I love Florida!! Beets, baptism and so much more. . . .

My dearest family,

I love hearing from you at all. It is wonderful to hear news and all about your lives in any way. 🙂

One of the sisters has been asking me a ton of questions about the atonement and such. I have been sharing!  Yay!  It is hard becuase I get scared but then I pray and move forward telling her in faith.  She is so funny – it is funny how perfectionism and shame come in so many different packages.  Also how our expectations can stop us from moving forward because we get so discouraged. . .   interesting.  Thank you for reminding me about gifts and how to pray for gifts instead of judge.  What an incredible way to choose faith over fear and serve!!!  I love that.  I have struggled sometimes knowing how to help Sister Dye and I be united in faith as a companionship after we learn about the about the huge hard things the people we meet are struggling with like smoking and not being married. . . .  Remembering how we can ask in faith for gifts for others and then asking Heavenly Father to also bless them with the gifts he has for them will really help us apply faith. Thanks.

I hope my emails make sense.  I feel like  a whole different person than I used to be, but at the same time like I haven’t changed at all.  It is weird.  I love this mission so much.  I love the work, I love it all.  Some days I really have to choose faith in a big way but it is always worth it.  I can’t believe I have already been in Florida for a whole month.  It is crazy how the days feel like they last forever but the weeks feel so incredibly short.

I would love ideas on how to work with the Elders – very much appreiciated.  I always want to just play basketball with them and be friends but it seems weird.  We are working on putting together a weekly volleyball/basketball night for the ward where they can invite their friends and we can invite our investigators.  What do you think?

This week has been a week of miracles once again. Working with members has truly changed the work here in Davie (dad – we serve in one ward with just the 2 of us). I love Davie and the work has really exploded! sometimes I wonder if there is a way to be in 2 places at once to get more done…

We had 2 baptisms this week. they are sisters, Ashley and Melanie. They are so amazing. Their mom and brother will be baptized ASAP. We love them all so much. It is so incredible to see how much the gospel changes people and brings so much light into their lives.

While harvesting yesterday we met a woman named Julie. She wanted to tell us everything about her life but she also wanted us to pray with her so much – it was wonderful how excited she was. When I was praying for her – it was incredible I was truly given the words to say. As the prayer ended she looked at me and said – you could not have said it better those were the words that needed to be said. I said we are representatives of Jesus Christ and he has sent us here to bless you and to bring you closer to him. She wholeheartedly accepted baptism and she will be baptized this month. We are so excited.

While teaching Liz and her wonderful kids this week about the commandments we shared with them Mosiah 2:41. They were so excited to live all the commandments so they could be in a “blessed and happy state” and have “neverending happiness.” The next day Melanie and Ashley got baptized and they all paid their tithing. That night when we stopped by to see how they were. They were all so happy and excited to tell us all the ways they had been keeping the Sabbath day holy. We could not help but smile. We asked them each if they were happy and they said YES!! We reminded them of the scripture. It was so amazing to see the blessings promised truly manifest in their lives.

While I was reading in Helamen and Samuel the Lamanite – I learned a lot about agency (Helaman 14:30). Heavenly Father completely honors our agency. We came to this earth to be tested and tried. We are free to choose always. When we choose the wrong choices we are then in captivity and bondage. It is rough and difficult to see that we have choices. As missionaries we are helping people open their eyes to the choices and freedom they really have. We have each been given the light of Christ and each choice we make either brings more light in or diminishes it. It is incredible to see the change in people we teach as they start using their agency to follow the commandments and repent. They truly change and the light within them grows. Then they are baptized and made clean again. Wow – this is the best plan ever! Every moment we are at choice. The choices we choose make us who we are. Heavenly Father loves us so much that he provied a way for us to choose again and overcome our weaknesses, through his Son Jesus Christ.

I hate time – there is never enough. I want the world to know that I finally tired some beets and liked them. Also latin food is the best!!! I don’t know how they cook their rice but i am going to find out. I am hoping our investigator Maria will teach us 🙂

Life in Florida rocks – I hope it starts cooling down soon. It is crazy to think that it is september but it still feels like july… weird. Humidity rocks – my hair always is crazy. I am going for the lion look for sure – always.

I am so thankful to be here in South Florida. I love missionary work with all my heart. I know that I am here because this is where the Lord sent me. I also know that this is the best mission in the world. I love applying all that I am learning all the time and continuing on a steady upward course!

I have to go but I love you all with all my heart!! Keep up the good work and do your best everday that is how we grow 🙂

love you always!

Sister Stegelmeier


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