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

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Summer Fades to Fall

Fall is on it's way. You can feel it in the air! The humidity is going away and there's a chill in the air. The leaves are even starting to change colors. I can't believe summer is already over. Time has just flown!
Norma Jean Keuer is now a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! She was baptized on Saturday and confirmed on Sunday. She was just too cute! We got to the church for the baptism and she just had the biggest smile on her face and said "I couldn't sleep at all last night! I was just too excited for today!" We went through the program, she went into the font and she went under the water and somehow breathed in a ton of water and came up choking! I was so nervous, but she made it. She had to get dunked again and this time she made sure to plug her nose! haha She's just too cute! She got into the changing room and we went to grab her wet clothes and all of a sudden we hear her in the stall: "Woops! I put my underwear on inside out. That's what I get for being too excited!" Hahaha I about died! It's amazing how much the spirit touched her! After the baptism was over, we gave her a quad so she could have all of the Standard Works and she just started bawling. Same with Sunday when the bishop welcomed her into the ward and everyone raised their hand, she just started bawling!:) She just has such a tender spirit! 
Yesterday was a pretty fun experience. I got to go on exchanges with Sister Rogers (my baby) and what a coincidence..? A year ago from yesterday was the day we became companions! It was so fun to look back and see how much we've changed in the past year!
Tuesday was the 192nd anniversary of the day that Joseph would've gone to the Hill to get the Gold Plates! So of course to commemorate that, all the sisters and President Francis and our Site Directors got together at 6:30 am and we walked from the Smith Farm to the Hill Cumorah! I remembered doing that last year and it's so fun to be able to think about what it would've been like for Joseph to take that walk! 
We also had a couple scary experiences this last week, but it's so comforting to know that our Savior and His Atonement are always available. I was reading in D&C the other day and in section 50 verses 40-42, and it really hit me how much He cares about us. He's aware of what we can handle and even though sometimes we're stretched to our very limits, He will always be there for us. He loves us and is so aware of our circumstances! 
I love you all and hope you're having a great week!
Sister Nield


Thursday, September 17, 2015

Miracles Big and Small

A lot has happened since the last time I emailed! So many miracles have happened and it's been fun to see the Lord's hand in every aspect of the last few weeks!
The day after my last p-day, we had a surprise baptism. This couple had been married for 42 years and she had been a member for 5 years. The missionaries have continued to visit them in hopes of the husband sometime deciding to be baptized! They were on vacation from Arizona and were driving in the middle of nowhere and he turned to her and said "How far are we from Palmyra?" She responded that they weren't too far away. So he told her that he wanted to get baptized in Palmyra. Their bishop called the mission president who called our mission President who called our district leader who called us. Our DL showed up to give the interview, we gave the talks, the bishop and President Francis were there as well as his wife. It was amazing to see how happy she was for her husband! It was so obvious that she'd just been waiting for this moment for so long. It was so fun to be a part of his big day!:)
We had MLC a couple weeks ago and the assistants gave a training on inviting people to be baptized in the first lesson/meeting. Feeling inspired to apply this, I'd been praying for some time to spend in the area finding so we could invite someone to be baptized. While serving at the Hill Cumorah, we had a visitor come in from Marion (small town north of Palmyra) who said he'd never been before. We talked to him about Joseph Smith and the restoration. We sat with him in the room with the statue of Christ and talked about His love for us and the Book of Mormon. The spirit was just so strong, and we just knew this was the opportunity to apply what the assistants had taught so we invited him to be baptized on October 3. And guess what? He agreed!!:) We gave his info to the Elders and they've been meeting with him!:) What a huge miracle!!:)
And a miracle on a smaller level.. Sister Davis and I got in for the night to start planning our training. We start our planning and Sister Davis's eyes get really big and she said "Do you hear that?" Me: "no... what?" (light knock on the door) We just looked at each other for a minute and I said, "maybe it's the sisters getting home. Try calling them" So we called to find out they were still at their shift and out of no where I hear my voice on our voicemail recording. We about died. We ran into our closet and told the other sisters that someone was at our house and we were home alone. They sent the senor elder to come to the rescue with one of their investigators. We sat in our closet, hiding behind our clothes, waiting and listening for noise to come from our stairs that would make noise if a feather dropped on them. Nothing. I've never felt so much adrenaline in my life. I just kept thinking about the temple president who lives next door and how their house was broken into last week... A voicemail appears on our phone. We listened to it and found out.. a member had come to drop off bread... haha We went outside and waited for the senior couple to show up so we could tell him it was a false alarm.. Woops! But Good news!:) We didn't get kidnapped!!:)
Another tender mercy! Chill 'n Grill closed this week! They have the BEST ice cream in the world and a small is 4 scoops! That means I don't even have to try to say no to ice cream anymore. It's no longer an option!:)
The Lord's miracles aren't always the big things but more often the little things that add up in the end to be big things!:)
I love you all and hope you have a great week! 
Sister Nield


Monday, September 7, 2015

Zone P-Day

Well, considering the fact that I literally emailed 4 days ago, there really isn't too much to report on. Things are still going really well. Norma called us Thursday night and told us she wouldn't be able to make it to church on Sunday. I was just devastated, but quickly responded with: "do you think you could set aside just those three hours to come to church?" And she said "you know.. You're right... I need to be there..." I feel like trying to get people to come to church is like pulling teeth, yet with Norma and James it's been so easy. They're just so prepared.
Friday was MLC and during our lunch I felt like we needed to call Norma and ask her about coffee. She's been struggling to quit after nearly 45 years of drinking it so she gets pretty bad migraines. We
asked her about it and she said "do you want to know what I had for breakfast?" My thoughts: oh no.... What happened? But her response was the quote of the week! "A cup of hot cocoa and 2 chapters of Mormon!" And she adds her cute little laugh at the end. If you knew her you'd understand. So she came to church yesterday and loved it. She participated in gospel principles and everything!:)
Also at church yesterday James sat up at the sacrament table for the first time!:) ah!!! It's just so awesome to see these people doing such good things with their lives. I felt like a proud mama.
Well, we had zone P-day today at presidents house. So fun!! We played a bunch of games. We had a kickball tournament. I started playing volleyball with presidents sons who have played in high school and stuff and everyone else wanted to join in so we had this big game going. Man it felt so good to have a ball in my hands again. It's been too long. It was hard though because it was about 95 degrees today with about 85-90% humidity! I've never sweat as much as I have on my mission!
We also saw Norma tonight and she's so excited for her baptism. She invited all of her kids to come and so Becky is planning to be there!
I just feel so blessed to have met so many amazing people!!! I have learned so much about love on my mission. My heart has just grown so much for all of these amazing people. And there's always more room for my heart to keep growing.
This week as I was reading the Book of Mormon, I was reading in Enos. I love how he explains his experience with prayer as "he wrestle which I had before God". It was something that was so intense; he put his whole heart and soul into it. He prayed all day long for crying out loud. His "soul hungered". It doesn't matter what we're praying for, whether it be guidance, help, peace, answers, strength, etc, if we will put our whole soul into it, we can have an amazing experience like Enos had. The Lord will bless us for our faith in Him. We can find comfort in knowing and trusting that the Lord will ALWAYS be there for us. So whatever your circumstances, put your trust in Him and pray with faith!!!
I love y'all!!
Have a wonderful week! I'll be talking with you again, next Thursday!:)
Love Sister Nield

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Make Sure to Read the BOLDED Words

Septiembre esta aqui. Where has the summer gone? Schools are starting to start up again, people aren't vacationing as much, the sites are slowing down a bit, local apple juice is being sold again (YUM). And yet, the weather is just starting to feel like summer. We've had such a rainy, cool summer that's mostly felt like spring, and this week we've been up in the 90s with 90% humidity. Summer is here right as fall is supposed to start!:) 
It's been such a great week! We've had a great week at the sites. It's slowed down quite a bit, but we've had some great experiences. We've had a lot more people who aren't members of the church coming in recently and as we've invited them all to learn more and keep in contact with us over the phone, we've seen some really sweet things. The other day we had a few people come in, two men and a woman. The two men were members, one active, one not, and the woman was the less active man's girlfriend. As they were about to go into the  grove, I asked her if she'd like to learn more and we could talk more about the Book of Mormon over the phone. She said she'd think about it as they went into the grove and as we walked away, I just had this great feeling that it was going to open up conversation with all of them and hopefully spark something in the less active brother and his girlfriend. 
We met with Norma this week! She is just absolutely adorable! She may be 76 years old, but I feel like she's my child. The last week or so we've wanted to change her baptismal date from "tentative" to "set". We went to pick her up with one of the members and we were talking in the car on our way to the Family History Center and she said "So... can we do 11 am on the 19?" My jaw dropped to the floor! I knew she'd get baptized, I was just so in shock that she had thought it all through herself and knows what she wants to do! And we're already planning for her to go do baptisms in the temple in October.
We also met with Zoe, Noah, and Hailey (our group of children) a few times. They are so funny! We taught them Book of Mormon Stories and were reading from the Book of Mormon with them. We were talking about how they've seen prayer give them the strength to do something and Zoe raises her hand and says "Sometimes.. My brother stuffs our cats in the freezer or the fridge..." hahaha oh my goodness! Those kids just brighten up my day! As we continued to read in the Book of Mormon, Noah (6 years old) comes out with a toy gun and sits down. Zoe leans over to him and whispers "Noah. Go put it away. They don't believe in weapons." She is the funniest 9 year old I've ever met, but she loves the gospel so much!
The last few weeks I've been thinking a lot about God's plan. So often, when I pray, I tell Heavenly Father what my plans are and expect Him to just make it happen. My plans are good plans, righteous plans, but I've learned on my mission how important it is to humble yourself enough to trust God's plan. This morning as I was reading in Jacob 4:10, it says  10 Wherefore, brethren, seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from his hand. For behold, ye yourselves know that he  counseleth in wisdomand in justice, and in great mercy, over all his works.  God's plans are so much better than ours. Sometimes, our plans are even aligned with His plans, but I've really learned that when we trust Him and His perfect plan, Things just work out so much better!
I love you all and I'm so grateful that God put you in my life!:) 
Love Sister Nield