Monday, May 24, 2010

A New Record in Odessa!

Hey family!

Thank you for the amazing emails today! I couldn't help but smile the entire time I read each email! I love Mondays because I get to read how great you guys are! I am glad that you all had so much fun in St. George! It looks like everyone is tan and ready for summer now! I hope that Dennis heals up okay after his athletic attempts! That is way cool that he is doing that though!

Mom, I am excited for your big splash in your 50th year! I think starting a business at 50 is a great way to do something big in a big way! I am excited to see how this all works out! I think that you will do great things for the Sister Missionaries! We seriously need it! I am glad that you had people to run with you every day! That sounds like a lot of fun!

Dad, I am glad that you had a pretty good birthday week! It sounds like you had a lot of fun with the youth! I am glad that they all sang happy birthday to you! That is crazy that you are getting a foreign exchange student! I am excited for you to be able to practice your German with her! I am honestly a little shocked! You guys always surprise me!

Brynn, I am glad that things have gone well with your surgery! And I am way proud of you for getting on the guy's case yesterday! That made my blood boil to think of it! It sounds like you all had fun and that everyone got some golf and Sun, but the question is did you get in a little TJMaxx?

Chase and Ashley, I heard you guys are moving out this week! I always hate moving but it shouldn't be that bad right? Allen and Ashley's baby is adorable! You will have to tell them congrats for me! I showed everyone in the Internet club haha!

So last week we had a really slow week as a zone. It was one of the lowest weeks I had had on my mission but this week was the best week our zone has ever had. We set a goal to find 16 new people as a zone. The most that Odessa has found is 15 in one week. Last night, at 9:00 we ended up with 20 new people to teach as a zone! It was one of the most intense weeks ever! We were all working as a team to try and reach these goals that we set and we blew them out of the water! We definitely saw some miracles this week, along with some disappointments.

We met several really cool families and it felt like people just came out of now where! We found this awesome woman that wanted us to help her with her and her daughter with English and it was one of the coolest lessons we have had in a long time. We talked with her about how important families are and how they really are the foundation of Society! We taught her about how it is important to teach your family because that is where they learn the most basic lessons of life and how church is a way to strengthen them but it shouldn't replace the family! It was really great and I am excited to go back to see her!

President has really been stressing that we talk to everyone and try and have really natural conversations. It is harder then you might think to be natural as a missionary, it takes some practice. So since we started talking about having natural conversations I have really been trying really hard to just make it part of my character to talk with everyone. I will admit that some days I get tired and I am not as open but I really do try my best to just bring a smile to some one's face on the bus or on the street. But anyway most of the conversations turn into an English contact and then they turn into investigators but about two weeks ago something that has never happened to me before happened. I got on a bus and sat down next to an older lady, I was really tired and I struggled with the spirit before I actually got the courage to talk to her. I started talking about the weather which turned to families somehow and then she really looked at me a asked me why I was here. As I handed her a Family Proclamation, I told her that I was a missionary and that I wanted to help others find happiness and truth, and that God has blessed me with such a wonderful family and I want others to have the hope of finding that themselves. She seemed pretty interested and I asked her if she new anyone that was looking for happiness and she started telling me about her niece. Her niece had lost everything and no one knew where she was. This woman is originally from Moldova and she felt like she needed to move here and try and find her, but she had no contact info for this girl. One night she was walking on the street and she saw her niece living on the street freezing to death. She brought her home and took care of her and is now helping her to get her life back together. I gave her another Proclamation and got her number. The past few weeks it has seemed like she was one of those people that would tell you that you could come when she had time but it didn't really seem sincere. But, yesterday I called one last time because our appointment didn't show up. She asked if we could meet her at the church and give her any kind of literature that we had. She had given the Family Proclamation to her niece and her niece read it and wanted a "Book." We gave her a tour of the chapel and she just seemed so happy. She had just moved here and she felt like the Lord had blessed her to talk with us and to find and help this girl. When we gave her the Book of Mormon and a pamphlet on the Restoration she looked at the picture and said, "I have seen this before!" She had a huge smile on her face! When we left her I reminded her to read the introduction to the book and she smiled big again and said she was going home to look at the picture right now! haha I love seeing little miracles like this, it seemed like our week was full of them!

We met so many really amazing people and also some of our friends here that have refused to take a Book of Mormon took one happily and they were excited to read the chapters that we suggested! I love this work! There really are so many miracles in everyday!

I should get going but I love you all so much and I hope that everything is amazing for you! Have a great week!

Sister Larsen

p.s. Photos are of our FHE group, the grapevine outlined entrance to our apartment and the young woman in our branch.

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