Friday, January 29, 2016

Wow! My Dad is totally not keeping up with this blog.

Well Hello Everyone! 

A lot has happened since my Dad last updated this blog.  Right before Christmas I was transferred to Ohio.  I had been in Fort Wayne for about six months, and absolutely loved it.  It was sad to leave, but exciting to start somewhere new.  I'm now in Kettering, Ohio, which is a little bit north of Cincinnati.  I've been called to be a Sister Training Leader which is a great responsibility.  One good thing is that we get a car.  I feel bad for the Elders, who are out walking in this cold weather.  

Now for the happenings of this past week.

It has been a super awesome week this week! I just love being a missionary! 

One thing that I loved about this week was the world wide mission devotional! It was one of the coolest feelings to know that there were 75 thousand missionaries all over the world who were singing the same songs and hearing the same inspired words (but receiving very personal revelation I am sure!) The work is most definitely hastening, and my heart is full of gratitude that I get to be apart of it! One of the things that stood out to me the most in that meeting was that we can't forget about the basics. Both in life and in missionary work. It is those little things that protect us and prepare us for the big challenges in life. Reading your scriptures, saying your prayers, noticing and thanking God for all the miracles we can see every day! It is what I teach about every day, and the world, both members and non members, would bind Satan with their righteousness if we could do these little things! So go out and do it!

Hilarious story for the week: I was on exchanges with Sister King on Friday.She was diagnosed with cellulitis the day before, along with some other things, so I got to stay inside with her all day. I had some incredible studies in the morning, and when she finally woke up she came into the kitchen and made us some cream of wheat. She seemed totally functional, but did say and do a few strange things, like spill cream of wheat all over the floor. Later on in the day, after she took a nap, She walked in and asked why there was cream of wheat all over the kitchen floor. I laughed, thinking she was joking, but then realized she really didn't know why! Turns out she didn't remember that whole morning..... I asked her about eating breakfast, taking her medicine, working on twelve week, and they all got me blank stares. It was hilarious, and a little freaky (not going to lie). All in the day of a life of a missionary :D

I love you all, know I can feel your prayers and your support, and it means the world to me!

Sister Sara Ann Matthews

Staying warm and weekly planning! Yay for electric blankets!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Companion has Pneumonia!


I don't have a lot of time today, but they do say a picture is worth a thousand words, so I'll send some of those! :)

But, we did get to go to the temple this week, and that was an incredible experience. Being in the temple with a handful of the Lord's missionaries brought an amazing Spirit. :) And I am so pumped to go out and do His work!!

And the next day we found out that Sister Peterson has pneumonia. Yep, it is a miracle I haven't caught anything! So I member hopped the past few days, while she stayed at a members house to rest and recover. Let me tell you, after being with a fellow missionary constantly for 6 months, it is the strangest thing to be without them. Luckily she is on her way to recovery, so she'll be back up in no time!

Angela and her family are doing well, though they have had a nasty sick spell. (I think that Sister Peterson gave them pneumonia... just saying) Angela knows. She is reading the Book of Mormon, and knows that it is true. She and her children are planning on being baptized, and she said that Cary (her husband) is taking a little longer, but that he will get there eventually. So prepared. Pray that I don't get transferred before they can be baptized (just kidding, but seriously.... :)

Love you all! MAKE it a great week :)

Sister Matthews

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Bloody Noses

Hi everyone:  

Still in Fort Wayne:

What a week!  I don't even know where to begin...  Hmmm let's start with a funny story.  On Friday it was about 8:30 and we were stopping by to see a less active, but she wasn't home. We knew that we were in that area for a reason so we decided to walk around a little to see if anyone was out that we could talk to.  Very shortly we ran into this man who was walking his dog.  We started talking to him and randomly Sister Peterson got a major bloody nose. We didn't know what to do so she just stood there with blood dripping into her hands and I tried to tell him about our message. Unfortunately, he wasn't paying attention to my eternity changing message because Sister Peterson was bleeding, and laughing because the whole thing was so awkward. He kindly gave her his unused doggie bag to catch her blood.  We set up a time to come back, said a prayer with him and quickly ran to our car that was parked about the length of a football field away. After which I accidentally revved my engine at a couple about to kiss, and we got blood over everything.  Lucky there was a very kind member that lives close by who got her all cleaned up and gave us a life-time supply of tissues and a humidifier :) It was hilarious.

We also taught Cary and Angela the Plan of Salvation this week. And it blew their minds. It goes against a lot of what Cary learned as a young boy, so he had a lot of questions! But you could tell that it also brought them both a lot of relief. The next time we came by, we saw that Cary had looked at an Anti Mormon site that had a bunch of Bible scriptures to combat Book of Mormon scriptures. But before we could explain anything, Angela pulled out a bunch of Bible scriptures to defend the Book of Mormon! Apparently she had gotten on a website that had Bible scriptures to support the Book of Mormon. It was really awesome! And even though they still have lots of questions (especially Cary), they said that they would keep praying about it, and that they really have the desire to know. In fact, they kept saying "I'm not a Mormon yet..." and "When I get my answer that it is true", so they know, they just don't quite know that they know. Anyway, I am really excited for them! Sick kids kept them from church yesterday, but we will get them next week for sure! :) Keep praying for them!

Love you all! 

Sister Sara Matthews

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Bajillions of People

Hello everyone;
I can't believe how time flies!!  I am already almost done with another Transfer, and I think I hit my 4 month mark this week! Ha ha, the time warp of a mission is at it again! I feel like I just got here but at the same time it also feels like I've been a missionary forever!

This week we had dinner with our investigator Carrie... though I don't think that she really knows she is an investigator yet. We told her we were going to share our message with her, but she seemed pretty confused when we started talking to her about the Restoration. She met us and knew about missionaries.... well actually, all she really knew is that we are away from our families so she wanted to have us over for dinner.  And while we were eating she asked us a bajillion questions about Mormon culture.  All of a sudden she stopped and said, "I can tell that there is something strong that is holding your families together and I can't figure out what it is.  It has to be more then just praying and going to church because I do that and I don't have that strength.  What is the core thing that is holding your families together?"  It was so cool to see that as we talked to her for just a few minuets about our families that she could tell there was something different and she desired it. We got to really focus on how the gospel of Jesus Christ allows our families to be together forever. We are excited to go back and talk to her more about the joy that the gospel brings! 

Also, I have been working really hard on talking to everyone, and it is making a huge difference! Even though we talked to about a bajillion people this week, and almost all of them rejected us, I know that God is proud of me for showing faith, and for trying to help all of his children that he places in my path. And even though I haven't seen a lot of success on my mission so far, I know that I am successful in his eyes, and that I am making a difference. So that is just about the coolest thing ever.

Also, our recent convert Darrel told me that I use the word bajillion a lot, and that I exaggerate when I talk... I'm sure none of you would agree with that right? But really, I feel like I have met a bajillion people, so I think it is an appropriate word for it!
Love you all, thanks for all the emails, they are the best! :)
Sister Sara Matthews

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Letter dated 8/18/15 - sorry for not posting it last week.
Things are going great here in Fort Wayne Indiana! We received transfer news today, and I am... staying here!! YAY! Sadly, Sister Mickelsen is leaving me, but I am excited for her to go change another missionaries life like she changed mine :) A bit more about this later!
This week was awesome!! We were walking into the library to have some time, and because our schedule was crazy we didn't get to go until later than we normally do. Coincidence? No such thing. Because right as we walked into the library a man stopped us and said hello! He was talking really loud, and the whole library was staring at us... but we stopped worrying about them when we found out he was a less active who had just hit the low of lows, and had at that very moment been praying that we would walk in the door to help him. How amazing right?? Like my dad said, life (especially a mission) is like a chessboard, and he moves us around, and has us meet certain people at certain times for a reason. I am so excited to help Joseph out, because this gospel will truly help bring him back into the light! It was one of the coolest experiences ever!
We had an awesome dinner appointment with a lady in our ward who had a non member friend over! She was really interested, and we got to share the message of the restoration with her. The testimony of the member (who was a convert to the church) was really powerful and I truly felt the Spirit there. She is praying to know if Joseph Smith is a prophet, but she truly wants to follow Christ, so I know she will get her answer!
She also asked me if it was hard to have doors slammed in my face. Which was a crazy question because it has literally happened like 10 minutes before! And as I was thinking about it, I came up with the analogy about missionary work (but I have proceeded to copyright it, so you must give me credit if you use it! ;D) Okay here goes: As a missionary, it is like we are standing at people's doors with the most delicious chocolate (or whatever kind you like) cake in the whole wide world. And when they open the door, we are offering them this never ending supply of cake. Cake that somehow has no calories and is made with so much love. (who can say no to that really??) So when they slam the door in my face, I try not to be offended or angry or disappointed in myself, I am just sad that they don't want the cake. Luckily, their neighbor doesn't have the cake yet, so I am always able to try and give it to someone else. As we were leaving, she thanked me for sharing my cake with her :)
Okay, new subject because now I am craving chocolate cake :)
The Lord has called me to be a trainer. Wow. What a exciting/nerve wracking/humbling experience. I definitely don't feel qualified for this. But I truly have been shown that the Lord calls the unqualified, and if we let him help us, he will qualify those he calls. It'll be exciting to get to pick up my newbie tomorrow! She is lucky that she got called to the best mission, area, and ward ever. Hopefully her trainer can do a good job too :)
I love you all!
Sister Sara Matthews
Description of Pictures:  We were asked to give our rap as the opening act at the Primary Talent Show...  
These adorable kids

Sister Tucker and I trying to be cool on exchanges :)

Subject: Families can be together forever :D  (letter dated August 25th)
What a crazy week. But so good. I have prayed harder this last week than I have my whole mission, and the Lord has really blessed me (and us) so much!  I have the best trainee in the world. I am positive that she came pre-trained, and that she is actually here to help me, not the other way around! Her name is Sister Peterson, she is from Holladay Utah and also went to a year of college at BYUI (represent!) before her mission! We have a lot in common, and get along really well, but we also have so different strengths and weaknesses, and it has been awesome to see those come out in these past few days! We are still working out a few kinks in our teaching methods, but we have a lot of appointments this week, so we are going to have the restoration down pat by the next time I email home!

We met the coolest family this week. We were walking to contact a referral, and there was a family moving in across the street. So we asked if we could help them! (On a side note, we ask to help people all of the time, and they almost never let us serve them! So I didn't really expect them to say yes when we offered our services!) AND THEY SAID YES. We helped them move for about an hour, and got to know them as we worked. And I have come to realize even more than before that
there is nothing better than physically serving someone to help boost your spirits, and theirs as well! And then it opens so many doors! We are doing a family home evening with them on Saturday, and I am so excited! They are so prepared, and really interested! And when we said a prayer with them, I felt the Spirit so strongly, and the grandma even started to cry! I am so excited to help this family come closer to Christ and each other, and to help them get to the temple someday!
:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D This is the only way that I can describe how I feel right now :)
Love you all!

Sister Sara Matthews :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Happy Birthday America!!
I was wondering what the 4th of July would be like here in the mission field, and it was not what I expected, that's for sure!
At 6:30 that morning, Sister Mickelsen and I rolled out of bed, and proceeded to sing the Star Spangled Banner quite loudly, and if you can believe it I am even more off tune right when I wake up! Also, our neighbors probably hated us. But we took cookies to them later that day, so it's all good! Then we went to a ward Breakfast at the church building, where we ate a lot of pancakes, which is always a good thing! And then to top it off, we had an investigator show up, and we were able to give him a chapel tour, which was really cool! He felt the Spirit for sure, and is excited to learn more!
We then had a service day, in which we made cookies and delivered them to people! That is one of the best ways to get into people's hearts, especially less actives! It was fun, delicious, and successful!
We then traveled to our Zone Leaders area for a finding activity! We went to a park, and drew the Plan of Salvation on the sidewalk with Chalk! It was super cool, and we got to show it to a lot of people who came by! Sister Mickelsen and I also got to show off our Hoosier Pride on a tank statue, so that was pretty cool!
That night we went to a BBQ that our investigator invited us too, and we got to meet a ton of new people and share our message with them. Most of them weren't that interested, but it was the first of the seven positive contacts, so that is good! We also committed her to church!
We finished off the day sitting in our room in the dark, singing the Star Spangled Banner again as we watched fireworks out our window.... all in all a very cool day!
Yesterday, our BBQ investigator Shannon came to church!!! As we were sitting there, she turned to me and asked if I would go up and bear my testimony with her. I walked up and sat on the stand with her, and then she had a panic attack. So I went first to giver her an example, and when I sat down she was still too scared. Take note, we are on the stand in front of the whole ward, and she is not a very quite whisperer. But then, as if the Spirit prompted her (which I am sure it did), Sister Mickelsen came up and bore her testimony, which calmed Shannon down enough so she was able to share hers. And it was so simple and powerful, and after church she decided that she was done smoking, and that she wants to be baptized!! YAY! It was way cool :)

Weird Story of the week: Our Filipino investigator always feeds us when we come over, so I have had some interesting dishes over the past couple weeks! But I think Fish Head Soup takes the cake. It actually wasn't half bad, it kind of tasted like Chicken! We even kissed the fish head for good luck!! So be prepared to hear about miracles galore! ;)
And last but not least.....

Steve is ON DATE! He is getting baptized the 8th of August, so keep him in your prayers! :D
I love you all, keep staying strong! Satan is throwing a lot at us right now, but we already know that God has won, we just have to rely on him and it'll all be okay!
Sister Matthews

Also, I SURVIVED MY FIRST TRANSFER!! :D It FLEW by, and I am so excited for more to come! :D