Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Monday, October 26, 2015

All Kinds of Fire!

Real Fire
This week we got tired of not being able to see in the bathroom, so we pulled out a candle only to realize we had no matches, so we used a lighter (it was too small to reach inside the candle to the wick) to light Q-tips on fire and then try to light the candle. So incredibly hard and did not work as well as I thought, ugh. In the end, we did not light the candle and our apt smelled of smoke from the many burnt Q-tips.

Make Believe Fire
Remember how we were going to visit the deaf man’s family this week, well that day we were almost to their house (which by the way is very far away!!) when someone from our apt building called us. They told us that they thought something was burning in our apt, and that our apt might be on fire. We were shocked and started sprinting to the closest taxi stop, got a taxi ... the taxi driver asked us, "are you sisters?" to which we said yes and asked how he knew - he almost got baptized in another area but moved and couldn't find the church, so we are going to teach him now- HOW COOL!!!!.... then we got home fast! The whole way home I was praying my English scriptures would be okay and my comp was praying that her shoes would be okay (one after my own heart). Our floor was smoky, but thank goodness it was another apt. Our apt was safe! I think God made that happen so we would meet that taxi driver because he is so prepared for us! 

Spiritual Fire
This week, the spirit has truly been with us. We have had amazing lessons and experiences. One of our investigators has been investigating for over a year (her husband and daughter are members) and I have been teaching her the entire time I've been in Erdenet.... well, she's GETTING BAPTIZED THIS FRIDAY!!!! I couldn’t be more excited!! This family will all be members now, and come a year from now, will be able to go to the temple together to be sealed as a family for all eternity! How cool is that?! AND, an investigator that my comp and I taught most of the lessons to, then gave to the elders because we were too busy, is ALSO GETTING BAPTIZED FRIDAY!!! AND, the new investigators just keep coming; showing up to church on their own, passed from city missionaries, meeting on the street and in taxis- we have so much work and so little time! Erdenet definitely needs more missionaries!

Other News
My STL and I
Our STL's came to town and we did a split, and I went on a split with the Mongolian STL (I taught her mom in my first area), and she was so amazing! I learned a ton from her and she said she is amazed by my language progress! woohoo! I got new boots- wow, my feet are apparently huge! My size almost doesn't exist here, but I found a pair and they are working well. The senior couple have finished their mission, so we had to say goodbye to our Erdenet American mom and dad... we will dearly miss their zucchini bread, kindness, and help in so many ways! Sunday my comp and I each had to speak for 30 minutes in both branches as there were no speakers - we were a success! I talked about Christ-like attributes, shared some scriptures, and  everyone kept telling me everything they learned from our talks! woohoo again! I'm keeping the commitment from General Conference to ponderize a scripture each week and it's going great! Transfers are next week, and my comp and I are getting nervous... we really don't want to leave. I think that's all for now! Love you all!

Our favorite soup
Ketchup on rice - it's a Mongolian thing.

A Mongolian door: you bang on them til someone comes out.
One of our awesome investigators.

Some of the ladies in the branch.

A wonderful family we are teaching.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

No water, no light, we're sick, but it's alright!‏

This week was work work work. We have so many people to meet with, some of which are progressing really well! We have a few who may be able to get baptized in a few weeks... just after the transfer, so we are praying we won't get transferred... we want to see our investigators get baptized so badly!!! And, we keep having new people show up to church.. this Sunday we got a new married couple, 3 22 yr old guys, and a few other random people as potentials, just by the Lord leading them to our church on Sunday! It's so cool! And, we have so many investigators, that we had to give a chunk of them to the elders because we simply don't have the time or ability to meet them all--- so sad :( but the elders will do a good job...

On another note, this week was interesting: we have been living without water in our apt (it finally came back), 4 dead light bulbs in our apt (so it's quite dark, haha), and we both got super sick (but recovered quickly luckily). But from this came newly discovered talents- the ability to shower from a water bottle, getting changed properly without light and look decent too, and I can eat Mongolian food without struggle (because I was sick and couldn't taste anything). There truly is always a bright side :)

An exert of a conversation with my comp:
comp: "Do you ever get angry?"
me: "ummm, what? yes, yes, yes."
comp: giggling
me: "why?"
comp: "I thought you've never gotten angry before..."
-concluded with both of us laughing :)

I am taking this conversation as a compliment! haha, love my comp :) She really thought I don't get angry...

Also, I translated for and talked with a deaf man in one of our branches on Sunday. It was so cool!!! I only know a little of sign language, but it was enough to help, and we are going to visit his family this week! I'm actually excited to visit them, even though it will be difficult to communicate for sure, but that's where trust in the Lord comes in :)

Not much else to report. Feel free to send questions about anything! I love you all, and like I'm sure I've said a million times before- I love this work and I love these people so much. I'm so grateful for the decision I made to serve a mission. This is truly where I'm meant to be- serving God's beloved children in this special country.

Sunset from the apartment

Monday, October 12, 2015

Finding Families

So this week was AMAZING in all aspects! We watched general conference, went to a zone training in Darhan, I got my birthday package, we played volleyball with the YSAs, I read the most amazing talk during personal study this week (becoming a consecrated missionary---read it!), and we found new families to teach. Seriously an awesome week!

Monday, we played volleyball with the YSA for FHE, and it was so incredibly fun! Most of them had never played before, but they all play basketball (Mongolians looove basketball), so they picked it up quickly, and it was an awesome game! I'm sad to say I have lost whatever skills I had from daily practice in the MTC, so sad :( haha

This week, we went to Darhan again for a zone training, and it was the best zone training I've had so far! Instead of focusing on how to teach a principle or whatnot, the whole training was on believing in ourselves and our potential and encouragement... it was basically like women's conference for missionaries ("you rock" "you can do it" etc) I learned a ton from it. At every zone training, 2 or 3 missionaries are chosen randomly to give a talk on a topic everyone prepared for... this week was about patience. And of course, I was chosen. My head injury had really tried my patience this last month or so, and one day (when my head was the absolute worst) for personal study I felt that instead of reading the BofM, I needed to read the august Liahona (church magazine). And in that Liahona was the answer to my prayers - a talk on patience in which the author shares an experience very similar to mine and then gives wonderful insights on the topic. I would encourage everyone to read it again. Anyways, I shared my experience at conference and my testimony and the spirit was so strong, and some told me that was exactly what they needed to hear. The Lord not only uses missionaries to strengthen and help members and investigators, but other missionaries as well.

Also, general conference was amazing! I had to wait to watch it because the translations had to be done for Mongolian, but I watched it this weekend and learned so much from the speakers and the spirit as I watched. I loved Russel M Nelson's talk on women, and it made me think about the kind of woman I want to become; when I get the Liahona I'll make lists and goals to do so :) I also loved the idea of ponderizing a scripture a week, and have committed to do it at least throughout my mission, and hopefully my life! I already chose my first scripture!

We are the luckiest missionaries on the planet! In Mongolia, since we can't proselyte, finding investigators can become very difficult, but my companion and I have been so blessed as of late. People seem to be coming to us! This week we found to new FAMILIES- yep, families, woohoo! Both of these families were found the same way- a teenage daughter came to church on her own and told us to meet her and her family. Both families seem just perfectly ready for the gospel and expressed their strong desire to belong to our church and that our teachings are exactly what they want in their lives.... um, how cool is that?! We are sooo lucky!

Anyways, that's about all for this week.I love you all!
Enjoying birthday treats!

Groupies - we came out together and are serving in the same zone. 
Zone selfie

Zone leader & AP pretending to be me and my comp

Monday, October 5, 2015

General Conference is Almost Here

First off, I just heard about the incident at UCC this past week, and I want to say my heart is home in Roseburg right now as so many are struggling with loss. I know a few of those hurt and killed and I am praying for their families. Things like this are very difficult, but I'm so grateful for our knowledge of the Plan of Salvation and that we may see those loved ones again. I know this gospel is true and that we truly will be with loved ones again after this life. God loves each of His children and He created this plan to bless and help each of us.

As for this week, the work is coming along. We have many investigators and got even more this week, but because we spend all of our time with investigators, I think the ALA's have been a little neglected and numbers are dwindling in sacrament, but we've set goals to help them and we pray that we may be the Lord's hands here in Erdenet.

One day this week we were wandering around a gir district when we heard quiet cries for help...we looked around and found two little puppies. One was hurt, bloody, and couldn't move, just crying on the ground. The other was standing guard of what I assume to be its brother. Lots of people passed by, but no one would help. We wanted to take them and help them, but there's really nowhere here to take stray dogs (no pounds or clinics or such), so we went to a dilgur (mini mart of sorts), bought canned sardines and water, went back to the dogs and fed them the fish and water. We stayed for a while feeding them, then said a prayer for them. We stayed with them for a while, but had to leave eventually. It was so sad.

Also, I don't remember if I filled everyone in before, but about two weeks ago, I was walking down the street, looking down and ran into a street sign. I hit the top back of my head pretty hard, creating a mushy indent and have had pretty bad migraines since. Last week I got a blessing, which calmed my mind and spirit about it, but this week it was too bad and I had to stay home one day. The struggle to stay home is real when you want to be out working! Anyways, the mission doctor prescribed intense medication, and I'm back up and running again! It still hurts, but it's better now and will heal in time! 

In regards to language - it's coming along. I'm learning more and more Mongolian and sign language and I'm doing a lot more translating now for the senior couple, which is a challenge but kinda fun!  Today we are going to play volleyball with the YSA. I'm so excited! 


1. How, when & where did you watch General Conference? I will go on a split with the senior couple sister and watch it at their apartment next weekend. Mongolians watch it a week later because of translation. I can't wait to listen to the words of our living prophet and apostles!

2. What kind of building do you meet in for church in your area? Is there more than one building? It's a normal church building, but just the one here.

3. Tell me a cool story about English class. The students are great and they really love learning tongue twisters, so feel free to send me any you know!

4. Are there malls in Mongolia? If so, what are they like? If not, where do you buy clothes and stuff? wouldn't say malls, more like markets or personal vendors. There are lots of options and fairly cheap until they see you're American, haha.

5. Do you feel ready for winter? If not, why? I think so, the cold is a nice change and I'm excited to endure the Mongolian winter I dreaded pre-mission :)