Monday, March 24, 2014

March 24, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

This week was SO TOTALLY  WICKED (Incredibles reference...come on).  Remember how I told you we would get 22 lessons this week?  Well, we ended up not having 22...we had 24!  We also had 5 investigators come to church (which is the most we've ever had)!!  This week was so successful!  We worked every second we could and ended up finding 7 new investigators.  Our Zone (18 people) goal was 14 new investigators in 2 weeks.  Sister S and I found half of our Zone's goal in 1 week.  We have been praying for new investigators and have been so blessed. 


We also bought new bikes online and they came in last Monday so this week we rode them everywhere!  We rode over 42 miles and we are so sore.  My bike even got a flat tire on Friday, but luckily our Assistant Ward Mission Leader is awesome and he fixed it that night and we continued riding the next day.  Sister S named her bike Bruno because she loves Bruno Mars.  My bike just doesn't look like a Taylor so if anyone has any name ideas let me know.  It needs to be very unique and a guy name.  A scriptural name would be nice too.  I'm thinking Nimrod or something weird like that.  :) 

We have been going to bed at 10:00 instead of 10:30 because we are so exhausted when we get home.  On Wednesday, someone texted us at 10:19 and it woke Sister Soleta up, so she went to grab the phone off the dresser and she ended up falling out of bed.  Let me remind you that our beds are almost 4 feet tall.  It was pretty much the funniest thing ever.  :)


This week we got to serve a lot as well.  We helped Sister H (who is like 80 something) with her yard work.  We raked and raked and raked...  We also helped Sister L plant some flowers because she can't bend over.  And we went on a scavenger hunt to find some clothes for Sister M so she could come to church.  We were able to find some that fit her, and we dropped off a box of church clothes at her house on Saturday.  Her face was filled with light and she was so excited.  It felt so good to be able to help her out.  "When ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God" (Mosiah 2:17)


Well we taught Bill again and we talked about the Atonement.  He asked why Jesus Christ had to come and suffer for us.  Why couldn't God just accept His children as sinners?  We talked about how no unclean thing can dwell with God so we must be made clean in some way.  Then we watched the Mormon Message called "The Mediator".  If you haven't seen it...please watch it.  It is my favorite video.  They talk about justice and mercy and how they play together.  There is a man who is in debt and he needs help because if justice wins then he goes to jail, but if mercy wins then the creditor doesn't get paid.  He pleads out, "Isn't there some way that both justice and mercy can be served?"  There is a way, but that way requires another...a mediator.  Someone else comes and pays the creditor so justice has been served and the man doesn't have to go to jail so mercy was served also.  He tells the man that he must pay back the debt to him.  He says, "It will not be easy, but it will be possible."  This is what Christ does for us.  He forgives us when we show Him that we are willing to do all we can to pay Him back.  He is the Mediator.  He allows us to receive mercy.  Without Him we could not return to our Heavenly Father's presence.   



Sister Moon

 Sister H, her granddaughter and I raking up a storm!

Sister S, Bruno, myself, and my unnamed bike.

Sister B and I at church.  Nerding it up because my allergies were getting the best of me Sunday morning.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

March 17, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

This week has been awesome!  We taught 21 lessons (we tried so hard for 22 so we could sing the Taylor Swift song, but it didn't happen).  Next week we will get 22 though!  We found 4 new investigators because the weather has been awesome, and we've been riding bikes like crazy, and we've been talking to millions of people! 

Yolanda was probably my favorite lesson this week.  We watched the Restoration DVD with her and answered all the questions she had.  We gave her a chapter to read from the Book of Mormon and then asked if she would be willing to read it.  She said yes!  Then we asked if she would pray to know if the Book of Mormon is true.  She said yes!  Then we asked her, "When you know the Book of Mormon is true will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by someone who holds the Priesthood authority?".  SHE SAID YES!!!!  We are meeting with her again this week!

 This Thursday we also celebrated the 172nd birthday of the Relief Society.  We all got together and had some food and listened to Sister T speak.  She is the Temple President's wife and she encouraged everyone to go to the temple.  She said for the Redland's temple to always be filled to capacity each temple recommend holder needs to do 27 ordinances per year.  Now those numbers aren't the same for everyone's temple district, but the point is we can all go to the temple more.  It was a great talk.  She talked about the scripture 1 Nephi 3:7 and said she knows the Lord will give us no commandment unless He prepares a way for us to do it.  Going to the temple is a commandment so the Lord will prepare a way for us to do it.

We also had the wonderful opportunity to listen to Neil L. Andersen (a member of the quorum of the 12 apostles), Anthony D. Perkins (a member of the seventy), and Douglass Highham (a member of the seventy) in Rancho Cucamonga on the 15th.  I also got to shake all of their hands!!  They all talked about the enabling power of the Atonement along with other things.  I'll type some of the quotes that I really liked.

 "We reserve some of the best missionaries to serve in the United States because this is the bread basket of the church.  If it stops here then we are in trouble.  To keep up with the growth of the church in Africa, we need to help the church grow here." - Andersen 

"50% of the members of the church know the church is true when they see the full-time missionaries" - Highham

"Christ didn't have to go tracting because people saw His countenance and wanted to know more about Him.  We need to have a countenance like that.  Strive for those Christ like attributes." - Perkins

"Don't judge yourself based on other people you know because your life isn't over yet.  We have a long way to go.  The Lord doesn't compare.) - Andersen

"The enabling and strengthening power of the Atonement helps us to be something tomorrow that we aren't today" - David A. Bednar (quoted by Andersen)

"Be patient with yourself, but also push yourself" - Andersen

Neil L. Andersen also challenged us to talk to everyone and if we don't know what to talk about, talk about Jesus Christ because we represent Him. 

I know that Jesus Christ came to this earth and died for me and for you.  His Father (our Father) willingly allowed His son to suffer so He could see you and me again.  It wasn't easy for either one of them, but it needed to happen.  I often think about that as a missionary.  I am away from my parents and it's hard for them and it's hard for me, but it needs to happen.  I am sharing the good news of Jesus Christ.  I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior and Redeemer.  I know that He lives.  I know that because of Him I can live again.  It is through Him that we can return to live in our Father's presence.  It is ONLY through Him (Helaman 5:9) that it is possible because we "have all sinned and come short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23).  I know this, but others do not.  That is why I am here.  I'm here to pay it forward.

Sister Moon 
The pictures are of the lovely sunset, service project, and chocolate chip ice cream root beer floats...

Friday, March 14, 2014

March 10, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

I have made it through my first transfer, and I am staying with Sister S in the A Ward!  12 more transfers to go then I'll be heading home to ITALY!!!!  For those that have not heard, my dad got an assignment to Poggio Renatico  (Ferrera),Italy (wherever the heck that is).  I have mixed feelings about that because they will be so far away and letters will come slower, but Italy is a cool place and the ice cream is awesome.  I just don't know how I feel about it yet. 

I am so happy to get to stay in the A Ward because our members are super amazing.  We told one of our members that we really liked strawberries and sure enough 45 minutes later we hear a knock on the door and she comes in with 7 pounds of strawberries!!!!

This week has been tiring!  My companion and I borrowed bikes and rode over 25 miles this week.  We have been having a lot of fun, so we are planning to buy our own bikes this week.  The only bad thing about being in the High Desert are all the hills.  It's ridiculous.  We take snacks with us though and take breaks in between appointments so it's not too bad :) 

Yesterday we were extremely sore!  We don't know if it was from riding bikes so much on Friday and Saturday, or if it was from our service project on Saturday.  We dug holes for a sprinkler system to be put in, at the L's house.  It was pretty crazy because they have 3 dogs that kept wanting to play with us, but really they just got in the way.  I have realized that I am much weaker than I thought. 

We had 20 lessons this week and 11 of them were with Less Actives.  We did have 2 Less Actives come to church this week though!!!!  They haven't been in forever, but they came yesterday so that was amazing!  It's so nice to see that what we are doing is actually making a difference in people's lives.  Being a missionary has its ups and downs but the ups are sooo awesome that the downs are worth enduring through.     

I would like to share one story that we shared with several people this week from the February 2014 Ensign called Our Light in Darkness  by Susan Wyman

"Our family had just experienced a devastating house fire, and all eight of us were living in a temporary three-bedroom mobile home in our front yard. Our family faced challenges and discord.

My husband was not active in the Church at the time. Our two teenage sons were making choices that would lead only to sorrow. Simultaneously, I was serving as Young Women president in our ward, and several of the young women were struggling with serious temptations. Some of their parents also faced struggles and therefore were not assisting their daughters at this critical time.

I knew these young women needed me to help them through their spiritual land mines. I knew my six sons needed me. I knew my good husband depended on my strength. Yet there seemed to be nothing but darkness around me, and I felt empty, weak, and incapable of leading these loved ones to safety.

Late one night as I rocked our infant son in the stillness of our temporary home, my thoughts turned to those who needed me to be strong. I felt the pervasive darkness that surrounded them. In my anguish I prayed with all my heart that Heavenly Father would show me the way to help them despite my inadequacies. He answered immediately and showed me the way.

I seemed to see myself in our ward’s large cultural hall, which had no windows. It was late at night, and there was not even a glimmer of light. Then I lit a tiny birthday candle. It seemed so insignificant, yet the power of that miniscule light was enough to displace the blackness.

That was my answer! The quantity of darkness surrounding us in the world simply does not matter. Light is eternal and is vastly more powerful than darkness (see 2 Corinthians 4:6; Mosiah 16:9; D&C 14:9). If we remain worthy of the constant companionship of the Holy Spirit, our souls can reflect sufficient light to displace any amount of darkness, and others will be drawn to that light within us.

This was all I needed to know. This simple insight has carried me through the past 25 years with the knowledge that with the Lord’s help and guidance, we can do—and be—all that He needs us to do and be in this world of darkness."


This story means so much to me.  We have to remember that light ALWAYS overcomes darkness.  Sometimes we see other people that are like a light and it lifts us up, but other times we need to be a light to lift other people up.  We must always be "an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity" (1 Timothy 4:12).  We need to look to Christ and find His light because that lifts us up.  Then we need to be a light to everyone else so we can lift them up.  That's what missionary work is all about.  Have a great week and I will too!


Sister Moon

Monday, March 3, 2014

March 3, 2014

Dear Family and Friends,

 This week was pretty awesome!  We taught 22 lessons and 13 of them were to Less Actives.  When I look at these numbers all I think about is Taylor Swift!  Just kidding.  But, I seriously haven't heard a Taylor Swift song in 50 days!!!!  (Not even in a store or at a gas station).  What is wrong with the California radio stations!?  Don't they know what's good?

 Anywho, we had 6 cancelled appointments last weekend, none during the week, just on Friday and Sunday so we tracted a lot on Sunday and found 2 new investigators!!  We have appointments with them this week, so we will see how that goes.  We had a huge storm on Friday and in Hesperia there are a lot of hills sooo there were like 4 streets that were flooded and we have to take I Avenue everywhere.  So we drove a lot on Friday and wasted miles.  We get 800 miles per month and Friday was the last day in the month and we only had like 700 miles so it wasn't a big deal. 

 This week was exchange week so I got to spend 24 hours with Sister P, our sister training leader, (it made me miss Rebecca) instead of Sister S, my companion.  It was crazy fun and freezing cold.  We had a pretty busy day.  We had something every hour, basically.  We taught Brother N, James, Kay Allen, Brandon, Rob, Tammy, and Diana.  You don't know those people, but it's ok because neither do I!!!!  We did have about 5 minutes of free time and we took some nice action pictures of our nerf gun war. 

This week I also met Sidney Going's cousin, Sister Smith.  For those of you who don't know, Sidney Going was a famous Rugby Player who put his dream on hold to serve a mission.  He is an inspiration to me.  Sister Smith's like 90 years old.  She shared her scrapbooks with us and showed us pictures of New Zealand.  She shared a ton of stories.  It was a great night!

Yesterday was a great Sunday!  In Gospel Principles we read Mosiah 3:12 and it says "Salvation cometh to none...except it be through repentance and faith on the Lord, Jesus Christ".  We talked about the word "on".  We literally have to put our sins on Christ and allow Him to take them from us for us to be forgiven.  When we recognize that He has our sins on Him, it should make us strive to do better.

We also have transfers next Monday.  Hopefully I will stay here with Sister Soleta, because we love it here and we love each other.  I'll let you know next week.  I can't believe I've already been out for 5 weeks.  Time flies.  Hope everyone has a fantastic week.  Love,

Sister Moon