Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas in Wyoming :)

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!  Christmas in Sheridan was pretty great! :)
On Christmas Eve we went Christmas caroling with some of the elders in our district! That was fun! Most of the people let us sing to them.  Some just closed the door, but it was fun when they would not close the door on us! :) Christmas day was so great! I loved getting to see my family and talk with them for a while :) Then we had a dinner, then 1/2 of a dinner because we had to leave to our other dinner and then to some pie! Oh my goodness I am still full from all of that food and our fridge is full of leftovers, so we are set! haha It was great and so much fun to see how other families spent their Christmas. At first I did miss the usual big family get together for Dad’s birthday and everything, but it really helped me to focus more on the Savior and the wonderful people here in this area. I love them all so much and it was fun to spend it with them :)

This week is going to be crazy. Tomorrow we will take off for Cody and do some exchanges with the sisters there, then on to Worland for some more exchanges. We’ll then be back in our area for a day and a half, then Sister Peterson will get all packed up and we will take off for Billings and she will go home on Saturday :( I am going to miss her so much! I have learned so much from her and we have become super good friends. She is an amazing missionary! Once she takes off I will be in a trio somewhere...maybe in Billings? not sure.. We don’t get transfer calls until Sunday, but I am 99.7% sure that I will be staying in Sheridan, so that’s good! We will just have to wait and see who my new companion is.

I know I talk a lot about mormon messages, but there are so many great ones and they are so inspired! There is one called, New Year's: Look not behind thee, and they ask random people about New Years and the story of Lot and his wife. Remember that story? When Lot and his family are told by God to leave the city and of course it was hard, but they listened to the Lord and left. One thing the Lord told them was, "look not behind thee". But for whatever reason Lot’s wife looked back and she became a pillar of salt. As we make our New Year resolutions or goals for the coming year we should look not behind us and live for the future! We have a Savior and He has already given us everything that we need to move on, to start fresh. We can choose to look forward and know that God has a plan for each of us and we can trust that His plan is a lot better than our own. This year we can prayerfully go about making new goals that will bring us closer to Christ. Whether it is to finish the Book of Mormon, bear our testimonies more, pray every day, or read the ensign cover to cover every month. There are so many ways that we can come closer to Christ and more become the person that our Heavenly Father knows that we can be.
Sorry this email is so short! I love you all and I hope that you will have a Happy New Year!

Sister Anderson
Her district - composed
not so composed =)
Out caroling Christmas eve
funny =)
Out tracting
The Schweider boys
Cool nativity scene
The awesome Reicharts
They did each others faces with mask stuff =)
New Christmas PJ's!
Traffic jam in Sheridan
Funny sign
Jacob had on a mustache that smelled like bacon that Jessica sent him =)
Skyping with the family
Good bye until Mothers day

Monday, December 21, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Hi everybody this letter is going to be short but it's been a great/crazy week! This week we had the Christmas conference up in Billings and it was so much fun! There was a big snowstorm the night before we were suppose to leave, so the president decided to have us just leave that night rather than early the next morning. So we did and the roads weren't too good and it took us about 3 and a half hours instead of 2, but we made it! :) We sang many Christmas songs and missionaries were called up to bear their testimonies on the atonement and it was amazing how strong the Spirit was. After that we all ate some lunch and got to see Santa. It was so funny because all of a sudden while we were eating our lunch our mission president breaks out from behind the doors and starts yelling and running around and telling us that Santa was coming! Hahaha it was a good time.

After the conference we went on a couple of exchanges for the next couple of days and saw many miracles! :) One miracle from this week was on Thursday! Sister Peterson and I had a lesson set up, but the people weren't there, so we tried all of our back ups and anyone that we could think of, but no one was home. It was around 8 o'clock so knocking on random peoples door at that time of night usually just makes people angry and there are not many people awake at that time around here. But we prayed about it and the letter H came to mind so we went to a couple of streets that started with H. First we went to Holmes Street and we're trying to figure out which way to go. I thought to go left and Sister Peterson thought to go right, so we decided to go straight. We then got to Highland street and we saw a couple of houses with lights on so we decided to try them. Pretty positive that it was negative something degrees outside because I couldn't feel my legs or my nose, but it was worth it! It always is :) The first few houses weren't too happy we were knocking on their door, but we decided to try one more and it was a really nice young dad! We talked with him for a minute about prayer and the Holy Ghost and invited him to pray himself. He ended up being interested in learning more and we are going to be meeting with him again tomorrow! I know that prayers are always answered and the Lord is so involved in this work. I am simply a tool in His hand and it is the greatest blessing! I know that the Lord will guide each of us each day as we let him. :)

I'm so excited for Christmas and Christmas Eve! We are going to be going Christmas caroling with our district, visiting with people who don't have family around, and with a few members. I love love love this time of year! There is a Mormon message that I love called, the Christmas Spirit. Shows a young family and many of them are worrying about money and presents, but in the end they come to see the true meaning of Christmas and that it is all about our Savior. If you haven't seen it you should check it out! It's a good one. I pray that we can all remember the true meaning of Christmas and focus our hearts and our thoughts on the Savior. :) Merry Christmas! I love you all!
Sister Anderson
With the mission Santa
Christmas tree at the mission conference
With her MTC Sisters Minus & Granodos
Great friends
On Main Street
Dads favorite street!
Exchanges with Sister Huerta
Small town of Ranchester WY
Exchanges with Sister Smith
Sportin some cool hats members gave them
Nativity scene made from rocks from a member

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Bowling With our Truck

Hello family!
This week has been pretty eventful! On Friday as we were traveling back from exchanges with the sisters in Lovell. We were driving over the Bighorn mountains and it had snowed the night before so the roads were pretty slippery and as we went around a sharp turn we starting sliding and sliding and we ran into a few of the reflector sticks on the side of the road. I felt like we were a bowling ball and we were hitting down all of the pins. Our truck is not too badly wrecked. It still works. There is a big dent the size of a basketball in the front of the truck and scratches on the side and another dent and our sideview mirror is done for, but it could have been a lot worse! Right after we slid a sheriff came up the mountain and got out of his truck to make sure we were okay. The first thing he said was, "what you up to sisters?".. He was a member! That made me feel so much better :) He made sure everything was okay before we got back on the road. We are heading for Billings tomorrow morning and there is a big storm coming today so hopefully the roads will be okay!

We finally found K and we were able to set up an appointment with him, but once it came time to go to the appointment he wasn't there.  So instead, we had the feeling we should go to a gas station, so we did! When we got there a big motorcycle guy came in and Sister Peterson was in the restroom, so I was by myself and at first I was a bit afraid of the guy because he was really big and looked like a tough guy, but I had a feeling that I should start talking with him about the gospel, so I did and he actually turned out to be a really nice guy and we were able to have some good gospel conversation! We invited him to church so hopefully he will be there next Sunday! Then we felt like we should go to the other gas station and when we did two of our less actives were there and we were able to set up appointments with them! So many miracles everyday :)

There was an amazing story told at MLC from a couple weeks ago that I would like to share with you all! There once was a father who had two children, a boy and a little girl. One day he was walking down the hall and he heard his little girl praying in her room. He couldn't help but put his ear up to the door to listen to her prayer. As she prayed, she expressed sadness for the bird traps her brother and father had made. She prayed that somehow the traps wouldn't go off and that the birds would be okay and safe. At first the father thought her prayer was cute but as he really thought about it, it began to trouble him because he realized that those bird traps they had made were really good quality and there was no way they couldn't catch some birds. Worried that her faith would be crushed by this, he decided to talk to his daughter. "Sweetie, I just want to let you know how happy it makes Heavenly Father when you pray to him. He loves hearing from you. But I just hope you know that sometimes, Heavenly Father doesn't answer our prayers in the way we hope for or ask for. I just don't want you to be disappointed if those traps catch some birds." The little girl looked at her father with all the confidence in the world and said "no daddy you're wrong I know those birds will be okay. I asked Heavenly Father!" He couldn't believe the faith of his little girl. But he told her "Sweetheart those traps are really good, and I just don't want you to be sad or upset at Heavenly Father when they go off." His daughter once again said "Daddy I just KNOW they'll be safe!" Finally the father asked his daughter "How can you be so sure? How can you have such great faith?" Then she looked at him and said "Because after I got off my knees I went and I kicked all those bird traps to pieces! There's no way they'll work now!" What can we learn from this little girl? She knew what she wanted and she worked for it and it happened. There's only so much we can do on our knees. Faith without works is dead! We can't just give Heavenly Father a grocery list of things we want. We need to work. God has given us all the tools necessary to see his will come to pass in all things. I definitely know that God answers our prayers. My invitation to you is to get out there and kick the traps! ;) Act upon the faith you have :)

Goodness I love being a missionary! I'll never get tired of being called Sister Anderson and wearing a name tag everywhere I go. I love you all! Thank you for the Christmas cards and packages :) I hope you all are having a wonderful Christmas season! For ponderizing I'm going to do 2 Nephi 22:2 :) We are ponderizing this with one of our less actives. 

Love, Sister Anderson
Bowling for reflector sticks on Bighorn pass =)
On exchanges with Sister Ranger
She may or may not got pulled over, but no ticket given =)
Silly signs out tracting
With sister training leaders in Billings
Sleeping arrangements in Billings
Christmas Bear

Selfie with a bunny rabbit
A lot of deer in town
The Young Women in Ranchester are creative =)

Monday, December 7, 2015

Hello Family! :)

This week has been crazy and so good!
Started off with another dark thirty morning drive heading off to Helena for MLC. MLC was awesome. It always is. I think the main idea that I got out of it was having the faith to receive and act on promptings that we receive from the Holy Ghost. Sometimes the promptings can be super strange and can put you way out of your comfort zone, but it will always work out! :) One elder told an experience of one time he felt prompted to stop a car that was driving down the street, random, but he did it! And those people in the car ended up getting baptized! On our way back to Billings we were in the transfer van with some other sisters and a bunch of elders and we all decided to sing Christmas songs and hymns on the way back! There is such an amazing spirit that comes from music.

Also this week we had a few different Christmas Parties! First our branch in Ranchester had one and it was at this cute cabin looking place and it was all decorated like Bethlehem inside and everyone dressed up like shepherds and wise men! It was so fun! They acted out the whole nativity scene and it's amazing how strong the spirit was as they did :) The next night our ward in Sheridan had their Christmas party and so many less actives came and D came too! The people here are just amazing and so genuine with their love and kindness towards us. The singles ward even made us some stockings with a bunch of presents inside them! Then yesterday the community put on a whole big free dinner thing at the holiday inn for everyone to come to, so we went with a bunch of members to that and then watched the Christmas devotional! The Christmas devotional was SO GOOD! I loved President Uchtdorfs talk on giving thanks and Elder Bednar was really good too. And everyone else! And the choir was amazing! Aw it was just all good. If you haven't watched it you should!

An update on K: he has disappeared. Nowhere to be found. But no worries! We will find him somehow somewhere sooner or later :)

Many miracles everyday! The other day we were told that we were giving discussions in zone training, which was in 2 days and we had zero time to prepare them, so we decided to pray and ask God if we should take time out of our proselyting, or if we would be able to continue working and still somehow be able to prepare our discussions. After we prayed we both felt like we should go tracting, so we went! At first no one was home at any of the houses, then we saw a car pull up to one of them, so we went there! This guy was awesome and said to come back in 20 minutes when his wife would be there! When we did they turned out not being super interested, BUT she had a lot of questions about the church that we were able to answer and testify of. She works with our ward mission leader Brother Johnson, so at work the next day she talked to brother Johnson about us and they got talking and he ended up showing her some Mormon messages! They are such a sweet family! Someday someday someday they will come to accept the truths of the gospel :) I know it! Also on that street we were able to meet a man who has a son that is a convert in the other ward. He doesn't know much about the church and we were able to tell him about Joseph Smith and the first vision! The spirit was so strong. I know he felt it! You could see it in his eyes! I think it may have scared him a bit though to feel the spirit because he wanted us to leave pretty quickly after that, but it was amazing to be so lead by the spirit to that street and to those people.

I love being a missionary! There is such a spirit and a happiness that comes as we help others to come into Christ. I was reading in Alma 26 today and came across verse 12 and I have heard this verse many times before, but for some reason it stood out to me a lot more today! "Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in His strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise His name forever." I'm going to ponderize that one for this week :) There has been so many more things happening, but I don't have time to write it all :) I love you all!
Sister Anderson
On the way to MLC in Helena
Ranchester Branch's Christmas Party
Funny bathroom signs in Ranchester

At the community Christmas dinner
Singles ward stocking gift
Matched again with Alex Zullig
Dark Wyoming clouds
Legos nativity scene our ward mission leader made
Lunch in the truck
They got a kit that makes a nutcracker face, they decided to try it themselves
Aww, for cute!
Wyoming antelope