Monday, January 20, 2014

How is it done? and I've been out a YEAR!?!

Could this mission I’m on get any better? Week after week, it only gets better!

 Today I was inspired to talk about Enos, he’s incredible.  His 2.5 page scriptural sermon and story in the Book of Mormon could be the model for our life and we would receive miracle after miracle.  He asked, "Lord, How is it done?"  This was a question in his prayer, he wanted to know how his sins had been "forgiven" and how he would be "blessed". The ANSWER THAT CAME TO HIM from the Lord was:  Because of thy faith in Christ!

This week, the effects of great faith proved to be real and undeniable. Jonathan was baptized and oh what a happy day that was. We knocked on his door and three weeks later he received a full remission of sins and was endowed with power for the gift of the Holy Ghost! His family even drove down from North Carolina to support him on his special day. They were touched by the spirit and as were all the other loads of people who came out to support him. Wanna know something funny? Jonathan asked Sister Watts and I to sing at his baptism…we did..WE SANG AT THE PULPIT…a mission really stretches you to do things you would never ever ever do otherwise haha. And it wasn’t even half horrendous! Anyway, we put Jonathan on the spot and asked him to bear his testimony after he was baptized and his closing line “The Lord lead me to His church, sent me these two (Sister Watts and I), and now here I am. I’m ready to serve God. Lets do this!” It was so happy! The Spirit testifying that this was pleasing to God was real and undeniable.

This week we piled into Bro Goin’s handicapped van with 3 less actives and 3 nonmembers and sang hymns and we cried because the Spirit was bursting in that van! We taught 20 member present lessons, most of which in member’s home and they changed my life. I’ve only grown in conviction of testimony that Joseph Smith restored Christ’s church today and that the Book of Mormon is evidence of it. I was blessed to go on an exchange with Sister Tavenner in my area of Acworth and after the exchange she remarked that this ward needs to be in The District 3. Amen to that! Ah! Everything is just so happy!

I learned this week that we need have the faith to ASK then comes the need for faith to ACT. Enos asked and the Lord responded because He could count on the fact that Enos would act. In my studies and thoughts this week, I had to ask myself if the Lord can count on me to ask. But firstly, do I have sufficient faith to ask God specific questions, expecting Him to answer. Why can I be fearful at times for God’s answers that I know will come with me asking? Am I scared of God’s will? I sure hope not. I know that as we trust in God, asking Him in frequent and specific prayer…answers will come. They’ve come like rapid fire this week and it’s my testimony today that if we will just have that desire to improve and see miracles in our lived, God will guide us, step by step! Choose God! Every day.  

This week I celebrated my year mark out here! This celebration of being on the Lord’s errand will be forever! I love you all so SO much and know that I feel the power of your prayers.

Sister Avery Miyahara! 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Called to Know the Richness of His Blessings 1/13/14

*Note from momma miyahara - Avery has been out exactly one year!*

This week’s realities:
Our church FLOODED. This week Acworth and maybe the rest of the world has some crazy times with bursting pipes due to freezing temperatures. On Wednesday night, there was water all in the church to your knees!! We all were treacherously doing all we could to sweep (literally) the water out the doors of the building. It was like nothing I’ve ever seen before! So. Much. Water.  My heart broke at the sight of the baby pool of our Bishop’s office and the skimming dream land for a surfer but knowing me, you can be assured that we made such fun out of it! My boots slid perfectly on the iced over sopping carpet and we were making waves of water to exit the building  : ) The ward came together and labored to get out dear church building back in its right and proper way. A night of ward bonding for sure!
Jonathan is wonderful! His progression has been a missionary’s dream! Everything we teach, he simply accepts. He has known Mormons forever because his extended family are all active members, he was just raised with a father who wasn’t. So it leads me to think of all my friends and family who hasn’t given the church a thought yet…they will, when the time is right. The Lord will lead those prepared to His church. We’re excited for this Saturday’s miracle of a baptism! A remission of sins, endowed with power (Holy  Ghost), and eternal life is real and available to all!
This week we had zone training meeting which mean a temple trip!! I wish I could sufficiently express my love for being in the House of the Lord. Glory and peace and understand and clarity flood my soul as I sit and embrace the blessings of the temple. Hey, everyone is welcome! The steps to be worthy of such are simple : ) President is all about the vision of this life and the life to come. I love how frequently he counsels us to prepare for celestial life. We can’t be worthy of heaven if we don’t abide by heaven’s laws here on earth.
1 Corinthians 1: 25-27; Ether 12: 27! Glory to God! I’m so weak. And slowly but surely He is making those weaknesses strong. I’m thankful for this journey of patience and humility.
The Acworth ward is just fantastic! I love my sweet companion. Every day is blast! There isn’t anything I’d rather be doing. The Spirit dances within me and I feel such inner peace as I labor in the Lord’s vineyard! "Glad our hearts His holy name confessing. Praises unto Him we bring"
Y’all have a blessed day!
Your southern peachy thing,
Sister Miyahara

Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy 2014! 1/6/14

WARNING. It’s gonna be a long one. Thanks for loving (hopefully!) my madness.
MOM you completed our mission’s BofM challenge in just over a month!!! Wow! You’re seriously the greatest mama. I love you! BACHAN + JICHAN thank you for your sweet oranges off the tree. I cried as I opened up that package and smelled the citrusy memories of San Jose! That was so thoughtful. BLAKE you went to the temple! The most incredible + beautiful place, huh? You were in my thought all Saturday. LILY, you’re Sister Checketts tomorrow in D.C.  whaaat?! So proud of you. Missions are life’s greatest miracle. I love my Lost Mountain ward family. Sister Heinhold took us to lunch one day and the Carnell’s the next. So much love! SO happy! Just love shout outs all around! This week rocked.
Firstly, IT IS SNOWING. IN GEOEGIA! SNOW COMING FROM THE SKIES!!! The low is 2 degrees today. LOL, right? immadie. Alright anyway, we saw so many miracles in the work this week! We’ve been teaching a man named Jonathon and he joyfully tells all that the Lord led him to His church. As we’ve taught him with less-active team ups, they’ve come back to church and rediscovered their testimony. Jonathon came to church on Sunday and if I didn’t know better, I would have thought he had been a part of the ward all his life. The members loved him in and he said it was “coming home.” Our lessons with Jonathon teach me so much. I’ve realized that you can tell you are teaching by the spirit that when the words that come out of your very own mouth teach you so much and make sense like it has never before.
We had mission council at the mission home this week and can I just day that the leadership team here in GAM blow me away. With President and Sister Harding leading us, under the direction from Above (obviously) (most inspired people I’ve ever known), I receive such strength and motivation! We got to watch “Ephraim’s Rescue” and break down some of the incredible quotes and apply them to missionary work. ITS AMAZING. If you haven’t seen it yet, drop what you’re doing and watch it. It’s that good. I’m trying to develop faith like Ephraim Hanks.
I had the total privilege of serving at the Bishop’s store house. It was seriously the coolest couple hours! To see the degree of charity exploding from the walls, it was no question that Jesus Christ was behind this “Costco” of free food for those in need in the metro Atlanta area. The Church is incredible! It was such so wonderful to feel a portion of what the Savior felt as He served and loved.

Silly shenanigans. So we went to visit Gracie, the really old lady. She’ll be turning 84 at the end of this month and her health has been declining a lot. She loves what we teach her and knows the church is true, but in her condition… it just makes the whole baptizing thing hard. Anyway, we went over to check in on her and see how she was doing/ offer a priesthood blessing to help bring her some comfort as she gets ready to pass on to the next life. Like.. she really is dying.  We read some scriptures and talk about her life and some of her accomplishments and then she says to us in her slow, drawn out southern accent.. “I told the Lord…. I was okay to go..” as she says this she’s on the couch sitting and she slowly says it and moves her head to look up. After she said it she just went quiet… eyes slightly open.. still… OHMYGOSH NOT EVEN KIDDING YOU! WE THOUGHT SHE DIED ON US AS WE WERE THERE! We shared a panicked look with each other and had a mini freak out.. then whattdya know.. Miss Gracie started moving and talking again. Haha! Oh man. We laugh about that all the time now. What do you do if that really happened? Call 911?
Next story…we’re teaching O.J. and his sister in law, they’re Muslim from West Africa. We’re there with a member and as we are testifying, O.J. cuts Sister Maney off and asks me how old I am and if I was married. He then guesses that I AM 28 YEARS OLD AND PROPOSES TO ME. Asked me if I can be his bride! Not even kidding. The member answered for me and we quickly clarified our purpose as missionaries. Yikes!
2014 begun with a bang! I couldn’t feel more thankful for this marvelous time when the work is hastening and the Lord is sending miracles full force! I love this work because it’s true and as I get to witness it change lives for the best, and my heart gets to change too! Love you all!
Happy are we!

Sister Avery Miyahara