Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Week 13 - Kuna 09/02/13

Hello Family!

To celebrate Labor Day I am laboring.....IN KUNA! I got to stay here and Sister Nick was transfered to Emmett. She left early, early, early this morning! I am quite tired to say the least. And I have a new Companion, Sister Stephens! She has only been serving for six weeks so I’ll be finishing her training! So now I am the Senior companion, Which is a TON of responsibility. It's really awesome to know that President Cannon trusts me enough to be the leader of the Kuna area! Not many people get to train after only two transfers! Thankfully, Sister Stephens is so nice and ready to get to work, which is a good thing because we have lot of appointments already scheduled this week! 

Mud volleyball was so much fun! It was a ward party for the Kuna 5th ward, and man was it hilarious!  We told one person that we were planning on playing mud volleyball. We went to change into our non pros (no proselyting clothing) and when we got back we found all of the kids impatiently waiting for us so they could start the game. Word sure travels fast! We gained many new fans that night. Now everyone wants us over for dinner, YAY!  Everyone had such a fun time! I am so glad to be staying here in Kuna. I love the people here SO MUCH!

Another funny story, yesterday at the end of the 4th Ward Sacrament Meeting, a Sister came up to us and asked, "Which one of you is Sister Lindsay Taylor?" And of course I was really surprised because I had no idea who she was or how she knew my first name because it’s not printed on my tag. Anyway, I told her it was me and she said "I'm Sister O'Brien! You went to college with my son Jacob. He told me I had to make sure I found you and said hello!" Jacob was one of Coriannes best friends and he would come over to the apartment all of the time. Isn't that so cool? I feel like I know everyone here! 

I've enjoyed reading the hymns and the scriptures that go with each one. This past Sunday, while going through the hymnbook. I looked in the front of the book and there is a  message from the First Presidency. From the “Music in Our Personal Lives” section it reads, “We encourage you to memorize your favorite hymns and study the scriptures that relate to them." I just thought the whole preface they put in the hymnbook was really cool.  Love me some Hymns!

I love you all so much and hope you are having a good week! You are always in my prayers! 

Lindsay, aka, "Sister Taylor"

P.S. Sorry I don't have any pictures for you this week! Things just got really crazy with transfers and packing and I forgot to put my camera in my bag! So now you will have lots of pictures next week!

A special thanks to the members that sent the following photos of our muddy missionary!

Mud Volleyball with Kuna 5th Ward!
Sister Taylor and Sister Nicholaison

Fun, but gross!

Last Sunday together for Sister Nicholaison and Sister Taylor before transfers

Monday, September 9, 2013

Week 12 - Kuna 08/26/13 and More Kind Word from Kuna

Hello Family!

It’s finally my turn to be the designated driver of our companionship! It's really different driving here and having to share the roads with some of the biggest tractors I’ve ever seen.  Most houses are built right off the roads where cars regularly travel at 50 miles per hour.  I always worry when I see children playing in their front yards so close to the road, yikes!  Despite the challenges of having to share the road with farm equipment, It’s fun to be driving again!  

I definitely think that Blake’s mom will be baptized someday. She’s reading through the Book of Mormon right now, so hopefully she is in a place where the spirit can bear witness to her the truthfulness of the gospel! 

Transfers are this coming week! We find out on Saturday where everyone is going (or staying). On Transfer day, a family in one of the Elder’s areas has the district missionaries over for a big breakfast and together we listen to the calls there. She’s Russian and cooks really good food and tons of it! They are the Huberts and I love them so much! I think that I’m staying and that Sister Nick is leaving, but she thinks the opposite, so who knows! I do have a feeling that I’ll be training, that would be so awesome! I think our area is going to be split because we’ve had so much growth over the past several months. Plus we’re expecting so many new missionaries to join the Nampa mission this transfer, it just makes sense to split what we have now and create several new areas to accommodate the growth.  Exciting stuff!!

This week we got to play mud volleyball with one of our wards! 

Oh and Shari is getting baptized! On the 7th of September! 

I have to go now but I love all of you so much! have a wonderful week!

Sister Lindsay Taylor

Letter dated August 11, 2013

Brother & Sister Taylor & Family,

My name is Dwayne Millward, and I am the Bishop of the Kuna 4th Ward, where your daughter is currently serving with Sister Nicholaison.  Several weeks ago I had asked this wonderful companionship to speak in our ward sacrament meeting.  While your daughter spoke, I felt that I should write to tell you how much we appreciate having her in this area.

Sister Taylor is an absolute delight, she is bright, bubbling with her love of the Savior, she is not overbearing, but works so hard with our ward members in helping them fulfill their responsibilities to be good member missionaries and examples.  How blessed we are to have such a wonderful Sister to serve in our ward.  I just wanted you to know that we appreciate the sacrifice that she and you are making to have her out here serving the Lord, and that her testimony and love of the Savior and the Gospel radiates from her.  You must be very proud of parenting such a beautiful daughter of God.  Thank you for sharing her with us and for teaching her so well.  I hope that my own daughter, who is now 13 years old, will stand as a witness of the Savior so well as your daughter does now.  Every assignment to visit part member, less active, non-member, or even members who are going through particular challenges has always been met with a positive radiant attitude.

For additional insight regarding our ward, we are 354 members with an activity rate of 60%.  Our Young Men and Young Women are stalwarts!  They just had a group Book of Mormon reading challenge where they completed it in 36 hours.  I believe your daughter participated in some of that activity as we had guest speakers and role playing for some of it.  We have recently been challenged by our Stake President to increase our missionary labors to keep your daughter and the other missionaries in this area anxiously engaged.  We held a special fast in August and already I can see the members concentrating their efforts to be more faithful, and of petitioning the Lord to find out who is ready so that they can open their mouths and share with them the good news of the Gospel.

Well, I just hope you realize that we appreciate your daughter choosing to serve, and to do so, so faithfully.  May God support and edify you as you continue to support her.


Bishop Millward

Email dated July 31, 2013

Hi Sister Taylor!

Our family had the sister missionaries over for dinner tonight.  Your daughter is a great missionaries - she's so personable and seems to really enjoy teaching the gospel.  This is the second time we've had her over and we really enjoy her sweet personality!!

Have a great day, and thanks for sharing your daughter with us temporarily!

Sister "B"

A note from home:

We're so thankful to have been blessed with such an endearing daughter who has always been a steadfast example in our home.  Lindsay is a spiritual giant in a kind and modest way, so much so, that she naturally draws others near.  The Lord has called her to serve in areas that will bless her life as much as the lives of those she has the opportunity to serve.  As her parents we take comfort in knowing such wonderful members and investigators are caring for her while she is away from home.  

Week 11 - Kuna 08/19/13 and Kinds Words from Kuna


Sister Taylor is doing pretty good here in Kuna, Idaho. We aren't really being affected by the fires, but it does get pretty smokey sometimes depending on which way the wind blows. I've heard that in Boise the smoke is so bad it's difficult to see any distance at all and the air quality is horrible! It’s still pretty hot out here and unfortunately, sweat is just a part of every outfit now! 

Zone conference was held in Nampa last Tuesday. There was still an hour and a half left in the meeting when President Cannon asked someone to say the closing prayer. Needless to say, we were all very confused because our meetings never end early, in fact they always seem to run long.  After the closing prayer was offered, President Cannons gets back up and says "Alright everyone, we have a surprise for you. We’re going to the movies!" How awesome is that? We hustled to our cars and headed over to the theater and saw Ephraim’s Rescue. It was a very good movie, and I highly recommend it for the whole family! 

Then on Saturday, we had our baptism for Blake! It was absolutely wonderful!  The room was packed with 101 people, which included three families we’ve been teaching. It was so awesome! Blake’s football coach gave a talk on baptism and it was absolutely incredible. The spirit was there so strongly felt. His mom, who isn't a member of the church, came up to us afterwards and gave us each a big hug and said, "Thank you so much. This was an incredible thing to witness." The confirmation was also pretty amazing too.  I hope you get to meet Blake someday! I want to bring my whole family back so we can go on a mission tour and meet all of these wonderful people!

 I feel so blessed to be serving here. I feel so much love for each person we visit. I have definitely felt like I've been gaining the trust of the members. And that is so incredibly important. We went from receiving maybe one referral a week, to recieving 7 or 8 on average. The members really help the work progress so much. 

Thanks for supporting me so I can do this great work.  I love you all.

Sister Lindsay Taylor

Water temperature... check! 

Blake (second from left), excited to enter the waters of baptism!

Kind Words From Kuna;

We are so thankful to the members and investigators for sending us kinds words and photos of our Sister Taylor.

This photo was sent by, Shari, with a note telling us that they had just set her baptism date for Saturday, September 7th.  Shari also said, "We are enjoying having your daughter as our missionary, thank you for allowing her to bless our lives.   

Sister Taylor and Sister Nickolaison

Week 10 - Kuna 08/12/13


Guess what? I saw Corianne and Regan yesterday! It was so cool! I was in the chapel before sacrament meeting talking to one of our investigators, and she suddenly says, "There are two young ladies behind you that look like they’re dying to talk to you." So I turn around, and there stands Corianne and Reagan! It was so awesome to see them! We had such a fun little reunion. They are both just as beautiful and fun as ever. We got to chat a little after church and catch up on the latest happenings in Provo. Reagan and Caitie (my roommate from Glenwood) might even have found "the one"! Guess we’ll see how many wedding invitations I get in the mail over next few months. 

I didn't get to take any pictures this week, but I did take a couple of videos! I'll try and send them to you, but a lot of times it says the file is too big to send. We shall see!

We received an extra special gift box this week that was filled with an entire gardens worth of vegetables! There was zucchini, cucumbers, sweet corn, acorn squash, peas, carrots, tomatoes, you name it. There were also fresh eggs! Fresh eggs taste so much better than store bought eggs. I actually eat them for breakfast now, without cheese or anything! Guess what else I love with a passion now? TOMATOES! I eat them with everything now! I bet you never thought that would happen huh?   People treat us so well here, I love it! One investigator we visited sent us home with a bunch of vegetables from his garden and said "And next time bring your husbands so they can pick out what they like!" Hmmmmm I have a feeling we have some explaining to do....

Our baptism with Blake is this Saturday. I'm so excited! We met with his Mom last Monday, and that was definitely an experience. She is a staunch Christian and wanted to know what Blake had been taught before he gets baptized. She kept questioning us and the situation was quickly going in the direction of Bible bashing. It was a really scary experience because we are told specifically not to get involved with that. Then, Blake suddenly turns to his mom and says "Mom, I'm not going to sit here and listen to you try and tear this religion down. I know this church is true, and I am going to get baptized. And you can’t say that it’s not true until you read the Book of Mormon yourself and pray about it." WOW! What an incredible experience! I was so overjoyed to hear him say that! Hearing someone you've been teaching bear testimony of the gospel is one of the most powerful experiences you will ever have! Ever since then, she has been reading the Book of Mormon for herself and has been much more open while asking questions and receiving answers. How cool is that?
We also have four more baptisms during in the month of August.
Everything has just been so great! I love it here, and I love every single person I come in contact with! 

On Saturday I ate raw rhubarb for the first time. It tasted really good and sour, but my stomach HATED me the next day and I had the worst acid reflux in the world! Needless to say, I won't be eating raw rhubarb again!  

You are all such a wonderful example to me. Have a wonderful week!

Sister Lindsay Taylor

Week 9 - Kuna 08/05/13

Dear Family,

Things have been going pretty good here! We went to Kuna Days this past week. It's an annual celebration of the creation of Kuna. It was really fun! Plus it was nice to eat something different! We had this yummy indian fry bread sandwich and it was free because the owners of the booth love missionaries. :) We have been making so much progress with our investigators! We have 15 now! Blake is still right on track to be baptized on the 17th. He is so excited and has been inviting absolutely everyone he knows to come. We will be meeting with his mom tonight for the first time too. I can't wait! 

Last P-day we went hiking, I'll be including some pictures of that! I was wearing my girls camp shirt and an Elder I didn't know that was with us said, "Ashburn, where is that?" and I told him Virginia and he goes "No way! I'm from Oakton!" His name is Elder Hinnegar and we got to talking and turns out we were in the same CTR class with our teacher who gave out homework! Small world huh? We took a picture together that I'm including with the e-mail. You can tell me if you recognize him! 

Nothing crazy has happened this week! We’re teaching a lot of little kids, and it's been really fun! Also the Callahans, the people we live with, have had all of their family over this week so I've been loving the time we have spent with those kids too. Last night I missed Kyle A LOT. It was really hard because I realized the next time I see him he will be 10 years old. Don't grow up too fast on me buddy! 

One of my favorite scripture stories this week is from Nephi. It's the story of when Nephi broke his bow and his family became angry because they were so hungry. Even his father Lehi began to murmur against God. But Nephi humbled himself and knew exactly what he needed to do. He got down on his knees and prayed to his Heavenly Father to know how to get food for his family. This is one of the most known stories in all of the Book of Mormon. Many children have heard it in primary, and we use it to teach principles all the time! The story is in 1 Nephi chapter 16 and I like verse 29 where it says:

"And there was also written upon them a new writing, which was plain to be read, which did give us understanding concerning the ways of the Lord; and it was written and changed from time to time, according to the faith and diligence which we gave unto it. And thus we see that by small means the Lord can bring about great things."

If you really think about it, this was such a small thing that happened. All Nephi did was break his bow, and the simple act of praying changed the hearts of his whole family. There are so many stories in the scriptures about building boats, burning bushes, and seeing God in the flesh, and those are all very powerful experiences. But sometimes, it’s those little moments where we show our love and devotion to God by going to Him for help that changes our lives forever. So remember, nothing goes unnoticed. Everything you do, whether big or small, our Heavenly Father notices and it so proud of us.

I hope you all have a wonderful week, and know that I love you all so so so much!

Sister Lindsay Taylor

Half our District Celebrating Kuna Days!

Elder Hinnegar (From Oakton, VA) and Sister Lindsay Taylor

Elder Zuniga and Elder Tuia with the District Mascot, Lorenzo!

P-day Hike with the District

Week 8 - Kuna 07/29/13

Hello Family!

We got four new investigators this week! Isn't that awesome? It's so nice to be able to teach formal lessons and share spiritual thoughts with our member families in between our lesson appointments. I love the people we come in contact with and teach, but it's really exciting to be a part of someones path to baptism. 

We did actually get to see Sister Nicks brother two times! The first time she saw him she gave him a big hug. There was an audible gasp in the room from all of the elders, but we assured them it was fine since they were brother and sister. It was really nice for her to be able to see him! He’s serving in Caldwell which is only about 20 or 30 minutes from us. So she should get to see him pretty often!

My friend, Cody Lords, who lives in one of the wards we serve, is having his wedding reception here in Kuna. We were invited because they’re expecting several non-members to attend that have asked questions about the church. I also think they invited us because they knew that my roommates would be there and that I'd really enjoy seeing them. They are so nice! 

The weather here has been mostly in the upper 90s/100s. Its really not too bad since there is no humidity but everyone here complains about it. This coming week is supposed to be in the lower 90s/upper 80s so we’re all pretty excited about that!

I love how everyone grows their own food here! People are always giving us fresh eggs, milk, potatoes, carrots, peas, you name it! Lots of people grow grapes here too. So closer to the end of August, we have 3 or 4 families who’ve told us to come pick/eat grapes to our hearts content. I love it here! 
Our MTC event went pretty well! We didn't have a ton of people show up, probably about 80 or 90, but our ward mission leaders and the elders did an amazing job at teaching their topics. President and Sister Cannon both came to our activity as well, and they said they were very impressed. I'm glad it turned out so well, and I'm also glad it’s over! It was a big event that caused a lot of stress, althogugh totally worth it. P-day couldn't come soon enough, whew! I didn't get to take any pictures because we were running from class to class and showing people who were late to their classes. 

I don't have time to write down a spiritual thought, but I will share a scripture I came across on Sunday. It's in Proverbs 18:10 and it reads:

"The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe."

I know that if we are ever going through trials or hard times, if we turn to our Savior, we will get the support and safety we need. I love this gospel so much! I gain a greater understand of the principles every time I have to opportunity to teach them. 

I love you all so much!


Week 7 - Kuna 07/22/13


Everything is going really great! This week has been especially stressful though. We’re trying to get everything finalized for our member MTC day and it’s been crazy! It seems almost impossible that everything will fall in place but I know it'll all work out. Especially since my companion has made it clear that the spirit has made it known to her many times that this needs to happen no matter how hard it gets! Health-wise, we are both doing really well. 

So Sister Nick has a brother who is going to Curriturba Brazil, and has been in the Provo MTC these past few weeks. As you know, visas just aren’t coming in so many missionaries are being reassigned temporarily in the U.S.   Salt Lake called our mission president, President Cannon, and said "Okay, we have 60 visa waiters, how many can you take?" President Cannon replied, "We have room for one elder." Guess which elder gets sent to our mission? SISTER NICKS BROTHER! So he will be coming in around noon tomorrow. How cool is that? Sister Nick is really excited. 

Alright I'll go ahead and answer your questions really quick:

  • We drive a 2012 Gold Toyota Corolla. The senior companion is always the designated driver unless there is a problem that prevents that. So right now Sister Nick is the designated driver! I probably won't be driving for a while. 
  • Our morning schedule goes as such:
6:25 Wake up/say morning personal prayer/say companionship prayer
6:30 Exercise
7:00 Get ready and eat breakfast
8:00 Personal study
9:00 Companionship study
10:00 12 week new missionary training
11:00 Usually go out an proselyte at this time and then take an hour for lunch at 12:00 but our district gets together for lunch every day at 11 for an hour and then we all go out proselyting. We get free sno cones at a local sno cone shack near one of our church buildings so we go there a couple times a week! I get the smallest size but I only ever eat about half. It melts faster than I can eat it!

*The weather really hasn't been to bad here! It's mostly in the 100's but since theres no humidity it’s more than bearable! 

I went on exchanges for the first time this week! The Sister Training Leader (kind of the zone leader for sisters) came from Nampa to visit with Sister Nick and I for part of the day,  then Sister Nick went to Nampa and I spent the rest of the day with Sister Thomas. We had a lot of fun!  Although miles wise I didn't do so well. I used up A LOT of our monthly allotted miles. Oops! We did get alot of work done though! We went and visited a farmer who was a former investigator and he taught us about farming and let us pull the tops off the Bull Row of his corn! I'm a real farmer now! He said he wasn't interested in the gospel but we convinced him to let us come back so we could do service and he could teach us more about the life of a farmer! We then visited another less-active member who got really excited to see us and told us all about his mission. He served in Taiwan and tried to teach us a bit of mandarin!  Sadly, I can’t remember any of it. 

I can't believe my first transfer is already over! It makes me sad to think that my time here on the mission is slowly getting shorter and shorter. I don't think I'll ever be ready to leave! 
We worked hard giving service to several people and families this week - and a lot of dropping in on families. We’re really good at dropping in! We had some great dinners this week and we were invited to several BBQ’s and breakfasts as a district. Our district sincerely love each other and the members in our collective areas love our district, so they love having us all together! It’s fun!

My roommates are coming up to visit this weekend so I will get to see them in church this Sunday! That will be a really nice treat. 

 As missionaries we get to do a lot of service which I LOVE. Service is one of the greatest ways to find people and help them trust us! And, of course, our district helps each other out with the different service activities we have. Sometimes we end up spending the entire day doing service by supporting each others service projects. We meet so many amazing people that way!

I haven't received any mail this week. But that may be because our mailbox is completely smashed. Some guy who came to clean the ducts in the house we live in backed into the mailbox.  I ordered more missionary tags for myself and I’ll be picking them up at the mission office today so I’ll check there to see if I have any mail! 

I found a hymn that I absolutely love this week! Its titled,  Brightly Beams Our Fathers Mercy.

It’s a men's chorus song in the back of the hymn book.

1. Brightly beams our Fathers mercy
From his lighthouse evermore,
But to us he gives the keeping
Of the lights along the shore.
Let the lower lights be burning;
Send a gleam across the wave.
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman
You may rescue, you may save.

2. Dark the night of sin has settled;
Loud the angry billows roar.
Eager eyes are watching, longing,
For the light along the shore.
Let the lower light be burning;
Send a gleam across the wave.
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman
You may rescue, you may save.

3. Trim your feeble lamp, my brother;
Some poor sailor, tempest tossed,
Trying now to make the harbor,
In the darkness may be lost.
Let the lower light be burning;
Send a gleam across the wave.
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman
You may rescue, you may save. 

One of the scriptures that go with it is found in 1 John 2:10 which reads:
"He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him."

Having love for those around you can bring about so many miracles. If we want to be true followers of Christ, we have to have love for everyone!  I know that if I didn't have love for the people I teach, it would be impossible to teach them the lessons and help them come closer to Christ. I wouldn't be an effective missionary and I wouldn't be able to fulfill my missionary purpose. One of the best ways to share the gospel is through loving and serving one another. Not only will people see that love and that light that the gospel gives us, but we will find so much joy in helping others. The Lord always answers prayers, and, more often than not, he answers those prayers through other people. So always strive to be in a place spiritually so that you can be an answer to someone else's prayers. 

I love this gospel so much! It brings me so much joy. I am so grateful for the knowledge that I’ll be with my family forever. It always makes me so happy to hear the wonderful things you are doing to strengthen others and to strengthen the family. The family is so sacred, and I am so grateful be a part of the best family ever!  I love you so much, and I hope that you have a wonderful week. Stay safe!

Sister Lindsay Taylor

Four year old "L" and I - she's such a spitfire!

"L" drew me a picture of all the people she wants me to teach in her neighborhood.

Week 6 - Kuna 07/15/13

Hello Family,

I'm quite well and full of energy, thankfully.  My companion is a-okay now, but I came down with a stomach bug and was sick all day Monday and through the night.  Tuesday morning came and I was exhausted and over the nausea, thank goodness.  We are both fit as fiddles now.  I was so glad to get back to missionary work and out of our room, woo hoo!

To answer some of your questions:

*The weather has actually been really nice out here!  It's only been in the 90's, which may seem like it'd be hot but without the humidity it's wonderful!

*President assigns a "designated driver" and she is the only one allowed to drive until he decides to change it.

*We each receive an individual debit card that's managed by someone the mission affairs office in SLC. 

*I am sleeping very well.

*My favorite meal was actually one we had at my friend Cody Lords.  He used to hang out at my apartment at BYU all the time.  His family made us hamburgers, baked beans, fruit, and chips.  It was delicious!

I'm glad you have the missionaries over often.  Missionaries love to have fun and connect with the families in the wards they serve.  It's so nice being able to go over to a members house and have a fun conversation and close with a spiritual thought and family prayer before we leave.  It's especially nice to come home at the end of the day and have letters waiting for me in the mailbox.  Neither Sister Nick or I receive many letters.  I would love to have letters in my mailbox more often, hint, hint.  They really help keep me going.

The people we went to visit last week and asked us to come back have been so much fun to work with.  We ended up teaching the investigator along with five other of his relatives.  They were all boys between the ages of 10 and 25.  We gave each one of them their own copy of the Book of Mormon, which we keep in the trunk of our car, then closed the trunk and said our goodbyes.  We went to get into the car, when Sister Nick realized she didn't have the keys and quickly remembered she had left the keys on the floor of the trunk next to our box of Book of Mormons.  Oops!  Luckily we had a member of the ward with us for the lesson and they were able to drive us home.  Fun times.

One last thing before I sign off..... I got my first baptismal date!!!  So exciting!!!  It's scheduled for August 17th.  I'll tell you more about it in my next letter home.  I love you all so much, and remember to always be in a position where the spirit can be with you!


Sister Lindsay Taylor

A beautiful Kuna Sunset

Believe it or not, we see Peacocks roaming the streets of Kuna all the time

Sister Nick and I

A double rainbow!

Sister Nick and I with some of the Elders in our District