Monday, February 27, 2017

No Matter Where You Have Gone, There Is Always a Way Back!

February 27, 2017
Hey Family and Friends!

This week was a great week!  Sister Grover and I have so poor that we have been surviving off Manna which has been an interesting experience. The Lord has literally been providing
every meal for us and it’s been so amazing! Luckily, we have money now (our monthly allotment came through today) and can buy our own food which feels so good!  One silly fact about us this week is: when Sister Grover and I find playgrounds, we have to slide down the slides and video tape it!  I know, random….

We went out with a few sisters in the ward this week. One sister took us out to Holton which is the farthest city north in our area. We got lost on a dirt road.... but found our way to civilization!
#thankyouJesus. We almost drove out of the mission but didn't #thankyouJesusagain. Ha ha, it’s so funny. The Lord has truly been blessing Sister Grover and me. We found this lady named Jackie. She told us that she had met with the missionaries before when her ex-husband joined the church. Then the missionaries lost contact with her and she went through so many trials in her life but now she wants to build her faith in Jesus Christ and raise her son in the church!! Literally the most amazing miracle.

Last Friday we went on exchanges with the STLs and I went with Sister Greenwood and my companion, Sister Grover stayed in Kaw Valley with Sister Pritchett. Sister Greenwood is amazing. I loved spending the day with her and learning from her.
We visited and had lunch with a member who talks really fast but is the sweetest lady I have ever met. Then we walked outside and it was snowing.... eww.... I don't like cold....
then taught the Plan of Salvation to their investigator over Skype. He is the most amazing person and was asking questions that you would find in our manual, Preach My Gospel.

Next, went to dinner with the Balsmiers and they fed us Belgium waffles. YUMMMY!! And…homemade brownies!!! HMMMM! Then, we went and taught another investigator the Plan of Salvation.  It went really well. Brother Balsmeir had this cute Labrador Retriever that would sit on his lap like a lap dog.
They also had three cats who were jealous of the dog and so in the middle of the lesson they were all sitting on his lap/chest hahaha! 

Saturday, we woke up at 5:30 in the morning to go play sports with the zone.............😑😑😑 (you KNOW how I feel about early mornings.) We played volley ball and it was actually quite fun. It was a great exchange! Church on Sunday was great! Everyone talked about Jesus Christ and His atonement and how we can use His atonement every day! I know that for a fact the greatest blessing of all is being able to use the atonement to change and be forgiven. To me it’s a comfort knowing that nothing we ever do is set in stone. No matter where we have gone or what we have done, if we have a desire to change and be better it can always be forgiven and wiped away. The Atonement also gives us added strength as we use it to overcome the challenges we face in life and the trials that may come. I just love this truth so much!!! 

I hope you all have a fantastic week.


Sister Magda

A Week of Changes

February 13, 2017
Hello Friends and Family,

This week has been super hectic. Monday was my last P-day with Sister Gillespie (She is being transferred away to Manhattan, KS) so we decided to go to Petland and pet all the puppies we wanted....
(Just kidding. We could only pet two ha ha ha!) but they were cute!!! Tuesday, Sister Gillespie went and said goodbye to people in the ward and then that night she packed.  It took her till 5 am!!!! I helped her until 12am but then I was just too tired. The next morning, we went to the church and the people and missionaries driving down to Wichita went together. I stayed with Sister Leavitt until my new companion came. Sister Leavitt is so amazing! She is only 6 weeks out on her mission and is such a solid missionary. She doesn't seem like a greenie at all! We had fun talking to people and getting to know each other.

My new companions is sister Grover.
She is from Idaho Falls and has been out for almost 6 months! Her last area was Lamar, Colorado which is the farthest west you can go in the mission.
It is also a very, very
small town. When she got here she had culture shock because Topeka is a bigger city. We get along well and have a lot of fun teasing each other and making jokes.

We work well together and have seen a lot of miracles this week. One miracle was when we were trying to get in contact with an investigator. We saw this guy was walking his dog late at night....(in the ghetto)  Despite this, we went up and talked with him. He told us he knew some people that were Mormon back when he was younger. We talked to him more about the Book of Mormon and he asked if we could come back and teach him and his family. Super cool!!!

I was super sad to have Sister Gillespie leave. She has become one of my best friends and has helped me grow and change. I know she will do so amazing in Manhattan, Kansas with Sister Nerdin!


Sister Alisha Magda

Monday, February 13, 2017

Um...We're on Fire!

February 6, 2017
Dear friends and family,

Here is a little bit about my week.  It won’t be as long of email as last week, though.   On Thursday, we had a lesson with Demetrius and it went SO WELL!  We sat down with him and talked about how by reading the Book of Mormon he will find answers to his questions. We read the 1st chapter with him and he loved it! We invited him to say the prayer at the end of the lesson and he did. After he said amen, he did a little dance and said "I'm so excited!!" He is so excited to learn more and to continue reading the Book of Mormon. 

The other day we were getting ready for bed and it was a bit late... like…LATE. I looked out our bedroom window and I said... what the heck...? We look out there and our downstairs neighbor had caught the backyard on fire!
He and his friend were standing around it like... uh... what do we do?? So, they start trying to throw dirt on it and they were falling into it catching themselves on fire! It started spreading like really bad, so we were like uhhhhh...should we call 911? We did call and I felt super awkward ‘cause I've never called the cops before. I’m all... "um yeah, there's a fire in our backyard and there's two guys trying to put it out and they're falling in it and we don't know what to do..." hahaha! So meanwhile, our apartment is filling up with smoke and the fire is getting bigger by the second so we try calling our district leader and our zone leaders but no one was freaking answering! That’s when we got dressed and went outside to get away from the smoke and flames.
Meanwhile, the guys who started it are banging on their door trying to get inside and their family wouldn’t let them in! So, they were walking around all angry. Then our other neighbor comes up to us and said, "hey, just so you know... we saw that he has a gun... you probably should go inside..." So we're like... uh.... no argument there!" We rushed inside and opened the windows and watched the firefighters talk about how people who start fires are stupid! Hahaha! By now it’s 12:00am “ish” and we are now super awake so we made some food, called our mission president’s wife cause we were scared we were gonna get shot in the foot ‘cause we could hear our downstairs neighbors yelling and banging things. Haha so.... that was fun.  (Fun she says.  Fire.  Guns. Not what a mother wants to EVER hear in a missionary letter.)

We also had zone conference and interviews and it was so good. President is inspired and wonderful.


Sister Alisha Magda

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Mission Broadcasts, Crazy Stories and Sam's Club Hotdogs

January 30, 2017

Hello friends and family!

This week was amazing! It went by way too freaking fast though. On Wednesday, we had a worldwide missionary broadcast. It was really interesting. The executive missionary counsel got together and held a meeting and we missionaries could be a part of it through the camera. They talked a lot about our missionary purpose and focus and how we can build faith in the lives of our investigators and the members where we are serving. They also talked about how we define success as missionaries and gave encouraging words to help us not beat ourselves up about not being good enough. Some of the things that I really love that were said were:

- "All things gather together in one. There is little or no spiritual power when we treat these fundamental principles of the gospel as separate things." - Elder Bednar
- "The baptismal invite and commitment should be based upon the individual and promptings from the spirit" - Elder Oaks
- "You're not just called to proclaim the gospel, you are also called to establish the church" - Elder Oaks
- "Will a missionary continue to choose what he knows is right whether or not the Lord decides to grant unto them "success?’ That is when you are establishing the church." Elder Bednar
- "You just have to be as good as you can be. God will magnify you to be more than you could ever become. We don't want missionaries beating themselves up saying,” I'll never be good enough.” None of us will ever be! But the Holy Ghost will work through you." - Elder Bednar

They also talked a lot about some changes being made to missionaries worldwide. They rearranged our daily schedule to make it not as blocked out as what we now do at particular  times of the day. Now it is more flexible and we are able to choose when we do certain things to be most effective. They want us to use our agency to be able to plan out our own days so that we learn this skill for when we go home as well. They also changed the things that we report on. We used to report to our leaders how many lessons we had, whether they were with active or
not active members or investigators and referrals received and contacted and a bunch of other things. Now we only focus on a few things: new investigators, Investigators who attend Sacrament meeting, investigators who have a baptismal date, and if anyone was baptized and confirmed. I am really excited about this new change because it changes our focus and helps us to better see how effective we are being. It is really cool because we are now more focusing on how we can build the faith in people's lives rather than anything else. I am excited!

Sister Gillespie and I have been so poor lately... Here's a few of the creative things we've had to eat...
- Saltines in chocolate icing
- We wanted eggs... But we weren't sure if they were still good. So, we opened a few to make sure... The first one was good... The second one was...........BLACK INSIDE! It was BLACK and ooooh. The smell.... You know how everyone says "it smells like rotten eggs!" Well guess what?
This smelled worse!!
- We really wanted brownies, but we didn't have any eggs... So we made a concoction up with this brownie/cookie mix, corn syrup, water, and sugar... It wasn't that bad!
- A Ketchup sandwich... Sister Gillespie would have no part in that though.
- Tortillas rolled up with strawberry cream cheese inside
- Old mac and cheese
- And the sisters from our ward brought us some soup to have for lunch yesterday! It was so kind!!
But we got our money allotment today #thankthelordandtithing so we are good!
We bought a

ton of groceries for super cheap today! 🙌🏾 score! And on Friday we had a member give us $20 for food. Since it was the end of the month we are really running low on funds and food… We needed to make this money STRETCH. We went to Taco Bell for lunch then we decided to go to Sam's Club for dinner... And lunch the next day… And dinner again… We did pretty good though! We made 20 bucks last us four meals! It was kind of embarrassing though going to Sam's Club three times in a row with the same people working… One lady even said something! She was all "weren't you guys here earlier today" and we were like "umm…Yes..." But hey, when we went the third time, we saw two people sitting on the corner and they looked freezing! My mom sent me a package of hats and gloves and stuff so we pulled over and gave two beanies to them. They looked so happy! The man put it on right away and patted his ears. It was so cute!

Here are some funny stories for the week!
- So one day we went to dinner at a member's house and their dog peed on sister Gillespie's leg. She had to go into the bathroom and wash her shoes and tights haha. Then when we were sitting down after dinner he started notice my leg... I think he likes me....
- The next day we went to another member's house and their cat is super evil. He pretends to like you and then mid-pet, he turns into Satan and bites you. Well... While we were eating, we were just talking about random things and then Sister Gillespie goes "Ah! The cat is under my skirt!!" She looked so terrified. The cat had been playing with the bottom of her skirt and decided to hop up onto her lap... Underneath her skirt.... I may have snuck him some food....good
job cat.

- Topeka is full of interesting/sometimes crazy people. Nothing as freaky as a guy with an ax though hahaha. But last week sister G and I were in the car getting ready to leave when we saw this young women dressed in this weird dress thing with two baseball hats on, one backwards and one forward.... She was just walking in the middle of the road sauntering around. I was like "what the heck, she is crazy looking!...We should talk to her." Then this guy comes running around the corner yelling at this chick and like waving his hands all over the place! I was like, "oop never mind! Pretend like we don't see them!" The guy then ran back behind the corner, crouched down in a creepy way, and started eating something from a bag he was carrying.😮 Then he got back up and started running after this girl like hecka fast. Thats when I said, “Oh heck no! I had started to drive towards them when sister G asked, "what are you going to do if he starts attacking her?" I said, "I don't know-run  him over!"...  But in the end
he just jumped into a car and she got in and they drove off... super shady stuff! I love Topeka!!

While I was in Abilene, Sister Southwick (one of my STL's/best friends) taught me how to use a prayer journal. It is the coolest thing
ever and has helped me so much!!! What you do is you say a prayer like normal but then in the middle, you ask a question and then stop praying to write what you feel impressed to say in a journal. It has helped me receive a lot of answers to prayers, questions, and worries. I love it!!!

Well, that’s my week! I love you all so much!
Sister Magda

P.S.  Sister Gillespie had me dress up in all of my clothes and model!  I know.  Me.  I've come a long way!!!!