“Look not behind thee.” MESA WEEK THREE

Holy moly, I cannot believe that week three has already passed!  We are halfway done with the transfer, CRAZY!  So no word on the Visas, but I don’t think President Jenkins will tell us until the end of the transfer since we won’t be leaving until the end of the transfer anyway!  But, we have gotten a lot of hints that they are here or will be here so as of now it sounds like I should plan on leaving at the end of the month!  BUT EXCITING THINGS are happening until that happens!
SO THIS WEEK!   OH MY GOODNESS! THIS WAS A WEEK OF MIRACLES!  And seriously, I have felt the spirit and love the of God for His children so much this week!  It has been so great.  Have I told you how much I love being a missionary?!
So, there is a family in one of our wards that have twin boys who want to get baptized, but their mom HATES the church (there was a bad divorce and that is about all I know).  Anyway, missionaries had always been terrified to talk with the mom, and in the 8 weeks that Sister Merrell has been here, she had never met her.  I have been feeling such a strong feeling to this family since being here, so we decided to stop by their house this week.  The mother opened the door and was really giving us the cold shoulder, but we trusted in God and just talked with her and showed her some love, and she let us in!  And we talked for forty five minutes, laughing and getting to know each other a little better!  OH MY I love this woman so much!  We are hoping to continue to build this relationship with her.  Seriously, we love her.
We visited this less-active member this week, Sister H.  She ended up telling us about a trial that has been happening in her life recently and we had a powerful lesson on the atonement.  She humbly prayed at the close of the meeting, and when she prayed, I felt God’s love for her so strongly.  Her prayer was so humble, I was almost brought the tears by the spirit (which as many know is pretty tough for me ;).  It was so great, we are going to have weekly meetings with her.
I do just love the people here.  I love the members, they are so so good to us.  I love those who are trying to come closer to Christ.  I am grateful I am able to be a part of their journey, they give me SO  MUCH JOY!!!!
So this week was New Years.  HAPPY 2016!!!!  So New Year’s Eve we were in our apartment by 7:00 because we didn’t want to come across any danger!  So we did some studies.  I have been studying the atonement; it has been great 🙂  Then New Year’s Day we had a whole mission activity at the stake center!  It felt like a big youth activity, which was weird lol!  But it was so fun, and so great to spend time with all the other missionaries in the mission!  It was so funny, we ended the day by singing this “french” song which basically just says “parlez-vous francais” over and over again, but I felt pretty cool knowing how to pronounce it correctly ;)!!
Ummmmmmm, let’s see what else is new!  It has warmed up this week!  It has been so great!  Sunday was so nice, but we were in church most of the day, so we didn’t get to bask in the sunlight, but at least it is warming up!  It’s like 70 degrees right now!  YAY!
So Sunday night Sister Merrell and I and a few other Sisters sung in a member-missionary devotional, which was so nice 🙂  I LOVE SINGING!  And I love sharing that talent with others!
So Christmas Lights are officially over, so now I get to see what “normal” missionary life is like 🙂  So that is exciting! But we have a lot of meetings this week, so it will still be busy busy busy!  Sister Merrell is a Sister Training Leader, so get to go on splits with the sisters she is over over the next few weeks, so I get to see some other parts of Mesa which is nice!!  And spend some time with some other Sister Missionaries!
I get my iPad tomorrow!  Which will be nice because literally EVERYTHING in this mission is done on the iPads, so I can finally start doing things!  But, with that, I can read my e-mails throughout the week, but I just can’t respond until Monday, so send me things throughout the week YAY! 🙂
So today we went thrift shopping!!!  So much fun!  I got some great stuff, and a lot of the stores here give discounts to missionaries which was great! 🙂 HOWEVER, Sister Merrell is sick, so I am going out by myself tonight (with a member of the ward as my companion)  BUT STILL I HAVE TO TEACH ALL THE LESSONS!  Which I am actually pretty excited for!  However, it means I also need to know my way around….we will see how this goes 🙂  At least it is in English and not in french!
OKAY SORRY THIS E-MAIL IS KIND OF SCATTERED MY BRAIN IS IN FIVE THOUSAND DIFFERENT PLACES! So my title “Look not behind thee…”  I LOVE THIS!  It is my New Year’s message this year.  There is a video produced by the church that we have been sharing with all of our members.  I will share the link..WATCH IT!
 It has to do with not relying on the past, but moving forward, relying on the atonement, to have the brightest future you can have!
The future is so bright my wonderful family and friends!  Let us live for it!
2015 seriously flew by.  I remember at the start I knew it was going to be a great year and so many things I have happened that has made it so!
1. Finished my first year of college
2. Took a summer class
3. Worked!
4. Spent time with those that I love!
5. Went to Utah (love you Madores)
7. Reported to the MTC
8. Came to Mesa
And I am still becoming a missionary.  But it is the greatest adventure I could ever take.  I love it so much, no matter how busy we may be, it is the greatest time of my life.  I love my Heavenly Father so so much.
So I have realized something.  My fondest years have been the ones where I have progressed the most and changed the most.  So 2015 has become one of my favorite years, because the atonement has helped me become a better person, someone I only hoped to be!
I wish you all the best in this New Year my wonderful supporters, this gospel is true.  The atonement is real.  Use it, and become that person you always wanted to be 🙂
I love you all!  LIFE IS GOOD!
Until next week,
Soeur Vogel 🙂 ❤
PIC ONE: My crazy companion during our service this week…we were cleaning out an old missionary apartment!
PIC TWO: Classic Arizona…the only water around LOL
PIC THREE: Sister Colbert, splits for the day yay 🙂

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