I learned a VERY valuable lesson this week. Last Monday, when I e-mailed, I was really frustrated. I was being VERY selfish and VERY prideful in thinking that it was totally unfair that we were working so hard and finding people for other areas. And then, of course, on Monday, with a slap in the face, we received a referral for a girl we will call Anastasia (she speaks russian) who WANTED TO GET BAPTIZED! Yes, I know, amazing. And also really pathetic because I was truly having the biggest pity party ever. A party that everyone was invited to but no one wanted to come because it was PATHETIC. So then I was on my knees thanking Heavenly Father and asking for forgiveness for my grumbling! And yet he still blessed us with this wonderful blessing regardless of my faults and attitude. We had a lesson with her on Wednesday, and she accepted a baptismal date for August. It was a really great lesson. She loved church yesterday and she is excited to come and see Quadra's baptism on Saturday. I will never ever complain or grumble when things aren't going well (never say never, right? Ok I will TRY to never complain or grumble) and try to do what is counseled in D and C 123 and "cheerfully go about doing good". Lesson learned. Brutally learned.
I then gave a training about being a happy, successful missionary (so basically having a good attitude) which was even more hilarious. Like Heavenly Father was like "here ya go. One more thing to make you realize how great you have it and to CHILL OUT". I mostly talked about CHOOSING to be happy amidst trials, trying to reach outward to heal the innards, and how to have a good attitude about this seriously hard and sometimes painful experience as missionaries. I talked about my Momma and how she always has a good attitude about things, especially during the oh-so-hard things. I gotta learn that trait. Still working on it. Which is hilarious because the reason my District Leader, Elder Haslum, asked me was because he says I am always happy. Well, he must not know what goes on behind closed doors. Or in my e-mails for that matter. Point in case: I'm sorry I grumbled. I am grateful for the blessings we are receiving, and I have decided to always have a good attitude because when it comes down to it, this work is AMAZING and I am so lucky to be a part of it. I say this often, but I really do love being a missionary.
Haha speaking of that. Today at Target I was trying on a shirt over my shirt (if you know me at all you know that I avoid dressing rooms at all cost, so I will just put whatever I want to buy on over my clothes right there in the store) and my tag fell off and I couldn't find it for like 2 minutes and I was STRESSING out. It was like I seriously didn't know who I was without my tag. I thought "What if someone is here and is ready to receive the Gospel and I'M the one they need to talk to and they will have no idea to approach me because I look just like everyone else!?" Anyways. It was funny. I found my tag. And no one really asked me about the Gospel. BUT that is ok. I still found my tag. It will be interesting when I take it off for good. Not looking forward to that. I like being Sister Brinkerhoff. Although, my name does cause a lot of problems being that most people we talk to are from other countries and my name is like the worst possible thing to say. I will be pretty happy when I don't have this 3-syllable monster-of-a-name attached to my simple but unique first name. Watch, I will marry someone with a much worse last name than mine. Because those are the kinds of things that happen to me. And I bet it's pretty funny to Heavenly Father when they do.
Granny G is still doing really well also. The ward is getting involved, and she is still reading and praying. She has moments where she says "I don't want to be committed" and then the next day she is telling us she read. We feel her testimony is growing. We still need a solid friend for her in the ward, but we think we have a couple older ladies who would be great.
Quadra is set to be baptized this weekend if all goes well. She is so excited.
CHAN CHAN AND HALEIGH GIRL! I AM SO PROUD OF YOU! Seriously. I am so sad I wasn't there :( But I am just so proud of you girls! You shine! I am proud to say that I am YOUR cousin! I bet you just blew everyone away and that you were LIGHTS up there on that stage. Ah! I love it. I'm so happy for you girlies. Always remember how you felt at YASE, that you are a beautiful daughter of God and that you can ALWAYS lean on the Savior for help and strength. I'm so proud of you.
God is so good. Really. I love being a missionary. (Have I said that lately?) Thank you all for your support and love!