Saturday, July 23, 2016

Week 60- Just a few good nuggets

Hey hey:)

Okay so here's the thing. Every week seems to go by faster and faster!! And then everything is a blur and I can't remember one single thing that we did the whole week. Haha but we'll give a few good nuggets from the week.:)

We love when deer are in our front yard!....

I got a bug in my eye and crashed my bike...
So..... S.  (I think I mentioned her to you a few weeks ago?) She was walking on the street with her kiddos so we just ran and got talking
with her! Found out she had met with missionaries before then moved and lost contact...then we met her! And her sister is a member working toward the temple. We've been meeting with them and they are super sweet! They had committed to coming to church last week, but then we never saw them. It was a sad day. So we went by to see them later to see how we could help...and they're like "church service was  great huh!?" We're like...what? Haha turns out they went to the wrong building!

We also had exchanges this week with the Sisters from Darby.  I was
with Sister Schwendiman here in Missoula and she is killer!! I love her! It's her last transfer, she's just about finished up. But it was SO amazing to see her on fire her last few weeks!  At one point, we were riding by on a busy bridge, and there was a woman pushing a stroller so we got talking with her! As Sister Schwendiman was talking, I turned and saw this big huge moving truck with a trailer (the flat kind you put like a tractor on) driving past us. As this guy
speeds by, his trailer swerves into the bike lane where we were standing talking with this lady. I saw it coming toward us for a split second and just thought to myself "well, this is its. This is the end." Haha literally I was terrified. Then all of a sudden, I don't even really know how to explain it...haha but it like stopped swerving and just goes right past us, like if we moved one inch we would have gotten hit. Haha we felt the wind on that one! Haha as I watched it go by, as SOON as it passed us, it swerved all the way into the bike lane again. wooho the Lord can protect His servants! But anyway. That was fun. We were a little shaken up after that one.  (Mom is not laughing, but mom  knows all of those prayers offered for her and all missionaries around the world helped with that one)

~tell me something you learned on your mission that you did not know you would learn....?
(we sometimes send some questions to stimulate communication…tee hee missionaries get so lost in their missions, as we would want them to, but asking questions can stimulate answers J  )
Oh gosh....everything?? Haha
Well first off, how truly difficult word of wisdom problems are to quit! Literally. Everyone that doesn't progress here is because of an addiction they can't quit...ugh. But besides that...haha

I think one thing that I've been learning a lot lately is about desire. There's a talk by Neil A. Maxwell called "According to the Desires of our Hearts" from October 1996 conference. But it's so good! I think we all should read it:)
But during mission tour a few weeks ago, Elder Andersen said basically
something to the extent that "if you desire something, you can have
it. Anyone who desires exaltation can have it" and Ive been thinking
about this lots...the tie between desire and willingness. If we truly
desire something, then we are willing to do whatever it takes to get
it. If we're not willing to sacrifice for something, then we don't
truly desire it. How many of us missionaries desire to be obedient but
aren't willing to wake up at 6:23? Or how many of us desire to be more
familiar with the scriptures, but end up checking email or getting on
Instagram instead of gospel library? Just the little things each day
that determine what we desire and essentially, who we are and who we
One of my favorite quotes from that talk is "Therefore, what we
insistently desire, over time, is what we will eventually become and
what we will receive in eternity."
And I think it's so true. How many times do I desire one thing, but my
actions show a different thing. Then do I truly desire that?

Anyway. Some food for thought. I've been praying and fasting lately on
what I can do...what little things I can change that will stretch me,
but strengthen my desire and my willingness. Gosh I love the
scriptures and the words of the prophets.....learning how to become
better...I have soooo much to work on....but step by step right??

Anyway. It was a great week! We got to do lots of service this week!  We literally got to play in a pile of dirt. It was way too fun. Sorry, my emails are getting worse and worse. Haha not gona lie, sometimes you feel like so much happens in a week it's hard to put it into words...but things are good! I can't even express how much I love serving s mission. I do t know if it comes off in emails especially because they're so scattered and random...
But just know I'm happy! 

Families are forever and I'm so grateful!! 

Sister Hodgson

 The members here like to stock us up! they take good care of us!!

                                                Planning time faces

Sunday, July 17, 2016

WEEK 59-- so worth EVERYTHING

Crazy week this week!! But when have I ever NOT started out an email
like that?! Haha thus is life on a mission!! 4th of July was GREAT!!
So fun. I'll send a few more pictures but we had a blast! Hope you all
did too. We got to go visit the Kemmers, they're the SWEETEST “mature”
couple in our ward. Love them with my whole heart!! But it was a great
4th :) (-FOURTH OF JULY SHENANIGIZING! thanks for the fun package mom)

This week was a little blurry to be honest!! Poor Sister Fletcher was
pretty sick this week  :(    she's such a trooper though!! Still made it
out to works some and I got
time to go through almost the whole ward list and map out where people
are, who to go see etc   I think the Lord
knew that I needed to learn how to love planning..(remember our lesson on loving to plan...).and I actually got super into it!  Praying about the people, looking through old records,
finding out things about these names that we've heard about, etc.
we're super pumped to go out and try some of these people this week!

This week with some of the quiet time, I got some time to really dig
into the Book of Mormon more which was so awesome! Gosh I love that
book so much. So so much. One of my favorite talks ever is "Stay by
the Tree" by Elder Pearson of the seventy.
Begin again to prayerfully study the Book of Mormon and live its teachings every day, every day,
every day! I testify of the profound power in the Book of Mormon that
will change your life and strengthen your resolve to follow Christ.
I can testify that that promise is true! The Book of
Mormon is a heart changer and a life changer. I've seen it change the
lives of those who have never truly known God. I've seen it change the
lives of those who knew God, but have fallen away and I've definitely
felt the power and influence that it has had in my life and the change
that has happened in me.

It was amazing to see M this week and see her smiling face tell
us as we walk in the door "guess what! I read the Book of Mormon!!! It
was so good!!"
When we first started meeting with her, she mostly wore sweats, had the lights in
her house off, the door closed, only opened it to a secret knock so
she didn't have to talk to people, etc.( remember my maazing comp “just happened”  to knick the right knock)
But then she started to know God. She started to gain, bit by bit, a relationship with her Savior.
She started reading the Book of Mormon, (not just her AA book like she
used to) when she needed a lift. And this last time we came, her
lights were on, her doors and windows were open, she was visiting with
a friend and she was smiling and laughing. She told us she feels like
she has reasons now to live, to do good things and to build
relationships because she knows that there is more to this life than
just wasting time and existing. She knows she has a purpose. THAT, my
friends, is what this gospel does with us! Worth it? Yes. 100% yes.

One other amazing story from this week is Jonathan. So Jonathan. He's
been doing so well! But he's been feeling like he doesn't really have
a place in the church. He feels like he likes different things,
doesn't know as much as other people in the church, etc.. He just
needs to feel like he has a place and a purpose. So last week I
mentioned we talked about doing family history with him right?! So we
went on Tuesday. Oh my. Talk about finding purpose. Afterwards, he was
on FIRE! He was non stop talking about all the people he found, the
family that he connected with, the person that he feels like he found a great purpose.
He called us that night and we had the most tender
conversation. He sincerely thanked us for sticking with him. For
keeping with him and guiding him to where he wants to be. He told us
he feels like he knows what he's doing, where he's going and who he's
becoming. And he likes it. He wants so badly to serve others and to
help others find the same joy he has. He already asked if he can work                                         
in the family history library.
This man. Oh my. He's had quite the go of it in life. He's lost some
loved ones, had some health problems, had some tough times, traveled
all over the place, tried every religion, every practice, every
political view possible. But he said he keeps getting drawn back to
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
He knows this is where he needs to be and  he knows
who he needs to become. And that's because he is getting to know

Gosh this work is the best! I love it. I love being a missionary. I
love the Book of Mormon with my whole heart. I love serving here in
Missoula! And I love my Savior. I love change. I love the change that
happens as we search the scriptures, get to know Christ and become
more like Him and our Father in Heaven. The change is so worth it!
This work is amazing. And I'm so grateful to be just a tiny part of
it. Love you all!!! Have such a good week!

Sister Hodgson

Picture 3-my adorable companion with glow sticks in her hair. Now I
can't loose her! Even in the dark. Haha



Picture 2&3-Missoula zone!!!!
Front row(sisters)
Sister Thacker, Fredrickson, Holm, decker, shoemaker, Dayes, Timothy,
Fletcher and me
Back row(elders)
Elder Ross, Bozue (DL), Rentfro (ZL), Hoschouer (ZL), Girrard,
Haskins, Metcalf, Kelly.

In the last picture, Sister and Brother Price (stake president and
wife) and president Lindsay (counselor)

Saturday, July 9, 2016

WEEK 58- 4th of July

Wooho!! Happy 4th of July!!!!! Today is pretty short because we're literally gone all day. But it's going to be a blast!!

Today we had a service project from 7am till now.  We served pancakes at Fort Missoula! It's a big huge fair thing so a bunch of us missionaries got to go serve breakfast!...then we ran home to change and sent this, and now we're off to a Pow Wow in Arlee!  I'm
super excited. The Pepions are meeting us there and it's gonna be awesome!!  I'll send pictures! Then we'll get back from that around 6 then we're with members the rest of the night! So busy day
but way fun.

Soo. This week. This was one of those "transfer week blurs" where things kinda get smudged together. So I'll share a few highlights! First off Sister Fletcher and I are still celebrating the fact that we're still together! Haha but really though. Anyway, this week was a week full of planning. Eek. Planning has never been my favorite part
of life in general. But ESPECIALLY missionary work! I just want to go outside and do things. Haha but when Elder Andersen was here, he talked about planning and how "when we plan, we create the future". He told us "if you're bored while planning, you're not doing it right". So obviously I'm not doing it right. Hahaha so we've been working on planning for the people that we teach and for their needs. We've been really trying to focus on the people and been seeing a difference! 


I did NOT plan to throw the keys in the dumpster...and yet......

Anyway, the work this week was a little weird....haha Missoula is full
of people who love to use holidays to the most people aren't sober the full week before any holidays. Haha it's quite fun.
But people are superrrrrr happy so that's always exciting! ;) It keeps us on our toes. We meet some exciting people. Haha but for reals though, it's way fun to see the culture here. We kinda just want to walk around town throwing Word of Wisdom pamphlets at people. But we refrain. Haha

So. Awesome parts of this week! One of them was D. She's doing
real well. She had another surgery this week which is a bummer. But
she's just awesome. The member that we've been bringing to her
appointments, Sister Shuey, is perfect

Jo. is doing well too! We had been feeling like we should take Je. to an appointment lately.
So we biked up to her place, met with her, had her jump on her bike and come with us a few blocks down to Jo.'s place. And holy cow, they hit it off right away! It was like they were best friends from ages ago! They have a lot of similar experiences and were able to relate to one
another right away. It was awesome!

We've been fasting and praying and talking and pondering about and studying and serving our members. Anyway, the past little bit we've been finally seeing the ward come
alive! We just started sharing little miracles with the members at dinners, being PUMPED in ward council about the people were meeting and seeing and trying to have members at every appointment. It's been so cool!

Anyway last thing. Well this week we got to see a bit more of downtown Missoula! M. asked us if we wanted to come with her and her friend J. from AA to walk around the farmers market. It was awesome!  We got to meet some of her friends and introduce ourselves and just be in
the community. It was awesome. M. has been doing super well! We gave her Alma 36 to read.
It's an awesome chapter, everyone should go read it! Haha but we gave it to her at our appointment Wednesday night, then Thursday morning she texted saying "I read the chapter!! Can you come over so we can talk about it?!" Uhh, YES! Haha. So we did. She went on about how it was just what she needed and the message she got from it was "do what God wants you to do if you don't want to be miserable. And Heavenly Father doesn't want us to be miserable." She talked all about how we are supposed to be happy and find joy in life, through the GOOD THINGS. Gosh it's so amazing to see the change that she's been having.
Just a month and a half ago she didn't believe in God and now she talks about her Heavenly Father that loves her and has given her these trials to learn from and find happiness. THIS is what this work is about. If all I do this entire 18 months is help one person realize that she has a Father in heaven that loves her, then I will be the happiest person alive. Gosh this work is amazing.

Okay woah, sorry this was supposed to be short  I'm so grateful for the opportunity to serve here in Montana! I'm grateful for this country we have to live in! (Even if things are going crazy right now But I love you all! Hope you have an amazing week and a beautiful 4th
of July!!

Sister Hodgson

Amazing sisters in the MBM 
 Sister Holm,     Fredrickson, Fletcher and I


We are riding our bikes a LOT these days...I love warm weather