Holland in Tucson

My dearest Mommsy and Popsicle, and E’rrybody else,

I don’t even know where to begin for this week. It has just flown by.  Freak how is it May already?!?!  Well I am going to start with Elder Holland because that was the obvious highlight of the week. So I am assuming Sister Passey put the mission picture on Facebook already so you need to go look at it because Sister Smith and I are standing right behind Holland. RIGHT BEHIND HIM!!!  We were holding our breath the whole time I think haha.  One cool thing was at the beginning of the meeting we all got to come in through the same doors and shake Elder Holland’s hand while we told him our name and where we were from. Later in his talk, he told us that he loves to do this so he could have a “mini interview” us as he looks into our eyes. The eyes are the window to the soul.  He said we had a pretty good mission and that he thought we were all great missionaries. Phew!  He talked for awhile about what our mission should mean for us and how it should be something we treasure now and for the rest of our lives. We are involved in the greatest work on the earth:  the salvation of the human race. woooo. And because of this we have a great responsibility on our shoulders that the church has trusted us with. He got a little intense in this part, despite the pressure and weight of this calling, we do not have the right to destroy the trust and image of missionaries. We HAVE to hold ourselves up to those things. He also talked a lot about how our calling is similar to his. Haha he said in some ways we have an apostalic calling as well, the only difference between us is him is that he is an Apostle with an uppercase A and we have a lowercase a. That part was pretty funny. After that he gave a freaking SERMON! Probably the best talk about the Atonement I have ever heard. He came down off the stand, he was writing on the whiteboard, and getting in people’s faces, engaging everyone, it was just great.  What he did was teach us what it means to use the ‘enabling power’ of the atonement. So first he went through what the atonement was. And then we discussed where the power comes from.  And it comes from the Holy Ghost and the Priesthood. Through that power we can use the Atonement. 

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After Holland spoke, Elder Lynn G Robbins of the seventy spoke. And I loved him too. He talked about how we all fought for 100% agency and because of that we have 100% responsibility. So he made this list- the loser list, or the Laman and Lemuel list. This list was things we use instead of being responsible. Like blame, self pity, excuses, denial, lying, loss of hope, etc. And he talked about how we should NEVER EVER go to the list. Even if we are right. even if we get hurt, we must never go to the list because it will never help us. It was an awesome talk about responsibility of our actions. I was a little surprised because he also tied it into marriage and love. I didn’t expect to be learning about those things on a mission ,haha. And he talked a lot about how love is a choice and how we are supposed to love our spouse with the love of Christ, charity. And we read the scripture that describes charity and then he says, “You cannot fall out of love because you cannot fall out of charity and you cannot fall out of kindness. It is a choice. I loved that so much!    Overall, I felt like I learned a lot. And now I have some things to work on!

Our Sunday was another highlight. We FINALLY got investigators to church. That family we are teaching all came! Well except the dad because he had work. And they made it through all three hours! Oh we could have cried, it was such a great moment for us. We haven’t had investigators to church since Mathew and Precious were baptized. And A- came too! He didn’t stay the whole time. He has some social anxiety but he said he really likes sacrament meeting and felt like it was a good thing for him to come to. SWEET!  Okay now to answer your questions. A time I felt the spirit this week was when we went to talk to a potential investigator. I was initially feeling kind of negative about this visit I was like wow I really don’t want to go talk to them right now. But got out of the car and went with my companion to the door and I am so glad I didn’t say anything about not going up to that door because that was exactly where we needed to be! G- is a member and wants to come back to the church now that she has a baby and her husband is also interested in becoming a member because he wants his family to be happy. And I felt the spirit so strong as they told us this after we shared our message about coming unto christ and how it blesses families. It was awesome.  I guess that experience also answers your question about how things fall into place, haha. I think that being a missionary has been a great way to experience the blessings of putting God first. We have to put him and this work above our family and lives back home and we are so cut off from the world it’s a lot easier to put him first. It’s harder for you guys back home! Getting caught up our sports, our music, and our classes and entertainment, and we don’t realize how God is involved in every single part of our lives. Just remember that if it matters to you it matters to God. That doesn’t mean it’s all gonna workout the way you want it to right now but he will have your best interest in mind. So to me putting God first is keeping him in our thoughts in everything we do and in every decision. And that will tell him you trust him and your ready to be taught and blessed.

Elder Jeffrey R Holland- “We must go forward. God expects you to have enough faith, determination, and trust in Him to keep moving, keep living, and keep rejoicing. He expects you not simply to face the future; He expects you to embrace and shape the future—to love it, rejoice in it, and delight in your opportunities.  God is eagerly waiting for the chance to answer your prayers and fulfill your dreams, just as He always has. But He can’t if you don’t pray, and He can’t if you don’t dream. In short, He can’t if you don’t believe.”

Pray for excellent wifi this next Sunday.  Love you all, cant wait to see you!  Love, Sister Packer

“Am I turtley enough for the Turtle Club?”

We had an awesome lunch appointment this week, Grandma Judy!!!

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