Well this week was great! We were able to do tons of great work and invite so many to come unto Christ!!!!! Miracles happen everywhere, but especially here in this Valley! I have no doubt that Heavenly Father is looking out especially for this Valley! But with that being said I also have no doubt that the adversary is working hard here on the spirits of the most amazing people you can meet!!!!!
This week was hard for the people of the Valley, in an area that is rarely effected by tragedies, this week they saw many. We saw three beloved children of God lose their lives this week, which isn't to bad in comparison to what happens in the cities every week, but here, where everybody knows everybody there is truly a gloom hanging over the Valley. On Tuesday while doing a candy drop celebrating the 24th of July the plane had a sudden failure, sending it in an unrecoverable nose dive to the ground, both the pilot and passenger were killed on impact, one dying at just 23 years old. The ward saw this all unfold before their eyes, and a great pain has hit the Valley for the lose of those two men, then just Saturday a car rolled while passing through the narrows, and two people were ejected from the car, one died on impact as well, and the other is in critical condition in Utah, the third passenger walked away seemingly unscathed, but internally you can tell he is shaken up, why would he survive, and his friends not? Why I am telling you this you ask? Surely there are less glum things to talk about, well yes always, how could there not be while in the service of the Lord? But the reason I mention it is because of this
This is the Star Valley temple. As you can see great progress is being made on it they have started work on the second and it is really coming along. This temple will be and is a great asset to the valley, and I have no doubt the miracles we see here are because of it, because the Lord is preparing to fill his home. But I also know that the tragedies we are seeing are partially due to agency of course but this temple. Because the adversary sees the progress, and it makes him mad!!!! Something I have learned is that the adversary is never madder then when you're obedient. He wants us all to fail, he wants us to feel worthless, and like we will never be good enough. Well there is no opinion more wrong than that. We have no need to fear. We have no need to doubt. After all aren't we promised over and over again in the scriptures that the Lord is with us where ever we go? I know that to be true, and being here, and seeing all the trials these people are facing I know that they to know it is true. Never before have I seen people so strong, who stand up for what they believe in in every situation. Despite the difficulties, despite the challenges they face they have true and everlasting faith that the Lord will truly provide, that what needs to happen does. It's hard to face any challenge, especially alone, but I think that's whats truly great about this Valley is that they never never let a single person here feel alone. They are tight and close, and bonded for life. They are truly examples of charity, and go out of their way to help someone in need. I only hope that I can be one tenth of the person that the people here are. Truly an inspiration!!!!!!!!
This week on top of the tragedy, we also saw so many miracles!!!!!! Day after day after day the Lord provides! We have been able to find so many people, and begin teaching them, and inviting them to come unto Christ!
Our investigator this week was having a hard time, and we actually ended up going to his house with the Elders to give him a blessing, it was crazy! let me paint you a picture Sister Parker and I, the Elders, our YSA fellowshipper, Joe, his dad, his dad's girlfriend, their two best friends from up the road, and two giant dogs crammed into a tiny basement with everyone yelling and 4 or 5 conversations going at once. CRAZY. It was seriously insane!!!! It was fun and we talked for awhile but it can to the point where we were just talking, and we needed to really teach, after all that's our purpose right? Well I started to talk to Joe's dad about the priesthood, and what exactly it is, well I kid you not within 10 seconds of bringing it up the room was silent. like SILENT! Even the dogs were hushed and there was nothing else to be heard except the words I was speaking. I have never been able to feel the spirit enter a room so fast as it did that night. As the lesson progressed we were able to teach a great lesson about the priesthood, and how it worked. Both Joe, and his Father received a blessing, and the spirit was so overwhelming!!!! There wasn't to much room down in that basement, but every space that wasn't filled with a body was filled with the spirit, it was so amazing!!!!!! We ended up having to move Joe's baptism date back one week so his family can be there, the bummer is it will be right after transfers, and if I get moved I wont be able to come :( but I have no doubt that he will be baptized, that he will enter the waters and truly follow the example of Jesus Christ. IT'S SO AMAZING!!!!!!!
On top of the many miracles we saw their was a great celebration!!!! Lemme' tell ya, small towns know how to party! Since it was the 24th this week the town was going nuts! Crazy!!!!! it shut down and the whole day was filled with marvelous activities!!!!! including the kids going fishing with their hands!!!!They brought in a huge pool and filled it with water and fish in the bank parking lot and the kids went crazy chasing them down having them slip out of their hands and eventually emerging victorious we a gleaming fish for dinner!!!!! They had a car show, and parade, and candy cannons, a rodeo, and a huge firework show!!!! It was so cool, and the echo through the valley was insane from those fireworks! So loud!!!!! But what was most exciting about the celebration was again the people. The pride they have for their small valley, and the even greater appreciation they have for saints who helped settle it. They were beaming, and even those who aren't members expressed such a great appreciation for the sacrifices of those in the past that I couldn't imagine a more joyous day, or sight for all those who lived before. Who sacrificed their all, so that we now could have everything we've ever dreamed of, and then some! I Love this valley so much, and once they get an actual pool, I'll live here for life! It's truly truly amazing!!!!!
Well I don't have to much more today, well I do, but we have tons of errands to run, and people to see!!!!!! This week was amazing! I'll leave you with some funny stories though. We rarely see the elders but because of all the events happening throughout the valley we saw them a ton this week!!!!!!! On Saturday though (when all the 24th celebrations were happening) we saw them a ton! They had a baptism and we took Joe to it so he could see what it's like (he loved it!) but he also noticed that the elders were wearing a maroon and blue tie, and then a bright red tie, and I was wearing maroon and blue, and sister Parker was wearing bright red...I made the joke that we were matching like prom, and they didn't like that so much...in fact I think they changed...haha priceless!!!!!! On Tuesday we had district meeting and I am always cold, ALWAYS! so I bring a blanket, but the funny thing is I got it from our old apartment, which of course was previously the Elders. So the blanket I use is embroidered...it says Elder Toone, and then it has the Brigham City Utah temple on it. Well I was using it and we were waiting on the Sisters from Jackson hole to get there and the Elders were staring me down, so I made up a story and freaked them out. I may have said Elder Toone was my fiance, and we were going to get married, they were about to have a melt down because they thought that it wasn't ok to be engaged on my mission! It was great! I of course started laughing and that gave it away, but it was great for the time being! To be funnier when we went to their baptism on Saturday the Elders were having a bad week like bad, they were at the party when the plane crashed, and lets just leave it at that, so to try and lift their spirits we folded it up and put it in their car with chocolate, and they were dying!!!!!! But now they took my blanket and wont give it back!!!!!!! Another story, I asked one of our investigators if we could have his beer, and he said yeah, well awkward then I just had a beer, what am I supposed to do with that? Definitely not drink it, and I am not going to give to someone else, so what was I supposed to do with it? The thought never crossed my mind to just dump it out...so I sat awkwardly with it in my hands the whole lesson until at the end he was finally like "give me that" he went and poured the whole thing out and tossed the can, while every laughed and joked at how panicked my face was. Thanks alot. Just kidding I really was a little nervous, what was I supposed to do with beer?! Anyway last story for you, I am totally being made into a country women!!!! I totally was chopping wood yesterday, and to be a little pathetic my fingers are dying as I try to type today!!!!! Seriously the worst!!!!! But hey it was pretty fun, although I am so awful at it...20 swings later and I barley split the wood, oh well I guess you cant ever take the city out of me!
Oh one last thing, mom you'll love this, but my backyard is like the most amazing garden ever!!!!!! Right now we have Rhubarb galore, and raspberries, holy raspberries!!!!! SO amazing!!!!!!!!! Also this week a met an amazing returned missionary from Allison Farnswaroth mission. Her name would have been Hermana Thompson. She said Allie was a phenomenal missionary and that she wishes her all the best with her marriage!!!!! Tell Allie to keep up the great work!!!!!!
Anyway let me leave you with one last thing, your prayers are needed!!!!!! Our investigator Dennis, has his parole hearing today, and dependent on what happens determines whether or not he can be baptized! He truly is so ready and prepared for this step, and it's a shame to see that he has been forgiven of the Father, but the World has not yet forgiven him, so pray he gets whats truly just in the law and best for him and his family!!!!! Anyway I have to go!!! Love you all, and have a terrific week!!!!!!
Sister Kaycie Sondrup