|With Sister McCord|
December 2, 2013
We had a wonderful week! Thanksgiving was seriously SO GREAT!! We had weekly planning and then we visited a man in our ward who is homebound and doesn't have many visitors. I really loved getting to meet with him because he didn't have anyone else coming on Thanksgiving. He was really grateful to have us there. After, we went to the Rinners house for dinner. Side note--they told me they know the Hammonds! Apparently Hammonds used to live in Michigan in the same area as Rinners--you will have to ask Hammonds about it. Rinners are an amazing family in our ward! Brother Rinner is a convert to the Church and they have 3 children who have all moved out of the house. Their daughter, Lizzy, was in the singles ward with me. She goes to BYU, so she came home for the holidays and it was really fun to be with her and their family. We had a couple of other families there with us and it was incredible. Sister Rinner is an interior decorator and she likes to go ALL OUT with EVERYTHING! Her favorite word is fabulous--and that is definitely what Thanksgiving dinner was. We came over for appetizers before dinner and then we had dinner itself and then we played games and had pie. It was extravagant. We had such a nice time and they also had a chalkboard on the wall where everyone could write what they were grateful for. I loved seeing everyone's responses--some things were small and simple but so beautiful!
It was kind of a hard week work-wise because of the holiday--people were out of town or had family in town, so it was hard to meet and hard to get members out with us but it was still really fantastic and a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the blessings I have.
So...I decided to have a gratitude e-mail this week and share some of the things I am particularly grateful for in light of Thanksgiving. Sorry the holiday has passed already, but better late than never, right?
I am grateful for a family that is supportive of me being on a mission. I am grateful they take the time to write to me every week and they pray for me every day. I can feel the power of their prayers as I struggle and grow on my mission. I am grateful for a family that loves each other. I am grateful that our home is filled with laughter and love and that we honor the commandments of God. I am grateful for parents who have honored their temple covenants and raised me in the gospel.
I am grateful for the scriptures. I am grateful for the guidance and counsel they provide, and I am thankful for the people who labored and suffered so we could have the Book of Mormon and the Bible today. Most importantly, I am so grateful for the sweet Spirit that comes as we search and ponder the words from our Heavenly Father.
I am grateful for a Heavenly Father who loves me. I am grateful He provides me with so many opportunities to grow and He gives me so much help along the way. I am grateful He has created a perfect plan for me and He gave Jesus Christ as a sacrifice so we can return to live with Him again.
I am grateful for Michiganders. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve here and to really learn what it means to TRUST in God's plan and be patient along the way. I am thankful for the kindness of the members I have met here and the way they have touched my heart.
I am grateful for fleece tights, boots, jackets, and gloves. I don't know where I would be without them.
I am grateful for the opportunity to pray and communicate with our Father in Heaven. I am grateful for the peace that prayer brings and that we can receive answers to every one of our prayers.
I am grateful for music and that we have such a beautiful way to worship our Father in Heaven.
I am grateful for all the companions I have had. They each are such beautiful daughters of God and such hard workers. I am thankful Heavenly Father knows who I need to serve with at each time of my mission. I am grateful they have all taught me different things and have been patient with me.
I am grateful for President Hess and my other mission leaders who inspire me to become better every day. I am so thankful for the lessons I have learned from them that will truly impact the rest of my life and influence the kind of disciple I will be as I work to endure to the end.
And most importantly, I am so grateful for the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. I feel as if I have started to understand the atonement more on my mission, but I am still nowhere close to understanding the depth and the beauty of the sacrifice Christ made for me. It's humbling to realize I stood in the same spot where He performed the sacrifice that will allow me to return to live with God again and that helps me to overcome all that is unfair about this mortal life. I am grateful that I can have forgiveness from my sins when I use the gift of repentance and that I have someone by my side who is able to empathize with every challenge I face.
The gospel is amazing, and I am so grateful I have had this opportunity to come on a mission and experience its power in a whole new way.
Have a great week everyone!