Thursday, September 5, 2013

09/04/13-Week 30 in Indiana [Week 1 of Transfer 6]


I must just say that I am a little crazy today. You see, my stress level this morning sky rocketed. 
I have news for you!!! Transfers:

I am staying in Huntington, IN.
I am training again.
AND I am now a Sister Training Leader for my Zone (a mix between a zone leader and district leader thing...)

Sister Colton is leaving and training!!! [I feel like a proud little mom:)]

So, keep sending me letters at:
337 William St #1
Huntington, IN 46750

Anyways. When we saw that President Porter was calling this morning. Sister Colton and I wanted to throw up. We both had thought that we slid past the radar and didn't have to train. BUT! At noon today, they dropped the bomb on us. I have to say that when I was asked to be a Sister Training leader I started to cry a little bit. My last companion, Sister Cordner, was one. I am so grateful that I was able to be with her for a transfer and get an eye into the life of one. But I am so nervous to actually be one now. I feel so inadequate. This past Sunday the Zone Leaders called me and told me that President Porter requested that I come to the Missionary Leadership Council (there were pictures of that on Facebook). I wasn't sure why because normally only Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders go to that. But, I said sure. While I was there, I felt so inadequate! Those missionaries are so amazing. They are really good at just talking to people. They have amazing ideas. They are definitely leaders. As I sat there I got overwhelmed with everything that I have to improve on. I am nowhere near perfect. I have no idea how to be a leader. President Porter said that he wouldn't normally call me because I am so quiet, but Heavenly Father has chosen me to do this. I just have to rely on that. I have to remember that this is a call from my Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ and that all things are possible through them. I am going to need a lot of extra prayers and supportI know that by myself I am completely incapable of doing this work. But I have to rely on my Savior, and He will get me through. I am just going to pray really really hard every single moment! I am not sure how to do this, but I know my Savior does. And as long as I rely on Him, it will all work out. 

Oh man. Anyways, this week has been really long!! Since Preparation Day was not on Monday, it has just kept going and going and going!! But, we are finally at the end. We had some amazing things happen this week!!

This past week we stopped by to visit a less-active family. We have met them a couple of times just on their door step, but have never been able to get into their home. This past week, we met them at the door, and they told us to come back during the day. So a few days later, we stopped by, and we got in! We talked with them and found out that they have seriously been thinking about the need to come back. They told us that the last time that we stopped by, it sparked a conversation with them at the dinner table with their 10 and 9 year old. They talked to them about what baptism was and realized that they have a great responsibility for their children. They are coming to understand that they have to teach their children the Gospel. We had a really good lesson with them. We talked about how the gospel is a lifelong commitment. We are to be examples of our Savior for the rest of our lives. We talked with them about Peter in the bible where he is commanded to leave his ores and his fishes and feed His sheep. When we are baptized, we are commanded to leave behind out ores and our fishes. We are asked to leave behind all that we thought we loved before, and become disciples of our Savior Jesus Christ. And it is not just for a few months or a year or so. But it is for the rest of our life. This gospel is a gospel of Becoming. Not just knowing. But yeah, so we talked with them and they are going to pray and think about having their children taught and brought into the church. We are very excited! They are so prepared.

Then we had a GREAT lesson with Shelby. She is still doing wonderful! She should be coming to church this week!! We are going to do a church tour tomorrow night at the church and commit her to baptism at the baptismal font. We are very excited! She has prayed every night to know if the church was true. And she said that she feels that God is telling her that it is true! We are so excited. We also went to her grandmother's (Lorraine) house and taught her about the restoration. It was a really good lesson. She had lots of questions about the differences between the churches. She has noticed the things that are going wrong in the Catholic church, and is searching for more. She asked for a Book of Mormon because she wanted to read it. She didn't want us to come back yet, but she wanted to search through it on her own. And then she told us that she was glad that we came and talked with her more about what her granddaughter (Shelby) was learning. And that now she is just fine if Shelby decides to join the church. Yay! We were worried about her family. But it seems that everything will work out right. She is moving along wonderfully!! :D

Next Saturday we have 5 baptisms! The Bowers family and Saranna Kewish. We are so excited for all of them! Saranna is very excited and she knows that this church is true. Her mom, Susan, is the only thing that is rough for her right now. Susan has been having a REALLY rough week this past week. We are really worried about her. Keep them in your prayers please!! Things have been very rough for Susan and she has been in a very deep depression hole. Everything has been building up since Saranna's baptism is coming up, and it has been too much for her to handle. Keep them in your prayers please!! But Saranna seems to stay upbeat. We think it may be partly because that is how she copes; by not really letting it sink in. The Bowers are doing great! They have had a ton of trials this past week too. Their daughter was in a car accident and Satan has really been working hard at them. But they are pushing through it all. They refuse to give up. We are very excited for them! We are just working with members to be in contact with our investigators more. They are struggling just coming to lessons with us, so we are praying they have the missionary fire work within them. Hopefully they catch the missionary wave!

Funny story. This past Sunday, Sister Colton and I tried to make Sister Kennedy's legendary chocolate cake. But let's just shouldn't use a glass pan. We baked the cake during our lunch break, and then at dinner we came back to frost it. After we had frosted it and it looked delicious, we broke our fast and ate it. And it was......not so good. Apparently it hadn't cooked all of the way through. it tasted like eggs...half way cooked. So, Sister Colton and I thought that maybe we could just stick it back in the oven for a little while longer (with frosting and all). Let's just say it was a bad idea. After baking it for almost 30 more minutes, it was now a crusted, eggy, soggy mess. It was quite the adventure. I guess I am just not supposed to bake on my mission! I will take it as Heavenly Father trying to put me on a diet ;) But it was quite hilarious.

Then!! We had a great lesson with a Less-Active, Adesa. She was raised in the church, but her family went off and on. This past week we went back to teach her the Restoration again, and she had a non-member friend there, Sierra. It was a perfect opportunity! We taught the restoration to them both and the spirit was so strong. Adesa started to get a little teary-eyed when we recited the first vision. It was an incredible lesson. Her friend wanted the Book of Mormon and wanted to read it. We are so excited! Heavenly Father is leading the elect to us. Our investigators are literally just falling into our laps. It is nothing that we are doing. We are just trying to be obedient and diligent and follow the spirit. And He is truly doing the rest :)

There have been many other miralces this week. The work is wonderful and moving forward at such a fast past. I can testify that this IS the Lord work. This is the only true church on the earth. We have the fulness of the gospel We have the Authority from God. We have living Prophet who talks with God and Jesus Christ and leads His church today. I am so privileged to have the opportunity to be a missionary at this time. I hope that all of you are looking for missionary opportunities!! They are all around us. Our brothers and sisters need our help to find the Father in Heaven again. To make it back to Him. And it is our responsibility and privilege to help them along the path. Oh man! I love this gospel. The church is SO true. I can't even handle it sometimes. Just reading the scriptures and truly studying them, there is no doubt in my mind that this is the true gospel on the earth. Joseph Smith was just a imperfect man who was called to do a perfect work.  The Book of Mormon is the way to know. We must not forget that whom God calls, He qualifies. We may not be perfect, but his Chruch is. His gospel is. He translated the Book of Mormon and that is the proof that he was called of God. That he was a Prophet. If you have any doubts, take Moroni's challenge and read and pray about the Book of Mormon. That is what we, as missionaries, tell people every single day. Just like Elder Holland told the world in the last general conference, if you don't know this church is true yet, you can lean on my testimony until you can gain one of your own. I just love this gospel. I know I keep saying it, but it is true. We are so lucky to have it. Not just part of it is true, ALL of it is true.

I love you all! Thank you for your prayers and support!!
Sister Farr

08/26/13-Week 29 in Indiana [Last Week of Transfer 5]


First off, next week is transfers. I repeat, next week is transfers. Which means, next thursday, I may be in a completely different place!!! So.....send your mail to my apartment address in the next few days, or just start sending them to the mission office address and they will forward them to me (the address for the office is PO Box 11671  Cincinnati, OH 45248). And!! Next week my P-Day will NOT be on Monday. P-Day will be on Wednesday. So now worries when I don't send an email on Monday :) I have not died :) Just hold tight for Wednesday. hahahah. That is all of the business. On to the good stuff!!

I got to meet an Apostle yesterday! I met Elder Dallin H. Oaks. He was coming to Cincinnati to do some work with the new stake presidency they called, but he had a special meeting just with us missionaries. It was AMAZING! Sister Colton and I had to wake up at 4:30am to get there in time. Yes, we were exhausted. But it was worth it! We drove up with another set of sisters and had lots of fun. What was even coooooooler is that I got to sing for Elder Oaks in the little missionary choir. Now, there is a funny story behind this. Last Friday, Sister Colton and I had just finished having lunch with a member and we get a call from our Zone Leaders. They tell us that they have a HUGE favor to ask of us. We say, sure! how can we help you? Then Elder Petersen asks us to sing "I Know that My Redeemer Lives" right there. So, confused, but used to being exactly obedient, Sister Colton and I look at each other quite puzzled, but start to sing to him. When we get to the Chorus we start to trail off and stop and ask "now...why are we singing this??" (you know, because we didn't really take a second thought before). Then he says "That was great!! You just auditioned to be in the choir for Elder Oaks." We both looked at each other and started to laugh. You see...Sister Colton is tone deaf. So, she doesn't really.....sing with choirs. But Elder Petersen is persistent and eventually gets me to say okay. Then later, the Assistants call and ask me again. But was amazing. The spirit was so strong as we sang that song. I just felt so honored to be able to sing. Alllllllllllso, when Elder Oaks was about to get to the building, the Senior Couples told us that he wanted to have a picture with all of us so we all started to file out of the chapel into the gym where they had some bleachers. Sister Colton and I run to the restroom quickly, and when we come back we get in the back of the line to go in. Right as we do so, the Assistants run to the door that we are standing next to and say, "He's here!" They hold open the door for a few seconds and Elder Oaks walks into the building. The first thing he says is "Hello, Sisters!" We reply in a shrilled "hi!!!!!" We probably looked star struck. He said he would be right back to shake our hands. When he came back, he was waiting for his "companion" he called him. But it was a member of the 70, Elder Bennett. He tried to have a casual conversation with us, but all we could do was laugh and nod our heads. I had completely forgot who I was, where I was from, and why I was there. (you know that feeling when someone really.....popular comes and talks to you?? And you have no idea what to say or do?? yeah, that kind of feeling). It was pretty great. Then they started to shake our hands....and I got to be first!! :) Oh man. It was an incredible day yesterday! It was full of.....9 hours of driving and Elder Oaks. Sooo great :D

Anyways, on with the rest of last week!! I have some very exciting news. Remember Saranna? Well, her baptism would have been last saturday :( But! Her brother, Jeremiah got baptized on Saturday. And right before the service, she came up to us and said "I want to get baptized :)" We both jumped for joy! She decided that day that she wanted to be baptized on September 14th! So, she is ready and excited for that day! All we have to do is teach her some last few commandments and she will be set to go!! Oh man it was a miracle. Also, good news with her mom, Susan!! She has truly had a change of heart. We went over on Tuesday to have lunch with her. As we were talking afterwards she started to explain to us how she no longer had a desire to just spend her money. She has struggled with budgeting since she was in her teenage years. And that is something that has been the source of many problems for her. If you gave her cash, she would spend it!! But a few weeks ago, her family had to go without power and gas and everything because of bills not being paid and it really hit her. Now whenever she sees money, she just thinks about her children and how they need it. She has had A CHANGE OF HEART. You know, the change of heart they talk about that is manifest when someone has truly repented?? Yes. She has truly gone through the repentance process. I am so proud of her. As we told her that she was having that change of heart, she gasped and clasped her hands over her mouth and began to cry as she realized that she was truly changing herself for the better :) It was amazing. Miracles do happen. 

Then we had a really great experience with a less-active this week. We met him outside on his doorstep and just had a casual conversation. We asked him about his background with the church and about his non-member wife. He was very nice and happy to see us. Before we left, we asked him if we could say a prayer. He kind of looked at us a little funny, but said "sure!" During the prayer, for some reason, we blessed him to have help in his work. It was just a simple prayer to help them. A few minutes after we left, we got this text: "Thank you for your prayer!! I so needed it. Seconds after u left I was called for an interview. Thank you again sisters! Wow, God blows my mind! I've got to get back to church!!!" Sister Colton and I looked at each other in amazement. We had no idea that he needed any help with finding a new job. We had no idea he was looking for a new job. But as I prayed, I just had the thought to pray for his work, so I followed it. I know it was all our Father in Heaven. Heavenly Father truly is all knowing. He is our master. He loves us and cares about all that we do! He cares about everything in our life. No matter how big or small. The Spirit can truly lead us in all that we do! The small whispering's of the spirit will lead us in ALL things. It may seem insignificant, but it can truly bring about miracles. 

Shelby is progressing!! Last time we committed her to read the Introduction of the Book of Mormon, and we came back and she had read all the way through 1 Nephi 3. Now, that may not seem like very much, but for a non-member it is INCREDIBLE!! We were so happy. She really, truly wants to know. She is recognizing the spirit and she really wants to know. We are hoping to ask her to get baptized this week! Wish us luck :D

We went tracting the other day on Gay St. We were debating on going to a Less-actives house, but we had meant to tract that street for a couple of weeks now and hadn't got to it. So, we decided, that obviously God had someone there who He wanted us to talk to. The first house we knock on, a girl comes out. And she quickly tells us that she is an Atheist. We started to ask her about why she was and about her history. After her telling us that she was raised Catholic, and she just felt that God never told her that He WAS there, she just figured he didn't care about her. As we kept talking with her, she started to just ask us random questions about our religion. Questions about God that probably stump most people. But, we had all of the answers. She talked about how the Bible had been changed. We brought up the Book of Mormon. She talked about how the Bible was written so long ago and we needed current things. We talked about a living Prophet. She talked about pretty much the dispensations, and we talked about the restoration. She asked about our purpose here. We told her about the Plan of Salvation (briefly). It was so interesting to sit there and have her ask us all of these questions, and for us to have all of the answers. You could tell that she had obviously stumped some other religious people in the past, but she was puzzled to why we kept having the answers. It finally came down to the point where we asked her if she wanted to know if God was real. And she told us that she didn't see the need to. She had no desire. We tried to bear testimony to her, but we could tell that she didn't have any true interest. She was very polite and animated when she spoke, but not quite ready to accept God yet. It was a really cool experience though. We knew that God had sent us to talk with her that day. To show her that He truly does have all of the answers. That there is "logic" behind His ways. It was a testimony building experience for me, because I realized the same things too as we responded to her questions. Friends and Family, the gospel is true. This is the ONLY true church on the earth today. We are lead by a living Prophet. He receives guidance from our Savior through the Spirit. Through prayer. Through searching the scriptures. That is the only way to know. Through Him. I just love this gospel!! :D

We had so many great lessons this week. Our investigator Linda is also progressing. She was the one that the George's invited over for dinner and we taught her a brief overview of the Plan of Salvation and she said "wow, that makes sense!" She is 70 years old. And she could feel the difference. This week we had dinner again and taught her the full Plan of Salvation. She just kept saying how much it made sense. She said she never really understood the whole catholic way of thinking. But she understands this so much better. The George's are a young family and have made such an impact on Linda. She knows that they love the gospel and that it makes them who they are. They have played such a HUGE role in her progress even this far. They have prepared her. Never underestimate your impact in someone's life. You are an example to all of those around you. Others
notice when you follow the Savior. They notice when you have the spirit. There is something different about us. It is because we are members of His church. He is our master. We have the fullness. And we have the responsibility to bring it to others. (side note: You have to look up the talk "Missionary Next Door" It is AMAZING!! I am going to do it when I get home. listen to it.). We have another appointment to teach Linda more about the church this upcoming week. If it wasn't for the George's we would have never taught her. Members are SO important. We (missionaries) can't do it on our own!

I also had another wonderful experience this week. I was having a rough morning and was just down on myself. I was thinking of all of my inadequacies and wondering if I will ever be good enough to make it to the Celestial Kingdom. I wanted to make Heavenly Father proud, but I just thought of all of the mistakes I have made and it felt impossible to make him proud. I was letting Satan into my head. After companion study, before we went out for the day, I asked Heavenly to tell me if He loved me. I figured He wouldn't tell me through a huge overwhelming spiritual manifestation, but I told Him I wanted to know. And I would be looking for His answer. We went about our day, and it was actually a pretty good day. As we came in for Lunch, we looked in the mailbox. And low and behold I had a letter. From my best friend. In the Philippines. (I haven't  had a letter from there for almost 5 months). When I saw it in the mail, I knew that it was Heavenly Fathers way of saying "I love you". Heavenly Father has always answered my prayers through other people. He answers our prayers in different ways. I have always wanted him to answer me through a big spiritual manifestation, but that just isn't how He does it for me. But he has sent many angels into my life to show me of my Father's love for me. Each of you have been an angel for me in my life. Thank you for always supporting me and helping me make it through. I love you all!!!

Sister Farr & Sister Colton
Stay close to our Father in Heaven. He will tell us what we need to do to get back to Him. Because, that is ultimately our goal.  

I love you all!!! I keep you in my prayers :)
Sister Farr