While on my mission I can be contacted at ashley.lynch@myldsmail.net

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Monday, March 20, 2017

If We Are Never Ucomfortable We Will Never Grow

What a week! I have made a goal for myself lately to study more specifically and find at least one thing a day for one of our investigators. Sister Hall has been really good about checking in with me to see if I have done it and it has amazed me how much we use my insights and the things I have studied for them in our lessons. It is truly a witness to me that I am needed here and that what I have to say can benefit others.

We have one investigator in particular that I have really been able to connect with. Allie is on my mind a lot, it is easy for me to understand where she is coming from on a lot of things because we think very similarly. I think it is amazing how the Lord not only prepares people to receive his message, but how he is able to prepare us to give it. There are countless times when I have been able to explain things a certain way or been able to help her because of my own trials and struggles that I have gone through. Never be afraid to share your experiences and how they have strengthened your testimony because you never know just how much it can touch another person.

Allie is such a great missionary too! She tells everyone about what we teach her and now her little friend Brittany is meeting with us as well. Allie is a person she looks up to so she is very interested and excited by everything she is learning. She honestly amazes me. Her faith in Jesus Christ is so strong for being so young and I am so excited to help her continue to build that faith. And she loves the youth group! We are so excited for her!
Allie also introduced us to her neighbor as well. We had an appointment but they cancelled sadly. Their backup in our plans was a woman we had been trying to see for a very long time and she is always so busy. This time, she allowed us to come in and we were able to teach her whole family about the Restoration! It was truly a blessing in disguise.

We received a referral this week and it was so exciting! His name is Will and he ordered a Bible through the church website and said he would like a Book of Mormon as well. So we brought it over as soon as possible and he was so nice! We were able to teach him the message of the Restoration! At the end he took off his hat and let out a sigh. We were both very worried, but he was actually crying. He was so touched by the fact that the church wouldn't just send him the books, but that they insisted on missionaries bringing them to his home so there could be that interaction and we could share that message with him. He was very exited to set up a time for us to come back. I love when we have the opportunity to meet people who have been prepared by the Lord to hear his message!

Something truly amazing happened this week. I have no doubt that my mission president and his wife are inspired. We had interviews with President Daines this week and got to talk with Sister Daines as well. Lately I haven't really been myself and the work has honestly scared me and I have bee really discouraged despite all the amazing things that are happening. The spirit has been trying to teach me a lot lately about the kind of missionary I can be and how to fix things, but until interviews and the chance I had to really get all of these thoughts and feelings out, I hadn't been able to sort through them and turn them into something constructive that I can move forward with. Since interviews my whole outlook has changed and I honestly feel like a new person. I have realized that I need to stop worrying about myself and if I'll say the wrong thing, because if I am focusing on the Savior and how much I love the people I am teaching I won't have to worry about what to say. And if I do say something silly, who cares, because everyone does. But I know there is a reason I am in The Ohio Columbus Mission and there are people here that I will be able to reach so I need to always open my mouth, no matter how imperfect the words are that come out of it. Since that time Sister Hall has seen a noticeable change in me and I feel so good. She has helped me a lot by making me uncomfortable. It sounds pretty weird, but she is helping me by having me make a lot of decisions and when I knock on a door she won't jump in and save me no matter how much I am struggling. It was so scary at first, but it is helping me see that I really can do this. I am so grateful for a loving companion who will patiently help me work through my struggles. That patience in letting me figure it our on my own led to a lot of awkward moments as I stumbled over my words, but it also led to a lot of "proud mom moments" when I succeeded. I love being a missionary!

Something that I have been noticing over and over again in my study of the Book of Mormon is how willing the Lord is to bless us if only we turn to him. It is usually our own fear, pride or doubts that are keeping us from receiving the blessings He longs to give us. I know that as you forget yourself and rely on Him you will be blessed more than you could ever imagine. 

I love you all! Just keep smiling!
Happy St. Patrick's Day