Monday, May 16, 2016

Puddles, Fish, and the "Ironic Priesthood"

Dear Family and Friends,

      Welcome to another week! Every time Monday comes around, I am floored! How is another week of my mission gone?! Nonetheless, it was a wonderful seven days. I hope you had a great one as well! 

     On Wednesday we had Zone Meeting which was brilliant. Some of my greatest insights came from a departing sister in our area. While reflecting on her mission, she could firmly say that 'biking up a hill is the best we can do' as missionaries. When you're staring at a massive Welsh hill and it's chucking down rain, the last thing you want to do is bike to the top! But, she testified that 'when we have courage enough to get to the top of the hill, that many blessings will be awaiting our arrival there'. I know this to be true! I have seen it! When we go just a little bit farther, the Lord will be there with open arms congratulating us for the journey.

      She also mentioned how the Holy Ghost has been her best companion throughout the last 18 months. Though sometimes we may struggle with companions or people in general, we always have the greatest one with us at all times. It is so important to recognize that we are allowed the comfort of the Holy Ghost to be with us always, but if we are not constantly striving for that comfort "ye shall not receive." If we want to feel the safety that the Spirit provides, we have to fill our end of the bargain; by following His commandments, reading our scriptures, and praying. And if you're not feeling this wonderful comfort that everyone is talking about, then take a look at the things in your life that are not in harmony with God and His principles. He wants us to be eternally happy, but we have to want it; then we have to do something about it! :) 

     As we were riding to Andrea and Lowri's home that evening, we exited the library the find golf-ball-sized rain drops falling from heaven, hitting us in the eyeball! Ow! We had to bike about 15 minutes away and had both only worn our thin rain coats. Mercy. As we rode up and down the hills, we couldn't help but laugh hysterically thinking about the memory this would make. We could do absolutely nothing to stay dry, so we just laughed! :) We showed up at Andrea's door looking like wet dogs. We had to wring the water out of our socks and tights, and have a lesson with towels wrapped around us! Good times! In that lesson, Andrea mentioned that when we first started teaching her, she thought that we were saying 'ironic priesthood' not 'Aaronic priesthood'. Ha! She was wondering what was so ironic about it.. Whew.. We had a good laugh about that one!

       Andrea and Lowri are doing very well and enjoyed another beautiful Sabbath Day yesterday! We had a lesson with them and the wonderful Williams on Saturday. I felt the spirit so strong and had an opportunity to testify of how her progression in this gospel and my progression on my mission were similar. We ask her after every lesson to take one step closer to her Savior. Though that step my not be easy to take, there is always a blessing behind it. On a mission, we are asked by Heavenly Father to get out of our comfort zones constantly so that we may grow and become who He needs us to become. We then testified of her strength and how brave she is for being willing to change her life, when she knows that this gospel is true! We love them so much and are so grateful for their examples. 
As Syd's mom ----  I have NEVER seen her eat her veggies, besides the occasional cob of corn.  *Even though its drowned in a bucket of gravy.

This girl couldn't even stand the smell of tuna...small miracles are happening :)

       Before their lesson, the Williams took us to have my very first experience of fish and chips at the chippy! Wooooaahhhhh. It was not anything like I expected it to be, I LOVED IT!  What? I know... I thought I hated fish too. But, I survived! Miracles are wrought people! While I was eating it, I was reminded of the experiences that my grandpa talked about whilst he was serving his mission in England many years ago. Eating fish out of newspaper, smothered in vinegar and salt! Listen to me, I sound so foreign! Hahah this experience is the absolute greatest! 

       I just shared this insight with a friend and I wanted to share it with all of you. Every time we pray and ask for His confirmation and guidance, it is as though we are giving Him a blueprint of our plans for ourselves. Telling him "I think this is the right decision for me, will you let me know?" When He has that blueprint in His hands, it might take him sometime to evaluate the plans; a day, a week, five months, two years!? In this waiting process, it is important to know that your plans/ideas for your future are in the hands of the Master Builder. He knows what is best for you. He knows what pathway to build for you, so that you may find your mansion in heaven! And when he feels the time is right, He will place before you the finished product; the beautiful path that you were always meant to take back to Him! And from that point, we are able to look behind ourselves and see that His hand was in all things! 

       God truly does know all the feelings of our hearts.He is sensitive to our wants and earnest desires. When we council with Him in what we do, He will only lead us on the right path. Only good can come from obtaining His guidance in all our decisions. I encourage you to do this. Even the little decisions can make a big difference in the grand scheme of things! So, look to the one who knows all; the Master Builder! 

       I am so grateful for this week and the many opportunities I had to testify of Christ and how through Him, we can all change. On Sunday, I was made very aware of how far I have come thus far on my mission, but also, how far I still have to go until I reach the feet of my Savior! There is so much more work to do for the people here in Caerphilly and on my personal progression...Time to get to work! 

      Thank you so much for all your words and prayers! I feel them! Have a great week and I will talk to you all shortly! 


Sister Sydney Jones

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