Monday, August 18, 2014

Week 5 in Sacramento

Hi everyone!! This was a busy week, and I have lots to share so read closely!! I am going to go day by day because I have so much!!

So, last P-day after I emailed you guys, we spent the afternoon at the bishop's house of the Bass Lake Ward (the 2nd ward I was assigned to in the trio). His house is a resort. No joke. I grew up in a nice place and have seen nice homes, but this is crazy. It is how you imagine celebrities living in California. He really should be in the Folsom Stake, where are the El Dorado Hills homes are. But he is in ours. I will attach pictures because you have got to see it!!! We were in heaven. I played tennis, basketball, relaxed, ran...it was a great P-day. 

Bishop Porter's house in Bass Lake. Not all the houses in the ward are like this...actually none are haha. It is insane! He sold something to Apple. His oldest son is on a mission in Brazil.
Bird's eye view of the house  
Yes, there is a water park. Okay I have lots but this is good for now. There is a Ward Luau there on Saturday, and although we are no longer over the Bass Lake Ward...we did serve there 3 weeks so we are crashing it for our dinner...so I will take pics at it :) 
Sister Bishop had to go to the dentist, so Sister Parkinson and I decided to tract some "sketchier" apartments in the area. We came across a former investigator, a less-active, and others we did not know about. It was decently successful. BUT, when we were crossing the street, we contacted these two high school girls and said we could come teach them next week! (We have yet to catch them home, hopefully soon). And then, we passed a man and started talking to him, and when he the small talk was almost dead we brought up family history work. Long story short....he said we are a sign from God and wants us to come talk to him and his girlfriend about the gospel! You always hear how tracting is more of a sign of faith and that blessings follow and this was true for us! That day, we were focused and found potential investigators because we had our faith on the line. Like I said, I actually do like tracting. You can definitely make it fun.

I got to sheer a sheep for service!! They are a family in the El Dorado ward (like all country people). They sheer them twice a year. All the missionaries came together, and it was so fun! I will attach pics. It is an experience I will never forget! 
Also, this was our last day in a trio/covering two areas. They really want them separate, so they have a returned missionary sister with Sister Bishop over Bass Lake ward. So, I am back with just Sister Parkinson over Green Valley Ward. Sister Bishop is still living with us until the end of the transfer, which is until next week. This is all so confusing I know, and weird....they never do that...haha I guess they are desperate for the work to get moving. This transfer has been chaotic for poor Sister Bishop. 
Sheering sheep!!! It was so funny. My area is not country like this haha. But most of our stake is. 
Our Zone sheering sheep.

Last day in a trio!!! 
Okay, so this is my big story for the week. On like my second day in the area back in July, we were going through the Area book looking at former investigators, etc. There was a woman names Monika, who was just taught the first lesson by Sister missionaries about a year ago. She was family friends with a Mormon family who used to live here. Anyways, we went to see her and she was not home. Then, on my first Sunday, I received so many promptings at church to go see Monika. I had no clue who she was...I had just seen her name in the book. But the Spirit kept telling me to see Monika. After church that Sunday, I asked Sister Parkinson if we could try again before heading to dinner. We did, and she was not home, but we met her husband and kids. Weeks went by and we caught her a couple times and she was so so nice, but the time was never good for her to let us in. Okay, so on this Thursday, we tried her again before dinner. She answered and let us in. We talked about her past experience with attending church activities with the Mormon family, etc. We ended up teaching her the Restoration right there and the Spirit was so strong. I felt prompted to tell her of this experience. I told her that I had no idea if she was searching for something or if she even knew that she was, but that I had strong impressions to come talk to her. She looked at me with tears in her eyes and said that she loved the peace her Mormon friend had when raising her kids, and she wants that peace. We testified of the power of the gospel. We committed her to read The Book of Mormon. We have another lesson with her this week. I am so excited for it!!!! She is incredible, and this experience taught me to always follow the Spirit, even if we do not know the person or really understand why at that moment. 
Sister Parkinson and me back to just us over the Green Valley ward. We miss the trio, but we are excited for what is to come! She is an incredible companion. 
Today was Zone conference with President and Sister Jardine! It was a great day, full of lots of spiritual lessons. There were 4 Zones in attendance, and it was fun to meet other missionaries. I got all my packages that day! I felt so loved! Everyone was making fun telling me that in a couple months everyone will forget about me and I will receive no more packages haha. 
El Dorado Zone at Zone Conference Friday. 
So, the Cohen family I wrote about last week is in Bass Lake, so now we will not be teaching them because we are back to just the Green Valley Ward. That makes me sad. But, Sister Parkinson and I are working hard and having faith, and miracles are truly happening in this area. We feel that it is about to explode!!!! We are so pumped. The ward members are catching onto our enthusiasm and they are getting excited too because this area has been pretty slow for a while. 

Transfers are next week (I cannot believe it has already been 6 weeks!!), so P-day will be Tuesday. They make transfer calls Monday night. We will almost 100%  be staying here because when you are training, you stay in the same area for two transfers. We are excited for another transfer in this area. 

Also, I want to thank Sara Coonce from the Inviting Place who gave me a ton of stationary to write to y'all on!!! I will be sending cute cards this week, instead of my ghetto lined paper :) 

It has been an incredible week here, and I am excited for the work this week! I love being our here and sharing the gospel. I know that it is the way out of darkness, out of comfort, and out of sadness. 

Talk to you soon!!
Sister Hickman 

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