Hi family and friends! This week has been so wonderful. New Years Eve was FUN! we had a big missionary party and watched a couple of fun movies (Despicable me 2, Monster's Inc Univeristy...) Sister McLaws and I voted for Lion King and Prince of Egypt, but those were out voted. The best part of it all was being with a bunch of missionaries playing games and eating good food, I'm sure it was the safest party going on in the whole Bay Area! We were safe and sound asleep in our beds by. Not even a single firework woke us up :)
We saw so many miracles this week! Exchanges are still going strong and we are trying to teach more lessons! The hardest part of missionary work lately is getting members to come with us! I know it's the Holidays and everything, but I wonder if they understand that if we don't have another member with us, we can't even get in the door to teach! Our members aren't really excited about missionary work... YET! We're trying to love them and serve them the very best we can and help them catch the joy and excitement and BLESSINGS of bringing our brothers and sisters to the Gospel of Jesus Christ! Mike (our recent convert) came to a lesson with us a bore his testimony so powerfully to a new investigator this week :) I wanted to cry! I love how those who recently come into the gospel have such a fire to share it with others, I wish all members were like that--I wish I were like that before my mission!!! but like President Uchtdorf says, it doesn't matter if the best time to start something was 20 years ago, the second best time to start it is now! I can't believe that my mission has flown by like it has, but as my missionary cousin Marie Clyde just sent me in an email, "this is a transfer from the harvesting field to the planting and nurturing field." I want that to carry that theme in the way I serve for the rest of my life!
Aaaaand, today's my birthday! Sister McLaws surprised me this morning with chocolate cake for breakfast! Then after we studied for a couple hours we had a birthday breakfast with our district--pancakes and birthday cake! ..... .... I know, totally the WORST things to eat in the morning. Today after we email we're going to San Francisco to see the Palace of Fine Arts! I'm super excited!
Also! We have a new key indicator (a goal that we set and count in order to indicate the work that we're achieving) for 2014, it's called OYM (open your mouth)! This is a new year for the Oakland/SF mission and we're going to reach out to as many people as the Lord puts in our paths--and not just say hi and give them a card, but really have a gospel centered conversation with them and invite them to meet with missionaries. the standard of excellence is 20 OYMS per companionship daily, which is 140 per week. This first week we had an average of about half that, so there's definitely a lot of room for improvement! we're going to start planning hours of oym time daily, contacting in parks and bus stops, we've sent out more referrals this week than we have in the past, so I know this is inspired to help the Lord hasten his missionary work! We're going to work SO HARD this week and se sooo many amazing miracles!
hasta la proxima!