It has been a super week! Here are the highlights . . .
Tuesday after email we went and hiked Cowles Mountain with our zone and it was AMAZING!! Bah. Best preparation day ever. First of all, hiking in California is not hiking, haha, it is more like walking up a hill, but it was still way fun! Oh, we also ate at Firehouse Sub!! Yum. This night we had a lesson with Raquel who had showed up to church on Sunday. We taught her the Restoration and it was a great lesson! She has a Jewish background though so she said the ultimate thing she wants to figure out is if Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of the world. She also said it's going to be hard for her that if she does find out that this is true, to realize that everything she has been taught growing up is wrong . . . It was sad! But she is really excited about learning and says she just feels peace and comfort when she reads the Book of Mormon. We then had a lesson with Tanya. She said she is so happy now :) Sister Pagel and I ate some ice cream for our goodbye party. I am grateful for the opportunity I had to be companions with her and become great friends with her. I have learned so much with her! And I love her a lot.
Wednesday was transfers! Sister Riggs and I are together in La Jolla! I am excited :) We had temple today and it was pretty chilly. Also at one point this family got out of their car and started walking towards us and they looked super familiar and then when they got closer, the daughter had a missionary tag on and it said Sister Jesperson . . . haha, I was like wait I think we are related?? It was Thad & Sydney Jesperson! And two of their kids. It was fun to run into them! Their daughter had just gotten home from her mission. We took a picture together. We had a cool experience with this guy named Bryan who has been super less active for a while and wants to come back to church and he came to the temple because he really wanted to see it. We had a cool talk with him about the atonement and then he asked us to pray with him so we did. After we had car trouble so we were trying to figure that all out and then we stopped by our Relief Society activity.
Thursday was Valentine's Day!! Happy Valentine's Day everybody!! One year ago today I got my mission call! So crazy. That was such an AWESOME day. We studied and then had district meeting and then weekly planned. We have two more sisters in our district now so that's fun. We had a lesson with David about enduring to the end. He is so awesome.
Friday we had MTE's. We talked about simplifying and intensifying. Making it so we can teach the lessons in 3-5 min and how much that would help for door contacts or street contacts. President also talked about how we should use Joseph Smith history when we teach because his own words are so powerful. Sister Miller was our coach today. She is an incredible missionary! Bah. I have a lot to work on, haha. It was so great to be able to learn from her today. We had temple and I got to see some of my Chula people! After we had a lesson with Tanya about missionary work and invited her to write her testimony in a Book of Mormon and share it with someone :) She is so good at keeping her commitments and she just glows now! She said her mom is coming and making her papoosas (?) and I don't know how to spell it haha but she invited us over for some! Unfortunately we could not, but she said she would save us some. Next we taught Taylor and she is so sweet. Next we went to the Ghanas and it was a cool experience. We wanted them to come to the Battalion to watch The Testaments, but they wouldn't come! It was cool though because our member April started talking to Basil (one of the preachers) and then Sister Riggs started talking to William (the other preacher) and then Sister Miller and I were able to talk to Andrew, Bright, and Pizaro (the open ones!) They actually listened and I could tell the Spirit was touching and softening their hearts. They actually accepted to read the introduction of the Book of Mormon and they commited to coming to the Battalion on Sunday!! Ahhh. It was REALLY cool. We also were able to figure out Andrew's concern which is that he feels like America has to have their version of everything so this is their version of religion. We testified of how God prepared America for this purpose but that this is for everyone all over the world. We also helped this great guy named Gary to carry in his grocery and testified of the Book of Mormon because he said he has a Mormon friend who gave him the book and we invited him to read and asked if missionaries could come visit and he said yes! It was a sweet day with Sister Miller.
Saturday we finished MTE's and talked about extending invitations and keeping commitments. After we had coordination at the temple and there were tons of weddings! We had MoBat and today MoBat was an intense day! My very first tour at the end when I was taking pictures of everyone, I took a picture of this couple and they started asking me questions. They were born- again Christians but then they went off about how they saw this archaeological documentary made by some BYU graduates who are Mormon who wanted to discover proof for the Book of Mormon and that they weren't able to find any proof . . . I seriously tried everything with them . . . analogies, testifying, simplifying and intensifying the Restoration, using the Joseph Smith history, asking inspired questions . . . haha, but they were so adamant and stuck on this video. Anything I said they would try to twist what I said and then they said they knew the Bible really well but when I would ask them about certain scriptures . . . they had no idea what I was talking about. They told me that faith can't just be feelings, that you have to have some proof as well otherwise you are a fool and being led away by Satan. They also told me that they are just messengers and that I can choose to accept or reject their message . . . haha, I was like "Wait, who is the missionary here?" But it was a super interesting and cool experience. We exchanged emails and I invited them to read the Book of Mormon and they invited me to pray and ask God if I know this is true. We talked for like an hour. After I was like dang, I should've said this and I should've said that . . . but throughout the whole experience I just had this amazing feeling of truth. I KNOW all of this is true, no doubt in my mind. Nothing they said could make me doubt because I know it's true, because I can't deny the feelings I've had and do have and because I have experienced the gospel. When I knelt down to pray that night I told Heavenly Father that I told them I would ask if it was all true again so that I was asking, but that I already knew it and then he confirmed to me again that it is nothing but TRUTH. I LOVE this gospel.
Sunday MoBat was pretty busy because of President's Day weekend. We had to go to ward choir practice and then church was great! David blessed the sacrament for the first time. We had a lesson with Keri after and I love her so much. Next we had dinner with a bunch of the members and it was delicious and great and then we went to the Ghanas. And guess what?!? They actually came!!! Well just Pizaro and Andrew, but at least those two came! We watched The Testaments and bore our testimonies after and then Andrew said the prayer and he asked Heavenly Father to help them know if this is true and to keep their minds open to new possibilities. It was SO COOL!! And then they set another appointment which is a big deal :)
Monday the MoBat was busy again and then we just went out to find people!! We were able to add two new investigators and set up an appointment with a potential and to get a referral for some of the elders! It was an awesome night! We also had a lesson with David about the priesthood.
It was a really great week! I am constantly grateful for this experience that I am able to have. I have learned so much since I've come on my mission and I am excited for what I have yet to learn :) I love you all so much! I hope you have a wonderful week!
Sister Cassie Chea Rasmussen