Wednesday, November 19, 2014

End of Transfer 3

 Hi everyone! SOOOO Sister Wilson and I are staying in Carmichael! This next transfer is Thanksgiving and Christmas. She was worried that she would get transferred. We are both happy! Things are getting SO much better with the ward, so it is nice things are staying as is. Plus, with Mohammed and Wesley, and Albert hopefully being baptized by the end of the year, we both wanted to stay. Sister Parkinson goes home Thursday. I cannot believe it! I am taking it kind of hard and am so sad! I know I have not been with her for a transfer, but it feels weird that she is going home. She is an incredible missionary, and I know we will be friends for the rest of our lives. Sister Wilson's trainer goes home too, so we are going to go to the Mission Office tomorrow to say bye to them :) Perks of living by there!
At the temple with Sister Wilson!
Also at the temple with Sister Wilson!

I cannot believe I have been out almost 5 months. When this transfer ends, I will be 1/3 done. It goes by WAY too fast. Today, I wanted to write about something that I have come to realize on my mission so far. Growing up, I always knew how important missionary work is in the Church. I knew that we merely want to invite people to "Come and See" (Read: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/come-and-see?lang=eng) and, as Lehi said in 1 Nephi 8: 12 "And as I partook of the fruit thereof it filled my soul with exceedingly great joy; wherefore, I began to be desirous that my family [and friends] should partake of it also; for I knew that it was desirable above all other fruit." The fruit being this Gospel of Jesus Christ. When you find the best thing in the world, don't you want to share it? As I came to develop a testimony, I grew the desire to serve a mission to share the gospel. I always thought there was a stereotype of Mormons. You either were one or you were not. And if you were not...there was probably not a good chance you would become one. It is ironic I thought that considering my dad is a convert..
What I have come to realize on my mission is that being a Mormon, or a Latter-day Saint, is not just being a part of another religion. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the gospel that Jesus Christ, Himself, established when He was on the earth. When He died, the truths were lost. In the 1800's, the fulness of the gospel was restored again, or brought back to perfect form, by a prophet of God. This is not just another "church." I know this gospel to be true. I know that it is for all people, who are truly seeking to find the truth. As a missionary, all day long, I do not shove this on people. I merely invite others to "come and see." I invite them to learn and pray to know for themselves. That is what I have done. I have prayed and received my own answer, which is the foundation of my conversion. True conversion is not learning the most amount of knowledge from the missionaries, but it is the Spirit testifying to you of truth. I have a firm testimony that this gospel has been restored. I know that we can find strength from Jesus Christ. Everyone has struggles. Everyone has stuff hurting them, no matter the act we try to put on for others. The Gospel of Jesus Christ brings hope to all and meaning to our lives. I know that there is not a certain type of "mold" to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ. He invites all to come unto Him. For this, I am thankful.
Next week is Thanksgiving. That is our P-day, so you will not hear from me next Monday :) We are eating with a family in the ward. Then, we are going over to Albert's for an African Thanksgiving with all of them. I am so excited!! This transfer was incredible. We still have a lot of work to do in this area!!!

Enjoy the break everyone! I miss you all so much! In week 6 of this next transfer, I get to skype with my fam on Christmas :) I am looking forward to that.
Until next week,
Sister Hickman 

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