Saturday, February 22, 2014

Cedar falls - week 7. Second baptism

Feb 17, 2014

Sorry (to email so late in the day): our cars got grounded because it snowed like 6 inches! Once the snow plows made it at like noon we were good, so here I am! My companion is from San Diego so she is HATING life right now, but I was thinking all morning how much I would love a little family ski day in Jupiter Bowl.....then I log on to pictures of you skiing with the Framptons: SO JEALOUS!!!!! Loved the pictures, though: thank you!

I LOVE MY LIFE! This week was full of growing experiences and tender mercies from the Lord and I absolutely loved it. My brain is super jumbled today, so welcome to the mind of a missionary via some bullet points:

1. I'm still in Cedar Falls! With Sister Monroe! I am so happy: I love her. It has been nice this week to realize that we are kinda over the getting-to-know-you part of the relationship and are onto the working-together-more-efficiently stage. I don't think I ever hit that in Iowa City #1 because I was so amazed by sister Lloyd that I just spent the whole time learning from her every word. #2 because second transfer there, we got Sister Murphy, so our teaching never really hit a routine.

2. J--- GOT BAPTIZED! I haven't talked about her a lot to you yet, but she is AMAZING. It didn't hit me that it was happening until she was in the water. She is 51 but has had a ROUGH past. She has been through so much and wanted a new life SO badly. She quit smoking and now is CLEAN!!!!! This is the second baptism I have had on my mission, and it doesn't even feel like I did anything. I just showed up. She wanted it so badly. It was amazing to witness.....but also very very stressful. Addictions SUCK. I think I want to study about them more when I get home. (side note: It's really frustrating as a psych major to not have access the the reference books I normally have. I have really tried this week to just focus on the principles of the Gospel because I know those are the things that change us quicker than any earthly theories could......that is my favorite quote by Elder Packer.)

3. WE MOVED!!!!!! This week we had the biggest tender mercy ever: on friday Sister Monroe and I woke up in our old dumpy house, just wishing that we could move to our new place. We called the office with our last glimmer of hope and they said the keys were ready for us: a week early!!! We dropped EVERYTHING that day and moved in! Luckily, we had like zero appointments. It was the biggest tender mercy from the Lord. OUR NEW APARTMENT IS BEAUTIFUL! I will send pictures next week!

Well, today marks a whole 2 months of happiness I have had since I said goodbye to Sister Lloyd. I feel proud, in a way, that I have done so much growing since she left. But I still miss her like never before. 

~Sister Chloé Michelle Sumsion~

Monday, February 17, 2014

Cedar falls - week 6. Week 20 mission

Feb 10, 2014


My heart is incredibly calm this week. My companion stays up for hours every night worrying about things here, and I am asleep in like 15 seconds. Sometimes I feel guilty that I don't think enough about the people I work with, but I had some really cool experiences this week because of it:
I felt all week that the Lord was trying to tell me something and I sought a blessing yesterday from my district leader. My heart was so calm I thought it might stop. (just kidding: but seriously it felt so cool). It told me that HE was the one giving me my strength each day. I am so grateful for a God that knows us so personally and blesses us so perfectly.

Two weeks ago, we had a district meeting and it was confirmed to me by the Spirit that the people in Cedar Falls need more doctrine...myself included. I have been trying...and sad to say struggling, with this all week. My companion is AMAZING at bearing testimony....I am amazing at just talking. :) So needless to say: I have a lot to learn. It has been really cool this week to focus on giving people simple truth. That is what people need. That is what I need. That is what my companion needs. Truth. Straight up doctrine. Pure and simple testimony that Jesus is the Christ and that HE, as the Messiah and as my Redeemer, can help me: any time, any day, any way that I need or that He desires. The Atonement changes everything: including hearts. And people. And lives.

Also: my district leader who gave this powerful training on the Atonement reminds me so much of Ben. Elder Sumsion: I pictured you time and time again this week as District Leader over me. It was so cool to think of you giving powerful trainings like I KNOW you are. I am so proud of you and wish we could share more with each other about our missions and help each other out: but please know your weekly letters to mom are SSSSSOOOOOOOOO great. I seriously look up to you, little brother, and I know that we are both learning about how to apply the Atonement in our lives and look forward to the MANY conversations I know we will have about the work of the Lord. LOVE YOU, BENNET! (She calls her brother Ben - Bennet - who is also on a mission as a district leader.)
The Lord is my Best Friend. Time and time again this week, I wished Sister Lloyd would be here. I knew she would have the answer to this investigator's question, or that part of the lesson, or this theory about how to teach, or that testimony of the Atonement, or this help to my companion. And so it was bore testimony to me over and over again that I was here for a divine and glorious reason and that I was here to learn what it best for these people......and then it would hit me over and over again that I have NO IDEA what these people need......and then again and again and again and again I would turn to the Lord as ask Him. Turning to Him is the answer to everything. I am slowly learning: and He is patient with me. I have weakness and strengths: which I am REALLY TRYING to have Him use for the upbringing of His kingdom of the earth. I pray each day that my heart will be humble enough to receive it.

 :) So yeah. The work is incredible. Transfers are this week but Sister Monroe and I are hoping we have another 6 weeks together!

Miss you, fam!
-Sister Chloe Michelle Sumsion

Monday, February 3, 2014

Cedar Falls, IA - Week 5, Week 19 Mission

Ok, this week was SOOOOO cool for no particular reason besides that I am who I am and I nerd out about things.

This Gospel is AWESOME!!!! Seriously, it changes lives.

First thing to report: I had my first exchange this week!!!!!!! Since Lloyd & Murphy were Sister Training Leaders, I never went on an official exchange and this one was full of MIRACLES! Sister Cannon was my companion for about 26 hours and I learned SSSSOOOO MUCH from the Spirit.

The Spirit changes EVERYTHING. And I mean everything. 
"Chapter 4, PMG, I can't emphasize it enough." -Sister Lloyd
"You want to do good and be good? That is commendable. But the greatest good that can be achieved is to be under the complete influence of the Holy Spirit." -Enzio Bucshe "Unleashing the Dormant Spirit"
I learned this week that when we are obedient, we can feel the Spirit more frequently, and then we can be teachable...and I think that chain works visa versa too....
When we seek for the Spirit, we realize that the Atonement can help us with ANYTHING.

The Atonement can help:
Julie (investigator on date for feb 22) with strength to stop smoking
Hannah (a "lost sheep" in the Gospel) with clarity to know if God still speaks to her
Sister Dunigan (a member headed to the temple on saturday) with her memory to remember the knowledge she has and feels like she can't access
My companion (who I love desperate, but who is struggling right now) to remove the stress and worry she feels about this area
Me (who is SO happy, but keenly aware of my imperfections) to allow the Lord to work HIS work through an imperfect servant
Anyone anywhere (who feels like they are trying to do things alone) should come unto Him.

I promise anyone who reads these words that Jesus is the Christ. He knows our imperfections. He wants to help us with them. He knows better than us, what we need. He always attempts to speak to us. He is ANXIOUS to help us with anything. 
If you are reading your scriptures and praying daily, and attending church, THERE IS NOTHING YOU CANNOT MAKE IT THROUGH. 
" Hope on. Journey on. Honestly acknowledge your questions and your concerns, but first and forever fan the flame of your faith, because all things are possible to them that believe." -Holland "Lord I Believe"

This week, I really had FUN. Seriously. I am obsessed with this new insight that I have about wanting the Spirit all the time because He makes me feel SO GOOD. Like I can conquer anything....which is a good feeling to have this week......My companion is a SPITTING image of me. We have the same weaknesses, but different strengths. She is having a really rough time right now and I have LOVED LOVED LOVED watching Heavenly Father have me look at myself through her and teach me what I need to do.......and how far I have come. I got to bear powerful testimony this week of how much the Atonement had healed me. I was in her exact position a few months ago and now I am so at peace with the world because Sister Lloyd showed me how to access the Atonement and Sister Murphy taught me how to have prayers of accountability every night so that I would never feel overwhelmed or unsettled about my work here.

Also: I may be going to the temple this Saturday!!!!!!!!!! Plans aren't cleared yet, but I am so excited that it's a possibility!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Kinz Danahoo, David Bean, and Grandpa Bapa. Families are forever and I am glad mine includes you!!!! Can't wait to see you three again!!!!!!

sorry. time sucks.