Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Pride D e t o x 2/18/2014

This past week’s weather forecast was snow showers, freezing rain, TWO EARTHQUAKES and today it’s 70 degrees and beautiful and my freckles are coming out to play! Holy Hannah Montana is this nuts or what?! I LOVE Georgia. Can I be a missionary in the South forever? Gah i wish!
To begin, I’ll share a quick story which will wrap all my sporadic thoughts together! So we’re at this Christian bookstore at the beginning of the week to get our recent coverts names embossed into their beautiful new leather scriptures when the store manager refused to serve us because they would be on Book of Mormons. He made a sly comments like, “So where are you from, Utah??” with a roll of his eyes. Going on to inform us that it was a “Christian book store” to serve their fellow “Christians”
 *deep breaths sister Miyahara, deep breaths*
There isn’t anything more gratifying then bearing pure testimony of the reality and divinity of the Savior Jesus Christ. I so badly wanted to be rude and make some sassy comment to the guy. My pride was kinda raging. But I felt like a got a smidge of what the Savior must of felt during his trials near the conclusion of His earthly ministry. The concept of “being still” and “holding my peace” was experienced. For which I am grateful! We are here to be tried and when we are given those opportunities to suck up our pride and attempt to do as the Savior would, we are strengthen and rejoice His goodness and mercy! And after that experience...WE FOUND A CHIPOTLE!!!! And I stuffed my face with a chiptole bowl with chips, thank you very much!  
Something cool about serving a mission and having 6 week transfer periods is that every month and a half, it's like staring a new year! And what does New Years bring? Self reflection, resolutions, goals! So this week as we kick started this new transfer I decided I needed to embark on a DETOX! A pride detox!
In the scriptures we read time and time again about this pattern of prideful hearts and their inevitable doom to destruction. Dramatic but true, people! I thought about the warning from the Lord in D+C 38, “Beware of pride, lest ye become as the Nephites of old.” So my game plan was to detox myself of things inside and out that cause me to feel prideful, better, above others. Acknowledging pride in ourselves is a tough pill to swallow. But I’m learning that when we are prideful, we cant be united and unless we are “one” are we not His. The experience at the Christian bookstore compelled me to be humble. So, I made a chose this week to detox myself of selfishness, envy, and pride and humbly resubmit my will to God’s.
We had a lesson this week with a large family from the Dominican Republic. Our inspired member team up is the coolest and is a life coach/super mom from Mexico. In that lesson, nothing I said mattered. The Spirit that was fostered by the faith of those in that house was what mattered. When Sister Estrada said the closing prayer so beautifully in Spanish, I could not help by cry! Not only was the spirit thick, but thoughts of Nicoley, Madeline, Erika, and so many others bearing witness of these same truths around the world really hit me. 83,000 and counting young people with black name tags in the four quarters of the earth preaching the Gospel…pretty spectacular. Pretty humbling! I just feel lucky to be here; blessed to be a part of this hastening. The saying “when must is given, much is required” brought a new light this week. I’m here to give it my all. Time is flying and I refuse to serve a day in Georgia with regrets.
I love y’all. For all the evers!
Sister Miyahara!
P.s. Linda Deyton is the bomb.com and when you reads this, you better know how much I luhhh you and that you're my good Christian sista for always and that your spunk is the most refreshing part of my days. And before you know it, you'll be in the water...a mormon woman! Just you wait :) Claim your blessing, my friend!
P.s.s BLAKEY I LOVE YOU!!!! You rock. Keep lighting up the MTC! I'm cheering for you everyday!!

One of my most favorite families in the whole world!  Garen came home from Afganistan!  Wahoo!


A big kiss to ya'll

Monday, February 10, 2014

Some of God's Greatest Gifts

One of my dear sweet companions, Sister Hailey Nelson, taught me mostly everything I know about missionary work and just being a Christ-like person but something she helped me realized that has altered my perception and brought a new sense of appreciation is the fact that some of God’s greatest gifts to us here on earth are people! This week proved that. I’m filled with such gratitude when I think about the people in my life. How grateful I am to be surrounded with such fun, such positivity and such charity. Here are some “God is blessing me with these people!” moments this week
:: Zone training kicked off this week to a phenomenal start. I’m constantly blown away by the missionaries serving here. I have so much to learn from them so whenever we get a chance to get all together, I’m stoked. The theme of the meeting was “a perfect missionary day” and we broke down all the aspects of the work we must be accomplishing each day. Breaking down the challenging tasks allows us to take a breather and realize we can totally do hard things!
:: About a month ago I was so blessed to run into Sister Heinhold (RS president) in the Lost Mountain ward at the Bishop’s store house. Because we can’t use our phone to contact those outside our area, we picked a date and a time and she invited the RS women go to lunch with me up here in Acworth! I walked into BBQ Street and instantly tears were brought to my eyes. A long table filled with people who have changed my life, people who will eternally mean everything to me. It meant SO much to me that these good people whom I love so dearly, love me too that they would travel up to Acworth to spend their afternoon with me. Wow. I’m still speechless at the degree of love I feel for those Lost Mountain families! Mission are so incredible. It’s terrible to think that, what if I didn’t serve? What if I just stayed home and continued college? I wouldn’t be ½ the person I am because of the good people I’ve learned from on my mission! Shout out to my Lost Mountain family!
:: This week’s exchange was nothing short of wonderful. I was in Mars Hill with Sister Jones and wow this sister is inspired. We found the greatest people prepared for the gospel. It’s crazy.  Imagine it…you’ve been welcomed into a complete stranger’s home and the Spirit is directing your words 100% because you don’t know these people and it’s absolutely perfect. Moments of pure light and understanding edified all present and it’s just happy! How grateful I am for total strangers who in a 30 minute lesson have made an impact on me forever. Miracle of exchanges, I tell ya! The best.
:: I love Acworth…the members, our investigators, and the people we randomly meet each day.  I love them! HEY! FUN NEWS, SISTERS WATTS AND I WILL BE HERE ANOTHER TRANSFER :) I’m learning so much. I’m becoming someone I didn’t know was in me. I love my companion, for ever and ever. We have the same brain and are experiencing such incredible moments of joy and growth. I’m grateful for the missionaries that serve alongside us here in Acworth. These elders have taught me more about being “lost in the work” than anyone. Ah! It’s just the best!
:: Saving the best for last, my dear family.  Blakey leaves for the MTC this week! I can’t help but want to reach through the screen and squeeze your face off, Blake. I love my mighty Miyahara’s with every fiber of this heart of mine. Know that I love you endlessly and think/pray for you unceasingly! Keep up all the good you’re doing. How proud I am to be a Miyahara! Forever! And ever! Thank Heaven for eternal families because mine is the coolest ;)
I’ve loved this verse in D+C 130 since the first time I read it preparing for my farewell talk last year. It says, “The same sociality which exists among us here will exist among us there, only it will be coupled with eternal glory, which glory we do not now enjoy.” Wow! Isn’t that just incredible? I can’t even fathom the joy that is to come. So let’s all just keep trying our best. It’s all we can do…try! And thankfully His grace will be sufficient.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The Greatest Week Thus Far! 2/3/14

The Greatest Week Thus Far ! 2/3/14
Holy heckyy where do I even start?! This week was INSANE! All of metro Atlanta was paralyzed but you know what…the work of the Lord wasn’t! Each week comes new adventures, new lessons learned and renewed devotion to the Lord. But this week is one for the books!
It all went down at district meeting when an elder opened the back door during a training and yelled “it’s snowing!” We all ran outside and jumped for joy! We were called to HOTlanta for pete’s sake, not Russia! It was 15 degrees and dropping and you know what that means…ice ice, baby!
District meeting quickly was wrapped up and we had planned to go on exchange with the sisters in Dallas. Having faith…or just ignorance, we decided to carry out the exchange anyway with me and Sister Mcfarlane(my fellow orange county sista!!) going to her area of Dallas. We got to their apartment and realized that driving wouldn’t be an option. The whole city was in shams!
We had to make a decision. Take a lazy day of scripture reading and journal writing in their warm apartment OR layer up and get to work. Easy answer. And off we went!
Day 1 Miracle. Bundled up in layers with our name tags in clear view, we began serving others where ever we could find. Being that they live in a big apartment complex at the bottom of a hill, there was plenty of people who needed an extra hand. How joyful it was to be “an answer” to so many prayers, just by simply deciding to look outward rather than inward.  We started talking to this mom, Katie, as she waited for her 7 year old daughter’s bus to arrive. The Lord was allowing us to be an instrument in His hands. She held in a lot of guilt and shame, was burden down by fears as a loving mother in a tumultuous world…and the gospel was her answer.
In the essence of the moment we shared the scripture in Isaiah 1:18, “Though your sins may be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” For the hour we talked under the mailbox cover, our faces froze but our hearts were warm. She is so excited for her and her family to be baptized next month! And get this, her mother lives in Acworth and was thrilled that I could go share with her mom what we shared with her on that snowy day.
Day 2 Miracle. Yes, day two. We were not able to exchange back. Like I said, all of metro Atlanta was paralyzed for a couple days. These southerners can’t handle a little bit of snow. A neighboring member said that in 3 surrounding counties they only had 2 salt trucks/snow plows.  Yikes! We’d have to wait for some sun! But it sure didn’t hold Sister McFarlane and me! We rejoiced at another day to find and serve!
As we were sliding down a frozen neighborhood street (my steve madden brown boots were perfect ice skates that day!) We saw three siblings playing in the snow! Perfect, families! Our favorite! Two sisters (13, 16) and a brother (10) were all captivated with the Book of Mormon and the message of the Restoration. The 16 year old cut me off as asked what website she can go inside and go on to purchase a copy. If that isn’t a sincere desire and real intent, I don’t know what is! All three were so enthused to come to church to be baptized and to learn more! We even did a little cheer for Jesus!
This experience reminded me of the verse in D+C  11:3, “The field is white already to harvest; therefore, whoso desireth to reap let him thrust in his sickle with his might, and reap while the day lasts, that he may treasure up for his soul everlasting salvation in the kingdom of God.” I committed to labor for the Lord every precious day I get to be entrusted with this work in Atlanta, Georgia. Regardless of the weather, the work must go forth! And I fully believe that with that attitude, brings the most joy!
Missions really do magnify your strengths but more noticeably you’re weaknesses. As I gain greater perspective of who God our Father truly is, I’m in utter awe.  I’ve never trusted God so much, ever. Honestly, because I have never really had to like I do out here. So I welcome every opportunity to grow, every opportunity to be reminded how great our God is. Thank the high heavens He is in charge…if we let Him.  He will show us the way, but we gotta take the steps. So take the steps this week; Let the Alrighty correct them if needed, but take the steps. There are no short cuts to eternal life.
Paul was baptized this weekend in Acworth AND my sweet Paula was baptized in the Whitewater ward (my last area). I’m overcome with gratitude and love! Miracles are all around when we trust in God :)
KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK PEOPLE!  I love you, a lot.

Sister Miyahara!

For the LOVE of Georgia 1/27/14

For the LOVE of Georgia 1/27/14
One of my favorite questions I get asked on the reg goes something like this, “so wait, what are you doing in out here and why Georgia?!” It’s one of my fav questions because it’s my favorite to answer!
I love look curious people in the eye and with the biggest smile tell them that God has again reached out in love to us His children on each by calling a living prophet! Christ’s church has again been restored from its perfect form a prophet and 12 apostles lead His church again today! And that all 80,000+ of us missionaries around the world sent in sort of a general application to the prophet and apostles and individually they commune with the Lord in where each servant of the Lord should labor in His vineyard! I was called of God to be here in Georgia. I agreed to “leave behind all other personal affairs” and give my all to the Lord and His work. We pay to be here; and are rewarded in rich blessings of happiness, safety and love and everything good! We wake up at 6:30, study for 2-3 hours and from about 10am-9pm we are serving others, sharing the Gospel, inviting others to come unto Christ, and doing as Christ would if He were in Acworth.
The curious person is typically speechless after we answer. They’re at a loss of words because we are so kooky! Never have they ever met people so devoted to something so selfless. If people gave the missionaries a minute to simply state why they are there, hearts will be softened. We saw that this week over and over and over again. It’s so incredible be out here and to confidently express my absolute surety of my sacred calling as Sister Miyahara at this time in my life. In all reality (how heart breaking it will be) the tag will have to come off eventually but the trust/love/testimony I’m developing is forever. The message we share is forever. The promises we make to God and Him in return are forever. As I think with an eternal perspective, my desire for worldly pleasures, temporary satisfactions, and selfish habits are gone.  I desire to be the best I can be and I only can become that through my Savior, Jesus Christ.
THIS WEEK ROCKED. Jonathan spoke at Stake Conference! The Acworth ward is incredible. Angel (our investigator) said this regarding the Book of Mormon, “every word in this book is true. It’s legit. I don’t question it for a second.” We met this 22 year old, Paul at the library two weeks ago and he is getting baptized this Saturday! It's cold, really cold but the ward looks out for us :) I'm learning so much about myself as I learn so much about God and His Gospel. I’m thankful for the goofy laughs and tearful testifying moments. I'm so thankful for my family and my friends! How blessed am I! I hope all will love the Lord and accept His sweet invitation to come unto Him.
All my love!

Sister Miyahara