Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Hey Family and Friends!!

Did y'all watch General Conference??! If not, go watch! LDS.org has it all! Conference is seriously like the Super Bowl for missionaries, that's how we described it to our investigators and they just laughed. But it's true! Everything the speakers talked about was dead-on. I loved being able to go and listen and feel like a lot of what was said was being said to me personally. That's how we should feel. It's a time to receive personal revelation, answers to prayers. I got mine, if you didn't get yours, do as the prophet directed and go back and study the talks that were given, I promise there were great things for you to hear and you WILL receive answers to your prayers. Maybe prayers you haven't even said yet. We all have questions and concerns, things no one around us knows. But our loving Heavenly Father knows about each and every one of them and will always provide you with answers, peace and comfort. All of Conference is meant to accomplish that so go, "listen to a prophet's voice!" :) President Monson and the other leaders of the Church are simply mouth pieces for Heavenly Father. Given to us out of love that we might be able to know more of what God wants us to know. So, go listen to what God is trying to tell you. You won't be disappointed!

I'm learning that something cool always happens on Monday, right after I'm finished emailing. This story actually starts the Saturday before last Monday, so I'll try and sum it all up. That Saturday, we were here at the library and I met this guy named Rick. I started talking to him and gave him a pass along card which has the website address mormon.org on it for people to look up and be able to see more about the Church. It also has our phone number on it so they can call and we can meet with them later if they like. So I gave it to Rick, talked a few minutes more, and we left. Then on Monday, Sister Turner was at the computer next to me and then in the middle of emailing all of the sudden got up and went to a different computer. She said she felt prompted to do so, and we all know we should never postpone a prompting! ;) Anyway, Rick ended up coming back and took the computer next to mine. He told me he had looked at mormon.org but was still having trouble finding our church building. I talked to him for a bit, gave him directions, and gave a quick summary of the first lesson we teach, which is about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I invited him to Conference (we watch at the church building), and he said he would be there! He ended up not being able to make it, but with everything he told me, I just know he is searching so much for the truth that I have and we are going to be given the opportunity to share it with him! I'm really excited. I'm thinking he'll be showing up here to the library before I leave again so we'll see if we can set up a time to meet, he is about to find what he has been searching for!!

Also this week we had a couple of great lessons with Micheal. Micheal is amazing and his conversion to the gospel is the most wonderful thing to see! I now know why he has fallen off date for baptism. BECAUSE.... now with his baptism date, he'll be confirmed on EasterSunday!! Seriously come on, what's cooler than that? Just something to make his day even more special! It's on him, but I know he'll make it. He is progressing so much, he doesn't even have the desire to smoke. That doesn't mean he can quit cold-turkey, but he's getting there. Sister Turner and I made him his own homemade pack of cigarettes. I'm pretty proud of them. Inside the box are rolled up pieces of paper with scriptures written on the inside we picked out that we thought would help him personally. The outside has uplifting pictures, one of which is now one of my favorite pictures of the Savior. We show that picture when we are in lessons and ask the people "if Christ were looking at you like that, what do you think He would be saying?" The answers are always so profound, never ceasing to amaze me. One thing Micheal said as an answer to that question the first time he saw that picture was that Christ would be asking him why he was smoking, that he shouldn't be. I can't remember his words exactly, but it was powerful. So of course we taped that picture on the cigarette box ;) It's working though! He also opened to us about an experience he had where God told him He was listening to his prayer. How cool is that?! I won't share details, but I just gave him a high five and was like "YES!" He gets it. I know he has had a lot of hardships in his life. He hasn't shared much, but it's there. The gospel is changing him. He is so much closer to Christ already and you can see the light of Christ in his eyes now. April 19th and 20th are going to be two glorious days as we will get to see Micheal step into the waters of baptism and receive a fresh start on the path of righteousness, and then receive the gift of the Holy Ghost on the morning of Easter Sunday. That is the greatest gift we have, and we are able to choose to have it with us 24/7. Don't take it for granted, but strive to have it with you more. You can definitely tell the difference in a room when the Spirit is there vs when it is not. That is my favorite thing about being a missionary--being in a room teaching somebody and just feeling the Holy Ghost testify, knowing that the person felt it too and their hearts are beginning to change. Likewise, I know it is also important for us to know how to recognize and understand the Spirit. We have had many occasions teaching people where the Spirit is felt, but there person has not felt it before and they don't know what to do-they get scared. Those are the saddest moments. The moments where we tell them what they are feeling and know that they can feel peace and have the knowledge that what we are telling them is true, but having them deny it. It is scary, and Satan does get his chance to interfere and let fear creep into their hearts. Something to be conscious of. The Spirit is quiet, but powerful. It testifies of truth, and brings comfort and peace. It warns. It is gentle but kind. There is no other feeling like it and it is not a feeling you can re-create or duplicate. The Holy Ghost testifies of God, of Jesus Christ, of the truthfulness of this gospel and how it was lost for a time, but is back on the earth today. This is our message. One of the most important things we learn as missionaries is that we are not the teachers. It doesn't matter how skilled we are or how much we know, if the Spirit is not there, nothing will change. Nothing will matter. The Spirit is the teacher, and that is why we should strive to have the companionship of the Holy Ghost each day. 

A couple things I took away from Conference was that faith requires work. Also talked about was the scripture Moroni 10:3-5. When you have a question, a concern, or are like me and know of the truthfulness of the gospel but just want to feel the powerful testimony of the Holy Ghost again bear witness to you, pray and ASK. "And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things."

I hope you will all take the time to review the messages given during Conference, and some from past conferences. If you look at it with an attitude that God is talking to you personally, you will get much more out of it.  The time taken to do that is worth it, I promise! The peace you are wanting right now is there. Having peace in your life doesn't mean there isn't chaos around you, but inside of yourself you will feel peace and that is the greatest feeling of all.

Love you guys lots and I will talk to you soon! I'm sending my love from Georgia :)

Sister Applegate

Micheal's homemade cigarettes

April Fools with the elders :) Win for us, and payback coming.... Yikes!

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