Such a wonderful week! We started out by going fishing, and let me tell you, I could totally be an Alaskan and fish every day all day because it's so awesome. It's not like the pond fishing where you just sit there and wait for something to bite. You're standing in water mid thigh and throwing your fly over and over again, and you are surrounded by TONS of other fishermen. Seriously, such a blast! I was fishing next to a less-active member the whole time, and he was such a champ and gave me all the good tips.
Tuesday, we were able to witness one of the biggest group of missionaries the mission has had in a long time, as 24 of them came walking through the small gate all at once. Coolest sight ever!
I feel so blessed every time transfers come because of the new missionaries love for the work, desire to go out and share the Gospel and the message we have, and their desire to be exactly obedient is contagious. We spent all day Tuesday with them, and then took the two sisters back home with us to spend the night. Such incredible sisters! Seriously love them. It was so fun to get to know them, and they are both being trained here in Anchorage, so I'm stoked!
We woke up the next morning and headed back to the mission home. We spent another whole day with them listening to them bear their testimonies, and watching them as they received their trainers and all that fun stuff. The spirit was just so strong, and boy are they going to do some incredible things here!
After all of the craziness, I dropped off my incredible companion, Sister Jackson, that I love and miss, who is now happily and safely home in the beautiful state of Utah. I then picked up my "Day 1-mission-home" Sister Cox!!! Seriously, so good to be back together! We picked up right where we left off in North Pole and got right to work. I freaking love her. You are probably already annoyed, but we only have six weeks to be together again before transfers.
We had the craziest week...I don't know where to begin. We tried lots of referrals, met with lots of members (and they gave us lots of referrals), knocked on lots of doors, talked to lots of people, laughed lots, and had a total blast doing it all.
We both spoke yesterday in both Bush Branch and Oceanview, and that was so good. We met with Annette, and, of my, she is the greatest. She just has so much faith and patience, and is truly incredible. I love the people in the mission field that I have been blessed to meet!
A couple of weeks ago when I was able to see the Ronne family...Wow, that was probably one of the best moments on my mission. Memory Lake will always have a special place in my heart, and being able to see the Ronne family and spend time with them was such a sweet experience. They are doing so good and seriously have the strongest testimonies. We went to lunch, and when we had all sat down, they asked if we were going to say a prayer on the food. I don't know why, but that was seriously one of the sweetest experiences watching them all say a prayer in a public restaurant. I love them so much!
And, I also got to see Bobby D. and the Henson's this week, too! Boy, I surely do love those people!
On a more serious note, though, my talk in the Bush Branch was on the spiritual gift found in D&C 46:13, the gift of believing in Christ. As I thought about it and studied it, I came to realize and really think about my belief and testimony in Jesus Christ and the role that this has played in my life. My belief in Christ is something that continues to grow stronger and stronger each and every day, something that has truly blessed me in my life and helped me in the hardest of times. I know that our Savior, Jesus Christ, lives. I know that He loves us. I know that He came into the world to atone for the sins of all mankind. I know that He knows every trial, pain, affliction, hardship, and suffering we have personally experienced. He knows what we are going through, and He is there for us every single step of the way. He is just waiting for us to call out and reach up and grab His hand to lift us up out of the pain, heartache, and trial we are in. I know that my Savior knows me individually, and I know that He has been there for me, and through the Atonement of Jesus Christ I have received that strength to get back up and keep going in the hardest of times. I love Him and am so grateful for the knowledge of Him. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity I have had to go out and share my testimony with the people of Alaska. I just feel so blessed, and am thankful for the testimonies of others that have blessed my life.
Thank you all for the love and support, many prayers, and incredible examples you are to me! I love you all, I love Alaska, I love the mission, AND I love Sister Cox! Have a stellar week!
Sister McKenna Lake
Alaska Anchorage Mission