Missouri – week #40

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HEY fam!
❤️️❤️️❤️️❤️️❤️️

It was another really great week in the MIM. We met President and Sister Love!! They are the complete opposite of the Vest’s haha but I love them so much (no pun intended). Their motto is “work hard, play hard” and I’m stoked about that! We met them at MLC on Wednesday and saw them again on Thursday for our Zone Conference and then I spent some time with them one on one in my interviews on Saturday. During interviews, President Love talked with me about things that he wouldn’t have known unless I told him. He is so inspired and I know that he has been called by God to oversee this mission. He’s so humble, very blue collar, but he is such a hard worker. I’m excited to finish out my mission with them!

At MLC, President shared something that I really loved. He said that during a Stake conference, a young boy asked Elder Bednar if he had served a mission. Elder Bednar replied that yes, he had. Then the boy asked, “What did you sacrifice?” Elder Bednar then replied, “Absolutely nothing. And neither will you. Till this end were you born.” Going into my mission, I thought I was sacrificing so many things. But it’s so true, I haven’t sacrificed anything at all. The Lord has blessed me so much over the last 10 months and my heart is so full.

But on to my week!

HUGE miracle occurred at church on Sunday. Lemme explain.

We had an amazing lesson with a part member family at the Russell’s house (talked about them briefly a few weeks ago). Marcy, the mom, has been inactive for ten years and has three unbaptized daughters. She has NOT been receptive to missionaries in such a long time so it has been a miracle that we’ve been meeting with them for the past 2 weeks. We read 3 Nephi 11 in our lesson and invited them to continue to read the Book of Mormon, take the missionary discussions, and come to church. And they agreed!! Cedae, the 17 year old, expressed to us that she wouldn’t be able to make it to church because she had to work. But when we showed up on Sunday, all of them were there!!! I WAS SO HAPPY!!

Also, we weren’t able to meet with Felicia and Bren this week BUT Sister Hanson texted us Saturday night and said that Bren would be coming to church with her family! And he LOVED IT. He said he wants to come every week! Sister Bleak and I were just beaming during sacrament.

Lastly, we met with another part member family this week and they agreed to take the missionary discussions. I talked about them last week in my email! The father was baptized in Blue Mills when he was young and no one else in his family are members. We did some HTBT and talked about how WE were converted to the gospel. It was such a huge miracle to pick up 4 investigators this week.

Hard work truly pays off. Being diligent doesn’t necessarily affect how much success we have, but it shows the Lord that we are ready and prepared to receive His children. I love working hard and establishing trust with my Father in Heaven. Please pray for our friends this week! The power of prayer is real.

XOXO
sister draper

Ps. Two fun things about Missouri: mosquitoes and Kool Aid. I haven’t had more mosquito bites in my life (I have 18…and they are currently swollen around my ankles #cankles) and everyone here drinks Kool Aid during dinner. That is all.

216 N Main St
Liberty MO 64068

Missouri – week #39

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HAPPY 4th OF JULYYYYYY FROM MY FAVORITE LITTLE HISTORIC TOWN OF LIBERTY (very fitting). I love this day and I love this country! Fireworks have been going off ALL WEEK in Missouruh. There’s pretty much no regulations on fireworks here hahaha it’s so fun. Also fun fact: 80 years ago today, here in Missouri, Sidney Rigdon gave a speech in which he promised that the Saints would defend themselves even if it came to a “war of extermination.” This speech pretty much caused the most conflict for the saints in Missouri :))) HAPPY 4th!!

OKAY I AM SOOOO EXCITED because one of my investigators in my last area is getting baptized!!!! Sheri!!!! I talked about her in a few of my emails last transfer and she has been progressing so well! LOVE HER SO MUCH plz pray for Sheri that she will keep her date :)))

ANYWAY my week was really good!

We got in with a part member family we’ve been trying to work with! We set up an appointment with them so their girls can be taught 🙂
Exchanges with Sister Bench and Sister Osburn: Sis Bleak and Bench had a lesson with our potential investigator Erica and they taught the Restoration to her and her daughters! We have a return appointment with them as well!
Zone service this week was at a wildlife conservation and we cut back bushes and trees from the path. It made me really happy because it felt like a hike (which is crazy bc Missouri is sooooo flat) but I also got bit a million times by mosquitos and chiggers 🙂 #justmissourithings
I also experienced the most amazing dinner message with a family this week. Sister Bleak and I read the story, The Room and had a discussion about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Brother Pickens had a stroke two years ago which made him mute and he wanted to say something so badly. He sat in silence, exerting all of his effort to express his feelings, but he just couldn’t get it out. The Spirit then encircled the room and enveloped each of us. Brother Picken’s frustration actually really touched me. He wanted to share his testimony so badly, but the Spirit was with us so much that we knew what he was feeling. Words cannot even describe this adequately…but it was the closest I think I have ever felt to the Spirit ❤️
And finally, last night Sister Bleak and I gave a tour to about 60 seminary and institute teachers hahaha RIP me I was so nervous AND brother and sister greiner were in the group (my mission prep teacher in CA). The tour was so spiritual. I was brought to tears a few times during the presentation which hardly happens for me. At the end, we all sang “Nearer my God to Thee” while gathered around the rotunda. I get CHILLS typing this. It was an unforgettable tour and I’m so happy we got to take it! One of the women came up to me afterward, letting me know that I had nothing to be nervous about. She said that I am called by God and have His power and authority with me. She reminded me of the scripture revealed here in D&C 122:

9 Therefore, hold on thy way… Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.

I know that God is always with me and with each of you. Love you all.

XOXO
sister draper

216 N Main St
Liberty MO 64068

Missouri – week #38

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FRIENDS AND FAMILY!

hello!! I promise my email is not actually this long, I just copied a lil story at the bottom.

This was such a great week. I don’t even know where to start!!
Well I will begin with Felicia because I LOVE HER!! Here is the miracle story…buckle up!!

SO Sister Hanson in our ward is so good at missionary work. She has this friend Felicia and her son is friends with Felicia’s son, Bren. We met them on Monday at a Lego activity where we sorted Legos for less fortunate children. We talked briefly and Bren actually came up to me and asked about baptisms for the dead and eventually said “can I be baptized again? like in this building? I just feel really good here!” Ummm okay I was pretty surprised/excited/stressed bc I didn’t know how to respond cuz he’s 12. But I invited him to church and he said he wanted to come! So the next night, Tuesday, we go to dinner at the Hanson’s and she invited like 4 nonmembers over and one of them was Felicia! We got talking with her about what we do, why we are here, etc. We asked her if she would like us to share a message about Jesus Christ with her family and she accepted a lesson for this Friday. THEN here comes the reallllll miracle. The next day, on Wednesday, FELICIA AND BREN SHOW UP TO THE JAIL UNANNOUNCED PEOPLE!!!! Luckily we were on shift and I was able to give them a tour while teaching the first lesson to them! At the end, she had so many questions and I was able to give her a Book of Mormon and a resto pamphlet. I WAS SO HAPPY gahhhh I can’t wait to see her again on Friday. She is the sweetest lady ever. PLEASE pray for them :))

Member missionary work is so effective! If you are reading this I invite you to pray for missionary opportunities this week and when you do, TELL THE MISSIONARIES!!! They will help you. Mostly directing this invitation to my immediate family but y’all are encouraged to do the same. The most prepared people that missionaries teach are member referrals so help a sista out

I also took a reallllly cool tour this week at the Jail. A family came in and both parents were deaf, so the daughter signed for me as I spoke. I’ve always been not very good at being okay with silence as I teach but this experience allowed me to be more comfortable with it. The Spirit was so strong and the family and I grew pretty close in that 40 minutes. SUCH an unforgettable experience I can’t really describe it.

Another spiritual tour: a family came in and their son had just returned home from his mission a week ago. Sister Bleak and I have been trying to be more bold in our teaching and at the end of the tour, sitting in front of the Liberty Jail, we invited Hayden (the RM) to bear his testimony about the Prophet and the Restoration of the Gospel in front of his family. It was AMAZING because they grew closer together as the Spirit touched each of them.

I love the Liberty Jail. A man asked me this week why we had the Visitor Center here because he didn’t think the Prophet would ever want to come back. I disagree!! The Prophet was truly refined and was able to come out stronger because of his experience here. Although he saw God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ in the flesh in the sacred grove, I feel like Joseph Smith really came to know his Savior while in the Liberty Jail. As he received answers to his pleas and prayers, the Lord said to him, “The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than He?”

Our trials help us feel a piece of what the Savior felt for us. He overcame the world, and because of His example, we can endure all things. The church is true and I know that God still speaks to us today through a living prophet and personal revelation.

LOVE YALL.

XOXO
sister draper
216 N Main St
Liberty MO

Ps. I LOVE this story and wanted to include it because it reminds me of the Prophet’s experience in the Jail and can relate to us as well. I love reading it to the visitors here 🙂

…………………………….

There was a group of women in a Bible study on the book of Malachi. As they were studying chapter three they came across verse three which says, “He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.” This verse puzzled the women and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.

One of the women offered to find out about the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible study. That week the woman called up a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn’t mention anything about the reason for her interest in silver beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that, in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest so as to burn away all the impurities.

The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot – then she thought again about the verse, that He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver. She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined. The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. For if the silver was left even a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.

The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, “How do you know when the silver is fully refined?” He smiled at her and answered, “Oh, that’s the easy part — when I see my image reflected in it.”

 

Missouri – week #37

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WHADDUP lovelies!!

the greeting was brought to you by my fav member in the New Mark ward, Bro Tallant, who greeted us like that paired with the shaka …without fail every single time we talked to him hahaha.

YEP IVE BEEN TRANSFERRED! I said RIP to sis daws (it was so so sad…to be reunited again in Provo…or probably in a couple days when she has a lesson at the Jail) and the New Mark/Lib YSA wards. I loved my time there and am already so excited to go back and stay with my favorite people.

BUT YES I am serving at the Historic Liberty Jail! My new companion is Sister Bleak (pronounced like steak) (so yes our comp name sounds like Blake Draper hehe) and she’s from St George Utah! We lived at the dollhouse my first transfer so I have deja vu! We are the sister leaders at the Jail and get to go on exchanges with all of the sisters serving here–which I’m so excited about! We live in the cutest little house right behind the Liberty Jail. I’m serving in the Doniphan Ward (named after Alexander Doniphan, go ahead and wiki him dad), once again following in the footsteps of my trainer mom Sis Williams…AND my bff Cyd Morgan served here too :,)

But I was given a very warm welcome by the senior couples my first day when they gave me my site guide and said “Brush up on your history Sister Draper. You have to take a bus tour on Saturday.” :,)) I didn’t end up taking a bus tour, but I did take a tour on my own of about 50 people! I love busy seasonnnn

Also, I logged back on to teaching Center and saw that a man I had taught online from NEPAL got baptized!!! Shyam is the man. He had moved to New York recently and wanted to know more about Christianity. I taught lesson 1, hooked him up with the local missionaries, and I guess the rest is history! I forgot how much I love Teaching Center and I’m happy we have two hours on it every day. I got to talk to Danielle, the woman I taught from Florida and it was so cool. She’s receiving a calling and preparing for the temple 🙂

Okay but here’s a couple more experiences from this week I wanted to share.

There’s an awesome part member family in our ward that we work with, the Green’s. The wife investigated the church while they lived in TRABUCO CANYON 8 years ago and was finally baptized when they moved to Missouri. When I met them at a ward activity last night, we totally clicked. She’s really good friends with a lot of the people in the RSM Stake (like the whole Corbin family) and it was SO COOL to be so connected to them! There is no such thing as coincidences ❤️️ I’m excited to work with them!!!

Secondly, we had presidents devotional Sunday night at the Jail and I was able to hear Brandt bear his testimony again along with sweet Wilbur!!! Some of my favorite quotes from him were “I was so nervous to do this, but then my wife and I prayed to the Lord Jesus (still gotta work on that one haha @ sis Dawson) and I felt so much better! I love this church I want to be a member forever and ever.” MELTED MY HEART!!

I love the ward I’m serving in, they are all SO missionary minded. One of my fav members, the Russell’s, already gave us a referral for their friends to teach tomorrow night! And I love serving in the Historic Liberty Jail where the Prophet spent 4 and 1/2 months of his life. Read D&C sections 121-123!! I can’t wait to share what I learn with all of you as I serve in this very special place. But for now, I’ll end with this scripture from section 123:

17 “Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power…”

This attitude was truly manifest in the Prophet as he tipped his hat to the men who were literally locking him up and said “good afternoon, gentlemen” as he entered the prison door. BE HAPPY and rely on our Savior, Jesus Christ 🙂

I LOVE YOU ALLLLL!!

XOXO
Sister Draper

216 N Main St
Liberty MO 64068

Missouri – week #36

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hello everyone!

I’m just going to make this email quick and to the point! It was kind of a rough week with dropping investigators and being dropped BUT it was also a really good week too! We can’t know joy without opposition!

We stayed very busy this week! We had our last MLC with the Vest’s on Wednesday, blitzed St Joe with our sisters on Tuesday, and had exchanges with some of my fav sisters from Far West on Friday!

We were able to go to the temple TWICE this week! Sister Dawson and I did an endowment session and I saw some of my favorite members from Blue Mills ❤️️ huge tender mercy. and on Saturday, we went with Brandt to do baptisms for the first time! He loved it. It was such a special experience. Before we got to be baptized, we were able to watch a returning member (he was inactive his whole life) do baptisms for the first time. He had a massive stroke about two years ago and is wheelchair bound. Two men verrrry slowly helped him into the font and he was able to be baptized for five individuals who have passed away. I can’t even describe this experience adequately enough. Although his body was weak and he couldn’t hold up on his own, he was still able to use his body to serve others and provide the opportunity for them to accept baptism. It was so amazing and I will never forget that experience, I’m sure Brandt won’t either. Temple work is so special and I will never look at it the same way again.

But of course, the hardest part of the week was being dropped by Aimee. Over the last few months, I have really grown to love her. She’s not ready to make the commitment at this time, but I have no doubt that she will in the future. The day she dropped us, I was reading in Jacob 5 about the allegory of the olive tree. The Lord of the Vineyard weeps with the servant when the tree brings forth corrupt fruit, after being planted in good soil. He asks in verse 41 if there was more he could have done to help the tree, and answers in verse 47 that there was nothing he could have done. Although this happens, he does not give up faith or hope in the tree. I was able to find a lot of peace and comfort while reading this and comparing it to our situation with Aimee.

At the end of our lesson with Brandt this week, he also said, “sisters, this whole week I have been prompted by the Spirit to tell you not to get sad, anxious, or discouraged. You are doing the Lord’s work.” Wow. It was so cool to see the Spirit work through him to answer our prayers! This happened again this week at church when our 70-something year old “Baptist Mormon” friend Jerry came up to Sister Dawson and I after gospel essentials. He’s not a member (just his wife is), and isn’t taking the lessons from us, but we have a really great relationship with him (he calls us his daughters haha). He said “you two are doing a great work. I know it must be hard to do what you do, to give up what you’ve given up, and so it is so inspiring to me that you serve the Lord to the degree that you do. Thank you for your example.” Sister Dawson and I talked about this experience later and said that it didn’t sound like the Jerry Naas we knew that was speaking to us, it sounded like our Heavenly Father.

I know that as His servants, we are being watched over, guided, and protected. This may have been a tougher week, but I have been able to recognize His love and tender mercies every single day. I am so HAPPY!! I love serving Him and I’m ready to work hard and see miracles this week again.

LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH! Plz pray that Sister Dawson and I stay together this next transfer. I love herrrr

Missouri – week #35

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holaaaa everyone

it’s officially summer here in Missouruhhh. You know how I can tell? Because sometimes I can’t tell if it’s rainy outside or just extremely humid. You know how else I can tell? Because there are just as many hairy, shirtless men mowing their lawns as there are kids with fidget spinners (hate those things) hahahaha sorry for that mental image…now on to my week!!

CAN YALL BELIEVE I AM HALFWAY DONE WITH MY MISSION?! I hit my 9 month mark in two days and it’s unbelievable. We had Zone Conference this week and for the closing hymn, we sang “God Be With You Till We Meet Again” because it was President and Sister Vest’s last ZC. Well turns out that song WRECKS ME and I just never want to leave my mission I love it so much. I’m glad I still have 8 months to go :))

I’ve been pondering a lot about my mission and how I’ve been able to endure this far. Well, a sister shared this scripture in our district meeting that I just loved and so I’ll change the name to my own:

D&C 52
3 Wherefore, verily I say unto you, let my servant [Sister Draper] take [her] journey as soon as preparations can be made to leave [her] home, and journey to the land of Missouri.
4 And inasmuch as [she is] faithful unto me, it shall be made known unto [her] what [she] shall do.

I have definitely felt the guiding hand of the Lord while on my mission as I’ve strived to be a faithful missionary. I’ve learned so much that this is His work and we need to involve Him in everything we do.

We saw a couple tender mercies this week that I want to share!!

We were able to teach Sheri the Plan of Salvation this week. We told her that she lived with God before she came to the earth and that He knew her as His spirit daughter. She responded, “I did?! He knew me?! I never knew that. Nobody has ever told me that. Wow, I feel so special.” With tears in our eyes, we spent the next 10 minutes discussing this point and reading scriptures out of the Bible and Book of Mormon. The Spirit was so powerful as we testified of the truthfulness of that point. I realized that as members of the church, we are so lucky to know the things that we know. It was one of the most spiritual Plan of Salvation lessons I’ve ever taught.
We received a headquarters referral for our friend Ky! His friend had posted scriptures from the Book of Mormon every day in May and Ky liked his posts! So his friend reached out and asked if Ky would be open to missionaries coming over and giving him a copy and he accepted! We invited him to read the introduction and testimonies and when we called his friend back, he said he’d already read them and started in 1 Nephi! We have an appointment with him this week and he’s super solid.

We saw so many tender mercies this week but we did have a couple of rough days. I am grateful for the hard times on a mission because it allows me to feel just a tiny bit of what the Savior went through when we was on the earth. I am so grateful for Him and the enabling power of His Atonement that gives me more strength and the power to overcome trials. I love being His servant ❤️️here’s to the next half of my mission!

XO
Sister Draper

422 Ne 103rd St apt 6C
Kansas City MO 64155

Missouri – week #34

 

image1image2image3image4image5image6HELLOOOOOOO everyone!! Happy Memorial Day!

hahaha Sister Dawson and I were excited to write our weekly email this week because we had the craziest experiences so tune in for some entertainment!!

To start this off, I had a very scary somewhat interesting experience at the Liberty Jail this week. We brought Wilbur (our 82 year old recent convert) and his wife Tammy to watch the Restoration movie at the Jail. (which, by the way, is so neat because so much of the movie takes place inside of Liberty Jail..) As we were leaving, Wilbur joked that he was going to lock Tammy up in jail. We all turn to her and she just stares at him and doesn’t say anything. Well, thanks to someone I know pretty well (@blakedraper) I’m pretty familiar with the symptoms of fainting. Just then, she turns ghostly white and collapses as I catch her. And she starts seizing!!!!! Sister Tallant was with us and knew how to work Tammy’s defibrillator to stop the seizure but it was soooo scary!!! As soon as it was over, she was back to normal! She has epilepsy so it wasn’t out of the norm for them, but it was for us haha.

ANYWAY moving forward…we picked up three new investigators this week and two of them are Eric and Valerie! We found them just by some good ol door knocking. We thought we were contacting an older lady but then Eric answers. He’s this tatted up, hard looking dude and we weren’t expecting that (seriously thought he was gonna yell at us) so we just start laughing (sooo professional). We ask for his wife and he gets her, and she’s not the one we were looking for either! So we explain the situation and we’re all laughing together. Eric then told us that he had always ignored missionaries at his door before, but we seemed super cool and he was willing to talk. So we went right in and taught them the Restoration!! It was so amazing. They are both so down to earth and super open to our message. When we gave them both copies of the Book of Mormon, he wanted us to sign our names and favorite scriptures!! I’m excited about themmmm!

Another cool miracle: we had a meeting with our ward missionaries and joked about not having anyone to teach at the moment, so we asked them all to pray for us! Well that night we went out contacting and got a headquarters referral for a girl named Mackenzie!!! She had talked with sisters online (woo VC represent) and had so many good questions! She works at Vivint in Kansas City and wanted to know what most of her coworkers believed (never thought I’d say I was grateful for Vivint lol). She’s YSA aged, SO SWEET, and we are meeting with her this week!

Our other new investigator this week was Cody, Aimee’s on again, off again boyfriend haha. K so remember she kind of dropped off the earth for a few weeks, and Sister Dawson and I have been praying with SO MUCH FAITH to be able to meet with her again. We stopped by one night and Cody answers her door (!!!!!!! cue the drama) We give her a hard time for going awol and she says that she’s been super busy etc etc. Well meanwhile, Cody was IN JAIL for two weeks hahaha BUT he read 100 pages of the Book of Mormon while locked up!! (ps his Book of Mormon is stamped “Property of Clay County Detention Center” LOL when u steal a Book of Mormon from jail) ANYWAY so we have an impromptu lesson with the both of them and then they both came to church on Sunday!!! Sunday night we also had a lesson with them and brought Brandt, our recent convert. I invited them to be baptized and after some hesitation on their part, Brandt goes “Draper asked me this our first lesson too. You just gotta pick a date and work towards it” hahaha. He basically put them on date for June 24th hahahaha. LOVE THAT GUY x1000

It was such a great week and it’s been SO FUN to be with Sister Dawson. We also had a mini missionary with us this weekend and she was so faithful and optimistic and we were able to see lots of tender mercies. Sister Dawson and I have been working really hard and creating prayers of faith to see more miracles. I know that Heavenly Father hears our prayers and answers them. Even if it is in His timing, He truly hears us. Growing up, my dad used to remind me every night to say my prayers and I’m grateful for that example! I have such a strong testimony of the personal relationship that we have with our Father in Heaven. This is His work and I feel so grateful to be apart of it.

Love you all!

XOXO
Sister Draper

422 NE 103rd St Apt 6C
Kansas City MO 64155