Where do I begin!? Now with having lived so much of my mission I feel like I have a lot more to say, but the thought of "How could I possibly type everything?" makes it hard to think of anything to say! I will start with some miracles from last week.
There was one day of missionary work in which I felt like I had not accomplished a whole lot. At the end of those kind of days (and every missionary has them) you go home and you can't help, but feel a little frustrated. SO, that night I fervently prayed to God to be able to find someone the next to whom I could share what I know and believe. The next day I was blessed with opportunities!
I was on a morning shift at the Visitors' Center and one person came in who loved our basic beliefs, but couldn't understand why God would command us not to drink coffee or tea when there were no obvious, drastic, or immediate effects she could see that they had on our bodies. I was able to tell her what I know to be true - God gives us commandments for our benefit. He reveals these commandments to modern day prophets like Joseph Smith. The way that we can know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God is by reading and praying about the Book of Mormon. As I have read and prayed about the Book of Mormon I have felt a new sense of confidence, happiness, hope, and peace enter my life. God has witnessed to my heart that it is the word of God and you can know all of these things for yourself through humble prayer.
The next experience I had was being able to show the new Christmas video #LighttheWorld to a BYUH student named Seth. He was touched by the video and immediately thought of some people that he would like to share it with from his mission in Tahiti and from high school. As he told us about these people a scripture came to mind. I didn't know why, but later he expressed a small concern about reaching out to them again. The scripture in my mind was the perfect answer to his concern. God works in simple and wonderful ways when we truly love the people we are speaking with.
Finally, last night I was doing some online teaching. I had originally planned do something else during the last our of my day, but felt strongly that I needed to continue to do online teaching. As is common with God's direction, I didn't at first know why I felt this way, but he had a plan. I texted a friend of mine who I had met months ago in the Visitors' Center with his girlfriend who is a member of the church. This friend is not a member of our church and I have been in contact with him to share spiritual messages now and then. Well, he texted me back and told me that he really needed the message I shared last night. He had a rough day and was glad to hear something uplifting. We texted back and forth until it was time for me to go. That night I kept him in my prayers as well. Another small miracle that meant a lot to someone. I am glad that I followed the promptings I felt from God. Being on the Lord's errand is so humbling and joyful.
As a last little thought, I have been studying JOY quite a bit recently and I love it! When we know the teaching of Jesus Christ we can have hope. And because we have hope, we can have joy in every circumstance.
I know God lives. He is our Father and He loves you. Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world - your Savior. This is the source of our hope. It is not uncertain hope, it is unfailing hope. This is the message I am so happy to share.
Mahalo nui loa for all and any service you render during this Christmas season and year round.
Sister Lindsay Evans
P.S. John Groberg from Disney's "The Other Side of Heaven" came to speak to us today about having God's Spirit with us always. It was wonderful!
Photo 1 - Why I love winters in Hawaii.
Photo 2 - One unique palm tree behind the Mata'ali'i's come
Photo 3 - In 2007, Sister Mata'ali'i (middle right) received assistance to pay for her son's mission. While he was gone she learned how to coupon and now for almost two years she has been doing monthly free stores at her home for missionaries. She gives away for many simple necessities (shampoo, conditioner, etc.) for free she acquires from her couponing. During Christmas time she even involves others and has people sponsor missionaries so that we can receive a personalized gift at Christmas! I have loved going to her home so often and feeling of her warm spirit. God bless you and your family for all of the service you render, Sister Mata'ali'i! Mahalo nui loa!!