Monday, February 6, 2012

Ostriches and Emus

Hello All,

It's amazing to me that a whole week has gone by again. This week
makes for one of the most stressful of my mission. We've seen some pretty incredible miracles each day, but we've also seen more opposition than I've ever seen. Long story short, we have an incredible investigator who is so ready to be baptized, but due to family opposition we have to wait. Yeah... it's been rough. But it's okay, she's handling it really, really well, and we know that it will all work out in God's time... it's just teaching us all a lesson in patience. I've learned a lot about prayer, and also about working hard to turn things over to God, which is really hard. As a missionary you love these people so much, and it is so hard to watch them go through trials.

On a happier note, we had some really fun lessons and experiences over the last week. Actually, the first one happened two weeks ago and I forgot to write about it. We were out tracting and met this really nice lady, we had a good conversation and set up an appointment with her for the following Saturday. At the end of our conversation she asked us if we liked cabbage. Mexican's like cabbage in everything, but it still seemed like a bit of a strange question. But we told her we did, she then proceeded to walk out to her car and open the trunk where she had a huge box filled with cabbages. Turns out she works on a farm, and gets to keep some of the surplus. I ended up with two huge cabbages in my backpack... it was a little weird.

Next, I got to pet an ostrich! Yeah. A real live ostrich! We taught a lesson to some new investigators this past week, and after the lesson they asked us if we wanted to go out back and see their greenhouses (they do a lot of farming). We said yes, and on the way out there saw a bunch of goats, chickens, ducks, geese, 2 emus and finally 2 ostriches! It was quite the farm. It made me think of a children’s Richard Scary (is that even how you spell his name?) story Dad used to read about some farmers who had all sorts of birds and got the eggs from them... I just remember the picture with the story, and now I'm pretty sure I know where the inspiration came from. Anyhow, long story short, one of the ostriches was sitting on the ground and they told us you could pet them... They're actually a lot softer than I expected, and really quite tame... I'm not sure if that applies to all ostriches, or just the ones we ran into.

We had Zone Conference this week. It was fun, but a little different. This year, President has decided to move to smaller Zone Conferences for 2 of the conferences of the 4 that we do. This was a small one, it was a little weird to have so few missionaries, and I was a little bummed because I didn't get to see any of the other Spanish Sisters. Oh well. We learned a lot, and had some really good discussions. It also got me out of metro-Phoenix again, because the conference was way out in Buckeye, which is pretty much (as far as I could tell) the middle of nowhere. There were just cotton fields and cactus, and then in the middle of 2 huge cotton fields there was a church. That's where we had our conference. It was fun.

I also got exciting news this week. For exchanges in 2 weeks I get to go with Hermana Graves! We are both super excited to get to spend a day together again. She was one of my very favorite companions, and I am so excited to get to work with her. She's now serving down in Montana del Sur, and I spend a few weeks there at the beginning of my mission, so it'll be fun to be back with a former companion in an area I'm at least a little familiar with.

I think that's all of the excitement for this week. I could go for a calmer week after this last one, I'm a little exhausted, but it doesn't seem to work that way. Maybe today I'll get a p-day nap in. That would be nice.

Oh, and to end quickly, last week Mom asked for favorite scriptures from my mission. I really like 2 Nephi 4:34-35, because it teaches us to trust in God... something that I've really had to learn on a mission. Also, (because I can't just pick one), I like 3 Nephi 5:13, because it talks to all of us as disciples of Jesus Christ. Finally, of late I've really loved 2 Timothy 4:6-8, because I want to be like Paul at the end of my mission and say that I have fought the good fight. It's my goal to work as hard as I can over the next 2 months and give my all so like Paul I can look back with no regrets.

All right, now I really am done. I love you all lots! Thanks for the prayers and the support!

Hermana Okeson

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