Tuesday, April 26, 2016

"shut up!"

This week was a long one, but a good one! Sister Ward and I are both staying in Roanoke for another transfer! Yay!

Starting last Monday, right after we had emailed, we went and hiked a part of the Appalachian trail. It was so beautiful, and a really good hike. 

Earlier in the week we were working in an apartment complex, and we started talking to this older southern black lady who was in her motorized wheel chair, and we go right into the Restoration. She loved all of it! She kept saying "shut up!" like she didn't believe us, and it was so funny. She was really excited to read from the Book of Mormon, and as we were setting up a return appointment, we asked for her last name. She takes a pause... looks at us really funny, and says "it's Mormon." We all busted up laughing! It was the coolest thing... So now we're teaching someone by the name of Sister Moorman. :D

We also had a really awesome church tour with one of our investigators named Ben Martin. Brother Martin is so sincere, and I love teaching him. He has been having a hard time with coming to church, because he has been going to his church for so long now, and it's hard to break habits, so we had a tour so that we could at least get him inside the building to feel the Spirit within. It went really well. He still didn't come to church, but we'll get there!

On Friday, it was 8:00pm, and all of our plans had fallen through. We had no idea where we needed to be, when Sister Ward got the impression to go try this less active, part member family. I had never met them, because every time we knock on the door, it's apparent that they're ignoring us. Sister Ward had said that the husband was really nice, but that she had never met the wife. (wife's the member, husbands not). Well, we follow her spiritual prompting, and it was PERFECT. Right when we pull up, they're getting out of their car from being out and about. We run up to them and they invite us right in! It was the coolest thing, and they are so open, and ready to come back to church, and go through the discussions. What a tender mercy! Best part about this family? They have 22 cats. YES. 22... and their house doesn't even smell like it!! You would have never even known! As we were getting to know them, there were cats everywhere! It's a good thing neither one of us are allergic. :D

We sang in sacrament meeting with the elders, and it went really well. I love the Spirit that music can bring.

Satan has really been working  hard on me lately, and I'm thankful for the things I've been able to learn. I cling to the promise in D&C 84:88:

"And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up."

I know the Lord is with us in the vineyard, whether we be full-time missionaries, or member missionaries, the Lord is with us as we do His work! What a great thing to know. We MUST be patient, because if we're not patient, then we obviously don't trust the Lord, and trust, or faith, is all we have.

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, April 18, 2016

"oh! Mormons!"

We've had an eventful week. Sister Ward's birthday was yesterday, and we saw lot's of miracles! We're teaching this man and his 15 year old son, and we had the coolest lesson with them yesterday. We're trying to help them understand authority and the Priesthood, and the 15 year old is so open and soft hearted. His dad will need a little bit more help.

On Friday we had a baptism! Zuleica, the 9 year old daughter of a semi-active family we've been working with for awhile got baptized. It was awesome to feel the Spirit, and to see how much it meant to her parents for her to get baptized. They're from Mexico, and they make THE BEST Mexican food I have EVER had. They had a party on Saturday for her baptism, and we went and celebrated. I love that family so much. When they were in Mexico, they went through a lot of scary stuff, and saw people killed all the time, and so they decided it was time to come to the United States.

On Thursday we met the coolest guy ever. We were tracting, and knocked on his door. He answered and said "Oh! Latter-Day Saints!" When people say that, they either mean "oh... Mormons... I'm going to tell them every reason as to why they're wrong" or "oh! Mormons! I know a lot of Mormons and they are really nice, and really awesome!" Good thing with this man, it was the later. :D We had a good conversation with him, and learned that he was Methodist, but that when he was in the military, he knew a lot of Mormons, and had gone to church with them for awhile. He also owns his own large print BOM, which is cool. We invited him to learn more, and to restart on the spiritual journey that we help people through, and he declined, and said he could never leave his church. "They're family". The Spirit told us to push... usually we don't push, because we want people to have positive experiences with Mormon missionaries, but we felt like we really needed to push, and testified again what this could do for him. He then went into how he truly believed (contrary to the Methodist faith) that everyone will be given the opportunity to get into heaven, since heaven will be organized into three different levels, rather than heaven and hell, and inside our hearts and minds Sister Ward and I were like "WHAT THAT'S WHAT WE BELIEVE". We were so excited! We asked what he knew about the Mormon faith, and our beliefs of the afterlife, and he said he didn't know a whole lot. We told him that that's what we believe, and we asked him why he believes it. He told us that God told him it was that way in a dream. WOW. it was so cool. We taught a little bit of doctrine about what the three kingdoms of heaven are, and then we gave his some things to read from the BOM, and made a return appointment. It was so cool to see how the Lord works, and to be lead to our new friend. I know it wasn't a coincidence. 

Friday night Sister Ward and I found ourselves back in West Virginia as we sat on someone's front porch in this beautiful 80 degree weather we've been having, teaching the Restoration to a couple who is defined as "West Virginian" It was good to be "home" ;)

Saturday morning we had a cool opportunity to teach a family history class to 8 people here at the library. It was so neat to feel the Spirit of Elijah, and I can't wait until I'm home and can work more effectively on my family history!

I hope everyone is doing well! My cousin Amanda sent something in her latest email that really hit home for me. She said "I relearned the value of desperation. Sometimes the Lord pushes us to the point of desperation before we can see the fruit of our labors. That desperation made the success we found even sweeter. So if you're currently feeling desperate, keep trying, keep going. It's when you feel like giving up, but keep going that the sweetest joys are found!" SO TRUE. The Lord has seriously humbled me lately, and I love that he has a sense of humor about it by constantly proving me wrong.... haha!

I know Christ is my redeemer, and that he makes up for my imperfections. What a blessing.

(also, no pictures because I can't find my camera cord :( )

Monday, April 11, 2016

Our purpose in life is to be happy. (I hate bowling)

Hah, so we thought spring had come, and then on Saturday it snowed as we studied, was sunny as we left the house, and then started snowing AS it was sunny when we were driving to our appointment. I can definitely say that there's a first for everything, especially for it to snow on a beautiful sunny spring day.... #weird

It's warmed up again though, and I feel so blessed to be a tool in the Lords hands. Last week we found five new investigators, and we weren't able to see a lot of our solid investigators, but this week we'll hopefully get in with them.

I've learned a lot about commitment keeping while on my mission, and I love what my mission president says often. "If you want to astonish someone, keep your commitments". This is SO true! Commitment keeping can be as simple as waking up at 6:30, or doing everything I can to teach, find and baptized! We make commitments and covenants with the Lord continuously in this life, and He always promises us blessings in return! One way I've really been blessed while being a missionary is the knowledge I've gained about how important choices are, and how time is of the essence! We are only given a very short amount of time in a day to do the Lords work, so we better keep our commitment, and do our best, if we are to see miracles in our life.

Our purpose in this life is to be happy. (2 Nephi 2:25) The formula for that is repentance, and serving the Lord (Alma 42:4). I know that the reason as to why missionaries are so happy is because they spend all their time repenting, and serving God! This is our ultimate commitment as we've made covenants to serve the Lord! Also remember that He WILL bless you, and that He loves you, and that knowledge will help you get to where you need to be.

I love my Savior. I know He lives! I know He directs His work through a modern day prophet, and I know that the evidence of this is the Book of Mormon!

Have a great week! I love you all!
Love, Sister Kirkby

went bowling with some missionaries last week. I hate bowling, but oh well. :D

Sister Kirkby and Sister Brower, MTC comps reunited!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Opposition is key


This week has been really slow, and I have no pictures because Sister Ward got really sick with the flu, and was in bed most of the week, bless her heart. We are also going without a car as of right now, and so it actually worked out really well, where she lied in bed, I got caught up on little things around the apartment, and we didn't have to walk much of anywhere. The little amounts of work we did do, we were able to pick up three new investigators! One of which seems super promising! So thankful to members who were willing to pick us up, and take us to our appointments :)

General Conference was this weekend, and I seriously needed it. Elder Holland spoke exactly what I needed to hear. I had gone to conference with a question in my heart, and with it wrapping up, I thought my question wasn't going to get answered, but the Lord humbled me, and answered it right at the end. He sure does love me, and trials my faith, for sure! Opposition is so key, and if we trust in the Lord, all things work out for our good.

As I was watching genconf yesterday, I realized that the next time I'll be watching genconf will be the last week of my mission.... Time sure does fly by.

Our purpose is to serve God! Never forget that! Find time this week to do something extraordinary for the Lord.

I love you all!

Love, Sister Kirkby