My dearest family and loved ones!!!!
I must say that this is probably the hardest email I have written on my mission. My heart is full and I am not sure how describe how I feel. Overall though I mostly feel JOY!! This truly is the best work I have been a part to this point in my life and I look forward for the future to be a steady upward coarse from here. I truly love being a FFLM Missionary and I will be a FFLM missionary for life. I have been changed by my mission and there is no looking back.
There have been so many miracles this last week I am not even sure where to start. I think the biggest miracle I have seen has been the change that has occurred in my own heart. I have learned how to submit on a deeper and greater level and for anyone who knows me, knows this is no small feat. I have learned that we cannot receive from Father unless we truly surrender and submit. “For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.” (Mosiah 3:19) It is as we submit that we open our hearts without submission our hearts are closed to feel of the great joy that is here to be felt in doing the Lord’s work. “Now behold, my brethren, what natural man is there that knoweth these things? I say unto you, there is none that knoweth these things, save it be the penitent.” (Alma 26:21) It is as we submit that we let go of our fears and allow the Spirit to guide us in word, thought, and deed. As we submit we “[put] off the natural man” and all the Savior to change and mold us into the instruments that He would have us be.
Friday we went to find a returning member that was on the list that Bishop had requested that we find. We pulled out the map and carefully found where we needed to go on our bikes to get to their house and we went out. On our bikes we quickly found that the road we thought took us though was now a dirt road (the first that I have seen on my mission!). We were lost. I knew that we were there for a reason because EVERY time I have been lost on my mission we have always found exactly who we needed to. While biking back up the street I decided to ask a couple who was out in their yard for directions. They informed us that we were definitely lost. As we talked WITH them we were able to gain their trust and we left a blessing with them. It was a powerful blessing – the Spirit was so strong. The Spirit truly guided our words and actions to help them to open their hearts and accept the invitation to be baptized. They are such an incredible family prepared by the Lord. When we came for our first lesson with them the Spirit was so strong and they told us how they had prayed and talked together about the baptism in February. Serai already had a Book of Mormon and knows that it is true!!! The member who was with us bore testimony of the temple and brought the Spirit even stronger. They are so excited to be baptized and go to the temple. My favorite part was after her beautiful prayer where she asked God if he wanted her to become a Mormon she asked me where I was from and I said, “Utah!” She said, “No way that is where my son told me I should move yesterday!!!!” She knew that she had received her answer to her prayer!
KJ and Keon got baptized!!!!!!!!!!! Miracle!!! Sunday was KJ’s birthday too so obvi it was the BEST day EVER!!!! It is amazing to see how much people overcome with the Lord’s help. There is so much hurt that can only be healed through the Atonement. I am so grateful for all that I have been given and I am going to do all I can to help others to receive the hope, healing and happiness that the Gospel brings to them. My mission does not end when I take my badge off – it is written on my heart. Missions truly are forever.
I am so grateful – Heavenly Father truly has granted and given me EVERY righteous desire of my heart on my mission. On Saturday we had the adult session of stake conference. It was AMAZING!!!! President and Sister Anderson came and before conference I joked around with president about accidentally missing the flight home so I could stay for another transfer (was i kidding?? hehe). They both spoke in the conference and President decided to do an unexpected role play about using members. He looked out in to the congregation and said, “Can I have Elder… O wait, Sister Stegelmeier and Sister Hartley will you come up here?” YES!!!!! I was so excited – that is until I realized that I had chosen to wear a “comfy” outfit and I was still wearing my crocs because we had a wild day moving a couple investigators and rounding everyone up. New rule – ALWAYS look your best, you never know when you are going to be called up to role play in front of the WHOLE stake with President. It was amazing and I am so grateful.
I commit to being RESOLUTE FOREVERMORE. I truly feel like Ammon in Alma 26 – “we have been made instruments in the hands of God to bring about this great work” for which I am forever grateful for.
I love you all!!!!!
Sister Stegelmeier of FLORIDA