Monday, November 24, 2014

Week 54

Hello everyone!

I hope you have all had a great week!  We had a pretty good week ourselves, which was good!  I was sick with a cold this week, but despite that we were able to get a lot of work done.  On Tuesday we were able to do a few hours of service, which was so great because we don't usually get to do that much service, so I definitely enjoyed that!  On Wednesday we were able to see Sister Batty, who is a less-active that wants to return to activity.  We caught her on her way out to work, but were able to share a quick message.  I'm really excited to help her return to activity, she is a really sweet lady!  We also had a lesson with a former investigator that went well.  We aren't quite sure how interested she is, but she agreed to take the lessons because she wants to know about the faith that her son will grow up in!  And, we are pretty positive that as we teach her truths of the gospel either way, she will slowly open up.  Then on Thursday we had a great Zone Conference and learned about a few different things.  We learned about an initiative that the church is putting out this Christmas season that you will all be learning about by the end of this week hopefully!  The church will be putting out a new video called "He is the Gift" and the initiative is for us as members to share the greatest gift that we have in our lives, which is our Savior.  It will be a neat way to keep us focused on the true meaning of Christmas, and will hopefully open people's hearts so that they will be more interested in our message!  The church has put a lot of time into it, and I hope that you all participate in it!  Then that evening we had a great lesson with a native couple, and we first learned about their traditional beliefs, then we shared the introduction to the Book of Mormon where it talks about how the Book of Mormon talks about the ancestors of the Native Americans.  After we shared that, their interest level went up and it was really neat to see the spirit touch them with the truths that we taught!  So we will start to teach them as well!  Then we had a great lesson with a sweet girl, Carlyn.  She just moved out here from California and we were able to talk about our Sacrament meeting and our other classes, and it was so cool!  She opened up a lot and we could feel the spirit and it was just a really neat lesson!  She said that she would come to church, but wasn't able to yesterday but said she will come this Sunday, so we are looking forward to it!  Then Saturday evening we were able to go to the Visitor's Center with Katie, and we were able to walk through the God's Plan for the Family presentation.  It was really neat, and at the end she shared some good thoughts on eternal families.  We are hoping that she becomes more motivated to have an eternal family of her own.  It's been a good week, and things are going well!  We are excited for Thanksgiving, and I hope that you all have a great Thanksgiving!  I am truly grateful for my Savior and all that he has done and continues to do for me.  I am so grateful for this gospel that leads and guides me in my life so that I can have peace and happiness in this life!  I love you all!

Sister Zimmerman
 this is Sister McConkie, one of the office staff.  She is so great and will be leaving in a couple of weeks, I will miss her a lot!  She is just so great!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Week 53

Hello Again!

Well, this week has been quite busy to say the least!  It's been really good!  On Monday evening, we were able to go out with the Hobbs to a lesson that fell through, but then miracles happened!  We ended up visiting two less-active families that we haven't been able to visit yet, and it went super well!  I'm convinced that members are our secret weapon. :)  Anyway, then Tuesday was super busy!  We saw Ann Marie, and she is doing well, so that was good.  We are hoping to get her on the track to the temple soon since she has passed her year mark!  Then we saw the Ham's and had lunch with them.  I will include a picture of the shrimp that we ate, it was fresh from Mexico, and it was HUGE!!!  I count that as me getting to experience a little of what Haley's mission is like. :)  Anyway, then we were able to see Sister Knowles, which was a huge blessing!  She is now working from 7am to 9pm, but she happened to be home because she was sick.  We are hoping to help them, but we may have to just be patient until she is free more often.  But, we were able to share a message with her before leaving.  Then we saw Demitri and he is doing so well!  We have been going over the Priesthood with him, and he's understanding it all more and more, so that's been fun!  Then that evening we had soup and pie night with the Relief Society, it was so yummy and so fun!  We have some amazing cooks in this ward, I feel very blessed. :)  Then Wednesday was SO good!  We had a mission tour conference with the missionaries in the valley with Elder Lawrence from the second quorum of the seventy.  His wife spoke to us first, and for two hours she taught us deep doctrine on the gathering of Israel.  I have never been so captivated by a talk in a long time.  It was so good and so interesting.  Later that day, we received a challenge to: read through the Book of Mormon by Dec. 31st.  We are to highlight all references of Jesus Christ, then write our testimony in the book, then give it to one of our investigators.  In doing this challenge thus far, it's been so neat to now have the insight on the gathering of Israel.  I don't know if it would be as cool to those who read this, but if you get a chance, try to learn all you can about the gathering of Israel.  Then when we got back we had a lesson with Carl, but it fell through and all of our other appointments fell through as well, but we have an appointment for tomorrow night!  We also saw Jason and shared a quick message with him, but he dropped us the next day.  But he was very nice about it, so that was good I guess!  Then Thursday we tried to see Carlyn, but she wasn't there so we will keep trying.  Then Friday I wasn't feeling too well with a cold, but we got a couple of referrals, so that was good!  Then Saturday we saw Brenda, who is a former investigator.  And she told us that she told a missionary that she wants to be baptized when she turns 18 and that she then wants to go on a mission!!  She is such a sweet girl, and she comes to church when she can, but her parents won't let her go as much as she wants.  But, we did get her mom to agree to come to Young Women's next week to teach the young women how to make homemade tortillas, so maybe that will be a good start to softening her heart!  Then we saw Jennifer and were able to teach her a short lesson.  Then we saw Barbara, and she is doing well!  I am so excited to see her progress to go to the temple, it would be so great for her, and she is finally in a good place in her life, I really do believe that she could do it in the near future!  Then Sunday was great with the Phoenix Temple dedication.  I have been so blessed in my life to have been to so many temple dedications in the past few years.  I really am so grateful, they are neat experiences!  Then we saw Katie, which was so great because we weren't able to keep an appointment all week long.  Then we saw a few other people that we have been trying to see, and we ended up meeting our goal of 15 less-active and recent convert lessons for the week, it was really amazing!  It's been a good week, sorry this update is so long.  Things are going so well in the area, I'm so happy to be able to be a part of these people's lives!  I love you all, hope you have a great week!!

Sister Zimmerman
 I am so proud of myself for eating this huge shrimp!  And we had two of them!
 On our way to a mission conference :D
Yes, I already have my Christmas decorations up :)

Monday, November 10, 2014

Week 52

Hello Everyone!

This week was CRAZY!!!  Oh my goodness it was such a good week!!  I'll try to squeeze it all in!  So on Tuesday, I went on an exchange with Sister McCashland and it was really good!  We were able to contact a less-active that I have never met, and he said he would come to church but didn't so we will try to see him again this week!  Then we saw Katie and taught her about prayer and scripture study, but Travis didn't come out to say hi to us the whole lesson, so that was a little sad.  But later in the week when we brought over some Diet Pepsi he was nice to us....I guess we know how to get to his heart. :)  Then on Wednesday night we had a member come out with us and we were able to teach Demitri about the Priesthood some more because he received the Melchizedek priesthood during Stake Conference.  Then that night we went to go see Stephanie and Johnny.  We stopped by and they let us in, so that was a good start.  Then we sat and visited with them and the member ended up inviting them over for dinner this week!!  Sister Crowther and I both had a very strong impression from the Spirit that our Heavenly Father has been preparing them for us.  It was a neat feeling, and I'm just really excited to meet with them and see them progress.  Johnny told us on Thursday when we dropped by to confirm the dinner appointment with the member, that Stephanie is worried to convert, but we told them that we won't push her to convert, which is true.  We were able to invite Stephanie to a Relief Society activity tomorrow night where we are going to have soup and pie.  How fun??  Anyway, I hope that she comes, it would be so great!  So then Thursday we had some carrot cake bread with a less-active girl named Gloria that we had met on Tuesday.  Since she is YSA age, we invited the YSA sisters to come, so hopefully she will be a little more open to going to the YSA ward.  We just want her to be active again, but we are going to have lunch with them tomorrow, so that's exciting!  Then we went tracting and had some pretty fun experiences.....oh the people you meet on the streets in Mesa. :)  Anyway, we then saw Carol after dinner, and she became a new investigator.  She was a referral that I contacted with Sister Rudy, but didn't get a return appointment.  Anyway, we were able to share an uplifting scripture, and learn more about her!  Then we saw Carl who has been on our radar, and we set up a return appointment with him and shared a message, so he became a new investigator!  So that made two new investigators on Thursday.  Then Friday right after weekly planning as we were walking to an appointment, we met a guy named Jason.  We started talking to him, learned more about him, shared some principles out of the Restoration pamphlet, then we set up a return appointment with him so he became a new investigator.  Then after dinner we saw Carlyn who was another referral that we had been wanting to meet.  We talked to her while she looked in her car trying to find her credit card, then we shared principles from the Restoration, set up a return appointment, and she became a new investigator.  So then we had two more investigators.  Then Saturday was soooooo good.  So we went to a funeral for a man in our ward that passed away from pancreatic cancer that he had for a year and 5 months.  It was a very sweet service and was so good to hear about him and his life.  Then we were able to go support Don Soule as he received his own endowment!!!  What a sweet experience.  I sat in the Celestial room after, and just thought about all of the hard things that I had gone through in the past year, and remembered that it was all worth it.  Seeing him there at that point in his conversion was so worth it.  As is so many other things that happen in missionary work.  It was just so rewarding to see that and be a part of that experience.  We also got to see him be sealed to his deceased wife.  It was so cool.  Then Sunday was so good.  Our meetings were really good, then after dinner we went to contact a referral that our members gave us, and his name is Alec and he said he would be willing to learn more.  He also said that we were the THIRD set of missionaries to stop by that week.  We aren't sure who those missionaries were, but his heart was softened, we shared a message, and he became a new investigator.  So he made our FIFTH investigator for this week.  I don't think I've ever gotten that many new investigators in a week.  It's been a great week and I just feel so privileged to be able to participate in the Lord's work.  I know that we couldn't do it without him, and I also know that he could do it without us, but he wants us to grow and he loves us enough to let us experience these great things. Anyway, I hope you all are participating in missionary work in your own way.  The joy that comes from it is indescribable!!!

Sister Zimmerman
I thought it would be fun to get a picture of my old companions at the Temple this week:D
 Sister Stevens
 Sister Krutsch
 Sister Lords
 Sister Hogenson
Sister Crowther

Monday, November 3, 2014

Week 51

Hi everyone!

So the past few days have been a little rough, but that's okay!  We were able to street contact 24 people and some of them we gave our phone number to on a card and some said we could come back to visit!  A lot of what we have done in the past few days has been setting up lessons for this week, which is great for this week, but our numbers were pretty low.  On Wednesday we were able to go to the Phoenix temple open house with Travis and Katie, and Irlanda and some of her friends so that was exciting!  Other than the fact that we got home almost at was super packed and took a while to go through all of the lines!  But, we had a good time and I think those that came had a good time as well!  On Thursday night we were able to meet with Jennifer and she got a comfort blessing from our Elders, and before she got the blessing she was talking to us about how she was hoping to come to church on Sunday and that she wanted to go back to our employment center for some help.  She just opened up a lot with us, and she hasn't been friendly towards the church in a long time, so it was really neat to see her open up and we have a lesson with her tomorrow night!  Also, we did hear from our missing recent convert, we just know that she is okay thus far, no one knows where she is at right now but she did call some of her family members so that was a good thing this weekend!  We were also able to set up a return appointment with a less-active member that we have been meaning to go see for a while, so that was pretty exciting!  Then Friday we went to our ward party which was pretty exciting there were tons of people there!  We had to leave early though, because we got to go do a session at the Mesa temple!!  It was soooo exciting to be able to do almost an extra session on our mission!  It was a great way to end the day!  Then Saturday was a little hard, Travis and Katie didn't show up to our lesson where we were going to teach them the 15-step stop smoking program, so that was a bummer, then Katie said that Travis doesn't think he wants to be baptized anymore.  So, we lost our one investigator, but we are hoping to maybe be able to keep visiting Katie because she still wants to come to church!  We were also able to teach a little boy who is going to be baptized in a couple weeks, so that was a fun lesson to teach!  I love his family, they are great members!  Then Sunday was so good.  We had a state conference that was broadcast from Salt Lake.  Elder Foster, Elder Christofferson, Sister McConkie, and President Uchtdorf all spoke.  They focused on remembering the eternal perspective in all things, especially in the trials that we face.  It was just really good, and we were able to participate in the choir and we sang "Let Us All Press On", the version that was performed in this April's general conference, it was SO fun to participate in that!  Then we were able to contact a less-active that we have been trying to see since I got here and we have a return appointment with her on Wednesday!  It's been a good weekend all in all, it's just been a little hard as well.  I guess I include that to let y'all know that missions are great, but we do go through a lot to stay out here, and it's because we love our Savior, Jesus Christ and believe that our message with bring happiness and joy that they have never experienced before.  I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week!

Sister Zimmerman
Selfie time!  I actually did my hair on Sunday! ;)  And yes, that pink thing on my bag is pepper spray!  I'm ready to protect myself! ;)
Phoenix Temple