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Sunday, November 30, 2014

MY HEART JUST ABOUT BURSTS DAILY!

Life is so beautiful. I have never felt so much profound love before. I don't know how to describe it. My heart is just so warm and happy and I love the people here so much. Sometimes I start crying when I think about it. Haha, it's so odd!!!

M. went to the Temple last week to do baptisms!! I was told that time after time dunking him under, he would naturally curl up his knees....hahaha.... He is so great.  They kept trying to help him understand to bend but not cannonball.

We have been teaching a man from India, Chir. Because of daily Book of Mormon study, his faith in Jesus Christ has increased so much. Faith in Christ leads us to action! Faith leads us to repent. This week Chir. showed up to our lesson with so much sorrow in his countenance.  He then told us that he sometimes get really angry at work. He hates it about himself and yearns to change. The lesson that we had prepared for him that day was on repentance! Heavenly Father is so aware. 
Repentance is so freeing. I love change.
 A lifestyle of repentance is a lifestyle of light and clarity.
Thanksgiving Day

Incredible news!!! Lam got her Permanent Residency!!! This is such an answer to prayer!!

Yesterday during third hour, Relief Society/Priesthood were combined (that is everyone in the branch) President Keller had all those stand that are the first people in their family to be baptised. 85% of the audience stood. This branch is so special. They are such valiant, courageous pioneers.
My heart just about bursts daily. I love being a missionary. I am learning so much about truth and love. 

Toi yeu gia dinh toi!  (I think this is I love you in Vietnamese...) 
Sister Stevenson 

PS.Funny story,
This week for Thanksgiving we were going to make Sister Larsen's funeral potato recipe! It called for frozen shredded hashbrowns, but they don't have those here, so we bought frozen tator tots and shredded/smushed them up. We didn't have a baking dish because it's a Chinese flat and there is mostly only wok's, so we used a big wok and unscrewed the handles. Then we forgot to buy sour cream so we just left it out.
It was interesting in the end!

Monday, November 24, 2014

LOVE AND AFFIRMATION MAKE US SOAR! I got a speeding fine :(((((

Hello!!!

Our new Golden Missionary (brand new) is sweet sweet Sister P.  She  is from Vigen, Philippines. She is almost 12 inches shorter than me, is freezing in 20 degree weather and is the most humble missionary I know. She is such a joy and a blessing. I have the most wonderful companions.

The night Sister P. arrived, one of our neighbours was playing Greek music really loudly, we can see into their backyard from our appt and could see a few older men and women drinking and dancing and yelling "OPAH!!!" for hours. It was a great way to welcome her to Melbourne!!!

We have been teaching a woman named K. for months on and off...she has been taught by so many missionaries. This week we got a text from her saying that now is the time. She is ready to be baptised and follow God completely. We met with her this week and she's had a complete change of heart. Such miracles.

There is a girl in our branch named A.    A.  is 16 and was baptised earlier in the year. She and her family moved from Malaysia recently and now live in the city. Honestly the miracles continue ceaselessly....we were invited over to their house for dinner this week. It was such a delight and afterwards we asked the father if we could share a gospel message. By this point, 4 of their neighbours from Malaysia had also come in and we were teaching a large room full of Buddhists. We talked about the Godhead and Jesus Christ's Atonement. We asked Alicia to bear her  testimony,part way through she suddenly started sobbing. It was as if she was a very shaken fizzy drink that was being opened. This was the first time that her family was listening! This was her chance.  For the next 40 minutes she bubbled out as much gospel knowledge as she could. "I believe in something called agency...agency is..." And then her father would interrupt and give philosophical view points. By then end her dad just said that he has such a special daughter...she has always had such a love for truth. The family said they would try to come to church on Sunday.  It was such a miracle night.
Stair Step Sister's

Unfortunately I've had the flu all week...all is well though! I was given a blessing that talked about how we must experience the bitter in order to appreciate the sweet. Touche. 
 I am choosing to be grateful for this flu! 
I am SO thankful for my trials that allow me to be grateful for good health and my healthy body and the ability to walk and run and jump and dance! I am so thankful to know that there is UNIVERSAL TRUTH and bright, glorious, shining HOPE through Jesus Christ.
Oh family, there are so many people that are suffering in the world. I am around so many homeless, hungry, sad and angry people daily and my heart cringes. It makes me weep. We do are best to lift and encourage and help them. How are you helping people today? God's children need love. Every one of them. Love and affirmation indeed make us soar!
Are you being a nurturer for God?

My heart burns with desire to tell EVERYONE about the Gospel of Christ. Everyone deserves to know that we are God's children...to know what that means changes everything. He loves us more than we can comprehend. We have inherited divine qualities from Him! We can become like Him!! I know that He loves us.

I love you all so very much. :) :) :) Please be kind and serve the people around you. We need each other! 
Sister Stevenson
PS.    I got a speeding fine :(((((
Back in March! Haha.  The fine was  mailed to me.
I was in unknown territory and there are speeding cameras and I guess I was going 2ks over and now I have to pay $180.
Money is temporal...money is temporal...money is temproal..... :(

Monday, November 17, 2014

Wow...Wow....Wow Wow...

Hello hello!!


I am JUBILANT! Sister Larsen and I are staying in the City another transfer!!! And we are training a new sister from the Philippines!! Eeeeeee! We will continue to do exchanges with the sisters in Heidelberg, Narre Warren, Gippsland, Braeside and Maroondah Zones.We are so excited for this transfer!

Last week J. prayed during our lesson about whether or not this is Jesus Christ's church. After she said "amen" we sat in silence and she just said, "wow....wow.....................wow wow......wow" I have, and then she moved her hands up and down her arms. (goose flesh anyone? ;) She told us that God told her in heart that she is in the right place. She was so excited to get baptised.
Two days later we were confirming our appointment with her and she told us that she probably wouldn't be coming back to our church. Her friend had told her some things and she said that she would now go to another church. We were devastated....we bore our testimonies to her and she said that she would pray and ask God what to do. She hasn't answered our calls since. :(
But  we know all will be well. J. is so special and her prayers will be answered.

There is an INCREDIBLE Taiwanese lady in our branch who lives in a huge penthouse in the city....guess what. This week, M. moved in to the extra bedroom. She isn't charging him a cent. So now he doesn't have to pay rent (he was living in the city before which is $$$$$) and Huang Mei LOVES to feed everyone in sight. This is such a miracle. She would not take any of my gratitude and insisted that he will bless her home because he is a Melchizedek Priesthood holder and is a good boy. She then said that she would be taking him to the Temple every Saturday to do baptisms for the names of all her cousins that have died. Heavenly Father is so aware of M.
We love him so much, I could cry just thinking about how happy he was this weekend.

This week we were able to do some training's at a couple of Zone Conferences. It is a special thing to be around so many missionaries. I love my calling! I love teaching people about hope and truth! I love my family! I love my Saviour!! There are so many reasons to rejoice!

My feet are healing!!!!! Thank you for your prayers!!

Sister Stevenson

Monday, November 10, 2014

I Was Blown Away

Bonjour!!!

Mama I met a boy from Lyon, France (my mom's mission) this week!!! And two others from Paris! One of the boys was Muslim, they were all very kind.... and very uninterested in our message of Jesus Christ...


I love teaching English class! My eyes are being opened to how confusing our language is...
Warm is pronounced like "worm", but worm is spelled like "werm." Oh my.

Mas. received the Melchizedek Priesthood this week...he is so righteous and such a blessing to the branch.
He also attended a Young Single Adult dance this weekend and I guess made quite the impression...haha
Riding to the Art Museum on P-day

This week one of our dear friends was sooo tired and looked especially skinny and withered...we asked him if he was okay and as usual responded, "I fine!" After a couple minutes of prodding he told us that he is very hungry...the only food he has everyday is rice and water. He lives by himself in an apartment and the money he has is what his little sister sends him from another country. Lam heard us saying that we could help him get food, and within an hour came in with bags of groceries for him. I am continually inspired by the humility and charity of the members in our branch. Lam is such an angel. We are praying that her PR paperwork from Vietnam will workout so that she can go on a mission or enroll in school. 

Elder Dudfield came to our MLC this week...he is an inspired man of God. He spoke mainly about Priesthood organization...I was blown away. Our church is so orderly...God is a God of order and of course His church will align with Him! 
He mentioned that the area he is over as a seventy, covers more languages and cultures than any other in the world.

We are teaching a man named K.from Mauritius 
When we first met him he wasn't sure if he believed in a God...he works over 60 hours a week and can't sleep at night...His faith has increased so much thanks to the Book of Mormon...he KNOWS there is a God..he said that since he has been praying, he can now fall asleep immediately at night. Prayer changes things!!  He said when he prayed about the Plan of Salvation, he immediately had an understanding come over him that his trials are of a temporary nature.

This week we met and started teaching a girl from Korea named J.!!! She is darling and bubbly and LOVED church...she hung on to every word during sacrament meeting and used her phone to translate words like "hymn" and "sacrifice" She cannot wait to be baptized!!!  Such a miracle!!

I love you all so much. I am so thankful for your righteous choices and acts of kindness. Hurrah for Israel!!!!
Sister Stevenson


P.S Please pray for my feet!!


Monday, November 3, 2014

BULA VINACA!

Bula Vinaca! 

I was able to go on an exchange this week with the lovely Sister B. from Fiji!  She has only been here two weeks, what a JOY she is to our mission. She is so positive, humble and friendly. 

We had a Cultural Night this week for our branch. It was one of the happiest, most delightful things to see the Men of our congregation learn a Maori Haka.

Cultural Night

We had a really interesting lesson with a Pakistani man who has studied comparative religions for the past 15 years. He mostly wouldn't let us say a word, but nonetheless explained to us the lead in to the Restoration of the Gospel. It was interesting... we were able to tell him that our views are very much aligned and that there IS universal truth...I'm so grateful to know that!

We have been working with a girl named A. who hasn't been to church in quite some time...she is a Bollywood performer!!! She has come to church the last three Sundays and bore her testimony yesterday....it is so special and joyous to help people rekindle their faith.

Tomorrow is a Victoria holiday!  Melbourne Cup Day! I have seen so many women in BEAUTIFUL, colorful, toule and feather-filled derby hats. So fun!

Some of the missionaries I work with are struggling with an emotional issue of some sort...President Maxwell has talked to us about not taking ones temperature too much, but helping them to love to work. I thought this was interesting.  I've found that every missionary is different, their needs, struggles etc. It's good to have one on one exchanges to figure out what their specific need is...One of my dearest sisters really struggles with anxiety and depression, she gets so nervous between 6:30 and 8am that it makes her sick....this week we tried listening to the scriptures on cd while she got ready and for the first time in 6 months, was able to start studies on time. This effected the rest of her day...she feels more at peace. It's like the prelude to her personal study/day.  

I love my Saviour, He sets such a perfect example for us. I have found such a change in my life as I pray for charity...the pure love of Christ. Will you study Moroni 7:44-48 today?https://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/moro/7?lang=eng
Love you forever. Hurrah for Israel!!!
Sister Stevenson