posted for Christine by Jana
Dear Freezing Friends and Family :D
Greetings from Orange Park!!! This week has just disappeared. We have worked worked worked and had soooo many miracles. We had a recent convert refer us to his family and wanted us to teach them...3 people!!! But then we found out they were a block outside of our area. We were sooo disappointed. So we discussed long and hard and realized we needed to be obedient and give the referral to the missionaries for that area. We were so sad to give them up. But then the Lord blessed us with 12 other referrals this week!! Some more solid than others. But we are truly seeing miracles from our exact obedience to every last little rule. The sad part is we don't know what will happen on Dec 21. Most likely we'll be split up. So I may be moving again!!!! Wowzers.
This companionship is a little unheard of since we flew out together and we are "co-training," but we are doing soooo well together. We make a lot of phone calls to the District Leader, Zone Leaders, and Mission Office with questions about policy and procedure. But everyone is being so helpful and supportive. We really are a powerhouse. And you'll see from the pictures that we are freaking people out a bit because we look pretty similar. One ward member was positive we are real sisters.
I think introducing ourselves is the most hilarious part for me. "Hi, I'm Sister Knickerbocker...Hi, I'm Sister McCracken" People legitimately laugh about 50% of the time when we first say our names. They're not used to such crazy names I guess. One member said my name sounded violent. Hmm??? And then another immediately replied "Release the McCracken!!!" Cracked me up.
I really love this area. It is a lot more of a traditional family community compared to Gainesville's college town population. So there is a lot more of seeing families. It's wonderful. We've got quite a few people we're working with as well. Our goal is for two baptisms in the month of December. We want a "white" Christmas! We can tell for sure that it will come from our strict obedience to the rules and from really letting the Lord take over and guide us. Having a companionship of two brand new missionaries has it's perks for sure.
One thing from my scripture study that I'll share is 1 Nephi 22:25. In there it talks about the Lord and how he'll number his sheep and they'll know him. Well that "knowing Him" came to a whole new light for me this past week. One time Dad (I think it's him who told me) explained a bit of shepherding to me and that when little lambs stray from the flock that the shepherd will use his crook to break it's leg. Now this sounds terrible!!! Why would he do that?! Well the next thing he does is pick that lamb up and carry it on his back until it is healed. And while the shepherd carries the lamb he talks and sings. And all that time the lamb spends on his shoulders helps the little lamb know him, and know his voice. So that whenever the shepherd will call, the lamb will know his voice and come to him... Where am I going with this. As you've all figured out by now, my last area was tough on me. I had my legs "broken", but the thing is, as I look back I can see that I was carried and helped to know the Shepherd's voice. And now I know Him. And now as I'm in this new area I can run and work hard, but can hear my Shepherd's call and know Him. And I am very grateful for that.
Ok, so the first one is the Orange Park 2nd missionaries! We have a set of Spanish Elders in our ward. We just finished up a service project. Laying the pavers for that driveway!!! They started it the week before I came and we did the last half last week! Aren't you proud of me?!
So look at me with curly hair. Sister Knickerbocker did it for me. I didn't believe her when she said she could make my hair curly one morning, so she did. Never tell her she can't do something....haha
Ok the next two are hopefully satisfying for Mom for my mission plaque. I would like it up before the end of the mission ;D. If you don't like them I'll get some more taken.
And this is the fabulous duo of K & M. Aren't we adorable?!
We got to decorate that tree!!! It made us feel more in the spirit of Christmas.
And Mom you won't believe this. I sewed stockings. Yes I am getting progressively more crafty...There may be something wrong with me...hahaha
Anyway, I love you all sooooooo very much! Your prayers and love are so appreciated!
This week, help others to know Him by BEing THE CHANGE! :D