Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Another week of miracles

Another week of miracles was among us.
When we opened this area President Craven said it was going to take time and that it was going to be difficult. I didn't understand what he meant because my companion and I were both on round 3 of opening areas and then my patience was tested for two straight months. It was rough but God has been blessing us big time all along and has been preparing these people for what they need at this very moment.
Steve the Jewish man is doing well. He had a good time at church yesterday and is fascinated with converts. Some members in our ward know a few Jewish people who have converted and he is dying to talk to them. We met with him last night and he spent 30 minutes explaining how he felt the Spirit but hadn't made the connection yet that that was what he was feeling. We are starting with helping him understand the Plan of Salvation and why there is a need for a Savior. He's so open to it, it's insane. He's more Mormon than he is Jewish.
We are working with a really great part member family right now. The mom is less active and has been for a long time. Her daughter is preparing to be baptized on the 17th. Please pray for them:) The daughter is 12 and the ward has scooped her right up and the YW love her. It was so good to have her at church finally.
OH. Another newly baptized family is the best. They were baptized in January and it was the parents and their 11 year old son. They are seriously the best, (and I may or may not have invited them to come out to Utah when I'm home-and they freaked out, they were so excited--hope that's okay:) anyway. their 18 daughter, that no one knew about is home for a month from school and she came to church yesterday. We met with them last night and talked about how the gospel blesses families and we asked if she was interested in the church or even being baptized and she lit up and just said, yeah. and told us how she had met with missionaries a few times in the past and told them that she knew it was all true. and I was thinking, well why have you not been baptized!? She's so wonderful and so ready for the gospel.
Last week we were knocking on doors in a neighborhood and no one was answering and we met these three men on the street who were fixing the side walk. We talked with them forever about the church and about what we do as missionaries. They were fascinated. None of them ended up living in our area, but we got some solid referrals for other missionaries, and they let us write our names in the cement! So that was pretty sweet. We're permanent in Charlotte. I was way more excited about it than I probably should have been but it was fun. I'll have to send you a picture later when we go back to that neighborhood.
Things are great here! I love being a missionary and I love sharing the gospel! As a mission we are reading the Book of Mormon right now using two different colors and highlighting everything relating to the Doctrine of Christ with one color and Christlike attributes with another. I recommend it to y'all. Just in the last week my studying brain has flipped upside down and it has amazed me how everything can be related to the Doctrine of Christ.
I love y'all! Hope you have a wonderful week!
Sister Webber

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

It's me, Sister Webber

This week flew by. We had Zone Conference on Friday and it was the best. President and Sister Craven spiritually fed us for the day and we learned some real good life skills to take on with us in life after our missions. I plan to make a book after my mission of all the Cravenisms we pick up. There are lots of good one liners.  
Also, we had just one exchange this week. I went with one of the sisters who has an ipad. She said the rest of the mission will have them by November. That's all the update I have on that topic.
We had the best thing happen a few days ago. But it's a long story. I'll try to be brief.
About a month ago we bumped into a guy and a cute little girl in the parking lot of our complex who asked if we were Witnesses and told us he'd be happy to talk about God sometime but just kept going. We didn't get an address or any information for him and kinda just went on with life. The other night we got home from an appointment and our next appointment had just cancelled and we still had 20 minutes before we had to be in but we were already back in our apartment complex. We took a loop around the parking lot to catch people who were already outside but didn't have any success. At like ten to nine I remembered about this guy we had met and remembered the general direction he was headed to his apartment about a month earlier. We were on the second level and a lady was outside taking a smoke break and we introduced ourselves and asked her if she knew her neighbors. She said a name of her next door neighbor that I knew wasn't right. and the name immediately came to my mind and I asked if she knew where Steve lived and she pointed towards her apartment door and went inside to get him. They opened the door and the little girl we had seen with him forever ago gasped and ran out straight towards me and gave me a hug. He looked at us and said, "Of course it's you! Come in."
Basically this man had the most insane 36 hours leading up to us being at his door. He said five minutes before he came he was about to google search "good churches in charlotte" so he could take his granddaughter to church the next morning and asked us, "so where do I have to go to hang out with y'all at church." We gave him the information for church and taught about the importance of church and why we go and left his apartment. Yesterday, he and his granddaughter walked in at 10:55 for Sacrament Meeting. I entertained the 4 year old so he could have complete focus on what was going on. I was trying to read him all during Sacrament Meeting but was having a difficult time knowing what was going on in his mind, I just knew whatever it was, it was a little intense. In all the hustle and bustle between Sacrament Meeting and Sunday School he snuck out but sent a text to us during sunday school that said what incredibly powerful experience it was. He said he was spiritually and emotionally exhausted and that he needed time to pray and contemplate all that went on during the hour he was at church. We set up an appointment to see him later that night and went over with some members of the ward. He talked for 45 minutes about his experience at church. He had been going on about how he didn't know why it all was happening and that he didn't know what God was trying to tell him. (Also, he's Jewish. I forgot about that:)) It was quickly reaching our time to be home and I was getting a little frustrated that we hadn't been able to get a word in while we had been there. So I stepped up to the plate and kind of cut him off. I told him that God had sent us to him for a reason and that it was for guidance and direction that he is seeking in his life and that we were there to teach him about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He went on for another 5 minutes about how transparent I am and that I had something that he wanted.
Inside I was thinking, LISTEN TO ME THEN. But I just smiled and said, well we'll keep coming back because I can promise you this will change your life and when you come to understand and know it for yourself, you'll want to make covenants with your Father in Heaven.
There were some intense emotions running through me, mostly because I had wanted to go in and teach him but we didn't get a word in. But we left on that note with a prayer. 
This is the Lord's work and it is great. I love being a missionary. My life is changing more everyday and I am learning things I feel I couldn't have learned anywhere else.  This is the hardest yet most rewarding thing I've ever done in my life. I love this gospel. I know it changes hearts and lives.
Y'all are in my prayers:) I love you!
Sister Webber

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The best week

So much happened this week. It's insane. It was seriously the best week.
Monday after we finished our preparation day festivities we went to the mission home and had dinner with the new missionaries. Seventeen sisters and ten elders. It was the best. After dinner, President Craven was doing interviews and Sister Craven, us and the Assistants got to sit with all the new missionaries and just answer questions. I loved it. I kept having flashback memories of my first night in the mission. It was so overwhelming and crazy to think that that was six months ago. Five of the sisters left with us that night to come stay at our apartment. On our way back to our place one of the sisters in the back seat said, "Sister Webber, I have a confession to make." I looked back at her in the rearview mirror and she said, I read your entire blog before I came out and the sister sitting next to her said, me too. Apparently the link got put onto a sister missionary page on facebook which gives me a baby heart attack. I have no recollection of things I write. Thanks for being my editor, mom:)
It was the best having the sisters stay with us. I wanted to bottle up all their nervous energy and store it somewhere. The next morning we drove them all to the mission office and did training with them all morning and stayed for transfers that afternoon. It was nice to be at transfers and not be feeling like I was going to have a heart attack thinking about where I was going and who I was going with. I'm hoping I stay in this area for a loooong long time. Pray that I do:)
Tuesday night we had a departing sister stay with us that was leaving Wednesday morning. It was the weirdest thing to think that she was going home. She is the best missionary I've ever worked with. I went on exchanges with her a few times since I've been here and she's the best. I died thinking that I'd be in her place one day. Then I decided not to think about it.
On Friday we had a training with President Wade who was a mission president in California and now works for the MTC and does a bunch of really neat things. He came and the Mission Leadership got together for it. He explained all the new changes with our mission. we're getting our statistics straight for all the tests they're doing:) A district in our mission right now is one of seven test missions (the others have one in the missions in Ogden, Salt Lake, Provo, Tempe, Mesa, Phoenix and Charlotte.) That district has Ipads and they all showed them off at this meeting. It was sweet. Digital area books and planners and all this other crazy stuff. They told us it would be a transfer or two before it would roll out to the entire mission. But it is still so fun to hear about it from the missionaries that have them right now.
wheewwww... and Pineville.
Like I told y'all before, we're focusing big time on our part member families and seeing some wonderful things happen. We are teaching this sweet lady who's daughter is a member. At the end of our lesson the other day we asked her if there was anything we could do to help her (she and her husband have had a few surgeries the last few months and are just having major health complications) and she said, just pray that we can begin healing. We asked if she'd like the Elders to come give her a blessing and she accepted. The Elders told us what a wonderful experience it was when they went to give her a blessing. They said she said she just wanted to know if this is what God wanted her to do in her life. She's reaaaady. I'm real excited about her.
Also, yesterday we had the best sacrament meeting. Sister Jameson and Elder Fowles both spoke and then a young married couple spoke who are both somewhat recently returned missionaries. The wife is a convert to the church and it was all THE BEST. It was all focused on Hastening the Work and they all did such a great job. Also, our Bishop is the best. I could say that nine hundred times. Oh and the Lindsey's. Yesterday was the first time we've seen them since y'all saw them. They were so excited to talk about you. It was great.
Woo baby. I think that's all I can think of for right now. My brain is so overloaded I can't even think straight. I have straight up LOST my memory of anything before this missionary life I'm living. It's the weirdest thing. But it's okay. Kate: Happy halfway. You're the best Ukrainian I know. J: I'm glad you got to meet Scotty. He's the best. Quince: I love you. Write me. Bud: Where you been, son? I love you. Mom: Your email about your calling? The best. I may or may not have laughed out loud in the library. Dad: I love you to the moon and back. Bishop showed me your email yesterday, we had a cry fest together.
I love y'all. I pray for you like crazy. Don't die in the heat:)
Love always,
Sister Webber

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Wooo Baby

What a week! Family. I love you. Thank you for being the best people I ever knew.
We had Mission Leadership Council this week which is always the best. Seriously. It is always such a revelatory experience and the Spirit is always so strong and we're surrounded by such wonderful missionaries who are so inspired. I love it.
We went on our exchanges this week and during both exchanges, miracles happened. President Craven always says to pray for and expect miracles while we're on exchanges with these Sisters and it never ceases to amaze me what great things happen when we are faithful.
The fourth of July was great! Members took all five of us down to the Catawba Indian Reservation in South Carolina for the stake activity. There were a million non members there with everyone so it was great to meet so many people and watch a few fireworks in the pouring rain. We had to be home at 930 but we still got to see a few. It was the best. And shout out to the Brownies, my SC people. It's a wonderful place. I'm glad I can say now that I've been to the great state of South Carolina. :)
Charlotte is growing on me and I'm loving everything about it. You don't come across the same kind of people every day in Utah. All these preachers would make the best members of the church. They're all so passionate about what they believe. Last night we met a preacher while looking for a less active member...he taught us a bunch of what he believed and gave us a few brief moments for us to testify about what we know is true. It was so good. He invited us to come back and teach him about the Restoration after he concluded his nine minute prayer. Nine. Minutes. While we stood in the rain and prayed with this man. It was the best.
I don't have tons of time to write today. But I hope this is sufficient:) 27 new missionaries are coming in today and we get to go be with them and President and Sister Craven and the Assistants this afternoon at the Mission Home. I'm excited to see all the anxious new missionaries. It'll be fun:) All that nervous energy is the best.
The work is hastening my friends. I'm so glad we all get to be a part of it. I love being a missionary. I know our Father in Heaven is so aware of each of His children. I'm so grateful for that knowledge.
I love y'all. Hope you have a great week!
Sister Webber
P.s. I'd love me some letters:) write me.

Monday, July 1, 2013

A week of good

I'm glad you got to visit with the Lindsey's! We talked to him on the phone last night and he brought up ermergersh...soooo whoever told them about're toast. :) I'm glad Youth Conference was a hit dad! You're the best. Happy Birthday to Nonester this week. Tell her I'm so proud that she's turning 40! Love you Non. You're the best:) I hope you have the best 7/7/13 yet. Also, congrats again to the love birds. the pictures are beautiful. I'm glad it was a great day!
This week was one for the books. Seriously. Here we go.
We're working a lot with part member families in the ward and have met some of the greatest people. We met twice this week with a wife of a recent convert who has been through about 10 sets of missionaries. It's like a badge of honor for some people with how many missionaries they can make it through without getting baptized. It's like a game. But she's never met with Sisters so we're thinking we'll be the last set:) She is moving in September but every time we leave her house she says, who knows what could happen before September! She knows it's going to happen. She came to church yesterday and we did a victory dance.
We had an exchange assignment for three days this week which was hectic and heartbreaking being out of our own area for that long but it was good. We went up to the Greensboro area and went on exchange with two different companionships. It was around a 2 hour drive to get there and we had to take our bikes so it was quite a trip.
Side note story: Sister Jameson and I were just driving along on the freeway, minding our own business and bam. her bike falls off of the bike rack. ON the freeway. It was out of a bad movie. Long story short-we retrieved the broken bike and made it safely to our exchange and eventually home by Friday. It was a nightmare. I took a video on the side of the freeway to capture all the raw emotions going on. It's too long to send but I'll have to show y'all when I get home. It's pretty funny.
We share an area with the Zone Leaders and on Friday, after we returned from our hectic three day exchange, the Elders gave us each a blessing. The power of the Priesthood is real. I am so grateful for worthy Priesthood holders and to work so closely with such good missionaries. We've got a good group in the Pineville 1st. Makes me sad that we won't all be together much longer.
On Saturday we went to see a part member family and we were standing at their door waiting for like 3 minutes because we knew people were inside. A man named Edward who doesn't live there came to the door and said that they had just been talking about Jesus and then heard a knock on the door. He came outside and we talked for a while and he expressed how he wanted to become a Christian but he didn't know how and he wanted to become close to God. He kept saying, "I can't believe y'all knocked on the door right when we were talking about this, I don't even live here!" We just kept telling him how God knows him and loves him and knows exactly what he needs and he just cried and cried. Our Heavenly Father knows where the elect are and knows where we are needed. It was perfect.
Later that night we were going to contact a referral and when we were walking up to the house the neighbors who were outside yelled at us to tell us she wasn't home. So we went over and talked to the neighbors, and immediately they asked if we were Witnesses. (If I got a dollar for every person who asks us if we are JWs, I'd have enough to buy everyone some CafĂ© Rio). We cleared up the confusion and explained who we were and why we were there. One of them said, "So you're Jesus' people?" We invited them to come to church and taught them the blessings of coming to church and learning about the gospel. I don't know why a little white girl from Utah feels at home with a bunch of big black guys but the whole time we were with them I was thinking, 'these are my people.' They're the best and they invited us to come back.
We have a bunch of summer sales kids in our ward right now and we had dinner on Saturday with a lot of them. They are the best and they are all returned missionaries. We talked about best practices and learned so much from them.
On our Saturday Mission Leadership conference call we said goodbye to the Asheville Zone leaders, I cried. Today's the official day that they're all gone. Breaks my little heart.
Good things are happening in Charlotte. We're working our hardest and enjoying ourselves:) Being a missionary is the best. The humidity, the bugs, and life is the best. I wouldn't trade it for anything.
I hope y'all have a great week! I love you!
Sister Webber
P.S. I killed my first squirrel yesterday on the way to church. I made it three months in the mountains without killing a possum, groundhog, or any other animal and it somehow happened in the city. I screamed all the way to church. It was the worst.
Also, while on exchange, we ran into a few Jehovah Witnesses and one of them asked one of the Sisters which kingdom she was from and the Sister was like..."Uhhh...Celestial?" I died.