Monday, July 28, 2014

Have the Miracles Ceased? No!? :)

Hey Y'all!
It's been such a great week. We've been working hard and the Lord is really helping us find those people who are being prepared to receive the gospel! I was a sweat ball as we walked around trying to contact people. But we've also been teaching people 21 tips to better grades, that's been a great way of contacting! :) The 21st tip is to seek Divine Assistance and to pray to our Heavenly Father before school, tests, and studying. I know that it can help all of us when we apply it into our lives. I know that because I've seen it help me as I've read the scriptures! I'm so grateful for those books and the prophets who kept record for us to have such great stories of God's dealing with his children!
When I first got into the area Sister Chantry and I sat down with the bishop and went over a ward list and talked about the people who may be open to us visiting and who the members were working with. There was one family in particular that he said "Don't worry too much about them, they're being watched over by many families" So we never bothered to go over.
This week I had a feeling that we needed to stop by and try to see them. We put them on our plans for several days but didn't have the time to go and contact them until Friday night. when we knocked on the door she opened it, with her son next to her, and said "COME IN! It's hot out there!" She told us that she had been outside pulling weeds and we offered to put down our bags and help. She was in shock that we were so quick to offer and told us that the mosquitoes were out so we couldn't do it then. We had a great conversation with them for about an hour and then they invited us to go to breakfast with them Saturday morning. After breakfast we were able to go help in the yard for a little bit. She told us a lot of why she doesn't come to church anymore, she has gone through some hard times and after listening for about 45 minutes while pulling weeds she said "Thank you for listening". In that moment I remembered what President Holland said about Listening in Preach My Gospel:
More important than speaking is listening. These people are not lifeless objects disguised as a baptismal statistic. They are children of God, our brothers and sisters, and they need what we have. Be genuine. Reach out
sincerely. Ask these friends what matters most to them. What do they cherish, and what
do they hold dear? And then listen. If the setting is right, you might ask what their fears
are, what they yearn for, or what they feel is missing in their lives. I promise you that
something in what they say will always highlight a truth of the gospel about which you
can bear testimony and about which you can then offer more. . . . If we listen with love,
we won’t need to wonder what to say. It will be given to us—by the Spirit and by our
friends” (“Witnesses Unto Me,” Ensign, May 2001, 15)

I know this is true. I know that when we talk to people about the important things in their lives will always demonstrate a truth of the gospel! I pray that we may open our hearts and minds to helping others see how the gospel can ring true to them! As we continued to help them their son opened up to us and told us that he misses coming to church and would love to come again. Sister B's daughter and husband (newly married) are not members and are open to learning more about the gospel. We're excited about this miracle and know that the Lord is softening hearts everywhere.
Along with the miracle we also had a hard time this week because one of our investigators dropped us. He texted us on Saturday and told us that his parents are not fond of him learning the lessons and he doesn't want to feel contention in his home by continuing without their blessing. I understand and respect where he's coming from. I pray that he may continue to be prepared to receive the fullness of the gospel at a later time in his life. I know it's already changed him so much and he's been taught some great things.
I know the gospel is true. I'm so grateful for all the Lord has blessed me with. I know that as we continue to pray in faith, our Heavenly Father will bless us because he's interested in every detail of our lives.
Until next week, Y'all!
I love you!
-Sister Tawny Sylar

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The House of the Lord

Hey familia! :)
So great to hear all your fun news and experiences this week!! I hope y'all are doing well and want you to know that you're always in my prayers!
This week has been great. Not too many exciting things happened. We had the opportunity to teach the woman who someone referred to us. It was absolutely amazing and she had so many great questions about the gospel! We invited her to be baptized on the first lesson and she expressed to us that she's scared to have someone else dunk her in the water, she also thought that we would do it in a dirty lake. Hahaha but when we explained to her the way we do it by priesthood authority and that her friend who referred her to us could do it she seemed more open to the idea. We are still working with her and hopefully she will see the importance of following the Savior in being baptized. I know that's something I've come to understand much more on my mission.
Nothing too exciting has been going on other than that. We are meeting some great people and working hard every day! The weather was extremely nice the last couple days and now it's starting to get hot, so that's been quite fun! This morning I got to go to the temple for the first time in 4.5 months and it was so amazing to just feel the peace of the temple and the spirit. I know that we worship in the House of the Lord and are commanded to go often to learn from on high. I'm grateful for such an amazing place where the spirit can dwell. At the temple I also got to see some of the best members of the Keller 2nd ward (my first area) which was a blessing as well.
I've been reflecting often on the changes I have made in my life since I've come out on my mission. Daily scripture study, praying often, and attending church every single week. One of the principles we teach is enduring to the end. I know that as we continue to develop faith in Jesus Christ and live these gospel principles, we will be guided by the spirit in every aspect of our lives whether it be work or school or missionary work. I know that I've been sent to Fort Worth for a reason! I know there are people that have helped me become who I am and who have strengthened my faith in the gospel.
I love y'all so much. I'm grateful for each of you. Thank you for the prayers said on my behalf, I can feel them, they give me strength each day. Have a wonderful week!
XOXOX- Sister Tawny Sylar

Monday, July 14, 2014

Frog Legs in Texas! :)

Good Morning, y'all!
Thanks for your emails and pictures this week. Shout out to my Amy Lee! :) Congrats on getting married, I love you so much! :)
This week has been wonderful. It's been a bit rough getting into the swing of things for some odd reason, but I've learned so much. On Tuesday we had the wonderful opportunity to go to lunch with our investigator, J.T. She took us to a thai restaurant where Sister Coleman ordered frog legs so we ate some good frog... it looks like chicken and tastes like fish! :) It wasn't too bad, so I guess you can say I like frog! After lunch we took her on a tour of the church building, I wish y'all could experience these things with me because the spirit was so strong. As we sat in the relief society room she told us that it just "felt right" then as we sat in the chapel and discussed the sacrament and the importance of taking it and how it's all about the Savior, she said there was a different feeling. She described it as "washing your face with alcohol". I've never thought of it that way, but it really just leaves a cleansing feeling.
Another awesome experience I had was eating dinner with a family we have never eaten with before. The reason it was cool is because as we were studying for the lesson we would teach them that morning I had an overwhelming feeling that there's someone in their lives they could share the gospel with. At dinner, as I expressed this feeling I had with them the spirit came into the room and they got excited to start doing more missionary work and to find the family or friend that they had in their lives to share the gospel with. I've never had an experience where I got to tell a member what I felt, but I know that as I shared that with them- the spirit will prepare them to look for that one person who is ready for the gospel!
I want to share an experience with you that I had just this morning. I told y'all about the woman and her daughters who came to church who feel compelled to learn more about the gospel. They have been cancelling our appointments and we haven't had the opportunity to teach them yet because we're not sure where they live and they've been busy. This morning, Sister Coleman and I both slept through the alarm and slept passed our exercise time, luckily I woke up before we were supposed to begin our studies. I know this doesn't seem like a big deal, but it is when you're a missionary because you know that exact obedience brings miracles! As I got down on my knees this morning and earnestly prayed to be forgive of my shortcomings and prayed for forgiveness, I asked the Lord to help me feel of his love and mercy toward me. When I got off my knees and started studying, this family called and said they want to meet this week and she told me that she is "probably going to join the church". I know the Lord is merciful toward us. He knows our weaknesses and is striving to help us become better each day (Ether 12:27) He will forgive us as we have faith in him and ask sincerely to be forgiven! The atonement is real- our Savior payed the price for our sins and is waiting for us to come to him.
I'm so grateful to be on a mission for our Heavenly Father and our Savior. I know that this is the true church and it's the same church the Christ established when he was on the earth. I'm grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who knew we needed the gospel in our lives. I know that as we continue to search the scriptures and feel of the spirit in our lives daily, we will see the hand of the Lord more abundantly. I hope y'all have a great week! :) Be safe and know that I love you!!!!
XOXOXO-Sister Tawny Sylar

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

FloMo for Life!! :)

Hey Family,
Guess what? I'm staying in Flower Mound for another 6 weeks with Sister Coleman! I'm so excited because I know our area is just breaking out and we're starting to find people who are being prepared for the gospel as we work with the members!
This week wasn't very exciting because we worked on our float every day until Friday! It was so fun, though! Another Sister and I asked our zone leaders a couple weeks ago if we could do a float in the 4th of July parade about Family History. They kinda shrugged it off and then we were talking with members in our ward and they brought up the idea and offered their truck and trailor for us to build a float on so we could be in the parade. We called the zone leaders, they called President Ames and we were able to make a float and be in the parade! I thought we would have the whole thing done in 2 hours, but I was so wrong. We worked on it every day, I think in total we worked 15 hours on the float and it turned out so cute! We had 2 families help us and some youth helped pass out candy.

Many people told us that more people watched the parade than were in it so we weren't expecting much. By the end of the parade we were drenched in sweat and all hot. There were so many people there it was insane! I was exhausted all week because of the work we put into it but it was a huge success!
We got many snide comments like " You didn't know you'd be running huh?, where are your bikes?" or some people would give out FamilySearch cards back and say "we don't want to waste your marketing" etc. But it's okay! We get antied every day, but we know it's all good! It was a great experience and we are hoping the church gets some visits to the website and possibly some new people to teach, if not... we know the seed was planted and I'm most grateful for that!
It's so amazing to see the ideas the spirit puts into your heart and mind while you're a missionary. And when you act on those thoughts even more blessings come! I know that I've been sent to the Texas Fort Worth mission for a reason! We are seeing so many miracles here right now. I also know that I've been sent to Flower Mound to help the people here find the gospel and learn more about it. Yes, the area is tough and people are set in their faith, but that makes finding people who are ready even more worth it. That's when you know the Lord truly does have his hand in every part of the work! I'm grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ. It's changed my life now and forever. I know the Savior loves each and every one of us and has made it possible in many ways for us to return to live with him again. I love y'all so much! :) Have a wonderful and safe summer week! :)
XOXOXO- Sister Sylar

Happy 4th of July!!

Hey Family!
I hope y'all are breaking in your shoes for the fun 5k on the 4th of July! Don't worry, I will be there running it with you next year... you'll see! :)
This week has been great! We had the awesome opportunity to have interviews with our mission president, President Ames, which is always such an amazing blessing to me. He teaches me so much and helps me to know if I'm doing things the way the Lord would want us to do them. When I walked in the room he said "Sister Sylar, you are always shining, whenever I see you and I love it" hahaha if only he saw me on the hard days, he would probably have something different to tell me but as for right now, he's only seen me happy. He also reminded me that 1 year ago this Saturday at 10:30AM I called him to go home... and a year later I'm still a missionary! What a great and hard year it's been. But I'm loving it!
Another sister in my district and I have been begging to be in the 4th of July parade for about... a month. A member in our ward brought it up to us and told us we could borrow their truck and trailor so we called the zone leaders and they called President and he said "of course you can be in it!" It's not become our responsibility to get everything together and we are decorating the float tomorrow. It will be really fun. I'm excited to do it! The theme will be family history work because so many people are getting into it nowadays. :) How exciting!
One of the nights this week we were having a really hard time. We went to see a potential investigator and they let us into their home. We sat there for an hour as they told us that we think the Savior is not enough because we have another book. They sat there and bashed us for quite a while and I felt down hearted and torn down. When we left and dropped our exchange off back at home, I started crying because I haven't had my faith tried and tested like that in a long time. As I started writing in my journal about that experience we received a phone call from a member in the Dallas mission who has a friend who wanted to come to church this week. She said she feels "compelled to learn more about the gospel". We met her on Sunday and she's so awesome! She's ready to have the gospel in her life and so is her 16 year old daughter! I'm so excited to start working with them. I know the Lord knows me and my trials right now and he's finding ways to bless us in our efforts to find people to teach!
I'm grateful that I have the time in Texas to serve the Lord. Thank you for your continuous prayers on my behalf and the love you show me by word and action! :) I'm so blessed to have y'all as my wonderful family. I know the Lord is blessing us all as we live the gospel and share it with others. Enjoy Independence day! It's a gift the Lord has given us to have our freedom! I love y'all so much and hope you have a great week!
XOXOX- Sister Sylar