Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Spiritual Freedom

This week kind of took us all by suprise. After I heard about Grandpa's passing and also the tender mercy that he'd been to Vannes at this time of the year exactly 70 years ago, it made me take a step back and realize just how much Heavenly Father is in the details of our lives. He has a plan for us that is infinitely greater and more well planned that anything we could ever orchestrate. I love my Father in Heaven so much.
 Dear Family and Friends,

Another surprise of the week was when Soeur Rasband and I got a call from the Assistants of our Mission President informing us that we would have a VISA waiter coming to stay with us for three weeks. Her name is Soeur Laura Mozos and she's from Nantes. We have such a wonderful privilege of having her stay with us and teach us french! (It's gonna get reeeel geeeeood that's for certain!) And then she'll be heading off to serve in the Salt Lake City Temple Square mission. And Soeur Rasband and I already planing on going to visit her when we get back!
But the best part was that we met the Stake President, her and her family at our church building in Vannes for her to get set apart. I felt so privileged to be able to sit in on her blessing and watch as her dad and her brother joined the stake president in the setting apart as they placed their hands on her head. You could FEEL the love that they have for each other and the spirit was SO POWERFUL that it brought me back to when I was set apart as a missionary for Jesus Christ. I made promises and commitments then to serve God with all my heart, might, mind and spirit. I will never forget the power I felt wash over me in those very first moments. By the end of the blessing, everyone was in tears. Her brothers surrounded her in a big hug and Soeur Rasband and I couldn't help but be touched by them...and so we hugged each other. :)
On Saturday, we drove out to give a Book of Mormon to someone who'd requested one from Church Headquarters (free with representatives too, right? :) And it ended up being out in Quiberon which is right next to the beach. We took our lunch break there and spent most of our time taking these loving, fun and funny pictures.
Sometimes it amazes me how beautiful the world is, what kinds of things Heavenly Father creates, how marvelous His plan and works are, as well as how close we can sometimes be to heaven. I couldn't have ever imagined Heavenly Father sending me to this beautiful place where I've seen so many miracles, experienced some of the greatest heights and traversed some of the lowest lows. But now I can see more clearly the masterpiece He was creating. We sat there on the beach and offered a prayer of gratitude, thanking Heavenly Father for the freedom we celebrate, for the ancestors that fought for it and the heroes today that continue to fight for it.
After the activity a couple of weeks ago on the Plan of Salvation, we took our model of the galaxy that we made and hung it up in our apartment. Just recently, I added a sign and attached it to the ceiling which reads, "Garder La Perspective Eternelle" or "Keep the Eternal Perspective." Now, I'm beginning to understand just what kind of meaning that can take on. The knowledge of this plan can and will always help us to hush our fears and respond to our doubts in a way that is liberating.
I am so proud of my Grandpa who came and served here in France to preserve freedom. No doubt, he saw lots of atrocities and many more miracles. I admire how strong he was in spite of it and how he always just wanted to create better futures for his children and grandchildren. I am so grateful that he gave me his own approval and blessing before I left last year around this time. And now I see a lot more clearly how this work is a fight for spiritual freedom.
I hope that we all can, as family, work to honor our family and remember always our eternal relationships with each other and with our Father in Heaven.
With Love,
Soeur Hopkins
p.s. As seen below, my sense of humor has in no way, shape or form diminished in the past year. haha. The other image looks like I'm hovering above the earth. Can you say "Wall E?" Love you all and don't forget to smile!

I think she may be having too much fun!

Lots of love,


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