Thursday, September 10, 2015

Another week!

We went on exchanges this week. Sister Miller went to Bend with Sister Griffin and I stayed in Sisters with the other Sister Williams. We got fleece blankets from our branch mission leader and his family because it had been really cold. I tried Salmon on Monday of last week and found out that I actually like it. We went to a Relief Society picnic. We went to Redmond and Bend several times this week. We went there on Thursday for an accountability meeting and then District meeting on Friday and then we drove to Bend to switch companions for exchanges and then I drove back to Sisters and then on Saturday we drove back to Bend and then we drove to Bend today to go shopping.

We've been sharing the Family: A Proclamation to the World. My favorite part is "Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ." When we put Heavenly Father and His Son first, everything else in our lives falls into place. I love my savior, I know He lives, and I know that they want the best for us.

I've seen wild turkeys, deer, horses, rock-chucks and much more here in Oregon!

I will be starting to put Sister Martin's address at the bottom of each blog for easy access.

Sister Kelly Martin
Oregon Salem Mission
700 Deborah Rd Ste 260
Newberg, Oregon 97132

They're in Sisters! Literally!

I love being here in Sisters, Oregon! It is a cute little tourist town with lots of camp grounds nearby, much like Idyllwild. My companion is Sister Miller from Las Vegas, Nevada. We have a lot in common and are having our own adventure! We have been using our maps to get around town and it's been fun. We got to take the car from Redmond with us, although we would rather have a jeep and lots of members keep telling us we will need a better car when the snow comes. We also need a better car after visiting a few members who live on dirt roads. Actually 2/3 of the members of the branch live on dirt roads. Sister Miller and I were both companions with Sister Williams. This is Sister Miller's last transfer. She was just in her last area: Brownsville for 9 months of her mission. That was how long Sister Williams was in Brownsville.

We are having a zone conference on Thursday and President Samuelian is inviting members to attend the evening session with the missionaries. It will be an all day meeting for us. Both Bend and Redmond stakes are invited. We get to go to Redmond every week for district meetings. Sister Miller and I are so excited to help the members of the sisters branch with the missionary work. We have spent the last few days trying to get to know the members.

We read about the plan of salvation today in 2Nephi chapter 2. Verse 26 stood out to me "And the Messiah cometh in the fullness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall. And because they are redeemed from the fall they have become free forever, knowing good from evil; to act for themselves and not to be acted upon, save it be by the punishment of the law at the great and last day, according to the commandments which God hath given."

SO we are free to act or be acted upon. The choice is ours.

Transfer 6

I got an early birthday present Saturday night!!! 

Sister Spencer and I found out that we are both leaving Redmond! Her with her 6 months and me with my 6 weeks! And this area is getting Elders! And the Elders will be on bikes because I am taking the car with me to my new area: Sisters, Oregon! And the Elders will be training! I will be re-opening the Sisters branch, there hasn't been any missionaries there for the last 3 months.

I found out that the ward mission leader is related to a young couple in Newberg. So that is super exciting! I get to live in a country mansion with President Liddell and his wife. He is in the stake presidency. I will still be in the Redmond stake. I meet my new companion tomorrow afternoon. My district leader will now be one of my zone leaders and I will still be in the same district!

The beginning of this week was a little rough. We were chastened, some people pointed out lots of areas of improvement. Tuesday night was intense, Wednesday morning was really challenging as well. We haven't had a new investigator in months and several of our investigators said they wanted a break from meeting with us. We kind of went through the motions of studies. We recognized that something needed to change. We needed to see God's hand helping us. We felt like we were working on our own and we needed to turn to him.

Miracle number one happened! We were at a recent convert's house and their cousin asked, "How does one join your church? Do you show up or is there a process?" So we told him that we could answer that question and gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon and told him about it. He asked us for our favorite scripture in it and asked us if we could share one scripture with him to give him hope, what would it be? We are meeting with him tonight!

Miracle number 2: While doing SERVICE on Friday at the house of a neighbor of another recent convert, as we were leaving, this neighbor whom we SERVED asked what my (scripture) bag was. Well I opened it up and said it contained my scriptures. I showed her the bible and the Book of Mormon and I asked if she has heard of the Book of Mormon and she said no. So we explained it and shared our favorite scripture (we learned that from the last miracle) and then we gave her a copy and invited her to read. The recent convert asked is she would like to come over and join us on Tuesday for the next lesson that we teach her and the neighbor agreed!

Miracle number 3: We had an appointment with some investigators and we went there with our ward missionary and they cancelled. So we decided to visit one of our other investigators and we had a wonderful lesson with her and when we left, the investigator's son was outside with two of his friends, one of them we had been trying to meet with for weeks, and we stopped and talked to them. We told them about the Book of Mormon and our ward missionary shared how the gospel had changed her life when she heard about it. We gave them copies of the scriptures and scheduled a time to teach them more about it!

Within a few days we had many new investigators!!! We had been trying to build up the courage for weeks to open our mouths to people on the street and go tracting, but we learned an important lesson. Heavenly Father did not expect us to go out there and do that, He expected us to open our mouths to those around us, those that we serve with.

The scripture that we shared with all of these people is found at the end of the first chapter of the Book of Mormon. "...I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender mercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of  deliverance." (1Nephi 1:20)

Our District and Zone:

Elders pose the same! Haha!

When we get together........

Missionaries do crazy things

We have FUN!!!!

         And we laugh!!!!


My birthday package! I waited all week to open it!!! Thank you!!!

          There's no place I'd rather be 

Transfer called... they want their missionary back...

This coming Saturday is transfer calls. We have no idea what will happen, we could both stay or leave.

We went on exchanges this week so I got to go to Bend! It's a pretty cool place. Sister Griffin and I went tracting. We got out of the car and I put my really heavy pink water bottle in my bag and she said "Sister Martin, do you need your water bottle?" and I said, "yes, I might get thirsty." 20 minutes later, we knocked on this door and a guy answered. He was very nice and said he grew up a Jehovah's witness and they went door to door and he then offered us water. We had an amazing conversation with him about the gospel and we set up a return appointment. It was great!

I promised Sister Griffin that I would go back to Redmond and open my mouth. That is something that Sister Spencer and I are still working on.

I gave a talk in Sacrament meeting based on Matthew 4:18-23. It was very intimidating because for once, I did not write my talk out. I took my scriptures and spoke by the Spirit. I need to practice trusting in the Holy Ghost more. [D&C 84:85] [D&C 38:30]

We got to attend relief society in the other ward and it was about dutch oven cooking! It was awesome! I can't wait to go home and practice!

This is me with Rudy. He is a little poodle and he LOVES to be held!
Matthew 4:18-23
18 And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.
20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.
21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.
22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of  sickness and all manner of disease among the people.

Zone P-day

Today, we had zone p-day! We were going to explore some lave tubes outside of Bend. So we went to the stake center in Bend and we waited for everyone to show up and then we headed out. It was hard to find parking for some of us, so we waited for all of the other missionaries to find parking spots. Two cars pulled up and rolled down their windows and said "Look at all the Mormon missionaries!" They were people from Newberg!!!!!! It was go great to see them! Their priests and teachers came to spend a week in  Bend and everything worked out perfectly.

The caves are pitch black and we probably would have walked by without noticing each other. There is a mission prep class for the stake that happens once a month and they were all invited to go out on splits with us! So next week they get to practice what they were taught!

Photobombed!! [Just kidding! I think those are just some elders]

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Welcome to Redmond!

There are tons of Volcanoes around here. I don't know if there are any active ones, but since there are volcanoes there are lava caves!! I haven't been in a lava cave since we went to Snow's Canyon years ago.... Anyway, we had a sisters' p-day with all of the sisters in the Redmond Zone (we're the only sisters in our zone) and the Bend Zone (there are 3 companions in Bend, well, one in La Pine and 2 in Bend). So there were 10 of us in total. It was really fun!! We got to do some crawling and lots of squats. I went the furthest, it was awesome!! [Knowing Kelly, it doesn't surprise our family that she went the furthest! I'm jealous I wasn't there, we'd go as far as we could possibly go.] Naturally, we all got super dirty and then ate Little Caesars Pizza.

We had an investigator come to church! Sister Spencer and I are going to open our mouths more and introduce ourselves to random people.

Our P-day has been super busy. We have been in Bend since 8 in the morning. We had to get an oil change on our car, we found out that 2 of our tires have nails in them so we have to go to Les Schwab soon to get new tires.

We sang hymns in the caves today. It was really spiritual. Some of the sisters got each of us a little flashlight and they wrote the scripture 1Nephi 17:13. "And I will also be your light in the wilderness; and I will prepare the way before you, if it so be that ye shall keep my commandments; wherefore, inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments ye shall be led towards the promised land; and ye shall know that it is by me that ye are led." It was really cute! And it is a great message.

[No lava cave photos]


I'm thankful for this tag that I wear everyday!!

We are SO blessed!
Hello!! -The Majestic Rockchuck
These are the little animals that live really close to the church.
They are called yellow-bellied marmots or rock-chucks.

[I thought they were just squirrels or really fat gophers or really small beavers!]

Sister Porter took pictures. Sister Porter and I were in the MTC together.

[Remember how long ago Sister Martin was in the MTC?] 

Redmond: "The Celestial Side of the Mountain"

On Saturday last week, I felt like I was going to be transferred. I feel like that everytime we get transfer calls though, so I was surprised to find out that I was actually being transferred. On Tuesday, I packed 5 packages to send home and then I filled my 2 suitcases, my carry-on, 3 boxes, 2 bags, and 2 and a half purses plus my hulahoop and I was ready for the transfer meeting. We got there and I was talking to Sister Abra,s and she told me not to worry, there's one Spanish sister, one STL and only regular sister going over the mountain, and that I will probably stay locally. I looked at allof the other sisters and I though, one of them is my new companion. They announced all of the trainers, there are 23 new missionaries this transfer, then they announced the Redmond Zone and I was the first sister called to leave. Redmond is 2 and a half hours away from Newberg and the rest of the mission. It is in central Oregon. Since it is so far away, for transfer meetings, only the missionaries who are leaving go. So my companion was not at the meeting. I got to ride with the 2 other sisters going to Bend and the stake patriarch and his wife.

We got a phone call on Thursday from our Zone Leader and he said, "Sister Martin, we were talking to President and he said you are being emergency transferred.... just kidding." I didn't think it was very funny... but it did get me thinking about how much time I do have left. Time is something we have no control over. It makes me strive to do my best every day. To give the Lord my all. D&C 4:2 "See that ye serve Him with all your heart, might, mind, and strength."

Sister Spencer and I are very excited to be companions! :)

Leaving Newberg

Transfer calls came this Saturday. We had gone over to Abrams for dinner and all of them were talking about how the Lord isn't going to take me away from Newberg too. Sister Williams is leaving so they will leave me and then the next sister missionary will take over the area after I leave. President won't send 3 missionaries in to take over the area. Well, I've experienced white-washing (2 missionaries come in and take over an area) twice now (Hemet and Newberg). Elder Adams gave me a blessing and I was able to be calm for the rest of the evening. We had to be in by 7pm and we did our weekly panning and then by 9pm rolls by, we get a phone call from our district leader. He tells us that half of our district is leaving. Then he says "Sister Martin is getting a new companion" and then I relax because I think that  mean I'm staying. He then says, "Sister... Martin is leaving too..." I felt like it was going to happen, but I hoped that I would get one more transfer here. Now I have to pack all of my stuff and prepare the go to the transfer meeting tomorrow and I will get assigned a new area and a new companion.

This morning was our last time at Vista Balloon adventures. Pierre, the owner gave us 4 certificates to give away and he told us when we come back to visit, to give him a call and he'll let us and probably a friend go up for free! He rocks! And definitely one of the best bosses ever, no nice and generous. Everyone there was always positive and encouraging, even when they were correcting our mistakes. I never felt scolded or lectured. Everything that was spoken was to lift others up and encourage them and not tear them down. It was such a great place to volunteer. We made so many friendships!

The only constant thing in this world is change, I felt change in the air and now it is here. Time for new adventures and new relationships. Alma 37:37 and Proverbs 3:5-6 are all about change and trusting in Him. The Will of God is one of my favorite videos. He is the gardener and He knows what He wants us to be. I want to say to Him: "Thank you Mr. Gardener for loving me enough to cut me down."

We gave her our first hot air balloon flight certificates! She was so happy!
We did a lemonade stand on Wednesday with the primary president in Newberg 2nd

At the Temple's Visitors Center

We made strawberry jam with cerrano peppers with a member. It was really good but really hot!