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A lot of firsts at the beginning of the last…

March 24, 2014

Hello all!

Sister Rackham is back in the saddle with a new companion and a new transfer laid out before and she’s, in the words of that old jazz song Michael Buble sings, “feelin’ good.” But really.  There’s nothing like a new transfer, especially one that is, in all likelihood my last in my beloved branch, to rev one’s engine.  So finishing up last week when I was still in Cameron…

Pentecostal Bible study!  We actually went because this lady we met on the street invited us and it was awesome!  When we got started the first thing she said was, “Well, we all have testimonies, right? Let’s share those.”  So we did.  And then they mostly asked us questions and we taught bits and pieces of the lessons, mostly the Restoration (wonder why that’s the first lesson…?) as things came up. 

Kayla. That was the best first lesson I’ve ever been privileged to participate in.  Sisters Moody, Costello, and I taught in unity and Kayla (17 year old girl who is so ready!) asked good questions and really got it.  It was a beautiful thing to behold.  She’s getting baptized on April 12th. 

And then I came back to Albany with my new companion!  Well, I got to see a bunch of my wonderful mission friends on transfer day and that always etches a smile into my soul for the next few weeks. =)  And then I came home to Albany.  So, meet Sister Michaelson.  She’s from “Idaho Falls, Idaho.”  (Not to be confused with Idaho Falls, Nevada–I don’t know why she always says Idaho again, but she does.)  She’s 19.  She wears a potato pin on her shirt every day. She’s really good at role plays and LOVES animals–thank goodness! She can distract all the dogs so they won’t jump on me. 😉  This week, she met her first Baptist, saw her first Amish buggy and Amish people, saw a possum for the first time, and learned how to work a washing machine.  She asked me if we have a Seagull Book or Distribution Center out here.  She keeps me giggling. 😉  She reminds me of Katie when Katie was a little younger–very authoritative, but rather clueless.  It’s endearing and adorable.  I bit my tongue and did not laugh when she asked me to help her with the washer this morning.  She’s coming straight from the Mormon bubble and it’s going to be an interesting few weeks for her.  She’s very willing to work hard and she’s a boss at role plays.  She’s bold and fearless–that perfect naïve fearlessness–and I think Albany won’t quite know what hit them when she starts laying down the law.  We’re going to have fun together. =)

Coming back to my people in the branch was such a good thing for me.  =)  I love them so much!  And they’ve grown rather fond of me, too.  We showed up at the Haddocks to talk about their family mission plan and within minutes of walking in the door there were brownies on plates in our hands.  We left with a dozen and a half farm fresh eggs–delicious!  (Even though S. Bowden hates eggs, good timing, I guess.)  I felt like the favorite niece who had been away for a while and then came home.  I love these people!  I was talking to Sister Janssen about having a lesson “up at Mom’s house” because we live in her mom’s basement, but it was normal for me to refer to Sister Smith as mom, too.  Remember when I felt like I’d never belong here and that these people would never like me?  Well, maybe you don’t because why would I have told you that?  But I remember that and now it’s so completely opposite! =) 

Brother Haddock is on board with helping Enrique get the money for Zenaida’s plane ticket so we’ll get her and her kids back soon and then we’ll have a wedding and a baptism!  And, drumroll…. we saw Georgia and Lisa last night!  That bridge is mended and they said they’d come to church this Sunday.  Lisa hugged me and we’re friends again.  =)  It’s a really good day to be a missionary in the Albany Branch.  The transfer just started, but I can already tell it’s going to fly by and I’m really going to miss these people, but we don’t have to think about that yet.

This gospel is the most beautiful plan!  With all the tumult lately with my beloved Sister Bowden going home and the transfer and just missionary life at large, I’ve been thinking a lot about strength and stability and being anchored.  Jesus Christ is the best Friend anyone could ask for.  Period.  I am so deeply grateful that He has guided me through the things I’ve experienced lately because I’ve come much closer to Him. I know He loves me.  I know He loves the people I’m working with.  I know this is His work and that is why I know the work will not fail.  Success is in the invitation.  And for me, success is in accepting His invitation to come unto Him and to preach His gospel.  I love my life. And everything about being a missionary. 😉  Well, duty calls.  Onward then ye people, join our happy throng!  Hurrah for Israel!  May the God of hope guide you and protect you. I love you!

true in the faith,

Sister Rackham

I’ll send pictures next week.  Probably. Love you!

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