Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bundled up in Vegas!

(Written Monday, February 23, 2015)

Hello All,

The weeks just seem to go by faster and faster and here we are at the end of another transfer.  I will find out if I am switching areas or if I am receiving a new companion on Saturday and then we make the change on Tuesday so you'll all know on Monday I guess. I am pretty sure that I am staying and that my compie is leaving sadly, but she's needed elsewhere. She has taught me everything that I know.

We had a really nice week, we met the most humble and happy homeless man last night that just changed the way I look at the world, he has nothing and yet he is so grateful to God and was so excited to talk to us. He was really neat. His name was Bryan Crites.

We also ran into some kids playing outside while we were walking around a neighborhood this week and when they saw us this little boy who was probably 4 or 5 stood up and said (just like the kid from the Incredibles that says that was totally wicked) ARE YOU GUYS MISSIONARIES?! It was so cute! And we said yes and they said that is soooo cool! We are missionaries too! And we told them that they were exactly right and that we can all be missionaries. I love being a missionary and wearing my savior's name on my black badge, I take so much pride in standing for him in this area and sharing him with the world.

I love you all so much, these are simple and short stories this week but I am just so grateful for this mission and the simple moments I get to experience. This week we are going to have some insane miracles, I can feel it and I can't wait to tell you all about them next week!
I pray for you always and I love you all! Take care and have a fabulous week!
-Hermana Alayna Nelson
The photos: My current group of missionaries that I have been working with in this area, and more pictures from another hike we went on this week in the morning. Sorry there won't be more pictures on the blog this week... I just didn't take too many. whoops.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day and Here Comes the Sun!

Hello Friends and Family!

I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day!

Here it feels like the middle of the summer, but that's okay! I can endure!
This picture is of us this morning on a morning hike! I think this is probably the coolest picture I have taken on my mission thus far. I love it! Hello Sun :)

Everyone! This week was amazing! So many miracles are happening in my area here and I know that Heavenly Father is blessing us because he trusts us. We have an investigator with a baptismal date for March 7th, her name is Nadia and she is wonderful, she knows it's true because she has felt the spirit. I am so thankful for her! She has so much faith!

Another fun thing was that we did exchanges again with the leader sisters here and I learned so much and it totally vamped me and my companion up to continue to work so hard!

ALSO, I received this amazing talk in the mail, it's a letter from a returned missionary to the son of one of his close friends and it just talks about this amazing missionary who was crazy but so hard working and did amazing things and me and my companion have read it together and it has been amazing! We are so pumped.

We are starting week five and then Sister D. might get transferred because we will be done with my training. I really hope not, but it's a large possibility! I love her so much and we get along so well as you can tell by all our crazy pictures. (Happy Valentine's day from us crazy gals)

Another exciting thing was that the elders had a baptism this week with Miriam and that was the first baptism I have been to since I have been a missionary and the spirit was there and it was beautiful and I love this church, there is not a doubt in my mind that it is not true.

Sunday was AMAZING. Us four missionaries were asked to give talks and I was kind of nervous because my Spanish isn't that great, but Elder Smith talked about the Book of Mormon, then it was my turn and I talked about Members and how they can show their love for the savior and for their friends by sharing the blessings they are receiving from this gospel in simple ways and then my companion talked about family activity nights and inviting us to be there and how that would strengthen them as a family while doing wonderful church activities and then Elder Anderson spoke about the Atonement and we were all so in sync and the spirit was there so strongly! I know I am working with some of the strongest, most powerful missionaries in this mission. It was amazing. AND! A member came up to me afterwards and I expressed my concern that my Spanish hadn't been very good and (he's from Puerto Rico) he said to me that I sounded like I was born and raised in Puerto Rico and that I shouldn't worry. That made me feel really good. I am getting there, or at least trying to. I know this church is true and I know we had help with our Spanish while we spoke. I said things that I didn't have written down because the spirit helped us say what needed to be said.

I really do love this mission and everything that I am learning from my Father in Heaven Here. This week I would just invite you to show your love and gratitude to the Savior by sharing something simple in an everyday conversation with the people you associate with about your beliefs and I promise you so many blessings and miracles! I want to hear your stories so if you do this, shoot me an email! As always, have an amazing week!

I love you all
--Hermana Alayna Nelson

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Something is Cooking in Las Vegas

(Written Monday, February 9, 2015)

It could be my face, it might be the food, but it's probably both!

Hello everyone! I hope you all are doing so good!
This was a great week and the weather was perfect for our activity that my companion and I planned to have a BBQ with everyone from church and the people that we are teaching and with people who haven't been to church in a while so that we can help everyone make friends and do fun stuff. As you can see, it was a huge success and so much fun!

We played soccer on the big field and had delicious meat with yummy seasoning! There were like 50 kids there and we made Nephi's boat from the Book of Mormon that helped them cross to the promised land (the Americas) and the kids loved it!
We have so much fun with everyone and my face is a little pinker than normal, but I am starting my tanning off early I guess.
It is normal summer weather here right now, just a little on the cold side, but not too much!

I love my mission and I love all that I am learning everyone! As a funny before I share my spiritual thought, We helped clean out one of our old missionary apartments that they are no longer using anymore and we got a sweet Yoda cardboard cutout, there will be a picture on the blog! And it's cool cause he's holding the Book of Mormon.
We also acquired Woody, the doll from toy story and when the elders in our district needed medicine, we put all this stuff in the bag and woody too and left a note saying you got a friend in me aka us and then when they found the random woody in their bag, they texted us back saying thank you for going to infinity and beyond in your area. Sometimes the simple funny stuff makes life good.

I really do love my mission everyone. I am learning so much here and I love the people. I am working with a lot of people that are going through really heavy stuff and life trials that Satan is handing them and one thing I am learning really strongly this week is that we can learn not only spiritually, but logically if something is of God and Christ or of Satan. As we learn about things from God, things become clearer and make more sense, as we learn things that are of Satan, we get more confused with more doubt and life becomes more hard. I don't know about you, but I want things to make more sense, not get harder.
Surprising to us these days, when Christ lived, most people didn't believe he was sent from God, they believed He was possessed by a devil. How is this so when he did so many miracles? Christ promised those that wanted to know how they could learn for themselves in John 7:17: If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine whether it be of God or whether I speak of myself.
Christ encourages us to test things out to know for ourselves, and a prophet at the end of the Book of Mormon adds his testimony to Christ's saying if we want to know we must ask with a sincere heart, with real intent and faith in Christ if these things are true and by the power of the holy ghost, the truth of ALL THINGS will be made known to us. I too can add my testimony to this. I have received so much clarifying knowledge that makes this life easier to live and that is why I am serving a mission, to help others find this same peace that I feel every day. I love you all! I hope you follow the savior and ask to know what is true and where you need to go in life and I promise you will be directed in all things.
Have a great week!
Hermana Alayna Nelson :)

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Funerals, Dumpster Diving, 9 Hours Packing and Boats

(Written Monday, February 2, 2015)

Hello y'all!

How is everyone doing and how is everything else around the world?

This week, I feel like a champion! We did some crazy stuff that just makes me feel like I can do anything with help from Heavenly Father.

First of all, we went to Gloria's funeral. I have never been to a funeral in my life and I was really worried about this experience because I didn't know what to do or how I would feel, but I was okay, I didn't cry because I didn't know her that well, but it was so sad to see so many members of her family thinking she was gone forever and they were in pain and so sad. Our investigator Nelly was just sobbing and the words that were shared with hopeless and lifeless and it was sad. I wanted to go up and share what I know about our bodies being resurrected just like Christ's and that she is okay and learning and happy. But it wasn't my place. But I am so grateful for the knowledge that I have and the peace that it brings to know what happens and where we go after this life. I love that Heavenly Father doesn't want us to be confused.

The rest of the week brought many awesome opportunities to do crazy things, like move a family for nine hours all by ourselves.  Leticia's family moved this weekend and they weren't packed and we had members coming at six to move everything, so me and my companion literally boxed up their house for them for nine hours without taking breaks for very long (like five minutes) I FELT SO AWESOME! I don't know how we did it because the mom got tired between working so much and taking care of four kids, she just gets exhausted so she had to go lay down for an hour because it was overwhelming. But I know that we were able to do it through the enabling power of Jesus Christ. We moved heavy boxes and packed everything so when the amazing members showed up with four trucks, everything was ready to go! It was a good feeling! And somehow, we weren't tired or sore the next day. I am thankful for help to be qualified to do things that realistically aren't possible on our own.
This week we also had the crazy experience of dumpster diving for boxes to build a boat. We had a Family Home Evening activity night at the Lopez house with Leticia and her family and we told the story from 1 Nephi 18 and 19 where they built the boat and sailed to the promised land! It was so much fun! I love this FHE Idea!

We had some times that were hard this week, but so much help and blessings and we have an incredible week that lies ahead! Thank you all for your prayers and your love! Check out the blog for silly moving pictures and ugly faces of me... yay!  Have a great week everyone!

I love you
-Hermana Alayna Nelson