Monday, July 29, 2013

The One Where I Lost My Voice

 July 29, 2013

I am sitting here writing you without a voice, haha.  My life in so unfortunate (actually, my life is super fortunate; I just like being dramatic).  I got a cold that quickly turned into a crazy cough, in true Alivia fashion, and now I don't have a voice!  So, that makes missionary work nice and difficult! :) haha! 

My mom might have already written something on the blog, but just so you know the address that has been on my blog for the past 3 months of my mission has been incorrect. (So, I haven't been getting mail.  Isn't that so sad?  I’m telling you – UNFORTUNATE).  So, if you have written me in the last 3 months and you were wondering why I never responded, it is because my kind, upstairs neighbor threw all my letters in the garbage.  Isn’t that the darnedest thing? Haha!  Hi, my name is Alivia and this WOULD happen to me.  It makes me laugh every time I think about it.  However, the address has been corrected, so if you sent me a letter in the last 3 months and I didn't respond, I encourage you to write me again. :) 

This week was awesome. We had one day in particular that was just miracle upon miracle upon miracle.  I want to specifically talk about Alex. I have talked a little bit about him in past emails. He is a kid we knocked into one night and have been teaching for a few weeks now. He is the weirdest person I have ever met. He is SO unique and just 100% himself. This week he told us that when he cuts his hair, he spreads the cut hair around his yard for birds to use to build nests. That gives you an idea of the kind of person Alex is.  He is so quirky and I LOVEEEE it.  Don't you just love people who aren't afraid to be 1000% themselves?  I hope to be as confident as Alex one day.  

Anyway, he has been prepared in the strangest way to receive the gospel. We taught him the Plan of Salvation.  He ATE IT UP and has been sharing it with all his friends and family. But, the lesson I wanted to tell ya’ll about is when we taught him the Restoration.  It was the coolest experience of my life. We started teaching and his eyes just lit up. It was so powerful and every single time we asked him a question, he would respond with a question that was 100% answered by the next section of the lesson we taught.  Like, the 1st lesson has several sections:  God is Our Loving Heavenly Father, God Blesses Families, Prophets, Dispensations, Christ's Ministry, etc., etc. Every time we would ask a question about one section, his question was completely answered by the next section that was in the lesson. I don't know if that makes sense, but let me give you an example. We get through the First Vision and it is really quiet; the Spirit is there so strong; we are just sitting in silence soaking in the Spirit and then we ask him how he is feeling.  He says . . . wait for it . . . "I just wish . . . there was like a book or something."  ARE YOU JOKING? DID THAT JUST HAPPEN!? And then we got to teach him about The Book of Mormon and it was AWESOME! 

I love you all!

WOAH! I just remembered like the biggest part of this week and needed to write you about it. Ahhh!

This week I had one of those, "You will never forget this moment ever, ever never in your life", moments.  My first transfer Hna Parry and I met Ezekial. We talked to him in his yard one day and haven't seen him since.  Last week, on Thursday, we were driving past his house and decided to knock. We didn't know anything about Ezekial except he had faith and his wife had cancer.

We knock on the door and his wife is sitting in the dining room, a ways away from where her sister opened the door for us, in a wheel chair. She tells us to come in. We went in and sat and talked with her and her sister.  She has been battling cancer for 7 years, she told us. We told them about the Book of Mormon and the comfort it can bring and invited them to read it until we could come by again next week. Before we left Juana started to cry and told us she wanted us to meet with her daughter because her daughter was having a really hard time with her (Juana’s) cancer and was the same age as us.  She gave us her phone number and then we left. We called Cristina a few times but kept missing her whenever we tried to meet. Then Thursday came and we went back to Juana's house for our lesson. When Cristina answered the door we were pleasantly surprised to finally meet her.  We then said we were looking for Juana to which she replied, "Oh, that's actually why I haven't been calling you back. I've been really busy with funeral arrangements.  My mom died on Tuesday."

We were taken for a loop. We had absolutely no idea. We asked if we could come in and talk to her. We asked her about her faith and noticed the Book of Mormon we had given Juana was sitting on their dining room table. We were like, "Can we read a verse out of – well actually the Book sitting on your table right there?"  She then goes, "Oh, did you give this to her?"  We told her that yes we had, to which she said:   "She brought it with her to the hospital.  Right before she died, she handed it to me and said, 'This is your Book now.'"  I could not hold in my tears as I thought of this lady who in 5 days had read the Book of Mormon and knew of it's worth enough to give it to her daughter, on her death bed, as her final token.

I testify, as a representative of Jesus Christ, that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and that this is the Kingdom of God on earth. God be thanked for this knowledge that we have.

Love, Hermana Burnham

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