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


Saturday, June 10, 2017

Another Monday! They come and go so fast - I feel sure I was just here writing to you.
Yesterday, June 4, marks 2 months since I made it to GA aka The Promised Land. :)

I am so happy to be in this area - the members are wonderful and take such good care of us, and the Lord shows us His hand every single day.

Sister H and I have been focusing on miracles lately. If miracles have ceased, it is only as a result of wickedness or lack of faith. Miracles have not ceased and we have been working on expecting them and looking for them every day. It has helped us to be more humble, more thankful, and more optimistic. 

One particular miracle that we saw happened just last Sunday night:
We needed to find new investigators to meet our goal for the week and had changed our plans for Sunday evening to be contacting such that we could accomplish this goal. After about 1.5 hours we were out of pamphlets/pass along cards to leave behind. We had great desire to stay out contacting and do all we could in the last few hours to accomplish the goal we had set with our Heavenly Father, but were unsure if we could really be effective without something to leave with those whom we met. We prayed and asked God if we should continue to contact anyways, or go to visit a less-active lady who lived in the area. Once we had finished praying, I found about 60 pass along cards in my bag that I had previously not seen! We were able to continue contacting and found a new investigator at the very next home we knocked on after finding those cards. It was such a faith promoting experience - I am thankful for the tender mercies of the Lord and for His perfect love for me and for all those in my area that I am privileged to serve.

Truth is on the Earth in its entirety. Gain a testimony of it. Cling to it.  Treasure it. Live it. Share it.
-Sister Gore


No caption needed  
Fun family pets at a dinner appt 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Hey, y'all!

To be honest, I feel obligated to say that in every email because this is the SOUTH. 
It's fun for me. 

It was one heck of a week in Perry.
We have.. basically 0 progressing investigators. (Progressing basically means that we see them regularly and they keep their commitments.) So we do a whole TON of finding people and contacting people and knocking doors. We do as much walking as we possibly can because that makes it easier to talk to everyone.

But we had the most incredible miracle on Sunday! In the mission we do this thing called Windows of Heaven. We do it at least once a month. We prayerfully pick a 2-hour chunk of time in which we plan to go to an area and stay there the entire time, talking to EVERYONE that we see - no justifying, no fear. We decide the area the morning of and spend the whole week prior to windows of heaven pleading with the Lord to show us where to be that we might find His elect. The whole idea of WoH is that we covenant with God to talk to everyone we see in a place - a parking lot, a street, downtown - for the two hours. We just ask that God will put people in our path whose hearts are soft and who are prepared to receive the restored gospel. Sister H and I had planned to go and do windows of heaven downtown. However, as we arrived we learned that ALL of the stores are closed on Sunday. We were the only souls in the whole area. We did talk to one lady, taught her a 5 minute restoration, but she didn't feel that she was willing to change and accept the gospel right now.  We both felt we needed to leave downtown Perry and walk further down into a neighborhood. We talked to one other lady, who also wasn't interested. It was now 1 hour into Windows of Heaven and we had no new investigators. However, the Spirit continued to guide us down the street and then right onto another street. I recognized where we were - we had contacted on that street my first week in the area. The last house on the street belongs to a woman we met in a parking lot one night and shared the Easter initiative with her. She said that we could come back, we had an appointment scheduled, but she ignored us each time we tried to make further contact with her. A little half-heartedly, we knocked on her door. She answered. "I don't know if you remember us but we met you in a parking lot about 6 weeks ago. Would now be a good time for us to share more of our message with you?" She allowed us into her home and we taught the entire restoration - the Spirit was so strong in her home. . Sister H and I had never taught an entire lesson together, but the Spirit unified us and we were able to teach by the Spirit. As we testified y about the Book of Mormon and how she can know of truth, she beamed. We invited her to be baptized and she accepted! She will be baptized late June/early July. WeI were so amazed as we left her home - the Lord had guided us to her, via beginning downtown for windows of heaven.  I cannot even describe the Spirit that was in that living room - I am so humbled and in awe. It was such an incredible miracle and we are going back to see her on Tuesday. It just.. filled me with this incredible joy and enthusiasm. As I reflect on it now I just.. can hardly conceive of the great privilege it is that God has allowed me, weak l as I am, to take part in the building of His kingdom - in preparing the world for the Savior's return - in inviting others to come and receive truth. I actually can't think about it without just crying and.. I am so thankful and God is good and I think I'll just be a missionary forever and ever and ever. 

It rained a WHOLE TON this week - like 4 days straight. It was pretty fun, actually. I enjoyed it and we managed to not have to go out and contact while it was raining. But I did miss the sunshine.

Today, as in Memorial Day, the Perry Ward had a cook out at a big old park in Byron, GA. The ward used to do it all the time but quit about 3 years ago because the turn out was so bad. They did the cookout again this year. The ward was planning for about 50 people to come, and got more like 100. It was such an awesome turnout and tons of families that haven't come to church in WEEKS came. We got to wear sweats because it's p-day and we literally spent 4 hours playing soccer/wate rballoon volleyball with the ward. We met so many people and it was just such an amazing ward social. I was super thankful that I got to play sports for so long - it feels good to be really tired. We are going to sleep so hard tonight!!

Yours,
Sister Gore

p.s.
The picture of us with the books is at that place called Loaves and Fishes. It is a food bank and also a free library kind of deal. I love going - the people work us so hard and it is awesome to be of any kind of help to such a good program. We counted hundreds of books last Thursday! 

At loaves and fishes

Rain for days  



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

2nd Transfer, 2nd Companion

Hi! It was such an awesome and challenging week. I am full of joy. 

My new companion is Sister H. She is from Idaho and this is her very last transfer! She will go home on June 26 and I will get my 3rd companion in my 3rd transfer which is crazy. She is little in stature but such a spiritual giant! She knows her scriptures so well and is an incredible teacher. I am already learning so much from her. And we are good friends - we share a lot of views and opinions and get along super well.

Because Sister V is gone, I am in charge of the area. That means that I drive everywhere which I enjoy and it also means that I have been pushed to know the area and the ward super thoroughly. An Elder in our zone gave us his GPS so that has been really helpful. I am thankful for this challenge that the Lord has blessed me with. 

We met with S. She had requested a Bible and a Book of Mormon from mormon.org and that is how we found her. We delivered her materials and talked about the apostasy/restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. She perfectly recognized the apostasy as manifest in the massive number of different churches and interpretations of the Bible. We committed her to read from the Book of Mormon and pray to know that it is the word of God.

We also met A this week. On Saturday, Sister H and I spent a good chunk of the day visiting all those individuals whom we had invited to church on Sunday - to remind them of the meeting and help and encourage them to attend. We stopped in to see a couple who used to take the lessons but weren't really interested. However, they had recently bought a car so we wanted to invite them. Tender mercy - their neighbor was over! As soon as we explained who we were and that our purpose was to help others come unto Christ she asked us to pray for her right then and there. We prayed that she would be strengthened in all her trials and that she would feel God's love for her and know His will. A explained to us that she has been really struggling to have peace in her life and that her kids are really angry and bothered. She feels like everything is falling down around her, and knows that if she can just focus on making Jesus Christ her focus in life that she will be protected and taken care of. We shared with her Heleman 5:12 and a few other scriptures from the Book of Mormon. Ultimately, we spent about 45 minutes with her, talking about Jesus Christ and His perfect Atonement, and how living the gospel of Jesus Christ will bring her and her children happiness and security. We have an appointment with her on Friday and we're so excited!!

Sunday night was super fun - a family in our ward drove us up to Warner Robbins/Centerville Area for dinner at their neighbors Methodist church. They were having a huge dinner with bouncy castles and hot dogs and cotton candy and music and water slides and it was packed. So many people. We got to meet their friends and they are such good people! Then we spent probably an hour talking to the community members there and we met so many interesting people - some who actually live in our area and said they would come to church with us! (We weren't doing this in like a malicious way, of course, but just leaving our pass along cards with the church address on it and saying they were welcome to come anytime and then people accepted.) We also talked to the minister at the church - he is so awesome and his whole drive is about getting new, young energy into what had become an "older" church. He didn't really want to talk to us, particularly, and I don't blame him.

I had super powerful studies this week which has been really exciting. I have been reading at least part of a general conference address each morning. In one color I mark invitations, in another color I mark warnings, in a third color I mark promised blessings, and then in black or blue ink I take notes on the page or underline or whatever else. I was really struck by something Elder Rasband said in his address. Referring to promptings from the Holy Ghost he said, "If we let the Lord know in oumorning prayers that we are ready, He will call on us to respond. If we respond, He will call on us time and time agaiand we will find ourselves owhat President Monson calls “the Lord’s errand."" I have started doing this every morning - telling God that I am ready to receive and act upon impressions from the Holy Ghost. I ask for them to come to me throughout the day, that I can know God's will and do only things that are pleasing to Him. As I have prayed this way each morning I have become more aware of the Holy Ghost constant presence and influence. I listen more carefully for His promptings and am getting better and better at recognizing them. It has been such an incredible blessing. I invite you to study the conference addresses. It does not matter what was said, unless we carry it with us outside of the conference. 

CTR!!

-Sister Gore
Sister V on transfer day

Sister H - emmas new companion

Monday, May 15, 2017

Hi, y'all!

This week was hard. Missionaries plan meticulously. Missionaries plan carefully for hours in weekly planning on Friday, and then for a half hour each morning before heading out for the day. About 60% of the planned appointments we had set with investigators and members fell through this week. Which left us lots and lots of empty time. So much. And we plan back ups, of course, but even those can only take you so far. I would say that that was discouraging, but discouragement weakens faith. It wasn't discouraging. It was hard. But it gave Sister V and I so many opportunities to rely on the Spirit! Countless times this week we would pull over wherever we could and pray. We counseled with God constantly to know where He would have us be, whom He would have us see. What He needed us to do right then and there. We were able to follow the Spirit with desperation every minute of this week and it was so awesome. We saw miracles!! Here's one of them:

On Thursday morning we  were planning to go and help out at a.. I'm not quite sure what to call it, actually. Food bank?  We go and volunteer there when we can and count food donations and make bags and then take those bags out to the cars of those who are receiving. Anyways this was the plan and Sister V and I just didn't feel good about it. Instead, we felt we needed to drive 45 minutes to Butler, GA. There is nothing in Butler. We don't have a teaching pool, we didn't have any referrals to go and see, nothing. M is in Butler, but she had already told us we couldn't come and see her that day. Nevertheless, we got in the car and headed to  Butler, feeling a lot like Nephi who went forth not knowing beforehand the things that he should do. We got all the way there and still weren't sure why. We pulled over and looked at our list of potential investigators for the area. We made some phone calls. We prayed. We pondered. We listened. And then M called!! She is sort of in between houses right now and is in an awful sort of limbo between landlords that stresses her out a ton. She called us because she really just needed to talk to someone. But we were in Butler! So the Lord had led us to Butler for her. We went to see her and let her talk and cry. We asked M if we could pray. We knelt in her living room and she offered to God one of the most earnest and sincere prayers I have ever heard. She concluded and we remained kneeling on the carpet, her grief was evident however a profound peace that surpasses all understanding had come into her home and into each of our hearts.  She recognized in that moment that God was aware of her and loved her and told us that she knew that everything she was going through would be for her good - it would help her to become better. 

I read about prayer in the Bible Dictionary this week: 
As soon as we learn the true relationship in which we stand toward God (namely, God is our Father, and we are His children), then at once prayer becomes natural and instinctive on our part (Matt. 7:7–11). Many of the so-called difficulties about prayer arise from forgetting this relationship. Prayer is the act by which the will of the Father and the will of the child are brought into correspondence with each other. The object of prayer is not to change the will of God but to secure for ourselves and for others blessings that God is already willing to grant but that are made conditional on our asking for them. Blessings require some work or effort on our part before we can obtain them. Prayer is a form of work and is an appointed means for obtaining the highest of all blessings.

When I pray, I first remind myself that I am a daughter of God and that He loves me and already knows my thoughts and desires. I pray honestly and openly, without reserve. I think that in the past there had perhaps been times where I had to put on my happiest or most righteous face before I prayed. In reality, I can and should go to God in the most raw and honest way possible. These two attitudes have changed my prayers completely - they are more conversational, more open, more trusting in my Heavenly Father. I have been better able to recognize the promptings of the Holy Ghost when I pray, and am more aware of God's love for me. It has strengthened my relationship with my Heavenly Father greatly. I invite you to go and read all of the Bible Dictionary enterance under Prayer. Ponder about how you can make your prayers more meaningful and personal. Prayer is such a powerful principle - gift - from our Heavenly Father. Your Supreme Creator wants to hear from You - always. I could talk about this for probably forever, but instead please go and study about it for yourselves. I want to hear what you learn. :)

Jr. is getting baptized on Saturday, May 13 and we are so excited! Keep him and his family in your prayers, please. 

 Sister V is super nervous about dogs so anytime she sees one she zips up her bag in case she has to throw it and it always makes me laugh. Also we really wanted smores this week but were too tired to like.. go use the grills at our apartment complex so we just used the stove top. #missionarylife 10/10 recommend, though.

Oh! I do have a funny story. Last night we went to see S with the young women's president in the Perry Ward. At the end of our lesson she offered us a prayer and we all stood up and held hands in a circle. Just a little ways in, about 10 kids ran up because they realized what was going on and soon our circle was super big because all these little kids had joined hands with us to pray. And that was the most energetic "Amen!" I have ever heard. So fun.

I realized last night that I am almost at my 2 months and also only at my 2 months. But I found myself praying that maybe God could just slow down time for a little bit. I basically want to be a missionary forever and am just so humbled and in awe at this sacred opportunity I have. It fills me with real Joy. 

Love,
Sister Gore :)

REPENT!  :)

Sunday, May 7, 2017

It got real hot and real humid real quick this week.

And everyone keeps saying this is only the beginning. An increase of prayers is requested. ;)

But actually, everything is wonderful and good!! 

I went on exchanges with Sister E in Cochran, GA this week. She hit her 18 month mark on the 28th and is a literal light. She is so happy and calm and her trust in God is so evident in everything she does. Cochran is great, too. We both set goals on our exchange to follow the Spirit better and respond to promptings immediately. Doing so led us to 2 new investigators for the Cochran sisters. (For someone to be a new investigator you have to share a principle with them, commit them to do something, and set up a return appointment). Anyways. It was a super awesome day and I am thankful for sweet Sister Training Leaders.

We had a super awesome experience with an investigator named this week. We have been meeting with her for about 2 weeks and have been working on helping her to feel comfortable praying. We left with her a pamphlet about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. On one of the last pages there is a "How Can I Know" section. It talks about the role of the Holy Ghost in helping us to recognize truth, and then teaches very simply how to pray - how to address God, speak whatever is in your heart, and close in the name of Jesus Christ. We were at her house this week and were fortunate enough to find her 2 boys at home , too. At the end of the lesson we asked her son if he would be willing to pray for us. He hesitated and immediately mom jumped up from the couch and ran to her room to get her pamphlet. Then she taught her son to pray from the book and he said such an honest and sincere prayer in front of all of us! It was so cool to see her so eager to teach her son what she had learned. The gospel of Jesus Christ really does bless families. Home is the best place for us to learn correct principles, practice living them, and prepare ourselves for the temptations and fiery darts of the adversary. I know this because I was so fortunate as to grow up in a home where goodly parents taught me what was right - it was such a blessing to see her teaching her family and striving to bring the gospel into their lives.

As we were leaving C's house, we met his next door neighbor as she was walking back to her house from the car. She is a girl of about 15  and she is so awesome! She is super mature and plays trumpet (!!!) in Perry High's marching band. (their band has about 250 people and they always get superiors, btw). Anyways. she shared with us some of her story - her family literally had nothing and was struggling to get by. At God's hand, they have all found jobs and a place to live and peace and comfort. She talked to us about how she has learned to trust God for all she does in this life. She relies on Him for everything and has incredible faith! She prays always and prayed with us before we left. We testified to her about the restoration of Christ's church to the Earth and she invited us to come back and teach her more! She seems incredibly sincere and honest. What a miracle to find someone so prepared for the gospel right as we were acknowledging that another family was not prepared! God put her in our path that day. 

This week I have been studying repentance in the Book of Mormon. I love what we read in 2 Nephi 2:21 - "For [God] gave commandment that all men must repent." God recognizes that we are weak and imperfect and will fall short of keeping commandments x, y, and z. So he commands us to repent of those things and try again! We are commanded to return to God - to grow closer to Him - to become better - to find peace as we repent - to become more like Jesus Christ - to draw on the power of the Atonement and experience a mighty change in our hearts - to come to the "knowledge of the Lord their God, and...rejoice in Jesus Christ their Redeemer"(Alma 37:9). And it gets even better - "As oft as they repented and sought forgiveness, with real intent, they were forgiven"(Moroni 6:8). God is so merciful and full of love for us. I was so blown away this week by the incredible hope and joy that I have because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I can always repent and return to God. He commands it. How beautiful is that? God is 100% for us, and all we have to do is turn to Him with willing hearts to see miracles and to be happy. We already know who wins. Choose the winning team. Choose Jesus Christ. Choose eternal life. Choose to repent and return to God.

Thank you for your prayers and your letters. 
Keep being good.


Love,
Sister Gore

15 and in the Perry marching band.  Plays the trumpet  <3

Peach cobbler and Ice cream.  Best ever!!