brought me back to swim team and lifeguarding days... :) Anyway, Pete was seated in one of those hydraulic seats on the poolside that lower people into the pool and the Elders and Pete's son were in the pool. His son said the baptismal prayer, then they all put their hands under him, carried him off the seat, then lowered him into the water, then back up into the seat. The Spirit was SO strong. I am so grateful for the power of the Priesthood :) Young or old, we all need baptism by the power of God on the Earth.

I am so grateful to be here and to be a part of all of these miraculous experiences :)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the restored church of Jesus Christ with the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. He lives. I am grateful to be a part of His work :)

Have an awesome week!!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway


P.S. Elder Holland is coming May 2nd!!! :D

video

                                                                     Biking!! :D

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Week 44: "We're not in Kansas anymore...."

Bahaha! Thanks Dorothy :)

Thanks to Elder Ringger for the letter this week! I loved it!

Well. This week was just great! It went by so fast! Disclaimer! I'm not gonna write super a ton, but it has been a great week! Of course, we had some trials, but the Lord never ceases to give us miracles as well :)

I got to speak in the little branch yesterday! I spoke on miracles and the greatest miracle of all: the resurrection of Jesus Christ. And because that miracle happened, every other miracle is not improbable. I love that thought :) because of the Atonement, if we have sufficient faith, anything, any miracle, can happen. We get to help out a lot in the branch - with teaching Primary classes and playing the piano, teaching the youth...it's awesome! The mission surely prepares you for the callings you'll have later in life! I am excited to work more closely with the branch and bring more people in :)

A member of the quorum of the 12 is coming to talk to the whole mission in May!!!!!!!!!!! Can you say STOKED. Yeah, gotta prepare really well for that crazy awesome experience!!!!!

Now a little bit about Sister Rosell! She is the youngest in her family as well! Youngest of 6 even!! She is 20 years old and super cute! She is from Orange County, California, but doesn't like the ocean. She's taller than me....not saying much.... She and I are really similar, I feel. We get along great and I love her!

We had a lot of very interesting conversations with people who disagree with our beliefs this week - for some reason it happened more than usual. It was awesome to testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and the nature of God and Jesus Christ. I know the Book of Mormon is the word of God. I know that testifying of the truth is so much more powerful than arguing. Sister Rosell and I were discussing how we just want to give everyone a little glimpse of how their lives could be with the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in their lives - then they would understand why we just want so badly for them to read the Book of Mormon, come to church, pray about Joseph Smith, be baptized, etc so they can feel for themselves what WE feel. This is the TRUTH. Absolute TRUTH of Jesus Christ. Everyone wants it, everyone needs it. :)

We were able to meet so many families this week and help them get started in their progression in the Gospel - with a few of them accepting to prepare for baptism!!! I am grateful for the comfort the Gospel brings to families. Death has no sting, the grave no victory. We can and will experience the joy of the everlasting Gospel and the fullness of the Atonement of Jesus if we would just simply open our hearts and our minds to this glorious message of the Restoration.
I know the Book of Mormon is TRUE. It is the word of God. I know Jesus Christ is the Son of God. They are separate beings, but united in purpose. I love them! :)

I love you all! I hope you have a spectacular week!

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

I finally got to experience BRAUM'S. I have been hearing
about this place my whole mission! It's sooooo yummy. I
guess they don't build a restaurant anywhere over an hour
from where they get their ingredients - it's allllways fresh.
Yummy, yummy, ice cream!

Bikes. Lots of bikes. In a small apartment. And the Elders! :)

Not sure why she has a sad face.....hmmm.
haha

Sister Rosell says this is what she pictures when she thinks
of Kansas, sooo of course we had to take a pic. :)  Just as we
were walking allll across Guymon back home!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Week 43

Hola!!!

Thanks Mommy for the letter and the package! I love you!!

The beginning of this week was pretty crazy trying to get everything together for transfers, but the Lord of course did not fail to show me some miracles before leaving Garden City.

So Tuesday, right before I was supposed to head out to Wichita with another Sister, we went and visited Xaviera in the hospital with her new baby! The Elders came too, to give her a blessing. It was SO powerful. The Spirit was so strong. In the blessing, the Elder said some very specific things that Xaviera has been thinking about lately. It brought her to tears. She has changed so much through the Atonement. Jesus Christ and His true Gospel has softened her heart more than I can describe and I will forever be humbled that I had the glorious opportunity of seeing that :) I will forever remember Garden City with such fondness because I saw the Atonement at work in so many lives!!

And now....I'm in GUYMON. Oh man oh man, I'm in Oklahoma, people! I am in the process of learning the area, of course, but I know I'm going to love it here. I am speaking tons of Spanish and learning a lot of Spanish, too! I know this will be a place of so much progression :) Sister Rosell is awesome! I'm excited to get to know her better :) Some quick miracles:

We are working with the Almeida family - and they watched both sessions of conference on Sunday by themselves!!! So awesome :)

We met a family last night who want to get baptized and change their lives!! We are excited to keep working with them :)

We met 2 women outside one day who are both really struggling with addictions. Sister Rosell and I committed to not eat chocolate if they would put down their addiction for 24 hours!! It was awesome! One of them did it! I love HELPING people come unto Christ.
I am excited to meet more members here in Guymon and truly serve them :)

Wasn't General Conference AMAZING!? I know that those men are called of God to lead Christ's original church. How grateful I am to know that and sustain them :) I invite you all to pour over the Ensigns when those messages are printed. Their words will keep up us firmly founded in Jesus Christ. They will guide us safely back to our heavenly home.

Happy Easter! Because Jesus Christ lives, it doesn't matter who you are, or who you were, He is here. He LOVES every single one of us and His arm of mercy is extended to all. How grateful I am for His infinite sacrifice that redeems so much more than sin. He gives me power to change and overcome. How I wish and plead with others to just make the choice to let Him in. He will not force us to love Him, to reach out to Him, to obey Him. But oh what marvelous things He can make out of us if we would just humble ourselves and let Him. I testify that Jesus Christ is the Creator of the world. He was foreordained from the beginning to be our Savior and how eternally grateful I am for His humility and complete submission to the Father's will. I love Him!!

I am grateful to be a missionary sharing the most important message this world has ever known, and will ever know. Family, friends, the everlasting, restored Gospel of Jesus Christ as found in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is TRUE. This is real life. Real eternity! So much of the time we are just too casual about it. Eternal life hangs in the balance. Why are we afraid to open our mouths? Those around us need what we have :)

I love you, I'm grateful for you, have the best week ever :)

Con todo mi corazon y mi amor,

Hermana Shumway

Last time getting Panaderia bread in Garden!
Love these ladies :)

Xaviera and friends :) LOVE THEM!

Kansas in all its beauty!

ELDER Shumway!!

MTC buds!!

Suuuper small gas station on the way to
Guymon! haha the sign says "We don't
"accept checks". Not sure why "accept
checks" is in quotations.

Sister Rosell and I took away somebody's cigarettes!!
First time someone has let me do that!! :D
#missionmilestones.....