Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Thanksgiving Week!

It's been a pretty good week! This week is transfers, but I am staying in Sharon Springs! Sister Thorn is getting transferred, and her new companion will be my trainer, Sister Mitchell! My new companion is Sister Patten, but I don't really know her. They're also putting us in a car share with some other sisters in the area right next to ours, so we will be biking a lot more now. 

Thanksgiving was great, really busy! It probably was the busiest day of my mission, we had appointments all day. By the end of the night we had seen 11 families/individuals, active and less active members and investigators! We just shared thanksgiving messages with everyone! We ate at a member's house and at Juanita and Julio's! It was fun! A lot of people gave us leftovers and pie to take home too. On our way home thanksgiving night we drove past a man sitting on the side of the road, and we decided to turn around to make sure he was okay. We started talking to him and he told us that he was homeless, just lived in the woods on the side of the road, and had spent thanksgiving completely alone. He started crying when he told us that a woman had just stopped and gave him a whole plate of food. We couldn't do much for him, but we gave him some of our leftovers as well and our card. Moments like that make me realize just how blessed we are to have what we do, even the little things like food to eat and a place to sleep.

On Friday morning we decided to set up a free hot chocolate stand at the outdoor mall, to try and talk to all of the Black Friday shoppers! It didn't work as well as we had hoped, the mall security came up and basically kicked us out. They said that since we weren't selling it or anything we could stay until they got a complaint, but we couldn't do it again unless we got permission. But we did get to talk to some people! That evening we stopped by on a part member family, from Haiti and they were doing their thanksgiving dinner that night, and gave us so much food! We didn't get to talk to them much, but one of their friends, Max, was there and he talked to us for a while! At first he said he wasn't very religious but the longer we sat there eating with him the more questions he asked about missionary work and Christ and prayer. It was cool!

Drew's been doing good! On Saturday night we had a lesson with him but after calling and texting people the night before and all day that day, nobody could come (and we can't teach him without another woman with). We had about an hour before the lesson and we're about to give up and just cancel when one of the members called us back and said "We're eating thanksgiving dinner tonight and it's almost ready, so I can't come with you but y'all are welcome to come here and eat with us and have your lesson!" They saved our night! It was so nice of them to call us back and change all their plans last minute to have a lesson with Drew in their home, we were so grateful! And another member had also invited him over to have thanksgiving dinner with them on Thursday as well! The members have been doing a great job reaching out to him and making him feel welcome and a part of the ward family! 

We had a cool moment Sunday night! After church a member stops us and gives us directions to one of their neighbors houses that we could try sharing to gospel with! When we get to the house we narrow it down to 2 possible houses, so we knock on both. One didn't answer but the other did and he watched the Light the World video and said he'd love to hear more of our message! Even though we didn't get to talk to the referral, we were led to talk to someone who would listen. The Lord is in every detail of the work!

Hope y'all have a great week, and if you haven't already check out the new Christmas video #LighttheWorld on Mormon.org! It's a great way to serve others and keep Christ in this Christmas season!

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor

 Our district: Elders Cochran, Frew, Haws, Fossum, 
Me, Sisters Thorn, Rosenberg, and Evans

 Us and Evelyn! She's a member in a nursing home that we go visit!

 A pretty fall tree outside our apartment!

 Sister Thorn and I have the same birthday!! 
We had to celebrate a week early since she's getting transferred.

 Us, Ciearra, Divine, and Robert!

Us, the Neilson's (members in the ward), and Drew!

Monday, November 21, 2016

live in Thanksgiving Daily

Hey y'all! It's been a great week, really busy!! Things are going well here in the Sharon Springs Ward, I'm grateful that I have the chance to serve here!! The members are starting to get more involved with the work, someone invited their friend over from work to dinner and invited us too! It was great!

Our investigator Drew is doing great! And so are the members, reaching out to him and making him feel welcome! Some of them have been reaching out to them on their own, planning to invite him to dinner so we can come too! After talking to him we decided to move his baptism date to December 10th, just to give us and him more time to go through the lessons and time for him to process and understand him. But he has a golden heart, and he loves the spirit he feels when he comes to church and meets with us! He even came to both Saturday night and Sunday morning sessions of stake conference this weekend! We were a bit worried it might have overwhelmed him, with all that was talked about, but he told us that he received inspiration from it! But they talked about some pretty deep stuff. Haha I guess Saturday night sessions of stake conference aren't exactly aimed towards someone who is just learning about the gospel...but it was good!

This week we also helped our neighbor make a turkey! She got one and has never really cooked before so she asked us to help her! (Even though we didn't know much more than she did). We just kind of made stuff up and told her how long to cook it and it worked out well! It was nice to be able to help out our neighbor! She said it tasted really good!

I'm grateful for all of you, my friends and family, and for all that you do!! Happy Thanksgiving!!
Alma 34:38 That ye contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it, and take upon you the name of Christ; that ye humble yourselves even to the dust, and worship God, in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth; and that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you.

Love y'all 
Sister Taylor

Pictures: Today we went to a park and played soccer with some of the sisters in the zone!! 

Monday, November 14, 2016

Obedience brings Blessings

This week was pretty good! On Tuesday we got to go to the temple, so that was exciting! Our investigator Drew is doing well! Last week one of the members invited him over for dinner and a lesson, and that went well! Right now he's planning to be baptized in 2 weeks, but we still have a lot left to teach him so we may have to move his baptism back so we can teach him everything and he understands it all. But it's really exciting!! And on Sunday Juanita and Julio finally came to church!! We were so excited, since they still haven't been to church! Things are going great with them, the more they learn the more they see how the Book of Mormon fits with the Bible! It was the Primary Program on Sunday, and we invited them to that, which is why they came. Haha when they showed up they asked if this was when our normal services were and we were like yep! But they loved it! Plus who doesn't love the little kids singing and sharing their testimonies!? They had to leave after sacrament meeting but they told us next time they'd stay for class! It was super exciting! And with them we had a total of 5 investigators at church!! That doesn't happen very often, but it did this week!

This week on Tuesday we visited with Robert, our recent convert. We have normally met with him outside, but since it was cold outside his mom said we could meet with him inside that night. We start our lesson and like 10 minutes later his mom and sisters all leave the house to go somewhere. (There is a missionary rule that we cannot be inside someone's house unless there is another adult of our same gender home) We just sit there for a second and I asked "Did all the women just leave...?" And Robert was like yes, I was just thinking about that. So we all go back outside in the cold, and as we are going Robert's little half brother (who was in the other room watching tv) kind of looks at us like he wants to follow us so we ask if he wants to come listen too and he said yes, but had to go ask permission from his dad first. So we go outside, and then his little brother and his step dad both come out to listen to the lesson! It was so cool! If we hadn't been obedient and left the house, they wouldn't have joined us! And then his little brother came to church on Sunday too, Ciearra invited him for the primary program! (Robert and Ciearra are his half siblings) Obedience does bring blessings, and it's amazing to be able to recognize those blessings! Although they aren't all as immediate or huge as that experience, they are always there, we just have to find them.

Last week I mentioned that quite a few of our investigators had dropped us, but this week we met some pretty awesome people! We didn't have a whole lot of tracting time, but when we did we met a couple people who let us inside and a couple people who said they were really interested and were looking for a church to go to! So hopefully this next week we will be able to go back and teach them more!

I found this really good quote by Elder Ballard this week (Elder Oaks quoted it in his talk from this past conference):
"A most significant evidence of our conversion and of how we feel about the gospel in our own lives is our willingness to share it with others."

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor

 At the Temple...

Zone Meeting...

Monday, November 7, 2016

Dare to Stand

This week was pretty good! A little harder, as a lot of our investigators dropped us. It's been really hard with this family the Elders had been teaching before they left. The family was really progressing towards baptism, and when the Elders left they like fell off the face of the planet, not answering calls or their door. It's sad because the last request of the Elders before they left was to take care of this family. Our investigator, Santos, also dropped us. He called us about 20 minutes before our lesson with him and told us that meeting with us was causing too much contention in his home and that he can no longer meet with us. We were so heartbroken, especially because he was making such great progress and was very sincere. But of course the last thing we want is to cause problems with his family. The next day he called us again and told us how much he appreciated us and our time, and that hopefully with time his wife's heart will be softened. He told us that he's almost to 2nd Nephi and he's going to keep reading and keep praying and hopefully will be able to meet with missionaries again when his family is more open to it. It's just amazing to see his faith and dedication, that even though he's faced a lot of opposition and can no longer meet with us he will still continue to read and pray, with a sincere desire to know if our message is true. 

Even though a lot of people have dropped us, we have a couple investigators who have been progressing and we're excited for them! We were able to have an awesome lesson with our investigator, Drew, this week! We gave him a church tour, teaching lesson 3, the gospel of Jesus Christ. We ended in the chapel, talking about the sacrament and how we can be clean again every week. We asked to end with a kneeling prayer, and asked him to say it. He said one of the most touching prayers I've ever heard, he said his heart is prepared and he's ready to come closer to Christ through this church! It was amazing, the spirit was so strong. On Sunday when he came to church our ward mission leader was telling everyone about his baptism and so many people were talking to him and introducing themselves to him, making him feel welcome!

Here's a great quote I read this week from Pres. Monson' stalk "Dare to Stand Alone":
"As we go about living from day to day, it is almost inevitable that our faith will be challenged. We may at times find ourselves surrounded by others and yet standing in the minority or even standing alone concerning what is acceptable and what is not. Do we have the moral courage to stand firm for our beliefs, even if by so doing we must stand alone?"

Love y'all! Have a fantastic week!
Sister Taylor 

On Halloween night we had to stay inside and weekly plan, and my mom had sent a pizza to our apartment ❤

 When we have to pull over and try to figure out where we're going!

 We found some Christmas lights in our closet 
and had to put them up!