Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Hit The Road

September 21-27

Things I forgot to tell you about last week:  Sister Lellis and I were driving down a rode and saw a man riding a horse.  Yes, this strange form of transportation is not only found in Oklahoma but also on the mean streets of Las Vegas.  It was so random.
Also the picture from last week of us ridding our was fake.  We were so determined to finally ride and had everything ready and then realized one of the bikes had a flat tire.  So Sister Lellis said, "well we have proof and we made and effort so that is good enough!  Grab the keys, we are using the car!"  Haha.  Not to scare you because you should not be concerned at all; were are extremely careful about what kind of areas we are in, but do you remember that one day before I left for my mission and we were driving in the area around Heritage Hall and went past some "ghetto" apartments???  And my eyes go big and you could clearly read my mind....Well lets just say there are differing degrees of "ghetto" the OK version and then there is the LV type!  The people here are humble and I am happy here.
I am very excited for Lauren Pitts' mission call to Vancouver.  She will serve a wonderful mission and make and impact on so many people's eternities.  I love the picture that you sent of Bree, Lauren and I when we were young.  It amazes ,e how blessed we were to all grow up together and hold each other accountable to our standards and now be able to share our testimonies with each other.

I am not going to do a day-to-day update because a lot happened and I hope I remember all that I want to say.  Keep in mind we received transfer calls on Saturday.  You will need to keep reading to know where I am going.

First thing P-day was typical besides playing dodge ball at a trampoline place.  So much fun, it was nuts jumping and sliding around.  I'll miss doing things like this in my next area.

Sister Lellis and I decided to ride bikes everywhere this week  Unfortunately, it happened to be 100 degrees most of the days but we pushed through.  I actually loved it!  Once the weather cools down more I will force my companion to ride and not use the car.  We some some miracles on bikes.  God put people in our path at the perfect moment.

Dijana is doing so well!  I am grateful to have had this opportunity to teach her and help her come closer to Jesus Christ, even though I know I was such a small part in it.  We have all grown so close as we taught her the gospel.  I will miss her a ton!  I know the next sister who takes my place will continue the work and take good care of all our investigators.

Tuesday, we had interviews for most of the day.  It is crazy how earlier this transfer I had an emergency interview and was in tears because I thought I had failed as a trainer because I did not get along with my companion.  Look how far we have come.  Sister L and I now laugh about hating each other in the beginning.  There will be 30 new missionaries coming in our area.  I am nervous to find out what will happen to me on Saturday.  Fun fact.  The northwest mission region is the best kingdom builder and retainer in North America.  And within this region, the Nevada LV mission is number! #bestofthebest .  No JV players here only Varsity!

The bad news of the week was Elder Scott's passing.

John's family still does not know he has been baptized.  He told us that a few weeks ago he hurt his foot and they took an x-ray.  They found a tumor which is frightening because his family has a history of dying from cancerous tumors.   So Prayers for him.  He also found out that he will be going overseas in January.  I know it is all in God's timing but I pray that his family will be baptized soon.

Other random stuff:
At mid 12 week, Sister Jane tole me that she met cousin Dominick.  Also it turns out that I talk in my sleep.  Sister Lellis says I talk about streets, investigators, planning etc.  I usually only sleep talk when I am stressed but I have been doing it this entire transfer.  It has been a hard transfer but I love it.  So far it has been my favorite.
Sister Lellis asked if we could stop by Sonic and get those things that are like French Fries but better?  I have explained to her they are tater tots.  The whole way home she kept saying "tater tots, tater tots, tater tots... She told me sister if you get transferred I need to know that they are called my next companion can take me to get tater tots!

Now for the BIG NEWS....the transfer.   When sister Lellis read that she would be receiving a new companion I began to tear up because I knew I was gone.  Just as I thought I had enough on my plate,  I realized I was a missionary and you are always given more.  I will be training a new missionary AND I will be opening a new area in Bullhead City, AZ.  You may ask "where is that?"  It is a dot on the map where NV, AZ and CA borders meet along the Colorado River, near and Indian reservation.  On avg about 10 degrees hotter than LV.   I am really sad that I have to miss all the baptisms coming up, but hopefully they will be able to Skype me in so I can watch.  It is going to be an adventure opening up a new area.  I am excited to see miracles and play cowboys and Indians for at least the next 6 weeks.
Prayers will be greatly accepted.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Sweater Weather

Sept 14-20th

The temperature finally got into the 90's and 80s and yes, I didwear a cardigan for most of the week.  Because it is 20 degrees cooler than what I am used to.  Even the weather app had a picture of mountains with snow on them.  Vegas has changed me.  I think I am now cold blooded.

I loved the picture of Ally and me.  I cant believe it has already been one year since that picture was taken.  it is good to hear Natalie is back on the court.  The new CRV looks nice.  I really like the red.  Tell Natalie to take good care of it!!.  I can't believe that the poor old car was rear ended again.  So many good memories came from driving it.  May it rest in pieces.... oh, I am glad Natalie is okay.

Pday was so much fun!   We went to the park and played every game you can imagine.  Volleyball, kenacky, football,soccer, basketball, name it1  It was great!  I am still one of the only females who plays sports on Pdays which is fun because the elders can't guard me in basketball because I am a sister. Ha!  I played too hard...I got sunburnt and dehydrated.  I felt so sick when we got back to the apartment I went straight to bed.
We met with Dijana ands has been keeping the word of wisdom for 2 weeks and she said she is 90% sure she wants to be baptized.  How awesome!

Tuesday we received some rain.  Las Vegas rainy days consist of partly cloudy with some sprinkles for about an hour.  Not what I call a rainy day but I'll take what I can get!  A member, Randy, took us out to Famous Daves, again.  Sister Lellis and I were so excited.  Randy is amazing.  Like I said in an earlier email, he really knows what the atonement means.  He told us that when he was in prison, he could not take the sacrament and he hated it.  It is amazing how many times we go through the motions of taking the sacrament and forget the true meaning of it.   In the evening we had some crazy street contacts.  There were a lot of drunk people out and about that evening.

Wednesday the weather was unbelievable.  The sky was so blue for most of the day and the temp was in the 80s!!!

Thursday while street contacting sister Lellis said this is like Pacman trying to chase people!  haha.

Saturday more street contacting this time in an area that we normally don't go to because it is super ghetto.  But sometimes I like ghetto because it is completely different culture than what I am used to. You can tell how ghetto a place is by how much grass is in the complex or what type of rocks they use if they don't have grass.  Sister L said can you imagine how scary this place would be at night!  That is why we went during the day...

Sunday, we met with Dijana again to teach her about tithing and fasting and she basically taught us.  In the evening we had dinner with the Rameriz family.  Mexican food...everyone knows if you have a Mexican dinner you will come out of the house 10 lbs heavier.  They made us this soup and is was so good.  We finished our bowls and asked for a little more but were given another heaping bowl full!  Then they gave us ice cream for dessert.  I thought I was going to burst.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Something Big

August 31st-September 6th

Monday was a great Pday as usual.  I am one of the only females who actually play sports on P-day.  It is weird to me that more of the females don't play.  I hope there will be plenty of people to play sports with on P-day throughout my mission.
Tuesday was a day full of miracles.  In the morning we met a lady who had talked with missionaries before but wanted to stick with her religion, Baptist, however she told us that she continues to read from the Book of Mormon and often compares it to the Bible.  And she agreed to have us come back again.  All of our appointments followed through which is awesome!  And while were were on our way to one of our lessons, a random member from a different ward saw us and fed us tacos.
One of the lessons I was most nervous about was John's.  He is in the army and used to live in EL Paso, Tx but moved back to Vegas.  While he was in Texas he converted to the church but no one in his family knows except his younger sister.  We have to teach hime the recent convert lessons but pretend that he is taking them as an investigator...while his family is there.  Today we showed him the  "Because of Him"video (Because of Him - YouTube) and shared some scriptures to try to get the family to warm up to us.  The father made it very clear that the family had all been baptized Catholic.  They are a nice family and fed us a Philippine feast.

The most interesting part of Wednesday what when sister Lellis and I went to go visit a guy named Darius.  Sister Fingerle and I had found him a few weeks ago but had to pass him off to the family ward because he is married.  I felt like we should stop by and see how he was doing.  We knocked on the door of his apartment and we could tell the person behind the door grabbed the knob but hesitated to open the door.  When Darius opened the door, his face lit up!  I asked if the other missionaries had been seeing him.  He told us his wife did not like them to come over.  Knowing he was still interested in learning more, I asked if he had been reading the Book of Mormon.  Discouraged he told us that his wife had thrown it away.  I offered him another and he graciously accepted.  Just as I reached into my bag to give him another, his wife opened the door and gave us a look that could kill!  So we left and tried to figure out how we could best help him.  We are going to have a set of Elders go and try to give him the discussions.   It is incredible how so many people take the Book of Mormon for granted, but there are those who would die to jus the able to hold it in their hands and read it.  It is precious.  It is meant to be read, searched , studied , pondered, and prayed over.  It changes lives.  Abraham 3:19
"and the Lord said unto me:  These two facts do exist, that there are two spirits, one being more intelligent than the other; there shall be another more intelligent than they; I am the Lord thy God, I am more intelligent than they all."   Sister Lellis's translation...."this is God saying shut up and listen you may think you are smart, but I am the Boss!"

Friday we went to the temple and it was lovely as always.  I always have this incredible feeling of peace and comfort there that can not be found anywhere else.   After the temple, we went to visit Tyler, Team Jesus.  He was surprised to see us.  He was a little depressed so it was awesome talking with him and sharing God's light.   In the evening, we went to Brady's house and taught his friend Dejanna the first discussion.  Members are so important to missionary work.  Ever referral we receive is so important because it somebody's friend or co-worker, family member, being introduced to the missionaries to bring them the gospel.  You never know what a huge impact that can have on their life.

I love you.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Aw Naw

Week 14
Aug 24th-30th

This week was rough.  It started with our investigator with a stripper pole in the living room dropping us...It was somewhat anticipated.
I felt popular on Pday with all the letters.  I am glad that I heard from Natalie and know she is still alive.
After emailing, Sister Lellis and I went to In and Out and an older guy came up to us and told us he was going to pay for our food.  Assuming he was a member, I asked which ward he was in and he told us he was not a member and that he was Catholic.  Can you believe it?!  A random non-member bought us lunch.  After talking to him for a while we learned that his daughter joined the church some years ago and his wife is Lutheran.  I don't know what motivated his heart to buy our meal but it was such a generous act of kindness.  My heart and stomach were full!  That evening Sister Lellis made 'brigadeiros".  It is a Brazilian comfort dessert.  "Everyone loves brigadeiros!"

It is only be in the low 100s all week!  We are continuing to find more people to share the gospel with and our investigators are staying strong.   Wednesday we had exchanges.  I was with sister Nelson.  The night before we went out, we prayed for and inspired street contact and decided to talk about family history and prayed that God would place people in our path that would accept our message.  It was so neat asking people what they want their kids and grandkids to remember them by.  While we ere talking to other people, Thought about it myself and I realized how truly wonderful missions are and how I am leaving behind a legacy for my children to follow.

Some members bought us pizza for dinner and we brought it home.  Sister Lellis heads for the refrigerator and pulls out the ketchup.  When I told her that I had never heard of anyone putting ketchup on pizza before she told me, "you have a problem"!  So I gave it a try.  It actually good...or maybe I was just hungry.  You know how I say "well this is awkward" sometimes?  Sister Lellis caught on but used it all the time and says "tis awkward" whenever something is weird or annoying.  It is hilarious.  

This week was long and hard, but time is going by quickly.  I can't believe it is already September.  Sister Lellis is hard to get used to and is a very dramatic ball of fire but I know that is just how she is and she usually chills out in a few minutes.  Even though she is stubborn, I am glad she is my companion because she is funny and has a unique perspective on the work.  This will be a fun transfer for sure.

The church is true!
I love you!
Sister Gier

Hot Mess

Monday was our last day with our zone and it was sad saying goodbye to most all the missionaries.  I will most likely serve with some of them again later on during my mission.  Elder Jones and Riley were so sad that they made plans with Sister Fingerele and I to form a new mission called the Nevada Las Vegas Strip mission and  we will start preaching from the top of the Stratosphere Like Samuel the Lamenite.  Haha!  Of course we were just joking...kinda!

August 17-23rd

Wednesday was a day of change.  Woke up and decided to change everything in the apartment!  Beds, couch, table everything was moved.  Nothing in the apartment is the same.  Today I was assigned a new companion. Sister Lellis.   She is from Brazillia, Brazil and has only been a member of the church for about a year and is the only member in her family.  She speaks English pretty well but she says she gets frustrated with herself because she has only been speaking English for 2 years.  I may need the gift of tongues!  Ha ha, but she is wonderful   She is very smart and the joke is "I know everything about the lesson...but in Portuguese!"    So far none of my companions have come from the continental USA.

Saturday was a crazy day.  Our investigator Kevone was about to turn us away and then the spirit took over and I asked if he had some time for a short message.  Sister ellis was opening her scriptures to share something but the spirit was telling me to go a different way...we followed the spirit and before you know it we had taught him the restoration and committed him to come to church and be baptized in 8 minutes and he agreed!.  It was a good thing it only took 8 min because it was 110 degrees outside.  That may have been the motivation for the short powerful lesson!

We had an appointment scheduled with two investigators and when we arrived at the house we were greeted by a note that read, "Dear missionaries, we will be busy at 7 pm today."  It made us laugh.  Most people just don't open the door if they don't want us to come and visit them.

The church is true.  I miss you.
Sister Gier