Monday, December 30, 2013

Happy New Year, Y'all! This week has been amazing! It was so great to talk to my parents and my family and hear their voices! It was definitely one of the highlights of the week along with remembering the Savior and having one of the most sacred Christmas's I've ever had! This week went by so slow but also so fast... We spent Christmas in a district meeting and ate lots of candy and had an amazing testimony meeting. To hear from other missionaries is one of the most uplifting things on the mission. I know that we're all out here to do the Lord's work and I'm so grateful to know that they know what they're teaching is true! We were also able to do some caroling to our investigators on Christmas which was really fun! Just Sister Tanner and I went and the spirit was strong as we sang about our Savior! I know that the people we went to have been touched by the spirit and they're continuing to learn more everytime we go and see them! We had dinner with a couple families on Christmas eve and one family on Christmas. I know the Lord has placed me in the area that I need to be at this time, it's not a question in my mind! I feel like this week was so uneventful because the Holiday was so crazy! We worked hard, though! We have been working with Chris, still! He's doing so great. He's overcoming his morning coffee habits and replacing it with hot chocolate! His birthday was on Christmas Eve so Sister Tanner and I got a mug that says "chocolate" on it and filled it with hot cocoa and chocolate candy bars, he says he uses it sometimes. :) He knows the blessings that come from living the Word of Wisdom and his testimony is so strong already. I'm grateful that the Lord has placed him in our path to teach him about the gospel. We taught him about the priesthood last night and he's so excited to be a part of it and have the proper authority that we know was restored through Joseph Smith! Gretchen, that sweet lady! She's so excited to be baptized in January, she knows the commitment she is making to Christ and the blessings that come from it. I know that as we are willing to give up our will and align it with God's He will bless us! That's how we become truly converted, and that's who we're working with... the people who will accept the restored gospel! We are trying to find people and coming up with some creative ideas. This week we are going to park our car at wal-mart and draw the Plan of Salvation on the windows and take people on a tour of the car/plan of salvation and teach them a little bit! How fun, huh? Sister Tanner and I are trying to get creative and really put some personality into the way we teach (along with the spirit of course!) We will have to let y'all know how that goes. Thank you so much for all y'all do for me. I really do appreciate it and love y'all so much! Happy New Year! Celebrate for me, I will be sleeping and working hard for the Lord! I know that the Church is true. I know that it has been restored through Joseph Smith, meaning that it was brought back to its original form... it's the same church Christ established when he was on the earth. I know that as we continually live our covenants with God, we will see blessings. Remember to be missionaries and disciples of Christ in all you do this week! Seek to remember the Savior and become more like him every day this upcoming year and always. I LOVE YOU! HAPPY NEW YEAR! XOXOXO- Sister Sylar

Monday, December 23, 2013

Hey wonderful Family!
It's so great to hear from y'all this week. I wish y'all could be here experiencing these wonderful things with me. As a missionary, there are miracles happening every day all around us!
On Tuesday Sister Tanner and I had the opportunity to substitute seminary and woke up at 4:45 in the morning to do it! We didn't have much time to prepare the lesson cause we receieved it at 8 pm the day before and I know the spirit was teaching the lesson, not us! :) I'm grateful for that opportunity to teach the youth and hear their testimonies.
We taught great lessons this week! Gretchen bought us a blow up chair to sit on for when we come to her house and teach her! She really has a sincere desire to learn more about the Savior and loves coming to Church with us each week. I'm so grateful for her testimony.
We also had a couple lessons with Chris this week. A couple days ago we received a text from him that said "The temple is beautiful!" After some discussion, sister Tanner and I thought that he had been looking at the temples online, so we texted him back and asked and he said that he just had nothing to do so he went to see the temple. He went inside and saw the waiting room and talked to the man at the front desk. He also said that he was touching the walls and asked "Are these stone?" Hahaha he's so funy. He had the chance to go to the LDS bookstore just down the street from the temple and bought himself a quad with his name engraved on it. I'm so grateful for the time the Lord has spent preparing him to learn from us. I know that through the Lord, none of this would be happening. He truly is preparing people each and every day. Chris is now preparing to be baptized in the near future.
On Wednesday we had our Mission Christmas Devotional. It was so great! President and Sister Ames served us pulled pork bbq sandwich's (Sister Sylar's favorite!) and we got to see other missionaries who are serving around us. I was able to visit with Sister Tullis, my trainer, and some of the other sisters that I came out on my mission with. It's so great to see their growth and how much their testimonies are touching the lives of people in Texas! After lunch we went into the chapel and had a devotional about Christ. President Ames shared his own Christmas story, we all think it starts with The Savior's birth, but it doesn't start there. It starts before we came to the earth. I would like to share it with you:
The Full Christmas Story:

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2 The same was in the beginning with God.
3 All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.
4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
(John 1:1-4)

22 Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones;
23 And God saw these souls that they were good, and he stood in the midst of them, and he said: These I will make my rulers; for he stood among those that were spirits, and he saw that they were good; and he said unto me: Abraham, thou art one of them; thou wast chosen before thou wast born.
24 And there stood one among them that was like unto God , and he said unto those who were with him: We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell;
25 And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;
(Abraham 3:22-25)

7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,
8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
(Revelation 12:7-11)

26 ¶And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
(Genesis 1:26-28)

25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.
(2 Nephi 2:25)

6 And after many days an angel of the Lord appeared unto Adam, saying: Why dost thou offer sacrifices unto the Lord? And Adam said unto him: I know not, save the Lord commanded me.
7 And then the angel spake, saying: This thing is a similitude of the sacrifice of the Only Begotten of the Father, which is full of grace and truth.
(Moses 5:6-7)

13 And it came to pass that I looked and beheld the great city of Jerusalem, and also other cities. And I beheld the city of Nazareth; and in the city of Nazareth I beheld a virgin, and she was exceedingly fair and white.
14 And it came to pass that I saw the heavens open; and an angel came down and stood before me; and he said unto me: Nephi, what beholdest thou?
15 And I said unto him: A virgin, most beautiful and fair above all other virgins.
16 And he said unto me: Knowest thou the condescension of God?
17 And I said unto him: I know that he loveth his children; nevertheless, I do not know the meaning of all things.
18 And he said unto me: Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God, after the manner of the flesh.
19 And it came to pass that I beheld that she was carried away in the Spirit; and after she had been carried away in the Spirit for the space of a time the angel spake unto me, saying: Look!
20 And I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms.
21 And the angel said unto me: Behold the Lamb of God, yea, even the Son of the Eternal Father! Knowest thou the meaning of the tree which thy father saw?
22 And I answered him, saying: Yea, it is the love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men; wherefore, it is the most desirable above all things.
23 And he spake unto me, saying: Yea, and the most joyous to the soul.
(1 Nephi 11:13-23)

14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a Virgin shall conceive,and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.
(Isaiah 7:14)

6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of peace.
(Isaiah 9:6)

1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Cæsar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.
2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judæa, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.
20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.
(Luke 2:1-20)

52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.
(Luke 2:42-52)

23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age,
(Luke 3:23)

16 ¶And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.
17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,
18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
(Luke 4:16-18)

32 Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.
(Moroni 10:32)

As I have reflected on this Christmas season as a missionary, I've had the time to really think about the Savior and his sacrifice. I know that all he did was for us. I'm grateful for him being willing to come to earth and suffer all he did. I know that he went to the Garden of Gethsemane and bled from every pore for the remission of our sins, praying the father "Let this cup pass from me... not my will, but thine be done." I know that he suffered on the cross for each and every one of us. I have learned that it wasn't the nails that held Christ up on the cross, but it was the thought of you and me. He died for us all individually. And I know that the Savior was resurrected and overcame death, which makes it possible for us to return to live with our Heavenly Father again someday. As I reflect on the sacrifices of the Savior, I can't help to think of the Sacrifice of our Father in Heaven. "For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son..." What a sacrifice! I know that watching Christ go through the trials and pains of this life was not easy for our Father in Heaven, but he knew it had to be done and because of it, we can all become perfected in him.
I'm grateful to be serving the Lord full time this Christmas holiday. I know God Lives, I know He loves each and every one of us.
MERRY CHRISTMAS to the best family and friends in the world. You are in my prayers.
I love you.
-Sister Tawny Ann Sylar

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Transferred and New Address

My family! :) Hello from Keller Texas! Not for too long, I'm getting transferred! Everything is happening so fast here. But I know that this was inspired. I going to be serving in River Trails in Hurst. It's a very humble place to serve with many people who are ready to hear the gospel. My new companion is Sister Tanner, I came out with her! How crazy is that? She's really sweet and I'm excited to embark on a new adventure. As I was getting ready this morning I was thinking about the transfer call we got and multiple times I just kept having strong impressions that I'm supposed to be going to River Trails. In fact, all week I have been thinking about River Trails and Sister Tanner so when I got the call, it wasn't shocking to me that I am called to serve there. I know that President Ames is in tune with the spirit to understand what I need and what the people I'm serving among need. This week was a little slow! We had our first ice storm and we got stuck inside for 2 days. I got a little stir crazy but when we tried to walk outside you couldn't take one step without slipping! We went out on Saturday to de-ice our car and it took an hour to get all the ice off. The chunks that fell down were huge. But the work went forward from inside our home! We helped Sister Todd put up her Christmas decorations and continuously texted and called investigators! We had the opportunity last Tuesday to put up Sherry's tree. If you don't remember, we met Sherry the first couple weeks I was here. She's a member of the church of Christ and lives in a trailer park with the dogs I washed a couple weeks ago. She was so grateful for the service and always looks forward to us coming over. I know that he heart is being softened as we continue to serve her. Heavenly Father knows what she needs and has sent us through revelation to help her and share the gospel with her! Bro. Mark Mabry also has a reflections of Christ showing that they do every year for missionary opportunities. This year they did it in the new Trophy Club building and displayed all of Bro. Mabry's work. Wow. I wish I could explain to y'all how strong the spirit was felt as you walked down the halls and saw the Savior's life in photographs. I'm so grateful for my Savior. I know he died for me. He had to go through pains and afflictions so he would know how to succor each and every one of us. I'm grateful for Heavenly Father and the many things he has placed in my life to teach me about the gospel and help me live it more fully. I know that nothing else can bring as much happiness to someone's life as the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Church was cancelled on Sunday because of the snow storm so we were privileged to have a devotion with Brother and Sister Todd at home. We all shared a thought, sang and prayed together. The spirit was strong as we reflected on the Life of Christ and all that he's done for us. What a great memory that will be. I am so grateful to live with members who know the gospel can bless anyone's life. I know that they were sent to me for a reason. I just want to take a second to bear my testimony. I know that the church is true. I know that this gospel can bring lasting peace, joy and happiness to all who find it and are willing to accept it. I'm grateful for the spirit to guide me each and every day as I "go about my Father's business". I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God who restored the fullness of the Everlasting gospel to the earth. I'm most grateful for my Savior's infinite atonement, which helps me become a better person and prepare to live with my father in Heaven again. I love this gospel. I love my calling and I'm grateful for all I've been given. I know the Lord is preparing people to learn the gospel and I give all the glory to him. I love y'all and hope you have a great week! Share the gospel when you have a chance, it may change someone's life now or later. XOXOXOXO- Sister Tawny Ann Sylar New Address 1008 Willow Dr. #301 Ft Worth, TX. 76120

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

On the Lords Errand

Greatest family on the earth! Hello there! :) I can tell you one thing.. Texas weather is bipolar and it's like a warm spring day today in Keller. I love it! We get to go to the park and play some sports with the rest of the zone which will be really fun! What a great week is has been, although I was away for Thanksgiving I was able to reflect on all the things I'm grateful for and eat with Sister Briggs and her family (the relief society president) I feel right at home and these people have become my family. I was also able to run a turkey trot on Thanksgiving morning that the bishop put on for members and non members! There were about 20 people there and I was dragging poor sister Bingham the whole way. Haha but she made it! I knew she would. One of the greatest things us missionaries get to do is go on exchange with other missionaries and see how their areas are doing! I got to go out with Sister Alldredge to Southlake and see how their area is doing and how they work. It was amazing to see how different work progresses for different areas, even if they're only one mile away from each other! I learned a lot, but specifically I learned about my own attitude and how I need to change it to have more faith and optimism in the work! Attitude is everything and I'm so grateful to be out here as a missionary, these are days I'm spending on the Lord's errand and I'm grateful he trusts me enough to preach His gospel! Saturday we had Matt Moreau's baptism. What a super elect young man! His convert girlfriend introduced him to the gospel about 1 year ago and he has been investigating ever since. He learned for himself the power of the atonement and the truth of the things we taught. It's great to see how the spirit can work through you to really touch his children and I know he will be a strong member of the Church and an example to his family in the future! LJ bore his testimony in sacrament for the first time yesterday too! Wow, what an amazing and elect man as well! He was prepared to receive the gospel throughout the year and when he gained the testimony that the church was true, he was ready to accept it! :) He also got to help ordain Matt to be a Priest! We had a lesson with the Kirkpatrick's this week! The main concern we have found is the truth of the Book of Mormon. We are working with them and going to help them start reading it every night as a family so they can feel the spirit testify to them that it's true! I know that as they continue to search for the truth and pray to know if the Book of Mormon is the word of God, they will find out for themselves through the Holy Ghost that it is! I'm grateful to be a missionary of the Lord, on the Lord's errand, at this time. I know that I have been called of God to declare his word. I know that hearts are being prepared everywhere to receive the gospel. I know that as we pray for missionary opportunities you will recognize them! I'm so grateful for my savior who died for me. I know that after all I can do, his atonement makes up the rest. We're so blessed to have the knowledge that we do, and just like Lehi shared the great fruit with his family, we need to share the gospel with our friends and family that we love. Keep enduring trials, keep sharing the gospel and God will bless you! I love y'all so much! Thank you for your love, support, and prayers! XOXOX- Sister Tawny Ann Sylar