Monday, September 29, 2014

I Love This Gospel. Do You Know That?

This week has been really good. I'm so proud that Cory got his Eagle! That's so great! Sounds like you had a good week! I'm glad y'all got to go to some football games. We pass a high school often and the lights are on, bleachers full and game going and that is something I miss. But as I drive by I think, "Those people have no clue that I'm out here, driving by, just working and working to bring people like them unto Christ." It's so interesting to think about.

Thank you so much for your advice on STL! I really needed all of that. President gave me some good advice and also Aunt Cheryl. I feel a lot more confident for the exchanges next transfer. The one this week is with the Hermanas and I get to have Hermana Reed come here. Last transfer I exchanged with her and she was the STL, now we switched spots! I hope I can get some good advice from her. She goes home next week.

Sister Stucki has still worked as hard as ever. I admire that. It's hitting me now... She only has one week left. The past 2 days have been emotional. She got her flight plans yesterday among a lot of other papers from the mission office. Today her family just kept making little  comments about it here and there in her emails. She just cried and cried and cried. She wrote back: "you're all fired!" and explained how she felt to hear all that and how she'd rather stay here. I think it will be a hard transition. Her little sister will get her mission call about a week after she gets home and I'm sure that will strike up a lot of memories.

When it becomes my turn for nearing the end of my mission, please do not mention it. Don't mention making transitions or anything. Unless it's REALLY important and has to be figured out before I get home. I know how easy my mind can get off track and so I'm going to need all the help I can get.

So now for the week:

We went out tracting before FHE and we found a lot of good potentials! We met Tony and Montana who are both YSA and living together. Tony is in the military and Montana goes to Austin Peay. They have both met missionaries before and were so nice and listened to us! They went out of town for the weekend but hopefully they'll be back soon and we can go see them. We went to FHE and they were playing volleyball. As we were playing, they kept making rude sassy comments to each other and it just broke my heart. One guy said "raise your hand if you don't like A." and a few did. Sister Stucki said "that's not very nice" and they got defensive saying she should come to their workplace because no ones nice. Then I got an idea.,. For FHE next Monday I'm going to do the spiritual thought. I printed out a picture of the group and put Christ on the back and taped it to a box. Then we'll take turns stabbing the front of the box with the group's picture on it with the negative comments we've heard. I remember this FHE from when I was who knows how old. When you turned the picture around and Christ was in the back, it really hit me... And so I’ll explain how when they cut each other down it cuts down Christ. He doesn't care what their workplace is like. That's not what his workplace is like. His workplace is a place of love and peace and safety. Then we're going to pair them up with someone they don't get along with, and we're going to duck tape their wrists together. Then we'll go outside and they will have to work together with 4 hands to make a pizza. Roll the dough, put sauce on and all that. No negative, sassy or demeaning remarks can be made. I'm SO excited for it!! I hope it will really help them see that this group is one of love and we are to be united, not competing against each other.

Pretty much all of our plans fell through. I don't remember what we did... But it was a good day! We had dinner at a member’s home and she was struggling with a lot of things. It just made me think... The gospel is the only way to get through it all. There's a quote that says "The gospel is not our last option, it's our only option." So true. Hang on to the truth that you know when things get hard. I've done that this transfer when things got hard and it makes all the difference. Trials come, but there's always an out. Trials may last. But they will end in God’s time. Hang on.

We stopped by a Less-active and braved it because we heard a rumor that the mom was getting annoyed with us coming. We went anyways and the dad answered and the mom said "Let me handle it." Uh oh... She told us to never come back... After some talk, she asked for our number and then went to get a pen. She came back with a bag of cookies and invited us in and was suddenly so nice! Turns out she thought we were just two YSA girls coming to flirt with her son. Haha she didn't know until she saw our tags. It was so awkward and hilarious!

I didn't really get much out of District Meeting, but we did receive inspiration on a couple things for our area. We found a quote in "The Power of Everyday Missionaries" that talks about how missionary work solves all problems in hearts and homes and wards. So we are working on an outline of helping our YSA to share the gospel and do missionary work. We stopped attending Institute and Sports Night so we could work more. When our YSA beg us to come, we encourage them to bring a non-member that we could ask to teach. Then we will go. It's going to be great.

We tracted that night and had not very much success. We stopped in at Institute for a moment and our Investigator Chris was there. He is not YSA... But is comfortable there so he attends with us. He's 35 and single. I can't remember if I've told you about him. He's met with missionaries a lot and he is a youth pastor in his church. He is intense. The lesson was really good for him though!

We had exchanges with CV1. They are struggling. They have different personalities. It was hard to offer advice because Sister F. has tried EVERYTHING to help Sister W. Every suggestion I made was already used. Sister Andersen is going on exchanges with them today and they're sending another sister to work with them this next week. I wish they would call us for help. I told them they could and they said they would.. But I guess not. The exchange was good though. I think Sister F. learned a lot. I taught her how to plan lessons and tract effectively. She seemed really relieved and grateful to learn those things. She's only been out 2 transfers and she's so strong and has such a great desire to work. I love her!

We talked so much about the exchange. Sister Stucki taught Chris and I guess the member who was there got really off topic and the lesson went crooked and they didn't teach a lot. During weekly planning, it hit Sister Stucki that she was going home soon. And she teared up and so did I and I commented that I was devastated and I was going to miss her and we both ended up bawling and we were eating and it was silent and we just bawled and laughed and it was so weird. It was awkward and funny and sad haha. Our day was weird. We saw Ebony and Steven and they are doing well! Ebony is coming to the Women's Broadcast and Steven is going to drop her off. I shared D&C 6:20 with them talking about how church, praying and reading the scriptures is the formula to eternal happiness and the blessing of those is being encircled in the arms of God.

Oh boy. This day. We tried to contact a bunch of potentials and they all weren't home. Our plans quickly vanished. So we stopped by a Less-active that Sister Stucki baptized last year and she just talked and talked for 1 1/2 hours! It was rough. Then we had lunch at the Bolos's. We had Greek food! Elder Bolos is Greek. It was pretty good. We had chicken and potatoes and beans and salad. It was all Greek style and I couldn't complain about it, but I still joked about how nasty Greek olives are. Elder Bolos loves them and they are nasty!!

We then tracted and tracted. I was a little grumpy because I didn't want to tract. But we found a lot of good potentials! One said he'd come to church but he didn't. We had a new gold mine tracting spot!
Lastly was the Women's Broadcast and I loved President Uchtdorf's talk! He sure does know how to make a Sister feel Heavenly Father's love! I teared up and I really felt the spirit.

Usually Sunday's are long and tiring and hard for us. But his Sunday was good! All the YSA that were led to Nashville were here. They all decided to come back. We had a good meeting and they are all so excited about our FHE movie night tonight! We had a great study and prepared for Chris.
We were able to go teach Steven. Ebony wasn't able to come out for the lesson. So we read Alma 36 with him. He needed a lesson just for him. We were able to help him open up. Oh, Ebony didn't come to the broadcast because they got in a fight and Steven wouldn't take her. So she and her baby daughter watched it on her phone and her two boys wanted to watch and she made them leave the room because it was for girls only haha. She loved it! They are so sweet! I just love them!

Lastly we taught Chris and it went really well! The spirit really guided us because we were prepared beforehand. We taught about a lot.. Prophets and priesthood mostly. I'm excited for him to see General Conference and to hear the prophet and to pray to know if he is a prophet of God. A lot of people just don't know what a prophet is! As I've thought about that this week I've just had a strong confirmation to me that Thomas S. Monson is the prophet of God. He is God's mouthpiece and he can receive revelation for the whole world. It's incredible.

Last night in the car Sister Stucki and I resolved to make this next week a week of "forget yourself and get to work" and we are going to work our hearts out!

I love this gospel. Did you know that? I love this gospel so much that I just want to share it with everyone! I just love God and doing His work! I love the Book of Mormon and I know it is true. I know that we have a prophet of God on the earth today and he leads and guides the church. I know the power and authority of God is real and in the church. Whenever anything tries to tell me otherwise, I just think "that's silly" because I KNOW it's true and nothing can shake my faith. That's a good feeling. I just feel like this is the greatest work ever. Probably because it is. I know it's God's work and if I rely on Him then I will be able to accomplish miracles. I am his instrument. I love working for Him. I love serving His children. I love it! And I wish it would never ever end. I sometimes cry from joy of how much I love what I get to do. Sometimes I cry over the people. But it's all worth it.

I love y'all and I love this gospel more than words can describe. My heart is just full of joy because of the gospel and how blessed we are to have it! I love my mission. Have a great week!

~Sister Rokovitz~

Sister missionaries can do handstands in skirts and still be decent.

The YSA men. They wanted their picture taken.

Monday, September 22, 2014

A Better Week

This week was so much better! As I've read my friends letters I just feel like they are having miracles everywhere! So I'm trying to focus on the miracles we are having. I often feel I don't have any, and then I realize we have a ton! So here goes.

Let me just tell you. The temple was aaaaahmazing! Oh my! As I sat there before the session started I just prayed with a smile and said "I've been waiting for months for this! Please help make this a special experience!" And He did. I just wanted to cry tears of joy from being there! I sat in the celestial room with my eyes closed until I had no clue everyone except my companion was gone. It was wonderful!

We had my first MLC (Mission Leadership Council) later that day. Elder Meredith and Elder Kopischke came. Here's what I wrote to President about my experience: "Friday was spiritually exhausting. I don't know why, but MLC was so intimidating! I don't think I said a single word and I felt like a deer in headlights the whole time. Are you sure I'm supposed to be an STL? As I was sitting there hearing everyone's profound comments, I just felt so out of place! Is that normal? Being a leader brings a million more humbling experiences. It's so wonderful and awful all at the same time." Haha I learned a lot from the meeting, but it was frightening.

This week went by so fast for me. It makes me just sick because I love my companion so much and I know she's going home. It tears me up! I just don't ever want Sister Stucki to leave! I have a companion who is a consecrated missionary. I'm trying to learn all I can from her so I can stand on my own when she leaves in 13 days.

We had exchanges with the Princeton sisters this week. They are both really shy and it was not what I wanted it to be. I went to Princeton and I don't think we taught a single lesson. Our lessons were small talk and encouragement to read the scriptures. There was no principle taught. Dinner was 2 hours at a member's home and lunch was 1 1/2 hours at a member's home. And for the life of me I had no clue how to bring these things up and discuss them! I had no clue what to say or how to start. And thus at the end of the exchange when I hadn't said anything, I felt terrible. This week we have exchanges with the CV1 sisters and we know their area is having struggles. I'm going there and so I have to brave-up and address the issues. It's not fun... But it's good to be able to teach these missionaries.

Ok so here's the weekly rundown:

For FHE we played some fun games! We played Mafia and Do You Love Your Neighbor. We were all running around in circles and it was so funny! We had 2 big Samoan guys just laughing their heads off! Even Elder and Sister Bolos played! It was a great night. People were trying to play the second game with cups of food and try not to spill it! It was pretty hilarious!

We taught Ebony. Steven was asleep. It was a mellow lesson but lacked with the spirit. We read 2 Nephi 31 with her and she really liked it! She said she would read it to Steven and explain it to him, and she kept her word! She's just incredible! She also loves the Book of Mormon so much and reads it every day. And she's starting the children's Book of Mormon with her twin boys. We also taught a lady named Shaneka. We were tracting and met her daughters. They said she was at work and told us to come back later. So we did and we got the same response. Finally we went one day and she had just pulled up. She had two of her daughters with her and Shaneka was so nice! We went back this day and taught her the Restoration. When we got to the picture of Joseph Smith, we asked what she saw, and one of her daughters said "that's Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and Joseph Smith!" Our jaws dropped! She said she read the pamphlet! Her little daughter! Ok well she's like 13... But still! The lesson was amazing! When we asked her to be baptized by the proper authority, she said "Absolutely! I would run to Him!" And her daughters said they wanted to also! We don't have a specific date with them, but they desire it! The spirit in that lesson... Just wow!

We had a really good district meeting! Not necessarily the trainings... But the insight and revelation I received. I randomly came across a couple scriptures that chastened me and I needed it! When we accounted at the end, we got a lot of good counsel from the AP's (Assistants to the President) who joined our meeting. They helped us with a few ideas on how to help Calvin progress. (Who we didn't see all week). They also helped us with ideas to strengthen our YSA. It was so good. I'm glad they got lost trying to deliver a washer and joined our meeting. God works in mysterious ways. We started our exchange with the Princeton sisters. I already mentioned that. How do I help them realize that 2 hours for dinner is not ok... How do I be a leader and help them improve?

We had the Bolos's come get me and we switched back from the exchange. Sister Stucki had miracles. She taught a lot of good people while tracting! We've tried to follow up but they haven't answered... So I'm excited to meet them when they answer! We taught Ebony and Steven and they are amazing. We've worried about whether Steven was interested or not and so this lesson was a huge breakthrough! We watched the Restoration DVD and at the end we all talked about it. He just has a hard time opening up about those things. He did express though that he just wants relief from all his sins. He actually looked us in the eyes and spoke up and expressed his desires! It was amazing! We are really confident in them! He is going to read Alma 36 about Alma the younger and Ebony even said she'd help. When we walked out, she already had the book open next to him ready to read! I love them! We also taught Chris. He was brought to YSA by a friend, who attends the Nashville YSA. And he's not even YSA... He's 35. But he's comfortable here so we'll teach him. He's been taught by missionaries for 15 years and just has a few hang ups that we’re trying to figure out. Chris has a lot of thoughts about the church. He has met with missionaries several times and doesn't like robotic presentations. He wants to feel loved as a person. He feels the verses in the Book of Mormon are true, but questions the truthfulness of how the Book of Mormon came  to be. He feels that the gift of the Holy Ghost is something he wants because he notices how it helps members resist temptations and get through struggles easier. We talked about a lot of subjects and answered questions. We committed him to read the Book of Mormon daily and told him that his answer all hinges on whether it's true or not. He is really willing to do his research but we are stumped on what to teach him.....
We had so many lessons this night that we had to skip sports night with the YSA!

Temple! Best day of my life! Then we rushed to MLC and then drove home. I had a headache by the end of the night from lack of good food (we had little time for lunch) and from thinking so much. As I was in the temple I learned something very important. God is real. Oh I learned how real He is! And ever since I've learned that, He's been all around me! He never leaves my side. He knows me very personally and my prayers have felt so much like a conversation with Him. God is real. It brings me more comfort and happiness than ever! God is real.

Me and Sister Stucki at the temple.

All of our plans fell through! So we ended up contacting potentials and Less-actives all day with not the most success ever. But we were listening to talks and just laughing and just bonding like mad! It was a great day! We love Jeffery R. Holland very much - let's just say that.

Today started out good. We had a good number of YSA at church. I had a weird pain in my chest all morning and it wouldn't go away! Then a headache started! After church we did a 2 hour software update and the headache quickly escalated to a migraine. When we got home for lunch I just fell asleep on the couch and woke up briefly to eat. We then did weekly planning and I was just miserable. I wanted to die. I felt so sick and my head just pounded! I slept again for dinner. We went out to work and the quicker we walked, the more my head pounded. We taught a man named Joe and his wife Norma, and they have a 2 year old boy named DJ. They are from the Pacific Islands. They loved the Restoration and are putting really DEEP thought into this. The spirit was so strong, and for a second I forgot about the migraine. Well 2 Excederine and plenty of crackers later I was still just dead. Finally we made it home and planned. I closed my eyes while Sister Stucki reported numbers. Well, apparently I didn't wake up. I made it to bed but I was really dizzy. I woke up today still a little sick. I've had to take it easy so I don't bring back the migraine. Boy. It's rough.

I'm learning a lot out here, but mostly my love of the gospel is just exploding! I love the Book of Mormon so much! So much! And I love the gospel and I just want everyone to have this happiness that I have! I will forever live the gospel of Jesus Christ and I will forever share my testimony with others. You can't escape my testimony because it's who I am. You'll see that when you look at me. I love this gospel!


~Sister Rokovitz~

Southern license plates are the best!

The dogs get a little excited out here. Here are my shoes.....soaked in dog pee. Yay! It was dripping down my leg and puddling in my shoes.

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Spiritual Battle

This week was very very very difficult for me spiritually. I was just stuck. On Monday, a YSA came up to us and bluntly said, "You'll never make it here building a YSA branch! You want to know why? Because I'm taking them all to the Nashville YSA. I will destroy you!" He sounded like Satan.... It was so rough. He really is taking a lot to the Nashville YSA though.

Tuesday was just a rough day. Not in a good mood, tough with lessons and tracting and all sorts of things. I just felt empty. Our area has begun to dwindle in success. We just don't have a lot of people to teach anymore. We tract and tract and tract and yield minimal results and they are mostly non-YSA who are interested so we have to pass them off to other missionaries anyways.

Wednesday was still the same. I gave a training in district meeting but it just didn't pump me up at all. We accounted to our district.... and we didn't have a specific person to talk about or ask for help on. So we told them about our situation and they gave suggestions. It's taken a lot of faith on our part and total trust in the Lord.

Thursday still wasn't much better. Still down and gloomy.

Friday... stunk. We went on an exchange, which I loved the sister I was with and I had a blast with her! I just felt like I was doing everything wrong! Our appointments fell through and we got yelled at that night by a Less-Active. Then the next morning I forgot the phone downstairs which had our alarm on it... so we slept in till 7:00 am. Now you can imagine how crumby I felt. I went into the bathroom and just prayed and cried. As I finished.... I got up and jammed the corner of a cupboard into my brain. I did not even attempt to hold back those tears anymore! I just bawled and bawled! We had to clean the church that morning and the building coordinator (who I have nicknamed Mr. Natzi) was just walking around the whole time watching us clean. And he made us do the most nit-picky jobs. He thinks the missionaries are destroying the building. (He got in trouble for making us clean. He wanted to make us do it once a month but they told him no because we need to be out teaching the gospel.)

Later we had more appointments fall through, I ran a red light, and my world just kind of came crashing down. At this point... all my prayers just became pleads of help! I felt like no one was listening because maybe I wasn't praying for the right things. It was too rough.

Sunday came. I took the sacrament and repented of all I had done the past week. I tried to really focus on the Savior. We had more people in church, but we were told by a member that he heard the bishop talking about abandoning the YSA. (I've also been praying for a ton of charity for these members who keep making these comments.... it's tough!!!)

I wrote down an experience I had this week. I was studying on Sunday and I was reading a talk by President Boyd K. Packer called "The Witness." Oh My. I bawled the whole time! It was truly incredible to read about! My heart was pounding and I just knew it was true. It was just another manifestation to me that Christ lives, and He is so real! He KNOWS me and loves me more than I will ever be able to comprehend.

Later on in my studies, in Luke, I kept reading about praying for your enemies and those that curse you and despitefully use you. Somehow the Lord paces my reading just right so I read the right things at the right time. Don't really get how He does that.... I also studied about having faith in Christ. I learned that the formula for getting back on my feet is:
- Repent
- Obey
- Serve diligently
This can apply to any time in life when we need to get back up on our feet. So I've been doing that. I've been repenting in every prayer and trying to obey and just work hard. I'm trying not to dwell on my mistakes (like being 1 minute late to studies this morning.) Sister Stucki is SO obedient! She is just the most amazing missionary ever and I feel like I'm in training again! She just is obedient to a "T" and she does it so gracefully. I'm going to learn as much as I can before she goes home!

Last night there was a CES fireside that we attended and it was all about denying yourself and taking up your cross and following Him. SO GOOD!!! Listen to that talk if you get a chance! It's not long. He said Success = living in harmony with His will. I'm trying so hard to do that. Oh it's so rough!
This morning I also read a talk from the October 2013 conference titled "Wilt thou be made whole?" that was definitely meant for me. This talk is all about repentance and becoming converted to the Lord.

So to sum this all up.... my week was pretty crappy. I honestly could not wait for it to be over! It was the biggest challenge of my life to continue to pray for guidance and to teach and find. I knew He was there, I just didn't feel it. It was so hard to cling to the threads of the gospel. I did though, because I knew that was the only way to get out. It's still rough.... but we both know that by small and simple means are great things brought to pass. We may not find investigators through tracting, but because we are being obedient and tracting, we will be blessed.

Richard is not progressing and so he knows we won't meet with him until he progresses and keeps commitments. He was supposed to read 1 Nephi 1 and take notes. I asked him in church where his notes were, and he said he didn't read. So I said "Ok, well you let us know when you read and we'll consider meeting with you."

With Calvin, we actually had a lesson with him on Saturday, with a member there, (Which never happens! ) and I suggested to him to set a baptism date and to go with it unless Heavenly Father tells him otherwise. He didn't set a date, but he's so close to being able to do that. The spirit was so strong in that lesson and he was just beaming every time we talked about faith and the Book of Mormon. I love Calvin.

I have learned this week that no matter how hard it gets, God is still there. I can "be assured that the Savior still seeks to mend [my] soul and heal [my] heart." What He asks of me is to repent, pray, forgive and forget. I know this gospel is the ONLY way to get through life and to live with our Father in Heaven again. It's all worth it.

Well... that's all about this week. It was rough and tough... but I was stretched and I think I can handle more now.

I love you and just want you to know that I do have a testimony of my Savior Jesus Christ. His Atonement is real and if you don't know what that means for you, find out. It means the world to me. I know I can access the Atonement at all times. It's so comforting. I love you and hope you have a great week!

~Sister Rokovitz~

Jesus loves you!

I hit my year mark. Thanks for the cookies Mom and Dad.

"Hay" Olaf. He's made completely of hay.

This is how "moving" is done in Tennessee.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A Week Full of Work

Hey this is a quickie! P-day was full and we're out of time so here's the week. I haven't read your email yet....

Last Monday we just bummed out in the church and then for FHE we went up to the Frogue's. They had food and Whiffle Ball and Frisbee and football and croquet. It was so much fun! We didn't change out of our skirts, but I wish we would have because I wanted to play the games. We mostly sat and talked. Then we got to go to Brother Frogue's farm! We saw his massive equipment and took pictures in the tractors, we saw the tobacco barns where they were smoking the tobacco, and we saw baby cows and they sucked our fingers!! Haha it was the weirdest thing ever! But it was a good night.

In the barn with the cows.

With the YSA for FHE at the Frogue's. 

We saw Nicole and she is doing good! She's has had a lot of alone time and so she's been reading the Book of Mormon. It's taken her a while because she can't read English very well. So we asked if she would like a German Book of Mormon. She said she would love one! So we're going to order her one. We also met a lady named Mary while we were tracting. She seemed pretty interested and when we went back later in the week she said "I've been waiting for you to come back! I told my brother-in-law and sister about you and they haven't stopped talking about you since you left!" They're all not YSA, but they're interested!

Ebony and Steven are doing so well! We went back and they had both read! Ebony read all the way to 1 Nephi 3 and Steven read to 1 Nephi 1. Ebony just loves the Book of Mormon. Steven doesn't really open up about that stuff. He's too tough. Lastly, this is a huge miracle. We had just stopped by Chelsea and Sam to check up on them and Chelsea wasn't home, and Sam... made her friend come outside and tell us very rudely that she wasn't interested. She said "We don't like people coming to talk about weird stuff." It hurt so bad. Mostly because she seemed so genuine and nice at first and it was all an act.... So ok miracle time. We were pulling out and it was about 8:30 pm, which we title "awkward time." It's so awkward if you have nothing scheduled. I then had a thought and I said "We need to go see Joe!" Remember Joe? Pretty interested then said he wasn't. He looks like a modern Jesus. I doubted a little if we should because I thought he might work. We went and we pre-wrote a note in case he wasn't home. We knocked and lo and behold... He was home. And he was still friendly. Basically I testified more boldly than I have in a long time. He looked in deep thought and said "Ok. I'll read more of the book and ponder this in my heart." So we left it at that. I don't know if he'll read or not or if it will change him, but I did what I could and told him what I absolutely know. Now it's up to him and the spirit.

This day we met with Richard... Who went out and got drunk the night before... And so we talked to him about repentance and then ended that lesson real quick. We then started a two hour drive to Hartford Kentucky for an exchange! Boy was that long. My GPS is crazy and took us off roading. We ended up on a dirt trail and I said "I'm gonna go for it!" Haha bad idea. Sister Stucki convinced me not to, thank goodness! We turned around and made it another way. But I was in Hartford with Sister Aiono from the rest of Wednesday, all of Thursday, and then we left Friday to go to Zone Conference. On my exchange I learned a lot. First of all I learned how much I love my area. Hartford is tiny, as in I already memorized where everything is. Also... I learned how much I've learned. I noticed slow transitions from lesson to lesson and slow walking and slouching while tracting... I realized how much more like a missionary I feel when I walk with purpose and just work work work! It's awesome. Sister Aiono is a great missionary! She has a strong desire to be here and learn all she can. She wants to just be able to do it all the right way. She desires to be able to answer people's questions. She has a great spirit about her. I'm so glad I got to go on that exchange.

We did see quite a few miracles. We tracted into one of Sister Aiono's Investigators who had disappeared but still wanted to learn. We also found so many prepared people! We tracted into one girl who we taught the Restoration to on the porch and committed her to be baptized!!! It was so cool! I was dead tired at the end of the day.

We had to wake up at 5:20 a.m. to leave for Zone Conference. We made it just in time and I was so happy to see Sister Stucki again! I wasn't really expecting much out of Zone Conference actually... I get myself so hyped up and then get disappointed, but it was SO good! President Andersen gave a training on prayers and how to make them more personal. He also talked about how to receive answers. Ever since then I have been so much more determined to better my prayers. After all, I'm talking to the God of the entire universe when I pray. We also learned about teaching the atonement, and how to do church tours. We helped with that training. I don't know if you saw the picture on Facebook, but for some reason I look terrified! I was pretty nervous though. Sister Stucki told  me while on the exchange she set a baptism date with Ebony and Steven! They will be baptized on the 27th of this month!!! They are just honestly so prepared!

Our Zone (Amber is in the green blouse.)

Sister Stucki, Sister Rokovitz, Sister Bolos and Elder Bolos.

Two huge miracles. First one: we did a church tour with Ebony and Steven and they loved it! Ebony was really into it. We showed them the baptismal font and Ebony asked if she would get to wear all white. They loved the chapel! And we had Steven read the sacrament prayer and then I played two songs on the piano. It was the best thing ever.

Second miracle: Calvin. We had the most powerful lesson with him. We haven't seen him in forever! We talked about answers and prayer and the Holy Ghost. He said he hasn't gotten an answer and he's prayed about it so much! So Sister Stucki asked him to pray right then. He smiled and said yes. We knelt down and he straight up asked if the Book of Mormon was true and if Joseph Smith was a prophet. She then promised him that if he would pray and tell Heavenly Father that he wasn't going to get off his knees until he got an answer, then he would get an answer. He's ready to act on whatever answer he receives, so honestly I don't know what God is waiting for!! He said he would pray after work on Sunday and text us. It was a powerful lesson.

Such a good day! We asked for a few Less-actives to focus on from the bishop today and we’ll do that for all the wards. We only had 3 people in church... And honestly I wanted to cry about it. We still had a great testimony meeting and I felt the spirit so strong prompting me to get up and bear my testimony... So I did. And I bawled the whole time and shared D&C 6:2 where it says "behold, I am God." I love that so much!!! We then stayed for Sacrament meeting in the next ward with Ebony and Steven and they loved it! Steven didn't want to stay after Sacrament so they left... But they still came! We saw them later and taught about temples and it went pretty well. It was a little scattered but still good.

I know this is really fast and short and I actually haven't even had time to read your email yet. I might scan real quick and answer questions. I have to go! But I love you!

~Sister Rokovitz~

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Miracle Email

(Mom's note: This came through today, after I sent a "help help" email to Amber Monday night. I knew it was after P-day hours but hoped she would see the email anyway....I even checked her missionary email account on Monday and the full email was NOT there. I explained that we felt we did not receive her full email but figured it was lost since it was not in her "sent" file. She replied with this today:
Sorry. Guess it doesn't work if I put pictures in the middle of an email. Won't do that again. Here's the rest. You probably died. If that ever happens, you can always log into my email and check the “sent” mail and see if I sent it through there. Love you!
Explain it how you will, but I know it was NOT there on Monday. Miracles from a loving Heavenly Father. Here is the rest of that lost email, starting with the last question I asked her and the pictures added in where they go.)

So tell us about Sister Stucki? You said she goes home the next transfer....gosh, you’re getting a lot of “six week” companions! Where is Sister Stucki from?
So Sister Stucki... This Sister is amazing. This is us.

She is so obedient and just loves her mission. I try not to talk about her going home or ending her mission. I'm trying to help her work hard till her very last day. We will see tremendous miracles and she will know she completed her mission the way Christ wanted her to. She has 8 siblings. I think she said she's number 6. She is from Moab Utah. I just love her! I'm so happy I get to serve with her. I remember telling her on my exchange in Illinois that she was an example to me because if she could be a 19 year old STL, then so could I. She's funny and sweet and so caring and helpful. We'll prepare meals and she'll just do things to help me that are so selfless. We both wanted some leftovers, and instead of just leaving it out for me, she served me some and heated it up for me. Her mission has shaped her into someone who lives a celestial life. I want to be like that.

I luckily did get to say goodbye to my mission mommy (Her first companion and trainer, Sister Giles.) I'm going to miss her. She was so perfect. I was such a snotty trainee haha, I gave her a lot of grief. Yet she just responded with such Christlike love. She served well. And now.... she can't get married till I get back.

So I just wanted to include a random thought. I just went down into the church kitchen to get a spoon and then came back out and plopped myself on the couch for more typing.. This church is home. We spend a lot of time here as missionaries and I love it. They're safe places. I feel welcome here and so close to Christ the whole time. Church is great!

Ok so I'm going to list all the miracles we had this week and then explain them in the weekly explanation.

1. We taught 33 other lessons
2. We got 7 new Investigators
3. We had 30 YSA show up to bowling!
4. We taught Eli!
5. We met Ebony and Steven. The perfect family.
6. We met with a Less-active who loves Sister Stucki and called us over. Missionaries haven't been able to find her in forever.
7. We taught Richard about scripture study and he took notes! This is his notes for the introduction.

8. We taught 11 other lessons on Friday. This was the day we had the exchange. I stayed in our area and Sister Johnson came with me.
9. We made it through Saturday. Haha it was a long day.
10. Gwen told me over Facebook that she feels comfortable at church
11. We saw Caleb. We looked through the peephole and his neighbor outside said "I don't think he's home." I knew Caleb could hear so I said loudly "I think he is! His car is here!" Few second later the door swings wide open. He's not interested and he's moving. But he answered. Miracle
12. We taught another 11 lessons last night within 2 1/2 hours.

You can say it's been a good week. I've been here for 3 months and I've seen the area just explode. There was not this much to do a whole month ago. Now there is so much to do! I now have witnessed what dedication and obedience do for an area.

Monday: So we had bowling this night for FHE. And 30 YSA came! Tons of Less-actives, 4 Investigators, and members. Most successful activity ever! We have no real budget so Sister Frogue said "let's spend it!" President Craig, Stake President, encourages us to spend it on good activities. We did 2 games of bowling and then had pizza as well. Here's a picture of the group. Some people aren't in this because they left early.


I also gave my first haircut this night to Sister Frampton. She just wanted a trim and even if I messed up she has curly hair so it wouldn't show too badly. I then trimmed my hair. Valuable life lessons taught from Mother Dear.


Tuesday: Transfers! This meeting was full of good people! So many great missionaries went home. I saw so many friends and I just feel like I have this huge spiritual army of friends! They never end! You finish talking to one and turn around and there's 5 more you want to take pictures with! We made it back super fast and then got to work! Tracting and visiting people. We met a nice girl named Caitlyn. She was pretty interested in our message. We went back Saturday but she forgot and so we set up another appointment for tomorrow. We taught Eli which was a miracle. He's Garrett's friend. He really has a soft side to him. He tries to seem tough but he's not. Let's face it. He rides with a minion in his front seat.


Wednesday: District meeting! We have a new district leader: Elder Harris. He is so funny! District meetings are a bit hyped up now rather than just.. boring. We taught Richard and he just confuses me. He had a major flip out on Saturday and said he was never coming back and then he showed up at church. He is smart. He knows what is right and wrong. He knows what he should and shouldn't do and he feels terrible when he sins. He has a strong desire.. It might just take longer. I don't know what to do. We also met Ebony and Steven this day. They invited us in and we showed them the Because of Him video. They were so focused. They have twin boys and then a little girl. At the end we asked if we could do anything for them and Ebony said "Just bring our family closer together." Melted my heart! We taught the Restoration on Friday and they promised to come to church (they couldn't make it) and read the intro to the Book of Mormon. They both read it! And then we explained it yesterday. They are the perfect little family. I've never taught a whole family before! They are so sweet and all of them squish on the couch and they sit so still and listen. They are so prepared! I love them so much! And they said they would really be at church on Sunday.

Thursday: We were out finding Less-active's all day! We stopped to tract for a while and we knocked on a door and a super sweet girl named Chelsea answered the door. We introduced ourselves and she said "Yeah I recognize you! I was your waitress at Texas Roadhouse!" She's totally interested in activities and was so excited to just be able to see us again! What a miracle! We were just looking all over for these people who are missing. We didn't meet many people, but we did get invited into the home of the parents of a YSA and they knew a lot about the YSA in their ward. So we were able to figure out who to focus on in that ward.

Friday: We had weekly planning and we set some pretty high goals! I put them on my mirror so I can often see them and strive to reach them. I feel so motivated to work hard and do good things for this area. I feel like there will be so many good things coming for this area. One of the goals we had together was to pray more specifically for people and to have more faith to find and be bold. It's been working out really great so far! I can see that when we have faith and expect miracles, great things happen. I'm really going to be working on this. We went on our exchange and it went well. It was tough to be the one to answer questions and to constantly just work, work, work because a lot of our plans fell through. But it worked out.


Saturday: It was so good to see my companion again, now I understand why STL's seem so happy and loving toward their companion. We work better with our companion and harder and it's just more comfortable, but I love these sisters. We talk about the sisters at least once every day and when we will exchange with them and what we can do to help them. It's amazing how much love I'm developing for these sisters and I just want to help them so much!!! We also contacted a LOT of potential Investigators. With no success. No one was home! It was really hard to have a day like that. I was so excited to just be done with that day!

Sunday: Church was pretty average.. Richard came and admitted he was wrong to run away from Christ. I did feel though in church this overwhelming feeling of God's love. And I just wish I could describe it and share it with others. But it's so hard. We had studies and we were just falling asleep. Sundays are long hard days for missionaries. Once we got out and started testifying we felt much better! It's nice to just tract and meet these people and share the gospel with them! I love these people so much!!

At the end of this week... I just feel good. I know this is going to be a transfer full of work, work, work. And guess what! We get to go to the temple on the 19th! I'm beyond excited!

Well I just spent way too long on this email. Haha I love y'all and hope y'all have the best week ever. Share your favorite scripture or Mormon message with someone this week. I dare you!

~Sister Rokovitz~

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Half An Email

(Mom's note: Somehow, we think Amber's email got corrupted in the sending process and only part of it came through. She always sends an email to me and one to her Dad, which I combine to make her blog post. The email to me is below and ends without any kind of ending or signature, which it always has. Then she mentions in her Dad's email how she is short on time because she spent so much time on my email...which is pretty much not complete. We're not sure what happened, but this is what we got this week.)

Ok question answering time!
-How are you doing with Sister Stucki?
So great! We just get along so well. I know why she needed to be my companion... To show me what exact obedience is really like. She is just obedient to a "T". Makes me seem so disobedient. She's always ready right on time and just doesn't waste any time. She's super efficient in planning and remembering things and I just love her! She's so bold in being obedient too. I love it.

- Is Sister Stucki a STL (Sister Training Leader) too? If so, does she sort of train you how to do your new calling?
She is an STL. She was my STL up in Illinois so I got to go on an exchange up there with her. She is training me and helping me get the gist of the calling.

- If CV2 was closed, who is taking over that area? Meaning, do they just add the boundaries to another set of missionaries?
They had elders in their ward already. So now it's just the whole ward to the elders.

- Are they going to keep you in that big apartment with just the two of you?
Yep. They signed a lease so we are stuck.

- How was your meeting with the Stake President, President Andersen and the Zone Leaders?
Pretty boring. Honestly. President didn't make it. So we talked about the missionaries but the ZL's talked most the time. But it was still good. It's amazing to see how much thought, effort and time goes in to coordinating missionary work with the wards and making sure everything is running smoothly. Now that I know how it's run, I might speak up more next time.

- Did you go on any exchanges this first week?
Yeah. I went with Sister Johnson. The one who's cousin is in your ward. It was a fun exchange.. But as an STL, it's harder because the sisters ask questions and I'm expected to have answers and I have to lead conversations and help them progress and set a pretty top notch example. But it was good.

- How has your first week of being a STL been?
As I've gone into this first week of being an STL I've realized how important it is to have help to run a mission. The way all of this is set up is so inspired. It was a little stressful for me to think about at first. Our area is to be an example area and we are to be baptizing frequently. When I read that I was like "No way this can happen!" We had no Investigators really, besides Richard. But we started with a lot of finding and working on faith this week. And we ended up teaching 33 other lessons. The average for this area is 8 for a week. Sister Stucki wanted us to reach 30 each week and I was skeptical... But we exceeded it! I can see the difference in our area already. This is due to hard work, prayers, faith, and trusting in the Lord. I've had no time for anything. Hardly even my journal. But we've seen miracles. I didn't have to become a leader to have this. It's not a magical power that does that for an area. But as I've become a leader, and been put with Sister Stucki, and had higher expectations given to me, I've seen what can happen. Miracles! I'm so excited for this transfer. I'm working on being more obedient on the small things and following my companion’s example. I love her.

So tell us about Sister Stucki? You said she goes home the next transfer....gosh, you’re getting a lot of “six week” companions! Where is Sister Stucki from?
So Sister Stucki... This Sister is amazing. This is us.

Sister Rokovitz and Sister Stucki

(We think this email got half lost in the process. This is all we got... the rest of this is from her email to her Dad.)

Ok so I have to tell you....... I STARTED THE NEW TESTAMENT THIS WEEK AND IT IS THE BEST THING EVER! I can't put it down! I love it so much! I'm up to Matthew 14 right now and I was just dying over how good Matthew 13 is! Ah! How come no one ever told me to read it before?! Oh my I just love the scriptures!

I was laughing so hard that you said "y'all" so much in your email. I love saying y'all! Where y'all at? Where y'all going? Will y'all pray? It's what we do.

Sorry this is short. I just spent an uber long time on Mom's email. Like way too long. But I just want you to know this: I love the gospel. I'm learning how to live it as opposed to be in it. It takes so much effort. But it's worth it. The scriptures are golden! I love them so much! I read them every chance I get. I even tried to read them while I did my makeup... Yeah I didn't turn out looking very pretty that day haha. God is good and He is real. And we are His children. The end.

I love you :)

~Sister Rokovitz~

(At least we got some pictures, but no descriptions, like we usually do. Another clue that we didn't get the whole email.)