Welcome!

Welcome to the missionary blog of Sister Ralynne Riggs. Here you will be able to follow Ralynne's experiences as she serves a full-time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in the California San Diego Mission and Mormon Battalion Historic Site. We will do our best to keep you updated weekly and hope you will find joy in being a part of Sister Riggs' mission!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Miracles!‏


Hello Dear Family! It's Your Pioneer Princess!

First of all, I wanted to wish Savannah a Happy 2nd Birthday! Send me pictures of her party! I am sure it was a blast and she was oh so cute! Also, a happy birthday to my awesome brother-in-laws, Brent and Jeff! You are the best and I love you for taking care of my sweet sisters and being amazing priesthood holders and husbands and fathers! Also a very happy birthday to my bestie, Alyssa! I got a surprise visit from her and her husband at the Mormon Battalion this week...and as she would tell you...my face and reaction was priceless! But yay for Birthdays!

This week has been yet another incredible week...would you expect otherwise when doing the work of Angels?! I truly am amazed on a daily basis. I love being part of the Lord's army! And let me tell you, the battle is truly raging!

Let me share one incredible experience I had this week. On Wednesday, my companion and I had set out into the field and we had three set appointments and six back-up plans. On our way to the first appointment, I called our second to confirm. She cancelled and wanted to reschedule. We arrived then at our first appointment and they were all home and the daughter was excited to see us and so was the dad...but the mom came out acting all tired and said she felt sick and asked if we could reschedule (2nd time in a row) so we smiled and we did...as we walked to our back-up plans I said, "So, I guess it's gonna be one of those days huh?" Then ALL of our back-ups fell through...people had moved, weren't home, turned us away...said they had no time (even though they were sitting around doing nothing...besides napping or watching TV) ...so we walked back to our car (which was parked right outside the window of the apartment of our first appointment) and we could hear the lady who had said she was sick and tired and wanted to reschedule...talking quite energetically on the phone! Oh...I was feelin' so defeated...but thought, "Welp, this is missionary work. It happens." So we had a ton of time still so we started thinking of others we could try to contact...I thought of a potential investigator we hadn't been able to reach, and so we got in the car and my companion said, "Mike just popped in my head. Let's go see Mike because he is on the way to the other house and we haven't been able to get a hold of him." We stopped by and knocked on the door. He answered! He was there! Yahoo we get to teach! So we had a lesson with him in his backyard and taught him the Gospel. Mike is trying to come back...he went a little wayward for a while when he became a Marine. He has been trying to come back to church and things but has faced A LOT of opposition through his friends and his mother. We had a great lesson with him though and I shared with him that no matter what you do or how far off the path you go, AS SOON as you turn your eyes back toward Heavenly Father, and move your feet, He immediately blesses you and that there is no greater love. God could never stop loving him. I shared with him my power scripture that always helps me through hard times, D&C 58: 2-4. He kept pausing as he read and clearing his throat...I wasn't sure what was going on but I knew he was feeling the spirit. Afterward he thanked us for coming by and said he'd be at church and made another appointment with us. As I left I thought, "Well...I felt like I had no idea where to go with that lesson and I didn't feel any super strong feelings but I hope it helped." 15 minutes later we got a text from Mike. He said, "Sisters, thank you so much again for coming by. I was in route to get something to drink...no, not water. (He's had an alcohol problem) and I prayed for intervention and just as I was about to walk out the back door. You knocked on it." I stopped dead in my tracks and couldn't speak. I just looked at my companion and we stood in awe and in gratitude....he told us more, "Last night my mom tried to kill herself again and when it happened the Elders showed up and said they felt like they needed to come over and they were able to help. I thought to myself why do I never get help when I need it? And today you came. It was all I could do not to break down during the lesson because I knew that my prayer was heard and had been answered."  MIRACLE!!!!!!! What's even more amazing is that my companion and I were discouraged and praying our hearts out to be in the right place at the right time. And I had literally prayed to see a miracle. Prayers were answered on all sides! Yes we had a hard afternoon, but those appointments fell through for a reason. Heavenly Father was freeing up our time so that we would be in a position to answer a desperate plea for help!!! Oh I just LOVE how much our Father in Heaven loves us and knows each and every one of us! It is so incredible...and I was so humbled and grateful that day to see again that Heavenly Father is in control and He works mighty
miracles! AMAZING!

I had another, well two more miracles this week! I witnessed my first two baptisms in the mission! Sherry and her daughter, Amber, were baptized on Saturday!!! It was so amazing and it went off without a hitch and the spirit was undeniably there. We had wonderful talks given and I was honored they asked me to sing at their baptism. I sang "Live Like You Believe", which was the song I thought of as I thought of the two and their journey that they had made to this point. My accompanist forgot her music so I was glad I thought to bring my copy...but that left me without the words and I wasn't sure I knew them...AND my throat had so much junk in it I kept clearing it and clearing it...I prayed for a clear voice and to remember my words and invite the spirit...that prayer was answered. The warmth of the spirit poured into the room and it was one of the most sweetest experiences to look into Sherry and Amber's eyes, two sisters I had taught and helped, and see tears come to their eyes while they smiled back at me. There really is no greater feeling of joy and happiness than knowing you had a hand in bringing another unto Christ...in helping them to find the path and take the first step down it by being baptized....a step that has such far reaching effects into the eternities. Someday their family will be sealed in the Temple for time and all eternity. Amber, who is now 12, will someday go to the temple with her sweetheart....they will teach and raise a family and maybe her son will go on a mission and change the lives of many! Oh how great and glorious is this life and the plan of happiness our Father in Heaven has shown us! MIRACLE!!! I wanted to attach a picture of me with them at the baptism but I got stuck on an old one this week. I will try next week. Oh! And our mission president and his wife came! That made us soooo nervous, but they said it was a really nice baptism and very well done. President Clayton shook my hand after and told me they were very lucky to have me in the mission. His counselor, President Jespersen, told me I had 8 days to prepare a song in Spanish to sing at the Spanish Mission President's Fireside! Ha! I accepted gladly but they are fully planned this week...so I will be singing in next month's...in English. = ) Every month they have a Mission President's Fireside that is all music. (Perfect for me right?!) They alternate Spanish and English and it's a chance for the missionaries to share their talents and testify through music. We invite all of our investigators! I am so excited to be a part of that!

I was able to use my voice also this week in inviting someone to be baptized. He has been on the fence for a long time and knows it's all true but has been waiting for God to tell him what to do next. They said they wanted to hear me sing. So we taught him the Plan of Salvation, which he had a lot of questions about because his wife passed away, and then I sang "When He Calls My Name" by Hilary Weeks and bore my testimony, then had him read Alma 5:59,60 &62...this I felt would really speak to him because he actually used to be a shepherd. He read it and lifted up his arm to show us his goosebumps...I extended my first invitation to baptism (my companion had said it the other times = ) ) and he said YES!!!! MIRACLE!!!! He will be getting baptized by his brother...the only member of the church in his family of nine! It was incredible...Here I am sitting in a room full of wise and learned people...he has five friends all over 50 years old who come to the lessons with him who all use to be members of the same church for years...even his old pastor and his wife...and they have all become Mormon....but not him yet...and he is sitting in front of us asking me and Sister Tanner...25 and 26 year old young women, to teach him! It made me think of D&C 1:4 ...how true it is. And right after that I went and taught two twin 9-year-old girls very simply...and who are living in poverty and were happy that day because they got groceries and some money to be able to turn their phone back on! Wow.....I truly am a missionary and this is amazing!

Another realization I had this week was that my patriarchal blessing is coming true! In my blessing I was told I would bring comfort and be a source of strength to many of my brothers and sisters throughout the world. When I got called to California I wondered how that would happen. But in just this week I have taught couples and families at the Battalion from the Netherlands, Holland, Denmark, China, Austrailia, Slovenia, Germany, and Iran! Oh my goofy gummies!!!! MIRACLES!!!!
I love you all so much and pray for you and that you will see miracles in your own lives as you turn your eyes to the Lord and do all you can to help build His kingdom on earth!!!

This is AWESOME!!! Keep in touch! I LOVE to hear from you!

All my love and hope for your happiness!

Your Servant in the Lord,
Sister Riggs