Monday, November 11, 2013

Safe from the Storm

Sister Stabenow with Elder and Sister Nielsen

Dear Family,
                Can’t believe it is P-day again! We had a busy busy and great week. We traveled every day except yesterday. So kind of exhausting, but really good at the same time.  Our splits this past week went well, I am learning so much from these newer sisters. On Friday this week we were in Cauayan for our zone conference, and it was one of my favorite days I’ve had here on my mission. In the morning a smaller group of us got to meet with the Area President, Elder Nielsen and he taught us about how we are agents to act and not to be acted upon.  He talked about how Satan tempts everyone to sit and do nothing, to let things just happen to their lives instead of actively doing something. He talked about how as leaders we must always be acting, we’re not just here to be observing. We then went into the chapel to have the main meeting with all the Elders and Sisters, but before we got started Elder Nielsen had us all kneel as he offered a prayer in behalf of all those members and missionaries down in the southern regions of the Philippines as that morning the huge typhoon was hitting the Philippines. Speaking of the storm we weren’t too affected by it, just a lot of rain here. I thought a lot about how safe I felt from the storm, there we were gathered together as missionaries being taught and spiritually fed, and not only was there a literal storm outside, but also what I feel a spiritual storm raging. I’m feeling quite out of the world as now I’m hitting the halfway mark of my mission. I love this feeling. 
                Sister Nielsen gave an awesome talk about loving our companions, couple good notes from her talk:
-          There is a big difference between tolerating and totally embracing the person next to you.
-          My companion and I are on the same side, so why criticize?
-          Q: how would it feel to be with somebody who you knew would not criticize?
-          She taught about her family growing and getting bigger and different likes and personalities coming into the family and one phrase she mentioned over and over: Not everybody has to be a Nielsen to be loved by the Nielsens.
Elder Nielsen taught us from 1st Nephi 11-14 and we learned all about the Revelatory Process and how we need to be connecting these people to heaven. I really could go on and on and on about how awesome the meetings were and all that I learned, but time is short, so I’ll keep this short. Overall I feel Heavenly Father’s love for me so much, he answered so many of my questions this week and I just want to do so much more. One thing I have to include though was what Sister Nielsen said, she said she felt like she was looking at us all and seeing us in our truest identity, stripped of all the worldy things that we thought defined us, and all the junk taken away. I think she’s right, and maybe that’s why I often say that I don’t recognize myself here. SO thankful for missions and what they do.
                Work has been exceptionally good since that meeting, and I’m feeling more motivated than ever before. Heavenly Father is blessing us here! I can’t wait to see what things are up ahead. I love you all and miss you!
Brynn with the President and Sister Rahlf
     Sister Stabenow

Yesterday celebrating her 9 month mark!
On splits this last week
Reunited!  Just missing Sister Miller:(
The beautiful night sky on the way to Cauayan City.

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