Thursday, January 29, 2015

Wadsworth & Batsuuri: How Farm a Foundation

Dear Fam!

I can't NOT start this off with the most hilarious thing ever. So I finally gave in and let my companion start using the phone. Up to this point I had been pretty protective because I let her text once when she first got here and she totally screwed it up cause she doesn't do the whole English language thing quite yet. Might have offended some people haha. Well I told her to text a member and say we were on our way so she texts her: "we're almost there! ):" I looked at the text and was like, why did you put that? She's like "smiley face?" No honey, that was a frowny face, it means your sad. We laughed for like ten minutes, and then laughed some more with the member when we got to her house and explained. I seriously can't handle it. Sometimes it is so hysterically annoying how easily we misunderstand each other. We both know we don't mean to offend by anything we say to the other but sometimes I forget she isn't like us and say something sassy and she gets all defensive, or she'll tell me I need to wear more make up and I get my feathers ruffled. What is it with Asians and paint? I'm a spring chicken I don't need makeup! Haha. Anyway it is going great and we had an awesome week!

On Monday we went and saw a girl who is leaving on her mission next week, she knows G dog and Big Dude cause she was in their ward at BYUI...her family was so sweet! It was weird to be in a family setting again. Her mama taught me how to make papa a la huancaina, this Peruvian sauce that is seriously to die for! I can't wait to make you all these new things I'm learning, they are so great! One of the elders from the Dominican Republic taught me how to make these KILLER tacos. Y'all are gonna get fat when I get back. 

Tuesday and Wednesday we had so many appointments! Plus our finding activities with our district and meetings and everything. We taught 5 lessons during prime time on Wednesday! I hate that saying "prime time." I feel like it makes it seem like the hours from 6-9 are the only ones in which you can be productive. All time is prime time! You seriously can't waste a second of your mission, or your life! There is so much to do! I sound like Trenton haha. Thursday we had a lesson in Jamaica with John. He is so cool! He is in the army and has gotten shot like 4 times, no big deal eh. He has such a strong testimony. I love being ale to see the spiritual side of people in lessons. I feel like in regular life we always see the funny or the quirky or the serious. It's cool to take time to see what people believe, and why they do what they do and live a certain way. People are honestly fascinating.

Friday we had an exchange with the STLs. We taught some lessons and got ready for JeongAh's baptism. I made chocolate eclair dessert..yesssss. Why is this whole email about food? Oh probs cause we haven't eaten today. Whatever. We went to FHE and they did make-it-yourself pizzas (food again. Oops.) Saturday we tried to do service with Dave. It snowed so Sister Lugo and I went to Dunkin Doughnuts and did online proselyting instead. Best decision ever. We did some other preparations for the baptism and went and saw a member. The baptism was sooooo good! The spirit was so strong and after JeongAh got out of the water she turned around to the guy who baptized her and held out her arms and they both got back in the font and gave each other a hug. It was so presh, it meant so much to her and she felt so good. I love baptisms because it's a time for us to reflect on the covenants we made with God and the good feeling we have when we repent. I gave a talk about the Holy Ghost and Sister Batsuuri gave one about baptism. The Director of the company JeongAh and Min work for came! He was looking at the font afterwards and so I started talking to him and basically taught him the restoration and Plan of Salvation in 10 minutes and then gave him a Book of Mormon. He was extremely grateful and I think he could really feel the spirit. 

I have such a strong belief and conversion to the Book of Mormon. One of our investigators wants to read it through before he makes a decision about baptism. We talked to him about real intent and I was so straight up with him, I told him if he reads it for intellectual or scientific reasons that's what he'll get out of it. If he reads it to get closer to Christ he will get closer to Christ. Reading the Book of Mormon for intellectual reasons is like trying to measure gravity with a measuring cup. It can't be done because we aren't using the right tools. We must listen to this gospel with our hearts, not our intellect (although it does require that to make a decision if it is true). I feel like there is such great harm in relying on the "arm of the flesh." I trust God so much more than I'd ever trust a scientist. I know that that book and this church are truer than anything else on earth, and if we put our all into this church it will give us all the blessings we need in return--and then some. I am so grateful to be a part of the hastening of the Lord's work, this is a marvelous time to be alive and especially to be a missionary. This is the greatest privilege I have ever had. 

Love you all, thanks so much for your love and support, I couldn't do it without you. 
Sister Wadsworth

1. Don't tell president, but this is my boyfriend on the mission. WHY ARE KIDS SO CUTE.
2. Doin some chalk art in the park! Love Sister Grass, she's the best!
3. Jamaica Ave at Sunset.

4. Freezing to death!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Turn on the font!

Dear Fam:
You're probably tired of me saying that every week was the best week yet, but that's just how it pans out. No matter what hardships we go through it is always satisfying to look back at all the wonderful things that happened, and there were a lot this week! 

Friday morning I was reading in my actual scriptures instead of on my iPad and for some reason I was looking at the maps. Random right? I looked at them for probably 10 minutes, and I honestly didn't know why I felt like I should. That afternoon we set up a table with free materials to give out to people. This one guy bashed us so hard but we just stood there and smiled. He made such a fool of himself, saying quite a few things about our church that weren't true, but he would NOT be interrupted. It's funny because most Christians believe that all you have to do is believe to be saved, so technically (by their standards) Mormons will make it to heaven #terrestialkingdom. ANYWAY. This one guy came up and was actually friendly! I invited him to church and he said he would come if I could guess where he was from. I blurted out Lebanon because for some reason that had stuck out to me from my study of the maps that morning. Haha. He looked at me utterly shocked..."how did you know?" He asked. Anyway he is coming to church on Sunday. 

Tuesday we did another singing-on-the-train gig and I didn't loose my comp this time! I talked to a lot of different people, and on one train people actually clapped! Elder Turley brought his guitar and we would sing 2 verses of "Nearer My God to Thee" harmonizing it. Our district is pretty talented guys. It's actually so fun. Where I first got here I would sing without moving my mouth cause obviously if you sing people look at you and it's so awk when everyone is staring at you. But you get over it and talk to people and it is so great. If you're ever grumpy just talk to someone, it will change your attitude almost immediately! 

Wednesday we had a meeting all day for new missionaries and their trainers. I got to sit by my trainer, and now that I am training I appreciate her so much more. She was just a wonderful friend to me, and that's what I needed when I first got here. God always knows what we need better than we do. Macy, my girl from Canada, took us out to Chinese BBQ and after we ate this lady fearlessed US and we got her info cause she wants to come to church! And then at institute one of the guys that a member has been bringing came up to me and we had a really good talk and he wants to start the discussions! Cha Chang! Members are the keyyyy to missionary work. We can't do anything without them. 

Thursday was weekly planning of course, and some less-active lookups (there are always lookups, every day) and we had transfer interviews with President. After interviews we went to Erica's house. She thinks she's gonna marry big dude cause she saw the family pic on FB, if you knew her it would be way more funny. Mostly cause she wears 10-inch heels all the time and the thought of her on the farm just kills me it's so funny. Her and this other girl fight over whose gonna marry big dude everytime they are around me. They're always like "who would you rather have as your sister-in-law?" Haha don't make a black girl jealous, it ain't pretty. But she is a good missionary and she is trying to get her Jewish friend to come to church! Then we went to Zarahemla's (Zara) house for dinner. They are from the Philippeans so whenever we go over I think of Big Dude. And half the guys in the branch served in Brazil so that reminds me of G-Dog. Basically everything reminds me of my awesome family cause I'm obsessed with them. It's fine. 

The most exciting thing from our weekend is that JeongAh decided to get baptized here before she moves back to South Korea!!! We had the most amazing lesson with her, and the spirit was so strong. I absolutely love her as well as Min, the girl who introduced her to the church and to us. It doesn't matter if I never see them again in this life, I will always feel that they are some of my closest friends. Her baptism will be this Saturday(: 

I have lots to tell you as far as gospel topics this week. I have been studying "hope" because sometimes we get so wrapped up in faith and charity that we forget that the 3 are all divinely connected. I was looking at the opposites of the three: fear, discouragement, and selfishness, and the way I see it if we use the 3 attributes interchangeably we can conquer those three negative qualities, thus enabling us to have faith, hope, and charity. Faith conquers discouragement (PMG 10), perfect love (charity) casteth out fear (Mor. 8:16), and hope makes an anchor to the souls of men, making us "sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works" (Ether 12:4) enabling us to be selfless, not selfish. I know that these 3 things are connected for a reason, and that is to help us be successful and happy in life. Something else I have been thinking about it that our reality is so relative. We see ourselves in a certain way because we can only see where we have been and where we are now. God, however, is from all eternity to all eternity. He sees us as we were, are, and can become all at the same time. He knows our potential and he knows our past transgressions. He also knows we will overcome the things we are going through. Whenever you have doubt about your abilities, TRUST GOD. Because when we trust him we gain trust in ourselves. Our level of faith in Jesus Christ is equal to the level of faith we have in ourself. If you struggle with self-esteem, strengthen your faith in Christ and you will see a positive difference. 

Thank you for your support and love, I am so grateful for such a wonderful family and for the gospel to bind us together for eternity. I'm so proud of Brent!!! He will make such an amazing missionary. I love you all!
Sister Wadsworth

So the week went by really fast and I just realized I only took a few pictures, but here they are!:
1. Our sister training leaders come over for dinner every Sunday so that I have an excuse to cook haha
2. Took a nice little selfie since I forgot to take pictures. Lucky you eh.
3. We went to a Korean cultural thing with Min and JeongAh, it was the weirdest thing of my life. I don't understand Asians ...not even a little. 
4. Had to take a celebration photo because JeongAh said YES to being baptized! 

5. Happy birthday to Elder Hartley!!! And of course Rebekah but you already know what she looks like...#hotmama

Monday, January 12, 2015

Remember when I thought Rexburg was cold?

This has been the longest week of my life! Not in a bad way, but we just had so many things happen! We didn't really have a p-day, since we have a car we took 3 sets of missionaries to Costco (separately)...I'm actually tired of being in Costco at the moment. We also took a member to the hospital cause she broke her leg. Ok that's something I have a problem with as far as city life. Most people don't have cars and NOBODY has a truck. How do you live? What if you bought a couch and you can't just put it in the back of your truck and take it home? I'll tell ya, you have to pay $100 for them to deliver it to your house that's 2 blocks away. I think that's RIDICLOUS! People pay so much to live here and none of them are even that happy. Haha

Tuesday it snowed for real, and again on Friday, so we have been shoveling for about 2 hours a day. I seriously love it. Other than the fact that you freeze to death no matter how many layers you put on, it just feels so good to do actual work for once. I've made chicken noodle soup for like 7 different people this week cause everyone is sick. Oh my I have a funny story! So my comps favorite is octopus soup, and ain't nobody got time for the way that stuff smells when she cooks it. So I made chicken noodle soup for her...I'm just sayin I pretty much outdid was really good. Well she LOVED it. She loved it even more than octopus soup. I am slowly converting her to American food and she is cooking fewer and fewer things that make me throw up when I smell them. She also gave me this Asian facial cause she was like "sister, your skin looks really bad." So she rubbed the heck out of my face for like an hour and then she was like "there, now I can stand to look at you." It was hysterical. She is really straightforward, the other day she called one of the elders fat and I was like "you probably shouldn't say that." But haha I guess it's not offensive in her culture. 

So Thursday night was probably the worst night of my life. My stomach is having problems still and so I couldn't sleep. At 11 I finally decided to eat or drink something so I could hopefully sleep. I went into the kitchen and turned on the light and there were literally 15 cockroaches in the sink and other ones walking all over the counters. Insta-gag. I sprayed the heck out of them and obviously lost the appetite I never had in the first place. Which was good cause my comp liked the chicken noodle soup so much that she ate all of it so there wasn't any left anyway.  I got back in bed and just felt itchy all night and might have cried myself to sleep. I love our pad. So one of the girls on the MTC told me that you burn more calories when you're cold...awesome! The guys never came to cover our AC units so we are still freezing away! For studies we huddle up to the heater decked out in all our winter gear. It's nice though cause when we got outside we don't even bat an eye cause we're used to it! Canada is gonna be a can of corn after this. 

Backtracking to Elder Hartley's palm-reading experience a few weeks back, the exterminator came to kill our cockroaches and he saw a pic of me and Travis on the fridge and was like "your husband?" I was like sure, why not. Give or take a few years. He looks at me and says "he is a very good man, he will make a good living and you will be very wealthy" I was like how do ya figure? Apparently this fool had studied psychology and knows people by looking at their face. He prolly should have stuck with psychology cause we still got cockroaches comin out the walls. 

Hardly anyone wanted to meet with us cause it's so cold, but somehow we got 3 solid new people to teach! They even came to church! We did have some awesome lessons..we talked to Neil about the temple and he is SO excited to go. We also had a new feller from Florida move in (Melissa Hartley knows him!) and he is excited to go back to the temple and do some family names! We are so blessed to be serving in this branch. Even though the living situation kinda blows it is more than worth it to be able to know these awesome people! I love them so much and they teach me more than I feel like I teach them! Also I can't believe how fast the time is going! It's already been 8 months! :( it's going by too fast. I love being a missionary SO much! 

I have been thinking a lot about why I KNOW this church is the only true church. We have an investigator who is really "scientific" and likes to "prove" things to us. He is so unhappy though! He doesn't know where truth comes from. It doesn't come from the Internet, and even if science can prove something that honestly means nothing to me. My faith is in God and His word, but it is manifest in the RESULTS of living the gospel. I know the church is true because of the way I feel. I am happy, peaceful and hopeful. This young man has none of those emotions because he refuses to act on what we teach. The worst part is I'm just a homeschooled girl from Nevada but he will trap himself in his words and realize that what I said was right all along... Not that I'm smart by any means but because I only testify that what I know is true, and it really is TRUE. I wish more people would go to God and His prophets as their source of finding truth, He(they)will never lead us astray. 

I love this gospel and the reason it is so important to live it is so we can all be together forever! I love you all, you're the most awesome family a person could ask for. Have a great week!

Sister Wadsworth 

1&2: tryna get on their level and be Asian...#forevesaskwatch 
3: one of our 3 Costco trips..I love these girls!
4: most awkward picture ever taken but it snowed so who cares.

5: the other sisters in our district. I'm basically the mom. Yep.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Life on the LIE (Long Island Expressway)

Cause lets get real, we aren't doing missionary work, we just drive all day. HAHA.
This week (year) started off with a bang! My comp almost burned down our apartment twice and we've had some AWESOME lessons this week. I think the thing I'll end up missing the most from my mission is teaching the gospel so frequently. I love it. It pushes me to study more effectively and pray more fervently. PS this is my attempt to write a shorter weekly update cause ain't nobody got time to read the ones I've been writing. Let's be honest I don't even have time to write them. Okay so here goes: 

Monday we had a zone activity and I got to cook so I was automatically happy, we had lesson with Eduardo and did a look-up for a YSA who just moved in. She couldn't come to the door cause she was with her 9-week old baby. Totes awk. Like, I hope she's not YSA. Cug.

Tuesday my companion was finally able to call her family since she didn't get to on Christmas! She was in heaven speaking her language and whatnot. I decided while she was taking it would be a good time to get our headlights fixed on our car. 5 hours later... we missed most of District Meeting and then exchanged with the STLs. I really like our Sister Training Leaders and so it was a good time. 

Wednesday we exchanged back at 2 and went straight to a zone flash mob on the subway. We sang a song and then I started talking to a really sweet lady. The train stopped and I saw a man get off with a black hat and suit. Our district leader obviously. So I said goodbye and jumped off the train, grabbing Sister Larsen's arm so she didn't get left. The doors closed and all I see is Sister Batsuuri's shocked face barely peeking through the window cause she's so short, banging on the door and screaming. All the other missionaries were still on the train so I pointed to them and she looked and stopped screaming. I'm probably the worst trainer in this whole world for accidentally leaving her, but as soon as the train shot away Sister Larsen and I were rolling with laughter for probably 15 minutes. My comp's face was the most priceless thing of my life. Sticks how everybody wears all black everything here so you can easily mistake a common business man for your District Leader eh. 

On Wednesday night I couldn't sleep but the moon was shining outside my window really brightly. I stared at it for a while since it's the closest to nature I can get. "I guess I'm not that far from Elder Hartley if we are both under the same moon!" I thought about the time difference for a while and realized that it was high noon and summertime in Australia. I guess we really are THAT far away from each other. Haha. I never thought I would be happy waking up to sirens instead of roosters but sharing this gospel is really exciting and I love waking up each day because you never know what's gonna happen! 

On Thursday we baptized 57 people into the YSA. Okay probably not but we weekly planned and did some finding as a district. Friday we taught one of our investigators twice! Haha the first time we answered all his questions and never got to the lesson, so we agreed to meet a few hours later since we both had stuff to do. He's a really cool but honestly the most frustrating person to teach. He wants explanations for everything and struggles with faith. I know he'll get baptized eventually. He is reading the Book of Mormon so that should help things out a bit haha. Saturday was the usual service with Crazy Dave and we taught a bunch of lessons and had some super awkward personal favorite. Seriously. We would be fine if people would just tell us they don't want to meet with us, but they have to go and make up all this stuff to get around meeting with us. Hysterical. 

Sunday we had an awesome branch council and I had to play for sacrament meeting again. It's so hard cause I want to sit with the investigators and make them feel welcome but somebody has to play. I'm sure it's all good in the end. We taught gospel principals and had an awesome lesson! We had 5 investigators at church again, we have for the last month or so and its been great! We had lunch with the STLs and did our studies since we didn't get to them in the morning. I am learning Spanish while my comp learns English. My favorite term so far: "lay patía el clutchè" probably didn't even get close to spelling that right, but it means that you put the clutch in but the tranny is still spinning...(eng. "your clutch is spinning) basically it means you're crazy. 

I had a dawning about real beauty this week. I was laughing at the thought of my pre-mission self, so worried and caught up about my fitness abilities, hair, make-up, and wardrobe. I realized that I have never felt more beautiful in my life as I do now. I spend less than 10 minutes on my hair and makeup most days, and I don't think I've worn an outfit that has actually matched for 2 transfers because all I care about is not freezing to death. I also realized how happy I am that I don't care about those things so much now as I did then. It seemed that I was always trying to buy something new, spend more time at the gym, or take longer to do my makeup, but those things simply made me more unhappy with how I looked. My confidence level has also risen and I no longer compare myself to others or try to put them down for how they look. Seeing people as children of God and recognizing their true potential has helped me to see myself for who I really am. The only way to find ourselves it to lose our lives in the service of others. 

Going along with that I have been thinking a lot about individuality. Isn't it funny how we try so hard to be unique by COPYING styles or celebrities in order to be a certain person? God's love for us doesn't change based on anything external about us. Or internal for that matter. Low self-esteem often comes to us when, in a struggle for identity, we try to be someone we aren't. We can't forget that our identity is that we are children of God. Whenever we try to become something we aren't, through sin and disobedience, we are going against our true identity, and automatically lose self-esteem. On the other hand, when we obey our Father and act in our true nature, as His children, the result is greater self-esteem and enhanced individuality. 

Well that was a sad attempt at a shorter letter, better luck next week! 
I am so grateful to be is such a blessing, as is this gospel. 
All my love!
Sister Wadsworth

PS I hate how everyone talks about the new year like it's gonna make them a new person. The only thing that'll do that for ya is the atonement Jack. 

1. Steve and Terry came and took us to lunch last Monday! Such a treat to see them(: 
2. With Sister Larsen after ditching my comp on the tube. Hysterical. You're probably wondering why my skin looks so incredible. My comp made me do this weird Asian mask thing...straight slayed me for like half an hour and got in my eyes. Works wonders though! 
3. Illustration from the above-mentioned outfit scenario. I can't match to save my life. 

4. This just makes me laugh cause crazy Dave always gets the most awkward photos. I look like I'm dying but actually I was really happy about being in -97 degree weather picking up other people's trash.