Howdy ya’ll! Day 38 mission

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It was such a great week! The only problem is I feel like I have forgotten everything that has happened! It’s hard to remember all that we have done or all we have to do, that I feel like things are just falling out of my brain and I am suffering from random chunks of memory loss.
So the following will proceed randomly from my memory:
We met President Mortensen Wednesday! He is so awesome and I already love him and his family so much! They are so strong and all have such wonderful testimonies! He has 6 children, one girl is on a mission and their youngest is 5. And they are all super tall!
He is so awesome because he showed up to Joshua’s baptism this last Saturday! Typically the mission president is super busy that he can’t make it to every single baptism, but he was there and shared wonderful remarks at the end. 
The baptism was great! It took a lot of planning and schedule rearranging to get everything put together and everyone included, but it worked out perfectly and went smoothly! We had the youth do all of it. They did the talks, the music, the musical number, two priests were the witnesses and the only person who wasn’t a youth was Brother Crumley, who baptized him. Joshua was just beaming with joy. His brother and father came. I think it touched a cord in his dad’s heart. It was great to see everyone so happy and supportive. We had invited all of our investigators but no one showed. Sad. The sisters in the area next to us brought an investigator and she just loved it. She connected right off with a few of the members. A new thing for missionaries, is that we are to work with converts for one year after their baptism. We are required to keep in contact and re teach all of the lessons instead of having members or HT’s teach them. It will help prevent many converts from becoming less actives. I have noticed the importance of the missionary remaining strong in their lives as we have helped Phyllis. She was baptized about a month ago and boy, does Satan work hard on these poor recent converts! She has been having a hard time, but just last night, we had a great discussion about the atonement and putting our trust in the Lord. The Spirit touched her heart and something just seemed to click. She is feeling so much better and excited to continue living a life of faith rather than doubt or fear. D&C6:36.
Finding. It is getting better. I still feel stupid approaching people’s doors and trying to explain to them what we are even doing there at their door. But I have noticed that the fear melts away as we begin talking to them. They are normal people, living normal lives, and their motives aren’t to judge, yell at, or slam doors in our faces like I seem to think. I have realized that I am just freaking myself out. Yes, there are some rude people. But most of the time, they are open to talking about religion. Perhaps that is because I am in the south which is full of faithful people, but nonetheless, these people are normal. And it might sound weird, but that just dawned on me the other day. People are normal and their intent isn’t to judge or be rude. I still have awkward moments at doors though. I think of the movie “best two years” how the guy says, “And I know that Joseph Smith is a pamphlet”. I do stuff like that all the time. I said to a lady the other day that ” I know Jesus Christ has restored his earth on this gospel.” And I’ve said, ” Just like in the bible, prophets like Moah have been a..” It’s supposed to be either Noah or Moses, not moah. I turn bright red and just want to walk away.
But Friday, the 4th, lot’s of people were home so we actually talked to a lot of people and spent the day tracting. We found 6 potential investigators on one street. THAT DOESN’T EVER HAPPEN. Typically we find 1 or 2 a day. We were so blessed! The power of prayer is real. Listen to the Spirit. Do all you can to be obedient. It makes such a difference!
So yeah. There was a random falcon just chillin’ on our little back porch thing. I got a picture of him. I just looked at the window one morning because the birds that have a nest right outside our door were making quite a bit of noise. And there the falcon sat, just enjoying the day. His wing span was about as wide as our little balcony, so like 5 feet? 6 feet? Pretty cool stuff.
There are a lot of random ‘neighborhood’ animals that wander around with no home. We were followed by Todo (the wizard of oz dog) the other day. We named him that because he looks like him and he just followed us while we were tracting. The poor thing is super skinny and almost creepy looking. Also, there are dead animals everywhere. Usually they line the road side but one day we just found a dead cat laying in someones yard. We think someone hit it with a car and tossed it into a random yard. It must have been there for a while cuz it stunk!!! 
I have a wonderful farmers tan already. Watch line, shoe lines, sleeve lines. It’s pretty great. I’ll probably be black by the time I come home.
The thunderstorms are awesome here! The lightning spreads out like upside-down trees and cover the whole sky! The rain just keeps coming. I think we were driving in a few inches of water the other day. They build the roads like a upside-down v so the water drains to the sides, genius, except that means the puddles on the right side of the road are super deep and so when its raining, we just hydroplane everywhere.
These people are so awesome and faithful. I love it here and am learning so much! 
 
hasta luego
Sister Jeppson
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