This week has been extremely hard for me... saying bye to best friends, (y'all know who you are! God lead us together no doubt about it.) my fantabulous companion Sister Owsley, and what felt like, saying bye to family all over again then coming to this area where like... I've never felt so unwelcomed or unloved in a ward before... plus I just came from Zion and thats like really hard to match, haha man, its really hard... but the Lord asks us to do hard things and after many prayers and study, I realized that I have a choice on what I focus on. I was reading Jacob 5 today and I realized this is an opportunity to further my roots in the gospel. In Jacob 5 I thought it was interesting how Heavenly Father grieved even over the thought of losing any tree and no matter where He planted them, He nourished them, and the tree that had branches grafted in (I related it to struggles/trials) became so much stronger. For me, relating the tree to myself and the branches and rocky soil to trails and change, it helped me recognize that Heavenly Father is giving me these things to strengthen my roots in the gospel and that no matter where I am He is watching over me, nourishing me. I have an amazing companion and this area has a ton of potential. Its hard leaving an area that felt like home and seemed to be on fire then to come to an area where it seems like the fire is out... but I am so grateful for Sister McCallum. We clicked really fast and have been able to talk to each other about anything. It feels like we've known each other for years when really its only been a few days. I am trying super hard to be okay with our living situation. I am grateful to have some where to stay its just extremely hard on me to not have a window in our room. Its so dark and very difficult for me to get up in the morning... I've never had a hard time getting up in the morning... on the plus side I hate being in our room so I'm never even tempted to go home haha ;) and I've been sleeping on the floor in our study room where theres a window so thats been helping me get up in the morning, so thats good! :) I feel like struggles I believed I had overcome are all of a sudden back again... but its okay because unlike before, I have a stronger testimony than ever and I know WHO to lean on.
As a Sister Training leader, it feels like we work a lot a lot with the sisters which I expected but not to this effect. I am learning to be quiet and just be a shoulder to lean on. Its weird being an STL because these sisters are awesome and I don't feel qualified and when they are struggling I want to help so bad but with our sisters right now, their struggles... all we can do is pray for them. Its crazy how some sisters lift me up on like some pedestal and others challenge my position... and inside I'm yelling, "I just want to help! Let me help!" Just because I have this title of an STL, I still have no idea what I am doing and I am a missionary just like them. I just want to help. Also, as an STL you seem to get close to no sleep and I am learning to not carry others stress upon my own back... but to carry it with them. Idk, still learning. Well, with all this stress I have a zit that is like a 3rd eye right in the middle of my fore head hahaha but all is well because I'm learning to deal with it and its been a good source of laughter the last few days! I am excited to get to know the sisters even more. :)
We contacted a referral and well... he and his brother basically... thought we were hot and so that was the only reason why they took a Book of Mormon from us. Of course we don't want that to be the reason they took the book, but we got like no sleep and my 3rd eye I felt was staring them down, and we had just a rollercoaster week, soo we both didn't even care that that was the reason why they took the book and plus, we are just glad they took it! :P
I gotta go but I hope y'all have an awesome day and I know I can make it through these struggles. Heavenly Father is always helping me out and I am super glad the last few days are over and done so I can continue on. Man, I hope this email doesn't sound negative because I'm not trying to be. I am struggling but I am not negative, if that makes sense. Tender mercies are all around! Like its raining outside, I get to go to some stores today, my companion is amazing, the sisters I am over are fantastic! (Especially Sister MacDonald and Sister James! They brought me Ice cream and whoa, I needed them more than they needed me this week.) Btw, yes same sister MacDonald as the MTC! SO AWESOME to have a best friend so close by and in my district! So lots of positives, I got a letter from President that made me feel on top of the world, and my district is fantastic and we got to go to the temple this week. Its been great. I got so much strength from the temple and the positives far out weigh the negatives, scratch that, there are no negatives. I am a sister missionary and I got this as long as I lean on Him. There is no way I can fail! :D
Jacob "Nevertheless, I know that the roots are good, and for mine own purpose I have preserved them; and because of their much strength they have hitherto brought forth, from the wild branches, good fruit."
Quote that gave me strength this week...
"When the night is dark and the clouds are thick, we have an opportunity to put our hand in the Lord's hand and rely on Him to help us through." ~ Elder Larry W. Gibbons.
So all of our mail is suppose to go the mission home then we pick it up that day or whatever, we go to the mission home a lot :) so My new mailing address is:
Sister Audrey Caroline Coats
421 Maurice Street North
Twin Falls, Idaho 83301