Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Alisa is now training! 5/12/13

Bonjour Ma Famille,

It was absolutely wonderful to get to talk to you all on Saturday.  I loved it and it made me so happy.  I guess I'll just give a little update this week for those who I wasn't able to talk to.

Most pressing, we got our exchange calls... and I am training.  Both Soeur Fairchild and I are staying in Carcassonne.  But, our companionship is splitting and we're both training.  In the U.S., when you are a new missionary, they refer to you as a "green".  Here, you are a "bleue".  You keep that status through your second transfer because you are still being trained.  So technically, today is my first day not in training as a bleue, and tomorrow I will pick up my bleue (fresh out of the MTC).  No lapse time whatsoever.  I've never been a senior companion...or even a normal junior companion.  I guess that all changes soon.  I have just been taking a lot of deep breaths, repeating the phrase "God qualifies who He calls.  God qualifies who He calls..." , and occasionally eating cookies dipped in Nutella when I get too stressed.  It will be great, though.  I really am so excited.  I'm most nervous about my French skills, but this will definitely just push me off the edge and force me to become fluent a lot faster than I would have been.  It's crazy to me that this is happening after the transfer that I just had.  It was not the easiest.  I can count the lessons that we taught in six weeks on my two hands.  But, maybe God needed me to learn other things so that I would be prepared for this next step.  I hope I'm ready.  It has been one of my goals from day one to be ready to train by my third transfer.  I didn't expect it to happen, but I wanted to be prepared so that God could call me to do whatever He needed.  One thing is for sure, I will have Him with me the whole way...and I will definitely need it.
I've had a quote going through my head a lot since that call.  Elder Neal A. Maxwell said, "The Lord does not ask us about our ability, but only about our availability.  And then, if we demonstrate our dependability, the Lord will increase our capability."  My dad has this quote on the wall in his bishop's office.  I always thought it funny and rather clever that he would have that quote plainly in view for everyone that he extended a calling to.  I think that it definitely applies to my situation here.  I am excited to take on this new challenge and watch the Lord work miracles through me.

One more highlight of the week, I got to work in a garden!  I was so excited.  At home, we do all of that the week of Mother's Day, it was awesome to keep that tradition alive in France.  We were talking to our bishop about how we could serve him and his family.  They have a massive garden and were planning on planting last week.  We insisted that we help with it.  He was super confused and said that girls in France don't work outside, they do house work (how ridiculous is that?).  Needless to say, we won that argument and spent a wonderful day out in the sun, planting a garden.  I loved it!

Well, that's about it for this week.  I'm getting prepped for a crazy couple weeks to come.  I love you all and hope that you are doing wonderful.  Thanks for everything!

Je vous aime,
Soeur Alisa Hulme

(So, the way I have been ending my letters, "Je t'aime", is not necessarily wrong...this way is just more right.  I realized that about three weeks into my mission but didn't want to change it.  It would hurt my pride too much to admit I was wrong.  But, there you go.  That is better French now.)

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