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Sister Kaitlyn Beard "Now therefore stand
Washington Vancouver Mission and see this great thing,
2223 Northwest 99th St which the Lord will do
Vancouver WA 98665 before your eyes."
1 Samuel 12:16

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Week 26

Dearest Family,
Well this week has been all over the scale!
We started off the week not too well. Nothing serious just not well. Anyway on Tuesday we went to visit this guy from the ward who use to be in the bishopric and now isn't active. Well he seemed nice enough till we asked him his story and then couldn't escape for like an hour and a half as he told us his story which turned into how he is completely on the other end of the scale and is anti-Mormon and anti-religious. When we finally managed to escape we walked away righteously angry. I think of how Jesus dealt with the people in the temple who were selling things and defiling the temple. We walked away from that at quite a brisk pace and once we were down the road our conversations rapidly developed. This isn't the first time we've met someone in this sad state. Nor will it be that last. However, I am becoming disenchanted with their reasons. They are all the same and they have each become the same type of person in a way. It is my belief that there are many men who fall away from the church who waste away. Men are suppose to be leaders and actively engaged in the community and with others. And yet there are quite a few who fall away and become weak and full of excuses. (I'm not saying women don't do this I am just focusing on the men part today because we've found a couple lately and they fit this type somehow). It makes me sad that these men sacrifice their potential for trivial matters. They truly haven't sought the companionship of the Holy Ghost as they ought to have.
Well on the other end. We were out tracting on Wednesday-which normally we have district meeting so this was pretty much a miracle! Well we came to a house of a really nice lady. She pretty much introduced us to her super nice family. The Scott family! And we had like an hour and a half visit and they invited us to stay for lunch and go swimming.... um.. I guess at some point we will have to tell them missionaries don't go swimming but right then I was just like what? well they are super awesome. They are really good friends with the Cup family in the 1st ward. The mom Kim agrees with like everything we say but then says 'no' she doesn't want to do it but yes she wants her dear sweet son who is 25 to go to church, and read the Book of Mormon, etc. She actually wants him to marry a 'Mormon girl' she told us. Anyway we are super excited about their whole family. They are SUPER awesome! And the best part of this whole thing is they aren't flakey! YYYEEEESSS!!!! Tim then 25 year old son and Sam the 11 year old daughter said they would come to church on Sunday and they came! We've taught them nothing and they come and they will come next week too! I am just stoked! And they came earlier than half the ward and have the greatest respect for church. Which I wish everyone at church had.
Sorry I will side track to church for a second. So here we are with two people at sacrament meeting which we haven't had anyone at church since Don got baptized! We are super excited. Well then the first talk the Brother starts talking about polygamy in his family. Then the second talk the Brother starts talking about pottery and NEVER relates it to the gospel! I was really praying at that point and wanting grab my face in shame! But then this distinct and natural thought came to my thoughts "What do you want them to hear?" and then just as it came it was answered "Nothing. Just feel the spirit." That taught me a valuable lesson. As missionaries we really want people to have a good experience at church. But I forget that the only thing we really want people to feel at church is the spirit. God works with us unperfect people all the time. He's got it in control. Valuable lesson.
So guess what? Sue got called to be our second ward missionary!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We've been here for 3 months and two weeks ago we got our first sister ward missionary FINALLY. And then this week we got Sue! It's crazy. 3 months ago I remember when we first saw her when we were out visiting with Pam Howe. Did I even imagine she would be our long awaited ward missionary? No way. But boy am I glad she is! I can't tell you how excited we are! And how excited she is! She says "I've waited 14 years for this! I thought for sure I was never going to get a calling because I am too old." She is just totally excited. Willing to clear everything for us. (which doesn't make her husband very happy so we clarified with her our expectations so he should be good with it now:)
This week I decided I don't ever want to feel like I finished my mission. I don't want to every feel like I did enough and it can be over. I want to be a missionary forever even if I can't be a missionary full time like this forever. There is no greater happiness than in the work of the Lord.
This week the Scott family asked us if there is pressure for us to serve missions even though it is 'voluntary'. I thought that was an interesting question. And if you want to know what I feel it is this: even if there is extra pressure to serve I think it's good! Serving a mission is the best thing I have ever done. I wish that everyone could serve! A lot of members tell us they admire us. They could never do this. Well I kindly say thanks but I don't think that is true. Maybe once in a blue moon there is someone who is just cut out to be a missionary. But in every other case normal people struggle to BECOME a missionary. This is a becoming not an already existing condition. Anyone can serve because anyone can become what is necessary to be a missionary through relying on God. It's hard. But it's possible through him.
I had a dream this last week that two elders who had previously worked in this area came and told me that this area had changed their lives. That no other area in their mission had changed them as much as this area. I know it was a dream but it's got me thinking that  actually ya. This area has changed me a lot. And maybe it's not a perfect area but it sure is a perfect area for me to learn a lot of things that are changing me forever. I am really grateful for this area. And for all that I will continue to learn!
This week we have been really trying to follow the spirit! It has helped us find some people and helped us serve some people. We are learning a lot about the spirit. We got to teach a lesson in relief society and the thing in that lesson are amazing! It talked about how there are people who aren't strong in their faith because they have never received a witness from the spirit. And so when they encounter anti things they are easily lead away. It seriously is SO true. And how important is the spirit in our everyday conversions!
Two amazing service things this week. We were driving and saw sweet Irene carrying her groceries. Having experienced carrying groceries and having it cut of your circulation at college we pulled over and ran over to rescue her that last little bit to her house!
Then another day we talked to the Comcast guy. He was super stressed. They were SERIOUSLY understaffed. Well he also through in that he hadn't had lunch. Well as we were driving home a bit later we decided to call Brother Hamblin and send him on an odd mission. Luckily he was willing to just drive around in the general location to find the Comcast guy named Ian and then go buy him a sandwich:) He called back to report that he left Ian with a huge smile on his face. Oh that made us SUPER happy! Ah I love it!
So Friday is our weekly planning day where we spend several hours planning our appointments, lessons, etc. (for more info look at Preach My Gospel chapter 9 Using Time Wisely). Well that is also the day transfer letters come. We decided to spend a longer time planning and get all our records up to date and clean up some of the stuff the Elders had left that hadn't been done. So we did and got pretty organized so we could even be doubled out if that was what the Lord wanted. Well we really felt Sister Major was leaving and I was training. But we went to the mailbox and...... EMPTY! WE HAVE ANOTHER TRANSFER TOGETHER HERE! Why the thoughts that didn't come true! Our idea (though probably not right) is that that is what would have happened if we hadn't been praying since we arrived for 6 baptisms before either of us left. Well we have more time granted for our faith to work. So we will see. But oh we are SUPER excited!
We got another surprise! The 1st ward sisters are moving in with us! The Thomas's are kind of unhappy that all of a sudden all the missionaries are out of their house for no reason. But ya. We've been trying to clean out the office room in our apartment for them. We never did get to that room when we moved in. But the Gilberts called us and we arranged for a bunk bed and have it clean and ready for them to move in.
Another cool thing. The first ward sisters hooked us up with this kid who came to their ward last sunday who is actually in Deer Island (so our area). Well we called him and he WALKED from Deer Island to church and back! I don't even know how far that is. Maybe 17 miles? I don't know. Anyway he is a recent convert of about a year. He is 22 and super stellar. He's fallen out of the habit of church and so we are going to start working with him and teaching him the new member lessons. And hopefully kick him out the door on a mission! I think he should totally go! I love missions! they are the best! His name is Launi  by the way. The one thing was... we brought our favorite sister Emily Ferrin who has been home from her mission for about 5 months. Well... then they went on a date that night... then they sat by each other at church. Man! My friend in Russian just wrote about doing the same thing and warned about that well... We won't make that mistake again hopefully! :)
It's funny. I hit my 6 months mark tomorrow. Let's see. 6 months ago I was.. packing? Wow Mom no wonder you were so stressed. Maybe I should have packed earlier :)
Well I love you all so much and I am glad that you had a good week! I love you so much! You guys are seriously the best! Well I love you!
Love,
Sister Kaitlyn Beard

I think we will take this "no trespassing" sign seriously...

Our wonderful little reading group. Sister Major, Don Jr., James, Don Sr., Me.

We like to play music!

Volunteering at the fair. Us and President Thomas, and his sweet Hawaiian friend.

We volunteered at the fair and Sister Major was SUPER happy. Except she was sad because they have steers and there were only 5 there. Sad day!

Sister Major cooking!

We went to a dinosaur museum in Portland last p-day

Us with the Thomas. President Thomas thought it would be fun to have a picture of us in our picture... haha! :) "Be happy" as he would say.

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