Monday, March 31, 2014

Saturday was the day of transfers, we already knew that Sis Godfrey was shipping out. Pres Holm shed some light on that at the fireside a few days earlier, but we were blessed enough to get a text requesting us to call him, and turns out I'm training again. I guess Heavenly Father knows I need the extra training time, and the great influence of a fresh missionary to put me in my place;) I'm real bummed to Sis Godfrey go, what am I going to do without her. I mean where do you get a companion who will laugh it off when you soak her with a tree branch full of water and walk at incredibly fast speeds to hasten our work? but there are grand things in store for both of other news, we had a real great week!!

A less active couple in the ward said they had a friend that was interested in meeting with the missionaries. We made like southerners to mac-n-cheese and jumped on that opportunity. The only issue was our directions to where they lived included, it’s on the street with the fire dept and it looks like a castle. We walked all down past the fire dept and saw no such castle. We tried again a few days later, this time venturing in the opposite direction and sure enough just around the corner was a home made with stone that looked like a castle. So Cory and Tara have 4 kids, he got his bachelors in religious study. It was so refreshing to talk with him, he was very open minded. From what he had studied about Mormonism he recognized them as Christians, respected their moral values and believed that it was significant that Joseph Smith was martyred just like many past apostles and prophets. The gospel is simple and makes sense, he seems like the type that will be able to see that. He’s also pretty cool due to his goatee. It’s like 6 inches long and he keeps it in blue and green ponytails, it’s real nice.

Here's some motivation for y'all-go hasten the work!...
Sis Farrel is the prime example of what it means to be a member missionary. For starters here’s what you’ll hear if you call her and it goes to voicemail…

“Hi you’ve reached Jean Farrel, if you’d like to learn more about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints just give me a call” *BEEEEP*. grand right?

Sis Redford and Shayla Redford came with us to Shane and Alisha’s this morning. We’d felt the need to talk about the priesthood with her, but before we could even say Susquehanna river she brought it up herself. After explaining it, she decided it made sense but would have to study more about it. Moving on into the Plan of Salvation all of it made a lot of sense to her. Haha, she loved the aspect of the spirit world, but when we brought up the part about baptisms for the dead her reaction was…”ehh, do I have to? The only thing that comes to mind is my dead grandma saying, ‘let the dead rest’” we assured her she didn’t HAVE to do baptisms for the dead. It was a great lesson, and Alisha said she’d be at the broadcast tonight as well-paige was bummed that she had to work, but said they’d be able to catch at least one session of General Conference.
So earlier today we got to stop in with Dave and Nanny and had another great experience. I just never know what to expect when I go in there. The reason Dave had missed church this morning was because Nanny had fallen and cut her arm. Judging I thought it was a pretty weak excuse, until they decided to redress her wound. They didn’t have any gauze or bandages so they put toilet paper on it and wrapped it with an Ace bandage. When Dave pulled it off the toilet paper was sticking. Nanny’s pretty old and I could tell pulling was just ripping the skin off more. I had her grab my hand to squeeze the pain, like when my dad would have me bite a pencil. She didn’t like him pulling it slowly, so her grand idea was to rip it like a band-aid. Bad idea. She ripped and so did most of her. Skin. This was a gnarly gash. After some deliberation, I tried my best to play nurse and had them rip up an old sheet to use as bandage. Dave poured iodine in it to cleanse it-not my idea, and Nanny didn’t appreciate it too much neither. Next plan of action. I gave Dave the job of holding nanny’s hand for support. Sis Godfrey then supported her arm while I used some scissors and nail clippers to cut away the dead skin. It was quite the process. I felt like I was in some makeshift surgery scene, I was very proud of my ability to deal with the gore and kind of wish I would've taken before and after pictures of what the wound looked like when Nanny first ripped the Toilet paper off as opposed to how it looked after I did some grooming with my less than sterile scissors.

only good things ahead! love y'all more than you know or will ever realize! thanks for your support and prayers, because these people deserve it:)

Sister Lindsay Mae Smith

Monday, March 24, 2014

What a Life I get to live!

Sometimes you're just blessed with one of those weeks, and when you peek ahead to what's in store you get all giddy and excited. My mind is BLOWN away when I think that we'll be having transfers next wed. The past 3 months in Anderson felt like nothing. Sis Godfrey and I have been having so much success, teaching so many new investigators and just started getting the ward going with their own missionary actions plans, and now she's probably gonna be headed on elsewhere. The work goes on, and our time here as missionaries really is super short/precious.

annnnnywho, here's a bite out of my week:)

We met with Katrice that afternoon and had a great first lesson. After we touched on the apostasy I asked, “if Heavenly Father was following the same pattern he had in the bible, what would happen following the apostasy” (I was hesitant to ask this question, not sure if she’d really understand) she replied, “Christ would come again, or He’d call another prophet”, “yes, he would” we replied. We were then able to testify of Joseph Smith and his experience. We then knelt in prayer and she prayed and asked if Joseph Smith was a prophet. We sat there for a couple minutes in silence, the spirit weighing down like a thick blanket. Still kneeling, her head buried in her arms as she leaned on the couch, we could tell she had begun to cry. Sympathetically I reached over and rubbed her shoulder asking her how she felt now. She said she felt so good, we testified of the spirit and committed her to be baptized April 26! She was so eager about it all, wrote in everything on the baptismal calendar herself and set up to come teach her more in a couple days. Me and sister Godfrey just sorta floated out of there, it was awesome!

We walked in and they were having spaghetti. I was totally fine with it, love the stuff, we just thought it was pretty funny because we’d had spaghetti as a meal 4 times in the past 3 days. It was a grand ‘ol time, enjoyed some bread from a can (they now put loaves of bread, ready-to-bake in a can, like canned biscuits!), and afterward were finally able to sit down and have a lesson with Alisha. We’d only given her a Book of Mormon and taught her family. She said that so far nothing in it went against her beliefs, and didn’t see any real differences. We then went in the priesthood, Joseph smith and where the Book of Mormon comes from. She took everything right in and promised us she’d definitely continue to read. She’s amazing, loves her family so much and strives to find anything that will strengthen or help her family in these tumultuous times. She told us that from what she’s read so far, no body can tell her there’s not good things in that book (book of Mormon), she said people had tried to tell her but she was at the point where Christ would have to come down himself to get her to stop. I’m really praying she’ll get a strong witness and have the faith to follow it-I could see her whole family following suit, I believe Shane (her hubby) would come right along as well as some of her kids. She’d be an insta-young women’s President-love their family so much!

What a life I get to live! Out knocking around and this man opens the door,”oh you want to see my wife right?”, “um, well, yes but it doesn’t really matter who we see”, “right, come on in”. We didn’t even get a chance to say who we were before we walked into their home, he introduced himself as a disciple of Christ and from there we discovered he’s actually Mormon, just hasn’t been baptized yet. Seriously though, this guy and his wife have consecrated themselves to God’s will, everything he believes goes right in line with our beliefs down to the spirit world, Christ visiting others after his resurrection and more importantly than that is how he and his wife LIVE their faith. He’s also also used to work with bro carpenter in the ward, bro carpenter also has the best conversion story (found a BOM in a marriot hotel, next thing you know spirit witnesses-whamo-baptism!). I’m real excited to go back, and have a chance to really teach them, I was learning so much from what he shared-he’ll be a great Sunday school teacher one day. It was just a peaceful environment where the spirit could easily abide, we didn’t have to fight for it to stay. Great.

Southern speck of the day: people are always taking baths…but what they really mean is shower. Makes it kinda hard to know when people actually take baths, meh guess that’s kinda inconsequential.

Also, some of the older southerners don’t say “what?” or “huh” when they didn’t hear what you said. They say “do what now?”.

sorry it was so long, life's just too great!

hope y'all, where 'er yer at enjoy the beauty of spring and the restored gospel.

sister lindsay mae smith

Monday, March 10, 2014

Sister Smith identity is Safe

The sun is shining, the birds are singing, the field is white!
it's about 70 degrees outside, with blue skies, a slight breeze and I'm a life is too good!

She’s heeeeere, Bro Helm texted us to let us know that Sis Hairston our favorite less active was in Anderson at a nursing home for a couple weeks for some rehab work. When we talked with him on Sunday he said that she was excited to find out he’s a member (he was working at the nursing home) and she told him about how Sis smith is always trying to get her to believe in Joseph smith, but she doesn’t believe in him. We stopped by tonight and when we peeked in the door she was so excited to see us, but tried her best to not show it too much. She was the nicest she’d ever been, let me read from the Book of Mormon w/o too much eye rolling, only stuck her tongue out at me once and was a little more open minded about hearing about Joseph Smith. My favorite was at the beginning she swore, and I gave her “you know better than that” look, to which she responded, “Yup, I said it and I LIKED it!”. She’s great. She actually confided something in us today, and said that she’d defend joseph smith to her grave and would never talk about him or the Mormon church like she does to us. But that she still wasn’t sure about him, but said “when God’s ready he’ll let me know”. Also she conveniently has nothing to do at the nursing home, because she was taken so abruptly to the hospital, and enthusiastically welcomed the Ensigns we said we’d bring by, even said she might come to church if they’d let her leave. She does not love it there, so I told her to give the Jazzersize they offer every morning a try-I think I got another eye roll for that one.

BEST MOMENT EVER, yesterday when we were at Jimmie and Tish’s Jimmie comes up to us. Now you’ve got to understand we already feel awkward around Jimmie because he loves to give us hugs and we’re always trying to skirt our way out of it. So he comes up to us and leans in real close placing his hands on both of our shoulders, we tensed up as he whispered to us “don’t worry y’all, I haven’t told anyone your names”. A few weeks ago we explained how we don’t share our first names to emphasize the fact that we’re all brothers and sisters and for safety, and I guess he took the safety thing a little farther than we anticipated. Haha, glad our identities are safe with Jimmie, that guy is a hoot.

We showed up to the birthday party at Shane and Alisha’s and there are a bunch of cars in the driveway and parked down the street. I should be more faithful, but my thoughts are like “oh great, they’re going to see us walking up and think the mormon’s are the party crashers”. Luckily paige and james spotted us and took us under their wing introducing us to a few people. When Alisha found us she swept us right up and proceeded to take us around to the 30+ different family members and friends and introduce us to them all as her friends Sister Smith and Sister Godfrey. I threw in the fact that we were also Mormon missionaries. What they really loved was when she told them how we were the ones that got Shane interested in church again. Although he’s not interested in the Mormon church right now.   I’m really glad he’s taking a step in the right direction and that the family is equating that with the Mormon missionaries. But she just spoiled us, I don’t know if she’s like that with everyone or if it’s because of the spirit she feels, but she made me feel like the most important and loved person. We ate BBQ and cake and ice cream with them all and spent a lot of the time talking with her mother and best friend. Her mom is basically a Mormon, but seriously, as we were talking here’s a few things that SHE brought up. 1. The trinity and how the members of the Godhead are separate beings. 2. The importance of God’s interpretation of the bible and knowing what the TRUTH was. 3. The gospel being preached to those who never had a chance to learn about Christ and 4. Here's was what BLEW me away she was quoting a scripture and emphasized how it said the heavenS, emphasis on how the word heaven is plural. She believes in multiple levels of heaven! She said she’d spoken with missionaries before, we couldn’t come over because her husband was a verrrry devout catholic, but I made her promise to read from the BOM and pray. I really really hope she does-I could just see her whole family kids and grandkids all following her example.

Have a good day, and ya know make it a good southern day and have a hotdog (people love'em down here)...and don't forget to put some coleslaw on it:)

love y'all! sister smith...or as some of my good friends pronounce it here

sista smiff

Monday, March 3, 2014

The color of a nanner is yeller

I never thought I could come to love people soo much in such a short period of time. When I think about my past Hartsville people, my heart aches for how much I miss them, yet when I'm with my Anderson people I'm on top of the world. Charity is definitely a gift, and I'm extremely grateful for the extra portion he blesses missionaries with to love these precious souls:)
Well now, hopefully a glimpse into my week will help y'all feel the same way:D

Update on the blood splatter scene-- we met a few days ago at Shane’s house. This time when we walked in through the garage instead of being welcomed by a scene out of CSI- Anderson Shane and his wife Alisha were chilling in the garage. He gashed his finger open, and luckily the blood made it look a lot worse than it really was. We had a really good time talking with them and Alisha was really sincere in expressing how she hoped we would come back again. As we explained the BOM/revelation/prophets the whole time she’d nod her head and be like “well, that’s right in line with what I believe”. I could tell it really touched her because at the end she gave a really good hug. You can always judge it by the good hugs/handshakes at the end of lessons.

Finally got someone to let us do some service, we made our way over to Dave and Nanny’s this morning in our painting clothes, that’s right pants. Dave was shocked to see us in pants. I was wearing basketball shorts and he said, “I never thought I’d see the day when I’d see one of the sisters in thunder blunders”. When we asked him what thunder blunders were and where the name came from, he was like “you know, basketball shorts, because you have the players going up and down the court thundering”. Sister Godfrey and I crammed inside his tiny little bathroom and painted it white for him He was very grateful he said, “oh this’ll be great now when I sit in the tub I don’t have to stare at purple walls”. He was fixin dinner (what some people call lunch here) and would pop in every few minutes to make a clever remark or joke, telling us how the yard bird (chicken) probably wouldn't be done in time. After our hard work we enjoyed canned chicken and dumplings, green beans, homemade cornbread and Dave said that because we ate all our veggies he’d give us a fudgeypop. Best part was the lesson we had before the paint job, we were talking about baptisms for the dead and asked Nanny what she thought about it all. She responded, “I think I want to be baptized” Dave was like “but you’re not even dead yet?!”. It took us a little off guard too, but she explained how she really believed and felt like this was something she needed to do and committed to be baptized March 22! We might have to get about 4 guys crammed in the font to get it done because she’s in a wheelchair, but it’s gonna happen:)

lovin' the south, never gonna leave. this is the best/most important work in the world!

love y'all!

-sister smith