June 3, 2013

I almost had a heart attack. The website wouldn’t load! ahhh! I thought I wasn’t going to get to email this week 😦 But hey look – miracle!
 
This week started off really embarrassing. We were out knocking doors and it was my turn. A sweet hispanic lady opened the door, and I say, “hello! we’re missionaries…” and give my whole shpill. She smiles, and gestures us inside! I’m all, “Oh this is awesome! We’re going to teach!” then my eyes adjust to the indoors and I see an Elder begin to rock back in his chair and peer around the corner! AH! It was the spanish elders and they were in the middle of teaching! I was mortified. They laughed and said she didn’t speak a word of English… I wanted to crawl under a rock.
 
I’ve been having really bad headaches for about 2 weeks. I had a migraine last for 5 days… I was miserable. So Sister Crawford (president’s wife) sent Sister Haller and I on a road trip to a chiropractor. It was AWESOME! He’s and LDS guy in Baytown. My back felt sooo good! Oh I miss doing that on a regular basis! He cracked my back at least a hundred times. He was laughing; having the time of his life. And my headaches haven’t been bad! I just get a slight one when it’s super bright outside, so I just try to wear my sun glasses as much as I can.
 
The LDS lady who we do FHE with each week is still meeting with the Johovah Witnesses on Wednesdays… We don’t know how to tell her to stop. hahaha. It’s so frustrating! I started to grill her, “Monica! Do you have a testimony of this church?” “Do you have a testimony of the Book of Mormon?” “Do you have a testimony of Joseph Smith?” She was embarrassed to answer some; admitting she needed to read more of the BofM and develop better faith. Hopefully we got something to settle right in her head.
 
Friday we had our first district meeting with our new elders and sister. It was good… My district leader, Elder Duke, is waaay different than my last one. Elder Viitanen was always a little crazy, tried to keep things light hearted and keep us in a good mood after a long week… Elder Duke is very dense; very spiritual. Which is awesome! Just a huge change. So we had a deep discussion on inviting people to pray. I do feel like I learned a lot from him though. He is the most Christlike missionary I’ve met here in Texas. His companion, Elder Gamez, is slightly handicapped; he talks slowly and his hands/knees are slightly disfigured. I dont really know what to call it… But Elder Duke is INCREDIBLE to watch when he takes care of Elder Gamez. It is so sweet! He is so patient, walks at his pace, holds doors, moves anything that could potentially be in the way – even though it isn’t. I was blown away. I’ve never seen an Elder behave so kindly and so Christlike.
 
Caroline Stone, my friend who got married my last Saturday in Boise, is AWESOME and sent me a package! It had chocolate, mints, a room freshner, Victorias Secret perfume, lotion, and body wash! (heck yes. stoked!) a pin that said, “I mustache how you got so awesome” with a mustache on it, duuuuh… It was so cute and so sweet of her! Ah! I miss her. I miss all my friends. and the fambam of course. But it totally brightened my week!
 
People here have a problem with cooking fruit. They cook it all the time. I’m getting really sick of it… It makes me gag. Warm fruit is just NASTY. But this lady made us peach cobbler, and sister haller is allergic to cinnamon, so I had to eat tons of it. I was dying! Sister haller got ice cream with fresh peaches on it! I was so jealous. I had to gag down all these warm peaches… I was trying to swallow them whole so i didn’t have to sit and taste them while chewing. hahaha
 
We had a wicked thunder and rain storm on Sunday. It was SO COOL! It was pouring… And the power went out during church! The lights were flickering during sacrament meeting, then finally went all the way out during sunday school. We just sat there, in the dark… well – we had windows. but it was still dark cause it was so overcast outside. but we all just pretended like nothing happened. haha it was weird. but super fun!
 
And that’s pretty much the jist of my week. I’ve been trying to read “Jesus the Christ” by talmage? I can’t remember… But it’s DEEP. Holy smokes. It’s such deep doctrine; I can hardly follow it sometimes. I’m racking my brain back to AP English trying to remember vocab and such. hahaha but I feel the spirit while reading, and I’m trying to learn more about the life of Christ, so I’ll just see how that keeps going… I think Dad would really like it.
 
But that’s my week! Pretty awesome, I know… I know… Sister Haller and I have been getting along. We almost never fight. That is a huge blessing. So thanks for everyone who has been praying for me! I appreciate it.
 
I just want everyone to know that Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers. I feel so lucky to be a missionary and really be able to recognize His hand in my life. He is amazing! He loves us so much. But I just know that He hears me and has been so kind; answering my prayers so quickly lately. I’ve been praying that Satan will not have power over me; that I wont feel discouraged or dream of being back home. In sacrament I was debating to share my testimony, and the thought came into my mind, “Maurinda, if you don’t get up – Satan will have power over you!” and I was all, “OH HECK NO! NOT ON MY WATCH!” So I knew that the Lord was teaching me that if I don’t want satan to have power over me, I have to be willing and prepared to act on every prompting I feel from the Holy Ghost. I know I’ve known that my whole life, it just hit me so hard yesterday. So I did share my testimony. All was well.
 
I know the Church is true! I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet and restored our gospel. I know that Heavenly Father is kind – that He loves us and watches out for us! I know that this life is ours to live; to choose and to act however we want. But remember that by having the freedom of choice, we have our choice of glory. So do what is right! Follow the Holy Ghost. I know that being a missionary is a sacred calling; I love being out here. Texas has really grown on me; even in all this heat! It’s only going to get better. haha.
 
I love you and miss you all! Thanks for everything (:
 
— Sister Stockinger
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