When we finally landed in Ohio the amazing President and Sister Daines were waiting for us at the bottom of the escalator, taking pictures and waiting to shake our hands. I was so excited to meet them! They are so sweet and honestly such a fun couple. But we were only with them long enough to shake hands, take a picture and load up our luggage. The Assistants to the President then drove all of us to the Ohio State Institute building where we met some other missionaries who had already been serving. Now here's the fun part. We were each paired up with one of those experienced missionaries, given a Book of Mormon and sent out contacting on campus! I was paired with Sister Gruver who is so cool! OSU is actually where she serves so it was neat to be with someone already comfortable in that setting, and she made sure I got comfortable real quick too. I was scared out of my mind, but she had me talk to people. A lot of people. I was so nervous at first because the first people we talked to wouldn't even give us a sideways glance or even two words. As we were walking away she told me those were the rudest people she had ever talked to on campus, and I let out a huge sigh of relief that it wasn't the norm. Talking to people and bearing my testimony to strangers started to come more easily and I even placed the Book of Mormon I was given! I love being a missionary!
We spent that night at the mission home where the Daines had prepared a wonderful meal for us. We had a small testimony meeting where each of the new missionaries shared an experience and bore our testimony of Christ. The spirit was so strong and there was such a great sense of unity among our small group. I was sad we would all be going our separate ways but I was more than anxious to meet my new companion!
The next morning we were off! We listened to so many presentations and orientations, it made me even more anxious. Sister Hansen was laughing at me all day about how I could barely hold in my excitement. It was very obvious apparently. We did some more activities and role played with the missionaries that could potentially be our trainers. I had a very strong feeling that my companion would be one of the sisters I had interacted with that morning, which included Sister Gruver, who I was with the night before, Sister McClelland, and Sister Hall. Well it was finally time to meet our trainers! Sister Hall's name was called and as she stands up to go to the front President Daines told her she didn't have to go anywhere because she was already by her companion. I couldn't tell if she was standing behind me or Sister Hansen. President Daines looked at me and said "Yes, Sister Lynch, she's yours." I was so excited! I sprung out of my seat, not gracefully, and gave her the biggest hug ever. Sister Hall is amazing! She has been on her mission for three months, and actually just finished being trained herself about a week ago. She loves the work and is obedient, which is honestly all I wanted, but she is also so much fun and reminds me to relax.
I am serving in the Hilliard ward, which is amazing. I got to meet them all yesterday. I am horrible with names and I met so many people, it is going to take me a while. But I had this really cool feeling all day of not knowing anyone, yet everything feeling so familiar and like I was home. It still amazes me that no matter where you go, the gospel is the same. It strengthens my testimony of how true this church really is and of it's inspired organization. We are in a car sharing area, so this week the Elders in our ward had the car. Honestly, being on bikes is so much fun. Except for when we have to carry them up the stairs in our apartment or when it's freezing cold, and the hard snow is hitting your face. I just laugh because the weather has been different everyday I have been here, everyone keeps saying that is normal Ohio though.
We are teaching so many people! I didn't realize how full a day could be until my mission. We actually have two investigators on date for baptism! One of them accepted the invitation to be baptized the first night I was here. Crazy stuff. But we have a handful of progressing investigators and when we are not teaching lessons we are street contacting or reaching out to people who have been contacted before. I love being a missionary! Sister Hall is giving me many opportunities to get over my anxiety about talking to people. She has seen a definite change in me since I first arrived which makes me so happy. I owe that to a lot of prayer and faith that Heavenly Father will give me the strength to face those fears. There is no doubt that I have improved and I know that God answers prayers if we have the willingness to act on the answers we receive.
I love you all.