Saturday, April 30, 2016

Week 36

Hello, all!

I have got to say, the mission is totally helping me set goals on what
I want my future family to be like. I don't know how my life would be
without coming out here and meeting the people I have met. Heavenly
Father knew what I would need and He knew a mission would help me do
It's been kindof a cool week. So in district meeting, we were doing
role plays about trying to resolve people's concerns using the spirit
and How to Begin Teaching points (and not straight up asking the
person what their concerns are) and I was nervous because the gift of
discernment has been something I'm struggling with and asking Heavenly
Father to help me have. So we got up in front of the district to role
play a first lesson with an investigator, who was one of our zone
leaders, and right off the bat I decided to state that we are
representatives of Christ and that our whole purpose and desire is to
bring all of Gods children to Him and our Savior. And then we asked
him (hopefully) inspired questions to help him and get to know him
after that. After the role play, he said his concern was that he
wasn't sure Mormons believed in Christ and that he didn't believe that
2 19 year old girls could teach him anything. And he said that we
resolved both of them within a couple minutes! How neat! I definitely
felt touched that Heavenly Father gave me and Sister Shupe the power
to discern his needs and put words into our mouths because there's no
way that would have been possible on our own.
And we also had the privilege of teaching institute this weeks to the
YSAs. One girl that came was less active and the lesson this week was
on Esther, so I think that was perfect for her because it's all about
courage and that's what a lot of these struggling college students
need. Courage to stand up for their beliefs and not fall into the
evils around them.
And we had another open house and we had a slightly better turn out
than last time. We had one more nonmember come- which is progress,
even if it was small. Her dad and sister converted a year or so ago.
So maybe she was impacted in some way to be in the church again!
AND we had an investigator come to church! This was the first time in
a long time that we were able to get someone to come who wasn't
already halfway baptized (our other recent converts have just been
super ready and they had no issues). So this lady that came is still
hesitant but we were able to bring a member couple to meet her on
Saturday and offer to bring her to church on Sunday and she was
actually waiting on the curb to be picked up before church!! She
stayed for sacrament but the deal was that she wanted to be dropped
off at her church, the Cowboy church, afterwards. That was a weird
deal to make but atleast she came!! And she enjoyed it and knew some
people there.

Sister Lauren Ney
Montana Billings Mission

Pictures: Sister Shupe and I found earth worms today because it was rainy!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Week 35

Hello, family and friends!

Well, this week wasn't too crazy.
We had an awesome lesson with a less active who moved back into town
with his family because of some rough things he's going through. His
mom referred us to him and we had a member of the bishopric come and
it was one of the best lessons we have ever had in that home. The
bishopric member was able to teach and testify about the Restoration
and the spirit was there. Usually, when we teach at that house, it's a
disaster and we are not sure if anyone learned anything. So I
definitely have a testimony that when the right member comes to a
lesson, it makes a world of a difference!!
We had a little earth day celebration here in Dillon and in the
morning, the community helped pick up trash around town and then we
had a bbq and vendors at the park. I love small towns. :)
This stuff doesn't happen in the city.
We were able to talk to a couple people and one of our former
investigators there.
We also had a service project for the youth to clean the church
building this past Saturday! This building is always soooo dirty for
some reason, so as part of the missionary challenge for the month,
they could come and earn points by cleaning the church. And it will be
nice and clean for our open house this week. :)
My testimony in talking to everyone also has grown this week. So,
during the winter time, my street contacting skills weakened because
it's cold and no one is outside, so you don't keep up on it. So I'm a
bit rusty and I'm trying to get used to street contacting again/
talking to everyone. I
just have to force myself to do it and when I did, we were able to get
a new investigator! We were walking out of an apartment building and
she was sitting on a bench while she was smoking so we talking to her
about the Restoration. She wanted us to come back again to teach her!
And we were also contacting a potential investigator and her friends
were on the porch with her and we talked to all of them (one of the
guys' names was Goob. No joke.) and he referred us to his friend a few
doors down who also became a new investigator! Miracles happen when
you obey the principle of talking to everyone. :)
Sister Shupe and I also spoke in sacrament this week about the
blessings of obedience and I mentioned that in there.
Hope everyone is having a great week!

Sister Lauren Ney
Montana Billings Mission

Pictures- tender mercies: rays of sunshine in the laundromat

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Week 34

Hello, family!
So this week we did a lot of biking because it has been warming up. It hit the 70s is week! I thought I would never see the day! I don't know how many miles we have gone but it was a lot. Sister Shupe and I might buy some FitBits soon so we can start tracking. I have some sunburns and a tan line from my watch. 
We have been contacting a lot. And trying to get more people to teach. I came across another guy who thought my name was Ranea when I said that my name is Sister Ney. It happens alllllll the time. So apparently I am Ranae and Sister Shupe is Sister Shupe. So she's just some weird person that goes by "Sister". Haha. I also realized how funny it would be if my name was Ranae Ney. Haha. It sounds funny.
Well, 3 recent converts we are teaching are going to all be ordained to the Aaronic priesthood within the next week. One already was yesterday and we have 2 more next week! So it has been awesome seeing them get excited to receive the priesthood. 
We had a missionary mutual on Wednesday for the youth. There were stations of handy skills you might need as a missionary like naming a scripture story from seeing a picture, sewing a button, tying a tie, pumping a bike tire, and ironing clothes. It was fun and they made it a race between Young Mens and Young Womens. Then they did a tug of war afterward for some reason. And then we kicked off our "Missionary Madness" challenge for the month of April. We are having the Young Womens and Young Mens from both wards complete different missionary things all month long and whichever group gets the most points by the end of the month gets a pizza party! Different tasks have different points attached to them, like "Bring a friend to church- 10 points", "post something spiritual on Facebook and tag the missionaries-5 points", etc. We really hope this will get the youth more involved in missionary work.
Oh! And we might be teaching some Youth Challenge kids from the academy here soon. They come to church and mutual a lot if they have been on good behavior, so some have been interested in learning about the church. We talked to their sergeant, and we have to talk to a few more of their leaders to make sure it's okay.
Well, I know the church is true and I have gained a greater testimony of the Sabbath day. I used to be all stressed out on Sunday's because there were so many different things to take care of and people to talk to while we were there that I would just feel so spread thin. But this time a
I let it all go and focused on what we should do on the sabbath- rest, worship and learn about the Savior. And boy, it made a world of a difference!! I just enjoyed the company of the ward family and soaked up the spirit. And that's how it should be! 
Have a good week everyone! 

Monday, April 4, 2016

Week 33

This has been a crazy awesome week!!
Transfer news: Sister Shupe and I are both staying here in Dillon! So this will be my 4th transfer here. When I first came on the mission I thought I would never want to be in an area for that long, but I have come to love this town. I was SO happy.  I could stay here forever and just live here for the rest of my life. The people are the best. 
We had a miracle baptism this week after the Saturday afternoon session of conference! The father of the girl who's baptism we sang at last week was baptized! His wife's whole side of the family is lds and they came and so did a ton of ward members. We ran out of seating for everyone that came! The whole process of teaching him and him being baptized happened all within around 10 days. He was just ready. His 12 year old son spoke at his baptism and started crying because he was so happy that his dad was being baptized and that they can be sealed as a family a year from now. The closing song was "Families Can Be Together Forever" and almost everyone started crying. It was awesome. He spirit was there and he was so grateful.
Moments like that make it all worth it.
Conference was also this week! We watched one session with a member, one at the chapel with the elders because no one else had us over and no one else showed up at the church, and two sessions in Polaris with a recent convert. I loved it. I was also super glad that President Monson was able to speak for a little bit. I liked Mervyn B. Arnold's talk and how we mentioned that we are ALL called to the rescue. I know that's true! Missionary, member, or non-member. We are all God's children with the same potential and worth. Heaven won't be heaven unless we are all there.
Besides those highlights of the week, some other stuff that happened was that Sister Shupe and I biked and walked a lot because we ran out of miles on our car and we also took turns being sick, which made biking and walking even more fun. 
But it's been great here in paradise. Hope all is well in the outside world!