Monday, June 20, 2011

June 20, 2011.

Happy Father's Day yesterday!
I am so grateful for the fathers in my life and most especially for my Heavenly Father. Did you remember to thank Him for the Father he is to each one of us? I'm sure it would mean a lot to Him :) Canada has been on a mail strike for over a week now so I don't know if I can send letters today. I heard from some members that the strike would end today, but we'll see. Happy 2nd Birthday to my nephew, Isaac, this week! I was there when he was born and I cannot believe it has been two years.
This week Sister Yi and I had an adventure when we drove out to Beeton (1.5 hours away) to go to the dentist (he's a member, so it was free). The drive was absolutely beautiful and Sister Yi and I were sad we didn't bring out cameras. We stopped at a convenience store and bought a disposable camera (yes, they still sell those!), and used the whole thing taking pictures of our little trip. The only hard part about the drive was driving on the freeways of Toronto. I had never been so close to the city of Toronto before (because it's in the East Mission) and there are lots of highways. I had directions from google maps and wrote them on post-it notes so when I finished one step, I could take off that note and move onto the next step. I may or may not be paranoid about driving places that I have never been hahaha. But we got there safely. After we got on the highway leading tonorth Ontario (it was tempting not to drive to North Bay ;D), the scenes were breathtaking. Everything is green, farms, barns, and beautiful skies. It would be a great place for a photoshoot (with a real camera, not an $8.00 one from the quickmart :D). The dentist quickly put a filling in one of my teeth and X-rayed Sister Yi's mouth. We don't have a clear diagnosis yet, but I think she has TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome - thank you anatomy!), which is causing her pain. Anyway, we are still working out details for getting her a bite plate for night time or whatever else we will need to do.
Andris came to church yesterday but Karey didn't. I don't know where she and her husband were. We need to call them today. We couldn't meet with her last week either, so we are looking forward to our lesson this week. We still have yet to find new investigators through our own efforts. We are tracting and talking to many people, but their hearts are hard and they won't let the Spirit in. It is interesting that so many people put their full trust in the Bible, instead of God Himself. I love the article by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland titled "My Words...Never Cease." In it, he says:
"Since it is clear that there were Christians long before there was a New Testament or even an accumulation of the sayings of Jesus, it cannot therefore be maintained that the Bible is what makes one a Christian. In the words of esteemed New Testament scholar N. T. Wright, 'The risen Jesus, at the end of Matthew’s Gospel, does not say, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth is given to the books you are all going to write,’ but [rather] ‘All authority in heaven and on earth is given to me.’ In other words, “Scripture itself points … away from itself and to the fact that final and true authority belongs to God himself.” So the scriptures are not the ultimate source of knowledge for Latter-day Saints. They are manifestations of the ultimate source. The ultimate source of knowledge and authority for a Latter-day Saint is the living God. The communication of those gifts comes from God as living, vibrant, divine revelation."
We do indeed look to the scriptures for guidance, comfort, and a knowledge of our Savior, but we do not close our hearts and ears to the words our Heavenly Father speaks to us today.
Sister Yi and I made some delicious noodles yesterday. They are noodles made from green beans, peas, and water. They are clear and delicious. We added brocolli, peas, carrots, corn, garlic, dark soy sauce, and green onions. We ate the whole huge pan that we made :) My hand was sore from using my chopsticks. When we were in our beds a couple nights ago, I said something that apparently was very funny. Well, I was trying to be funny, but it was even better than I had planned. Sister Yi said "I love you," to which I replied in mandarin "Wo ai ne, er." You see, she had just taught me how to count to ten in chinese (which I am getting better at each day), and I decided to say "I love you, two" in chinese, because I knew the word "two," and it sounds the same in english as "too." She laughed so hard and told me that I had just said "I love you, son." It was pretty funny. It's one of our little jokes now.
We have a busy week ahead of us and we are going to sacrifice a certain amount of time out of each lunch/dinner break we have so that we can be efficient and show the Lord our willingness to serve Him. It will be a great week! Make it a great week wherever you are too! Show gratitude for those you love, wear a smile all day, no matter what your circumstances, and pray for the guidance of the Holy Ghost to show you opportunities where you can serve! I love you all!
Sister Barton

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