Sunday, January 8, 2017

Returned Missionary

It is weird being termed an "RM" now. I feel like my mission just begun and now it's over. But, words can't express how grateful I am for a loving Heavenly Father who is aware of us and who knows us each individually.
On December 30, I flew home to Boise, Idaho and I was welcomed by family and friends. Love filled my heart as I was reunited with some of the people that I love most. But, there was also something missing, because I love the people in Missouri and Kansas just as much and they weren't there with me. And that was hard for me to overcome. On the other hand, I love my Savior most, and I know that He was with me and that He was with those I love back in the Midwest when I could no longer be with them.
Returning home was a glorious reunion though. I missed my family so much while I was gone and being in their arms again was so good. It made me think about the glorious reunion we will have with our Heavenly Father one day...that we will hug Him and catch up and laugh and cry and be filled with love. I know that just as I missed my family while I was gone, my spirit misses my Father in Heaven and that day when I get to see Him again is a day that I look forward to.
Adjusting back to normal life is weird, but I am grateful for the things that I learned on my mission. I truly know that when we put God first in our lives, everything works out. He is our Father and He will bless us as we follow Him. It takes a lot of faith and diligence to keep trying, especially when we mess up, but I know that each and every day is an opportunity for us to try harder to be like our Savior. And when we take those opportunities, we grow and come closer to Him.
I am so grateful for my mission. It has given me the faith I need to continue to do the things that are right and to not give up. It has provided a foundation for what I want to do and who I want to become. Serving taught me that Christ is the only way and there is no other way back home or to find happiness.
I love my Savior. I know that He lives. I am grateful for Him and His love for us and that He never gives up on us. I have come closer to Him through serving His children and I look forward to continually learning and growing throughout my life.





Monday, December 26, 2016

I Stand All Amazed

Merry Christmas!!! We had a WET Christmas over here in Missouri, but
it was so good! My heart is so full for the love of the members and
the love of the Savior. It was also so good to talk to my family! The
Lord really is in the details of our lives...my brother and I got to
skype my family at the same time so I got to see him as well! He truly
watches over us. I hope you all enjoyed your holiday and time with
family and friends.

This week we saw a lot of miracles! We went to the liberty jail with
Shannon and she absolutely loved it! Lily had to work so she couldn't
make it. But we met with them again on Friday at a member's home and
we had such an amazing lesson! They accepted a baptismal date of
January 21! It is so cool to watch them learn and grow...they just eat
up everything and absolutely love it. I love them so much! We saw them
again Christmas night and Brother Campbell and his boys were there.
Again, I just love their family and I know Heavenly Father is taking
good care of them.

For Christmas Eve and Christmas, the elders and us went around
caroling to less actives and recent converts. It was so much fun and
music definitely is the best way to feel the spirit quickly. Spending
Christmas on a mission is so cool to remember that I am a
representative of the person whose birth we celebrate and whose
mission and atonement I am so grateful for.

I can't believe that this is my last email as a missionary.. I have
been reflecting a lot on the last 18 months and the only thing that
comes to mind is the line "I stand all amazed". I have come to know
that Jesus Christ's sacrifice is real. Each and every day of my
mission, I have somehow felt the power of the atonement take effect in
my life and it has carried me through. Jesus Christ lives and He walks
with us every day.

I stand all amazed at the love He has for me. I have been much more
aware of my weaknesses and shortcomings as a missionary, but I have
never failed to feel the love my Savior and Heavenly Father have for
me. I have come to know on a very real and personal sense that They
know who I am and They love me. And because of these experiences, I
know that our Father in Heaven loves all of His children. His only
purpose is to help each and every one of us return to life with Him
again. He has given us everything we need, including a Savior, to make
it back.

My advice to anyone who is trying to know this truth for themselves is
to be obedient to the commandments. Read your scriptures everyday and
pray to your Father in heaven. The simple things are how the Lord
works. I've learned that. Every time I wonder how I can improve or
qualify more for the spirit, I'm always reminded to spend more time in
my scriptures and on my knees. I know He hears our prayers and will
answer them.

I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God's
kingdom on the earth. Jesus Christ is the only way back to our Father.
I have been able to see people's lives change because of the gospel of
Jesus Christ and I can't deny the power that it has. God is so good to
us and blesses us for every effort we make to come closer to Him.

Being a representative of Jesus Christ has been the greatest blessing
I could ever ask for. I will forever be grateful for my mission and
the lessons I've learned and the people I've met. But more than
anything, I'm grateful for my relationship with Jesus Christ that has
increased. I've come to know Him better as I've experienced just a
little bit of what He did. I know that He lives.

Thank you all so much for your prayers and support. I truly stand all
amazed at the many, many blessings that I have in my life. I love you
all!!!!

          
We got to go to the Visitor's Center with Adrath and Sister Cashin this week!  Adrath always makes us laugh, that's for sure!  I love her so much!


The Bennett Family-one of the families we went caroling to!  Love this family so much!

The Burley/Campbell Family!  I am standing in between Shannon and Lily.  We caroled to them too!  They're such a fun family and I love them!

One of the things I'm going to miss most...the Missouri skies!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Grounded

This week was quite the adventure... Saturday and Sunday we were
grounded, meaning the missionaries weren't allowed to drive at all!
The crazy thing about the Midwest is that the winter brings
ice...which is something that is so foreign to me. But Friday it was
freezing rain all day, which means that everything was just covered in
a sheet of ice. It was an ice skating rink everywhere! ThenSaturday
it snowed all day, on top of the ice and it was too dangerous for us
to drive. Church was even cancelled yesterday! Unfortunately, this
means we were inside all day for two days... We got a little cabin
fever haha!

We called pretty much everyone we could.. We cleaned out our whole
area book.. We had some lessons over the phone.. We set up our whole
schedule for this upcoming week.. We even made some cookies with the
members we live with! Finally, we caved and played this ridiculous
game the elders taught us called Book of Mormon baseball.. It is a
very missionary thing and Sister Day and I were laughing so hard at
the fact we were even playing it (again, we definitely had cabin
fever...) but the Lord will consecrate our efforts! And he already
has! Out of the many people we called, one texted back and said he
wants to meet with us! Miracles!!!

Kimi, Nichole, and Adrath ALL went to the temple this week to do
baptisms! I love when people get to go to the temple! And something
totally amazing is Adrath was baptized for her great grandma and some
young men were baptized for her husband who passed away and two of her
sons who have passed away. Adrath thought it was incredible. Now she
is looking forward to being sealed to them in a year. I love the
gospel!

On Thursday we had a zone conference. It was AMAZING. We were combined
with two other zones and it was held in Liberty right next to the
temple. It was really hard though...I had to bear my departing
testimony. It was so surreal after hearing missionaries bear their
departing testimony my whole mission, to be the one whose turn it was.
I was so humbled as I reflected on my mission and how I've grown
closer to Christ.

The highlight of the week was at zone conference, we got to go to the
temple in our zones. It was such a neat experience. And being
surrounded by my mission family was incredible. We were all dressed in
white and President and Sister Vest welcomed us into the celestial
room. It was the greatest Christmas present I could ever ask for. I
love the temple and I love my mission. Words can't express the
gratitude I have for my Savior and all He did for me. I hope you all
have a merry merry Christmas!!!

Sister Moss
         
Kansas City Temple at Christmas time!


Exchanges with Sister Harvey

This is what happens when you try to take a picture in a snow storm...


Monday, December 12, 2016

18 Months!

Hi friends and family! Hope you're all having a wonderful holiday
season and enjoying the #LIGHTtheWORLD initiative! It's definitely
helping me understand the true nature of Jesus Christ and how we can
do the littlest things to become like Him. It's also helping me focus
on putting off my pride and really focusing on others. I'm not perfect
at it, but I'm definitely trying!

This week was an emotional roller coaster for me, but it was a very
good week. I think one of the hardest parts of the week was on
Saturday, I realized that I hit my 18 month mark on my mission...and I
realized that it is quickly coming to an end. 18 months ago, I
embarked on a journey that I knew would change my life, but I didn't
know what to expect.

These 18 months have taught me so much, but I've learned so much about
myself. Just like Ether 12:27 says, when we come unto Him, He shows us
our weaknesses. As I've come closer to Him on my mission, I've
realized truly how many weaknesses I have. But I've been humbled to
know that these weaknesses are given to me to help build the kingdom
of God and if I rely on His Atonement and His grace, I can overcome
them.

Some of the highlights of the week include MLC and zone training! It
was bittersweet because they were my last ones...which means I had to
bear my departing testimony. But I was able to learn so much. I
learned so much about the Holy Ghost and how special of a gift it is
that we have a member of the godhead with us always. It encourages me
to remain worthy and obedient so I can have his influence and guidance
because I know without it, I am nothing.

We found 3 new investigators this week!!! They were all former
investigators. But we saw some miracles! On Tuesday, Sister Flahrety
and I (we were on exchanges, but I forgot to take a picture) felt
inspired to stop by a lady named Laura Means. She met with the sisters
earlier this year but hasn't been getting back to us. We stopped by
and she opened her door and her grandma had just passed away that
morning and she knew God told us to see her. It was amazing to see how
Heavenly Father uses us to bless the lives of others.

We also finally saw Shannon and Lily again!!! We saw them Friday night
and Shannon said "we are on lesson 3 right?" And so we taught lesson 3
and it was so good. They both said they would be baptized when they
knew it was true! Saturday night we went over again and Shannon, Lily,
Zoe, Brother Campbell, and his 3 sons were all there. It was so fun!
Brother Campbell is a less active that is dating Shannon and he shared
his favorite general conference quote with us all and Shannon is so
into it! Then, yesterday they ALL came to stake conference! It was
amazing! We taught Shannon and Lily again last night and they're
definitely going to be baptized one day!

Tender mercy of the week...I found out that Michelle, who I taught at
the beginning of my mission, was baptized last month! It is so true
that we plant seeds and to know that one of those seeds blossomed is
so cool!

Well, I hope you all are enjoying your Christmas season and continue
to reach out and love and serve those around you. I know that is what
Christ's invitation to all of us is. He is our perfect example of
that.

Sister Moss

            
It's getting really cold outside...


Got to see Jaleh at church yesterday!  She was in the Shawnee mission YSA and she came to the Liberty YSA!

Monday, December 5, 2016

December?!

Has it really already been a week since I emailed home? And is it
really December? Time only gets faster... Yesterday was my last fast
Sunday as a full time missionary and it hit me how soon it is to being
over. I'm not quite sure how to feel about it.

But the week was good! Crazy, but good. We are REALLY struggling to
find new people to teach. I've been learning a lot about patience
lately. It is one of the hardest attributes to develop in my opinion.
But Satan teaches us to receive things NOW and see things NOW and
understand everything NOW. But that is not how Heavenly Father works.
He works line upon line. And I often have to remind myself
that...especially when we go through periods like this where we go 3
weeks without a new investigator. It's definitely hard not to get
discouraged.

Thank goodness for the #LIGHTtheWORLD initiative, though, because I've
been a lot more focused on service and being like Christ, even if it
doesn't result in numbers or anything. It's really helped me
understand who Jesus Christ is and the motives behind everything He
did. On the 3rd, I read an account in Mark about how Christ healed a
blind man and I thought about the very end of the story when He told
the man not to tell anyone what had happened. Christ never went about
looking for praise or recognition. He served out of the goodness of
His heart and to glorify His Father. We all should remember that,
especially as we serve throughout this month.

Something really cool happened this week! Brother and Sister Johnson
have a man who lives across the street that we met last week and we
invited him over for dessert and a Christmas message (we totally
through the Johnson's under the bus...thank goodness they're awesome
and were okay with it!) On Friday, David came into the Johnson's home
and we shared the light the world video and had some dessert and
chatted for a while. Brother Johnson invited him to church and gave
him a calendar for the initiative. David didn't become a new
investigator, but it was really cool to watch member missionary work
take place and how strong the spirit is when it happens in someone's
home. David loved the message and hopefully we will see him again this
week!

Funny story.. last week the elders left a card on our car that said
"tag" on it, and we begun a tag battle! Whenever we see each other's
car we can tag them and if we don't get caught we get a point. It's
lasting all transfer and at the end, the losers have to buy the
winners lunch! I'll give weekly updates because it's very intense
competition. Sisters - 2 and elders - 1! #SistersRock


         
Sister Day and I

Exchanges with Sister Edwards

Monday, November 28, 2016

Light the World!

I hope you all had a WONDERFUL thanksgiving! We had such a good day
here. We ate dinner at the Cook's with the Hatch's and it was so much
fun. I love these two families so much, and I just love this ward!
I've met some truly amazing people here and I'm so grateful for all of
them. I'm also so very grateful for my mission. It has helped me so
much to understand who Christ is and how I can become like Him.
Because of my mission, I have been able to come closer to Him and
fully he healed. (Look up 3 Nephi 9: 13-14... one of my favorites!!!)

Kimi was baptized this week! It was probably the coolest baptism I've
been to. Aremondo baptized her and he was baptized in July. And a girl
named Tyler spoke and she was baptized in August. They all met at
school and now they are all members of the church! And they're
continuing to help others come to church! Kimi was SO happy after she
was confirmed and we could just SEE the glow in her. In relief society
we went around saying what we were grateful for and she said she was
grateful for her sister missionaries and gave us big hugs...it was
adorable.

I was also able to go to Independence to see Darlene Sampson be
baptized! That was so cool. I found out that there is no more
Independence 2nd ward, though! It got dissolved into two other wards.
But it was so fun to see some people from 2nd ward and to see the
change that was in Darlene. I know Mac is so happy on the other side
of the veil!

Maddox Bennett is also on date to be baptized! Bishop met with Jesse
(Maddox's dad) to get him ready to baptize her and we are planning on
December 10! That'll be such a good day. The Bennett family is awesome
and I'm so excited for Maddox to finally get baptized! :)

We have really exciting stuff with baptisms going on, but we are
really struggling to find new people to teach. But we are exercising
faith and patience and I know they'll come. I can't believe how fast
time goes and I'm still enjoying every second, even the hard days when
no one talks to us.

On Friday, the #LIGHTtheWORLD initiative went live and I am so excited
about it! I hope you've all been able to see the video, but if not,
make sure to get on Mormon.org and watch it and then share it! And
don't forget about the service in 25 ways over 25 days calendar! It's
so cool how that is included with this initiative. We all get to be
the light this Christmas season as we serve our brothers and sisters
around us. What an honor it is for each and every one of us to act and
serve in Christ's name. Our ward mission leader invited our ward
council to share the video and calendar with 5 people and invite you
all to do the same! To be the light and share this message with 5
people. This is how we will light the world!

               
We love Kimi!


Kimi and Aremondo!

Darlene got baptized!!!  :)

Monday, November 21, 2016

THE FINAL TRANSFER!

First of all, sorry this is coming out a day late! We went to the
temple today! And it was something I definitely needed today! I LOVE
the temple. Something I understood more deeply today is the role of
our savior as our mediator. He is the only way! I love learning new
things at the temple.

I stayed in Platte City for my last transfer! And the craziest thing
of them all...Sister Day is still my companion! This is our FIFTH
transfer together! Who knew that my daughter would kill me?! I am so
happy to be ending my mission in Platte City, though!

I was reading in Moroni chapter 8 this week and verse 3 says " I am
mindful of you always in my prayers, continually praying unto God the
Father in the name of his Holy Child, Jesus, that he, through his
infinite goodness and grace, will keep you through the endurance of
faith on his name to the end." I immediately thought of all of you and
I am so grateful for all of your prayers. I definitely feel
strengthened because of the support I have from loving family and
friends.

This week was another one for the books! Adrath Thomason got baptized!
It was such a good day and her smile said it all! She bore her
testimony the next day at President's Devotional and she ended by
saying, "It felt good. Amen." She is so awesome haha.

We had more lessons with Kimi and she is SO AWESOME. She is what you
would call a golden investigator. She writes down her "homework"
assignments we give her in her notebook and she comes back with
questions from the things she read. She usually reads the chapter 3
times so she can understand everything.

We had a lesson with her and a guy named Timothy from the YSA. He just
got back from his mission about a month ago and his family just moved
to Platte City. It was so cool to see Kimi so interested in learning
more about the truth. She asked Timothy so many questions about the
priesthood and it made me so excited how exciting she found
everything! The gospel is so amazing!

I was studying in Mosiah 2 this week (King Benjamin's sermon are some
of my favorite chapters of the Book of Mormon! A line really stood out
to me this time that I never noticed before. In verse 34 it says, "ye
are eternally indebted to your heavenly Father, to render to him all
that you have and are." The Holy Ghost taught me that who we become is
the greatest gift of thanks we could give to our Heavenly Father. We
will forever be indebted to Him for all He gives us, but if we
remember that who we are on the day of judgment is our gift to Him,
then we will want to become better and more like our Savior.

I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who blesses me way more
than I deserve. I feel like this lesson sums up the past 17 months of
my life... I am learning who I want to be when I stand before my judge
one day. And I know it's only by allowing the atonement to enter into
my heart and change me that I can become that person. But I will put
forth any effort it takes, because I want to thank my Heavenly Father
for all He has given me by giving Him myself.

Happy thanksgiving!!!


         
Windy day at the temple!

We love the Edwards!

Sister Baggett, my BFF completed her mission.  Thank goodness I'll see her soon!

Adrath got baptized!!!  Look at that happy face :)

This is Jacob Squire...he was my brother's zone leader in Italy!  He just came home and lives in Overland Park.  Him and his mom took us to dinner.  Small World!