Donkeys and Testimonies!

Hi everyone!!

bikepicThis week was AMAZING. The Lord has definitely prepared the people of Strasburg, Colorado! The Lord is guiding us to new people all the time, people who have a desire to serve the Lord and are ready to hear about His restored gospel:) I love teaching lessons so much, but I also love tracting because that’s how we find new people! We have been talking to EVERYONE. For example, last week we were tracting, and we got a glimpse of a man in his garage on the other side of the street, so we went to talk to him. We ended up teaching a lesson to him and his family, and we’re visiting them again this week:) We never know who is going to let us in, so we try to never let anyone slip through our fingers!

I am totally in love with all of our investigators. (That was a weird way to say it. I mean that in the most platonic way possible.) They are amazing, strong people who have been through a ton but who still have the desire to follow their Savior. It’s incredible!

bike On another note, we got bikes!! That’s why there wasn’t an email last week… we went into town to go bicycle shopping:) I’m actually just using a member’s that they were going to throw away, but Sister Kastner bought a nice one! Haha it is definitely interesting to bike in a skirt. I hope we get better at it soon:) We had to trade vehicles AGAIN because our black jeep didn’t have a place for a bike rack. So now we have a white jeep, which isn’t quite as cool as the black one but we love him anyway.

Also we planted cilantro in a little container in our apartment and it’s growing quite nicely. We’re quite proud of it.

allthedonkeysI have now added donkey poop-scooping to my list of accomplishments! It’s a new experience, but actually more pleasant than you might think because the baby donkeys follow me around and it’s so cute:) And we got to name a couple of new donkeys that came in! Sister Kastner named the boy Skyler and I named the girl Ariana. She’s dark brown and really gorgeous:)

Oh I found out something interesting! Four of our five small towns don’t actually qualify to be towns. They’re technically villages:) Haha I live in a village:D

notherdonkeyOne of our new investigators is the sweetest old woman and I love her so much! The second time we visited her, I left a Book of Mormon accidentally (besides the one we’d already given her). And then the next time we saw her, we got it back. But I accidentally left my personal scriptures. Bible, BofM, everything. Haha so when we went back later to get it, she was like, “I think you’re doing this on purpose!”

emanddonkeySo as a missionary obviously I bear my testimony a lot, and it’s been amazing to see how much my testimony is growing because of it! I know what I am telling people is true. I know it will bless their lives if they live it because it has blessed my life. Seriously, everyone should bear their testimonies all the time:)

Conference was awesome! One of my favorite talks was the one about “What lack I yet?” I will be asking myself that every day now:) The prophets and apostles and other leaders of the church are truly called by God. Their word is His word!

This past week in our district meeting, we had a training about extending baptismal invitations. It was really good! Some people think that the missionaries just want to baptize them. And that’s true, but not for the reason they think! Baptism is how we are washed completely free of our sins, it’s how we make the sacred covenant with our Heavenly Father that we’ll follow Jesus Christ, it’s how we qualify to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, it’s a necessary ordinance for salvation… so yeah, we want to baptize them, but it’s because we love them and want the best for them!:) Sometimes it’s scary to invite them to be baptized. My first week here, I was supposed to invite one of our investigators to be baptized in a lesson we had planned with him. And then I didn’t do it. I chickened out. And I felt awful! In the next lesson, we did invite him to be baptized. He said no. But we found out what his concerns were and why he felt that way. So extending the baptismal invitation is a win-win situation! That’s what the training was about, and afterwards Sister Kastner and I decided to be better about inviting everyone to be baptized. Before the training, we had two investigators on date to be baptized. And a few days later, we had two more! It was amazing. It reminds me of this scripture (It’s kinda long but I love it too much to cut it down):

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, as I said unto my disciples, where two or three are gathered together in my name, as touching one thing, behold, there will I be in the midst of them– even so am I in the midst of you.

Fear not to do good, my sons, for whatsoever ye sow, that shall ye also reap; therefore, if ye sow good ye shall also reap good for your reward.

Therefore, fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail.

Behold, I do not condemn you; go your ways and sin no more; perform with soberness the work which I have commanded you.

Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not.

Behold the wounds which pierced my side, and also the prints of the nails in my hands and feet; be faithful, keep my commandments, and ye shall inherit the kingdom of heaven.”

That’s D&C 6:32-37. I love it:) Whenever we do good, the Lord will be there helping us. So we should all take courage! We are children of God. We are the brothers and sisters of Christ! We can do anything he asks:) “I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.” (1 Ne 3:7) I know that I am on the Lord’s errand, and He is with me!

emanddotI love you all! Have a great week!:)

Love,
Sister Stratford

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