Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Howdy, Ya'll!!!

My greatest family in the world!
It's been great to hear how your week has been. Mine has been really great. I'm excited to share some fun things with you! I hope your missionary work is going as well as mine is :)
This week we unexpectedly got a call on Thursday from the Assistants to the President telling us that Sis. Chantry is going to Killeen (Military Base) to finish training a missionary! I'm so excited for her. She will do an amazing job. I am very sad to lose her, she's been so fun to serve with but I know the Lord needs her to find people who need the gospel in Killeen! I get to stay in Flower Mound! I'm so excited to serve the people here and work with the ward longer! My new companion is Sis. Coleman. She's been out about 4 months and I'm nervous! I've never had a companion who has been out shorter than me. But it will be a great experience to see the faith that she has and the miracles the Lord has in store for us and his children as we serve together.
We had an amazing experience on Friday of teaching R.A. She's such an amazing daughter of God who has been prepared to receive the gospel. She was praying about Christ to know whether he was a prophet or the Savior, she grew up Jewish and she felt that it was time for her to know for herself. When we got to the lesson we had plans to help her understand who the Savior was and how she can come to know he is the Son of God. What actually happened is she the spirit taught her of the truthfulness of the Savior. When she realized that she had used the atonement in her life and it became personal to her, we realized she has a testimony of the Savior and you could literally see a light brighten her countenance. She got a big smile on her face and she knew it was true! I'm so blessed to see these miracles happen every day! She is asking her dad for permission to get baptized in the next few days and I know with diligent prayer and faith the Lord will provide a way- whether it be now or in the future.
As I've been going about my week I've realized that I've been on my mission for a long time. I look back at the trials I faced when I first came out. I wasn't humble, happy or willing to do the Lord's work. I look at the person I am now and see that I try to humble myself, I'm happy and willing to do what the Lord wants me to do and it will always be a desire of mine to share the gospel! I like to think of my mission life as the Plan of Salvation. Before I came out I spent months, if not years preparing myself to come to the Texas Fort Worth mission and share the gospel that brings me so much happiness. While I've been in Texas I've learned, grown and achieved so much personally and I've helped others learn about the gospel. In time (not much, may I add) I will be coming home, to loving parents who have taught me so much. We are so blessed to not remember what happened in the pre-earth life! Don't get me wrong, it would be amazing to remember living with our loving Heavenly Father. But it would make us take this life for granted. We would always be wanting to return to his love and comforting arms. As a missionary, it would all be so much easier if we didn't remember our pre-mission life. Sometimes distraction comes easily until we get lost in the Lord's work. I know that as I live this short period in my life I will learn so much. My testimony and knowledge of the gospel has already grown beyond what I could ever imagine! I'm grateful for the time I have to serve the Lord. I'm grateful to say exactly what Moroni proclaims in the Book of Mormon- 3 Nephi 5:13 "Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of Him to declare His word among His people, that they might have everlasting life".
I hope y'all have a great week. Remember who you are and share the gospel by word and example! I love you with all my Texas heart.
XOXO,
Sister Tawny Ann Sylar
P.S. The pictures are of the wedding of one of our Active/Part Member- Less active family's in the ward :) Missionaries came because they've taught the groom as well.

Monday, May 19, 2014

The realization of a missionary

Hey family!
Thank you for y'alls letters and love this week! I truly feel the prayers y'all say on my behalf and I know my investigators are being blessed by your prayers as well! It was an amazing week. We had Zone Conference on Tuesday. There were some fun things we got to learn, but also some things that helped us realize we need to buckle down and find those who are prepared to receive the gospel! What a nudge of help from the Lord. I know he's helping us every step of the way, he knows there are people ready to hear the gospel and he's letting us know that we need to help him hasten the work in it's due time, which is now! I'm so excited to go forth and find the people who are searching for the truth!
At zone conference we were talking about the importance of everything in missionary work working together, kinda like a golf swing, there are so many steps, but when you put it all together it works! So I got to be a guinea pig. President Ames had an elder and I go up and he gave me a golf club. The elder told me how to hold it and all the things I needed to do to hit the ball. I had so much that I had to do that was on my mind that I couldn't hit the ball! In fact, I missed it twice and then just said "Okay, let me do it my way!" Although my hit wasn't as powerful as the elders, I got to kind of hit the ball. Haha just a funny story, but it helped me to learn that I really have to focus on every aspect of missionary work, not just one.
One of the greatest realizations I had at zone conference was how much time I don't have left! This is probably the saddest realization I've come to on my mission! :( I don't want it to end. President Ames said to us "Elders and Sisters keep asking me for extensions because they say if they knew then what they know now they would do things different. You don't get more time." Then he gave us a look as if to say "do you understand?" Yes, I understood loud and clear. The Lord only has allowed me to stay out on my mission for 18 months! What a short time to share the gospel with full purpose of heart and full devotion. I can promise you that things will be different in my missionary work from here out. I will return home exhausted and take a 5 hour nap! But for now I have to trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not unto my own understanding. Here goes!
This mission is the greatest 18 months for my life. It truly has changed me. I've seen the Lord work through me this week. I asked Sister Chantry a question about some doctrine as we were studying for a lesson with a recent convert on Thursday morning... that night he asked us the same question that I had asked Sister Chantry and we knew the answer because the spirit told us what he needed! We are instrument in His hands as long as we are living worthy of the spirit.
Please look for someone who needs the gospel in your life! Invite them to learn! Show them the happiness that can come from having the gospel and Jesus Christ in their lives! I promise the Lord is preparing people we know and love to have this in their lives. I love you, I pray for your missionary experiences and success. I hope you have a wonderful week!
XOXO,
Sister Tawny Sylar
P.S. One of the cute girls at Copper Hills who was a sophomore in my Seminary class when I was a Senior is on her mission here with me in Texas! :) She's serving in the Keller 2nd ward (my old area)! She's so cute.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Texas, Fort Worth!!

Hey y'all! If only you knew how much faith can be instilled in a missionary when they hear their family cheering them on! :) Thank you so much for the phone call, it was amazing to hear y'all's voices and see how things are going!
Last week was pretty busy and fun! We are doing our best to make effective use of our time and some ladies in the ward put on their neighborhood social media website that they need people to feed us and people who are looking for service to be done. So we got to go and help 2 women this week with their yard! Tuesday we spent about 5 hours doing service and my body was so tired by the end of it I wanted to pass out on my bed! But we went on our way to share the gospel and find people to teach! :) I know the Lord is blessing me with strength mentally, physically, and spiritually because I know I've never worked this hard in my life! The reward is wonderful though, I love sharing the gospel with God's children!
On Monday we did family home evening with this amazing family who's daughter is getting ready to be baptized and their little friend whose mom is less active is listening to the discussions so she can prepare to be baptized, too! At the end of the lesson we were talking about bread... (I don't know how that came up) and they pulled out a couple slices of Grandma Sycamore bread and gave them to me! I devoured that bread like candy! There are some things in Utah that y'all should be happy to have! ;)
We are also working with a less-active/part member family who is super receptive to the gospel and trying their best to make things work. Their mom passed away recently, I think I shared that with you, and the dad is the only non-member in the house. It's been a blessing to see them build their testimonies of the Plan of Salvation a little stronger every day. The dad also stayed for Sunday School for the first time ever! He invited us over to eat with them on Mother's day, so we got to eat some of his good salmon and help the family a little bit more. I hope that his heart will be softened and one day he will receive the gospel! I just know he will. We had zone training and were trained on how we can help improve the work in the Texas Fort Worth Mission! I love getting together with other missionaries and receiving revelation from the Lord on the things we can do to help others! President Ames is so inspired and such a diligent disciple of Jesus Christ. He is an example to me and all the missionaries and I know he's been called of God, just as I have!
Oh! I forgot to tell you that we took cookies over to the lady who hit our car! She was so nice and we are hoping to go back to help her with some service in the next week or 2. It's funny because Sister Chantry and I both had a feeling that we needed to go over to her house after she hit our car and as we followed that prompting she was very receptive to talking to us for a few minutes!
I know the Lord is preparing people in our lives to hear the gospel and accept it. I know that those who didn't have the opportunity to hear it in this life are getting the opportunity now because so many people are doing their temple work! I know that Heavenly Father is aware of all his children and is willing to bless us as we obey and have faith in him.
I hope y'all have a great week. I love you with all my heart!
XOXOXO from Texas and back-
Sister Tawny Sylar


Monday, May 5, 2014

Happy Mother's Day Week!! :)

First of all I just want to say Happy Mother's day to all the great mom's I have out there, especially my Mama, she's the best of the best, wouldn't you agree?

It's been such a great week here in Flower Mound. We have been working on trying to find new people to teach and hoping that we can continue to work on finding more people and sharing the gospel! We are working a lot with the ward members and have seen the most success working with them!

There's a family in the ward, a part member family, whose mom just passed away and the dad isn't a member. We called him on Monday and when we told him it was the missionaries he said "No way, you're kidding! Do you have dinner tonight or tomorrow? Will you come eat with us?" And then he asked us "Can you teach a lesson afterwards?" And we were like.. of course! I asked him if he would like us to share the Plan of Salvation with he and his family and he said "My children just lost their mom so whatever would help them with that" and I bore witness that I know it can help because it's helped me through the passing of my grandma and grandpa. After he took a moment of silence he came back on the line and said "That would be great" and I could tell he was crying. I know that as we went to share with their family the plan of Salvation the spirit was testifying of the truth of it. I hope he can continue to teach them and bring their family the gospel in it's fullness.

We also had Stake conference this week which was absolutely amazing! Especially as we talked about the Work of Salvation. Our recent convert got to share his conversion story and one of the elders got to talk about how us as missionaries and members can work together in bringing souls to Christ! I know the Lord is hastening his work and we have to be prepared to help him hasten it! :)

This mother's day, I am especially grateful for the example of my angel mom. She's such a great woman. I remember as I was growing up, and this is something that's been on my mind as I've thought about mother's day, I would walk into the room and find her praying to our Heavenly Father on her knees. What an amazing example she is to me of the woman I want to become and the testimony I want to have!! I hope y'all have a great Mother's Day and a great week! I love y'all! XOXO- Sister Sylar