Monday, November 19, 2012


We found four new investigators this week. The Spirit led us straight to this one guy who is  elect but has a lot of problems with faith. He wants to know God is there but doesn't think he can trust feelings because he's had good feelings about things before and had them turn out to be lies. He feels like scientifically he has to prove that there is a God. It's weird because he said his life goal is to know God but at the same time he hasn't been able to be convinced yet that God is there. He's crazy smart. He has a genius IQ but works at McDonald's  ecause he doesn't know how to channel his intelligence. The other girl we met is in high school and sincerely felt the spirit when we talked to her and committed to reading the Book of Mormon right away. Her mom joined the church when she was a baby so she doesn't know anything about the church but wants to know everything. The other two we added are a father and son. The father is in our Ward Mission Leader's drug rehab support group and he's already in the middle of the Book of Mormon. He showed up at church yesterday with his son and wants to be taught.

We had a lesson at Shirdy's this week with his mom and Adam and Maelyn. Shirdy calls me Vegas and he kept telling me that I don't belong in the city but I belong in the country. He said over and over again, "What're you gonna do if you get home and your mommy answers the door and takes one look at you and says she don't want you no more and shuts the door?" Then I'd respond, "I guess I'll have to turn around and come back here to Kentucky." "You hear that, Adam? We'll make a country girl outta her yet!" Then I'd say, "You don't really wish that on me though, do you, Shirdy?" He'd laugh, "I aint sayin'." Then came his favorite part, "Oh, Vegas, I'd give anything to have my eyes (his eyesight) back to see you livin' in the country, barefoot and pregnant in the garden with some chaw in your mouth and your teeth fallin' out! I'd give anything in the world to see that." "Shirdy! I like my teeth right where they are, thank you very much!" "I'm serious, Vegas. We'll find you a nice country boy without no job and you can settle down and become one of us." "No job?" "Well, yeah. None of the other girls have husbands with jobs. It would be unfair to get you one that did." Adam and Maelyn were rolling. He kept insisting that that is what is in my destiny: pregnant, no teeth or shoes and married to a bum. How romantic. 

I finally asked him, "Why, out of all the missionaries you've met, are you so set on ME being the one who comes back and turns into a hillbilly?" That's when he dropped the jokes and got all serious and sentimental and said it's because I'm the one who has the heart and soul of someone from the hills. It was very sweet. All kidding aside, the people here in Kentucky have some of the purest, humblest hearts I've ever come across. It was one of the best compliments I've ever been paid to be told I have a heart like one of them. Then Adam broke the silence by saying the real reason I'm the one Shirdy wants to see in the country is because I'm such a city girl that they'd all be entertained hearing me scream and squawk anytime a bug popped up. All we did was laugh and laugh that night. Shirdy shared his conversion story with us and I think it's a really good tradition that's been started of Saturday night pizza night at Shirdy's.

I don't know what else to say. This week has been surreal. Sister Ford and I can't believe this transfer went by as quickly as it did. It's been an emotional week. I think I've done a pretty good job of blocking out the thought of going home until this week. But Sister Ford and I have been talking and crying together about how when the mission is over, it's a chapter that's complete. You don't come back to it the same way it was before. I'm going to really miss Sister Ford. We feel like when we met last Christmas that we weren't forming a friendship, we were picking up where one had left off. We feel like we were best friends in the pre-existence and promised each other we'd serve missions and find each other here on earth. What a blessing that the Lord let us keep that promise. We're convinced we were besties with the Vonnahmes and Adam and Maelyn and Sister Smith and June, too. Maybe not all eight of us were good friends before, but that Sister Ford and I were inseparable up there and so when the Vonnahmes came by to say hi to one of us the other was always there. The same goes for Adam and Maelyn and Sister Smith and June. You couldn't be my friend without being Sister Ford's and vice verse. Oh, and we were best friends with Moroni and Teancum, of course, too.

I've done a lot of being grateful this week. I've been overwhelmed with how blessed I've been to be a missionary and to meet the people I've met and witness the miracles I've witnessed and learned the lessons I've learned and feel the way that I've felt. I'm too blessed. Just too blessed.
I know that Christ lives. I know that He died for me because even though He knows I'm imperfect, He sees potential in the person I can be and the happiness I can receive. He loves me enough to let me learn and grow and struggle. He loves me enough to rescue me when my head is about to go under because I can't tread water anymore. He has sent me His gospel through prophets and scriptures. He has given me access to His Atoning sacrifice through His priesthood power which is on the earth.
There is a plan for me and it's one that results in happiness. I don't have to be alone in this fight I've been sent to fight. Nothing here will last forever, but if I make the best of the things I have while I have them, I can one day hold on to happiness and joy and peace FOREVER and let go of pain and sadness and turmoil FOREVER. Hurray!!! This is all because of Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost. I know that they restored the gospel and the plan and the priesthood to the earth through a valiant man named Joseph Smith Jr. They've given me gifts of instruction in the Bible and the Book of Mormon and other scriptures. They've given me prayer and church and family and commandments all to allow me to be happy now. They are very much aware of me and of my everyday life. They move in my life constantly. I love them and cannot ever thank them for everything they've done and will continue to do for me. My mission has blessed me profoundly and permanently. It has been the greatest gift and opportunity and blessing of my life.

I love you all. Thank you for every prayer and thought and letter and email and sacrifice you've given in my behalf. I'm too, too blessed.

I'll be seeing/talking to you all very soon.

The Church is TRUE! Share it!

Love Yuns,

Sister Brooke Nelson

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