Monday, January 20, 2014

Laughter; the Better Choice

Me and my nifty desk!

Not much is new down here in Georgia. Gosh is it really time for a new letter? I swear it was yesterday that I sat here trying to think of what to do and say. Do you all ( I mean y'all) still read these?? I feel as though I say the same thing every week... I apologize for any boredom I may be causing! 

This week was a big learning week for me. Almost every single night I wrote down in my journal an epiphany I had that day. A few of them I want to share with you since I really don't have funny South stories to share. Originally I wanted to share all my revelations... but then this would be like 15 pages long and that's just too much. Ain't nobody got time for dat.
One experience was on Friday which was a rough day for me and Sister Pribyl. We were excited to go out and do some "finding" (what we call tracting). Finding is probably the scariest part of missionary work. I mean, it's talking to complete strangers... and not just talking but discussing personal beliefs in God! It is often helpful though and when appointments fall through, you've gotta find a way to continue the work. So finding it is. Anyways, in Douglasville you have really really poor areas and then some disgustingly rich neighborhoods. On this particular day we were finding in a neighborhood with houses the size of Cinderella's castle. Every single house we knocked on turned us away. From that day I specifically remember one lady. We chatted at her doorstep and then introduced ourselves when suddenly, in her southern bell accent, she said, "Let me just stop you right there..." She continued to sort of tell us off to which we complimented her apron and left. Silently, Sister Pribyl and I walked back to the car. We got in and buckled up. All of a sudden, and out of the blue, I just busted up laughing. And I got Sister Pribyl laughing even more. And for no particular reason... we were just laughing!

That night, I wrote in my journal what I learned from this. I learned that on these trying days or in the midst of trial, we have 2 options: whether to laugh or to cry. I think I will always choose to laugh. In fact I think I've always chosen to laugh . It always makes me feel better. As soon as Sister Pribyl and I stopped laughing, we drove on further and knocked on more doors. Instantly our mood was lightened and we could press forward with confidence. All in all, always choose to laugh. Crying is ugly anyways.
Another thing I learned was something that I understood after the course of this week. We've had a lot of opportunities this week for finding. The biggest rule for finding is letting the Spirit guide. All week, I've been waiting and expecting the Spirit to tell me to talk to a person or to knock on this door or to turn on this road. What happened is that we didn't get anything done. We hardly met anyone and made just about zero progress. What I learned is that you really can't expect anything. We can't expect miracles and promptings to happen. For heaven's sake they wouldn't be miraculous if we expected them right? If we spend all our time waiting for an answer or prompting or miracle, where is our faith? After all, we "receive no witness until after a trial of your faith." (Ether 12:6). Many times that witness comes only after we decide to go up to that random person, after we work hard to find answers, and after we just try reading the Book of Mormon to know that it's true. It is after these faithful actions that the Spirit manifests His presence and guidance. And that manifestation is worth whatever it takes!
I hope you have all learned just as much as I have this week! If not... what are you waiting for? Oh, and don't forget to LAUGH! :)
Sister Hawkins

Since I didn't take pictures this week, here's a tour of my apartment:

This picture is of all the cards that people have sent me!!
I love reading them and seeing them!! When I get them from people
I always hang them up! So if you've sent one it's probably up there.
If not, no worries... I haven't finished it yet!

What's a missionary apartment without Mom's inspiration quotes...

Here's sister Pribyl in her corner by her desk! We both usually just work on the floor
and spread out our work all over. This is a sad example of that but a start!


...more kitchen
Haha sis pribyl and I share a closet but it's funny seeing how much
stuff she has verses's mine.

...and hers!

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