missionary plaque picture

missionary plaque picture

Monday, September 28, 2015

I'm going on an adventure!

Hey all! 

For those who watched the Women's broadcast- wasn't it amazing? I think President Uchtdorf's talk was something that everyone needs to watch. His message was actually something I've been learning all transfer-- something Sister Loveless has been teaching me by example. She is like the happiest person I know, regardless of anything that happens in life. I'm so grateful to have been her companion. I've made so many amazing friends on the mission and many of them have been my companions. Lucky me!

Transfer news arrived... I am headed to East Las Vegas! I covered the area geographically when I was in Temple View YSA. Sister Porter, one of the sisters that's currently in my zone, will be my companion! We are both so excited. Just last week we were on exchanges and were saying, "we should just be companions!" Well, Heavenly Father listened :) We're whitewashing into the area and I'm SO PUMPED. I have always wanted to whitewash an area. You get to go in with brand new eyes and just start fresh! It's going to be an adventure! 

This will probably be my last move of my mission. It's actually where Sister Luke was trained, so I'm finishing where my trainer started. Sister Koyle is also in the zone so I will get to go on exchanges with her :) hooray! 

We talked to more people this week than I ever have before on my mission- we almost broke 100 contacts! That was our goal and we got soooo close. It was really exciting. As far as the work goes, I think this was the hardest transfer of my mission. No one got baptized, no one came to church, and despite our best efforts, many of our investigators dropped us. But I have had some very sweet and tender experiences in this area with investigators, recent converts, less actives, and my companion that confirmed to me that I am in the right place and our efforts were not wasted. It's also been amazing to see Nate and Jori's progression, despite tons and tons of opposition. 

Last week we gave them Mosiah 4 to read (one of my favorite chapters) and Jori was so impacted by it that she got rid of all of her bad TV shows. Nate told us the other day, "if it weren't for the missionaries, we probably would have given up on the Mormon thing." Now they consider themselves Mormon and are working hard to make it to church and make it to baptism.

I'm grateful for my time here and I'm excited to go to back to the ghetto!! Wish me luck! 

I love you all and am so grateful for my Savior Jesus Christ. I feel an increased tenderness toward him every time I get to share His love with others. 

 Love, Sister Browning

This is Sister Zigler! She is a poet and gave me one of her award winning poetry books. 
For the last  2 months we have been stopping by this sweet lady's house each Sunday  to tell her what we learned at church. She is widowed and has lots of health issues so she can't make it out. I love
her like my sister! Since we started visiting her, her sons who are less active have all slowly started returning to activity. I don't believe in coincidences, do you? :)

Monday, September 21, 2015

This is where it's at!

Hi family! 

This week was better. We had a couple cool experiences finding new people to teach. Nate and Jori introduced us to their coworker Chris who is so prepared for the gospel. Hopefully we'll be able to get back in contact with him this week, and our other investigators- Satan is
tricky, and he likes to make people think they are too busy to come to church or meet with the missionaries. But we're not giving up! Joke's on you, Satan! 

We also met a woman named Earlene who just recently lost her 27 year old daughter but has incredible faith in Christ and knows she'll see her daughter again. We testified to her of the Plan of Salvation and she is excited to learn more :) Eternal families are where it's at. I just wish I could share that joy with EVERYONE! 

So I don't know if this is a little too irreverent to send, but it made me laugh really hard so I'm sharing it anyway. Nate, during one of our lessons this week: "You know what I like about the Mormon church? They always end everything with 'I know that this is true, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.' You're testifying in the name of Jesus Christ; you can't be full of crap. You can't be full of poo poo." Ah boy. Too true, Nate. 

One of my favorite sister missionaries who has since gone home, Sister Hope, surprised us with a visity. I asked her what her advice would be for us, looking back. She said to really use that hour of personal scriptures study to its full advantage. Just soak in every minute of it. My studies have been really good lately and I feel like I've been feasting on the words. Today I read in Alma 22 where King Lamoni's father says that he would forsake his whole kingdom and give up everything he possess to know God. What am I willing to forsake in order to know God? Am I willing to give away all my sins? I'm so amazed by the humility of the saints in the scriptures and I hope to be like that someday. I know that through Christ we can be totally transformed. If we're willing to give up the things that hold us back he stands ready to help us give them up :) I know that peace and healing come from the gospel that we can't get anywhere else. Use the Atonement every day! I'm so grateful for it and for my Savior :) 

So we decided to bike more this week. It was a blast because you can talk to SO MANY MORE PEOPLE :) and our area is almost mini Provo so there was tons of "hi, sisters!" going on. We biked to the ward activity and everyone was like whaaatt?? Sisters on bikes? 

Instead of helping my companion lock the bikes, I take selfies. Selfish selfies. :) 

Clara, our member friend and Jori's fellowshipped friend, cut and styled our hair today. We love her! 
Katherine, just so you know, the freshman marriage rate at BYU-I is 40%. DON'T LIVE ON CAMPUS! I love you ;) 

Love you all, have a wonderful week! 

Sister Megan Browning

Monday, September 14, 2015

1st Nephi 11:17

Dear Family, 

Congrats to Katherine on getting into BYU-I!! And I'm so excited about Nicole's baptism! How exciting to have the whole family involved in helping someone embrace the gospel. Her and her little son's life will be totally different and so enriched because of your examples and her decision. Way to go, Idaho! ;) Mom, my prayers are with the Algers and with you. I love you! 

This was the hardest week of my mission. But it was also wonderful because I learned so much about the power of the Atonement. I have felt Christ carry me this week, as if I were in a cradle of the spirit, and I have seen and felt His tender mercies. Now I can testify to others with a depth of understanding I didn't have before. 

One of those tender mercies was being able to go back to Kingman with Sister Loveless for the Anderson baptism. The wonderful Walker family drove all the way to pick us up and then drove us all the way back that night. As we drove into Kingman I had a flood of emotions that are hard to explain. It was as if I could feel all the prayers I said and the testimony I bore echoing and reverberating off the old store fronts and canyon walls. I thought about the scripture in Isaiah about the "voice of one crying from the dust." Prayer is powerful. Even if they're the prayers of an inexperienced, young sister missionary. The rest of Kingman may not be able to feel it when they drive through, but I can, and I know that place has changed me. At least one family was affected by my efforts, and that's the Anderson family. If they stay faithful, my entire mission will have been a success. 

Anna and Braeden were baptized by Brother Walker, and Andy, who now has the priesthood, got to be a witness! Missionaries are lined up left to right from the newest to the oldest. Sister Hame and Onorato have both finished their missions and couldn't be there. And Bro and Sis Walker have been there since the very first lesson :)

 I am astounded at the growth and change of this family. They have the purest hearts in the world! Can't wait to come back for their sealing! 

I love you all and invite you to draw on the Atonement as often as you can. Jesus Christ suffered for you so that we don't have to go through anything alone. He loves you and walks beside you and is your eternal best friend :) 

Sister Megan Browning

Monday, September 7, 2015

My Sister Tan Line is Outrageous

Hi family! 

We are coming to the close of another summer (and by that I mean the high is ONLY 105 degrees this week!) and I think I have the worst moddest-is-hottest tan I've had to this point in my young life. Haha attached is a picture of my feet, so if you're afraid of feet, I'm sorry. This is a once in a lifetime look I'm sporting as only a sister missionary can. 

It's like my upper arms are glowing. Just put that vanity on the altar of sacrifice ;) 

I forgot to write last week about the Turley family. We had decided that we wanted to do a little bit more finding through the members, so prayed and picked a few names off the ward directory. It led us to the Turley family, who invited us back for dinner and to give their family home evening lesson. What we thought was a simple visit to meet an active family and beg for  some referrals turned out to be totally a part of Heavenly Father's plan for this family. Over the course of the evening we figured out that Bro Turley had been struggling with going to church for a long time and that hearing the restoration from us was exactly what he needed. We have been going back each week to teach another lesson to them and their sons who are all preparing for missions. I have so much love in my heart for this good family and can't wait to see them reach their goal of the temple someday. I know we were meant to find this family and help them be more united in living the gospel. 

This week we taught Nate and Jori the word of wisdom and they are currently working really hard to keep it. In the middle of the lesson, Nate looked us in the eye and said, "have you ever been addicted to anything?" Uhhhhhh.... Long story short, we have given up all desserts and sweets in an effort to support them. We've made it through week 1 and so far, so good. They are making progress on their end and we have held our end of the bargain so far! :) 

It's been an interesting experiment giving up sweets for Nate and Jori. I hope I can keep it going for a very long time. It hit me this week that, to go on a mission you give up almost all your coping mechanisms. No phone calls to mom. No Netflix night. No going for a run by yourself with your headphones in. No hitting the gym, going on a date, or napping it off. And now no bowl of ice cream or chocolate chip cookie dough at the end of a long day. It really is just me, my companion, and the Lord, facing it together! A mission is designed so that, if you are being obedient, the way you face your challenges is on your knees in mighty prayer and in your scriptures. What an inspired exercise in turning to God! I feel so good and so free. 

I finished the Book of Mormon again this week and knelt and prayed to be reassured that it was true. I do this every time I finish the book. I stayed on my knees for a long time, and essentially told Heavenly Father, "if you tell me the Book of Mormon is not true, that it is not the word of God, I will give this all up. I'm willing to go whatever direction will bring me the very closest to you and if it is something other than this, I will do it." Now I know that sounds a little weird... But as I prayed I knew without a doubt that the Book of Mormon is true and that I am exactly where God needs me to be right now. The Holy Ghost is anxious to confirm this truth. 

One more cool story: we street contacted an older gentleman this week who said, "what are you girls doing tonight?" We smiled and said, "well, we're missionaries!" He asked, "are you Mormon?" When we said yes, he said, "I was thinking of converting to Mormon. One of my clients is Mormon and he's a great guy." We get to teach him a little about the Book of Mormom right there and set up a return appointment. We have high hopes! God is preparing people everywhere :) 

I love my mission with my whole heart. It is not easy but it is wonderful. I love the gospel of Jesus Christ that I get to proclaim every day. Nothing else can bring this kind of lasting joy! 
Love always, 
Sister Megan Browning

Oh yeah, we spearheaded a car wash proselyting activity this week. We had lots of nonmembers come and gave some church tours and sent out a referral!

 No Pday clothes, no problem :) 

Do you spy the member talking to the nice lady about the gospel? :)