Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Where to even begin with this week...Just to give you an idea of what kind of week it was, I had 2 Cokes. And when you need a Coke, you know its been one of those days! We are already half way through this transfer! Can you believe it? This transfer is kicking my butt, I´ll tell you that much. Yet it has been a very humbling transfer. I am being brought to my knees and to earnestly rely on the Lord. Missions are hard. There is no sugar coating or excuses for it, they are hard and they push you to your limits. Yet it is a refiners fire, a process of growing up and change. So i am so thankful to be here and to be serving. So this week Aurora (17 year old investigator) got back from her vacation and has graduated! WOOHOO! She was gone for about a week and a half and she is on a baptismal date for THIS Saturday. So it was pretty crucial for us to meet with her and see whats up. We met with her and SHE STILL WANTS TO BE BAPTIZED! We have gone over all the lessons, we have gone over the interview questions and she is ready. Minor detail....She is a minor and she needs permission from her mother. With that said, it has been pretty crazy and nerve racking. Tonight we have an appointment with her and we will know if she has gotten permission or not. I have faith that it will work out and be okay. Just a tad bit nerve racking and exciting. I pray that all goes well. Another miracle...5 referrals this week! So in one form or the other blessings are coming from our hard work. Just gotta keep pressing forward! Next I just want to share something from my Journal. Friday my companion had to go to Brussels for legality things so I worked with two other sisters. We spent the day looking up referrals, so lots of travel time and talking. It was very nice and much needed. But by the end of the day this was what I realized... My mission has been hard, full of challenges and obstacles. I wouldn't trade this for anything. IT´s HARD. And you could sit and journal about how hard life is, how much your companion is driving you crazy, and you feel weak. I have my family and friends to write and I could unload and tell them everything. But why do that? I have a Heavenly Father who is always there and he wants to hear from me about it. No matter how hard it is, no matter how much i complain, cry, or whine. I am going to Him. I´m talking about my feelings, asking Him for help and working with Him. He understands, and because of Christ they know what I am feeling. This is their work. I´m his daughter, their instrument, a laborer in the vineyard. My strength to get through those struggles, rejections and rain come from Him. So why not go to Him? I don´t want to go to e/mail and complain or sound like I am struggling. Because honestly, everyday is a fight and there are always hard moments. But there is so much more. I am doing everything I can to find my Savior, to work with Him everyday. And to do that I must talk with Him about anything everything, then get up and do. I am walking with my Savior. I pray that everyone of you could search for Him, to get on your knees and find Him. He is there. I know because I have felt Him right beside me as I pray. Life is hard, but behind every obstacle is a greater and grander opportunity that the Lord is just waiting for us to discover. I know that Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ live. They are very mindful of you. Thank you all for your support and encouragement. I love you all dearly! Have a great week! -- Zuster Young Pictures 1st is the day I worked with Zr. Fleming and Johansen. Second we worked with the Zone Leaders and well the lengths we go to to get a sticker. Lastly those signs are all over Gouda. For one of the local churches, they are doing workshops and such. Their faces crack me up... they are so confused. They need to Book of Mormon in their life!
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Goede Morgen! I hope everyone is doing marvelous! Well this week... yeah this week. Not much happened and well it was simply put a long week. The woman who let us in last Sunday and we left a BvM, we went back on Friday for our appointment. She opened the door, turned around and grabbed the BvM and handed it back to us. Didn't give us chance to talk about what she read or anything. Honestly felt like a slap in the face. And because this appointment fell through we were out in a small town in a the middle of no where for the next four hours knocking doors because our dinner appointment lived just around the corner and it wasn't worth it to go all the way back to Gouda to turn around and come back. I will be completely honest and tell you I was upset. Feeling like I just got slapped in the face and now I gotta go back out knock doors. First couple houses they laughed at us and closed the door just as fast as they opened it. And if this was how our afternoon was going to go, I didn't want to do it. I kind of shut down a little bit and started humming songs to myself. We got farther down a street and I started humming "A Child's Prayer". Once I hummed the line "His love now surrounds you." I felt this huge wave of love sweep over me. Comforting me and telling me it will be okay. She made her decision and there was nothing I could do. The Lord sees my efforts and sees that I am not giving up. I just got teary eyed, sucked it up and kept knocking. The Elders had a baptism on Saturday for a 12 year old young man. 0930 and Zr. Romney and I are on our way to a breakfast appointment with a member that is an hour away. Phone rings and its our ward mission leader asking me to fill in for sick son and give the Holy Ghost talk at the baptism! t-Minus 5 hours till baptism! Get home from breakfast at 1300 pm and I have 30 minutes to write this talk. I was so nervous! I just looked at Filipe the whole time, talked to him and just spoke. Didn't even use the talk I quickly wrote out. He is an incredible young man! Had Zone Training on Wednesday and said goodbye to President and Zr. Robinson. That will be the last time I see them until I go home and visit them in Utah. They go home in just a couple weeks. I am so thankful for them all they have done for me, the missionaries and the church here in Nederland. Okay, now the highlight of my week...I want to share with you my studies: Matthew 11:28-30 "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and i will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me. For I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." (The fourth missionary) She becomes increasingly aware of her weaknesses, she becomes increasingly humble, while at the same time she grows in faith and stature before God. She experiences what the Lord said "If men come unto me I will show them their weakness." Ether 12:17 I've been wondering why it is so hard these last couple weeks. I thought I was prepared and ready to tackle this new transfer. Yet the opposite has happened. It's been hard, long, stressful, frustrating. I've been wanting to simply do what the Lord wants me to do. Just do his will. But it was only getting harder. But now I see why...I'm living Ether 12:17. I've been coming unto Christ. He is hearing me, seeing me, and accepting me. I'm being shown my weaknesses to be made stronger. I'm not failing, if anything I am succeeding. I pray that each of us can go to the Lord and hand over our will to him. It may not be easy, it may be painful, but the refining process is a beautiful thing. He will make us more than what we could have ever imagined. I love you all and pray for you all. Liefs, Zuster Young P.S. Thank you Peachwood Ward R.S. for the sweet letter!
Monday, June 8, 2015
Ladies and Gentlemen I don´t know if you heard the news... But for the first time in History the Verenigen Staten beat Nederland in a futbol match! 4 to 3! I saw the first goal made by a header from Nederland through someone´s window as we were walking home. Absolutely crazy... I am still a red and blue through and through American. So when I opened my call and found out where I was going, thinking I had to be humbled from the World Cup... well this weekend I was humbled. I love Nederland, their team is incredible and I will support them. But I can never back down from my team. Church was very exciting getting to talk to everyone about the game. Well now on to matters of why I actually came to Nederland... This week was full of hard work. What can I say, life of a missionary. The weather has also changed over night. From freezing to blazing hot and humid. One night we are in jackets and tights and the next people are out barely wearing anything at all! We have seen a lot of miracles this week... 2 new investigators, one investigator´s brother showed up half way through and wants to be there for the next lesson. Went langs de deur (knocking doors) and a younger woman let us in, we dropped a RAD and gave her a Book of Mormon. We are going back this week. Another young mom who we have been going and doing yard work for her, we finally had a lesson and gave her a Book of Mormon and we are going back tomorrow. It is amazing to the see such miracles. It has been hard work but these have been answers to prayers that the Lord sees how hard we are working. That we are trying so hard to just do what he wants us to do. The work is moving forward all in the Lord´s timing. So we must depend on him and do what he asks. I have been trying to change, change as a person, a disciple of Christ and become the missionary that the Lord wants me to become. So I have been studying a talk called The Fourth Missionary by lawerence Corbridge and it is amazing. All Heavenly Father wants from us is US. He just wants us to surrender our will to Him. And when we do that we feel power, we see blessings. `Everything that you ahve to give to the Lord has its origin in Him, except one thing:Your will. He does not have your heart nor your mind unless you give it to Him. It is the only gift you have to offer that He does not have and so when you give yourself, you truly give everything to Him.` I hope that I am giving him everything. That my offer is enough. I pray that each of you can feel Him in your life. To do eveything you can to feel his love in your life. Let him guide you, and you can never go wrong. I love you and miss you. -- Zuster Young P.S. Thanks for the sports updates!
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
And so a new transfer has begun... This is how I am looking at it: Now is my chance to really step up to the plate. I've been practicing and have had some time in the game but now it is up to me. I'm on the starting line up and its time to prove to the coach I CAN do this. All my hard work and preparation was and is for something. The rest of the game (my mission) depends on this play (transfer). I really need to step it up and bring it all out on the field. There was a different feel this time than from when I took over Antwerpen. I now have a younger companion and she is depending on me. Oh how the tables have turned! I feel the weight on my shoulders. Just trying to figure it out myself. This week about 98.99% of our appointments fell through. So woohoo loads of time to go out tracting! Met some very interesting people and learned some good lessons: A man who used to take the lessons many years ago and even went to the Open House of the Den Haag Temple. Yet he said himself, he chose to keep his life where it was at. I don't doubt that he experienced the spirit, how could you not by going to the temple? He caught a glimpse of what he could have but wast willing to leave his comfort zone. A gay man from IOWA! Anywho he knew exactly who we were, talked about how he too took lessons, had LDS friends and went to church a few times. But he too was too was comfortable where he was at. We are in the smack center of the Bible Belt in Nederland. So the majority of the people here have their own religion and when we come to the door defend themselves saying they know God, read the bible and claim that Christ is the fundament in their life. And a good percent of the time I believe them, i don't doubt them. What I don't understand is IF this is all true, then why treat us with so much disrespect? Why not be willing to listen for just a few minutes? Why not TRY to learn more about the man you claim is your foundation? People are just too comfortable in their lives and not willing to leave. Even if they have felt something. Cori de Groot- A lesson fell through so we went next door and knocked the door. A 76 year old woman opened the door, and as soon as that door opened we were hit with a wall of cigarette smoke. She immediately got defensive and claimed she wasn't religious. All of her family is either dead or have left her.. so why is she still here and where is God in all this? After trying to talk, testify, simply utter a word she continued to talk and ramble. But then she invited us in. We sat and talked, well mostly listened to her. She broke out in song a couple of times of songs she learned when she was kid in catholic school. Every concern, issue or event in her life that she mentioned I thought of where it could be addressed in the Book of Mormon. The whole time I listened to her all I could hear in my head was give her a Book of Mormon. Finally at a pause when she lit a cigarette, I puled out the book. Immediately she stared at it, and I bore my testimony and just followed the spirit. As I spoke, she put the cigarette down, leaned forward and was actually listening. She took the book. I saw her soften just from when she opened the door to when we said a prayer and left. It doesn't matter how old or young you are...YOU ARE A CHILD OF GOD. He knows you perfectly. He wants to help you. You are never too far from Him. You just need to open up, leave your comfort zone, listen and then you will see and feel Him there. There is nothing to fear or worry about. I promise. I absolutely love this ward!! They are all so very supportive, make us feel at home. Our ward mission leader is very on top of things and very encouraging. We have had dinner appointments every night for the last 3 weeks and are set for another week! They acknowledge our efforts, hard work, they know how hard this area is and simply love and support us. Give advice and encouragement. Plus they keep me informed about soccer! BTW's: the Women's World Cup begins in a matter of days! SO this is very important... I am asking for a volunteer to be my personal SportsCenter and send updates! Alstublieft! Another thing, the USA Men's National Soccer team is playing the Netherlands this Friday in Amsterdam! Good thing I am not serving there or else we would be proselyting around the stadium! ha Anywho, Yesterday I unknowingly agreed to teach the Young Woman's lesson to our one and only young woman in the ward. I had no idea what to do! But it turned out great and I loved reciting the theme is Dutch! I miss young woman's so very much. I am so thankful for the leaders, their time, love and support for me through those years. Man so many things have happened, so many hours in the rain knocking doors! But not enough time to tell you it all. Thank YOU. Thank you for your love and support. It is what drives me when it gets hard. I am in the most beautiful and blessed country in the world doing the Lord's work. With you supporting me nothing can go wrong. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. Have a great week! Liefs, Zuster Young