Friday, October 30, 2015

October 27, 2015 from facebook

Oh how true this is! We each have the wonderful opportunity to choose to be happy. Even when life gets hard and trials come our way, there are always things to be grateful for. I know that as we choose to have a positive attitude and outlook on life, everything else will be better! You will find yourself happier & you will be blessed! #behappy

October 27, 2015~Happy Transfers

Well hello everyone,
How's it going? I hope everyone had a wonderful week! I cannot believe that it's almost Halloween, and that November is right around the corner. Do you have any fun Halloween plans? What's everyone going to be? You'll have to send me some pictures! We have a ward Halloween party tomorrow and I'm excited for that! They said they usually have a really good turn out and that lots of nonmembers come. Plus, Sister Steinagel and I as well as our elders get to judge the Chili cook off and the pumpkin carving so that'll be a good time. It seems like these last few months of the year really seem to fly by. Lately I have really enjoyed all of the colorful leaves and have enjoyed the pumpkin aroma, and the spirit of Fall that is in the air. It's been getting a little bit chilly, but I'm sure it's nothing quite like Utah yet. I am not really looking forward to all of the holidays just because I have a feeling it's going to be hard and I'll probably get homesick, but I'm excited to share the Christmas message with the world and help share the gift of love. I am praying that the people's hearts will soften these next few months as the holiday spirit enters into their hearts. I have always loved Christmas time because everyone is always so kind and loving, and people seem to be in a better mood for the most part. I picked a new ponderizing scripture and it's Doctrine & Covenants 54:10. Thanks mom. Y'all should go read it. :)
It's been a really tough week for me mostly due to transfers. It's been very hard for me just because it's quite a big change. I like change, but not this big of a change haha. I feel like I'm starting my mission all over. Since I haven't ever transferred before, it was all very overwhelming for me. Saying goodbye to Sister Stratford and Sister Stephanie Hargus was absolutely miserable. One of the hardest things I've ever done. Sister Hargus helped me so much and literally saved my life. She is like my second mom. I got so close to her and was able to feel my mothers love for me through her. I'm glad she was able to take me to transfers though and send me on my way. Transfer meeting was really good and the spirit was really strong. President just really made sure that we knew that these transfers were inspired by God and he really wanted us to make sure that we prayed extra hard this week to know that we are where we need to be and that we are with who we need to be with. When President called my name and told me where I was going and who my companion was going to be, I turned around and she wasn't even there! She ended up staying back in the area to work and so the anticipation was killing me. I found the random member that was going to take me to my new area and packed up my stuff, and off I went. My new area is 2 hours from the mission office which is really weird because I've been so used to being so close! My area is called Tanglewood, and sometimes I feel like I'm Rapunzel in Tangled, except for not quite as magical. Well, I got dropped off and met my sweet companion. Her name is Sister Jenna Steinagel and she is from St. George, Utah. This is her last transfer and she will be heading home real shortly. It's been kind of hard because she keeps talking about how she gets to see her family really soon.. and i'm just over here like yep. I still have forever. Don't mind me. I miss you guys SO much, it hurts. You have no idea. We are very different and look at missionary work quite differently... but I know that it'll work. I know that I am supposed to be her last companion for some reason. She has already taught me a lot and I have been able to really grow and learn. A LOT. We live in a cute little apartment and I've already moved in and made it feel like home. My companion laughs at me all the time because I have been de-cluttering everything and deep cleaning everything. When I got there, there was like 10+ things in the fridge that were moldy. Like are we serious? You know I don't do well with that. Being on a mission has really made me realize how OCD I am and that I am actually quite a clean freak. I think my companion thinks I'm nuts. During lunch hour I clean out and organize everything and she just stares at me while she sits on the couch and eats potato chips. It's pretty funny. Overtime sisters just leave so much stuff and it just drives me nuts. Anyways, I've had fun doing it though and it's been a good time. Except for when we went to take a huge basket of crap to the Goodwill today and I brought my favorite clothes that I was going to change into after P-day and set it on top of the basket, and then donated it to Goodwill without thinking of it, and now I lost my favorite shirt, sweats, and shoes, so that really put a damper on my P-day. But life goes on I guess. I was so mad. Ew.
I have really loved being a Sister Training Leader! It's been super fun. I am now in another full car area so that's super nice, especially during the winter! Sister Steinagel lost her license so I have to drive, but I've been actually really grateful for that because it has helped me become more familiar with the area. It is SO huge and wayyyy bigger than Waxhaw. So, I have a feeling it's going to take me a while to get used too. We have lots of meetings to go to and are super busy, and I like that. We also get to be with the elders a lot and that makes me happy. There really are a lot of great elders in my mission. My zone leaders are the BEST and it's been so fun to work right by their side. We are really trying to work on helping our zone RISE UP and become the missionaries that God needs us to become. We haven't been able to go on any exchanges with the other sisters yet but I am really looking forward to that. We call them almost every night and it's so fun to talk to them and feel of the sweet spirits that they have. I know that God has placed me in their paths to love them and help them become who he needs them to become. I am so excited to get to know everyone! We have a mission leadership conference next week and I am so excited because I get to see my favorite zone leader from my last area and my trainer, Sister Ekstrom. It's been sooo long since I've seen her. So, i'm really looking forward to that.
Let's see, every morning we go outside and play soccer with the elders in the tennis courts so that's been pretty fun, although I don't feel like it's really that good of a work out. One of the elders got really sick this past week so I took over my essential oils and cured him and now everyone calls me a gypsy, so that's kinda nice. We have two really solid investigators who are scheduled to be baptized in November so that's really exciting! We met this girl named Melissa last week and she's going to be baptized on her birthday, November 7th, and I'm SO excited. She is so elect. She lost her only child last year and me and her have just really clicked. She came to church and absolutely loved it, and we have a lesson with her tonight in a members home after dinner and i'm so excited. We also are teaching this man named Robert and he's so great. He's been investigating the church for 10+ years and is really starting to progress. We taught him in the chapel last week and had 2 great members there and we taught him all about the power of the sacrament and the spirit was SO strong. It was my first lesson actually teaching in the chapel and it was such a good experience. He hasn't come to church in years, and guess what, he totally came on Sunday, and even brought his 11 year old daughter. They stayed for all 3 hours and we have a lesson with them tomorrow night, and then they are planning on coming to the ward Halloween party on Wednesday! Miracles are happening here in Tanglewood! Please keep Melissa and Robert in your prayers! Meeting the ward was great yesterday. They aren't anything like my Waxhaw ward, but I know that I can't compare anything to Waxhaw. I am excited to get to know everyone and begin serving with them! They all seem like great people.
I don't have very much time left, and I'm typing this on my ipad, but I just wanted to share a few thoughts with you before I sign out! I have studied a lot about agency this past week and really learned a lot. If you really think about it, we have the power to think, choose, and act for ourselves. Each and every one of us. Every single day, with everything that we do. What a blessing that is. We can choose what kind of attitude that we have. We can choose what we say to others, and what we do. We can choose to follow the Savior and live the Gospel, or we can choose to not do that. How grateful I am that a loving Heavenly Father trust me so much, to give me the opportunity to learn and to grow for myself. To really be a committed follower of Jesus Christ we must have the option to reject him, and therefore that is why we have Satan. I am grateful for hard days. I am grateful for Satan. Yes, I know that's weird. I am grateful for temptation. I have come to know that "only those who resist temptation really know how strong it is." We must not just give into Satan's traps. We will grow as we resist temptation and overcome the adversary. I am grateful that I make mistakes, so that I can learn from them and feel sorrow, so that I can feel joy as well! Right now our world is flooded with choices. It's both a blessing and a curse. We have millions of choices to choose from, and they are slowly all starting to mix together. There is really no right or wrong anymore. Satan is trying to make the good bad, and the bad good. I absolutely hate it! Growing up it was sometimes hard to keep all of the commandments because I seemed to think that they were restricting me, but my mission has changed me 100% and I have really come to know that they keep us free. "He who loves and obeys the truth is free." We all want the freedom without the consequences, but unfortunately, that's not quite how it works. God's commandments have been given to us for a reason. But, God also loves us so much that he is going to allow us to choose for ourselves. Our love for the Savior impacts our agency. Agency is an eternal principle and we must come to understand how it works in this life, so we are prepared for the next. Agency is God's gift to us, and what we do with it is our gift to him. I hope and pray that all of you will be able to use your agency wisely. Make good choices. Do what is right. I know that as you do, you will be blessed. It's not always easy, but it's ALWAYS worth it.
I've gotta get running. Thanks for all the love, prayers, and support. You guys are the best!! Talk to you in seven! By the way, my new address is 6007 Claudias Ln. Apt. 101 Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 27103. Love you! xo
Sister Worthington
. To really be a committed follower of Jesus Christ, we must have the option to resist him, which therefore is why we have Satan. I am grateful for hard days. I am grateful for temptation. I am grateful that I get to learn from my mistakes and feel sorrow, so that I can feel joy. I love being a missionary. There is nothing that has brought me more peace and happiness. I wish I could be a missionary forever. I love my Savior Jesus Christ so much and am so grateful to be serving him at this time.

From One To Another

October 22, 2015 from facebook

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

October 19, 2015~Farewell my dear Waxhaw

Hi sweet things,
Happy Fall! How is everyone doing? I hope that you all had a wonderful week! I hope that the weather has been nice for y'all and that you are enjoying the wonderful beauties that surround us! It's been a bit cold here in Waxhaw, but I am loving it! I love the chilly mornings and enjoy wearing sweatshirts to bed. :) Guess what! It's Monday and do you know what that means? A new ponderizing scripture! This week I chose Doctrine and Covenants 50: 40-42! It's a real good one and perfect for me right now. It's been a really good week, and I'm glad I ended on a good one. Yes, I'm getting transferred tomorrow afternoon. Yikes! Saturday night we got the transfer calls, and sure enough my district leader said I was bouncing out! My heart literally broke in half and I literally started crying, but five minutes later I fell right asleep and everything was all better. President Alexander called me last night and told me that I was going to be called to be a Sister Training Leader (which is basically a girl zone leader) and that I will be over 18 sister missionaries. I am so excited! I have always looked up to my STL's and it's crazy to think that now I will be going on exchanges with sisters, and that I will be giving all the trainings in zone conferences and meetings. I know that I am going to really need to rely on the Lord and that it's going to take a lot of work, but I am excited for this new journey that is ahead. I had a feeling that I was going to be leaving this transfer. I know that my time here in Waxhaw is finished and that I've accomplished what the Lord needed me to accomplish. I have come to love this place oh so much and will forever be grateful for the chance that I had to serve here. There is just nothing quite like you're first area I've decided. I have made so many new friends and have made some amazing relationships! I am so excited to come back and visit everyone. Church yesterday was killer because I had to say goodbye to everyone. I was a complete wreck, obviously, but I am grateful for the many people who have taken me in and wrapped their arms around me. I have truly felt a special love from my Waxhaw ward and it will always be considered "home."
So let's see, so much happened this week! I don't even know where to begin. Oh wait, that's the story of my life every week, isn't it. Sorry if this email is all over the place. My brain is a little scattered at the moment and I'm trying to do a million things at once. The highlight of the week was mission conference with Elder Kopishke. He is the member of the seventy that is over my mission and oh my goodness... he is amazing! It was my first time hearing a general authority on my mission and I was just blown away. The second he walked into the room, you could just feel that he was called of God. We had half of the mission there, and so there really wasn't that many people. It was a very intimate setting and it was great to be able to be so close with him. Since I was playing the piano for mission conference, I got to go shake his hand very first, and then had to run and play prelude music while everyone else trickled in. It was soooo special. He looked at me and said, "So you're the piano player that everyone talks about?" I smiled big and we had a good laugh, and then I went up to the piano. For the first two hours he just opened it up to question/answer kind of thing. It was insane! Missionaries would ask him intense questions and he would turn immediately to the scriptures and just gave the BEST answers. I honestly have no idea how he did it. It was unreal. It was such a testimony builder to me to know that he truly is a servant of the Lord and that the spirit is real. So many of my questions were answered and it was exactly what I needed to boost me up.
He told us to rise up to what we really want to be and to LIVE OUR DREAM. That really made me think a lot. I really sat back and reflected on who I want to become and who my God needs me to become. My mission is just the very beginning and it is preparing me for what is coming next. I am SO grateful that I chose to come on a mission. You have no idea. Absolutely no idea. If anyone of you are considering a mission.. GO. I know you hear that from everyone, but really, it has been the best thing that I have ever done in my entire life and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am truly "living my dream" right now and know that this is only the beginning to many more wonderful things. Elder Kopishke also talked a lot about the scriptures. He told us that we need to look for the principle in each verse of scripture. He said that we need to focus on three things. First, finding the doctrine. Doctrine will NEVER change. It answers the "why" question. Second, we need to find the principles based on the doctrine. The principles answer the "what" question. Third, we need to focus on the application, which answers the "how too" questions. So many of us as missionaries invite our investigators to make and keep certain commitments, without actually teaching them the why, what, and how too behind those commitments. We invite them to do hard things, without seeing the big picture. The commitments we extend will be a burden to them and they will not be able to succeed unless we do our part and actually help them understand why we are asking them to do certain things. I'm sure this isn't even making sense to anyone, but it was really eye opening for me. It makes sense in my head haha. I need to be a better teacher and make sure that my investigators really understand the doctrine, principle, and the application.
We talked a lot about families again. It seems to be the topic and theme of the whole mission, which I love. I am absolutely not upset about it one bit! It seems like all of our trainings and meetings are all about FAMILY! Elder Kopishke talked a lot about the temple and told us that our work here is not done until we get the whole family to the temple. We are not out here to baptize individuals, we are here to baptize families, and get them to the temple. The temple is literally the house of God. It is there for us to come to know the name of the Lord. (2 Chronicles 6.) He said that the power of Godliness is manifested when husband and wife kneel across the altar and marry under the authority of God- and then have children, and that is how we will all come to know God. The whole reason we are really here is to come to know God, and the only way that we can do that is through ordinances, and through the sealing power. Oh how it got me excited for that day when I can marry in the temple. I have really been trying with every fiber in my being to focus on finding families, because I know that that is what it's really all about. None of this individual baptism stuff!
So, we all were able to have lunch in the middle of mission conference and guess what... Elder Kopishke came and sat down right next to me. Everyone was so mad haha. It was quite funny! We ended up talking for a good 45 minutes and it was literally the best thing ever. I found out he is from Hamburg, Germany and we had a good discussion about Meike and her family! It was so fun to listen to him tell stories and to be able to talk to a servant of the Lord! It was an experience that I will never ever forget. He taught me so many things and told me that he knows God has a specific plan for me! We had a great conversation and I wish you all could have been there with me! As we were getting ready to go back into the chapel for our other half of the conference... I saw this sweet little woman walking down the hall and guess who it was? Sister Garlick from Alpine, Utah!! I ran up and gave her the biggest hug and it was the best feeling in the entire world! Elder & Sister Garlick just got here and they are serving as the medical missionaries in my mission! Sister Alexander told me that they were coming, but I didn't know that it was this soon! I absolutely love that woman to death. Mom, it felt like I was hugging you! I know that she was called to this mission for a reason and that she is going to do great things. I am grateful to have another "missionary mom" who can watch over me and who can be there for me, while I can't have my mama at the moment! Anyways, mom & dad they told me to tell you hello! Do you remember them? :) I'll try to get a picture with them next time I see them and send it your way. Anyways, the conference was great and I learned so much! I also got to play the mission song at the end of our meeting.... and that was the best thing in the whole wide world! I only had 10 minutes to practice it before the meeting... so one of those times that I was really relying on the "spirit of music" as I call it, but it was such a special moment for me and I have really come to see the power that music really does have!
After mission conference I had one of the most powerful moments on my mission thus far. I was feeling quite anxious the previous week and had asked if I could receive a priesthood blessing. All of the elders in my district came into the primary room and pulled up a chair for me! They explained to me that the priesthood is all the same, and that I could choose whomever I wanted to give me the blessing. I felt really impressed to have Elder Gill give me a blessing. He has been in my district ever since I got to Waxhaw, and we have been together the whole time, and so we have gotten really close. The second they laid their hands on my head, all fears, worries, struggles, everything was gone. It was so powerful. Many things were said that were exactly what I needed to hear. Elder Gill told me that I was a princess in God's kingdom and that I have a great work to accomplish here on Earth. During my blessing he told me that there were others on the other side of the veil who were with me right at this very second. OH MY GOSH I have never felt the spirit more strongly. The spirit was so tangible. He said that I have others on the other side who are cheering me on and who will be with me every step of the way. It was such a powerful thing that I can't even begin to describe. I know that it was a blessing coming straight from God and my testimony was so strengthened of the power of the priesthood. I was immediately comforted and ended up having the greatest week ever! Ah! It was so special and I wish I could go into more detail but I don't have time!
The work here in Waxhaw has been moving right along. Sister Stratford and I had a really crazy week! We were able to find a few new investigators, and while I was on exchange with Sister Vargas, we found a new family!! The only problem is that they speak Spanish, and well, I don't. Where's Elder Parkinson when I need him? :) I was grateful that I had Sister Vargas with me for the day and I know that the Lord placed them in our path on that specific day because he knew that I needed someone who could speak Spanish.. but now we (Sister Stratford and her new companion hahahah) are going to have to really rely on the members for help! Thankfully we have a lot of members who can speak Spanish and will be able to help them out! We found a few new people who seem to have some good potential. I am really grateful that we were able to find some new people and build up our teaching pool. We were able to contact our referral Scott this past week, (I can't remember if I mentioned him or not) but he was a referral from a branch president in Virginia and he is sooo elect. He is so ready to be baptized and I'm super sad that I only got to teach him once. We instantly clicked and got along so well and I'm sad that I have to leave him now.. but I hope to see him progress in the Gospel! Miracles are happening everywhere! I am so grateful for members who help us out. We literally couldn't do it without the members. I have loved being out here and have loved seeing how much the members are really involved in missionary work. I am sad that I didn't have that opportunity growing up. It's been so fun to see how excited the youth and kids get when we come around! I absolutely love it! Tomorrow we get to teach seminary at 5:30 am and I'm so excited! It'll be a perfect ending to my time here in Waxhaw! I love the youth of this ward and am so amazed at their diligence and their testimonies.
So yesterday was a crazy, busy, hard, hard day! I absolutely love Sundays. We had a wonderful ward council and I was again amazed at all the wonderful leaders that I have been able to work with. Right now the ward is really focused on family and the sacrament, so that is what most of our ward councils are about. Someone shared a really neat thought about families and it made me think. She said that there are two types of families. The older family, and the younger family. She went on to explain that her first two children were considered the "older family." She read scriptures with them every night, made sure FHE happened, always made church a big deal, and really spent lots of one on one time with her children and helped them learn and grow. They ended up growing up, serving missions, and marrying in the temple. Her "younger family" was a little bit different. She had them a little bit after her first two, and the dynamics of the family changed. Life got busy, the world got a little more crazy, and slowly, these two younger children were being deprived of the most important things and not even knowing it. This mother wasn't spending as much time with them, church, prayer, and scripture study, and FHE were not the top priority, and she wasn't able to nurture them and raise them like she did the older two. Although her two younger children are wonderful and great, they didn't end up serving missions, (which is absolutely okay) they went through a lot of hard times and had to suffer some serious consequences, and didn't end up marrying in the temple. Now she went on to say that that is not the situation for all families, but that it is common in a lot. It is SO important that we focus our lives on the simple things of the Gospel. Family prayer, family dinner, family scripture study, family church attendance, family home evening, and building family unity. Satan is trying so hard to attack members of the family because he knows that that is what God cares most about. Family is everything. Our Gospel is all about families. At a recent multi-religion conference, a pastor of another religion said that the Latter Day Saints do the "family thing" best and have it down! I thought that was super interesting, but so true! We get it, and that is because that is what it is all about! Family family family! We must focus on the basics so that we can remain a strong family in the Gospel, and let that continue into the generations to come.
Crap, the computer is going to time out in 2 minutes. I love you guys so so much!! So sorry I have to cut this one short! I will have to continue next week! I will let you know where I ended up getting transferred too! Thanks so much for all of your love and support. Remember that with God, all things are possible! I have such a strong testimony of this Gospel. I know that it is true. I promise you that it is the way to happiness and everlasting life. Be patient and understanding during your trials and struggles. God lets us struggle because he wants to let us grow. Trust that God wants what is best for us, just as we want what is best for ourselves. I love you all so much. Thanks for everything!! Talk to you in seven! xo
Sister Kyla Worthington

Two of our favoirite Hall boys

NC is all about pineapples...It means welcome? So hi

Last lunch with the halls today!!

Bathroom Selfie with my favorite sister yesterday at church

Late night sprint to the coffee shop to send in our numbers :)

There was also a movie with an older man that I can't figure out how to add.  Sorry.  But here is the caption that was along with the movie:
SUCH A SPECIAL MOMENT!!!! Gonna miss these friends so so so so much!!
This couple we served once a week and they're like 90+ years old! I already got permission to do their temple work when they pass!!! GOD IS GOOD!

Facebook October 14,2015

Today my heart is so full of gratitude for the beauty of nature. God always seems to know when I need a little something to cheer me up. It seems the closer we look, the more we see that God's hand is present in everything. From the petals of a flower to the cosmos of the universe, all things testify of Him. The delicate touch of a butterfly and it's radiant colors remind me that God is beautiful and His majesty is great. How grateful I am to live in a world where all of nature simply obeys God perfectly. I am grateful for little things like butterflies, that testify to me that He lives & that he is the creator of all things

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

October 12, 2015~You can Change

Hi my cute, adorable family,
How is everyone doing? I hope it's been a good week for each of you! I'm grateful for this opportunity to sit down and reflect on my week. It's been a crazy one full of ups and downs. I picked a new PONDERIZE scripture this week and am excited for that! My new one is Omni 1:26. Does everyone have their new scripture picked out? I was really able to see a huge difference this week as I picked one scripture to really focus on! I'm excited for a new week! I am so grateful that the Lord has given us preparation days too! They are definitely needed. We've had a pretty busy day today and I'm pretty wiped out. This morning after studies we went and played ultimate Frisbee with some members of the ward! That was super fun! The kids are out of school today so it was fun to get together with them. After that Sister Stratford made our way over to Target so she could get a new ipad case. I have officially decided that Target is my favorite store. I had to get out of there quickly because I basically wanted the whole store. Once again reminded me of how much I miss clothes and fashion. I know that doesn't matter and I shouldn't be thinking about it, but.. I think most of you know how much I love clothes and I just can't quite get the look I'm going for with a dress and skirt everyday. :) I'm grateful for the opportunity to be able to be "out of the world" for a short period of time though. It's been really good for me. We got together with our district and played some beach volleyball and soccer and that was a blast. Transfers are next week and so we tried to get everyone together one last time, in case anyone leaves. We usually never do anything on our preparation days so it was nice to get out and do something different! The weather has definitely been better this week. We finally saw the sunshine and it made me so happy! I didn't even want to use the car because it was so nice outside. We were able to go running outside for morning exercise every day this week and it felt so good to be back outside. It's amazing what some good vitamin D can do for ya!
Let's see, there were very many interesting things that happened this week! The whole mission had to go and get the flu shot so that happened. I wasn't super excited about that. I haven't typically gotten the flu shot in the past because I feel like it's made me get the flu.. but since they said we had too, I obeyed haha. It kinda hurt and I didn't like it all that much.. but I'm over it. It changed up the day a little bit so I can't complain. For dinner last night we got fed Ox Tail and I DO NOT recommend it to anyone. It was so disgusting and made me so sick to my stomach. Literally was up all night and it was the sickest that I've felt on the mission thus far. A super poor recent convert fed it to us and so I felt like I had to eat it... but it was a bad idea haha. I'm proud of myself for trying something new.. but that won't be happening again! I can't remember if I mentioned to ya'll about the Tiwi's getting installed in our cars last week or not? But, that's been quite the adventure! They are little black boxes that were installed in all of our mission cars. They have a GPS connected to them and basically the designated driver (which is me right now) has to log in and out every time we go to drive. The box talks to you and lets you know if you don't have your seat belt on, if you're speeding, and if you are driving aggressively. (going to fast over speed bumps, turning corners too sharp, slamming on breaks, etc) Basically we get 3 violations per transfer and if we get more than that, our driving privileges get taken away for a transfer. Anytime it talks to you it sends the information to SLC and notifies our vehicle coordinator. The church spends about 115 million dollars on missionary car accidents per year, so they are hoping that by installing these boxes... it will eliminate the accidents that missionaries have! It's been quite interesting and has really helped me as a driver! I am actually doing quite well and am quite impressed with myself. I haven't gotten a violation yet! Knock on wood. I'm so grateful for the cars though. They help SO much. I am so grateful for the faithful members of the church who pay their tithing to help support us in our work. I know that they are a sacred tool from the Lord and that I need to be treating them with the utmost respect! Other than that, things are going well & I can't think of anything else that really happened that's been too exciting. Waxhaw had this huge Fall Festival this past week and it was super fun! It was like a massive carnival and there were people everywhere! It rained for 2 of the days.. but the rest of the days were really good! There are acorns EVERYWHERE and lots of squirrels. The leaves are beginning to change and fall is definitely in the air! I love this time of year. I am going to miss seeing the beauty of the mountains, but I am grateful that I get to experience something new too!
We have been teaching a few new people. We got a few referrals from some members of the ward and that has super helpful! We don't really have anyone who is super super close to baptism, but we are working towards that for sure! We have been working with an excommunicated member and it has been so fun to see the light of Christ come back into her life. She's truly wonderful! We had a really neat experience this past week that I will share with you! We have this part member family in our ward who I have just come to love and adore. It is this older couple and the wife is a member, but the husband is not. They don't have any children. Larry is basically a member of the church, he just isn't baptized! He comes to church every week, reads the Book of Mormon with his wife, and allows us to come over for dinner often! I have built a really good relationship with him and truly love him to death. He is sooo weird but I just love him. As we have tried to begin teaching him the discussions, he has been really hesitant and has said that he's not ready for them yet. I know he is ready because I can just see it, and feel it! I have been praying a lot about him and decided that I was going to start praying for the spirit of Elijah to touch his heart. He really likes family history but hasn't been doing it for a long time. After a few weeks of that, we went over to his house to do some service for his wife this past week. We had a good long talk with her and I began telling her that I have been praying for the spirit of Elijah, and have been praying that he would feel it. She looked at me in tears and said, "Sister Worthington, just recently he has picked up family history again and has been finding his ancestors and has been asking all about our view on eternal families." She told me that my prayers were working and that something will "click" and he'll be ready to accept the gospel. I don't know if anything is going to come from it or not, but I know that the spirit of Elijah is touching his heart and bringing him that much closer to the gospel! I have had such a strong testimony of families lately as it has been something that we have really been trying to focus on as a mission, and my testimony has just been strengthened beyond words.We had a mission wide conference call this past week and President and Sister Alexander invited us to pray for some specific things this week and I have really been trying to do what they have asked and have seen a huge difference. I have really tried to pray for the spirit of Elijah, for stronger faith in Jesus Christ, for the gift of charity, and for the doctrine of Christ. I have been absolutely amazed at how much that has been helping me individually, and those around me. I feel like my love for my companion, myself, the Lord, and my investigators has increased immensely. I have stronger faith in my savior, and know that this is where I need to be at this time in my life and that there are people who are prepared for me! There hasn't been a day go by where I haven't thought about the doctrine of Christ and where I haven't tried to implement it somehow in my life. I have gained such a stronger testimony of the power of prayer. I know it is real. I know it works. I know that every prayer is heard. I am grateful that I get to kneel down and pray to my father in heaven. He has helped me so much this week and has been by my side every second of every day.
Sister Stratford and I are doing well. She had kind of a harder week this week and was super stressed and discouraged, but I was able to step back and really love her as our Savior would love her. Right now I know that I need to be with her. She is teaching me so much, and together we are learning lots. I am grateful for her example and for her desire to do good. She is an amazing missionary and I know she has a great work to do. We are ready to jump in this next week and watch miracles happen!! We had a wonderful Sunday yesterday and I was so grateful to be able to take the sacrament again. Having missed it due to general conference, I was in dyer need of it. It felt so good to feel of the power that it has and be renewed once again. Oh how I need the sacrament! I couldn't do it without it. I am grateful that I can put everything up on the altar and give it to my savior!
I was able to reflect on a lot this past week and had many things come to mind that I wanted to share with you! I want to start by re-asking the question that was asked in conference. "Is the Gospel working for you?" How do we find the life we want, and not the life we're living in right now? I have come to notice that most of us are getting caught in a pattern of life that we don't necessarily enjoy or want. I think so many look at our lives and think that we have it all put together, or think that all is fine and dandy, but yet in those quiet moments when we are all alone, we know that we are sad, lonely, depressed, afraid, and things really aren't going the way that we wish they'd be going. Now I want you to think about another question that was asked. "What is keeping you from progressing?" We all have problems and challenges. We all have weaknesses and we all make mistakes. If something we're doing is violating the commandments of the Lord, it's coming from Satan and it's keeping us from progressing. How can we find our way back and allow the Gospel to "work for us?" The Gospel really is so simple and can work for every one of us if we let it. I hope that we can understand that the way back isn't as hard as we may think it is. Satan is telling us it's impossible, but we know that through Christ, we can completely overcome all of our challenges, and that with God, nothing is impossible. (Luke 1:37 ) I came upon that scripture this week and it just made me super happy. I have never seen that verse before and I definitely read it at a perfect time and really needed it.
Anyways, Satan will do all that he can to keep us captive and not let us get out of the trap that we are in. We cannot let him discourage us! When we decide to take the path that climbs up, not down, and is maybe the harder path, there will be many rewards along the way! When you do something right, when you resist temptation, when you meet a goal, you feel good about it. It's a different kind of feeling that you can't find anywhere else. Better than the feeling you'd get if you broke a commandment. It's a feeling that brings peace, comfort, and encouragement to keep going. If we are going through a lot, or feel like we are weighed down with stress or sin, We can receive so much help through so many people but we have to realize that improvement must come from our own determination to change. The most difficult part about changing is to make the actual decision to do it. Once you commit, the path will become so much easier. We will qualify for the Lord's help and his strength! A big part to changing and allowing the Gospel to work for you is through setting goals! "To reach a goal you have never before attained, you must do things that you've never before done." Reach out to those you love to help you set goals to be a little bit better every day. Let others know that you need help and that you're ready to change! Don't be selfish and think that you can do it all on your own... because you can't! That's where humility comes in!
If the road was easy, we wouldn't grow in strength. If we were always forgiven for every mistake without any effort on our part, we wouldn't know the blessings of repentance. If everything was done for us, we wouldn't learn how to work, or learn how to acquire the power to change. Being able to move on will come through our faith, our true repentance, our willing obedience, and our giving of ourselves. Selfishness is at the root of our problems. I firmly believe that. We must learn how to conquer our selfishness. Selfishness blinds our vision and keeps us from changing. We must learn how to turn outwards. That is exactly what the Savior did and that is the example that we must look too. If your life is in a rut or a bind, I want you to understand that it took time to get that way, and we must allow time to fix it. Be patient with yourself. Take it day by day, decision by decision, and choice by choice. The hard period will pass and we will come to see the real power of the atonement. Search out God's plan for YOU specifically. I know that he has a plan for each one of us, and sometimes we have to go through some bumpy times to get to the place that he needs us to be! I know that through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we can all be repaired and restored.

I know that as you progress in working towards being better, you will see that the Gospel is working for you and that it really is so simple, and the way to complete happiness and joy. I wish that I could replace each of your doubts with my certainty and that you really could know that anyone and everyone can repent and change. Even when you think all hope is lost, you can change and come to the savior. Don't let the little things keep you from progressing and becoming who our Father in Heaven has intended for you to become. The lord will help you if you just humble yourself and turn to him. He gave his life for us so that we could change. Trust in him completely. You will feel his love, strength, and support with you. Be obedient in all that you do and keep his commandments and he will bless you. I want to invite you all to allow the beauty of the Gospel to CHANGE you. Turn your thoughts to Jesus Christ this week and submit yourself to him. Let him heal you!
Sister Stratford shared a really neat analogy with me that she heard Elder Bednar talk about in a U of U devotional one time. She began by telling me of a box that represents our hearts. She said that you have a box that is full of black sand. On one end of the box there is only a hole big enough for one grain of sand. On the other side of the box there is another hole that is big enough for one grain of sand. If you put a grain of white sand through one end, a black grain is going to pop out of the other end. Once you put a grain of white sand in, is the box completely dark? No. Do you still feel yucky inside? Yes. But are you completely filled with darkness? No. Sometimes we sin and we feel so guilty and painful and downright gross inside that we want to erase it completely. That can happen, but it doesn't happen all at once. We need to remember that the guilt and pain we feel when we sin is important to keep us from doing the sin again, and the memory will not go away, neither will the feelings of pain. Yet, in order to truly forgive ourselves, we need to recognize that we can move on. As we continue putting white grains of sand in the box, more and more black grains will come out, and we will feel more whole and more clean, and slowly, those feelings of guilt and shame will leave us. But it takes time. In order to forgive ourselves, we need to accept the fact that we have sinned and recognize our feelings of pain, but we must also recognize that forgiving ourselves doesn't mean erasing those feelings of pain. It means replacing them with good feelings one at a time. We will never ever be able to completely forget some of the mistakes that we have made. If we forgot, we wouldn't remember the pain and suffering that we felt and remembering is essential because it helps us not make the sin again. If we forgot how it felt, we would most likely commit the sin again. Looking back we'll remember what we did, but through time and filling your box with white sand, we will be able to move on and use those experiences as growth and learning experiences. I thought that was a really neat analogy and it's really helped me get through some of the things that I've done in the past. I have made plenty of mistakes in my life, but as I have been filling my life with goodness, I have been able to move on and see the true beauty of repentance and forgiveness.
I'm sorry this email is all over the place and probably not making any sense. It's really hard to type out what's really in my head. I just have been feeling so overwhelmed with the love of my Savior and have really come to know of the power of the atonement and repentance. As I have been focusing on the Doctrine of Christ, I have come to understand that we can all change, and that we all need to change. Repentance is simply change, and it's trying to become a little bit better every single day. That's all that Heavenly Father asks of us. He just wants us to try a little bit harder to become a little bit better and a little bit more like his son Jesus Christ. I know that we have been given the best gift in the world, the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let's take advantage of it and really let it "work for us." I know that this is Christ's true church. I know that he lives. I know that this is his work. I am so grateful to be serving a mission at this time. I know that there is no where else I'd rather be right now in my life. I am so grateful for each one of you and for your examples of goodness. I look up to each of you so much. I am so grateful for the friendships that we have and the relationships that we have. I hope that you will each be able to feel how much I love you and how grateful I am for you! I hope you have a good week and come unto Christ. I sure love you! Let me know if there is anything I can do to help any of you! You are all in my prayers! Sending you all my hugs & loves from NC! Talk to ya in seven! xo
Sister Worthington
My favorite family EVER!!!!  They will probably be the hardest for me to leave.  They have become such a huge part of my life.  They were baptized right before I came on my mission and they're like my second family!

Best Distrct Ever!!

My district leader did this stupid burger challenge.....Worst idea ever.  He didn't even finish it either.  Weak sauce


Saturday, October 10, 2015

October 9, 2015 ~ Facebook

This simple message is so profound. I am so grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ and for his example of perfect love. I know that as we love others and pray daily for the gift of charity, we will truly be able to see others as God sees them. True love, is when you finally realize that you love others more than you love yourself. I promise that as we put other first, we will feel the deep love that our Savior has for us individually and we will come to understand what the Gospel is really all about

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

October 5, 2015~hello

Hello family,

Another week come and gone. Happy October! How is everyone doing? I hope you all had a wonderful week, and a great weekend! Wasn't conference so good? I don't know if it's just because i'm a missionary or what.. but they seem to just be getting better and better every time. I am so grateful for the power of revelation. I know without a doubt that our new apostles were called by God. The spirit testified to me that they are truly who we need right now to hasten this work and change the world. There were so many talks that were given just for me! I cannot even pick a favorite. I really enjoyed them all. It's amazing how much you really take in when you are a missionary. I learned so much and was truly taught and edified by the spirit. I wish we could have conference once a month. I encourage you all to really take what you learned and what the spirit taught you, and apply it. Accept the invitations that were given, and we will truly be blessed. I'm so excited to start "ponderizing" a verse of scripture each week! This week I have chosen Mosiah 2:22! This morning in personal study I broke it down and really studied what it meant. It was super powerful and I invite you to all do the same and then post it on the fridge or write it on your bathroom mirror so you can see it everyday! Let's make it a family goal! 1 scripture a week. I love it!
This week was particularly very difficult for me. It was the hardest week that I have had on my mission thus far. There were a lot of things that happened that I won't get into, but let's just say that I am grateful for my patriarchal blessing, the power of prayer, and priesthood blessings. I finally gave in and asked for a priesthood blessing. It was my first blessing on my mission, and I know it won't be the last. Sometimes I feel like I can't be sad, can't have a hard time, or can't ask for help because of who everyone thinks I am haha. For the most part, I try to put on a happy face and act like everything is complete bliss, but this week I just couldn't hold it in any longer! I am so grateful that my companion was strong and was there for me. She has been a rock for me and has taught me so many things. I know that God has kept me with her for a reason. I needed to learn from her. I needed her example, and I needed her friendship. We are oh so different, but when you both have the same purpose, to love and serve the lord, it doesn't matter how different you are, it works.
Aside from all of the emotions that I've had, it's been such a wonderful growing experience for me. I am grateful that I had conference to pick me up. Each and every week I am amazed at all that I am learning. We have been struggling to find new investigators and the work has really slowed down. It's been quite discouraging, but I know that this is the Lord's work and that everything is on his timing. If I am doing my best and working hard, then I know he will take care of me and he will do what he needs to do. The weather has been HORRIBLE lately and has been really putting some restrictions on the work. We had a ton of hurricane warnings and were told to seriously prepare. Sister Stratford and I were even on bikes this week... so that didn't help the situation haha. We got aprox. 14 inches of rain this past weekend, so it was super windy, wet, and cold. Which brings me to my next point. MOM, I need winter clothes now! It's FREEZING! I literally didn't bring anything with me.. so i'm either going to just drop some money, or I need you to send me some things haha. Mostly just some tights, boots, sweaters, and coats hahah. Gosh. I'm so needy. haha i'm so sorry. I guess I just take some advantage of being in the United States. Those poor missionaries in other countries. I feel so bad for them! But, there is a pair of black combat boots that I have, and those thick black tights that I bought before my mission that would sustain me until the later months. Anyways, none of this matters, I am surviving haha.
Melissa and Taylor are both doing really well. We are hoping to get Taylor to the temple next month. It has been so fun watching her learn and grow in the Gospel. We were able to attend institute with her again this past week and she just asked lots of questions and loved it. It has been so amazing to see her mother come back as well. She has come to church 2 times now and has been so welcomed by the ward and is "back to stay." Not only was it amazing to see Taylor get baptized, but it has been amazing to see one of Christ's lost sheep come back to the fold. I love this work so so much and this is what makes it all worth it.
My personal studies this week were kind of all over the place, due to my all over the place week so I wish I had some super good things to share with ya'll but I just don't haha. Hopefully this letter doesn't let you all down! Please forgive me. I am currently at a zone activity in Charlotte typing this off of my ipad, with no notes, so it's gonna be a rough one haha. We don't have time to go to the library today so that's kind of a bummer. I think you all know how much I love my email time! I just have so much to say and could go on and on and on and on!
The highlight of the week was probably mission conference on Thursday! One third of the mission was able to get together in Charlotte all day long and it was sooo good. Our main training was done by President Alexander's son. He is from Bountiful, Utah and works for the church in the family history department. Our whole conference was all about family history, and the spirit of elijah. It was incredible. That's about all I can say. I learned more about family history in those 8 hours than ever before. President Alexander's son explained that the church adds 1 million+ names every single day to the family history website. He basically told us that if you think your work is done, it's not. He said you can always find new information and new names. It made me really want to get into family history and got me all pumped up! The reason he did the training on this was because he wants to spread the spirit of elijah throughout our mission. They want us to start using family history more in our finding efforts and in all we do. President said that missionary work and family history work are ONE. Neither is greater than the other. The work for the dead is just as important as the work for the living. The FAMILY is one thing that everyone in this world can relate too. Everyone has special feelings about their family. We did lots of role playing and learned how to approach people with the family history attempt. It was really neat and i'm excited to start using it. We were able to all pull up our family trees and look at our families. I had a really spiritual experience with my grandma Joan that I will never ever forget. She was carrying me through this week, and when I went to open my family tree, her name and picture was randomly pulled up. It was sooo crazy and was exactly what I needed. I know that there are really angels among us. I pray for angels daily. I encourage you to all do the same! It's brought miracles!
Sister Alexander also had a training with all of the sisters! We talked all about self worth, and being daughters of God. She mentioned that there are a lot of sister missionaries who are going through a lot right now and need to feel LOVE. She showed us a surprise video that was amazing! Somehow she knows Sister Adeth Kapp, (the old YW president) and she made a special video for all of the sister in the North Carolina Charlotte Mission! It was incredible! She is like 88 years old or something and just has so much power! She recorded herself giving like a 30 minute talk and it was just so unreal. Exactly what I needed to hear. I wish I could tell you everything, but without my notes, it's kind of hard haha. I learned a lot and it was an answer to my prayer.
I want you to know that I know this work is real and that this church is true. Everyday my testimony is strengthened. Everyday I become more converted to this Gospel. The doctrine of christ has changed my life. I am so grateful for my knowledge of the Plan of Salvation. I am grateful for Joseph Smith, and his service and dedication to the Lord. I am grateful to be on a mission. It is the hardest thing i've ever done, but the most rewarding. I am grateful for every hard day. It's shaped me into who I am today. I am grateful for Elder Holland's talk, as well as President Russell M. Nelson's. They really helped me see who I want to become and who God needs me to become. I have so much work to do, but I am excited to learn. I know that all he asks is that we try our best. We have to exercise faith. We have to be strong and courageous, especially in this crazy world. We need strong women. We need good wives, and solid mothers. I know that my mission has helped me become the wife and mother that I need to become. My mission has been so good for me and my life. I have learned to rely more on the Lord, to seek the guidance of the spirit, and to feel an overwhelming love for God's children. My knowledge of the scriptures and my understanding of the doctrines have increased. My desire to be obedient and to keep the commandments with exactness have increased immensely. My testimony of the savior and his infinite atonement has been strengthened. My missionary experiences have become part of who I am and what I am.
I want to thank all of you for your love and your support. I couldn't do this without you. It's been definitely a refining experience for me, and all of my weaknesses have come out, but I have been able to truly figure out who I am and what my purpose is here on earth. I love this work. I love the Gospel. I love my savior Jesus Christ. I love my family so so much. I've got the best one in the world. :) wouldn't change ya'll for anything!! Let me know what I can do for you guys! I hope you have a wonderful week. Keep the faith. Keep smiling. Keep working hard and being obedient. I love you!!

Oh also, President Alexander told me I had to tell you that I'm an AMAZING missionary... haha I have to report to him in my email this week that I told you. So i'm really not, but i'm trying to be obedient. My zone leader, Elder Hutchings, from Beaver, Utah also wants me to tell you all hello, and to tell you how great he is. I love him so much haha. He has been the best zone leader EVER. We were definitely best friends in heaven. People think that he is the "boy" version of me haha. He is just always so happy and full of love. He always has a smile on his face, and he always makes me want to be a better missionary. :)
Well, now I really have to go. I love you so so much. Sending you hugs & kisses from NC. See you in seven. Next weeks letter will be better.. sorry. This is a lot to type from an ipad. Getting really tired. LOVE YOU! xo

Sister Ky Worthington

Friday, October 2, 2015

October 2, 2015~ from facebook

I'm so excited for General Conference! What a wonderful opportunity we have to hear our prophet's voice! Remember to come with questions & I promise they will be answered.