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Monday, January 6, 2014

Heavenly Father Loves us, even when we are goobers.

Hola!!!!!! (I am sooo happy when I meet people from South America!! It reminds me a little bit of home, haha)
Happy Happy Happy New Year!!!! We did some party poppers and went to bed at 10:30. Such party animals.

Today for a Preparation day activity, we went to the Melbourne Zoo with all of the sisters from the West side of the mission. It was so FUN!!!! I saw some animals I'd never seen a platypus and a red tree kangaroo. And I  got super close to koalas and PET KANGAROOS!!!!!!! Yes. Today I have fulfilled a bullet on my bucket list: Take a selfie with a kangaroo. SUCCESS! They are so soft and they kept eating food out of all the prams and babies were generally terrified of them! Hahahaha the parents just laughed and let the kangaroos sniff their babies faces. It was hysterical.
selfie with a ROO
But, the biggest highlight of the trip was something very unexpected. Jem called. I think my heart skipped 7 beats. To get down to it, Jem kept her promise to us, and has been praying everyday. She has been praying about how she can have the happiest life that God wants her to have and yesterday, she moved out of P.'s house. She is living with her sister, and has a new job lined up and wants to start taking the discussions again. Is that not enough to make you bawl your eyes out?!??!!??!?! Ahhhhhhh!!!!!! Heavenly Father has heard our prayers and we could not be more blessed. We are meeting with her this week!!
We had another miracle happen this week. (Actually like 485978493 trillion) 
We were in the car leaving an appointment and going to do some finding, when I saw this girl walking on the footpath. I felt like we should go talk to her. But for a solid 45 seconds, I was a goober, and kept writing in my planner vs following the prompting immediately. Luckily, Heavenly Father still loves us even when we're goobers :) So we got out and went to talk to this girl. 23 year old Samoan (yeah!!!!!) and said we could come share a message with her another day. So the next night we went over, taught her the Restoration, and it was so great! T. has learning disabilities cannot read, and it was important that we taught very very simply. The spirit was very strong and she recognized the happiness she felt. When we told her about how families can be together forever, she said her dad died 3 years ago, and she would want to be baptised so she can be with him again. BLESSINGS!!!! We set a baptismal date for January 25th. I pretty much exploded into glitter that night ;)
Sooooo, the next day was Sunday, and we had arranged for T.H. (A Young Single Adult in our ward who served a mission in Samoa!) to pick her up for church. When we saw T.H. walk in the chapel alone we were DEVASTATED. T. didn't answer the door or her phone. That night we went back over with T.H.. T's mum answered the door and told us that T. couldn't just go and do whatever she wanted without her mum's permission. She said that they had their own church. We kept talking to her mum and she definitely softened. Then she told us something that made all of our eyes bulge. "I was a Mormon when I lived in Samoa" T's mum is a member!!!! She just hasn't been back to church since she got married!!! When we told her there was a chapel 3 minutes away from their house she was surprised and said they would come to church sometime. She said we could come share a message with her and her family this week :) BLESSINGS BLESSINGS GALORE!!!!!
Sister St. and I are working as hard as we can, and are really trying to utilize every minute of our day. We want our will to be completely aligned with Heavenly Father's. I really admire Sister St. desire to improve, and how immensely teachable and humble she is. She's exemplary!
  There were a lot of ups and downs this week. Such is life! But I can say with absolute confidence that there is a God. And He loves us SO much. His hand is constantly outstretched to us, wanting to help us, and uplift us. It's completely up to us whether or not we reach out to accept. I know Heavenly Father hears our prayers and answers them.
Prep Day in Melbourne on our way to the Zoo
Mom that is so crazy you are reading about our ancestors!! This week we got to do a genealogy briefing and guess what! I found a Brigham Young Stevenson in our line. Genealogy is soooooooo COOL!!! There is so much work we need to do! Send me some cool stories! How many companions did you have on your mish? You and dad should keep sending me mish stories! And you are absolutely correct. Obedience=JOY. And immense blessings.
I just love Australia so much. I'm reminded daily of how unique this place is. This morning we were walking and BRIGHT, beautiful parrots flew right in front of us to a tree. 

This week I have been thinking a lot about two questions:
Do I love my Heavenly Father?
Do my actions show that I love Him?
Once you have this embedded in your mind, life changes a little :)
Love y'all heaps,
 All the Aussie shoes I bought last week.
just kidding ;) only a few are mine. they were soooooooooo cheap 
Sister Hailey Stevenson
Sweet doors in Melbourne...prep day

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