Tuesday, December 27, 2011

2012- Incoming!!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! (In a few days)
MIM-Missouri Independence Mission!
What the heck, I cannot believe that it is almost 2012. Where does the time go?!!!!! I feel like I was just in January. I hope all of you had a very holly, jolly Christmas. I know I sure did!
It was so awesome to talk to the family and to see how big everyone is getting. I'm realizing though that I'm truly turning into a missionary, haha all I wanted to do was testify, and extend invitations haha.
Talking to everyone was so awesome, but I also realized that there's no where else I'd rather be than on my mission. I don't mean that to sound bad, I am just so grateful to be serving and to have this opportunity to be so close to the spirit and to have the light of Christ around me. It's so great. Thank you, thank you everyone who sent me Christmas cards and packages filled with love, it meant so much to me! Sister Jones and I got to spend Christmas at a members home and they were so wonderful. They made the best mexican dinner and even gave us our own stockings and gifts. I felt so spoiled! I totally wasn't even expecting that. I really do love my area, it is going to be so hard to leave when the time comes. I've been here since my birth into the mission field.
I honestly don't even know what to say right now, so much has happened this past week. But I think the greatest thing that's happened is that I have never felt so close to my Savior than I did this past week. I saw Christmas in a completely different light, and appreciated it so much more. At church I had such an overwhelming feeling of gratitude and love for this Gospel and for this precious chance I have to be here at this time, I know that time will go fast and I'm trying to really drink in every moment. The Lord is truly blessing us, we have 2 wonderful souls with a baptismal date, and a few new investigators. We're pretty excited about that. I love teaching and sharing with others what I know is true! I want to be a missionary for life, there's no greater calling! 
On Christmas Eve morning we had a big breakfast with all the missionaries in Independence. It was so good, I felt like such a spoiled little girl! All of us sisters did a musical number for everyone called, Sister Grinch, and of course (me being the quoter of movies that I am) got to play the Grinch part, it was hilarious! Then Sister Jones and I with 2 other sisters sang the most beautiful arrangement of What Child Is This. I loved it! We also got to hear the Liberty sisters sing, and the Elders did a few funny musical numbers as well. Ha, gotta love the Elders! Then, President Keyes even came and read us this Christmas book that he wrote himself. It was awesome and so focused on the birth of the Savior! Later, that night we had a Secret Santa gift exchange with all the sisters and ate some more food! I think i've eaten enough for all of January. When we got home, Sister Jones and I went across the hall to the other sisters' apt and opened our gifts under their little baby Christmas tree and I read them a Christmas story. All in all it was a wonderful week filled with way too much food, good stories, laughter, and the Savior. 
I love all of you so much, and really do enjoy reading all your letters. It's nice to know I still have friends and family back at home that love me and think about me (for now). Haha. Thank you for everything, seriously. I want all of you to know that I do know this is Christ's true gospel restored to the Earth and that through our Savior we can overcome any obstacle, we can be cleansed from every sin, and we can return to live with our Heavenly Father. I know that if we but trust in Him, and go forth with faith, we shall not fall. I am so happy- the happiest I've ever been. I love this work with all my heart, and I truly do love everyone that I teach. How blessed I am to be in the arms of my Heavenly Father as His servant. Remember who you are- and the royal heritage from which you come!  
Love, Sister Conrow

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Merry, Happy, Jolly Christmas! :)

WOW!!! Christmas is almost here! Merry Christmas everyone! "God bless us, every one!" Ha ha.

That is just so crazy to me. I have been out for about 7 months now. AHHH. Time is going by way to fast. I'm getting old. One of the senior couples introduced me to a family that came into the Visitors Center the other day and said, "And this is Sister Conrow, one of our more "seasoned" sisters at the Visitors Center." Ha ha, I was like, ahh thanks for reminding me I'm old. I can't believe that by this time next year, I'll be home. I don't like it. I just want to be a missionary for the rest of my life. It's so much easier than real life and reality. Ha ha.                                                                                  
Me with The Browns, they are a missionary couple serving at the Visitor Center 

Well, this past week has been an interesting one. Seriously, Sister Jones and I have made a lot of pretty fun memories and she has certainly experienced the life of being in Independence. There's just no greater place for funny stories.

This week we had our zone conference, which happens every other transfer. Oh my goodness, I loved it so much. We have the MOST AMAZING mission president ever. He has so much love and compassion and is just so in tune with the spirit. He talked about happiness at the end of the meeting and told us he had received special revelation from Heavenly Father on how we can be happy as missionaries. I loved it so much that I wanted to share it with all of you because I know that it applies not only to missionaries but to life in general. Here are the ways to happiness, he called it the:

5 B's to Happiness-
1) Be worthy
2) Be obedient
3) Be anxiously engaged
4) Be "not weary in well doing"
5) Be prayerful

He promised us that as missionaries the Lord truly does hear and answer our prayers. He is so mindful of the work we are doing. He promised us that if we did all of these things that we WOULD be happy, not just maybe happy, but 100% positively happy. Man, when I heard that, I knew it was from Heavenly Father, and I know it's true because as I have tried to follow that these past few weeks, I have really seen the change in my attitude. Isn't that so great?! Do those things and I know you will be happy, no matter what is going on in your life at that time. We have no excuse to be unhappy, we have the gospel!

Ok next, our investigator, who has a baptismal date in January cancelled her apt with us the other day because she was busy with her kids. A few hours later our stake president told us that she had just been taken to jail! I was like, "WHAAAA???! How does that happen?!" Turns out she got into a fight with her boyfriend and he called the cops on her for no reason. Man, I was pretty upset to hear that because this lady is just awesome, she is so humble and has such a desire to do what's right and Satan just wants to do anything and everything to get in the way of her progression. We are having faith though because I know everything happens for a reason and this may end up being a good thing for her life to get away from her past. Who knows, all I know is that I must trust in the Lord.

This weekend we had our ward Christmas party- it was so awesome! Lots of Polynesian food, topped with a cooked pig and all! It was great! I love my ward, it's going to be hard to leave them. A cute older sister in our ward even made Sister Jones and me these awesome handmade bead necklaces! Ah they're just the coolest! She made me a turquoise one even (my fav color!) We're going to wear them to sacrament next Sunday for Christmas, we're pretty excited. Man, I am so grateful for the love that I get from my ward here in Indy. I couldn't ask for anyone better!

Now a couple funny stories, because those really are just the best! First one: Sister Jones and I were out tracting one night and we weren't having a lot of success and couldn't find the homes we had planned to go see, so I said, "Ya know what, let's just go caroling to people's homes.." And she said, ok sounds good. So we try the first home. This lady pulls down her window and says first thing, "I go to the Naz-a-reeene

Next funny story- the other morning the sisters across the hall from us got up early to go play sports (we stayed behind because Sister Jones wasn't feeling good). Well after they left we get this text that says, "Sisters, don't be alarmed but there's a homeless man sleeping in our hallway.." Ha ha. Kinda odd. Then when those sisters got back from sports he was still there so they called us and told Sister Jones to go look outside. So she did. When she opened the door the man woke up and drunkenly (if that's even a word) turned his head and gave a little groan at her. Ha, so she shut the door and ran inside. Well, then Sister Dodd (the one across the hall) called our Zone and District Elders because she just didn't know what else to do. So they show up to our hallway, but right before they showed up the man took his bike and ran off. They said that he smelled a lot like alcohol, chased him down and told him, "never sleep in that hallway again!" Ha ha, they told us that this homeless man told him, "but it was where my mom used to live and I have good memories there..." Ha ha, the poor guy, although now we're all a little weary of him showing up again, we're grateful he didn't stay. Ha ha thank goodness for awesome Elders who are so protective over us sisters! They're great!

Well, even though this week has had it's share of funny experiences, we've been able to have a lot of success, we now have a new investigator with a baptismal date and she is just awesome! Gosh, I love being a missionary, especially around Christmas time. Sister Jones and I love to sing together, and so wherever we go, we sing for people. It's so much fun, and such a good way to invite the spirit of Christ into every one's homes. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for sending his son into the world so that we can return to live with him one day with our families. What a blessing! I know this is Christ's true gospel here on the Earth, and there's nothing else I'd rather be doing, than sharing his beloved message!

Merry Christmas everyone! Or as Uncle Robert would say, "Merry Jolly!"

Love, Sister Conrow

P.S.- If you must send me Christmas gifts, all I really want are your letters filled with love. Those make my day! Love ya!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Oh Sister Jones!

Oh my goodness I am already having too much fun this transfer!
Me and Sister Jones
My new companion is Sister Jones from Mesa, AZ! She is soooo awesome! Love her guts already. She went to BYU and was a professional diver there! She came out in April then went home in August for knee surgery, and just got back out this last week. Ya, she's a trooper, a super hardcore missionary. This is her 4th transfer, and my 5th, so we're very close in mission age. Our first day together we had a blast, I felt like I had known her for years and years. I really do feel like we're sisters. Haha, everywhere we go everyone tells us how much we look alike and compliment us like crazy. (That just tells you how awesome and cute she is). We love singing together and so we always try to sing at every appointment we go to. We always say the same things at the same time. Haha, it's just too funny. I am so grateful to the Lord for allowing us to serve together! Seriously. Even though we've only been together 6 days, it already feels like months. We just clicked the second we met. I'm really, really excited about this transfer, and we are soooo excited to do the work and to see miracles! 
I would send you all pictures, but this silly computer will not ever let me upload pics, so.. It might be awhile on that one. 
Our first day together we went to help a lady in our ward move in. She had tons and tons of boxes full of books that needed to go in her basement. Well, I told Sister Jones she better not even think about going up and down those stairs, so she would bring the boxes in and I would take them down. Haha, well on my first trip down those steep stairs I started to make my way and just about tumbled down onto my face. We both started laughing so hard because it really would've been a pretty deadly fall. Ha, I said, "Man, I probably would have had to go home for knee surgery.." Ha ok, this story really isn't that funny, but you just had to be there. President Keyes kept making fun of her at the airport when he was carrying her suitcase and said, "Oh man you could tear an ACL lifting these bags.." And then he told her on the way to the Visitors Center that she didn't need to worry about the stairs because there was an elevator there and then he said "Or, we could just put a diving pool at the bottom of the stairs and you could dive in." Haha, ya President can be pretty clever sometimes ;)  
My Aussie Sista! Sister Kavea! 
Even though we haven't been able to find tons of people to teach, we've been having lots of fun trying. I'm still here in my first area, but we are not only covering 1st ward, but we're now covering the singles branch as well. It's going to be crazy double covering an area, but I know we'll have lots of fun making mistakes I'm sure. Haha. The Visitor Center sure has changed a lot, some of my favorite sisters left but now there are lots of new ones to get to know. My little Aussie sister went to Kansas, and my other fav sister crystal is training and opening an area that's pretty sketchy. But, all is well, I'm just grateful for the memories I've been able to make these past 7 months with those sisters, and I'm grateful for the time I'll have in these upcoming months to make more memories.. This will probably be my last transfer in the Visitor Center so I'm going to do my best to work hard and enjoy every minute of it because I really don't want to go. I love Independence, and I really love everyone that I've been so blessed to serve around! :) 
This Christmas we get to SKYPE home soooooo everyone better look their best. Haha, I seriously am so happy we get to do that. We're having Christmas at a members house that feeds us every Sunday and when we went there this past Sunday they totally had stockings hung up for Sister Jones and I that had our names on it. It was so cool! I am soo excited to be out here and to have my very first and my only Christmas in the mission field. It's so fun to teach others what Christmas is all about, CHRIST. There's just nothing better than serving. I seriously love it. Sorry I don't have anymore exciting stories, but I know there are bound to be plenty in the future. I love you all soo much and I can't wait to get all the packages you're going to send me. (haha joking, but seriously ;) Don't forget what Christmas is all about! 
Love, Sister Conrow    

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Let It Snow! :)

First things first- This morning, I woke up to SNOW!!!! My first snowfall of the mission. Haha, it was pretty fun. Not sure how much I'll love it come January, but right now- it's great. What's Christmas without snow right? Second off, transfers are this week! AHHH! Craziness. Sister Lund will be going home, and I will be staying in 1st ward again. Ha I'm so stoked! Just won't know who my new comp is until tonight... drum roll please.....
Well- this week was pretty awesome, I must say. No, we didn't contact 500 people or baptize the nation, but spiritually, it was just really awesome.
The Lord blessed us with a new investigator the other day, and she's amazing! I've never met someone who is so open to the gospel and so willing to change her will to God. What a great example she is to me. She has 4 precious little kids, who I just adore. Sometimes I wish I could just hold them because they are so stinkin' cute. Right now, her and her boyfriend are actually living in a motel until they can find a good house for their family. I think she was kind of embarrassed to have us come over, but then I told her not to worry because I could relate. I thought about how when all of our family moved to Montana and we didn't have a house yet and so we stayed at the Friendship Inn in Kalispell. Haha, I will never forget that place. I know what it feels like to live in a motel, but I also know that the spirit of God can dwell wherever there is peace. And believe it or not, but this humble little room had such a strong spirit and I know it's because of how open the heart was of this sweet mother. She has such a desire to bring the gospel into her life and the life of her family.
The first time we taught her, I had a really neat experience- As I told her about the Restoration of the Gospel and about the Book of Mormon and how because of our Savior we can have an eternal family, the spirit just came over me and I just started crying because instantly I felt so much love for her. I knew that I was supposed to be there. I wouldn't say that "only I could have taught her," but I knew that the Lord had allowed me, silly little me, to be involved in this lady's conversion process. I felt so blessed, and I felt so grateful that God loved me enough to place me in her life at this time. There are no such things as coincidences, only divine signatures from our Heavenly Father. I know that she felt it as well because she was crying and she looked at me and said, "I don't know why I'm even crying, I just am." We then invited her for baptism, and she said YES! I am so so happy for her, and I pray that I will be here long enough to be able to see her be baptized and to be able to see her cute little family come together as one. How exciting, right?!!! 
Another cool story- so I think I've told you about our one investigator who we've been meeting with for months. He's awesome! He knows the church is true, but his wife is very Catholic and isn't too happy with him coming to our church. He loves his wife so much, and he doesn't want to upset her or his family (which I can understand) but he knows that this is what he wants for his family. Sunday he came to the Christmas Devotional that was given by the First Presidency. At the very end of it when they sang Silent Night, he was crying. I knew that the spirit really touched his heart. And when it ended, he turned to us and said, "That was just amazing. Everything they did and said rang true with what I believe." He went on and on about how much he loved how well everything was presented and how he had never seen a "minister of God show so much emotion and love." Ha, when he said that I said, "Ya, isn't it nice to know that this man truly is called of God and that he extends his love to literally everyone." Ah man, it was just so cool, I was soooo glad he came. He told us that he was going to go home and tell his wife exactly how he felt while he watched it. Ha, I pray that she might have a desire to at least come to the Visitors Center and feel of the spirit that is so ever present there.
Besides those awesome stories, this week I've really been thinking a lot about how grateful I am for all those that I have been so blessed to serve around these past 6 months. (crazy, time is slipping through my fingers). I thought about how mad I was when I first got my call to the Visitors Center (you know me, stubborn as ever sometimes) but since being here, I couldn't have picked a better place for myself. The Lord really just knows me so much better than I know myself. I thought about how much I love my ward mission leader and his family and how they will always be my family too. Monday we went to their family home evening and got to listen to them sing "We Thank Thee O God for a Prophet" in Samoan. Oh my goodness, I wanted to cry I just loved it sooo
Man, everyone, I hope you don't forget what Christmas is really about. Our Savior, and nothing else. He is the Prince of Peace and He is our Redeemer. I can't think of a better way to celebrate Christmas this year than to be on my mission and to be serving Him. There's just nothing greater, really there's not. I would invite all of you to go out of your way this Christmas to serve someone, and to pray for an opportunity to share the gospel with those that the Lord is preparing because they are truly out there, I promise. I love you, I love the Gospel, I love Missouri, I love my mission, and most importantly, I love my Savior, I know that He lives! This is His work! 
Love, Sister Conrow :)  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Precious Souls

Me, Derrick and Sister Sawyer

This cute little picture describes this last week in the mission field. PERFECT.  
I LOVE MY MISSION. I meet the absolute cutest people in the entire world. This special little soul is famous. His mom has a Mormon message on Mormon.org- here's the link. Check it out! http://mormon.org/rochelle/
Anyway- her son, Derrick, came into the Visitors Center and sat down next to me and Sister Sawyer, and put his arm right around me and kept winking at me. Oh my gosh, I loved it. Haha, the closest I'll come to hugging a guy on my mission. Don't be jealous. This happened at the lighting ceremony at the Visitors Center for Christmas time. There were tons of people there that night and all of us sisters had a blast! I am so lucky to be serving here. We just get to meet the coolest people and have the neatest experiences. We had a less active member show up with her non-member boyfriend and they stayed for the whole ceremony. Afterwards I got to take him through the Visitors Center and teach him about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He hasn't been brought up in any religion his whole life, it was crazy. So I taught clear back to the biblical days.. Long story short, he was super interested and the spirit was so strong and we have an appointment with him now today. I'm super stoked.
I'm sorry I don't have a whole lot of time to write today, it's been crazy busy. I love this Gospel! I love being a missionary. I know I will think about my mission everyday for the rest of my life. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father for letting me serve here. This is His work! 
Love, Sister Conrow  

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Oh Jolly Day!

Ah man, I just got so much love this week I've spent pretty much all my time writing everyone back. I know, I know, I've been slacking on a richly filled, fun-to-read-for-everyone email.

No worries, it'll come..... One day. Hahaha-joking.

Well this is what I have to say about this past week.


Ha Ha, it has been a rough one everyone. Guess we all gotta take the good with the bad ya know. Many a doors were slammed in our faces, tears were shed, weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth in all the land really. Ha ha. 

I've learned something though from this past week's lack of successes. When the tough times come, I can appreciate my Savior that much more. I felt just a tiny bit of how He must of felt after all the times He was rejected and persecuted. 
And when I thought, "why?!!! oh why me Heavenly Father? I just don't get it? I'm doing everything I can, I'm being obedient?!! WHY?!" 
And then the spirit rebukes me and reminds me that it's when things are hard, that I really love and appreciate the good times. It's when things are hard that I can come closer to Jesus Christ. 
  It's when things are hard that I can learn to endure and smile even when a frown seems easiest to manage. 
    It's when things are hard that I learn to look up, I learn to smell the roses, I learn to look for a greater sense of peace, I learn to serve, and understand all those around me.
      It's when things are hard that I learn how much God really DOES LOVE ME, and has a bigger plan in store for me.

And that, my friends, isn't un-success, it's knowledge and experience gained. 

Now, could I say this just a few days ago when I wanted to lash out irrationally? No, definitely not, because when I was going through it, it was hard. But now I see how silly I was, now I see how the Lord was just doing a little gardening for little prideful Sister Conrow. Now, I get it. Ha ha. 
So if you're week has been like this, I'm sorry, truly I am, but guess what - we all have to go through it some time or another... so just smile, be happy, and fake it til ya make it. 
The Lord is there, 
       He knows how you're feeling. 
             Rely on Him, and all will be well in Zion. 
Pinkie promise. 

One experience I'd like to share with all of you really quick- 

Sister Lund and I were out knocking doors, just trying to find people who the Lord has prepared. We got to a house, knocked, and a younger guy opened the door half-hearted, not really wanting to talk. We said Hi and asked if so- and so was there. He said, ya- but she's sleeping and started to go inside. So- me being the missionary I am- asked for his name and extended my hand. 
"Hey, what was your name?" 
"John," he said. 
"Hey John, I'm Sister Conrow." 
Then, with a disgruntled look on his face he said, "Uh, ya I can see that." (meaning- Duh, you have a name tag, I can read) Ha ha. 
Well, by now in my day, I truly was at my breaking point, so instead of turning that extended hand into a punch in the gut, I just simply smiled and said, "Oh good." 
And as he began to close the door, I exclaimed, "Happy Christmas to all and to all a goodnight..." Hahaha Jk. 
I said, "Have a nice day, John." And walked to my car, where I then punched my seat. Ha ha.
Something I learned from this tiny experience was that we all need to keep our cool, but I also learned how sad it was that he didn't even give me a chance to say who we represented. 

Jesus Christ.

Hello, our one and only SAVIOR! 

Why wouldn't you want to listen to a message from him?! 

How often do we do that ? ? ? ?

Slam the door on the spirit, and go on our merry little way? 

I know for me, it's sometimes too often. I pray and hope that all of us can remember to always follow the promptings of the spirit, and smile even during the hard times when you just plain wanna pull your hair out. 
      (Mom, I may be bald when I get home, just sayin') Ha ha.
Well, I hope you all have a wonderful experience. Send me the leftovers. Ha ha jk, that'ld be gross. 

The church is true. This is HIS (sometimes very hard) work. Ha ha. 

Love ya!
Love, Sister Conrow :)     

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Golden Letter!

Do you want the good news or bad news first?
Ok- bad news, I like to end on a good note. Ha ha. So, bad news is this- remember that guy who was meeting with us and we read Alma the Younger with him and he was so excited and set a baptismal date? Ya, well he dropped us hardcore this past week... Man, sometimes I just want to give Satan a good 1-2, ya know? He told us that he didn't think church was important and that "Jesus would be ok if I didn't go to church..." And I thought, ya that may be true, but it is a commandment that we keep the sabbath day holy. He even told us prior to dropping us that he enjoyed going to church and that if that was all he did the entire week, it was worth it. That's why I know church isn't really what's keeping him from baptism. But, I can't force him to do anything, and I know he has felt the spirit as we've taught him. He knows the difference in his life that he has felt as he has met with us almost weekly. This man comes from a pretty rough background though and has made so many changes already, I'm just grateful that we were able to plant that seed in his heart and help him see how this Gospel can change him for the good forever. He will remember meeting with us, and he will never be able to deny the spirit he felt. One day he will be baptized. I'm not worried in the slightest, although I will miss teaching him.
Ok- AWESOME NEWS! Well at least to me it's pretty exciting.... So I don't know if I wrote about this experience, but about 2 weeks ago there was a non-member couple from Oklahoma that came through the Visitor's Center, and they were just super amazing. I spent at least 2 hours with them sharing stories, and teaching them about the Gospel. They were just the sweetest people in the world and agreed to read the Book of Mormon. Well, I don't know why, but as I wrote my testimony in that Book of Mormon I felt inspired to write my address in the book- so I did. Long story short, yesterday I got a letter from that very couple! You have no idea how excited I was. That letter was like gold in my hands. It's every sister missionary's dream to get a letter from a tour they take through, especially ones that are not familiar with the church. So in this letter he expressed his feelings about how much he and his wife enjoyed the tour and that they were so grateful that they were able to meet me. They told me that the minister of their church had just passed away at 50 yrs old and how hard this was for them. (They are very much into their church and close to the minister, which is awesome, so I can only imagine how hard this must be for them). He then went on to say that he had been reading from the Book of Mormon and told me about how he had learned to make wise choices in his life because of the experiences he had in his own family, and that he saw that I had chosen to do the same. By the end of the letter he had said many nice, wonderful things, but the greatest part was when he said, "P.S.- Because of our visit with you, it has helped me a lot with the passing of our minister." Man, I just wanted to cry I was so grateful for that letter! I can't wait to write them back! The church really is true, it does bless lives. It is a constant foundation in this time of peril and tribulation.
This week has just been full of stories and experiences, but that one was the cherry on top for me. I am learning so much, it's insane. Something I've been thinking a lot about this past week is how important it is to just give, and to give willingly. If we're not willing to give of ourselves, or our talents, or to serve those around us, we have nothing. Truly, we don't. We are so unhappy and miserable when we're always worried about "me" and what's in it for me. Some people can't see how if they just give, they will be sooooooooo much happier. And I can say this, because it's something I had to learn at the beginning of my mission, and am still learning. I do have my days where I'm in the "depths of despair.." and I just want to curl up in a ball and lay in bed. But then I remember this quote by Elder Holland, "Don't you dare ask for your mission to be easy. Don't you dare. Salvation is NOT a cheap experience." And so I'm rebuked and try to change my attitude. Ha ha. Anyways- I love you all. Thanks for your letters. It's helped me through some challenging times this past week. I love this work, even on it's hard days. 
This is God's work. Fight the good fight! 
Love, Sister Conrow :)   

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Keep on keepin' on...

Sorry everyone, this week is unfortunately going to be a short one!

My companion and I have been pretty sick this week, so it hasn't been too much fun. Haha. As a missionary you really don't have time to be sick.
Things are going well though. I'm getting really excited for the Holidays. I know it's going to  be a blast as a missionary. Lots and lots of service opportunities!

Some of my thoughts this week are- how grateful I am to my dear, sweet mother who taught me how to love, serve, and work. There is no way I would be able to do what I do if I hadn't of been taught that. I'm grateful that the Lord has allowed me to be here and to be constantly learning and growing and becoming a better person.

Today my companion and I were able to teach this way cool guy at the laundromat. We taught him about the prophet Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. It was crazy because prior to him approaching us, I had just been reading a past conference talk that explained why the Book of Mormon is true and how it testifies of the things that are already written in the Bible. So because of that, I was able to explain to this man (who is very attached to the Bible) just all that the Book of Mormon had to offer him. It was really neat. He said that Elders had actually talked to him before and he went and grabbed his Book of Mormon. Ha it was so neat to see that the Lord has already been working on his heart. 

Ah, I know I say this every week, but I seriously love, love, love my mission. I just don't know how I will ever be able to go home come a year from yesterday. Time is just slipping through my hands and I don't like it. However, it's teaching me that I really need to make every minute count and love even the hardest of times. I love this gospel, and I know it is true. How grateful I am for a loving Heavenly Father who is so patient with me, despite my many weaknesses. I love all of you and am grateful for your letters (Jess and Whit- you're the greatest!) This is God's work!

Love, Sister Conrow :)  
Me and Sister Blackham

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Missouri Independence Miracles! :)


I finally got an adaptor so I can send pictures. CHYAAAA! Haha, hope you all enjoy their goodness!
Well- change finally came and went. My sweet Sister Loo went home to St. George and I now have a new companion.
Her name is Sister Lund, and she is from Manti, UT. We are already loving each other and seeing many, many miracles. I won't lie, change is hard, and sometimes I really miss Sister Loo, but I'm grateful I have the memories, and that I can remember all that she has taught me. She set such a good example for me, and I'm glad to say I am her daughter (in the mission) and can follow in her footsteps!  
Saying goodbye to Sister Loo!  :(
This past week has been busy, busy, but fun! Saturday night my comp and I were able to go to this cool little thing called Enchanted Forest. It's where the drama production puts on these little mini plays outside and you take kids through this trail with tons of trees (at the park) and they get to watch the actors. It's such a cool idea! It's very family oriented and as missionaries we get to go and volunteer to be guides for all the groups that come in. So we got to see it for free! It was just the neatest thing. Independence has done this for about 15 years and so there were probably thousands of families that came to take their kids through. I loved it!

Yesterday was just the greatest day ever! We were only able to proselyte until about 7 last night just for safety reasons (and because we wouldn't want people thinking we were trick "r" treating dressed up as missionaries, haha). So we picked an area to go visit and parked our car and just started walking down the street. It was a beautiful day yesterday so we were able to talk to soooo many people. It was an old joke with me and Sister Loo that the only people we contacted or taught always seemed to be older single men. Well that still holds strong today. Haha. Every person we contacted last night was an older single male. But it was still just super awesome. One guy in particular was the biggest sweetheart. He belonged to the RLDS faith but hadn't been in a long time since the split of the church. So we invited him to come to church with us on Sunday and he said he really wanted to. Sister Lund and I are pretty excited about that!

Later on that night Sister Lund and I were able to teach this guy who we've been teaching for a really long time. About 4 months. At one point he set a baptismal date, but then backed out, but still wanted to meet with us. Well, last night I told Sister Lund that enough was enough. He knows the church is true, he just doesn't want to give his ear to the Lord. He comes from a very troubled past and everytime we meet with him he expresses how many burdens he holds and how miserable he is. And no matter how many times we tell him all of that can be taken away from him if he'll just come unto Christ, he never seems to get it, or rather, accept it. So for our app we decided to read the story of Alma the younger from the Book of Mormon (ya know, the one where he rebels from his own father's church and teaches against it and then an angel of the Lord appears unto him and tells him to straighten up or else and then he is racked with all his sins but remembers the mercy of Christ's atonement and changes his heart forever? Ya, that one). After we read that story this man just lights up and tells how he can so relate to Alma the Younger. And I said, "See, that's why we kept telling you to read from the Book of Mormon. It was written for you!" Haha. Needless to say, for the rest of the app I did my best to follow the promptings of the spirit and told this man that he knows these things are true because he has told us that. We told him that he needs to stop fighting the truth, come unto Christ, and be baptized. Well, after much boldness and gifts of the spirit, he finally said, "Yes, this is what I want and need!" AHHHH. I was soooooooooooo happy and relieved. We were finally able to get through to him and to help him understand why baptism in Christ's true church is so so so important! It was just the coolest experience ever. I just about jumped for joy! 

Ah, I love this Gospel. I love missionary work. It's the greatest. I'm grateful for my companion and for all the growth that I know I will be able to have this transfer. This is Christ's true church! I love you all, thanks for you support and love! 

Love, Sister Conrow :) 

P.S. Some of the pics are of me and Sister Loo at transfer bus with other sisters, and then 2 are of me and my new comp at Enchanted Forest! Enjoy.  

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Time To Say Goodbye... :(

Ok, so I have like 5 minutes to write an email today, so I will do my best to bring up the highlights of this past week. 
First off- I have never gained a greater desire and love for my mission than I did this past week. There's not necessarily a particular reason, I think I am just finally adjusting to the work. I have learned how important it is to let go of the past and focus on the present. I need to look at the path that my feet are on. Weights are lifted from my shoulders when I apply the atonement and forgive those who have offended me in the past. I feel more confident, happy, and successful. I've realized that all I can do is my best, and that's the best I can do.

Words cannot express how I feel about Sister Loo leaving me to go home to St. George this week. I have learned more than I know from her. She was the greatest mission mom Heavenly Father could have given me. I will never, ever forget her and the impression that she has forever left on my heart. There's just no trainer greater than Sister Loo. She was the perfect role model for me and I hope to be half as good as she is by the time I near the end of my mission. Ah, I just love her. 
This past week has been filled with so many wonderful tender mercies and miracles from the Lord. He just really loves me I guess. Haha. I was able to take a non-member couple through the Visitor's Center and had the most amazing spiritual experience. Their hearts were so open even though they are active in another faith. By the end of our 2 hour tour, I didn't want them to go. I was able to give them a copy of the Book of Mormon as well as my personal testimony of the Gospel inside the copy (which they asked for, which I thought was super cool!). We shared many personal experiences with each other and even shed a few tears together. Haha. I know that the Lord allowed me to be a tool in helping this couple come closer to the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We promised to write each other and I cannot wait to see where their path will go now. 
I love this Gospel, I love this work. For reals. There is just nothing that can even compare to a mission. I promise. Hold firm to what you know is true. I know Heavenly Father is aware of every single one of us. We are His children. I love all of you, and I am so grateful for your letters of support and love. Never give up! 
Love, Sister Conrow :)  
Me, Sister Loo & Sister Moe
Our Ward Mission Leader!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pride Cometh Before The Fall...

Pride and Disobedience.

The 2 greatest sins that will separate any relationship. Why are these things so hard to swallow? Because Satan will do anything that he can to make sure these 2 sins do not go down the pipe. Isn't that so rude of him?! But guess what, Christ overcame both, so that means I can as well.. Now, please do not think that I am being extremely disobedient or that my head is blowing up like a balloon. These are just my thoughts from the past week. I realize that every bad thing we do, or that someone else does, really boils down to these 2 things. Sometimes, it's frustrating because we don't even realize we are being prideful, or necessarily disobedient, especially as a missionary, but something I am learning is that it is more than possible to overcome these things.
So how do we overcome them? Sister Conrow says, "Suck it up, and just do it. You'll be way happier." Haha, I can't tell you how miserable I am if I don't swallow my pride, especially because I can be pretty stubborn sometimes (all of my family is probably nodding in agreement right now, haha). Sister Loo is a great example to me of humility, as well as other sisters. She is so happy all the time and I know it's because she is constantly serving others, and confident enough to swallow her own pride. It's a process. Resolve doesn't just happen over night, but I know that if i can constantly remind myself to just become as a child, and to love everyone else around me, these sins will start to diminish, and missionary work will get a little easier.

I know you're all probably thinking this is a super random topic for me to bring up, and to be honest, I don't really know why I brought it up, it's just something that seems to be a continuous topic for me as a missionary. Humbling myself before the Lord. I guess it's because that's the only way I can be happy and ok with the fact that I still won't see my family for another year, that there are nasty spiders in my apartment, and so on and so forth. Haha. Granted, these really aren't major issues, but sometimes Satan likes to make them out to be greater than they really are.

Sister Loo and I have really been focusing on having a positive attitude this week. So we came up with this- I.Y.A.P. (Is Your Attitude Positive?) So every time we're yapping away about something, we can stop and remind ourselves with the phrase- IYAP. It helps us to have a greater perspective, and to find joy in the journey instead of weeping and wailing over the little tragedies in our lives that don't really matter a whole lot. For example: a couple weeks ago I told the story about the mom, and his son that we street contacted that we're super interested in the church, and just golden investigators. We ended up having to give them to some other sisters because they didn't live in our area, and the other day I found out that both the mom and the son are getting baptized!! Now, I could have been disappointed that I didn't get to teach them, or be excited that the Lord led Sister Loo and I to them, and that they are now going to be able to enjoy the blessings of exaltation and eventually eternity with their family. I'm grateful to Sister Loo for reminding me to be positive and to look at the bright side of things. It makes things way more fun, and enjoyable.

Sorry this email isn't as exciting as others haha, but I want all of you to know how much I love the Lord and this work. There's just nothing greater. Everyday can be a challenge, but at least the Lord is still allowing me to grow, right? Right. I love you all so much and even though I haven't heard from anyone for a good 3 weeks, it's ok, just be sure to send me a new pillow case, since mine is soaked in tears every night. Haha jk jk, but seriously. I would love to hear from you! Mom told me that my blog is boring because I don't send any pictures, but hopefully within the next month I'll be able to spice up the blog here! Everyone, I love you. Don't allow Satan to drag you down! 

Love, Sister Conrow

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Live, Learn, Love & Laugh!

Me and Sister Clarke
Time is going too quick, and I don't like it... The end of this month will be my 5 month mark. I feel like I'm still stuck in January sometimes...

I am growing to love my mission more and more and I don't know how I will ever be able to part from it come next November. I realize that's a ways away, but I know time will go by fast, and before I know it, the time will come for me to go home.. I guess I've been thinking about time a lot because my companion is getting ready to go back to St. George in 2 weeks! I seriously cannot believe it. She's been handling it really, really well, and has been a great example to me of how you should be when you go home..
I am spoiled in this mission! Friday all of the sisters were able to go on a history trip where we got to see Liberty Jail, Far west, and Adam-Ondi-Ahman. It was SOOOO COOOL. I feel so so so blessed to be serving in this mission where I get those opportunities to learn about what the Saints went through, and where Christ will come again. It was the neatest experience. The spirit was so powerful and I was just so grateful. I can't wait to go back again!  
Something I have really learned this past week is the importance of having fun and laughing. It's the greatest release. I cannot tell you how much fun I've had this past week just by laughing at the silly mistakes I make. Sister Loo is a big ball of fun and she has really taught me how to just enjoy the small moments and not be so serious (I have a tendency to be that way sometimes). I think that's one of the greatest reasons Heavenly Father put her as my companion, so she could teach me to just stop and smell the roses and love every moment of every day. Regardless of what happens.

For example: last week we got home and we were welcomed by a ginormous spider on Sister Loo's side of the room. Well in her attempt to kill the spider at the top of the ceiling, she dropped her shoe on her dresser which caused everything to fall off, and Mr spider never got killed. So she moved her entire bed and dresser away from the wall and threw all her pillows on my bed in her attempt to continue searching for the spider. She moved a big mirror we had, to the floor and ended up stepping on it and shattering the whole thing, while in the meantime still searching for that gosh darn spider. Haha meanwhile, I'm just laughing my head off in the background at how much damage had been caused all in an attempt to kill a lousy spider. Well the funny story doesn't stop there. She finally went and got the vacuum and started vacuuming all around her bed and the floor and all the spider webs on our wall.. well I decided I would do the same to my side of the wall just in case he tried to come snuggle with me.. Well I had to stand on my bed to vacuum the wall and so I had to lift up the vacuum. When I did that, the stupid vacuum starting sucking up Sister Loo's favorite pillow case she had for her whole mission and it burnt the whole bottom of it. Haha, I  felt soooooooo bad, because I knew how much that pillow case meant to her, but I just could not stop laughing at how ridiculous all of this was.. Long story short, we never found that blasted spider until yesterday morning, where he greeted me by my feet. I guess he knew not to bother sister Loo again. 

Haha another release sister Loo and I have found is Sudoku's. They are our bestest friends at night after we've gotten ready for bed and said our prayers. We race each other to see who can get their Sudoku done first, starting with the easiest ones to the hardest ones. I love it. After a long day of missionary work and rejection, Sudoku's are the perfect medicine for us.

Haha well.. enough with the fun and games, I promise we do actually work everyday.. even though this email may not seem like it. Last week I was on exchanges and my comp and I were able to teach this young man about the Book of Mormon and the purpose of life on his doorstep. It was really awesome. He had never grown up in any religion and didn't even really know about Jesus Christ. It amazed me! He was very receptive and open to learning more. We promised him that if he would just take the time to read from the Book of Mormon he would be blessed, that he would be so happy, and that he would know what his purpose was for this life. He said he would, but that he was moving to WA. So hopefully the missionaries will find him there!

I love the Gospel, I love this work, and I am sooooo thankful to be apart of it. Thank you all for your love and encouraging words. It means everything to me! The church is true! Don't give up on it!
Love, Sister Conrow :)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

My Spiritual Feast!!

I don't think I need to say anything else in this email, except for that. Hope you all have an awesome week!!!
Hahahaha, jk, jk... but seriously. General conference was the greatest spiritual feast I have ever had. I loved it, and I couldn't get enough of it. I just loved how bold all of the speakers were and how powerfully they testified of the Book of Mormon. I loved the comment with one of the general authorities that said, "If God had prophets in the Old Testament, and He is the same yesterday, today, and forever, why wouldn't He have a prophet here on the Earth today?" Haha, it makes sense. The Gospel of Jesus Christ makes perfect sense. All that we, as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believe in is what Christ established when he was here personally upon the Earth. God loves us, and He will never confuse us or lead us astray so he has placed a prophet on the Earth to lead and guide his children today. And that was manifested to me even more so as I listened to the prophet, Thomas S. Monson, this past weekend. I just love him! He is a man called of God.           
Man, I could just go on and on about how much I loved General Conference, but I simply don't have enough time for that. Anyways, miracles have been popping out of the seams left and right this past week. The Lord has placed his mercies upon my companion and I. We were able to contact this man who belongs to the Catholic faith, taught him about the Book of Mormon on his doorstep, and about the Restored Gospel and his eyes just lit up and he said, "All of this just makes sense..." It was then, when he said that, that I knew the Lord had been preparing him to hear about his true Gospel here on the Earth today. Anyone who has a relationship with Heavenly Father and studies his word, will know that this church has the fulness, and that the doctrines we teach make sense because they are the true doctrines of God. I am so grateful for all those who have helped prepare people to hear about the words of our Savior. 
Anywho- I've had a lot more exciting things go on, but I am running out of time. Something I've been thinking about this past week though is how important prayer is, and what a powerful role it can play in our lives if we allow it to. Heavenly Father is real, He is in Heaven above, and He wants to hear from us. If we have faith in Him, and earnestly pray to Him and tell him exactly how we're feeling, or what's going on in our lives, He will answer us according to our faith. J. Devn Cornish of the Seventy made this comment in his talk, that "we must pray, and then live our prayer." Ha I loved that. So simply put. He said, "prayer is the passport to peace." If we want peace, we pray, if we want answers, we pray, and then we go to work. Faith without works is dead. Anyway, I'm just rambling now.
But I want all of you to know this- A mission is hard, in fact, it's REALLY hard, but my life would be so much harder without it. I know that Christ lives, I know that Thomas S. Monson is His living prophet today, and I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers my prayers, and I know He can do the same for you. I love all of you so much. I truly am so grateful for the challenges and trials the Lord has given me. I'm grateful that He loves me enough to allow me to struggle and stretch so I can grow into who He needs me to be. I love this Gospel. The church is true! If you have doubts, all you have to do is ASK! 
Love, Sister Conrow :)    

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

I Believe In Miracles!

Happy Birthday to my dearest, sweetest, funnest sister Ashlee, today. She is turning into quite the old timer. Haha jk, jk Ash. I love your guts!!

So.. This week was awesome, a little slow, but awesome!

First off, I went on exchanges and had the best experience! We went out into an area called Blue Springs and it is absolutely beautiful! It reminds me of home, there's just all this country side and green trees, and beautiful homes. It's really nice. I loved it. But before we headed out there, my comp and I went to try to contact an investigator of hers that kind of dropped off the planet.. Well she's a deaf girl and so when she answered the door, I started signing to her and immediately she warmed up to us and we were able to go inside. I don't know how I did it, but from my 2 years of sign in high school I was able to understand pretty much everything she was signing and was able to translate it for my temp companion I signed to her (it was not so great) but we were able to understand where she was at, and what her concerns were, and set up another time to meet with her. She was the biggest sweet heart and just so patient with me and my sign. Ahhh, it was just the coolest experience for me. My heart is just so close to the deaf culture. I love it. I hope to be able to have more experiences like that. My comp told me that her and her other comp had such a hard time teaching her because they had to do it by writing back and forth to each other and so by me being there, I was able to get a lot more in, in a shorter amount of time. I know it was all thanks to my Heavenly Father. He was the one who brought all of those signs to my remembrance and helped me with my own signing. Ha, I love it! The church is true!

Second miracle that happened the other night. My Aussie sister and I were temp exchanges and it was the last hour before we had to be home, so we decided we were just going to walk the streets and find a miracle. Well we drove around and finally came to a street and pulled over. It was dark, and a little creepy, but we felt like it was where we needed to be. When we got out we just started walking, and knocking on the closest doors. We had a few rejections, but kept going.. Eventually we got down one street and all of the sudden I just had this really dark feeling, and felt like we needed to go back to the car, so we did. Well, at this point, I was feeling a little bummed because I couldn't understand why I had that feeling. Well, a few seconds later, as we were sitting in the car, I saw this younger guy walking down the street towards our car. So, Sister Kavea and I got out and approached the guy. Turns out he's in college and has been searching for a church. We were able to teach him all about the Restoration of the Gospel and the importance of the Book of Mormon and invited him to some activities and church on Sunday, which he said he'd love to come. IT WAS THE COOLEST EXPERIENCE EVER. I know that the Lord put him in our path, and that I had that feeling to go back to the car for a reason because if we hadn't of done so, we never would have met this kid. Ha, if that doesn't tell you that the church is true, then I don't know what will!

Another cool experience- the cutest couple from Hooper, UT came into the Visitors Center the other day. Turns out we had some mutual friends in common and spent a good amount of time on the tour. The spirit was so powerful and I just felt like I really connected to these people. By the end of the tour, I didn't want them to leave. I felt like I had known them for years. Poor Brother Roberts wanted to give me a hug at the end of the tour, haha but as missionaries we're not allowed to do so. Ha I felt so bad because I really wanted to hug him, I felt like he was my own dad, but I must obey haha, I know he understood. That's one thing I really love about serving at the Visitors Center- you just get so close to some of your tours and you really do build lifetime friendships in just a short one hour visit. It's amazing how the spirit can cultivate such strong feelings in such short amounts of time. Ah, I love this gospel. It's so great. 

Well everyone, I best be going. I love you all. I love this Gospel, and I'm so grateful to be apart of such a marvelous work and a wonder! The church is true.
Love, Sister Conrow :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Don't worry, be happy! :)

Everyone! I love you!  
I love all the letters that I receive, and it's nice to know that people are reading the blog. I really don't have much time today, so I'm just going to keep it short, sweet, and to the point. 
 I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY. It is the greatest thing in this entire world. I have seriously never been happier in my life and I would urge everyone to go on a mission if they are able to. I just can't even explain the happiness you feel from serving your Heavenly Father. This older gentleman came into the VC the other day and he was Jewish but he just LOVED the Mormons and everything about us. Haha, he went on and on about he he'd been to salt lake, and Palmyra, and how he loved all of the people. He said, "I don't think I've ever seen a Mormon who wasn't happy and smiling, are y'all taking drugs or something?!" Haha I just started laughing and thought it probably looks like, but then I said, "Nope, we're just really happy people because we know who our Heavenly Father is, that He loves us, and that we are apart of His true gospel. He has a plan for us!" It was so great. I love meeting people at the VC. You get your share of the coolest people around the world.  

Anywho- our area is doing well, just really trying to build up trust with our members in our ward and let them know we love them and want to serve them in anyway that we can. The other day we were out in our area just trying to contact people on our ward roster and we pulled up to this members house and outside was this man, and so we started talking to him. He isn' t a member, but he's friends with the member who we were going to see.. Long story short, his mom was inside and then came outside with the member and all his kids and we all got talking about the church. By the end of our hour long conversation, this guy, who was outside, and his mom, just loved us, and loved what we had to say, and just loved that we were so happy. This guy then told us that he would love to come to church, and we have an appointment with him today. And, he's super excited!!!! Ahhhh, I love it. I can't wait to get to know him and his mom a little better. They are just the most down to earth people and just so sweet and kind. I love meeting people like that, who are just so receptive to you and to the light of Christ.  

Something I'm really learning this week, as you can tell from my stories, is how important it is to just smile and be happy regardless of what's going on in your life. People are drawn to happiness, so if your are happy they will be drawn to you, which in turn, draws them to the Gospel, because it is the gospel of Jesus Christ that makes me happy. I love you all, be happy, delight in His glorious gospel!

Thank you for your letters, and your kind words of love and support. I cannot tell you how much it means to me! I wanna give a shout out to the the Carlyle's from Texas who are wonderful writers! Sharon, you are just the biggest sweetheart, and I loved the picture you sent me from the VC. I promise I will write you back as soon as possible. Everyone- you're the greatest! This is His work, and we are apart of it :)  

Love, Sister Conrow

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mosiah 2:17

Hey everyone!
This week is going to be a short one..

But I just want all of you to know that I would love to have some letters! Let me know how you are! If you do, I will do my best to write you back!

Haha, anyways- things here have been busy. Transfers were last week and I'm still here in Indy with Sista Loo who. I love it. Ha I'm glad I'm still here. I have the best ward mission leader in the world. He's great. This past week my comp and I have just really been focusing on service and visiting all of the ward members on the ward roster. It's amazing how many people we have in our ward that haven't been visited by members of the church. It's so so so important to do your visiting and home teaching. I can't express that enough. For reals.

So the other day as we were out in our area we were trying to find this one guy in our ward, well Sister Loo accidentally got the addresses mixed up haha so we knocked on this door looking for this guy and this lady came out and was super confused and told us no one lived there and so we just thought, "Oh he must have moved..." So we got talking to this lady and turns out she has been looking for a church for her and her kids and so we gave her our cards and invited her to come check out our church on Sunday. She was a total sweetheart and said she'd loved to, so we're hoping that we'll get to see her there. Well when we got back to our car Sister Loo realized that she mixed up the addresses.. ha so her mistake turned into a miracle. Funny how the Lord does that. Ha! Ahh I love this Gospel so so so much. I have never ever had anything in my life that has ever brought me greater joy and happiness, and I just want everyone to have that in their life. So does our Heavenly Father and that's why he calls missionaries!

Something I've been realizing as I've been out here is how important it is to serve others and to forget ourselves. Sometimes we can't even see how caught up and focused we are on our own lives and what WE have to do. I know I definitely need to work on forgetting myself more. I was reading in the Book of Mormon the other day about serving with a willing heart and also praying. When we don't pray or serve with a sincere heart or with real intent, it profits us nothing, did you hear that? Nothing! We might as well not serve if we don't do it gladly. Craziness.. 

Well.. that's about all this week- I wish I had more crazy exciting stories, I probably do, but once again my missionary amnesia has taken over. I love you all. Thanks for the support and kind words. Have a wonderful week, think of others and you'll be way happier. I promise! :)

Love, Sister Conrow :)

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