Sunday, July 30, 2017

Hello hello! 

I learned to run this week. When I was in middle school and did cross country one of the coach ladies told me that I had really bad form but never expounded and I never asked. She told me what I was doing wrong but I didn't know how to fix it and didn't really care to find out at that point. But every single time I go running I think about what she said. So this week as I ran I paid really close attention to how my body moves and how my feet land and to my breathing and I think I found really good form because running has become a lot easier and I go a lot faster and feel way better at the end. I am very happy about it. Also I stretch a ton and am becoming quite flexible. Sister Orton used to dance so HER goal for me is to be able to do the splits. We'll see how that goes. If it happens you will get photo evidence. 

It was kind of a quiet week - we had a ton of meetings to go to in Macon and Cochran and it felt weird to have preparation day on Tuesday. 

On Thursday we traveled to Reynolds, GA to visit a lady who requested a Bible. We also introduced the Book of Mormon and she was so excited. She said, "If this is true that changes my whole life." She gets it - she gets that we need to chase after truth, learn all we can, and then act in accordance with the things that we know. Reynolds is really far away and it's really hard for us to get out there but we are hoping to see her again in the next 2 weeks or so.

Ais doing well - she came to the Pioneer Day ward social and brought a ton of her family. We read the Book of Mormon with Angela a lot - it is the convincing evidence of the restoration of the gospel - it is what converts individuals. 

The Lord loves you. Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world - He lives! 

Yours,
Sister Gore



Family and others,

Here are some various things that you probably weren't curious about but might be:
1. Sister O and I run between 1.2 and 1.6 miles every morning. It depends on how many times we run around the apartment complex, 3 or 4. It is super good. And super sweaty. Good ol' humidity. Then we go inside the little gym for the rest of our time. 
2. I put up a wall calendar and at the end of every day I record a miracle/tender mercy. It's a good place for them and a good thing to do at the end of the day and I would highly recommend it. 
3. Our tire had a puncture in it this week so we had to get it fixed. 
4. We found a sunflower patch this week and I was for sure the happiest ever.

We had an A+ week, like usual. It is good to be obedient and diligent. Even when things do not "work out", Sister O and I can have peace and know that we fulfilled our purpose in sharing what we know and inviting others to learn more and to become more.

Ais as solid as ever. She loves coming to church and is always so excited about going and about us coming over - she is so eager to do better and to learn more. She even signed up to bring food to a ward social, how awesome is that? Members won't even do that! Last night we talked about the 10 commandments and about how we shouldn't take the Lord's name in vain. She was so excited to learn about some of the things included in that commandment and to stop using God's name in irreverent ways. She loves to learn - and soaks everything  up. She tells us that she always feels so much peace at church, like she has come home.  She told us this week that the biggest change she has seen since learning about the gospel is that she is less angry. She has become more tolerant and more friendly and has more love for others - She has become more like Jesus Christ! . We are working with her to help her recognize that answer and continue learning and increasing her faith. Sister O and I talk about and pray about her constantly - that we will know what to do and say to help her make this sacred covenant with her Heavenly Father. 

We had another neat experiene this week while out tracting in a neighborhood. We met a lady named outside of her home. She had just returned home from the hospital with her dying mother. She told us that she is having a really hard time with her mama being sick. Sister O and I shared what we felt impressed to and asked her if she wanted to learn more. She said that she was comfortable in her Baptist church, but that she did know a lady in our ward whom she really admired! We left her with our number and went along our way. Two days later this same member texts us: My friend told me that she ran into y'all! She wants you to come back and see her soon - she regretted not talking to you as soon as you left. We went back and saw her, who was recently married and has 3 young teenagers. They are the sweetest family! Her older daughter was walking through the living room where we were meeting and she just stopped and sat down and listened. I think she was touched by something (hint: the Holy Ghost) and she listened just as intently as her mother did. We taught about the restoration of the gospel, to include the restoration of the priesthood, and the sealing power that binds families together. They were so touched - she always believed that families could be together forever but no one could ever tell her how or show her that doctrine in the Bible. She said she had asked her pastor about it just the other day and he had no idea. What a miracle that we were able to share that precious truth with her - families really can be together for forever! God intends for us to be in our families for all eternity, to continue learning and loving and growing. Hearing that brought her so much peace. And it was so cool to be able to show her where the sealing power is talked about in the Bible (Matthew 16:19) and talk about how that power and knowledge has been restored to the Earth through the prophet Joseph Smith! It's been here almost 200 years and still some people don't know.

We spent Saturday in the mission home at the trainer/trainee meeting. Super good day - I so look forward to any time that I get to be with President Grayson - he is such an inspired leader. Also I got to see Sister V! I love her and it is so fun that I get to keep seeing her in all kinds of places even though we are no longer companions. 

I was listening to a devotional address that President Nelson gave this week called "Becoming True Millennials". I don't care who ya are or how old ya are - go listen to it and take the inspired challenges that an Apostle of God extends to us! They are powerful and oh so very real. Here's a link so no excuses: 

Yours,
Sister Emma Caroline Gore

Holy hugeness!!

Someone small at our house wanted to know if there were pink flowers in Georgia.  Yes.  Yes there are.  :)  

Friday, July 14, 2017

Sister O makes me laugh laugh laugh and we had a great week!

Tuesday was the 4th of July - best day ever - and we got to have another lesson with K and T. We taught them the plan of salvation and it was SO GOOD. The Spirit was so strong and they soaked everything up. It was amazing to watch them learn - He literally said "wow" about 100 times. They were so in awe at the precious truths of God's plan for His children. They both kept saying, "We've never even heard this before" or "I've always wondered about that" and "that makes so much more sense than what I'd been taught". It was such a cool lesson because we got to read from the Book of Mormon SO MUCH. Just like it says in the introduction to the Book of Mormon, the plan of salvation really is outlined in that book. T has had a sister and 2 uncles die in the past few months - it was so joyous to teach them about the resurrection of all men and of how their family members are being taught in the Spirit world and how they can all be a family ETERNALLY in the Celestial Kingdom. Sister O and I marveled as we left that lesson - we have both known the truths of the restored gospel all our lives - loved them, but taken for granted at times - they have simply always been there.  I thought on the words of Alma - Have ye felt to sing the song of redeeming love? Can ye feel so now? Also - they are reading the Book of Mormon and loving it. How could they not?  :) 

Bonus - we saw fire works as we drove home!! 

Wednesday we had a lesson with A, who has been out of town for a while. She diligently reads and prays about the Book of Mormon - she wants to be baptized but is uncertain because she feels she needs to know and understand more. When we met we read in the Book of Mormon with her- she happened to be in 2 Nephi 3 where Lehi recounts Joseph of Egypt's prophesy about Joseph Smith. In 2 Nephi 3: it says that the restoration would bring people out of darkness and into light. She said that that is exactly how she felt as she began meeting with us - that we had brought her out of darkness and into light. we met with her on Friday as well.  On Sunday, she came to church!! Just as she had promised to do about 3 weeks ago! She loved it - and will be back next week. :) 

We weren't able to meet with R this week but we did meet her daughter on a different occasion? So they both want to learn so that's really cool and they both work a ton a ton a ton but I know that if it is God's will we will be able to get into their home and teach them.

I have had the coolest experiences in my personal study this week!! In the past.. 2 years or so my testimony of and conversion to the Book of Mormon as the word of God has deepened exponentially. I remember sitting at work in the drive through lanes of the credit union - in those quiet moments I would pour over the Book of Mormon for literally hours at a time. I hungered after that book - it changed me - it helped me to know of a surety that Jesus Christ lives and loves me. I could speak volumes about the wonders that are contained in the Book of Mormon and still feel that I had not done it any kind of justice. (I guess you'll have to go and read and pray about it yourself, huh?) However, I never have had a similar love and hungering for the Bible. I believed it to be God's word and to be true but I never had a real connection with that Book. Well, I've repented. I'm not really sure when the change happened but I guess there's just something about being in the "bible belt". All day long I hear people profess their love for the Bible and quote from it and the Lord has been creating in me this desire to understand that zeal that I see here. This week I began to study the New Testament from the beginning, using the other standard works and Talmage's Jesus the Christ as references. The exact same desperation and excitement that I felt when reading the Book of Mormon has filled me as I read the Bible!I have to tear myself away from it to study anything else - I cannot get enough - it is how I spend almost any of my free time. I am learning so much about Jesus Christ and how He lived and taught and about the organization of the Church and I LOVE the Bible. The Holy Ghost has blessed me with a sure testimony that it has power, just as the Book of Mormon does, to change hearts and minds and bring us to salvation.

I love Georgia.   I sometimes want to buy a UGA shirt and then I remember very clearly my father's voice: Don't come home a bulldogs fan! which I just think is funny that I always remember. 

Yours,
Sister Emma Caroline Gore

Happy fourth!!

Sisters and their car  

Dear all,

I feel really quiet today but I am going to do my best to write this email. :)

My new companion is from South Jordan, Utah.  

Miracles we saw this week: 
1. We were in Fort Valley on Tuesday and the appointment we had fell through. As we drove to our backup plan, I just felt really strongly that we needed to stop on this one street and get out of the car and talk to whoever was there. We met some awesome people who we have appointments with next week! Even better, we knocked on this one door and found a lady R. About 6 weeks ago we had met her while knocking in a different neighborhood.She  works doing like.. In-home care so she wasn't at her own home when we initially found her and couldn't talk much. We found her on Thursday at HER house. We got to share a little bit about the Restoration and she invited us to come back. How cool is that?
2. On Sunday night we went to eat dinner at Mama's home. As soon as we got there she called up her grandson and his girlfriend and there 2 kids to come over and eat, too.We had met them before they had wanted to study with us but we hadn't been about to see them in a few weeks. They came right over once mama called them and we were able to teach the restoration of the gospel. Honestly, I have never heard of more prepared people.  As we talked about Joseph Smith, they immediately connected with the story, knowing that they felt the same way Joseph did and believing that God would help them to find truth. They soaked up everything we taught, asking so many questions, honestly hungering after the truth and after God's will. They asked where the church was and what they could do to learn more and I just.. don't have sufficient words to describe to you the feeling in that home as we taught. We introduced to them the Book of Mormon and before we could invite them to read and pray about it, they had said they would read from it every night together. We invited them to be baptized and they immediately accepted, so eager to do what is right.We will be able to have lessons with them every Tuesday and Thursday! Sister O and I are so excited and they are so excited and it's amazing to me how God works to put those who are seeking the fullness of the gospel in our path.

Perry is amazing. Being a missionary is amazing. I see the Lord's hand every single in day - this is His work. Things are picking up here and our teaching pool is growing and before we know it Perry will need two sets of missionaries! High expectations + High love = successful missionaries.

Also, I feel like something changed in me when I became a trainer and I am just.. so incredibly focused on the work and on our investigators and I finally feel really adjusted to missionary life and that's such a huge blessing.

It has been raining a lot this week but we just bring rain coats and umbrellas and pray for safety and it all works out. Plus humidity is.. fun? Yeah, that's the word. ;)

Also there are fireflies everywhere which is so bomb.com. I love them.

Have a fantastic 4th of July which we all know is the best holiday ever!!! 


Sister Gore

New companion



Dear all,

I really have little to say - this week was crazy because Sister H was going home and we spent Tuesday in Macon for zone conference and then we spent Saturday morning in Macon because I got called to train!! So I got training about how to train.

I am so beyond excited. I will meet my new companion at 9am on the 27th. I have been praying so so earnestly for her - and for me. 

Our 2 solid investigators are out of town this coming week so.. It may be a slow week but that's a-okay. We will do lots of finding, which is wonderful. :)

I wore my glasses once this week and it was so humid that they actually fogged up when I went outside.

Yours,
Sister Gore

Sunday, June 25, 2017

tender mercies

Hi, all. 

Here are some things that happened this week that don't really matter too much but that made me really happy and thankful:
1. I got to play a trumpet this week! A member had one at their home and let me play it after we ate with them and I still have the fight song and national anthem memorized and it was so awesome and I totally need to get back into that when I get home. 
2. A member brought us pizza this week and I haven't had pizza since I left home which is super weird because I used to have homemade pizza like... weekly. Anyways, it was so so good and Sister H doesn't even like pizza so I've been eating leftovers all week. WIN.
3. No matter how much water I drink I always feel a little bit dehydrated. This week, someone gave us water every time that we went out tracting and it was so wonderful.
4. On... Thursday night there was a huge thunderstorm and we sat on the porch for like an hour after we got home and watched the lightning and ultimately ended up pretty wet but it was so happy and good.
5. We ran into a member at the store this week and they bought us ice cream. I love ice cream.
6. A family in the ward made salsa and jalapeno pepper something-or-other and they gave us a jar.
7. We got to pick blueberries with Bishop's family from someone's little farm in town. 

It's the small stuff. Tender mercies do abound. 

We currently have one really solid investigator. Her name is Angela and we've been able to see her about 3 times a week which is a HUGE blessing. We gave her a Book of Mormon on Wednesday and when we went back to see her on Saturday she had already read all of 1 Nephi. She had really amazing questions about who Gentiles are and why Laman and Lemuel were always rebelling and why Ishmeal needed to bring his family and so on. She retained like.. everything she read and said that she can't wait to keep reading and learn more. She is feeling her testimony of Jesus Christ grow. The Book of Mormon is so powerful. When combined with the Spirit, it is the most powerful tool in conversion. 

I finished reading the Book of Mormon today! Truly, it is the word of God. I could never deny that. I have a testimony that everything in that book is of great worth unto us - that by studying, pondering, and praying about the principles found in the Book of Mormon we can find real answers to real problems and receive heaven's help in our lives. I have been pondering as I have approached the end of the Book about what light I want to study it in next - I think I have decided to focus on the Plan of Salvation. I am way excited.

Have a happy and safe week!
-Sister Gore :)

Blueberry picking


Bucket of berries.  And a smile  on PDAY


Another Awesome week!

We had such an awesome week! We stayed busy and were diligent and as we put forth our best efforts, Heavenly Father brought about miracles for us. 

On Tuesday, I was on exchanges with Sister B. We spent the day in Fort Valley. At one point we were going to try a referral from some missionaries in another area who had met a lady living in our area. We found her home but she wasn't there.  One of the houses we tried in the neighborhood didn't have anyone home - I reached into my pocket to find a pass along card to leave at the door. I pulled out a Book of Mormon card and then had the thought that it might be better to leave a Bible card since most people already know the Bible and might be more receptive to that invitation. So I found a Bible card and we went on our way. We ended up knocking the whole street, and had made it back into the car for the next thing we had planned when the phone buzzed. Media referral! I remember saying "I hope it's in Fort Valley" and then, as I read it, "Hey it's on Edward St.... Hey we're on Edward St!". The man living at the house that we had just left a Bible card at 30 minutes previous had already called! We were so thrilled and went right back to his house and talked about the goodness in the Bible and also gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon, committing him to read 2 Nephi 31. It was such a neat little miracle! The Holy Ghost prompted us to stay and knock that street, to leave the Bible pass along card, to be in that area and that time and it resulted in us meeting him right quick. What a cool thing.

 Also - at dinner that night we had blackberry cobbler and vanilla ice cream that was TO DIE FOR. Just sayin'. 

On Friday we were in an area tracting and for an appointment from 6-8. However, our 8pm plan fell through. As I wondered how we could best spend our time I thought of a family in the ward whom Sister Vand I tried hard to get to see but were never successful in doing so. I'd only seen them at church once and hardly knew them - I didn't feel hopeful that they would be home or open the door. As we left the area we had been working in, I first opened the ward directory in our binder and wondered if there was somewhere better to go. Then the Holy Ghost reminded me of something taught in conference by Elder Rasband in the most recent General Conference: "We must be confident in our first promptings. Sometimes we rationalize; we wonder if we are feeling a spiritual impression or if it is just our own thoughts. When we begin to second-guess, even third-guess, our feelings—and we all have—we are dismissing the Spirit; we are questioning divine counsel. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught that if you will listen to the first promptings, you will get it right nine times out of ten." The absolute last thing I ever want to do is dismiss the Spirit - Remembering this warning and counsel, I followed through on my first impression and we drove to this families home. Their 9yr old daughter opened the door almost as soon as we knocked - we spent the next 45 minutes in their home, and had a wonderful visit. I am so thankful that the Spirit helped me to have that experience - to see and understand that acting on the very first prompting is always best. It still takes practice to do this but I am learning so much about how the Holy Ghost speaks to me and it is so awesome. Without the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost it would be literally impossible for me to have any measure of success as a missionary. It reminds me of the words of Mormon :  "And I do this for a wise purpose; for thus it whispereth me, according to the workings of the Spirit of the Lord which is in me. And now, I do not know all things; but the Lord knoweth all things which are to come; wherefore, he worketh in me to do according to his will."
Allow the whisperings of the still small voice to guide you - to teach you the Lord's will. Then be sure to act promptly on the things you receive - it is the best way, every time. 

In closing: This week a member asked me why I was here. Here as in on a mission. I knew the answer but it made me think and ponder on that answer in coming days. Then this morning as I was studying I was so struck by the scripture in D&C123 about how many of God's children "are only kept from the truth because they know not where to find it". I have heard that over and over again, but it really pierced my heart this week as I reflected on why I am out here serving the Lord. Ultimately, it is because I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and that the fullness of the gospel was restored to the Earth by a prophet, Joseph Smith. I know that the gospel of Jesus Christ can change hearts and create peace and lead us back to our Heavenly Father. And because I have a testimony of these things, I have a need to share them and testify of them and invite others to come and know these things for themselves. It is exciting and this work is so sweet. I am eager to continue doing my part by opening my mouth and sharing - I will delight in the agency of those whom I share truth with, for I know that the Lord is preparing hearts and minds for us to find who WILL accept the restored gospel and that we will be led to them on Heavenly Father's timeline. 

Yours,
Sister Gore