Monday, February 22, 2016

ONE YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 22, 2016

Making my way through the palms

I'm so ancient! I can't believe that it was a year ago that I was dumped off at the good ole MTC. This week and year went by so-- so fast! I don't know where time is going! It kind of makes me ill to think about. Man I've turned into such a square. 
Mowing the Elders' yard
Sister of Mary
Well we JUST picked up our car today! I just want to say HALLELUJAH!! We had lots of exchanges this week and I was in our area for all of them so I got the fancy privilege of getting to bike all the way to our area everyday! One of the days we figured we biked about 21 miles. I'm guessing I biked well over 70 miles in the last few days. Our area is forever away; it's fine it builds character. I got to work with Sister Castro for one of the days and that was a lot of fun. We biked all the way to our area and I took a wrong turn and so we ended up on this random street that I had never been to before. It was a lot like a little country road in Idaho. We locked our bikes up to a pole and knocked on this door and nobody was there. We decided to cut clear across their yard, which was pretty big and ended up on another street. We walked up to this little pink trailer and some dogs were barking at us and this lady came out.  I thought she was going to yell at us. She told us they weren't her dogs and so we just walked past them and we talked with her on her porch. Her name is Janie. Turns out her son is a member of the church but he is in the military. We got to know her. It's a cool feeling to talk with random people and all of a sudden you feel like you have known them forever. We have been going by her and teaching her. She is super cool. Last night we taught her about the Restoration and the Book Of Mormon. I'll keep you updated on her. 

Exchanges with Sister Castro.  We found some cool hats!
The other 2 sisters we live with- Sisters Eggett and Stanfill.  All of our bikes on one pole!
On Friday we got a call saying that there would be a mission meeting in McAllen the following day and that we all needed to be there at 9 a.m. Which has NEVER happened. Usually the whole mission never gets together and they would have told us way in advance. The only time that has happened was at Christmas. I was convinced that we were all going to get an iPad! I was a little disappointed to find out afterwards that we weren't. We had one of the 70 come and talk with us. He is the one that wrote "The Fourth Missionary".  It was really good to hear from him.  His name is Elder Corbridge.  He talked about being converted and how to set baptism dates with people making sure they know exactly what they are getting into and the purpose of helping others to come unto Christ. It was a nice answer to my prayers because since becoming a leader they drill us on "numbers, numbers, numbers" and so I have been struggling with that. My district leader asks where my faith is if I don't ask everybody to be baptized and it was nice to have one of the 70 to back me up!  It's hard because there is no one way to do missionary work. Like life, there is no instruction book to doing things. Yes, there are guidelines and rules but we still have our individuality and agency.  Sometimes I feel as though i am trying to please SO many people; The sisters we are over, our district and zone leaders, the members, the ward mission leader, the bishop we work under, our investigators, our mission president and endless others. How often in life do we forget our purpose as to pleasing God? How easy it is to just do things so people will be off your back and how easy it is to just do things to not be criticized or yelled at. One thing I have come to learn is there are two kinds of fools in this world. Those who don't do what they are told and those who ONLY do as they are told. 

My fancy study area
People think we actually do things!
I didn't realize how much I lay down in random places until I was going through all of my pictures!
 Not even my bed is fine.
This area is awesome. The members are so good to us. I love this ward and the people we have to serve with. It's funny how you just fall in love with your area over and over. I love the opportunity to have this new calling to help more people. The sisters we are over are awesome. It's frustrating sometimes because i have no idea whats going on in our area but it's nice because we get to change things up a lot. I've learned that everybody and I mean EVERYBODY has something to offer and how we can learn from each and every one of them.  No matter how uneducated, poor, rich, smart, unsuccessful, hard working or lazy, we can learn something new from them. Learning to listen is the key to life, then everybody becomes your guru. 

Waiting for church
Our lives in a candid picture
Eggett smiling, Tervort studying, Stanfill praying, and me dead asleep on the floor!
This was on the way to go help someone move this morning.  They didn't have enough room for all four of us and my bum was too big to sit on the ground so they made sure I was nice and safe!
 (My awesome new shirt of the one and only Hermana Browning)
The gospel is true. This life is so precious and short. Time really does fly. The days are going to pass by anyway so we may as well make the most of them.  

Chillin with the pigs
Horse selfies
I love you all. Thank you for the love and support. Have a good week!
Love Sister Thompson 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Happy Valentines Day!

February 15, 2016
 Sister Tervort and the other two sisters we live with, Eggett and Stanfill
I'm super "Hangry" today. This morning we got up and took our car into the Chevy dealer to get it fixed. We got there at 9 am and sat around until 2pm for them to tell us that it's going to take longer because they can't get to some wire. We hitched a ride and made it back here to Calallen to the library. I'm not sure how we are going to do anything or even get home since our area is so huge! Also I'm starving. 

Sister Tait and I at 3 day
McAllen was good. We had 3 day. My companions for those days were Sisters Tait and Smith. It was really fun and I learned a lot from them. We sat in meetings from 7 am until 4 pmand then went out and worked for the night. I have still been super sick and so it was a little miserable. One of the nights I couldn't fall asleep until 4:30in the morning and every day we had to get up at 5:30. I may have cried in the middle of the meeting but I'm just hoping everyone all thought that it was because I am SO spiritual. I sometimes feel like I'm in a Nazi concentration camp. It's okay though. It builds character and I need a lot of that! 

Sister Tupou and I 
I literally don't even know what to write! I feel like we do literally the same thing everyday lately and it's been hard. I've been bored out of my mind. I only got to work in my area for a day this week so I don't know what's going on with the people we have. I went on an exchange up to Beeville which is a small little town. It was kind of a cute town with a lot of rednecks there. We talked with some great people. I literally am at a loss of words today. I'm hungry and tired. 

My companion Sister Tervort and I
Things are going well. I don't feel like I'm making all that much of a difference because it's hard to measure progress if I'm not working with the same people! I'm learning a lot about patience and how to be a leader this transfer. 
I love you all. The gospel is true!
Love Sister Thompson 

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

The Crazy Life

February 8, 2016

Biking in the middle of nowhere
I literally feel like I am living in a dream! We have been so busy that I don't even have time to think! Today we are leaving to another meeting down in McAllen. My companion and I have to give a training in Spanish. It will be good I hope. We will get home later on Thursday.  I won't get to work in my area until Saturday because we have exchanges with some of the sisters. We had three exchanges this past week. I have learned a lot. Sometimes I feel like I'm not doing anything because I'm working with so many sisters in different places that it's hard to see the progress I'm making. So that's been a struggle lately. 

                                                           Sunsets in the new area
On one of the exchanges one of the sisters asked me how she can have more faith and we talked about that for awhile. I told her that faith isn't measured by success but by action. I talked with her about doing the small and simple things and the Lord will trust us in doing the bigger things and that's when miracles happen. It just starts with a willingness to follow the Spirit. We had a great exchange and I think I learned more than she did!
Last week my companion and I were knocking doors at this complex that apparently is "golden" (It is) and we were walking around and these chihuahuas from a second floor balcony started barking at us like crazy so we talked to the people that were sitting out there. We were yelling up to them and they were yelling down. The lady's name is Ruth. Turns out she dated an RM five years ago and was going to church with him up in the middle of the Corpus area. I asked which building the street was on and it ended up being the building/ward that I had just come from!  She said she was never baptized but that it was the only church that she ever liked. We got to talking and it turns out that she is a dental assistant and that she was getting her wisdom teeth out the next day. I asked her if she got a sweet deal on paying for them and we got talking about it and I told her my dad is a dentist and she was so shocked by that point at all the things that happened to be "in common." It was a tender mercy from the Lord. I told her that it wasn't a coincidence and she agreed. She then invited us back after she recovers from her surgery for her wisdom teeth. So I'm excited to get to teach her! (Whenever I make it back to my area to work) 

It was 87 degrees the other day!!
We have an older man that is less active that lives in a nursing home in our area. We went by to visit him. I die a little inside when I go into those. They are so sad! There were old people in wheel chairs all over the place! They just seemed so unhappy being there. It made me think of how precious this life is! We talked with this little Mexican man before the visit on the way in and on the way out we saw him with his family in the front lobby area. We decided to go talk with his whole family as well. They were with his father- in-law who was having really bad head aches and is 94 years old. I asked them if it would be okay if I said a prayer for him and so we all had a prayer in the front lobby of this old folks home. It was great. I love the random places that we are able to teach people whether it's at a Walmart, McDonald's, a gas station, sitting in the dirt, on the front porch or even doing yard work; the gospel is for everybody anywhere who is willing to hear it.  

A little boy we taught.  He wanted to wear my nametag.
We are still getting to know the area and the members we have here. All of the missionaries in the mission talk about the "Robstown Ward" and how good it is. I can see that this is such a great place all ready for miracles! We weren't left with any real investigators or even a map. So it's been an adventure, that's for sure.
I love you all! Thank you for your love and support to help me be down here. I hope y'all have a good week! 
Sister Thompson 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Transfer 8

February 1, 2016

Hello from wherever I am!!! I don't think I have much time to email today because we are leaving for a meeting down in McAllen. I'm not a huge fan of meetings because I get bored haha but it will be good. This past week I have been sick. I sound like a 12 year old little boy when I talk -- it's been great. I just want to go into a mini-coma. Most of the groceries I bought was medicine! 

Saying goodbye to Karl
Recent convert and investigators
Sister Castro's cousins we started teaching
Another family we are teaching with the Lebaron family
Saying bye to the Hulls
Not exactly sure where I am still, but this week has been full that's for sure! We are white washing, so it's been a lot of guessing and going by members houses. We live with a member. She is a single lady in her 60s.  She has a dog named Coco that looks like he is on crack. He is crazy. She got mad at me for teasing him, oops. This area reminds me a lot of Idaho but just a lot more flat! Our area is called Cal Allen and we are here in the Sinton Zone. I'm still in the same stake as my last area so that will be nice.  I will still get to see the members from there. That doesn't say much though because the boundaries down here are huge! There are a ton of fields everywhere and it definitely is Texas. When I think of Texas, I think of a place like this city. The other day we went to a members home for dinner and they have 2 pet pigs! It was the coolest thing ever! One of the sisters said, "Sister Thompson, I bet you won't lay down with them" so of course I had to! I thought that they were going to bite me for sure! 

This family had pet pigs in their home!  I was not expecting that when I got there!
They literally gave us like 20 minutes to write! I love you all. I have to go! There will be lots to write about until next time! I love you!!

Love Sister Thompson