Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Week 57

Hey everyone!

Transfer news: I'm staying in Shelby and Sister Thomas is going to
Missoula. My new companion is going to be Sister Smith and I served in
the Butte zone with her a lot- so I already know her decently well. :)
The weather has been so weird. One day was in the 30s and had an awful
windchill and then the other days have been in the 70s! I don't get it
We had one of the best lessons ever this week with the 15 year old I
was talking about the past couple emails. We met with him at the
church and we had a sister who was his Sunday School teacher the
couple of times he came to church in the past. He
Had the bombest lesson ever. He read the pamphlet we gave him and he
soaked the whole Restoration in. He believes that Joseph Smith saw
Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and that having prophets could really
help guide him and his family. He says his parents will be supportive
of him learning but his extended family will probably oppose. He said
he bought church pants to wear on Sunday bc he wants to be respectful.
He also wants to learn because he's investigated churches in the past
and he really felt the spirit here. He said it felt close to him. We
committed him to be baptized on my birthday-October 15th!!!!! 😄 I'M
We also had a lesson with our media referral/ investigating couple. We
have permission to teach them with the elders who are teaching their
in-laws in Cutbank (who this couple referred) who are also
investigating but we are still trying to work that out. We taught the
Plan of Salvation and they're doing good and they came to church this
week!!! Our 15 year old and the investigating grandparents of the
recent convert 9 year old came too! It was a beautiful day. :)
We had testimony meeting for district meeting this week and I felt the
spirit so strongly just among the 6 of us. I am so blessed to work
among other chosen servants of the Lord who testify of Him every day.
This week we volunteered at the thrift store in town. I love working
in thrift stores. You never know what's gonna come in. Haha.
We went to a Hutterite farmers market this week. The Hutterites are a
religious group that live in colonies up here and are very self
sufficient. They have lots of acres of community gardens, make their
own clothes, raise their own animals, and so on. They have a distinct
wardrobe and speak German.  So we got some produce from them.
We also helped at the primary program practice. The kids were so funny
and I just stood in as a teacher because they had teachers missing.

Sister Lauren Ney
Montana Billings Mission

Picture 1- we were in a trio for a little bit with a cat that followed
us all the way down the street
Picture 2- if you let us in your house, we will break your dishes.
Limited time offer. :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Week 56


So this week was pretty great.
We had our annual branch corn roast where they grill and deep fry
Canadian corn. It was pretty good! I've had so much corn lately
though. I think I've had more corn within the last couple of weeks
than I've had in my whole life!
I learned how to can things as well- mainly apples and relish. We just
happened upon 2 different ladies that needed help canning this week.
And we made homemade apple sauce with this big contraption thing.
We went to a funeral of a less active member of the branch. I never
met him but we went to support the people. There were maybe only 10 in
attendance. This was the 3rd funeral I've been to on my mission and I
hardly knew all of them.
We had some awesome member present lessons this week. I just love when
members come with us. And I have found these scriptures and have been
thinking a lot about the benefit of THREE witnesses. In 2 Corinthians
13:1, it says, "This is the third time I am coming to you. In the
mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established." and
2 Nephi 11:3 says, "...Wherefore, by the words of three, God hath
said, I will establish my word. Nevertheless, God sendeth more
witnesses, and he proveth all his words."
When we have a member present in our lessons, the testimony of the
doctrine being taught is so much more powerful. The people who are
learning can see that other people, besides the missionaries, have
faith in Christ and have seen blessings come from living His word. So
go out with the missionaries! You will be able to participate in the
most important work- the work of salvation. :)
We contacted lots of referrals because they piled up because no one
was ever home when we tried them. We were up there in the 20s.
For district meeting this week, we all met in Great Falls to hear a
guy by the name of Craig S. Michelsen speak. He's currently a young
men's president in one of the Great Falls wards and he had written
some books on church doctrine. He's had some other higher up callings
in the church as well. He actually spoke to our zone about the signs
of the second coming and all of our minds were blown by the end. It's
kindof sad though because everything he taught is in the scriptures.
We just don't study and utilize them enough to know the important
information that Heavenly Father has given to us. So that's something
I need for work on. It's definitely evidence of 2 Nephi 28:30,
"...thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line
upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and
blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto
my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I
will give more; and from them that shall say, We have enough, from
them shall be taken away even that which they have." And if we don't
read and understand the scriptures we have now- we won't be able to
receive additional scripture Heavenly Father has for us in the future.
He actually started off with talking about the preexistence. I felt
the spirit so strongly when he was talking about that and I started
crying. I don't know why. It just hit me really hard.
We had an awesome miracle yesterday. We previously met this lady at a
Mexican restaurant who said she wanted us to start teaching her son
again because missionaries in the last have tried to meet with him. So
we went over yesterday and met him and he was so excited that his mom
gave approval. He didn't take the lessons before because he thought it
would go against his parents wishes. So we just said "Yeah. Your mom
is all for it." He asked how many lessons there are and what happens
when they're done (so we of course brought up baptism and church) and
he took a Book of Mormon and everything. So we have an appointment
with him later this week and he's so cool!
Hope you all are doing great!

Sister Lauren Ney
Montana Billings Mission

Pic 1-Making applesauce!
Pic 2-Sunflowers that are taller than me!
Pic 3-It's been reallll rainy this week.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Week 55

Hello world!

So last Monday we went to Glacier national park for preparation day!
It was probably the prettiest place I've ever been to. Hands down. The
pictures don't even do it justice.  It's crazy how it's so flat here
but only an hour or so away, it's all mountains and valleys and lakes
and glaciers. It's amazing. I want to go again so bad. :)
So quite a bit happened this week. Here are some of the miracles:
Sister Thomas and I decided to eat at a Mexican restaurant here in
town for dinner one night (it's one restaurant of like 3) and right as
we walked in the door, a lady/ our waitress approached us and said
past missionaries have tried to meet with her teenage son and she
gives full permission to come by anytime and basically asked us to
teach him! It was so cool! So we are trying to meet up with him now!
We got a media referral too! So if I remember right, this is the one
and only media referral I've had on my mission so far. So a lady went
on Mormon.org and asked for a bible so we delivered it to her and set
up a return appointment to go over the Restoration with her! The next
time we saw her, we taught her and her husband and they started
flipping through the Book of Mormon right when we gave them their own
copies and they texted us and told us they were already reading it
together right after we left! The husband is willing to be baptized
but she is a little hesitant. I think they will receive their answers
quick though because they are very sincere and honest people. :)
We also went to Sweetgrass which is at the Canadian border. It just
looks like farmland over there too. There's no big wall or anything
like I pictured. There were just little markers and indirect signs
that marked the border. Customs and all of that is in the middle of
town and on the other side is a Canadian town called Coontz and it all
looks like one big town just on opposite sides of the markers. We were
there to contact some referrals. We were given the wrong address of
the referrals and at first, we went to a house that was surrounded by
military trucks and the sign next to the door basically said they
could used armed forces against us if we are on the property. It
wasn't some joking sign either. It looked really official. So we
decided to back away slowly and call the person that referred us to
them. We had no reception and the pay phones were out so we went to
the post office and they gave us the right address. The person was no
where near that place. Hahah. So we were glad we are alive.
We had exchanges and I went to Helena. I basically count that as one
of my areas now since I've been on exchanges there so often. The
sister training leaders live with some members in a mansion in the
woods and I didn't get much sleep that night because I swear there was
a bear outside responding to the dogs barking incessantly at it. The
dogs went nuts and I heard a creature that sounded like a bear respond
to them. I was too tired to check but now I regret it. :P
Well, other than that I also realized the future is here. At an active
lesson, the dad just said "Alexa" and asked a question and some robot
machine like Siri answered from somewhere in the house. It was crazy!
And then at another members house they had a microwave DRAWER and
there was a vacuum in the wall that sucked up dust from sweeping at
the mansion house. So my mind has been blown all week.
Here's a spiritual thought I found this week:
"These deficiencies just illustrated are those of omission. Once the
telestial sins are left behind and henceforth avoided, the focus falls
ever more on the sins of omission. These omissions signify a lack of
qualifying fully for the celestial kingdom. Only greater consecration
can correct these omissions, which have consequences just as real as
do the sins of commission. Many of us thus have sufficient faith to
avoid the major sins of commission, but not enough faith to sacrifice
our distracting obsessions or to focus on our omissions."-Elder Neal
A. Maxwell
(Sins of omission are sins of not doing the things we have been told
to do. Commission is when we do the things we are told not to do.)
This especially pertains to us when we have made covenants and have a
more expansive knowledge of Gods commandments, we are held more
accountable. We stand on a higher plane with higher responsibilities
involving our use of agency and works to exemplify our faith. So I
have taken that to heart and have tried to focus on what I have been
lacking to do because that has eternal significance as well.

Sister Lauren Ney
Montana Billings Mission

adventures at the border