Monday, July 25, 2016

"I'm Feelin 22" // Merry Christmas in July !!!

Hey everyone :)

This week has been a busy one. It is only appropriate that I gave this email that title because when else can I say that. It's been a good birthday week :) Huge thanks to my family and friends for making my birthday special even while im out here in Idaho.  For our last P-day sister Olson and I got some members in the ward to donate bouncy houses for p-day and we had an Olympic games day it was super fun and i think all the missionaries really enjoyed it. That night we had exchanges with the "Kuna Trio" which was fun. I was in Kuna with Sisters Latu and Beauchamp and we had fun with all the cornfields and cows in Kuna. It was a very much needed exchange for one of the sisters who is far from home. We were just grateful to be able to step in and help the sisters in their area. We were able to find a potential investigator who said he would like to learn more and get into some less active homes which they needed some more work in their area. This week i really focused on being a bolder, better missionary at ever door we went too.

 Sister Olson and I worked on having a thought prepared for them as we approached and we had some good conversations with people. Our district leader  committed us to talk to 10 extra people everyday. It helps that Pokemon Go came out because we can actually talk to people on the streets now. We had a lesson with a potential investigator that I have personally been praying about and for for weeks now and the moment came we brought a member and he brought his friend. His friend did all the talking and the purpose of us meeting was so lost. We went twenty different directions and I asked the gentleman what is your purpose if you want to know the book of Mormon is true what are you going to do when you find out? There is so much that flew through my mind in the moments. It wasn't the most positive experience but i learned many things from it this week. I reflected on Oliver Cowderys experience when he wanted to translate the plates the lord says in Section 9 "you supposed i would give it to you.. and you thought not to ask me and i will answer" sometimes we expect heavenly father to just give us answers and the fact that we asked the question should bee enough. But Heavenly Father asks us to search and ponder we need to work for the answers we get but when we truly search we learn and then receive that confirmation of the principles truthfulness and that journey is what builds our testimony. 

 Saturday morning we went to have a tracking blitz and were supposed to meet in the high council room and as i walked it I heard "Surprise!!" It's super hard to surprise me but, well I'm nosy and i make it my job to know. But Sister Zittinig and Robinson pulled it off and we had a early birthday celebration with the zone ice cream was the cake with 22 candles :) It was great. Balloons, streamers, party hats it was super sweet of my sista to pull it together for me! Tons of randoms surprises this week from family and friends it was awesome. Sunday was great it was filled with tons of happy birthdays from the primary kids who sang to me twice, more ice cream and cupcakes than you can imagine from ward members and tons of sweet birthdays wishes. I serve in such wonderful wards and am super grateful to have celebrated my birthday in the mission field. We ended our day with ice cream sundaes with the members we live with and their kids and a awesome voicemail President and Sister Sorenson left on our phone wishing me a Happy Birthday. It was a jammed packed week but we made it work! Thank everyone SOO much for thinking of me on my birthday I really appreciate you remembering one of your favorite missionaries :) Hope everyone had a great week :)

Merry Christmas in July :)

xo Sister Cleveland    

Monday, July 18, 2016

The CTR 6 Squad

Hey everyone :)

Hope you all had a great week. We've been trying to get a lot of the referrals we had from our tracking blitz this week and tried to teach Aleena about our purpose as messengers of the truth. The only problem was that she was very intoxicated :( She opened up to us about alcohol addiction and how she was suppose to be entering rehab that weekend. She and her husband George have and could hear them of course i didn't tell her that the next day. We ended up finishing the "lesson" by giving her a book of Mormon to read while she was in rehab. It was quite an interesting experience to say the least. You have those prayers you offer that you will be led to the people who the lord has prepared and you find them and often time they are broken down and you see how much the gospel can help them if they will just turn their  will over to heavenly father and trust him. It's easier said then done but i have seen the beginning and ending of this investigators and the ending is far more beautiful then they could have imagined. We asked Aleena why she thought we were there she answered "God sent you". That is the truth the Lord loves his children everyday in the mission field yet alone in our own lives there is  evidence that the Lord loves his children. Often times our prayers but also the prayers of our family and friends are answered by a simple invitation to come unto the Good Shepard. Aleena and George came to church on Sunday ( no rehab yet) and everyone in church is soo good with welcoming them. This week we taught Kahbrea who is super sweet and we were able to set a baptism date for her for next transfer. This week we also went to Sister Gilman and Sister Canary's  Ward pioneer activity. It was super fun and good to do it with all the sisters that serve in our zone . This Sunday we were asked to teach the CTR6 class and in the middle of my speak on how "Choosing the Right brings Happiness" one of the little girls asks "Are you a mother?" I replied "No why..?" she said "You seem like one!"  haha It was super cute :)  but still will be interesting my third trio on the mission.. well hope everyone has a good week and are watching everything Olympic for me!  #Rio2016

All My Love,

xo Sister Cleveland

Monday, July 11, 2016

America' ,Exchanges, Baptisms, Miracles

Hey everyone :)

This week we started off celebrating 'Merica which was super umm less exciting than usually but that's because we are missionaries. haha  Still we had fun with the family we live with painting and watching fireworks from the deck it was a good night. It was actually a little weird since we had curfew and were in by six that night i was slightly bummed we couldn't go out and work but its all good. The next day we had tons of prep for the baptisms this weekend and the adversary was working super hard on one of the families that we are working with. We had changed the baptism place and time so many times and we trying to get approval from the parents to have the baptism. It was a mess and lots of contention was going on those few days. Sister Olson and I prayed and fasted super hard this week and waited upon the Lord. We also had interviews with our mission president this week which went super well he told us his goals for the mission and invited us to be exactly obedient there are always areas we can improve upon and i took that challenge my companion and i have been working on leaving lessons on time, and getting home exactly when we need to be. Preparation for the baptisms this week was a little stressful baptism week is always a little crazy but I'm grateful for that craziest because it means the Lord work continues to move forward. 

We had exchanges this week with my girl Sister Zitting sista since the MTC and (proud member of the trio) we had a grand time and had so much success. It was awesome. It was pretty much having a mission sleepover with one of you best friends. We went tracking on Saturday and we were just laughing down the street trying to make tracking fun quoting movies, and we decided to knock on a door or two kidding we knocked on tons and got rejected plenty of times BUT there ones the one.. (side note: those of you who have seen a Cinderella story remember the scene when its the last quarter and Austin in about to catch the snap and he looks over at the sideline and his dad is saying "This is the one Austin, this is the one!!") We knock and hit it off with Elena right away were laughing and sharing stories. We start talking to her about our purpose and missionaries. She told us that Jehovah Witnesses always come and never leave them alone. She and her husband having been trying different churches and they are really trying to find a church to belong to because times are getting crazy so we invite her to church which is the next day and she says YES! Sister Zitting and I were like What?!? I was defiantly in shock..  You hear about these tracting experiences but never would I think it would happen to us... hah So we are in church yesterday and Sister Olson and I were ask to speak on the power of scripture study. I didn't see Elena before church and figured she wasn't going to come. It was a rainy morning and maybe decided to sleep in. I get up to speak and start "preaching" (kidding.. slightly) and i look over to the left side of the chapel in the back is Elena and her husband.. like MIND- BLOWN! You know people always say us they'll come to church but she actually came and the best part was everyone in the ward came up to her and talked to her and her husband and were super friendly and she said we could come over this week and teach her and her husband. Huge Miracle. 

The baptisms this week we everything. We were only able to attend Swayzee's because Greggors was at the same time. We should have split but didn't.. But Swayzee's The spirit was so strong and the emotion from the family was beautiful. we were able to run over to greggors after and take a picture with him. Such a tender mercy that I'm blessed to be apart of so many lives and meet so many people who have such a desire to "come unto Christ and be perfected in him." Each baptism comes that spiritual confirmation that there is nothing I could be doing right now that would bring me and our heavenly father so much joy. 

This week I've been thinking about this awesome article I read about improving our personal prayers everyone should read it here! I have been thinking about the purpose of real intent and how we ask our investigators to pray with real intent.. as i have been studying this throughout the week we when petition our heavenly father for spiritual gift s or assistance the question came to my mind "What will you do when you get it?" I have been trying to be better as I have been praying to take the time to think before I say my personal prayers and to really prepare to speak with my heavenly father. I have seen the difference and i would invite you all to do the same.  Lie it says in Alma 37:37 "Counsel with the lord." It will make a huge difference in your week.

Have a great week everyone. 

Lots of love from Idaho,

xo Sister Cleveland

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Fourth of July

Helloooo everyone!

Another wonderful week in the mission field. This week we got a new mission president and had an awesome meeting with him. President Sorenson & Sister Sorenson already love this missionaries its awesome and it was super good to talk to them.

This week was a little all over the place which kept us busy. We continue to work with Swayzee and Greggor and they are going to get baptized this week. We are super excited for them. Things are coming together nicely and I know there families are super proud of them. Its been dreadfully hot this week at one point it was 111 degrees i'm defiantly working on staying hydrated during the week i have to say i miss the humidity for sure.
 This week we've been doing some contacting with past referrals and ran into a man named Sampson and had such a great gospel discussion with him. I couldn't stopped thinking about the conversation we had. He said that he's studied at a bible college and researched about the Mormon faith and kind of felt bad that we didn't know our own religion it was funny. But  it made me think where is our source for truth and light? do we rely on the words of google and search engines? Or do we follow the example of Joseph Smith who had a sincere desire and went to the source of truth and light - Our heavenly father. I've been thinking as I have been able to teach people on the mission each lesson we have is to prepare myself bring the spirit into the lesson.. because there is no denying the spirit. If they are going to push it away they are going to reject it having felt the influence of the spirit and hearing his truth. But many people don't ask for themselves and that's the key.. you can listen to anyone who is writing articles or creating podcasts, even missionaries, but if you truly desire to know if you want to know the truth for yourself you must ask the right source. You will hear or see many examples of members of the church but you can truly know the truth of what you hear through real intended to act upon the answer you receive. So if you really want to know and are willing to act upon your answer i'd invite you to ask for yourself.. I promise you will receive an answer. 

This week we went on exchanges with my old companionship. They are awesome and it was super good to exchange with them to learn from each other and grow. I was with Sister Chevalier and it was great to be with her again and in my old area. I love being able to serve the sisters.

Lots of random pics. Hope you all have a great holiday.

Much Love, 

Sister Cleveland

1. Sister Zitting and Elder Skipper MTC dayzz 
2. Exchanges with Sister Chevalier
3. I mowed that lawn.. not perfect but grass is shorter :)
4.Fourth of July packages from wonderful people who i love!!
5. Hot Days in Nampa
6. Sister Olson and I
7. Sunday Patriotic outfit I had a red bow in my hair to top it off :) 
8.Fourth of July packages from wonderful people who i love!! (again)

9. Trio Love <3