Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year!

Dec. 31 2012

Dear Family,

Thank you for the emails and the love.  Also thank you so much for the package.  I love the purse and am slowly, sparingly enjoying the caramels. Thank you also for the deoderant and face wash. It was the perfect little package from home. :)  The visit with the Satina's was actually quite short which I was grateful for, but also disappointed.  I felt bad they went out of their way to see me for such a short time.  It was much appreciated!  Fun to see them and the package they brought was SOO sweet!  I can't remember if I had written this or if she just knew that it is very possible to burn yourself on laundry soap when you do it by hand.  I have done so once and almost did again the other day.  Anyway, sweet Sister Satina and family brought me an entire bottle of liquid tide specifically gentle on skin!  It was a heavy bottle and I was so grateful for their thoughtfulness. I will use it for the first time later today. :)  They also included a sweet note and KASHI trail mix bars!  That is my favorite kind and I only ever eat them at home.  I have eaten two so far and treasured every bite.  Please express my thanks to them for their lovely, thoughtful gifts and the sacrifice of luggage weight!  Also, about the picture she posted... don't worry my hair did not look like that all day! Haha

This morning I was reading 1 Nephi 22:26 and it talks about everyone dwelling in righteousness after Christ comes.  I remember mom talking about how in Heaven perfection doesn't mean every one is perfect in your eyes.  I thought about dwelling in righteousness and how it will be us being Christlike. When something bothers us about some one else, we ignore it, we endure it.  If they are acting righteously just accept their way of acting and love them for it. :)  Part of life and become perfect like Christ is having Christ's acceptance of all people as they are, loving them for the good and ignoring the annoying parts.  It's a choice to enjoy each others company at any given moment.  Not sure that completely got my thoughts across but that was the gist of it.

Another random thought-- we were in gospel principles and going over tithing.  Tithing, fasting, word of wisdom, law of chastity (24 hours, caffeine, modesty etc) --- all topics that can easily be turned into a letter/spirit of the law discussion and trying to help people understand the higher law and personal accountability to God. So the question came up on whether you pay tithing on gross income or on what you actually receive after taxes.  Good times, my companion and I look at each other, confirm what we have been taught/believe is the same and then wait to see how it plays out. haha.   Luckily, (haha) as the discussion began and the teacher turned to us for an answer the member of the mission presidency popped his head in and was able to give a really good answer.  He teaches so clearly and with the Spirit.  Something he said was new to me but made a lot of sense.  He said all those things that are taken out after gross are for our benefit.  It may not always seem like that (aside from SS) but paying taxes is something we do because we are privileged to live in the US. Anyway just a thought.  Then he also shared that with the Lord 1-1=2 and 1+1=0 because the more we give the more He can bless us and the more we keep the less He can give. Food for thought.  

So we went tracting this week in a new area and I was so grateful I was serving in the Philippines.  I like to call tracting Treasure Hunting. :)  For 2 reasons, one we are looking for souls to teach and every soul is precious and we are looking for "golden" investigators. haha.  But also (2) because finding some of these places here is like a treasure hunt.  We look and it's like, "oh, I think that's a path there." So we follow this little dirt path and it opens up to a cute little house.  Or we walk down a narrow little alley and are led to a whole neighborhood we had never seen.  It's so fun and we were excited to see so many areas where we can try and find more people prepared for the gospel! 
Well that is it for this email.  And this year.  Hope everyone has a Happy New Year and sets some goals.  I know a goal I would like people to make is to give a referral to a missionary at least once in the coming year (or months). :) haha.  But really...  Have a great week and 2013. :)

Sister Hamm

Pictures are the roasted pig at the Christmas Party and what I will call Temple Square for this Christmas (only because of the lights, the Spirit and purpose of the area is in no way comparable.)

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