Monday, September 22, 2014

It's not downhill from here. It's onward and upward. - 9/22/14

Melbourne Mission Moments 

If this email doesn't make sense, it's because all my thoughts just feel like they've become a huge mumbo-jumbo. So much happens in so little time that it's hard to put it into anything coherent.

Monday we had our zone p-day which was really fun. We just all played games at the chapel. This zone is really fun. Everyone just looks out for each other. It really feels like a family. That night we got to see K. We taught her about how to pray and about God's love for us. She really opened up to us about questions that she's had and how she feels when she comes to church and things. She's so cute. Unfortunately, she's a typical teenager and she gets caught up in friends and stuff sometimes. But I know that she is going to get baptized. Hopefully before I leave, but if not, that's okay. Just as long as she gets baptized.

After DLC in Deer Park
Tuesday morning we had district meeting. After our meeting finished, we went over to a member's home for lunch. Small world--as we were talking I found out that her son and his wife are in Churchill Park ward! My memories went straight back to Churchill park-- all those people that I love so much. Love them! When we left that member's home, we had to stop to get petrol. When we went inside to pay, there was an young Indian man named A working there. Right when we walked in, he said, "Do you work for the church?" He explained that he was a Christian and he wanted to find a church here to go to. It took me off-guard a little bit. It's usually us approaching other people, not them approaching us. It was really cool though! He is going to Adelaide for a few weeks but we have an appointment with him for when he gets back. That evening we had dinner with Aunty and Uncle K. She made the yummiest Quinoa salad. It was so good! After that we drove to Point Cook for exchanges.

I got to spend Tuesday night and all day Wednesday with Sister A. I love working with her. It's so fun to have been so close throughout our whole missions. We had a really good day! We found the cutest girl named J with the cutest little girls! I love finding families!

Thursday morning we had to drive to Deer Park for DLC there. Such awesome missionaries. I love sitting in Council with them. After that, we drove back and Sister V was feeling really sick so we had to be inside for a while and she slept. I was able to just read and study and reflect. That night, we had dinner with a Tongan family in our ward. I will have to take pictures with them and send them home. They are all so big! SO TALL! Their son that is 16 looks like he's 25. The 11 year old looks like she's 17. They make me feel so small. I will get pictures with them that I can send home.

Friday we were on exchanges with the Werribee sisters. I got to spend the whole day with Sister A in her area. They don't have a car so we got to use Public transport. I haven't been on public transport since before I went to Tassie so that was fun! We had a lesson with their investigator K and we were able to set a baptism date with her. We had dinner that night with the C family in their ward. The C's are a family from Utah. They have been here for two months and will be here for a year in total. Bro. C is a professor at Utah State and is here doing research or something. They are so cute! So Utahan. I loved being in their home so much! Reminded me of home!

Saturday morning we went out and did some finding. Then we had a lesson with an Indian woman named P. The lesson went really well but she just kept telling us, "I can't commit to anything. I won't commit." Which is sad. She's such a lovely woman. Hopefully we helped prepare her heart a little bit more so that she can be ready the next time she meets missionaries. Saturday afternoon we headed over to the chapel for the Stake Relief Society conference. It was really good! I received so much revelation during it. And it was not so much from what was said but from the things I felt. I love those moments when the Spirit is really able to teach me. One thing in particular stood out to me. I feel like I've been feeling like, "Uhh... my mission is ending. This has been the high point of my life and when I go home, it's all going to go downhill from here." Obviously that's not true, but that's kind of how I was feeling. So resistant to the idea of coming home and not being a missionary anymore. But that attitude changed during the meeting. I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to serve a mission. Surely it has been the best experience of my entire life up until this point. Although I'm sad that my time will draw to a close soon, I AM looking forward to the next stage of life. I'm excited to be a wife and a mother and to serve in church callings, etc. It's not downhill from here. It's onward and upward. The mission is a springboard for the rest of my life.

Sunday morning we picked up N, one of the Laurels, and we went tracting. It was a really good morning and we found lots of people at home with their families which was awesome! Church was really good. Unfortunately, our investigators didn't show up. That has been the hardest part of my entire mission--getting people to church. But that's okay. After church, the Elders had a baptism. It was a young Aussie couple. The baptism was beautiful and there were lots of members there to support them. After the baptism, a member approached us and asked if the elders had double checked the boundaries. We went and checked and it turns out that the couple lives in the other ward by about two streets! Oh no! Now the elders have to somehow explain it to them! So sad!

So last night after we got home, we gathered up all of our stuff and drove to the Melton flat. All the sisters on the west side came and we all slept on the floor there. (There were twelve of us in total.) This morning we got up at 4:45 am and headed out to Bacchas Marsh where we sat on a hill and watched the sunrise together. First sunrise I've seen in Australia. After that we had a testimony meeting with all the sisters. It was such a perfect morning. I love these sisters so much. I am so grateful to be not only a missionary, but a sister missionary.
Sisters Sunrise

I was studying from Elder Bednar about conversion and testimony this week. I love a few of his thoughts. "Testimony is the beginning of and a prerequisite to continuing conversion. Testimony is a point of departure; it is not an ultimate destination. Strong testimony is the foundation upon which conversion is established." Before the mission, I felt that I had a testimony. But now, during my mission, I have begun to experience true conversion. I love this gospel so much. It is the most important thing in my entire life.

Love y'all heaps!

Sister Baker xxx

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