Monday, April 28, 2014

Hermana Leavitt changed my life and I will forever be grateful for her example to me, not only as a trainer but as a friend

Soooo.... it hurts my wrist to type because... my wrist hurts and we will leave it at that.  But this week was super great! we saw SOOO many miracles that I know we're lead by the spirit only because if we had been anywhere else in the moment that things wouldn't have happened, we would have missed it. The family we are teaching is not progressing and it's breaking my heart! The elders had came by with us, we have had a member with us at almost every lesson but we have been lead to what may be the close of our time to teach them. But have no fear. We are teaching two other families that we found this week and I feel they are very ready to progress♥ Hopefully and prayerfully. Just know that this week we had 2 huge miracles finding these families. I'll give more detail next week but I really can't type much more. We had an awesome hermanas activity and Sang Hasta Ver to Hermana Leavitt today. She leaves for her house in three weeks. She changed my life and I will forever be grateful for her example to me, not only as a trainer but as a friend (: She was my mama in the mission! She will be missed greatly. Also I just have to let you all know how awesome Presidente and his wife are (: 

love you. miss you. but not that much. 
and we will be talking in.... 2 weeks ! (; 
hooray. Kay xoxoxoxo 
love you 100000 red M&Ms ♥
Hermana Cook

Monday, April 21, 2014

SOOO this week was FILLED with service!!!

SERVICE! collecting and filling big 
trucks to go help the people in the fires!
SOOO this week was FILLED with service!!! We had so much fun and were humbled by the stories of the people in Valparesio. Over 2,000 houses were eaten by the huge fire 2 hours away. I am so jealous of the Elders because they got to go there and help!! I wanted to so bad but Presidente found it in our best interest to stay.  He reminds me of daddy.... Boys get to do all the hard working help stuff and the girls have to stay home in.  Yes, it may be justified but I REALLY WANTED TO GO HELP.  That’s also a big thing I am learning on my mission.... how to be more dependent on people and I am not as much as a feminist as I used to be.  Don’t get me wrong, I am all for woman’s rights, but there is an extent.  Women and men are different and I am okay with that (: I don`t know if anyone outside of my family will remember or even knew this but it used to be a big problem for me that men had the priesthood and women could not, but before my mission and every now and then on my mission I pray for a confirmation that this is really how it should be and I receive a loving answer from my Heavenly Father every time. (: So I don`t mind now that we can’t have the priesthood in the same manera (manner) that the men have it.  Just as long as I can receive the blessings and help support the Power that Heavenly Father allows them to have, I am a happy woman!

I want to send something that Presidente Cook sent us; it is of course about the Resurrection since it is Easter (By the way we had a fantastic Easter. Hermana Ryback hid eggs for us and we ate SO good she’s an angel!!) Okay here it is


 During the agonizing hours that the Savior hung on the cross he only uttered seven statements. They are often viewed only in the context of the event and not their larger significance.  Let’s examine each one and how they apply to each of us.

1. “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34) This is such a powerful statement when we consider that Christ was taking upon himself the sins of all mankind including those who were in the very act of crucifying him.  Do you really believe God has forgiven your sins?  Do you take time on a regular basis to confess your sins to God so that you might enjoy the freedom of forgiveness?

2. “Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43) This is one of the most astounding and encouraging verses in all of scripture.   Jesus promised the criminal would be with him in Paradise. Yet the text gives us no indication that the man was a follower of Jesus.  We do not know the depth of his repentance, still his cry to be remembered seems to be an expression of trust in Christ.  Each of us must also trust him, as we cry similarly, “Jesus, remember me.” Have you staked your life on Jesus? Have you put your ultimate trust in him? If so, you shall also one day be in Paradise.

3. “Woman, behold thy son!” (John 19:26) As Jesus was dying, his mother was among those who had remained with him.  As far as we know, most of his male disciples had fled, with the exception of one who was called Beloved.  The presence of Mary at the cross adds both humanity and horror to the scene.  We are reminded that Jesus was a real human being, a man who had once been a boy. Mary may have been reminded of the prophecy of Simeon shortly after Jesus’ birth, when he said to Mary: “a sword shall pierce through thy own soul” (Luke 2:35).   It is clear that Jesus was asking his disciple to take care of Mary.  Even as he was dying on the cross as the Savior of the world, Jesus was also a son, a role he did not neglect in his last moments. The death of a child is one of the most painful of all parental experiences.  To watch one’s beloved child experience the extreme torture of crucifixion must have been unimaginably terrible.  Yet, the very act that would cause Mary such pain would be the means whereby her pain would be overcome.

4. “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34) James E. Talmage wrote of this awful cry: “What mind of man can fathom the significance of that awful cry?  It seems, that in addition to the fearful suffering incident to crucifixion, the agony of Gethsemane had recurred, intensified beyond human power to endure. In that bitterest hour the dying Christ was alone, alone in the most terrible reality.  That the supreme sacrifice of the Son might be consummated in all its fullness, the Father seems to have withdrawn the support of His immediate Presence, leaving the Savior of men the glory of complete victory over the forces of sin and death.  The cry from the cross, though heard by all who were near, was understood by few.” At times when we feel alone or forsaken we must remember we are not the first to have felt those feelings.  But God’s love for us is not diminished any more than it was for the Savior.  Always remember, Jesus was abandoned by the Father in that moment, so that you might not be.

5. “I thirst.” (John 19:28)  No doubt Jesus experienced extreme thirst while being crucified.  He would have lost a substantial quantity of bodily fluid, both blood and sweat.  John notes that Jesus said “I am thirsty,” not only as a statement of physical reality, but also in order to fulfill the Scripture. (Psalm 69:20-21) ,

As you walk the streets of Santiago, you may have experienced the need to relieve your thirst. You must ask yourselves if you feel a similar thirst for the spirit, which is also necessary to sustain you in your labors? Do you yearn for the living water that Jesus supplies? (John 4:10; 7:38-39) And do you yearn to share it with others?

6. “It is finished!” (John 19:30) Surely Jesus was expressing relief that his suffering was over. But the Greek verb translated as “finished” (tetelestai) means more. “It is done . . . complete.” Jesus had accomplished his mission. He had announced and inaugurated the kingdom of God. He had revealed the love and grace of God. And he had embodied that love and grace by dying for the sins of the world, thus opening up the way for all to live again. The keystone of the Father´s plan was now in place. We have the great privilege to declare that great and merciful plan to those Christ died for.  Do you live each day with the urgency to share that plan with everyone?  Do you likewise strive to complete in every way the mission with which God has entrusted you?

7. “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.” (Luke 23:46)  Again the Savior was quoting scripture, (Psalm 31) He not only entrusted his future to his Father, but also implied that he would be delivered and exonerated. No, God would not deliver him from death by crucifixion.  But beyond this horrific death lay something marvelous; the resurrection.  Have you put your mission, your life, and, indeed, your life beyond this world, into God’s hands?  Gethsemane, Golgotha and the Garden Tomb combine to bring all mankind the most important event in all of human history. It is the clarion call of Christianity and the Restoration. As the least of the Disciples of Christ, we declare our personal witness that death has been conquered, victory over the tomb has been won. May the words made sacred by him who fulfilled them become actual knowledge to us all.  May we all remember them, cherish them and honor them.  He is risen.  Such is our fervent prayer.

But we worked hard this week and learned a lot (: I am so grateful for the experiences we have had this week we are truly blessed!

Well have a super sassy week♥
Austin your tractor is the bomb as always!!  And enjoy the last few months of school, especially you Landonnnn (: it’s your last! woohoo!
Love you xoxooxox

 Hermana Cook

Super independent Hollyhock flower that was like 20 feet off the ground! It made me smile
General Conference April 2014
Yummy food at General Conference
Hermana Taylor and I at General Conference

Temple trip with elders
Temple trip

Monday, April 14, 2014

This week we learned a lot and I am so grateful for fasts and miracles.

SOOOOOOOO, this week I learned a lot about balancing teaching urgencia, and having patience. Urgencia is the theme Presediente has more or less dedicated to our mission.  I thought of being urgent as fast paced and rushed, but this week I learned that urgency is more of an attitude of doing what needs to be done first and not wasting time, not necessarily trying to cram things into a schedule that might not always be possible to accomplish.  Last week we worked on being really urgent in all things that we did, but I felt like the relationship with Hermana Taylor and I wasn`t as good, and there was a lot more tension between us and I was struggling to have patience.  I was going to bed irritated and I lacked the peace I needed to teach by the spirit in all the lessons.  I talked with Hermana Taylor and we set goals on what we could do better and change.  I repented and asked for help and immediately and  I felt better. (:   These past three days have been so much more rewarding and calm.  Patience and urgency are two qualities I know we need, and have seen blessings from both, but now I know there is a better way to practice them both of them together.

I also learned the power of fasting.  Our numbers were lower this week than the week before, but we had the highest number of less actives and recent converts that we have had in a really long time, possibly ever.  It made me tear up again in sacrament meeting to see a less active/recent convert in sacrament meeting (Paula Leiva) with her three kids, two being 3 year old twins!  I could just see her love for the testimonies that were being shared and I could feel the spirit working in her 9 year old son.  He told us this week, in a lesson, that he had decided to listen to Jehovah’s Witnesses to see if he felt the spirit and he said that he did not feel anything good when they came over, and decided to come to the church this week and was able to feel it, so we challenged him to do Moroni`s challenge and read the last chapter of the Book of Mormon, think about it and then ask Heavenly Father if it’s true. (:   He said he would, so we are going to verify that with him and his mom this week.

For service this week (WE FOUND SOME YAY!) we helped clean and sort through a really disorganized attic and got some clothes out to give to the individuals suffering in the fire, and I am looking forward to serving in the churches this week for that!  Service is so fun.

This past week I started my sticky note of thoughts and things to leave behind, and it has been going really well!  It is helping me leave a lot of unnecessary thoughts behind.  This week I`m making a goal to study much deeper chapter 5 of Preach my Gospel a lot deeper.  I think a lot of our newly found menas activas (less actives) lack testimonies of the Book of Mormon and I think it would be good to strengthen mine.

This week we learned a lot and I am so grateful for fasts and miracles.

Kay so fun news!!!! (:   We had PIZZA today and it was super fantastic.  It did not taste like American pizza at all but hey... I was happy!

Also there is a huge fire that ate like 600+ (more like 2,000) houses or something so this week we get to have a TON of service!!!  Passing out fliers and collecting water, clothes, cleaning things and stuff like that!  It is so much fun to be or service!!  It’s so sad though, the news is always on in the member’s home about the fires and people have lost EVERYTHING including some family members.  It breaks my heart.  I am glad the church always reacts quickly to help though (:  

There have been no big earth quakes this week so I think we’re all good (:  Don’t pray not to have earth quakes, just pray that we survive them because that could be some good service opportunities. heehee. and we are well prepared!

Well, Love you all!  Hope you have a super sassy day.  Brandon and Emily give Kdog and Kelton a hug and kiss for me!  Miss you boys so much after teaching families with little children that I CAN’T HOLD. Ugh. But all is well (: Love you all.
Have a super sassy day
Hermana Cook

Thursday, April 10, 2014

General conference is so much fun!! We are SO blessed to be able to listen to the prophet all the way on the other side of the Equator

This week went by really fast.  General conference is so much fun!!  We are SO blessed to be able to listen to the prophet all the way on the other side of the Equator (:  I learned a lot from conferencia, I felt like the General Authorities have been watching me with the people we have been teaching this past month and based their talks on what I could do better when I teach... and how to love my investigators better!  It is true when we grow more and learn more, more questions and doubts come into our minds, but I like it because it makes me look forward to personal study.  This week I had so many questions about the priesthood and realized I know close to nothing on that subject.  Hermana Taylor and I had some really cool experiences this week.  From really nice door contacts, to progressing investigators!

Our investigator Francisca (who is 15 years old, and wheel chair bound) hit her head going down a flight of stairs at school and we had the opportunity to bring the elders over that night to give her a blessing.  It was a really great lesson!!! They have been progressing so much! I just want them to get married is all!   So Francisca and her mother and father ended up going to conference with us!  But they had a really hard time sitting in the last session for two hours and I worried for about an hour after conference that they didn`t really enjoy it, and I was SO discouraged.  But then the Lord helped calm me after we got back out to work and found a really awesome contact named Luise!   I decided that the discouragement that I had felt after the conferencia, was only from Satan.  A very discouraging resource, and in reality I don`t know what Francisca and her family thought of conference specifically, but the best thing I feel we can do is to ask what they liked and understood, and then explain things for them better so they can have a clearer understanding of what they listened to.  I, however, am obsessed with conferencia general. I think I want to skip a Christmas and just have and extra Conferencia.   Can somebody make a request to the prophet?(:

Sooooo, Hermana Taylor has been doing well.  She gets to be in charge of the phone this week! YAY! (:  It is so funny how being a trainer feels like (I would imagine at least) being a mother!  It is so hard for me to let her struggle but she grows mountains worth when she does.  I am so pleased with her desire to learn more, we are coming up with more creative ways to contact and try new things so she doesn’t fall asleep in lessons.  I remember feeling like that.  Spanish is so hard.  She makes my day (:

Our sector is doing well.  I focused this week on finding similarities with the Bible and the Book of Mormon so I could use them more together in teaching and I found today in Lucas 9, the last few verses about how Jesus is inviting people to make commitments and follow him and THEY HAD EXCUSES TOO!  I could not believe it. But it made me think when I looked up some of the cross references that it said that those who look back or make excuses are not fit for the kingdom of God. So this week... I am making a ``shelf list`` and every time I think of worldly things or things from home I want to do, I am going to write it on a sticky note in my planner and try to never think of it again, until I get home.  Why I am telling you this, I don’t know (: but I thought it would be fun info to read!

This is what I told Tate:  I FELT TWO HUGE EARTH QUAKES.  Legit! I was scared on the first one, but the second one was just plain funny because my companion was in the shower and the lights and water shut off!  I felt so bad but couldn’t contain my laughter. We have so much fun together.  She is so patient with me and we are really progressing in our lessons we teach together.

Sorry this letter is really random... Lots happened and I kind of jumbled them all around! But it was a super great week. (: We are so blessed. I could seriously be in this sector my entire mission I love it! ♥♥♥

Well hope you all have a super sassy week.