Tuesday, October 28, 2014

We Would be Lamanites...

"....but they don't wear very much clothing." -Sister Arnold
Well, my darlings, this week has been pretty good I think. Everything kind of blurs together and I basically never have any idea what happened. Okay, no, this week actually has been really good.
So, I'm going to start by talking about this one investigator we have. Because she is so great. Oh my goodness, I love her SO much! So, we've only taught her a few times. I've only taught her twice. She kind of disappeared off the face of the earth for a while, because her phone is broken (it's really super complicated, but basically she has no way to communicate with anyone.) Sister Arnold and I thought she might have had her baby, because she's super pregnant. (It turns out she still has two months more to go, so thank goodness that wasn't the case.) So we hadn't talked to her in like a week and a half. BUT! When we finally are able to have a lesson with her again, she tells us all about how she's getting MARRIED! We haven't ever said anything to her about getting married, so we feel like this is a huuuge step. Also, she keeps talking about how she wants her mom and her fiance to be accepting and understanding and how she wants them eventually to accept our message as well. So. Sister Arnold and I feel REALLY strongly that she's going to be baptized. And I am so excited, because she is so lovely. I love her SO much. She has the most beautiful light in her eyes. She would make the best member. Also, she loves the Book of Mormon. A lot. She's so great.
We got dropped by one of our investigators this week. (And then he came to church on Sunday, but we're still dropped....) Anyway, that was really hard. I love Jaime so much, and it's so hard to know that now is just not his time. We thought it could have been. But someday, he'll know. And everything will be well then.
I sang in Sacrament Meeting yesterday! That went really well. The thing is...no one in the ward that I'm in can sing. I think it's really adorable. But they were all really impressed with me. And it made me so happy. :) But then I got chastised by the "Ward Music Chairman" which I did not know was a thing...but apparently it is. So he came up and was...well not yelling, because we were in church, but having this really frank discussion with me about how I'm supposed to tell him because he needs to approve of the musical number and blah blah blah. He talked to me about this for like 20 minutes, saying the same things over and over. The thing is though. Nobody told us that we had to do anything. This was a special sacrament meeting that the missionaries planed entirely. The Bishop told us that we were to plan it, and that he really wanted a musical number to happen. So we explained that to him, and he yelled more at me about how I should have called him. Which I'm not sure how I was supposed to do that if I didn't even know he existed. But that was fun. Got chastised a few times by him throughout the three hours of church. But all is well! Because now I know.
So, we serve every week at this place called the Action Center. Basically what we do is sort through bins of food and then it is given to people who need it. So it's a really cool place. And they listen to the best radio station. (I have a really hard time with it, because it's my kind of music and I miss listening to my music when I am there.) Anyway. They listen to the best radio station and it was ridiculously solid today. One day there was Carryon My Wayward Son by Kansas; Your Song by Elton John; You Make My Dreams Come True by Hall & Oates.. Another day they played Piano Man by Billy Joel. Sometimes they play The Beatles. And man. It's just so good. Get some Whitney Houston going sometimes. So much happy. Anyway. The one day that they played Carryon My Wayward Son it was stuck in my head ALL the day long. My guitar lesson days were coming back to me and I was getting some really good air guitar going on. I miss my guitar. And my brother's guitar that really I'm stealing when I get home. Anywayy. Enough about that.
Mmm... Oh! There was a baptism yesterday, and it was so beautiful. The Spirit was so, so strong. It was amazing. I loved it so much.
I'm getting really sick of everyone just assuming that because I can sing I know how to lead music. But it's fine. I just feel a little bit like Elder Heiner in the CCM. All is well, all is well.
I feel like I should have lots of other things to tell you all about... But I have no idea what those things would be.

That's a lie. Okay. Guys. Colorado is broken! There are record breaking high temperatures right now. It's basically been 85+ all week. It's almost November. And today, it's 42 I think. Sooo...someone needs to fix Colorado, because basically fall is not a thing that is happening.
Oh, one more story. Ah, my companions always get hit on and I think it's so, so funny! We were tracting one day, in the 90 degree weather, and Sister Arnold was just grumpy. And this one guy walks up to us, and we have the following conversation:
Random Guy: Hey, I was just wondering if you girls know where I could get a joint?
S Arnold: Nope, we don't. We're actually missionaries.
RG: Oh okay. I was just wondering where I could get a joint.
SA: Well, we don't know. Sorry.
RG: That's okay. Hey, I was just thinking, you girls are pretty cute. *stares intensely at Sister Arnold* I really love your green.... I mean blue eyes.
SA: Well, thanks. Uhm, we're going to go get in our car now.
*silence until we get halfway across the street*
RG: Hey, I was just thinking..Do you have a boyfriend?
*Arnold throws a frantic/exasperated look at me*
SA: Yep, I do.
RG: Ah, well, that's okay. I was just thinking you're pretty cute chicks. But it's okay, because I just have to get on facebook and text a couple of chicks and...
SA: Okay, here's the thing. We're actually not chicks, we're girls. Chicks are baby chickens.
RG: That's cool, I would hold a baby chicken, too.
And then he said a lot more about chicks, and it was really funny and I was basically dying the entire time. So funny.
Also, sometimes I come home at the end of the day and I smell like weed. Colorado life.
Love and miss every single one of you.
Hermana Sherilyn Harper

P.S. What the what?! It's the 27th which means, it's already been 2 months! How has it already been two months?! Time. Where are you going?!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Zuni, Arnold, and All that Goes with That

Hello my lovely friends and family.
This week has been a week. Or something like that. It's been really good, actually. And it went by ridiculously fast. I feel like I was emailing yesterday. Time flies by soo quickly. I can't really handle it.
Okay. I realized last week that I said nothing about my companion. And I feel bad about that. Because she is so wonderful! The best mom that anyone could ever want! :) Her name is Sister Arnold, she's from New Hampshire, and she goes to BYU Provo. She watches Sherlock and she watched part of Doctor Who (but this is a really long story and I get a little bit upset with her because she skipped 9 and only watched 10 and I just...I can't.) But we get along really, really well. We love each other so much. She had a really crazy situation -- she was called to speak English, and then she got 3 months into her mission and President Murdock asked her to switch to speaking Spanish. So she's only been speaking Spanish for 7 months. She's really good though, and she helps me out a lot. I love her so much! Really, she is the absolute best trainer I could have ever hoped for.
I want to talk about my district. But I also want to make it known that the Zuni District is in no way better than my 12C. 12C will always be the best. I miss my Mexico crew. Anyway. My District here is really great. I love them a lot. We are the model district for our mission. My mission president is pretty new and he has had to implement a lot of rules because it was just a normal thing for everyone to be really disobedient. SO. My District is the most obedient District in the mission. We have to set a really good example for everyone else, so I feel ridiculously blessed to be in it.
We had exchanges this week, and I got to go English speaking for a day. :) It was really great. I can actually participate a lot in the lessons in English. I loved it. We met this one guy though, oh man, he was funny. He told us all about how he believes in God, but he thinks God is an alien. And he thinks God and a bunch of his alien friends discovered Earth and saw a bunch of monkeys just hanging out, so they did some gene splicing. And that is how God created man in his image. So, my friends, according to this theory, we are half alien and half monkey. Mas o menos. It was so funny. My Sister Training Leader was not impressed with him. I thought it was really interesting to listen to. I've never met anyone who has thought that way before. My Sister Training Leader has kind of a bad attitude. I had a hard time with her. But I do love her! And that's all I have to say about that. But while we were on exchanges, we tracted...basically all day. And I fell off of the sidewalk and almost got run over by a car. That happened. But I'm still alive and didn't get hurt! So all is well.
Yesterday we tracted into a less active member (and by less-active, I mean inactive). She hasn't been to church in 10 years. But she wants to start meeting with Sister Arnold and I. And I love her SO MUCH! Oh my goodness. I can't wait to get to know her better and ah. She's great. She's going to make us enchiladas sometime, also, because evidently she makes the BEST enchiladas.
Next Sunday, we're having a special sacrament meeting especially for our investigators! I'm really, really excited. Because it is just centered on Jesus Christ. It's going to be soo amazing. The missionaries had to plan it. (There are 4 companionships in my ward. My entire district is in the same ward.) But our obispo kind of gave us an outline of how he wanted the meeting to go. He was very insistent on a musical number. And my District Leader was very insistent that I sing. So. I'm singing next Sunday in Sacrament Meeting. So I'm really excited about that. It's going to be an amazing Sacrament Meeting, and I'm not going to be able to understand about 75% of it. That's rough. But all is well.

My heart is so, so full. I love the people of Colorado so much. I love my investigators. I love the members. I love the recent converts. I love the people that are less/inactive. I love all of the missionaries. I just love everyone. I'm pretty sure that my heart is going to explode. But it has a crazy way of just expanding. And I love it.
My Spanish is so rough, guys. The struggle is real. I can say lots of things, actually. I speak it pretty decently. BUT. I have no idea what anyone is saying to me ever. And that's really hard for me. It's not like how it was in the CCM. The teachers were so easy on us, speaking slowly and in Spanglish. But, they did help me a lot. It's just so different in the field. I'm slowly understanding more and more. And someday, I'm going to be great. But I'm really jealous (that's not exactly the right word, but I don't know how else to express it) of the missionaries that just get to be immersed in the language. I feel like you're going to learn it so much faster than I will. But it's okay. Because I can do it! Because I was called of God and He is here to help me.

Friends and family at home: I hope all is still well. I love and miss you so much, it's a little bit insane.
Friends and family from the CCM: I'm pretty sure everyone is sick of hearing me talk about how much I loved my time in Mexico, how much I loved every single person, and all of my never ending stories about my time there. I miss you all so dang much. And I hope you're kicking butt in the field. :)
I love you all so much and pray for you always!
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Sherilyn Harper

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

CDSM is Life

Hermana Harper and the New Missionaries
hola familia y amigos!
I have a lot of things to tell you. Colorado Denver South. So. Great. I love it here so much! I've been assigned to serve in the Denver 1 North area, which is one of two areas where Spanish speaking sisters can be assigned in the Metro area. So. City life it is, for now.
I have a random list of things I needed to tell you all. So. Here it is.
-You might be a Spanish state-side missionary if someone opens the door and you think, "Oh crap, she's white."
-Sometimes if your dinner plans fall through, you go buy a Little Caesar's Pizza and eat it on the hood of your car in the parking lot with the other sisters in your district. When in the ghetto, live like it.
-If your 18 year old district leader tells you, "Your testimony thing was sweet," it's meant to be the highest form of a compliment.
-Obedencia trae bendiciones. Obedencia perfecta trae milagros.
-The structural integrity of the roads in Colorado is crap.
-If you tell Coloradians that you miss the mountains, they get really, really offended and rant to you about how they have mountains. (This is a lie. In the city, the mountains do not exist. YOu do not ever see them.)
-Little Hispanic children are the cutest.
-If your mission president finds out that you can sing, he will make you sing a solo on your first night there.
-So many hugs/cheek kisses and handshakes. And my awkwardness just can't even handle it.
Okay, so there's that.

Other really cool thing. On our first day here, our mission president (who is the best! i love him a lot) told us that our first assignment as a missionary is to read the Book of Mormon in the first 42 days we are here. We also have to underline all of the references to Jesus Christ and write down the different names He has in the back two pages.
SO! That has been going really, really well! I absolutely love it. My love for the Book of Mormon just grows and grows every day. I love it so much. :) If you're up for that challenge. Do it. Because to read it in 6 weeks, you only have to read 13 pages a day. It's really not that much.
Colorado in the fall is BEAUTIFUL. I love it so much. I'm so glad that I got to come here in the fall. It just makes me really, really happy.
I love the people here so much. I have no idea what they're saying to me 80% of the time. But I love everyone here with todo mi corazon. Being a missionary is the greatest. I love it so much.
If anyone ever wants to send me letters, my address is:
Hermana Sherilyn Harper
7160 W Cedar Ave #1
Lakewood, CO 80228
I hope everyone is having a most wonderful life. :) I miss everyone. I especially miss Mexico right now.
Con mucho, mucho amor,
Hermana Sherilyn harper

Friday, October 10, 2014

October 6, 2014

Hi everyone!
I have not received an email from Sherilyn yet this week. She flew from Mexico to Colorado on Monday! The Mission President sent a picture of her after she got there. So, sorry that this is not a blog entry, but a post of two pictures. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!
President Murdock, Hermana Harper, Sister Murdock
Hermana Harper's District from the CCM

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Love and be Loved

¡Hola familia y amigos! 

The District
Crazy news: This is my last week in Mexico! At this time next week, I shall be in Colorado. :) And I am feeling all of the feels. I'm so excited and so terrified and so sad and so happy and so everything really. I feel all things and I feel all of them deeply. The struggle is real, guys. Entonces, this last week is going to be crazy. Because I'm leaving so early on Monday, I only have two more days of classes left. So that's weird. I'm going to miss my teachers a lot. Because I have had the best teachers. :) And let's just not even talk about how much I'm going to miss my District. Because it's slightly obscene how much I'm going to miss them. 

Anyway, I got to leave the CCM today. :) We went to visit the Mexico City Temple. Unfortunately, we did not get to go in. Because it is currently closed for construction. But we went through the Visitor's Center, which is ridiculously beautiful. (The temple is also beautiful, But I have no idea how the inside is, because...I didn't get to go in.) But it was so much fun. I loved it so much. After our little tour we got to go to a little bookstore right next to it. So I have super great scripture cases for my Spanish scriptures now. (Guys, this is really important to note, because Spanish scriptures are taller than English ones, it's the weirdest thing. So normal scripture cases don't fit on them.) And I got some really great shirts that are made by native people. But since I didn't get to go IN the temple, I'm just going to have to come back to go in. Good thing I have a friend in Mexico. Pamela - you got me here? We're taking a Mexico excursion so I can go through the temple here. Okay. As you were, team. 

I don't even know what else to say to you all right now. Being on a mission is the best. I learn so many wonderful things and I have grown and my testimony has grown. I've made so many wonderful friends. So many friends. (Like, when I get back to Provo it's going to be a constant party.) And I have friends to travel to visit. My life has been touched by so many people for the last 5 (and a half-ish) weeks. 

I know that last week I wrote about love, but I feel like we're constantly getting the whole love thing crammed down our throats here. Which is great, I love it so much. But one part that I didn't really write about was opening yourself up to be loved. Love goes two ways, and you expressing it is so great. But you need to be able to receive love, too. If I hadn't let myself be receptive to love for the last five and a half weeks, I would have been so miserable. Love is something that is so central to this gospel. So. Love and be loved. 

I'm sure there's so much more I could ramble on about. But...I don't really have the time. But know that I love you all so much and you are in my prayers siempre. 

Con mucho amor, 
Hermana Sherilyn Harper