18 March 2009

I'll Die Smiling

"We stand at the crossroads, each minute, each hour, each day, making choices. We choose the thoughts we allow ourselves to think, the passions we allow ourselves to feel, and the actions we allow ourselves to perform. Each choice is made in the context of whatever value system we've selected to govern our lives. In selecting that value system, we are, in a very real way, making the most important choice we will ever make.
[...]
"Since the foundation of all happiness is thinking rightly, and since correct action is dependent on correct opinion, we cannot be too careful in choosing the value system we allow to govern our thoughts and actions.
"And to know that God governs in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayers, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him, is indeed, a powerful regulator of human conduct."
--Benjamin Franklin

What have I learned this week? (Besides the fact that a European keyboard is completely different than an American one.) That I am so lucky to have my Heavenly Father on my side. He is helping me with every step I take. I really can feel it. I know it.

Plane to plane to plane. Bus to mission home. Interview. Get to know the area, the assistants and the President. A quick trip to the Duomo. Bed. Really the first day was a blur, but I know I felt excited to be back in Italy. Day two: I learned where I would be spending at least the next transfer (we hope much more time). GENOVA. What a fantastic city, full of fabulous people, lined with colorful piazzas, and surrounded by the deep blue sea. Funny that this city was my first choice, lucky girl.

Guess what, I am a real Sorella! I teach (when I can figure out what the others are saying). I talk to people on the street. I smile. I pretend I know Italian. I go to district meetings. I have a companion/trainer teaching me all the ins and outs. I love life. It is incredible because, like I stated in the beginning, I have had someone walking with me every step of the way. The fear I thought I would feel has not even approached. Any nerves I assumed would come, have had no time to effect me. I am amazed. Of course I have language galore to explore, but I am lucky to have the help of nearly every person I meet eyes with. Keep smiling.

I came into an area with work which seems to be soaring. I love the people we have been working with and am excited to find more. I am building the courage to talk to more and more people every day. Everyone we work with is a little different and they have the most unique personalities. As I learn their stories I know you and I both will grow to love them without end.

Life has never been busier. As a matter of fact, last Saturday my companion and I literally ran from one appointment to the next. No time to spare. But who has time to spare when you are trying to share the most important message anyone will hear? No one.

I sit at this computer and think about what I am doing. I realize it does not really matter if I am in Italy or Wyoming. Genova or Heber, Utah. It only matters that I am a missionary. A sister missionary. The days when I think to myself, "I miss the MTC" or something of the sorts, I remember that there are people waiting and ready for me. Here we go, together. Thank you!

God knows me, what I need. He knows you, and what you need. He knows the people around me, and what they need. I love love love that He prepares the way for all we will ever do. "God governs [...] the affairs of men, [...] He hears and answers prayers, [...] He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him, is indeed, a powerful regulator of human conduct."

Thank you. Find a miracle in every day. Smile.

Blue Skies.
Sorella Frederique Stone Carroll


Pic of the week: Brother and sister. Red crying eyes(for me), red rash face(for him). I may or may not have cried like a baby. I left for Italy!

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