Zuster Young

Zuster Young
Zuster is Dutch for "sister", which is a title used for female missionaries.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Power of an Orange

Goed morgen!! First of all I just want to say thank you to everyone for the birthday wishes, birthday videos and most importantly the support. I had an incredible birthday over here in Nederland and then to have gotten the videos from you back home was just the cherry on top! I can not believe that I am 20 years old!! Yikes! But just like every other birthday for as long as I can remember, it was a rainy and stormy birthday. My companion made me a yummy cake, had a dinner appointment with Familie Martes- they made a traditional Dutch dinner but Zr. Martes is German so she made a German Chocolate Cake...oh it was divine! We were able to watch the Saratov Approach on my birthday. It was a whole new experience watching it from this point of view. Being a missionary and watching that movie was incredibly powerful. Of course I was in tears and super emotional. I am so thankful to be out here and there is not anything else I would rather be doing. No matter how hard it gets, it is not until your life and faith is put on the line that you realize the mountains you have climbed and how you have become stronger. This week I went on exchanges with Zr. Fleming and we had an incredible time. It was the best day that i have had in a few weeks. We first worked in Gouda for a little bit and while biking around we saw a woman who was having trouble with her bike so we pulled over and helped her out. She tried to pay us but what does a missionary do instead, we tried to give her a Book of Mormon. Kept biking and stopped a man walking his dog. We started the conversation by asking about cheese...which led to a 30 minute conversation about faith and believing in God. Turned around on the bus and started a conversation with a guy by asking him what a word was in the dutch book of Mormon, which led to a 30 minute conversation about the difference between the bible and the book of Mormon. Travel contacting has been hard for me to do, I just feel awkward but was able to do it. Went to Dordrecht and just knocked doors the rest of the evening. However that was the best experience knocking doors. Unfortunately no one let us in or was interested, but at every door we left it better than we found it. We didn't leave a house without bearing testimony, complimenting them or simply leaving them with a smile on their face. It was amazing to see some people soften up from the time they opened the door when they saw us, to when we just sat and said a few things, bore testimony and moved on. We met some really interesting people, had some very insightful conversations. There are people from all over the world, with such very different backgrounds, and each one of them I felt Heavenly Father's love for them. Some I could see the wall standing in front of them blocking them, the adversary clouding thier view, and that sucks! Yet, I am thankful for the time I had to work in Dordrecht and with Zr. Fleming because I was able to catch a glimpse of the missionary that I am, who I am trying to become. It has been really hard lately, hard to see that what I am doing is enough, fighting the adversary, and feeling confident. But this exchange helped me to feel t spark of that confidence. And all I did was simply bear my testimony to as many people as I could. Also that night, we got back to the apartment and Zr. Fleming and I just talked for a long time. I could go on about these last few weeks but a lot of stress and emotions have been building up and I set it aside to focus on the people. Well Zr. Fleming did something to help me let it all out. Now don't judge because I know it sounds silly but it worked! We took oranges, shouted something was was stressing us out and then threw the orange at the wall in the bathroom. Did that a couple times and man that orange was destroyed and I felt so relieved! haha crazy but it works!! Anywho, I don't have a ton of time now, I got overloaded with videos and I spent my time watching those. ha Thank you again for your love and support. Thanks to y'all I have been had the motivation and support to keep going. When things get tough, just get on your knees and pray. I love you all. Have a great week!! -- Zuster Young

Monday, July 20, 2015

The Trial of My Faith

Taking over the Elders area and people has been crazy. They handed over 35 people (Potentials, Investigators, Less Actives) and the fact that our area has increased has been a tad bit stressful; but really exciting. The Elder's area is what we call... GHETTO! Oh my lanta.. but they have a lot of people there. You just see some really interesting things and people. Unfortunately, it is summer vacation here so many the responses we are getting is a) "We are gone on Vacation" b) "It's vacation, you can't come by." or c) Since the elders went and said bye to people, they thought that was the end of it. So we are slowly crossing people off this large list but I have hope that someone, at least one of the Elder's people turns into a progressing investigator. My favorite reaction was Yesterday we were in Nesselande, a newer neighborhood. So there are no maps for this little area and the spirit just led us to these houses. One house, the two sons open the door and know who we are. They run to the end of the stairs to yell up to their mother (the potential). She yells something back down and he tells us "It's kind of tricky right now.." and we ask when we can come back and he runs back to the stairs and yells "Mom, hey mom Sunday is a good day for the church right?" and then she yells again and that is when we realized she was drunk. The door was open and the other son lifts up a cup and pretends to be drunk. HA! They both come to the door and are saying right now isn't a good time and they are trying not to laugh but also look embarrassed. We have gotten that a lot lately... it is summer vacation so the drinking starts earlier. And more recently people have gotten more rude. Yesterday we were doing some doors and went up to a group of teens waiting to be let inside, offered them a card and they laughed and said no. Okay moving on... next door the woman listened to our intro and then quickly and quiet defensively said no. Turn to leave and those teens were standing right next to us mocking and laughing. Oh man I had to bite my tongue! So we continued to knock the street. Thursday we went and did service. A family friend of the De Jonges (members in the ward) asked us to give them a call. So we did and their family has hit a really hard spot and the wife, Joke (said like Yoke-ah) asked us to come and help clean her house. So we did. I was touched by the fact that she knew that they could call the LDS Missionaries, could rely on us to drop what we are doing to help them. It was a testimony to me that we are here to be the Lord's representatives and he wants us to reach out to those who are suffering and do what we can to lend a hand. And that was exactly what we did. Friday we had Zone Conference and it was great. I love President and Zr. Bunnell! The spirit was strong and got a renewed sense of motivation to go out and work. I am excited for what is to come. But on the flip side of that the ultimate test of my faith and dedication to this work was placed before me.... Due to the increased amount of accidents and issues Church Headquaters has announced that we must purchase and wear bike helmets. NO! We are in Nederland... land of the bikes. So despite how embarrassing that is, we are to buy helmets this week. So please do not laugh at us... The way they presented it was hilarious, everyone was in absolute shock. It was presented at the end of conference so the closing song was right after and we sang "Nephi's Courage" and well no one made it through the song without laughing. They totally did that on purpose! I am now know as Zr. Waaghals or Sister Daredevil. Things are going here, busy and working hard. Also I learned this week i am going to be an awkward RM, so when I get home please help me out! We are going to play soccer with the zone so we need to catch a train, so if I don't respond to you, know I will get to you next week! I love you all, thanks for your love and support!! Zuster Young

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

How I Met Our President

I got a new bike from Elder Sudweeks and her name is Mindy the Iron Maiden. Taking over the Elders area has been an adventure. So many investigators, potentials, LARC's it is crazy. But has been fun... so many more doors which means more opportunities and more people to testify to. We are seeing progress with our own investigators. They all have their own struggles and personal obstacles but are all working their hardest to come closer to the Savior. They all have strong testimonies and doing what they can to move forward. It is amazing to see them changing and growing. This last week was a bit of a haze.... I was able to meet our new mission President and his wife this weekend. Took a trip to the ER... after hours of pain and finally calling someone they thought I had appendicitis. Well all hospitals around the world are all the same. You wait for hours to see the doctor and the verdict is some weird thing that has no explanation or something you could have told yourself. I am fine, just so you know. By the time I saw the doctor, the pain was gone and so it was some weird thing with no explanation. So finally got home at 1am, and thanks to our ward mission leader and his wife who came to escort us to the hospital. But because of this, the president and his wife came to Gouda the next morning for church. They are incredibly sweet and caring. Full of energy and excitement. I am looking forward to working with them more! Well sorry for just a lame and short e-mail but that is all I have for you guys this week. Living life in the Netherlands to it's fullest. Talking to as many people as we can. I love you all and hope you are happy and healthy. Have a great week! -- Zuster Young

Monday, July 6, 2015

Hitte Heeft ons in de Greep: Holland Bakt

Hoi! Well not a lot to say this week so here is what I got to share: Got my bike stolen... yep Gimpy is gone. There was a thief in the night. So that has put us in a bit of a crazy situation with trying to get to places. But lucky there are 28 elders going home this week and Elder Sudweeks has offered to give his to me. All I had to do was buy him chocolate. Hottest week of the year here in Nederland. I felt like I was at Girls Camp... humid, sticky, and sweaty. There is no AC here so that's fun. Got to spend 15 hours alone of knocking doors, walking outside this week. That is not including the times we were in a lesson. So needless to say I got a shade or two tanner this week. My feet are blistered up and have 3 shades of a tan from my shoes. Because fo the heat something melted on the train tracks so we got stuck out in a small town in the middle of no where. So we walked and worked. Went to go cool off and get some lunch but again no AC, so we were sitting in this cafe and sweating more in there than we were outside. The food was hot and not all that great. We ran out of water... But some cool things did happen: Went to Kinderdijk with Familie Teske and that was gorgeous! Tour de France! The race came right by our apartment and church building!! So we stayed after church with some of the ward members and watched it. Well we waited for about 2.5 hours. So much excitement and anticipation and finally when they came it was over and they passed by in a matter of seconds! It was crazy. But when will you ever be in a small town in Europe that the Tour de France happens to be going through. It was a huge deal and so much fun! Transfer results: Staying in Gouda with Zr. Romney for another 6 weeks!! The elders area is getting closed so we our area just doubled. I am excited, this will be good. So happy to hear about the USA winning the World Cup. All is right in the world now! I love you and miss you all dearly. Have a great week! -- Zuster Young

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

The Switch Was Flipped

Ladies & Gentlemen, The Lord works in mysterious ways and in His due time He will flip the light switch on. And that is exactly what He did this week. After swimming around in the darkness and mist for 3.5 weeks we found a glimmer of light. 7 Potential Investigators found 1 New Investigator 3 Progressing Investigators 3 RAD's dropped 4 Referrals 3 Boek van Mormon gegeven Now I know those numbers may not seem large in the eyes of many, but please do not compare this to other missionaries and other missions. These numbers are pretty good for the area in which I am serving. The culture of my mission is not reflected in large numbers. This week we saw miracles and the hand of the Lord in the details. With things falling through, investigators dropped due to personal and family circumstances, baptismal dates dropped, and hours upon hours of rejection, each and every disappointment turned around by another door knocked or person contacted was noted by the Lord. With no appointments we set out to new little towns and dorpjes to knock. Within 2 hours we had given two BvM's away and another lesson given. Have met some really great people, people who are open and not closed off like typical Dutch. I hope that we can continue to see success and see what the Lord has in store. The Elders in our Area are both going home next week, and with a new president as of tomorrow, we believe they are closing Ommord and we will take on their area. Ya never know though. But the work is hastening, and the Lord is at the helm. Well funny story: Yesterday we had to do weekly planning... well I started making cookies. Everything was going fine, but then thanks to our incredibly ghetto apartment, the oven is ancient and if your are not careful you can burn down the house. Well thankfully I didn't burn the house down, don't worry but came pretty close. We got a knock on the door and the JoVo's (YSA) came over to ask for bread for their sacrament, and then we went back to planning. I forgot about the batch in the oven. Few minutes later I run over and they are BLACK. I open the oven and POOF smoke in my face, the most awful smell in the world. Took the tray out to the back so the house wouldn't be that bad. And then we met our neighbor Arnold, white hair, great white mustache, t-shirt, khakis and orange suspenders. He asked to show us how to operate the gate. We agreed and for the next 10 minutes we gave him a thorough demonstration of how to operate the gate. He was a professor at the Delft Technical Institute, and then for some time in Ohio. He was and is a Mechanical Engineer, and he misses teaching young adults. So thanks to burnt cookies, we now know our neighbor. So again this last week as I have been searching and striving to hand over myself to the Lord, to simply push through and keep going the Lord has once again spoken to me and shown me the way. This week I read two talks from general conference: "If You Will be Responsible" and "Truly Good and without Guile". Which then led me to Alma 38 and 1 Peter 5. Pure revelation from Heavenly Father. A new BvM hero...Shiblon. This week not only in the work but in my personal life and testimony were light bulbs turned on. Saw the Lord in the details of my life. I have been trying to do exactly as Shiblon did, and what is said in 1 Peter. Everyday I ask the Lord to take over the reins and help me. And because He is accepting me, cares about me and has a greater plan for me He is allowing me to suffer a little bit. Just go through the refining process because at the end of all this ME, the true Morgan Alexis Young, a glimpse of who I was before I came to the earth, I will discover her. I am finding Him and seeing stukjes of His plan for me. And right now I am doing exactly what the Lord wants from me. I can't tell you all of what that is, because well everyday is a battle I am fighting to see the good I do. But in the end what I am doing is the Lord's work. I know He is proud of me. I hope and pray that everyone of you can feel that trots van onze Hemelse Vader. Kom te weet dat hij van u houdt. U heeft een doel op de aarde. Ik bid voor jullie elke dag. Ik miss jullie veel. Ik hou van jullie. Fijne week verder! GO USA!!!! -- Zuster Young