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

Friday, December 11, 2015

"These Were Days Never to be Forgotten"

I know I've said this a million and two times, but I cannot and refuse to believe that this time is here! All week I've been bi-polar with feeling like this isn't even a real thing or freaking out because I don't know what I'm doing. It's definitely been quite the roller coaster!
These last 18 months have changed my life forever and I'm so grateful for the love and support that you've all given to me!
This last week was such a treat. We had a mission tour with Elder Schwitzer of the Seventy and his wife. We had an MLC with them and it was so wonderful to see this man, called of God talk about the work of Salvation. We are all part of the greatest work on earth. It was so wonderful getting to be with he and his wife in MLC and also for Zone Conference. Before Zone conference started, we had a "sisters meeting" with Sister Schwitzer and Sister Francis. Sister Schwitzer was talking about spiritual gifts. She was asking what spiritual gifts we have and which ones we'd like to work on and a sister from my group mentioned that she wants to work on trusting the Lord's plan with change. In response to that, Sister Schwitzer said something that I've thought about constantly for the last few days. "You shouldn't be sad about this season is ending. Look how great this one will be." It reminded me of a verse in Alma that I'd read a few weeks ago. Ammon, who is one of my great missionary idols, said "... for could we have supposed when we started from the land of Zarahemla that God would have granted unto us such great blessings?" (Alma 26:1) The sons of Mosiah went to preach to the Lamanites who were titled as helpless, hopeless, and bloodthirsty. They didn't know what to expect going into this new phase of their lives, but looking back they could see all the blessings that were given them from God for trusting in His perfect plan.
Over the last 18 months I've learned to rely on God in all things, which is going to change the way I do everything when the time comes for me to return! I've truly learned of the love that he has for each and everyone of His children. And I've learned that there is no better way to come to know Him and His Son, than to learn to feel of Their love for His children.
Now I can say, as did Ammon "Now have we not reason to rejoice? Yea, I say unto you, there never were men that had so great reason to rejoice as we, since the world began." 
And I can say along with Oliver Cowdery "Where was room for doubt? Nowhere; uncertainty had fled, doubt had sunk no more to rise, while fiction and deception had fled forever.
I want to bear my witness that Jesus is the Christ. I know He lives. I know His atonement is real and all encompassing. I know that because of the love that He and our Father have for us, they've again called a prophet to allow us to have the fullness of the Gospel. Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. I can say that with no doubt in my mind. As I've come to know Joseph better, I've come to know my Savior better! I know that Thomas S Monson is the prophet and mouthpiece for God today. And I know that as we listen to his words and FOLLOW them, we will feel God's love in a much greater abundance in our lives! 
This Gospel is so good! Never take it for granted! 
I love you all and I'm so grateful for the blessing that it's been to have your love, support and prayers over the last 18 months!
I'll see you all soon!


Thursday, December 3, 2015

Power of the Priesthood

December.. December?! How did this happen?! The Christmas season is in full swing here in Palmyra! We've got Nativities from around the world on our table that usually has the different languages of the Book of Mormon at the Hill Cumorah. The Locals have Christmas lights up. Santa Clause is blown up all over the village. Christmas music is playing everywhere we go. I can't even believe it!
Merry Christmas Season to one and all!
This week has been so crazy! I've had a few moments of "this is my last ______" which kind of stresses me out. We had our last district meeting because we have Zone meeting next week with Elder Schwitzer of the Seventy, which will be so great to also have a mission leadership council with him. 
We had our last shift at the Grandin Building and Sister Hunter and I were both having a little freak out moment about going home. We've done so well and every now and then we'll have little flashes of "this is real life." So we were freaking out a little and I was also starting to get sick so I asked Elder Bradford (our site director) for a blessing.
I have LOVED being able to see throughout my life the power of the priesthood. God really works through his priesthood holders to help each and every one of us. There were some things that I'd been praying about for a couple weeks and after a pause in the blessing, Elder Bradford would, basically word for word answer the very questions I'd told to no one but God. if I had ever questioned whether or not God knew me, I can now say like Oliver Cowdery "where was room for doubt?"
I'm so grateful for the priesthood in my life! I'm so grateful for this time that I've had to get to know my Savior even better! I'm grateful for the time that I've had to learn more about His gospel. I'm so grateful for the time that I've had to be in the world, but so far distant from being of the world that my perspective on so many things has changed! I've become a lot more like Nephi who said "The things which are pleasing unto the world I do not write, but the things which are pleasing unto God and unto those who are not of the world." I have found so much more happiness in the things of God, and I'm excited to be able to take the things I've learned here on my mission and apply them at home!
One of my great friends told me a couple weeks ago that "change comes from God." As much as I don't like change, I know that as we change to become more like God, we'll be happy. Change is necessary for salvation! I hope to be able to continue to change for the better!
I love you all! 
Sister Nield