Monday, June 13, 2016

WOW! I cannot believe how many thing I could write an entire e-mail about this week! Needless to say our days have been pretty jammed packed with every single possible emotion known to mankind. 

This week was transfers. The first transfer I knew I'd be effected. 
      On Tuesday we had dinner with our bishop's family and Andy. As we were busing to a park in between ours and Andy's houses to read scriptures we got the long awaited, mostly dreaded, transfers call from our zone leaders. But because we were on the bus we couldn't put the phone on speaker so Sister Allard had them just tell her everything. She was still talking when we got off the bus and Andy and I just had to wait to find out what was happening. I wasn't a fan of how the whole situation went down because it took a solid 10 minutes to find out everything they had told her... But finally she informed she was being transferred down to lethbridge to be in a YSA ward, and her new companion is Sister Paige. We were all kind of messes after that, as we all took in the news in totally different ways. So finally we said goodbye and walked back to our apartment. In all honestly, I lived quite comfortably in denial for several days after hearing the news.
     But on Wednesday, in preparation for the dreaded change Sister Allard and I made sure we crossed off a few things from our bucket list of things we wanted to do together. One of those was we finally went out for Sushi! :D We may or may not have ordered WAAY too much sushi for the 2 of us... but you know me! I ate it all anyway. We also took an obsessive amount of pictures together of literally anything and everything. At one point we just sat in front of the camera and made weird faces for a solid 5 minutes... 

Thursday morning came all too quickly it seemed. I was really nervous about the change. I thought back to when I first met Sister Allard and how honest to goodness awkward things were for the first several days... And I really didn't want to go back to that. But I knew that these transfers were inspired and whatever was going to happen next would be a great opportunity for me to learn what the Lord would have me learn. We took some more pictures, and then said goodbye. I felt like it was a scene out a movie as we got into different cars and drove off in opposite directions.
     At that point I was with my STL Sister Blaser. Our new companions were coming up from the South of the mission, so it was going to be a few hours before we would be picking them up. We went back to her apartment for a few hours to clean up, and drop off some things Sister McDonald had left there, and then we went to my apartment to 
do our studies we couldn't do in the morning. Then it was time to head back to the church to pick up our new companions. We were both a little nervous, but once we got to the church and met them some of those nerves started to slowly settle. 
     My new companions name is Sister Blake. She moved around a lot growing up but is mostly from Bountiful Utah/ Alpine Utah/ California. She was also into choir and theatre in high school, and we even figured out we were both at the same competitions several times! Small world eh? I have actually really enjoyed being with her so far! It seemed like the awkward first few days were cut down to just a few hours because we have so much in common it has been so easy to really connect with each other:) 

Saturday was the most intense day ever! 
We started off by waking up at 5am to get ready to drive 2 1/2 hours down to Lethbridge to see President Nelson! We also got to see Ulisses Soares, W. Mark Basset, and one more from the seventy that I forgot :P It was a really amazing meeting. I was amazing at how simple it was. Now that we have seen Elder Christofferson & President Nelson, I have been able to see an over riding theme with the Apostles. When they come to talk to us they could talk about any single thing in the whole world, and yet both apostles chose to talk about their testimonies of the Book of Mormon. It was really neat to be able to hear how much the Book of Mormon means to each of them, and how much it should mean to each of us. I love the Book of Mormon so much, and am so grateful for all of the sacrifices that took place so we could have it in our lives today. I hope that this week everyone will take a little extra time to really ponder on how different your life would be without the Book of Mormon. It's a pretty overwhelming list of things that would be fundamentally different in my life without it. The biggest thing is the knowledge of the Atonement. The reason why the Book of Mormon "contains the fullness of the gospel" is because it explains to us exactly what the Atonement is, and what is does for us. So many people have no idea that Christ suffered for our sins and afflictions in the garden of Gethsemane. Many people in the world simple believe that he went there to pray to our Father in Heaven, and don't understand much else. But because of the Book of Mormon, we have it explained simply to us over and over and over. I am so grateful for that as I reflect on the many times in my life when I relied on my knowledge of the Atonement to lift me up and help me to keep going when I know it would have been impossible for me to do on my own. I love my Savior, and I love the Book of Mormon. I promise you as you truly study it's pages each day, you will grow closer to Him that has suffered all, and in turn, you will gain a greater appreciation for what He has done for you, and receive a renewed motivation to serve Him more fully every single day. 

Once we got back to Calgary Sister Blake and I went to this little Vietnamese place. After we ate, we were walking through the parking lot, and we saw this couple a ways away helping their baby in a stroller. We both awkwardly struggled to decide if we should go over and talk to them, but then sadly enough we chickened out and kept walking. We both felt SO guilty for walking away that we promised we would talk to the next person we saw. Just as we said that, a guy came walking up the street. So we both walked over to him and asked him if he had ever seen missionaries before. After talking to him for a little while we came to find out that he grew up very lutheran, but was currently in between churches right now because when he was a teenager he stopped going to church. We asked if he would be interested in hearing what we believe, and he said "Yeah, for sure!" I almost fell over when he said that. I have been trying so hard lately to talk to people on the street and every time it's been a less than awesome experience. So when he took our card and gave us his number I was blown away! We walked away so happy, and so confident we decided we were going to talk to everyone we saw after that! 
So as we walked over to our investigators house to drop by, we stopped and talked to everyone we saw. Nobody else was really interested, so by the time we were almost to Nadia's house I was feeling a little discouraged again. We were almost to her apartment when we saw a man across the street with his 2 kids getting groceries out of the car. When we saw him Sister Blake asked if we should offer to help him. I told her I am a total chicken and will never initiate a street contact where we have to cross the street. At the moment he looked up and saw us, and Sister Blake yelled over to him asking if he needed any help. With his arms full he stated to sign to us that he was good. So we started to walk away, but then Sister Blake started freaking out telling me that I had to go talk to him! I was freaking out then because I haven't signed in over a year now, and was worried I wouldn't be able to say anything and I would just look like an idiot! But after my dear companion literally shoved me over to him I walked over and started signing with him!
I asked if he was sure he didn't want some help, and he said he was good. Then I asked if he had ever met missionaries before and he told me that he had when he was really little. I asked what he knew about the church, and he said not much, but he knew about it when he was a kid. Then he asked our names, and I told him, and he told me his name is Tyler. When I asked if he would be interested in having us come over and teach his family sometime he ran over to his car and grabbed a business card with his number on it and told me they were going inside to eat dinner right now, but we could text him and set up another time to come by! I thanked him, and then said goodbye. 
I could barely contain my excitement as we walked away, and Sister Blake kept asking me what happened, and what he said! After I told her she got super excited too!
But now I don't know what to do! I don't know enough Sign Language to actually teach the discussions! But today I will be spending all day on lds.org learning how to sign gospel words. Honestly my mind is still blown at how it all went! 

So yeah! That's how my week went! I love Sister Blake and am SO excited to learn from her! I can tell we are going to get so much done in our area, and I can't wait!
I love you all and hope you are all getting beautiful tans this summer! I will not be because even though it's been 30C, All my shirts are long sleeves... haha:)

Have a wonderful wonderful week! 
And please enjoy the following ridiculous photos... 

Love, Sister Dobyns






My Cute Zone saying goodbye once again!

SUSHI SUSHI SUSHI! 

Last picture in our apartment! 

Andy came to say goodbye one more time before we headed off! 

GOODBYE FOREVER! 

Moving in the new sister! #3flightsofstairs #prettybuffsisters

MTC Reunion thanks to President Nelson! You know you are best friends when your outfits coordinate even though you got dressed hundreds of miles apart...

Reunited at last! (2 days later...)

My New Companion Sister Blake!

Day 1: Biking in the Rain! Welcome to the life Sister Blake! 😅

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