Monday, July 27, 2015

A Wonderful, Wonderful Week

This week has been AMAZING. That is not to say that it hasn't come without trials, but the blessings mean so much more.

Funny stories first...

A few weeks ago we were knocking doors near our house. We walked into a yard that and saw a guard dog sign, but no guard dog in this completely open yard. So of course, without thinking I decide to say, "Here guard doggy doggy doggy.." [I can't tell you why..] and this dog starts barking super loud from the inside [thank goodness] of this big cage. Needless to say we jumped, laughed, and got out of there pretty quick. Anyway...

Longer [but wonderful] story...

Perhaps the greatest part of the week was a lesson with one of our progressing investigators. The only thing is that we couldn't get him to commit to a baptism date and I had no idea why. He just kept saying he wanted to take things slow. SO... we prayed and prayed and prayed and finally had a lesson with him. When we did, every little scripture and thought we were going to share with him flew right out the window. That was NOT what we were supposed to share with him, but God recognized out preparation and guided us with His spirit throughout the rest of the lesson. 

How did it go? Well we both shared scriptures and thoughts and asked inspired questions.  It flowed so smoothly that I was in awe the entire time. Towards the end of the lesson I saw my companions planner in her lap open to the page that has the baptismal interview questions. I thought, "YES. This is exactly what needs to happen." [which was funny because I had no clue what was going to happen]. He read the questions and said they were simple, but important. All along he just wanted to be confident in his faith before being baptized! So cool! Now we are going through each question with him and when we are done, he will be baptized!!

We testified of God's love for him and also told him about the plans being changed. The spirit was so present and obvious. He even smiled and said, "My hands are shaking." After the closing prayer he said, "I could feel the spirit," with a big smile. "I think we all could!" I said. We had a little laugh about that. When my companion and I got in the car we just screamed as we drove away for I-don't-know-how-long.  This was the happiest lesson ever. God knows His children by name. 

A Spiritual Sunday...

You'd never guess who came to my ward. He was on vacation with his family and we greeted him and shook his hand as he walked into chapel [just like we greet everyone]. 

It was Elder Neil L. Andersen!! 

He and his wife were nice enough to talk to us too! And guess what they talked about? 1) Elder Packer and Elder Perry 2) Sabbath day observance. He said that this has been a big focus of discussions with the apostles and first presidency. He warned that in future years, the world will try to creep into the church as well as into our families.  This is one essential commandment that we must follow. Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. One of the scriptures he said is talked about a lot is...

D&C 59:9-10 
"And that thou mayest more fully keep thyself unspotted from the world, thou shalt go
 to the house of prayer and offer up thy sacraments upon my holy day; For verily this is 
 day appointed unto you to rest from your labors, and to pay thy devotions unto the  
Most High;"

How can YOU have better Sabbath day observance? 

I love you all! God knows and loves His children. There are blessings awaiting us it we, but turn our will over to His. 

-Sister Lindsay Evans

Photo 1 - Sister Penales and I after our amazing lesson. This is exactly how we felt. :)

Photo 2 - It gets really hot here some days...

Photo 3 - My first exchange with an amazing sister who cooked for me for every meal!!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Extra Photos

Photo1 - Zone Conference lag time.

Photo 2 - If I ever forgot that I was a greenie [newbie], well... I definitely won't forget now. Thank you, Paige.

A Crazy Week of Big & Little Blessings

Hello everyone!

To start of the week I thought this would be fun...

FUN FACTS about the Hawaii, Honolulu Mission!
- It took me awhile to really realize it, but chickens live in my backyard. Sometimes they even wake up an hour early just so that I'm not a minute late for morning prayers.
- The humidity has some interesting effects. 1) If I hand my wrinkled clothes in my closet and wait one or two days, they unwrinkle automatically. 2) My hair is wayy frizzy some days. 3) Many of my envelopes have sealed themselves, just by my setting them down some place.
- It rains 0-3 times a day [sometimes pours] for 20 minutes and then is hot again. Never dry though.
- Missionaries get into the Polynesian Cultural Center for free!
- Rice for every meal.
- We get to wear sandals!
- No matter who you are, you are a foreigner. Especially in the VC, their are visitors and missionaries from all around the globe. Pretty cool! It's mainly Americans, Asians, Filipinos, and Pacific Islanders. 

So.. exciting story...
We were robbed on Tuesday! Woo-hoo! Not really....
Now you all probably have questions. Here are the answers..
How? They got through our broken front window. [It's fixed now and secure.]
What did they get? 3 Handbags with important stuff. We got 2 back without the important stuff in them [wallets and such].
When? At 6 AM when we were still asleep upstairs. A neighbor saw them take off and came to wake us up.
Why am I telling you this? Not to scare you or impress you believe it or not, but to express that the Lord protects His servants.
A big part of my blessing when I was set apart as a missionary spoke of how I would be protected during my service as a missionary. I want to point out two miracles... 1) For no apparent reason, my companion woke up at 6:08 and picked up her alarm clock [which she never does]. She ended up dropping it. This likely spooked the robbers and caused them to leave quicker then they would have. 2) After she dropped her alarm clock we fell back asleep into a deeper sleep than I have ever been in on my mission. So did she. If we would have heard them and gotten up, and confronted them, this could have caused greater problems. I truly feel that angels were protecting us and I am very grateful.
I got to call my parents to cancel my debit card too! They were very surprised haha. It was good to say hi. Love them! And I am totally fine!! So, no worries everyone :)

Besides that, my first zone conference was this week. It was all day and we learned about some wonderful things including the effect and blessing of music. Since then my companion and I have been singing to the people we visit. We sang to one lady who has been reluctant to meet with us and she finally set up a day! Cool! We also sang to a family who is less active in the church. The mother was very touched.  I had the strongest feeling that if we kept working with her [although people have been working with her for a long time before] she would start to come to church again and eventually make it back to the temple sooner rather than later. And guess what?! She was at church on Sunday! I love how God prepares people. It's all in His good timing.

My last thought is that God loves every single one of His children more than we can imagine. He loves you more than you can imagine! Are we really doing everything we can to share our beliefs and have the same love for them that our Father in Heaven does?
God asks you, "__[your name]__, do you love me?"
If you answer, "Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee," then what is the first thing he demands of you? ...
"Feed my sheep." [John 21]

Thank you for your support! I love you all!

Sister Lindsay Evans

Photo 1 - Welcome to Zone Conference! [I'm holding my beloved planner.] This was my first "I actually feel normal being here" day in my mission. Thank goodness! So, that is why I look so happy! :) Love it!

Photo 2 - Her New Zealand Whitaker's Chocolate! Who gets this much chocolate in a package! Sharing is caring right??

Photo 3 - Any Mexican food in Hawaii is a blessing. It always makes me so happy. Little blessings!

Monday, July 13, 2015

He Lives!

Aloha everyone!

Just thought I would let you all know that I ate lunch with a bunch of sisters on a lawn right next to the beach in the middle of all these trees with a nice breeze coming in off the water.... It's been a rough P-day.

Haha. In all seriousness, Hawaii has all the challenges of any other mission and is pushing me to learn and grow in a lot of ways. The weather is a blessing though. (:

This last week has been so great. Tiring, challenging, even disappointing and frustrating at times, but great. I think I'm starting to lose that "deer-in-the-headlights" look and I'm getting to know the people here. Most are members of the church, but even members need strengthening. They prepare dinner for us most night and are very kind. Sharing short messages is fun an so inspiring. They strength in the gospel and as people in general is so powerful.

I had the opportunity to go the the Polynesian Cultural Center this week and watch the night show. It's all about families and has really entertaining Polynesian music and dancing to go along with it.

My companion and are getting along really well and we end up laughing a lot. She's a super cool person. Always happy and excited too! All 4 feet / 10 inches of her. It cracks me up. 

How the Visitor's center? It's great! When we are having a slow day we watch videos and get to know the resources there. They are so wonderful. We taught a lot of member families this week. Also after a week with no knew investigators we had some high-school seniors come in. They went to a baptist school, and didn't view God as being active in our lives today. Because of this, we got to share with them some of the most hopeful news  - He Lives! He lives and is totally aware of every single one of us, whatever our circumstance. He loves us and wants us to return to him. We showed them this video...
They were very interested. After they left, they actually all came back in a few minutes later asking for copies of the Book of Mormon. So cool! I love missionary work!

Anyway... spiritual thought...
Some of the most hopeful words ever spoken [in my opinion] are these...
Luke 2:11 - "For unto you is born this day in the city of David aSaviour, which is Christ the Lord."
Matthew 28:6 - "He is not here: for he is risen."

Why does He live for YOU?

I hope you are all doing wonderfully! 

Much love,
Sister Lindsay Evans

Photo 1 - A little friend I found on my bedroom floor. So cute! My companion thought he was gross though... 

Photo 2 - The sunsets are short here, but wow.... they are always beautiful.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Extra Photos

Photo 1 - the downstairs of my beach view apartment. woo! I study at the desk closest to the backyard.

Photo 2 - the view

The Mission Home!

Photo 1 - A nice panorama of my first beautiful lookout in Hawaii. Gorgeous!

Photo 2 - My MTC sisters! Sister Miao [meow] and Sister Kim were quiet at first, but when I started joking with them they opened up. Turns out - they are hilarious. This is at a transfer meeting. They put us in a side room because the newbies weren't allowed to see anyone right away. They made us walk out with our eyes closed and then open them to see our VC sisters who came to get us. haha

Aloha Hawaii!

Aloha Everyone! I haven't sent an email in awhile, but Mondays are my
official Prep-days.

Where do I start? How about a fun fact?
My roommates caught this big spider in our apartment and now keep in
on top of our fridge. His name is Gary.

So.. I left the MTC Monday in the morning and hopped on a plane to HI
for starters. I sat next to a really nice girl who had the cutest
service dog. We talked about the Plan of Salvation and I invited her
to visit the VC sometime. Cool!

The first 2 days we got to stay in the mission home. Our mission
president and his wife picked us up from the airport. They're are so
nice. They gave us kukui necklaces. Usually these kukui nuts are used
as candles and burn for about 3 minutes, but to us the necklace
represents the never ending light of Jesus Christ. Anyway, I love my
mission president and his wife. They are wonderful people and she is
very strict on manners. It makes me laugh a little. Although it
probably shouldn't...

Mission Motto
Our mission is the ALOHA mission and this is why [our motto]..... "We
are grateful to be in the Hawaii Honolulu Mission. The ALOHA mission.
The Atonement of Jesus Christ is our message, love of God and others
is our motivation, and obedience to the commandments and mission rules
is our strength. By sharing the gospel with others we can give them
the "Ha" - the breath of life, even eternal life. Aloha!"
Pretty cool right? [In reality that isn't even a question. It's way
cool.] I am so blessed to be a part of this great work in Hawaii.

As far as how Hawaii is?
Humid. You feel it the second you step out of the airport, but I don't
notice so much anymore. The surroundings are BEAUTIFUL. [I know you
are probably all shocked... haha]. It is green everywhere and I live
in a small apartment on the beach! The view is wonderful. It's been
hot, but usually a nice breeze blows in. Thank goodness.

The Work
My companion is 4'10". She a Filipino and is so sweet. It's funny when
she aloha because her voice is so cute sounding. The work is hard
because I'm new and don't know exactly what is going on, but the more
I have the chance to share what I know the better I feel. We give tram
tours from the Polynesian Cultural Center to BYUH, around the Laie
community, and then they end at the VC. [The tram tours are
interesting, but not enough (don't tell the senior couples I said
that... :) I have come up with a few jokes to throw in there. I
will be testing them out next Thursday.] Tours at the VC are sometimes
great and sometimes not so great. That's just how it goes, but the
great ones with people who are interested make it worth it/

Fourth of July!
The fourth was great! We worked then had Karaoke with our Zone. Later
we had a BBQ with all of the sisters and played Cambodian
Duck-Duck-Goose. Instead of tagging someone you drop a towel behind
someones back. Then the person grabs it and tries to wack the person
who was next to them as they run around the circle. We were laughing
pretty hard. It's great getting to know everyone.

I hope you are all doing well! I read every email and if I don't
reply, then I will at some future time, but just know that I
appreciate everything I read. It is so uplifting.

Hawaii is wonderful! Everything is new and some things are hard, but
the gospel is the same wherever you go. The simple truths are so
powerful. Even if you have heard it before, open your heart. Ask "What
more can I learn?" or "What more can I do?" You will be greatly
blessed. God loves us. Jesus IS our personal Savior. I will do my best
to testify of this through every second of my mission because it is so
important. Aloha brothers and sisters!

Sister Lindsay Evans

[Pictures may not come today, but will come in the near future because
I know that is half the fun of the email] (: