Florida Fort Lauderdale Mission // April 2014-October 2015

Monday, July 27, 2015

Week 69 - The fruit of our labors

My new companion is SISTER BRISCO! She is from Arizona and has been on her mission for three months...
yes, I'm "greenie breaking" again!!! I'm really excited. 

This week was one of those sweet, rare, weeks when you see a little bit of the fruit of your labors. Dylon, our eighteen year old investigator who referred himself, entered the waters of baptism. The change in him was remarkable as he received the Holy Ghost. In his blessing he was blessed that he would have the opportunity of sharing the gospel with many and going on a mission. He was also blessed that he would have the opportunity to be married and sealed for time and all eternity. It is a sweet moment when those you've loved and taught except the gospel and are CHANGED because of it. I know he will do great things.

Our Recent Convert, Sharon, has been working on helping her fiance become active again in the church. She said that they have gospel discussions multiple times a day. This week while we were visiting with Sharon, Tom came to us and asked if the Elders would be willing to give him a priesthood blessing in order for him to stop smoking. He received a blessing on Sunday and the Spirit was very strong! We also had ANOTHER recent convert share his testimony and experience of when he quite smoking. It's a beautiful thing to see Recent  Converts sharing THEIR testimonies of the joy the gospel has brought them. 

This transfer I really want to help the members in their missionary work. Sometimes the members underestimate the power and influence they have in sharing the gospel. In Chapter 13 of Preach My Gospel is explains the process of coming up with a Ward Mission Plan. It's something you can create for your families as well, a Family Mission Plan! With a vision, goals, and plans to share the gospel. I encourage you to create one for FHE. Sharing the gospel brings so many blessings and joy so if you're going through a hard time, SHARE THE GOSPEL! I know it will help. 

D&C 18:16 "And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!" 

Let me share with you all a wonderful quote from Elder Hale, in our most recent General Conference… 
“How we live our religion, is far more important, than how we speak of our religion”….

I love you all! 
Sincerely, Sister Matheson
Last P-Day with Sister Tui
Dylon awkwardly put his arm around me right before the picture was taken...
he wouldn't take another one so just ignore that...
A member took us out to dinner. Elder D'Addabbo from my MTC district is now my District Leader.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Week 68-Instruments in His hands

I have to say, I'm surprised about transfers. I'm grateful and excited, however, to be STAYING IN PORT ST. LUCIE for at least another six weeks. Sister Tui got transferred. I'm especially excited because our investigator Dylon is getting BAPTIZED this Friday. As we taught him the lessons he accepted everything, but when we got to the Word of Wisdom, he began to justify. As we were bold and loving, he prayed about it and realized that it really was a commandment from God. It showed me the importance of receiving a personal witness for all of God's commandments. When we do that, then we are more converted to our commitment to keep those commandments and we are more deeply changed.

We also received a referral for a woman named Jessica. As we visited with her and taught her, her desire to attend church increased. She brought her two children and her niece to church on Sunday and said that she felt like she was home. It's amazing how God prepares people.

I read in the Isaiah chapters of the Book of Mormon. They continue to be difficult for me to understand, but as I prayed to be able to learn at least one thing and be able to apply it in my life, God answered. One verse in particular that stood out to me was  2 Nephi 20:15

 "Shall the ax boast itself against him that heweth therewith? Shall the saw magnify itself against him who shaketh it? As if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself as if it were no wood!"

I learned that, just as the ax, saw, or staff, we are completely reliant on God. We are merely the instruments in His hands and He is the one in charge. When we humble ourselves and submit our will, that is when we can be made into an effective instrument in His hands.
The highlight of my week was going down to the Ft. Lauderdale Temple on Friday for the sealing of Rose and Robert. They got baptized one year ago in the Pines ward, and President gave us permission to attend their sealing. It was the first sealing that I have attended and it was simple and elegant. I also got to see my "baby" Sister Anderson. 


Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Week #67

Sister Tui is recovering well. She ended up not even needing a hard cast.
We are back to working full days. :)
This week we received a referral for a guy named Dylon. He is 18 and referred himself. We met him on Friday at a park for our lesson. He told us that he had a friend who lived in Utah who was a Mormon. He was looking for a church where the people were "real" and where he could get closer to God. We taught him the Restoration and he accepted everything with excitement. The next day we taught him the Plan of Salvation at a member of the bishopric's house. They offered to give him a ride on Sunday and they ended up being the perfect member friends for him. He agreed to prepare for baptism on the 25th, however, Satan is already trying him. His uncle who he lives with gave him an ultimatum: Either he could "drop the Mormon stuff" or he would have to move out by August 1st. Dylon is staying strong and we are praying that he will find a place to live. 
We know that God will provide a way.
This experience has been a testimony to me that no one is going to go through life without things that will test their faith. It is in those moments when we desire to come closer to God that our faith will be tested. 
That is when our desire and character will be tested. 
In 2 Nephi 9:18 it reads,
" But, behold, the righteous, the saints of the Holy One of Israel, they who have believed in the Holy One of Israel, they who have endured the crosses of the world, and despised the shame of it, they shall inherit the kingdom of God, which was prepared for them from the foundation of the world, and their joy shall be full forever." 

I love you all! 
Endure to the end.
Sincerely, Sister Matheson

Quote to ponder….

Dieter F. Uchtdorf… 

"Often the deep valleys of our present will be understood only by looking back on them from the mountains of our future experience. Often we can't see the lord's hand in our lives until long after trials have passed. Often the most difficult times of our lives are essential building blocks that form the foundation of our character and pave the way to future opportunity, understanding, and happiness…. "


A family in our ward ran over this turtle and then rescued it. 

Larry fed us dinner this week!

This is the after-math of Sister Tui's surgery. 
She got a plate and 6 screws. 
On Friday she got her 18 stitches removed.

Sister Frankenstein...

Here's our Zone last P-day. 
We had a BBQ at a park and played soccer.

I may or may not wear my namebadge to sleep...
I'm never taking it off!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Week 66

Sister Tuiolemotu's surgery was quite a bit longer than I expected, but all was well. We haven't done much besides letting her rest and recover. Don't worry, I'll attach some gross pictures of the after-math:) While she's been recovering we've been able to go on splits with our STL's so that we could have finding time in our area. Last week, while knocking doors with Sister Clegg, we ran into a man who had a lot of questions about the Plan of Salvation. Although his questions were good, he was not sincerely interested and just wanted to talk. If we had let him, he could've talked for much longer, but thank goodness Sister Clegg cut him off and ended the conversation short. 

We KNEW that God had prepared someone for us to find and we had limited time so we started RUNNING to every door. The next door that answered was a woman named Kerri. She invited us in, cried during the prayer, told us that she has been looking for a church, and accepted everything! In that moment I learned the importance of urgency and being sensitive to the "decoys" that Satan will put in our path. 

I've been reading the Isaiah chapters in Nephi as well as a talk titled, "Lessons From Liberty Jail" by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland.  From both I read this scripture, "The Lord has 'graven thee upon the palms of [His] hands' "  
Elder Holland goes on to say, " Having paid that price in the suffering that They have paid for you, the Father and the Son will never forget nor forsake you in your suffering. They have planned, prepared, and guaranteed your victory if you desire it . . . "

I love you all! Remember that we promised our Heavenly Father that we would come down to earth, with these specific challenges and circumstances, knowing that we would be able to be a beacon of hope to all. Continue to share your testimonies. Continue to stand up for what you believe in. Continue to turn to the Lord in prayer for guidance and direction. He is the author of peace. He will guide you. Also, the talks from last general conference were not coincidental. Read them over as a source of strength. Love you!

Sincerely, Sister Matheson

"Do the face when you just broke your arm..."

Warning: viewers disgression may be advised.

What a nice bruise!!!

Our party on the 4th of July!