Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Kia ora guys!

And guess what?  This week I did a much better job at writing in my journal!  Aka I wrote in it!  Twice!  I have five million entries that I start and then fall asleep, so it has like one or two sentences and then a bunch of scribbles.  I'm officially fired.

So one of our investigators, Isaiah, pretty much dropped off the grid this week.  He told us he was coming to church, and then he didn't come, but texted us afterwards that a lot of family issues had come up from the past, and it sounded really intense.  Then he didn't reply for a week, and in the middle of emails today he texted us and said that he needed to get away.  We went outside to call him and so my email is probably going to be a bit shortish today.  Sorry!  Reread last week's email ha.  Not too many exciting things happened this week.

Blonde moment for the week that I am going to put down to following the spirit...we were going to invite this family to have family home evening with this amazing family that I love so much, but before we were going there to invite them, we had a lesson with a different less active family who live just a couple houses down from the 1st family.  So we go in and I say, "Oh, before I forget, we wanted to invite you guys to a family home evening....." So I invited the wrong family to the lesson.  When we got in the car we were laughing soo hard.  I swear, we were laughing all week at stuff, I just don't remember why.  No worries, if I did remember, and tried to tell you I'd just butcher it like I did with this story haha. (Good news from the "blonde moment" - the family said yes and Sister Formica and Sister Va'ai were headed to have a family home evening with them the day she wrote!)

So we had a lesson with Matthew, the drunk man that we met last Sunday. He was very straight up with us that "the whole God and praying thing isn't really him." But that he really wants to change his life, and wants to participate in activities with people like ourselves who don't drink at all. We had a pretty good discussion with him anyway, the member who was with us was able to share her conversion story--she used to drink and smoke, etc., so that was also really good for him to hear. We gave him the plan of salvation pamphlet and invited him to our ward activity that night. He was hesitant to come, and said that he needed a little more time, but he would come to the next activity, but not church ha. 

 Heavenly Father's timing never ceases to amaze me. He led us to Matthew on the night that really shook him up and made him want to was kind of his last straw. I feel so strongly that he will accept the gospel and truly become converted unto the Lord. I don't feel like it will take that long either, but that doesn't matter anyway, and that's up to Heavenly Father and Matthew. All we can do we is guide and help him.

I love the atonement!!  Anyone can change at any time--no matter how we may feel about ourselves, Heavenly Father loves each one of us and He never gives up on us.  It's never too late.

So we got a referral Saturday night like 30 minutes before our ward activity--a movie night watching Meet the Mormons!!  We already were going to see someone as a little last minute encouragement to go when we called Sister Escher, and so we were running late to the movie already, but as we were driving, we felt like we needed to go contact this man. So... we went to see him, and were so happy that we listened to Heavenly Father.  Bill lives with his wife who has an incurable disease.  We taught him briefly and were able to share the Book of Mormon with him, but it was so powerful, and he is the sweetest man and desperately needs the gospel and Heavenly Father's comfort at this time.  Afterwards we went and caught the last half of the movie (he and his wife couldn't come), but it was a powerful reminder to me that at all times I need to turn outward and focus on helping others like the Saviour does. It's so easy to get caught up in what I want or how I feel. (Rebecca and I are similar in a few ways -- one way is that we both like to see the whole entire movie.  I don't like someone to "catch me up" when I miss the first five minutes.  I am guessing she felt the same way about "Meet the Mormons", but followed the Spirit anyway.  Gotta love her!)

P.S. I absolutely love the movie Meet the Mormons.  If you haven't seen it, go watch it! 

Oh, this week I found a letter that I wrote at the very beginning of my mission...two days into the MTC...(sorry Brad) and I wrote that I had already lost my card (which is the key to literally everything in the MTC) TWICE and that I was learning that being a missionary didn't make me more organized or less likely to lose things...9 months later...exactly the same.  Don't worry, I still have a long time to learn :)  My poor companions.  I'm a mess.  Actually, lucky them, they get to learn patience haha. 

Anyways, have a wonderful week everyone!!  Love ya!

Sister Formica

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

It's raining, it's pouring, the old man is snoring...or just drunk

Why do I literally have the best family in the world?  Thanks for all you do guys, I love you so much!!  (That seems to be a familiar missionary phrase -- missions increase appreciation for families, I guess.  Reminder - blue comments are Mom's).    

Couple things this week...I ALWAYS lose my keys in my bag...this bag is the best and has lasted me for 10 months and will make it through the rest of my mission (shout out to the Lovett's--thanks guys!!), but there's a whole in the lining--I probably put something sharp in there on accident, so the keys and pens, etc. always fall into the lining and disappear.  So after a lesson on Sunday, it was raining and cold and we were all trying to find the keys in my bag and afterwards, the member we were with gave me an extra lanyard that she has to help me keep track of them.  Later on I was trying to steer with the lanyard, and it slipped a bit, only as we were going through a roundabout though, otherwise it was fine, and the wheel was locked and it was a bit scary...don't worry,  I won't do it again. But church was amazing!  I learned so much!

So last night we had the coolest of the less active girls we are working with came to sacrament, but didn't stay, and after church we felt prompted to visit her.  We went to her home, but she wasn't there, she was at work.  We really felt like we should go to her work, but we felt a bit weird, especially because it was Sunday, but we prayed about it and went.  When we got there, she let us in and locked the door because this man was super duper drunk and he had been in the store for like 30 minutes just standing by her and he wouldn't leave.  So when he left, she locked the door. Then when we looked outside, he was laying on the ground by the road.  She called an ambulance, and we went over and talked to him.  He was a bit older, and he was in tears saying that he just wanted to go home.  We talked to him a bit -- he was really pretty present for being that drunk, and he is in a lot of pain, emotionally.  He gave us his address and phone number--and the number actually works, so he remembered his info, and we told him we would help him get home but also help him change his life.  I know that Heavenly Father led us to him that evening.  I felt so strongly that this man is Heavenly Father's child and Heavenly Father is reaching out to him right now.  I love being able to reach out to people for Him.  Or I guess be an instrument in His hands, and I know it's as we listen to the promptings of the Spirit that we can be. 

I am learning how to truly pray and I feel like I am finally learning how to listen to the spirit more!  At least a bit ha.  10 months into my mission haha.  I have so much further to go, but I'm also learning to be ok with the pace at which I am learning.  As long as I am progressing.

So we had this great uplifting night, and when we got home to do our studies, I don't know what happened, but Sister Vaha'i got pretty mad.  To be fair, I probably did something to make her angry without realizing it, but I had no clue was one of the most tense nights of my mission, and I was trying sooo hard not to react, but to act.  Then I remembered something that we were told in Sacrament meeting, that when you want to do something, there's no point in trying, just do it!  I decided to apply that, and when I changed my thinking from I'm trying so hard to be kind and patient and bite my tongue, to think, it's not that hard, just do it, it became soo much easier!  I don't know if  I explained that well, but oh well.  Hopefully it makes sense, because it really clicked for me last night.  I pray so hard for the strength to change and for help becoming better, and then really I needed to change my thinking ... rather than try to be patient or try to be loving, just do it!  Even if you don't feel it right away, you will eventually.  She apologized this morning and we are all goods now, so no worries either.  We all have those moments.  She is amazing and I am lucky to be companions with her :) Sister Vaha'i has such a strong desire to be good and do good.   (One of my new favorite quotes is from a talk by Elder Scott entitled: The Transforming Power of Faith and Character.  It says: "We become what we want to be by consistently being what we want to become each day.

The one spiteful thing I did last night in response was to eat the rest of the Doritos (there were only crumbs left anyway), but the joke was on me, because they were all stale haha.  Learned my lesson. 

We are working with this part member family, coming, and we stopped by after church to find out why they didn't come.  They told us that they had been hung over, and that's why they didn't end up coming, but the wife shared that she doesn't want to drink anymore, and she  really wants to go to church!!!  The first time we met her, she told us that she just didn't want to keep the commandments at all.  We are witnessing her heart and her desires  change as the spirit works with her!  I am soo excited for their family! 

Oh also this week we were leaving this one home as well, and I said bye, and turned to walk out and walked right into their screen door, and there is now a dent in their screen from my head...I'm that hard headed.  Great. 

Life is great!  Have a wonderful week!  LOVE YOU GUYS!!!

Monday, May 11, 2015


A lot happened this week!  On Monday we had district pday and went to this really cool dam where they have a picnic place. It was so pretty!  I'll send the pictures next week.  On the way home...get ready for this, 

So this week we helped set up for a big huge beehive convention, our washing machine flooded our kitchen, I got a ticket and hit a kangaroo, we found out we have to sing at two different meetings this week and don't have time to practice, (and aren't musical enough to just pull it together haha), and it has been super stormy, which has been really fun!  Bit hectic, but other than a couple sad things (all of the things that have to do with the car), it's been a fantastic week! 


Church was fabulous!  I loved all of the testimonies, and classes were on point!  We got pulled out of the third hour so the primary kids could give us giant cards that they made for all the missionaries.  It was so cute!!  

We haven't been able to get a hold of the woman and her son, but we will this week!

If you remember the young man we started teaching last week, we are going to have the elders continue to teach him, but he is still learning, which is great!  I probably already told you that.  I'm just trying to think about all the people you asked about...

Just for future reference, many many people aren't married here, so when I say partner, that's just what they call the person they are living with/have a family with or whatever haha.  

I am learning that everyone has their own time table, and no matter how fast I want things to happen, oftentimes patience is the key.  Conversion isn't a cookie cutter process, or else it wouldn't work.  I read this week that the first step to conversion is desire. The people we are working with right now have differing levels of desire and different needs, and we have to work with them to not only help them learn how to plant the seed, but help them nourish it and then learn how to nourish it for themselves.  See Alma 32 verses 26-43

The gospel is the best!  I am so grateful for the Saviour's atonement, which allows me to change and grow and allows each of us to find relief during our trials and from our weaknesses.  Have a great week!  Love you all!

Sister Formica

P.S. Tell Mckay to send me a picture from Prom!  

(Here are two for you, Rebecca)