Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Small and Simple Marbles

Hi hi
Just a few good marbles during the week that I'd love to hit at you:

+my companion shut herself in the door a few times this week.
explanation needed? She literally would be walking out the door, beehive house door, car door, ect, and would close the door half way on her self as she was going out. Haha I hope you all have some good imagery of that, wish I had a picture to supply.

Our zone had a barbeque in our mission counselor's back yard, because we don't have ward members to hang with. Sister Bastos and I swapped sunglasses. The weather was hot and beautiful and we were really soaking it in.
+Took a lot of Mandarin tours (Chinese) with my zone leader Sister Chen from China while we were on exchanges. (for those still unfamiliar with the lingo, we switched companions for the day basically. My companion went with our other zone leader.) On chinese tours: I speak, she translates for me, she speaks and translates what she says. Really helps me learn how to teach simply, most of these people don't really know who God is. Such cool experiences with her she is a wonderful missionary. She is also going to BYU.



+There was a man in the beehive house who was about to go through to take a tour with other sisters in a big group but started to cough like crazy and I was like "woah there you okay?" and all he could get out was "water please." We don't exactly have a water supply all up in the historic beehive house, so I ran and got my water bottle and apparently he really was desperate and didn't care about stranger germs and apparently I didn't either so he just sat there and drank water and was grumpy and quiet. But weird cool thing I realized, I never would have done that before my mission. But I sure was feeling the love of Christ for that coughing old man. Didn't get the chance to talk to him at all because it was really busy and we had to take another tour. But grateful for the little opportunity Heavenly Father gave to me to experience love in that way for him.

Sister Radcliffe from my district barbecued all of our meat because she is a Texan grilling machine.

+During Teaching Center this week, I answered a phone call coming in to mormon.org and it was this cute little Filipino lady and she didn't really know why she was calling and to be frank she didn't really know how to call. Poor Raquel hardly knows how to use a phone. But she said she was cleaning her garage and she found this picture of Jesus Christ with our number on the back and she just felt she needed to call, she had prayed about it, and just kept feeling God was urging her to call. She had missed seeing Jesus Christm she always saw his picutre all over in the Philippines. She said had been looking for him lately ( I think figuratively as well as literally) So she gave up resisting and this was actually the very first number she called on her new phone. We spoke for a while about God and no coincidences in our lives, had a very spiritual conversation with her and she said she is basically ready to have the missionaries come by and bring her to church and bring her to the waters of baptism. It was such an amazing thing for me to see how even the small things we do or give, have an impact whether we know about it or not. 

Trees are growing everywhere whether we see it or not! But we can trust that Heavenly Father, the Savior Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost are the ones giving the rain and sunshine even when we can't reach our little plants.

I challenge you all to share the gospel in a small and simple way this week, give a Book of Mormon, share a pass along card. Alma 37:6
"..behold say unto you, that by small and simple things argreat things brought to pass;"

Our crazy zone

LOVE YOU ALL

Sister Cox

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Zdravstvuy, Guten Tag, Hallo

Zdravstvuy, Guten Tag, Hallo
Today's notes will be random, my thoughts are a little like scrambled eggs today. :)

This week I had exchanges with everyone in our district. It's an incredible opportunity to really see the ins and outs of the beautiful souls that I get to be here with. We are a very America saturated district this transfer. Two Texans (both sweet/sassy, hilarious and I love them they remind me of a lot of folks from good old nodak), Californian (my companion), German (so clean and organized and smart and hardworking wow I love Germans) and Russian (she has a great fondness for cats and missionary work, going home in a few months) I can't even comprehend that right now still seems so far away...

Took a tour with 3 Russians with Sister Semenova. They live where missionaries actively seeking them out is not lawful. But while they were here we were able to share the message missionaries could have been teaching them, gave a Book of Mormon in Russian and gave them access to find church and more resources. Temple Square is amazing.

Investigators we are working with are from Chicago, New York, California, Iowa, Ohio, Jamaica, England, Georgia etc and it is amazing seeing God's loving hand over all nations and people and that He will really give every single human on this earth the opportunity someday, somewhere, whether its on this earth or not, to receive the gospel.

 Alma 26:37 Now my brethren, we see that God is mindful of every people, whatsoever land they may be in; yea, he numbereth his people, and his bowels of mercy are over all the earth. Now this is my joy, and my great thanksgiving; yea, and I will give thanks unto my God forever.

Met a homeless man yesterday who was a little insane, but safe. A common occurrence because we have many homeless friends in the area..some safe, many not. :) Security here helps a lot with that.

Anyway, this guy was telling me about how he woke up the other night with a fox adjacent to his face. There in the visitor center, he pulled out a stuffed fox that was in his backpack and explained that the stuffed toy was probably the source of the anomaly. Hahaha. He's Buddhist, and has had a past of mental illness and cutting and it is amazing to me the different ways people cope with their challenges and ways they find peace. I'm so grateful for the knowledge and relationship I have with Jesus Christ, that I can turn to him in all things, and He really will understand me, help me to heal in my own individual ways.

As we share the messages of this gospel, the restoration, the sacrifice of the pioneers coming to the Salt lake valley and the unique history of Brigham young with people everyday, we become in tune with common facial expressions. It is difficult at times because many come with closed hearts/minds. Judgement as well complete disregard is clear in their countenance. Many funny situations as well. God has a sense of humour, I really believe that.

But when we see someone or multiple someones in our conversations or tours who have this almost familiar light in their eyes, shining, hopeful, full of love and a desire to know more, it fills me with this warmth and energy that I have only felt here. It makes all of the pinched lips and repetitive questions so worth it.

Today for pday we went to a an international European deli and grocery and a cute man gave us free candy. We also went hiking. So glad I am still near the mountains, keeping my sanity up in these glorious God given beauties.

Also we got locked in the beehive cellar this week. That was a little cool and sketchy all in one. We made it out without too many horror film stories running through our minds.

I just want to end with a cool thought  from this week. Often as we speak to people on the square, we start talking to people and suddenly the mind will go blank. A Sister and I in my district found in it a blessing I had never thought of before.How many times when we freak out during a presentation, speech, performance and suddenly our mind just takes a trip to space land. Compare our minds to a marker board and Heavenly Father being in charge of that marker board through the spirit. Because He allows our minds to go blank, we have no preconceived notions of the person or situation and He is in charge of what is written there on that board, and if we listen and are in tune with what he is telling us to say, that once blank board can fill the heart of a once empty and longing soul that needed to have their own canvas or whiteboard filled with good things.

Love you all, and may your blank marker boards be filled with love this week.

Sister Cox
Hiking today.
Hiking last week in the blizzard/thunderstorm and I look like a bald awko-taco but it's okay because we were all just trying to stay warm. These kids were the bomb and so cute. #presoaked
My companion took a pic on the way home, I thought there was cool symbolism. Our walk home is very uphill, that's how the everydays and months here are, a continual climb. Onward Christian soldiers. 








Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Love One Another ft. Neon Trees & Imagine Dragons

Today was a pday to remember. 

I'm trying to figure out a cool way to share what happened but there is no way to make what is this cool, cooler.

We bumped into both lead singers of Neon freaking Trees, and Imagine Dragons, Tyler and Dan. They are both members of the church and both actually served missions in Nebraska.  
Dan is making a video and they are hosting a festival this week to help soften and eliminate the harsh stigmas of the LGBT community in the church and help bring a feeling of love through their music and influence. They will both be performing and Steve Young and his wife will be speaking. 

They asked if they could interview us to possibly be part of the video.

I tried to keep my chill but GUYS THIS WAS SO LEGIT. And they are such good, wholesome awesome, beautiful music making humans. 

I asked them to please sing a hymn for us and they had us sing with them, so yeah that happened. We sang "Love one another," and they said that is what they are thinking of giving the title to all of this. 

We also hiked up Ensign Peak today and it stormed, rained and hailed on us and we were stranded up there with two kids and their grandma who actually served as the secretary of our mission years ago. The little boy was kinda freaking out about the thunder and everything, so I had a few thumb wars with him and we all sang some songs together to keep the calm in the midst of the storm. PS I love thunderstorms so I was pretty much hyped.

We received Transfer calls and our pday switched to Wednesday so we will have two pdays this week......

Transfer info:
Companion: Still will be with Sister Nuttall another transfer! Merica
Zone leaders: Sister Chen (China) Sister Shumway (Hawaii)
Assignment: Beehive (Again!)
Pday: wednesday 

We met some super neat people this week and I can't wait for the full blown chaos of the summertime. 

Feeling so blessed. 

I am still often waking my companion in the middle of the night to pray under the haze of sleepytalking. 

The Chinese people are swarming the square already and they are hilarious. I've never felt more like a celebrity than I do with them, I am asked to take a picture with them at least once a day. It's the blonde hair and the fact that I am american.

This is a quote I love from Elder Quentin L Cook, "It is okay to disagree, it is not okay to be disagreeable." In the midst of the crazy opinions in this world, look to Jesus Christ my friends, the source of all things good. 

Love much,
Sister Cox

Hike today pre-storm. Can't see the valley because I'm in the sky.

       
An adorable couple we took on a tour last week, they insisted on a picture so we took one too. Love them just after 30 min with them.
 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Hello,

Greetings come in English this transfer because American companion. 

So sorry there was a whole lot that happened this week but I am sitting here and my mind is really quite blank and I left my journal at home. We had some final exchanges, zone conference, music and the spoken word and met a lot of great people. Our investigators are doing great. It was an uplifting week, a little more difficult than usual, and I am down with a little bit of a cold, but nothing a good relaxing p-day can't cure I'm sure. Next week is transfer week already, wow.

I do have in my ipad one of my favourite quotes from Jesus the Christ this week:

"Misunderstanding is the prelude to offense."

How often have we had trouble in some kind of relationship just because of misunderstanding? How many conflicts between countries have started because of misunderstandings? How many things have simply gone wrong because of misunderstanding?

Here is my mantra for the week, let understanding be the prelude to our good deeds
When we really understand people and who they are and their potential, I believe we are able to see a side that the Savior sees. And we will have a continual desire to serve everyone around us.

Have a great week everyone, 

Sister Cox


Music and the Spoken Word with Sister Nuttall

A bird pooped on Sister Orellana. This is actually a pretty frequent thing because of all the trees round about. Maybe it's good for the skin?

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Sometimes we do get to meet the Apostles

Buena Sera,
This week we talked to some cute little tykes outside, and one just got baptized not too long ago. We asked him how he felt when he was baptized and he said "the water was cold but I was warm." Melted my heart like a popsicle on the 4th of July. Then the mom told us about the little sister (4 yrs old) who said when she prays she feels like the sun coming up. KIDS♥

Yesterday we had missionary leadership council and it was SO GOOD and tomorrow we have zone conference. (we basically just have trainings from President and Sister Risenmay, the Assistants to the President, Zone leaders and District leaders. How to become better missionaries and reminded of why we are here. I'll be giving my first training! #rookie

Today we went hiking for zone activity and at the top of the hike DL shared scriptures about the Savior and sacrifice and we meditated and prayed and I just felt so close to Jesus Christ and it felt so good being back out in my natural habitat/environment where I really do feel the happiest and closest to God and the earth.

Aaaand last but certainly not least:
On Sunday Elder Ballard of the Quorum of the 12 Apostles came to speak with us. IT was amazing.

He walked in and said, "you all look like a bunch of tulips." hahaha.
I'll try to give a brief synopsis of what he spoke about.

Began with Savior to the women of the church, his ministry and love for them. The samaritan woman at the well, and Mary Magdalene. He said, "The women of the church who have deep testimony and learn who Christ is, you have a power and strength that you carry into your homes, and lives, married or single."

I noticed that while he reads things he speaks slowly, letting time for the spirit to speak to us individually. It was a good reminder for me, in speaking and reading.

He told us to Internalize all the good things we are learning on our missions so that they become apart of us, not just things that happen to us these 18 months.

He also went over all of the Christlike attributes and emphasized how important they are. "Understand and study them until it becomes part of you"

He told us we are celestially blessed to serve here, so close to the Prophet, many of Christ's ministers and wonderful people. 

One of my favourite quotes: "some people who come onto the square are a little square, a little funny. But we need to try to be patient with them." Hahah so true.

We shook his hand at the end and FYI he has really soft hands. One of the sisters took a picture of him and I just so happened to be shaking his hand in that moment so HERE IS ME SHAKING THE HAND OF Elder M. Russell Ballard.



Family Parlor in the Beehive House. Another sister took a picture of this and I just had to share.


Zone Service project last week: we gardened and cleaned and organized the Bateman's home.They are part of our mission Presidency. We were originally going to go to an earth day fair and help out but it was rained out so this was our last minute change of plans.
Mom and Dad, I'm sure you would never think this day would come BUT I LOVE WEEDING IT WAS THE BEST PART OF MY WEEK. It felt so good to do that close to home familiar yard work.

Our hike today. Some of the sisters. Bonneville Trail
It was seriously so peaceful and reminded me so much of the Sermon on the Mount from the Bible Videos. The Salt Lake is incomparable to the Sea of Galilee and Jesus Christ wasn't there teaching us, but it was still such a beautiful time.

I love you all! Have a wonderful week! Send me pictures of your lives!


Sister Cox