Saturday, October 14, 2017

We finally had a lesson with Alex last week. He is awesome. His highest pursuit is that of truth. Alex has started to read the Book of Mormon, but hesitates to pray because he feels that all the prayers he offered earlier in his life went unanswered. 
Our biggest challenge right now is probably just that the people we meet are incredibly busy. And even if they sincerely want to learn, it's hard to set appointments and what not.
My study time has become.. Just, awesome. It's something that I am guaranteed control over! So I have been focusing on digging into the plain and precious truths of the gospel while the work is slow so that the Lord can draw on my understanding when we do have people to teach. I usually can get ready fast enough to have 1.5 hours of study. A +. This week I studied a ton about how through Jesus Christ we can be cleansed from sin. I studied the relationship between grace and our own works. This doctrine is taught so clearly in the Book of Mormon! I love 2 Nephi which teaches us that "salvation is free" and that "men are free" and given all the knowledge and ability to "choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death". No unclean thing can dwell with God, and our sins and failures and carnal nature certainly makes us unclean. Jesus Christ came and suffered for us so that we can be clean and return to the presence of our Heavenly Father as we CHOOSE to be made clean by living the gospel of Jesus Christ. God calls unto us, saying, "whosoever repenteth, and hardeneth not his heart, he shall have claim on mercy through mine Only Begotten Son, unto a remission of his sins; and these shall enter into my rest" (Alma 12: 34).

I am thankful that the way is prepared. I am thankful that Heavenly Father expects me to change and grow and learn - that I cannot be saved in complacency. I am thankful that God is not content that we stay how we are, but that we become more like Him and rely on Jesus Christ. I am thankful for the gospel of Jesus Christ - it it simple, it is true, it is a sure way to have peace in this life and to know we are on the path back to God and eternal joy. I am thankful that God expects us to work - as He surely works, ever on our behalf. I am thankful for Jesus Christ and his abounding and perfect love, by which He atoned for the sins of all mankind. He is the way, the truth, and the life - through Him we can grow closer to our Father in Heaven. I am thankful that God loved us so much that He sent Jesus Christ, His Only Begotten Son, to suffer, bleed, and die. I am thankful that the Savior ever pleads with us: Come, follow me.
We also had stake confernece this weekend in Evans. The Augusta stake is awesome! Super inspired leadership. We talked about how revelation from the Lord comes to the prophet and works its way to area authorities and stake presidencies and bishops and to parents and into the home. And that's the end of the road. And that's where it really matters that we live the gospel. One thing that touched me was said by a man who spoke of his new-found love and appreciation for family history work. He said, "I prayed often that family history would be a spiritual experience for me." I had never thought to do that! I am sure that if I had sought that from the Lord that I would've more diligently searched for my kindred dead. I resolved after that meeting to pray that the Lord would help me to have more spiritual experiences and that I might recognize them and have my testimony strengthened and light brightened.
I challenge you to do the same! Identify an area in your worship or.. daily life in which you are bored or less enthused about. Perhaps it is mutual or presidency meeting or council meetings or family dinners or your own personal study. family home evening. family council. Anything! Pray that the Lord will show you how to make it a spiritual experience. Act upon the impressions you receive. Be open to the influence of the Holy Ghost, who knoweth all things and inviteth and enticeth to do good continually. 

-Sister Emma Gore
Week 2 in Grovetown. 

I've never been so tired in my life. We spent all our time walking. In the sun. I sleep like a rock. It's amazing.

Grovetown is interesting because it doesn't feel like GA. It's a military community so.. no one is even really from here. Also it was cold this week so that was odd. Who knew that happened in GA? 

This week we met our ward mission leader. He is from AZ and sells.. something to do with trash. Anyways, he's super awesome and has a lot of energy for missionary work. We had ward coordination at his house with the Elders the other day,he taught Sister S and I so much and we've been using it as we tract and people are way more open to us and to talking and it's awesome. . 

General Conference was this weekend! It's basically Christmas as a missionary. So good. I loved President Nelson's pondering of the Book of Momon:
How precious is the Book of Mormon to me?
What would my life be like without the Book of Mormon? what would I not know? what would I not have? 
When I think of the Book of Mormon I think of ____.

I've been pondering the answers to those questions yesterday and today. I took about 30 minutes of my study this morning to reflect on what the Book of Mormon really is and why that has matters in my life. To share a few thoughts:

The Book of Mormon taught me to fully repent and change.
The Book of Mormon is my first source of knowledge and understanding in regard to the infinite Atonement of Jesus Christ.
The Book of Mormon confirms the reality of a life after death.
The Book of Mormon shows us how to withstand temptation.
The Book of Mormon brings light into my life - light that can only emanate from that which is true and good and testifies of Christ - light that leads to repent and reach for a better way. The Book of Mormon leads us home to a loving and merciful Father in Heaven, eager to grant us eternal joy and progression according to our deeds and intents here upon the Earth. 

I also loved Elder Arden's words. He encouraged us to be patient disciples, waiting upon the Lord, holding to the things we do know and feel and understand while waiting for further knowledge. He encouraged us to "pay the price" for gospel knowledge. Are we willing to do so? Do we trust Heavenly Father?

Keep being awesome. 

"Shall we not go on in so great a cause?"

Love,
Sister Gore



Sunday, October 1, 2017

Growin in Grovetown

Hi!

Today makes day 6 in Grovetown,  It is tiny and just about a purely residential town. Tons of new homes and lots of construction and the families are typically young and with children,and move around a lot. The demographic is totally different from Perry, GA.  Right before we got to the ward they actually had to split the boundary and create a new ward because this are is growing so fast. Our area is tiny! And I love it.

I am here with Sister S. She has been out about 5 months and was baptized last year. She's from Iowa, plays trumpet and did so at Iowa State, so that is fun.

There are Elders already serving in the Grovetown Ward and President Grayson just added us as the Grovetown Ward Sisters. So we are re-opening/white washing here. Which is insane. We got our assignment and were just... left to ourselves! It was a huge blessing that Sister S had a GPS. We made it! White washing is so weird because no one tells you how to do it. There's no instructions. You just go to your area and figure it out.

It's been an absolute blast. So fun. And I love not having a companion who's been in the area because I didn't step out the door of the apartment to work with any pre-conceived notions about what the people/area were like. We've just been figuring stuff out on our own.

Missionaries already pray a ton but I'm pretty sure my praying has like.. tripled since getting here. I am just so desperate to be led and instructed by the Spirit. We have seen miracles this week. Primarily, we have been led to some amazing people who seem really sincere and ready to learn the gospel.

Thursday we also had dinner with Bishop B and his family. They are awesome! Bishop B's push with his ward this year is that each person has daily accountability to the Lord. He loaded us up with  families to visit. It was clear that he had very high expectations for us as the missionaries serving in his ward and that was super exciting to see. 

Make it a great week. Focus on Jesus Christ. 

Sister Gore

Goodbye to Sister O

Hello to Sister S

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Hi.

Tomorrow at roughly 10am ET I will have a new companion and be headed to a new area. Which is insane. Because I just barely got to Perry like... 2 days ago. And Sister Ois training. Which makes me a grandma. (I'm so proud of her.)  I love this place. And these people who are so good and who have such faith and love for the Lord. The Lord has wrought many mighty miracles in Perry. 
Also, I was blessed with some miracles this week that I feel like Heavenly Father allowed me because I am leaving:

A's mom has committed to be baptized on the 21st of October. Her fear is gone. She said "I know this is the way I want to go". I am proud of her. 

On Friday night Sister O and I were working in a neighborhood that a handful of members, less-active members, and investigators live in. It's a busy place. Anyways, it's also a very big place and so we were driving from one corner of the neighborhood to the other and passed the home of a sweet member of the ward. Months ago, this member referred us to her friend who really was going through a hard time and was looking for a church and needed the direction and peace that come from a knowledge of the gospel and the Plan of Salvation. She gave us her address. Yet, for literal months, we could never catch her at home or at this member's home. We kind of put it on the back burner. The member said she is very busy and rarely home because she works such bad hours. As we drove by this member's home, we saw a lady just standing in the front yard. We  were both sure that it was her. Knew it was her. She talked with us for about 15 minutes about the challenges she is facing and wanting to be closer to God. We invited her to hear our message. No one as yet has responded so enthusiastically as she did. Miracle! Long time in coming. 

It has been incredible to focus on listening. It seems that as we do, the Lord sends us to people who are ready to open up and help us to hear and understand and meet their needs. It changes everything about missionary work.

"Shrink not from your duty, however unpleasant,
But follow the Savior, your pattern and friend.
Our little afflictions, tho painful at present,
Ere long, with the righteous, in glory will end,

Be fixed in your purpose, for Satan will try you;
The weight of your calling he perfectly knows.
Your path may be thorny, but Jesus is nigh you;
His arm is sufficient, tho demons oppose."

-Sister Gore


Sister O.  



Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Hi! It's been... 10 days? A lot has happened. I'll do my best: 

I know you probably want to know about Hurricane Irma so here it is: 

On Friday 2 sisters from Hilton Head, SC came to stay with us. They got evacuated. They are the sister training leaders over the Savannah Zone and are awesome! We basically were on exchanges Friday-Tuesday (they left Wednesday, Sep 13 in the morning). So.. We got double the work done!! And met so many truly incredible people whom the Lord led us to. Also, all 4 of us really just needed those experiences for different reasons. But I just love that amidst the mess of a hurricane, the Lord helped us to find good and answered so many prayers. The work in the Perry area has changed so much since I got here - we are so busy - the Lord has truly opened the windows of heaven in the Perry Ward. By the time the hurricane got here it was rain and wind. We stayed in all day on Monday. The most damage we are aware of is.. Well, Sister K and I found a tree fallen in the road, taking power/telephone lines with it. We had to find another way to our appointment. Also some people we know had a tree break a hole in their roof. Hopefully we will get to do some service this coming week! There will surely be opportunities to go about doing good. 

We met with M (the man who came to church) on Monday the 4th. He knows the Bible so well! He said he came looking for a church because the one he is going to is "dying". He seems sincere and is very excited about the Book of Mormon! 

Sister O, while here with Sister R for exchanges, knocked doors and found a lady who we were able to go and see on Saturday and learned that she is a member of the church! She was baptized in VA 10 years ago and has lost or forgotten all of her gospel knowledge. She is now married to a man  who is not a member and they want to be taught! So incredible how the Lord places people in our path. 

We received a referral this week for a lady who wanted a Book of Mormon. She is awesome - we were able to be in her home within 4 hours of receiving the referral and taught her the Restoration. She is so ready to learn and truly loves God! 

Remember always that the Lord saves us individually. One by one. Not in large batches, but personally. Turn to Him. He knows your heart and desires and can motivate and lift you to righteous action. He knows your sorrows and heartaches and temptations. By yoking ourselves with Jesus Christ, our burdens can be made light. We can have true joy. "If thou believest in the redemption of Christ thou canst be healed."


-Sister Emma Gore

At the Mission Home

Roller Skating on pday

with the sisters from hilton head who evacuated











Friday, September 8, 2017

The church is true - act like it!

After writing last week,we went to the Aviation Museum in Warner Robins with Marissa and saw the fastest plane in the world and it was so fun. We also ate at this sweet place called The Taco Shed. 10/10. 

We taught BOM class this week about the vision of the tree of life and I learned so much from the members!! It was such a fun lesson to teach and I was amazed at the insight and Spirit that the members/investigators brought to the class. I'll share one piece with you: 1 Nephi 8:30 says that once the people had made it to the tree they "fell down and partook of the fruit of the tree". I had never before noted the phrase "fell down" as one of importance until it was discussed in class on Tuesday night. It was so amazing to hear how the Spirit taught different people different meanings of the word: humility, worship, overcome with joy, no plans on leaving the tree, etc. What does it mean to you? I thought that someone who fell down at the tree was exhausted. I was reminded of this scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants:
12 For there are many yet on the earth among all sects, parties, and denominations, who are blinded by the subtle craftiness of men, whereby they lie in wait to deceive, and who are only kept from the truth because they know not where to find it—
13 Therefore, that we should waste and wear out our lives in bringing to light all the hidden things of darkness, wherein we know them; and they are truly manifest from heaven—
14 These should then be attended to with great earnestness
17 Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed.
I left the class with a heightened resolve to wear myself out in the service of God and my fellow men. 

This week we had an awesome lesson with a couple. I'm not sure if I have talked about them previously but we found them knocking doors. They have 2 young teenagers and want to get back into a church and build their home around Jesus Christ. We taught them the Restoration one day.. I think 2 weeks ago and they asked us to come back and teach it again to all of their family. We taught the 4 of them the Restoration on Saturday night. They are energetic and have righteous desires. Sister O and I are eager to help them progress and grow and realize God's plan for their family.

A has started to receive the new-member lessons. We are continuing to teach Angela's mother and have also started teaching C's niece. This week we had a lesson with A, C, and R in a member's home. It was amazing to be in the member's home and have their testimonies added to mine and Sister O and A. The Spirit was so present and definitely helped us to be able to teach the lesson to 3 sets of needs and use the member family in our teaching. A has been embraced by the ward.

This week I went on exchanges to Macon, GA with a Sister A !! She has been out 16 months and is the sweetest Spirit. It was so easy to be around her - she is genuine. As is prone to happen on exchange days, lots of people cancelled or we had to rearrange the day. But it all worked out. The Lord knew where we were and where his other children were and led us to 3 potential investigators. Also, I had the privilege of going to the mission office!

 I walked into the office and it was so clean and organized. There are offices where the senior couples work to manage housing and cars and finances and nursing. I noticed a room at the back of the hallway - the lights were off but the door was open and a large painting of the Savior was visible. I walked to the end of the hall and turned on the light and stood in what I knew to be a sacred place. There was a table surrounded by chairs, Books of Mormon stacked on top. A larger desk was in the back, more paintings of Jesus Christ and Church history. I was blown away by the presence of the Holy Ghost in that room. As I left that room, I became more aware of the Spirit that filled the whole mission office. It was such a blessing for me to experience. God is in this work - He is in the details about who lives where and what to do when a car breaks down and how to help missionaries be healthy and what phones to buy for the mission and sorting the mail. Heavenly Father is concerned about all of it and Elder and Sister Jensen confirmed this to me in some sweet experiences shared that they had had while battling problems in the mission office. Elder Jensen told me one particularly neat experience : He had come across a problem sorting out something with the cars. He couldn't figure it out and had spent a good amount of time studying it out and praying and trying to find a way to make it all work. He called President Grayson, who could spare a minute or two to come to the office and look at it. Elder Jensen and President Grayson found a solution and a way to make everything work. When it had all been made right President Grayson said, "Okay. Now I'll go and see what the Lord wants us to do." Elder Jensen said it had been about a week and President Grayson hadn't gotten back to him yet. I was so amazed by the attitude of President Grayson. I probably would've been content once it had been resolved the first time, sure that that had been made possible by the Spirit. But President Grayson wasn't. He knew that He needed to go the Lord and ask His will again, surely taking the plan to Heavenly Father. Good day.

We had a miracle happen on Sunday this week! A man named M just sort of showed up at church and had been looking for one to join. He asked good questions and stayed for all 3 hours and the members were so kind to him. Sister O and I are going to teach him tonight!

Sister O has started driving which I super love because it turns about being the driver for 4 straight months made me way way way excited to just be a passenger!! And she loves driving so it all works out. 

Go forth with faith.

-Sister Gore

Georgia

Even in Georgia you can fnd Arizona  <3


Pday at the musem

Hi All,

Here's an update about some of the people we are seeing:
C- A'as mother. We taught her the Restoration this week. We asked her how she felt and she covered her mouth and said, "Well.. I think it's true!" as if that were the biggest shock to her. So precious. She is coming to church and reading the Book of Mormon. She is contemplative and thoughtful, much like A. Pray that her faith will grow so that she can follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized. 

H and G - We found them I think.. 2 weeks ago. We taught them the Restoration this week. Oh, it was such a good lesson. Before we even showed up he said that they had prayed to have open hearts to our message. G, at least, has studied with just about every religion he could. We shared our message and I really understood about teaching to needs as they asked thoughtful and sincere questions which we answered with the help of the Spirit. As we talked about Joseph Smith's calling as a prophet of God, he asked, "Okay so every missionary or minister that I meet with has a story like yours that seems good and is about Jesus Christ. And they don't seem to be doing anything evil and neither do y'all. So how are you any different from everybody else and why should I listen to you? How can I know you are any different?" Perfect question!! In Matthew 7 the Savior teaches that we will know a work by its fruits. Sister O and I introduced the Book of Mormon - Joseph Smith's fruits - to them. I was so thankful then for that Book - a second witness - a convincing evidence. I was thankful that Heavenly Father had led us to honest seekers of truth. I Pray that they will feel the incredible power of the Book of Mormon.

On Saturday A was baptized and on Sunday she received the gift of the Holy Ghost as was confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Precious day - long awaited - long in the making.  I have never seen her so happy as she was those two days. There is a physical change in her- a new light in her face that is so obvious. I feel so blessed to know her. She has made such an impression on me as I have watched the gospel change her - watched A pray and talk to her Heavenly Father and learn, then accept and act upon, His will for her. 

Sister O has been out 9 weeks - next week she starts driving and that is so crazy. I'm also gonna have her "train" me with the book we use. It'll be good. She's a powerful servant of the Lord, humble and full of love for God. Her only desire is to please Him. She is helping me grow. I'm so lucky.

We are officially scheduled to eat squirrel on Friday, September 1

at 5pm Eastern. Prayers requested. Just kidding - I am excited? I think. I'm really not sure.

Anyways, I love you.
"There's a right way to live and be happy.
It is choosing the right every day."
Don't forget it!

-Sister Gore

(see hymn 8 in re:my subject. It's a good one - a new favorite)



What a great day!