Snowy Mountains and Chinese with Lisa

Monday, September 26, 2016

Okay so honestly, this week was a little rough. It was a lot of crazy stuff and a lot of crazy people. But we made it to PDay. Woo. Thanks to all the homies that sent emails and photos though, it seriously saves my life. The mountain tops were white with snow when we woke up on Thursday morning- winter is here!! It's already starting to get dark around 6pm up here and it makes the days feel super short because the sun doesn't seem to come out until 10am. Sister McGee and I take tons of "Sunshine Shots" aka Vitamin D supplements everyday and drink tons of water to keep our bodies going. We're supposed to be able to see the Northern Lights later on this week! Alaska is such a crazy (but awesome) place. 

When we went grocery shopping last Monday, Sister McGee and I were walking down the isle and this cute lady who was giving out Dove product samples stopped us and said, "are you the Mormon missionaries?! I was just watching a documentary all about y'all and how you put your whole life at home on pause to come and be out here in those black name tags and share your gospel with strangers! And now, y'all don't just wear those name tags and cute floral dresses on Sundays at church, but you're missionaries EVERY DAY! Young ladies, your faith inspires me!!". Meet Lisa Langley, everyone. She's awesome. We talked to her about what we do as missionaries and then I gave her a Book of Mormon. Sister McGee gave her our contact information and Lisa told us she wanted to meet with us sometime so she could ask us more questions about missionary work. OKAY!!

Friday night, we met Lisa at this super sketchy hole in the wall Chinese restaurant (home to the biggest goldfish I've EVER seen). I was terrified the whole time but we made it out alive & without throwing up. Blessings. We shared our stories with Lisa and then she shared hers with us too. At first, we had to do some clarifying between Mormons and the Amish for her, but eventually we got it all sorted out. She asked us if we could contact our Amish for her because she wants to go live with them and learn to make furniture like them haha. Lisa is almost 50 and has lived her whole life trying "a little taste of everything" and serving others. We shared with her Mosiah 2:17 and she LOVED it (and thought we had planned to share that with her but no, it was a prompting from the Holy Ghost)! She told us about how meeting with us would be something for her "Memory Box" forever and how she doesn't believe in coincidences and that God does everything for a reason. Lisa is the bomb! We taught her about the Restoration and the priesthood and invited her to read the Book of Mormon and as we were testifying of it, she started to cry. The Spirit was so strong in that scary little Chinese restaurant with Lisa. I'm so grateful for my knowledge of the gospel and for the way that it has shaped and molded my life. Never take that for granted. I love being able to share that knowledge each day with these random people and to help them come to know Heavenly Father and the Savior better that way.

We've been teaching this family (the Heckels) where both the mom and dad are less active members of the Church and they have three kids who haven't been baptized yet. This week, Sister McGee and I decided that we are going to focus on teaching the kids and helping them grow their faith and testimonies, then hopefully be baptized soon! It's so cool to see how the gospel impacts and blesses families. That's what missionaries do! We walk around teaching about eternal families and of Heavenly Father's love & His Plan and of the Book of Mormon & the Restoration!! It's so awesome!! The Heckels have been coming to church every Sunday that I've been up in Alaska and when we told them that they could watch General Conference this weekend (so stoked) from their couch, they were so excited haha. Side note: y'all need to watch General Conference this weekend because it's going to be powerful and we get to hear from our LATTER-DAY PROPHET which is the coolest thing ever so don't miss out or you'll be bummed. 

Remember Pastor Steve and the homemade tortillas from last week? Yeah well, he invited us back for his giant Sunday night family dinner this week! SO BLESSED! Sister Jewel, Sister Martinez (the Huffman sister missionaries), Sister McGee, and I are the powerhouse Quad Squad teaching Pastor Steve and his family about the gospel right now & it's so cool. I shared with him the story of my car accident and how Heavenly Father has a plan for each of us and then we jumped in to teaching him about the Restoration and he asked us about temples and thought it was so "inspiring" the work that we do in temples for eternal families and how he believes everyone should have the chance to know about God and Jesus Christ. Pastor Steve is literally a Mormon, he just doesn't know it. So that's awkward. We're working on it. He said he would watch General Conference with his family this weekend so that's super cool & amazing. Go Pastor Steve! 

I know my emails keep getting shorter and shorter...haha sorry about that. But shoutout to [Sister] Allie Winter for heading to the MTC on Wednesday afternoon before she goes to Alabama for 18 months! She's going to do big things people, y'all better watch out #rolltide

"...behold, I say unto you, that the thing which will be of the MOST WORTH unto you will be to declare repentance unto this people, that you may bring souls unto me, that you may rest with them in the kingdom of my Father..." -Doctrine & Covenants 15:6
"The time has verily come that it is necessary and expedient in me that you should open your mouths in proclaiming my gospel, the things of the kingdom, expounding the mysteries thereof out of the scriptures, according to that portion of Spirit and power which shall be given unto you, even as I will...verily this mission is for a season, which I give unto you." -Doctrine & Covenants 71:1-3
I testify that there is NO GREATER OR MORE IMPORTANT work than that of missionary work. This is the most important job in the world! That's been going through my head over and over this week. Something that Sister McGee and I always say to each other is, "you only have eighteen months to be a superhero, so don't you dare waste a moment,". Missionary work is hard mentally, physically, and spiritually (I'm still trying to figure out how to wake up 6:30am every morning...) but I know that there is no better work than this. We are up here literally saving souls and it's the coolest experience ever and I feel so lucky to be a part of it all.

I have to drive down to Soldotna this week so #prayforsisdunlop2k16 that it's not icy.
Watch General Conference, read the Book of Mormon, go forth & be awesome. 
Thanks for all the love and support, y'all rock.

xoxo Sister Dunlop

PHOTOS: some from PDay hikes, the sister missionaries in the Anchorage Zone, and we stole the rubber duckies from one of the Elders's truck

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