Monday, May 30, 2016

Transfer Week #StressedToDeath

So we were supposed to get transfer calls last night, but President decided that he would send them out today instead. So we're just sitting around and playing the waiting game to see if we're leaving the area or not. 
All of the senior missionaries are leaving and new ones are coming in. The mission president is leaving July 1st. Change is good, but not knowing what's going to happen is scary. It's all in Heavenly Father's hands though. I know it is.
My #1 advice for preparing missionaries is to break in your shoes before you leave for your mission. Sister Young and I have no miles left for the last 3 days, and we decided to walk all day yesterday - which was the worst idea I've had. My shoes rubbed knurly blisters on the back of my heels, but that's okay. It's a sign of hard work...or stupidity..or something like that. Just don't follow my example and wear new shoes when you walk all day. 
Somehow I got Sister Young and I into talking to all of the youth in each on one of our wards yesterday, and into our speaking in church next month AND into a musical number. How do I keep getting myself into these things?
Not a lot happened this week. Aaron didn't get baptized because he went on vacation with his family, but he did bring us little souvenirs so that makes up for it. He is going to get baptized though; He said he's definitely planning on it within the next 2 weeks. He's GOLDEN! 
Joy has been investigating the church for about a year now, and yesterday was the first time she came to church AND she asked for a priesthood blessing! Her heart has softened towards the gospel so much since I first met her 3 months ago. 
The Jackson's children, Haylie and Robert, are both on date for baptism on June 8th! 
It's so amazing to see the gospel change people's lives. I love being able to help people see that they are so loved by Heavenly Father and that they are literally His sons and daughters.
I definitely think that I needed this mission more than it needed me. 
I have seen a change in myself that is so great. I have never wanted to dig into the gospel so much or thrived off of reading the scriptures. I love being in Arizona. I love serving the Lord. It is so tough at times - really all the time, but it's so worth it. Every tear, every drop of sweat, every slammed door, every baptism, every blister - it's all worth it. If I had to die for this gospel I would. It's all worth it, and it's all true. I can never stress that enough. 

Ether 12:27 "And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my graces sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them."

Have an amazing week and STAY GOLDEN! ☀

1. Caity and Maddie from the Creekside Ward
2. Grandma Patsy and I. She's the spunkiest old lady I've ever met!
3. My young Women from the Cloud Creek Ward
4. My rad foot tan
5. The hottest hot sauce you will ever eat in your life. Some old man we had dinner with tricked me into eating it, and my mouth was raw for days. 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Brownie for my brownie

So I just wanted to start off by saying I've been counting the days wrong this whole time..I'VE BEEN OUT FOR 3 MONTHS and NOT 2! This is a miracle!! #Hallelujah
Time sure flies when you're having fun, serving the Lord, and cooking like a pancake.
This has honestly been the longest week of my life. I've never had this many appointments and places to be since I got to Arizona. It's so amazing to see our areas and the work boom.
Some of our recent converts moved this week, so before they did we went to the temple with them. Even though Sister Young and I couldn't do baptisms, being in the room and the chapel watching the Cooks do baptisms was so spiritual and amazing.
On Wednesday we had interviews with President Nattress, and before interviews we washed our car at the wonderful time of 7 am. The Senior Missionaries forgot to check our we got up to wash it for nothing. After interviews we had a lesson with a less active family. The children told us they wanted to get baptized so we're going to put them on date in tonight's lesson! After the lesson Sister Young and I were walking around in Riggs trying to find a house...and we found a church. The music was so loud we could hear it from 2 streets over, so obviously we had to check it out. Tons of Hispanics came out of the church, took us by the hands, and ran inside. They were jamming out with tambourines and were singing at the top of their lungs. It was the funniest thing that's happened on my mission so far.  
We surprise visited Joy this week, and it was so amazing. She's changed so much since I first met with her 3 months ago. We read 3 verses out of the Book of Mormon. When we were done, she had tears in her eyes and asked if we could read more.
Aaron's baptism date moved..again, but this time it's legit and staying. On Sunday he came to a new member Fireside with us to listen to recent convert's testimonies. It was so amazing, and we could all feel the spirit so strongly. Afterwards Aaron told us that he couldn't wait for his own baptism. It's so wonderful to see Heavenly Father help people, and to see the light of the gospel enter into their lives.
So every Friday we have a 3 hour planning time to plan for our upcoming week. About an hour 1/2 into it the Elders got...a little side tracked (that's what the video is of). This is what happens when you put 18 18-24 year olds together.
Also the goobs gazing at each other in the middle of our zone picture are in our district. #bless
Sister Young and I always have the best ideas ever (if by best you mean dumb). We decided to tape glow sticks to our fans. Friday after planning I was practicing the piano, and my pencil fell down behind the keys. My hand couldn't fit, so Sister Young and I got tongs and tried to get the pencil out..the tongs broke and fell down into the piano. So when someone goes to tune that piano one day..they will find tongs and a pencil. Help. 

I hope everyone has an amazing week and remember that everything happens for a reason, and remember the wonderful words from the Help: "You is smart, you is kind, and you is important."
Stay Golden!

Monday, May 16, 2016

Angels in the outfield

This week has been so amazing and full of miracles. It's honestly so wonderful to see things happen when you just put every single thing and care aside and focus all you have on the Lord and His gospel.
Sister Young and I started teaching the children of a less active family, and they both want to get baptized! We also met with our awesome eternigator (eternal investigator), Joy. She's been meeting with the missionaries for a while, but she's never really progressed or read the Book of Mormon. We got her to start reading the Book of Mormon and we have a return appointment with her this week! Aaron is also back on date for May 28th, and is going so strong. We had a lesson with our less active's friend, Steven..who is also less active. It's so awesome to see the people we work with reach out to their friends. In each of our wards we picked up a new gator! Chris, Martha, and Jill. Sunday topped it all off: Steven, Jared, and Aaron all came to church and sat with us. We had a pew full of boys. It looked super funny.
We taught Aaron about the Plan of Salvation this week and in all seriousness he asked "So do you think 2 Pac and Biggie are homies chilling in Heaven now..?" Yes, Aaron, yes. Definitely homies now.
This week it seriously felt like it got up to a million degrees...turns out it was only 110, and that it gets up to 120 here. Like what? The first thing I do when I get home is go straight to the lake...I have 15 months left, but a girl can dream, right?
Our zone this week had Family Home Afternoon. It's where we all play games together and have a little "us" time.
On Friday we went to the temple, which was amazing, and afterwards we all went to Kneaders. That's what the polaroid picture is from! The nut head elder in the front picking his nose is Elder Faulkenberry.
The last picture is from dinner last night. Brinlee wanted me to take a picture of our CTR rings together. She ran to her room and showed it to me. She told me she wanted to always wear it so she can be like the Sister Missionaries.
What I love about teaching people is that I feel like I learn more from them than they learn from me. I've learned so much about the importance of family, being self sufficient, love, trust, and the Lord from the people that we've taught. I've also learned a lot from just simply being here on my mission. It's so amazing to see how these short 3 months have changed me and my views on life. I know that the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ, Heavenly Father, and their teachings. I know that the plan of salvation is the plan of happiness - that it is here so that we can know how to get back to our Father in Heaven one day. I know that Joseph Smith, at 14 years old, went to the grove to pray about which church was true and saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I know that every single word in the Book of Mormon is true. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus are always there for us. They always have their arms outstretched waiting for us to come to them with our problems. I have a huge testimony of prayer. I know that ALL of our prayers get answered - no matter how big or small they are. We may not get the answer we want, but we will always get an answer. I know that this gospel is true. I know that I am out here for a reason - that all of this is for a reason. I'm not out here biking in 110+ degree weather just for the fun of it. I know that Heavenly Father needs me to help spread His gospel. I know that this is all true.

Alma 26:12 "Yea, I know that I am nothing; 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; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever."

Monday, May 9, 2016

1/8 of the way done

So it feels like a lot happened this week, but I guess the heat has gotten to my brain. The highlight of my week hands down was Skyping my amazing family yesterday! It's just what I needed. It was so weird hearing someone call me Logan and not Sister Kilsby. #Trunky
Sister Young and I made the wonderful decision of eating at a hole in the wall gas station last Monday to get burritos. It was seriously the best Mexican food I've eaten since I've been here!
We talked to a random old couple who's names were Rose and Jack. I lost it laughing because I thought it was hilarious. Needless to say they didn't think it was funny and told us to go away.
Wednesday Sister Young and I decided we would bike all day in the Riggs ward and bike up to the mountains to tract on Peace Pipe (wonderful name, right?). It was probably the best worst decision that we've made (besides the gas station food). It got up to 110 degrees that day, and all of the houses had gates in front of them so we couldn't go inside. We finally got to a house where someone would answer the door. This is horrible to admit, but I love when it's burning hot outside while we're biking because people feel sorry for us and let us in. #miracles? Anyway this lady answered the door and was telling her dogs to come inside, but I thought she was telling us to come I walked past her into her house. She didn't say anything at first, but we had an awesome lesson with her and she told us to come back! I have a lot of weird first impressions. Sister Young always laughs at me because of them. We'll just meet random people, and I'll give them huge hugs. It works though.
Saturday night our ward had a rodeo at the Thomas' ranch. It was the funniest thing that I've ever seen. These people are more redneck than the Mississippians. They had the kids chase down greased pigs, chickens, and goats.
One of our less active families wants us to start teaching their children and get them ready for baptism! The grandpa lives with them, and he's deaf. I've been learning how to say things in sign language. It's pretty awesome.
I added pictures of my area. I bike through these fields almost every day, and this is what half of our area looks like. I thought I was going to hate it at first, but it's so awesome and comforting. I couldn't have hand picked a better area. It makes me appreciate all that I have, and makes me want to work harder. I love biking through the field and being able to soak in everything that Heavenly Father has given us. We're all so extremely blessed. Take the time this week to really notice the little things that Heavenly Father has blessed us with!

Mosiah 7:33 "But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage."


Monday, May 2, 2016

2 months in the Royal City...Wait what?

So I've seriously been out of the MTC for 2 months. This is insane. I almost started crying because time is going by so fast! The days feel like weeks, the weeks feel like days, and the months feel like years. That's the best way I know how to describe missionary time.
I absolutely love the mission. It's so hard, but it's worth it. Especially when you see someone change. That's the best part - knowing that this isn't me helping and changing these's the Lord helping them. The worst part of the mission is not knowing what you're doing. The best part is that no missionary knows what they're doing. I've learned that really fast! Also it's amazing that the Lord trust these idiots (including myself) to spread His gospel to His children. I love when all of the missionaries get together (or a group of us). It makes me feel like a real person again, and not "just a missionary". We all joke around and laugh and stuff. It's great to know that so many others have the same struggles as I do (like figuring out the area, not knowing what to do, etc.) That sounds strange, but it's true.
Sister Young and I still don't know what we're doing, but we're biking EVERYWHERE. I love it and hate it all at the same time. I have the gnarliest Toms tan line, but that's one of the many missionary perks.
This week I got a package from my home ward, and I cried for a good hour. I loved all of the goodies and letters from the young men and women and the other members of the ward. It made my whole week, and it gives me something to look back and read when I am going through a rough day while I'm out here.
We're working with a less active, Jared, and he invited his less active friend, steven, to our lesson this week. Jared has also started coming to our lessons with our investigator, Aaron. It's amazing to see how the gospel changes lives, like I said above. It's so amazing. Jared wasn't really receptive about 2 months ago, and now he is out teaching with us!!
On Saturday we had service in Florence which is literally the desert, and we drove through a prison. But don't worry. I'm okay. I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I came to Arizona. Also, Savannah went through the temple for herself on Saturday. It was the most amazing and spiritual day that I have had since I've been here. It made me think of when I went through the temple for the first time. 
I know that coming on this mission was the right decision for my life. I know without a doubt that I am here for a reason