Lessons from Gardening

1:44 PM Samantha Warstler 0 Comments

April 19th, 2016
So this week, I learned some cool lessons! Most of them while gardening. Kinda funny. You never really think of gardening as a revelatory experience, at least I didn't. Until now!

Allow me to explain. There's this woman in our ward named Sister Suelzle (pronounced sell-zlee), and she told us she needed some help in her garden a couple weeks ago. So my first impression of Sister Suelzle was this: SUPER MORMON! She and her husband used to own an LDS bookstore called generations, which is the Canadian version of Deseret Book, but the store went out of business, so now they have a ton of cutesie vinyl quotes, pictures of Jesus, loads of LDS novels, etc, etc. So when you walk into their home, your first impression is, "Wow! These people must be Mormons!"

{Photoshoot time!}
However, when we were gardening we had an amazing conversation! I want to share what we talked about with you. So I asked her about how her family was introduced to the church, and she said that her ancestors were actually Mormon pioneers (surprise, surprise, am I right?). But just you wait... So her father was actually the first to leave the church after this long line of Mormon ancestry, and he basically made life growing up really really difficult for Sister Suelzle, to say the least. However, her father has a brother, and he was a really honest and faithful man who stayed strong in the church his whole life, and he and his wife went out of their way to get Sister Suelzle and her siblings to church every week! If it weren't for him and his wife, sister Suelzle would not be the woman that she is today.

I wish I could tell you her story in as much detail and with as much passion as she told it to me, but my memory is not that fantastic, and, frankly, I don't have much time. But she did teach me a really great lesson of the importance of reaching out and lifting those around us. The story has a very bitter sweet ending. Her father's
brother, who helped her and her siblings all of those years, 
eventually got cancer and died at a very young age. She felt like that was the most unfair thing that could have happened, because of what a righteous man he was. However, as a result of her uncle's death, her father (his brother) finally decided to rejoin the church and their family was sealed in the temple! It was his death that made him realize that life is short, and it really is "the time for men to prepare to meet God." (Alma 34:32) The lord works in mysterious ways!

 32 For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.

The reason I wanted to share this story with you is because I learned such a valuable lesson about hard work! Sister Suelzle shared some other really difficult challenges that she has dealt with that have shaped her into the woman she is today. This life is so valuable! We have no idea what an impact our actions, no matter how big or small, may have on the lives of others. I was dumbfounded that such an amazing woman had had such a rough upbringing, but if it weren't for all of that, she would be nowhere near where she is today! The key truly is hard work! We can't just sit around and wait for life to happen for us. We need to work at our goals and rely on the lord each and every day in order to become who he knows we are capable of becoming.

{I got to go on exchanges with my mama before she goes home to Nevada on May 12th!}

Which leads me to the next person I wanted to give a shout out to: Tyson! Tyson is an investigator that I taught in Drayton Valley, and he is amazing! His story is so inspiring. To make a very long story short, Tyson is the most hard working, and goal oriented person I have been so privileged to teach on my mission! I received word that he is coming into the fold this weekend! He's getting baptized! I cried tears of joy when I got that news! The transformation I saw in this man over the course of just 3 months was unreal. He has become a true disciple of Jesus Christ, and I know that great things are in store for him and his family! But the key was hard work! He learned the importance of doing his best each and every day to remember our lord and saviour, Jesus Christ by doing simple things such as reading the scriptures, praying, and attending church. Those were the things that transformed his life. I am so happy for him!

{The sistas in our district!}

Oh man. I love the gospel. So this morning we had a miraculous lesson with a father and daughter named Vlado and Irena! They are neighbours of the Vreeling's, some members in the Lakewood ward, and they told us to stop by their house, so we did! They were very kind yesterday, when we first knocked on their door, and they invited us to come back today. We had a fantastic lesson with them. So they're from Croatia, and Irena was translating everything we said so that Vlado could understand.  Vlado has been studying religion his whole life, and he's really unsure about what he believes, but he loved everything we taught him. They asked all of the right questions about Joseph smith and the Book of Mormon, and the spirit was so strong in their home. They are both so excited to read from the Book of Mormon, and I cannot wait to see where the gospel takes them.

God is good! Hard work pays off. I love you all, and God bless each and every one of you for all of the love and support that you show to me.

Xoxoxoxo

Sista Robinson
{Happy Birthday to meeeeeee!}


.........................................
May 3rd, 2016
My dear loved ones,

Here I am sitting across the table from Sister Angilau waiting in Splash N Dash (the Canadian Sonic Car Wash), pondering the events of the past week. Each week, I try really hard to remember the miracles we see so that I can include them in my letters home. It's funny though, because I wasn't expecting it to affect the way I think in such a huge way! For example... Today has been an interesting day! It's been jam-packed full of ups and downs, and it's only 3:40! This morning, I woke up to some cute little emails from friends and family back home, I received word that my FAT $388 ticket I got for running a stop sign was reduced to (wait for it)... $150! Hallelujah! Thank you, Jesus! On top of all that, today is an absolutely GORGEOUS day! The sun is shining high in the sky, birds are chirping, and summer is here. We were able to get everything done that we needed to, and I'm feeling good! 

{Selfie Sunday!}

With all of that in mind, today we also got a suuuuper flat flat tire. "Flatter than Canada," as Sister Angilau said. We had a grumpy cashier at Walmart. And uh... Well I can't think of too many negative things, actually. I think the flat tire was the major thing. Oh well. My point is, "every day may not be good, but there is something good in every day!" That is my favourite quote of all time, and it is one that I really try to live by. Some days, the good things are small, and some days they're big. But no matter what, there truly is something good in every single day. The trick is to look for it, and to thank God for it! 

From day one on my mission, I have really tried to recognize the miracles of each day, and as a result, I can honestly say I am a better person! I am more pleasant to be around, and I am more God-loving. It makes sense, right? I'm just, well... Happier. Recognizing the Lord's hand in my life each day has made an incredible difference in the way I view challenges as well, because sometimes the only "good thing" that happened that day was I learned a lesson about the importance of patience. Sometimes, at the end of a long day of knocking with no one letting us in, I just think, "well I learned a good lesson of patience today!" Or, "well I was extra mindful of the Lord today, because of all the prayers I said before we knocked on each door." 

{Like true Canadians!}
Something I have been thinking about again and again today was this man that rung me up while we were doing some shopping at Winners (Canadian TJ maxx). He was in a really good mood, and we were chatting for a bit, when he paused and said "oh! I just saw your name tag." To which I replied, "Yeah! We're missionaries!" And he said "Ah! Praise God! We need more goodness in this world. You are doing a VERY good job." It made my day. The only thing that could have made it better is if we had gotten his contact information to teach him about the gospel, but you know what, if it's meant to be it'll happen. We'll meet him again if the Lord needs us to. 

But I bet he had no idea how happy our little conversation would make me! We never know how much we can impact a person's life just by a kind word or a smile. Why don't we all go out of our way each day to make someone else smile? To make someone else's day? It's not hard at all! And it makes everyone happier when we do it. The Lord needs us to do this! He wants us to be happy. 

Well that was my little rant for today. I hope you all learned something and enjoyed being inside of my brain for a few minutes. 

Anywhooooo...
I love you all! Thank you SO much for all that you do for me! Have a fantastic week. 

Xoxoxoxo 

Sista Robinson 

P.S. Hopefully there aren't any typos... I'm not proofreading. :))

{Everyone threw a farewell party for Sister Angilau and the other two missionaries going home!}

.......................................................
May 17th, 2016
video

I am doing so dang great! Life is gooood. Sister Phillips is amazing.
We are like the same person. But she's a little bit of a better person
than me.

So I little bit about sister Phillips: she is from Grants Pass,
Oregon, she studied for a year at BYU-H, she LOVES basketball, she is
the oldest of 4, she is SO NICE. And we have SO MUCH IN COMMON. Here's
a list for ya:
1. Both of us have a -3 eye prescription.
2. We both love Bon Iver.
3. We both love working out.
4. My initials are ALR and hers are ALP! Pretty close, eh?
5. We came out on our missions on the same day.
6. We both LOVE working hard and talking to everyone we can about the gospel.
7. We both are happy, optimistic people.
8. People say we look alike? I dunno, maybe it's the hair? The eyebrows?
9. We have similar long-term goals, such as going to nursing school.

{Sister Phillips, my new companion!}

This is sister Phillips! Hahaha. :) I'm such a stalker. But yeah,
she's way cool! She and I connected on Instagram before we came out,
and we were in the MTC together. I'm really excited! We talked on
Friday about the possibility of being companions, and we were both
really excited!
Hahaha so that's the jist of it. I adore her. I'm so happy. And we
have seen so many miracles in the past week! Yes! I feel like the Lord
finally trusts me again, and is putting people who are prepared for
the gospel in my path. Yay. :)


Well I ❤️ youuuu! Have a great week. :) 
Xoxoxoxo

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