Sunday, November 27, 2016

I'm Good....

SO FIRST OFF, thank youuuuu to everyone for all of the kind words of encouragement and prayers this past week! I'm slowly but surely regaining my strength and hoping to be back to being a normal missionary this week! 
Sooo in the Micronesia, Guam Mission there are 7 different islands that missionaries serve on! And Guam is BY FAR the nicest of all the islands so if missionaries ever get really sick then they usually have to go to Guam to get better assistance in regards to their health. And since I first got sick one of my biggest fears was that I would get sent to Guam and wouldn't get sent back to Pohnpei! So on Tuesday I went to the hospital for some testing and to hopefully receive some medication that would solve the problem. However, the hospitals here are a little rough and they couldn't test for what they thought I had and consequently couldn't give me the medicine I needed to fix the problem. So I'm sitting in the hospital with Sister Bowers and she looks over at me and says, "don't you cry, everything is going to be okay." which of course makes me cry haahahah. So we drive home, talk to the mission nurse, and get news that I would be flying out for Guam on Thanksgiving. It's safe to say that Tuesday was a rough day! However, on Tuesday night the Elders had heard that I would be going to Guam and came over to give me a blessing. And with that blessing, life got a little brighter! I KNEW that my Heavenly Father was aware of me and I KNEW that everything was going to be okay. Sooooo fast forward. It's Wednesday night. I'm packing my bag, getting ready to go to Guam when Sister Shupe (the Mission Nurse) calls! All the flights to Guam were booked for 10 days out!! So she put me on a special diet and we are going to see if I'm well enough to stay on Pohnpei after this week. Wahooooo!! 
And on Thanksgiving it was a tender mercy for me to see that on the day I was supposed to leave for Guam we put 3 new people on baptismal date who's hearts had previously been hardened towards the idea of baptism. I was needed on Pohnpei that day and I have a feeling that I'm gonna be needed on Pohnpei for a whole lot longer!!
Again, THANK YOU. I've felt the prayers from loved ones at home and I sure am grateful for all of you! Thank you thank you thank you!!!
Xoxoxoxo. Sister Russell

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Hospitals and Heaven Helps....

These past two weeks have been nothing short of HARD. Since last Thursday I haven't been able to keep ANYTHING down which has lead to a few late nights in the hospital, a priesthood blessing, and a whole lot of times on my knees. And though it's been a difficult time...I know without a doubt that if we allow them, trials bring us closer to our Father in Heaven and Savior. There was one especially hard night where I was SCARED that my mission would be coming to a close. I was bawling. Then I heard a knock on the door! The senior couple!! The Fultons have been watching over my these past few weeks and felt prompted to come see me that night. And just before leaving Sister Fulton leans over to me and says.."let the Atonement heal you." I can't begin to explain just how much I NEEDED that simple sentence. And though I'm not fully healed yet, I'm getting better! EVERYTHING will be okayyyy!
But for GOOD NEWS this week.
The Elders contract was up on their house soooooooo they moved into our house and me and Sister George moved in with the Uh sisters which means I get to live with Sister Bowers a.k.a my BEST friend on the island!!! Wahoooo! And living with her makes bucket showers about a thousand times better because we can just laugh through it together! 
I'm not quite sure how but I know that somehow everything is going to be okay! Never in my life have I been so grateful for bucket showers, HUGE spiders, being dirty 24/7, the Pohnpeian language, and being a missionary on this crazy island! I LOVE IT. And never again will I take it for granted!!!
Sending loooooooots of love from Pohnpei! happppyyy Thanksgiving!!!
Xoxoxo. Sister Russell

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Lost Crabs...

Soooo to start off here's my stupid island story of the week 

So me and my companion are at one of our recent convert's houses having a lesson. As we are getting ready to go they hand us a bag with 3 crabs in it! Not thinking anything of it we took the bag, put it in the back of our car, and headed to our next appointment! Sooooo we go about the day and both of us had totally forgotten about the crabs! So at this point the crabs have been in the car for about 6 hours and I open up the back to get some pamphlets and I see this ripped up garbage bag. I was so confused. So I ask my companion what it is and she freaks out hahahahaaha we lost the crabs. And if we are being honest I'm kinda scared of crabs. Soooo we go to a member and ask if they can search our car for the crabs! and liiiike 20 minutes later he found and killed all 3  BOO YAH. 
In regards to the work, things are GOOD! Mesihsou is a whooooole lot different thatn Sapwalap! There are 4 BIG churches in our area and that has caused some serious problems for us! In Sapwalap we taught like 6 to 8 lessons a day to investigators and in Mesihsou we are working with less actives a lot and teaching like 3 lessons to investigators! And this week I was FRUSTRATED. I was jealous of my friends serving in the states! Being around normal things, eating normal food, and speaking english! It took me realizing that this is where I am NEEDED. And remembering that this work has nothinnnng to do with me! That I'm simply a tool in the Lord's hands and I don't wanna be a dull one! 
So after I got it together and put my big girl skirt on we went to see on of our investigators, Minaco! She broke down to us about some of the trials she was facing. We just listened and listened and prayed and prayed! We went into the lesson planning on teaching the Plan of Salvation but as we sat and listened to her (I only got like 50% of what she was saying) we both felt impressed that she needed the Book of Mormon! The Book of Mormon has provided me with answers and comfort and I KNEW it could do the same for her! That lesson was one of the sweetest experiences I have had yet!
Before coming to Pohnpei I had read the Book of Mormon multiple times and thought I had a testimony of the strength within that book! My testimony of the Book of Mormon has been tried and strengthened so much over these past few months and now I know without a doubt that the Book of Mormon is true and can work miracles in the lives of those who read it!
IT'S ALL TRUE I PROMISE. There's no way in heck I'd be here if I wasn't so dang certain!
LOVE, Sister Russell