Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Rule 88: Just do it!

Can we talk about miracles for a sec.... I have been trying to count all the miracles that happened this past week, but I just can't count that high (at least not in Italian)!

I don't even know where to start. First off, Saturday Giovanni (one of the Anziani's investigators) got baptized!!!! All the excitement happened before the baptism though. The Anziani had to stay the night Friday night in Firenze so they could not travel up to baptism with Giovanni (p.s. we do all our baptism in Firenze). They called in the morning to check on him and he said he was having some doubts. They hung up prayed then called him back but he wouldn't answer. Uh oh. That's when we got a call from the anziani seeing if we could go over and talk to Giovanni. We read Joseph Smith History with him and his mom -- the part when Satan overcame Joseph right before the first vision. Right before we are about to make good choices Satan will try to stop us. Other investigators have been talking about temptations they have now that they didn't have before. Satan is real and is powerful, but God is always more powerful. The Spirit was so strong in that house as we read together. Before we left to go to the baptism we said a kneeling prayer together and Giovanni pulled out his knee pads (he never stops joking :P)! His baptism was absolutely beautiful. Just simple and perfect. President got to come to it too because our Stake had Stake Conference this weekend. Gabriella (Giovanni's mom) is telling everyone her baptismal date now. She is so excited. She asked me to baptize her.... so we had a lesson about the priesthood this week. I hope Giovanni baptizes her :)

Monday, in district meeting, the anziani challenged us to challenge Sara to baptism that day. Well Sorella Hastings and I were super pumped. We planned it all out and we were going to challenge her in the first 5 minutes. When we got there, however, before we even started, she hit us with some bad news. Well the lesson didn't go at all how like we planned and we were a little down. It was 5 minutes to 9:00 and I didn't know how to challenge her before we left. But I had to. So I just did it. We weren't talking about it at all but I just told her we wanted to set a baptismal date with her and she said "absolutely"! She said she already told her mom that she wanted to be baptized! I wish you all could have seen the smile on her face, it changed her whole attitude. She was so happy. I am never going to forget that smile. Her life is really hard but I see hope in her eyes now. THIS GOSPEL CHANGES LIVES. We also saw her yesterday and she asked us if she could serve a mission. Haha! We didn't see that one coming at all. She always knows how to surprise us.

To add to the story, Sorella Hoffman called that night and we told her that we set a baptism date. She said she wanted to set a baptism date the next day. We told her to call us when they did. Sure enough  the next day we got a call from the Pisa Sorelle. This is so great that we get to help challenge each other.

Another small miracle: one of my name tags got ran over by a car (don't ask me how). The pin broke but the name tag is perfectly perfect and I can just order a new pin. On Sunday we found it waiting outside our door. One of our neighbors must have found it outside and put it there.

We also had Stake Conference and that was amazing but I am running out of time :)

Last thing:  Sorella Hastings and I are starting this thing in December called 25 days of Christ. We are going to send a scripture about Christ to our investigators every day in December. My invitation this week to y'all is to send me your favorite scripture about Christ and tell me why you like it!

Remember Grazie a Lui we have this beautiful Gospel and we know we can return to live with Him again. We don't ever have to be alone because He knows how we feel. He knows our pains and only through Him can we be completely healed. I am honored to wear His name every day. I know He lives. Don't ever forget that He loves you.

I love you too!

Sorella Dani Hamblin

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Rule 80: There is never enough email time

November 19, 2014

So much happened this week I hope I remember it all!

First off we had an amazing Zone Conference yesterday with Anziano Fingerle, an area 70. I loved it. One thing that stood out to me is how much we talked about the importance of prayer -- for us and for our investigators. It is easy for us to forget to make our prayers sincere at times. We talked about the importance of saying personal prayers aloud. I have such a testimony of this!  I know that prayers are powerful. I know if our investigators learn how to sincerely pray they will see miracles.

We also talked about how missionary work and family history work is the same great redemptive work --  they go together. He said we weren't called to be family history missionaries, but my brother is. I think it so cool that Derrek and I get to work on both sides of the veil. Our work goes hand in hand. 

If I had three more hours to write I still wouldn't be about to fit in everything I learned yesterday. 

We also set a baptism day with our investigator Gabriella. It is for January and it gives her 3 weeks to quit smoking. I know she can do it. She is making all the right choices to help her in her goal. 

I lost my bible a while back and didn't have one in Italian. Our sweet new convert surprised me the other day and gave me a mini bible. It was such a sweet little miracle.

Our primary program was on Sunday and was so cute. One of our investigators, Sara, came to church for the first time and she is going to Giovanni's baptism on Saturday! 

Sorry I ran out of time again this week! Just know things are great here. I love this work. I have never felt so much love in my life. I can feel all of yours prayers. I love you all! 

Sorella Dani Hamblin

Monday, November 10, 2014

Rule 73: It isn't a good P-day without bucket-loads of rain!

Ciao Tutti!

I can't believe another week has flown by! I got a new companion. Her name is Sorella Hastings and she is from Arizona! We both have names that Italians can't say because the H confuses them. so much. While I was waiting for her to come down from Milan on Thursday I got to work with the Firenze Sorelle. It was fun to work in another city for a day but I have to say I like my small towns in my area compared to the big city of Firenze. My new companion just served in Milan so she is getting used to this small town thing.

Halloween; Day of the Dead; and Day of the Saints were all this past weekend:  Also our branch president's daughter came home from her mission and one of our investigators had a birthday! It was quite a busy weekend! 
I had a really rough week and I was feeling super down, but it brought a super neat experience. One morning while I was praying I could literally picture all the people back home that are praying for me. I got so much strength from remembering how loved ones are cheering for me back home. It was one of the sweetest moments I had on my mission. After some good study and an inspired district meeting I am feeling completely back to normal. Not to mention, my companion is amazing! We compliment eachother's strengths so perfectly. I am excited for the upcoming weeks!

The work here is so great. We are teaching some truly amazing people. I love teaching. My favorite part of any day is teaching. It even tops gelatto ;) It is amazing to feel the Spirit teach through you. There is nothing like it in the world. Sometimes you don't have a clue what to say but as long as you try, you are always able to say something. Sorella Hastings and I are exhausted, but its that "I have used every second of every day to the best of my ability and I can't take another step" kind of exhausted. I feel so blessed to be serving in this branch. the new converts here are doing amazing. It's amazing to watch them continue to grow.

This work is amazing. God knows us. Dio ci ama. Tutti!

Sorella Dani Hamblin

Firenze Sorelle