{mis-sion-ary, [noun] someone who leaves their family for a short time so that others can be with theirs for eternity}

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

I've Learned...

Spring... Spring is here. It's also as bipolar here as it is in Logan, but it's here! The tree across the street from our apartment is budding and I can't tell you the joy it brings to my heart to see that! If we get anymore snow that sticks to the ground I may pull my hair out.
This week has kind of had two parts. 
Part #1: Exchanges
This week we got to do exchanges with the Farmington Sisters. Their area is actually in Palmyra so it was fun for me to go with Sister Christensen who's on her second transfer and be able to spend some time in Palmyra. I'm super jealous. Those sisters and the PalMac sisters live right up the street from the temple and the smith Farm. What a great place to live!
We had so much fun together! There was a less active member that we were going to see after she was done at work (Palmyra Inn) but as we got there, she still had the Honeymoon sweet to decorate. So we volunteered to help her out! Haha we had a ton of fun learning how to make swans out of towels and putting rose petals on the beds. We're pretty much professional is what I'm saying. haha Most awkward form of service I've ever done...
We went out tracting which is always so interesting in Palmyra. Everyone has met missionaries before. Everyone things they know everything about the church. It's a pretty hard area, but we were determined that we were going to find someone who would talk to us. So we knocked on a door and out comes this cute little old man. He starts talking to us and telling us that his wife isn't home so he can't talk to us and I noticed that he had an accent so I asked him where he was from. He was from Hungary, so I talked to him for a minute about how I have a good friend serving in Hungary and how there are missionaries like us all over the world. We got to talking to him and he was telling us about how when he moved here, he went and saw the pageant and he was so angry with the people who were protesting. He was telling us how mormons are such great people. So we talked to him about the Book of Mormon and he said that the sisters could go back and talk to he and his wife. Tender mercies happen when you're on the Lord's errand. 
Part #2: The Apartment
I learned this week that I'm going to have a really hard time coming home if I don't have a job, and school, or ANYTHING to fill my time... Saturday night after we got home, Sister Hall got really sick. I don't know if it was food poisoning or the flu, all I know is that she was REALLY sick, and I didn't get it. Poor thing. I wish there was more that I could've done to help her, but needless to say we stayed in Sunday... and Monday... and most of Tuesday. Sleep has really been helping her but she just hasn't been able to recover until today! She's such a champ! You can tell she's just so ready to get back out to do the work, but her body won't let her. 
I've never looked at the same four walls for so long. As she slept, I would study, get bored, do some pushups and situps and jumping jacks and ANYTHING that could get me moving, then I'd get bored with that so I'd study again, and get bored and go stare out the window and watch as it would turn from blizzarding to sunshine. Haha not the most thrilling few days but if that's what it takes to get Sister Hall's health back, then so be it!
I had a lot of time to sit and think and I thought a lot about my mission and the things that it's taught me and I got a list of things written up in my head of what I've learned:
  • I've learned that the Savior's Atonement can help ANYONE who allows it to work in their lives.
  • I've learned that I can do hard things.
  • I've learned that no matter how different I am from someone, we can still be best friends.
  • I've learned that acquiring patience... takes patience.
  • I've learned that no matter how much I teach someone, no matter how many times I invite them, no matter how many times they feel the spirit, they still have their agency to accept or reject the gospel.
  • I've learned that miracles happen on a daily basis.
  • I've learned that the Lord's plan for me isn't anything like what I've planned on, but it's MUCH better than anything I could've planned for myself.
  • I've learned that serving people is the best way to get through a hard time.
  • I've learned that the Lord trusts us enough to give us hard things so we can learn and grow.
  • I've learned that no matter what circumstances someone may be in, our Heavenly Father knows THEM and what THEY need.
  • I've learned that God will speak to us in ways that WE understand.
  • I've learned that the more we act on spiritual promptings, the more we receive them.
  • I've learned that feeling the power of the Spirit can do more for someone's conversion than any miracle.
  • I've learned that the little, daily habits make the biggest difference. 
  • I've learned that the best way to be happy is to CHOOSE to be happy.
  • I've learned that the only way to do things successfully is to do things the Lord's way.
  • I've learned that all things are possible with His help.
  • I've learned that a single prayer can change the world.
The list could go on and on! I've learned so much from my mission and I now understand why people say this is the best 2 years (18 months) of their lives. I will eternally be grateful that I made the decision to serve the Lord and to bring His gospel to His children.
I hope you all have a great week! Jesus Christ loves you!
Love Sister Nield


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Power of Parents

Well. Week #1 in Canandaigua = WONDERFUL! All the great things that I've heard about it are absolutely 100% true! The ward is amazing, the people are amazing. Change is always pretty scary for me, but it turns out to always be a good thing. I miss Amherst with all of my heart, but I also love Canandaigua!
Sister Hall and I work really well together! We both have a great desire to work hard and see the miracles that come from that! This last week was full of meeting lots of new people! This has been the first time that I've been new to an area that my companion isn't new. Sister Hall got transferred in the transfer before me, so she's been able to help me to get to know the people and members!
We got to meet with one of the less active families in the ward, the Labombards. Oh my goodness, I LOVE that family! There are 4 kids in the home and 2 of them are the strength of the family! Patrick is a senior in high school and he's planning on going on a mission after he graduates this year. Thank goodness for the other young men in the ward who've been great friends to him and helped motivate him to go to seminary every morning. Then there's Elizabeth. She's a freshman in high school right now and I had the chance to sit down and talk with her and get to know her better. She decided recently that she also wants to go on a mission. Sister Labombard amazes me. She hasn't been to church in awhile, but she wants the church for her kids. She wants them to have the happiness that comes from the gospel, and it's been amazing for her kids to recognize that in her. 2 of the 4 kids have responded pretty well to her desire for them to have the gospel.
It got me thinking this week about the influence that parents have on their children. Parents typically see the influence (good or bad) that their children's friends have on their lives, but rarely see the influence (good or bad) that THEY have on their children's lives. Yes, I will agree that friends play a huge role in the attitudes and behaviors of kids, but I will argue that the biggest influence is in the home. Friends come and go throughout the years, but, in most situations, parents remain the same! 
I thought about the stripling warriors in the Book of Mormon and how impacted Helaman was by the influence that these young men's parents, especially mothers, had on them. He said: "Now they never had fought, yet they did not fear death; and they did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives; yea, they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them. And they rehearsed unto me the words of their mothers, saying: We do not doubt our mothers new it." I am so grateful for my parents and the things they've taught me. For helping me to know the importance of the Gospel and for helping me to understand the role of the Savior in my life! I don't know what it's like to be a parent, but I've seen, especially on my mission, the affect that a parent can have on their children without even realizing it. If you're a parent, never underestimate the influence you have. Even if you're not a parent, never underestimate the influence you have.
"Nothing will bring greater joy and success than to live according to the teachings of the gospel. Be an example; be an influence for good." --N. Eldon Tanner
I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Love, Sister Nield
P.S. I'll be off Facebook for a couple months, so keep me updated on what's going on!:)

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


Surprise! New area=new p-day! My p-day will now be on Wednesdays not Mondays so don't freak out when I don't email on Mondays anymore!
I'm all settled in Canandaigua! I'm super excited for the work that Sister Hall and I are going to do together! I'm excited to get to know the area and the people! It's been a crazy couple of days but I'm super excited for what's ahead!
Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that my pday has changed! I don't have anything new to tell you about, besides the fact that my new companion is awesome!:) She's from Arizona, her parents are mission president & wife in San Fernando, California, she goes to BYU! We'll be seeing lots of miracles together! That's for sure!

Love y'all! Have a superb week!:)


Monday, March 9, 2015

Be Not Moved

Transfer week. Nothing stresses me out more than transfer week. I couldn't sleep last night. I tossed and turned all night. As we were trying (key word TRYING) to do our studies this morning I was practically having an anxiety attack. I have loved being here in Clarence with Sister McLaren SO much and I was so scared for transfer calls! Finally they came. As usual, the Elders think they're funny and they joke about where we're going to see our reaction. Eventually we got them to let us know that I will be getting transferred to Canandaigua! Canandaigua is about 15-20 minutes away from Palmyra! So once spring comes, my area will be a site area! I'm so sad to leave Amherst, but Canandaigua will bring new adventures and miracles! It'll be a sister training leader area again so i'll still get to do exchanges and do trainings and things like that which I love because I've learned so much! Also now I will have served in all 3 stakes in the mission! Rochester, Buffalo, and Palmyra!:) WAHOO!!

You'll never believe what happened today! I got to go outside..... without wearing tights under my skirt! We hit 39 degrees and it feels like heaven! Only in Buffalo does 39 degrees feel like heaven! There's a member in the Buffalo ward who was telling us that we really live in the worst case scenario. In February it was colder here than in the North Pole, colder than it was on Mars. Yep... Buffalo broke a record for the coldest month ever. I was here for the worst winter they've had. But it's beginning to look a lot like spring!:) (meaning the snow is melting and it's only to my knees now!:) PROGRESS 

As for this last week, we had exchanges with the Gowanda sisters. They're in a trio So i got to be in a trio for the day!:) We spent almost the whole day on the Reservation and this less active's son is a member of the Longhouse (the native american religion). It was really cool for him to tell us about some of their beliefs and to see that they really are the decedents of the Lamanites in the Book of Mormon. So many of the beliefs are so similar but you can tell that there are things missing and things added! (The Apostasy is real!) 
It's been super fun to serve in the YSA because every week we go and set up a table at UB (the campus close by) with the YSA elders and we get to have people come up to us and ask us a ton of questions. The first time it felt so weird being back on a college campus, but now I'm grateful for USU and how the majority of the people there are LDS!

Also Thursday Mornings we go and volunteer at a nursing home and we do their exercise program with them (baton waving haha) and we paint the ladies nails! They say the funniest things. They were handing out treats and Rita, one of my favorites, said "Was it made in China? If it's made in China, I don't want it! You can't trust those things." haha I about died She kept saying "I was born in the USA and I'm going to die in the USA! Let's be Americans please!" She's such a crack up!

Saturday we had a relief society conference and it was themed after the parable of the 10 virgins. "Oil in Their Lamps".There were different breakout sessions where we talked about temple attendance, family history, food storage, having a grateful heart, recognizing talents and abilities the Lord has given you, or the signs of the second coming. They all went through different things that we can do to make sure our lamps and vessels are filled with oil. It was so insightful! There are so many things we can do to fill our lamps. As we were going through it, one of the scriptures that kept popping into my head was D&C 87:8 "Wherefore, stand ye in holy places, and be not moved, until the day of the Lord come; for behold, it cometh quickly, saith the Lord." Standing in Holy Places isn't so much about physical location as it is about ourselves and whether or not we make places the kind of environment that the spirit can dwell in. And it all starts with doing the primary things: read your scriptures, go to church, have FHE, say your prayers. But then "BE NOT MOVED". It's these things that will in essence fill our lamps. Don't let anything keep you from doing them. "for it cometh quickly". I know I want to be prepared for when the Lord comes and I'm so grateful for His help. I'm so grateful for the gospel to help fill my lamp!

I love you all! have a great week!
Love Sister Nield


Monday, March 2, 2015

March Madness

March?! Already?!?! I can't believe it! But great things are ahead here in Buffalo! The Amherst ward is doing "Missionary March" where each day we go into a member's home and help them decide what kind of missionary work they want to accomplish within the next week as individuals or families and then we start their fast with them (obviously we can't fast everyday...) It was so amazing to be with one of the families last night and to hear the missionary work that they're already doing (this family is such a rockstar family! One of my favorites in the ward) and to see them have the desire to take their work one step further! And to do that each night with a different family is going to bring about some SERIOUS miracles!
Oh and last Tuesday we had 2 members of the Seventy come for our iPad training. I was a bit nervous that it was going to be a boring meeting all about the ipads and telling us all the things that we weren't doing right. Boy was I wrong! When Elder Evans got up to speak, the first thing he said was "If I, as a special witness of Jesus Christ, were to stand up here and only talk to you about iPads, I would be forever wrong. This isn't about iPads. This has nothing to do with iPads really. It has everything to do with your salvation and your desire to be a better, more dedicated disciple of Christ." WOW! It was such a good meeting about how we've been trusted by the Lord more than any other missionary in the history of the church with these tools that we're using. What am I doing with that trust? Am I showing the Lord that He Can trust me?  One thing that I thought was so interesting is that he said: "The mission field is the place where the Lord is seeing fit to strengthen you against the temptations of the world. The temptations with technology will never go away but if we can teach you NOW, you'll be better fit to overcome those temptations for the rest of your life and not only that but you'll know how to use technology for the purpose that it was really invented. To further the work of the Lord." I received so much revelation on how to better use the iPad as a tool but more than anything, I walked away from that meeting with a stronger testimony of our Savior. Those men really are special witnesses and what a blessing it was to be in their presence!
Highlight from this week: We met with Steve a few times. One of my favorite things in the whole world is being able to see someone's countenance change even just over a short period of time because of the gospel! The first time we knocked on Steve's door he was very adamant on how corrupt organized religion was and even after 5 minutes of bearing testimony I could see him softening. Now, a few weeks later, he's read the Book of Mormon so consistently, he's been to the church and family history center, we took him on a tour of the church building and we've kept daily contact with him. The light in his eyes keeps getting brighter and brighter. This last week he was talking about how empty other churches feel when you go inside and I asked how he felt while he was at our church. His response almost put me in tears. He said "The first things that come to mind is how homey it feels and how simplistic it is. I don't think God wants His church to be a big show." Man, this man who's known about the church for about 3 weeks has had such a change of heart and it makes my heart melt to think about it!:) He's thought a lot about baptism and says he will when he's ready, but that he likes everything he's seen and heard so far!
Transfers are next week and I'm hoping that I can stay so I can see him be baptized, but no matter what happens, as long as he gets baptized, I'll be so happy! The members that we've had come with us to lessons have really clicked with him and it was so cool to see the other day when Brother Lamb (who's a convert) was so bold. Without hesitation, when we talked about baptism, he said "Steve, this is THE SINGLE most important decision you'll ever make in your life." 

I know that this is the Lord's work and I feel so blessed to play a small role in it! I am so grateful to be able to see the lives of so many people change and to see them become the people God wants them to be! I know that the Lord puts us in specific places for a reason. Wherever you are right now, you're where the Lord needs you!

Have a great week!
Choose the Right!
Love Sister Nield