Monday, June 29, 2009

Come What May and LOVE It

Family,

OH, my goodness... I just wrote this HUGE long amazing But yeah, after we got the ticket, I wasn't really talking (because I used to be really bad about NOT talking about things when things go wrong, which I'm sure you guys know). And Sister Osbourne knew I didn't want to talk because I was still a bit upset, but then I thought of the Wirthlin talk, "Come what may and love it." So I was just thinking about that, just laugh when things go wrong and love it. I was thinking about how when I teach people about Priesthood authority, I use the example comparing what would happen if a cop pulled you over and wrote you a ticket versus what would happen if the Ice-cream man would pull you over and write you a ticket. Which one would you pay? Obviously the cop because he's the authority. Anyways, so I say to Sister Osbourne, "Well...too bad that he actually did have the authority." And then we both started laughing hysterically. It was really funny because I use that example all the time. After that, everything was better and I was way happy. email and then ALL the computers here at the library shut off. So we all lost our work... :( But come what may and love it. So yeah, I have 15 minutes. We'll see what I can bust out.

First off, I spoke too soon about the weather and the humidity. It rain last week and woah, the humidity was crazy. But it wasn't that bad. I also gave a talk in the Spanish ward. As a missionary, you don't really have time to do ANYTHING--especially things like write a big fancy, intricate, quote-filled talk like I used to. But luckily the topic was the Plan of Salvation, which we teach about all the time. So it was all good. Another thing I don't have time for is blow-drying my hair. Haha, I just let my hair air dry and it does this little wave thing, which I don't think looks that bad. And we were at the store last week and these two 10-year-olds ran down the aisle and as they were running past me, one of them said, "I LOVE your hair." So apparently, it's semi-acceptable.

So I have a story. So Friday we were contacting around 6:30 and we had a lesson with Pete--one of our baptismal dates--at 7. And we promised him that we'd be on time and be out the door by 7:30. So we started talking to this man and decided to teach him real quick, so we said "10 minutes." Well, 10 minutes turned into to 30 and it was a complete waste of time. The man was completely not interested, didn't want to set up a return appointment, and is not interested in any other church. I was kind of upset about it because now--as a result--we were late. We were walking to the car as fast as we could and then we get a call. Sister Osbourne immediately hands it to me because it was in Spanish and she didn't want to talk in Spanish. So that kind of got me mad too that she didn't even want to try. But whatever. We're driving to Pete's and I look at my Speedometer and see that I'm going 50 mph. I think, "Oh wow, Sister Loftus would definitely not approve of this " (because she was SUPER obedient and if we were going even 5 over she'd say something). So I start slowing down and I look up and see a cop ahead of me, then he turns on his lights. I didn't think it was for me and keep going and then he flips a U-turn and so I'm like, "Oh great, it's me." So yeah. I got my very FIRST speeding ticket. He wasn't even very nice about it either (but Sis. Osbourne thinks that's because it was the end of the month and he has a quota to meet). So yeah, I was super embarrassed. But right before he left I said to him, "We're missionaries, and I know I'm not a very good example of following the law right now, but I'm really grateful for repentance, so that I can be forgiven of this and change. And I know that that is only possible through following the Gospel of Jesus Christ..." And then I said some other stuff, gave him a pass -a-long card for the Book of Mormon. Haha, Sis. Osbourne said that I was remarkably SUPER happy and positive as I was talking to him. I guess that's just because the Gospel really does make you happy, even when things go wrong. It makes me think of the Mother Theresa quote: Whatever starts in anger, always ends in regret. Definitely true. Think about the story of Teancum. He got angry and ended up dead...yikes. So, yeah, I have to appear before the judge before the 10th or else they'll put a warrant out for my arrest. Haha, so yeah, we're taking care of it today. But lesson learned: it was the ONLY time that I have EVER been semi-upset on my mission, and look what happened. I really learned from this situation and am grateful for repentance.

We've been praying really hard that we would be able to find a family that is ready to accept the Gospel. As missionaries, we want to find families who can progress in the Gospel and eventually go to the Temple where they can receive the blessings found there. Well, we definitely found a family this week and it's interesting how it all played out: we were just contacting on a street and saw this guy outside. He was throwing away some beer cans and we were just talking to him and didn't even get to introduce ourselves and he invited us in. We were a bit shocked because honestly all we had said was, "Hi" and then the next thing we knew we were sitting on his couch and he got his wife to come out and all his kids. So we starting talking about what we do as missionaries and how the Gospel really does bless families and make them stronger. We taught them how to pray and then set a return appointment. The husband was really excited. Right before we left, I asked if they knew any of their friends or neighbors who would be interested in hearing more about the Gospel. And Myra--the mom--immediately gave us the name of her mom. The mom didn't live in our area so that night we called it into the Referral hotline for the Elders who lived in her area.

We came back on Tuesday and the husband wasn't there (because he works in the oil rigs and he works up in Corpus for a week, then he's off a wee), but Myra's sister--Sandy--was there. Myra had told Sandy about our lesson and invited Sandy to come. So we taught the first lesson and Sandy didn't seem too interested, but she did say that within the past two weeks she had been getting back into church. The ladies from the Christian church had been coming over and teaching her things from the Bible and visiting her all the time. She really wanted to change her life and she's having a birthday in a few weeks and told us she wanted only Christian music played. We counted her as a new investigator because she said that she would just come back for our next appointment on Friday. OH, another crazy thing about the whole situation is that we had a member come with us to the lesson and we parked in front of her house and she said, "Wait, this house?" And he said, "Yeah." And she kept saying, "Wait, are you sure it's this house?" We walk in and it turns out that she is REALLY good friends with Myra and their daughters play all the time. Miracle! Instant fellowshipper.

Then about an hour after that lesson, we get a call from the Elders in San Juan (the area just south of ours) saying "Hey, how come you are stealing out investigators?!" We had no clue what they were talking about, but then they told us that they went to contact Rosa (Myra's mom, the referral that we called in) and this lady answered the door and said that "Oh, she'll be back in an hour." So they came back an hour later, that same lady answered the door, they asked for Rosa and she said, "Oh that's me." So it was a bit of a miscommunication, but they were in there for 5 minutes, when Sandy walks in the door and says, "HEY, I just got done talking with the Sisters!" Definitely no coincidence that the Elders came back an hour later, and Sandy walked in. So yeah, all these things happened and I know that they are not coincidences. The Lord has prepared them and now we are teaching both of the families. We are hoping to have a joint baptism with the Elders and baptize the whole family. Rosa, her husband, Sandy, and Sandy's brother have already accepted a baptismal date, but Myra (our investigator) isn't so sure yet. Her husband will be at our next appointment, so we're hoping that when they see the progress that her mom and sister are making, and how EXCITED Sandy is (Oh yeah, Sandy came to another one of our lessons and her countenance had already changed. She is loving the Gospel), that they will soon follow. The Cruz family is definitely an answer to our prayers and we are so excited for the progress they're making.

Times up! Love you all! Oh and HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD! When I come home, we'll have to play a few rounds of golf to celebrate! ;)

--Sister Burt

Monday, June 22, 2009

Training Day

Family,

So first I'm going to answer your questions because I always forget. Yes, I got your package, thank you so much! The weather here isn't that bad. My new companion--Sister Osborne--is from Seattle and she thinks it's ridiculously hot. But you know me, I don't even turn the AC on in the car in the middle of summer in AZ. I LOVE the heat. I think it's probably 90-100 degrees here which definitely isn't hot for me. The humidity isn't bad either; only in the mornings when we go running is when I really notice it.

It has been a wonderful week with Sister Osborne. Surprisingly, I've never felt stressed about training which has been a blessing because it could be a very stressful situation. We rode BIKES once last week (yay)! Hermana Osborne is really fitting in well to the missionary life and work in the field. I see her growing and improving every day and I'm so proud of her. It's funny how that when you are sort of thrown into a position like this, you just immediately grow and improve. I've noticed a HUGE difference in the way I contact people, teach in lessons, study, and even the way I act and talk. I am her representative of what a missionary in the Texas McAllen mission is and should be. Instead of sitting back in lessons and letting my trainer or other companion do all the talking, I have taken full control. Any fears that I may have had about going to random people and talking to them have gone away. I know that she may not do it--because she doesn't know how to say it in Spanish or know what to say--but I know that it's my job as a missionary to give everyone the chance to hear and accept or reject this message. I don't want you to go off blabbing to everyone that I'm a Trainer on my 2nd transfer and about "how great of an honor it is. It must be because I'm such a great missionary." Haha, because that's definitely not it. There were too many new sisters and not enough Veteran sisters to train. So here I am, and I'm humbled at this opportunity. I don't think I'm training right now because I'm such a stellar missionary, I think that I'm training because the Lord knows that I have leadership abilities and potential. One way to fast track those are to just throw you into the situation, I guess.

I've really been blessed with the gift of tongues. It's crazy how dramatically my Spanish has improved just within the past week. I literally can understand nearly everything that anyone says. It used to be that I could understand a lot, but then I'd get lost and sort of zone out because I knew my companion would understand. That doesn't really happen anymore. They speak and I understand and respond back. I teach the majority of the lessons (sometimes I call myself a "ball hog") because Sister Osborne struggles with Spanish, but it's ok. I push her really hard as much as she can, then take over the rest. It's crazy that I've only been here about 2 months and already I'm teaching, having conversations, committing people to baptism in the street--all in Spanish. I've been blessed with the gift of tongues.

But I mentioned in the paragraph before about committing baptismal contacts in the street. That's something that I had been wanting to do since I got here, but didn't think that it was possible. I mentioned it to Sister Behrmann when we were companions that I wanted to try it and she was ALL for it. So we decided to "experiment on the seed" and see if it really was possible to commit people to a baptismal date in the street. Pretty much there are 8 steps to it. We started doing it and people were rejecting us right and left. But we knew that we were here to find the prepared and this was one way to find those people right away. Instead of finding people who were not interested, but still would let us in and teach them and then we'd have to waste 2 weeks teaching them before we dropped them because they weren't progressing. We decided to try this when Sister Behrmann and I were together because we were in two areas and didn't have much time to mess around. A week later we mentioned it to President at the incoming missionary dinner and he was SO intrigued with what we were doing. He talked to just she and I about it for about 20 minutes, then again the next morning when we were making breakfast from the new missionaries. He was really excited for us and wanted to see our progress with this method. Then at Zone Conference, the Assistants (who obviously had been talking to President Miller) called us out and said, "So Sisters, we want to you talk a little bit about what you have been doing in your contacts." So we talked about it. But after we got our new companions, I didn't think I would be able to keep doing it because my area is mostly all Spanish and it's WAY harder in Spanish AND--let's be honest--Sis. Behrmann was doing most of the talking and contacting. But since I've been training, I've been doing most of the contacting and been doing it using this method. And it's been working! I had one man accept a baptismal date in the street. When people are ready, they are willing to learn and search for the truth. We set his date for July 25th. Also, I committed another lady to a baptismal date, but then at the very end of it, she told us that she actually didn't even live here. But rather that she was just visiting for the weekend and lives in California. So, that was a big let down, but I do know that she was very interested and hopefully will call the missionaries when she gets home. We promised a lot of blessings and tied it back to her family, which is definitely her number one focus and priority.

At the Pharr ward coordination on Saturday, some of the Elders came up to me and wanted me to show them how I do the street baptismal commitments. Of course I was willing to share this with them: if it can help bring people into the Church, I don't care whether I'm the one giving it or someone else. And since I can't be in all the areas of the mission, I'm very happy that others want to try it. So I gave them a quick training on the 8 steps of the commitment and they seemed excited to try. The next day at church, some of them told me that they had tried, "but it was really scary and hard," so they stopped and Elder Allen said he tried it--and although he didn't get through all the steps--he was able to set up a return appointment. So I was happy for them and told them to just keep trying. The street contacts are amazing. It's able to put the Gospel in a simple way, so that people just get it: it gets them thinking. Starting it off talking about Christ has been such a blessing; people believe in Christ, people want to follow Christ. But then you tell them that one of those ways is baptism--specifically baptism by immersion and the proper authority--and it really starts getting them thinking if they have that authority. Then you mention that this authority is here again due to the Restoration of the Gospel. Those three things together: Christ, Baptism, and Restoration are like the Tri-Force of the baptismal contact. I LOVE it! I feel like I'm accomplishing my purpose as a missionary. People know why we're there; they know what our purpose is as missionary; they know what the church claims. I let them know and they chose to accept or very firmly reject...and that's ok because I did my part. Because we ask people, "If you knew this was true, would you be baptized?" And some people, even though you've clearly explained it will say, "NO. I'm Catholic and will stay that way. Even if I did know this was true." Well, ok, thank you for you time. It's definitely been an AWESOME way to weed people out. We've only had 2 people this past week go through all the steps and accept baptismal dates, but that's ok. I'd rather have to go through 100 people and find 2 that are really ready, rather than find 20 people who will let us in to talk, but are not ready at all.

Well my 45 minutes are up. Got to go! But I love you all and this church is 100% true. If you don't believe that, you can pray about it. I can promise you as a personal representative of Jesus Christ, that you will get a confirmation of that. :) Have a great week!

--Sister Morgan Burt

Monday, June 15, 2009

When I grow up, I dont' want to wear a tie, or a serious expression, in the middle of July! (Instead, I want to marry a girl like her someday)

Familia,

Ok, first off, I got 2 letter this week from Chelsea and Alex saying, "Oh my gosh, I can't believe you got quarantined because of the swine flu!" Haha, to set the record straight (maybe I mistyped it in one of my emails): I did not get quarantined, the all 2000 missionaries at the MTC did! Haha, but I think it's all over now. They fly in tonight and we start working them tomorrow!

Wow, it's been a pretty amazing week with Sister Behrmann. She really is an amazing companion and I'm REALLY going to miss being companions with her, but the Lord called us together to serve during this short time for a reason. I'm grateful for this opportunity.

So we were over at the "blue apartments," (because they don't have an official name as far as we can tell) where 2 families of investigators live. There's only about 18 apartments and they all face this grassy (and dirty, there's glass all over the place) area where the kids can play, people hang out, etc. So, pretty much, we've talked to EVERYONE in this complex (people are ALWAYS outside, so it's pretty easy to get to know everyone). So now we just pass everyone and just wave and say "Hi" because we know they're not interested. But one of our investigators was outside her neighbors house, so we started talking to her a bit, then started talking to her friend. We invited her friend and her family to the ward's Father's Day Celebration that they were having this Friday (emphasizing the fact that there would be TONS of free food--because this lady has about 6 kids). Her friend thanked us for the invite and then told us that her son told her the other day that he sees us come by everyday and can tell that there's something different about us. And that "When I grow up, I want to marry a girl like them." Hahaha, this kid is 12. But the mom said that she knew that we were from the church and that there was something different that she liked. We were shocked because she was definitely not interested, but we used this as an opportunity to ask if we could come by again and talk to her more about the church. She totally accepted. What a witness to me! People really are watching you in all things that you do: even if it means you are just walking 200 feet from your car to your investigator's door. I still think it's a hoot that that little boy said that he'd want to marry a girl like us one day. My answer to him (and no, I didn't really say this to him): you can! But let's work on baptism first. Haha.

Also, this week has been a one of mini-sacrifices and me having to make some “executive decisions.” For example, two of our investigators were supposed to be baptized on the 20th (this Saturday). But Margarita isn’t married, and it will be a while until her husband can get his act together to try to get divorced from his other wife…so…her baptismal date dropped and she knew it. She was really sad because she has such a strong testimony. But her daughter—Brenda—still could have been baptized this week and really really wants to. But I didn’t feel right about it. There’s a recent convert in my area who is 11 and she was baptized and the mom wasn’t because she was waiting to get married. Here is over a year later and the mom is still in the exact same place with her marriage situation and Gabby is completely inactive as a result. I don’t want this for this family. So I told them that it would be best for them to get baptized together. Brenda really wants to get baptized and I think that she really will be the motivating factor to help her mom push the husband to settle his situation. Also, I decided to give up of investigators to the Elders. Joe and his wife are having marital problems (and, we found a teaching record for them from 7 years ago and even back THEN they were having maritail problems). But the whole family and Joe is interested, except the wife. And they’ve come to church and REALLY want a happy family (Joe is to the point where he wants to give up and leave, but he refuses because then he knows that he’s teaching his kids that it’s ok to pick up and leave in marriage, life, etc.). But Sister Behrmann and I felt that 2 girls coming over, teaching the family, and saying things like, “It’s ok, Joe. Everything will be alright.” Probably wasn’t helping with the marriage problems; I think the wife isnt’ a fan of two young girls coming over. So, we felt that Joe and his family needs the Elders to come by: two strong examples of Priesthood Holders. It was sad to hand them over, but they really weren’t progressing with us. So hopefully, the Elders can.

Hope you have a great week everyone. Thanks for all your love, support, guidance, and prayers!

--Sister Burt

Monday, June 8, 2009

2 Sisters, 2 Areas, 2 Cars, 2 Phones = 100 times the fun!

Familia!

First off... HAPPY BIRTHDAY, little Bro! AKA Elder Steven Burt! Hope it was wonderful. No better way to spend your 21st birthday than on the mission (haha, at least that's better than how I spent mine: 2 finals (spent all day studding in the library, then took one final from 5-7pm and the other from 8-10 pm, then got home to an empty apartment because it was the last day of finals and all my roommates had already flown home for the winter holidays. Yeah...it was suuuuper special...Haha)

So anyways, how is everyone doing? Surprisingly (well, actually not surprisingly), I am doing rather well! I have some crazy loco news for you all: this transfer I'm TRAINING. I actually have known that I would be training from my very first interview with President Miller. We have 5 new sisters coming in and not enough veteran sisters to train (trust me, I've talked to President quite a few times about it...it's been a logistical mess from him to figure this out). But things are happening the way the Lord wants: resulting in me training on my 2nd transfer in the field. I'm really glad that he told me 6 weeks before it happened; it really allowed me to mentally prepare myself for it. And now that it's here, I'm all good.

Oh, but that's the thing: it's not here yet. The new missionaries are still quarantined for at least another week and a half. SO, I'm with Sister Behrmann! She was one of the other sisters that we live with. Her companion went down to San Benito to get ready to train. Sister Behrmann is training for the first time this transfer too. Anyways, since both of our new companions aren't here yet, we're companions and we're working BOTH of our areas: Mission and Edinburg. Yep, so that's 2 sisters, 2 cars, 2 phones, 2 times the investigators, half the time to see them all...= 100 times the fun! It's actually been kind of tough trying to figure everything out: we both want to keep working in our areas and keep them alive. Our organization and time management skills have really had to come out in full force.

But anyways, Ah... I can't say enough good things about Sister Behrmann. She is a truly amazing, DEDICATED, hard-working missionary. I've learned SO much from her already and can't wait to see what the next week and a half brings. I love this Sister to death. It's kind of crazy because our personalities are INCREDIBLY similar. We have the same tastes, likes, dislikes, sense of humor--it's actually been a blast this past week with her. Whenever I have a question about something that I want to know about her, I have learned I just need to ask myself first, "What would my response be to that question?" And then I know my answer. Haha, well actually, there's one thing in common we discovered that is different: I love cottage cheese but can't eat it plain (I always have to put fruit or something else in it to make it tasty) and she can't stand anything in her cottage cheese. So, yeah. One difference isn't that bad.

We have the whole apartment to ourselves so we also completely moved around the furniture in the apartment and did a major cleaning of the whole place and now it just feels more like a clean, neat, organized home--a refuge for when we come home during breaks or for the night (rather than a dark, dirty, cluttered space where we just eat and sleep). This too has made a huge difference. Although, the lighting situation in our apartment is pretty grim and dismal...but we'll try to manage and scrounge around for some more lamps.

I'm beginning to realize how hard Satan works against the work of the Lord. Our amazing baptismal candidate--Margarita--we just realized that she is not married to her husband (even though we already had asked her if she was married and she said "yes"). I had the feeling that I needed to ask again (because her baptism is in 2 weeks) and this time ask if she had marriage papers...and she said, "No." Ok, no big problem, easy fix. EXCEPT we also found out 10 seconds later that her husband is married to someone else and they have no clue where she is...This is the same situation with one of our other baptismal dates--Theresa. I really don't know what to do...as a missionary, I don't have the ability or permission (or even the know-how) to work on finding these missing people and getting them divorced. These investigators really are AMAZING, but this is a huge obstacle and road block that Satan has put in my way and I don't know how to over come. The only thing I can do is pray and trust in the Lord.

Anyways, I would write a longer email, but we have tons and tons of stuff to do today. Next week will be longer, I promise. But this church is 100% true. Sometimes we leave lessons with investigators thinking, "How could they not get it?" But in those situations I need to repent and just humble myself. Not everyone is ready, willing, or even wanting to know the truth. But I know for myself that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored through a modern prophet. Jesus Christ is central to the plan of salvation which is our only way to be happy for eternity. We have all that we need in this gospel and church to know what we need to do. There's always more we can do, which is what we should be asking ourselves every single day.

I love being a missionary.
--Sister Burt

Monday, June 1, 2009

Quarantined, 10 and Bike Day!

Family!

Ok, so news flash: ALL of the missionaries at the MTC have been quarantined because of the swine flu! It's transfers this week, so we are supposed to be having transfers on Wednesday (They new missionaries come in on Tuesdays), but now they aren't even flying in until Friday! BUT, there are 20 missionaries flying home on Thursday (Tuesday is my last day with Sister Loftus, who will be going back to her home in Oregon) and so....you can see how this creates kind of a problem. So transfers are postponed until Friday, but until then, there's going to be a lot of crazy stuff happened. I'll most likely be in a threesome with the other sisters and we'll be working both our areas. Yikes. But yeah, FYI, heads up...this upcoming transfer is going to be so incredibly crazy...no one knows anything for sure yet (you never know until you get the transfer phone call), but yeah. It's going to be crazy. So just wait for next week's email to find out what happened...because even I don't know!

Anyways, what a great week it has been! We had 10 investigators come to church yesterday! From 6 different families/people that we are teaching. It was an absolutely incredible experience and I was just so happy the whole day. What a miracle and I am definitely so grateful with how much the Lord has blessed us. It was incredible because for the first time at church since I've been on my mission, the whole time I was worried about my investigator: what they were learning, how they were feeling, what questions they had. Before, none of the investigators would come and so church would mostly just be for me and what I could learn from it. Yesterday was a completely different experience and I absolutely loved it. I always knew that Sunday was the best day of the week, but this just re-verified it to me.

I really do forget how close Mexico is sometimes. We stopped by a member's house for an appointment and they told us, "Oh she's in Mexico running some errands." Or when we were calling a member asking if they'd be at the ward activity they said, "Oh yeah, we in Mexico and we're crossing the border. We'll be at the church in 10 minutes." I get a kick out of those conversations.

We got to ride bikes last week for my first time ever. I didn't have a bike to begin with, but don't worry, I'm buddies with the Transport (aka Car) Elders (Ok not really "buddies", haha but we're are at the office at least once a week and our car has had a lot of random issues, so we've been in contact with them a lot). So, they were able to scrounge around the office and get me a bike. Biking was amazing! I was so exhausted at the end of the day and the next day after, but it was awesome. They say you only bike as much as your trainer or senior companion likes to bike. My trainer has only rode her bike 3 times total on her mission, so obviously, it's not one of her top priorities. But that's ok! But--mark my words--if I ever train, we're going to be on bikes the whole time!

I've learned a lot this week that we can't make judgment calls as missionaries, or even as people. This has been an amazing thing for me to learn. We don't understand their situation; even if we really get to know them, no one will REALLY understand them except the Lord. I also shouldn't just see a problem or a person and immediately discount them as someone who could be an investigator. I don't know if they're ready or not, how they've been prepared in the past, if they're searching and open to hear the restored Gospel. I don't know that and I have to look at everyone the same: optimistically that they are looking, searching, and open. After talking to them and teaching them, then I will be able to be prompted by the Spirit to confirm whether they are or not (also, an obvious way to determine this is if they are keeping their commitments). We just talked to Todd a few minutes ago outside of our apartment. He is a middle-aged gentleman who joined the church a little while ago. He is amazing and so strong. He's a professor at the college and before the missionaries taught him, we was teaching a Comparative Religion class and told us that he bashed the Mormons during almost every lecture. He would let the missionaries come and talk to him for months, just so that he could make fun of them and then tell his experiences to his class. He says that the one thing that made him open and changed his mind was something that no one ever would guess. He was talking to an Elder whose bike was covered in duct tape (it wasn't broken, but he just did that so that no one would steal it). Todd asked what happened if it did get stolen and the Elder replied, "Oh, the church insures our bikes, so I'll get another one." He said that statement really opened him and got him thinking. Obviously, this--missionary work--is so important that the Church insures the bicycles of the missionaries. This got him on the path to discovery and eventually, conversion. The point is, that you never know how what you say will affect someone. Just go and do. Say and talk to everyone the message that you have been set apart and called to do.

Some days I feel a lot of pressure and stress of the mission life. But in those times I think of what Emma Smith said in the movie, Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration:

Emma: Don't you ever think the Lord asks too much?
Joseph: No. I don't let myself.

I need to gain this perspective. But, every day I can see that I am becoming more and more like that statement. I accept and do whatever call or task I am asked because I know that I have been called of God. That I am a living, breathing representative of him in word and in deed. That my commission is to do what he wants done, say what he wants said. He never will ask something too hard because we've been promised that "these experiences shall be for thy good" and that the Lord will always provide a way for you to overcome and accomplish. I've grateful that I am "Becoming." There are two words that epitomize the Texas McAllen Mission: Remember and Becoming. These phrases are on plaques and things all over the mission home. I know that it's not a coincidence because these two words are exactly what I need and want. I already can see that in my first transfer, that I am Becoming. I haven't "Become" yet, nor do I believe that any of us really actually reach that goal. It's always an action.

Anyways, glad to hear from everyone. That everyone is safe, well, happy, and having a great time! Till next week!

Love,
Sister Burt