Tuesday, December 5, 2017

"I love Jesus Christ more and more every day.... and Black Olives!"

December 4, 2017


So.... this week was awesome! I know I say that every week but I mean it every week! I love this time of year and I feel like I love it even more this year because as a missionary I try to focus on Jesus Christ everyday but this is the time of year when other people step up their game and think about Jesus Christ everyday too! It's the neatest thing to watch the general attitude of people change! 

Monday: P Day! We did the usual P Day things and it was great!

Tuesday: On Tuesday it was a great day because we had service at Baxter Retirement. We were serving lunch and this woman saw me and smiled and threw her arms up and gave me a hug and kissed my cheek and yelled "You're GORGEOUS!" and then walked away. I was very surprised and I laughed a little bit but it was a great start to my day! After service we played the piano and then we had to leave for a lesson with our investigator Craig. Craig has been investigating for a while and as had like 5 or 6 baptismal dates and he just is always "sick" and never comes to church. Well, we aren't going to baptize someone who is already not doing what they need to so we decided, a few weeks ago to drop him for a little while. Well, he started coming to church again after a couple weeks he called us and asked for a lesson. So we went to their house and they had made us fried chicken and they loaded a picnic lunch into their car and we followed them out to this lake and we had a picnic lunch and a lesson (because it's still warm enough here to do that). Well, we talked for a long time and had a really good heart to heart and at the end of the lesson he said he wanted to get baptized and that he was going to come to church every Sunday he could make it. So we set a baptismal date with him for the 16th of December and he is really excited about it and has come to church so we really think that he understands and is ready now which is so exciting! 

Wednesday: On Wednesday we had a lesson with our other investigator who is scheduled to get baptized this month, John Harvey. We talked about the importance of C.P.R. (going to church, praying and reading your scriptures) and how this will keep you spiritually alive. It was a really good lesson and he is excited for his baptism on the 23rd! So are we. He has been taught by missionaries for a long time and is so ready to be baptized. On Wednesday we also helped the youth assemble personal hygiene kits for the salvation army. It was really cool to be able to help those who are less fortunate in that way with the youth of the ward. We put little scripture verses in each one to hopefully bring some light into their lives. 

Thursday: On Thursday we did weekly planning which was not as boring as usual because we got to talk about LIGHT THE WORLD! We have been trying to plan little acts of service that we can do for the members of our ward every day for Light the World and it has been so fun to plan! We are really excited to serve our ward. We also did service for an older lady who isn't a member of the church. She was moving out of her house and needed to be out by the next day and when we got to her house we looked around and knew that there was no way we were going to be able to help her pack up all of this stuff. We could only stay for two hours but by the time we left we had all of the living room packed and a lot of the kitchen packed. We felt bad that we couldn't help more but we did what we could. 

Friday: On Friday we had Zone Conference! So we got up at 5:00 am, hopped in the car at 6 and started driving to Springfield. It was a great Zone Conference. We talked about our culture as a mission and the thing that we ARE as a mission. We also talked about how to make our mission more of a Zion Community so that we are uplifting and encouraging each other and help each other to be better. It was really a great Zone Conference. Another fun thing was that we were having lunch and SANTA CAME. We all got to take pictures with Santa and that was super fun. Sister Loveland took them on her phone so I don't have it to attach to my email but it's on the Facebook Page for our mission. We all also got a Christmas card from the First Presidency which was REALLY cool. After Zone Conference we hopped in the car and drove home from Springfield. We finally got home about 6:00 so we had dinner and then worked on the Light the World lesson we are giving to families right now. 

Saturday: On Saturday we did service at Baxter Retirement again and that was fun as always. After lunch Mikey came over to me and told me that "[He] loves Jesus Christ more and more everyday.... and Black Olives!" and it was honestly so cute and so funny. I hope that when I'm older I am that excited about Jesus and Black Olives. After that we put together a little hot chocolate packet to take to some of the members of our ward for Light the World because the scripture for that day was "I was thirsty and ye gave me drink" So... we gave them drink. That evening we went out and delivered the little hot chocolate packets to the members we had picked. It was honestly really fun! We got to visit some people we normally don't see and that was fun. We even went to visit one lady that neither of us knew and, apparently she is going to a different church now. But we gave her the hot chocolate and wished her a Merry Christmas anyway! I won't lie... she wasn't super happy to see us, haha. We went to visit one guy in our ward who is a fairly recent convert and he answered the door and I was still coming up the walkway and all I heard was him say to Sister Fife "I don't even have pants on! Hold on!" and then when I got there I could hear him laughing about how the missionaries came and saw him without any pants. Sister Fife and I couldn't stop laughing. But after words he showed us his pet turkey and all was good. He told us on Sunday that he had hot chocolate before he went to bed. 

Sunday: On Sunday we had a really good day! We went to church and one of our Primary friends in the ward, Blake, was there a little early so we went to say hi to him and he asked us if we would sit by him. We said of course and sat by him for Sacrament meeting. He sat right in between us and held the hymn book for us. It was absolutely adorable. After that we went to Gospel Principles which was good as always. Then we had a Relief Society lesson about the new Relief Society curriculum and that was really interesting! After church we had a lesson cancel so we went to see our recent convert, Ethan. Who we hadn't heard from in a while and he wasn't at church. We got to his house and apparently he's engaged! So that's exciting. His girlfriend is really nice and we like her a lot and she is hopefully going to become an investigator soon! So we are really excited about that. We had a good lesson with him and then we went and had a lesson with a new investigator. It's a convert in our ward's mom. We taught the Restoration and it was really good until I invited her at the end to read the Book of Mormon and she said "I just don't understand why you want me to read it..." I was kind of confused because I had just explained why but my companion re explained and then she said she would read it. We left and kind of chuckled about it but we were just happy she said she would read. We are really excited to continue to teach her. That night we watched the Christmas broadcast which was AMAZING. 

Well, this week I have just been thinking a lot about Christmas but something that I have been thinking a lot about was mentioned in one of the talks last night, about giving and serving even when it's not easy and loving even when it's not easy to love. I think this is amazing because, I can't imagine it was easy for Jesus Christ to love the people who nailed him to a cross. Or to love the people who spit on him and mocked him. He did it because, He's perfect. But I bet it wasn't as easy as it was to love his disciples or his mother or his friends. But he did it. Sometimes I don't want to love people because it's hard and it's time consuming. It takes effort to love someone and be a part of their life and sometimes I'm just not sure I have the time or energy to make that kind of commitment. I know it sounds dumb to say that but sometimes I do. BUT what a blessing if we can take the time and make the effort to befriend someone who ends up changing our life. Something we learned in Zone Conference is that sometimes "angels" that are sent to help us aren't heavenly beings. But the people who are placed around us in our everyday life. What if God is trying to send you and angel and you decide you don't have time and turn them away? This thought made me really sad. What if I turned away an angel God was trying to send me, or even worse what if I was supposed to be an angel for someone else and didn't think I had enough time? I am making a bigger effort to be an angel to those around me and to love them even when I'm short on time or energy or patience. God doesn't ask us to be perfect. He asks us to be willing to act. I love y'all and I hope that y'all have a great week! Don't ever forget how amazing you are and how much God loves you! I love y'all! 

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Pictures! 

Picture 1: a little girl in our ward who wears a "future missionary" tag and wanted a picture with the missionaries

Picture 2: Throwback to when I was in Granby. This is me with Jesse

 

Monday, November 27, 2017

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.... except there's no snow...

November 27, 2017

This week was so good but as you can probably guess I have like no time to email. so here are some of the highlights!

First off.... THANKSGIVING! Oh how I love Thanksgiving. We had a great day. We had one dinner at 1:00 and another dinner at 3:00. We ended up staying at the 3:00 dinner until like 7:00 haha. It was with a family, The Stephens, who are awesome! I love them so much! They both went to culinary school so dinner was AMAZING. Their little kids have basically become additional siblings to me so that was so fun. After dinner we played Candyland, Uno and Headbandz. So all in all Thanksgiving was pretty great! 

Another highlight from this week is that we were asked to speak in church yesterday (the 26th) and we found out last Sunday (The 19th) So that was a little bit stressful. They asked us to speak about how serving a mission has changed our relationships with Jesus Christ and that was good because I actually know something about that topic! :) So I think it went pretty okay. The biggest thing that I talked about was how, coming on a mission has taught me to not just love Jesus Christ, but trust Him and His Atonement more than I did before. On my mission I have truly seen and experienced Jesus Christ carrying me or others through their hard times and I'm so grateful that I was able to learn that.  

Another highlight from my week was we did service at the Retirement Home again. I was in the kitchen and I turned around just in time to see Mikey walk into the dining room and he saw me and said "SISTER LLOYD!" and this old guy pushed his walker away from him and did the cutest little shuffle over to the kitchen to give me a hug and tell me Happy Thanksgiving. He was so sweet! After we served lunch we played the piano for them and this one lady made a point of asking me, "Will you play that Titanic song?".

This week we also were asked to come into Primary for their "I can be a missionary now" lesson. It was so fun! The kids were so excited that we were there and almost all of them told stories about what they were doing to be missionaries now. It was so sweet! 

One fun experience that we had this week is that we have been "heart attacking" people in the ward. Which is where we cut out hearts and write some scriptures on them and tape them to people's doors. Well, this week we went and did a couple of people who live in apartments right across from each other. The first guy, Dave, is pretty homebound. So we figured we would remind him that he is loved and missed. But when we got to his door we noticed that it was cracked open but we couldn't see him through the window so we decided to just be quick. So we taped all the hearts on and we only had about 5 left... .when all of a sudden... his dog starts barking. and all of a sudden the door opens as I'm reaching out to stick a heart on the door. He was so surprised until he realized who we were and then he just said "OH! Hello girls! What brings you here?" and then he saw his door. So we talked with him for a little while and then left to do the other member's door. but as we were leaving I looked over towards his apartment and he was sitting there looking up all of the scriptures that we had written on the hearts. It just made me so happy to think that maybe they were something he needed and brought a little light to his life. The next day at church the other lady we heart attacked told us how much she loved and appreciated us doing that and that it even opened up a missionary opportunity for her. Her neighbor asked her about the hearts so she got to explain it was the missionaries and who they are. I thought that was so neat! 

Well... this week was pretty uneventful so I'm sorry that this email is a little different than normal but it's kind of been a weird week! But I do want to invite all of you to participate in the Light the World Initiative that the church is putting out. YOU GUYS IT IS GOING TO CHANGE CHRISTMAS FOR YOU! If you participate in it I promise that it will bring more of the light of Christ into your holiday, it will make you feel better, it will make others better, and it will give you opportunities to share Jesus Christ with others that you wouldn't normally have. I promise that if you participate in the initiative you will be blessed and you will feel a difference! I love y'all! Have a great week! 
--

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

"Half way there, Whoah! Living on a prayer!"

November 20, 2017


Well Friends, this week I hit my 9 month mark. And you know what that means, I'm half way there. So that's kind of gross. I don't feel like it could possible have been 9 months yet, but I have done the math and checked calendars about 20 times and it is, in fact, true. Another thing is that this week was transfer week and we found out that nothing will be changing in our area. Sister Fife and I will both be staying in Mountain Home for 6 more weeks! 

Well, this week has been an adventure. I'll just share some of the highlights because, per usual, I'm running out of time rather quickly. 

This week we put our ten year old investigator on date for baptism! His name is John and he is scheduled to be baptized on either the 22nd or 23rd of December which we are SO excited about. He's a sweetheart. 

We did service at the Retirement home we usually go to and I LOVE doing service there. As I was walking around helping them and getting them the food and drink they wanted I was walking past a table and I smiled at some of the older ladies and as I walked away I heard one of them say "she is a happy little girl, isn't she!" and the other said "and a sweet one too. I like her!" and that just made my day!  It was so sweet to hear that. Later I was doing something else and this little old man, Mikey, came up to me and said "Sister Lloyd, I wanted to give you this. I won it playing Bingo and I just wanted to say thank you for being so nice to me." and he gave me a little angel magnet. It was so sweet! It just melted my heart. After lunch Sister Fife and I took turns playing the piano for them and this one older gentleman, Bill, kept on just saying how much he loved it and thanking us. When we were about to leave he asked for one more song so Sister Fife played one more and I looked over and he was crying. We said goodbye to him as we were leaving and he said he was so grateful for us coming and helping them and for the beautiful music. He now asks us to play the piano every time we go. 

This week we also got to help our recent convert, Ethan, write his talk for stake conference. He spoke on Sunday and gave a great talk about the Sacrament and how important it is. He did a great job! It was such a cool experience to be able to start teaching him right after his baptism and then work with him and see him get all the way to where he is now, speaking in stake conference. While I was at stake conference I was sitting there, taking notes and someone sat down a couple chairs down from me. I looked to see who it was and it was Samuel! My recent convert from the YSA! I just looked at him making sure I wasn't wrong and then he looked at me and we both realized who the other actually was and we were so excited! He slid down and sat next to me and updated me on his life. It turns out, he is from West Plains which is where our stake conference was and he was visiting home for the weekend. It was such a tender mercy to see him and get to catch up. I'm so grateful I got to help teach him. 

Another cool experience I had this week was that Sister Fife and I were looking through our area book trying to find ideas on people who we could go see for a spare hour we had. We flipped through and found a few ideas, but none that really stood out to us. So we closed the area book and Sister Fife, at some point, has written down one of the couples that we talked about in that space. so we just went with it and went to visit them and they were so awesome! We went to see them and they told us that they want to come to church and that we are welcome back to talk with them anytime. It was so cool to watch the Lord direct us.

Well, this week something I've been thinking a lot about is making sacrifices. We have some talks on CD that we play in our apartment and a theme that I've been noticing in these talks is that when we make sacrifices for the Lord we are blessed. This has been on my mind for a couple reasons. The first is that when I left on my mission, I thought I was making a sacrifice for the Lord, and in a way I did, but I have received more from my mission than I ever could have imagined. I have grown and learned and improved. I'm a better person than I was when I got on that plane 9 months ago. My "sacrifice" was actually me doing what God wanted me to do so that he could bless me and make me better than I was. Another reason I have thought about this is because I have been pondering something that our mission president asked us to ponder. What are the "little things" that we aren't doing that we should be? Little things that don't seem like a big deal so we don't do them but that we should be doing. How much more blessed would you or I be, if we chose to make what now appears to be a sacrifice so that the Lord can give us back WAY more than we anticipate? I would invite each of you to look at your lives and pick on thing that you can "sacrifice" and I know that as you make an effort to sacrifice that thing that you will be strengthened and you will be blessed. I love y'all and I hope you have a great week! Happy Thanksgiving! 

--

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Picture 1: Me burning a skirt in honor of my 9 month mark

Picture 2: Me at the Flippin Church of God

Picture 3: Me and Mikey :)

Picture 4: Me filling our car up with gas (picture credit, sister fife)




Tuesday, November 14, 2017

This girl runs on cupcakes and Jesus

November 13, 2017


This week was awesome! So many good things in one week! :) But I am running a little low on time so I will just share the highlights 

On Tuesday we got to go to the St Louis temple ad it was AMAZING. I love the temple. after the temple we got to go and see the St Louis arch which was really cool! I can now cross that off the bucket list. :) Yay! 

Also this week, we had a really cool experience. We have been working with this recent convert who has been struggling to keep the word of wisdom. Well, we asked him if we could send him a scripture every day and he said yes, he thought that might be helpful. Which was great! So we started sending him scriptures every day and the second day we sent him one, he actually responded and said "thank you so much" which isn't  a super big deal but it was nice. Well, we had a lesson with him later in the week where he told us a really neat story. He was at work and for some reason had NO patience that day. He was just grumpy and in a bad mood and at one point he was so frustrated he looked up at the sky and said "Jesus, give me strength." and then his phone went off. He thought "are you kidding me? what now?" and pulled out his phone and it said "Missionaries" with a scripture. He said he looked around to see if were close by, we weren't. He opened up to it in the scriptures and read a little bit and he said he had a better rest of the day.  I thought this was really cool, God is so aware of each of us and knows what we need. He also has a really good sense of humor. :) 

We also had Interviews with our Mission President this week and I had a really cool interview with his wife. We talked about light and how we need to be doing something that brings light into our lives. I took this to heart and have started listening to talks in the morning  and I have started singing more often and dancing in the kitchen to gospel music when I'm cooking food and it has brought so much light and happiness into my life it's crazy! It's amazing what trying to bring light into your life and making more of an effort to bring happy things that are Christ centered into your life can have on you and your emotional state. It was a cool experience to have. Small, but neat. 

Well, that's all I have for you this week. I hope y'all know how much I love you and how much the Lord loves you. What an amazing life we live and what a cool opportunity we have to come to know we are children of God and to realize how much he loves us. We are so blessed. Have a great week! 

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Pictures:

Picture 1:Sister Fife and Sister Lloyd and the temple!

Picture 2: Sister Lloyd and Sister Sanders at the temple

Picture 3: Sister Fife and Sister Lloyd at the Arch



Tuesday, November 7, 2017

WOO PIG SOOIE!

November 6, 2017


If you didn't know, that is the call of the Arkansas Razorbacks which I am now a fan of. I haven't watched any games or anything, don't get any crazy ideas, but where I'm now an honorary Arkansaian I am a Razorback! You can be jealous, I would be. ;) 

Well this week was good! We got a lot done.

Monday: On Monday we helped the Primary President set up for the trunk or treat and then did all of the other things that need to be done on prep day. It was a good day!  Nothing too crazy happened. 

Tuesday: Halloween! What a fun day! We spent the morning doing normal missionary things. We started the day doing service at the Retirement home and that was great as usual. A bunch of the little old ladies brought in candy and gave it to all of the helpers. One came up to me and was like "Say trick or treat!" and so I did and she handed me some candy and had the BIGGEST smile in the world! It was adorable! After that we went and visited some less actives  and then went to the ward's trunk or treat. It was so funny because Sister Fife and I switched name tags because we couldn't do much to dress up and this little boy came running up to us and just started laughing and said "LLOYD IS FIFE AND FIFE IS LLOYD!" and then ran away. It was adorable. After that we went home and waited for trick or treaters and only had one. But we gave them candy and a pass along card!  

Wednesday: On Wednesday we had District meeting and we talked all about the Christmas Initiative that the church is putting out this year, the Light the World Initiative! It's the best and we are SO DANG EXCITED. If you didn't do it last year ( I didn't) now is a great time to decide to be better than you were a year ago and do it! It is going to bless you and others and it's a great way to share the gospel with others! You should all do it! After that we came home and we did some service at the humane society walking dogs. That evening we had a lesson with a little ten year old boy we teach, John. We taught him the ten commandments and it was so fun! I love him! After that we went to mutual and learned about budgeting and getting the best deal for your money. Which is a lesson I really needed to learn! So that was good! 

Thursday: On Thursday we drove almost an hour to do service at a food bank and it was closed, it was sad. So we recorded a lip sink to frosty the snowman to cheer us up. It's pretty good. The rest of the day was visiting less actives and teaching a lesson to our recent convert Ethan who was baptized right before I got here. That night we had a lesson with a less active couple that we teach. So we went home and weekly planned and got about half way done. It was a good day!

Friday: On Friday we had a good day of trying to visit a bunch of people and no one being home and so then we would try to visit someone else and no one was home. It was a LONG day. I don't remember anything of too much importance other than we finished weekly planning. I hate slow days on the mission.

Saturday: On Saturday we had a lot of really good lessons. We had a lesson with the pant less lady I talked about a couple weeks ago, she still is working on finding her pants! But we did vacuum her living room so I mean that's good! We also had a lesson with a lady named Laura who is working on becoming active. I was really nervous because when we walked into her house she was really grumpy and was telling us that she didn't think that what the pamphlet we gave her said lined up with the Bible. So we sat down, had a prayer and then talked about her questions. Turned out she didn't actually read the pamphlet, she saw a word she thought meant something it didn't and then got way ahead of herself so we were able to calm her down and everything was great. 

Sunday: On Sunday we watched a really good Regional Broadcast from the church as kind of a preparation for Stake Conference. It was super good! After that we had a lunch with some members and they were awesome! We talked about all of our favorite scripture stories and we were talking about Moroni when he spent 40 years by himself and I jokingly said "Just imagine spending 40 birthdays by yourself!" (quoting a Hank Smith talk I had just listened to) and then started talking about something else and suddenly the 14 year old son starts CRACKING UP and we all looked at him confused and he says "What if.... Moroni threw himself a SURPRISE PARTY!" and he just started cracking up. So we all started cracking up! It was seriously so funny. That night we had a lesson with Ethan and we had another lesson with a lady named Debbie.... Debbie is a little crazy but overall it was a really good lesson! She called us later and thanked us and told us it made her feel like someone loved her which was actually really cool. 

Well This week I have been thinking about the idea that, it doesn't really matter how slowly or quickly we move forward, but what matters is THAT we move forward. Forward is forward. I think this is important because sometimes I see other people who appear to be moving way faster than me and I get discouraged, but I shouldn't compare myself to them because our circumstances are different and our strengths and weaknesses are different. What matters is that we are moving forward. I would invite you all to give yourself a break and give yourself credit for the strides you already have made or are working on making. You're doing better than you think. God loves you and so do I! Have a great week!​​

~Sister Madisen Lloyd



Sunday, November 5, 2017

"Would there be enough evidence?"

October 30, 2017


This week was good! A lot of super cool things happened that I'm excited to share with you!

Monday- PDay! We did all the things that every missionary needs to do in order to be a successful missionary the rest of the week and moved on with life! 

Tuesday- On Tuesday we started our day with service! Every Tuesday we go do service at this assisted living home for older ladies and gentleman and I LOVE IT. It's seriously so fun. There is this one super sweet older gentleman who is seriously so sweet. He always looks at me and with the biggest smile says "Thank you Sister Lloyd!" and this week he looked at me and said "I'm not trying to flatter you, but it's so nice of you to be so happy and friendly to all of these people." and it seriously made my week! After that we were able to have the opportunity to practice using our back up plans! In our mission we have a super strong emphasis on "planning our day with the Lord" in that we try to pray and set all of the things that we have planned and that we feel like we should do and THEN we set back up plans for the whole day so that IF something were to fall through we aren't like "oh shoot... guess we can go home" but instead we have something else planned. Well, on Tuesday we had a bunch of things fall through and we were able to practice back up plans. I won't lie, I'm not very good at setting back up plans. I just want my original plans to work out and have life be good! Buuuuut that doesn't usually happen. So I was humbled and reminded that back up plans are important and that I should probably take them a little more seriously. 

Wednesday- On Wednesday we went and walked dogs for our service... this was... one of the best decisions we've ever made. W go to the Humane Society and walk the dogs that are there and they are seriously so sweet. It makes me so sad but the dogs just LOVE to be walked and talked to and it's so fun. So that was awesome. The rest of the day we had some visits with less actives and did a little bit of tracting with no success, unfortunately. On Wednesday night we went to mutual and taught two of the young men about missionary work. We asked them if they wanted to talk about ways to share the gospel casually now or practice being missionaries and teaching the first discussion and they picked practice teaching the first discussion. So together we went through the Restoration lesson in Preach My Gospel and picked out two or three important parts from each section of the lesson and then had them teach it to their young men's leader. It was actually really good and we invited them to go through it again during the week and mark those points and study that section. It was fun to teach! They're both going to make great missionaries some day. 

Thursday- On Thursday Sister Fife and weekly planned! So boring! For real! But it helps us to be better prepared for the rest of the week. After that we had dinner at a member's house and they fed us rabbit! I had never had rabbit before (that I can remember at least) and they breed their own rabbits and raise them for food storage. But anyway it was really good and I was happy! I feel bad though because all I could think of was Peter Cottontail. We came home at the end of the night so tired but... got an idea.... neither of us are too terribly fond of Halloween.... we both have a strong love for CHRISTMAS. SO... we decided it was close enough to set up our Christmas tree :) There is a tiny little Christmas tree and some ornaments in our apartment so we set it up and decorated it and put twinkly lights all over our apartment and listened to Christmas carols.  

Friday- On Friday we had a Zone Conference. So we got up at 5am, left our apartment at 6, a member drove us the two hours to zone conference and then sat in zone conference for six hours. It was a long day. BUT Zone Conference was so good! We talked about how we can be better representatives of Jesus Christ. It was super awesome and I learned a LOT. I have so much to do to be a better representative of Christ but I'm excited to see that I have already made improvements. On the way home, the member was driving and I was sitting up front. The member (an older lady) was talking to me, telling me a story and she looked over at me as we were coming around a bend, for some reason my eyes were glued to the road and then suddenly I noticed that there were deer on the road about 100- 150 yards in front of us and our member was speeding... I shouted "DEER!"  the member screamed "HOLD ON!" and slammed on the breaks, Sister Fife woke up in the back seat when she almost hit the back of my seat and somehow... the member stopped in time. I am convinced that there were angels pushing and pulling our car to a stop. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father is aware of us and was able to protect us. By the time we got home we had just enough time to have dinner, have a lesson with a recent convert, have comp study and go to bed. I was EXHAUSTED.

Saturday- On Saturday we had a good day! We had a few lessons and spent a lot of time visiting less active members. We had a little bit of weekly planning to finish and then after that the day was done. Saturday was a good day but nothing too notable happened. 

Sunday- On Sunday we had church which was good and then we went home and had lunch. We did a little bit of studies because we didn't have time before church, after that we were able to go visit some less actives. We had dinner at home and we found this chicken and rice casserole thing in our freezer and made it! It was actually really good! :) After that we went back out to visit less actives for the rest of the evening and per usual nobody was home. So that was a bummer. We come home and had companion study and then went to bed. 

Well, at Zone Conference this week there was something that really struck me. was President Loveland asked us a question "If you lived in a country where being a believer in Christ was illegal, would there be enough evidence to convict you?" This struck me and it has been weighing heavy on my mind and heart as I evaluate my "evidence". I would invite y'all to look at your "evidence" and make any changes you feel like you need to make. I love y'all! Have a great week!
 
~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Monday, October 23, 2017

"Jesus is bigger than my circumstances!"

October 23, 2017

This week was so great! I had so many concerns! 1 I hadn't seen my camera since I left Granby and I did NOT want to lose the pictures from the first half of my mission! 2 My Tiwi card (the card that I need to be able to drive the mission cars) was missing! Yes, I lose things a lot. I know. It's fine. and 3 I have felt SO overwhelmed with adjusting to a new area. BUT Today a member texted us and he found my camera in their car! It fell out at some point! My Tiwi card got mailed to me today! And I'm filled with a peace that one way or another I'm going to adjust to this new area and be able to fulfill my purpose! I'm such a blessed person!

Well... one cool thing that happened this week was that we were tracting and we set a time that we were going to be done tracting... 4:15. So finally 4:15 comes around and there is ONE house left on this street. No doors had been very nice to us, I really didn't want to knock any more doors, but I felt the spirit say "just do one more! It'll be okay". So I grumbled a little and Sister Fife and I went and knocked this door and it was a super nice lady! She used to be Methodist but saw some problems and stopped going to church. She said we could come back! That's a new investigator! Yahoo! I walked away chuckling and just thinking "Man, God really has a sense of humor." 

Another cool thing that happened this week is that when I was listening to General Conference I kept noticing that something that stood out to me was using technology for righteous purposes and this week my mission found out that we are turning into a technology mission! Weird! In a few months every missionary in my mission will have a smartphone that we will use as a daily planner an area information book and a lot of other things and when we are transferred the information will stay in the area and the phone will come with us! I don't totally understand it yet and I don't have a lot of details but I am very excited to use this to further missionary work! 

Also I hit my 8 month mark on my mission yesterday!

Well I'm sorry that this week's email is so short but my thought for this week is the words to my favorite Primary Song, it's been stuck in my head for days now and it's made me try a little harder to be a little better so I'm going to share it with you. "I'm trying to be like Jesus, I'm following in His ways. I'm trying to love as He did, in all that I do and say. At times I am tempted to make a wrong choice, but I try to listen as the still small voice whispers:

Love one another as Jesus loves you. Try to show kindness in all that you do. Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought, for these are the things Jesus taught." 

Are you trying to be like Jesus? I think this is something we could all do a little better. I definitely could. I love y'all! Have a great week!

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Monday, October 16, 2017

Just two Idaho girls living in an Arkansas world

October 16, 2017

 
This week, was crazy. So many things!

Thursday: Thursday was transfer day and that was so bitter sweet. I hoped on the transfer bus and rode to my new area... Mountain Home. Let me tell you about my one of a kind area. :) Mountain Home has about 12,000 people and is a huge retirement community! I'm happy to be here! Excited for my adventures. I met my new companion, Sister Fife who is amazing! She is from Blackfoot, Idaho and is a total sweetheart. We get along fantastically. That night some other sisters came and spent the night so that we could do exchanges the next day!

Friday: We had exchanges! I met a lot of people... most of which I can't remember their names because I have met about a billion people in the last 5 days. So details will be vague. But I did meet one investigator named Craig, who is super awesome. He had a baptismal date and then got really sick and so we went to visit him and set a new baptismal date with him for November 11. Exciting stuff! Then Sister Montoya (the sister I was on exchanges with) and I had a lesson with some new investigators. They were so nice! They own 62 birds and are trying to make a bird breeding business which is pretty neat! We taught them the Restoration and they had TONS of good questions! It was awesome! The thing I thought was neat was that the lady we were teaching, at the end of our lesson, looked at her husband and said she thought it was so cool that we could pick up each other's sentences and pick up teaching where the other had left off and how most religions you can't do that because everyone has different answers. She talked about how inspiring that was that we bothe had the same beliefs and the same information. We got to testify to her that it was because Jesus Christ's gospel is the same across the world. Not just from person to person, even though we can receive personal answers to things. We invited them to be baptized when they came to know that what we taught was true and they accepted! It was so cool!

Saturday: The day Sister Fife and Sister Lloyd ACTUALLY got to be companions. Because of exchanges we hadn't spent super long together so we actually got to get to know each other which was cool! We spent the morning doing service which is always good and then we spent the rest of the day weekly planning. It was a little overwhelming to plan for a bunch of people who I don't know and haven't met but it was good and I'm excited to meet them all! 

Sunday: On Sunday we had church which was good! I introduced myself to so many members it's not even funny and have told everyone where I'm from so many times it makes my head spin. After church I was super sick with a cold so we spent most of the afternoon inside, until dinner with some awesome members. I don't remember their names but they were really really nice! We invited them to write their testimonies in copies of the Book of Mormon and look for opportunities to give them to people and they said they would try! Super cool! That night we went and drove out to the house of a less active that neither of us knew. We knocked on the door and she answered and didn't have any pants on! I was so surprised I about died and it was hard not to laugh (I laugh when I feel uncomfy). I expected her to say it wasn't a great time but she said "Sisters! Come in! Let me find some pants!" Then she spent the next five minutes wandering around trying to find pants and I just tried to keep from laughing. Life as a missionary is such a fun adventure! After she found some pants we had a really nice talk for the rest of the evening and we even scheduled a time to come back, hopefully this time she'll be expecting us. ;)

Well friends, this week was so good and my thought for this week is that God loves you. Sorry it's short and sweet but i's all I got for ya. I love y'all! Have a great week! 

~Sister Madisen Lloyd


Picture: Sister Fife and Sister Lloyd 

Friday, October 13, 2017

I'm going Home.... Mountain Home.

October 11, 2017

MOUNTAIN HOME, ARKANSAS! Well friends. I've worked my whole mission for this and I've finally made it to where they are going to let me serve in Arkansas! In the mission we call this "going to the motherland" and I'm so excited! A little piece of me is going to stay in Granby and probably will never leave Granby. I have made tons of friends and I love these people so much but I am excited for my new adventure in Mountain Home

This week... was a blur quite honestly. I can't remember much of what happened but I'll try. 

Monday- P Day! wash clothes, grocery shop, email, wash car and then drive to Bentonville for exchanges with some other Sisters! I spent the evening with Sister Burton who is a sweetheart! This is her first transfer so she is still in training and I loved working with her because she has that greenie fire! Once we started working together I felt my greenie fire reignite! It was so fun!

Tuesday- On Tuesday I spent the day with Sister Tillotson doing missionary work. It was a really cool day! We went to visit some less actives and had some active member lessons. It was raining and I was expecting warm weather... so I was pretty cold but one of the members let me borrow a jacket and made us hot chocolate! It was such a tender mercy! :) Next time, I'll pack a jacket even if the forecast doesn't call for rain. :) oops. That night we went to a choir concert at the high school and they sang some beautiful songs about Christ. The last one they sang was "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" and oh my goodness it was beautiful. Tuesday night we ended up deciding that I was going to be more alert for driving if we drove back that night than in the morning, so at 11:00 we hit the rode and drove the hour and a half back to Granby. Sister Crandall slept and I just listened to the radio and drove and pondered. It was actually really nice. We made it home safe and sound.

Wednesday- District meeting! We all met together and counseled about how we can improve our missionary skills. It was a good meeting. I love all the missionaries I serve around. After that we went to District lunch which was fun. Then Sister Crandall and I came home and tried to visit people. We went to see our investigator, Sean, but he was sound asleep. So we went to see another investigator who was asleep. Then it was time for dinner. After than we went to mutual and interacted with the youth which was good. And after that our day was done.

Thursday- On Thursday we had weekly planning. Always a long day inside. We had to try to plan more in depth this week so that we had to do less make up planning throughout the week. By the time we had dinner we were almost done! We did take more breaks though, because you can only plan for so long before you want to set your planner on fire. ;) Planning is not my favorite activity if you couldn't tell. After dinner we finished weekly planning and then we went to visit Sister Steele who is a member in the ward and the Powell's who are awesome! We helped Sister Powell make some water bottle treat things for her cheerleaders and then it was time to go home! 

Friday- On Friday we had service at the Newtonia Library and then had a great day of visiting less actives and investigators planned out and literally NO ONE WAS HOME. We spent half the day driving all over America and nobody even answered the door. It was the worst! So we stopped in to see a member in the area, Jesse, he's the older guy who super loves the Sister Missionaries and he needed people to talk to so he ended up telling us stories and talking to us for a while. That night the Lassiters took us to dinner in Monett and they let me pick the restaurant because they knew that I was probably leaving. So we had Mexican food! :) It was so good. I love the Lassiters. 

Saturday- On Saturday we went to visit the investigators who weren't home the day before and one of them answered the door which is better than nothing! So we talked to him for a minute and he said that he had been out on his porch a few days earlier when it was raining and he fell off his porch! He has been in a lot of pain since then and has not been doing well. We felt so bad! He said he wasn't up for much of a lesson because he was on pain medication that makes him sleepy but at least we got to see him. After that we went and visited some of the less actives we work with in a different part of our area. We talked to them about how they're doing. They have a lot of health struggles which is why they are less active but they are super nice. We had dinner that night and then we exercised and went to bed.

Sunday- On Sunday we went to church which is always good! I ran into a little girl that we've been working with. She and her family are active but we have been meeting with her and teaching her about the restoration, plan of salvation and the gospel of Jesus Christ just to make sure she understands everything before her baptism. But she came up to me and said "I'M GETTING BAPTIZED NEXT SUNDAY!" I said "Oh! I'm so excited for you!" She gave me a big hug and then looks at me and says "Will you come to my baptism?" I knew I was probably getting transferred and my heart, seriously, broke. I felt so bad. I promised her I would try but that even if I couldn't that the missionaries who were here would come. She was sad but agreed. After church we had a meeting with our new ward mission leader which took a while because we were updating him on everything that we're doing in the area. Then we had dinner and a lesson and after that we went and visited some members.

Monday- Not P Day. So sad. We had district meeting which was good and they actually surprised us and told us what was happening with transfers then! They usually tell us Monday Night but I was excited they did it sooner. After that we went to District Lunch and then we all went to Dairy Queen to celebrate the end of the transfer. It was a good meeting! After that Sister Crandall and I went home and planned the rest of our day. We went to see our less actives and we walked in and Phil was going nuts! He is hard of hearing and he thought he heard someone say that we worship more than one God. Which is incredibly untrue. So he was going off and every time we tried to say something he would cut us off and talk over us. So finally I just looked at his wife, handed her the movie we got for them and just said "here's this! We're going to leave now." and got up to walk out. Phil all of a sudden goes "Hey! Where are you going?" I said "look Phil if you think we are just lying to you and you aren't even going to let us talk then we are going to leave. We worship one God, that's what we've always believed and if you think we are just coming over here and lying to you I'm not going to come anymore." He quieted down and said "no, sit down. That's not what I think." and after that we didn't have a problem. We talked it through and he decided he probably misheard. Sometimes you have to be blunt with people.

Tuesday- On Tuesday we had service at the Newtonia Red Library. They let me pick one of their signs that they make to keep and to remember them with which was super sweet of them and then they took us out to a special lunch because I was leaving. Danny and Marsha are some of my favorite people. After that we had to make a trip to Joplin for an appointment and that took most of the rest of the day. It was Sister Crandall's birthday so we did make a pit stop into a Geology museum for her. After that we came home and had dinner with the Lemons. They made chicken strips, I made apple pie. Everyone was happy. It was nice to spend the evening with them before I leave.

Well, something that has been on my mind lately is the poem, Footprints in the Sand. I love that poem and I've been thinking about the part where he says "I carried you." I think it's interesting that the man didn't notice that Christ was carrying him during those times, he thought he was walking. I think a lot of times I do that. I think I'm walking and making my way by myself and I grumble a little bit because it feels like I'm walking alone. But when I take a step back I realize I didn't do that myself, I was carried by my Savior. I am so grateful for Jesus Christ. I know he knows each of us individually and loves each of us individually. I know that he cares for us and wants us to succeed. He wants us to find joy, even if that means carrying us through times of sadness and trials. I know that my Redeemer lives and I'm grateful for everyday that He has carried me. I know there have been many. I know that He can strengthen us and that He understands us perfectly. I love y'all and I hope you have a great week!  

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Pictures: 

Sorry... my camera isn't connecting to the computer this week so you will just have to wait until next week! Love y'all!

 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Baking Pies and Taking Names!

October 2, 2017


This week has been awesome and so full of stuff that I'm probably not even going to fit half of it into this email... but I'm sure gunna try. :) 

Monday- P day! Always fun! We got everything done that we needed to and then some! P Days are fantastic. That night we ended up having a member buy us lunch at the only diner in town which is fun because we are friends with the people who own it so it's always fun to go in and see them. 

Tuesday- On Tuesday we had service! We worked on setting up and cleaning a building in preparation for the Newtonia Fall Festival! Which is basically the best thing ever. It's like a miniature county fair, so it's a festival. haha, funny how that works. but Newtonia is just this little, cute town with very few people so it was fun. We had lunch with Danny and Marsha after words (she owns the library we usually volunteer at and she is helping put on the fall festival) and they were talking about the pie baking contest. I jokingly said "Aw shoot! If I'd thought ahead I would have gotten my mom's apple pie recipe and entered! We've been looking for ways to get involved in the community." He looked at me and said "You still can!" and I said "Naw, I'd have to have someone else get the recipe." So he whips out his phone and says "what's your mom's phone number?" I started laughing and, turns out, he wasn't kidding. So he got her apple pie recipe. After that we had a lesson with our investigator, Virgil. It was really,  really good and we talked about the Plan of Salvation and at the end of it he said "that actually makes a lot of sense." Go figure. :) After that we went to visit this older guy, Jesse, and we ended up helping him move his furniture around. I was pushing a recliner across the room and he said "You're like a bulldozer! What did you do to get that much strength???" I just smiled and said "I'm from Idaho Jesse!" He thought that was pretty funny. After that we had some scripture study with him and that was really good. After that we did some clerical work at home trying to stay organized. After that we had Dinner with the Lemons which was great as always! After dinner we decided that we had better make a practice apple pie. So we went home and exercised and then baked a pie. 

Wednesday- District Meeting! All of the missionaries close by got together and had a meeting. Since Sister Crandall and I couldn't eat a whole pie, we brought it to share and to get input on how to make our next one better. After that our district went out to lunch and then we went home. We had a lesson with a Former Investigator who, sadly, just isn't ready to accept the gospel yet. She has a lot of concerns that are holding her back and that's always disappointing. After that we took some copies of The Book of Mormon to a member who rocks at member missionary work. Then we headed home for dinner. That night we went to mutual because one of our investigators and her non member friend were coming, so we got to go to the corn maze! Always fun! 

Thursday- On Thursday we had weekly planning. Which, per usual, was a long day in the house planning out the next week. Once we finally finished that we went to go see our investigator. We were really, really bummed when we pulled up and he had a cigarette in his hand, but that's okay. Repentance is real and the Lord can help us become better. :) That night we had dinner with the Talbott family and Sister Talbott bought pizza for her family and chicken wings for her and I and they were so good. Paigey was really sad she didn't get to eat wings though, so I shared. What are friends for, right?

Friday- On Friday we had service again and we helped with last minute details for the Fall Festival. After that we had lunch and Danny asked me if I was making a pie. I told him I sure was! after that we called some potential investigators, visited some investigators and then headed home for dinner. After dinner we headed home and exercised. Guess who ran an 8 1/2 minute mile? Yes I am aware that that isn't super fast, but it's a 1 1/2 minutes faster than I was running it 6 weeks ago so, progress! After that we went home and I made 2 pie crusts so that I was ready in the morning.

Saturday- The day of the Fall Festival. I woke up and started making apple pie filling and baked my pies. It's a very good thing that I made two because I made every mistake possible on the first one and made the second one the way it was supposed to be made. Baked it, finished getting ready and then headed to the Fall Festival. I dropped it off and it looked really bad. I honestly wanted to cry. It was an open faced pie and the apples did not look as pretty as they did when my mom used to make it. I was so bummed. But I dropped it off and we started walking around and talking to people. We left and went to General Conference and that was AMAZING. I don't know how but they always say exactly what I need to hear. In between sessions we went back to the festival to hear the youth in our ward play in the band and when we got there Danny came up to me and said "Hey! You won!" I was very confused until he reminded me, I entered a pie in the contest. I went and found Marsha and it turns out that the Lord blessed me for trying to get involved in the community and not only was my pie not the worst pie ever but it won second place! :) I also got the "most nostalgic" award. I was tickled half to death! We headed back to the church to watch the second session of conference and then had dinner with some members. They made us salmon, shrimp and king crab legs. It was really good!

Sunday- Sunday was General Conference part 2 and it was so good! I seriously am so excited for the conference ensign to come out so that I can re read them. The biggest thing that stuck out to me this conference was the idea of "centering our lives on Jesus Christ." I thought it was kind of odd that this stuck out to me because, I wake up every day and do my best to center my life on Jesus Christ because I'm a missionary. But as I've pondered this I started thinking about how much more centered I could be, In my thoughts and my words. I also started wondering how much more happy and successful I would be if I did give that extra effort to TOTALLY center my life on Christ. I also pondered about what if I submitted to his will CHEERFULLY. I have a bad habit of whining when the Lord asks me to do something I don't want to do and I realized it would probably be a more pleasant experience if I would accept that I need to do it and do it happily. I'm so grateful for prophets and apostles who are guided to tell us things that will bring us a happier life. 

I hope life is great for all y'all and that you enjoyed conference as well. I know that Thomas S Monson is a prophet and that he has been called of God to lead the church. I know that the gospel is true. I know that reading The Book of Mormon brings blessings. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer and that He perfectly knows us. He is with us through every hardship and every single time we fall. I'm grateful for such a devoted, older brother. I love y'all! Have a great week!

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Picture 1: My standing by some pretty flowers ( I can't remember if I already sent this one, if I did, sorry bout it) Picture 2: My and my pie awards (  I learned from the best!) Picture 3: Our investigator with his cat on his head 



Sunday, October 1, 2017

Happy fall y'all!

September 25, 2017

Hey! This week was good! I just feel like I always have so much happen during the week and then I get to P Day and can't remember a lick of it. I usually bring my planner to email and this week I forgot it so I'll just share a couple three things that happened this week. 

One cool thing that happened was that this week we got to do service for an older guy. He's really nice and loves the sister missionaries, I've talked about him before. He's older and a little bit crazy but that's okay. So we went over and he had us paint one of his walls green. It was kind of fun! He sat there and talked to us and told us stories and we just painted. It was almost therapeutic! When we were done he gave us some of the juice that he buys from some store and makes himself. Which was super nice of him!

Another cool thing that happened this week is that we got to watch Women's Conference and it was so dang good! I felt like I couldn't write fast enough. Something cool that was said was Elder Uchtdorf talked about how there are always going to be reasons to be sad, there will always be reasons to be mad and there will always be reasons to be glad. What we decide to be is up to us and it just depends on what you decide to focus on.  That was super awesome because being more positive is a goal that I have set for myself recently! I've been trying to see the good more often than I see the bad. So it was cool that that was what he chose to talk about.

This week another cool thing that happened was that we got to have a really cool lesson with our investigator, Amanda, about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It was cool because we used the Book of Mormon to teach it and she had some really awesome insight and thoughts about each of the steps, especially Endure to the End. It was really cool to hear her bare her testimony of the things we taught and then to hear her talk about how excited she is for her baptism in December! A missionary's dream! :) 

One last cool thing that happened this week is that I received a huge tender mercy. On a mission it is not uncommon for you to see the fruits of your labors, it's also not uncommon to not see the fruits of your labors. It kind of just depends on the day. I've felt a little nervous because I've been in a swing where I haven't really seen a lot of fruits of my labors and I was kind of bummed about that. Ya know? It's nice to see things happen because you're working hard. I feel like I'm working hard but not a lot of things have been happening because of it. Well, yesterday I was talking to a young woman in the ward and she gave me a hug and told me that she loved and appreciated me and that she was grateful I came into the ward. That I made her excite't d for when she can serve a mission. This was such a tender mercy because even though I was feeling like I wasn't having a huge impact on people, she showed me I was. I was so grateful for her kindness and for the spirit telling her to say those things. :) 

This week I have been thinking about lots of things. One of them specifically is Jesus. Go figure. ;) I've been thinking about how grateful I am for Him. For the knowledge that He is my Savior and Redeemer. For the testimony I have that He walks with me everyday. That He knows me personally and has felt what I feel and is there to succor me. He loves us so much! How blessed are we to know that we have someone who knows us better than we know ourselves cheering us on! I know Christ lived, died and lived again. I know he knows you and loves you. I know he helps us in our day to day lives. I hope you all know that. I love y'all! Have a great week!

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

 

Pictures: 

Picture 1: Sister Naegle and I Picture 2: Sister Sanders and I Picture 3: Sister Crandall and I



All the General Authorities like the ABM

September 18, 2017


What a week! I'm exhausted! :) Those are the best kind of weeks

Monday- P-day, I bet by now you can probably tell me what I do on P Days so I won't run through it all BUT needless to say it was good and much needed. 
Tuesday- On Tuesday we did service at the Newtonia Library! Which is fun as always. After that we were able to go see our investigator Amanda, which was so cool. Amanda has met with missionaries for a really long time off and on and just has never really made any solid commitments on things. Well, lately she has been going through a really rough time and we haven't been able to see her as often because she started a new job with a weird scedule. But we were able to go see her and when we got there she immediately started telling us about how she has been reading in the Book of Mormon everyday and how it has brought her peace and happinness and really spoken to her. It was so cool! I was basically on Cloud 9. and then she "and something else" and pointed at me and said "something you said, the first time you came over, has been in my hear" I was so scared, and she started crying and said "you talked about how your baptism has brought you happiness every day since you were eight. I want that." I teared up and invited her to be baptized and she accepted. She has to get her work schedule figured out and a few other things so we set her baptismal date for December 23rd. The sad part is that I probably won't be here for it, missionaries rarely stay in an area for that long. But I am so happy that she has decided to be baptized! She is so cool! I love her dearly. After that we went and tried to contact some potential investigators and they were either not home or not interested. So we went tracting and again no one was really interested. Then we had dinner with the Lemons, I LOVE the Lemons! It was a great day.

Wednesday- On Wednesday we started the morning with a lesson with a new investigator! It went pretty well, we went over and got to know him and started talking to him which was good. He has some concerns about baptism and priesthood but overall it was a really good lesson. For the rest of the afternoon we went and tried to visit people and literally, NO ONE WAS HOME. That's the worst. So we went to visit the Talbotts who are always awesome. That night a member brought us dinner to our house and we ate it and then went to Mutual. We went with the young women because they were learning how to check their oil and fix a flat tire and those are both good things to know how to do. PLUS I've been trying really hard to get the youth in the ward more involved and strengthen the relationship between the youth and the missionaries. That night we went to see some less actives and had a really good visit with them! :) It was a good day. 

Thursday- On Thursday we did weekly planning. Always boring but always productive. Then we did a lot of organizational stuff on a binder that has information on the ward, that our mission president wants us to have up to date... that we haven't been very consistent about working on. BUT we got it up to date and all is well! That night we had dinner with some members who are really, really good at making Gluten Free food, they made crepes and let me tell you, they were dang good. Then they made Gluten Free Earthquake Cake and I just about died I was so happy. :) That night we did online training and did some exercise

Friday- On Friday we delivered a Bible and Book of Mormon to one of our investigators, did some more work on the ward information binder and then had lunch. After lunch we went to do service for an older lady named Leanor. She is so sweet and she asked us to help her clean her kitchen... which ended up taking most of the afternoon and we still aren't finished but it looks better than when we started and that's what counts. That night we had dinner with the Lassiters and then we came home and exercised. 

Saturday- On Saturday we had interviews with our mission president and his wife, which were amazing as usual. I'm so grateful for a mission president who takes the time to talk to each of us every six weeks and make sure we are doing okay. That afternoon we went and visited some former investigators and found one that said that we could come back and start meeting with him again! Which is awesome! :) That evening the Lassiters came and picked us up and took us to dinner and then took us to Stake Conference. Elder Kim B Clark came and spoke to everybody which was really really cool. He is super nice and I even got to shake his hand! :) After Stake Conference the Lassiters took us to get ice cream which was super nice of them and then took us home! It was a good day. 

Sunday- On Sunday a sister in the ward came and picked us up and drove us to Stake Conference with her. We got to hear from Elder Clark again as well as our Mission President and his wife which was good. That afternoon we went to go visit a family of investigators that we found the Sunday before who said we could come back and, go figure, they weren't home. That's okay! Missionaries aren't afraid to try again! and again! and again! and again! So we spent the rest of the afternoon contacting less actives in that area and then we had dinner at some members and had a lesson with their daughter who should be getting baptized soon! It was awesome! 

Monday- PLOT TWIST it wasn't P Day. We had Elder Cornish come and speak to our mission on Monday and so P Day was moved to Tuesday. That's why I'm a day late. But he talked about working with ward members. If you are not trying to help the missionaries in your area PLEASE START TRYING TO HELP THEM! He told us a statistic that if members and missionaries work together, one out of every three people they work with will get baptized. Whereas right now one out of every 28 gets baptized. Just ask the missionaries what you can do to help. :) It works. Anyway, another fun part about this is that I got to see all my missionary friends! Always a good time. 

Well this week I have been thinking a lot about lots of things. So I don't have any super cool thoughts. But something that I have noticed several times over the last several weeks is the importance of knowing that you are receiving support that you can't see. My grandpa died when I was a Sophomore and it was a really sad time. It was hard to lose my grandpa. But lately I kept being reassured and reading that we had angels helping us! Going before us and preparing the way. Protecting us. All sorts of cool things. I hadn't really ever thought about it much but I started to notice times when I was protected, never from anything that would have killed me (that I noticed) but just from little things. I started noticing when hard things were easier to handle than they probably normally would have been. I started noticing when things lined up how I needed them to without me doing a lot of work to get them that way. I have been astounded at how much help I didn't notice I was getting. I promise you that angels are helping you. They are supporting you and they love you! They help you because God loves you! I love you! I hope y'all have a great week! 

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Monday, September 11, 2017

Baptism week!

September 11, 2017


Hey y'all! This week was one for the books. :) 

Monday- on Monday (I bet you can guess) we had P Day! we washed our clothes and cleaned and emailed and shopped. Yay! after that we spent the evening visiting less actives but no one was really home. Bummer. 

Tuesday- On Tuesday we went and did service at the Newtonia Red Library! After that we went to see our nursing home friends, Mary and Donald. They were so fun to visit with and so are all of the other lonely people in the nursing home. after that we tried visit some less actives who are always an adventure to talk to but they weren't home... so sad. Tuesday night we had dinner with the Lemons :) I love the Lemons. They made fried chicken and it was oh so good. That night we went to visit Page Talbot and see how she was doing before her baptism and she was doing well! We came home at 8:30 and did some exercises! It was a good day.

Wednesday- On Wednesday we did weekly plannins (plot twist! it wasn't on Thursday) and it was good. That took the whole morning and then we got a text from our Mission President's assistants asking us all to clean our cars in anticipation of our meeting with him the next day. So we spent the afternoon making sure our car was in tip top shape. That night we had dinner and then visited a less active and then came home and exercised. 

Thursday- On Thursday we woke up bright and early and got ready and drove for an hour and a half to... SPRINGFIELD for our meeting. I love Springfield and it was so fun to drive through the town I spent the first 5 1/2 months of my mission in. We had zone conference at the stake center and I got to see so many people! My trainer, Sister Sanders and my good ole MTC friend Sister Naegle! It was so fun. Another cool thing was that a member of the seventy came, Elder Villareal. He instructed us and gave a lot of really cool thoughts  After the meeting they had some people come in and give us all flu shots if we wanted. I knew my mom would want me to get one so I braved the needles and got a flu shot. Sister Naegle held my hand. It was all good. After that we drove home and had dinner with some members who have celiacs disease so they are the masters of gluten free cooking and they made homemade biscuits. They were so dang good. That night we went and  met a less active who we didn't know and had a really good conversation with him and got to know him. It was awesome. 

Friday- Remember that time I got a flu shot so I wouldn't get the flu? Guess who woke up with the flu. Gosh dang it. So we had a sick day. Didn't get a whole lot done. The High Priests had a karaoke activity where they invited tons of less actives and some non members so I threw my hair up in a bun and we went to that. It was really fun! They bought me my own gluten free pizza (I'm so blessed) and had soda and karaoke. I sat down at a table and talked with some members and Sister Crandall sang karaoke and did a puzzle. All was good. 

Saturday- Saturday was a special day! Paige got baptized :) I was so happy I could have died right there. Paige has some health struggles so we spent the whole morning taking bleach wipes to the font to make sure it was clean and bacteria free. It was a great service opportunity. Then we had her baptism. She was so sweet and the spirit was so strong. We sang I'm trying to be like Jesus and I got all teary eyed because I thought of how Jesus Christ was baptized, how I was baptized and now how Paige who I love dearly was baptized. So much happiness comes from "trying to be like Jesus" and "Following in his ways". After the baptism we had dinner with Paige's family and then that night we went to see our investigator Shawn. He is doing really really well and we are excited he is making so much progress. Saturday night we came home and went over to the high school's track across the street and exercised. It was such a good day.

Sunday- On Sunday we went to church and then went home teaching with one of the men in our ward. It was pretty cool. After that we came home and did some studies and then went to see some potential investigators. They didn't let us in BUT they said that we could come back this coming Sunday so that's pretty great! After that we had dinner and then we took some copies of the Book of Mormon to a member who wants them so she can hand them out (it's great! you should all try handing out copies of the Book of Mormon! :) ) and then we came home and went to sleep. 

This week I have been thinking a lot about singing. I saw my mission president and his wife at zone conference and I got to talk to Sister Loveland for just a minute and she asked me how much I was singing. I said "not much" and asked what made her ask me that. She said the spirit told her and that I needed to sing. I thought that was kind of an odd thing but I started singing and holy cow does that make a difference for me. I found the scripture Doctrine and Covenants 136: 28 " if thou are merry, praise the Lord with singing, with music, with dancing and with a prayer of praise and thanksgiving." I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to sing praises and to worship, If you are happy, take the time this week to sing a little bit. It made a difference for me. I love y'all! have a great week!

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Pictures:

Picture 1 Sister Lloyd and Paige pre baptism :) 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Round 2 In Granby MO

September 4, 2017


Well I've said this before but I'll say it again. I never know what to tell everyone on these short weeks. I feel like I just gave my life update a couple days ago... because I did. But I'll see what I can come up with. Here goes it.

Thursday- On Thursday I took Sister Snyder to transfer point in Joplin and dropped her off, picked up my new companion Sister Crandall and drove the two of us back to Granby. We spent the afternoon weekly planning and I told her about the area. Updated her on everything she needed to know to be successful, okay maybe not. I don't even know everything I need to know to be successful but I sure try. That night we had dinner at the Moffit's house. They are awesome and they fed us Chinese food which is my favorite, but it is not Brother Moffit's favorite. After that we did online training and I worked on some family history! 

Friday- On Friday we started our morning by going through the ward list. I told her how everyone is related and anything else that she needed to know about the members. After that we went and started trying to visit people. and we got to see a lot of members that Sister Crandall needed to meet. We went to visit some of the less actives we work with. One of which was this really funny old man who loves the sister missionaries and he gives us all nicknames. My nickname is "Red horse" because I guess that is an orange fish and he thinks that I have orange hair which thus makes me look like a red horse. I looked up pictures of these fish and... they aren't very pretty so I'm a little offended. BUT that's okay because the nickname came from a loving place so I can't be mad. The rest of the night we drove around and met members and less actives and then we came home for the night. 

Saturday- On Saturday we started the day by helping with the highway clean up our ward was doing. We put on some ugly orange vests and each walked down a different side of the highway cleaning up garbage. You would be amazed what people throw out their car windows. *shudder* On a happier note, I was reading Elder Uchtdorf talk where he mentions forget me not flowers earlier this week and as I was walking down the highway I saw some growing in the ditch bank I was walking on and it was such a cute tender mercy that let me know God was thinking about me! (I'm not a flower expert, I don't know if they were actually forget me knots or not but I decided that they were. Don't bust my bubble.) The rest of the day was good. We went to the elderly home in Granby and visited a member who was in there and when we got there this elderly lady wheeled up to me and asked "Are you looking for me?" I thought maybe she was confused or maybe just really lonely and so I asked her where she was headed and wheeled her there and then went back to the guy we were visiting. We finished our visit and  went on our way. It was good! We finished the day with a lesson with our investigators, Jess, Steve and Chloe and it was awesome. We taught them the Plan of Salvation and they were really open to it. It was cool!  

Sunday- On Sunday we went to church and we were talking to the relief society president and she mentioned she needed to go see a new name that just came onto our records. An older lady who lives at the elderly person home in Granby. Remember the confused lady who thought we were looking for her? Yeah, she's a member. *face palm* I'm the worst. So after church we went back to Granby House and met her and talked to her. She's super nice. That night we had a really good dinner with some members in the ward and then we went to scone night! We had invited some investigators to scone night but they didn't end up coming. I was super bummed but that's okay. There's always another scone night. :)  

This week my spiritual thought is not mine. My grandma Maughan sent it to me and it was such a tender mercy for me I thought it might be for someone else too. 

"Isaiah 41:13 For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, fear not, I will help thee.

President Uchtdorf said Christ's perfect love allows us to walk with humility, dignity and a bold confidence as followers of our beloved Savior. Christ's perfect love gives us the confidence to press through our fears and place our complete trust in the power and goodness of our Heavenly Father and of His Son Jesus Christ."

I'm so grateful to know that the Lord is willing to hold my hand and help me through anything that I am asked to go through. Sometimes I forget that and I usually end up falling on my face as I let go and try to run ahead of Him. But when I do choose to hold His hand and let Him help me I am always more successful. I'm so grateful for the song I am a Child of God. "I am a Child of God and He has sent me here. Has given me an earthly home, with parents kind and dear. Lead me, guide me, walk beside me. Help me find the way. Teach me all that I must do, to live with Him some day." I'm so grateful to know that as I walk through this life, I never walk alone. God is so good.

I love you all! Have a great week! 

~Sister Madisen Lloyd

Pictures: 

Picture 1- We had a really bad rainstorm that flooded and we were trying to get to a members house. So I hopped out to make sure the water wasn't too deep for the truck. 

Picture 2- Sister Snyder's feet hurt on Sunday so we hitched a ride home in the back of a truck