Monday, January 26, 2015

Miracles Through Faith and Action

Bonjour mes amis et ma belle famille!
I hope that all is well back in the real world and that life is
treating you well! It has been a good and hard week for me. At the
beginning of this new year, the ward proposed a goal of twenty four
baptisms for the year 2015. This is a lot. Since this ward had 12
baptisms last year they thought that it would be a good idea to double
their efforts and double the number of baptisms. This means that we
need two baptisms each month. So this month we came to the conclusion
that we had 8 investigators that could potentially be ready for
baptism before the end of January. As the weeks progressed and none of
these investigators really seemed to be keeping their commitments and
Satan seemed to be having his grasp on each one we started to fear
that we would not reach our goal of having two baptisms in the Month
of January. So Soeur Hunter and I decided to fast. We fasted and asked
our Heavenly Father who would be ready for baptism. We said countless
prayers and fasted with faith. As our fast came to an end and I said
the prayer to end it, I said aloud each of the names of the
investigators who we had thought of who could potentially be ready to
be baptised. As I said the names Peari and Heimoana, the light of the
sun came through our window into our little house and we could feel
its warmth through our closed and praying eyes. We had received our
answer. Peari and Heimoana would be prepared and have the true desire
to be baptised by the end of the month. So the next day at church the
mother of these two sisters flagged us down. She began to tell us that
her daughters had both received their answers through prayer and
wanted to be baptized this week! What? I could hardly believe it! So
it is settled. Peari and Heimoana will be baptized this Thursday the
29th. On Shaylees birthday! So happy birthday Shaylee! I truly do know
that when we do all that we can do and all that we know how to do that
God will provide a way. Miracles can happen through diligence,
obedience, and faith. Yesterday was probably the hardest day of my
mission. My companion Soeur Hunter will soon finish her mission and it
seemed to hit me all at once all that I will have to know how to do on
my own when she is no longer there to show me. There are a lot of
responsibilities that come with being a missionary. It is a lot to
take in and especially when you have to do everything in a foreign
language. Last night I began to doubt. I did not think that I was
capable of all the upcoming things that I have to do in the future. I
did not have confidence in the languages and I felt weak and alone. It
was a very hard time for me. As I thought about all these things over
and over again I realized something very important. Someone has
already felt these things for me. Someone has already paid. Our Savior
Jesus Christ gave us the atonement so we can give away these doubts
and negative emotions so we can feel joy. So I decided to ask my
Heavenly Father through prayer if He would please allow me to use the
power of the atonement in my life and take away my stress, my worries,
my sadness, and my doubts. Sure enough my head started to clear and I
felt light. I truly do know that all is possible through our Savior
Jesus Christ. He loves us and wants to help us in every way that He
can. But He also makes it possible for us to use the power of His
great sacrifice, the atonement in our lives. I am so thankful for the
atonement and all that is possible through it. So this week with your
trials and afflictions, practice using His atonement. It is there for
us! I know that Jesus Christ lives and that He knows and loves us
specifically and individually. Show your love for Him by trying to
become more like Him each and everyday! This church is so true! Thank
you for all of your prayers, your love, and support! It truly does
help more than you will ever know! Have a great and Christlike week!
Love, Soeur Heather Kofford
This is the family MATEHA! We made Oreo Cheesecake, had a lesson on Joseph Smith, and I taught the daughters a dance this morning! DAY MADE!
Pascal and Leonie got married!

Monday, January 19, 2015

The Huahine Life

Life continues to go well for me here on this little island. Huahine is officially starting to feel more like my home and less like a foreign and uncomfortable land. It is so fun to see people on the streets and be able to wave at them because you know them. It is fun to finally be able to converse with people because I can better speak their language. Our companionship also gets better and better as my French improves. The mission life is really starting to set in and I truly have grown to love it. It was a good week for us! Our days are always so busy and by the time we get home each night it is about all we can do to read a chapter of the Book of Mormon in Tahitian, share our testimonies, write down our miracles, plan for the next day and prepare for the night. Before my mission, I would always say that productive days are the best days. Haha I did not know what a productive day was until now. A productive day is when you have so many lessons planned that you have to reschedule or go on splits, when you do not have time to eat lunch, when you feel guilty when you are in the car and not memorizing something, when you are constantly praying for guidance and help, as well as thanking our Heavenly Father for all of the blessings and miracles He gives us daily. A productive day is a happy day full of lots of good and meaningful things. The mission life is a productive life and I am so thankful for the decision I made to serve. The languages are coming along a lot better. I now have a lot more confidence in my French and am finding success in my conversations and lessons. I can understand a lot of what is said in Tahitian. There are still the days where things are hard and I think of how much more there is to learn and how much more I need to improve, but then I remember how far I have come. I remember that life is a process and that we have the wonderful opportunity to improve each and every new day. This week I thought a lot about our message as missionaries. I was asked the question, What is your message? If we are ever posed with this question in life and only have a few minutes to explain our message . . . what would we say? I thought a lot about this and came to a conclusion that our message is Jesus Christ AND His atonement. His atonement makes this gospel possible. Through His atonement we have the opportunity to have faith in Him. We can repent and be forgiven of our sins. We can be baptized and make special covenants and if we keep these covenants, we can have the Holy Ghost with us always to guide and comfort us. And after all this, we have the chance to endure to the end. To do these things continually. To become more like our Savior each day and if we do this, one day we can achieve eternal life. The atonement of Jesus Christ is what makes all of these things possible. I also thought a lot about the Book of Mormon. I have challenged so many people to read the Book of Mormon with the things listed in Moroni chapter ten. A sincere heart, real intention, and faith. I thought a lot about the second thing. What is the real intent? This intent is the intent of coming to know our Savior Jesus Christ. On the title page of the Book of Mormon it says that Jesus is the Christ, the son of God. And we are told and we teach that the Book of Mormon is another testimony of Jesus Christ. So I want to challenge all of you to read the Book of Mormon with this intent. With the intention of wanting to know Jesus Christ. As I did this, I truly did find that on almost every page of the Book of Mormon that I read there was something that testified of our Savior. This was a cool realization for me and definitely changed the way I thought about the Book of Mormon. We have three investigators that are almost ready for baptism. Their names are Heimoana, Peari, and Pauro. So if you could pray for them that would be great! Thank you so much for all of your love and support! I love you all so much! I think and pray for you daily! This church is so true! Try each day to center your lives around Christ. I hope you all have a great week! Keep enjoying each day! 
Love, Soeur Heather Kofford
Haha we went fishing this morning! Caught a whopper!! Hope father Kent is proud! I did teach everyone how to tie the hook though so that was good! 
Soeur Malerani finished her mission this week! Thanks for the good example!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Another Great Week!

Things have continued to go well here on the little island of Huahine. The sun has been shining and it is absolutely beautiful. I truly am serving in paradise. I often ask myself why I am so blessed. All I can do is remind myself that where much is given, much is also required. So I truly am trying my hardest to live my life for my Savior. I successfully survived my first district meeting that I had to conduct. I had a very stressful week trying to prepare by the spirit and also practicing my French and Tahitian. The lesson was on the importance of meaningful planning and all went well. I know that my Savior was helping me every step of the way. This week was also fun because I got to witness my first MAA TAHITI! This is just Tahiti food haha. And a lot of it. They prepare the food in an oven in the ground. We helped set everything up. The food cooks over night and in the morning its finished. There are lots of interesting things that go in the oven and I do not know the names for it all haha but for the most part its edible . . . . hahaha! Oh! The other thing with Maa Tahiti is that you can only eat with your hands! They would not give me silverware! It was a great cultural experience with me and all of the members find great joy in watching me struggle! The island finally has gas again so we have our car back. One day as we were driving, after I had finished memorizing my scripture for the day, it occured to me that I was thinking in French. Then I realized that I had been thinking in |French for quite a while. I kept thinking and to my surprise I could say anything in my head that I wanted to say. I am so thankful that the Lord has helped me with my French. I know that He will continue to help me with French and Tahitian as well if I continue to work at it and do my part. For the duration of my mission so far I have had the thought in the back of my head that while I am on my mission, I have to put everything on hold. My talents, hobbies, desires, etc. While this is basically true, I came to the realization that I am still me and I can still be myself and enjoy my life while I am serving. I can use my strengths to bring joy to the lives of others. There truly are people waiting for me. They have been prepared for me and my personality. My way of thinking and my way of teaching. They are ready for my testimony and my love. So this week as you go throughout life, be yourself. Let your light shine into the hearts of others. And I promise you will find joy as you bring your light and happiness to those you associate with. Look for opportunities to love and to serve. Pray for these opportunities. You are you for a reason. Thanks for all of the love and support! Have a fabulous week! Love, Soeur Heather Kofford
Cute bridge! This is the hang out spot for all the young people! If someone is not at their house we can always find them here! There is no hiding from the missionaries on this tiny island. 
At the beach just after a ward activity!
Making coconut milk! MAA TAHITI

Making coconut milk with Soeur Hunter!

Monday, January 5, 2015

First Week of 2015!

Iaorana family and friends! I hope your new year is treating you well! I hope that you have all made some attainable resolutions that will help you improve yourselves this year! My week was good. Its amazing how much happens in just one week! I find it hard to even write in my journal every night because there is just so much to include. I can officially say that I witnessed my first gift of tongues experience in the last week! We were having a district meeting over the phone and I was asked to give the spiritual thought. I was really scared at first but quickly gathered my thoughts and prayed that I would be able to express effectively what was on my mind. Since I had memorized the first four Articles of Faith that morning in French and also fell upon the scripture, Ether 12:6, I decided to talk about faith. I mentioned how important faith really is since it is the first principle of the Gospel and then went on from there. Apparently I talked for quite a while and when I finished I looked at Soeur Hunter who looked a little shocked. She congratulated me saying that my spiritual thought made complete sense and went really well. I was satisfied. It truly was a cool experience for me. Later on in the meeting, Soeur Hunter made the point that we need to realize and know our weaknesses so we can find ways to fix and overcome them. She said that it is good to ask God to show us our weaknesses so we can be made stronger. So I told myself that I would ask God to show me my weaknesses later because I was a little scared at the moment. But sure enough, He began to enlighten me. We did an activity in the district meeting about stories in the Book of Mormon. I realized that I need to improve my knowledge of these scripture stories. This was humbling for me. At the close of the meeting, our district leader hesitated to choose the next teacher for the next district meeting. After a minute, he said, Soeur Kofford. So yes I have to lead the next district meeting and I am definitely not fluent in these languages yet! But I know that if I put in my part and prepare well, and also have the faith that God will help me, all will be well. He shows us our weaknesses and puts challenges in our paths because He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows what we can and cannot do and He would never give us something that we could not overcome. I truly am being stretched in every direction. The mission life is very hard and different but I am learning who I truly am and how much I really can do. Life is good! Make the best of it! Do not waste a minute. Always seek to improve yourself or to learn something new. I promise there is joy in these things. And blessings as well! I hope you all have a great week! Thanks again for all of your love and support! Love, Soeur Heather Kofford
I love my bike!
We had a picnic on the beach with some investigators