Sunday, April 24, 2016

Week 7: Chihuahua's, puertas, y estar + bueno (April 18, 2016)

Not really sure where to begin so I guess we'll start with April 12. I apologize for the scatteredness, there is more than can ever be said every day.

April 12 - we left nice and early and all I really remember is feeling a little bit like a deer in the headlights as we made our way to the airport, through the airport and on to Yakima. The second plane was little and I got to talk to this super sweet 16 year old girl who told me a little bit about Yakima and her family. In the MTC the concept of "hermana" and "elder" isn't even blinked at but I forget that isn't the same everywhere else and the look she gave me when I introduced myself as such made me laugh. Yakima is gorgeous. There are mountains that are incredibly different than Utah's and all of the trees are in bloom right now so of course it's stunning. We stayed at the mission home that day and got briefed on how everything will play out. The food they made was also some of the best food I have ever eaten. Relatively soon after we arrived they sent us out to tract. I thought I was at least somewhat prepared but as always, that is where I was wrong. We used both Spanish and English which was odd to me but when we knocked on one house where we spoke Spanish I totally froze. The woman we were talking to kind of laughed and said something to the effect of, "She's new?" Yup. I felt a little tonto (stupid) because we were talking about families and I know how to talk about them, I understood most of what was being said. . . I just could not figure out how to talk. We headed back home, ate, took a million pictures, and had a brief testimony before bed.

April 13 - Today was the day we got our companions. I've been assigned to Wenatchee which is about a 2 hour drive (from the mission home). I can't believe how many different types of landscapes there are. We drove through cliffs, around mountains and across a river of some sort. It's stunning. I met my companion and then we went to dinner with a member who's daughter recently got back from her mission at the Salt Lake Visitor's Center. Then we tracted (walking around knocking doors and trying to talk to people) a little bit and found a sweet lady while looking for a referral.

April 14 - We spend so much time studying. I kind of love it, just to be able to study and prepare for the day, to be immersed in the scriptures and Predicad mi Evangelio (Preach my Gospel). Our service is at the museum in town where we set up for a tea party. Then we tracted. We were still looking for the one referral but we still couldn't find them. This is the first place I ran into a door. We knocked on this super cute little house and a grandma answered the door with one of her grandkids. He grinned at us and we had time to smile back and say "Hi!" before she said, "Oh forget it!" and slammed the door. I honestly couldn't do anything but laugh because of the dynamic between the child and her. We tried next door and taught the first lesson on her doorstep. I'm learning so much already, it's kind of crazy. Later, we headed toward the Garcia's. We're in a walking area so we obviously walk everywhere but I honestly love it. We decided to knock some doors on a street nearby and ran into Aaron. He was quite nice, but when we were introducing ourselves he started laughing which took us off guard a little. Apparently his wife was a member, a less active, and he thought somebody had sent us. We spent the next 30 minutes or so discussing the LDS church and Hinduism which is what he practices. We left him with 2 Nephi 4 and he invited us back. Not because I think he's really interested but because, well honestly I'm not really sure. Then we met with the Garcia's. I have had the privilege to come at the right time to be here for her baptism! She gets baptized this coming Saturday and I'm so excited. Her family is really sweet and she's darling.

Wenatchee : )

April 15 - We had a training meeting where I learned a lot. It was really neat to be with all of the missionaries again. We had dinner with a member family that night who is half Ecuadorian and half white. That night while we were eating and talking, I was a little stunned at where I was. Me, a super rubia gringa (blonde foreigner) was sitting there eating and chatting in Spanish with this incredible Ecuadorian family. Their culture is so amazing and I am seriously so blessed to be a part of it. We visited the Garcia's again that night and while we were walking home we did what we call the Miracle Walk. 8 pm at night is kind of like the twilight zone. Not really, but that's when people are kind of settling down and it's an odd time to knock doors so we really just hope to find people in the streets. We were almost home when we ran into two families. I talked to the kids and got to know them while Hermana Dungan (mi companera) talked with one of the moms. About 10 minutes later one of the families left and we turned to the other mother who had been listening. She then tried to convert us to her church. She was an incredible missionary honestly. She talked really fast and although I got the gist of what was happening I didn't totally catch all of the context. Sometimes she would look legitimately interested and then other times less so. We tried to leave her with a prayer and after we did she whipped out 1 Corinthians 11:4-6 I think which says a woman's head must be covered in prayer so I think maybe she thought we were being sacrilegious.

April 16 - Today i got attacked by a chihuahua. Granted, they aren't very big so how terrible can that really be but still. She just had three puppies and so in her defense she was just being a good mother but even though I tried to stay a respectful distance, she obviously didn't like how blonde I am and so attacked my foot. Before this we had mostly just planned because all of our schedules had been a little thrown off but it was really good to talk to the member that fed us that night. She was having some doubts and struggles and all I could do was give her scriptures. It's tricky, knowing exactly what to say at the right time. But every day I learn a little bit more and it is slowly getting easier.

The attack dog and her puppies.

April 17 - I made my first major Spanish error. When someone asks, "Como esta?" Don't reply with "Estoy bueno." Long story short I called myself a sexy man and have effectively made a fantastic first impression on my very first Sunday here. Elder Solis, who is hilarious and our zone leader, has made sure to tell everyone about it and I probably will never live it down. :) Sunday's are fantastic though. It's all in Spanish and it's just a branch but the people in it are absolutely amazing! Their testimonies are so strong and sweet and I feel incredibly blessed to serve along side of them.

This week was once again weird because we get to go to the temple on Friday!! So our usual PDay has been moved to Friday and after this we head out to work. Also, we got locked out of the church and so the library is hosting a bunch of needy missionaries.
There is so much to learn and I cannot wait to grow. I've really learned this week that there really isn't any comfort in the growth zone but if you really grab hold of it and use it as you should, you grow much faster and it's a little bit easier to go through. I absolutely love it out here and I am so excited for what is to come.

Sister Jaycie Baird
Washington Yakima Mission

A spicy mango smoothie with a spicy fruit leather type thing 
wrapped around the straw a member made for us.

Hermana Baird made it to Washington! (April 12, 2016)

Dear Missionary Family,

We are delighted to report that your missionary has arrived safely to the Washington Yakima Mission.  We already love them and are excited to serve with them.  We are confident that they will become an effective instrument in the hands of the Lord in sharing the gospel with the people of Washington and Oregon.

We have assigned them a companion who is an experienced, devoted, and motivated missionary.  All of our missionaries understand that one of the greatest privileges available in the mission is to train a new missionary.  This first companion will be a special person in your missionary’s life and will help give them a great start here.

We feel that our greatest responsibility is the care and welfare of your child.  We want to assure you that we will be in regular contact with them and will be observant of their physical health, happiness and spiritual well-being.  We will work closely with them throughout their mission to help them succeed and fulfill their calling as a representative of the Church and as an ambassador of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Please be assured that we will be in contact with you if we encounter any concerns that would call for your attention.  You are a great asset to the success of your missionary while they are serving here and we will work closely with you if the need arises.  Please keep us apprised of any changes to the address, phone number or email for you, your bishop or your stake president.  We want to keep our records current so that we can contact you whenever necessary.

Attached is a photograph of your missionary taken with us at the welcome dinner at the mission home.  Please feel free to contact us at the mission office with any questions that you may have.

Thank you for the sacrifices you are making at home to have your missionary in the field.  We have seen the Lord bless the families of missionaries who are serving in untold ways.  We know that His blessings will be upon you as well.

With love and appreciation,
President John C. Lewis and Sister Ann Lewis

Week 6: Enjoy to the End (April 11, 2016)

I cannot believe all that has happened at the MTC. Every week has been incredible.
There was temple dedication, Easter, General Conference, the topping ceremony where I got to sign my name on a beam and it is now on top of 20M which will be completed in 2017, it was seriously the best 6 weeks to be here, without a doubt.
Since there's always so much to write, I'm going to tell some of the funnier or more interesting things that have happened in the MTC.

-This week for service we once again cleaned the banos (bathrooms), no surprise there. We did the math (well, Hna Holmes did because she's a math genius) and we've cleaned 112 toilets, 88 sinks and too many urinals. But this last week we decided that we would at least make it enjoyable and so sang Disney songs the whole time. The bathrooms really have some great acoustics. After one of our performances of Elsa's song the main one, I don't remember what it's called the one on the mountain you know, and we leave the bathroom and a cute little older lady dijo (said), "That was a fantastic performance!"

-Down the hall in my residence there are a bunch of islanders. I was learning how to juggle, as I said and one of them from Kitibus was laughing at my somewhat pathetic attempt. Long story short, we ended up talking late into the night about her life back home while she taught me how to juggle. Now every night she comes down the hall and hugs me before leaving and saying "I love you!" in her language and then I say it back in Spanish. It's really been a neat experience to see how everyone is so different and how all of the people on this earth are children of God. She has an incredibly sweet soul and I can see how being here in such a different culture has been really difficult. But she will have such an amazing time and will bless so many people in Fiji.

-Today in class we were discussing different scenarios with less-actives and we were talking about a returned missionary who didn't think that she was doing enough. Being on a mission, there is a completely different spirit. We were talking about enduring to the end and all throughout the scriptures we are promised that when we endure and follow Christ we will receive exaltation. So I'm a little tired and speaking some mad Spanglish as I speak. This is kind of how it went. "Me encanta las escrituras porque (I love the scriptures because) there are so many that have promesas para nosotros cuando nosotros perseveremos hasta al fin (promises for us when we persevere to the end). Like, you're enduring? Cool beans, celestial kingdom for you!" Mi mente es roto (my mind is broken).

-This was a little while ago but here's another example of my Spanish mishaps. (I am so sorry if I have already told this story but here it is again) We were talking about ir+a+infinitive in class and it had been a long day. I was kind of dead tired. Which is always a good combo, spanish and tiredness. My teacher finishes explaining what we are doing and then asks me to do something. I have to really focus to understand and I was not at that moment and so, using the ir+a+infinitive, I told him "Voy a dormir" which means "I am going to go to sleep." Turns out he asked me to explain to the class in Spanish what we were doing, basically to repeat the instructions. So if you ever feel bad about yourself, just remember, when my teacher asked me to instruct the class, I told him I was going to sleep. It's a progress (process).

-The word "awkward" doesn't exist in Spanish which is honestly a little bit unfortunate. The closest thing is "incomodo" which means uncomfortable. Our TRC investigador (investigator) Nicolas is honestly one of the best but we're really bad at transitioning from small talk to lesson. We laughed rather awkwardly and I said rather quietly in ingles, "I'm so sorry I am so awkward." He died laughing because he understands a little bit of ingles and I guess he caught that. He assured me I wasn't THAT awkward as he was laughing and Hna Holmes just shook her head.

-There are so many awesome people here from all over the world! My companera (companion) is a fantastic pianist and so a lot of the times people will ask her to accompany for them. One elder was Elder Parkinson. He was one of the most genuine people I have ever met and he's headed to Germany. His companion for the day was the very first Turkish born missionary in the entire history of the missionary work. While they were practicing I was talking to him and he speaks three different languages, English, Turkish and is learning German. He was so awesome! And he is the very first, talk about representing his family, his country. I was honored to meet him honestly. There is another Turkish missionary coming into the MTC in the next couple of weeks. I love all of the different people I get to meet here!

-We learned present and past subjunctive this week and I learned that I have been speaking Spanish pretty much incorrectly from day one. Apparently it is totally possible to communicate without it, as I have seen but it is so much easier and much clearer to be understood when it is used. It actually made me really excited because I was feeling a little bit overwhelmed with how much Spanish I didn't know. Turns out, as soon as I learned that particular grammatica, I understand so much more and it's only the occasional (okay, many) words in between that I'm less familiar with. I am so excited to KNOW this language. I love it so very much, and it's the coolest thing to be able to express myself in two different languages now. I can't believe I only ever did in one before, Spanish has become such a part of my every day life.

-We finished teaching Nicolas which was incredibly sad, but we did get to do TRC Skype. We taught two different members, one lives in Guatemala and the other one lives in Argentina. It was seriously one of the coolest things. Our second lesson was on the difference between believing and knowing. There are lots of things that we know, anywhere from science to knowledge about different religions. But the difference is that believing is ACCEPTING it as truth. It was a really fantastic lesson. Both times I was honestly terrified. These are native speakers in different countries no less, how am I supposed to be able to understand and teach in a language I am still trying to learn? But both times I was surprised at how much I was able to understand and communicate. Another blessing and testament of the don de lenguas (the gift of tongues).

-Last thing. We had in-field orientation and it was actually amazing. They did a skit toward the end of it and I volunteered to be a part of it. I was in a ward council (a meeting with the missionaries, bishop, relief society president, primary president, young men and young  women presidents) and I was the primary president. During the second meeting, they introduced me and I jumped up and said this silly line and gave the bishop a gold star for being so very reverent. (you can take this out if you want, i guess it's like once I was a beehive status). Anyway, it was a lot of fun and we met an Australian elder who was in our group. They're whole district is from new Zealand or Australia and their accents are the coolest thing. They're learning cebuano which is an offshoot of spanish. Again, the people I have met here are all incredibly amazing and we all get to serve in the neatest places. Fiji, Texas, New Zealand, Italy, Australia, Washington, Minnesota. They're all different countries to us and it's going to be such an amazing experience, I can't wait!

That's all for now, I'll try to send pictures and of course there will be many more experiences that I will remember over time or have in the future that I will try to add in. Also, I want to bear my testimony of the scriptures. They are the word of God, both the Book of Mormon and the Bible, as well as the other standard works. Every question you may have, there is an answer in them. I love them and am so grateful that God loves us so very much as to give us the very way to get back to Him. They testify of Christ, they teach of Christ and they promise us blessings that we cannot possibly imagine if we follow the Savior's example and follow His commandments. There is much we have to sacrifice, we have to sacrifice our impurities and imperfections. But it is so so so very worth it. He wants to bless us, He wants to give us everything. And there are so many hard things but it will all be worth it.

My relief society lesson was on Enduring to the End. But I really hope that we all Enjoy to the End. As cheesy as that sounds, who doesn't want to be happy in this life? I love the definition:

"Endure to the End: To remain true to the commandments of God DESPITE temptations, opposition, and adversity throughout life."

In my lesson I modified it just a little bit:

"Enjoy to the End: to remain true to the commandments of God and to endure temptations PATIENTLY, opposition FAITHFULLY, and adversity CONSISTENTLY throughout life."

Sister Jaycie Baird
Washington Yakima Mission

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Week 5 - When Will You Decide to Believe? (April 5, 2016)

The original two districts at the temple today.

(*note from Corinne - Jaycie's mom - She heads from the MTC to Washington on Tuesday so she will have a different address.  If you would like it, please personal message me on Facebook @ Corinne Teichert Baird and I will get it to you.)

This week was ​incredibly amazing and there was so much that happened. Although I would love to express all of the things I learned, I am fully aware that we must each learn for ourselves and so will try to keep it short.

Thursday - Thursday was honestly a little bit spiritually draining pero tanto bueno (but also good). We had service where we had the privilege to clean, once again, you guessed it, los banos (the bathrooms)! My favorite thing. *llorando* (*crying*) Pero, esta bien (but it's ok). We're learning good cleaning techniques. Siclo (the four hour study period often called PCL or personal, companera (companion), idioma (language) study). We taught member TRC again only this time was a little bit different. We had the opportunity to do Skype TRC and the miembro (member) we were talking to was currently IN Guatemala. It was really awesome. Our lesson went through 1 Nephi 8, a chapter I had recently finished during personal study and paired with certain verses in 1 Nephi 15.  I was really excited to share it. We talked about the four groups of people. (they can be found in 1 Nephi 8:21-23, 1 Nephi 8:24-28, 1 Nephi 8:30, 33, and 1 Nephi 8:31-32, 34). It was really awesome to hear all of her thoughts. So often when we teach, we're teaching those that know nothing about the gospel or aren't familiar with the Bible or Book of Mormon and while I love it, I felt like even though we were in completely different paises (countries) at the time, we were three friends discussing this chapter in the Book of Mormon and being edified by each other. Turns out that 1 Nephi 8 is her favorite capitulo (chapter) and somehow we had taught or discussed with her exactly what she needed. It was honestly humbling. During class, we were learning again about the don de lenguas, or the gift of tongues. I can not tell you how real of a thing it is. For missionaries to be able to learn a language in 6-9 weeks in any level of fluency is literally impossible. All of the Spanish grammar, Mandarin Chinese, Finnish, Russian, and any other language you can think of, in 6-9 weeks. Yes, when they first get out in the field it isn't perfect. But the fact it is even possible is a miracle. Anyway, there are 5 things that are needed to have the don de lenguas - Believe in it, Be worthy, Seek it, Work Diligently, and Love the People. Hno Roberts asked us what was the hardest thing for all of us and the consensus was work diligently. Before he asked this question, I would have agreed with the others. But then I realized it was believing in it that I was struggling with. Guess which one the lesson happened to be on. There was a list of scriptures to read concerning believing in the don de lenguas and the one that hit me the hardest was Mark 16:17 " And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues." There were many things I learned in that lesson that helped me tener mas fe en Jesucristo y venir cerca de Dios (to have more faith in Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father). There was one question that popped into my head and would not go away, and I would like to put it out in the open. "When are you going to decide to believe?" If there is anything I could even hope that would stay with those that read this is that question. When are you going to decide to believe? It's an action, it is a decision that once made will change your life. The answer may be never, it may be tomorrow, but I really hope it is now. I had to ask myself that and I had to decide. I do believe that Christ is my Savior and He will redeem us. And it's up to each of us to figure that answer out for ourselves.

Saturday/Sunday - General Conference! For the first time ever I decided to try out picking specific questions I wanted answered at Conferencia General and what do you know, every last one of them was answered. I was honestly blown away. I love General Conference so so much and pretty much everything in it was amazing. But there were a handful of main points I took from it.
1. Prayer is a gift to us to communicate with God. He wants us to talk to Him and it is so important to always be praying. He can and will help you in all things if we have the humility to turn to him and the amount of faith and trust we put in Him determines our ability to recognize His love and the answers we need.
2. We are children of God. Since I was a tiny little kid I have known I was a child of God but it's also knowledge I have taken for granted. The speaker, Donald L Hallstrom asked us, "Do you know it, that you are a child of God?" Our Heavenly Father is constantly calling out to us to "Come home". It was humbling to remember once again, that as much as I know He loves me, He loves every one of us that much. He loves everyone more than we could ever know.
3. Service is critical. Because each of us is a child of God, it is that much more importante that we serve as Christ served. There was a lot of talk about the refugees. There is nothing political about the refugees, it is a matter of humanity. They are all children of God and how can we turn them out, people who are just like us, professors, mothers, inventors, good upstanding people. They are people, every last one. How can we deny them safety? How can we deny them basic comfort, a sense of security for their children, food for their loved ones, shelter and peace? Reach out to one another and serve as Christ served. He loved the rich and the poor, the meek and the lofty, the leper and the whole, the saint and the sinner. God is not a respecter of persons and in the end that is all that really matters.
There is such a message of hope in General Conference. If you didn't watch it go back and read some of the talks or listen to it. Some of my favorites were:
Henry B. Eyring
Donald L Hallstrom
Mervyn B Arnold
M Russell Ballard
Thomas S Monson
Dieter F Uchtdorf
Gerrit W Gong (who spoke to us at the MTC a couple weeks ago)
Patrick Kearon
Jeffery R Holland.

That night VOCALPOINT came and performed. I say performed but they also bore their testimonies and shared brief experiences. All of them are RM's and they ended with "Nearer My God to Thee" which is my favorite song, especially their arrangement. It was amazing.

Monday - I crossed off two things (only partially) from my bucket list. I played the cello (it was a little rough but wow) and I learned how to juggle. Well, mostly. I spent two hours practicing when we got home and a girl from Kitibus from down the hall saw me struggling. She laughed and then helped me learn how. We talked long into the night as she told me her conversion story in broken ingles (english) and it was an incredibly unique experience. Her main idea was when she was younger she wanted to climb the coconut tree and she was so stubborn because she wanted to so bad and she wanted to make her dad proud. During one of the times she tried she fell and she has this large scar on her arm from the tree. But she eventually did it, just one step at a time (figuratively). She said she was like me. I'm stubborn and I will learn how to juggle, I wasn't going to give up. She sat there and taught me to juggle with one hand and two. She was so patient and kind, laughing because apparently I act afraid of the balls and once or twice it fell either on my head or hers. It's a slow process but just like her, I will "climb that tree" even if it's something as silly as juggling. But like everything else at the MTC, it was a unique learning experience I'm really grateful I was able to have.

I know this does not seem short, because it is not short. But to quote the Book of Mormon this is only a hundredth part of what I learned this week and I did my best to only include the most important parts although how I wish I could include it all.

​Elder Lambson in the background. Stuck here as a solo because he got pneumonia right as everyone else in his district left and so amuses himself with photobombing.

Sister Jaycie Baird
Washington Yakima Mission

Monday, April 4, 2016

Week 4: A Scripture a Day Keeps the Devil Away (March 29, 2016)

This week was a little bit weird, the internet was broken so I have a brief thing about each day and a scripture to go with it. I know many of these scriptures are out of context and perhaps foreign, there may be ideas that everyone isn't as familiar with, but I really wanted to share the scriptures that have taught me a little more cada dia (every day).

3/22 Tuesday: After pday we sang in choir the song "Jesus Once of Humble Birth". I really love choir. Music is the song of the heart and so often it is the way I bear my testimony, be it with my violin or with a choir but oh how I love it. 

Doctrine and Coventants 25:12 For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.

Wednesday: I learned of the importance of revelation and a desire to learn. It is so important.  The Book of Mormon and other scriptures, including talks from our prophets, contain all of the answers we need. It is up to us to search for an answer, that's why every time we read the scriptures we learn something more. Just as with General Conference the words we read are the same, but the impact and the message those words carry is different and incredibly personal for every person.

2 Nephi 31:3   For my soul delighteth in plainness; for after this manner doth the Lord God work among the children of men. For the Lord God giveth light unto their understanding; for he speaketh unto men according to their language, unto their understanding.

Thursday: We had service in the morning and we were cleaning bathrooms AGAIN. Don't get me wrong, i love cleaning as much as the next person but man sakes alive. 28 toilets, 12 urinals, and 19 sinks later we hit a bump. H Holmes spilled chemical on her shoe and there was a toilet that neither of us wanted to clean. Long story short, her foot was in the sink and we were arguing about who had to clean it when the service worker came in. But, as Ether says, we are given weaknesses so that we can be made strong. We are given opportunties to learn and to grow and to change. And that lesson was made quite obvious to me that morning.

Ether 12:27
And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if  they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

Friday: I love this scripture. We used it in a leccion con (lesson with) Nicolas who is trying to give up cafe (coffee). He wanted to know why we don't do certain things. Honestly, muchas veces (a lot of times) we don't have an exact answer to some of las cosas (the things) or rules we follow, but just as Adam of old, it is a commandment of God and sometimes that's all we really need.

Moses 5:5-6
 5 And he gave unto them commandments, that they should worship the Lord their God, and should offer the firstlings of their flocks, for an offering unto the Lord. And Adam was obedient unto the commandments of the Lord. 6 And after many days an angel of the Lord appeared unto Adam, saying: Why dost thou offer sacrifices unto the Lord? And Adam said unto him: I know not, save the Lord commanded me.

Saturday: I learned about kind of a weird phrase in spanish. Muchas veces(many times), someone with say "ella compartia con la familia" literally translated it means "she shared with the family".  I was so confused because what did she share?? Usually it's shared a lesson or a scripture but it is totally normal to just say she shared. Apparently it means, to share oneself or one's time. I love Matthew 5 because it's a good reminder that we need to be constantly sharing our light with the world.

Mathew 5:14-16
 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the  house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify  your Father which is in heaven.

Sunday: Elder Ballard came and spoke to us that Easter morning and when he entered the room I could feel the incredible truth that he is a man of God. In his talk he called us his "fellow missionaries" (which I absolutely thought was the coolest thing) but he also told us to testify boldly of Christ. Let your purpose be known. If you love Christ, if you strive to follow Christ, do not be ashamed. He is your Savior, my Redeemer, and it is through Him alone that we can return.

 2 Nephi 25:23,26
 23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do. 26 And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

Monday: I love these scriptures so much. I found them during personal study. Oftentimes, there are concepts given to us or things we learn that are difficult to understand and verse 3 beautifully describes that save a man should inquire of the Lord, we will not understand these things. Verse 11 describes how we must ask and 25 is a plea to do so. If there are things you do not understand, please, please ask of God. James 1:5 - He giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not. If we ask in faith we WILL receive an answer. Of course, our faith is what our answer is dependent upon. But I know that if you have the faith to receive, He will gladly give.

1 Nephi 15:3, 11, 25
3 For he truly spake many great things unto them, which were hard to be understood, save a man should inquire of the Lord; and they being hard in their hearts, therefore they did not look unto the Lord as they ought.
11 Do ye not remember the things which the Lord hath said?—If ye will not harden your hearts, and ask me in faith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you.
 25 Wherefore, I, Nephi, did exhort them to give heed unto the word of the Lord; yea, I did exhort them with all the energies of my soul, and with all the faculty which I possessed, that they would give heed to the word of God and remember to keep his commandments always in all things.

Tuesday: These scriptures don't look very connected, but they both bring home a lesson that is muy importante (very important). When we "wholly follow the Lord my God" we are given the ability to have the power of the Holy Ghost with us.

2 Nephi 33:1
 1 And now I, Nephi, cannot write all the things which were taught among my people; neither am I mighty in writing, like unto speaking; for when a man speaketh by the power of the Holy Ghost the power of the Holy Ghost carrieth it unto the hearts of the children of men.
Joshua 14:9
 9 And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children’s for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the Lord my God.

Wednesday: This is my mission scripture, Alma 26:12, and I love it so much because cada dia (every day) I learn more and more that I cannot do everything by myself.  In Ether it teaches, "after the trial of your faith" and this is true. I have been at the MTC for 4 weeks, going on 5 and there are a lot of things that tend to be a trial of my faith. But it's okay because I know that through the Lord, I am enough. We taught Nicolas again today and it went really well. Spanish came easily. And I know it isn't me. I know that it is the Lord. And so in all things I boast of the Lord, my God for yo se que (I know that) I am nothing.

Alma 26:12
12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

Ether 12:6
And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.

I am so grateful for this opportunity.
I know Christ is our Savior and Redeemer.

Thank you for the support, letters and emails, they mean so much.
Les quiero mucho (you are wanted (quite literally by me but it's a way to express love amongst friends)

Sister Jaycie Baird
Washington Yakima Mission

"Personalities galore"
 The last of our zone - left to right
Elder Simpson, Elder Nielson, Herman Briscoe, Hermana Rosenlund, Elder Dinges, Elder Stahlei
H Arnold, H Maine, H Holmes, H Baird, H Roundy, H Powell

I ran into Grandma Baird at the temple!