Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Amber Ltr: 2014-05-19

Subject:  Motherhood and Miracles :)

May 19, 2014

Hey y'all!

It is always weird starting off these emails. I try and shake it up so I don't say the same thing every week but here we are. But it sounds like you have had a great week! I can't believe that Court is graduating tomorrow!! I am so excited for you Court and know that I will be thinking about you! Also I loved the family picture :) haha that is so funny! If you wanted to print me off a copy of those pics I wouldn't be mad. Is this the last week of school for everyone?

That was such a cool experience about our neighbors :) Who knew that that would be happening right in our backyard? How often do convert baptisms happen in our stake? What do the missionaries do who are assigned there. Are they teaching anyone?

It was such a good week! Seriously so many miracles happened. On Tuesday night, Sister Webster's last night here, we went over and saw Donna and had a great lesson with her and then we went over to the Horsley's home and Brother Perry met us there. I was really nervous about training and taking over this area and had felt really strongly that I needed a blessing. Brother Perry gave me the most beautiful blessing and it was word for word what I needed to hear. It was really powerful. He talked about how Heavenly Father was aware of the struggles that I had had at the beginning of my mission but that He was proud of me for the work that I am accomplishing and that I have touched so many lives here. I had never told Brother Perry about that so it was a really special experience. I really needed it. The next morning came really early. We had to be in Norcross at 7:30 to drop Sister Webster off and pick up a sister who was going home. We rode together to the mission office and I found out that she is actually my great grandma! Sister Sanders trained Sister Sorenson who trained Sister Haderlie who trained me. I thought it was fun to be dropping her off before I went to pick up my new baby girl :) Sister Sanders is really nice and we had a really good talk. When I got to the mission office, one of the AP's who used to be my zone leader was talking to me for a minute and he told me who my new companion was. He said that her name is Sister Castleton-Rudolph and she has been waiting her whole life to serve a mission. He said that it took her almost a year to come out here because she used to get nocturnal seizures and had to be seizure free for a while before she could get medical clearance to come out here. He also said that she is a little different but is excited to be here and is ready to work. I was really glad that he told me that. She is 21 years old and is from Malaala, Oregon. I think the best word I could use to describe her would be precious. She honestly is one of the sweetest, most innocent people that I have met but she also doesn't have any common sense. She grew up in a very sheltered home and has never used a cell phone before. So that definitely keeps things interesting and gives me lots of opportunities to practice patience and love. She is just excited to be here and is eager and willing to learn. We have done a lot of role-playing to help her with her teaching and contacting and I have seen a lot of growth in her already. I wish I could record what it is like to tract with her :) I really do love her though and I am loving training. It has given me a renewed dedication and a new focus. So life is good :)

So 2 huge miracles happened this week. The first one was with a new investigator named Sam. Sister Webster and I met her last Monday when I was backing out the car and we set up an appointment for this last Friday. We had given her a Book of Mormon and she was reading it. She actually set a picture of the book of mormon as her cover photo for her facebook profile. Her name is Sam Smith if you want to try and look her up. It might be easier to find her through her friend, Sandee Wallace. But on Monday she was asking us about how to join our church and we told her that we would tell her all about it on Friday. We taught her the Restoration and it went so good. She told us that she could just feel the Spirit telling her to join this church. I looked at Sister Castleton and mouthed to her to ask her to be baptized and she did (and did a great job :) great trainer moment) and Sam said yes! It was so crazy and I couldn't believe that it was happening! She is also a little different but very sweet and is really excited to learn everything. We set a date for May 31 but we are going to have to push it back because she got sick yesterday and couldn't make it to church. But it is probably for the best because she doesn't know anyone in the ward yet and we have a lot to go over with her still. But that was a really cool experience :) Prayers that things continue to go well with her would be greatly appreciated.

But guess who is getting baptized on May 31?! We had the most incredible lesson with her last night. Oh my gosh it was so great! She came with us to church but was really emotional during the meeting and wasn't feeling up to staying the rest of the time but we scheduled to go over that night. A member from our ward, Sister Cobian came with us and before we went in we talked about not trying to put her on date that night because she had had such a hard day. I told Donna the story about how we came back in contact with her after she initially didn't want to meet with us and then we listened to the talk by Elder Bednar from this last conference. All of us were just bawling through the whole thing and we talked about how all of the experiences in her life had led her to this point where she was ready to come unto Christ. She was crying a lot as we were talking about giving our burdens over to the Savior and I looked at her and I said, "Donna it's time." She dropped to her knees and began to pray. really pray. She gave one of the most sincere prayers I have ever heard and when she got up she said that she could feel Heavenly Father's arms around her lightening her burden and being yoked with the Savior. It was so cool! And then we talked about how Heavenly Father is ready to bless her with all the fullness of the blessings of being a member of the church and that she knows and has received that confirmation that that is where she belongs. And then we told her that May 31 was the day and she said yes! Oh my gosh it was so cool! She said that she needs to pray about that date for sure because we still have some things to go over with her and she needs to give up coffee still but the date we were originally going to pick was June 7 but then the Spirit told both me and Sis Castleton that May 31 was the day. :) I am so excited for her and I know that the Lord truly has led her to this point and that He led us back to her. I love her so much and I feel so blessed to be able to work with her. Thank you for all the prayers that have been given in her behalf. I know that it has made a big difference.

It really was such a great week and I am so glad that I got to stay here in Collins Hill. I love you all so much and I am so grateful for each of you. Again good luck tomorrow Court with graduation and everyone else on Friday! Have a great week!
Love, Sister Bedke

PS I found out today how easy it is to send pictures so I will try and do better at sending them more often. This is me and Sister Castleton outside the mission office right after I picked her up. It was kind of wind so my hair is a little crazy. Enjoy!

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