Friday, December 30, 2016

Merry Christmas kumwail!!! 

Christmas in Pohnpei is definitely different. It almost didn't feel like Christmas without the snow and cold, hot cocoa and caroling, sledding and pine trees. But it was still fun! We went to the ward Christmas party (soooo different from home, but still lots of fun... They sang songs and shared their talents). Then we all ate all this local food. And hot dogs are a thing here, apparently. And no, they aren't dogs.... hot dogs just like from home haha. It was pretty good. Then we went to this place and the missionaries did a nativity scene for the locals. Then they laid out all these really cool gifts the locals made and had the missionaries draw for them. I got this super cool carving of a manta ray and two fish things made out of some kind of plant and seashells (Tyler White, if you are reading this, I think you would have a blast here. So many cool things they make out of plants and things. Also, I was talking to a local guy, Jones, and he said that people come here and tell them they have lots of food and all these plants that grows here naturally that is edible... but they don't teach the local people how to cook/make it. Kinda crazy.)

I keep forgetting to mention, but bangs are no good in humidity!!! Just sayin'.

Today I think homesickness finally hit me a little bit. Funny thing is, talking to and seeing my family is what did it. I realized how much I miss them. I was thinking and praying about it while we were driving, and a thought occurred to me (thank you, Spirit). I told Heavenly Father the other day that going home is not an option for me. The thought I had was, there is a reason I am on Pohnpei right now. I cannot go home, and I cannot focus on myself and what I want. I HAVE to focus on the work and serving the people here. It is hard, so hard sometimes. But I "have trusted in [the Lord] and I will trust in [Him] forever." (see 2 Nephi 4)

I don't have much time today (ok, ever), but I just wanted to say thank you for the prayers. They are felt. 

Ok, so this week's attribute of Christ was Charity. Learned lots, don't have time to say it all.. But here it is in a nutshell. Charity is teaching and serving, and not being proud of the service you give. Charity is turning out from yourself, completely. Scriptures: Alma 32:28-29, Moroni 7:44-48. 
This week I will focus on Hope. 

Merry Christmas again everyone!! I miss you all and think about you often. 

Sister Springer

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Kasehlelie! Hey all!! Sorry I did not have a Pday last week, so I couldn't email home. 

So the flight to Guam was super long. We flew from SLC to LAX (had to deice the plane, which added almost another hour to the airplane time.. yuck). Then from LAX we went to Hawaii, then the super long flight to Guam. So we left at 6am on Monday and landed at 6PM on Tuesday. So I lost a day, but that's alright. I will get it back when I go home. 

Once we got to Guam, we went to the President's house and ate dinner (Nothing crazy, just pizza). We slept there too, the first night. Wednesday we went to the chapel and had training. We also got to meet our companions and find out where we will be serving. Guess where I am?? Pohnpei! It is beautiful here!! I see the ocean every day! Not so much the beach though, because Sister Fehoko and I are serving in Sekere, which is a driving zone and doesn't seem to have too many beaches. It's very much a jungle here. I will get a machete eventually, so I can drink from those coconuts that are everywhere here!

I love the people here! They are so friendly. They are very humble too. You are well off if you have solid concrete walls instead of plywood and metal, and can paint those concrete walls. Very few have any kind of furnishing, so we sit on the concrete/tile floor mostly. Some have chairs we can sit on, or a bench or something. It puts things in perspective for sure. Be thankful for what you have, because it is so much more than many people have. 

#LightTheWorld. Look into it it, then do it!

I haven't seen any huge spiders yet. Lots of lizards though!! You would love it, Maddy! I will have to get some pictures of them. And then there are dogs... everywhere. They are not pets though, not really. Many if not all of them have some kind of disease. It breaks my heart, and I wish I could help them, but we can't really touch them. If we do we can't touch our face, and we have to wash our hands. 

So last I emailed the Christlike attribute I was working on was diligence. I don't have a lot of time, but 1 Nephi 10:19 talks about how the mysteries of God are unfolded to him that diligently seeks. To be diligent means to study. You have to have a purpose(Jacob 1:7). When we take upon us the name of Christ, we are diligent in keeping his commandments (Mosiah 1:11). Moroni tells us we have to diligently search in the light of Christ so we can know good from evil (Moroni 7:19). To be diligent is to be constant. To be diligent is to endure. So don't give up, ever. Just take one step at a time, and rely on the Lord. Pray. Read your scriptures.
This next week will be Patience. 

I only have an hour, sadly.... So I am almost out of time. I am staying so busy, but I am loving it here. The weather is beautiful. It has yet to dump rain on us, but I know it is coming. The language is slowly coming along, too. I am learning a little be at a time.

Thank you for your prayers! I feel them. I am praying for you all, too. I hope all is well back home. 

Here is my address:

PO Box 2203
Kolonia, Pohnpei 
FSM 96941

I poakpoakeikumwail (I love you all)
Sister Springer
Hey all! Hope you enjoyed the snow. It was cold here, but at least we were inside like, all day, every day.... Ha.... Not. 

Just another crazy week at the MTC. This past week was actually kind of rough. But Heavenly Father, as always, sustains the diligent and faithful, the downtrodden and suffering, through it all. If you are feeling down right now, just keep taking one step at a time. You'll pull through, I promise you.

So I realized in my last email I didn't get to tell you all too much about my district. I told you who was in it, but not about them. 
Just know they are all so strong in their own ways. So many leaders and teachers have commented on the strength we have as a district. I know it's gotta be true, because at the same time Satan was working on us all SO hard. One Elder went home, but only because it was the right thing for him personally to do. ​​
As I said, Satan has been working so hard on us. But so has Heavenly Father. We are on His side, and He has strengthened us sooo much. I guess I should maybe tell you about my week one day at a time. 

Wednesday was good. I actually don't remember too much about it.... Probably because Thursday was so good.

Thursday was Thanksgiving. Food wasn't too bad (doesn't compare to yours though, mom)​. It was a fairly relaxed day. The morning was really cool, because the sisters in my district got together to thank all the Elders for everything (because we seriously have the BEST Elders in our district). We wrote thank you notes and decorated our classroom whiteboard, and gave them cinnamon rolls and chocolates. It was a lot of fun to surprise them. I am going to miss everyone in my district. 

Elder Anderson spoke at the morning devotional. He was just like a grandpa! I loved it. I was sitting like 4 rows back and he walked past. Even though I was too far to shake his hand, we made eye contact. It was super cool. 

The Humanitarian project we did was super cool. We worked with the organization called "Feed the Children Everywhere" and made 359,000 meals for hungry kids. It was super fun: Sister Jones, Sister Pokipala, me, and a bunch of other Elders and Sisters sang almost the whole time. Pretty sure they recorded us, so maybe watch in the news or something for us. (yeah, I sang.... crazy what a mission will do to you when you are deprived of music for so long.... haha)

The Evening devotional was really cool too. A bunch of people shared their talents with us. Yay for guitars!!! I hope someone on my mission can play a musical instrument, otherwise I might go crazy.. or at least drive my companion crazy with my off-key singing haha.

Saturday was great, but a little rough.... Studying for long hours is always rough, locked in a small room. We are getting better at focusing though.

Sunday was so Spiritual and awesome, as usual. The Devotional was AWESOME!! I might have to tell you bout it later though, I am out of time. Brother Stephen Allen spoke, the managing director of the missionary department. It was hilarious, inspiring, and an answer to my prayers.

Yesterday was also good. 

Pdays are great, but not long enough... So I am basically out of time. But last note: I said last week I was going to work on an attribute of Christ each week. Last week was faith. To sum what I learned, you can increase your faith by reading and studying the BofM. Read with a question in mind: you will find answers, no matter what. Just take time to think and ponder. 

This week will be diligence. I will need, it, in prep for heading out into the field next Monday. We leave sooo early in the morning and don't get to Guam until like 6pm on Tuesday (long flight and time change... yeah....)

Anyway, gotta go. I love you all!! I hope life is treating you well. I probably won't be able to respond to anything until Dec 12th, but I don't know. 

Until next time,

Sister Springer