Let me tell ya bout my shorty companion! They call her Hermana Halverson, she is from Washington state and we were actually up at school together in Idaho. We didn't know each other, but if we did I am sure we would have been the greatest of friends. She is 4'10 and
basically the feistiness person I have ever met which is probably why we get along so well.
I remember when I first opened my call and saw that Kiss-a-mee was on the map well here I am a year later and it is so different than my previous area in every way possible. First, we ride bikes. We even have this one hill that makes me want to die every time we ride it, but in my head I say "siga adelante" and keep moving forward. Sometimes my thighs tell me otherwise, but I love it. We contact soooo many people and are getting some pretty serious tan lines so it's basically the biggest blessing thus far. Second, the ward here is Spanish and English (there are some serious controversies) and you know what that means? We get AMERICAN FOOD! Third, Hermana Gruber is in my zone and we see each other at district meetings and what not, it is always a sweet reunion with her. Fourth, it is literally a mini Puerto Rico aqui. Can this area get any better? Yes... It does. It has a Colombian family.
We have seen so many miracles this week most of which stemmed from service. I will tell you about one who's name is Octavio. So there are two Octavio's (Jr. and Sr.) and Octavio Sr. was a former investigator who we are teaching right now, he has a son on a mission. (Sounds like a mom I know!) His son, who was also a former, lives just down the street and the sisters have been trying to get a hold of him for the past 12 weeks. Well thankfully one day every single one of our plans fell through and we happened to be around Octavio Jr.'s and saw all the cars home... Knocked on the door.. No one answered. We heard a lawnmower going in the back yard and felt that it was right to walk back there and talk to him, so we did. I ended up mowing the lawn while Herm Halv's set up a return appointment and that is how it is done! He says he is still searching for the truth.... It's been 2 years..... Yeah this is not a coincidence.
Just call me Sister MowYourLawn.
We had a Sister Conference all day Friday and it was a good time. They had little workshops for how to do basic things like sewing, cleaning, laundering, etc., but they also had others like makeup tips for summer and how to do hairstyles and what not. They had this huge missionary mall where people donated a ton of stuff and we could go "shopping". Most of the moms that were helping out had daughters serving missions and there was definitely a strong spirit in the building. Let's take a step back (like I do a gazillion times a day) and realize I am speaking Spanish... In Florida.... On a mission... Riding a bike sweating to death.... And I LOVE it.
This transfer I am really working on serving others con todo mi corazon. I don't care what we are doing, if I see someone on the side of the road or someone doing their yard we stop and help them. I know that that was something I really struggled with back home.. "selfishness", but being on my mission the past few months I can't say I am a totally changed person, but I am a better person. This week I have been trying to read a conference talk every day and I love Elder Holland's "The Cost-- and Blessings-- of Discipleship"! He said, "Christlike love is the greatest need we have on this planet in part because righteousness was always supposed to accompany it." Simply put, if we love Him we will not only serve Him, but serve His children and that's why I am out here. I am here because I love Him. I love this gospel and am so grateful to be able to serve the people in Kissimmee. I hope you all have a week full of service and Christlike love! I'll be praying for ya'll! Con amor, Hermana Brooks