Monday, April 25, 2016

Megan's Letter 4/25/16

So when I was in the tripan, we were teaching this amazing guy named J.C. And guess what!? He got baptized on Tuesday!(: I was glad to be able to go.

Sister Hintze and I went CARNIVAL CONTACTING this week. Yes, we went finding at a carnival, and it was so much fun. (: We even taught the Restoration to one of the booth game workers! Sadly it cost us $5 though😂

We got to have dinner in a members home on Friday, with our investigator Regan who was babysitting! Regan has been involved in the church for a while now, and is getting baptized back home this summer! We love her.

Also, we had a lesson with Olivia's mom and grandma last night! It went so well. Olivia even helped prepare part of the lesson on the Godhead. She said she wanted to teach about Heavenly Father, because she felt like she didn't know a lot about Him and she wanted to learn more! She is incredible. I think she would be a great missionary one day!

This week the scripture that got me through was D&C 78:17-19

17 Verily, verily, I say unto you, ye are little children, and ye have not as yet understood how great blessings the Father hath in his own hands and prepared for you;

 18 And ye cannot bear all things now; nevertheless, be of good cheer, for I will lead you along. The kingdom is yours and the blessings thereof are yours, and the riches of eternity are yours.

 19 And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more.

I've been realizing how much attitude can change your day! A song that I love has the lyrics:

"There is sun on the horizon
A candle in a cave
A little bit of color on the next page
There is always something better
When you look for the light on a dark day"

-Benton Paul

I have been working hard to find the good in every single day, no matter how hard. I invite all of you to do the same! I LOVE Y'ALL SO MUCH. Have a good week! (:

-Sister Merrill

Monday, April 18, 2016

Megan's Letter 4/18/16

So this week I have gained a HUGE testimony of member missionary work. Let me tell you about 3 experiences we've had!
1. Last week we rode to Stake Conference with the Cates Family. We got talking to the older son, Adam, about his friend who used to meet with the Elders! Long story short Adam offered to set up a lesson with him and his friend later that week. We met with them on Thursday and it went decent, but nothing extraordinary. Afterwards we received the nicest text from Adam. He told us that he has been struggling with his own faith lately, and meeting with us and teaching the gospel to his friend helped him a lot!
2. James was baptized on Saturday! Charlotte was so proud of him. I'm so grateful for the example she has set for him! Charlotte reminds me of Lehi in the vision of the tree of life. She partook of the fruit and immediately desired that James would too. We need to be as anxious as she has been in sharing the gospel with our loved ones. (:

​3. So I don't think I've told y'all a ton about Olivia. That's because she's been through several sets of missionaries over the years! She is 15 years old, and was introduced to the gospel by her step mom. She has wanted to be baptized for a long time, but never could since her mom was against the church. Thanks to a visit from a loving Young Women's President, Olivia's mom (Toria) agreed to meet with us. We began to have lessons with her from that time on! At one point we even had a baptismal date set for her and Olivia both. The ward truly accepted Toria in with open arms. Although Toria didn't follow through with her own baptism, we did not count it as a loss because her heart was softened. Olivia was baptized and confirmed yesterday thanks to all those who have reached out to her over the years, and those who reached out to her mom as well.

On Saturday night we got a text from a Sister in the ward who asked me to cover her relief society lesson on: Bringing the Gospel to the World. She told me to take the angle of encouraging the women to do their own missionary work. I learned a lot from studying about it, but my favorite was a quote from Ezra Taft Benson who said:

"We are commanded by God to take this gospel to all the world. That is the cause that must unite us today. Only the gospel will save the world from the calamity of its' own self-destruction. Only the gospel will bring happiness, joy, and salvation to the human family."

As I first read this I was reminded of the many experiences in the week that all lead back to member missionary work. I know when we reach out in love to share the gospel, miracles can and will happen.

If any of y'all know someone who is struggling with their faith, or who would possibly accept the message of the gospel-- Simply open your mouth and share! You never know the impact you'll have on someone, or the impact you'll have on your own testimony. Hope everyone has a good week. (:

I love you all!

-Sister Merrill

PS our zone went hiking today (which everyone knows I hate), so another sister and I got to explore the park instead!(:

Monday, April 11, 2016

Megan's Letter 4/11/16

Thank you for the birthday wishes!! I had an amazing day thanks to a lot of people here and back home (: 

We had interviews in Tupelo on Thursday! I think it may have been the last one I'll have with President Hanks since he leaves in July. It breaks my heart to see them go! I love President and Sister Hanks!! I can honestly say they have changed my mission and my life.

We stopped at the state line of course (:

We invited James to baptism again this week, and he said yes! It's been so amazing to see him follow his mom's example. He will be baptized this Saturday in a super small setting, since he is shy. (: Also, Charlotte made us skirts! She is so sweet. (yes that is a selfie stick #birthdayblessings)

Yesterday was Stake Conference! Elder Zwick of the Seventy came and spoke. I was so grateful for the message he shared! He told the story of Peter walking on the water towards the Savior. When Peter saw the wind and waves he became frightened and called out to Jesus! Immediately Christ stretched forth His hand. Elder Zwick encouraged us not to "let the 'wind' in our lives push us into hopelessness. Reach out to the Savior!"

I was thinking about this and it reminded me of a scripture and quote that I love! The scripture is Luke 3:5 which says:

Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth;

And the quote that comes along with it is from a book called "The Continuous Atonement" By Brad Wilcox:

"If the knuckles of our hands represent the valleys and mountains of our lives, it is Jesus who offers to hold our hands through both... Faithful Saints who make covenants with God in His holy house know the power that comes from feeling His hand in theirs... Jesus makes every mountain manageable and fills every valley."

I have found this to be true in my own life. I know that there is no void that can't be filled with the love of Christ! I would encourage anyone who is struggling in any way to simply reach out to the Savior, who is constantly stretching forth His hand to help you.
I love y'all so much! Hope you have a blessed week.

-Sister Merrill

Monday, April 4, 2016

Megan's Letter 4/4/16

Okay we had a crazy amazing week!

First off I want to tell y'all about a cool experience we had! We were over at Charlotte's for a lesson when her best friend, Jennifer, made a surprise entrance... And now we are teaching her! Charlotte has been an incredible member missionary. We are excited to see what happens! Also President Hanks came on a team up with us later in the week! We were on exchanges with the STLs, so I wasn't in that lesson. BUT he invited both James and Jennifer to be baptized if they found what we've been sharing to be true, and they both said yes! President Hanks has such a powerful presence. I'm so grateful for his help this week!

After that lesson we all met back at the apartment. The Elders knocked on the door to get their bikes back from us- and right in that moment the weather radio went off! 


The sirens started to go off outside! We called the Zone Leaders and they told us to have the Elders come into our apartment and take cover! We followed the usual drill (bike helmets, bath tub, mattress on top.) The Elders were in one bathroom and all four of us girls were stuffed in the other tiny bath tub! The warning didn't last too long but the Elders had to stay until the weather calmed down. We ended up playing the game of Life and I made Mac and Cheese for everyone (:​

Okay General Conference was AMAZING. Seriously, we are so blessed to have a living prophet and apostles!

I loved President Uchtdorfs talk! He started out by showing a beautiful church that had been destroyed in a bombing, and how man later rebuilt it. I loved how he likened that to how the Lord takes us from rubble, and turns us into something more beautiful than we were to begin with! I have such a testimony of this. Heavenly Father lets us go through trial and heartache, so that He can lift us higher than we've ever been! That was just one of the things that stood out to me.

I hope that y'all took some good things from conference this year, and that you share them with others! Member missionary work people!! Have a good week everyone (: LOVE YOU!

-Sister Merrill