Saturday, August 31, 2013

Week 4

OLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAyayayayaya hi! hello! bem-vindos! parabens! otimo! and all kinds of other ways to say HI and WELCOME and just all kinds of other nonsense (: hiiiiiiiiiii!

First things first - HAPPY (one day belated) BIRTHDAY MAMA!!!!!!!!!! I love you SO SO SO much and hope your birthday was AMAZING!!! (: (: (: (: Can't wait to celebrate in style together in 2015 (: I love you!!

Como vai?! How are all of you!? Words seriously can't express how much I ADORE hearing from each of you!!! Your letters/Dear Elders/emails seriously make my week, EVERY DAY, every week! #cadadiatodadia #everydayallday (: thanks to EVERYONE for the love this week - I forgot to write down everyone that I heard from and don't want to risk leaving anyone out so just rest assured THANK YOU to ALL of you!! (: (: (: keep it up and I will continue to love you to forever + para sempre. Deal?! (:

Okay! WOW get this: the key to the subject of my email...EXACTLY A WEEK FROM THIS MOMENT I WILL BE EMAILING YOU AND TELLING YOU WHERE I GOT MY REASSIGNMENT/when I'm leaving/when I will get to CALL YOU (family!) and talk to you on the phone!!!!!!!! AYAYAAAAAAAA (: (: (: (: (: basically long story short we will get either notification that we got our visas (usually 1-2 people in a district get this news) and everyone else will get notification of WHERE IN THE USA they are being reassigned (aka where they will serve until they DO get their visas!!!) and when they will be leaving (as early as NEXT SATURDAY MORNING!!!!!!! aka not tomorrow lol but the next Saturday) and as late as the following Wednesday morning!! WAHOOOO (: love it. So stay tuned for that!! Basically I will be able to talk on the phone while I am at the airport (so when I first get there until my first flight leaves and also [if there is no time then] then during my connection...if I have one. Lol). Fun fact though - most people leave at around 3 or4am on the morning of their So good thing you're in Ohio and not in Washington like Sister Hirz's family (: Just let me know who I should call (and at what numbers so I can make sure I have the right ones!). There's no limit on time - just whatever time we have at the airport. And I can talk to you family (Mama/Daddy/Ruth/Anna/Daniel) so just let me know what numbers to reach you at and I can't wait til NEXT FRIDAY to let you know what the deal is!! (: (: (:

OKAY. Wahoooooo! There is always so much to say and always like, a negative amount of time to tell it all. Lol. But I have about 20 minutes left so I'll try to make the best of it!

Here are my bullet points from the last two weeks that I've neglected to mention:

-One night when I was praying, one night after being called as Sister Training Leader (at a time slightly later than I should have been awake), I heard someone cough outside in the hallway and got a VERY distinct impression (probably the clearest impression I've ever had in my life) that I needed to stop praying immediately and go right out into the hall. That was crazy. So I got right up and went into the hall and long story short - the only girl there in the hall was a Sister from my zone/branch (which is crazy because the sisters in my branch/zone only make up about 20 of the 100+ sisters on our floor alone) who had been trying to sleep for quite some time but this cough was keeping her up and she didn't have any cough drops or anything to soothe her throat. She just so happened at this time to be walking down the hall to get water from the drinking fountain when I felt impressed to go into the hall. This may not seem like a big deal to anyone else but moral of the story is that I had some awesome cough drops that I was able to grab from my room and help this sister out and be able to fall asleep that night, all because I was willing to act on whatever crazy kind of prompting I felt like I was having. That was so neat. The Church is true and inspiration and revelation are REAL. And this experience has really brought this sister (Sister Young :) and I a lot closer together. (: #thechurchistrue #ilovemissionarywork

-You know how we ran into Hungry Runner Girl at the temple last week? I neglected to mention that Stephanie Nielsen (nieniedialogues - Google her and you've probably heard of her, she was a burn victim when her and her husband got into a really serious plane crash and she's incredible) was ALSO right there sitting next to us on our other side in the session we were in. What!? Its awesome because I love Janae (HRG) and Sister Hirz LOVES Stephanie Nielsen. And we got to talk to both and they are both the nicest people on the face of the planet. #itsasmallworldafterall

-We did TRC for the first time two weeks ago (Training Resource Center) which basically just means random people come in that speak Portuguese (or whatever language you're learning here) and for an hour (two half hour sessions) you talk to them and teach them in your mission language. Very cool. We do this on Fridays and LAST Friday we taught ACTUAL BRAZILLIANS THAT ARE LIVING HERE IN PROVO/OREM!!! Oh my gosh meeting actual Brazillians was INCREDIBLE and they are so kind and speak SOOOOOOOOOO crazy fast hahaha but they loved us and we love them and they're all members already but we teach them a mini lesson anyway and they just loved us and all sing really well and I was CRAZY intimidated at first lol because they were talking SOOOOOOO fast haha but then I said a little prayer in my heart and it's incredible how much I could understand and say back!!!! Basically coolest thing ever and before meeting actual Brazillians I was thinking it wouldn't be terrible at all to get a reassignment state side for awhile, I just want to be in the field already!! But...AFTER meeting with the Brazillians, basically all any of us wants to do is just get to Brazil because WE LOVE THEM SO SO MUCH!!!!!!!! It's insane!! Lol. But the REAL moral of the story here is that God's children are ALLLLLLLLLLLLLL over the world and His children in Brazil are no more important than His children in the USA (or vice versa...or anywhere else, for that matter) - He loves them ALL EQUALLY. So I am just excited to go WHEREVER I get reassigned/end up serving/for however long. Missionary work is just so so fun and I love EVERY moment!!!!!!!! #eek #eek #eek #iloveit (:

-Okay so much for bullet points..I still take like a paragraph on each thing and am eternally behind on catching you all up on my life because I talk so much about everything. Hahahaha. Lemme try to be more brief so I can catch you up better in these last 10 minutes:

(still from a week ago here):

-Watched a devotional on Sunday nightwhere Elder Holland was here at the Provo MTC last Thanksgiving - AKA WHEN MICAELA (SISTER ANDERSON) WAS HERE IN THAT VERY AUDIENCE!!! That's really all I could think about the ENTIRE time I was watching it. Lol. Sister Anderson - wasn't that an AMAZING devotional!?!? And it's like we watched it together now (: (: (: All the rest of you should go watch it! My favorite thing he said was when he was talking about how our generation is not only lucky because we get to have TEMPLES in our dispensation - before our dispensation (aka before Joseph Smith restored the gospel here on the earth), think how many temples there had ever been on earth? One. And since the Gospel was restored here on earth just under 200 years ago...we now have over 100 temples!!!!!!!! How crazy is that!? Just think about that. We are SO lucky!! We should be going to the temple every chance we can get it!! Also another thing he said that I love was that in every other dispensation, they were doomed to fail. With each time the Gospel was removed from the earth in the past through apostasy or wickedness, there was a period of time when the Gospel WASN'T on the earth. But today, in OUR lifetime, we have been promised that now that the Gospel has been restored, it will NEVER again be taken from the earth until Christ comes again! Aka (in Elder Holland's words): We are the generation that gets to (finally!) WIN! How lucky are we!? Ah. #humbleddaily #ilovelife #thechurchistrue Moral of the story: COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS DAILY! We have SO many!! (: (: (:

-Last week we did a 23 hour fast from dinner one night (Wednesday) to dinner the next night (Thursday). Our entire district did it, even one of our teachers, Irmao Smith. But here's the catch - we fasted from both food/drink of any kind, AND ENGLISH. It was INSANE. And incredible. And SUCH a testimony builder and oh my goodness I HAVE NEVER LOVED PORTUGUESE MORE IN MY LIFE. Or been so grateful to eat MTC food again once we finally broke our fast Thursday night for dinner! Haha. (: But seriously. It is such a testimony to me that the Gift of Tongues is REAL and we are capable of SO much more with God + Christ on our side (and the inspiration of the Holy Ghost!) than we are on our own!! The best part? As soon as broke our fast (from both English and food), we were (obviously) allowed to speak in English again...but my brain took a good hour/hour and a half to realize it didn't have to try to say everything Portuguese so I kept speaking Portuguese because I kept forgetting I could speak in English!! AKA I DEFAULTED ON PORTUGUESE AND IT WAS THE BEST DAY EVER! My goal is to come back from my mission (after 1 year + then some!) of speaking ONLY PORTUGUESE all day, err day, and for it to be the weirdest thing in the world for me to be speaking in English. Just like it was for that hour/hour and a half. Because it was the coolest feeling in the world. I LOVE IT. (: (: (:

-Okay I am so so sorry I have to get going but two things really quick - Daddy you asked about my being a Sister Training Leader. Yes, I am the "senior" STL now and a new one - Sister Brotherson (: was called this past Sunday as the new Junior STL. Basically our responsibilities are to check up on the sisters in our zone (we have just under 30 right now, between 6 districts total) as much as possible. We interview senior companionships (just like district leaders do for the elders in their districts) and make sure they are doing okay. Each night, we split up the rooms (bedrooms) of the sisters and visit them and give them a spiritual thought/talk to them/see how their days went/get to know them better. It's basically like the ultimate calling to get to know the people you're spending time with here at the MTC just a whole lot more than you would get to normally. I love it!! Then Wednesdays when new missionaries come in, we (with the Zone Leaders) talk to the new districts (we got two this past Wednesday - 27 missionaries total and 10 ARE SISTERS!! aka over 1/3 of the new missionaries in our zone are SISTER MISSIONARY!! #represent :) for an hour about their schedules, answer questions, and do brief "getting to know you" activities, and then we give them a tour of the MTC campus and escort them back to the residency halls to unpack. Then Thursday night (the next night) we pick them up from their classrooms and escort them to their first meeting with the branch presidency - where they do more getting to know you things, learn about our branch (standards of excellence, rules, other fun facts :) and get interviewed by different members in the presidency. It's so fun. I love seeing them all over MTC campus (even the elders!) and saying hello and answering all their questions. It's so much fun!! On Sundays we just have two meetings (one with just the STLs/ZLs and the Branch Presidency) where we talk all about the branch and kind of like a ward council, basically. Then we go to breakfast and after breakfast we have a meeting with all the previous people + all the district leaders from the zone, and that is more specifically focused on individual members in the district. And then there's little things we get to do here and there like decorate the new sisters' bedrooms (I'll have to send photos of that next week - Sister Brotherson and I had a blast decorating this past week!!! :) and have girl talks and sure it's hard work but it's really helped me to not focus on myself hardly at all because I am constantly talking to and getting to know the other girls in my zone. I love it.

I think that's one of the biggest factors as to why I'm loving my mission so much so far - each day I get up and remind myself that I'm on the Lord's time - not my own time. As such, I shouldn't be focusing on myself - I need to focus on HIS children and doing HIS work and serving HIM. That's exactly why I came out here on my mission, that's why I'm putting my life "pre-mission" on hold for 18 months, and that is why is it 1000000000000000000% worth it, all day every day. Because just like it says in Mosiah2:17, when you are in the service of your fellow beings, you are only in the service of your God. And I can honestly testify that there is nothing that has brought more happiness in my life than what I have been doing and feeling these past four weeks of my life. Nothing even comes close. For the first time in my life I am trying to focus all my efforts on the people around me and stop being so self-centered...and I've never felt happier. I testify that you really do find yourself when you lose yourself. AKA like how President Gordon B. Hinckley's dad told him: "Forget yourself and get to work". THAT is what brings joy. THAT is what will bring lasting happiness - helping others find happiness in joy in their lives. Because that is what God does for all of us - His children!! - ALL day, EVERY day. THAT is why Christ was so willing to atone for the sins of the world - so that we could be happy! Why else do you think God and Christ are such wonderful, happy people? Because their entire purpose is to make us happy...that is what they are dedicated to doing. That is why this is the Plan of HAPPINESS. Because being with God again will make us so so happy...And as we serve Him, we become more like Him and more like our Savior, Jesus Christ, and are therefore more able to see the world through their eyes. We are able to see each other as they see us. And the love can only grow from there. (:

Wow. That was a long little paragraph. Haha. And I don't have time to re read it because I'm already over time but just moral of the story: I love this gospel. I love being a missionary. Sure it is hard work but it's a fact - missionary work isn't easy because salvation doesn't come cheap. But I have no doubt that the harder it is, the more happiness it can bring. And I have never been happier. (:

I love this gospel. Mama I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to talk more about my schedule here at the MTC but I'll do that next week or send you a copy of my schedule to give you a taste. Basically we're in classes 6 hours of the day and have other studies/activities the other times. And meals...that's basically how we plan our time. Around our eating schedules. Lol. (:

Ah. I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH! And sorry for being so long winded and not really editing as I go. But at least you can rest assured this is all straight from my heart as I sit here in a little computer lab in the middle of Provo, Utah. I love love LOVE this gospel!! If you are feeling down or frustrated or aren't happy with where you are in life right now - lose yourself and get to work for a little bit. Go out of your way even just a little bit to serve someone else - either helping them with the dishes or writing them a little note. I promise you (promise!) that you will feel better after doing even the slightest bit of service. There is nothing that brings more joy than serving others. :)

I love you all! Read Doctrine & Covenants 51:40-42 and remember that we are ALL God's children - He loves us all so so much!! And as long as we are His, we will NEVER be lost, NEVER be forgotten. Trials come in life so we can learn to trust in God and over come them with His help. I know it.

I love you all so much!! Thank you so so much for all your prayers and love and support! It really does make a difference. This is an inspired work and I know I say this a million times but I really could NOT be happier. There is NO where else I'd rather be!! (:

Talk to you in a WEEK!! (: (: (:


Sister Sarah Elizabeth Kron
aka #yourfavoritemissionary (:

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