Monday, February 23, 2015

the phone call.....

What a crazy week that it truly has been. I don't even know where i should begin. hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm my thoughts are pretty much everywhere due to a couple changes that i have just found out about but hey.. that's the mission for ya! I feel like I have become a lot better at dealing with stress, which might surprise a lot of you! But it is the truth! 3 cheers for the story that you are all about to hear.. 

This week was filled with many crazy opportunities, helping sister Johnson prepare for the return home, helping her pack,(missionaries truly collect so many things and nobody knows why), finding, teaching, and having miracles, and then going to a different area while sister Johnson went to a seminar for all the returning missionaries, and here is where my story begins. I had the opportunity to be with a sister who was barley finishing her training. as we were studying together that morning i was looking through the training booklet and for some reason the words went through my head,, "wow i think training would be stressful, and then again it said.. "it is, but it will be just fine". WHAT?! So then i got a little nervous thinking about ALL the possibilities and i decided to just worry about the then and the now. So i did! Sister Morring and I had a great day together in her area, miracles and teaching and it went quite well. I went back to my area with Sister Johnson and went on with our day. Then i forgot about what i had experienced that morning. The next morning we woke up and Sister Johnson went to the phone and started screaming out of so much excitement... now i was really confused because she was not much a morning person and she was jumping on my bed and read the words in the text to me.... SURPRISE! 

If you haven't already guessed... I'm going to be training this next transfer! WOOT WOOT. I cant believe it and i am so nervous but i am also so excited. There are 4 new sisters coming into the mission and i will have the privilege of being able to train. Also i got word that I am moving apartments. But i know that everything is in the Lords hands and that it will all be great! I have no idea what to expect but I cant wait for everything that is about to happen. I do know that this is the Lords work and that he qualifies us for anything and i truly have been able to see that throughout the course of my mission. There have been so many times for Heavenly Father has put me through things that i would never think i could go through and then after all is said and done i come out a new person. I know that it sounds so cheesy but its so true and I am grateful for the opportunities that i have been given. 

I cant wait to see what lies ahead! I know it is going to be such an awesome experience! 

This week was an amazing last week that Sister Johnson and I were able to have together, we were able to reach standards of excellence, and have 6 of our investigators come to church. That was amazing! The weather has been great and things just keep getting better and better! 
I have also really increased in my studies this week and have gained a better understanding of the scriptures and preach my gospel. When i have good studies my day just seems to be that much better. That is the power of the book of Mormon and the power of personal prayer. 

sorry this is so scattered! LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU ALL!!!

love, Sister Norton

P.S. never forget that God understands us and knows what we are going through, no matter how large or how small. 

Monday, February 16, 2015


Oh what a wonderful week that it has been. EVERETT!:) I love love love the people, and the ward and AT LAST! The sun came out.. and it has been pretty sunny for the past couple of days. We are trying to take in all the vitamin D that we possibly can. It's been super wonderful and we have been able to bike around and more people are out, and they are a lot more happier:) LOVE IT
 Okay I think that may be enough for the weather update in Washington... hope you all enjoyed:) This is it... It is the last week of the Transfer. These past 2 transfers with Sister Johnson have flown by! The other night we were talking about how fast it has gone. Time is something that has been so strange to me. I know that every missionary says it, but it really does go by so fast! I have enjoyed every single moment so far, and I am so grateful for the things that I have learned. Sadly.. "I'm going to kill my companion" This is the last week that Sister Johnson and I will serve together. It has been so bittersweet helping her prepare to go home, but we are both very excited for this upcoming week. We have so many great things happening in our area, and so many great people to teach the gospel to!
The miracle of the week was this... READY! We were trying to visit a less active sister in the ward, as we knocked on the door a younger girl answered the door. She looked a little shocked and began to tell us that her mom wasn't there but that we could try back another time..then she began to talk with us and said.. "you are not going to believe this, but i haven't been to church in 6 years and i just moved back from Texas a day ago, and i just barley decided to open up the book of Mormon to read it and while i was reading it i heard a knock on the door and it was you guys" HA. There have been to many times where this has happened. This experience truly goes to show that God is real, and that he is aware of us and he wants to help us. He has given us the tools to get by. I know that it was truly inspired for us to knock on her door at the time that she had opened her scriptures.
BEST EXPERIENCE of the week. Kennedy Keo! oh my goodness. I think i have mentioned him just a little but this week was the best. We were able to get a member to come with us who spoke Cambodian, and as this women translated what we were teaching the spirit was so heavy and we could all feel it. At one point we just had to stop and let him know that what he was feeling at the very moment was heavenly father. WOW! it was SO NEAT!
We are working with a lot of people that are having a hard time recognizing that they have felt the spirit. The scripture that comes to mind is found in the doctrine and covenants.
 21 Behold, I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I am the same that came unto mine own, and mine own received me not. I am the light which shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not.
 22 Verily, verily, I say unto you, if you desire a further witness, cast your mind upon the night that you cried unto me in your heart, that you might knowconcerning the truth of these things.
 23 Did I not speak peace to your mind concerning the matter? What greater witness can you have than from God?
 24 And now, behold, you have received a witness; for if I have told you things which no man knoweth have you not received a witness?
we need to ALWAYS remember that there are certain moments in each of our lives that we have felt the spirit and felt gods love for each of us. I think this scripture says it all perfectly. Let us all try a little harder to write down the spiritual impressions that we receive, which will allow us to get more!
sorry this is all over the place, but i love you all very much! 
love Sister Norton

P.S when your bishop is a DJ and he throws a Valentines dance party.......................

Monday, February 9, 2015

Humility, Obedience, and Listening

Oh hello! " the rains came down and the floods came up" I remember this from last year, riding on bike in the rain! There is no better way to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love the look people give us... and what they say. Sometimes all I can do is laugh. It has been a constant drizzle/ mist for the past 8 days... I think, but that's why the motto here in the mission is.. "YOU MAKE YOUR OWN SUNSHINE" We have defiantly done that this week. 

For instance the other day we saw a sign saying that anyone was welcome to come help clean at the commons park for service hours. SCORE. We thought it would be a AWESOME opportunity to get out and do some service in our area. We woke up that morning to it raining and we decided to go anyways. We had no idea what to expect, when we showed up there were 2 people there and they greeted us with HUGE smiles and were so grateful that we showed up. It was a blast weeding in the rain, we got to know a couple of great people and then towards that end as we were leaving this man came up to us and said.. "ya know, you 2 just really made the Mormons look good" Service is the key to making one happy and lifting your spirits as you lift others. I have loved learning that:) 

crazy story: one time we tried seeing an inactive women for a couple weeks and she was never home.. then suddenly one evening we received a phone call from the hospital telling us that she would love for missionaries to come by and see her. She was unable to talk and the women said that after writing down the message that she would like "Mormon missionaries" she quickly called us. We were happy to go visit with her. As she wrote down things on her whiteboard we began to have a lovely conversation... the spirit filled the hospital room as we read from the Book of Mormon and reassured her that she had a father in heaven who loved her very much, and that everything was going to be okay. Then fast forward a couple weeks later.. we were given an assignment by the relief society to go see her at home and to see if everything was going well... we knocked on the door and a women answered... not the same women at the hospital... we asked for her by name and she responded.. That's me. Sister Johnson and I were both so confused and were speechless...  we began to tell her what was going on and she laughed.. it was pretty crazy and that is when we learned that sometimes you do things and you don't know why you do them but you listen to the spirit and you continue forward. We still don't know who the women was in the hospital that we visited but we do know that it was indeed somewhere that we needed to be. 

I have been such a conference junkie this past week and I came across so many good things! I do have such a strong testimony of the importance behind my subject title. HUMILITY, OBEDIENCE, and LISTENING. These 3 things are very crucial for each of us to develop and to have. I like to think of them as a formula for ETERNAL HAPPINESS. if we are humble we are ridding ourselves of the natural man and becoming more like the savior in our thoughts and actions, when we obey gods commandments and read and study the scriptures we are filled with the spirit and when we listen to those prompts we will be guided and we will know what to do! ahhhh:) its wonderful but it is also something we much always work on. 
here is the hard part.. 
" hearing the words of the Lord through the Spirit is more than felling His promptings. It is acting according to those promptings. 
we have to act and do something! 

I love this gospel. I have a strong testimony of it and I know that it is all true. IT just has to be:) 
love love love you all!
thank you for all the encouraging words and for all the prayers. They do not go unnoticed. 
you are all AWESOME!!
your dearest. 
Sister Norton

Monday, February 2, 2015

WHIDBEY Island.. :)

GOOD MORNING!:) What a wonderful day it has been already and its only 11:30. I LOVE that. This morning we took the ferry to the island and we are now currently on South Whidbey Island. It almost reminds me of McCall Idaho with the beautiful Evergreen trees and then the lake.. but instead of the lake we are surrounded by the Ocean. Its so unbelievably GORGEOUS as we are emailing at the moment i am enjoying the peacefulness of the view that we have. I truly feel like i am in a different country. I LOVE it, and with all that being said it brings me so much happiness to know that this world that we live in is so beautiful and its Gods creation. It was made for US. To live and to grow and to be tested.
I will briefly go over the week. 
We had a great zone conference... seemed to last forever because all of the returning missionaries bear their testimonies and we are losing a lot of missionaries within the next weeks.. (Sister Johnson being one of them:() She is so much fun to serve, we make a great team:) I love how opposite we are but yet how similar we are as well. It just seems to work! 
then we were able to see the power of the book of Mormon come to life. We are teaching a man who is from Cambodia, and we were able to give him a copy of the book of Mormon in Cambodia. We went over for our lesson to see if he had been reading and that he had! We asked him how it had been going and he began to tell us EVERYTHING that he had been reading. I was so surprised from it all. My mouth dropped and all i could do was testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. IT is so true and it truly does bring us Closer to our Father in Heaven and to Jesus Christ. We then were able to meet with a newer investigator who accepted everything that we taught about the Book of Mormon and is very excited to read from it!
We found out that the McNamaras are very sick and that the father is still looking for a job that will allow him to come to church with his family. They were planning on coming to church yesterday because he got it off for the Superbowl but they were all sick. Whenever someone is doing something so good and trying their hardest to accept the gospel the adversary will work that much harder on them to pull them down. "don"t listen to satan"
WOW. I sometimes am still in shock that i am a missionary. That happened to me a couple times this past week. It is so neat to think that i know i am in the right place at the right time serving the people of Washington. I love love love missionary work. It requires everything that you have and at the end of the time it is so amazing to be able to account to the lord what we have done with his area. I know that i am just a voice for the Lord and that i am here to help them either come back on the path or find that path. The gospel is TRUE happiness, but that doesn't mean we do not have trials that test us. They allow us to stretch!
"the decision to change is your and yours alone" 
Let us all strive to remember our true purpose in this life and strive to become more like the savior in our thoughts and in our actions...
one more quote.. so sorry i have just been all over the place..
"the true success of the gospel of Jesus Christ will be measured by the spiritual strengthen of its individual members."
Love, Sister Norton:)