It's so different but I love it.
The first day was pretty tough because we had to leave the MTC at 3:30 a.m. and then we flew into long beach at 10 a.m. California time.
After that it was kind of a blur. Sister Denton, Sister Magelby and I came a week before transfers so we were all put into trios.
My companions are Sister Stigen and Sister Tabin. Sister Tabin is leaving us because transfers are tomorrow. I'm going to miss her so much. She is from the Philippines and is the greatest. I love her so much. Sister Stigen, my trainer, converted 2 years ago and is from Mesa, Az. She is really great and has only been out 2 months longer than me so we are both pretty new! We are in the Huntington Beach North Stake and are in the city of Westminster.
There are people here from all over the world. It's nuts. I am amazed by the youth here. We are currently teaching 5 teenagers and one 13 year-old- Brayton just got baptized last month and now we are teaching his dad. They are incredible.
I have loved getting to know people and learn about their lives. Everyone is so different but we all have one thing in common- the need of Jesus Christ and His restored gospel. My first day out 2 people started crying while we were teaching them. They are experiences that I will never forget. One man was named Albert from Vietnam and he has been struggling with a law suit. You could just see the pain and stress in his eyes and as we taught him he began to cry. I can't articulate the feelings that I felt as I stood there and explained to him the atonement and how God loves him and knows him. The other man was named Michael and he has been addicted to pain meds for 30 years. He is only 55 but looks like he could be 70 and definitely doesn't act that old. He told us he doesn't believe in God anymore. His mom and sister died recently and now his dad is dying of cancer. He told us how he used to be so talented and was going to play professional baseball but then got injured. That's when his life started spiraling downward. It was heartbreaking. We taught him about the plan of salvation and how God is there for all of us. Michael began to cry and put on his sunglasses. I will never forget these experiences. I know that God really does care about each and everyone one of us. No matter who we are.
If you haven't watched the "Because He lives" video, go watch it. That video has been helping so many people we contact and teach. It is phenomenal.
Wow. I don't think I have ever loved conference so much. It was so good. I loved Pres. Monson's talk and Sister Wixom's. They both helped me so much. I also loved Kevin W. Pearson's about how it is our daily discipleship that will determine our eternal destiny. Another good one was Rafael Pino, The Lord knows what He wants to accomplish with each of us.
California has been treating me well so far and I have faith that for whatever reason this is where the Lord needs me to be right now.
I love you all!
p.s. one of my favorite things is watching people's reactions when they see us. Their body language is priceless. They start nervously walking when they see us, we call out to them and they slow down for a second as if they are considering actually talking to us. Then they think that through and start nervously walking again looking down and around to avoid eye contact. Everyone does everything they can to dodge us. Oh and then there is the classic let me try to give you a head nod as I walk past you as fast as possible. It's hilarious, but none of them can escape talking to us!