Tuesday, April 22, 2014

P-DAY B-DAY!!!!!!!! Weekly email # 59

WOW!!!! Having a birthday on a p-day that just so happens to be the day that I can go to the temple is AWESOME! I highly recommend it to anyone that can do so. Let me start off my letter by telling you something that happened last Wednesday:
Last Wednesday I was struck by the Spirit of Elijah. I kid you not. Sister Sheperd and I were looking at my family tree as part of the 12 week training and we thought we had found someone that hadn't had their work done (Ann Batt. Turned out she has), but in that moment, I got so worked up. (in a good way) I felt a great urgency to have her temple work done because she's been waiting for years and years!!!! I kept thinking about how I don't know my grandparents very well and I don't know anything about my ancestors that came across the plains or who first converted to the church or what. I had a leaky faucet syndrome that day. I just kept crying every time I thought about my family! Then that night, Mom, you sent Sarah Lillian Minerva Briggs name to Sister Arrington to me to do her endowments today. I got so excited to hear she was a missionary! And the next morning I read from D&C 128 and I was crying during personal study. Sister Sheperd asked me if I was okay and I said "yes, it's just the spirit of Elijah again." I wanted to share the scriptures that meant the most to me. In reference to baptisms for the dead, Joseph Smith says in verse 15:

15 And now, my dearly beloved brethren and sisters, let me assure you that these are principles in relation to the dead and the living that cannot be lightly passed over, as pertaining to our salvation. For their asalvation is necessary and essential to our salvation, as Paul says concerning the fathers—that they without us cannot be made perfect—neither can we without our dead be made bperfect.

I am curious as to why we can't be made perfect without our dead. Maybe it's because we need to do service for them? Either way, temple works pertains to salvation!!!! And then the next two verses I want to share with  you are quoted a TON, especially in Joseph Smith the prophet of the restoration video, but are never attributed to the section that is about FAMILY HISTORY AND TEMPLE WORK!!!!! Here they are:

 19 Now, what do we hear in the gospel which we have received? A voice ofagladness! A voice of mercy from heaven; and a voice of btruth out of the earth; glad tidings for the dead; a voice of gladness for the living and the dead; glad tidings of great cjoy. How beautiful upon the mountains are the dfeet of those that bring glad tidings of good things, and that say unto Zion: Behold, thy God reigneth! As the edews of Carmel, so shall the knowledge of God descend upon them!

 22 Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause? Go forward and not backward. aCourage, brethren; and on, on to the victory! Let your hearts rejoice, and be exceedingly glad. Let the earth break forth into bsinging. Let the cdeadspeak forth anthems of eternal praise to the dKing Immanuel, who hath ordained, before the world was, that which would enable us to eredeem them out of theirfprison; for the prisoners shall go free.

Oh, and on Wednesday Sister Arrington had general conference playing while we were eating dinner and the one by Elder Cook came on, which is about family history. I was crying again. Man, I just want to know all about my ancestors and do their temple work! Elder Cook said that the Spirit of Elijah is just the Spirit manifesting to you (or me, in this case) the sanctity of the family. Well, I felt it. =] 
To help me out with this spirit of Elijah, Mom and Dad, could you send me all the addresses of all your siblings? And for Grandma? I want to write and ask everyone for stories about grandmas and grandpas, and then could you send me grandma's address so I can ask her about herself and her parents? I need them for next p-day because Sister Sheperd has requested a nap. While she naps I can write letters to my aunts, uncles, and grandma! 
And then to top off the Spirit of Elijah, I got to go to the temple today!!!! It is such a beautiful temple. Sister Sheperd enjoyed it, too. I really did feel like I was having a birthday party with Sister Palmer (my 4 transfer  companion) and Sister Pond (we were in the same district for 3 transfers in my first area) there and other elders that I know. A good amount from my zone. There's a picture attached. But anyway, it was such a special experience to have a family name! I had been praying for her and for me since I got her name a week ago that today would be a good experience. Heavenly Father answered my prayers. I feel that Sarah Briggs accepted her work and I am so grateful I was able to participate. Mom, could you thank Aunt Diane for her part in getting me the name? I am so grateful!!! 
We have been adding a good number of investigators!!! It's really easy to find investigators, which is awesome. Now we have to find people that are willing to progress. Yesterday was my last interview with President Clayton before he goes home at the beginning of July. He thanked me for my work and he said he thought I was a wonderful missionary. I feel like that is the highest praise I could receive from President Clayton. Anyway, the point is that in his closing prayer he prayed for us to find many investigators that are willing to progress towards baptism. I loved that he prayed for us! So cool! Anyway, the work is pressing on.  We're staying busy. 

Could someone get Maren Bishop's mailing address for me? She wrote me a letter a long time ago and I responded on the same day but apparently I wrote it down wrong and it came back to me. I don't want her to think I'm scum. 
Family, THANK YOU FOR THE PACKAGE!!!!! I love the Texas t-shirt, the yogurt covered pretzels, the kolaches with "Happy birthday, Audrey", on it, and all the self care things. I even put on the tiara for a little bit. Julianne, I haven't read the letter yet. I love how cute the card is, Mom! Thanks for the essential oils, and the love that went into this box!! And Mom and Dad, thanks for the birthday song you sent to Sister Arrington. =] I feel your love today. Don't you worry about that. 
I am just so elated today. Or joyful? I'm not sure which adjectives to use. I'm spectacular! A lot of people in the mission have been helping me have a great day. Anyway, I love you, family!!!!!! Thanks for taking care of me!!!!! 
LOVE, -Sister Audrey Michelle Bishop 

pic 1 - Eating deviled eggs Sister Sheperd and I made on Easter. 
pic 2 - I am eating a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats for breakfast that Sister Arrington gave me and a HUGE GLASS OF ORANGE JUICE that we fresh squeezed from the oranges that came from Sister Arrington's back yard!!! WHOO-HOO!!!! 
pic 3 - a picture taken at my birthday party!!! =D 
pic 4 - Ran into Elder Cardiff and Elder Bittner (my last zone leaders) at the mission office today! =D

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