Monday, October 5, 2015

Week 53: "He Takes Us As We Are" (:

"Haircut!" (:
                                         My heart really is so full of gratitude right now. 
As I've been reflecting back on this week and the countless miracles and
spiritually strengthening experiences that have happened, I can't help
but feel happy and thankful(: I love the Lord, I love my amazing
companion, and I love being a full time missionary! 

 We had some amazing lessons this week. We met with Elizabeth, and she
honestly has such a pure heart. She read the chapter in the Book of
Mormon that we left for her, and she even highlighted a favorite
verse. She is so prepared, and I'm praying that she will receive the
answers that she needs. I know she will as she continues to seek for
the truth(: we also met with Becca and Russ, Cassie and Zach, and the
Cadwalladers. All of them are striving to do what is right and what
will bring them true and lasting happiness. That has been a really
beautiful thing to see, because you can tell that little by little,
they are changing. And that's what this gospel is all about(: 

 We got to have a lesson with the Hoflund family on the Restoration. It
was really powerful. Cash was taking notes and it was the cutest thing
ever. Bobbi Sue and Clint are both so wonderful. She's been so sick
lately, and he's been having some hard stuff happen as well, but
instead of letting it get them down, they've been using it as a chance
to rely on the Lord more, and I think that says a lot about the kind
of people they are. I love that family with all my heart. I don't
think I'll ever be able to fully express how much they mean to me.

"Just another day in the Hoflund home!" (:
We had exchanges and I got to spend the day in Lusk with Sister Danz.
I love Sister Danz so much. She's one of the sweetest people I know. I
got to meet a lady named Carrie while we were doing service. She
reminded me so much of my Nana, it was a tender mercy(: We also had
MLC this week, and guess who's an STL now?? Sister Jenson!!(: it was
so great to give her a big hug. I just love her and have missed her so
much. She's awesome. 

 General Conference was amazing. I received so much revelation not only
for myself but for the people here in Casper that we are striving to
help come unto Christ. I learned so many things that I can improve not
only to be a better full time missionary, but also to be a more
consecrated disciple of Christ and better person as a whole. Seeing
President Monson deliver his address was powerful. Even though he was
weak, the Lord provided him with the strength to finish his talk. I am
truly amazed at the power behind this man, this prophet of God. He
gives all that he has, including his physical strength, to the Lord. I
am thankful for his example.

"Me and Sister Jenson!" (:
The Holy Ghost touched my heart during a lot of the talks, but
especially during Elder Stevenson's. When he talked about feeling
inadequate, I could totally relate, as I'm sure we all can. I don't
know how many times I have felt like I'm just not strong enough, not
smart enough, not good enough, to do what the Lord has asked of me or
to press forward through the hard things in life. As Elder Stevenson
talked about President Monson looking him in the eyes and saying, "The
Lord will always qualify those whom He calls,", I imagined the Savior
looking me in the eyes, with love and understanding in His face. I
could almost hear Him say, "I will always qualify you for what I have
called you to do. Just trust me,". 

This took my thoughts to one of my
favorite talks, President Uchtdorf's, when he said, "We don't need to
be more of anything to start to become the person God intended us to
become. God will take you as you are - at this very moment - all you
need is a willing heart and a desire to believe and trust in the
Lord,". 

 This week, lots of things happened that I didn't feel qualified to
handle. However, as I spent lots of time on my knees in fervent and
pleading prayer to my Heavenly Father, I was given the words to say,
the actions to take, and the thoughts to cultivate in the times where
I needed it most. I know that God loves us, I know that He speaks to
us if we are willing to ask and really listen, and I know that He
loves us for who we are, today. He will help us be better. He will
help us be happier. We just have to trust in Him. 

The scripture that
I'm "ponderizing" this week is 2 Nephi 31: 3. It talks about the
plainness and simplicity of the gospel, and about how the Lord will
speak to us in a way we understand. How thankful I am for the ability
and privilege to receive answers and counsel from the One who loves me
more than I will ever comprehend. How thankful I am for the fact that
He takes me as I am, and strengthens me to become who He knows I can
become.

"We finally found a Russian Olive tree.....in our backyard!!" (:
I love all of you. Thank you to everyone who sent me videos and emails
for my one year mark!!

 I am thankful for your prayers and support. 

 Love, Sister Allen(: