Monday, February 24, 2014

The Closest Thing to Christ 2-24-2014

This week has been a roller coaster. I will just throw in some stories and talk as I go. First off, I figured I would quickly describe my living arrangement. I live in an upstairs apartment about half a mile from the ocean. The stairs are crazy steep….and they have holes in-between each one. Pretty much, one day I will die. I will stumble out of bed to go running at 6:30 and I will fall right down them. I look like I’m drunk whenever I go up or down because it’s either way early or late and I’m way tired. Good thing stair climbing style is not a qualification for missionary service We eat every night with a family from the ward and they feed us great food. In fact, it’s almost too good because I just overeat and then I have to try and run harder. This mission used to be known as the Carlsbad 30 (you would gain 30 pounds) ….great right? Good thing they changed it to the Carlsbad 30 (we all have to run 30 mins every day) I finally bought a beautiful fluffy comforter and pillow. Now it feels like home. We do not run on the beach….we do not touch the sand ever. We run up a hill and by a golf course. So we got bus passes! We are being brave and trying out public transportation. No missionaries use them in our mission and we had to get special permission to try it out. The first day I talked to a crazy man and a born again… that was kinda discouraging. It is really hard to teach and talk on a bus because no one wants to listen. They are all tired and listening to music or whatnot. But that will not stop me because a bus is a perfect opportunity for me to make a quality contact. They are almost forced to listen to me for longer than 30 seconds. I changed my attitude and approach and just was trying really hard to share the gospel. Then a miracle happened! Something I had been hoping for since I got my call in September happened! I got to teach a man in sign language! Yes, that is correct folks, I said something to him and he pointed at his ears and said no. I about died with happiness as I started waving my hands around going, I sign I sign!!! I started signing to him and learned about his family and background. Eventually I told him I was a missionary and I gave him a Book of Mormon. We had a twenty minute lesson purely in sign. I got all his information and ASL missionaries are going to teach him. It was a wonderful experience and I now I love my buses so much. Embarrassing moment: We all know I could probably fill up the whole page with these, but I’ll just stick in a few. We were street contacting and we went up to a man and starting talking about the Book of Mormon. He was clearly from a different country and he said he would let us come back to teach him a lesson. I guess I forgot that people from different countries don’t always just speak Spanish. Whoops. In short, I invited an Indian man to take the lessons in Spanish. My companion looked at me like I was crazy and then fixed the situation. I do actually know the difference between a Spanish accent and an Indian one but in that moment my brain failed me. I just wanted to be as helpful as possible! It was pretty sad though. I went on an exchange and was in the singles ward! So fun! The girl that we ate dinner with went and got herself engaged that night! Does it get crazier? That means her last dinner as a single unattached women was with me. Fitting I suppose since missionaries are both single and unattached. Well I mean we are attached to the gospel but that’s different. We had a zone conference this week. Something that was said was very powerful to me. The AP was talking about how we come in contact with so many people every day that don’t have the same knowledge as us. He said: You might be the closest thing to Christ they ever know. Think about that for a minute. Think about what that could mean. It hit me really hard that I am representing Christ everyday to people that might not really know Him. I must prepare myself to be the best for those people. I need to be more like Christ so that when they see me, they know and understand Him better. How sad it would be if I was not acting in accordance to my Savior and that is the image of Christ that they take away. May we all strive to be a little bit better because we are all the closest thing to Christ that some people will ever know. If we just let His light come through us, we will have shared Him and shown them what it means to have a loving Savior and Redeemer. Some days it is really frustrating but I know that as long as I am walking with God, all will be right and all will be well. Love, Sister Huber

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Carry on the work 2/19/14

Hello, So this week we had a crazy lesson with K. We taught revelation and tried to focus on Baptism. What happened instead was a whole lot of concerns came out. That is good! Then we can address them and help her. I can’t wait to see where she will get to this week. It is hard because some of the questions she asked are really hard to answer. They take a lot of faith to live and a lot of faith to accept. I am learning that faith is always going to be required because some of the commandments will always be hard for us to totally get. We have to trust that God knows best and that He loves us enough to only give us things for our benefit. I have lots of thoughts, questions, concerns and feelings swirling around in my head from this week. There is so much sadness in this world. Some days I feel like it is all around me. I am so grateful for the Atonement and for a loving God who can heal sadness. It seems to me that every marriage out here is broken. It breaks my heart. I have visited so many families who are hurting and suffering. The amount of divorced women is really high and the amount of single moms is really high. I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ can heal all pains and give hope to all. I am grateful for my knowledge and the chance to try and spread some of that joy with these people who need it so much. On Valentine’s Day we heart attacked some of our investigators doors. It was so fun! It really has to be love that drives your missionary service. I love these people and that allows me to feel the spirit and try and help them come closer to Christ. I know I am becoming such a stronger person through this mission. We were teaching about the word of wisdom and I was able to bear my testimony on obedience and allowing God to bless us through acting in faith. I feel such a powerful spirit when I bear witness of things I know. I have really focused this week on becoming consecrated and giving up everything for God. I am trying to take His will upon me and only think of the things He would want. I have seen Him bless me for my efforts and I just want to be better and be more like Christ. I hope I can continue to learn how to think like Christ would and act always in accordance with God's will. I have gotten blisters from walking 8+ miles a day, sun burnt, been freezing cold, rained on, cursed at, threaten, and on and on, and quite honestly, I have never been so happy. To all who say no, thanks for sending me on to the one that will say yes. To all who are doing this same work or their own version of this work, I say carry on! Smile. Be cheerful and do all you can do so that God can show forth His power through our meager efforts. I sure don't know much, in fact I really don't know anything, but I do know that God loves me. I know that He loves all those broken families. I know that He loves all those people who feel lost or alone. I know He loves all His children. And when I walk in His footsteps, I am qualifying myself to one day stand in His presence. I am grateful for the journey and for the chance I have to help others on their path. I love you all! sister Huber

Friday, February 14, 2014

I will go. I will do. Because I know. 2/10/14

Hello all! So update from Del Mar. I love, love, love the ward that I am working with. They are all so fantastic and really willing to help with the missionary work. That makes it so nice to find people to teach with. The families are really strong and it makes me want to have that kind of family some day. I know that this mission is preparing me to be ready to have a family and raise them in the church. I think about that a lot when I am getting tired or sick of knocking doors. I realize more than ever that all I really want in this life is to be a mom and have a family. I know in order to get what I really want, I have to be willing to learn and grow and trust in God. It makes me so sad because there are sooooo many broken marriages and single moms that we visit. I just can't even describe the pain that I have already seen and felt from these women who lost so much. I am so grateful for my family. I know how rare it is to have a family, all active and strong in the church. Being in the field is hard. BUT it is also so worth it and rewarding. I realize I will knock 100's of doors if it means I can find one person to teach. I am in a very rich area so people are rude and don't listen.....every area is hard in its own way. But I love it!!!! I just feel so good and happy when I'm talking and teaching.(we also have some apartments which are like gold to us) I am so lucky because we have people we are teaching. This Sunday my investigator K came to church with her little 2 year old E. Her daughter is having surgery today and she was so worried for her. She is a single mom and I just love her to death. We offered her a blessing and she willing accepted. It was such a spiritual moment as I got to witness the proper authority of God blessing a child and her mother. She is really moving forward and I can't wait to keep teaching her. We have been struggling to find out her real concern and issues with the gospel. She is struggling with priesthood but also something else. During the blessing I just prayed to know what she was feeling and what she was worried about. I got an answer and I now know what she is feeling. I can't wait to find a scripture and lesson that will help her overcome her fears. I know God will always give us what we need in order to best help His children. We got dropped by another investigator because her aunt won't let us come. It is so sad because she is not really taken care of and has a hard life. I guess all I can do now is pray. Another lady is from Germany and is 87, she is so cute and just talks and talks. We taught the Plan of Salvation and she soaked it up. We had a two day streak of very mean rude people. Every door we went to or every contact we made was negative. I was really thinking about that and I decided to really try and have the spirit and smile always. We went contacting last night and miracles happened! We got three return appointments and lots of good conversation. I know that the people I talk to can see my happiness and that it makes them want to learn more. I have decided that every door that slams in my face will simply make me smile bigger at the next one. Nobody can take away my joy and the hope I have. One guy answered his door and told us he was a love pastor......he was crazy and was just telling us how beautiful we were compared to the elders.....we told him that God loved him and then we left. We get some good laughs out of people like that. One appointment was with a couple who were awful. They just got us in and allowed us to talk for about five minutes before they started going crazy and telling us how wrong we are and how we are mislead by the devil. I could just feel the spirit running out of the room. I just really wanted out. Some people are really just not ready to hear. D&C 123:16-17 I know that when I am cheerful, God is able to pour out His spirit and to reach forth His hand through me. I know that all of us have the chance to be cheerful, no matter the situation, and that God will bless us for our attitudes. The Atonement is for sin- but it is also for feelings and thoughts. It is every pain and every grumpy day. We must use the power of the Atonement every single day in order to come unto Christ. I love my companion and I am so grateful for her obedience. We are seeing miracles because we are trying so hard. I honestly feel like I have been on a mission forever. But some days the thought of 18 months is kind of overwhelming. I guess I will find the balance soon. Happy Valentine’s Day! I love you all! Sister Huber

White Wash Training! DEL MAR 2/3/14‏

Hello! So first off I will talk about my area. I am serving in Del Mar. It is honestly the most beautiful place you could ever go. I can see the ocean and beach everyday and the houses are incredible. I am constantly cold though :( I live in my coat and tights. I don't even like tights so that is proof of how cold I am.)The ward is awesome and I have loved getting to meet them and start to teach with them. The place does have a rap though for being really hard and low baptizing just because of the money and lifestyle. Bring it on!! Set me free in the hardest area right out of the MTC and I will give it my best effort. It’s been a party. We actually share the ward with a set of Elders. It’s fun because we eat dinner with them so we get to interact a lot. One Elder, Elder Redford reminds me of Jake Hatch. Jake if you ever read this, please know I found your twin (he even looks like you). I just laugh everyday about it. He will do something or say something and I about die. He is a great missionary just like I know you were! Second my trainer is great! She has been out a year and I feel like we are kind of the same person. We have a lot of things in common. She has had a rough go on this whole mission thing, with companions, areas, and personal things. I feel like it’s great for us to be together. She tells me I'm pre-trained and I feel like that's true because I feel like I have been doing this forever. Honestly it all seems very natural to me. I feel like I am giving her a fresh start and she is teaching me the details I don't know. So new beginnings for everyone! Third the area. This area/ward hasn't had sister missionaries for three years. That is a long time! We are white washing (meaning neither of us knows the area) and opening it for sisters. I know without a doubt that God has been preparing this place for miracles. I can just feel it. There are so many single moms or women that the Elders can't teach. I feel so honored that I got chosen to be the missionary who gets to start it all out. I don't know why it is me but I do know that God gave me this place. I was praying one night and just thanking Him for all the people that the sisters can now reach and teach and I felt the spirit very strongly. I don't want this to be taken wrong, I know a large number of missionaries could do just as good a job here and that it is all about God, but I heard myself saying the words: Thank you for saving this place for me. As soon as I said that I got a confirmation that it was true. God saved this ward for me. I know that the reason it was so important for me to come on my mission now and not wait another semester is because God has been preparing this place and needed me to be the one to help move the work forward. I have a testimony that God knows how hard things are for us and He will always give us more blessings then we can imagine for moving forward when it is hard. Leaving for a mission was the hardest thing I have ever done. I had to give up a lot and really trust in Him. I know because I did that and I followed the promptings and answers I had received, He in turn is now trusting me to find teach and baptize in this special area. I proved to Him I would always try my best and so in turn I got some of His best. It is a very humbling situation and I just hope that I can be the best possible vessel for His spirit so that I can do what He has prepared me to do. In the last week, I have been able to bear testimony to people of things I only know because of the hard times I went through growing up. God really does give us trials to move His work forward and prepare us. We just have to be willing to learn and then to keep looking to Him. Never doubt in the power of the Atonement and a loving Heavenly Father. One special moment I will share with you is about Maribel. The first night I was in the area I was going through the area book and looking at potential investigators. Out of the whole list of them I picked one name, Maribel. I just felt like she is someone we should visit. I didn't know anything yet about how missionary work really works but I knew that we needed to see her. We went over one evening and knocked on her door. She and her boyfriend answered. They were eating dinner and invited us in. Her boyfriend has a brother who joined the church many years ago so they knew about the church. Maribel has cancer and is dealing with everything related to that. The LDS brother had brought the elders by to give her a blessing earlier that week. When we were talking to her she mentioned the blessing and said that she felt so much better after it was given. Her swelling had gone down and her sadness went away. We gave her a Book of Mormon and asked to come back and teach the lessons. The spirit was so strong in the room and I know all present felt of it. She accepted and we set up an appointment to return later that week. When we went back next we were able to teach her the restoration and testify of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. My companion let me be the one to relate the first vision and after we asked her if she thought it was true. She had tears running down her face as she answered our question and said that she believed it was true. She said I know that happened. It was a very special moment and the spirit was there as we told her that God understood all her pains and sufferings and that she could find peace through his gospel. I will never forget that lesson because it was the first lesson I ever taught in the mission field to an investigator. What power I felt when I let the spirit speak through me. I have a very deep love for Maribel and I cannot wait to see where we can take her. Sister Huber p.s. Please send me written mail! p.p.s. Seth get stoked! Missions are RAD (see I now talk like them) p.p.p.s. It is not just a dream. It is really really hard but there is enough good (see above) to make it all worth it. Just to be real with y'all