Monday, December 23, 2013

Jingle Bells, Batman Smellz, Merry Christmas Y'all


We are finally back to normal and having fun again. Last night was really cool. We went to the First Methodist Church Christmas choral concert and they had stringed and brass instruments as accompaniment and narrators that read verses from the bible. The people there were all so friendly! Some people there recognized us as missionaries and told us they were from Idaho Falls. They had great things to say about their experiences with our church (even thought he ref-ed church basketball.... crazy right? hahaha).

 After reflecting about my experience at the Methodist church I started thinking about how so many other churches have so many great things about them. While I was listening to their music, I could feel the spirit. It was weird for me to think about that I could feel the spirit in a different church. That triggered thoughts of my admiration towards Joseph Smith. He felt the spirit in the other churches he attended. He saw the goodness of those churches BUT he realized that something was missing! He had to be SO spiritually sensitive to realize that. Being a missionary in the south is hard, because people mostly have religion already which is so good, but there is something more! This experience really helped me realize the importance of teaching when you find. To not ask for permission to teach, but to immediately begin and to find some relation in the conversation to the restoration. It will be there!

Being away from home for Christmas is definitely not an easy thing to do; but, I am so happy to be here in Tennessee! The people here aren't just ward members, less-actives, investigators and other missionaries; they are my friends! I am so happy that I am surrounded by friends this Christmas and that we get to help people remember the reason for the season, Jesus Christ! I just got on a semi colon kick ;;;;; They're kewl. I hope that everyone has a wonderful Christmas! Let me just leave with the lyrics to my favorite Christmas song, In the Bleak Mid Winter:

What can I give him,
poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd,
I would bring a lamb.
If I were a wiseman,
I would do my part.
What can I give him?
Give my heart!
I hope we can all find a way this Christmas to give our heart a little bit more to Jesus Christ!
Sister Merrell

PS here are some pictures of the thugz in my life. Maxine's typical thug life and Sister Weight's thug life with her tooth ache--also results from last weeks dental appointment are that she has to get a root canal! Poor girl, a broken arm and a root canal! :(

Sunday, December 22, 2013

And then... BAM she got hit by a car....

Hi it's me.
So I thought the highlight of this week was going to be that I held our investigator's pet rats and it was disgusting… but then all the drama happened!
Thursday night we are riding to an appointment, we were riding single file, on the right side of the road, and wearing reflective vests! A jeep turns the corner and starts heading towards us. AND THEN BAM SISTER WEIGHT GETS HIT BY A CAR!!!!! She falls on to the ground and I run over. She tells me she is okay but her arm hurts. I tell her not to move and I call president, no answer. Bishop, no answer. Elder Parkinson…"SISTER WEIGHT GOT HIT BY A CAR!!" And then he zooms on over. Great district leader.
I think I should start a new paragraph so this is the new paragraph. Anyways, the Elders helped John (the idiot driver who was probably texting) change his popped tire, and then they take us to the hospital. Long night. And the results are… my fun friend broke her arm!

So that was great. She's on loratab. Even better. And then on top of it all, the next day she gets a horrible tooth ache! So then she was a mess and crying a lot. So I took her to a member's house (the awesome Valdezs) and I get a sister in a trio on the other side of Oak Ridge to be my fun friend for the day. Then I dropped the phone in a puddle and had a melt down. That was fun. Hahahahaha I was just so stressed. But then I felt better! Don't think I'm a weirdo, it's what humans do. Then we put the phone in a bag of rice for a few hours and IT WORKED… Yeah Heavenly Father loves me. It's fine.

Well then I went and got her and she was still a wreck, emotionally and physically. We didn't sleep at all that night. But then it was Sunday so I made her go to church and that made her feel a little better. Then President called us and told us we could come sleep over at the mission home and go to a christmas musical devotional that evening with them. So we did that. And that was fun because my best friend forevs Sister Hamilton was there and that turned my week right around! 
Today whomps because it consists of going to doctor appointments ALL FREAKIN DAY. Three (3) of them! One was in Farragut so that's why I'm at the mission office right now. Yeah  so I need to work on patience it has been brought up a couple of times…. Hahahaha. Anyways so I got on this precious lil' macbook. And then President decided we needed to chat so we did that. Gosh I love that man, he made me feel like a million bucks! He told me I'm a great missionary! He also gave me a spoiler alert that I will be staying in my area but getting a new companion. And we will be back on bikes! I miss my bike. I'm the driver now in our car. Bahahaha everyone tells me I have skillzzzz.

Anyways, this week is going to be a whole lot better! I can't wait! And we have the zone conference christmas party so that's going to be tizight! And we have a bunch of appointments with new investigators. What better gift can we give for Christmas than to fetchin' baptize! Bahaha that was about to get all sappy about how the best gift is the gospel but everyone knows I'm not that girl. But the gospel is kewl.

I love everyone! Can't wait to talk to some of you on Christmas! Feel inclined to show up at the Merrell house and bring my mom some chocolate orange sticks for me because she loves them. And then maybe she'll let you talk to me but I doubt it. Ha. Stay in skool kidz!


Sister Merrell

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Shortest Email Eva

Hey Y'all!
So this week was really fun! We got to be in a Christmas parade in Wartburg with the youth! They made a float that had on it and we passed out bracelets. It was so fun! I love our ward members!
Also, we got 11 new investigators!!!!!!!!!!! We have really been blessed because of our renewed faith to find!
I will write a better email next week! Thank you for the love and support!

Sister Merrell
PS Oh hey it's my doppleganger Elizabeth Smart hahahahaha NOT!

Monday, December 2, 2013

They Call Me Zerahemna

Hey Y'all

It's me Sister Andrea Kate Merrell!!!

My Thanksgiving was good. We had like 4 meals so that was rough eating like a bird at everyone, but don't worry I'm okay. At the church there was a turkey wrapped in bacon... These southerners... They really are something.

Well let's get to the point. Want to know why they call me Zerahemna? Well first check out Alma 44... done? K cool. My companion scalped me. Yup! We were walking home from our dinner appointment and I some how ended up in a playful headlock. My hair got caught on the button of her jacket... AND THEN I GOT SCALPED! Don't worry I saved the hair in a plastic baggy and showed ward members, missionaries, really anyone interested. I had a photo shoot with it too. She's sorry though! hahahaha SORRY SHE GOT CAUGHT!!!

Anyways, sorry I'm crazy, whatever. Let's talk about missionary stuff now. We have one baptism date for this guy we're teaching named Terry! The only bummer is that it's January 1st... which I thought was fine until we told the District Leader and he said it's too far away blah blah blah and then the Zone Leaders  that too. It is too far away! We know that! But he is stubborn and has to quit smoking. Elder Parkinson and Elder Hagans came with us last night to see him and they gave him a blessing to help him. So hopefully he has the faith!

Anyways that's all I got. Smell ya later homiez!


Sister Merrell