Sunday, June 29, 2014

Angleton Week 3 June 23 2014

Dear peoples!

Satan works too hard. 

Last week I had the mother of all colds and this week I had a huge allergic reaction to a spider bite that made my entire ankle swell up. By the time I slowed down enough to look at it in Relief Society on Sunday it looked like I had a golf ball on top of my ankle bone on the outside of my right foot. It was pretty freaky because usually when my ankle is that size it means that I twisted it or something so at first I was thinking.. "When did I trip and hurt my ankle?.. It doesn't feel like I hurt it.. It just stings.." I gestured to my companion to look at it and, bless her heart, she said.. "Soa(sister in Samoan) is your ankle always like that?" hahah I laughed and said, "not that I remember!" hah

But it is fine now.. just swollen and I am taking allergy medicine. :) These crazy bugs in Texas are just too much. 

Despite the golf ball in the ankle this week was really awesome!! 

We received a media referral for a Less Active from a missionary serving in North Carolina. She said that this was her best friend and she really wanted us to go by and make sure she had a Book of Mormon and invite her to church. So we went by one day and she let us in! We ended up getting to know her a little bit and then her boyfriend came over and we were able to teach him as well! Royce now has a baptismal date and is really excited to keep learning more!! :) It was such a cool experience. 

One of my favorite miracles this week was when we were trying to see a Less active in the ward but we ended up not catching her home. We looked down the street and about 2 houses down there was a lady that was trying to get a huge tool box out of her car. So we went to help her and ended up talking to her a little bit. After a few minutes a 16 year boy named Angel came outside and he joined the conversation almost immediately. It was obvious that he was more interested in learning than Trisha was.. especially near the end of the conversation when Angel asked us, "hey I don't want to sound weird, but can I have ya'll number so I can contact you and learn more about this?" YES!! 

We ended up coming back the next day and he told us how he had just attended a church camp a few weeks ago and he was praying to God that there would be some way for him to learn more and be able to attend a church that was right for him. He said that when he came outside. (the next day after praying btw) he just knew that God was answering his prayer. :) It was such a cool and humbling experience. 

Our Heavenly Father really works through us to bring His children unto Him. I know that this work is true. It has the real saving power called the priesthood and that Priesthood is given to us so that we can bless and help each other on our path back to Him. That authority and power is so important and it is something you can feel.

I love this work!
-Sister Earl

Angelton Week 2 June 16

I absolutely love missionary work and absolutely hate being sick.

This week I caught the most disgusting cold I have ever had. I was coughing up my lungs all week and even lost my voice for a little while. The good thing about this was that I have an awesome companion and an awesome ward so they made sure I had plenty of meds and support. We worked hard this week and talked to a lot of people even though Sister Tauasa did most of the talking. In the end we found 5 new investigators and have 4 baptism dates set! It is crazy how when you trust God he can really work miracles. This is not our work.. we are just the un-perfect, often sickly, instruments that get to participate in this wonder work. He loves me so much that He gave me all that I needed to accomplish my desires despite my setbacks. 

I know this is exactly what he does for each of us. He loves us so much that he will support us in whatever our desires are. He tells us over and over again what the best desires are, but he will never force us to follow Him. He only invites and then supports whatever decision we make. :) 

So last week for P-day Sister Tauasa and I ended up getting done with everything pretty fast and so we went to the church to play games with our Zone. We ended up playing a game called Scatter-Ball. It is basically doge ball, but everyone is against everyone else. We ended up having such a good time that we played that game almost non stop for 2HOURS! haah It was so much fun and we were just loving every minute of it. The only downfall of this was that the next day my companion and I were so sore it was hard to move!!! hah We spent Tuesday and Wednesday trying our best to never stop moving, because when we would sit down and have to stand back up it was almost impossible... as a result we talked to a bunch of people!! haah :P It was definitely a miracle in disguise...

Speaking of miracles in disguise.. 

This week we were visiting a Less active and when we left we had to turn the car around. Well I didn't want to have Sister Tauasa have to get out of the car to back the car up (mission rule) so I decided I would try to make it. We almost made it.. but we hit a pile of leaves and made them go everywhere in the process.... haha So being the upstanding citizens that we try to be we got out and made the pile look like a pile again. This took a good 5-7 mins or so, but in that time our investigator Bea.. (short for Beatrice) pulled up!! She had broken her phone and so we hadn't been able to get a hold of her! We were able to set another appointment and ask her how her reading was going! She is awesome!! If I hadn't have tried to turn around and had the leaf set back we would have missed that opportunity!!    hah we had a good laugh about that one. 

This is Sister Tauasa.. (it rhymes with Mufasa) Tah-wah-sah 
making eggplant chicken and noodles! It was delicious! 

Fun times in the car!! 


We are doing great!!

-Sister Earl

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Angleton/Lake Jackson with Sister Tauasa! week 1

Transfer meeting was so crazy this time around!! First of all, usually the missionaries that are going home in the next transfer are called on to come up and bear their testimonies.. and they did do that. President gave a list to the Assistants and they read off the names. After all of them had borne their testimonies the assistant got up again and said, "Now we will have a testimony from Sister Earl." 

That a a big surprise, but I loved the opportunity to share what was on my mind. One of the biggest lessons I am learning is just how fast people can change. If someone decides they want to be better then they can! It is part of the Atonement that when we rely on Him we can be better and become different. I am learning that I need to choose to believe that people can change. (my companions, my investigators, myself) As long as we are humble, we can do it. :) 

After that I found out that I would be going to the country!!! Angleton/Lake Jackson area is completely green and infested with mosquitoes!! I had 28 bites the first day!! This is the first time I have been in an area of the mission that was not in the city so I am super excited. The funny thing is this is the area that Sister Winger was in before she came to Clear Lake. She was overly excited when I was coming here, but I was pretty excited too because I have met a lot of the people that live here. The people here are very humble and really super nice. We have been talking to everyone and all of them love to hear about our message. We found 5 new AND progressing investigators in the matter of a few days! It is a big change from Clear Lake just because the people there are all lot better off so they generally less excited to talk to us. haha

We have some really cool people and the members are wonderful!! :) I feel like I am more at home here just because of the wide open spaces and the people remind me of Moses Lake!

Sister Tauasa is from Samoa! She is learning English even though she is already pretty good at it. She understands everything I say and I usually gets what she is trying to say even though she has a funny pronunciation sometimes. She loves to dance and sing so we have a fun time together! She wants to learn how to cook American food... so I am trying to think what would be fun to learn... if you have any ideas let me know.

I love it here and I am so excited to see what is going to happen! 
-Sister Earl

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Transfer 10 week 6 June 2

So this morning was transfer calls and I found out that I will be getting transferred on Wednesday. I am not sure where I will be moved to, but I know it will be where I am needed. I am having a little bit of a hard time with this just because I love the 2nd ward and the YSA branch so much!!!!!! I have been here since November and I have really worked hard with these people. I can't imagine being anywhere else.. but I guess I don't have to imagine it because I will be there on Wednesday!

I have been taking pictures with all of my people since I love them all so much. :) 

This is the Nowak family! They are a semi-less active family that we have been teaching and helping to paint the house! They are awesome. I love them so much.

​This is Bishop Brower!! He is the bishop of the 2nd ward and the most excited person about missionary work I have ever met! He is always coming out with us and asking us how he can help more. I love him and Sister Brower so much! His catch phrase is "Catch the Wave!!"

​My lovely YSA relief society!! I will miss everyone so much. I am just glad that we have been able to become so close and some of them will be at BYU in the winter! :) 

​Madeline Rippstein!! She comes with us a lot and I love her!! :) She will be a TA for the anatomy class in the winter that I want to take!! 

​Tony Abquina! The guy who was baptized in the Phillipines by an Elder Earl and has been coming back to church in the 2nd ward! :) He is one of the funniest  and most humble guys I have ever met! 

I am just glad that I have gotten to serve with all of these wonderful people!! There are tons more pictures.. but I know they really only mean a lot to me.. haha :) 

Anyway, I hope ya'll are doing great and always remember that God is there for you! :) 

He works miracles everyday
-Sister Earl

​League City Zone!!! Me and the sister next to me (Sister Taylor) are getting transferred.. and the elder in the lst row with the green tie (Elder Carter) Everyone else is staying!!!

Transfer 10 week 5 May 28

Hello again!

(So if anyone actually was paying attention to the subject of these emails they might be confused as to why it went from transfer 9 to transfer 10.. well I realized I was off a transfer :/.. and it was actually really scary. I might have to stop putting the transfers in the subject area, just because it is starting to get a little too high for my liking.)

Anyway, so it was a really great week! 

If I were to sum everything up I would say.. It was the last week for a lot of my missionary buds (that was sorta sad), the recently reactivated couple the Callahan's' want us to come with them to the temple when they get sealed (they are so awesome), Sharon (a friend of several members living in our apartment complex) is more open to talking about religion instead of avoiding the conversation, and her daughter is always bugging her that she wants to go to church :), Amber is going to be baptized soon, we had like 10 members sign up to come out teaching with us!.. (which has been a slow process...) and things are only going to be better this next week! 

Transfers are next week and if me or Sister Winger get transferred I will be really surprised. We have a lot of work to do here and we are still learning a lot from each other. :)

Lately I have been having experiences were I feel like God is telling me that I need to be more humble. Pride really is a sneaky thing. It can come up in the weirdest ways and it can really only be detected if you are looking for it. As I have studied pride I have begun to see it more and more in my life. I have found that I need to be more humble in my prayers. When I say my personal prayers I tend to get really distracted and not really make them super meaningful.

So I am working on it and I am humbling myself, with the help of Heaven or course.

No tennis today! It has been dumping buckets of water all morning! :P I love this time of year. You never know when the sky is going to open up and drench everyone. :) It is always exciting. I am sure there will be stories next week. :)  

Rachel Goodson comes out with us a lot! She served a medical mission in Ecuador! She is awesome. 

We (Sister Cotton, Sister Taylor, Sister Winger and I) went to a Cajun restaurant with the Kellers and I had Seafood Gumbo! It was not as good as Genikas Gumbo, but it was alright. (oh and you might have noticed the sandwich with about an entire pack of bacon on it.. Oh Texas) :) ... I love it. :)


transfer 9 week 3 Mothers Day May 12






Hey ya'll!

It has been another fabulous week in the lives of Sisters Earl and Winger. I wish I could somehow let each and every one of you really understand my thoughts and feelings about my mission and the gospel, but you are just going to have to try and understand all that from the words that I use. 

Really the gospel is unexplainable. It is something that has to be learned individually and personally. The very real and personal spiritual experiences that I have everyday could be cool to you, but they mean everything to me. God wants to tell us personally what is the truth and what is not. So often we are swayed by the things of the world, because we do not understand how to get pure knowledge and truth from our Father in Heaven. 

That is my very favorite part of being a missionary. I get to help other people head in the right direction so they can know and feel for themselves who God really is. I have heard the phrase, "I am a daughter of God" so many millions of times in my life, but I now can say I know what those words actually symbolize. They explain the very real and intimate relationship that God has with each and every one of His children. He knows me. He understands me and he wants to help me to become like Him.

Do you realize the significance of that statement? Think about it. The most wonderful, all knowing, all understanding being in the entire universe wants us to know him as our Father!! He wants us to pray to Him and to develop a personal relationship with him. He wants us to be close to him and he wants to teach us all that he knows. He teaches us through the scriptures, modern-day prophets, and personal revelation (which revelation usually comes when we are reading the scriptures or listening to modern-day prophets) 

The complete Gospel of Jesus Christ is where we can find the answers and guidance that we need. I know that that gospel is in this church. The church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is where all the doctrine that Jesus Christ taught when He was here is found. 

Isn't that just so cool!!! However, just like I was saying that is a truth that I have come to know as I have studied and sincerely asked God. Each of us need to know for ourselves, because that is the only thing that makes sense. :P 

Anyway, ok I am done with my soap box now. 

Mothers Day was awesome! I got to see my brother on the other computer and my family. :) It was great to see them.. I love them so much! (see picture)

The coolest story this week had to be yesterday evening as we were walking to our apartment. As we were walking a lady got out of her car and started to head for her apartment. Just she came around the corner we started to talk to her. 

Me" Hey how are you doing tonight!?"

She told us she got back from the store since she had to pick up a couple things for her kids. We kept talking and she said that she was Hindu and that she had talked to missionaries before, but that was a while ago and she didn't really think she wanted to learn anymore. Sister Winger and I both knew that we needed to talk to her though, so we asked her about her family and asked her to explain some of her religious beliefs. We had a really cool conversation about her life and a little bit of what we do as missionaries. Basically in a matter of about 5 mins she went from not wanting to talk to us to inviting us to her home any day to learn more about the gospel. She gave us her phone number and gave us a hug when she left.

My companion and I walked away completely in awe of what happened. The spirit was able to work on her because we showed love and respect for her and her circumstances. She felt how much we cared and therefore had a change of heart. I have never seen the Spirit work so quickly and powerfully. It was the coolest thing ever! 

We also met a girl named Unique this week! She is 19 and is not a member of the church, but her mother and 2 older sisters are Less Active members. We invited her and her family to come to the Palm Sunday Celebration a couple of weeks ago and she came! We then went back and started to talk to her this week. She was talking about a bunch of things with work and her friends and somehow we ended up asking her if she had ever been baptized before. She surprised us but saying, "No, but I am looking forward to it"

It turns out her friend in another part of Texas was baptized about 4 months ago and has been sharing her love for the gospel with Unique for all of that time. Unique has listened and wanted to be baptized, but she just didn't know how to ask or what to do. It was crazy! 

We are really excited to see how it not only blesses Uniques life, but her entire family as they see her spirituality grow and multiply. 

Pretty exciting week! 

Hope this one is just as awesome (or even better!) for us and for you too! 
-Sister Earl

Well I also want to say Good Luck to my cousin who is leaving for the Missionary Training Center this week! I love you Kendall! :)

Skyping family!
Julie Katsoff! (YSA)
Tennis fun!
Me eating grits :)

Transfer 9 week 2 May 5

Hey ya'll!

It has been another great week! So many things happen and then I find myself drawing a blank when I come to the computer.. haha 

We had a bunch of Ward activities this week that were really fun. The first thing was a preparedness fair where the community was invited to come to the building to hear about hurricane preparedness, gardening, couponing, nutrition, and then we had a booth on Spiritual Preparedness! It was awesome! We got to talk to all sorts of people from the neighborhood and shared with them how living the Gospel of Jesus Christ can help them to be prepared spiritually for the figurative/ and real storms that come into our lives. We were able to talk to some less active members and even handed out a couple Book of Mormons to the people who came by. It was a great activity. :) 

Then that night we had a Chili Cook Off in the ward!! Everyone brought their versions of chili and we had a contest! It was awesome chili AND we had 10 investigators there! What makes it better was members brought friends and family to us to meet us as the missionaries! It was such a wonderful night. Sister Winger and I were talking to different investigators the entire night trying to keep up with all the people that had come!! 

Sister Winger and I are actually going to go and play tennis with some members and investigators in a little bit so I don't have much time, but just know that things are going really good. :) :) I get to Skype home on Sunday for Mothers Day and I am excited! 

We are teaching more people and we have some baptisms coming up for sure. I feel so blessed to have so much truth in my life. I know that this church is true. I know it is true and nothing can take that knowledge away or make me doubt it. 

Love ya'll
-Sister Earl

1) if you notice we are having pancakes and Asparagus. haah It was an attempt to eat vegetables. It tasted pretty yummy! :P 
2) Jessica Heydorn is a YSA that comes with us a lot! She is awesome and preparing to go on a mission! She wouldn't smile though.. such is life. :P 
3) another temple picture! 
4) Cornbread Club crackers.. they were interesting.