Translate

Saturday, January 17, 2015

"WELL DONE THOU GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT"

HERMANA MAXWELL IS COMING HOME!!!!!!

You are welcome to come and hear Hermana Maxwell report on her mission
January 25, 2015
1:00 p.m.
14650 South 3200 West
Please join us following the meeting to congratulate her on a job well done!
14416 South 3400 West




Tuesday, January 13, 2015

"THIS IS IT!" Last email!!!! 1/13/2015

"Funeral in a Box"

"A few goodbyes... with many more to come"




THIS IS IT!!!

Well everyone, this is my last email I'm sending out as a full-time missionary. It doesn't feel remotely real. However I do think its starting to hit me little by little. I don't really know what to say other than these last 18 months of my life have been the most intense learning period of my whole existence. And I am so grateful for them.  It would take hours to be able to express the love I have for my mission and for my Savior. My mission is truly everything to me.  I've changed, and I've helped others change.  There is no greater work than this.  I love it.
This week has been a lot of hugs and tears however its also full of excitement for the future too.  Saying goodbye to some of these people is so incredibly hard but I have never been more grateful for a stateside mission because I CAN come back! I had my departing interview on Saturday with President Miller. It was one of the sweetest interviews I've ever had with him.  We talked for an hour and ten minutes! Usually they don't last that long but I spent a good amount of time asking him for advice haha. I just value his opinion so much.  He asked me to share with him one principle and one experience from my mission that has shaped who I am.  I talked about the Atonement.  I have learned so much about so many things but if I had to pick one it would definitely be that.  I've learned that the Atonement isn't just for the remission of sin. But its for "good" people too. There is a real enabling power behind it that allows good people to change into better people.  I learned a little more about the depth of His sacrifice. That He really did feel everything, not only pain, but also happiness so that He could understand every flaw and every strength of our character. Its only through Him that we become like God. For my experience I shared the one with Gloria.  As I talked about it I started to cry, and as I looked up, he was crying too! Ive never seen him cry.  The spirit was so strong. He asked me to type the story and send it to him.  Of course he gave me the whole marriage/family talk and  lots of good advice. At the end he thanked me for the kind of missionary I have been, and told me that I have changed his and sister miller's life, and have truly served an honorable mission.
I also had to speak in church on Sunday. There was only two of us so I had to take up half of the meeting haha. Of course my topic was missionary work. I spoke on 3 ways that we can preach the gospel effectively as members: developing our own testimony, consecrating our life to God, and working with love.  It went pretty good! I am going to miss the Montana Vista ward dearly.  They have become my family. I mean ive been here 7 and a half months! 
This past week consisted of soooo much finding. We found another incredible family. The parents are Isabel and Pedro and they LOVE us.  Its funny because missionaries are basically like celebrities to members, but its rare that investigators fall in love with you that fast. They are taking me out to eat at a steakhouse before I leave haha. They call us their "angels" and told us that we bring such a beautiful spirit into their home. I love them so much. I think the hardest people to leave though is Monica and her kids.  This family has changed my life completely.  I want to come back for their baptism.  The father is presenting a lot of difficulties for them... so they haven't been able to come to church because of him.  They just have my heart. I hope to be a part of their lives forever.  
Im just so grateful for everything. Im so sad to end this but at the same time so happy to start this next "adventure chapter" as President says.  I cant wait to see you!!!!! I cant thank you enough for all the support you have given me. My life is different because of it. I Love God. I love my Savior. And I love this church. IT IS true. and I love all you so much. See you soon :)
Hermana Maxwell 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

"TRIBULATION producesPATIENCE and patience produces HOPE" Email 1/6/2015

Jennifer Lawrence aka Hermana Budge
Look a likes!

The goodbyes commence!

MI FAMILIA.

Hola from el paso :) 
This week has been in one word: WONDERFUL. Every time I recover from a sickness its just so awesome to realize how grateful I am for health!!! The world is so much better when you are healthy haha. I've really been able to focus on my investigators and just working hard till the end. And beyond :) This week has started to be really emotional as i've realized how much I love these people here in El Paso. I will leave lessons and just be close to tears because I feel such a deep love for those I teach. I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. But I am excited to continue the work on the "other side." And to represent my Savior not necessarily by my tag, but by my heart. Im sure the field is white in Utah as well!
Unfortunately President didn't let me make the trip up to Albuquerque for MLC because he wanted me to reserve my strength.  It was a disappointment considering it was my last one.. but its awesome because since we were obedient and went out to work instead we had the most miraculous day ever and found 7 new investigators!! God works in mysterious ways.
Our investigators are doing great right now. Monica, Camila, Jorge, and Ximena just have my heart completely. I’m not sure if they will be baptized before I leave... but I am praying for it haha. I just have to remind myself that it’s not my decision, its theirs. But I really do love them so much. I can’t wait for you to meet them someday.  Miguel, a boy we are teaching from a part member family should be getting baptized on the 17th! We are so excited not only for him but also for the whole family. It’s so cool to see how one little boy can help reactivate his family through baptism.  It’s kind of a similar situation to the Salas kids. Who, by the way have come to church almost every Sunday since the baptism ;) As we stopped by to kind of "say goodbye" the mom just took me in her arms and cried. She thanked me over and over. Its moments like that that you know you have done your job. Well at least God did. :)
Some of our new investigators have turned out to be really awesome as well! We met a woman named Rita last night who is basically a "dry Mormon" She had so many good questions during our lesson and believes everything we do. She is a very faithful member of the Catholic Church but is very excited to read the book of Mormon. Also are teaching a woman named Josefina and her daughter Yesenia. We actually originally thought they weren't interested but luckily we were persistent and now they are beginning to progress in the gospel. Miracles are happening! This week we also were able to have some really spiritual lessons with members. It seems that whenever we prayerfully choose a member to go by they ALWAYS need us in that moment. There is nothing like being an instrument of the spirit.
I gave my "dying testimony" in zone training this week.  It wasn't anything like I expected it would be. You always kind of imagine that moment your whole mission but I just walked up, gave my testimony, and sat down and it STILL doesn't feel real haha. I have my departing interview with President on Saturday which will be interesting. I guess I’m in denial.. I still feel like I have forever. Although i've heard it doesn't hit you till you are laying in bed at home haha.
This week I've been studying a lot on the Christ-like attribute of patience. I was reading in Romans (I think its chapter 5) where Paul talks about how we should "glory in tribulation." What a phrase huh? Glory in tribulation. Well, it’s possible! Tribulation produces patience and patience produces hope. How can we have hope without tribulation and patience? I love the gospel because it helps us to not only endure our trials but endure them well and be able to grow in them.  The church is true people.
Well this is a long email! Better stop now :) I love you so very much!!!! I'm counting down the days too... but I definitely don't have a chain haha. LOVE YOU

Hermana Maxwell

"Challenges never occur in life without a whole lot of learning" email 12/30/14

Family,

Well this week has been a bit of a challenge but a challenge never occurs in life without a whole bunch of learning to go along with it! Especially patience :) Still feeling really crummy. This is a different kind of illness than I've ever had.  VERY weak and tired, a bit sick to my stomach, cough, just cant seem to get better. BUT! the TB test came back negative! yay! I got some blood-work done yesterday (a horror-story for another day... couldn't get my veins to bleed..almost passed out... not fun) and the results come in today. 
Christmas was wonderful although I spent all of it in the apartment. We received a lot of support from other missionaries and from the ward so it was truly a demonstration of Christ-like charity.  No plans for the New Year... other than hopefully just working my butt off :) MLC is tomorrow but we aren't sure if we are going to be able to make it.
Im sorry its kind of a depressing email this week, my head is pretty in the clouds and I cant think straight. However I am grateful. So grateful for the opportunity I have to still wear this tag, even if its in bed haha. Ill keep you posted on whats going on. I love you so much.


Hermana Maxwell

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

KIDS PRAYERS ARE THE BEST! Email 12/23/2014




Familia!!! Feliz Navidad!!!!
Things in El Paso are great! This past week has really been a good self-reflection/spiritual time for me. We had our zone conference which was all about what our real purpose is as missionaries. A lot of us get caught up in other "good" things but they aren't our purpose. Such as developing our own testimonies, blessing our own families, etc. Those aren't bad things but they are focused inward instead of outward. We are here to bring others to Christ through living his gospel. I have really tried harder to focus outward these last couple of days and it has been awesome :)
Investigators are doing great! Maria Gomez is going to finnnnallly quit her job and Monica and the kids are just as amazing as ever. Everytime Camila (9) prays she says: "Thank you for Budge and Maxwell for teaching us about you." Its the most adorable thing ever. The other day another little boy prayed "Dear god. Just keep doin what your doin.  And please bless Obama that he can make good decisions." I LOVE KIDS PRAYERS haha. We have gone on a couple exchanges this past week and I got to go out to Ysleta again! Its always so weird being back out there. I found the singing turkey you sent me last year as well as our old blankets/santa hats. It was really funny and super nostalgic. We have been doing a ton of caroling lately and its soooo amazing. The first time we did it it was super awkward because no one carols here in El Paso but it is such a good way to soften peoples hearts around this time of year. No matter how bad we sing ;)
Im feeling quite a bit better... this transfer has just been kind of unhealthy all over the place but its ok. As im sitting writing this im kind of nauseous but im alright.  Just pray for me :) Ill get over it. Basically im just real happy. I love this time of year, I love my savior, and I love getting to represent him as a full-time missionary. Times are a bit bittersweet right now but Im enjoying every second. Love you all so much and Ill see you soon!
 
"He is the Gift" - John 3:16
 
Hermana Maxwell


LAST TRANSFER!! Email 12/16/2014

New Comp: Hmna Budge


FELIZ NAVIDAD!!
Another crazy week over in the life of Hermana Maxwell! I feel like week 1 of the transfer is always slightly bonkers.  Hermana Budge (I was right!) my new comp is all settled in now. She is awesome!!! She is from Layton UT but her family just moved to St. George. As with all of my companions she has gone through some really hard things in her life including leukemia as a child. I look up to her a lot. She has such a humble spirit and is willing to learn and work hard.  She has been out about a year on her mission. 
So bad news first... we had to drop Luis Reyes. Apparently he has been drinking behind our backs and doesn't really want to be baptized. He was just doing it to please his wife. Pretty heartbreaking but its ok! They did all come to church on Sunday which was good!
Good news. First I FINALLY have gotten over being sick. I have been able to work but I finally had to go see a PA in New Mexico to get an antibiotic. It lasted 12 days... awful. BUT ITS OVER!! :) Also we have seen SO many miracles this week. I love the Christmas season so stinkin much. We invited Monica and her kids to the ward Christmas party and she came!!! They just ate it up and they all want to be baptized and to come to church :) she made so many friends in the ward!!! This is the family every missionary dreams about. Im so excited for them I cant even tell you!!
Maria Gomez also finnnnallly switched her work schedule and is coming to church on sunday!!! Early even!!! (that's a very important detail. Everything starts an 1hr late in the Mexican culture.) She surprised us by waiting till the end of the lesson to tell us.
Basically i'm just really happy. Time is going real fast.... especially with the Christmas season. We are singing a special musical number on sunday put on by the stake president's wife. She is like a Mexican Mozart haha. Really though.. she's intense. I love my Savior and I love being able to testify of him every single day. There is nothing better. Also I love my dear family and friends and am so grateful for every single one of you!!! Have the best week ever. y feliz navidad!
Hermana Maxwell 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

5 TRANSFERS IN ONE AREA!! Email 12/8/2014

"Killing off" another comp!

Our "Mexican" picture. People never smile.



Familllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllia!!!

Transfer news is in once again! Im staying!!! Surprise surprise. 5 transfers in this area!! Im actually super happy about it because it would have been hard to spend just one transfer anywhere else... especially with Christmas and everything! Sounds like my companion is going to be Hermana Budge from guess where? LAYTON! but not sure yet.... 99%. She is really sweet and obedient so I couldn't ask for anything more. I have actually served with her a lot and have been her STL for the past 4 transfers.
The Christmas season is definitely underway! They are playing Christmas music in the library as we speak and I'm staring at a giant Christmas tree behind my computer. We got to watch the Christmas devotional last night and it was just incredible. I could kick myself that I missed so many of those before the mission. Did you guys watch it?? My favorite talk was Elder Christofferson. He talked about the condescension of Christ and what that really means. The fact that Christ came down to mortality at all was a form of descension let alone to be born in such humble circumstances. He related it to us and how we also experienced a type of condescension from heaven.. no wonder we are forced to descend below "some" things. Not anything compared to Christ obviously but its descending below those things that allows us to ascend back to god's presence. It was beautiful. I have been so sensitive to the spirit lately Im just always bawling.
We also had one of the most spiritual MLC's i've ever had on the mission. We discussed the connection between sacrifice and sacredness. The reason the sacred grove, martin's cove, and the temple are all so sacred is because of the sacrifices that took place there. The last picture they held up was that of Christ in Gethsemane. That place is the most sacred because the GREATEST sacrifice of all mankind took place there. Everyone was crying in the room the spirit was so thick. We talked about making our missions more sacred. My mission has really been something that I hold soo sacred to me. It has required a lot of sacrifice but ultimately it becomes more of a gift than anything. I am so happy to be a missionary for another Christmas!!! There is nothing like bringing the TRUE meaning of Christmas to everyone 24/7. I love my Savior and I know he lives!!!!! LOVE YOU TOO!!! Really focus on him this Christmas and you will have the most sacred Christmas of your lives too. Have the best week ever!