Monday, March 27, 2017

Seis semanas mas en H3! (Six More Weeks in Houston Zone 3)


Hola!


This week was crazy! I was preparing to leave the area, and said goodbye to everyone. Then we got the call last night and learned that I am staying and Hermana Calderon is leaving. We were really surprised! I am excited to stay in this area, but I am going to miss Hermana Calderon so much! I have learned so much from her. We are going to be friends forever!


Us on the bench at our school! I am excited to spend six more weeks with sweet kindergarteners and 1st graders for eight hours a week :)

My mission mom (my trainer) is also dying this transfer! I love her so much. She taught me everything I know, and she changed my life/mission! She is going to do great things, and I am so excited for her!

Other than that, it was an awesome week. We didn't have any baptisms this week, but we were able to set a baptismal date with one of our new investigators named Karen! She met with missionaries two years ago. She wanted to get baptized, but her boyfriend was living with her. He didn't want to get married, and she was pregnant and didn't want to kick him out. Now they are separated. She looked so happy when we invited her to be baptized! She came to church with her kids on Sunday and loved it! Her kids are super cute, and I am so happy they get to grow up in the gospel now!

I thought I would be leaving this week, so I said my goodbyes to everyone in the ward. It is also Hermana Calderon's birthday on Tuesday. So, we show up at our dinner appointment on Sunday, and Albert had planned this surprise party and ordered a giant tres leches cake in the shape of a Bible with our faces on it 😂 These wards have their issues, but I love them so much!
The cake "Hna Bettridge gracias por su trabajo" (Thanks for your work) Jokes! I'll be here working for six more weeks :)



  video

then it was Carolyn's turn!



This week was also awesome because we had zone conference! A bunch of the zones got together, and President and Sister Mortensen talked to us about eternal marriage and the importance of the Melchizedek Priesthood. It was amazing, and I learned so many things! I know that through the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ families really can be together forever. I know that Heavenly Father didn't intend for marriages to last only until "death do you part," but that it is possible to be with the ones we love for time and all eternity!

This next weekend is General Conference! That means we get to hear from living Prophets and Apostles. I would encourage you to watch, and have your questions answered. You can watch this Saturday and Sunday on lds.org


I hope everyone has an awesome week! We are going to hit hard on finding this week, so I would appreciate it if you could keep my new companion and I in your prayers :)




Love,




Hermana Bettridge


Fotos:
We had two flat tires at different times in the ghetto this week, but the elders helped us!

My mom and I! I am going to miss her!

All of my awesome past comps :)

My best friend 😉 

The district

Us throwing confetti at our party







Monday, March 20, 2017

Another baptism and a chicken



Hola!

This week Samuel got baptized! We also finally got the water at a comfortable temperature! (Which was a miracle!) The only problem was that I was sitting there playing prelude, and he wasn't there yet. His mom called us to say that their car broke down and they didn't know what to do. So we drove down with a member to pick them up. The baptism started an hour late, but it was amazing and Samuel was so excited! He loves the gospel and can't wait to serve a mission in 9 years! 😁 



This week we were talking with a Bible referral named Crystal. (The one who had the dream about the Spirit world) She told us before we got started she felt like she had to tell us something. She told us that she had been reading Matthew the night before, and had a dream the middle of the night. She had written down pages of notes that she said were part of her dream from God about how the original church Christ established needed to be restored. She wrote down that she had to receive the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands, that she needed to repent, and that the Church needed to be restored. So we pulled out a pamphlet and told her that's what we were going to share with her. She started crying and said she had a feeling we were sent from God. So we shared our message. We left her house and she called us and asked us if we thought she should talk to her pastor about what we shared. We told her to pray about it, but she might want to learn a little bit more before that. I think she talked to him and got into some anti because now she won't meet with us again. That's super sad, but I'm so grateful I was able to witness that miracle! I know Heavenly Father is preparing people everyday to listen to the message of the Restored Gospel and that we are led to find them! 


We have been helping Maria, who got baptized last week, with her family history! She has been able to get the last four generations! She is super excited, and we will be going with her to the temple this Friday to do baptisms!


I went on an exchange with Hermana Fernandez this week to her area. We went to our dinner appointment at this family's house that had a pet chicken. They also had a dog, but the dog and chicken are friends and the dog protects the chicken. I asked if I could pet the chicken, and the daughter brought the chicken over. I guess the chicken was mad we were eating chicken, because the chicken then started flapping her wings and ran across the table. The food flew everywhere. The mom was really embarrassed, but I thought it was so funny. The picture is of the chicken right before she ran across the table. 

The chicken, her name is chicken little

This week I started the Book of Mormon over with Hna Calderon! I am reading it all the way through in Spanish for the first time, and she is reading it through all the way in English for the first time. I have been thinking a lot about Nephi and how he always obeyed the Lord even when it didn't make sense at the time, or when he didn't have a plan. I know that obedience brings blessings. It takes faith to keep the commandments, but the Lord always provides a way. 


That's about all that happened this week. Transfers are next week, and I will probably be leaving because I have been here for six months. I am sad this is probably my last week.

I love you all! Thank you for your support!


Love,


Hermana Bettridge


Fotos:
This building reminded us of the Saratov approach, we delivered a Bible to someone in there #sketch
My companions/ favorite people!

I played the piano and Hna Calderon led the music at the baptism

















Monday, March 13, 2017

Milagros!

Hola!



Maria got baptized this weekend! It was so amazing and the Spirit was so strong! The hot water has been broken in the church for several months. We called and they said it wouldn't be fixed by the baptism because they needed to order a part. So, the night before the baptism we asked a bunch of different members for their pozole pots. We were all prepared to boil water for the baptism, when the water decided to work! It worked so well it was too hot for the baptism! But the baptism itself was amazing! She said it felt like a weight had been lifted, and that she really felt like she had been born again.

Maria's baptism!

We have another baptism this weekend! Samuel will be getting baptized, and is so excited!


This week we started volunteering at the elementary school! It is super exhausting to work with 25 first graders, but it is really fun too! We are helping them read and do math. They all have very interesting names. One of the girls is named Im'unique. The kids are all super cute! They call us Ms C and Ms B.
The missionaries volunteering at the school

This week I officially hit my halfway mark! It is crazy! I feel like I just got here. To celebrate we went to this macaroni and cheese restaurant.

Halfway done 
This week I have been thinking about miracles. The Lord allows me to see miracles everyday and I feel so blessed. I was reading in Mormon 9 about miracles.

     18 And who shall say that Jesus Christ did not do many mighty miracles? And there were many mighty        miracles wrought by the hands of the apostles.

     19 And if there were miracles wrought then, why has God ceased to be a God of miracles and yet be an unchangeable Being? And behold, I say unto you he changeth not; if so he would cease to be God; and he ceaseth not to be God, and is a God of miracles.

     20 And the reason why he ceaseth to do miracles among the children of men is because that they dwindle in unbelief, and depart from the right way, and know not the God in whom they should trust.



Many people think that God no longer allows miracles to happen, or think that miracles stopped when Christ was no longer on Earth. I know that miracles happen everyday, and that Heavenly Father loves us so much! Here is a new video the Church came out with about the First Vision. You should all go watch it!



I love and miss you all!

Love,



Hermana Bettridge



Us with the Villegas family!





Monday, March 6, 2017

This week is my halfway mark! 😁 😭



Hola!


This was an amazing week full of miracles!



Elizabeth's baptism!

The best thing that happened this week was that Elizabeth got baptized! Unfortunately the water heater in the church broke, so we had to boil water in the kitchen and carry it to the font. It was still pretty cold, but the Spirit strong! She sang a song after and it was really cute!



video




El Plan De Dios Puedo Seguir 
Letra
Mi vida es un don, un plan se le dio,
allá en el cielo fue donde empezó.
Opté por venir a este mundo terrenal,
y procurar siempre la luz celestial.
Puedo el plan de Dios seguir,
confiar en el amor que me da.
Y obrar y orar,
en sus sendas caminar.
Y aquí podré ser feliz
con Dios más allá.



I will follow God's Plan
Lyrics ( in English)

My life is a gift; my life has a plan.
My life has a purpose; in heav'n it began.
My choice was to come to this lovely home on earth
And seek for God's light to direct me from birth.
I will follow God's plan for me,
Holding fast to his word and his love.
I will work, and I will pray;
I will always walk in his way.
Then I will be happy on earth
And in my home above.
Words and music: Vanja Y. Watkins, b. 1938. (c) 1981


This week we were visiting less actives and felt we should go see this random family we 
didn't know. We went to the woman's house and she let us in. She and most of her daughters were all baptized several years ago, but are now inactive. We taught the entire family the Restoration and they all loved it. They all came to church on Sunday! We set baptismal dates with one of the daughters who wasn't baptized yet and her 11 year old daughter! They are so excited!

We found out this week that starting tomorrow we will be mentoring in an elementary school! We will be working with first graders for eight hours a week for the rest of the school year! I am so excited because it's going to be like I'm in college again! We are there to help them with their schoolwork, and to be their friend/example. That should be an awesome experience and I can't wait!


Also this week we went to deliver a Bible to someone who requested one from mormon.org (on a side note, if anyone would like a free Bible or copy of the Book of Mormon you can get one onmormon.org!) We gave it to her and asked if we could share a message with her. We started teaching the Restoration and she loved it! She told us she had a dream that she went to heaven and there were people waiting to get in. She said she knew she had to do something to help them, but didn't know what. She asked us what her dream meant. We told her it would make sense as she continued meeting with us and reading the scriptures. I wanted to tell her her ancestors were waiting for their temple work to be done, but we will get to that later 😉 I know as missionaries we are lead every single day to people who are ready to accept the gospel because they have ancestors on the other side who have learned about the gospel, accepted it, and are waiting for ordinances to be performed on their behalf.


I know Heavenly Father loves us so much, and wants us to be happy!

I love you all and hope you have a great week!


Love,

Hermana Bettridge




Fotos:

Houston North Spanish Zone


We went to La Madeleine to celebrate life



Monday, February 27, 2017

The Temple

Hello!


This was an awesome week because we got to go to the temple! I love the temple so much! I just love the area here and Hermana Calderon! I love being a missionary! 




We had to push Elizabeth's baptism back to this weekend so her parents could be there, but she will be getting baptized this weekend and is so excited! Our investigator, Maria went to church yesterday and loved it! She is on track to get baptized in March. 

We are on Earth to be tested. But, we have the ability to choose if we want to keep the commandments. This gift from God is called "agency." We read in the Book of Mormon what our two choices really are. 


In 2 Nephi 2 we read:

27 Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.

We have the ability to choose liberty and eternal life or captivity and death. We are able to choose liberty and eternal life by choosing the great Mediator, Jesus Christ! I am so grateful for the knowledge I have of Jesus Christ and of the Plan He has for my life.



Las fotos:


Us at the temple with our tags!


On the bench at the temple 

Hermana Jones and I went on an exchange

A street dog





Cute Houston and tag pics

Monday, February 20, 2017

Feliz Dia de San Valentin!


Hola, amigos!


This was the best Valentine's day because I got to be with my love, Hermana Calderon, and didn't get transferred! This is my fourth transfer in H3 and I never want to leave! Life is great, and this morning I realized I could have been buying my tortillas at one of the billion panaderías around here instead of the grocery store. But for the next five weeks I will be eating fresh tortillas! Also I taught myself how to play the piano on the keyboard in our apartment and played piano for the Elders' baptism on Saturday and for sacrament meeting yesterday.
Hermana Calderon and Hermana Bettridge


It has been a great week of teaching, and we are helping our investigators with baptismal dates continue to progress toward baptism. Our investigator, Elizabeth, will be getting baptized this Saturday and is so excited!

One of my favorite things to share with others is the Plan of Salvation. I am so blessed to have knowledge of the Plan Heavenly Father has for us. I know this Plan began before we even came to Earth. Jeremiah 1: 5 states:

"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations."

Just like Heavenly Father knew Jeremiah before he came to Earth, Heavenly Father knew all of us. We lived with him as his spirit children. I can imagine life was good living with God, but there was a limit to how much we could grow. Just like when we can't live with our earthly parents forever. If we did that there would be a limit to how much we could learn, grow, and experience life. So, under the direction of Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ did something we read about in Abraham 3: 24-25.

" And there stood one among them that was like unto God, and he said unto those who were with him: We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell;

And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;"

He created the Earth. He did it so we would be able to come to Earth and receive bodies. He did it because of the love He has for us. And we read that He did it to test us, to see if we would do the things God commands us. I know that We have a Father in Heaven who loves us all and has a plan for us. I know that we are here to be tested, but that as we keep the commandments we will find true happiness.

Que tengan una buena semana!


Con amor,


Hermana Bettridge

Fotos:




Last p day we went to this place where you hit golf balls off a ledge as far as you can. I wasn't that great, but it was pretty stress relieving!
Us admiring how great we did!
More of us because we're cute.
These dogs that were following me around while we were tracting at a trailer park.
Us with Samuel and our commandments board! Samuel will be getting baptized next month!
Our district this transfer
District meeting




Monday, February 13, 2017

Almost Half Way!

Hola!!!

All of my dreams came true because I found out I am staying another transfer here in H3 with Hermana Calderon! I know we are going to have so much fun the next six weeks and see so many miracles!

Us with Diana, we are going to start teaching her soon

We have seen so many miracles the past two weeks. We have been able to find some amazing new investigators and have set six baptismal dates! I am excited to see these baptisms go through this transfer! Half of our dates are with part member children, which are my absolute favorite type of people to teach! I love teaching kids because they want to understand and have good questions. They have such a special spirit about them and are able to easily distinguish truth.

Us with Elizabeth, she is getting baptized in two weeks and is so excited!

This week I have been thinking about why we have commandments. It all starts out before we even came to Earth. Before this life we lived with God as His spirit children. In Revelation 12 we read about something that happened in this pre-mortal life.


      7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,

      8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.

      9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.


In this life there was war. Michael and his angels fought against Satan and his angels. Satan lost the war and was cast out into the earth, along with his angels. So, we know Satan and his angels are here on earth with us. The Bible does not tell us why there was a war. I am grateful for the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ because of the additional revelation we have received. We can read more about this war in Moses chapter 4.

      1 And I, the Lord God, spake unto Moses, saying: That Satan, whom thou hast commanded in the name of mine Only Begotten, is the same which was from the beginning, and he came before me, saying--Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor.

      2 But, behold, my Beloved Son, which was my Beloved and Chosen from the beginning, said unto me--Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever.

      3 Wherefore, because that Satan rebelled against me, and sought to destroy the agency of man, which I, the Lord God, had given him, and also, that I should give unto him mine own power; by the power of mine Only Begotten, I caused that he should be cast down;

      4 And he became Satan, yea, even the devil, the father of all lies, to deceive and to blind men, and to lead them captive at his will, even as many as would not hearken unto my voice.

Before we came to this life there was a council in heaven. We were told we would come to earth so that we could gain a body and experience. We needed a Savior. Satan wanted to be the Savior. But, he wanted the honor. Christ volunteered to come and give the glory to His Father. Satan was going to ensure that we all returned to live with Heavenly Father, but he was going to do this by taking away our ability to choose. He does this by causing us to believe in things that destroy our ability to choose. That was the cause of the war, Satan wanted to destroy our ability to choose.

It seems like a good thing that we would all return to live with Heavenly Father, but if we didn't have the ability to choose and were forced to choose the right life would be different. Life wouldn't be good if we didn't have that freedom. This war didn't end in the premortal life. Satan was cast down to earth. The war only changed battlefields. In Revelation we read how we won the war the first time.

      11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

We won the war the first time because of Christ. We wanted to come to earth and knew we would sin, we had faith He would come to save us from our sins. We also loved not our lives unto the death. That means we loved Heavenly Father and wanted to put His will over our own.

One of the greatest evidences that Satan is still trying to take away our freedoms is through addictions. He wants us to be addicted to things so that we can't choose. But, we have a Father in Heaven that loves us. He knows what Satan is trying to do. Because of that, He has given us instructions so that we can be happy and return to live with Him. People are addicted to money and work, for this Heavenly Father has given us the Sabbath Day and the Law of Tithing. People are addicted to drugs and alcohol, so Heavenly Father has given us the Word of Wisdom. People are addicted to casual sex and pornography, so Heavenly Father has given us the Law of Chastity.

I love all of you! I hope you have a great week and keep the commandments!


Love,

Hermana Bettridge


Fotos:

We went to a park last week


Me with some of my favorite members! She served a Spanish speaking mission in Texas in the 50s

Her during her mission with Spencer W Kimball