Good morning everyone! I’m so excited to be writing today! This week has been pretty quiet. No crazy adventures or loopy shots, just a little more calm. Sister Harris and I are getting closer and closer and learning from each other. It’s been very essential for us to open up to each other so we know the best ways to help one another when we’re struggling. I’m very grateful for the preparation I received about opening up to people and communicating with companions especially from a dear friend of mine.
I did want to share a talk that my companion and I listened to this week, and I’ll be brief this time (edit: Sorry. This is not in any way brief lol).
We listened to a talk by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf called Three Sisters. I love how he talks about the way you look at yourself and the people around you, and how you treat them despite their actions. I’ve thought a lot about Jesus Christ this week and how He would truly act if He was in my shoes.
Right now we are trying to help a less active member and we (our branch) are struggling to get out there because of some complications. I want so badly to just be able to send people put due to the fact that my companion and I aren’t allowed to go ourselves. Our branch has helped this woman a lot in the past, but she seems to reach out only when she needs help. As I thought of what the Savior would do, I was no question. He would not give up on her just because we had helped her so many times or because she wasn’t coming to church. He would at LEAST extend a hand of love and friendship. Does it really matter if the people we reach out to are part of our church? Does it really matter if they do not accept our invitations to come to events even if they are members? I think we should forever reach out to people with the love of Christ. Every single person living on this Earth is our brothers and sisters. Why wouldn’t we continue to reach out to them with love like the Savior would? We are not worthy to judge their hearts and actions.
Now there is a different perspective. You could ask,”Well, shouldn’t we be focusing our efforts on people who are ready to accept the gospel?” I believe we should. You cannot help someone who does not want to be helped and there are so many people just waiting to be invited to “come and see.” We should touch as many lives as we can in normal and natural ways. HOWEVER, I do not believe in giving up on people. Christ said “follow Me” but did not force anyone to follow. He reached out in love and kindness to EVERYONE, even if He knew they would not follow Him or would betray Him. Even as He was crucified on the cross, He was an example of perfect love and kindness.
I want to extend an invitation to all of you reading this (and feel free to share this with anyone). I invite you all to read Elder Uchtdorf’s talk and think about how Christ would reach out to people if He were in your shoes, going through your trials. Would He pity himself and feel sad that everyone has it better than Him? Would He lash out at others and blame them for His misfortunes? Or would He put a smile on His face, reach out to others in love and kindness and pray and study earnestly about what He could learn from His trials?
I know the phrase “What Would Jesus Do?” is something that’s been around for a while and sometimes I think some of us can forget how important that question is. I invite you all to really ponder that question and apply it to your life specifically. What did Christ teach? In what ways was He the perfect Example? What can you learn from Him? Christ had trials. He had temptations. He had people He truly loved betray Him, but He never gave up on them. He died for them. And He died for you. You are not perfect and He knows that. He is still reaching out to you. Will you reach out to others? Share what you believe! Invite others to serve people who need help! “Others naturally want to help. They just need to be invited.”
I can promise you that as you look at your trials and the people surrounding you with these questions in your heart, you will be blessed to be happy, and others around you will notice. Invite them to “come and see.” If they do not accept your invitations, continue to reach out in love and support in any way you can. You will be amazing!
For the last bit that I share this week, I would love to call out my best friend and my cousin who have been planning a trip to visit my friend’s home town here in Michigan. They traveled 4 hours early in the morning to come meet with me and my companion outside my “apartment.” They brought me a giant bag from home containing things I had forgotten or requested (thank you Mom and Dad!!!) And met with me for an hour.
NOTE: this is not something that missionaries get to do often or at all on their missions. I had to ask for special permission and it could not conflict with my missionary service or appointments.
I was so happy to see Monica and Joseph as well as Monica’s Mom and her sister Emily! We learned as Monica was leaving, that Emily actually converted one of the Elders who was just transferred out of our district! What a small world! So my companion and I took a picture with Emily to show the Elder.
Anyway, it was so nice to catch up with Monica and Joseph and actually let my companion put a face to a name! The four of us had a lot of fun just chatting and, as my companion puts it,”Talking to people from the outside world that aren’t going to look at us weird.” 😆 Clearly, we enjoyed the nice- not calm- but nice conversation. I’m so grateful for everything and everyone that came into play with that meeting working out including my parents, my mission pres., President Heap, Monica’s Mom, and of course Monica and Joseph. It was refreshing to see them, and get to share the love I have for them with my companion.
I miss all my family (and I won’t try to fit all of their names here, cuz it’s a lot) and friends. I miss everyone from the Maricopa Stake including those who are serving the Lord as I am at this time. I also miss my dear MTC District and hope they are doing well. We only get to communicate with each other on P-Day as well.
Thank you so much to the people who have reached out to me, especially those who have asked for me to pray for them. My companion and I are praying for you. My district is praying for you. We love you.
I do get to occasionally look on FB and see how some of you are doing. I’m praying for all of you, and I love you all.
If any of you have time, please feel free to reach out to me on FB Messenger throughout the week, and I will reply to you all on Mondays. If you contact me on Monday, I will do my very best to set some time aside to text back and forth. I also love getting emails from y’all! You all get to hear a lot about me and what I’m up to, but I don’t get to hear a lot about you! You can email me at katie dot malan at missionary dot org.
I also LOVE receiving mail!!!! PLEASE SPAM ME WITH MAIL!!! My companion and I check the mailbox several times a day, and it’s been very empty lol. 😆 we can read and respond to physical mail throughout the week, so I would love to hear from you all! If you don’t already have my current address, please reach out to my Dad. He’ll hook you up with my mission office address or my current living address depending on how close I’m getting to being transferred. 😉 (THANK YOU DADDY)
Love you guys! Email/text/mail me with questions (about anything), experiences, updates on life, or just about anything. I am here for anyone who needs me. And I very much mean that. Thank you to those who have reached out to me. It means so much to me.
Sister (Katie) Malan