“Twi” Miracles

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Hey Hey!

How’s it going? This week was AWESOME! My heart is as full as can be and I know this is the Lord’s work. We saw so many miracles this week! First off, Doug. Doug was baptized on Saturday with a support group that filled the little Midwest City chapel. The whole branch came and more! The spirit was so strong as Bonnie teary eyed watched her fiance be baptized. He was so giddy! He was so prepared that he bought white pants like 6 months ago. His non-member mom came too and that was a neat experience. It was great because the Tuesday before his baptism we went out to dinner with Doug and Bonnie (I always tease and mix up their name “Boug and Donnie” haha) at a restaurant called Go Go Sushi. On the way there Sister Swensen remembered one of our young potentials, Evan, works there so she thought he might be there. When we got there he was there, but when we had tracted into him it was kinda dark so we didn’t know what he looked like for sure. Sister Swensen pointed him out to me and I looked over and we agreed that was him. He saw us looking and so he came over and asked if we were the ones that had prayed with him last week and made a joke about how one of his co-workers had said “Hey dude, I think that chick in the blue is checking you out.” #embarrassing Oh the life of a missionary. After dinner, we had a really good lesson with Doug and Bonnie about enduring to the end. My favorite topic!

We had a good lesson with Kristena also. Sister Anderson (my old comp) went home this week 😦 I will miss her, but I know she has a work to do and I loved seeing her before she left. Sister Anderson went to the lesson with us. Spencer was also there and we taught the Word of wisdom and follow the prophet. She accepted it all. She is really excited for her baptism next week!

Allswell’s lesson…OH MAN! It was so cool. Brother McArthur came with us, and since they are both from Ghana, they spoke in the “Twi” (pronounced “chi”) language. He cleared up SO MUCH that she was confused about due to the language barrier. Apparently in Ghana “Mormon” and “mammon” sound similar, so many people shy away from the church because of that misunderstanding! We couldn’t figure out why she wasn’t reading consistently. She also asked him about baptisms for the dead, how he as a Ghanaian likes being a member of the Church, etc. It was a miracle. She came to church, too!

My prayer has definitely been answered being able to influence and work with people and families with special needs. We went to visit Sister Baker and she just went on and on about how if we hadn’t come into her life she would have walked away from the church (due to getting offended at church because of her kids with special needs). She said we have changed her life. We are looking forward to going back this week with the Relief Society President to help make a plan to get her comfortable coming back to church and to help her kids into it. Both of her kids have Autism. Also, I think I mentioned Dustin, the Randall’s grandson, last week. Well, at church Brother Randall found out that I have a brother with special needs and he came up to me really excitedly and told me that I need to talk to his less active wife and come visit them and meet him. I don’t think he knew we had already met him! I am SO excited. Also, Sister Williams came to church again for the 3rd week in a row. She is the woman with the severely Autistic son. Having Michael in my life has been such a blessing, helping me connect with the sisters in the Moore 1st Ward. I didn’t know why I needed to come here originally, but Heavenly Father has blessed me with so many opportunities to serve others with talents and skills I’ve grown up with.

I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ! I feel so privileged to be His missionary. Transfers are next week and I have no idea what will happen, but I know without a doubt that His hand is in all. “I’ll go where you want me to go dear Lord” has had a profound impact on me during the past 9 months. Almost a year ago, I opened my mission call to the Oklahoma Oklahoma City Mission. I was so confused why I was going to Oklahoma. I mean, does anyone live in Oklahoma!? (I thought back then). Yes, many people do…many people prepared for the gospel. People who have changed my life for good. People I hope I have influenced and who will be my friends for life! I know without a doubt that if you go where the Lord wants you to go and say what He would want you to say and be what He wants you to be, you will be changed and you will have a greater sense of peace.

“I promise you, as you pray to know with whom to speak, names and faces will come into your mind. Words to speak will be given in the very moment you need them. Opportunities will open to you. Faith will overcome doubt and the Lord will bless you with your very own miracles.” -Elder Neil L. Andersen

I love y’all! Keep enduring and moving forward!

Love, Sister Roberts

Baptism, Temple, and ASL Miracles

JANUARY 21, 2014

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Howdy!

Well this week was great. Definitely had its ups and downs. I mean, what week doesn’t? ha ha But this week had a couple distinct ups. On Monday we got a call from President. He asked to speak with me and for a split second I was like “Whaaa?” trying to think of reasons, then it clicked when he mentioned Doug’s name. A little review background. We’ve been teaching Doug for 6 months. Because of past issues he needed First Presidency approval for baptism. He and Bonnie (one of the members) got engaged last week. He is so solid it’s crazy. Because of this wait and the events during it, his testimony is so immovable and he will make an amazing member. Oh wait did I spoil the news? haha YES! He got the approval on MONDAY! So, on Tuesday we had a lesson with him and Bonnie and were looking up scriptures about enduring to the end. We had him read D&C 20:37 and the spirit in the room was thick. It was one of the coolest experiences of my mission. I paused and looked at him and said, “Doug, now that you have First Presidency approval, will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by one holding the priesthood authority of God?” (Bonnie is bawling at this point…well, we all were). He kept saying, “Are you serious?” then said, “WELL YES!” He was so giddy the whole evening. So Doug will be baptized this Saturday the 25th!

Then we had a lesson with Kristena. She has been praying about a baptismal date and when we mentioned it again she said, “I’ve picked a date.” In my mind I was thinking, “YAAAY!” This is a miracle because when we first started teaching her she was hesitant about it all. She picked February 5th! This was a miracle filled week!

On Thursday we got to go with the Niras to do temple baptisms with the youth. Oh myyy… SO COOL! It was such a privilege as a missionary to go with them. They both LOVED it. They had so many questions, so it was good that Sister Swensen and I could be there to help answer them and show them where to go. Sister Nira was a little nervous about it, but as we drove closer to the temple, she looked back from her seat and said, “I excited now!” When in the locker room, one of the youth said to her, “Sister Nira, if you slip, I’ll catch you!” haha So cute!  The Bishop asked if we would be examples to the youth and do baptisms, too. That was neat … it’s pretty rare to go to the temple on your mission and even MORE rare to do baptisms for the dead on your mission. I felt such a special spirit there as I watched the Niras be baptized for ward members’ ancestors and as I got do it for people. When your purpose as a missionary is to invite others to come unto Christ and help them prepare for baptism, it is so cool to do baptisms in the temple to remind you of what it feels like. I loved watching the Niras walking out of the temple holding hands and talking about how great their sealing will be in a year. AH the gospel is amazing! Then yesterday we got to Skype with Sister Smack and Sister Smith in Anaheim with Karen, our deaf investigator. It was the coolest experience. Sister Smack is a pro ASL interpreter just so everyone knows. She was keeping up with me as I spoke. We had the iPad set up so we were behind it, and as I talked Sister Smack would interpret and as Sister Swensen talked, Sister Smith interpreted. They were also able to help communicate what the priesthood is better than we could with her just reading our lips. We were so blessed to have them and I know the Lord looks out for all his children. Anastasia, a recent convert also is coming back to church. She was baptized a year ago and has gone through a lot of rough things. When we saw her this week she had read 12 chapters of the Book of Mormon and she looked so bright. It was another re-confirmation that the scriptures fill us with light! Another cool miracle…we were out with Sister Brown and our appointment fell through and she had the idea to visit an older sister in the ward. We went and her daughter, who is less active, was there taking care of her disabled grandson in another room. At the end of the visit, I looked into the room next to and noticed the back of the wheelchair in whichhthe grandson was sitting. The spirit nudged me that we needed to meet him. I asked Sister Kidwell, the older sister we were visiting, if we could meet him. She said sure and we got to meet Dustin! I’m not sure what he has but he is sharp! He is 22. After the visit, ideas started filling our minds about trying to involve him in the ward! We are going to go back to see him!

On a fun note, since it was MLK day yesterday and we couldn’t e-mail, Sister Swensen and I went shopping at JC Penny and Target (favorite!) and went to lunch together at Mongolian Grill. Then we played scatterball with the Elders and Sisters in our Zone. Scatterball is kind of like dodgeball except everyone is against each other. I definitely have a couple battle scars…oh well! haha

Love y’all!

Sister Roberts

Summer Already?

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Howdy!

Oklahoma is playing tricks on us! Yesterday was a nice 71 degrees. It felt like summer. I could live with this! But tomorrow there will probably be an ice storm haha! This week was great! It flew by, but it feels like a lot happened. This was the first week we weren’t covering the singles’ branch. We are still going to the lessons, but 3 hours of church just didn’t cut it! I miss my 6 hours!

We went on splits for Kel’s lesson. I went with Sister Young. We even got to teach Jaron, too. We had a lesson on testimony. Kel said the strongest area of her testimony is obedience… jaw drop! It was so cool! She explained that she just feels so good when she is obedient to all the “rules” and what God wants her to do. Jaron knows it is all true, I know it! He has a really powerful testimony of God and grace. We also had the Veterans Meeting for all the new missionaries and their trainers. It was neat because  I had tons of questions in my mind going into the meeting, and all of them were answered in the training! So cool! We had a lesson with a new investigator named Trinity. She was a referral from the Zone Leaders’ investigator. She is single though, so we have to give her over to the other sisters, 😦 but she is amazing and we had an awesome lesson with her. When she came to the door, she said, “Are you the Mormons? Come on in!” We also got to meet with Chester and Julie. We talked about Abinadi, and they were laughing at me because I get really animated when I tell stories apparently. haha. We got to talk to a lot of people this week. Because we lost a lot of our single investigators we are doing a lot of finding. We had a really sweet lesson with Allswell on the priesthood. She really opened up and told us that she is slowly gaining that testimony, but to give her time.

Our bed bug adventure is almost over! We haven’t been bitten for 3 weeks! So that is good. I have just been so grateful for all the miracles we’ve seen. I am always in awe and have my testimony reconfirmed every day of how grateful I am for this Gospel and how true it is! We had a cool experience this week: All the missionaries in our District went to lunch at a Mexican restaurant for Elder Edmund’s birthday, so there were 16 missionaries. At the end, when we were getting ready to pay, the cashier told us that someone had paid for all of our meals! We asked who it was, and she said it was a lady who had just left. I was in shock all day. How nice! My first instinct was to find out who it was because we wanted to thank her. Then, I remembered the scripture that says, “Let all thy alms be in secret.” It really inspired me to do more good without being noticed. I have so many good examples in my life of service and sacrifice. I have been able to use Michael as a good example in so many lessons. We teach two less active women who have severely autistic children. They are great examples to me!

Well I hope this week is great! Life is good!

Love,

Sister Roberts

“Try a little harder, to be a little better” -Gordon B. Hinckley

Happy in this NEW YEAR!

JANUARY 6, 2014

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Hey Hey! Happy New Year! 2014..it’s going to be a great year! I am sooo grateful to be here on a mission. It was just a year ago that I was about to turn in my mission papers. I didn’t imagine that I would be here in Oklahoma, but I am so glad I’m here. It’s been a great 8 months! I am so glad I still have time… I’ve been having these funny dreams in which I am coming home at the end of my mission, but I panic thinking…”Wait! I still have things to do!” Then I wake up relieved! It’s a good lesson to me that missions are short and we have to take advantage of every second.

Some highlights of 2013 for me were… obviously my mission call on February 15th! Praying and seeing miracles in the lives of my own family in our move to Provo and Dad’s new job; helping clean up after the Moore tornado and then getting to SERVE there for 5 months and counting!; Witnessing people’s lives, some of my best friends, changed through the gospel… Jocelyn, Zhaotong, Flora, Davon, Jessie, Brother and Sister Nira; being able to be full time missionary for Jesus Christ; having my testimony grow, be strengthened and renewed, and understanding more than ever how to live the gospel. It has truly been a year of miracles and JOY! I feel so grateful for this experience I’ve had.

This week was great! Ups and downs for sure. We are still getting rid of the bed bugs. It’s been a long week that way. Did you know bed bugs smell like overripe raspberries and almonds?? Weirdest fact of the week. We also had to give the Midwesty City Singles Branch to the Midwest City Sisters because our church times overlapped. That was HARD! We are losing 3 solid investigators whom we have spent months teaching. I prayed about it really hard and just felt peace about it. President let us decide what to do and we felt it was best to let the other sisters take care of them. It’s really hard, but I know it’s for the best! So that means we are starting pretty fresh with just our Moore 1st ward area. Sister Swensen and I have some really cool ideas for finding new investigators here and building our area back up! It was hard before because we were covering two wards and we always had to 50-50 it. But now we are 100% Moore 1st’s. We had a really good experience tracting this week. We tracted into 4 teenage guys, and since we had a member with us, we went in and taught about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith. It was a really cool experience. They were so zoned in when Sister Swensen told Joseph’s experience of the first vision. We also had good lessons with Allswell who is starting to progress a lot more! Kristena is praying for a baptismal date, and we had a sweet lesson with her in which we just asked her, “Do you believe that the Book of Mormon is true?” She paused…”Yes I do.” We asked, “Can you see yourself being a member of this church in your future?” She said yes! She is so close! Despite being shy, she went to FHE, the singles’ dance and church with members! We are so excited for her! Doug just propsed to Bonnie (one of our members), so they are getting married March 1st!! We’re waiting to hear about his baptism! Hopefully SOON!

I love this gospel! It’s amazing! Alma 29:1… remember that it ends with an EXCLAMATION POINT! If we have the same attitude and commitment as Alma, we will be given those opportunities!

Love yall,

Sister Roberts

Bed or Bugs?

DECEMBER 30, 2013

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WELL… it’s been quite the week. We started off the week with Christmas Eve and Day! It was amazing. Christmas Eve day we spent the day taking goodies to our investigators and less actives. We stopped by the mission home to give them something and we got to meet “Elder” Walkenhorst. Our mission pres’ son that is on The District I. It was like meeting a celebrity for us missionaries. Then we went over to the Brown’s for Christmas Eve. Sister Brown is a widowed lady in the ward, and her two older children and their families were there. Her son and his wife both went to Harvard and her son is really funny. When we were reading the Nativity (they have puppets for the kids to act out) he did this whole in depth version of it. I can’t remember all he said, but we were all cracking up. Then on Christmas day, Sister Swensen and I both called our families, then we went over to the McLaughlin’s. There were tons of missionaries there. After dinner/lunch we played games. It was a lot of fun! Then we had another dinner at the Bean family’s home. I felt so fat after Christmas day haha.. SO. MUCH. FOOD. The rest of the week we did our normal thing and visited less actives, checked referrals and such. We started teaching a new girl named Marisol. Most of our investigator appointments fell through, but because of that, we met some really cool people on the street. A guy named Julian was one of them, and we’re going back to see him next week! On Sunday Sister Swensen, Elder Henderson, Elder Ravsten and I all gave talks in Sacrament Meeting. It was really fun actually. President and Sister Taylor (our old mission president) were there! All our talks were on missionary work and went really well together- SPIRIT!

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So, to get to the crazy stuff… Sister Swensen woke up one morning with nasty looking welts on her arms, legs and even face. I have gotten a couple of them, but not as bad as hers were. The bites itch really bad, so we decided to call Sister Walkenhorst. She didn’t really know, but told us to check our beds. ……. yes…. bed bugs AHHHH!!!! Anybody that knows me well knows how much I hate bugs… with a passion! We investigated and found like 5 in her bed. We caught them in a tupperware. Not to get graphic here, but they were big… because ya know… they were hungry. Sister Swensen and I made jokes about them all night including naming them all. We called Sister Walkenhorst back and she confirmed: bed bugs. The Elders brought us two air mattresses and we slept in the living room, but it was freezing cold and we used our towels instead of our blankets, so we only got a couple hours of deep sleep. haha it was quite the sight. The bed bugs were quite the topic in the office this morning. We took our little friends to show everyone and we are taking care of it more today. The apartment complex and the office missionaries are spraying our apt and we are getting new mattresses. Pray that we get them out! They are such pests! Anyways, it is going to be a great week! We were talking on the way over to e-mail how funny it is to be in the middle of a trial. Most of the time we point out that it was a trial after it happens. You can always see a little fork in the road when trials hit… Attitude (the sign says): Positive or Negative. The negative path seems more inviting and comes more naturally; the positive one is rough at first, but brings the lasting, deeper happiness. We decided together that we are going to take the positive route. We are going to make this a great week and it’s going to be a week of miracles!

Love y’all!

Sister Roberts

Pic #1 Sister Swensen and I out on Christmas eve!

Pic #2 Sister McLaughlin and I!

Pic #3 Ward Activity (Sister Swensen, me, Brother Ruick (WML), Elder Ravsten and Elder Thompson)

Joy to the World!

DECEMBER 23, 2013

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Hello family and friends!

Merry Christmas everyone! This has been quite the busy week for me in Oklahoma and my family in Utah. I am glad to hear the move went well to Provo! I am excited to hear all about it more! I still can’t believe you guys live there now. Well….My new companion is Sister Swensen (see picture). She is from St. George, Utah. She just barely turned 19 in October so she’s a new one! She is a great teacher. Right after transfers we headed straight to an appointment with Allswell and she was pro. I’m excited to work with her! We got to teach like 9 lessons this week already and it’s going to be a great transfer! We had a great lesson with Doug where we watched the Joseph Smith movie. The Spirit was so strong, and he said he really enjoyed it! We also got to meet with Alexis and her mom, Gina. Gina is hesitant about it all, which is holding Alexis back, so just pray for a heart softening! Friday we got to help usher the Joy to the World concert that the Norman and South OKC stakes put on. It was AMAZING. I honestly wish I could put how I feel better in words. Stephen Beus played in it as well. For those who don’t know, he was one of my piano professors at UVU and then got a job at OU, so I see him occasionally! We also had our Christmas Zone conference on Saturday from 8:30 in the morning until 7:30 at night! It was also amazing! President Walkenhorst gave a great training on faith and putting it into action. We had a great Christmas music program too. Sunday was full of great Christmas Sacrament meeting programs and Allswell came too!

I have been pondering this week what the Savior means to me personally. Being a missionary in the Bible Belt is unique. Everyone believes in Jesus in some form or another. I thought, “well Sister Roberts, what does it mean to you to be a member of Christ’s church and one of His missionaries?” I felt a great longing for everyone to feel and know what I do about the Savior- the joy and happiness! Now don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of people here that have read the New Testament more extensively than I have and know more of the facts and events of His life, but I couldn’t help but feel close to Him knowing that the fullness of His gospel is on the earth and that I know it. And not only that, but that I get to share it! People all the time contend with us on the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith and even Jesus Christ himself (they don’t think we worship the same Jesus), but I know that it is all true. The Spirit has borne witness to me that this is true! I know that Jesus Christ is the son of God. I know that Jesus Christ came to this earth to set the example, to show us the way and to atone for our sins. Without Him we are nothing and we couldn’t progress or become better. I know He lives today! He knows us all. He loves us all with a perfect love. We can show Him our love by serving others and helping others feel His love. I hope y’all have a Merry Christmas and feel Christ’s love!

I am SO excited to call home on Wednesday!!! It’s a been a great and long 7 months since I have talked to the fam! Then, a bunch of us missionaries (16 of us) are all getting together at Elder and Sister McLaughlin’s house on Christmas. I am excited! It will be a great day!

Again, have a Merry Merry Christmas! Love y’all!

Sister Roberts

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‘Tis the Season!

DECEMBER 16, 2013

Hello y’all!

Well this week was long, but good! Christmas is in the air. The lights, music, food, the smells, the freezing rain..ahhh I love it all..sorta! We had transfer calls and Sister Law is leaving me to go to Ada, Oklahoma! I am SOOOOOO SAD! We are like best friends and get along so great. We already decided we’d hang out after the mission, so that’s good! Fun fact about Ada, it has one of the highest Big Foot sightings in the country. haha AH! 😉

Like I said last week, I am training again so I will meet my new “daughter” tomorrow when they get here, but we’ll actually be together on Wednesday! I am excited to train again. “Moore” adventures await! I have been here in Moore for 4 months; another 3 will be great! Tuesday we did a service project for the Salvation Army. We filled gift bags for children in need. It was a really great experience! It was freezing freezing cold. Oklahoma weather is crazy. For a week it was a solid 13 degrees in the sun, and now it’s back up to 50. oh well! This week seemed packed with meetings and service projects. I also had trainers’ meeting at which there were only 7 of us. There hasn’t been fewer than 10 missionaries coming out in over a year! Trainers’ meeting was great though! This week we went out teaching with one of our new ward missionaries, Sister Brown. She just got released from her Relief Society president calling. We had a great afternoon! We visited a girl named Spring who was baptized 6 years ago, but went less active. She said she’d love to have the sisters come over again and read with her. She has 5 cute little kids and was recently married, so we’re excited to work with her and help her come back! We also went and visited Sister Gathron an older lady in an assisted living home whose records had recently been moved into our ward. She said she was waiting for us to come because she hasn’t been to church in 6 months because she doesn’t have a ride! Problem solved! I think the best part of that afternoon wasn’t even the visits alone, but that Sister Brown had a really good experience. Her face was glowing after we finished. It really was a testimony to me that missionary work brings the Spirit into our lives and fills us with joy. AH I never want to lose this fire and joy I feel for missionary work. I have been gathering ideas throughout my mission on how I can keep it going even when I return home. We had a good lesson with Kristena, too. She was different this time. She said she felt a smidge of the Spirit at the Nira’s baptism. We told her to take that smidge and never forget it. She agreed to pray about a baptismal date for January 18th. We are praying for her big time!! Another cool thing about that lesson was that we brought a member named Lacey. Kristena is a photography major and Lacey is a photographer. All three of us applied feeling the spirit to photography and it was really neat. Saturday was another baptism for Brother Guinn in our ward. The Elders have been teaching him. His wife is a member and they have two small children. He told Elder Henderson that he felt so happy and good when he was walking up the steps after he was baptized! They asked me to give the talk on the Holy Ghost. I was actually kind of nervous, which was weird because I teach all the time, but it went well and I felt the Spirit! Saturday we also went and visited a less active lady in the ward- Sister Baker. She has two small children with severe Autism. (what a coincidence!!). We were able to connect by talking about Autism and the similarities with Michael and them. That was cool! Her husband left her because he didn’t want to deal with them, which is LAME! And when she came to church someone told her to take her kids out since they were too loud, LAME! We apologized for her bad experience. She was very upfront with us when we first came in about why she doesn’t go to church, but we just told her that we were here to be her friend and to offer any help we can. We are going over this Thursday to help her clean her house and cook! She said she wants to come to church, but wants her children to be understood and accepted. I pondered back to all the experiences we have had with Michael at church. She even mentioned when they lived in Florida, they had an “autism room” where parents could watch sacrament meeting while their children could play and be loud. I feel very connected to her and I now have a little confirmation of one reason I’m staying in Moore. I prayed before I left that I could work with a family that had children with special needs… here’s my chance!! I am going to try to work with the ward in helping her come back to church! Sunday Kel came to church! A member picked her up and she stayed for all 3 hours! Everyone LOVED her and so many people got her number to invite her to things. Bonnie offered to pick her up for the RS activity on Thursday. She stayed for the caroling at the retirement home after and the potluck too, AND we had a lesson with her after that! haha She is great. I feel like Kel is another mission best friend. She is awesome and I excited for her to get baptized, soon, hopefully! Our lesson after was on the Savior and His qualitites. We challenged her to do an act of service, write it down, put it in an envelope and put it under the tree. She is so excited to do it.

My spiritual thought/quote of the week comes from my wonderful trainer Sister Carlini. She sent me a cute package this week with quotes and one stuck out to me on prayer:

“The marvelous thing about prayer is that it is personal, it is individual, it is private in terms of your speaking to you Father in Heaven. Ask God to forgive your sins. Ask Him to bless you. Ask Him to help you realize your righteous and worthy ambitions. Ask Him to help you with your studies. Ask Him to take away your worries and fears. Ask Him to help you find a companion with whom you can share your life. Ask Him for all of the things that mean so much to you. He stands ready to help because we are His sons and daughters. Don’t ever forget that.” -Gordon B. Hinckley

I loved this quote because a lot of times we wonder what we should pray about. Investigators voice that worry all the time. We can pray to our Heavenly Father anytime about anything. The best example of prayer, of course, was Jesus Christ. He prayed with the people, for the people, before he perfomed miracles, with the disciples, in the garden of Gethsemane, on the cross, with the Nephites in the Americas. He taught us the way made it possible that we are worthy to live with our Father again. How great the love! He lives and I love Him.

I love y’all,

Sister Roberts

PS: Merry Christmas and I am SO excited to talk to my family in 9 days! YAAAAAY!