Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Week 24 - Lizard Shower 🐊🐊

Hi Familia!
Well, I'm not going to lie, this week was probably one of the hardest in the mission. But it was still awesome πŸ‘Š.   It all started on Friday. We had a blitz in our area, where all of the missionaries in the whole Imperial Valley came to Brawley to help us find people to teach and clean our area! It was super cool. But, as I was getting into the car (this is a testament to how out of shape I have become) my knee did this terrible popping thing and I thought it dislocated! Yeah. I'm out of shape. But I walked it off and then we met a ton of people and miracles happened! But it was crazy. Then then next day, we were going about our regular business, and all of a sudden I realize that the phone is gone. Completely gone! So we spent like an hour searching, and then ended up having to use our members phone to call the zone leaders. Then we have had to use the zone leaders phone all weekend! It's been the worst because President keeps calling us thinking were the zone leaders. So embarrassing. But then on Sunday JUAN (our investigator with a date for the 13th) CAME TO CHURCH. YAS.  So he's still looking good to get baptized! Whoo hoo!

Then on Monday I found out I was getting transferred to Poway! Apparently it's like the wealthiest part of the mission. The best part is that it's only like 90 degrees there πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰  But then. To top it all off, I was in the shower this morning. Just, enjoying my last morning in Brawley, and I picked up my little scrubber thing, and to my astonishment (and horror) there was a LIZARD under there! Just chillin with me in the shower! I jumped out of there so quick! But yeah. So that was my crazy week. But it's been so good.

I love the mission so much.  And I'm excited to see what I can do for the people here in Poway! My new companion's name is Sis Bartholomew and we actually met at Snow College before the mission! She's really nice.  I think with time we will be really good friends! She just got out of training, and she was trained by Sis Tess Hanson who went home today! (McKell swam with Sister Hansen at Bingham).  And apparently this is the safest area in the mission, so that should give you some comfort ;) especially since I came from one of the sketchiest..haha. But I will miss that sketchy place! So so much. Brawley will always have a special place in my heart. I hope I don't get transferred to too many different areas over the course of my mission because I don't know how many goodbyes like this I can take! But I guess that's just how  the mission is and I just have to stop complaining.

I love you all! Have a wonderful week!
Hermana Fowlks

This was our last district picture in Brawley.  Elder Strong's picture is on the ipad because he had to go to San Diego that day for departures.  From left to right:  Sister Garcia, Myself, Sister Romero, Sister Summers, Elder Strong (ipad) and Elder Baldwin.  

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Week 23 - Christmas in July πŸŽ„πŸŽ„

Hello all!

Sorry I didn't write very much last week....there wasn't a ton going on except a lot of finding and also there was an ultimate dodgeball game going on. So, yeah sorry about that! But this week was a good one! We actually found someone who was prepared and his name is Juan and he has a baptismal date for August 13! πŸŽ‰  We've been a little bit frustrated these last couple weeks because we haven't been able to find people that will progress. But we've learned that as long as you're giving everything you can, Heavenly Father will make up the rest.

Thursday was a really good day. We had an appointment with Juan Franco who we found during power hour. And as we taught him he told us about all his problems (for some reason people do that all the time with missionaries, I don't know why) and then we explained to him that baptism is a way to start a new life. So we invited him to be baptized, and he said yes! Then we set him for a date on August 13! I might not be here at that time because I'll probably get transferred (πŸ˜“πŸ˜“πŸ˜“) but I just hope he progresses. He didn't come to church on Sunday so we'll keep trying with him. Then we had dinner with the Smith family, not Bishop or Stake President Smith but old stake president and ward organist Smith family. They are soooo nice and we're actually going to start playing racquet ball at their house for excercise 3 days a week so that will be fun.

Friday we had district meeting, and our district leader is so so good.  He really cares for us, and he told us then that we were going to do Blitz in our area.  Blitz is when all the members of the district go to an area of a certain companionship that might be struggling, and they all stay there for an hour and find people to teach. So we're going to do that next Saturday! Hooray! That's how you show love to others, especially as missionaries. Trying to help others. So that will be cool.

Saturday we had a lesson with Damian. He's so awesome. He wants to go to all the temples in Utah. He loves the temple! He's really got a testimony of the Book of Mormon. He's supposed to be getting the Melchezedek priesthood soon, and that will be so awesome because he leaves for college in like a month. We also had a lesson with a less active named Katie. She's really struggling, and it stresses me out that I have so many people to take care of and that I am responsible for helping them and I want to make sure I can do everything I can. It is just a little overwhelming when you realize just how much you need to be doing as a missionary. And I want to do it right, I want to do everything I can, but sometimes I feel like it's just so much.

Anyways, later on on Thursday we went and visited an investigator named Silvia. She's really really old, so we're not even sure if she understands everything. And she didn't come to church on Sunday like she said she would. :( so we'll keep looking to see what we can do to help her understand. And Pres. Flores and his wife came to the lesson with us and they helped. And I can't understand her at all because she's speaking a lot of slang Spanish and she has no teeth. So, it's a little frustrating! But then we had a lesson with a less active family that night named the Mayas. Their kids are soooo cute! And they love us always, and they are so nice. They have true desires to come to church but Ulises always works so they don't come to church. So we will keep working with them!

Sunday was good, we had church, and there was a bunch of drama in the Spanish branch because of the old ladies. We had dinner with Sis Holt who is so sweet. But then I accidentally ate like some cashew dust.  But it was a miracle because I didn't even react! My mouth got slightly itchy and then it went away. Milagro!! And that night we had another miracle. We went to go see an investigator who we hadn't seen for a long time. So it was a long shot that she would be home because she's always in Mexicali. But we drove by her house and there she was! Sitting outside! So that was so cool. And we talked to her and she had been reading the Book of Mormon! So we're going to go back and see her on Wednesday and help her understand the Book of Mormon a little more because she struggling with that. The only problem is that her husband doesn't really like us.....so I really hope that he sees that we truly care for her and that he doesn't make us go away. Because that has happened before and it's sad when that happens. But we will keep praying for her! She's going to have a baby in a few months too, and that softens hearts.

Monday we went and did power hour with John. He's a member, he got baptized 3 years ago but is too old to serve a mission but he wants to SOOO bad. And he's like a better missionary than me. But he's awesome! And we take him out with us at night to keep us safe from all the crazies haha

This week something special that happened was that we had dinner with the Gows. They are the cutest!  And Sister Gow likes to celebrate Christmas in July so she gave us clues and we had to find our Christmas present.  And she gave us chocolate covered macadamia nuts from Hawaii! They are so nice. I mean, I'm allergic to macadamia nuts so I actually gave them to our homeless friend named Bruce but it's the thought that counts. Brother Gow is really old but he's really really funny and they tell us stories and we're also kind of working with their less active kids at the same time. So it works out great.

If I get transferred next week, I will be super sad but I also know that I can trust that my Heavenly Father knows what's best for me! He knows what's best for all of us. And that is so great about this Plan that He has. It is in our favor. We're on the right team. :)

I love you all, thanks for all the support! You guys are awesome!

Les quiero!
Hermana Fowlks
Here we are celebrating Christmas in July with Bro. and Sis. Gow :)
Here we are with who I like to call the King of Brawley.  He's literally everywhere.

Here is some of the scenery we found when we got lost.  Only cows and birds and us.  But the sunset looked nice!
We found this crazy person with these crazy signs.  Yeah we avoided this house... haha.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Week 22 - No hay mucho...

Hola!! ¿Como estΓ‘n?

I'm doing pretty good over here in Brawley, I'm having a hard time believing how fast the time is flying but besides that I am good.  We're seeing a lot of miracles, especially with our less actives  coming back!
Wednesday we had a lesson with a recent convert named Adelina. She's super sweet, and comes to church every single week. But she needs to get to the temple. She's just fine staying where she's at. But I suppose it's all in the Lords timing! We also had a lesson with someone we found during power hour, her name is Silvia and she wants to get baptized! Who hoo!  Thursday we had weekly planning, and we got spooked at the church so we had to come back and do weekly planning in the apartment haha. But it was good! Then we had dinner with this crazy old lady from the Spanish branch. Her name is Hermana Ledesma. She like 85 years old and she is so crazy.

Friday we had zone meeting! We learned a lot about having member home lessons. Our Stake President came and gave a super inspiring training. I love our stake Presdient, he's a convert to the church and he's super into missionary work. He loves it! And we're lucky because he lives in our ward boundaries so he helps us especially. He's just so cool. And his son is our bishop and is just as awesome! And then we had dinner at our stake presidents house. 
Sunday was church. And it was my turn to go with the Spanish branch.  And this returned missionary came and spoke and it was really good.   All the old ladies were in love with him. Then we had a lesson in the stake presidents house and it was super spiritual! And the stake Presdient told us we were good missionaries. Which was good to hear because our numbers are so bad and it's stressing me out.

Monday during power hour we met this guy named Juan who is super interested in the church! So we're going to see him on Thursday.
And, nothing too crazy happened this week. But the work continues! And I love it here! And that's all :) but here's some pictures!

All of the 4th of July stuff that my mom sent!                          Also a super cool chicken mailbox we found!

Sister Garcia and I found this selfie of two other sisters in the mission and we recreated it!

Aqui es una foto de la zona despues de dodgeball!  Pero, dodgeball maravilloso. ;)


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Week 21 - The Armor of God πŸ’ͺ

Hola a todos!

This week was a good one. We worked really really hard, and saw a bunch of miracles! One miracle in specific that we saw was with one of our members named Lori. She loves visits from the missionaries so we thought we would stop by and see how she was doing. But her mom never lets the missionaries in. But this time she did! And we taught her about the Plan of Salvation and how she can see her son again. She is a very stubborn woman in her own beliefs but I think her heart is softened. And it was so cool! So my invitation to you all this week is NEVER DELAY A PROMPTING. ever. You never know what could happen. If it is a good thing, there is no harm in doing it. :) go visit that
neighbor, or pay for that person behind you in the drive though. Little things make a big difference :)

Wednesday we struggled lessons wise, we didn't teach very many, they just all seem to fall through! But we did have dinner with the Walkers, and they are such an awesome family. She's like my mom out here, always making sure we have enough to eat and that we are happy and safe. Even though she lives in Westmorland she still takes good care of us. She has 2 boys that are preparing to serve missions, so it's cool to be able to talk to them.

Thursday we had district meeting, and our district leader is really good and supportive even though our numbers right now are TERRIBLE. He keeps trying to find ways to help us, and we just keep finding those different ways. One place that we are really struggling in is member present lessons. For some reason, we just can't get fixed appointments to get members to. And if we do, then they fall through! I mean, the Lord might be testing me because we are working so so hard. But there is always room for improvement. We also had lunch with Presidente Flores and his wife. She makes such good chile and rice and beans. YUM. I love Mexican food. And they gave us a bunch of less active families to go visit!

Friday was a much better day! We went and found a less active named Isaac and found out his concerns. So we're going to start working with him to help him get back to church. We also went to have a lesson with one of our members named Lori but then it turned into a lesson with her mom who is not a member! It was cool. We also had a lesson with a recent convert who was having troubles with the word of Wisdom. She's like super old, and she's struggled with it her whole life. She quit cold turkey for her baptism but then started up again a few weeks ago.  But when we went and visited her on Friday, before we could say anything she said "I'm on my sobriety!" And we were SO EXCITED FOR HER! It's so awesome. And she's so much happier now. Then we had dinner with the Gows. I love that family so much. Brother and Sister Gow are the cutest. Brother Gow actually reminds me a lot of grandpa Dee. Just like 10 years older. They even have the same glasses. But I just wish that I could hang out with them all day and listen to their stories.  Because they are so neat.

Saturday we had lunch with the Call family, and we had a classic 4th of July BBQ. It was just like home! I didn't know how much I missed that until I saw the food sitting there on the table and just got so happy.  They were really good burgers too. It was awesome. And we had a cool lesson with a less active member who's son told us he wanted to be baptized! He has been going to church in El Centro and the Elders had neglected to tell us about him and the fact that he lived in Brawley. So we were super pumped and we were like well let's get you baptized next weekend then! But then he told us he's going up north to work. So maybe like 3 months from now he'll get baptized. When he comes back.  But we will see. Sunday was fast Sunday, and there were some awesome testimonies born and it was a cool day. Except we didn't have dinner with anyone...so we had instant potatoes. NASTY!

Also this week I was reading in Ephesians 6, where it talks about the armor of God. But in verse 12 it says:
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."
We are in a wrestle every day! We need to always be prepared to fight off what comes. Never let your guard down. Read the scriptures, pray, and go to church. We cannot afford to be casual in this fight. We've got to keep going and help our brothers who have become wounded in battle!
And most of all, we've got to keep fighting. ;)

I love you all!
Hermana Fowlks


Friday, July 1, 2016

Week 20 - It's still hot haha!

Being a missionary is awesome. Really though, like even though it's like a thousand degrees outside and there are cockroaches in your apartment you're still so happy. All the time! It's so cool. It's amazing what the gospel of Jesus Christ does :)

This week was good, we're in a rebuilding season of missionary work. We are finding, finding, finding! And as we were knocking on a door on Thursday, we saw these 2 guys that looked like they played NBA basketball. Except one of them had crazy black dread locks. But these guys were huge! And one of them was just staring at us. And as missionaries, we are called to bring the gospel to everyone. And I looked at my companion, and I could tell she was thinking the same thing I was thinking. That these guys looked SCARY. But something told me that we needed to talk to them, and something caught my eye about the one with the dreadlocks. So we start walking, and he calls out to us and asks who we are. So we started talking to him, and he asked for a Book of Mormon and he said that he really wanted to know more. So the lesson here is never ever judge someone by how they look or what they do. We are all children of God, we were all on the same side at one point.

Friday we had exchanges. The new sister Sister Romero came out to Brawley with me. And we had like the least successful day of my whole mission. We did have one good cita where a less active said they would come back to church. And that was at the beginning of the day. But then for the rest of the day nobody was home. We knocked so many doors and nothing happened. Then our power hour that day was just garbage because we weren't in the right place at the right time. It was just bad. And the day ended with us knocking a door of a potential investigator. And her little white miniature poodle came out of nowhere and started attacking us! It actually like was biting our ankles! We were fighting it off with our bags as we ran away. So yeah Friday wasn't the best day. It was fun though, and we worked hard. So I suppose that is was matters! We did have dinner at Johnnys Burritos with Hermana Anduro and I love Johnnys Burritos. SO YUMMY.

But Saturday was better. It wasn't as hot which was pretty awesome. We also had a lesson with Maria where we watched the movie Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration. She really liked it. I really liked it too, that move is awesome :) if you haven't seen it, you can download it on gospel library! You should watch it! Then we also had a bunch of visits fall through...but we went did get a potential investigator  named Pamela! It was cool. But Sister Garcia and I really support each other, and she is so loving and I feel really good when I am with her.  She's also a really good missionary. I'm so lucky to have her as my companion! And I'm sad because we'll probably only be together for one transfer.
Les amo!
Hermana Fowlks

PS Damian is going to Utah for 2 weeks, so keep an eye out for him! He says he wants to go to the Oquirrh Mountain temple, so he'll be around there. So if you see a giant Peurto Rican guy with glasses walking around with a little white blonde girl, that's him and his girlfriend McKenna ;)
Sister Fowlks and Sister Garcia

Zone Conference - June 2016

Note from Sister Fowlks Mom -
Damian stopped by our house today and gave us a letter from McKell and one from her companion.  He told us how grateful he was for McKell and that she was the reason he was now a member of the church!  Pretty awesome!