Tuesday, August 26, 2014

God Knows His Children

Hey everyone!  I hope all is well in your lives and that you don't all hate me for not sending pics and writing anything good the past few weeks. 

So, here in the YSA it is a lot different kind of missionary work than what I was used to before. We have been trying to visit all of these people we have on the branch directory and there was a name someone gave to us to go visit so we drove by.  Well, the gate to the complex was closed so we waited for someone to go in then we snuck in!  haha  We drove around then finally found her place, knocked on the door and what do you know? No one answerd. There was a guy outside when we pulled up working on a truck and I noticed him and felt like we needed to say hi so on the way back I just yelled out, "Hey man!  How's it going?"  He answered saying he was good just working on his truck.  I asked him if he needed help.  He said no, but where are you elders from?  Come to find out that he is a less-active that moved here 9 months ago and hasn't been to church mainly because he works a lot, but also because his girlfriend that he lives with isn't a member but he said she would probably be open to hearing about the Gospel!  Also, he said he wouldn't want to go to a family ward but would want to come to the YSA ... we were freaking out. He told us that the lady we tried to see has moved... look at God's hand. We drove way out there for someone but in God's eyes it was to find this man. He knows His children and we could sense this man's good heart and that he needs to return to the fold. Later we ended up giving blessings to sister missionaries who are really struggling.  I was honored to perform them and felt such an overwhelming feeling of the Spirit. I felt again that God sent us to help His daughters feel better; He sent us so that HE could speak to them through HIS priesthood. I know our Heavenly Father loves us; He needs us as much as we need Him. This last week was crazy.  We had a sister who had to go to the hospital because of horible pain in her stomach area then we had a lockdown and had to stay in someone's house for a hour and a half because a guy who killed someone was on the run and shooting at the cops; we gave a  blessing to someone sick while they were sitting in the car and had to go to my companion's doctor appointment. It has been crazy over here! haha 

I was able to attend a special baptism in the zone this last week of 3 children. Their mom hasn't been to church in YEARS and then came across the missionaries.  They all had a change of heart and were converted to the Lord and baptized. During ALL of their testimonies we were in tears crying and they were saying "I know that this is where I'm supposed to be; I feel at home now. God led me here because He saved me."  Even the youngest one (who was 9).  It was such a tender moment to hear that; all of their testimonies and one of the mother who now has all her children in the church. She felt the spirit tell her to get her kids into the church.  I testify that God uses the spirit to prompt you to do things. He knows who you are. 

I'm thankful for the relationship I have with my Heavenly Father.  It is so personal to me and I hold it in deep reverance. I have no words to describe my thoughts and feeling towards Him but that He is engaged and lives and wants us all back.

I invite all who read this to look for things in your life, like the small experiences I had this week, that tesify that He is aware of you and more importanly others around you.

Love always,
Elder Taylor 

Some missionaries going home or just being transferred! 

Sister Morris, the coolest sister who came out with me, just went home

Also my best bud Elder Magalei went home too :/ 

Elder Ahloy who I trained awhile back is now training a new elder!!  So cool! 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Hey everyone!

Hey everyone!  Another super-busy day. Didn't have time to type up something good and I'm so sorry about that.  I have a lot of pics to send so I'm going to buy a cord for my camera because I lost my other one.

Know that this Gospel is true, and that the times you truly feel the Spirit you need to record that somewhere and when times of trials come and doubt you can reflect back on those experiences that are recorded to remember how merciful our Father in Heaven is and that He lives and is REALLY wanting you to return to Him! 

Love you all,
Elder Taylor

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Craziest week

Hello Everyone -

I don't think I have enough time or enough words to quite express all the things I want to.  I  hope some of this email makes sense to you all.

Transfers was this last Tuesday.  I had to say bye to 2 of my best friends in the mission. Not gonna lie - it's tough seeing people you love so much go home, people that you have grown with. On top of that saying bye to the Bandelier Ward and going into the West Mesa YSA branch was another new experience too. We have had like 4 meetings last week and have been meeting with our branch president and branch mission leader trying to get things figured out. Honestly I can't even begin to tell you how busy every second of every day was last week, and always something comes up with a member or a missionary at the worst timing haha.
The branch is now splitting. It used to cover 2 stakes and now they are splitting off so we had a meeting Sunday for that and the Spirit was very strong. The missionary spirit was there and the stake presidents and mission president spoke and in each of their talks, of course, they spoke about missionary work and this great force in the Church. It really took me back and made me ponder on my mission, that right now is my time to work my hardest for the salvation of men. Now is the only time I can fully focus on the work like this and the only time that everyone's so focused on me and my calling... I came to realize that it will end sometime, that this attention from members and spiritual feasts all the time and long days wearing these clothes and name tag will end - my heart was filled with emotions. Am I truly stepping up to the plate, am I truly letting myself be molded into who God wants me to be? Our mission president said that we will be accountable for the people in our stewardship. Am I truly helping them come to Christ and giving them Christlike love? These questions are stirring  up inside me and motivates me more. I have taken a deep breath at the end of this last week and have truly prayed long prayers and pondered much on my life, my future and if I am reaching my highest potential. I can testify that our loving Father in Heaven will let us know when He wants to push us a little more and make us stretch and I'm eternally grateful for that! 

All those who read this I just want to say that this world brings NO true hapiness. I experienced one of the craziest things and scariest things of my entire life this last week and I don't think I have the right to disclose that information and speak of it. But what I will say is that it has changed my life, has made me grow up a lot more and see how horrible things can flip in people's life and how much the Lord protects His missionaries from danger and His saints who follow the commandments. I feel at times in my mission like Joseph when the Lord said to him... "know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good... Fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." D&C 122:7,9. I know that my life has purpose and a plan and I continually pray for the Lord to put things in my life to make me be who I truly am destined to be, to put me in ways to prepare for being the best husband and father and priesthood holder. 

For those who are stressed and have so much going on that your mind is going 100 miles per hour and your days are filled with ups and downs, know that it will give you more experience. Know that it is ONLY for your good and that if you so simply ask for help to finish the task the Lord will help and carry the rest! Hopefully this week isn't so crazy but I know that whatever happens that I will look at it with spiritual eyes. 

My testimony from this last week is perfectly summed up in this verse...

" Therefore, that we should waste and wear out our lives in bringing to light all the hidden things of darkness, wherein we know them... let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God." D&C 123:13,17.

Do all you can in your power and God will send you as angels to save others.

Love always,

Elder Taylor

Monday, August 4, 2014

Area Swap

Hey everyone.  Hope all is well. Don't have much to write about today.
My companion and I are switching areas and will be covering the West Mesa YSA branch and will be covering the whole stake. We were super bummed-out to leave the ward that we were in because we got super-close with a lot of members there but it will be a new adventure covering the YSA. There are a lot of families in our ward that have YSA kids who are active or less-active; so we will still be able to eat with them and stuff so that will be good.
Time is flying by so quick out here... it is starting to freak me out!  One of my best buds is going home tomorrow and others are leaving the next transfer. I've come to better realize how time works in our mortal lifes and how important it is for us to pay attention to our experiences and to learn and grow always!
Love to you all... have a great week!
Going to miss Bandelier Ward SOOO much, but I know the Lord has other plans! 

Elder Taylor