Doctrine and Covenants 4:3

"Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work" -Doctrine and Covenants 4:3

Monday, January 11, 2016

Called to Serve -- Week 12 in the Utah Orem Mission

Hello, my name is Sister Taylor. I am a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I am a representative of the Savior, Jesus Christ. I have the right to receive revelation over this area in which I have been called to serve and the people in it through my obedience. The blessings I promise through the guidance of the Holy Spirit will be honored by the Almighty God.

Being a missionary is pretty cool. There is really nothing like it. No time that is so special, because you get to devote 100% of your time and effort to the Lord. It is hard, incredibly hard. But it is so worth it. The amount of growth that has happened over this period of my life is amazing compared to the rest of my life. I am still not perfect, and I still have a lot I need to learn and know, but I have grown. I am going to miss being a missionary. It makes me teary-eyed every time I think of taking this badge off. I will never again have the opportunity to wear a tag that says:


But God has given me the opportunity to know how it feels, and now I get to take this into the rest of my life. As Elder Neil A. Anderson said in the April 2013 General Conference: “If you’re not a full-time missionary with a missionary badge pinned on your coat, now is the time to paint one on your heart—painted, as Paul said, “not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God.” And returned missionaries, find your old missionary tag. Don’t wear it, but put it where you can see it. The Lord needs you now more than ever to be an instrument in His hands. All of us have a contribution to make to this miracle.” I am excited to learn how to wear a tag of the Spirit. Pretty special chance!

This week has been wonderful. An amazing last full week of being a missionary! The highlight of the week was Myshima’s baptism!!! She was nervous, but when she came out of the room, I asked her how she felt. “I feel like a new person!” Her faith and desire to do what God wants for her is what brought her to this point. She is now working on family history. In the next few weeks, she will be able to go to the temple and be baptized for her mother and both of her grandmothers. Such a cool opportunity! I know her parents and the rest of her ancestors are so excited for her to begin this chain of solid church members.

Something that was a little crazy. We were in charge of filling the font. We filled it to a certain point with hot water, then the rest with cold water. Unfortunately, we didn't know that the cold water runs faster than the hot. Half an hour before the baptism started, we noticed that the font was almost overflowing, and that it was freezing. You can't pull the plug and put it back in without going we didn't know what to do. We found 2 clean trash cans and created a mini bucket brigade to empty the font enough so we could add more hot water and have it not overflow. We got done minutes before everyone showed up. Good times. (Here's a picture of me in the EMPTY font! :)  )

Craziness of the week came when we went to a couple’s house that we’ve been to a few times. They’re engaged, but didn’t really intend to get married. We challenged them to set a date.….but they have to change together. It turned into basically a soap opera. We sat their awkwardly, trying to tie it back to the Gospel, while they fought. We finally just stood up and walked out mid-sentence. I think that was the turning point for them though. We told them we wouldn’t come back until they had set a date, and they were so embarrassed that they had been like that in front of us, that they’ve almost set a date now. I hope I get to see them before I leave!

We went to the Provo City Center Temple a ton this week. We saw many General Authorities, and more importantly, we saw the Holy Ghost touch people and push them to change. Such an amazing opportunity. We aren’t the teachers, we just tell truth that the Holy Ghost can testify of. In this mission, we “SEE MIRACLES”.

I will be honorably released Thursday, and be speaking in church on Sunday the 17th at 1:00 at the Red Brick Church on Cliffside. (1350 Eastridge Drive, I think). If anyone would like to be there, I would love to see you. If you can’t make it, know that I am grateful for your love and support.

I love this Gospel and the chance that I had to share it with those in the Utah Orem Mission. Every person that I have come in contact with has taught me a lesson. This is the true Church. I have seen and felt it hundreds of times, and there is nothing that would convince me otherwise.

Have a wonderful week!
Sister Taylor

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

First Week of 2016!


First off, Happy New Year!! We found out last minute that we would be on “lockdown” for New Years, so we spent it with our District in a chapel. But that day was a little crazy to begin with. We first had a lesson with Myshima…..WHO IS GETTING BAPTIZED ON SATURDAY!!!!!!  I forgot to write that in my email last week. It was a super spiritual lesson. She was talking about how she hadn't received her answer yet.....but then basically bore her testimony to us. Sister Ortiz said "I think you've received your answer". Then I flat out asked her: "Myshima, do you know the Church is true?". Not your general question, but she sheepishly said "yes". We're super excited for her. Anyways, New Year’s Eve we had a lesson with her…and she majorly dropped a bomb on us. She wasn’t sure why we should live one of the commandments, which, admittedly, was a problem we hadn’t run into before, with anyone. We explained God’s love for us, and why we need to see others as our brothers and sisters. That helped her realize the importance of all of God’s commandments, and she committed to live it. We then had a super quick lunch with Darcy and Jonathan. We love them! But because of Myshima’s more-complicated-then-planned lesson, we were running late for our training at the Provo City Center Temple. Then we tried every single parking garage but the right one, and I ended up getting blood all over everything. Needless to say, it was an adventure. But I got a couple band-aids, we got to see the temple (GORGEOUS! has tickets open now….and they’re going fast, so make sure you get them if you want to see the temple!) , and everything worked out.

That meeting with all the sisters from Provo and Orem went well, but it ran over, so we ended up getting to the chapel for New Years at 6 instead of 5. Oh well, we tried. We watched “Ephraim’s Rescue” with our district. We’re the only companionship of sisters, and there’s a companionship of British Elders in our district, so it was really fun to watch it. They kept saying “what kind of accent is that?!”. Funny thing is, one’s from the North, and one’s from the South, so they have very different accents from each other. We gained an appreciation for the pioneers, and learned not to complain when our feet turn blue, because they’re not black and dead yet!! It made us stop complaining when we walk now. Good lessons to be learned. Are you prepared to go now?

I also was an Hermana for a day! Because my companion is an STL, I went to the Spanish area and served there for a day. I can understand a ton in spanish now....but I still speak almost nothing. I could testify though, and most of the people we taught understood English, so I could bear my testimony on the subject in English. I dreamed in spanish that night. :)

Well, this email has already rambled on, but I do have to share how cool having a VIP week at the temple is. WE SAW PRESIDENT RUSSELL M. NELSON YESTERDAY!!!!!!!!  Elder Oaks and Bishop Causse were also there. I didn’t get to see Elder Oaks though. We get to take our investigators, less actives, and recent converts through the temple before the general public, which is a special opportunity. I love this gospel!! The Church is true!!

For those of you who’ve asked about my plans: I am going to be returning home next Thursday, speaking in church on the 17th, then hopefully moving back to Arizona soon after. I will attend BYU-I in the fall, majoring in paramedicine. Of course, all of these plans are subject to change, depending on what the Lord wants. :)
Thank you all for your support!!

Love you all!!
Sister Taylor

Merry Christmas, and News of the Week! Dec. 28, 2015

Hello Everyone! 
Merry Christmas!!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, and were able to feel the love of our Savior at this time of the year. I spent it with some wonderful families. We were even able to teach 3 lessons on Christmas Eve, and one on Christmas Day! My sweet companion made breakfast for me on Christmas morning.

On the 22nd we had a Christmas party as a mission!! My favorite part of it was the traditional movie. We watched "The Polar Express" at *drumroll* THE MOVIE THEATER!!!! It was so weird to be there as a mission. All of the Sisters sat in the front section, then the Elders sat in the back. You know you're a missionary when:
Santa says "The First Gift of Christmas!!" and immediately half the theater goes: "Was not wrapped, had no bow, was not purchased online, or in a store..." (See if you have no idea what I'm referencing) 
When the little girl in the movie gets her ticket hole-punched to say "LEADER", 3 or 4 Sisters shouted out "STL!" 
It was a lot of fun. (awkward picture at the party)


As much as I really don't want to have to type this, I probably should. My mission president, President Killpack, called me on Christmas Eve. I was informed that due to my persisting medical conditions (seizures), I will be honorably released at the end of this transfer. I'll admit it, that literally floored me. I dropped to my knees and bawled like a baby. And for those of you who know me well, know I don't cry. However, there is only one thing I want more than to continue serving as a full-time missionary, and that is to follow the will of the Lord. I know that the missionary board works with revelation, so God wants me to go home. That is His will. So if any of you have a problem with it, take it up with Him. ;)  So I will, as of January 13th, be an honorably returned missionary. My one request is that you treat me like one. I honestly would love to stay and continue serving, but I served for the full time that I was called for. My mission call said "It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 3 months." I have learned and grown, just as any other return missionary. I love my mission and the opportunity to serve. I have stories and experiences and scriptures. I am not returning early. Anyways......
I will probably stay at home for a few weeks, then I will probably move to work again until school starts. I'm excited to see what God has in store for me.

Other exciting things of the week!!
The Larsen kids got baptized!! It was so cool to be there to see them FINALLY get to enter the waters of baptism. I love those kids! I went on a split with a recently returned Sister who has been home for 17 days. We had a lot of fun. 

I love this Gospel, and I'm so grateful for the opportunity I have to share it every single day. I encourage you all to pick something to work on that will bring you closer to the Lord Jesus Christ. There's a great (and HILARIOUS) video perfect for New Years.

I love you all, and am thankful for your love and support.
Sister Taylor

Highland East, Week 3

Dec. 21, 2015
Hello Family and Friends!!!
Hope you all are enjoying your prep for Christmas!! This is a wonderful time of the year when we all get to focus on the Savior of the World!! I encourage you to make Him the FOCUS, not the afterthought!

First, the highlights of the week!!
KARLY GOT BAPTIZED!!!!! It was absolutely incredible!! I love that girl so much!! It took a while for her to work up to going all the way under the water, but SHE DID IT!!! It was an absolute miracle!! I am BEYOND excited to meet her after the Resurrection. She is so smart and powerful in the Gospel and in life, and I’m excited to get to know her when we don’t have to deal with physical difficulties.
Also on Saturday I got to go back to my old area to attend the baptism of two of the people I taught. It was cool to go back, but it felt so different, because it is no longer my area, so I no longer have the responsibility for those people. It was so special to watch them be baptized though. The Gospel is a light that you can see in people’s eyes as they are truly converted.

Funny Stories of the Week:
We got stuck in the snow……twice. The first time we had just pulled to the side of the road and the snow was deep enough that we got stuck. I just pushed us out. The second time, I was backing Sister Ortiz and backed her into some snow that I THOUGHT was just unshoveled driveway. Turns out it was just an oddly shaped driveway and I had backed her into the grass. A half hour and two elderly ladies later, we finally shoveled enough snow away to push us out. Lucky designated driver Sister Ortiz doesn’t have to push, because she is the only one allowed to drive the car. 

You know you’re a Sister Missionary when…… drive past a blow up thing of Santa and his wife, and you say “Aww, look at Sister Claus!!” and don’t realize for 5 minutes that she’s not generally referred to as “Sister Claus”.

We went to visit this 93 year old lady who owns a mink farm in the middle of nowhere. We parked at the bottom of this hill, climbed clear up it, then hiked through a foot and a half of snow in fields for half a mile to her house. Needless to say, it was an adventure! 

We taught Myshima at one of our Ward Mission Leaders houses. He is a French Canadian, and Myshima speaks French better than English, and Sister Ortiz speaks French as well. So 99.9% of the hour and a half lesson was in French. Guess who can't even count to 10 in French? Yup. This Sister. So I tried to understand anything for the first 45 minutes, then I gave up and started planning how my future Christmas tree would look so I wouldn't fall asleep. Not the most missionary-like I've ever been, but according to Sister Ortiz, the lesson was AMAZING. So that's good. :) Aww, the life of a Sister Missionary in Highland.

Last story: We met this adorable couple named Darcy and Jonathan. They’re both return missionaries, but not exactly active. We love them a ton though. They’ve become like our second set of parents. We have so much fun with them. It’s interesting to teach them though, because they know all the answers, and the terms that missionaries use. For example, we challenged them to do something, and they asked us if we were going to follow up. They have solid testimonies, they’re just relearning how to USE them.

I am so grateful to know the true meaning of Christmas, and be able to share it at this time of the year. This Church brings so much Joy to me and to those that I teach, because of the Savior.
I love you all, and hope you have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!
Sister Taylor