Work and Miracles

It’s been a really good week, since we started exchanges and everything it finally feels like the transfer is getting going! I’m feeling 100% better, even though everyone over here is freaking out about the Australian flu, apparently it’s pretty bad! We talked to one guy on the street and he told us he hadn’t left his home for weeks because he was afraid he’d get it. But mostly I think he was just crazy haha:) Sister Tiffany is awesome, she’s from California originally, she just took a couple chinese classes in uni and then the MTC, she’s not fluent, but she’s taught me a few sentences! Now I know how to say “Hello, my name is sister McOmber. I am a missionary. you are sinning. baptism” I haven’t tried it out yet on the street, but I’m looking out for opportunities 😉
This week we went on exchanges with the sisters in Bridge of Don and the ones in Glenrothes. I got to go with Sister Bair, she’s only been out for a few weeks but she’s doing so great! I was with Sister Winn as well who is training, so both were fun days:) We had a cool miracle story with Sister Bair, we were GQing in the evening and we decided to go down a way we usually didn’t go. On the way back we stopped a guy just outside a pub. While we were talking he told us he had been thinking on the way there that he should stop drinking, and now here we were between him and the pub! He kept saying how weird it was and then agreed to hear our message instead of going in for a pint:) We taught him about the Holy Ghost and the restoration, he really liked it and was thinking super deeply the whole time. Unfortunately he lives in Manchester so we won’t see him again but he has a book of mormon and contact info for the missionaries down there, so we are praying he gets in contact with them! That was fun, and really cool that it could happen with Sister Bair, she was really excited! Over the next few days this week we met every basher in Dundee. I think they’re just attracted to me, I always seem to find them. One day we were finding all day and the whole morning, every person we talked to was trying to bash. I think a preacher of some church recently told his whole congregation to or something. We were not in great spirits so we went and ate cookies for lunch, and after lunch we had so much appreciation for the people who were kind. Even the ones who didn’t stop we were always like “that was such a nice person!” So we gained a testimony of “there must needs be opposition in all things” because we were a lot happier after knowing the sad things:) And we were able to set up a few appointments and have some good conversations, it’s so true that miracles come after the trial of our faith! Yesterday was a really good day, we had one of our new friends come to church who is really looking for peace in his life. He is from the middle east and told us he hasn’t felt peace in like 10 years. We talked about God’s plan and the Holy Ghost and he came and loved church. The ward here is great about welcoming people and talking to them! Especially for this friend, he really needed a family and the ward took him in:)
This week I was reading in Alma about Ammon chopping off arms. I liked chapter 17 verse 23, Ammon is completely dedicated to giving whatever the Lord required of Him. He told Lamoni he wished to labor among them, maybe even until he died. And I love what he does next, he goes to work! He serves the people, he is kind to the servants he is with. Just as when the sons of mosiah get started on their journey, he acts first! He had faith that God would give him the opportunity to share the message he’d come to proclaim. And then he was able to, very soon after coming. It reminded me of a quote I think one of my young women’s leaders gave us that says “live in such a way that those who know you but don’t know Him will want to know Him because they know you.” I know that when we’re living in that way, Heavenly Father will place opportunities in our path to share about Him. Why wouldn’t He? So we just need to get to work and serve and love, and He will line it up perfectly:)
Love, Sister McOmber

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Don’t just pray for what seems possible. Pray hard for the impossible.

The American family in our ward signed up to have us on Christmas and then came over and told us we can come all the other days too but they didn’t want to look like they were hogging us, so if there were any other things we want to do to do those but to know that theirs was always open:) So we will be skyping there but I’m not sure what time yet! And probably I won’t move, I’m hoping not too! I am also praying Sister Kotter will stay, but she might move. By the way, we met with Liam this week and he told us that Bear ate all the treats, he was just grumpy that day but he appreciated them.
We were talking about how different missions are today, I’m very grateful for mine. It’s pretty normal, but just crazy enough to have some fun experiences. Scotland is a weird country haha I love it.
Dale is doing so great! She’s so excited to get baptized!! The only issue is that her parents would need to sign the record since she’s 17, and she’s pretty sure they wont, they are communist back home. So she might just wait till her birthday (which is also my birthday!) but she is the most prepared person ever, I’m so excited for her! We are praying for a miracle that her parent’s hearts will be softened so that she can be baptized when we’re here! ALSO Stuart has a baptism date!!! He’s not positive, but he emailed and told me!!!! I am so excited!!!!
This has been a crazy week!! And a bit exhausting! On Monday evening the Stornoway sisters came in and then Tuesday we all went down to Edinburgh for the Christmas conference! It was so much fun, we had a bit of instruction but then we played games, like the minute to win it ones, and did skits (I do not like being in skits, but when ours was done we had a really fun time watching them, missionaries are hilarious) and then watched Moana!!! It was so cute, I liked it a lot!! I loved the “You’re welcome” song, and I remembered how Jessie had the t-shirt and it made me laugh so much more, classic Jessie;) Tuesday night we went back and then Wednesday we were supposed to have exchanges with Stornoway, but there was a huge storm forecast for the North (Stornoway is on the Isle of Lewis, so they travel on the ferry to get home) so they were going to try to get home before it was too late. They made it 45 minutes into the drive and then all the ferries till Saturday got cancelled! So they stayed with us for 2 more days and then we had different exchanges on Friday and on Saturday Sister Kotter and I were grateful to be companions again:) I love exchanges and all the sisters but it is also nice to have your own companion:) Saturday was a miracle day, it was freezing but we had a lot of appointments set up in St. Andrews, a cute little uni town a bit away. All of them went through! And we had another on-the-spot lesson! We had so much hot chocolate, since we teach in cafes a lot of the time. So we were able to find some new people to work with and a few of them are going home for the holidays which is a bummer but we’ll get to teach them next year.
I was reading my patriarchal blessing and I thought about how one of the greatest gifts that Heavenly Father has given us is our potential, through our agency. Satan’s plan missed the whole point of that, to just force us to all be back home. On the surface, it sounds nice. But it doesn’t bring any kind of progression, accomplishment, or joy. Heavenly Father’s plan gives us limitless potential, although some people choose to limit that with their choices or mindset, as we give our will to Him then we see that nothing is truly impossible. There’s a quote in my book that I love, I won’t say it all right but it goes like
“Don’t just pray for what seems possible. Pray hard for the impossible. And God will show you that with Him nothing, nothing nothing nothing, is impossible.”
I believe in that! I don’t always know it, but I really do believe in that! Miracles are so real:)

Love, Sister McOmber

 

 

 

“that’s an important job”

Our week has been really good here:) We are in St. Andrews today, and I came here a couple of other days when we were on exchanges, it’s a university town and we have found a lot of success here! On Saturday we met a cute girl from China who we taught then and she wanted to come to church so she took the bus the next day and loved it! We taught her yesterday as well, she is so excited to read the Book of Mormon and texted us today about it and how she feels as she reads. It’s amazing, and the way she treasures the things we say and the Book of Mormon reminds me what gifts they really are. When we talked about the apostasy and how Joseph Smith was called as a prophet and how we are now sharing that with everyone she said “that’s an important job!” and it just kind of hit me how we should see missionary work in that way. It shouldn’t be just a thing we do for a couple years that’s tough but you grow and then you move on with your life, when we have this gift it should be something we share as much as we can! And there will be people who treasure the truths we share, that makes it all worth it:)
Liam did show up in a kilt! It’s semi common, anytime there’s a wedding people wear kilts, or funerals I think. It’s like a tux here. And some old men wear them to church still:) We met Liam in St. Andrews today because I wanted to meet Bear (his dog). He was so cute and fluffy! He was kind of grumpy, but I bought him treats this morning so he was a little bit okay with me. and sometimes we would be walking and I would pet him and he would look at me but I just looked away so he didn’t know and then it was all good! I will send you pictures:)

This week I studied Alma 26 one day, and it was amazing. It’s such a good missionary chapter, and also for everybody too! I was studying about joy because it was the exchange focus for one of the missionaries I took on exchange, and I learned so much. I went through and wrote down all the reasons that Ammon was happy, and there’s one in almost every verse! Then I grouped them and found 3 main reasons why he was happy. I came up with 1. hard work 2. relying on God and 3. Remembering blessings with gratitude. I loved reading about his passion and love for God and the work, it’s so easy to get excited and really pumped about the work out here, Alma 26:12 is one of my favorite verses. It just sums up all those things, and it sounds so happy. I love that you mentioned that this season is a time for joy. There is so much joy to be found in it, and especially when we use the time to do God’s work through service and love for our friends. It’s just the best time of the year:)

Love, Sister McOmber

Here is some of our p-day today, and one of Bear (he was so dang cute!) and a reindeer we saw. The graves and stone stuff was from some cathedral ruins we went to earlier today:)

This is me and sister kotter getting ready to go outside when it’s cold. we are going to convert to islam because i think they’re warm. ​

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“Do it. Do it right. Do it right now.”

 Liam got baptized on Sunday!! He was so happy, and he showed up to church in a kilt so that was awesome! I didn’t get a picture of the kilt, but I have some of the baptism so I’ll send those:) Joe is doing well too, we had a lesson in KFC and saw at the end that someone had written “Jesus” on the wall so we took a picture with it. We had exchanges in Edinburgh on Wednesday, I was with Sister Hill and it was so fun! It was so good to be with her and learn from each other and talk about how much some things have changed since the MTC, it was so good.
This week for Thanksgiving we had 2 dinners! One was on Thursday, that was with a Scottish lady named Granny who feeds us every Thursday. She tried her best to make a real thanksgiving, it was so nice and really good! The one on Saturday was a bit more authentic, an American family had us over and made it all just how it tastes at home, it was delicious! The dinner was at 1 and we were stuffed all day, we didn’t eat again till like 10. They even had sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top!! That family is really great, and they told us that we have an open invitation to go to theirs for Christmas Eve and Christmas day, so we will probably be at theirs a lot, and we’ll try to visit some other people too who might need the love. But it’s nice to know that we have somewhere to be for sure:) Their name is the Von Valkenburghs.
This week we also had exchanges with the sisters in Glenrothes, I was with a new missionary who’s been out for about 2 weeks, it was so fun. She was so confident and willing and just hungry for advice and to try new things, it was a great reminder to me about being submissive and willing to stretch out of my comfort zone.
One principle I’ve been thinking about this week is just pure hard work. The bishop in our ward right now is so proactive, he visits people and is so concerned for us and our people, he’s just an amazing leader. And then in relief society they were talking about doing all the little things and about ways we can make sure we’re doing them and remembering and what to do when things get in the way, and they asked how we can do them, and a lady in the back from Romania I think raised her hand and said “even when it’s hard and things get in the way, just do them.” It was so simple! Like the nike thing, just do it! That’s kinda been my motto for a bit now, when I’m nervous to do something or don’t feel like it, I just need to do it! There’s a good quote from someone in the church that says “Do it. Do it right. Do it right now.” I love that! Sometimes there’s not a better way to do something. We just need to do the thing! Wooo!!
Last night when we were GQing. There was a born again lady who stopped to talk to me and they’re just not usually my favourite people. I’m sure there’s some lovely born again people out there, but she was not one of them. I love to defend my faith, but sometimes I get pretty heated while doing it and it leaves me after the conversation a bit not happy. So we were still GQing and being happy for people but I wasn’t feeling it a super lot. But then I thought about His plan and how He is so aware of what’s going on and I tried to see His hand more in the time we had. When I thought about it, I noticed the tender mercies! There were a few people I stopped who were just really nice and fun to talk to, we set up a few appointments and had hand warmers so we were actually pretty warm, it just turned so much better once I remembered to see God’s hand in the situation. It’s so easy to forget to do that or choose not to because sometimes it feels good to be mad, but when we sacrifice our pride and anger for just a bit and tell God we’re not feeling it but we want to so please help me as I try to soften my heart, He works miracles. It is so real!! I guess it’s something that I had to experience to see it, but I know for sure now that He is real and will be as active in every moment as we choose to let Him. I am so grateful for that, even though I need constant reminders of it:)
Love, Sister McOmber
 It’s a thing here for old ladies to dye their hair cotton candy colours. it’s usually less vibrant than this, but this lady was awesome haha. for exchanges that day we had a competition to find the person with the best hair, so we told her that and she let us take a picture with her:)
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​ ​Here’s some of the baptism, us with Joe and KFC, thanksgiving Scottish style, and exchanges:) Also I think one of us drinking hot chocolate by the giant Christmas tree

I thought adults had it all figured out…

Dundee is wonderful:) We did travel all the way across Scotland, it was a long travel day! Last Monday we took the ferry over, it was really fun because there were lots of missionaries traveling:) Then there was a long bus ride through Scotland which was beautiful but also went through some back roads that made us a bit sick. I was grateful to get to our flat:) We have a really big teaching pool here! Four of our friends came to church with us this week, and lots of people we’re teaching have baptism dates! Our friend Liam will get baptized this Sunday, he is so cool! He has a big dog that’s like a husky but bigger, I can’t wait to meet him. We taught Liam the commandments yesterday and it was really good, he’s all set! It’s so good to have lots of people to work with! My new companion is awesome as well, her name is Sister Kotter! She’s from Georgia and has been out one transfer less than me so pretty close. All the members are excited that neither of us are from Utah haha! It’s always tough to leave good areas and companions, there are always things that remind me of other people that I’ve taught or served around, it’s amazing though to get to know so many people and become great friends so fast. Sad to leave them, but I hope to come back to visit someday
We had a really good week this week. On Thursday we went to MLC and it was amazing. President challenged us to help each team in the mission bring a friend to baptism before the end of the year, and miracles are happening all over the place! He talked so much about finding the one, and how Christ ministers to the one. I love the light the world video for this year, it’s so personal and happy! There’s also a cool invitation from Elder Ballard, i don’t know if you’ve seen that? the music in it is so happy too! I’ll forward that to you, I think I have that on my email. But basically he invites us each to invite a friend to church before the end of the year, and I love the bit where he says “how? I don’t know! Get on your knees and ask.” I feel like that applies to so much in our lives, we have no idea how we will achieve something, and generally no one else does but the Lord. I have realized in the last couple years how much people don’t usually know what they’re doing. I though adults had it all figured out and knew what was going on with their lives all the time. Turns out we usually don’t, but that’s a good thing because it allows us to depend on the Lord and then He can direct our lives in the way that we will become the best we can be.
This week a few food truck type things set up in the town square and they will be there till Christmas. That is a problem because we got some donuts from one and they are delicious. So probably we will get quite fat. Sister Palmer served with both of us and when she found out we’d be together she said we would because she knows we both have a sweet tooth! That’s pretty fun though:)

The time is going so fast now. There is a wee trainee in our zone who had a hard first week this week and it reminded me of that time when the days felt like years but now the last year has felt like a day. I have completely fallen in love with this work, I love every day. Miracles happen all the time and just giving everything to the Lord is the best experience I’ve ever had and one I need to work every day to be better at. You’re right, we have a 5 week transfer this time and then a 7 week one, Feb 5th is my release date.
Love, Sister McOmber

 

His plan has more than enough room for all our shortcomings and mistakes, so long as we are willing to take His hand

It is getting QUITE cold here! We are in scarves and gloves, but no hats or double coats yet so it’s not all the way there! It is just cold and wet and we are not excited for it to get colder and wetter! It hasn’t been too bad, most of the week was okay actually:) We get our moves call this saturday!! Ahhhh!! I’m so nervous, I could stay or go, I have no idea.
Our Halloween was really fun:) My pumpkin was Mickey Mouse and we took some fun pictures of them, and also we played football inside and it was so much fun! The cookies turned out pretty good too:)
This week was interesting! Really good, we have been happy and laughing through all of it, and I know that’s a blessing from Heavenly Father because kind of lots of things not so good were happening…we don’t have much of a teaching pool right now. That’s a nice way of saying zero people want to talk to us haha we are still teaching Stuart, he’s doing great (I have a story about him to tell you next) and we have a couple appointments set up for this week but mostly we are finding all day and people aren’t showing up to their appointments! Which sounds really sad when I say it like that, but we have been having fun each day and still having good conversations and setting up appointments so we know the miracles will come soon:) We could use some prayers for our area though!
Sunday was a really good day. We had fast and testimony meeting and I felt like I should go up, so I did. It is just as hard to follow that prompting on a mission as it was before, I still get nervous! But I shared a quick testimony and as I was walking down Stuart stood up and went to the pulpit! He has been coming to church for a few months but struggles with some things so he doesn’t feel ready to be baptized yet. He shared a beautiful testimony about the love he feels at church and how good it is, and then just said “I know the church is true, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.” It was amazing! We all cried! I was sitting by Sister Potts (you might have seen some of her posts on facebook, she’s like the missionary’s mom here! she’s amazing) and she was bawling, it was lovely. We taught him after church and had a really spiritual lesson, he is making progress and is so sincere, we love to teach him.
Recently a few of our sisters here have been struggling pretty bad with some things, it’s been a learning and stretching experience for me. I love all of them, but i don’t always know how to help them! I’m grateful for that, last week I was worried that I was starting to go through the motions, but now Heavenly Father has given us a few unique challenges that don’t let us do that!
One of the chapters in the Book of Mormon that I just love is Alma 26. it’s all about missionary work and the pure joy that comes from it, but also the hard times that are there as well. That’s what makes it so beautiful though, I wouldn’t want my mission to be any other way, even though it’s been far from perfect and things now are far from perfect, I love it. That’s how life is too I think, it never looks quite like pinterest, we don’t ever seem to be satisfied with ourselves and our goals seem like they’re never quite achieved, but when we look back it just is such a beautiful ride. I know that living the way Heavenly Father would have us live is harder, it’s bumpy and we feel like we never are, but He sees it in such a different way. He has a perfect plan, that doesn’t mean we’re messing it up when we’re not perfect, that means the plan is perfectly arranged with exactly what we need and what He knows we’ll do. It has more than enough room for all our shortcomings and mistakes, so long as we are willing to take His hand and overcome them.

Love, Sister McOmber

Here is me with voni’s family! Also 5 guys and us eating dinner at albert’s house:)  Also, ​Here is all our halloween pictures:)

Accountability is an eternal principle

This week was good! I got to go back to Bangor!!! One of the sisters there is really sick, she has to be in the flat for 2 weeks so we went down for 2 half days to help Sister Bradley get out of the flat. It was so fun to GQ there again! And we saw the Peacocks, do you remember about them? They are one of the nicest families I’ve met here, and I’ve seen them in every area because they clean ward buildings in the UK for work! We also had exchanges with the Lisburn sisters so it’s been a busy week! They’re doing so good, I was with Sister Jorgensen and she served here for a long time so she loved being back. We also were hanging out with them on P-day last week, we hiked Cavehill and took lots of pictures:)
Some sad news this week…Blessed moved out of our area:( I actually cried…he’s just so amazing! But we passed him over to the Holywood elders and they got along great and he went to church and loved it, it’s all good. We were all pretty sad about it (in the ward) but then our recent convert Albert (who is the most amazing guy ever) shared 1 Corinthians 3, about how it doesn’t matter who plants and who waters, it’s all God who makes it work. That was a good reminder that it’s not my work, but the Lord’s. And a cool miracle that happened maybe because we were trying to be obedient and pass him, was that we bumped into a former investigator who moved into our area and wants to meet this week! I think we will find lots of miracle people this week:)
We also helped out with the Poppy appeal one day this week! That’s a thing for Remembrance day here, it’s kind of like veterans day. everyone wears poppies, you can buy all kinds of them (like pins, paper ones, a member in Bangor knitted us ones last year) and the money goes to the charity for it. The missionaries volunteer every year, we just stood there and sold poppies for a wee bit. It was really weird cause you couldn’t approach people which we are not used to. But it was pretty fun.On Saturday we went down to Portadown for a baptism there – it was a couple that Sister May had found while she served there! They were from Portugal, and they were so sweet! It was amazing because you could tell it was just the beginning of generations in the church, they have a wee family and everyone was so happy and welcoming, it was beautiful:) Also they made delicious pizza so we were very happy we went;)
I did meet Voni’s family! It’s so funny, her brother looks just like them. I actually only talked to her sister-in-law, and she’s so nice! That’s such a cool thing they’re doing, traveling all over!
Things are great with Sister May! She’s awesome, we’re working hard and having fun! Tomorrow for Halloween we have to be inside by like 5 so we are getting together with some people at the church and carving pumpkins and making Halloween cookies, we’re pretty excited:)
This week I had a really good study on accountability. I read Ezekiel 33:1-6 and was reminded about the stewardship that we each are responsible for. It is a blessing and also a commandment for us to look out for those who we have been asked to care for. I feel it a lot with the sisters here, and I was reminded that we can only correct when we have real Christlike love for them. When I have a good relationship with a sister, it’s so easy to ask them to fix something or change it. It’s so scary when I don’t know them very well! It reminded me that accountability is an eternal principle – like in the temple. we are each preparing now to give an account to the Lord about the time we’ve been given here. I read in the Gospel Principles book that the Book of Life is actually ourselves – we will judge ourselves. Not completely I don’t think, I don’t really know, but I do know that each of us are aware of the choices we make. When we’re toeing the line, we know it. That’s part of the Light of Christ that is in us all. But I also know that the Lord is so proud of us and happy when we do what is right regardless of the circumstances, when we’re obedient with integrity. And we can be so happy for it as well when we account to Him each evening in prayer!

Have a great week!
Love, Sister McOmber