Merry Christmas!!

IMG_0214Merry Christmas, everyone!

Here’s Sister Sherwood’s and my Christmas card:

Our boots were completely caked in mud haha:D

It’s been a good week! This one day, Sister Sherwood and I were trying to decide whether to get pizza or Mexican for lunch, so we did rock paper scissors and pizza won. So we went to the little pizza place here and there was just one girl working, and we were the only customers. So she saw our nametags and started talking to us about where we worked, and we told her what we do and shared a little about the Restoration of the gospel! She thought it was awesome! She gave us her number and we’re going to try to meet with her soon:) That rock paper scissors game was definitely inspired!

P1010929 Monday night through Tuesday morning there was a huge snowstorm. So on Tuesday, all the missionaries’ cars were parked, meaning we had to walk everywhere. Haha so we were just trudging along with snow pelting our faces. We mostly just visited nearby members and shared the “A Savior is Born” video with them. (Watch it on christmas.mormon.org if you haven’t yet, and if you have, share it!) It was good because everyone felt sorry for us and let us in!:) Haha then we walked to a Mexican place for dinner since we couldn’t drive to our dinner appointment, and we got this call from a member. She was like, “Are you guys okay??” And we said yeah, and she said, “My husband said he thought he saw you two walking through the snow on the side of the road!” Haha that made us laugh:D

We got a ton of these pink sugar cookies (from Liahona Academy) so this is what our weekly planning looked like... we just sat on the floor and planned and ate cookies:D
We got a ton of these pink sugar cookies (from Liahona Academy) so this is what our weekly planning looked like… we just sat on the floor and planned and ate cookies:D

We’ve been teaching this teenage boy who is awesome, but every time we go to see him, his grandpa comes out and monopolizes the lesson. He’s about 70 years old, with a weathered face and a long, scraggly beard. He’s nice and all, but he could talk for hours without taking a breath! He just waves his cigarette around and says things like, “Eve was actually Adam’s second wife” and “Based on the DNA evidence, every person on earth comes from the same woman– except the Eskimos of course” and “The only difference between us and that tree is one percent of water.” Super nice guy, but he makes it a little hard to have a spiritual discussion with his grandson!:)

Snow is so pretty!!
Snow is so pretty!!

This week, we’ve been talking to a lot of families about how they can remember Christ this Christmas. We were talking to one family about how Christmas lights remind us that Jesus is the light of the world, and we asked what a Christmas tree represents. One little boy said, “Jesus is like the tree trunk, and we’re the branches. He holds us up!” I loved that:) Jesus Christ is always there to hold us up!

Some of the most well-known verses in scripture about the Christmas story are found in Luke 2:

“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

“And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them; and they were sore afraid.

We hit a milestone this week! 0 degrees!
We hit a milestone this week! 0 degrees!

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”

What were the good tidings? They were tidings of a gift. A gift to the shepherds, to you, to me, to the world!

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”

Our tree :)
Our tree 🙂

Jesus Christ. He was a a gift of a Savior. “And this is the gospel, the glad tidings, which the voice out of the heavens bore record unto us– That he came into the world, even Jesus, to be crucified for the world, and to bear the sins of the world, and to sanctify the world, and to cleanse it from all unrighteousness.” (D&C 76:40-41)

It was a gift of hope, of mercy, of forgiveness and eternal life. A gift of love. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” God is our loving Heavenly Father, and He gave us this matchless gift of a Savior!

So we should be singing with the angels, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”

We teach a less-active family from Venezuela, and they feed us the BEST food ever. This time was ayacas, which are like Venezuelan tamales!
We teach a less-active family from Venezuela, and they feed us the BEST food ever. This time was ayacas, which are like Venezuelan tamales!

The shepherds recognized this wonderful gift. In Jesus the Christ, James E. Talmage writes, “They waited not, but went in haste, for in their hearts they believed, yea, more than believed, they knew, and this was the tenor of their resolve: ‘Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.’ They found the Babe in the manger, with the mother and Joseph near by; and, having seen, they went out and testified to the truth concerning the Child.”

Even though we don’t see the angels or the manger or the star, the Lord has still made these glad tidings known to us. We can still go in haste. And just as the shepherds, we can testify to the truth concerning the Christ.

I know that Jesus Christ was born. I know that He lived for us, and I know that He died for us. And I know that He lives again.

Mary and JesusI hope that we all come to our Savior, at Christmastime and always, and that we bear testimony of His truth to everyone! Because what better tidings could there be? A Savior is born.

Merry Christmas!

Love,
Sister Stratford

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