(Amber Garvin from Provo, Utah served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also known as 'Mormons') in the Richmond, Virginia area (Now called the "Virginia Chesapeake Mission"). 'Sister' Missionaries are able to serve at age 19 for a period of 18 months. They leave their homes, families and educational pursuits to love and serve their fellowman, and to teach about how families can be together forever. All are invited to follow her missionary experiences.)

*I have now returned home to Utah and will continue to share the experiences of being a returned missionary. :)

Monday, December 2, 2013

Monday, Dec. 2, 2013 Rocky Mount, North Carolina, LDS Sister Missionaries, 'Mormons'

Today is the second day of the last month of the year.  That's pretty final.  I have to say that I am truly grateful that the world didn't end in 2012-- because now I can be on a mission!  And... I had some great Thanksgiving food.
I don't really know the full history of the Thanksgiving, I just know that it is a day that I truly enjoy, and I know that I like food.
There is this thing called 'corn pudding' it's like a sweet corn souflet (sue-flay--I thought I'd put a prounounciation just in case I spelled that wrong. :)  And I think that it is one of my new favorite things.  I'll have to make it for you next year.
Also, lemme tell ya: casseroles are for the benefit of man.  I would like to know the history of casseroles.  The person that figured those out was on track.  I like whoever it was already. :)

Serving Thanksgiving Meals at Community Center

Sooooo, There are so many miracles!  We have been able to see us beautiful miracles in this area!  The work is truly moving forward!  We had 5 investigators at church yesterday!  We were so excited!  I know that I wrote all about it before, but the Lord TRULY is in the details of His work!  I can see it everyday.  Sometimes I take it for granted and forget to look, but it is definitely there. :)
I forget what we did all last week, but it was a holiday, we served on Thanksgiving at a community outreach center, and ate with different members of the ward that gathered together.
We took a 30 minute nap.  
We taught the Gospel.  (That came before and after the nap. :)
We conversed about our blessings and showed thanks by writing in some lovely gratitude journals that a member gave us.
--Also, I have reached the end of my first mission journal.  (We picked a good journal mom!)  It has lasted me 8 months!  I don't know how many missionaries have that kind of luck. :)
But I'm excited to start another one!  It's like writing a sequal!--
We taught some investigators, and gave some people copies of the Book of Mormon.
We bore our testimonies.
You know!  Missionary life!  :) 
I have just continued to grow in love for the people in Rocky Mount.  This is a chapter of my life that I will never forget.
On that note:  We had fast and testimony meeting at church yesterday, and there was a little boy who bore the sweetest testimony and said something very profound that I would like to share this week.  He said: "The present is a gift. You have to enjoy it--otherwise you wont be ready for your future."
Isn't that so true?
I love it! 
I know that I'm far from perfect at enjoying the present.  If you read some of my past letters you probably could attest to that fact.  I sometimes wanted to come home, (still do sometimes) I sometimes wanted to leave an area, or just move on instead of focusing on the things that I could enjoy in each day.
It's sometimes hard to end a hard day and look for the good in it.  Sometimes you just say " I'm done, I'll go to sleep and it will be tomorrow, and it will be better. "  I think that I would like to change my attitude to be better in alignment with the principle of enjoying the present.  Saying something like "Well, today wasn't the best, but I know that God's hand was [here] and I am grateful for [this].  I loved today because..." I think that would make us a happier people, and it would make me a happier person.
Sorry, sometimes I feel like my letters are just a long jumble of random thoughts, but thank you for reading and growing with me anyway. :)  There is simple truth mixed in with the complete circle of thoughts that I have. :)
This week could be the best week of your life, the best day in your year could be tomorrow, but sometimes you have to make it so.  We can't just wait for happiness to fall into our lives day by day.  There are no "I'll be happy if...." happiness is not conditional upon events.   Happiness is only conditional upon our agency.  You are happy if you choose to be.  Let's face it -- we have a responsibility for our personal happiness.
That is what I know this week.
(also that) I love you SOOOOOOOOOOO much!  (And I wrote you on the card of things that I'm grateful for around the Thanksgiving table. :)
Sister Amber
Sorry for the spelling and grammar errors.  Partly because I've forgotten how to be correct, and the computer didn't have automatic spell check . :)