Heart, Might, Mind & Strength!

Family and Friends!

What a week! I am so excited to tell y’all about it and the miracles and love that are yet being poured out to the people of Norman, Oklahoma. We started off the week with a great Specialized Training given by our Zone leaders Elder Ravsten and Kennedy. Specialized Training is with the whole zone and is a two hour training given on a specific subject. We talked about working with all our “heart, might, mind and strength.” We went through the specific words and specified what each meant. I know that we can apply that with everything that we do. The Lord does so much for us and we should work to build up the kingdom of God with ALL our “heart, might, mind and strength.” That night we had a wonderful lesson with one of our less actives. I was able to talk to him about the Book of Mormon and commit him to “feasting on the words of Christ.” I said start by just reading every day. The more you do, the more you will be able to understand it, and get more out of it. He came up to me yesterday at church and said excitedly, “I’ve been reading every day and trying to feast…. but it’s pretty dang hard!” haha I was so excited for him and told him that we would do a Book of Mormon deep read for this week’s lesson. He also told us he was going to quit his job so that he could start coming to church! We are so excited for him and the trust he is putting in the Lord. Wednesday we were able to meet with another less active that randomly showed up at church. He said that he has a testimony and wants to come back, but doesn’t think he has the will power to do it. We had a powerful lesson on the power of the Atonement and that Christ doesn’t just make up the difference… He is the difference! We also met a new investigator/referral named Chase. He is getting married soon and is studying at OU. We dropped off the talk “Watch and Learn” from last general conference on marriage and he loved it! Thursday we were able to teach our investigator Joey and read the Book of Mormon with him. We talked about the importance of feasting upon the scriptures (scripture reading) and counseling with God (praying) to receive answers to our prayers. Friday is where the miracles started to pour. I was feeling a little down because we had had one lesson all week and I didn’t feel like we were having very much success. There are so many people in Norman; I knew that at least somebody, even one person, could be interested. I prayed for an answer and the answer of word I got was “work”. Sister Carlini went up to Moore for the weekend to do exchanges so it was Sister Zaleski and I alone… newbie power! We prayed that we would have a “powerhouse” weekend and would be able to see many miracles as we put in the work and that we would be lead to those seeking the truth. On Friday, Sister Zaleski and I tracted for 6 hours! It was 103 degrees and humid we found out later haha. We found 2 new investigators and taught 4 lessons with members present. On Saturday, we taught 3 lessons and found two more investigators! We were so excited. We went from 0 and 0 every day to this. It was truly a miracle and lead by the spirit. We really did, through the guidance of the spirit, find some of God’s prepared that weekend. I am excited to see how they all progress. We even ran into one of them in the library right before we started e-mailing.

There are so many stories and miracles from this week like promptings to knock on specific doors or things to say. All I know is that I am so grateful to Heavenly Father that we were able to be vessels for the spirit to find His children that He loves so much. I am so humbled that He called me to this place. It truly is the best mission ever. No doubt. I hope you all were able to watch the Missionary Training Broadcast yesterday. It reminded us of the importance we have as members to share the gospel. We are so blessed. It’s like talents. Sometimes one looks at others who have great talents and wishes they also had them. Sometimes we just think “well it’s theirs and they’re good at it, good for them.” We need to share that “talent” or the gospel and help others realize that they too can have it. The gospel brings joy and if you feel it don’t be afraid to share it.

The gospel is true. “Miracles happen to those who believe in them.” It’s true isn’t it? Faith is the power, the spirit is the key, obedience is the price, love is the motive and CHRIST is the reason. I know as we develop a deeper love for God that we will want to come into His open arms and not stop there, but bring others along. I love you all and wish the best!

Sister Roberts

Moroni 10:32

Pictures are of our Zone, our “Fiesta” District lunch and the OU Institute building!ImageImageImage

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Live Up To Your Potential

Family and Friends,

Hello from the beautiful (green, hot, humid) land of Oklahoma! This week was great again although it did surpass 100 degrees with HUMIDITY! I have never had to be in this type of weather for this long before. It makes me so grateful for living in the desert. I keep thinking..wow I use to be a wimp with heat! BUT it is sooo worth it! I love Oklahoma and have really grown to love and appreciate the people here. So, here’s an update on the week!

Tuesdays we go do service at an assisted living home in Norman. We organized Bingo for them and read out the numbers! It’s so much fun and the old ladies are adorable! All our lessons fell through sadly, but we were able to go visit ward members and less actives.

Wednesday we went up to Moore for the New Missionary “Veteran’s” Meeting. President Taylor spoke along with Sister Taylor and the Assistants. Something that stuck out to me was that we can choose what we get out of life (or missions). Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ has shown us the way, and all we need to do is follow it to receive all the blessings he has promised and more. But how many times do we prevent ourselves from receiving the fullness of His blessings because of laziness or our own agency? We need to take advantage of this life He has given us. Watch YOUR POTENTIAL YOUR PRIVILEGES (http://www.lds.org/media-library/video/mormon-messages/mormon-messages-2013?lang=eng#2013-01-001-your-potential-your-privileges) No more should we be eating beans and rice in this life. We need to live so that we can receive ALL the blessings he offers us if we only follow him. So now I’m a “veteran” which just means I’m not a greenie anymore. haha…

Thursday we were able to plan for our whole week. We also went out “finding” and met some interesting people.

Friday we had District Meeting where we shared our testimonies of Christ and the Atonement. It was a good one! Then we had District lunch and the Elders brought out a one month birthday cake they had made for my one month mark! It was so great! We then went on exchanges and Sister Zaleski and I taught Joey. We watched the Restoration with him to add to the lesson and the spirit was so strong. Later that night Sister Burnham and I watched Finding Faith In Christ with Mike, a less active. That was amazing as well and the spirit was strong. It was amazing! Saturday we continued with exchanges and went finding more.

Sunday we went to church and FIVE less actives came! It was so cool! All of us sisters were asked to share our testimonies and afterwards a guy in our ward named Aaron spoke. Both his parents were killed in a car accident two weeks ago. He shared that experience and his testimony. The spirit was so strong. He is also so strong and has been able to strengthen our testimonies through his as he has put his trust in the Lord. Later, we found two more people we are going to teach next week! Funny story… I was standing outside our car in the back waiting to help Sister Carlini back up and a car pulled up with two young guys in white shirts and ties. I knew it wasn’t our missionaries because they didn’t have a bike rack (haha) and they didn’t have name tags. One of the guys pulled up his Jehovah Bible and said pointing to it, “yeeeahh?” I quickly held up my Book of Mormon and pointing to it said, “Yeeeahhh!” haha. They were Jehovah’s Witnesses. We had a short chat with them and they went on their way. I think they thought we were their people.

I know this church is true. I believe the statement that “As our testimony in the Atonement grows, our desire to share the gospel will increase.” I believe it with all my heart. I know that Jesus Christ lives and that he came to earth to set an example for us and so that he would know how to understand us better! I am so grateful also for FatherImageImages, both my earthly and heavenly fathers. I am so grateful for my dad because of his excellent example of responsibility and concern for his children. He definitely puts his family first. I know my Heavenly Father loves me too, and you as well. It’s hard to imagine the kind of love He has for us sometimes, and we don’t need to dwell on that. All we need to do is allow it to changes us. It is never too late. Listen to this quote:

“Just give it up. Surrender your will to Him. Unconditionally. Withhold nothing. Turn it all over to Him; all your desires, wishes, dreams, and hopes. Be true and faithful in your head and in your heart, not just in your behavior, Trust in Him. Trust Him that knows all things. Trust Him who has all power. Trust Him whose love for you is perfect. Trust Him who alone suffered, paid and atoned for your sins, and for your weaknesses as well. Trust Him that He will make of you immeasurably more than what you will ever, ever in all eternity, make of yourself. He will create of you a masterpiece. You will create of you only a smudge. You will create an ordinary man or women, He will create a God.” 

I know with all my heart that we need to trust in Him. That is the only way to be happy. As we live up to our potential, we will become the person we want to be, the happy, successful child of God that God intended us to become.

I love y’all,

Sister Roberts

A Week of Miracles

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Family and friends,

My heart is SO full right now! This week was like my title states, A week of miracles. This week (Tuesday) started out with us doing exchanges. This is when we split up and go somewhere else with a different companion. I went to OKC south which is like 20 minutes north of Norman. We (Sister Burnham, Sister Zaleski and I)  started off by teaching a first lesson to Jimmy Brown. His wife is a member, but he has never really shown interest. He helped out with the tornado relief and said the Mormon people were so nice so he wanted to learn more. This lesson was so powerful. I got the opportunity to share the Joseph Smith story. I looked into Jimmy’s eyes and bore strong testimony that Joseph Smith was a true prophet and that he did see Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. The spirit was so strong and he committed to be baptized July 6th. I was on a spiritual high after that! The forces of evil can not stop this work! We had dinner with the Robley family afterwards and visited another less active who is struggling with recognizing her own self worth and God’s role in her life. On Wednesday (still in OKC south), we went and visited Sister Steele, she is less active and is trying to put her past behind her and come closer to the Savior. We taught her the Plan of Salvation and she teared up when we told her that she was one that fought on Christ’s side in our premortal life, that she is strong now, and can grow stronger through the Atonement and the love of God. Then we had this SWEET experience. We were driving to visit a less active sister and Sister Burnham felt that we should go to another person’s house instead and when we parked we realized our tire had a hole in it. We had to re-exchange in only an hour and so we were a little nervous. Then 4, 10 year old boys walked by and asked if they could help. We said “Well, if you can change a tire.” They had that tire changed in 5 minutes. tops. It was so impressive. I had a prompting then that we needed to give them Book of Mormons. We told them we had a book we wanted to give to thank them and that it was special to us. One of the boys was like “Oh we don’t want to take your prize possession.” We assured him that we had plenty haha. They all took one and headed on their way. We will probably never know if they ever read it, but I know the spirit told me to share it with them and that’s all that matters. After the exchanges, we headed back to Norman (Sister Carlini, Zaleski and I) and went to dinner at the Biddles. Brother Biddle is in our YSA Bishopric. He is so amazing and so is his family. Then next day, we planned and trained and had District lunch. The Elders made us all hot dogs and set the table all nice for us. (Picture). Friday we had District Meeting. Elder Wells taught about Leadership in missionary work and how important the work is that we get to do. After the meeting, I asked Elder Curry if he could give me a blessing. I realized I hadn’t gotten one since I had been out! It was just what I needed. The blessing talked about so many things that I needed to be reminded of, but one line that stuck out to all of us in the room was “for fear is not worthy of a child of God.” It was powerful. I think that is something we can all remember. That we are children of God and fear is the opposite of faith. We then visited a referral that wasn’t too interested because he only believed in science… then we met a male witch…haha it was quite the afternoon. We went to Jamba Juice after to visit another investigator who worked there and to get smoothies. He said he wasn’t interested anymore either. It definitely was a downer afternoon, but… we got to meet with Zhaotong that night and watch the restoration with him in Mandarin Chinese! He definitely gave us a boost with his unfailing testimony and diligence. He is the best! On Saturday we went out to Little Axe to serve in our yellow shirts. We helped out at “Ginger’s Farm.” She had fainting goats, a pig named Amanda, and turkeys!  After the work was finished she showed us around. I PET A TURKEY! They are actually really nice. The pig Amanda sits if you give her a treat and Ginger showed us how to make goats faint! You surprise them! It was super funny and we were all cracking up! We then went to Paula’s to clean up. She is from France. I got to speak French with her… or the little bit that I know. I said, “Je m’appelle Soeur Roberts.” She said, “tres bon!” AH 🙂 SO COOL! It was so great and we talked to her a little bit about the gospel. After that we visited a referral named Melissa. She was amazing! She is so happy and we are thrilled that we get to teach her. More updates on her next week. Sunday we went back to Paula’s and worked from 9 until 3. I am completely fried from the sun haha. It was a neat experience though. We heard that she accepted to have the missionaries come teach her! YAY! We then taught a lesson to Joey who was just interested in hearing more. The lesson went really well! Missionary work is the best!

So now to explain why this was a week of miracles. One could look at the events of the week and think that it all just happened, but in reality, everything that happened was a miracle. The timing, the people, everything was truly directed by the spirit. I have a strong testimony that God is our loving Heavenly Father. He wants to be a part of our lives, but we have to let him, and through that our life will be more full, rich and radiant! We will feel the peace of the spirit. Why fear when God is on your side? He is on our side as we are on his.

Love y’all!

Sister Roberts

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“Sooner” Than Later!

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Family and friends,

I felt so blessed at the number of e-mails I received this week regarding the tornado. We are all fine and safe, although it was a pretty hectic week. We arrived in OKC last Tuesday around 1. We had a short orientation and interview with the President. He told us we’d be going to straight to our areas that night and put to work. I got assigned to be with Sister Carlini and Sister Zaleski in Norman, OK. We are serving in the single’s ward on the OU campus! So… I’m a SOONER everyone! It’s great and so beautiful here. We are a trio because I guess they like 3 sisters in the single’s wards. My trainer is Sister Carlini and she is from Layton, Utah. She went to Cosmetology school and BYU-ID before and she is leaving for home in July! She is great and so loving. Sister Zaleski came out a transfer before me, and she is from Southern California. What is it with me and California comps!? haha I love it. Maybe it’s telling me I should move there someday. Anyways, the first night I was there we taught this man named Zhaotong (Jow-toe). He is from Beijing and got baptized last Friday night (funny story about that… I’ll get to that in a min). We taught him about the Priesthood. He was so excited about it. He researched the Church on his own. He was so prepared when the Sisters started teaching him. He will be such a strong member of the church. He has immovable faith and trust in God.

Wednesday we helped clean up from the tornado. Sorry for all the pics, but some of them are from that day. It was horrible. Any trailer home that got hit was completely gone. The contents of it blown everywhere! We picked up trash, halled away wood from the property and literally pulled down big metal side wall stuff from off of the trees since it had gotten wrapped around them by the wind. It was a mess. Sister Carlini found a tick on her later that day. We framed it.

The next day (Thursday) was super humid. I mean, the hot sticky kind where you can’t breathe… okay that was a little dramatic, but it was pretty humid! We were suppose to teach this lady, but she never showed up and then we got a call from the Sutherwaite’s who are our emergency weather contacts. (Only in Oklahoma). There was a storm coming. We went to their house and just waited. They have a storm shelter so that’s why we stay safe. There are underground storm shelters and ones that look like a shed. In the big tornado in Moore that hit before we came, anyone that wasn’t underground died. That’s how powerful these storms can be. The storm ended up missing us so we went to another lesson with Zhaotong. We taught him about temples and family history work. He was so excited about temples that he wants to go visit all of them! haha I don’t know if he knows how many there are, but more power to ya, it’s a great goal!!

Friday was interesting. We got called up to Moore to do more service. We did a little bit at the Stake Center then headed back to have our weekly District Meeting. We heard that there was going to be a huge tornado that night but we also had Zhaotong’s baptism! We prayed that it could happen, but “thy will be done.” Did the baptism happen? Oh you better believe it. Even the tornado sirens were going off as he was getting Confirmed. It was crazy intense. The Lord answers prayers. They tornado came like an hour after, but Heavenly Father is definitely in control. The baptism was beautiful and he was so grateful. “Sank you,” he always says. After he received the Holy Ghost he said, “Wow, powerful.” He made a covenant with God that day and I was so grateful for his example. Afterwards, we rushed to the storm shelter and ended up staying there til 9:30. The rain was like nothing I’d ever seen. The power went out, so these native Oklahomans pulled out their radio. We got hit by a storm, but luckily not a tornado. We made it home safely that night.

Saturday came and President Taylor arranged for us all to meet at the Moore Stake Center to do service. We had the privilege of having Elder Rasband come and speak to us. He is in the seventy and gave the talk about how missionaries get assigned to missions. Anyways, he’s super cool. He gave us a great message which I will get to later. He was going to be meeting with a congressman afterwards, so he had him come in to join us in singing “Put Your Shoulder To The Wheel” and the closing prayer. The whole mission in yellow helping hands shirts sang that song boldly and firmly. It was powerful. We then headed out and worked with our Zone.

Sunday was cool. We had a sacrament service, in our yellow shirts I might add, and were split into groups. There were around 250 people there with tractors, chainsaws, shovels, gloves and of course smiling faces. We then were able to go to Little Axe, OK which is a little south of Norman and help. The house we were at was a disaster. There was one part that was still standing (I’ll get to that later too) but stuff, trees, and the house were scattered everywhere (one of the pictures). We worked for about 5 hours. Then, we were about to head out, but we heard that Elder Rasband was coming to visit that site. He came and spoke to us, on that property. Behind the group a lady named Lisa walked up. She is the daughter of the owners of the home that had been destroyed. With tears in her eyes this good Christian lady told us of how her parents were both old and crippled and that when the storm hit they hid underneath their bed. The only part of the house that stood standing at the end of the storm was their bedroom. She talked about how she knew her parents had a purpose for their lives and that their lives weren’t finished yet. Elder Rasband asked if she wanted to stay for the message. She did. He told us that he had been in Salt Lake celebrating President Eyring’s 80th birthday. They were having a party in the boardroom celebrating with cake. Elder Rasband noticed President Monson sitting in the corner looking kind of sad. His dear wife had passed recently. Elder Rasband walked up to him and clasped both of his hands as he shook them. (Now keep in mind that he’s telling us this story and I am sitting right in front of him, so he asks me to reach out my hand to demonstrate). He clasped both of my hands and Elder Rasband said, “I’m going to Oklahoma tomorrow, do you—” “Yes,” President Monson said, “I’ve heard.” Elder Rasband asked President Monson if there was anything he wanted to say to the missionaries or people there. He said, 1) Tell them I love them from the bottom of my heart, 2) Tell them I’m praying for them, and 3) Tell the missionaries and volunteers ‘thank you’. Elder Rasband bore powerful testimony of Jesus Christ and of the Prophet. It was amazing. Lisa, with tears in her eyes, thanked us over and over again. Elder Rasband also shared the story of a farmer who lost like 60 acres of his farm. Barns were flattened and everything was gone. As they both stood looking out at the mess, Elder Rasband asked, “What are you going to do?” The farmer replied, “rebuild.” That, my family and friends is the attitude of these dear Oklahomans. Rebuild. Keep moving on. I know that Heavenly Father is very aware of His children here and that He loves them. That is my mission, to “rebuild”. Help others come unto Christ and rebuild there lives so that they can feel of the powerful Atonement of Christ and receive all the blessings of the Gospel-the priesthood, eternal families, The Book of Mormon. Through these things, we can find true happiness and the fullness of Christ’s gospel. It’s the only way. I love you all and pray for you. Thank you for your love and support. Enjoy the pics!

Much love,

Sister RobertsImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage