Sunday, December 4, 2016

October 17, 2016

This past week was pretty awesome. On Monday we had dinner with a
> family in our ward named the Arnolds. At church the day previous
> Brother Arnold came up to me and sounded ridiculously excited about
> something. He and his wife told me that they had done something that
> kind of rocked their world. They gave into the ultimate temptation.
> They bought a Costco pumpkin pie. So naturally they had to have the
> missionaries over the next night to give them an excuse to bust it out
> and have it after dinner :) Needless to say we had a grand time. Plus,
> they gave us the idea to start a secret dessert calendar to go along
> with our dinner calendar! Haha maybe someday!
> This week I met a man who basically used a motivational video as his
> form of religion. We were teaching him about how we can gain strength
> through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and that we can pray. He kept
> telling us that we need to rely on our own strength and our own power
> to succeed. He then pulled up a video of what he was talking about. It
> was a very good motivational snipet, but nothing compares to the power
> of the Atonement. We do not need to rely on ourselves for everything
> and thank goodness that's not the case! We have a loving Heavenly
> Father who gave His son to die for us so we never have to carry our
> burdens alone! Sure, every now and again those videos can help us get
> back on our feet and keep going, but Christ is the source of the true
> strength we need. He is the way y'all! Anyways, he had cute kids so
> that made it better.
> We also Skype Terry! Well halfway Skype Terry because she could see us
> but we couldn't see her. Kind of a weird lesson, but it worked! She is
> doing really well and is excited to share a Book of Mormon with her
> son! That woman amazes me everyday. She shows me that sharing the
> gospel is so simple. It's just an act of love. It's something that's
> brought me happiness and peace, so why shouldn't we all be jumping at
> the opportunity to let others around us know about it?
> Peter is just a boss as always. He also agreed to share a Gospel of
> Jesus Christ pamphlet with his family. He is also planning on
> attending the baptism trip our ward is doing later this month!
> Tammy fed us the most bomb tuna salad sandwiches of my entire life.
> Miracles of the week! Ok so first of all, we went contacting in this
> little Hispanic trailer park in our area. The potential we were trying
> didn't live there anymore but I decided to open my mouth anyways and
> teach the kids that were there. We didn't think much of it until the
> next day when we got a random text from someone. It was Jose! One of
> the kids we taught! We are going back next weekend for a lesson :)
> Secondly, the kid we found a while back named Donny. Yeah him. We had
> a super cool lesson with him about the restoration and he had so many
> questions. We committed him to baptism and he even prayed right then
> to know if the Book of Mormon is true and if Joseph smith was a
> prophet!! The feels were real man! So real! Hopefully he'll be at
> church next week with us :)
> The B. Family are coming more to church as well! I think the dad is
> taking us more seriously. He has known a lot of missionaries in his
> life and he looks out for each one. Always makes sure we are fed and
> safe and happy and working hard. I just love that whole family.
> Destiny, one of the kids, even let us borrow her blow dryer to dry us
> off after we got dumped on by the rain. I just gotta laugh sometimes,
> even when we show up to lessons or dinners soaking wet. Ya know, just
> biking sister missionary things :)
> Exchanges this week were fun as well! Sister Watson and I took on Dry
> Creek ward and we were livin it up in Rio Linda. We saw lots of dogs
> and I totally bought a piece of corn from a lady on the side of the
> street who did not speak English. GET THAT CORN OUTTA MY FACE.
> I heard a talk this weekend about how we need to take hold of the iron
> rod with both hands and zealously press forward in the gospel. If we
> on put a finger on the rod or just hold on with one hand, trying to
> look all cool and stuff, we are so much more susceptible to satans
> temptations. Why not play it safe and grab a hold of all of the simple
> truths that make up who we are? Why not push forward to obtain all of
> the blessing that Christ's atonement offers us? Everyday I am grateful
> for the knowledge of my Heavenly Father's plan for me. He wants us to
> be happy, and following his commandments is how we do it.
> Hope everyone's weeks are the best ever!
> Luv,
> Sister Thorum

We did things this week, I promise! (October 24, 2016)

Man, this transfer has just flown by. I find out this coming weekend
whether or not I'll be staying in Antelope.

This week we got to teach Alice, a new investigator who had referred
herself. She seems to be on fire! She loves what she is learning and
she came to church on Sunday! We also taught Tammy a few times and she
was able to score a volunteering job at Deseret Industries. We taught
her about the Word of Wisdom, but before we did, she stopped us and
told us she had thrown away all of her sweet tea. She was a big time
tea drinker, and she just went cold turkey. What an amazing example of
faith. She just reminds me that there are people out here with a true
desire to know that this church is true and be a part of it. No Terry
this week so hopefully she'll get her strength back from her trip to
Vegas so that we can see her in the next few days. We got to do a zone
blitz in another area of Antelope. This just means that all of the
missionaries in the zone were working in one area to help find as many
people as we could for that set of missionaries actually over the
area. It wS super cool to see how inspired my little list of the area
was for me. I met the less active daughter of a lady in our ward. I
met someone who's daughter we had helped teach a month or two ago.
There were other little quirks that let me know that even though I was
in a different area, Heavenly Father knew who I needed to see. All of
the B family came to church!!! Sister Seely was giving a talk and I
was singing a special musical number. Justin, the dad, texted us
afterwards saying that, when I got up there, he thought my voice would
be like nails on the chalkboard but it sounded like a Disney princess!
Lol thanks Justin?

Well, this week is a little short cause I'm feeling kind of under the
weather, but missionary life is just awesome. I heard a talk in church
on Sunday that really changed my perspective on something. Sister
Alafua asked us to close our eyes as she read the final moments
leading up to the saviors crucifixion. She talked about when the
Savior instituted the sacrament. She read about when he suffered in
Gethsemane for all of our sins. She asked us to think about what we
were doing and how we were feeling when we were watching him from
heaven do this for us. I just felt a wave of gratitude because I knew
that I was probably in the pre-mortal existence bawling my eyes out
because I knew that this was part of the plan. His sacrifice for us
was essential for our salvation. I can't even put into words the love
that I know he has for all of us. It makes me want to strive to always
remember him through ordinances such as the sacrament. How cool is it
that each week we get to feel that same love and peace that comes
through the Atonement of Jesus Christ?

Hope everyone has a safe Halloween and eats lots of candy for me! The
sweet tooth is so real for me right now.

Sister Thorum

cute lady named Cathy

selfie because Halloween door!!!

Missionary Purposes and Patriarchal Blessings (October 15, 2016)

Dear Missionaries:

Today we taught our recent convert a lesson today on patriarchal blessings.  As we discussed the great value of a patriarchal blessing in our lives, I felt that I should counsel every missionary to take time to read his/her blessing again and preferably this Sunday as you have time.  I promise you that as you read your patriarchal blessing you will receive added insights to your missionary service.   As you read your blessing, consider these words of counsel from the prophets.

President Monson has said that your patriarchal blessing is “your passport to peace.”   A passport allows you to enter a country, but just having a passport doesn’t allow you to experience what the country has to offer.  You have to use it.  Go to that place of peace found in your patriarchal blessing often.  There you will find the counsel, comfort, and promises that will bring you peace.

President Thomas S. Monson has said, “Read [your patriarchal blessing] frequently.  Study it carefully.  Be guided by its cautions.  Live to merit its promises.”

A patriarchal blessing, according to President Ezra Taft Benson, is “personal scripture to you.”  Study your blessing as you would the scriptures.  As you read follow the same patterns used in scripture study:  make cross-references, keep a journal of promptings you receive while you read, pray, ponder, make lists, memorize parts of your blessing.  As you study your patriarchal blessing, think of how its counsel and promises give you direction, safety, and peace when you have trials or face difficult decisions.

The Liahona was a perfect compass for Lehi’s family as they traveled to the promised land—if they heeded it and kept the Lord’s commandments.  As you seek for the promises made in your patriarchal blessing, heed the warnings given about what to avoid and what you should do to obtain those promises.

I know that a patriarchal blessing is another evidence of God’s love for us individually.  It is personal and specific to what the Lord knows you need to be able to navigate this mortal journey.  I hope you will feel the power, comfort and peace that can be found in your patriarchal blessing.

We love you and pray for you.

Best regards,
President Michael F. Marston
California Roseville Mission

Celestial Kingdom: "That's where I'm gonna be :)" October 10, 2016

Holy moly this week was a whirlwind. We definitely almost saw a kid
get hit by a truck right outside our apartment complex. Needless to
say, we pray a lot for safety on the streets in this area.

We taught Tammy about the plan of salvation this week! She just loves
how everything makes sense. When it got to the part about the three
degrees of glory after judgement, she pointed to the celestial kingdom
and said that that is where she's gonna be. My heart flippin exploded.
She wants to get baptized so bad. She knows that it is just the
gateway to all of the blessings her Heavenly Father has in store for
her. Buuuut of course Satan just has to step in and have her boss
makes her work on Sundays. We're just telling her to hold strong to
her goals!

Terry is still livin it up in Vegas.

One of the returning less active families that's been on my mind had
us for dinner! We taught about the temple and they are making
sacrifices for their family to get there. Happy day man!

We were contacting in this one apartment complex since both of our
lessons fell through. It was such a miracle because we were teaching
this one guy when all of the sudden another walked up and asked me if
we were teaching about the Bible. I told him that we were and that we
also teach about the Book of Mormon! He sounds very humble and sincere
and I challenged him to start reading the Book of Mormon to know if it
is true. He and his friend were just in the area. His friend was just
recently in a bar fight where he got hit in the head with a baseball
bat. Good times! Some of these people really have it rough out here.

Definitely taught one of our less actives who was as high as a kite
during our lesson. She accepted to read the Book of Mormon everyday
though! She's just interesting lol.

We biked our little fannies off this week and taught like 25 lessons!
Good thing I have legs like steel now (haha not really).

We got to teach Ryan and Alexis about the priesthood yesterday. It was
so cool to see how seriously Ryan takes the thought of having that
responsibility. He asked us at the end of the lesson to send him talks
about the priesthood so that he can listen to them on the way to work.
Shout out to my dad for being such a good example to me by being a
worthy priesthood holder. He shows me how they should serve and how to
rely on the Lord as he exercises that authority. I just know that once
Ryan can clear up Sunday's so he can lead his family in forming
righteous sabbath day habits.

Shoutout to Sister Andersen cause I saw her on Thursday. Man I love that girl :)

One cool thing I studied this week was that when we are on the Lord's
errand, we are entitled to His help. How cool is that?! When we are
making righteous choices and acting on prompting s from the Holy
Ghost, we can have assurance that the Lord will strength us and
support us in whatever we do! It's just up to us to get into action :)

Sorry, literally took one picture this week, but hey I hit my 4 month
mark and got a delicious cake pop!

Sister Thorum

October 3, 2016

Please excuse me while I come off of this spiritual high that I've
been on since General Conference. This week we've been able to really
hit home and share the message of the restored gospel and how we could
hear the Lord's words from living prophets and apostles at General
Conference! We met so many people this week that we were able to leave
with Books of Mormon and come back in a few days for a return lesson.
So quite a few new investigators!! Between sessions on Saturday a
member made our whole zone pancakes! And what pancakes would be
complete without a scoop of fancy ice cream on top ;) Life's too short
I'm tellin ya.

We biked in the wind and rain for the first time this week! I'm sure
that that will be the one and only time it will actually be fun. But
hey now I'm getting more use out of my cute green raincoat Mom! I just
need some kind of contraption that is like a built in umbrella for a
bike. Sad thing is, I think that next transfer they'll put me in a car
area :( We shall see!

So this week we learned not to go contacting in this one part of our
area after dark. It was just super eerie and this one guy opened a
door we knocked on and I saw him holding onto a taser or gun or
something. Haha needless to say, we scooted outta there pretty quick.
A member who lives in the neighborhood told us later that she is on a
facebook page for that area. I guess people on there were talking
about us and called security on us. One guy posted that he had a gun
and a dog on the ready! Ya know, we're just your friendly neighborhood
sister missionaries. Real threatening, right? :)

We got to go to the temple this week! I'm pretty spoiled because I've
been in a southern zone this whole time. The three other sisters in
our zone hadn't been in like over 6 months, so I got to tag along. It
was just cool to reaffirm that I don't always have to hold onto
feelings of being stressed about things I can't control. I can always
lean on the Savior to help me.

Tammy is on date now! She'll get there. Terry was able to meet with
us, even though her back was feeling awful. She left for a trip back
to Las Vegas to be with her son and granddaughter. She needs all of
the emotional support she can get right now. The B family is doing
same old same old. We eat quite a bit at their house.

Cool story this week! So there's a less active family I'd been wanting
to contact for a while and was curious about. We stopped at this one
ladies house and it turned out to be that family! They ended up being
super nice and we decided to come back to their house later in the
week. I threw out that we could stop by on Friday night, not looking
at our schedule. We agreed to come over on Friday after dinner at like
7:30. When we left and stopped on the street for a sec I looked at our
schedule and we had put them in as finding that Friday night at
7:30!!! It was such a small thing but a huge reminder that we really
do work on the Lord's timetable. It is His work and He is truly
directing us.

Stay tuned on how our lessons with new investigators go!

One of my favorite talks from this conference is President M. Russell
Ballard's one on joy. He said that our joy isn't determined by the
circumstances of our lives, but the focus of our lives. When we focus
on the savior, we can bring joy and the power of God into our lives.
This way, we can be joyful in any circumstance! This gospel really is
meant for our happiness.

Hope y'all's week is the bomb diggity,
Sister Thorum

Next time I guess I'll proofread what I write cause I get mixed up
with M. Russell Ballard's and Russell M. Nelson's names. I liked
Russell M. Nelson's on joy :) But both of their's were wonderful!

The sistas

Sister Seely and I

Ice cream pancakes!

The antelope A

The Book of Mormon Reading Challenge - California Roseville Mission

Dear Missionaries and Families,

This week we invited missionaries who are new to the mission or those who were not here to participate in our Book of Mormon reading in February – April of this year, to begin to read the Book of Mormon daily and to read it in its entirety in 61 days, To finish in that time frame, you will need to read about 9 pages per day.   We suggest doing this by reading 3 pages in the morning, 3 pages at lunch, and 3 pages before retiring to bed.

A personalized copy of the Book of Mormon has now been given to every missionary in every group who arrived since April.  Inside the front cover of your copy is a reading schedule as well as quotes from President Ezra Taft Benson concerning the power of reading the Book of Mormon and the names of Christ.   As you read, we invite you to find and mark in red every reference to Jesus Christ and His Atonement.  When you have completed this assignment you will have your own personal “witness” of the Book of Mormon as another testament of Jesus Christ.
We invite friends and families of our missionaries to join with us in this inspiring endeavor.

The authors of the Book of Mormon desired readers to receive a witness of Jesus Christ as our Savior and Redeemer.  The Book of Mormon came forth with the intent to convince Jews and Gentiles that JESUS is the CHRIST.  The Book of Mormon is “Another Testament of Jesus Christ.” By reading and marking every verse which contains one of the Savior’s names or titles, and references or teachings about the atonement, and then praying about the truth of these scriptures, you will gain your own witness and testimony of Jesus Christ.  You will be able to testify as did Nephi, Abinadi, King Benjamin, Alma, Ammon, Mormon, Moroni and others that Jesus Christ is indeed the Redeemer and Savior of the World.  We invite you to frequently bear your testimony of the Book of Mormon and invite your investigators to hold and thumb through the marked pages of your Book of Mormon.  They will feel the strength of your witness and feel the power of the book just by holding it.  The Book of Mormon will be your most powerful conversion tool.

President Hinckley promised blessings to those who read the Book of Mormon, “Without reservation I promise you that . . . there will come into your lives and into your homes an added measure of the Spirit of the Lord, a strengthened resolution to walk in obedience to His commandments, and a stronger testimony of the living reality of the Son of God.”  Sister Marston and I have experienced these blessings in our life.  We know you will receive these same blessings as you read the Book of Mormon.  We know we will see miracles in our missionary service.

We love you and pray for you.

“Much of the Christian world today rejects the divinity of the Savior. They question His miraculous birth, His perfect life, and the reality of His glorious resurrection. The Book of Mormon teaches in plain and unmistakable terms about the truth of all of those. It also provides the most complete explanation of the doctrine of the Atonement. Truly, this divinely inspired book is a keystone in bearing witness to the world that Jesus is the Christ” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Ezra Taft Benson [2014], 129–30).  

We are also using the Book of Mormon for discussion in our interviews coming up during the next several weeks.  Each missionary is to focus on their own specific reading assignment and come prepared to share and testify of a scripture in that assignment that has significance to them.  A copy of that interview assignment is also attached.

We invite all to read the Book of Mormon.
We invite you to begin to share with me your experiences while reading from the pages of the Book of Mormon and when completed we will have a wonderful mission-wide testimony of the power of that sacred record.

We love you and pray for you.

Best regards,
President Michael F. Marston
California Roseville Mission

The week where Leatherby's destroyed my arteries (Sept. 9, 2016)

This was my last week of being a greenie!! On top of that, I am killing off my mother (mother being the term for the sister missionary who trained me here in the field). Her stuff is all packed up to go home. My new companion, Sister Seely, will be here tomorrow! She's coming from Paradise and into the refiner's fire aka Antelope. Things really are getting a little warmer down here. Hopefully fall will come sooooooon. 

Terry is the most amazing woman. Never have I seen someone rely on their faith as strongly as she does. The gospel is something truly remembered, not something taught new. She feels the influence of the Spirit so strongly. She keeps telling us that she wants to be baptized and be a part of this church so that she can teach her granddaughter these true principles. 

Elizabeth, one of our inactives (I'm talking no church attendance in yeeeeaaaarrrrrrsssss), came to church on Sunday!! She stayed for all three hours too! It is never too late people, never.

We ate at a place called Leatherby's twice this week. I'm talking massive ice cream sundaes. MIRACLE: Someone mysteriously paid for all of our dinners there one night! #blessed. The sugar high was so real that night. 

Crazy week and crazy week to come!

I'm starting a 60 day Book of Mormon challenge to find all references to Christ in it (starting a little late whoops). My testimony of that book is growing everyday!

Loving being a missionary,
Sister Thorum

Exchanges with Sister Memmott

I spy with my little eye