Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Thank you for all the birthday and Christmas wishes!



Wow I look back on this week and I can't believe all that has happened. First off thank you everyone for the Birthday and Christmas wishes! I am grateful for all the cards and emails that have come! I am sorry if I don't write you each back individually but please no that I am very grateful. I had a great birthday... I received the best present ever! I am going to be a grandma! That means that Sister Andrew is training a new sister! I am so excited for her. She will do great. 

It is transfers this week and I will be getting transferred. I will find out tomorrow where I am going. I love the start of a new transfer. It is another beginning and chance to start fresh. This morning I took sometime to ponder all that has happened these past 2 transfers. I have learned and experienced so much. I don't even know how to put it into words but I am so grateful. 

On Wednesday we received a phone call from a pair of zone leaders. It came late at 10:27 just 3 minutes from when we are to be to bed. They told us that they were with a set of sisters and we needed to pack somethings and immiedately head over there to stay the night for the next couple of days. We were both confused. What? Why? We said Elders it is 10:30 why do we need to come now... they kept saying and being my usual prideful self I kept asking questions needing to know the details finally the Elder said here I will put President on the phone will you believe him? haha So next thing I know President is on the phone telling us the same thing... so we packed somethings and headed over to there apartment which was a good 30 minutes away. It was an adventure. The Sisters were having some issues at there place so we have been sleeping over there the past several nights... we haven't been getting much sleep... it feels good to be in my own bed again...haha I have learned to sleep anywhere. I love the Sisters whom we get to serve. 

I got to be on exchange with Sister Montoya this week. How I love that girl! We talked about so many things...we laughed, we cried, it was a tender time. I will miss her so much as she goes home this week. I have learned so much from her. We learned so much and experienced so much together. At times I still can't believe that we really were companions and all that we went through together but looking back we wouldn't have it any other way. The Lord knows what he is doing. I have been so blessed to have wonderful companions.. most of them international as well: New Zealand, Australia, and Costa Rica...

I can't believe how fast time goes.. this transfer there are a lot of missionaries going home... Most of the leadership of the mission is going home.. there will be lots of new Zone leaders and STL's... At times I still feel as though I am one of the young ones but the reality is that I am one of older ones now... I can't believe it. Time goes by. I love my mission. Every minute of it. I am so grateful to be here. 


I love you! 

Sister Hartley 


 Sister Richardson and I at our Christmas Conference. 

I was missing my twin on my Birthday so I had to recruit a new one! 

The branch brought a cake that we ate after church on Sunday

The girl on the left is a really special member that comes teaching with us quite a bit and the girl on the other side is our investigator! I love her. She will be baptized this coming sunday
     

Sister Price the bow one is for you!! I thought I would make you proud.

Monday, 8 December 2014

He is the Gift!! It is amazing.





It has been a wonderful week.

We saw an amazing miracle yesterday. We set a goal earlier in the week to contact daily for 30 min picking a location close to the college with a lot of bus stops. We met an amazing girl on Tuesday. Being busy with school and work she couldn't meet with us until Sunday morning. Sunday came and she told us that she could only have the lesson but not come to church because she had something for school she needed to do. However, half way through the lesson she looked at both of us and said she was going to drop everything and come to church with us! We finished the lesson and all walked to the church together. She LOVED it! Turns out she knows about half the branch from school! She kept saying "I feel right at home." In Relief Society she introduced herself and said, "Well, I am getting convinced...I think I am going to stay!" It was amazing! She is so elect and ready for the gospel. When we gave her the Book of Mormon she held it close in a warm embrace and exclaimed, "This...this is what I have been looking for." WE love her so much!!! We are going to go to the Temple tomorrow with her and walk around the outside. I just love being here in YSA. I never thought I would serve in YSA let alone Miami YSA but I love it. 

I hope that you all have watched He is the Gift!! It is amazing. We watch it on average 3 to 4 times daily. We use it in contacting and harvesting. Almost everyone has a smart phone so we just watch it right there on the street. It works miracles every time... I love it. It is inspired. We didn't watch the Christmas devotional last night, we chose to go work instead. That evening time is just too good of time to work. We will watch it in the morning sometime this week when it is less affective proselyting time. 

! I love you all have a great week! 

Love,
Sister Hartley












Thursday, 4 December 2014

Expect a White Christmas here in the South! #baptisms

Last week one of my friends from school asked me a question that I wanted to answer for her. It really hit me so I am going to share it with all of you. I hope it helps.
Her question: Have you ever felt like you have so much responsibility and assignments to complete but not enough direction to complete them? Like, the Lord trusts you a lot to get things done but you wish you had more specific directions in getting them done?
As always, the scriptures are the best place to turn to receive answers. When coupled with prayer, we will receive the revelation we need. I dedicated a personal study to this and this is what I learned.
I read 1 Nephi 17-18. It is the story of Nephi building a ship. In vs 8 we read Nephi is given an assignment from the Lord to build a ship. This assignment would not only affect him but generations of people, for if he didn't complete it they would not have made it to the promised land. The Lord promised to help him and show him what to do. However in chapter 18:1 we learn that the Lord only showed Nephi from "time to time" what he should do. In vs 3 we read of Nephi often going up to the mount to pray and recieve further guidance. We, as deciples of Jesus Christ, are a return and report people. In other words, we are given an assignment from the Lord and then we must account to him through prayer as to how we are fulfilling it. Once we do what he has  asked he will give us further knowledge. We cannot expect to know all at once what we should do. Imagine how Nephi was feeling? I am sure at times he was overwhelmed, discouraged, and didn't know what to do? But, the Lord trusted him and gave him enough guidance and direction to be able to do it. He did not give him every little detail for if he did Nephi wouldn't have learned anything! So it is with us. We can't expect all the details of what to do, or no growth would come and no knowledge would be developed. There are so many principles from this story that we can liken to  our selves!! I don't have time to point them all out...but please read it with the above question in mind and liken it to your selves.
I also read Ether 2 and 3 where many of the same and additional principles are taught. I challenge you all to read that as well and apply the principles. I love this one because the Lord solved 2 of the Brother of Jared's problems (air and steering) but left he last one up to him to solve (how to get light)... He did all that he could. He molted stones and carried them up the mountain but in the end it still was not enough... and this is where the most wonderful gift comes in--the atonement. The Lord touches the stones. Wow is that ever powerful. The same is true for us. We will do all that we can but in the end we trust in the Atonement to make up the difference!!!
I wish I had time to write and explain everything I learned, but I know that as read these stories with a prayer in your heart the Lord will help you understand the principles relevant for you. Liken them to yourself and apply them. The scriptures are our greatest gift.
We had a great Thanksgiving. Sorry I will try to send pictures next week. Sister Sanchez and I are loving our YSA branch. Each member is becoming so special to us. We love them. (In a missionary sort of way I promise! haha gotta love YSA)
If you haven't checked out He is the Gift yet on christmas.mormon.org repent and go watch it right now. It will change your life.
 I love you all. Christmas time is the best time to be a missionary. Make the most of it! Expect a White Christmas here in the South! #baptisms
I love you!

Monday, 24 November 2014

My new companion is Sister Sanchez from Texas

The first thing I want to say is O MY! (Yes Sister Steg that was for you I still say it... your legacy lives on)... Katelyn you and Sister Jones are a twin companionship to Sister Steg and I. You look exactly like us! It is crazy...  all Sister Jones needs is crazy curly hair. haha Congrats on your baptism. Travis congrats on training again and being DL. You will love it. I have had many amazing district leaders that have changed me. Be bold. Be loving...and be nice to the STLs! haha it makes our job so much easier when we have cooperative DLs. :D Let them help you as much as possible with the Sisters in your District.
 
My new companion is Sister Sanchez  from Texas. Her family is from Mexico and speaks perfect Spanish and English. She is short...possibly shorter then sister price...but very very sweet. We make a good team. I keep in contact with Sister Montoya and she is healing well from her surgery. I pray she is all better soon. I will send pictures of Sister Sanchez and I next week.
 
We had a neat experience yesterday. President Richardson encouraged us to ask our Branch President for priesthood blessings. I love President Robinson. I don't know if it is because  he is from Magrath or what but we sure do get along great. He gave both Sister Sanchez and I beautiful blessings. It felt more "fatherly" which we were grateful for. The Elders are great but it was nice to feel like in a way I was recieving a fatherly blessing. Yesterday in the branch a high council gave his talk in Spanish. I had to where a headset for translation. haha our entire stake is bilingual. Everyone in the branch speaks both english and spanish except for a few. Miami is so diverse. It is great to look over the congragation and see so much culture. The Gospel is true. No language, nor culture can separate us from our divinity as children of God. Sister Sanchez is really good at helping me use my spanish. The other day she told me that I would take the lead at every door approach. We knocked  on one and when they opened it I approached them in Spanish. The  man listened and then looked confused and mumbled.. sorry I don't understand do you know english? haha the one time I get the courage to do it and they speak english. :D I am continually working on it.
 
Another miracle in the Branch is that we have a meal appointment everyday this  week! When I first got here no one would ever feed us. We have gained a great realationship and trust within the branch and I am thankful. I love them all.
 
We had a speicialized training this past week and we finally got to see Meet the Mormons. It was really good. I encourage all to watch it and share it if you haven't already. We also were told about the Christmas initiative that the church is doing. It is going to be amazing and I am so excited. What an exciting time to be  a missionary. It will be coming out in the December ensign and will soon appear on lds.org. I encourage all to check it out and us this great intitative! Sariah I bet it will be really exciting for you  in New York with the billboard they have!! You will have to tell us about it.
 
This week I was studying in 2 Nephi 31... I have read and used this chapter so much. It is amazing. Vs 20-21 really stood out to me this time. We must pressforward, with steadfastness,  having a perfect brightness hope, loving God and all man, feasting on the word of Christ and endure to the end. That is a lot of strong language!! I defined some of these words... steadfastness is not changing in your attitude or aims, endure is to experience and survive pain and hardship...etc. Thus, eternal life is no small task. It takes work. It takes continuous commitment. It takes dedication. It takes sincere repentance. It is  an everyday thing. God recqurie our whole heart. While it may be hard and frustrating at time I know that it is worth it. Life is all about being outside of our comfort zone. I never dreamed I would be serving in Miami and be one of the Sisters in all of the south zones that doesn't speak spanish. All of our Sister in our sisterhood speak spanish. It is so humbling to go to an area on exchange in effort to help the sisters but not being able to contribute much because of the barrier. The majority of the people we meet speak only Spanish. I am definitely outside my comfort zone. I have to have more faith and courage then ever before. I have trust that if I open my mouth God will fill it even if I don't know what to say. I am learning and growing and I am grateful. Examine your lives and ask yourself if you feel comfortable with where you are at. Being comfortable is "Wasting the days of our probation".  We cannot be complacent... if we are we are not repenting. Always be ready and willing to change for this is the greatest blessing of mortality and the atonement.
 
Te quiero,
 
Sister Hartley

Monday, 17 November 2014

I am going to miss this girl!

 
I am going to miss this girl!


Sister Montoya is still not 100% better. In fact, she needs surgery. She will be having it on Wednesday. Tomorrow they are doing an emergency transfer. This means that I will be getting a new companion tomorrow afternoon. They haven't told me who yet, but I will find out tonight. She will have her surgery on wednesday and then hopefully she will be good to go in a week and she will finish her mission in another area. I know it is the Lord's will, but we are both in shock about it. We are sad not to say together. It is crazy to think that today will be our last day together. :( I will sure miss my favorite Costa Rican. I will get to train a new STL so that will be fun.

We still didn't have much time to work this week with the sickness and all. We were able to go on splits with members a few nights and then I was able to go on exchange with Sister Simmons and her companion stayed with Sister Montoya. We had an amazing miracle filled day together. Our District Leader wanted me to focus on having faith filled words and actions. We did and we saw miracles because of it. We knocked on a door and at first the lady kept refusing and refusing but we were so full of faith that she just couldn't say no. She let us in to a chaotic home. Multiple TVs were blaring and kids were screaming. Because we were full of faith we got all the TVs turned off, and all the kids quieted down. We all knelt down together and we prayed and the spirit was strong. Afterwards all the kids sat without saying a word and the Mother was in tears. We testified of families and they all accepted our invitation of baptism. Another miracle happened as we were teaching a lady struggling to live the word of wisdom. We read some scriptures with her. The first time we read it normally. We then taught and discussed the principles the scripture taught. We then had her read it again to us but told her to change the wording to apply it to herself and her situation. She made it about halfway through the scripture and then the tears came. The spirit was strong. I am so grateful for the doctrine and princples contained in the scriptures. They truly show and tell us all things that we must do. The scriptures are our greatest tools to teach.

 Sister Simmons was so happy for the miracles. (She is a new missionary and is still adjusting.) I asked her after, "Sister why were we able to see that miracle?" She responded "Because of our faith." It was the best moment ever. All we need is faith and exact obedience and we will do miracles for the Lord. We had a great exchange and both learned a lot. I love going on exchanges with new missionaries. They are so humble and eager to learn. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to go on exchanges with Sisters. I learn so much from them.

Sister Price asked me to share a little something about Charity so here it is.

Before my mission I thought of charity as service. You do your Visiting teaching, you make a plate of cookies and deliver it to someone, you write a nice note, you make your siblings bed... stuff like that. But Charity is so much more. It is the pure love of Christ. When we have charity we are concerned for the eternal welfare of all those around us. Not there temporal needs or something that will put a smile on there face. But truly there ETERNAL needs. When we have true charity we will do all we can to share the Gospel with others because this is what will meet there eternal needs. I think of our time together Sister Price and truly it was because of Charity that we were able to teach Angie. Had she not felt the love we had for her she would have kept not wanting to listen to us. Anyways there is a few things hopefully that helps you a little bit.

I love this great work.

Have a great week.


Wednesday, 12 November 2014

I have also really learned the power of example

Sister Montoya and I have had a while week to say the least. She has been sick all week. We proselyted for probably only 9 hours this week. Most of our time was spent in the apartment. I tried my best to stay diligent. I went through old area books and called formers, called less actives, and even began to call each member name by name on the ward directory. haha I found out all sorts of stuff. I texted members to try to arrange splits and thankfully we were able to do it multiple times. One member would come and stay with her and another would come with me to work. At the end of the week I was pretty happy with all we accomplished. She still isn't better...we went to a doctor and will go to another one in an hour or so...I pray we get it all figured out.

We are both staying together for another transfer. I am grateful. Thanksgiving in YSA should be an adventure. I am so grateful for this transfer. It has sent me to my knees. It seems as though all my weaknesses have come apparent and I have learned to greater rely on my Savior Jesus Christ and trust in him. I have learned to ask "Is it I?" and not blame others for what may be happening. I have learned to give everything and receive little in return. Lessons for life and I am grateful.

I have also really learned the power of example... I am so grateful Mom for your wonderful example. This past week as I have taken care of Sister Montoya I have greater realized all that you have taught me. You should of seen me taking care of her... Both Sister Richardson and our mission nurse commented on how surprised they were because they would tell us what to do and I would tell them that I already had or was doing that. They were both impressed that I knew just what to do. I just smiled and said well I have a wonderful Mom and she taught me well. They both said that they knew that was yet another reason why we are together because no one would be able to take care of her like I can. Thank you Mom for everything. I see more and more of you in myself everyday. Dad thank you so much also for your example. You have taught me how to work hard and get a job done right the first time. If I got a dollar for every time someone commented on how hard I work I would have enough money to pay for your mission. I am so grateful to the Lord for 2 amazing parents. I love you both.

I am so grateful this week for my family. I miss you all but don't worry I am not homesick...just grateful.

I agree with what Travis said about idleness... I was actually studying that this week as well. Something I love about the Book of Mormon is that they never sit still for very long. They are moving "further" into the wilderness, crossing seas, pitching there tents and so on. Just like them we must never be content with where we are at. We must constantly change. We can never be comfortable. Pre. Uchtdorf said, "I have learned that the difference between happiness and misery in individuals, in marriages, and families often comes down to an error of only a few degrees." Never be complacent. Elder Godoy also said "Just because things are going well does not mean that we should not from time to time consider whether there might be something better." 

I love you all. Have a great week. Please pray for my companion that she gets better soon. 

With Love,

Sister Hartley  
My old companion, Sister Price, and her boyfriend.



Monday, 3 November 2014

Many learning experiences this week.


Happy Halloween and happy birthday to my companion

It has been another week filled with learning. I can't believe the snow. It has been a bit chilly here the last few days as well.. ok well not that cold but for here it was.

Halloween was good, we didn't knock doors after 5 and had to be home by 7. We mostly wrote in journals...haha we are always behind. We had fun though. We had MLC earlier so by the time we got back to or area we didn't have much time to work which we were sad about but we made the most of it.
  
It is transfers next week and I am curious as to what it will hold. Resident has a hard time keeping things secret so we have a bit of an idea but still aren't sure. I will let you know next week.

Many learning experiences this week. When I was on exchanges with a Sister we taught one of there investigators who suffered from severe Word of Wisdom problems. I have never seen anything like it. It broke my heart. I am so grateful for the commandments. They are there for or safety and protection. I am grateful that through the atonement we can be healed 


Love Sister Hartley

My Favorite Costa Rican and I at MLC this last week.


All the STL's at MLC.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Arturo was baptized yesterday!


Family and Friends,
 
It has been a revelatory week. We had interviews with President as well as a comp study with the AP's on Saturday. I learned a lot. President never ceases to amaze me.

Arturo was baptized yesterday!  We love Arturo. He is Cuban; thus, we teach him in Spanglesh. He can't speak English very well but he understands it. Sister Montoya teaches him in Spanish and then when we switch I teach in English. It amazes me how things just flow. The language of the spirit takes over. I can't speak much Spanish but I can understand it pretty well. Sister Montoya's English is greatly improving. She is getting more bold with it everyday and this makes me happy. I can pray in Spanish now and our Spanish investigators get so excited every time I do. haha I love it.
 

Our little YSA branch is progressing so well. We are gaining a lot of trust with them...really trying to mend any broken bridges from the past. We are visiting members, serving them, and as a result they are coming out with us and starting to feed us which in YSA is a miracle. I love all the members so much. They are at such a fragile stage in their life with there testimony. I can see many just wavering. We are trying to do all we can to help them. I have learned this week that each and everyone of us can make a great impact and have lasting influence on all those around them. We may think what we are doing doesn't matter but I know it does. Small things really do bring about great things. Never shy away from doing something right. Always stand for principle. Don't settle for the good or the better but truly always seek to be the best. It makes an eternal difference.
 
I love you. Have a wonderful week.
 
O one more thing... Sister Montoya knows the Redford family (Jim and Anita) small world eh? I guess Taylor served his mission in Costa Rica in her families ward!

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The last door we knocked on held the miracle.

I am getting settled here in Miami. The traffic here is crazy. It tests my patience. I have become quite the freeway driver...5 lane highways are nothing now...haha The GPS will say it is only 15 minutes away but in the end it can easily turn into 45 minutes. We cover YSA for 2 zones so thus our area is HUGE! We can only teach YSA...We try to harvest and contact around universities and places where there will be a large concentration of YSA. We depend a lot on referrals from other missionaries. With our area being huge, and exchanges we spend a lot of time in the car. We try to make the most of it though. It gives us a lot of time to talk which is good. I got to meet the rest of the branch on sunday and it was good. YSA is so different then family wards. We have to be there friend first before they will trust us and help us. This area has had a hard past with missionaries and thus they do not trust missionaries easily. President is trusting us to build up the branch and strengthen the relationship between members and missionaries here. 

In President Richardson's email last week he included the mormon message "The Will of God". It is amazing and I encourage all of you to watch it. It talks about how God knows what we need to grow and become who he wants us to be. Sister Montoya and I watched it and in all honesty we were in tears afterwards. I swear President put it in his email just for us. We both know that God is giving us this experience to acquire greater humility and grow in ways we didn't know we needed to. We had an amazing comp study with our district leader on comp unity which really helped as well. We are communicating a lot more effectively. We are getting along so well. SO well! Together we are powerful. Sister Montoya is such a strong individual. She has been through so much in her life. SO MUCH!!! The more I learn about her the more I can see why she is the way she is. I respect her so much. I love her so much. President came down to interview one of our investigators and before he left he asked us if we wanted to talk about it or if we had gotten things figured out. We laughed and smiled and said we had gotten things figured out. He smiled and said, "I hope you know you are my power companionship. You two are the strongest." We replied, "President if that it is the case does that mean we get to be AP's next transfer?!" haha he laughed. I love President. 

In PMG it teaches us that the Gospel improves the quality of our lives. This is a truth that we share with investigators in the first lesson. As I have pondered that this week I have realized that this means so much more then what we have, or the style of life we live. Rather like Elder Ballard put it, it refers to substance. A quality life is based on eternal potential It is filled with love loyalty, compassion, etc. So many times we knock on people's doors only to hear them say that God has been good to them and they simply have everything they need. Boy are they blinded by the precepts of man. A quality life is so much more then what we have. I love testifying to people at the door about what a true quality life is and seeing there eyes opened and the spirit enter there hearts and they realize something is missing. I just love being a missionary. Please read D&C 33: 2-10, 17. We are all among the last labours in the Lord's vinyard. Each of us. Missionary or not. Do not be content with what you have or who you are. This is a Gospel of change. 

 I love going on exchanges with our Sisters. I had the opportunity of going with a brand new missionary only 1 week in the field. I was so blessed to be able to go on her first fire exchange. She was so excited. Her district leader wanted us to focus on being faith filled in all that we do. I began by spiritually creating with her saying, "Sister we are going to see amazing miracles on this fire exchange. We are going to find families. Are you ready?" She smiled with excitement and off we went. At every door and every OYM we both possessed excitement that radiated faith. The last door we knocked on held the miracle. We knocked and a lady opened the door just a crack. At first she turned down the prayer but we continued to testify and invite. Finally, she agreed. She stepped outside to join us to pray. Rather then being content with praying outside. We began to testify that it was a blessing for her home. She didn't want to let us inside but again we kept being lovingly persistent. Finally, she agreed. We were led inside to find her husband and 2 kids. We all knelt and prayed. Afterwards the spirit was evidently strong. The family accepted all our invitations-church, baptism, and a return appointment. We testified and taught doctrine and left them with a Book of Mormon to begin reading. Afterwards we talked about what a great miracle that was. We could have easily left the lady with a card when she initially rejected us. However, we were full of faith. We knew that God had sent us to her and we weren't going to stop. Because we were bold and persistent we were able to pray with the entire family and bless the home and create a spiritual experience for the family. I explained that all this happened because of our faith filled words and actions. I am so grateful to have had this experience with her. She is committed to doing all things filled with faith.

All in all, the work moves forward and I love every mintute of it. Have the best week ever.

Love,

Ssiter Hartley 



Tuesday, 30 September 2014

It was to good to last

Our Zone Leaders and a member. We have loved serving in the same ward as the ZL's. They are amazing.

Here is the photo from the 4 Northern Zones for our Special Mission Conference, Sept. 2014





Well transfer information is in... I am being transferred. It still hasn't settled. Sister Aisa and I were very surprised. I am excited though. Sister Aisa and I got along really, really well.  I think I am going to be going down south. They need some excitement down there.... I am finally leaving the Palm Beach Zone... haha

I love proselyting Mondays. They are better known as MIRACLE Monday. Sister Asia and I went out excited and we saw many miracles. We were able to see 2 PMF, Give to 2 new member lessons one was a FHE at a member's home. Not only that but while we were working with these new members we were able to OYM an elect lady who accepted all our invitations. We were on exchanges and utilized our car time well. We passed the time with calling less actives and were able to schedule 2 return appointments. While harvesting we blessed 2 strong families that both accepted return appointments. The miracles were flooding upon us and we are so grateful. It is going to be an amazing transfer.
I hope you all have a good week!
I love you!
Love,
Sister Hartley
Our Sister activity last week! so fun. :D

After we had Fondue.

Look what I get to stare at everywhere.

Harvesting in the rain...

On a fire exchange with the Sisters.

Our dinner eating off the car. You do what you got to do.

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

BIG spiders!!!

We had a wonderful week here in Palm Beach. Sister Aisa and I are still as happy as ever and getting along well. One of our investigators refers to us as a Mary and Martha combination and I couldn't agree more. We click and really compliment each other. We are different but it works. I love it.
Family Home Evening with our Ward Mission Leader.
We saw a miracle this week as all are plans fell through. We saw a woman and contacted her. We began just simply talking with her and transitioned into a harvest approach. She at first refused, but we were persistent and she accepted. At the end she was in tears and claimed that she knew God sent us to her. It was amazing. Sometimes all things must fall through so we can be right where God wants us to be.

This week I was really reminded that no effort is ever wasted. We had lots of opportunities to serve unexpectedly like helping others grocery shop or unload things from their cars etc. I love planting seeds. Interestingly enough, this week we have also been received by a lot of people because they have had positive encounters with missionaries before that have helped them and they have never forgotten. We never know how much good we do.
Our finding efforts are focused on individuals with cars, priesthood holders, and families as this is what the ward is greatly in need of. We know God is preparing these people. We are spiritually creating and we know we will find them.
Everything sounds good at home. It looks beautiful. Here there are so many squirrels, lizards, and BIG spiders. Haven't seen to many snakes thank goodness. The humidity has died down dramatically so it doesn't feel as hot even though it is. I am grateful.
Lots of fun things coming this week. We have a specialized training with President that I am excited for. It is always a revelatory experience. Transfers is next week so I won't be emailing until Tuesday.  Sister Aisa only has one more transfer left so it will be interesting to see what happens. How blessed we are to know that it is all in God's hands.
Have a great week!
Love,
Sister Hartley
                Look what Sister Aisa ate for dinner by her own free will!!! haha I am so proud of her.

This one time both Elder Passey and I Iost in "What are the Odds" and had to eat this nasty stuff! It was so gross!! Sorry for sending the pictures one at a time. It will not let me send multiple.



 This is at our members home. It is a chalk board so she can erease it and change it when ever she wants! Cute eh?!



Getting to bike in the rain all day with Sister Vaioleti on exchanges!! It was an eventful day. I am predicting it now that she will be my next companion! She is amazing.

This past week I got to go on a fire exchange with Sister Porter. It was her birthday and she is a twin!!




Monday, 15 September 2014

A really strong member friend

We had another wonderful week. Here is one of our miracles:

I was on exchanges and literally all of our solid appointments fell through. I was praying for a miracle because I really wanted this dear Sister to experience it. We began to knock and sure enough it was the last door we knocked on. We met a wonderful lady. She recognized us as the Mormon missionaries instantly. She loved the prayer and accepted a Book of Mormon. She asked us where the nearest ward was.... turns out she grew up with a really strong member friend. They have kept in contact all these years. She went to young womans with her as a child and everything. She related how she had always been so impressed with this family. She had only been living in that area for a week and she knew we were sent by God. We followed up the next day and she related how she had taken a picture of the Book of Mormon and sent it to her friend with the caption "Look who knocked on my door last night". They even talked about the chapter we left with her in the Book of Mormon! When we were doing our How To Begin Teaching she expressed that she wanted the genuine happiness that we all had...when we asked her what she needed to do to receive it she replied, "Well I guess I need to be baptized!". She is elect and it is all because she had a great example all these years!!! She herself even related that had it not been for her member friend she would have wanted nothing to do with us. It was great to share this experience with our members yesterday about how there examples really do make all the difference!

We had Zone Training this past week and President came.
Mom this is what we did for the ZL's... we did a sunshine scavenger hunt around the church.. haha they enjoyed it and felt lots of love... they loved the yellow fuzzy socks... we had fun at the dollar store ...you would have been proud.

Matched on Sunday and didn't even plan it.


Yes Mom we are still biking. :-D

Sister Aisa and I are getting along well. We can communicate openly and I am grateful for that. We are learning so much together. We had an amazing day yesterday. We both bottle up stress and yesterday we both realized that there was a lot of stress and things we needed to talk about so we did. We both agreed that when our sisters have problems like this they have us that they can call but when we have problems we have no one to call... then it clicked that there was indeed someone to call! Sister Richardson!!! (Mission President's wife) At first we didn't want to... our pride was preventing us from doing it. Then we realized that this is how our sisters must feel when they know they need to call but don't. We realized that if we want our sisters to do the same thing then we to must do it. So we humbled ourselves and called Sister Richardson. I am so glad that we did!!! It was refreshing and exactly what we needed. We told her what we were going through and what we needed help with. She gave us the council and direction we needed. She was so happy that we trusted her enough to call her. She let us know that that is exactly what she is here for. She was so grateful. We all rejoiced and were edified together... (Sister Steg that was for you!!). God always provides servants to help us. It was a great lesson learned. I am so grateful to be on my mission. I am learning life lessons for eternity. I can't believe how much trust God puts in us. We are so young and have so much responsibility as missionaries/leaders but we are sanctified and purified as we leave ourselves behind and seek the Lord's aid in all that we do. It is the best 18 months to 2 years we could ever do.

A highlight of this week was getting to go on exchange in my old area!!! I got to go back to Delray! I am so grateful. We got to teach one of my recent converts in one of my favorite members homes... I also got to talk to one of my favorite members on the phone. It was such a tender mercy. It is such a blessing to still be in the same zone. I love exchanges. I learn a lot from the Sisters. They are all amazing. Sometimes I think we learn more then they do.
All in all, it was a wonderful week.

This beautiful girl lives so close to the spirit!! Her prayers are so POWERFUL!

Love
Sister Hartley


Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Turns out she is even a minister at her church!

Wow what a week! We saw so many miracles and I am so grateful. I LOVE Sister Aisa!!! We are so unified and I love it. We get along well, which I am grateful for. We have a lot of time in the car so lots of time to talk, laugh, and just enjoy the moment. We only get to be on missions once. We have the best sisters and we love going on exchanges with them. I got to experience my first MLC (mission leadership conference) and it was a treasured experience that I am grateful for. This is undoubtedly God's work. 



Comp Study with the Assistants! These are the hardest working Elders ever!!!!

This one time we were in a trio for the afternoon...



Picture from my first MLC (Mission Leadership Council). All the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders come together to receive training from President and the Assistants. The District Leaders were invited this time as well.

Our area is doing well. We experienced a huge finding miracle this week! Following MLC, we talked together on the way home about what we wanted to apply in our stewardship and area. We felt that we needed to be more persistent with our OYMing. Rather then focusing on giving pass along cards, we determined to seek a harvest prayer at every opportunity. God gave us an immediate situation. We had just followed up with a referral and were heading back to the car when we saw a couple getting out of the car. We approached them, gave them a card, and began to talk with them. Looking tired and complaining, the wife claimed she wanted nothing to do with us but said that we should pray with her husband. She headed up to her apartment expecting us to stay there and pray in the parking lot but we didn't. We testified that it was a blessing for his home. Finally, he agreed and we followed him up to the apartment. Long story short, in the end both the husband and THE WIFE joined us for the prayer and they loved it! We gave them a Book of Mormon, invited them to be baptized, and they agreed to come to church. We didn't once doubt that they would come. They were honest people. On Sunday they both walked in!! Not only that but the wife got up and bore her testimony!!! She started off with, "Well this is the first time I have ever been to a Mormon church. . . " and it went from there. Turns out she is even a minister at her church!                              
Our investigator that bore her testimony on Sunday!

She related how we found her and how impressed she was with our love, boldness, persistence, and obedience. She could tell that we had a purpose for being there. She commented on how we were so full of faith and determined that she just couldn't say no. It was such an incredible testimony. She recognized the light in us. It really hit us that this is what being a FFLM missionary is all about. We are bold. We are loving. We are full of faith. We are persistent. We are challenging and testifying. All-members and non members-will recognize these qualities because we literally are being beams of light for all to see. This is what FFLM is all about.

This experience of having one of our investigators bare there testimony also developed a lot of trust with members of the ward. They were able to here what we do in relation to harvesting from the investigators perspective. They were able to see how hard we work. It was such an incredible experience. We were so grateful to God for allowing us to see such a big miracle! We know many more are in store as we continue to be true FFLM missionaries.
There are twins in our ward!
                              
In effort to greater know the ward and develop the trust of the members, we decided to go to Young Women's. I felt so old! haha they are all SO young. It was an amazing experience though. Sister Aisa and I were able to contribute a lot to the lesson and we could tell the leaders really appreciated us being there. It really impacts the girls to have us there. It made me so grateful for my own young women's leaders and teachers. They have all impacted my life so much. I never thought that I would receive my Endowment at such a young age. However, I was prepared to do so and the young women's program and my leaders played an integral part in that. I am so grateful.
We have another busy week ahead. It will be another amazing one filled with miracles! I love you all!

Love,
Sister Hartley 

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Exchanges really tire me out



Bro. and Sis. Sommerfeldt are back in Canada
That is so weird to see you with the Sommerfeldts!! I sure love them and miss them. I am really happy that you saw them. Happy Birthday Dad! It sounds like you had a great day. Sister Aisa and I had a great week. Together we are both very positive and full of faith and we are trying to instill that in all our dear Sisters. I love Sister Aisa. She is teaching me so much. I love my area as well. We literally have the best zone in the mission and the best zone leaders. They are such extraordinary missionaries and men and I am so grateful to serve along side them. Really we are just loving life and loving being missionaries and servants of the Lord. Travis I am so happy that you are training!! O my both you and Sariah are greeny training! That is so awesome! You'll be a ZL and STL before you know it! Katelyn you look adorable as always in all your pictures. You look so happy and I love it. I am learning wonders about the atonement. It truly strengthens us beyond what we can do. I have never been so tired in my life. Most nights I just drop to my knees, not knowing how I am going to have the energy to do it all again tomorrow but then I begin to pray and I feel Father take over.  physically, spiritually, and emotionally. But I am learning so much and loving every minute of it. Our sisters and investigators are so wonderful and sweet. I love them all. I am so filled with gratitude for all of the many blessings Father has given me. I have no room to ever ever ever complain! I have been given so much. I am so grateful. I hope that you all have a great week!
I love you!
Love,
Sister Hartley
Parcels the Sommerfeldts brought home for me.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

I am very excited/humbled to be serving as an Sister Training Leader




my beautiful Aussi comp


A little taste of Palm Beach for ya... it is pretty humble.




Saying goodbye...hardest thing ever!!!
Well... what a week it has been. I am so excited/overwhelmed for this transfer. Transfer meeting was CRAZY! There were so many changes made. It feels like a completely new mission. President Richardson is making it his mission. He has been here for a while now and has things figured out as to how he wants to do it. I am excited. I about died when they read my name and said my new area and companion! I am now serving with Sister Aisa in an area called Palm Beach. The funny thing is I didn't even leave my zone! haha I have been in the same zone my entire mission so far... (Sister Steg why am I just like you?! haha) Sister Aisa is such a good companion. She is from Australia but not Travis's mission she lives in the Brisbane mission. It was funny she was my STL and we went on an exchange just under 2 weeks ago and had a great time and now I am her companion. I am very excited/humbled to be serving as an Sister Training Leader with her. We look after 7 companionships of Sisters. We go on one full exchange and 2 fire exchanges every week... in other words, we are very very busy. I have never been so tired. It is a good tired though. I figure I only get to serve the Lord in this way once and I need to embrace it and cherish every moment. I love our dear sisters so much. They are amazing. I went on my first exchange this past week and was very humbled. I learned a lot. Most Sisters think the STL's are there to be an example and learn from but in reality the opposite is true. We probably learn more from them then they do from us. As a leader you see lots of things that you don't as a regular missionary. So much goes on. Basically it has taught me that I literally have so much to be grateful for. I have no reason to ever ever complain!!!!! 
The Comp Study with our District leader

Heavenly Father has blessed me so much. I have a new appreciation for the Assistants to the President. Man are they ever amazing and work so so very hard! I enjoy getting to talk to them regularly I learn so much from them. Looking back I can see how God has been preparing me for this my entire mission... especially with Sister Stegelmeier being my trainer. I am so grateful. One thing I love about being a leader is having an awesome companion! You don't have to worry about dis obedient issues or anything like that because we both have to set the tone and be the example. It is nice. We get along really well together and both work very hard. Even though we have only been together for a week we are really unified. We teach very well together. I am so grateful.... I just love her to death. The new area and ward are awesome. The zone leaders serve in our ward to so we get to spend lots of time with them. It is really fun....I think I will stay. :D haha  Anyways I don't have much time.... to be honest letter writing is going to be hard. On PDay's all we want to do is sleep... haha I will do my best. If you don't get a letter just know it is not because I didn't want to, it is because I am losing myself in this great work. Now I not only get to work to bring our investigators closer to Christ, but other sisters as well. I am so excited. I love this work.