WEEK 11: Silver Beet leaves + Exchanges + Desires to change



did you do it? no? ok... smile then.

Good. Now a collective group of people smiled just because I told them to. That's a little bit of joy for all of you :) It is important that you smile this week during the hard moments. It will make you feel a little bit better. If you read nothing else, just remember that.

I hope you find some enjoyment out of reading these emails, even though I don't always have something super exciting to report. This week we had zone conference again and I finally feel like I am starting to get to know President Cummings more. He is from Australia so when he says my name it sounds like "Sista Bah- Kah" and I love it. It sounds so fancy. Also Sister Meto pronounces my name as "Sister Bawker" haha. I never knew there were so many ways to say Barker!! 

Zone conference was really good. Sister Cummings talked about Integrity and different ways to think about it. Integrity is honesty with yourself and with others, at all times. You are the same person everywhere you go. But she also said, "Integrity is leaving something better than you found it." Are you leaving your companion, your area, your surroundings, the people you come in contact with...better than you found them? It is a good question for us all to ponder. Are we making things better wherever we go and whatever we do? I have loved pondering that this week.

I am putting a picture of us below with giant leaves. An old man named Glenn that we have started to meet with gave us a TON of Silver Beet leaves, which is kind of like swiss chard. We had a hard, long day, so at the end what did we do? Took silly pictures with leaves. It was great.

I went on exchanges with Sister Glass to the Papamoa area again and it was awesome. She is so organized and lovely and I can learn a lot from her. We helped a family with five little girls clean out a bedroom. One of the girls is going to have surgery next week so she needs a clean environment to recover in. After we helped them, we taught the kids about the plan of salvation. They had SO many questions and were so excited about it. I loved hearing their heartful, soulful little questions. You really can learn a lot from children.

It has been good to see the full spectrum of what a desire to change is. I have seen it in myself and I have seen it in the people we are teaching. It is really interesting to watch another human being just break down their pride and humble themselves enough to sincerely pray, sincerely listen, and sincerely act. I won't go into specifics, but let's just say that I saw that in people this week. What a blessing to have a new perspective on this. I love the new eyes I can see with.

I thought I'd give you a little taste of some Maori culture or things I've noticed:

-People walk around barefoot. Everywhere. In the stores, mall, etc. It's so funny and carefree.
-We sang "keep the commandments" in church, but the accent makes it sound like "Keep the ComONDmints" and I wanted to laugh.

-Karakia (I think I'm spelling these wrong but oh well)- means prayer. We say, "can we close with a karakia?" at the end of each lesson.
-Wairua- Means spirit
-"Ah chur!" or "Ah Choice!"- If you are talking to a teenager, you won't get through the conversation without hearing this. It's kind of like saying "Cool!" or "awesome!"

Have a wonderful week!

-Sister Barker

                    Silver Beet leaf Fun!!!
    Reunited with Sister Jenkins!! She made it to New Zealand !!
               Sister Toi, Sister Meto......Zone Conference !
    Our wonderful friend,  Shilo with us at a Turkish restaurant
                      More Silver Beet leaf Fun!!!

          Beautiful Sunset on the Beach !!

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