August 17, 2015
Right now at this moment I am listening to Grayson and Katelynn's homecoming talks and I am just in awe, absolute awe. My spirit is full. My heart is full. My testimony has grown. Missions change lives and I sit here in Danville, Illinois with so much gratitude for my savior and for all the missionaries that so faithfully serve. Missionary work is real and it is powerful. I am grateful for the faithful servants that served and returned with honor and I am so thankful for the missionaries that continue to serve. God's work is great.
We found 2 new investigators this week, really solid ones. Our car would not start and so we walked. We were frustrated. Sister Erickson said, “sister Dahlberg there is a reason why we need to walk to today.” It was hot, it was so hot. My feet hurt. I felt alone. I was turning inward. I was being selfish. When I thought about it for a spec of a moment looking back..... I think I felt a sliver, a small piece of how the savior felt in Jerusalem, "we as his servants can't expect anything less than the master." As we were walking, my heart began to change. My attitude changed and I KNEW WE NEEDED TO PRAY! I told sister Erickson that we needed to pray to god to help us walk in the heat, to stop having out feet hurt, to just find the house we were looking for. It was a plea........... within about 10 minutes Heavenly Father answered our pleas. We turned the corner and found the house. Oh how I stand all amazed at the love he has for each one of us. He cares about everything.
This week I learned how to use jumper cables on a car. We had president interviews. A little about President interviews, it was amazing. I look up to President Morgan so very much. He gave me really good advice. It was nice to sit down and talk to him about the experiences I am having, about old companions, about the growth he sees in me, and the reality of our savior Jesus Christ and how TRUE this gospel is. I looked at him and told him it was black vs. white, I now can see it so clearly. Clear as day. I have a new pair of eyes. The gospel will not only change me on my mission, but I will continue to let it change me for the rest of my life. At some point in the interview president Morgan looked at me with tears in his eyes and said, "you are not the same kid I picked up at the airport in October.”
Once again, as I listen to the pure testimonies of these “released missionaries” I feel similar to the way they feel. My heart is full, the spirit filled my soul. I need to be here and there is so much to do, so much to do in the next 7 months. There are so many people to help, so much good news about Jesus Christ to bring to souls.
I sit and reflect back and I see the growth in myself in just these short (almost 11 months) and I do not even have words to explain. There were many ups and downs this week, but those things are just helping me grow and helping me turn into the person that Heavenly Father wants and so badly needs me to be. I am learning. I am not perfect, very far beyond that, but I love that I get to do the Savior of the world’s work each day. I asked sister Erickson if I was weird and she just smiles and said yes. At first, I thought oh no.......................... I don't want to be weird, but I look at it as something different. I am letting the gospel of Jesus Christ changed me. Some day she will see with different eyes, just like the day I saw it, it takes time, it takes practice. I may seem weird, because I am changed forever.
Lots happened this week…. from an investigator loosing her baby when she was only 5 months along, to trying to get over the hurdle of teaching someone who believes in speaking in tongues very differently than we do, to the joy of hearing someone say, “After you taught me the restoration, you girls uplifted me today and it makes sense.” to my brand new companion telling me that it was not us, but it was a message from god that he wanted them to hear, to hearing our investigator Christy tell us that everything makes sense and she knows the messages we share are true, to laughing with her and feeling the love that god has for her, to sister Erickson hitting one month, to the ward members being some of the most amazing people I have ever met, to finding out the Whites are moving to California, to visiting with a less active who has a word of wisdom addiction and him crying happy tears telling us that he daughter is getting married in the temple and baring testimony to him that he could make it to the temple someday, to being uplifted in sacrament meeting, to seeing my worth, to having someone say.... “I am more open to read the Book of Mormon after the spirit testified to me, I was very tense when you came in and now I feel calm.” to having a sweet old lady in the ward tell me that I should not be a flight attendant, to president Morgan being so excited and happy when I told him when I get home I want to work at the MTC, to delivering backpacks to kids that do not have much to start school, to testifying to a young man that he will see his mom again who just passed away.
There are so many things that happened this week and that is just to list a few, but I want you all to know this is his work and I am honored to be a part of it.
August 24, 2015
11 months today, you guys...... I cannot even believe it. I always thought people were crazy when they said...........time needs to slow down..........I CAN NOT BELIEVE I AM SAYING THIS. BUT TIME NEEDS TO SLOW DOWN. It is already week 5 of the transfer and it feels like it just started. The fact that I can count the number of transfers I have left on one hand makes me so sad.
Okay let me just say, my heart is happy right now. Can this be my favorite week in Danville so far? Thank you for all the birthday wishes and sweet and kind words. I have been so excited to tell you about this week.
Monday we did service for a less active member and I held a wild FROG. Yes, it was exciting. But that is not what I have been so excited to tell you all about.
Remember Christy; we have been working with her. She is the one with the boyfriend who made her throw away her study materials. Well anyway, last transfer we tried to call her to set appointments, but she was always SUPA busy (single mom of 5 kiddos) Finally, we got over to her house and her and her boyfriend had split and the time was finally right for her. We started teaching her and she knew the things that we shared were true. We watched the Restoration dvd and she knew everything that was testified was true.
We went over on Tuesday and she wanted Sister Erickson to teach the lesson, lesson 2 so she could practice and get more familiar with teaching. She asked her all kinds of questions, smiling, and she is my favvvoooorrriiiiteeeeee. Well during the lesson, I would ask sister Erickson if she needed help and it was just a big learning lesson for all of us. Christy has the strongest faith. I felt very strongly that she just needed the invitation to baptism. She is very independent and I wanted her to realize for herself, instead of us telling her what she should do. I looked at her and said, "Christy would it be crazy if we invited you to be baptized?" She looks at us, and says "No. But it would be crazy if I was not ready and I got baptized, I need to be ready." We started to talk about the atonement and how the past is the past and the atonement of Jesus Christ covers it all. We are not here to be perfect and baptism is the first step. The spirit filled the room and my heart was full of God's love. We looked at the phone calendar and talked about what had to happen for her to enter the waters of baptism and she is on board with it all. WE SET HER DATE FOR SEPTEMBER 13TH! (which is a very special day for her. Her grandmother’s birthday) Her sister is a recent convert in Champ and her godfather died a month ago and he told her that he had joined the Mormon church. She joked with him and asked, “what did you do that for??????? Those missionaries keep coming to my door.” Well she knew that when we came it was the answer of the thing that she has been searching for. You guys when I say she is the coolest person ever, I love her.
We have been bringing members to lessons with her and they are so impressed with her. At first she was going to keep her baptism a secret. Last night we went over with the Fultons and Christy said, “I am telling everyone.” She told us all kinds of stories of her telling her friends and family members who came over. She is receiving a lot of opposition from some people, but her faith is so strong. I am not worried. I know that God will win and she knows it too. We were talking and she said something that warmed my heart, we were talking about God's love and perfect timing and she said, "and he even sent me the right ones.”(referring to missionaries) I just smiled and giggled and she said... “I AM SERIOUS. He did.” Brother Fulton was talking about how we need to get her to the temple right after she is baptized to do baptisms for the dead and we were talking about the temple yesterday and she was getting so excited. Brother Fulton went to show her pictures and she said do not show me...... I want to see it for the first time and feel the wow factor. She turned to me and asked when I was leaving the area. She wants to see if I could go to the temple with her. I explained that the Indianapolis temple was outside of our mission. But then I told her I could come back and we could go to the temple together. I always joke with her that I want to be black and we laugh and laugh and laugh. She said she is going to find her a good Mormon husband. EVERYONE JUST ADORES HER. I LOVE HER SO MUCH. I want you all to meet her.
Okay so get this? We go on exchanges and I go to Springfield with sister Montgomery on Wednesday to Thursday. We had the greatest day. Oh my gosh. Our last exchange before she goes home...................... I cannot believe it (she called and sang me happy 11 months this morning. she is my BFF. love her being over our zone)
Well our day on exchanges started out seeing someone who was preparing for baptism and then we went to lunch, then we went to help at the breadline and saw so many miracles there, a homeless guy after talking to him told us he joined the church when he was 17 and the other guys sitting next to him had been to Salt Lake and had seen the temple. Long story short, we got an appointment for the sisters to meet with them and a ride to church! sooooooo coool.
After we had a lesson with a less active member and then we went to a dinner appointment with a family in the ward. Well sister Montgomery told me we had a potential appointment at 7:00, so we tried to eat quickly. We left and she was telling me how prepared this potential was. I WAS SO PUMPED. We drove and she told me his name was Don Balcner. I thought man.... that is close and sounds like the Dambachner. She told me we were teaching the restoration and I prayed before that lesson that he would be receptive. We get out of the car, go to the door, and before I could ask her why she had her camera out, KIM DAMBACHNER ANSWERED THE DOOOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I dropped my bag, in complete shock and just started screaming! Then I ran over to the grass and dropped on my knees. Yelling so excited, WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE????????????????????? DID YOU MOVE?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? TURNS OUT THE DAMBACHERS MOVED TO SPRINGFIELD. I had no idea because I have been emailing the wrong email for months now. I have not heard from them and I wondered why. I thought I was emailing them............... but I had the wrong email all long.
We caught up on what was going on and how God's plans are perfect. I WAS LAUGHING SO HARD THAT MY CHEEKS HURT (I forgot how much I missed that family) and crying because I just could not believe it. I could not believe that I was with them, talking to them. I touched all their heads just to make sure it was not a dream. BEST DAY. After we got back in the car I told sister Montgomery how much it meant to me. She said, “I knew your birthday was coming up and I cannot be here on your birthday, so I wanted you to have a surprise!” Then she took me to ice cream; we were running, trying to hurry. It was great. She is my favorite. That night we talked and talked about our memories. We got on our knees to say one last prayer together before bed and were crying. Oh boy, we were a mess. I love her.
We got to go to the Indianapolis temple dedication at the stake center yesterday. WOW. WOW. WOW. I love this work. I love this church. I seriously am reminded again and again how true it is. I love what I am doing, I really, really do.
Love you all, sister Dahlberg!
August 31, 2015
I am 20.
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE BIRTHDAY WISHES. I SERIOUSLY CANNOT TELL YOU HOW MUCH I JUST APPRECIATE YOU ALL AND HOW MUCH ALL OF YOU MEAN TO ME. I HAVE BEEN SO BLESSED TO HAVE THE PEOPLE IN MY LIFE THAT I DO. And that is how I felt on my birthday, overwhelmed and I felt my many blessings. I loved my birthday on a mission, serving the lord, and everyone made it a special. I really did appreciate it. The people here in Danville have stolen my heart. I do not think I will ever be ready to leave this place. I just adore it with all of my heart. SO thank you to every one who made my birthday so special.
It is the last week of the transfer......... what?
This morning I was studying in the New Testament and I sat there thinking of everything Jesus Christ has done for each one of us, what he went through, and my heart is full of gratitude. Another thing that I have learned and that has stayed with me the past couple days: REMEMBER PROGRESSION, NOT PERFECTION.
This week we have been going through our teaching pool and really trying to determine who is progressing and who is not and if not, why.
We have been doing a little bit of missionary work in Covington, Indiana. It is the cutest little town in Indiana. Our area covers it and we met a really amazing young mom who is going through a lot. We really think that we could help her and through the spirit of the lord, her life could change.
One night this week, we were waiting for Christy at her house, and she was not answering the phone, so we waited just a bit. We saw a RACCOON and it tried to run after sister Erickson. Finally, Christy answered her phone and we told her what had just happened. She was dying laughing when she pulled up she got out of the car. We all laughed and laughed. Please just imagine it…. I WAS SO AFRAID AND SCREAMING. I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING TO GET ATTACKED.
We have really been trying to see Christy everyday, or just keeping in contact with her and sweet kiddos. We have been going through all the lessons and I seriously cannot believe how gold she is. Her heart is so pure. She believes everything. She is my new BFF. Her baptism interview is coming up! She came to church yesterday and when we were in Relief Society she saw our meal calendar. She said, "I am always cooking, you come to my house for dinner tomorrow." Everyone just loves her. She is so down to earth. WOW! We were in sacrament meeting and she was embarrassed when her two-year-old son was being really loud, but everyone loves him and would grin at him.
This is a story I will have to explain when I return home. It is hard to explain over email. We went over for a lesson yesterday and she said something like this, I need to tell you something. I was going to back out.......... she was going to tell us to no longer come to teach her; because of the actions that some one did to her for her decision to join the church. She said, “I just felt that it was just too hard, people think I am crazy and I have lost 2 of my best friends already.” She began to tell us what happened right before we came over for a lesson on my birthday and it broke my heart. I looked at her and talked to her and I cannot even begin to use words to explain how amazing she is. She told us more and we all just sat there, I had tears in my eyes, she looked at me and said, “Do not cry.” She hates it when we cry.
Sister Erickson asked her what changed her mind. We talked about everything Joseph Smith went through for us. Christy looked at us and said look what Jesus Christ had to go through. WHY WOULD IT BE EASY FOR ME? IF IT WAS NOT EASY FOR HIM? IT WILL NOT BE EASY FOR ME AND IT IS NOT EASY. SHE IS SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO AMAZING. SHE WILL NOT LET SATAN WIN. He sees what a powerful source of good she will be for this church. SHE AMAZES ME. Please keep her in your prayers, prayers never hurt.
I love this work. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I love what I am doing; there is nothing more important than this right here. I love you all. Please have a happy week for me.
Love, sister Dahlberg