Tuesday, May 30, 2017

may 24-30

Hey y'all!
It's been a pretty great week! We've knocked on a lot of doors. Things
are slowing down a bit, I think it's just because it's summer in a
college town so a lot of people leave. But there's still lots of work
to do! Since yesterday was Memorial Day our preparation day was moved,
and we went on a little exchange with the UGA Sisters, they both came
to our area and we split up and knocked on a lot of doors, we got to
talk to lots of people that were home for the holiday! I was with
Sister Thorn, it was fun to go on exchanges with her since we were
companions for a while back in the fall! We also had a lot of random
people give us food too, so that was cool! One of our investigators
randomly made us food to go and one of our recent converts also
spontaneously invited us to dinner! And on Friday we were biking down
the road and a member sees us and pulls over, and invites us to come
to lunch with them!

Connie and her family are good! We've been able to see them several
times a week. One challenge with them is her children, Lincoln and
Jennifer, are progressing much faster than Connie is. It's been a
struggle for them to keep commitments, but we're doing all we can to
help them see the importance and provide the means for them to be able
to keep the commitments. Jennifer and Lincoln both really want to be
baptized, but Connie still isn't sure. Hopefully as her kids work
towards that she will be able to have that desire for herself as well.

We had a cool experience with a lady we're working with! Last week
week I had led out the lesson and after we were done she turned to
Sister Hansen and told her she's really quiet, so next time she had to
lead out the lesson. The morning of Sister Hansen was pretty nervous,
she kept telling me she had no idea what to share but I couldn't
really help, it was her lesson and the lady we're teaching would know
if I had told her what to share. She felt prompted to share "The
Living Christ", but had no idea why or how that would help her. I
encouraged her to go with the prompting and she did. While we were in
the lesson, right before we were about to read through it together, I
mentioned that Sister Hansen had it memorized, and she got really
excited and asked to hear it memorized. It was exactly what she needed
to hear that day, not necessarily the document "The Living Christ",
but the fact that Sister Hansen had it memorized from the heart really
impressed her. The spirit knows what she needs, even if we don't. We
just have to trust the spirit's promptings even if it doesn't make
sense!

"True disciples of Jesus Christ are willing to stand out, speak up,
and be different from the people of the world. They are undaunted,
devoted, and courageous." -President Nelson

Love y'all, have a great week!
Sister Taylor

Today for preparation day we went to
 the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, it was pretty!




Wednesday, May 24, 2017

May 15-23

Hey y'all!
It's been a pretty good week! It's just been really busy but lots of
finding at the same time. I feel like there's always a million things
to do and I can never keep track of it all! But it all somehow works
out! This week was like a repeat of last week, I got another flat bike
tire and it poured a ton of rain! Except all in the same night. We
walked out the door after dinner and we realized somehow my bike tire
had gone flat in the last hour...we tried to fix it but it was because
apparently we had fixed it wrong last week when it went flat so I just
needed a new tube. And then the sky poured out all the rain. We
decided to walk over to Walmart since it was so close and contact
people there.
Our investigators Kim and Barry are doing well! They're always happy
to meet with us and enjoyed church, but they have yet to read on their
own. We always talk about the importance of reading but it just
doesn't seem to be a priority. So this week we just read from the Book
of Mormon with them, and at the end Kim said the closing prayed and
asked if the Book of Mormon is true! It was so cool! Now the trick is
helping them connect that desire to actually reading and praying.
Sometimes the Spanish elders will find someone and refer them to us
with a specific appointment, this week they gave us a referral with an
appointment this Saturday morning and it was pretty far and we didn't
have the car so we had to find a member ride. Unfortunately we were
not able to get ahold of the referral before hand and she wasn't there
when we showed up. We had a couple other investigators in the area so
we picked our investigator, Ruby, to go see with our team up since we
had driven all the way out there. She was the perfect member to go
visit Ruby with, just looking at both of them you wouldn't think
they'd connect well together but it turns out that our team up had
gone through a lot of the things Ruby is going through, and she was
able to share some scriptures and experiences that really helped Ruby!
It's always cool to see how things all work out even though they don't
work the way we plan it to!

"The Final Judgment is not just an evaluation of a sum total of good
and evil acts--what we have done. It is an acknowledgment of the final
effect of our acts and thoughts--what we have become. It is not enough
for anyone just to go through the motions. The commandments,
ordinances, and covenants of the gospel are not a list of deposits
required to be made in some heavenly account. The gospel of Jesus
Christ is a plan that shows us how to become what our Heavenly Father
desires us to become." -Elder Oaks ("The Challenge to Become")

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor

 Doing service at the UGA horticulture farms! We helped pick a lot
of onions and strawberries!

 All the sisters in the Athens zone

 Me and Sister Hansen

 me and Sister Lang at the Atlanta temple today!

 flashback to me and Sister Lang at the Provo temple in the MTC
almost a year and a half ago!

 Me, Sister Hansen, Thorn, and Lang (We're all in the same district
now, they all were my companions at one point!)

We got to go to the Atlanta temple today!

Monday, May 15, 2017

May 8 - May 14

Hey y'all!
It's been an exciting week! Transfers are this week, but both Sister
Hansen and I are staying in Athens! This will be our 3rd transfer here
together, it will be a good one! We've been biking a ton this week,
and lots more biking to come. There's a new policy with cars/mileage
allotments which dramatically decreases how much we can use the car,
so we're ready to bike! (Haha and get some really awesome tans from
being out biking in the sun all the time). I'm a little worried
because it's staring to get really hot and humid really fast, but
we'll survive. Friday we biked almost 20 miles. I also got a flat bike
tire and somehow Sister Hansen and I figured out how to patch it up!
Then our car also got a flat tire. Haha that one we had to take to pep
boys. And we also got caught in the rain on our bikes with no jackets
or umbrellas. The weather is so unpredictable. It's 90 degrees in the
morning, it starts to sprinkle rain in the a few minutes later the
water pours down like the sky is a faucet. Also if y'all remember the
awkward guy we met at the bus stop last week that asked us out...we
were knocking on doors Saturday morning and tracted into him. Haha he
was like wait are y'all the ladies who I met at the bus stop last week
and one of you fell off your bike? Yep....

I also went on exchanges with Sister Evans to UGA, that went well. It
was hard because not too many people were on campus (since the
semester ended a couple weeks ago) but we walked around and even went
out to the streets in downtown Athens by all the shops and we had some
pretty good contacts! It's like a whole different kind of missionary
work being on a college campus contacting people.

Things have been going pretty well with Connie and her family, it
works out really well to just drop by every night for the last 15
minutes or so to teach a quick lesson. I've definitely been able to
see the difference from when we taught them before once a week to now
dropping by almost every night for just a couple minutes. Lincoln
really wants to be baptized but his mom and sister aren't sure if they
want to yet. The only hold up for him is that he is having a hard time
progressing when the rest of his family aren't on board yet. Last
Friday night we stopped by to see Connie and her family (and we were
biking) but they were sick so we couldn't stay. As soon as they closed
the door it starts pouring rain on us, like the rain was coming down
so hard we couldn't even see. After about 10 seconds we were drenched,
but didn't have anywhere to go to be dry. We start walking back to our
bikes and this lady comes up to us with and gives us an umbrella! She
saw is out walking completely soaked and felt bad for us so she wanted
to help us! She invited us to come inside her house for a few minutes
so we could dry off (the best we could), and after a few minutes the
rain lightened up so we could bike home. It was a huge tender mercy
and really showed us that God is looking out for us. Even though this
work is hard and sometimes we will get caught in the rain (or all the
other situations we get caught in) this is the Lord's work and he is
very aware of us!

D&C 6:34, 36
"Therefore, fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell
combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot
prevail.
Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not."

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor

 Our district! Elders Anderson, Stevenson, Sheppard, Jackson, Sisters
Hansen, Me, Lang, and Evans.

 Trying to fix my flat tire

 Exchanges at UGA

Monday, May 8, 2017

may 1-7

It's been a great week! We've been super busy, we had Zone Conference
and MLC and I also went on exchanges to Braselton this week, and  and
then today we had to drive all around the zone to do apartment clean
checks for the sisters. Our investigators are doing really well! Kim
and Barry are awesome! They came to church on Sunday, we were so
excited! Deitra and her family are doing well too, they didn't make it
to church because something came up, but they're still excited to be
baptized. We've been making sure we contact them every day, and we
usually send a scripture every morning and one morning we forgot, and
she texted us and asked what happened, why we hadn't texted her yet!
Keeping us accountable!
Last week some of our former investigators reached out to us asking us
to come by (Connie and Lincoln) and we were able to see them! They
still have the desire to learn and be baptized but they just had
gotten really busy and hadn't made the gospel really a priority, and
then they gave us permission to just drop by whenever and to have
daily contact to help them stay on track!

We also had several people randomly call us, which doesn't normally
happen! People we met a while ago and gave a card and something made
them decide to get in contact with us again! One guy called us but
then said he wasn't interested when he realized we were missionaries.
Another lady called us as well and set up an appointment with her! It
went pretty well, she had some questions for us, but we're not sure
how interested she is in continuing to learn. Also this week we were
biking down the road and there was one part where Sister Hansen like
fell off her bike but I was like stopping at a bus stop to contact a
guy waiting and it was kind of awkward...but we gave him a card and
later that day he actually texted us! But then he asked us out instead
so that was even more awkward.....we explained we were full time
missionaries and the only thing we do is serve and teach others about
Jesus. He said he wanted to learn but we'll probably send the Elders.

"He wants to change more than just our behaviors. He wants to change
our very natures. He wants to change our hearts.
He wants us to reach out and take firm hold of the iron rod, confront
our fears, and bravely step forward and upward along the strait and
narrow path. He wants this for us because He loves us and because this
is the way to happiness." -President Uchtdorf

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor


 All the sister training leaders and Sister Bennion!

 All the sisters in the Athens zone!

Monday, May 1, 2017

happy may!

It's been a good week in Athens, things are starting to pick up! We
have investigators who will actually meet with us and do their best to
keep commitments! We had 5 (from 2 different families) who told us
they would come to church on Sunday, but then when sacrament meeting
started nobody had showed up yet. I felt pretty let down, since we had
talked to both of them on the phone Saturday night and Sunday morning
and they all said they were coming. When there was only 15 minutes
left of sacrament meeting 3 of them showed up (Deitra and her kids)
and then halfway through gospel principles Barry showed up! We were so
happy that they came, even though they were all late. They all loved
the classes and told us they'd be back next week too!
Our investigators Deitra and her family are doing well! We had a good
lesson with Deitra this week, things were a bit crazy with her kids
and grandkids so we were only able to teach her, but she accepted a
baptism date for June 3rd! They were an hour late to church, but they
made it! She brought 2 of her kids, Patricia and Will. Since it was
the 5th Sunday everyone was combined for the 3rd hour, and they were
talking about the stake goals for this year and how each family can
make their own goals to go along with that, and then had us split off
into groups to discuss. While we were talking about it Deitra's
daughter said she wanted to get baptized, and she accepted June 3 as a
baptism date as well! And then after we were finished discussing each
group shared their goals, and Deitra told everyone her goal was to
continue studying to make it to her baptism date! We're very excited
for them!
Barry was the other investigator who showed up late to church, he
loved it as well! He told us that he got lost, but finally found the
church! He almost decided not to come in because he was so late, but
he decided that because he would be late to his church too he might as
well just stay for ours, and he really enjoyed it! He was able to meet
lots of people and he said he'd come back next week with his wife! We
were able to have a good lesson with them this week, we talked a lot
about the importance of priesthood authority and baptism. They weren't
ready to accept a date, but said they want to continue learning and
studying!

"Personal foundations … are usually built slowly--one layer, one
experience, one challenge, one setback, and one success at a time."
-Elder Cook

Love y'all!
Sister Taylor
 

A random field of yellow flowers we pass a lot when we bike!