Monday, August 14, 2017

WE FOUND A FAMILY....

Hi Everyone!

I'm going to apologize in advance, my keyboard isn't working very well.  So as you can see by the por speling so far, it won't let me type in double leters.  Hapy editing, Mom!!! :)

We had an amazing week here in good ol' Mississauga!  We've been trying to work as hard as we can, talk to lots of people, be obedient, etc... On Thursday last week, we had zone conference and that was honestly the best zone conference of my mission (which is a good thing I guess, considering the fact that it was my last one).  I learned a lot about the importance of setting goals and making plans, not just as a missionary, but for the rest of my life.  (Blessings! The person beside me moved, so I have a functioning keyboard now!).  We also talked a lot about the Plan of Salvation, and President Shields shared something with us that I thought was pretty neat.  He told us that he thinks in the pre-earth life, we were probably involved in the planning of the Plan of Salvation to some degree.  Isn't that cool!  My favorite thing I learned though, was at the end. President showed us a video from the last mission president's training.  Elder Oaks gave a talk about the sacrament that encouraged the mission presidents to teach their missionaries to appreciate the sacrament.  He said that in some churches, they participate in communion where everybody eats an identical sized wafer.  In our church, we partake of the sacrament, where the bread is broken in our presence.  Each piece of bread is unique in shape and size, just like the individual who partakes of it has unique sins and needs.  He taught us to conscientiously renew our covenants each time we take the sacrament and to be grateful as we partake.  Isn't that cool?!

At zone conference, all the missionaries who are going home that transfer give their departing testimonies.  It was a very spiritual experience for me to be able to get up and share what my mission has meant to me.  It has really taught me that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can have a change of heart and we can receive strength to do things that were once impossible for us.  The Savior really has become more of a reality to me the past 18 months.  Being a missionary is a sacred privilege that should not be taken lightly.  We have such a great responsibility to represent our Savior.  It has been such a blessing to serve him as a missionary.

After zone conference, we went on exchanges with our Creditview sisters.  I was in Mississauga with Sister Keeslar.  While we were on exchanges, we found a family to teach!  It was so cool!  They are both Christians, but the denomination they belong to only exists in Syria, so they are looking for a spiritual group to join.  I think we can for sure help them out with that!  It was such a blessing! 

On Sunday, four of our investigators came to church!  One of them was a new investigator named Rajani.  She is from India, but over the past several years, she has come to believe in Jesus Christ.  She walked into church on Sunday morning, stayed for all three hours, and then we taught her later that night.  It was such a tender mercy!

I wanted to share two things I learned in my studies this week.

1).  On Thursday, I was studying the talk Our Father's Glorious Plan from general conference.  This part really stuck out to me.  "Another of the great blessings of my life has been to feel the closeness of heaven during those moments when I sit at the bedside of people as they pass away.  Early one morning some years ago, I entered the hospital room of a faithful Latter-day Saint widow who had cancer.  Two of her daughters were sitting with her.  As I went to her bedside, I quickly discovered that she was no longer suffering, because she had just died.  In that moment of death, the room was filled with peace.  Her daughters had a sweet sadness, but their hearts were filled with faith.  They knew that their mother was not gone but had returned home.  Even in our moments of deepest grief, in the moments when time stands still and life seems so unfair, we can find comfort in our Savior because He suffered as well.  It was a privilege for me to be in the room."  As I read, it really strengthened my testimony of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and of eternal families.  Death is not the end!  Because of Jesus Christ, the grave has no victory and death has no sting!

2).  First, can I just say that the Book of Mormon is so amazing!  Wow! I don't know how I missed this before!  I was reading in 1 Nephi 16, and as I read, I realized that so far, the Book of Mormon has been all about how Lehi's family deals with one trial after the other (like the effectual struggle in Mosiah 7:18 and the muddy creek story I shared a few months ago).  I started comparing the different responses to the trials, and I put them in three main categories.  A.  Laman and Lemuel Level:  Whenever something goes wrong, you immediately begin to murmur by your words and your attitude.  B.  Lehi Level:  You're very faithful and want to obey, but sometimes murmur.  C.  Nephi Level:  No matter what, you do not murmur.  You trust the Lord and instead of just sitting around, waiting for your trial to end, you get up and act with the faith that solutions will come in God's timing.  Our lives are like the first chapters of the Book of Mormon.  There will always be challenges and trials to overcome which we cannot control.  However, we can control our attitude.  When we don't murmur, it is a sign of deep faith.

Wow, this email got really long!  I love  you all so much!

Sister Dille














Tuesday, August 8, 2017

She Calls Us Her Little Daughters...

Hey Guys!

Wow, it's August! When did that happen?! July just started. This week was such an amazing opportunity for Sister Varty and I to learn patience and diligence. We've lost almost all of our investigators, most of our appointments cancel or don't show up, and for those of you who have served missions, you know that it's not exactly the funnest situation to be in. It's been really good though because both of us are learning patience and humility. Last night, we were talking about it, and we decided that even though our area is not doing very well, we can still make these last three weeks of the transfer fun. We've both learned on our missions that the greatest joy comes as we obey with exactness and have urgency about the work. We've set goals and made plans to be exactly obedient and work super hard. We're doing our best to talk to every person the Lord puts in our path. (Haha, we've started talking to people through their car windows and inviting them to church while we sit at stop lights. It's pretty awkward, but it sure keeps the work exciting!) We both have so much more energy and a renewed love for the work! =)

Last night, we had such a good lesson with Sister Pat. (I love her...she calls us her little daughters!) We taught her the Restoration again because we really want to help her understand the priesthood authority. While we taught, we both felt so much love for her! Because we felt so much love, we were able to be very bold with her and we testified that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the one true church upon the earth. We promised her blessings and invited her to read and pray. It was such a powerful lesson!

We had MLC last Wednesday! It was my last one. =( It was such a good meeting though! I love going to MLC because the Spirit is always so strong. It's such a great opportunity to learn from other missionaries who are trying so hard to do their best. I wanted to share one thing that really stood out to me from what we learned. The assistants gave an instruction about how we need to lead our missionaries in the Saviour's Way. To help us understand our role as leaders, they shared the story from the Bible when Jesus asked Peter if he loved Him. We watched the Bible Video and it was so powerful. Each time Peter answered the Lord, he got more and more serious that he truly did love Him. The elders taught us that Peter's responses represent our conversion. The first 'yes' was us at the beginning of our missions. We really want to tell the Lord we love Him, but we're struggling to leave home behind and be on our missions. By the time we end our mission, we should be on the third 'yes' where we're deeply committed to obey and serve. They taught us that our job as leaders is to help our missionaries when they want to say 'yes' to the first 'do you love me,' but are still struggling to obey. It was such a powerful lesson for me!

So now for the funny stories...
1. Yesterday, we were walking down the street and we were trying to start a conversation with this guy walking away. He wouldn't stop, so we just said by and turned back around. As he walked away though, we noticed that he just had this random snake in his hand walking through the middle of the city. What? 😕

2. Haha, this is probably my most embarrassing moment of my whole mission. Sister Varty and I went running this morning and it was a really good run. We were keeping a pretty good pace and we both felt pretty good. We turned a corner and I'm not quite sure what happened (maybe the side walk was a bit uneven or something), but with I totally face planted on the sidewalk! Right off of the highway! It was hilarious! I wish somebody would've gotten it on camera. Wow, I'm so graceful. 😂

I hope you all have a good week!

Love,
 
Sister Dille
 





 

Monday, July 31, 2017

Being Tone-Deaf or Off-Key.....

Hey Guys! I hope you all had a good week! 

I don't have too many experiences to share from this week, mostly just stuff I've been learning.

As I did My Plan today, two quotes really stood out to me that I wanted to share.

1. “As I look back on my life following my mission, I realize that there were periods when I was able to maintain the same closeness to the Lord that I experienced in the mission field. There were also periods when the world seemed to creep in and I was less consistent and faithful with my prayers. … If the world has diverted us from the practice of prayer, we then have lost great spiritual power” Elder Perry

2. “Clearly, a dividing line between those who hear the music of faith and those who are tone-deaf or off-key is the active study of the scriptures. I was deeply touched years ago that a beloved prophet, Spencer W. Kimball, emphasized the need to continually read and study the scriptures. He said: ‘I find that when I get casual in my relationships with divinity and when it seems that no divine ear is listening and no divine voice is speaking, that I am far, far away. If I immerse myself in the scriptures the distance narrows and the spirituality returns" Elder Cook

I can testify that these quotes are true! As we immerse ourselves in the scriptures and commit ourselves to sincere, faithful prayer, it makes a huge difference in our lives!

I have a renewed love for the Book of Mormon. I've been studying one chapter everyday for the past week, and it's been such a revelatory experience for me. I've been learning so many wonderful principles that I've never noticed before. I wanted to share what I learned with you as I studied in 1 Nephi 3. It talked about two different responses to our trials... 1. Nephi-faithful and never murmured. 2. Laman and Lemuel- unfaithful, disobedient, and always murmuring. It was interesting to compare their two responses to adversity as I read. Because Laman and Lemuel were murmuring and lacked faith, they weren't able to accomplish the commandment the Lord had given them to go get the plates. Nephi however, was obedient and never murmured (which is a sign of deep faith). Because of Nephi's attitude during their trial, the Lord was able to use him as an instrument in His hands. It's the same for us! =)

My testimony of prayer was strengthened this week. We went on exchanges this week with our Churchville YSA sisters. I was with Sister Wehrli, and she's so awesome! (She actually went to Weber State...I knew there was something I liked about her!) She's only been in the field for 12 days, so I wanted to set a really good example of opening our mouths to talk with everyone, but I was pretty nervous. I had a silent prayer in my heart the whole exchange that God would give me the strength and courage to open my mouth and talk with everyone He put in our path...and He did. It really strengthened my testimony that he listens to our prayers.

I love you all!
 
Sister Dille
 











 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Did You Know Lehi & His Family Had a Pet?.....

Hey Guys!

Wow, I have such a strong testimony of D&C 24:12. "And at all times, and in all places, he shall open his mouth and declare my gospel as with the voice of a trump, both day and night. And I will give unto him strength such as is not known among men." Everyone has been telling me that your last transfer, you're completely exhausted all the time, and I believe them. I have never been so tired in my life. It's been really cool to apply the Lord's promise in this scripture though...whenever I feel really tired, we go out and talk to people, and all of sudden I have energy to keep working. It's so cool!

This morning, I was studying in 1 Nephi 2, and there are so many principles in there that are applicable to us. In that chapter, the Lord asks Lehi and his family to leave behind all of their comforts and head out into the wilderness. Obviously that would be quite difficult to leave behind your nice home and go spend the rest of your life living in a tent. It was interesting to see how they each responded to the test. Lehi was faithful and obeyed, Laman and Lemuel murmured, Nephi prayed to have his heart softened, and Sam was so  humble and willing he accepted the testimonies of others. In our lives, we're often required to make sacrifices and go through hard things. Sometimes we murmur like Laman and Lemuel because we 'know not the dealings of that God who created us.' But if Lehi and his family hadn't made that sacrifice, we wouldn't  have the Book of Mormon today. Our sacrifices bless others, and although we do not always understand why we're called to wade through certain afflictions, God does. We can trust that He loves us and no matter what happens, it is for our good. (1 Nephi 11:17).

Fun fact for the day, did you know that Lehi and his family had a pet? They had a pet flea. In the Book of Mormon, the Lord commands Lehi to take his family and "flea" into the wilderness. The things we learn from studying the scriptures. =)

So, I have a new companion! Her name is Sister Varty and she's so awesome! She's from Millerville, Alberta, so I get one last Canadian companion! She's a really sweet sister, and she's a very obedient, diligent missionary! She's awesome!

We had a cool experience this week! We got a media referral for a lady named Anne-Marie who wanted some help painting her house. We went and did service for her and we chatted a little bit about the gospel. She has a new baby and so she's starting to think about how she wants to raise him and how to protect him from the evils in the world. We talked with her about prophets and how we have one on the earth today to help us do just that. She's going to let us come back this week and share more with her. It's really exciting!

My testimony of planning was strengthened a lot this week. When we plan, the Spirit can help us more. Sister Varty and I have been planning a lot more effectively for our lessons, and it's made such a huge difference. We spend our personal studies focused on our investigators, and then in companion study we make detailed lesson plans according to what we learned in personal study. Last week, we had a really powerful lesson with an investigator named Fostina on the Restoration. As we taught, she totally understood because the Spirit was there. She understood the pattern of apostasy, the need for the Restoration, the role of the Book of Mormon, etc. Planning is inspired.

I Love You All!
 
Sister Dille
 
This is our ward mission leader, Brother Miles.

A missionary who served in the ward came back to visit and I talked with her mom.  It turns out we're very distantly related through the Dille's side, so we obviously took a picture!

We learned how to use a drill today to hang up hooks in somebody's washroom.  We were quite proud of ourselves, if you can't tell.

This is a little girl we are teaching named Romina.  She's a member's daughter and she only speaks Spanish.



Romina wanted to take pictures with us at church.  She drew us a picture too.

A member gave us a chocolate cake.  TOTALLY. MADE. OUR. DAY!!!!!!
 

Monday, July 17, 2017

I'm Staying in Mississauga to Finish My Mission!..........

Hello!

Wow, can I just say that goal setting and planning are such powerful tools! Since we were almost 99% sure this was Sister Holmstead's last week as a sister training leader, we wanted to end it by hitting the standards of excellence. We set our goals and made our plans and then did our best to carry them out. We're both so weak and simple, but the Lord took our simple efforts and magnified them. We were blessed this week with so many miracles...
~We were in an apartment building dropping by a potential investigator and a man walked by to throw out his garbage while we were standing outside a door. We started talking with him, and he told us he had been sitting inside debating on whether or not he should leave his family. Something told him to take out the garbage so he did, and we ran into each other. He really wants to change and we get to help him!
~We started teaching a Muslim couple we met a few weeks ago who were going through a rough time.
~A member called us last p-day and said, "Sisters, can you come right now and come teach my friend?!"
~Five of our investigators came to church on Sunday!
The Lord is so good to us...I can't even handle it! These experiences really built my testimony that people are not numbers...they are children of God and it's our responsibility to reach out to them. 

God's timing never ceases to amaze me...on Wednesday, we showed up to our returning member's house, but she forgot we were coming and was about to leave to go run an errand. So we started working around the area, tracting and OYMing. We met a girl named Zoe as she was coming off the bus. We showed her the Book of Mormon and read Alma 7:11-13 with her. She was like, "Wow, I like that. I don't even like to read, but I'm gonna read this book. Hopefully I can get it done in the next two weeks." Shout out to the Book of Mormon for being true!

We had an amazing lesson with our investigator Dennis...we've been working with him to help  him stop drinking and smoking. When we showed up to our lesson on Friday, he said, "I haven't had a drink since Tuesday." We were so proud of him! I love it when we get to witness the Atonement of Jesus Christ changing people!

There are just some days where your heart is so full of joy, you can't even explain it! Saturday was definitely one of those days...Sam and Stacy both got baptized. My favourite part was seeing the joy on their faces as they came up out of the water, having just made such important covenants with God. It was so awesome!

Well, another transfer has ended. Sadly, Sister Holmstead's time in Mississauga is over and she's headed up to Georgian Bay. I get to stay and finish off my mission is Mississauga with Sister Vardy. =)

I love you all!
 
Sister Dille
 
Sam's baptism :)  Sam asked me to speak and it was really special :)

Stacy's baptism :)

Missionaries in my district

Sister Training Leaders ( And Elders)

These are some of the missionaries I came out with from the MTC!
 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Don't worry....sometimes it's freaking hard!

Hi Guys!

I hope you all had a great week! Our week went by super fast! On Tuesday, since it was our p-day and it just happened to be the fourth of July, President and Sister Shields invited all the missionaries over in the Brampton Zone for a BBQ. It was super fun, but I have to say, it was really weird being in normal clothes at President's house and seeing President walk around in slippers, hahaha. :)

On Wednesday, we had MLCs, which are always super good! I always love meetings because you're just called to repentance so much! You come away from the meeting with so much to work on that can help your area. One of the things we talked about was talking with everyone. President's been bringing that up frequently for the past few weeks, and it's been so cool to see the miracles that have come from it! After MLC, we had a lesson with an investigator named Trisha who we found through talking with everyone. Her dad recently got baptized in Nigeria, so now she's curious about the Church. We went over and we taught her about the Book of Mormon and it was really cool to see how much she wanted to understand the truth. We're going back this week and she wants the rest of her family to join in the lesson. :) (It's like talking with everyone is inspired or something!)

We have an investigator named Stacy who's preparing to be baptized this Saturday. We had a lesson with her a few days ago, and we brought a really nice lady from our ward with us. Stacy asked a question about understanding the Book of Mormon, and our member jumped in to answer. To understand how hilarious this was, you have to know that this member is super sweet, quiet, and kind...she's a really nice Japanese lady. So her answer was, "don't worry, Stacy. Sometimes it's freaking hard!" Sister Holmstead and I about died! It took everything we had to keep it together! It was so funny! 

We met with Stacy after church again yesterday right after her baptismal interview. She was so happy! It was so neat to just see her joy that she's going to be able to enter into a covenant with God. I think that's one of my favourite parts of missionary work...seeing the joy the gospel brings to other people. 

Well, it's officially the last week of the transfer! Honestly, we can't figure out how that happened! Time sure flies! 

I Love You!
Sister Dille

P.S. Next week, I have to start working on My Plan during computer time, so I probably won't have time to email most of you back, but I promise I'm not ignoring you, hahaha! :)
 
BBQ at President & Sister Shields' house

Would you look at that! Alma!
 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

With His Stripes We Are Healed....

Hey Guys!

Sorry, today's email will be fairly short because we're short on time. :)

This week was so crazy! We went on back to back exchanges with our Creditview and Etobicoke sisters, and then we went on exchanges a few days later with Hamilton, so we feel like we haven't really been companions at all this week. I love exchanges though...they're really good opportunities to learn from and serve other sisters! =)

It was Canada Day on Saturday! This was a special Canada Day because it was the 150th anniversary of our country! It also happened to be our 500th day on our missions, so it was pretty sweet! In the morning, we got all dressed up in our missionary appropriate, Canada Day apparel (white shirts and red skirts, hahaha) and we walked to the church for ESL Class. While we were walking, a lady in a minivan rolled down the window and yelled, "Are you twins?!" She went and turned her car around, parked, and got out. She was like, "Sorry! I saw you two from the back and I just had to see if you were twins!" (Sister Holmstead and I don't think we look very much alike, but everybody else up here thinks we're twins, haha). She happened to be in a red skirt and white shirt too, so we took a picture with her. =) It was cool...I love random things like that.

Our mission has been working really hard to talk to more people everyday. We've been asked to talk with 20 people everyday independent of regular finding activities and working with members. On Sunday, our whole mission fasted for the strength, faith, and courage to open our mouths and talk with more people. We've seen so many miracles as we've tried to talk with more people. We've found more of God's children who are prepared to hear the message of the Restoration, and we're so much happier! Missionary work really does bring greater joy!

I want to share my testimony of the healing power of the Atonement. In Isaiah 53:5, it says, "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with His stripes we are healed." I've been able to have some powerful experiences with the Atonement this past week...I never realized before that through Jesus Christ we can be healed. I know that as we rely on Him, he can heal our broken hearts, give us the strength to forgive, and help us have peace to move on.

Hahaha, I guess it didn't end up being that short...had too much to say! 

I love you!
 
Sister Dille