Sunday, November 30, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving....

Joyeux Jour de Remericements!  Happy Thanksgiving!

Soeur Gunn and I had a delightful little thanksgiving. We ordered a pizza, made some stuffing, age some lychees and had a dessert of cookies. We called it our rolls, stuffing, cranberry sauce and pies hahaha. Twas not quite the same, but still fun :)

First of all, me and Soeur Gunn are staying in Bourail! Ehich means Christmas, my birthday and New Year's with someone I know and love in a secteur I know and live. Blessings! Hahahaa it will be a slightly isolated holiday season, but nevertheless. We are pscyed to have the Christmas spirit all month long and share it with these people!

God is so kind and He gave us a little pre-Thanksgiving present. Around 10:00 on Wednesday night I was sitting journaling when I look up and see tins thing the size of a hamburger scurrying across the ceiling. It was a SPIDER. No JOKE the size of my HAND. Ok if anyone knows me they know that spiders are my thing. They're my one big thing that I CANNOT do. I cannot. And suddenly there was an enormous one in our apartment in the middle of the night with no one close by to help us. Oh. And if that's mot enough, it had a GIANT EGGSAC under it. UNREAL.  Me and Soeur Gunn spent a solid 2 hours chasing it around our house trying to catch it cause we didn't want the smash the eggsac and have millions of baby spiders crawling around our house. Well finally around midnight we were exhausted and so tired of this evil thing so we just smashed it. And all the babies went running and then we had to smash them all too. It was horrific. And terrifying. And stinking hilarious. Hahahahahahahaha God must have been laughing so hard. Grateful for dead spiders.

Walked 30 minutes to a less actives house in the pouring rain. Then he was asleep so he didn't want to hear a message. Hash's so we walked back in the pouring rain..hahaha it was pretty fun

I have now officially read the entire Livre de Mormon en francais. Highlighted and all. And what a glorious book it is. What a blessed experience to read it in another language that I know the Lord has chosen for me to learn and know. My project for December is to now read the whole Book of Mormon in English. I'm going to try to make it my birthday gift to Christ.

Got to give a talk on Sunday. I felt impressed to talk about the family. I read the Family Proclamation to the World. I testified of the family. Satan is attacking the family so hard. He knows how precious it is. I know that it is only through the light and love of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that our families can stay united and protected from all of life's tempests. How blessed I feel to have been raised in, and to continue to be taught and uplifted, by a family of faith and love and laughter. I do so love them.

With all my love! May your days be merry and bright! How grateful I am for each of you and how you have touched my life personally.

Soeur Evans

Sunday, November 23, 2014

And then they were baptized in the ocean

Salut salut salut.

God lives. And He is glorious and miraculous and GOOD. 

This Saturday I got to be a part of the baptism of two Amis of 15 years. And what a beautiful, sacred experience it was. 

We prayed all week for there to be good weather because the man is very ill and has lots of aches and pains and said if the weather was bad he might not get baptized. Not to mention bad weather means rocky ocean waves which mean no baptism either. We also prayed for the wife to be able to be ready on time because she has a hard time with punctuality. And we also prayed that their less active children would be able to mot only come, but be on time (they were also the ride for our amiss.) 

Saturday arrived and I woke up to see a blue blue blue sky with NOT A SINGLE CLOUD. I almost burst our crying. 
We got to our amis (they're an old couple of 60 or so) about 30 minutes before we were supposed to start the service and R hadn't even showered yet. And then she got ready faster than she ever had and got ready in time to be perfectly on time. 
As she was getting ready, her less active daughter walks in to check on her. Then her less active son walks in. We have never even met him. 

Miracles already in abundance. 

We held the service at the church and member from both Noumea and Houailou (both at least an hour or three away) had shown up to support them. The family of our amis was all there in the back. Oh glorious day.

I got to give the talk on the Gift of the Holy Ghost and felt the Spirit guiding me so strongly. My French was definitely getting some divine help. What a tender moment to describe thesis sweet gift our loving Heavenly Father has given us to not only our amiss but also to their entire family.

After the first part of the service we drove over to the ocean. We were nervous it would be crowded on the beach and that the waves would be big. NOT A SINGLE PERSON was on the big. Not one. And the waves were tiny. This sweet, newly married couple were baptized. Their children stood on the beach with tears streaming down their cheeks. The elders got soaked up to their waists in their normal suits acting as witnesses and helping each ami to make it safely in and out of the ocean despite their weak bodies. They bore testimony and the whole family was bawling. The Spirit was blanketing the entire beach. It filled my heart and my soul and testified of not only the truthfulness of this alliance but also the GOODNESS.

God is a God of MIRACLES. How grateful I am to have been able to witness this beautiful day. 

Love you all!
Soeur Evans

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Greetings from across the Deep Blue!

Greetings from across the deep blue! 

This week we met a really awesome man. We yelled at his house until he came outside (ahahahaha once again in a part of this country where knocking is joootnpossible). He came out and invited us to take a seat on his patio. Well after talking with him for 20 or so minutes and testifying and sharing our personal stories of conversion to the gospel, he agreed to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it. He goes, its reason enough to read this book if you came from so far away to bring it to me. Just the fact that you're inviting me to read it and that this book has made enough of a difference and impact on your lives to make you come here makes me convinced I need to read this book....And you could feel his curiosity to see what lay between those blue covers and to see if this book would impact him as much as it has us. What a sweet moment to get to testify and share directly WHY I am here with a stranger. To get to share my process of getting to this point in my life. How sweet to look back over my life and see all the little culminating moments that sum up to the testimony I have today. Each choice to be like Christ, each leap of faith to follow His counsel. If we aren't willing to give the Lord a CHANCE to change us, how can we ask to change? How can we ask to know? We have to do the work, of that I am sure.

Walked and walked and walked this week. All. Over. Bourail. I have a serious tan line on my feet. And a seriously brown neck.

Had a moment of utter perfection. We were walking in this neighborhood of government housing and we see a family moving in. So we go over and help them move in. A few loads later, a few kind words exchanged and they told us we could come back. AND they have FOUR SONS. Helloooooooo priesthood power for Bourail.

We've definitely been feeling the responsibility of our calling and of being up North. Sometimes it feels like the Lord just dropped us alone up here and said, "Ok. Go start the church. " hahahahshshahshs Uhhhhhhh ok easier said than done. But were doing our best. Praying a lot.

Love you all!
Soeur Evans

also totally made a classic new cal meal this week all on our own- meatballs, canned peas, cabbage, potatoes and maggi. Yummmm!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Mango & Miracles

Bonjourrrrr tout le monde!

Oh la la qu'est-ce que c'est passe cette semaine? Well. We have two baptisms coming up. Completely no thanks to anything i did. They have been investigating the church for ~15 or more years and finally after all that they set a date! When we got to Bourail we already had a baptismal service to plan, how cool is that?! Hahaha blessings! They will be baptized the 22 of novemeber in the ocean (soooooo excited about THAT detail). Wish i could send pictures but ill describe it really well when that happens. Weve been spending lots of time preparing everything for that and its been really cool to see how it all works since i havent had any baptisms yet. God is good. 

Had easily one of the coolest moments in my life this week. Probably the epitome of an experience ive been imagining since i got my call. Were walking along this back street with jungely trees all over us.. And we walk next to a mango tree loooooaded, i mean LOADED, it was absolutely heavy, with mangoes. We walk up and each pluck one right off the tree and just bite into it as were walking. And  it was an orange color like ive never seen. My new favorite color. Dripping with this thick juice and so sweet and i just about died in the perfection of the moment. Our faces were covered in mango and our hands were all sticky, so we rinse off in a puddle from last nights storm amd wipe our hands on our very well worn missionary skirts and keep walking. Oh my it was such a beautiful  moment. That is real living. 

Sang for this really grumpy 92 year old woman. Not everyone is happy when you try to be kind to them believe it or not hahaha

Contacted a man and told him that we had a message of Gods love. He said he prefers the love of women. Then he complimented our beautiful eyes. Then we left. Just a normal contact in a normal day. Yikes.

Had a total MIRACLE. President Brewer counselled us tto pray for find old amis, or people who knew about the church from past missionaries. Well we did and the next day we found the most amazing woman. She took the lessons with the elders in 2004 and had to stop because she got sick. When she saw us she was overjoyed. She told us to come back that night. When we showed up (buzzing with joy and graittude might i add)  she had an old copy of Le Livre de Mormon on her table and began to tell us of how much she loves the gospel and how our message gives her hope in Gods love and in the world. She was overcome. And she was so grateful we were back in Bourail and that on top of that, we were women, because she feels much more comfortable with women. We are definitely here in Bourail for a reason. How sweet it is to have such a sure confirmation of that. 

The other day I realized that soon well have 7 active members in Bourail after the baptism. And immediately go, "thats a LOT"! Funny how perspective changes.

Bourail is great. We are feeling so blessed. I am feeling so blesed. Im an AUNT and am overjoyed. The Lord lives. He loves us. He is a perfect example. Im getting to know Him on a whole new level.

Looooove a jamais!
Soeur Evans

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Bonjour from Brousse. In the Bush Now.

Le bonhomme
La Roche Percee  (courtesy of Google images)

McKay in Magenta , NC August 2014

Bonjour from brousse! In other words hello from the bush!

Well we finally made it and we even found a way to email for a second. We are currently in the tiny office of tourism borrowing their tablet to send this but send it we will! 

Where to even begin? 

Church. Easily my most spirit filled Sunday thus far on my mission. There were only 11 people at church on Sunday. 4 missionaries, the branch presidents family, the one other active woman in our branch and her granddaughter and an ami who has been investigating the church for 17 or so years. The elders drove an hour and a half down from Kone to bless and pass the sacrament for us because there are no other active priesthood holders. Words cannot express the sacred sweetness of two young worthy priesthood holders kneeling across each other at a tiny tiny table, breaking a little piece of bread and then blessing it with the poower and authority of God so that a handfulnof people could renrw their promise with God. And then doing the same for the water. I was so overcome. THAT is why we go to church. To take the sacrament. And how sweet it is.

After church we all ate together in our kittle church room ( its jst a storefront in Bourail in village that the church rents). A true church family of love and kindness, strengthnamd faith.

Other highlights
Talking to a man on the street who was just casually walking with a cow on a leash, as his other cow moans from down the street because he is tied to the fence and doesn't want to get left behind. Hahahahazh real life.

Miracle! We are a walking secteur as you know. 'Ill mention that later. But we're walking along on our first day. We had just finished introducing ourselves to the above mentioned ancient ami and they gave us directions to a less active member. Mind you, we know no one else in this town. So were walking along this back road trhough some farmland and see a woman walking down the road about a kilometer away. As we get closer she smiles at us. Then she stops by us and asks, oh were you looking for me? ...No actually hahah uuhhhhh who are you? We're looking for.... Ahhh yes I'm  his daughter-in-law. I know the other, missionaries.... She then introduces herself and points us in the right dirction to go see the less active. What are the chances?? The ONLY other person on the road. 
Then walking back from there this random guy yells across a field, Bonjour les soeurs missionaires! Hahaha uhhhh bonjourrrr who are you? And then it jst happens to be this same mans son.The Lords hand is definitely guiding us.

Well Im gonna let Sr Gunn write her family and president now too. Sending all my love!  We are happy and safe!

ps google La Roche Percee and Plage de Poe. We drove by there when we got shown around our xecteur the other day. It is ACTUALLY that blue and that beautiful. God worked many masterpieces over here.

Looooooooove and bisous! (hahaha everyone does the bisous here and its the best)( Bisous is the French kissing thing)
Soeur Evans
Plage de Poe ( courtesy of google images)