Thursday, August 1, 2013

We'll Bring the World His Truth

Hello Hello again everybody! 

I hope you all have had a truly wonderful week.  It's been hard for me to decide what I want to write about in this letter because there just was so much GOOD.  Really, it's a problem I'm okay with having though :)  That's something I love about being a missionary, it really helps me to see just how blessed and lucky I really am, it helps me to see that everything of God is good.  I know this to be true as now as a missionary, I go around talking about God, our loving Heavenly Father all day, and I have never seen this much good in my entire life.  Look around you, everything of God is good :) 

THANK YOU MOM for the package!!!!!!! :) you're the best!

It's been a busy week full of youth conferences, tours, chats, phone calls, LOVE, reading, growing, testifying and I am loving every minute of it.  I've gotten a couple of questions about the youth conferences, so here's a little update on what I do :)  There are three companionships, and we meet together each day to discuss the requests that have been called in or e-mailed to us regarding different groups of youth.  We then are in charge of getting the youth their schedules, their lovely Deseret Book lanyards and doing orientation for them.  

So most days at 8:45 am and at 2 pm,  my companion and I are talking with 100s of youth! It's the best! We loving telling them that the gospel of Jesus Christ was restored because of the faith and determination of one youth, of Joseph Smith.  He was just 14 years old when he prayed and now look what has happened.  He had every trial that could have ever possibly come upon him, his family and those he loved, but he could not deny the truth, and he was a youth. I know Joseph Smith truly was a called prophet of God to bring in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.  I think it's powerful that it all started with a prayer. Never ever underestimate the faith that you have, and the trust Heavenly Father has in you.  You can do more than you know :)

The view from my window :)

Exciting news!!! For those of you who know me,  you know I LOVE to pretend I speak Spanish haha.  It is so much fun for me to try to understand Spanish or to try to put together broken Spanish sentences.  And now, I have DOS HERMANAS from Mexico living with us.  Neither of them speak hardly any English, and so we are all having so much fun every night trying to learn from each other.  It's a wonderful apartment to come home to :)  Los misionarios son mis amigas!

Me with my roommate Sister Lee--she has Biscoff spread
(Tag Madeleiene Kmetzch! also, she wrote me a letter-shoutout!)

Okay, I can see this is already getting a bit long, sorry :)  

One of my favorite moments this week though came from a tour I took yesterday.  I was on exchanges with my old roommate, Sister Li, from Hong Kong, since her companion was feeling really sick yesterday. Sister Li and I were so excited to get to be together for the day and to catch up with one another.  I learned so much from her too. She is an amazing girl and such a powerful teacher.  We met a couple from Arizona  outside of the Tabernacle on Temple Square named Don and Mary.  We started in the tabernacle and then moved just next door to the Assembly Hall for our next stop.  When we came in, there was a kindergarten warming up on the stage.  My goodness, they were all so sweet and so adorable--not to mention, have you ever seen a little kid's violin? AH! They are TINY! I loved it and it made me think of The Donakey family...all of them with their violins :)  

We were going over the history of the building with Don and Mary when the kids started to play.  Don loves music so he asked if we could just sit and listen for a moment.  Of course we said yes and we all sat there excited to hear this young orchestra play.  It took only a few moments for Sister Li and I to realize what song these kids were playing.  They were playing "We'll Bring the World His Truth."  Sister Li and I looked at each other, and without saying anything, we both started singing along with it.  "We have been born, as Nephi of old.  To goodly parents who love the Lord.  We have been taught, and we understand, that we must do as the Lord commands.  We are as the army of Helaman, we have been taught in our youth.  And we will be the Lord's missionaries to bring the world his truth."  Sister Li and I both just started to cry, and we looked back to see Ron and Mary staring at the two of us almost in awe, with tears in their eyes as well. 

On exchanges with Sister Li from Hong Kong yesterday,
she's the sweetest and was my roommate last transfer! :)

This was one of the most spiritual moments on my mission thus far.  We both bore a simple testimony to them about why we were on missions, about how grateful we are for our families and loved ones at home who have taught us everything we know and cherish in our lives.  I really don't think it's any mistake or coincidence that the VERY FIRST scripture in The Book of Mormon starts with, "I Nephi, having been born of goodly parents..."  Our parents are everything.  Our families really are how God shows His love.  I started to think about how I love my Savior Jesus Christ for so many reasons, but one big reason is because he has been there before.  Every joy, every hardship, he has already walked through it so that he could pull me through it after him.  I then started to think of how God really shows His love to us through our parents.  These people too have been our same age before, they have had similar trials and difficulties, they too have asked the common questions that we ask as youth.  I am so grateful for my family and so grateful that they truly are Christlike in that they use those things that they have endured, to guide me in my own life later on. (I love you Mom and Dad!)

Sister Humble and I trying to learn Tagalog...
you can see by the look on our faces it's a bit difficult haha

At the end of the tour, we were able to exchange information.  It was so touching to me that they said at the end of our tour, "We can really tell through your smile, through your words, through the way you carry yourself that you really know and believe what you shared with us."  They were amazed that we were not paid for our service as missionaries, or that no one else is paid for it in all the church organization.  I love the purity of this gospel in that way.  That every member of the church is busy with families, with school, with work, with other activities, but they devote everything they have to fulfilling their callings in the church without any sort of monetary payment.  

The people at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints don't testify or say the things they do because someone is paying them, they do it because they genuinely know it and treasure it in their lives.  I am so grateful that I was able to meet Ron and Mary.  I am learning I sometimes fall in love with people too quickly...haha the Sisters joke that I am terrible at saying goodbye because whenever they go to leave I act like they're my best friends.  Well, I really do see everyone and anyone I meet as my best friend--we are all in this world together, trying to do the best we can.  I hope that in even the smallest of ways I can leave people feeling uplifted, or even just a little better than they did before.

With Sister McQueen from New Zealand! Today is her 20th birthday!
Anyone and Everyone...write her a card! :)

As you can see, I thought  a lot about family this week.  I thought about how all growing up, I would run to my Dad and say, "Dad! Can I tell you a story!?"  He quickly learned that I wasn't ever really asking, I would tell him my story whether he said I could or not..I just liked to ask to be polite anyway :) haha So now, whenever I would say, "Dad! Can I tell you a story!?"  (and trust me, it's a lot, I love telling stories and talking with people)  He would smile at me and respond laughing, "Well, you're going to tell me anyway aren't you?"  This has always been such a funny aspect of me and my Dad's relationship--he knows me so well, and still loves me enough to listen and just hear me out even though he knows he didn't have much say in the matter haha.  I have talked with a lot of people this week about how they say they hope The Book of Mormon is true.  When we ask them what will happen when they receive their answer that The Book of Mormon is true, they often say things like, "Well, I'm not sure yet."  I think this is often times why people say they pray and pray for an answer from Heavenly Father, yet they don't receive it.  Heavenly Father, like my Dad, knows us SOOO well.  He knows if we are really asking to know, or if we are asking just to ask.  My Dad knew that whether he said yes or no played no role in me telling my story, just like Heavenly Father knows that for some of us, His answer will go unnoticed or unappreciated by us.  I have really strengthened my testimony that when we truly pray with sincerity, when we ask Him as He is our own Father (which He is), He cannot help but tell us.  He is excited that we are asking Him, that we are listening, and that we genuinely act on what we will hear.  

Sister Tupou, from Tonga, gave me her flower from her hair and
told me she wanted me to be an islander today :)

So, here is my commitment or my invitation to everyone, everywhere.  Pray with sincerity of heart.  Figure out why you want to know--is it because if The Book of Mormon is true it means you can be with your family for eternity?  is it because if The Book of Mormon is true it means the Jesus Christ really knows you personally and loves you?  is it because if The Book of Mormon is true it means that each day is a new day full of opportunities for progression and growth to return home to our Heavenly Father to live in never-ending happiness for all time?  Think about it, read even just a few verses a day of The Book of Mormon, and ask Him.  Don't ask Him like I would ask my Dad if we could have story time, I would ask knowing that no matter what he said, I wasn't going to change my idea of what was right for the moment-my story.  Ask your Heavenly Father with an open heart, with a real desire to hear Him out, and I PROMISE you that you will know The Book of Mormon is true.  And knowing that, oh my goodness, has been the greatest blessing in my life.  

Really, I say this all because I can't help but smile as I write this, I can't help but smile because I have found out for myself, purely, genuinely and truly that this really all is true.  

It is a "gospel of second chances and happy endings." 
(Elder Holland)

Thank you SO much to everyone for reading this, I know that this is long but it was an amazing week full of inspiration and growth as I really learned to full-heartedly rely on my Heavenly Father!  

I wish for nothing but the very best and happiest for all of you! I hope to hear from you all soon!  YOU ARE LOVED...SO SO LOVED.  Please know I am always thinking about you all and get SO excited to hear from you, really, I do kind of an awkward dance when I receive mail haha you're all the best!

Love always,

Sister Briggs


-Thank you to Sister Donakey, Cami Jensen, Britt Lam, Casey Briggs, Mom Briggs, Briana Layton, Curtis Layton, Dad Layton, Peggy Kinkade, Johanna (from the Philippines), Robert Donakey, Becca Donakey, Brother Donakey, Sara Donakey and Mary Donakey for all the letters and packages!

- Also, SO wonderful to run into so many people I know this week! ---> So happy to see Britt Lam, Cami Jensen and Ally Morgan! Congrats to Britt Lam who got her mission call to THAILAND! I am so proud of her and am so excited to write her and hear about all of her adventures! She will be SO AMAZING! Also so happy to see Seth Chatterly and Taylor McBride, I am so happy to see you both doing so well! Also, wonderful to see my Grandfather and Grandma Jeanie as they were passing through! Thank you with everything for the goodies and for the hugs! It meant so much to me to see you!

Mahal Kita!

Oh yes...
and always remember....

Smile :)

No comments:

Post a Comment