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

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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Hello again, Hilliard

Despite what the title may make you think, I did not get transferred. Sister Asay and I will be staying in Piqua. I am so excited for this transfer!

We did go back to Hilliard for a quick visit though, which is about an hour and a half away from where I am currently serving. BUT it could not have been more worth it! You may remember me talking about the amazing couple Rachel and Daniel from Hilliard. If you don't, Sister Speakman and I met Rachel walking her dog outside her apartment and things flew from there! She just soaked everything in and Daniel was a little more skeptical but was diligent in learning  everything for himself. I am so grateful that I got to be a part of their beginning and have grown to love them so much, they are absolutely wonderful. I was sad when I got transferred that I couldn't be an active part in their journey anymore, but the wonderful Sister Speakman kept me updated the whole time. And guess what! They got married Friday night and then I got to come see them be baptized Saturday night! The spirit was so strong there and filled me up. It was such a blessing and an honor to be able to attend and watch them make these essential covenants with their Heavenly Father. So many exciting things happening for them and it just brings me true joy that they are starting their journey in the gospel together and have their sights on the temple! 

Sorry I don't have much else to tell you, it has been just a short time since I last wrote. I do want to leave you with my testimony of service. We have had the opportunity to do a lot of service lately: working in a clothing bank, doing yard work, random acts of kindness, being a light to those around us, and of course performing the service of sharing the blessings of the Restored Gospel with our brothers and sisters. Us rendering service is a way we can show our Heavenly Father our gratitude for everything we have been given. I am truly grateful to have this time in my life set apart completely for the service of others because service brings joy. It's what makes the world a better place. It is my prayer that we each look for those opportunities to serve those around us, because they are always there. 
Mosiah 2:17
"And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God."

Sunday, August 13, 2017

I'll Go Where You Want Me to Go

This week has been a huge testament to me that God make sure we are exactly where he needs us to be.
We met many wonderful people this week, like a man named Larry. We were knocking on this street one morning and we both got this feeling that it's not where we were supposed to be. So we went to a different road we had been wanting to go to and behind one of the first doors we knocked on was Larry. He just recently lost his wife and is searching for comfort, and it turns out that some of his wife's family are members of our ward and actually invited his to attend church recently. We are meeting with him again later this week which surprised his family,  but it is incredible how God prepares people in ways we don't expect.
We also met a woman who was out on her porch who met missionaries and read from the Book of Mormon about 30 years ago! How incredible is that, especially since she would like to meet with us.

We met a man recently who we first had contact with when we were walking down this road and he stopped to make sure our car wasn't broken down or something. Then we saw him again later and actually got to talk with him about the gospel  and it was really cool. The funniest part though is when the next day we met this woman who asked us where we had been yesterday morning, when we told her she informed us that we had met her son! They are not ready yet, but I know that God needed us to have contact with that family for some reason.

Last night we were about to go in for the night and before we did we felt we needed to go talk to a woman sitting out on her porch. She told us how her and her mother have been looking for a church to go to. Then she said she wanted to get baptized and since she doesn't have an extensive background in religion she wants to have someone that will start basic and teach her. Ma'am that's why we are here! It was so incredible.

One of the coolest things was meeting James. We were just walking down the street and he was sitting on the porch. We waved and instead of keeping on to where we were going, we stopped and I am so glad we did. He doesn't have a knowledge of God being his Father, he experiences a lot of emotional turmoil and simply lacks hope in his life. We are just in the beginning of his journey, but we have already seen him feel the spirit and the love of his Father, feel the power of the Book of Mormon, and start to find those glimmers of hope. I love being a missionary!

I want to leave you with my testimony that we have a loving Heavenly Father who has a very specific plan for each of us. That simple but profound truth is what kept me moving forward this week. He knows us individually and perfectly and desires for us to know Him too. I am grateful for prayer and the peace it brings, that it is a way we can feel of His love. If there is anything you are struggling with, need answers for, or just need to know that someone is there for you, I would advise you to get on your knees and offer a heartfelt prayer prayer. I promise that as we humbly listen He will always answer.

I love you all, just keep smiling!


Thursday, August 3, 2017

Whatever the Mind Can Conceive and Believe, It Can Achieve

Oh what a week! We had Zone Conference filled with great insights and lessons. So many things were simply inspiration to give the Lord our best. The title of my post today is a quote that President Stratford lives by and has asked that we adopt as a mission. I know that great things can happen when we show the Lord we are willing and give him our all. A key part of that though is recognizing the Lord, yes we can achieve anything, but only with the Lord's help. We talked a lot about humility and turning our will over to God and Sister Stratford presented a few simple statements: I can't, He can, I think I'll let Him. I know that when we turn ourselves over to God and rely on his strength to do what would otherwise be impossible for us, miracles can happen.

Lately we have been exhausted, so we must be doing something right. I wish I knew how many miles we walked the other day, because that's literally all we did. It was awesome. Especially walking back to our car at the end of the night when it started pouring. We were so soaked! But still smiling and having a blast of course.

Saturday morning we also spent a ton of time on our feet. We and the Elders were invited by a member in our ward to share his booth at the farmers market. We made a poster and set up our booth all about family history. I was excited about the concept, but the execution scared me out of my mind. But I applied the principles I have shared with you from zone conference and the Lord was able to give me strength beyond my own and worked the miracle of me being able to talk to many people. It actually turned out to be a lot of fun and we did a lot of good.

The week ended in the greatest way possible, with a baptism! A family that the Elders have been teaching entered the waters of baptism this weekend. The greatest part was being able to spend a lot of time with the mom helping her and above all watching her witness her sons being baptized. There were so many emotions and the spirit was so thick. It was an incredible experience!

Apparently this week's theme is relying on the Lord. Something I wanted to share with you from my study of the Savior comes from John 16
33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
Christ is the founder of our peace. We have no reason to fear because he has overcome the world, so through him we can overcome anything that comes our way. I know that Jesus Christ is real and that he is our Savior. He is the source of our peace in this life and our hope for the life to come.

I love you all, just keep smiling!