Wednesday, 28 January 2015

We can NEVER judge anyone!

It has been a refining week, probably the most refining week yet. I have learned so much.

I love the words of hymn 220 "Who am I to judge another. . . In the quiet heart is hidden sorrow that they eye can't see." I know that those words are true. We can NEVER judge anyone! We never know what anyone is suffering with. I have learned that so much this week. I love my dear companions so much. This trio has been so inspired. We are all learning and growing together. I have never been more tired, stressed, and felt more helpless then I do now... God knows how to give me mountains: solo STL with 5 companionships, 2 areas, and being in a trio with a new missionary and one working through some very hard personal matters. Add on to that finding and teaching investigators and helping them progress. Not to mention taking care of the Recent converts and strengthening the branch. I can't even begin to count the number of times I have fallen to my knees not knowing what else to do. I am so grateful for the Priesthood. I asked my District leader for a blessing which he gratefully did and boy was it inspired. He promised that I would be blessed with the knowledge I needed to do the things the Lord wanted me to. That was all I needed to here. So many of these situations I have never encountered before. I am grateful to know of the trust the Lord puts in his servants and that he qualifies everyone according to there faith. I have never felt the enabling power of the atonement more stronger then I do now. I have never felt the Lord helping me so much then I do now. I know that I am not in this alone. He is there to help me every step of the way.

We had interviews with President this week as well. I always love talking to President, I cherish each time we get to talk. He is so different then President Anderson. With President Richardson you can get all sorts of transfer secrets out of him... haha He gave me a little preview of what next transfer will hold. I am so excited!!! God answers all of my prayers.

I love you all! Have a great week.


Sister Hartley

District Activity last PDAY. There is a park with mountain biking trails... us missionaries just can't get enough of our bikes.

Our mission is now 1/3 bigger!

After Jayson's baptism... Jayson, Karla (member that contacted him on the bus), Sister Coates on face time a

This week brought so much change for the mission. The Fort Meyers zone (formally in the Tampa mission) has been added to ours. Our mission is now 1/3 bigger! I can't believe all that has changed since I first got here. It is such a different mission. It is true that the only constant in life is change. I'm grateful to be an active participant in all of it.

I love being in a trio! Never a dull moment and when we all teach together in unity there is so much power. People can't help but listen and respond. I am grateful to serve with these dear Sisters. We worked so very hard this week and are grateful to see the fruit. The Sisters faith in this area has grown dramatically. There has been no one to teach for a while . . . there is no such thing as a hard area. It all depends on our faith... The Sisters and I have really witnessed this as we are now teaching an elect family of 5 that came to church on Sunday. Miracles are happening and we are building up a teaching pool. Sister Anderson is still in her training so it so fun to see her get so excited at every little thing that happens. "This is what missionary work is supposed to be like" she'll often say. It's cute. Being around her makes me realize how old I am in the mission! I'm trying to help her get out of her comfort zone. We contact people and we just stand there until she talks.. her confidence is growing and I am grateful. It has been a wonderful adventure here in Pines. I am excited to see what the next 2 weeks brings. It has been busy going on exchanges and managing there area and mine... but the Law of compensation is real and the Lord is blessing us.

My testimony continues to deepen everyday. This week I took some time to study Jacob 5 and it really stood out to me how we are to labor WITH the Lord! We are in this together. I love the definition of labor "work hard, move or do with difficulty, work, toil, slave, struggle, exert yourself". It truly is no minimal task. Laboring with the Lord is exhausting, but the growth we experience is to much to express. I am so grateful to be here.

Jayson was baptized this week! We even got Sister Coates on facetime so she could see it! It was such a fun day. Jayson is amazing and I am so grateful for the opportunity to know him and be apart of his conversion. Amazing things are happening in the Nova branch. I am so grateful to be serving in YSA.

I hope that you all have a wonderful week!


Sister Hartley

Elder Zwick Zone conference.. Elder Thomas from Glenwood is also in the picture.

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

The Trio!!Expect great things

Sebastian's baptism...

Driving to Conference with Elder Zwick

What an incredible week it has been!! I will miss my dear companion Sister Coates so much! President and Sister Richardson and I took her to the airport this morning so she can go and receive further treatment on her back. I am now in a trio with Sister's Matheson and Anderson. I am so excited to be here... I know that this is exactly where I need to be. It is going to be an eventful rest of the transfer because we will be covering both their area, and mine, and I will still be going on exchanges so it will be busy but I am excited.

We were so blessed to have Elder Zwick in the mission this past week. We had MLC with him on Wednesday and it was a treasured experience. Katelyn he was so excited when I mentioned where you were serving. He and his there really is no words to describe them. There is such power when you are in the presence of someone who has literally given there whole life to the Lord. The power and spirit they emulate is simply amazing. After MLC, Sister Coates and I got to be 2 of the 6 blessed missionaries that were interviewed by him. He asked us several questions and then we could ask him anything we wanted. It was revelatory. I am so grateful for the opportunity. We had additional conferences with him Wednesday night, and Friday. He taught us many things... one of the themes was the Danger of Complacency...we can never be comfortable with where we are at... He shared many other things as well. It was undoubtedly what we all needed to here.

 The law of compensation is real...between all the meetings, exchanges, and Sister Coates being in so much pain (so much sitting is really hard for her) we had limited time in our area... However, We were able to get done just what we needed to. We were able to see Sebastian everyday and he was baptized yesterday and will be confirmed this coming week!!! His baptism was so special.. He has changed so much.. .afterwards he was so overcome with emotion that he just cried. I had never seen break down so much before. He has been through so much in his life and he is only 20 years old. He is so happy to be starting on this new path.

I have learned so much the past few transfers. I have learned so much patience (Sister Steg you would be so proud! I still say "We are experiencing plenty of time" just like you taught me :D) I have learned more fully that when we do our part the Lord ALWAYS does his. However, it often isn't in the same time frame that we may think. I honestly can't even begin to describe all the emotions I feel as I think back and look forward at what is ahead. Mostly I am filled with gratitude for all that I am learning and how much more refined I am becoming. The Lord is shaping me one experience at a time. I pray I will continually strive for humility so that he can keep giving me what I need. I was grateful for the opportunity talk to President this morning. Just me and him and Sister Richardson... what a blessing. President told me how much he trusts me and that he puts me where he knows no one else can go and knows I will "Get it done". I am so grateful for his trust because I know it means the Lord trusts me and that is the most important thing. I pray to always live worthy of that trust. Thank you so much for everything.


Sister Hartley

 The TRIO!! Expect great things.

Teaching Sebastian...

Happy New Year 2015

How we spent the New Year.. we watched the District in the Loft... haha 

PDay activities

Sister Coates and I have had a very busy week. I am so grateful that it is Monday. Sometimes I look back in my planner and I just can't believe all that happens in a week. This week is going to be even busier.. I am very excited for it... Elder Zwick is coming to tour the mission. We are having MLC with him on Wednesday. He wants to interview 6 missionaries and Sister Coates and I are 2 of them!! We are excited. Wednesday night he is having a meeting with all stake presidents and ward councils that all full time missionaries go to as well... Friday we are having our zone conference with him and Sister Coates and I get to give a training at it. We are both so grateful for all the opportunities we have this week. It is such a blessing. It will be so busy with all of that, exchanges, and most importantly those we are teaching. It will be crazy but I wouldn't have it any other way. 

Mom Happy Birthday this week!!! I hope that it is the best one yet. 

We had an experience where the Lord's hand was undoubtedly manifested. Recently, a member had posted a picture on facebook of the branch. One of our investigators that was at church that day was tagged in it. One of his friends saw it and commented "This looks like a good group of people, how can I join this church?" His number and information was passed along to us. He came to church on Sunday and we have been teaching him everyday. Our first lesson with him was one I will never forget. He told us that he didn't know if God existed and loved him. He felt lost, hopeless, and helpless. We asked him, "Do you want to know if God is real and if he loves you?" He lowered his head and starred at the ground, "Yes I really do." We told him the way to do that was to pray. After teaching him how, we invited him to pray and ask specifically if God was there and if he loved him." He slowly folded his arms and bowed his head and proceeded to give the most sincere prayer I have ever heard. The spirit was tangible. After the prayer, I opened my eyes just in time to see him slowly wipe the tears away from his own. After a inspired spiritual pause we asked, "Do you believe that God is your father and that he loves you?" He nodded. "How do you know that?" He replied, "Because of the peace that has entered in my heart." It was an incredible faith promoting experience for all of us. 

I am so grateful to be here and see the Lord's hand each and everyday. 

I hope that you all have a great week. Don't freeze to death up there eh? Sister Coates brother is in the Edmonton mission and he told her that they haven't been able to do much lately because of all the storms... he is way up North. It is sunny as can be here. I will try to send some of it your way. 


Sister Hartley 
One of our Members work's at a Sushi place. It was so good. 

Christmas phone call were the best.

Christmas in Florida

It was an incredible week. It was so good to talk to you Dad, Mom, Chris and Echo and JETT!! I am so grateful. 

Sister Coates and I have learned many lessons this week it is hard to even know where to start. It is hard to sum up all that we experience and feel as full time servants of the Lord. We truly are doing his work, the exact thing that he did while here upon the earth. The work continues. That being said, we are truly going where he went, feeling what he felt, and learning what I am sure he already knew. The things we see, the emotions we feel, it is so hard to describe unless you experience it firsthand. I am so grateful for every moment as an authorized representative of Christ.  

A great lesson I learned this week was the outpouring blessings of continual obedience and faith. We have a member in our ward who is great for referrals. She takes the bus everywhere and talks to everyone! Recently she was talking to someone about reading and she mentioned how much she loves the Book of Mormon and asked if he had ever heard of it. He replied, "Yes I love that book! I have been trying to figure out how to be apart of the church." She gave us his phone number and we immediately set up an appointment. It turns out that he was street contacted by missionaries in northern Florida. They gave him a Book of Mormon and Resto pamphlet. He is in Alma 42!!! Because he has been reading the Book of Mormon, his faith in Christ is high. He is progressing fast and keeps every commitment. He readily agreed to keep the Word of Wisdom and Law of Chastity. In essence, he is the very definition of elect. We rode the bus to church with him yesterday and he made himself a part of the  branch and participated in Gospel principles. Sacrament meeting was all about missionary work. They had a recently returned missionary speak and one about ready to depart. He is only 20 so it really instilled in him a desire to serve a mission. He is ready for baptism. He will be such a great addition to the branch. As a companionship we are overwhelmed with gratitude for such a miracle. It was literally nothing we did to find him. It was all in God's hand that he was led to us. We know this miracle came because of the continued obedience and faith throughout our entire missions. We are so grateful. I am so grateful for those missionaries that contacted him. We truly never know the seeds that we plant. 

I love you all! Have a great week. 


Sister Hartley

Look what we knocked into!! He has been hunting all over the world!! His house had every animal you could think of! 

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

I can continue to learn a little more Spanish.

Christmas...and my new companion Hermana Coates 

Merry Christmas everyone!! I am all settled in to my new area. Sister Stegelmeier you will be so happy... I am finally in the Ft Laud Zone!!!!! Be excited. haha Don't worry people here still remember you. :) I am in another YSA branch. My new companion is AMAZING!! Hermana Coates from Layton Utah. She is a spanish missionary so hopefully I can continue to learn a little more spanish. She is the best listener ever and has so much charity for everyone!!! We are going to have a great transfer. I don't know very many of the Sisters in our Sisterhood so I am excited to get to know all of them as well. I got to speak yesterday in the branch so that was a good way to get to know everyone. We only have an average attendance of 20 so there is lots of work to be done. Everyone always loves to here that I am from Canada. Most people have no idea about Canada so it can be entertaining at times. Sister Coates brother is on a mission in Edmonton right now to. Here are two of the many miracles that we saw this week:

               We had a great miracle this week. A few weeks ago the Sisters received a referral that they were unable to contact. However, on Saturday we got a phone call from him! "Sisters, When is the baptism? I want to do it! I can't stop thinking about it! What do I need to do?" We told him that in order to be baptized he would first need to come to church tomorrow. He readily agreed. Yesterday we got a phone call from him because he was lost trying to get to church he said, "I just dropped my friend off at church and now I am coming to your church." We explained again the directions and he replied, "Wait a minute, that is the same church that I dropped my friend off at!" Come to find out his friend and 2 of his sisters are members!!!! God is a God of miracles. He had no idea and neither did we. God arranged everything beautifully. He is so excited to be baptized. The good Lord knows his sheep. 

              This week we also had our faith grow in selfless finding. The Zone Leaders have consistently been praying to find us YSA and we have been praying to find them a family. They called us on Thursday with an amazing referral and then the next day we set out to harvest and found them an Haitian family...come to find out the Elders were praying specifically for a Haitian family!!! Wow. When we are faithful and selfless the Lord will bless us. 

I am so grateful to be a missionary. Especially at this Christmas season. The Lord's work really is the greatest. I can't believe that it is Christmas again... it seems like yesterday Sister Steg and I were having Christmas together.. I look around the mission and truly so many of the people I know have all finished and returned home... It still blows my mind that I really am one of the oldest now. I am working my hardest and enjoying every moment because it goes by to fast.

 I love you all!! Merry Christmas, 

Sister Hartley