Friday, August 30, 2013

I am "gobsmacked" by this mission

Hello again everyone! I hope you all had a delightful week. 

(Kelsey had a visit from her parents this week.  The SLC Temple Square mission is the only mission that allows a short family visit during the mission stay.  We took a quick trip to visit Kelsey at Temple Square for a couple of hours and enjoyed meeting many of the Sisters, the Mission President and his Wife, and taking Kelsey to lunch.  Throughout Kelsey's blog you'll see some pics from our visit - Kelsey's Mom and Blogmaster. It was wonderful to see her so happy.)

Mom and Dad got to meet Sister Siegle from Brasil! She is from Sao Paulo where my brother served his mission over a billion years ago..because he's old now ;)
Reunited with my Mom and Dad and ohhh how wonderful it is!...with Sister Marsh (MTC companion) and Sister Humble (current companion)
I met a woman this week outside of the Tabernacle just after the daily 12:00 organ recital and she was simply wonderful.  She is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from Australia and she is currently traveling the United States with her husband and some friends.  She came straight up to me and said, "I am just gobsmacked by this mission! I mean every where you turn, you are in a new country.  Just"  haha well, I had no idea what gobsmacked meant.  Come to find out it means something like..."in awe of" or "impressed by."  She has no idea she just gave me my new favorite word :)

This week I really was gobsmacked by this mission, by the Utah Salt Lake City Temple Square Mission in the very way she described it.  I feel so blessed to be serving here.  I had the amazing opportunity this week of teaching people from Iraq, India, Hungary, Philippines, New Zealand, Israel, Germany, Taiwan and Wales.

A man from Wales on the square gave us this map! So kind of him! Lets all travel the world together :)

 I feel greatly blessed and humbled by this opportunity.  In my personal study this week I really thought about how vast this world is, how different all the cultures and people are everywhere--even within one family we can meet and see so many different personalities and characters. 
Happy missionaries :)

I love my Mom and Dad.  Thank you for being some of the most amazing and inspiring people I know

Feast time at the Cheesecake Factory...and we were so grateful! We don't get fed in this mission so sometimes we get just a little hungry :) my parents are the best for taking us, thank you Mom and Dad!
Outside with our bags and bags of left overs from Cheesecake Factory.  My time spent with them today was so precious to me.  Everyone--LOVE your parents, respect them, admire them, learn from them, they are your biggest fans here on earth

During Sacrament meeting this past Sunday, two Sisters sang my all time favorite church hymn, "I know that my Redeemer Lives," and I could feel the spirit just over power me.  I wrote in my journal.."I DO KNOW that my Redeemer lives."  One of the lines in the song that really struck me was, "He lives to bring me safely there." Who else does that?  Who LIVES to comfort us, to hear our soul's complaint, to bring us safely home?  I can think of many people who do these kind acts for me, but it is not what they LIVE for.  And that is what binds all of us together.
We all have someone, no matter what we look like, where we live, we all have someone, the same someone who lives for us.  I was studying a lot about the Atonement after Sacrament meeting during my personal study and just started to smile, and then started to have tears come down my face. Now, as I teach these people from around the world, it is the love of Jesus Christ that is what even inspires them to pick up their phone, to respond to our e-mails.  It wasn't a different Savior for each continent or country...the Atonement of Jesus Christ is infinite.  We can connect with people from across the world because my Savior, my Redeemer is also their Savior and Redeemer.  How powerful is that?

At the beautiful Bountiful temple this morning with beautiful Sister Lucas!
With Sister Humble, Sister Ince (Canada) and Sister Silverio (Dominican Republic)

With our District leader Sister Phagwah from Guyana!

I have already especially seen this light of Christ evolve in one of our investigators this past week.  Her name is Adelle and she is from the Philippines.  She was referred to us by her boss who is a member.  After our first quick call with her we wrote, "Not very interested at this time, not sure she will even answer next time we call." 

Well, we called her at our scheduled appointment and she was up and waiting for our call (it was 8 AM there).  Her heart had completely changed.  We were not teaching her- she was teaching us.  She gave the most honest, heart felt and sincere prayer I have ever heard in my life.  She quite literally cried unto God, and I cried with her there too.  Sister Humble and I may have been kneeling down in a Teaching Center in SLC Utah, but we couldn't have felt closer to her than we did at that time.  The love of Christ, that connection between us of having the same Savior, was softening her heart.  We invited her to read 2 Nephi 31 and to think of what it is that God wants her to do at this point in her life.  We were about to call her when we received an e-mail from her saying she was so sorry but that we'd have to reschedule...but she bore her testimony to us and even told us that she wrote her thoughts about 2 Nephi 31 in a Facebook post...Adelle did, the same woman that just a week before we thought would never even give us the time of day, and now here she was sharing with us how after reading 2 Nephi 31 she wants to be a missionary, she wants to follow Christ by being baptized, she wants to be a light to her children so that they too can be a light to others. I was so touched. 
With our new best friend Sister Marcetti from Rome, Italy!

Just a clip from her Facebook post- "To be baptized means to totally submit one's life to God and to follow the path of His Son, Jesus Christ."  Yes, it is fair to say I am 100% completely gobsmacked, touched, inspired and so grateful for my friendship with Adelle and her family in the Philippines. 
I want you all to know that I know that my Redeemer lives, and that everything he does for us, is why he lives.

"I know that my Redeemer lives
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, he lives, who once was dead.
  1. He lives, my ever-living Head.
    He lives to bless me with his love.
    He lives to plead for me above.
    He lives my hungry soul to feed.
    He lives to bless in time of need.
     He lives to grant me rich supply.
    He lives to guide me with his eye.
    He lives to comfort me when faint.
    He lives to hear my soul's complaint.
    He lives to silence all my fears.
    He lives to wipe away my tears.
    He lives to calm my troubled heart.
    He lives all blessings to impart.
     He lives, my kind, wise heav'nly Friend.
    He lives and loves me to the end.
    He lives, and while he lives, I'll sing.
    He lives, my Prophet, Priest, and King.
    He lives and grants me daily breath.
    He lives, and I shall conquer death.
    He lives my mansion to prepare.
    He lives to bring me safely there. He lives! All glory to his name!
    He lives, my Savior, still the same.
    Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
    "I know that my Redeemer lives!"
    He lives! All glory to his name!
    He lives, my Savior, still the same.
    Oh, sweet the joy this sentence gives:
    "I know that my Redeemer lives!"

We love Sister Frost--one of our Senior Sisters!

 With our TMSQ guardian angel- Bob.  He comes to temple square every day and greets and protects all of us Sisters.  We love him

 At the top of Ensign peak with the Phagwah Sisters from Guyana! Sister Phagwah's sister came out because she is going to the MTC on Wednesday for Saint George!
I love you all and feel so very blessed and grateful to know you.  Wherever you may be, whoever you may be, whatever you are going through, He is the same, and he lives for you, live for him :)

Love always,

Sister Briggs :)

P.S. SMILE EVERYONE! Every day is a delightful day, and smiling is the way we show it :)

Shoutouts!!!---Dane and Lauren, Kayla and Steve--congrats on getting married!!! I love you all and hope to see pictures soon! Also...Garrett Pierce and his wife, Casey, Bryan, Mom, Dad, Robert, Mary, Becca, Sara, Brother and Sister Donakey, Madeleine Kmetzch, Rex, Romm, Austin Grant.  You all amaze me :) thank you for keeping me updated, just know I love you! So good to see some of you and to receive letters from others, I am the luckiest girl :)

Eating during our Teaching Center time...we didn't have time to take lunch or dinner breaks because of the crazy time differences with all of our investigators! It is SO worth it :) we have fun

1 comment:

  1. so i've been reading sister briggs' blog for a while now but haven't commented yet. i met her on temple square one afternoon and it was that meeting that got me super excited about my own mission (i leave this month!). sister briggs was just such an inspiration to me even though we only spoke for a few minutes. i'm serving in washington DC which includes the call to serve in the temple visitors center (similar to what sister briggs is doing!!). i've been told that before heading to DC, i'll get to spend a day on temple square with the salt lake sisters and i am really hoping i run into sister briggs so i can tell her how great i think she is!