Painted by the amazing, beautiful, and talented Mckenna Kirby. Thank you so much!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Vietnamese Sister

Happy Monday!

This week was had days of utter miracles and days that were blah and
uneventful. But hey, that's life right?! First of all, on Monday we
set a baptismal date with two of our investigators. David and Kristy.
They are from Vietnam and they are SUPER cool. He speaks little
English so his wife translates for him but they truly love their
Savior and they just want to follow Him the best they can. The concept
of the priesthood really stayed with them and motivated them to
continue forward. We originally set their date for this coming
Saturday the 5th but have to push it back because we felt like we were
rushing them a little. Because of scheduling conflicts, the current
date isn't until April 9th but I'm so excited for them. They have
already brought their friends to lessons with us and they brought one
of their friends to church on Sunday and they want us to come over on
Wednesday night to their little worship get-together to meet more of
their friends. We keep joking about how just from the Phams, we are
going to get a whole flock of their Vietnamese friends to be baptized
and start the first Vietnamese branch in Dallas. Haha! We call
ourselves the Vietnamese sisters because we joke about how we were
going to get called to learn Vietnamese to be the sisters for the
branch. Haha!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

End of First Transfer

So this week marks the end of my first transfer. (That's something new
to me in the mission. Time is measured by transfers which are every 6
weeks). Sister Byers and I were convinced that she was staying in
Allen one more transfer but lo and behold, we get a call this morning
and she is being TRANSFERRED! She is going out east to Tyler and I am
staying in Allen and getting Sister Jones as my back up trainer. I've
heard awesome things about her and how hard working she is. But I'm
sad I don't get another transfer with Sister Byers. I know President
Taylor is inspired of the Lord and I know the Lord has His own plan
for this area.

This week was hard but good nonetheless. My body reached a whole new
level of exhaustion. I think the biking everyday all day thing along
with such a new vigorous schedule has just left me wiped after my
first transfer. My body felt so weak this week and I felt so mentally
exhausted. But it really helped me to humble myself and realize that
"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."
(Alma 26:12). The work here in Allen is really picking up and I trust
that the Lord has many prepared hearts that are ready to receive the
restored gospel into their life. I just want all y'all to know of my
testimony of this gospel. I know Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father
really live and that they know each of us personally. And that's not
just me being naive or hopeful. I have had evidences all throughout my
life to backup my faith. So many prayers have been answered in ways
unexplainable by human logic and after that happens time and time
again, I can not blame it on coincidence or chance. I feel my Saviors
love and my Heavenly Fathers love. I feel of His reality in a very
true sense. I know there is a plan to our life and a reason for us
being here on Earth. I know we can return to our Heavenly Father as we
ACT on faith and become better and better every single day of our
lives and as we become more like the Savior and emulate the way He
lived His life. His life of love, service, diligence, obedience,
humility, and hope. It's real. And as we live according to the gospel,
EACH of us will be blessed. This isn't just a religion or a faith but
it's a way of life that will give us the most fulfilled sense of joy
and satisfaction. A sense of satisfaction and joy that nothing else in
this life can bring with such magnitude. And it's not just a gospel
for some, it is for EVERYONE to benefit from. That's the Lords hope is
that everyone will follow and be blessed by His truth. I'm not on my
mission because it's a social norm in my church, or because it was
expected of me in anyway. I'm here because I know our Heavenly Fathers
plan of happiness is REAL and what we teach everyday about Joseph
Smith restoring Christs church in its fullness to the earth is REAL.
The promises and blesses we make and receive at baptism is REAL. Trust
me when I say that I would not be here doing this, serving with every
ounce of energy I have, if I wasn't sure this gospel is a good thing.
It will bless. I know it. It has blessed my life beyond explanation.
It is something that is not worth being lax about. I think you can
understand why I might say, if it's true, (and it is), then it's a big
deal and each of us ought to investigate it for ourselves and find out
for ourselves. As we bring in the New Year, I urge you to push forward
in hope and build your faith in these things. I promise you it will
change your life eternally for the better.