Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Drop the last syllable and it becomes the Spirit of CHRIST. :) MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

Mum, PahPea, Family and Friends!!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM ETOBICOKE, ONTARIO!! :) First off, let me thank ALL of you who have sent me letters and gifts, and ornaments for my tree. I really do appreciate all the love and support! I truly do feel the love and prayers of each one of you, so thank you so so much!! My companion appreciates it too, actually, because her packages got sent to her last apartment and she probably won't get them until sometime mid-late January. :( So she's definitely grateful that we have decorations and a stocking for her from you, mom!!!:) THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
Ok, so to start out this greatness of this week, let me introduce you to the effects of Ontario weather...ahem...basically our entire assigned area has no power, including our building. haha!! Because of the freezing rain and cold temperatures Saturday night, the power lines froze over and most of our area has no electricity.

But before you worry, we're doing fine, we've taken precautions and have enough supplies, but just picture this-Sister Edwards and I wake up Sunday morning to see our Christmas lights completely off, it being absolutely FREEZING and for some silly reason our washroom lights won't turn on. so naturally, we got ready in the dark! haha my eyeliner on Sunday may or may not have been a little higher than where it's supposed to be....;) Because our hallway and stairwell lights are out as well, we've been using our phone to walk out the building. But then, a tender mercy, Sister Edwards found her flashlight!!! and then 2 hours later...she left it at our investigators house. hahaha but you know what's great, although this situation is making some people a little bit grouchy on the streets, we find it absolutely HILARIOUS!!! So what? We don't have light...Christ Lives! and in our opinion, He's all the Light we need!:) and Yes mom, we have enough food, blankets, and everything we need to keep us safe and healthy, I promise! :) so we're going strong on day two without power, we're hoping it'll be on by tomorrow afternoon, but there really isn't any promising that...apparently this happened about 7 years ago and it lasted a week. PHEW! good thing I don't get too scared of the dark! :) We were actually informed today by president that we can make arrangements to stay with other missionaries or with a member in the meantime, so we'll be working on that today. :) good times...good times. :)

And it's Christmas this week!! what the crazy!?! I Hope that all of you have a splendid Christmas and know that I love and pray for you daily!!!:) I love you all!!!! what a wonderful holiday season it is!!!

speaking of Christmas, let's do our Christmas question time!!!:)
1.  WHAT TIME should I call you (or are you calling me)?  SKYPE?  YES, PLEASE!!!
We planned for 7:00 here, so 5:00 your time, would that work? If you would call the skype here, that would be great, I'll send you her name and information so you too can contact each other and make sure skype works, sound good? :)
2.  ASSUMING I'm calling you, I need a number (or email, etc.)...
I'll give it to you in the next email, it's Kristen and Paul :)
3.  How excited are you to talk with your family?!?  :0)
super duper excited!!! crazy to think that I'm skyping you again, though. times flies! I'm excited to see you all!!!!!!
4.  I forgot to ask you last week if you received the package with the Nativity?  (Did you see the note to open the envelope that was taped to the bottom of the box?)
I sure did and thank you so much!!!!! our cute little nativity is almost complete with just a couple more days to go, and it sits on our kitchen table to we can see it every day and especially at night when we plan together. :) and my goodness everyone, thank you for the ornaments, there are SOOO many of them, I am still trying to fit them all on the tree!!!:) Thank you oh so much! oh and I'm wearing the sweater now, thanks a million, mom! SO warm :)
5.  Have you received any other packages, and/or ornaments in the mail?
I've been getting lots of letters, so thank you so much!:) I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH!!! can you tell...?;)
6.  How are you and Sister Edwards getting along?
We're getting along SO well! She is such an incredible missionary, my goodness!  She is such a powerhouse! She has such a strong testimony and she LOVES obedience, so her and I will get along VERY well!:) She is so gentle and Christlike, I already look up to her so much!
7.  What can you tell me about her?  (where is she from, how long has she been out, etc...)
From Layton, Utah, She came out the transfer after me, in February, is the oldest of 2 siblings, and is 19!!! my goodness, she's just so great!!!:)
8.  The Caldwell's went home?!?  Where do they live?
almost, they are staying a few extra days to train the new senior couple, so I think they're driving home on Saturday. They live in Lehi somewhere. note exactly sure where...ha just over by thanksgiving point, they're living with their daughter I believe
9.  Other than talking with your family, what are your plans for Christmas Eve and Christmas?
We're doing a read-a-thon with the other missionaries! We're reading the 4 gospels, Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price! woot woot! SO SO SO excited!!!:) and Sister Edwards and I are going to have pancakes Christmas morning...if we have power, that is...:)

10.  David is doing....
SOOO well! He even referred us to his friend, Luanda, and we're teaching her now too! She's actually the one who has our flashlight now...:) She is SO prepared and is asking where she came from, what's the purpose of this life, why are there so many churches, why do bad things happen to good people, all the questions that are truly answered by our Heavenly Father's restored Gospel! How wonderful it was to see the light enter her eyes that she's found the truth! She wants to go to church SOOOO bad but it was canceled again yesterday due to the weather, and so we're making arrangements this week to make sure that she can get to some ward in the area! :) Ah, they are both doing tremendously! all I can say is repentance truly does change people! all possible because of our Savior Jesus Christ! How beautiful the act of the Atonement is!
11.  The best thing about Christmas in the Mission Field is....
Doing the Living Christmas Card. We go to people's homes and give them a card from their member friend as we sing hymns and share scripture about the Savior's birth. It is such a wonderful experience! I love it so so much! 
12.  Sister Edwards and I have bonded over....
slipping on the ice. many a times. :) oh. and singing lead kindly light in the pitch black. boy, she has a beautiful voice!
13.  Our Ward's Christmas Sacrament Meeting consisted of...
people speaking in spanish because we went to the spanish ward. all the english ones were canceled and we really wanted to partake of the sacrament. hey, I understood about 55% of it! :)
14.  This week we spent most of our time...
talking to people on the streets!! there are people everywhere, I love it!
15.  My favorite personal study session centered around...
sanctifying ourselves to become humble. There are 2 different ways to become humble, one is "to be compelled to be humble" and the other is "because of the word" or "choosing" to be humble. We're compelled to be humble through difficulty and trials. whereas we choose to be humble because of love, desire, forgiveness to others, serving a mission, rendering service, going to the temple, confessing and forsaking sin, ultimately loving God and submitting our will to His, and putting Him first in our lives. Why do we allow ourselves to have to be humbled by circumstances when we can choose to be humble? I studied how I should, in every situation, learn something new and take inventory of my humility. I came to the conclusion that to be humble is to Love God and love His ways more than our own. that sounds so simple. yet, I make it too difficult sometimes, I guess we all do. But we don't need to, thanks to Our Savior! :)
16.  Our best companion study time was about...
Our conversion. The knowledge that we have, and simply studying the Restoration of the Gospel with each other. We have such incredible knowledge as members of our Father's Church! How incredible is that!??! :)
17.  I am so grateful for...
flashlights and warm blankets (thank you sister williams for leaving yours for me!!!!:))
the Spirit - a universal language
Our Savior's humble birth
Well, I must be off, but let us have the most wonderful Christmas ever! If the turkey isn't cooked right, or the cookies fall on the ground, or the presents don't turn out the way you planned, let us all remember the real reason for the season; the celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that He lives! I know that He loves me and He loves you! For He died for all of us so that we may be cleansed from our sin. I know that because He taught "one direct way" to return to our Father, I know that there is still one direct way to return to Him, and that is through His Church. I know that His Church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, for I have searched myself, and amidst my questions and concerns, I asked my Father in prayer if these things, (the Book of Mormon, the teachings I was learning from my family and from church lessons, etc), were true. And I testify that I know that they are true, for our Father has manifested them unto me by the power of the Holy Ghost, many many times! This is His church, and it's not to prove others wrong, it's to invite all to come fully and completely to our Savior, Jesus Christ! and how BEAUTIFUL the witness I have received and now have to declare it to all! How great is our calling!!!
Love for now and for ever,
Sister De Groot :)
Missionary Invitation: It's Christmas! Go do something unexpected for someone you care about! You know what's unexpected for you, so go do it. :) and when I say this, I mean something unexpected that's GOOD, please. I don't want to be blamed for criminal conduct, thanks. :) I love you all!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment