Thursday, January 1, 2015

Bills&Landa Round 2

Happy Birthday this week to my favorite Teach in the whole wide world, from Stu. I can't tell you how awesome you are and how much I appreciate everything that you've taught me! I learned so much about photography and about brew and about so many things from you! Thank you for always being patient and laughing at my jokes. I hope you have the best birthday ever!! :) 

Thank you thank you thank you to everyone who has sent me gifts and packages and letters and love. I appreciate it so much! I'm going to be honest with everyone right now and just admit that I have been struggling a little bit this week. I don't like to admit that, because I just want all of you to think I'm superhuman and mega happy all the time!  But really, that's not how it works. Even missionaries have hard days, and you people make it so much easier to have hard days because I have just had a rainstorm of love showing up at my apartment doorstep almost every day this week. I adore you folks. I wish there was something, anything, I could do in return for all the kindness that you have given me. I adore each and every one of you. 

This week was the last week of the transfer. We didn't get transfer calls, so it looks like we'll be staying together! Yay! We are so happy. We're learning and growing so much every single day. Our district is also staying the same! We're excited. You kind of feel like your district is your family, and that would be so hard if you had to get split up right before Christmas. But luckily we all get to stay together. 
We are getting excited to Skype home for Christmas! I will be crying, that's for sure. We get to go to the Henson's house for breakfast and she said we are welcome to stay and skype there. She's such an awesome lady. I love our ward. 

We had an incredible week this week, we were so busy. We broke the record again for the number of lessons we taught in one week for our area. We've been working so hard! We're also running low on miles, now... 
So I don't know how many of you are aware, but missionaries have a certain number of miles allotted to them that they're allowed to drive each month. For our area, we receive 800 miles a month, which is usually enough to do what we need to do if we're just working around the Lebanon area. But if we head out to the farm towns surrounding Lebanon, it's a little bit more tricky and we have to guard our miles a little more carefully. So we're working on being conservative. It might just end up that we'll be walking everywhere by Christmas time. :) Happy Holidays to us! Brrr! :) 

I had a very humbling experience this week that was awesome! There is this less active recent convert family in our area that we've been trying to work with but they're really hard to get in and see. The last time we were over there before this week, their son told us that he liked the last missionaries better and that he wished we wouldn't come over anymore. It was a little bit hard to hear. But we were able to get in with them early this week, and the dad came down, which doesn't usually happen. So we were talking with him for a while and he really connected with Hermana Landa's story. She talked about how sometimes we're not fully converted to the Lord the way we should be. Then she told her dad's conversion story. It was so powerful.
I have a testimony that we are placed into specific areas to find certain people that the Lord knows we can help. I know that. It was so humbling for me to stand there with my companion and hear her speak and have the Lord whisper to me, "Don't say anything. She's here to help this family." And knowing that if were to open my mouth and speak at that point, it would only detract from the incredible spirit that Hermana Landa was bringing to the room. It was... awesome. So cool. 

Another miracle that we had was when we went to teach Joe. We seriously just want to bumb his baptism date up so bad. He's come to church every week since we started teaching him, he's pretty much a member already just minus the baptism and holy ghost and stuff... But we were asking him how coming to church was feeling and what he was liking in the scriptures and he told us this incredible miracle about how him getting closer to the Spirit and feeling closer to the Lord was literally healing him - mentally and physically. He could feel himself stronger as he prayed daily and lived the word of wisdom. He could feel his mind more open and thinking in "straighter lines" from studying the scriptures and having gospel conversations with others. 
I mean...
that doesn't just happen every day, right? That's crazy! We said the biggest prayer of gratitude afterward. 

Unfortunately, Matt has been struggling this week. He's kind of on the losing end of a custody battle. It's breaking my heart. The lesson was so quiet when we went over. He kind of vented and I could tell he was so angry and hurt. The spirit really had to take over. I knew that I didn't have the words to say, but I knew that if I opened my mouth, the Lord would fill it with the words that He wanted to say. It was an incredible experience. All I can remember is feeling the spirit and feeling love and concern for Matt and Samantha. I don't remember what was said. All I can remember is that we promised him that if he would study the scriptures with real intent, he would find what the Lord wants him to learn from this experience. It was so powerful! 

I don't really have any super funny stories from this week. I am just overwhelmed by the amount of love that I've received from all of you. Thank you so much for your support!! :) Keep firm in the faith, the gospel is true! 

10 days till Christmas! 

-Hermana Bills

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