Monday, November 24, 2014

The One With a Whole Bunch of Exclamation Marks!!!!

This week was AWESOME!!!!!!! So many miracles, so much fun!!!!
Monday- We went to the New Haven building on Yale campus and played sardines. So much fun. The building is 5 stories and has so many random rooms. 
Tuesday- We had our Book of Mormon Webex (online web conference with President Packard) and we read 2 chapters about the Atonement. We also had dinner with the VDM's and guess who read with us!!!!! E! E's little brother!!! So we got to sit there and read with the whole VDM crew and then we invited E to the open house that we were having on Wednesday and guess what??? He said that he had already been invited! The LR boys invited him in band class and he wanted to come. We just about died of excitement. Like... we are super lucky he didn't hear us scream of excitement in the car when we left. 
Wednesday- We did service in the morning which consisted of attempting to peel a bunch of butternut squash... Have you ever tried to peel a butternut squash? No? good, don't try. It is impossible. We saw some at the store this morning and we both shuttered at the sight. Good old Connecticut, making butternut squash and leaves scare me... hahah. 
Then we went to the church to prepare for the open house! It was awesome!!!! Oh my goodness the youth invited everyone that they could! We had 11 non-members there and they were all super interested!!!!And guess who came!?! E!!! Haha we were so excited! It was so much fun to see the youth sharing their testimonies with their friends and their friends being open to it! Then we got home and Sister G had a package in the mail.... it was the Nashville Tribute Band CD that just came out. It is called Redeemer and oh my lanta it is AMAZING. We totally know every song by heart hahaha. 
Thursday- We had dinner with the C's. Sister C is our primary president and she is wonderful. They invited the C's and R over too and we got to have a really good conversation with all of them. 
Friday- District Meeting was hilarious because everyone was sick. #missionaryproblems I had a head cold since Wednesday and so did everyone else. Good stuff. We got to see C, who is a punk hahaha. She was all, "It wont snow here when Sister is here(She calls me sister) It will snow in Arizona! Ahahahaha!!!!" What a punk. She is like 83 and is crazy. We also got to have dinner with the G's and their daughter and her 2 year old son. He is adorable. He gave us hugs and made sure that we had pillows and blankets for bedtime. So precious. They were super excited about our #MBM70 goal which is awesome!
Saturday- We had apartment inspections and we passed... not that that was surprising but it was good haha. Then we had pie with L and we talked about being kind to people even if we have different opinions. I love the quote from Elder Oaks in this past General Conference that said, "You can disagree without being disagreeable," So true! We then went to E's house and we played Uno with MK LR and E. I totally won!  MK invited E to church and E told E to wake him up so that he could come!
Sunday- E was "too tired," so was I, but that is okay ahaha. We had an awesome Sacrament meeting about gratitude and we had 3 non-members come to church! Two of them came because of the open house! So cool!!!! 
So with our #MBM70 goal, the highest amount of baptisms in one month that our mission has ever gotten is 59. Yesterday we had our 63rd baptism for the month of November!!!! 63!!! And the month isn't over! It is crazy how even though our area hasn't had any baptisms for this month, we have still seen so many miracles happen in Madison! 
I am so grateful to be out here, serving the Lord in Madison Connecticut. Thank you for all of your support and love and prayers! 
Pray for A! He is trying to find a way to tell his mom his plans! 
God is good! Be good! 
Sister Alexander
This is the drawing that we received last Sunday, so stinkin' funny

Monday, November 17, 2014

Miracles in Madison

Hello all!!! Guess what? It snowed.
Well... in North Madison it did, not where we live but still snow!!!! Wooohooo!
But, that means that it is cold. And it really is. 43 degrees is the average these days and that is nice weather. I am going to die.
This week was AMAZING!!!!! So many miracles!
Tuesday- We had a Relief Society Thanksgiving dinner and so many Less-Actives came! It was wonderful! I love stuffing and cranberry sauce. The theme was "His Hands" The story given by President Uchtdorf In April 2010.
"A story is told that during the bombing of a city in World War II, a large statue of Jesus Christ was severely damaged. When the townspeople found the statue among the rubble, they mourned because it had been a beloved symbol of their faith and of God’s presence in their lives. Experts were able to repair most of the statue, but its hands had been damaged so severely that they could not be restored. Some suggested that they hire a sculptor to make new hands, but others wanted to leave it as it was—a permanent reminder of the tragedy of war. Ultimately, the statue remained without hands. However, the people of the city added on the base of the statue of Jesus Christ a sign with these words: “You are my hands.”"

Isn't that so awesome?! We all got a pair of gloves and were encouraged to remember that we have the opportunity to serve and help God's children while he isn't here in the flesh. Good stuff. 
Wednesday- We had Book of Mormon night and we read a bunch of different scriptures about why the prophets in the Book of Mormon wrote what they wrote. So stinkin' cool. My favorite is Jacob 4: 3 and 4
"Now in this thing we do rejoice; and we labor diligently to engraven these words upon plates, hoping that our beloved brethren and our children will receive them with thankful hearts, and look upon them that they may learn with joy and not with sorrow, neither with contempt, concerning their first parents.
 For, for this intent have we written these things, that they may know that we knew of Christ, and we had a hope of his glory many hundred years before his coming; and not only we ourselves had a hope of his glory, but also all the holy prophets which were before us."
I made my favorite part my favorite part... I love the fact that in these days, we have to have faith that Christ did come and that he preformed the Atonement, but in their time, they had to have faith that He would! Not only that, but, that prophets like Abinadi say things like : "And now if Christ had not come into the world, speaking of things to come as though they had already come, there could have been no redemption.(Mosiah 16:6)" Where he had so much faith that Christ would come, he just testified as though it had already happened! Oh my lanta, the Book of Mormon is filled with just amazing people with amazing faith! What awesome examples to us now! 
Thursday- We taped a bunch of snowflakes on C's door, beacuse she is always adamant that it will not snow and I am always sure that it will. Then we got a voicemail from her that was all "It is snowing in my hallway and all over my door. I wonder who did that? I think that it was my darling sisters. Thank you." Oh my goodness our hearts melted. Then we went and saw her, after her surgery and she just stared at her door with this cute little smile on her face. #sisterpross. I love her so much. 
Friday- We started our exchange after District Meeting. I went to Bridgeport with Sister M and Sister S came to Madison with Sister G. Oh my goodness it was a BLAST! First off, They not only have roommates(the Spanish Sisters that also serve in Birdgeport) but they also have Elders serving there too! It was so much fun! We went and saw a bunch of families and we had dinner with the M's, who have a 10 year old and a 7 year old. The 7 year loved me. Want to know why? Because I know about Ninjago. We played Uno and he begged to be on my team. So stinking cute. 
Saturday- Sister Mo couldn't sleep, so I woke up because it was FREEZING in the apartment at 5 AM and so we just talked until 7. It was great. Then we went and raked leaves for 3 1/2 hours with the stake president and OH MY LANTA SO MANY LEAVES. Elder D(From my MTC District, and also serving in Bridgeport and from Gilbert) and I both were flipping out. "This is so not an AZ problem" , "In AZ we rake our Dirt to make it look pretty"<-- He almost died he was laughing so hard at that one, because it is true! I got videos and pictures :) Then we went back to our own areas and I missed Sister G! hahaha we both aren't touchy so we were all "Sup" with the whole head nod thing and then the STL's (Sister Training leaders) hugged and were all "First day of school after summer break teenage girl" esque and we were all dying of laughter. Sister G and Sister S had so many Miracles in Madison too! They had an Awesome Family History lesson with A and they were able to get in to see a bunch of people that even I have never met! Woot! 
Sunday- I woke up and felt like I had been hit by a bus. Raking leaves seriously uses more muscles than I think I have ever used in my life. I am still super sore. #wimp haha. We had church and guess what??? A stayed for all 3 hours!!! We were so excited!!!! Woohoo! We also went out tracting around the church to invite the neighbors to the open house that we are having on Wednesday and it started to snow/baby hail on us. It was AWESOME! I did a happy dance. Then, we had dinner at the MP's and their daughters drew us pictures of us... HILARIOUS. Oh my goodness, we were dying. I forgot to take a picture of them but next week for sure! 
And now we are here! It was such a wonderful week! Gah! I love it here! OH!!!! And guess what!!! So far, this month the mission has had 39 baptisms!!!! Gah! Can you believe it! Well you better because Miracles are happening! Oh!!! and guess what else? As of Sunday, I have been out here for 4 months! Can you believe it?! Seriously, the best 4 months of my life. God is good and He loves each and everyone of us!
Be good! Write me! 
Sister Alexander
Picture1-Elder D, Me, Elder W and Sister M
Picture 2- Elder D  jumping a part of the giant pile of leaves. Seriously. So many leaves. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Fear Not.

The Lord is Hastening his work!
You all probably hear that all the time but what does it actually mean?
For me, it means that now is the time. Heavenly Father has put everything into action so that we, right now have quite honestly too much to do! Like I said last week our mission has the goal of 70 baptisms in the month of November. We have 16 thus far and we still have 124 scheduled this month! I love this work. The people here are so prepared to hear the gospel! It is happening!!!
This past week we did a lot!
Monday- We went to the mall with some Elders from our Zone. They are obnoxious and they were looking for "Man uggs". Yeah...
Tuesday- We had a lesson with S and L! We talked about the Restoration and prayer. Speaking of prayer, pray for them! They are so close to seeing how important the gospel is!
Wednesday- We had interviews with President Packard. He is seriously the best. We talked about my "hatred for people" and he was so concerned as to why I used to dislike them. I explained my obnoxious brain and conversational and social anxieties and he was all, "Well that is why you don't like them! They make you sick!" Yuppers haha they sure do! But then he introduced me to my new life theme. It comes from Moroni, which is the last book in the Book of Mormon. 
Mormon 8:16 "Behold, I speak with boldness, having authority from God; and I fear not what man can do; for perfect love casteth out all fear."
Isn't that the best?! Gah! It just speaks right to me! I think that one of the best things about being on a mission (Personally, not for every other reason that has nothing to do with yourself) is how well I am getting to know the scriptures. Pay attention in seminary! I didnt and I am behind ahaha... yeah. We also had Book of Mormon night and a lesson with A. We found out that he is inviting his friends and coworkers to church. Go A!

Thursday-We had dinner with the P's. We got to talk to their whole family and we got to give A the study journal that I made for her. We talked about personal revelation and praying with a question in mind. It was great. 
Friday- We had District Meeting. Sister G was in charge of the Get to Know You question so she asked, "What Disney character is your companion most like?" I said that she is like Kuzco from Emperors New Groove, because she LOVES alpacas and llamas and she hates being hugged and touched. "No touchy" ahahaha She said that I am Rapunzel from Tangled (Duh) Because I am artsy and random and innocent. "I am a terrible human being." Good stuff. We also had dinner with the VDM's(E's Family) and E, E's Brother hung out with us! He talked! It was great. He is JUST like Brodie and Corben mixed together. 
Saturday-We went up to Higganum and visited as many people that we could up there.  We then had dinner at the Y's home. They have 3 boys and a little girl. So much fun haha, Always an adventure over there!
Sunday- We got to see S, and we had dinner with the Y's clan which is pretty much a Caldwell and Alexander reunion mashed into one. It was hilarious. Then we went to Young Women in Excellence. This ward is co cute! They give their Young women temple slippers when the get their medallion. So smart! 
Yesterday(Monday) We went to the Zoo and I let everyone else email before I did so I had no time haha. 
I love it out here. Pray for A and everyone here! 
Sister G is awesome. We are so alike it is hilarious. I am pretty sure that if I had been born more sporty and less nerdy that I would be her and vice-versa haha. 
Be good!
Also, If you ever run into David Archuleta, tell him that a bunch of missionaries in New England are in desperate need of a white handbook approved album. Just saying. 
Sister Alexander

Monday, November 3, 2014

Goals and Ghouls

Hello!! How are things?!
I hope that this post finds you all warm and cozy...because it is cold here! Boy oh boy am I in for a treat this winter. It has been about 40-50 degrees this week with a crazy rain storm on Friday and Saturday that had the possibility of being snow! But it wasn't...dang it. Oh well, all in due time right?
Here's what has been up!
Monday- I finally got a bunch of winter clothes. I got a pair of boots and some long sleeve shirts. Oh...and a cat shirt...yeah. We also had FHE with one of our Less-Actives and her son. We talked about the different things we can do to remember Jesus along with a little visual thing with rubber marbles and water. He loved it.
Tuesday- We had a follow up lesson with A, and he said that he will pray about a baptismal date that is before the end of the year, but, "No promises."...bah. It is okay, he is awesome and loves the gospel. He just wants to be sure.
Wednesday- We went and did service! I love working at the soup kitchen! People get so excited when we walk by and you hear, "That is the Sisters," or "Hey, it is the Sister Missionaries!"
Ahhhh we love it!
Thursday- We went and saw C and the O'N's are reading Parables and some of them are hard to follow! We definitely have been studying Parables more often now!
Friday- OH MY WORD. Friday was probably the best day ever. First off, we weren't allowed to be outside of our apartments after 6:00 because of the trick-or-treaters. Safety and stuff. We were at Zone Conference from 7:30 AM until 7:30 PM and it was glorious.
Saturday- Ward Halloween Party. We brought home more candy than we came with. This ward is wonderful and there were some HILARIOUS costumes.
Sunday- We got to see the S's, who are a part member family. Sister S asked us to find videos so that she can help her husband learn about the gospel. We also saw the E's and had dinner with them. They are adorable.
On Friday Elder Lawrence and his wife spoke for a good 5 hours. It was amazing. Zone Conferences are awesome and terrible at the same time. You get so pumped and excited about the work, but, you also kick yourself thinking, "Dang it, why didn't I think of that before??" Yeah. So Sister Lawrence talked about the House of Israel and the gathering of Israel. I learned so much, I can't even write it all out haha. It did, however, emphasize the FACT that I will marry someone in the temple, no exceptions.
President Packard announced that our mission has made the goal to have 70 baptisms. We are so ready. So far we have had 9 baptisms and it is only the 3rd!! The Lord is hastening His work!!
Elder Lawrence gave us a formula for Faith, so that as we work towards this goal we can achieve it.
1) Choose a righteous desire or goal.
"It has to be something that the Lord would be willing to do if He were choosing it. If you choose that you want to win the lottery...good luck."
It should be a desire with a gap. You don't need faith if you are doing something that you know that you can do. You should be able to see exactly where your natural ability ends and the Lord steps in and helps.
2) We have to be believing.
"You have to have faith to have faith."
THIS is my new mantra haha
3) Plead with the Lord.
Always have your goal and a prayer in mind.
4) Commit yourself fully to the accomplishing of your goal.
Do everything in your power to help the cause.
Make a sacrifice to show Him how important it is to you.
"Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven."
5) Know that your faith will be tried.
Work through your challenges.
6) Expect the Lord to perform.
Jacob 4:6-7
6 Wherefore, we search the prophets, and we have many revelations and the spirit of prophecy; and having all these witnesses we obtain a hope, and our faith becometh unshaken, insomuch that we truly can command in the name of Jesus and the very trees obey us, or the mountains, or the waves of the sea.
7 Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is by his grace, and his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things.
"God will NOT permit His work to fail."
I KNOW that through faith, the Massachusetts Boston Mission can get 70 baptisms in the month of November. I KNOW that The Gospel of Jesus Christ changes peoples lives, it makes them happier, comforted and able to return to live with God. I am so blessed to be out here helping the people of New England come closer to Christ. Pray for them, pray for our goal, and pray for me, that I can be bold enough to open my mouth when I am prompted and share what I KNOW.
God is Great, Be good.
I love you all!
Sister Alexander