Monday, February 24, 2014

Amber Ltr: 2014-02-24

Subject: Collins Hill!!
February 24, 2014
Hey family!!

Thanks for the email! It sounds like y'all had a great week! And holy cow Jace you are a stud!!! I'm so glad that you had a fun time! And Brooke you looked beautiful too!!! No I didn't get your letter before I left. I am way sad about it but Sister DeBry will get it forwarded on to me, it might just take a while to get here. I did get Uncle Layne's talk, which was incredible, and your valentines package! Haha I was laughing so hard over those notes. They made my day! I love you all! And Sister DeBry said to tell you thank you for hers :) We had fun reading them all!

Thanks for passing that on about Karl! That made my day :) He is seriously the greatest! I miss him a lot. But Sister DeBry will take care of him and told me that she would keep me updated. He is in the middle of his divorce right now. He wants to try and work it out, but she just won't listen or respond at all. It is really sad. He still loves her and still wears his wedding ring and everything. But I really think that the Gospel will help him through this hard time and hopefully will help to soften his wife's heart. He is golden.

Tell Sister Welch and Sister Adams hi for me! I am working on a letter to Sister Adams. She is so sweet to keep writing me. I love hearing from her and it always makes my day to get those letters! Give her a big hug from me! And that is crazy that Bro Welch isn't our home teacher any more! He was so great! Do we still get popcorn? haha I'm mostly kidding. 

So I am now in the Collins Hill ward in Lilburn stake, which is right next door to Roswell. It took about 45 minutes to get here from my old area. My address is: 2910 Buford Dr Apt 924, Buford, GA 30519. My new companion's name is Sister Brooke Webster. She is from Gilbert, Arizona. She is really cute and I like her a lot. She got here the transfer before I did and just came out of a trio. One of her old companions is from Tahiti and just finished her mission. The ward absolutely loved her so there are some big shoes to fill. But I am excited to work here and with this ward! It is really different than Webb Bridge, but everyone I have met so far has been great. It is really weird not knowing everyone and the area though. I feel like I am a new missionary all over again but it will come. I just need to be patient and work hard. 

They just had a baptism the Saturday before I got there and they transferred their other top investigator over to the Dacula ward so there is definitely a lot of work to be done. But we have found some incredible people to work with who have a lot of potential. There is this one man named Mike who we went and visited on Friday night. His wife was inactive when they got married but has since come back to church and went through the temple this weekend! He has taken the lessons before but had issues with the word of wisdom. But he committed to stopping today and wants to be baptized and receive the Holy Ghost! I really don't know what to do after teaching the Plan of Salvation to people because we never got past that point in Webb Bridge so I guess we will see how it goes! But I am really excited :)

We also found a family called the Dunns. The elders from Dacula accidentally tracted in our area and set up a return appointment with them but then they passed them over to us. With the snow storm last week, they weren't able to make the appointment so we stopped by the day I got there. At first they said that they were busy but then they changed their mind and let us in. We were able to share the restoration with them and the blessings of having a modern day prophet. The Spirit was really powerful as we shared the first vision and the blessings of living the gospel. They were really receptive to everything and want to continue learning more! The parents are Cory and Patricia and they have 3 kids: SheaShea (14), Cory (12), and Coco. All of the kids stayed to listen to us too :)

Well that about wraps up my week! It has been a good one. But thank you for all of your love, prayers, and support. It means the world to me and I couldn't do it without you! I love you all!

Sister Bedke

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Amber Pics: 2014-02-18

Sister Debry, Amber, Karl

We received this picture from Karl.  He is one of Amber's investigators.  We had the below email exchange with him.

On Tue, Feb 18, 2014 at 7:55 PM, Karl sent picture:


On Wed, Feb 19, 2014 at 12:34 AM, Kathy wrote:
Oh thank you so much for sending this picture! We have heard so much about you from Amber! She has really enjoyed getting to know you and is so sad to be leaving!

Know that you are in our prayers!
Alex & Kathy Bedke

Date: Wed, Feb 19, 2014 at 8:28 PM, Karl wrote:
Dear Alex and Kathy,

Thank you for your prayers, Please know that Sister Bedke and DeBry have been such a blessing during this trying time and that Sister Bedke is in my prayers as she moves on to minister to others. What a wonderful young lady, she has a heart of gold.

Best regards
Karl -. -----


Monday, February 17, 2014

Amber Ltr: 2014-02-17

Subject: Transfer news is...
February 17, 2014
Hello family!!!

Thanks for your letter! It sounds like things are going good for everyone :) I am way impressed that you sent the letter before midnight mom! So happy to hear that Jace made it to school!  And happy valentines day! I hope y'all had a great one :)

In answer to your questions. I have not gotten Brooke's letter or your package yet but I am excited to get both! Thanks in advance! Haha and we actually did make cookies :) they weren't sugar cookies but they were cute pink valentines ones! haha that is way funny that you guessed that :) We took them to our lesson with Carl and gave some to a couple of members who came on team ups with us. Congrats Ash on being able to speak in another ward! That is way cool and I'm sure you did great! And with the weather, we stayed in all day on Wednesday (our apartment is spotless, you would be so proud mom :)) and had half days on foot on Tuesday and Thursday. It ended up being really good but it is not good for missionaries to be cooped up inside all day. We were going crazy! But it was a lot of fun to spend time with Sis. DeBry because it was our last week together :( Yup I'm getting transferred out of Webb Bridge. We found out early because Sister DeBry is training a new missionary here! She will be incredible and it will be a great experience for her new golden. But I am really going to miss her a lot. We have been through a lot together and I was really really hoping and praying that we would get at least 2 transfers together but I guess the Lord needs us in different places. I am not sure where I am going yet. I am really hoping the call comes before I finish this email so I can tell you before next week. But wherever it is, I know that that is where the Lord needs me. I will miss Webb Bridge and all of the members and investigators here but Sis. DeBry is very capable and I'm not worried about them at all. Which is such a huge blessing!

We had a pretty good week in spite of the snow. We had a lesson with Carl on Friday night with Sister Simon and when we got there, he bought us flowers! It was so sweet! He told us how grateful he was that we were out serving the Lord when we could be having personal nights at home. It was an incredible lesson to top it off. He just went on and on about how much he loved church and how down to earth and real everyone was. He had a lot of questions about the book of mormon and how we view it in comparison to the bible as to which supercedes the other. He was very accepting of our answers and is just golden! I love him and I am going to miss working with him alot. When I told him I was leaving, he said that the Lord needs me to go and help another area be incredible and help them come unto Christ. In his prayer at the end of the lesson, he said how grateful he was for the work that I am doing and prayed that I would be successful wherever I go. That was a big answer to prayers for me and it really meant a lot. We are having one last lesson with him tomorrow night as a really great way to end the area. :) He was in Augusta with his boys this weekend so he wasn't able to come to church. But whenever he is here he is coming.

Taareka is doing ... I am a little worried about her. We had a lesson with her on Wednesday night that went really good and were supposed to meet with her again last night but she wasn't home when we got there and wouldn't answer our calls. We are just praying that something came up or forgot and wasn't purposefully not there but... I think she might be a little scared and is backing off a little. But we aren't giving up on her! She is too incredible. 

Joe cancelled on us again because he got so backed up with work. He just needs to see how important this is and do it! Oh man if only you could just force people to open their eyes! But he will come around.

But a cool miracle that happened yesterday. So when we got to Taareka's complex and then found out she wasn't home we were way bummed out but knew that we were there for a reason. So we called up a couple of our potentials in that area to see if they were around and they weren't so we said a prayer as to what Heavenly Father wanted us to do. about 2 minutes after the prayer, one of them called us back and said his wife had just got home and they wanted us to come over. Their names are Shrikar and Paravi. I know Indian names are a killer. But we met them the same day we met Taareka and were able to leave the Savior's peace and blessings with them. They told us that their home felt like a temple when we were there. We were able to give a really powerful lesson about Christ and His Atonement. Truly a miracle. The Lord is so aware of us and really does answer our prayers!

Sorry that the call didn't come. I will see if I can get a letter out this week, but if not then you will find out where I am next week! I love you all so much! Thanks for the love support, and prayers!
Sister Bedke

Monday, February 10, 2014

Amber Ltr: 2014-02-10

Subject: Best weekend ever!!!
February 10, 2014

Oh my goodness where did this week go?? I can't believe how fast it went by and transfers are next week! What the? When did that happen? I am really really hoping I get to have one more transfer in Webb Bridge with Sister DeBry! We have both been praying that that can happen. Is that an OK thing to pray for? Hopefully... but I guess we will see what happens. And if not, Sister DeBry can definitely take care of everything here but I really want to stay! I love it here :) 

But it sounds like y'all had a great week and a fun time in Idaho! And I LOVE that you are doing a Bedke MTC!! We have a family in our ward, the Castromans, and they called their house an MTC too for Missionary Training Castromans :) But definitely our family should ALL prepare to go on missions, even if they don't end up serving because it will be awesome and is such good preparation for life! But you all should definitely serve missions :)

But this week was really good. During the week was a little slow, but our weekend was crazy! Our car is all fixed and everything, no we didn't have to call the police or anything. The guy was really nice and commented that he was so glad that he hit a Mormon instead of a JW haha. We ended up contacting them and will probably stop by this week or next. You never know :) But while it was getting fixed, we got to go out with the Lilburn sisters which was a lot of fun.

We didn't get to talk Joe this week, dang it. He wasn't home when we stopped by for our appointment and we called him and he felt so bad. He has been swamped at work and completely forgot but we are meeting with him this Friday so that will be good :) But while we were on our way over we got a phone call from this guy who said that he was interested in learning more about our church and had some questions for us. What? That never happens! We both got really excited but after talking with him for a few minutes it became clear that all he wanted to do was argue with us and Bible bash us in the whole "saved by grace" concept, which makes me so mad. Did you run into that a lot Ash? It is huge here. He was a real jerk about it and finally we just had to hang up. He told us the real reason he was calling is that he was concerned about our salvation and wanted to save us from going to hell. Thanks buddy.

But that night we had an awesome lesson with Carl! Sister Simon, a convert from Haiti came with us and it was incredible. He had read the entire book of 1 Nephi! We were able to start on the plan of salvation with him and compared his relationship that he has with his sons to the relationship he has with Heavenly Father. He was really accepting of everything. Sister Simon ended up talking about her baptism and how she had come to know that the church is true. It was so powerful! And he came to church yesterday and stayed all 3 hours!! He seemed so comfortable and the ward was so welcoming and he wants to meet with us again before our normal lesson on Friday! Life is good :)

Have I told you about Taareka yet? I don't think I have. She is an Indian woman that we met the day of the snowstorm. We left the Savior's peace and blessings with her and had a lesson with her last week as well. She has the most adorable 4 year old daughter ever. Her name is Ani and she always gives us these huge hugs whenever she sees us :) I love this family! But we met with them on Saturday evening and talked with her about the identity of God and her role as His daughter. She knew when she was about 12 that there was only one god and has the most incredible faith in Him. But the Spirit was so strong as we testified of His love for her. She really opened up to us and told us how her husband had died 2 years ago. He was her best friend and they loved each other so much. She told us that when that happened, she knew that there had to be more to life than this and that God had a bigger purpose for her in life and that we were there to help to show her that. Oh my gosh it was incredible! Sister DeBry gave the most powerful testimony to her. And she also came to church yesterday with Ani! She said that there was a lot that she didn't understand but that she is excited to learn more and I think she really felt the Spirit and very welcome :) Oh it was just the best thing ever! I love her so much!

Well I think that about wraps up the week :) Thank you so much for all of the love, prayers, and support. It means a lot and I am so grateful for each of you! I love you!!
Sister Bedke

PS I did get grandma and grandpa's package and letter and I got the first talk that you sent, but not the second one yet. Thanks!
PPS SO glad that Jace is doing better! I love you bud! (write me!)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Amber Pics: 2014-02-03

Amber and Sister Debry at Member Home

Amber and Sister Debry in Apartment

Amber and Sister Debry after Atlanta Snow Storm

Amber - A snowman to teach

Sister Debry - A baptismal challenge

Amber Ltr: 2014-02-03

Subject: Snowstorms in Georgia :)

February 3, 2014

Hey family!

Sounds like you had a great week! That is awesome about stake conference! I love the Spirit that is there! It is truly an incredible meeting :) And that the whole family was there for Jace is way awesome. We have such a great family and I am so grateful for all of them! Yes I did get that package, thank you so much! I have loved reading Ash's journal and all of the other stuff! And I am way happy that Ash beat dad at ticket to ride since I couldn't be there to do it :) thanks for keeping him humble Ash!

We had a pretty good week in spite of the "snow storm" yes we were right in the thick of it but we had lots of advance warning. We got a call from President that morning telling us to keep our district meetings short and to be back in our apartments by noon and to just go out on foot. But then an hour later we got a call to just stay inside the rest of the day. So that was kinda weird but it was nice :) we made hot coco and got some really good studying in. And then we were still not allowed to use our car on Wednesday so we were on foot. But everyone was confined to their apartments so a ton of people were home and we found 5 new investigators in one afternoon! We were able to leave the Savior's peace and blessings with a couple of different families which was a really powerful experience. One man we met his name is Carl. He was born in England, raised in South Africa, and moved here about 15 years ago. He has the coolest accent and he let us in to talk for a bit. He had known Mormons before and was always curious how they could be so happy all the time and that he has liked everyone he has met. We ended up talking for about an hour and set up a time to come back that Friday. We were able to have Bishop and his wife come with us (I thought of you and mom, dad, and it was cool being out with them!). The Spirit was so powerful as we talked about the restoration and how the gospel blesses lives and gives us peace and strength to keep going. He was in Augusta this past weekend but he is coming to church next week! He is golden as Ash would say and we are meeting with him again on Friday! Keeping him in your prayers would be greatly appreciated!

We also had a great lesson with Joe this week. We invited him to be baptized! He didn't really say yes or no but it was still a really powerful lesson. He has a lot of potential if we can just get him to turn off the stupid football game and come to church!

We got backed into yesterday. We had just come out of lunch with a lady we had met that week and as we were leaving, this guy just backed into us! Luckily it wasn't very bad, only a few scratches to our brand new car, but we still had to fill out everything with the accident report and get it all taken care of. Apparently we are the 6th missionary vehicle we have had that happened to. Poor Elder Residori (the senior missionary over cars).

Well I am out of time but I love you all so much! Thank you for your support and prayers! I am so grateful for all of you!

Sister Bedke