Wednesday, July 29, 2015

True Happiness

Dear Everyone! 

The reason that my e-mail is late this week is because I was able to go on my departing temple trip today! Usually we go as a big group with President Brown and all the departing missionaries, but there was a mix up on our end and my companion is hitting her year mark soon and wanted to go to the temple, so we ended up just going with the E family in the ward. They are so great! I am so grateful for them and their selflessness. They truly take care of us and love us like we are adopted daughters. It was so great being able to take a family name to the temple today. I felt the spirit strongly and I also just felt a readiness enter my heart. A readiness to take on the next stage of life. I know that I just need to trust in the Lord. As I sat in the temple, I opened to the perfect chapter.(That never happens to me. haha.) It was Alma 38. 
There were so many verses that just spoke to me and I know Heavenly Father is aware of me and my service and is preparing me for the next stage of life.
I am still going strong! This past week was pretty good:) We started off the week having a dinner with the M Family(Terry Lake Ward) and the M family(Wellington Ward). Both Part member/Recent Convert families that I have worked with. I just feel so blessed to have been a part of their lives and I am so excited to continue to see their families grow in the gospel together and be sealed in the temple someday. This work really does bring such joy! At the end of my mission call letter and in the last line of the First Presidency Message in Preach My Gospel, it says, "The Lord will reward and richly bless you as you humbly and prayerfully serve Him. More happiness awaits you than you have ever experienced as you labor among His children." 

At times on my mission I have wondered, is this promise really true? There have been some very challenging times being a full-time servant of the Lord and I have not always felt happiness. But now, as I reflect on my experience as a whole and the many wonderful moments I've experienced and the closeness of the spirit, seeing people change before my very eyes, witnessing miracles, learning every day, seeing individuals make or renew covenants, seeing families grow together in the gospel of Jesus Christ, and so so so many other experiences. That is what TRUE happiness and joy really is! We don't need the fluff of the worldly things to make us happy. The way to be truly happy is to focus on those things that matter most. I have experienced this promise first hand. I have felt so much joy and happiness as I have labored among our Heavenly Father's children, even in the midst of the trials. That is proof to me that even in the midst of hard times, we can still find joy. How great is my calling!

We've been struggling to help investigator's progress here in Wellington. It's been a bit difficult to even meet with them as of late. We are still working to find as well. We did a lot of service this week, which was great! We struggle to find service in this area. We have been feeling strongly lately that we need to develop a better relationship with the bishop. We barely meet with him and never eat dinner with him and his wife, and we just don't really know him, and missionaries in the past haven't really known him either. So, he and his wife live out in the country and own a bunch of goats. We asked if we could come out this past week and help out for a bit. They gladly said yes! We spent some time clearing out all of the goat pens, raking, shoveling, gathering hay, all kinds of fun things:)Then we taught them a lesson and they took us out to lunch. They are such great people! It was great to finally get to know them and build some trust with them. 

Well, I don't really know what else to say for now! I am finishing strong! Making the most of every moment that I have and preparing for the next step. My learning will continue. It doesn't stop after I am released. One things that I have been praying for a lot is to be able to keep what I have learned and to continue to make it a part of who I am and what I do and then to continue to grow. Thanks for all of your love and support. It truly is so wonderful that I have such amazing family members and friends that help me to keep pressing forward and stay steadfast. I don't know if I could have done this without you all. I love you all so much! 
Love,
Sister Young

Pictures:
Temple with Sister Helsing
Our District
Dinner with the M and M families


Monday, July 20, 2015

Searching for Truth

Hello All! 
I had a moment this week on about Friday I think...in my mind I had just been thinking that I had 3 weeks left still and then all of a sudden, Sister Helsing and I were talking and it hit me, I don't have 3 weeks...I have 2 weeks. It was a weird moment. 2 seems like a lot less time than 3 weeks does. Weird! But I am excited, and nervous, and sad, and happy. I work hard during the day and then prepare myself mentally during my breakfast, lunch and after nightly planning time. But there is not much time to even think about it. We can barely get everything done that we need to here! But it will be so nice for my whole family to be back together! What a good day that is going to be:) A joyful reunion! 

It's kind of tough. In this area, I am teaching the least amount of lessons every week, that I have taught on my whole mission. But it is not for lack of trying, and I hope people don't think that I am slacking since it is my last transfer, because I am not. haha. But people are just really hard to catch home here and they don't keep their appointments and they are even pretty hard to set appointments with, But we made some plans during Weekly Planning that should help us to teach more this week. We have a lot of set appointments this week and some good plans. 

But despite the low number of teaching appointments, we have seen some neat miracles. We received a referral when we contacted another referral who wasn't interested. But he told us about his friend named P. P is 98 years old. He will be 99 next month. He goes on a walk around the block every day and he loves the Bible. When I first heard about him, I thought that he might just be one that we would go and visit to help him not be lonely, but our visit was quite an amazing experience. As we started talking to P he told us about losing his wife a few years ago and how heartbroken he had been. He wants to believe that he will see her again, but the way he talked we could tell he felt it might be final. He talked about how he didn't believe in churches. But the only reason why is because he was searching for the true church his whole life and never found it. As he talked we felt strongly that we needed to teach him the lessons. He seems to be all there, he just struggles to hear and see. We felt strongly that he was still around so that he can hear the message of the Restoration of Jesus Christ's fullness upon the earth. He has so many similar beliefs and views and he has been searching his whole life to find the true church. It was a very spiritual experience meeting with him and feeling the spirit testify that he is ready to accept the gospel. It might be a bit tricky to teach him but with the spirit, we know he will understand and be taught. 

The gospel is so true and the only way to find true peace in this life and the life to come. I know that! I love you all! Have a wonderful week. Find someone to lift and bless, sharing the love of Christ each day. It's so needed in our world!
Love,
Sister Young

 Exchanges in Laramie
Our travel buddies that a Recent Convert gave us. haha
Beautiful Sunset in the mountains.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

This Week Flew By!

July 13, 2015
Dear Everyone,

T'was a great week here in Wellington! Many wonderful miracles occurred even though we have done more traveling this week than I think ever on my mission. The sisters that we are Sister Training Leaders over live in 4 different Zones. Greeley, Loveland, Cheyenne, and Laramie. Which makes for a lot of traveling for exchanges. We did 2 exchanges this week with our sisters. I love exchanges. It is truly amazing to see how we can help the sisters and how the Holy Ghost helps us to know what we need to say or do to help them. For the past few transfers being a STL, I have felt that this is one of my main purposes at this time. While I have also seen miracles in our areas, I have felt that a large part of my mission right now is to help these sisters. I love each of them!
One of my exchanges was with Sister Jenks in Berthoud, CO! My very first area. It was crazy going back to where I started my mission and seeing what has happened there. It was great to see some of the ward members and to visit some of the former investigators that we worked with or Less-actives. There have been some really neat things that have happened since I was last there and then there have also been people who have just still not progressed or stopped going to church again. Joys and sorrows as I went back.

MM was baptized and confirmed this weekend! It was a neat baptism. His wife gave an amazing talk on Baptism and the spirit was strong as we heard more about their journey to get to where they are now. The ward has been so great already with retention. He already received the priesthood, a calling, has a date set to go to the temple to do baptisms, his home teachers are prepared to begin teaching him the temple prep lessons preparing him to be ready to go to the temple in a year with his family, the new member lessons are starting tonight. It is so great to see the ward just jump right on board with helping to keep him and his family as active members of the church. I was able to see the wonderful M family this week at the baptism and the BBQ that a member threw for the MM family the night before the baptism. It was so good to see them. I just love their family so much!

We also were able to find a new investigator this week. His name is S and we found him when we were walking around a neighborhood in Wellington. He said we could come back on Friday, so we did. We got there and he had been drinking...but we didn't feel nervous about it. We just met in his open garage, since we couldn't go inside, and we taught him an introduction. We didn't jump right into the Restoration all the way because we figured he was not in the best state of mind to take it all in. But we taught about Prophets, the Book of Mormon, and the importance of the Spirit in helping us know the truth of all things. Then he asked us why we don't drink, and we explained that when we drink it blocks us from being able to feel the spirit and that is not something that our Heavenly Father wants and it is a commandment that He has given us. He said, "That makes a lot of sense." We set up a time to come teach him next week with a Sister in the ward. We feel that he has a lot of potential.

We received and contacted a lot of referrals this week. One is a girl who is just about to be a freshman in high school. We have an appointment with her this week. Lots of really good things happening here. I may not get to see the results of all of this but that is ok:), I am here at this time to do what the Lord wants me to do! 
 I love you all!! Have a wonderful week! Remember how much Heavenly Father loves you. 

“Though we are incomplete, God loves us completely. Though we are imperfect, He loves us perfectly. Though we may feel lost and without compass, God’s love encompasses us completely. …

“What this means is that, regardless of our current state, there is hope for us. No matter our distress, no matter our sorrow, no matter our mistakes, our infinitely compassionate Heavenly Father desires that we draw near to Him so that He can draw near to us [see D&C 88:63].”

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, “The Love of God,” Ensign, Nov. 2009, 22, 23.

Love,
Sister Young

Pictures-Me in front of FOCO Cafe- Look it up on Facebook. Did service while I was serving in Terry Lake ward. Best food ever, organic/healthy and it is pay what you can. Non-profit. Such a great place.
Me with the food from FOCO cafe.
Baptism of Matt Marquez
Sisters in the Loveland Zone.


Monday, July 6, 2015

Otter Pops and Following the Spirit

Hello Everyone!

Happy Late 4th of July!! On our 4th of July, Sister Helsing and I came up with this brilliant plan that ended up not working out according to our plan but I'm sure it worked out the way Heavenly Father wanted it to. 
Here in Wellington they have a HUGE 4th of July celebration where the whole town is at the park all day with different vendors, a car show, live entertainment, bounce houses, and all kinds of fun things. So, we knew it would be hard to catch anyone at home, but we came up with a plan. It would have been brilliant if we had more time and had known more about it in advance. But we made a plan to buy some Otter Pops, and go around handing out free Otter Pops to people at the event and talk to everyone, starting off the conversation with a question of, "What freedoms are you grateful for?" We took the Otter Pops to a member's freezer and left them overnight, expecting them to be frozen...but we got there and none of them were frozen yet. (We left them in the boxes...bad idea.) So we spread them out and then decided to go try some referrals and attempt to visit a few other people while we waited. They finally ended up freezing but right as we got to the park , it was getting stormy and everyone was cleaning up...Fail!!! haha, but we made the most of it. We changed our approach and went around talking to the different vendors seeing if they wanted Otter Pops and help cleaning up their booths. We ended up talking to quite a few people in the process and got some potential investigators out of it! We also ran into a missionary couple that is in charge of overseeing the temple being built and they said that they had a referral for us. They wrote their testimonies a copy of the Book of Mormon and they asked us to go and visit them. This man has been working on the temple and they say that they have felt prompted many times to share the gospel with him. We are excited to go and give him the Book of Mormon. He has a large family and very strong values. Miracle! So our epic failure on the 4th, resulted in many good things:) But we laughed pretty hard about it all day. It was such a hot day! Then we came home at our usual time and since we are in the country, we went into our backyard and climbed on the hay bails to get a better view of the fireworks:) We had a nice 360 view of about 8 or 9 different firework shows. T'was a great day! So grateful for the freedoms we enjoy. It's because of our freedoms that I can be a missionary right now!

M M will be getting baptized this upcoming weekend! Yay! We are excited for his baptism. We also had some really neat lessons with some less-actives this week. One thing that I am grateful for with Sister Helsing is her desire to follow the spirit. It is helping me to remember to listen:)  One lesson I have been learning my whole mission is how the spirit works. I believe that the spirit works with both your heart and your mind. We need to study it out, use our brain to think what would be best, and then ask Heavenly Father. The spirit will help us. But Heavenly Father will not command you in all things. There is a quote in Preach My Gospel that says,

 “[A person may have] a strong desire to be led by the Spirit of the Lord but … unwisely extends that desire to the point of wanting to be led in all things. A desire to be led by the Lord is a strength, but it needs to be accompanied by an understanding that our Heavenly Father leaves many decisions for our personal choices. Personal decision making is one of the sources of the growth we are meant to experience in mortality. Persons who try to shift all decision making to the Lord and plead for revelation in every choice will soon find circumstances in which they pray for guidance and don’t receive it. For example, this is likely to occur in those numerous circumstances in which the choices are trivial or either choice is acceptable.

“We should study things out in our minds, using the reasoning powers our Creator has placed within us. Then we should pray for guidance and act upon it if we receive it. If we do not receive guidance, we should act upon our best judgment. Persons who persist in seeking revelatory guidance on subjects on which the Lord has not chosen to direct us may concoct an answer out of their own fantasy or bias, or they may even receive an answer through the medium of false revelation” (“Our Strengths Can Become Our Downfall,” Ensign, Oct. 1994, 13–14).

This quote has helped me to understand the Holy Ghost more fully and my role in receiving revelation. 
There were many times this week that I felt very guided by the Holy Ghost. I am more confident now in being able to recognize what is from the Holy Ghost. I still have a ways to go but I am grateful for how far I have come and what I have learned. 

I have more I could share, but I am running short on time.  I have many good things that are helping me stay excited and focused. This is such a great work! I am so grateful to be a part of it. I will do with this time, the best that I can. I love you all! 

Love,
Sister Young

P.S-Thank you all for your birthday cards, and wishes! I appreciated them sooooo much:) 

Pictures: 4th of July Fun!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

First Week in Wellington

Dear Everyone,

What a great week! I am so excited to be here in Wellington with Sister Helsing. It was such a great week. The people here are wonderful. I already feel super welcomed and like I am meant to be here. I think my struggle here might be not wanting to come home because I am enjoying missionary life so much;). We have 2 main progressing investigators, both with dates to be baptized. Guess who one of them is? Do you remember the M family from Fort Collins with their daughter who got baptized? Well, one of our investigators here is the husband of Sister M's Sister! So still part of that very same family! He has been going to church for years and years and at one point had a baptismal date set but then decided against it. But now, the Sisters have been teaching him here and he is moving forward and making some changes and is going to be baptized in a couple weeks! I am so glad I get to be here for it and to be a part of their lives for a bit. I was so excited when I found out!

First week in any new area is a bit of a blur but I feel pretty well adjusted already, in a good way. Sister Helsing is super great and we get along really well. She is an amazing missionary and super loving. I'm so grateful that Heavenly Father knows what we need. We are going to be a powerful companionship for sure.  It's a bit of a bummer meeting all of these people and then having to leave them so soon, but because of that, Heavenly Father has helped me to connect quickly with the people that I have met already. There are some amazing people here and I've already learned so much from other's examples.

My birthday this week was almost like any other day, which actually helped me have a neat realization. It was totally fine to me that I spent my whole birthday, (that is usually all about me)...focused on others, it was great:) I realized how I have let go of a lot of selfishness that I had prior to my mission. I still have a ways to go before I become self-less, but it was nice to see progress. I love being able to focus on others and serve them. But Heavenly Father still blessed me with tender mercies that day. Our dinner that night was with a member in the ward and it just happened to be that Sister's birthday too!!  So we just had a double birthday dinner. They even had Chinese food that night, rice and orange chicken, which I love! Tender mercy. Then I got home and had an amazing package from my lovely family waiting for me:) It was filled with great things. My favorite being a cute layered Testimony Cake with the testimonies of each of my family members on paper shaped like a cake. We had lots of fun with the pinata! We had to be kind of quiet so we didn't wake up the sister that we live with but it was fun trying to find something to use to bust it open. I ended up using my mousse bottle, after breaking Sister Helsing's umbrella...opps. Haha. I have a video:)

One thing that we are going to focus on here in Wellington is trying new things. This area has been in a rut at times with tending to stick to things that have always been done, or contacting the same people over and over with no results. So we are excited to try new less-active members and new Part Member Families as well as giving copies of the Book of Mormon to everyone! We are Sister Training Leaders over 5 sets of sisters, so a couple more than I had last transfer. It will be so good to get to know all the sisters and learn from them. 
 
Time is flying by ever so fast. We live with a member in the middle of the country. It is so peaceful and quiet. I just love it. We do not have air conditioner and so at nights it gets reaaaally hot...but we are asking around for a fan. We just pulled our beds over by the windows though and  get a little cool air every night. I am happy. I am grateful. I am excited about life. And ready to work my hardest this transfer.  Have a great week! I love you all soooo much! 
Love,
Sister Young

Pictures: Saying goodbye to Sister Heintz
A member who collects Minnie Mouse EVERYTHING!
My b-day with Sister Helsing and my package:)
Alpaca Farm that a member owns. He gave me some Alpaca wool.

Change is in the Air :)

Monday - June 22, 2015

Dear Everyone!
We found out about transfers this past Saturday, and everything is about to change! Haha. 
I am getting transferred to Wellington, Colorado to be Sister Training Leaders with Sister Helsing! I am so excited and so at peace about this last transfer. This is exactly what the Lord wants me to do this transfer. Wellington is right by Fort Collins and meets in the exact same building as my last ward, Terry Lake Ward. I will get to see everyone:) But Wellington is out of the busy city of Fort Collins and is a smaller, country type town, which is perfect! I actually have always wanted to serve there and Sister Helsing just seems really great too. If you look at my picture from a couple weeks ago, with all of the Sister Training Leaders, she is the one in the back with the headband on her head and the red shirt. So I will be back in my old district I think. Funny that I am excited to go back to Colorado. ha. It was just time for change. Elders will be swept in to this area and take our spots.

One of the neat lessons that we had this week was with the basketball players. This week we had a member meet us at the church to be a part of the lesson. He is a convert and has such a neat story. He comes from a pretty rough past, he was a cage fighter for a while, and we felt that he would really connect with the b-ball players. It was amazing. He just said it how it was and connected so well with them. The 2 that hadn't really gotten involved last week and the one that didn't take a Book of Mormon last week was asking so many questions. It was amazing. They are truly having the spirit touch their hearts. The Elders will continue to teach them. 

We weren't able to meet with J and JF this week, which was a real bummer. But I am anxious to see what happens with them in the future. We also just got a call from Temple Square with a really great referral. So the Elders will have great things to come to. This area will continue to grow I am sure. I am still not 100% positive as to why I have been here, but I have met some wonderful people and I am sure I will continue to see that no effort has been wasted as I have served my best here in this ward. It is better than when I found it, and that is what matters. 
I love each of you! Thanks for your love and support!

Love,
Sister Young

Here is my address for the rest of the mission:

Sister Karissa Young
7123 Reu Ranch Road
Fort Collins, CO 80524

District Picture
A youth in the ward that I love!
Our Ward Mission Leader and his great family


Monday, June 15, 2015

Perfection


Hello All!

Well, I have one more week of this transfer. This transfer has flown by. It's been a hard one, but we are finally seeing the fruits of our labors, I guess you could say. This is Sister Heintz's last week on her mission. But this week it gonna be great! Then I find out on Saturday if I will be staying here or leaving for my last transfer and who my last mission companion ever will be! haha.  This past week was Zone Conference...my very last one. That was weird. That is one thing I will miss so much. Meeting together with other missionaries and learning from each other through the spirit. When else will I be with a room full of young adults my own age all set apart as full-time representatives of the Lord, Jesus Christ? It is such an amazing feeling. I was able to bear a "departing testimony". I've been watching missionaries give these testimonies from the very beginning and I always would think, "That is a long ways away." But guess what? It goes fast and this time it was me. It was a neat experience to feel how much my testimony has solidified. I had a testimony before I came out, that was why I came out, but my conviction and my understanding has increased and I have continually been refined and converted more fully. I've come closer to my Savior than ever before. It was a good time to reflect. 

This week we were able to teach J again. The woman we met with at the restaurant last time. This time we met at the member's home and had lunch and taught the first lesson. Oh my goodness! It was such a neat lesson. She was like a sponge just soaking it all up. She has a very fresh perspective on life and is starting from square one in a lot of ways. She accepted the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith's experience and said she would pray about it. But after we were done, she said, "Can we do this again next week!?" Then she went on to say how familiar all of this was to her and that it was the most correct religion that she has experienced yet an felt the best. She is such a neat lady and that experience was good to have. It has been a long time since we have found someone that excited about learning the gospel. Those are the moments that make it all worth it. 

We also taught the basketball players this week. We had 4 of them in our group. It was really neat as well. We got them involved with questions and taught the whole first lesson to them. All of them accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon except one and afterwards, 2 of them went up to President Stocks and said," We really enjoyed that!" Those are the 2 that we feel might be truly interested in learning more. They were great though to teach and all had Christian backgrounds and a faith in Christ. 

Another individual that we were able to teach this week was a man that we found while looking for a less-active member. The member had moved but we met JF. He accepted a Book of Mormon and then we set a time to come back and teach him, and we did. He listened and learned but he kept saying, "This is great and all but guys, I'm already saved!" He told us we could come back though and we will continue to work with him:). 

It was just a blessing that we were able to teach so many investigators this week. That is what I love. That is what we are called to do. To teach. So, it was a good week. 

A few articles that I have been studying this week that have really helped me to understand weakness and the Savior more have been these two:

These have been huge in helping me understand our learning process here on earth and that we do have our weaknesses and faults but as we rely on the Savior, He can help us. 

I love you all! Have a wonderful week!!!:)
Love,
Sister Young

Picture: Here are all of our lovely sisters that we get to serve as Sister Training Leaders.


It's Short! Sorry:(


June 8,  2015

I hardly have any time today because I needed to send some e-mails to a few people, so I apologize now for the shortness of my e-mail. 
I wanted to share a miracle that we saw this week though. Early this week, we had a member text us and saw that he had a friend that he knew that was looking into different churches and he had invited her to meet with us. She agreed. So, on Friday, we met the member and his friend at a restaurant and we were able to teach her and set up a return appointment at the member's home from next weekend! She is such a sweet lady and is truly searching for truth. It amazes me how Heavenly Father is preparing His children and it takes patience. Nothing ever coming all at once. We have done a lot of patient waiting and working here, so we know that blessings are on there way. It's just hard in the process of waiting to be patient. 
This week for Zone Conference we will be talking a lot about Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy. We have been asked to read the talk given in this past General Conference by Elder Nelson,
It is a beautiful talk given about the Sabbath Day and it's importance. What sign are you giving Heavenly Father on the Sabbath?:)
I love you all!! Thank you so much for your love and support. Stay strong. Smile and be happy!
Love,
Sister Young

P-day making cookies with a few of the Sisters. I'm the only one in comfy clothes...
MLC's. All of the Sister Training leaders and Sisters Brown.



Monday, June 1, 2015

Yay! It's June! I love June:)


Hello All!

The work continues to move forward.
One really awesome experience we had this week happened on Thursday. We received a call from the Zone Leaders in the morning saying that the Stake President had called and said, " I have 30 potential investigators for you all." There are a group of 30 guys that come and play basketball at the church every week. Most of them are not members. It has slowly grown over the years and now there are so many that come. Well, in order to follow the church handbook that state that the building must be used for church functions and edifying, President B, instead of "shutting down" the basketball time, he made a deal with them. He said that in order to keep playing that they each would have to take the lessons from the missionaries and go to church once a month. Nothing unreasonable. They agreed. So this Thursday we go to meet them all for the first time. There were 3 sets of missionaries, and each of us took a group of about 7 to 10 guys and gave them a tour of the building and introduced them to the core principles of what is taught within the church. It was so unique watching all of these big basketball guys, all filing into the room to start with prayer. We don't quite know what will come of all of this but President B is a very inspired man and felt like this was what needed to be done. We will teach them the first lesson this week:) I'll let you know how it goes.

Another neat miracle that happened this week was with a Less-active member and her boyfriend. We have been meeting with this less-active woman who is very sweet and super great, every week. Her boyfriend is not a member and has never been super open to the gospel. But the other day, this woman told us about a miracle that had happened. Her Grandma was visiting from out of town and she received a blessing. The boyfriend was there and felt an incredible spirit as the blessing was given, so much that he just couldn't contain his emotions. He went outside and she followed after him. He apologized for never being open to her religion before and said he wanted to learn more because nothing that felt like that could be bad. His heart is for sure being softened. They really want to get to the temple together. It is such a testimony to me that God is preparing hearts to receive His messages. 

We had a Stake President breakfast this week and it was probably the best Stake President breakfast I have attended my whole mission. Not just because of the food:) but because of the spirit. Along with our wonderful stake president, we also have President S, who was the mission president to the Leeds, England Mission. Him and his wife are amazing individuals and I know one reason I am in Cheyenne is so I can learn from them and Stake President B and his wife. What amazingly in-tuned individuals they are. During breakfast we each shared a "highlight" of our missions and then we discussed common principles that we saw in each of the stories. One thing that the spirit taught me/reminded me of was an important principle that I have been getting wrong lately. The Lord is the one that is the miracle worker. We are not the ones that make the miracles happen, we are merely the instruments in His hands. I think sometimes I try to make miracles happen and I take on the world thinking that I have to be the one to be the miracle worker. But it's not me! The Lord will do His work, the Lord will perform His miracles. That for some reason hit me powerfully. I need to stop taking so much on my shoulders and let the Lord do His work. We also need to focus on the successes that occur. So many times we look at all the hard parts or the struggles and by so doing, we miss the miracles, we miss the successes. We all have had successes! We need to focus on those more than our weaknesses, our struggles, or discouragements. 

Guess what else happened at church yesterday? We got done with church and were waiting to start our meeting in the foyer. Then someone said, "Guess who just got done with Sacrament meeting and is in the chapel? Lindsey Stirling!" Crazy! Haha. She is on tour right now and Cheyenne happened to be the place that they were stopped on the Sabbath so she came to church with one of her dancers. We waited in the foyer and she saw we were missionaries and she came right up and started talking to us. It was great! Then we got a picture with her. She is super sweet in person too. It's so great how she makes time for the most important things each week, even on tour. The sacrament is key. To those of you who who don't know who Lindsey Stirling is, here is her "I'm a mormon" video 
She's a great example of standing true to the gospel at all time and in all things and in all places, and helping other realize their true worth while being unique. Plus she's super talented and uses her talents for good:) Check it out!
I love you all! Thanks so much for your prayers, your love, and support! Keep smiling:)
Love,
Sister Young

Group picture

Exchange with Sister Martin

Us with Lindsey Stirling

Exchange with Sister Caserta

I-Pads to Hasten the Work

May 25, 2015


We had an amazing All Mission Conference the other day. We had Elder Nielson, the member of the Seventy who gave the Prodigal Son talk at conference, come and give us the training on how to use ipads in the work. I thought it was going to be merely a logistical meeting, but it actually turned out to be an amazing spiritual experience. I truly was taught by the spirit and my eyes were opened. Technology truly is the way that the Lord has always anticipated to hasten His work! We received training on how the Lord will truly use technology now and in the future to help… "the truth of God go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear."
 
We are also learning the principles now to govern us after our missions to continue to use media to further the work. We are also learning now, how to protect ourselves and our loved ones from the dangers of media as well. We received multiple booklets on how to safeguard ourselves against the "dark side" of media. This truly is a training ground for life. 

So far it has been so amazing to have so many resources at our fingertips to share the gospel. We have videos to access in moments at doorsteps, we have interactive pamphlets, (Check out the app, LDS Pamphlets) we have LDS Tools, we have Gospel Library to study with and mark and use, we will in a few weeks, have the area book and our planners on a single app, we will be able to use facebook in about a month, to communicate with members, investigators, leaders, and to share the gospel, we can email our leaders and investigators on a daily basis to remind them of commitments we left them, share videos, we will be able to skype or facetime leaders to meet with them, or have "member present" lessons by having someone facetime into the lessons, the list keeps going on and on! It is truly amazing! I was in awe the whole time. My companion sadly did not get an ipad since she is going home at the end of this transfer, but I got to have a loaner one for now. I am good at sharing though:) haha. It took a while to convince her to use it though. She has never had an ipad/ipod so she was a bit hesitant. But I've helped her get excited for it. It has been a bit of a weird adjustment. Going from not being allowed to have technology like this for 16 months to being encouraged to use the iPads as tools in your work. I've had to force myself a bit. It's been weird, but I truly love the opportunity to use them to hasten the work.
 I am so excited to be able to use media to share the gospel when I go home too, this is really good preparation for me. I am grateful for this transition at this time in my mission. 
We are still struggling to find people to teach. This has been one of the lowest "number" areas on my whole mission. It is so weird. We really are trying everything. I know numbers don't matter, but it's just sad not to have individuals to teach.

This week we also had some miracles happen. We feel like there are good things to come. First, we received a referral from some other missionaries who called and told us that a member was moving into our ward and her husband is not a member but recently his heart has truly been softened and she feels like he would be ready to learn about the gospel! We have dinner set up with them this week!Another miracle that happened, we knocked on a door of a Part Member family that we were trying to find and we found out that they had moved but the man who answered said that he had had 3 encounters with missionaries in the past year and he felt like God was trying to tell him something. We asked if we could come back and he said he wanted us to but he was going to talk to his wife. He has been to church a couple times and says he is searching for truth right now. That was another great miracle. We will see where that goes. 

Well,I feel like there is more to say, but that must be it for now. Keep pushing forward! This is a great time in the world to be alive. Scary, yes, but a good time nonetheless. It is the time for us to stand firm for what we know to be true. In all else, stand firm for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is what will remain constant through every change in the world. I love you all!
Love,
Sister Young

Monday, May 18, 2015

Praise of the World



Ok, well, I better begin. First off, yesterday was our last lesson with N, because she informed us that she is moving to Idaho this week and will be getting baptized this coming Saturday when she gets there. Ha, so bitter-sweet. She is so excited for her baptism and she is ready. But I wish I could be there! But that will be happening this weekend on Saturday. 
Another neat experience I had this week was the opportunity to attend a funeral and sing a musical number at it with Sister Heintz. This funeral was for a member of the church who had not been active for over 40 years but for some reason he still wanted his funeral in the church building. I have been to quite a few funerals on my mission but this one was quite different. Interestingly enough, the spirit taught me some powerful lessons as I sat through this funeral. This man was involved heavily in politics in Wyoming, and held many offices over the years. He was a prominent member of society. Each person who spoke was also a very prominent member of society, who had served with him for years. Each held high titles. They spoke of his earthly accomplishments, his honors, his awards, his highly esteemed name in the community, his career, but there was hardly a mention of some of the things that matter most. I sat there as each person spoke and thought, "What do I want said about me at my funeral?" After their remarks, we got up and sang, "Where Can I Turn for Peace," The spirit filled the room and was powerful. Then a member of the church got up and also shared his experiences with this man but also the Plan of Salvation. As I looked up at the stand there was such a distinct difference between the men and women of God on the stand and the "prominent" members of society. The spirit testified to me that, "The praise of the world, pales in comparison to the blessings of eternity." While this man had been praised so much for the things he had done here, I knew none of that would matter. What matters is who we become and how we prepare to make it back to the presence of our Heavenly Father. Because of those powerful lessons that I was taught by the spirit, I have resolved even more to not seek out the praise of the world, but to seek after the blessings of eternity, by focusing on my relationship with my Heavenly Father and my Savior now. Following His commandments. It will all be worth it. 
Well, I am out of time. I hope some of my deep contemplation of the week have helped inspire and bless in some way. I love you each so much! Have a wonderful week:)
Love,
Sister Young


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Endure It Well


Well, I don't have a ton of time. But I told you about transfers. I am staying here. I am excited. We are going to just have amazing things happen this transfer!
So, exciting news!! N set a baptismal date last night!!!!! We have been waiting for soooo long for her to get an answer about getting baptized here or in Idaho and when she should be baptized. She said that she has been thinking and praying and she feels like she should get baptized here and she wants to be baptized as soon as possible!! So we set her for May 30th!
Also, yesterday, P, who just got baptized got up and bore his testimony in sacrament meeting yesterday. It was a powerful testimony. He is fitting right in. It is so neat to see his life so changed. We went last Monday to get pedicures with his wife, C. It was my first one ever and it was quite nice:)
 
Well, I must get going. But I love you all sooo much! Thanks for you support and love. I pray for you all!!
Love,
Sister Young
 
P.S- My address is:
5270 Fishing Bridge
Cheyenne, WY 82009 
 
Write me!!!
Pictures: Pedicures
Hot Cocoa for the snow on Mother's Day
It rained a ton and there were worms all over!







Monday, May 4, 2015

White and Scarlet


It's been hard so see a ton of miracles here, but I was reminded the other day that I do know that the Lord will provide and show us, in His timing, who is ready. In every area I have been in, He has always lead me to them or them to us in one way or another. But it always has taken a bit of time. I know that the Lord will provide. We have been visiting Part Member Families , and former investigators all week. We have a few set up for this week that should be good. Also, we knocked on a door the other day of a part member family, and the wife answered the door, who is not a member. She was super nice to us and told us when we could come back. They have 4 kids and the dad is the only one who is not a member. They could be really promising. 
Another miracle that happened this week is that we met with N, our 9 year old investigator, at our Ward Mission Leader's house. He has a daughter who is N age and they are such a good fellowshipping family. It was wonderful to be in their home with the spirit and be able to have N feel that. She has a really hard home life and she feels so clearly the lack of the spirit in her home. In her own words she said, "I feel like my room is white and then the rest of the house is scarlet. And it's hard because I can't take that white with me. I want the rest of my home to be white too." She is such and in tune girl and so smart for her age. She wants so strongly for her home to be a refuge, a place away from the scarlet sins of the world. But she doesn't get that. She talked about how much she loved coming to church and being in member's homes because it feels white like her room does. I felt so heartbroken as she was speaking, to realize that she does not get the peace in her home like I was so blessed to have. We explained to her more about the Gift of the Holy Ghost and how she can have that whiteness with her always when she has the gift of the Holy Ghost. She is getting so close to setting a date to be baptized. I just love her a lot.
I love you all sooo much!!!
Love,
Sister Young


Monday, April 27, 2015

The Time Is Far Spent

Hello!

This week P was able to get baptized! It was such a special baptism. Him and his wife were so happy. They both practically glowed. He was baptized, and then confirmed yesterday and then he received the priesthood on Sunday as well. His whole countenance just changed! It was amazing to see. They are so excited to get to go to the temple and be seal and have a cute family. It is just amazing to see the changes that happen to individuals and families as they center their lives on Jesus Christ.  I have such a strong testimony about how the gospel can bless families. I am so grateful for my wonderful family how they are consistent with family prayer, scripture study, and family home evening. Even when the weeks are crazy busy, they make time for those things that matter most, and it makes all the difference. It is because of that consistency that I am where I am and who I am today. I will carry the tradition on with my future family because I know how important it is. I've seen the contrast on my mission between doing those things and not, and the difference it makes is amazing. 

This week we also got to go to a Leadership Meeting in Laramie with Elder Martino of the Quorum of the Seventy. It was such an amazing meeting and I realized how far I have to go to become the kind of missionary that I would like to be. I am grateful that I still have 3 months to be able to improve and get better every day. One thing that was mentioned is that we can not be complacent. We can not be satisfied with who we are right now, we want to always be striving to become better. If we remain complacent then that is when we will decrease and not increase. I have set some goals because of that meeting and I will continually be striving to improve until the day I go home, and then until the day that I die. Because guess what?! When your mission ends, that is NOT the end! It is the time to take what I have learned into my life back home and put it to the real test. I am excited to be able to do that. The meeting that day motivated me to keep trying, keep improving, doing the best I can with what I have, and then do even better! haha. 

This ward that I am a part of is an amazing ward. They are so on top of everything. For the baptism, literally all we had to do was show up. It was all taken care of. We have great leaders in this ward and they are so great to work with. This area has so much potential and I know that great things will continue to happen. We are focusing a ton on finding this week. We are struggling in that area. But we have some goals to help us stretch. Things are getting better every week. Thanks for all of your prayers and love. I love each of you sooo much!
I found a wonderful Hymn I wanted to share with you all this week:) It's not super common but I read the words for the first time yesterday and it hit me. Hymn #266-As I'm nearing the end of my mission I felt it very fitting. But it also can apply to the last days and how we have little time remaining to do the Lord's work.

1. The time is far spent; there is little remaining
To publish glad tidings by sea and by land.
Then hasten, ye heralds; go forward proclaiming:
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven's at hand,
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven's at hand.

2. Shrink not from your duty, however unpleasant,
But follow the Savior, your pattern and friend.
Our little afflictions, tho painful at present,
Ere long, with the righteous, in glory will end,
Ere long, with the righteous, in glory will end.

3. What, tho, if the favor of Ahman possessing,
This world's bitter hate you are called to endure?
The angels are waiting to crown you with blessings!
Go forward, be faithful, the promise is sure.
Go forward, be faithful, the promise is sure.

4. Be fixed in your purpose, for Satan will try you;
The weight of your calling he perfectly knows.
Your path may be thorny, but Jesus is nigh you;
His arm is sufficient, tho demons oppose.
His arm is sufficient, tho demons oppose.

Love,
Sister Young

Pictures-P Baptism
Happy Earth Day! 
Leadership Meeting





Monday, April 20, 2015

Snow, Snow


I only have a few minutes left because I have been writing a lot of personal emails. But I will try my best to fill you in on the week. 
So, Had a pretty good week. Things have gotten better this week, I am feeling more adjusted to the area. The Lord is helping me. We went on exchanges this week, and I got stuck in Laramie. So our usual 24 hour exchange turned into an extended exchange of 72 hours! Haha. It literally did not stop snowing for 3 days straight! It was crazy! We had to walk a lot too because they kept making it a no-drive day because of bad roads. Also, we didn't have a phone because the sister that I went with, her companion accidentally took it. It was quite an adventure but I truly loved it and I know there are reasons for all things. It was nice being in Laramie and I got to be in the YSA ward for 3 days, which I have always wanted to try. I was with Sister M. She is sooo sweet and I just love her a lot. I learned a lot from her and we had a great time together. 

We have still been teaching P and he is getting all prepared for baptism this weekend. He is going strong. The only thing he is struggling with really is keeping the Sabbath Day holy. We showed up last night and they had bought dinner from some restaurant. We'll have to go over that again. But he is doing really well and he is excited! 

Sorry, this isn't very long! But I love you all so much! Thanks for your love and support. 
Love,
Sister Young





Monday, April 13, 2015

Continue in Patience


Hello All!

Our top progressing investigator is P. He is still set to be baptized on April 25th, which is coming up really fast. He is doing really well. They are a super sweet family. 
Another investigator, N, she is 9, has been having some real struggles lately and doesn't want to be baptized. She is super smart. Most of the things that she says I just can't even believe are coming out of a 9 year old's mouth. She knows what she needs to do but is not willing to get baptized yet. She is having trouble feeling Heavenly Father's love because she is struggling to feel love in general. But she still comes to church, but she doesn't want to get baptized yet. Soon though, hopefully.
.
We had a ward party on Saturday night. It was super great. A yummy meal and then a lot of performances from the ward members and some non-members as well. We had quite a few non-members and less-actives that were able to come. The K family performed some traditional Korean songs and even sang, "How Great Thou Art" in Korean. It was neat to be a part of the whole evening and to finally get all of the ward members in one place so I could finally meet them all. We truly are part of a wonderful ward here. The people in Wyoming are so focused on the Atonement. I love it. I've been able to see how all kinds of different stakes work as I have gone throughout my mission and I have seen how the stakes that are most focused on the Atonement before they are focused on the numbers, those are the stakes where true miracles and progression happen. Those are the stakes where the most rescuing is being done. It is so great to be a part of that again here in Cheyenne. 
I love the Lord. We are doing His work. I am still learning to trust Him more. Especially when trials come and I don't feel like I can move forward. I was reading Pres. Uchtdorf's talk this morning from 2010. One of my all time favorite talks. "Continue in Patience." Here is a quote that I truly just loved. "

Patience Requires Faith

Brigham Young taught that when something came up which he could not comprehend fully, he would pray to the Lord, “Give me patience to wait until I can understand it for myself.” 5 And then Brigham would continue to pray until he could comprehend it.
We must learn that in the Lord’s plan, our understanding comes “line upon line, precept upon precept.” 6 In short, knowledge and understanding come at the price of patience.
Often the deep valleys of our present will be understood only by looking back on them from the mountains of our future experience. Often we can’t see the Lord’s hand in our lives until long after trials have passed. Often the most difficult times of our lives are essential building blocks that form the foundation of our character and pave the way to future opportunity, understanding, and happiness.
 I know that is true. I have been being continually built as I exercise patience. Trusting in the Lord. He knows what will help me most now, and help me most for my future family. He loves us perfectly!

I love you all!!! Have a fantastic week.

Love,
Sister Young
Pics-The K family in their traditional Korean clothing. 
A giant cookie that some members bought for us. I only could eat a few bites. 



Monday, April 6, 2015

We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet!

Hello!
 Happy Easter! How was your Easter Sunday? How was General Conference? Tell me all about it. What talks were your favorite? I am still processing. We watched conference at a a bunch of different places with people I had just met. haha. Such is life:) 
So, first, tender mercy of General Conference weekend. There is a family in the ward named the K family. Guess where they are from originally? Korea!!  Well, we watched Sunday morning with them yesterday and then they invited us to stay for lunch, which was Korean food!! Bee Bim Bop...I think that is how you spell it maybe. I was overjoyed. They are such a neat family too! And their cute Grandma was visiting them from Korea for the weekend as well and only spoke Korean the whole time. It was just a great place to watch conference. I'm excited to get to know them.
As as mission we are working towards helping 50 of Heavenly Father's children to the waters of Baptism this transfer. We have been fasting and praying for this as a mission and doing our part as much as we can. So, last week we did a mission fast. That same Sunday, there was a man from this ward who went to the bishop and told him that he is ready to be baptized. His wife is a member and he has been working with missionaries on and off for years. But he is now ready! We met with him this week and he truly has spent a lot of time gaining his testimony and now feels like he is ready to be baptized! He will be baptized on April 25th. Miracles! The Lord is truly preparing His children to be baptized. 

There is also a 9 year old girl we are working with who is ready to be baptized but is having a hard time setting a date to actually get baptized. Not quite sure what her hold up is yet. But we will figure it out for sure. 

My new companion is Sister Heintz. She is from Northern California. She is great. She loves life and has a positive attitude.

This weekend with General Conference, I was able to have my testimony of Living Prophets strengthened so much! Oddly enough it was during the sustaining of our leaders that my testimony was strengthened. With the odd occurrence of those who "opposed" our prophet, I had a mix of emotions occur. But as the session continued I realized how much I do know that Thomas S. Monson is God's Prophet on the Earth today! I will sustain and stand by him through whatever happens. When we sang the hymn, "We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet," the spirit testified strongly to me that we do have a living prophet and "those who reject this glad message, shall never such happiness know." It just made me sad for those select few who chose to not sustain our prophet. They really have no impact upon the Lord's work. They will never receive the joy of the gospel. That is so sad. 

I know we have a living Prophet on the earth today! I will stand by him, sustain him, and follow him. I love you all so much! Have a wonderful week:)
Love,
Sister Young

Monday, March 30, 2015

I'm Going Back to Wyoming!


Hello All! 

We heard about transfer news this weekend and there are some pretty big changes that will be happening for me. I will be heading to Cheyenne, WY in the Capital Hill Ward. I will be companions with Sister Heintz (I think that is how you spell it...) Another exciting change, I have been called to be a Sister Training Leader as well. I think I will be the Sister Training Leader for all of the Sisters in Wyoming since they now only have 3 companionships of STLs for the entire mission. I'm excited to have this leadership opportunity to learn, grow, serve and love. It will be quite a few changes though so I will be praying a lot. I hear that the ward I am going to is awesome though, so I am pretty excited:)

We had some really neat miracles happen this week. First one, last night we got a text from Sis. M, K(recent convert) mom, that said, "Just wanted to let you know that (her husband) has been sitting in on scripture study for the past couple nights!!!" That was the best text ever! His heart is being softened little by little and as they read the Book of Mormon together, I know it will continue to be. That was a huge step for him and it filled me with so much joy to hear. Their cute family is so sad to see me leave. The youngest doesn't quite understand transfers and when she was told that I was leaving, she said, "She can't leave mom! She can live with us! She can have my bed!" They were pretty upset when they heard. This family has been such a big part of my mission and I know they will continue to be a huge part of my life

Another amazing experience that we had this week was a bit unexpected. One day we felt prompted to text a couple that we have worked with a bit but not too much. The wife is a member but less-active and didn't grow up much even in the church. Her husband is not a member but has taken the missionary lessons many times through out his life. They both love missionaries but have seemed pretty content to stay how they are which is why we haven't worked a ton with them. But we text them, after not having seen them in quite a while. Sis. B said, " My husband was just asking about you both and wanted you to come over!" We set up a time for the next night. We went over and found out that we needed to be there that night. He had been going through some tough times and was really in a tough spot. We shared Because He Lives with them and had a wonderful lesson on the Savior and his Atonement. They both really opened up to us, which is hard for them. Then we felt prompted to sing, "Where Can I Turn for Peace." So we did. The spirit was so strong while we sang and Bro. B after just sat there sobbing. They kept saying how much they had needed us to be there that night and how it was not by accident that we were there. I love the spirit. I love music. I love the Savior. 

As, I leave Terry Lake, it will be hard to say goodbye. I love the ward dearly. I am so incredibly grateful for my wonderful companion, Sister Jensen. We have had such a good time together. I am so grateful for her. She is such an amazing missionary and I have learned so much from her. We helped each other through the difficult times. I know I was needed here.  I'm grateful for the people I have meet and worked with and I have made some lifelong friends here and seen lives change through the Atonement. 

I am so excited to watch General Conference this weekend and hear the counsel from our living Prophet. I know he receives revelation from Heavenly Father that we need in our lives. To watch conference online this week you can go to  https://www.lds.org/general-conference/watch?lang=eng
Prepare this week to be able to receive the messages that Heavenly Father has to give to you individually. I know the spirit teach us each what we need to know. I love each of you!! Happy Easter!! Always remember our Savior and His sacrifice for us.  
Love,
Sister Young