Monday, August 31, 2015

"i am the hole in the doughnut"

Hello everyone!

I really don't have much to say... Missionary work is missionary work, and we just teach a lot! I'm so blessed! before my mission, I really took the gospel for granted. I never really knew HOW important it was. I always just did the things I needed to do because I was told to do them, but now as I teach people to do these things, I understand the blessings that come from it. The mission has truly blessed and shaped my life, and I feel SO incredible. I love this work.

Sister Miller started driving this week, and I've discovered that I just would so much rather have me always do the driving, because I get SO TENSE when others drive. It's kinda funny. It's not like she's a bad driver either! It just happens!

This past week I was kinda mean to Sister Miller and pretended that I was tired of missionary work, and that I was ready to give up. I did it to see how she would react, because when my trainer did it to me, I was FURIOUS and just walked away from her (Never walk away from your companion, btw, NOT GOOD) It's basically an exercise to help the new missionary understand that we are NEVER alone, even when our companion is being difficult and we feel alone. Ultimately the person we need to rely on is Jesus Christ, and that's exactly what she did. I was so proud of her. She gave me this really awesome pep-talk about how we are representatives of our Savior, and how we are called to the work for a reason, and we should never give up, and it really truly made me teary. Basically she's amazing and I aspire to be her one day.

There are so many characteristics of Christ that I aspire to emulate and master as a person, and as a missionary. I've really been focusing on humility this past week, and I've been very inspired.

In Alma 32, Alma is teaching the people that it’s better to naturally be humble, vs compelled to be humble. Cheryl Brown, in a BYU devotional, gave four simple suggestions on how we can become naturally humbled.

Always be willing to laugh at yourself when you make a mistake.
Write in your journal so that we can begin to notice the Lord’s hand in our lives more often
Show gratitude towards others as we continually learn from them.
Reexamine the fruits of following the Savior

President Kimball said this when asked how to remain humble:

“First you evaluate yourself. What am I? I am the circle. I am the hole in the doughnut. I would be nothing without the Lord. My breath, my hearing, my sight, my locomotion, my everything depends upon the Lord. That is the first step, and then we pray and pray often, and we will not get up from our knees until we have communicated. The line may be down; we may have let it fall to pieces, but I will not get up from my knees until I have established communication. If it is twenty minutes, if it is all night, like Enos… if it takes all day long, you stay on your knees until your un-humbleness has dissipated, until you feel the humble spirit and realize, ‘ I could die this minute if it were not for the Lord’s good grace. I am dependent upon Him – Totally dependent upon Him.’”

I LOVED THIS. Humility isn't something you seek for, it comes as you yield your heart to God. It may be defined as wanting what Heavenly Father wants more than any hope or dream.

Anyways, there's a glimpse of what I'm learning. It's hard to retain all this stuff I'm learning, and I'm so thankful for my study journal! :)

I love you all! Have a good week!

Love, Sister Kirkby

Monday, August 24, 2015

"teach with the power and authority of God"

Hello everyone!

Thanks to everyone who wrote me a cute little note, about what they learned at Education Week! It made my entire day!

My week was good. Nothing much happened. Two people came to church on Sunday! Lisa and a new investigator named Amanda!! I've eaten WAY too much this week, (thanks West Virginia) but it's all worth it because it's SO GOOD. We went on exchanges this week, as well as a Zone Conference, and I was able to see Sister Sorensen! YAY. She's doing well.

When you go on missionary exchanges, you stay in another area for a night, so I was in the big city of Charleston, with a sister training leader named Sister Webb. It was way fun, and good to get out of Ripley for awhile. While on exchanges, I learned about how I'm just not a very confident missionary, and Sister Miller has actually brought to my attention that I rarely look people in the eye when I'm teaching. I don't know why I get so scared. I've been praying a lot to become more confident, and to be able to look people in the eye, and now that I am consciously working towards it, I see Satan working at me. I hate that guy. I was studying in PMG earlier in the week, and came across this:

"Missionaries are to go “in the power of the ordination wherewith [they have] been ordained, proclaiming glad tidings of great joy, even the everlasting gospel” (D&C79:1). You have authority to preach the gospel. If you hold the priesthood, you have the authority to administer the ordinances thereof. As you prayerfully and worthily exercise that authority, you will receive spiritual power, which is evidence of the reality of your call. Do not be afraid or shy about fulfilling this commission. Just as the sons of Mosiah, you are to "teach with the power and authority of God (see Alma17:2–3)."

I've literally been set apart with a higher power to teach the people here in Ripley, and as long as I can remember that I represent Jesus Christ, I think I'll be okay.

Also, about a week ago, my ankle started hurting REALLY badly. I didn't do anything to it, and it's not swollen. but I can barely walk.... we bought a brace on Saturday, and if it doesn't feel better by this coming Saturday, we'll call the mission nurse. It's just really inconvenient.

anyways moral of the story is that exchanges are incredible, and I am so blessed to continuously be humbled and enlightened by people all around me! Sister Miller is the best, and I hope to be like her one day. The mission changes lives, and there's no place I'd rather be.

I hope everyone has a good week!
Love, Sister Kirkby

Monday, August 17, 2015

transfer week

Not much to report on since it's only been a few days since I've last written. Transfer week will do that to ya!

Sister Miller and I have been really focusing on faith lately, and how it can influence our work incredibly. There's a difference between hoping that something will happen, and having faith that something will happen. Having hope is wishing for something to happen, where as when you have faith, you KNOW that the task at hand will happen, and that the Lord will bless you. It's a hard concept to grasp in missionary work, because you often think to yourself "It's the Lords will" but if we have enough faith, His will will become our will.

On that note, we have a lot of faith that we'll see a lot more growth in our area within the next transfer! Keep in your prayers that the hearts of the people will soften here in Ripley, and that miracles will arise, and let's combine our faith and see the Lords hand more abundantly.

I'm so thankful for everyone's support and love, and I hope that life outside of the mission is going well for all. I pray for my friends and family back home, and I have faith that the Lord is touching your lives, as you constantly rely on the Lord.

Eliminate all self-defeating, faith destroying, Atonement denying thoughts words and actions!

Have a good week!

Love, Sister Kirkby

Wednesday, August 12, 2015


This week was so good! Sister Miller turned 20, and now she's REAL old ;)

Also, it's transfer week, and we're both staying in my home of Ripley, West Virginia! I never want to leave here, and it'll be heartbreaking when I do have to leave. :(

We've been able to pick up a lot of new investigators, and are teaching greatly! As we work on getting our investigators progressing, Sister Miller and I are humbled daily. Preach my Gospel is such an incredible tool for anyone who wants to do missionary work, and I wish I hadn't taken it for granted before my mission, so some advice to all you youngin's who are out there preping for a mission, STUDY Preach My Gospel! and never ever overlook the Book of Mormon. It is TRULY the word of God, as if He wrote you a personal letter, so why not read it daily?

So, I got myself into trouble this week! We've recently had an investigator move away, with her family, after she broke up with her boyfriend. Well, in the process of trying to find her boyfriend, to continually teach him, we could tell that her kitten was still locked up in her apartment, and that thing was SCREECHING. You could tell it was not being taken care of, just by the sounds it was making, and I was HEART BROKEN. It's a mission rule that we're not aloud to have pets (pretty self-explanatory) but I couldn't just let that kitten die in there, so we went searching for the landlord, to see if we could take the cat, and find it a home. Long story short, worst mistake of my life. As I put upon myself the responsibility of finding a home for this cat, it turned out a lot more that what I anticipated. We eventually found a home for it, and all was well, but holy moly it was stressful and not worth it... Wish I coulda just kept the cat for myself. :) #gottalearnsomehow

Anyways, thanks for all the prayers and thoughts! The area is growing so much, and Sister Miller is incredible!

Love, Sister Kirkby

Monday, August 3, 2015

Bird Troubles


What a busy week this week! First off, here's a picture of when I smash a bird to pieces... It literally looked like it exploded when I hit it. It was really depressing, but also hilarious.

We were able to do a lot of walking this last week, because it was the end of the month, which means we're runnin' low on miles.... walking=lots of tan lines, and more sweat than you can even imagine, but it's also great because we get to meet so many people on the street, and talk to people who might be prepared to hear our message. One man we were talking to was really excited to hear about the organization of our church, and I guess I've always taken that for granted... out here, in the bible belt, most church's are "family run" and there's a lot of bias. This man was talking about how in every church he's been to, he's not liked that, and was really impressed to hear that we an run by a modern day prophet.

There's always so much we take for granted as we grow up in the church. Things we don't even think about. How blessed I was to learn from my parents, and to learn all of this growing up.

We picked up some new investigators, one named Kelly, who has a daughter that reminds me SO MUCH of my sister Savannah (also, shout out to her, she was baptized on Saturday! Proud of that girl!) And we also picked up a young man who is on house arrest for drugs... but is very interested in learning.. we think. He might just like the company because he get's lonely... so we'll see! #benefitofthedoubt

We saw Sister Sorensen at a zone meeting this last week, and boy what a blast from the past (or month... lol) She's doing great things in her area, and I love the example she is to me.

Speaking of examples . . . You know how it's thought that the trainer is the one training the trainee? WELL it's actually basically the opposite. Sister Miller is always keeping me on my toes.... and I LOVE her for it. So much. She is training me to be the best missionary I can be, and I'm so blessed to be serving with her. She is constantly looking outward, rather than inward, and that's an attribute I wish I had more of.

Funny story, we were tracting the other day, and it was Sis. Millers turn to introduce us, and as she starts talking, the man who answered interrupts and says "We'll, I'm actually a baptist preacher" and she freezes. She doesn't say anything... just stares at him..... intimidated much? :) It happens all the time... these people "already have Jesus"... that's great! Just let us give you more of Him!!!!

Well, anyways, life's good here in Ripley. Thanks for the prayers and support. I love this work with all of my heart!

Love, Sister Kirkby

No Title

This week has been busy and uneventful.... so I don't have much to share.

We did get a new branch mission leader called within the past week, and we are very excited to put forth some goals, and to really see this area grow as members become more involved in our work!

I never knew how much I'd love this work, but every time I think about it, I get teary. It's hard... no doubt about it, but I feel my Heavenly Father so close to me daily, and there are times when I KNOW He's the one doing the work... not me, and Sister Miller and I are just the ones to follow through with what the Lord wants us to do.

Sister Miller and I continue to go on adventures every day, and oh boy are we busy as ever. I'm wayyy way tan, and I've never sweated so much in my entire life, but I guess the humidity does that to people (did you know that the sweat was the number one thing I was dreading when I heard I was coming out east.... it's actually not THAT bad though.. :))

One thing that's really ran through my mind all week is the scripture "By small and simple things, great things are brought to pass" - Alma 37:6

as we put in as much effort as we have, day to day, we may only see but a few changes actually taking effect, but as I've been here for 4 months (CRAZY RIGHT?!) I've been really able to witness the power of God in this work, and His hand in all things. We've seen so many blessings, and there's no place else I'd rather be but here in West Virginia.

Thanks for all of your prayers and support. Sorry this week was uneventful. We'll be more exciting in the next week ;)

Love, Sister Kirkby