Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Disasters & Miracles

Dear Family & Friends, 

It feels like this week has been full of lots of miracles and disasters, usually happening back to back! But, it's neat to see how Heavenly Father has it all planned out and even when things seem to go wrong, He is seeing the bigger picture. . 

You know your hair looks bad when you look more attractive with a helmet on then you would with it off. Haha!
Me & Sister K
I loved the pictures from Chad's wedding, although I would like to see more. Also, thank you for sharing the points that Elder P. made in the Sealing. That was really neat. Everyone looks so much more grown up in just a year! 

Disaster- I got my first flat tire!! And we had to take the bus to get an extra tube and then try and figure out how to fix it
Miracle- There was a bus that left just in time to get us to our next appointment that day. ALSO, We managed to fix it!! (Which, if you know me, is a big miracle :)

Dirty Work!

Disaster: between a dinner appointment, service, weekly planning, and coordination, we had NO time.
Miracle: We still hit the contacting goal that we had set for each day that week!! :)

Thursday: My year mark!!! Woo-hoo! Crazy. I still feel like a baby. We actually had an exchange that day and Sister K (Sister Training Leader) and I were planning on going to Krispy Kreme to get a do-nut shake, but we had too many awesome people that kept wanting to be taught the Gospel!! We got a quick ice cream cone instead.
Disaster: all four of our set appointments canceled!
Miracles- We contacted like CRAZY and met some amazing people. We also went to contact a mormon.org referral, M. He saw a documentary on the church and was SO excited to get a Book of Mormon. He told us that he would have it read in 2 or 3 days :o

Miracle- We were 20 minutes away from home and see this huge, black cloud moving really quickly. So, we started booking it home since we hadn't had our dinner break anyway. Right as it's starting to sprinkle, a potential investigator pulls up in her truck, and gives us a ride home! I kid you not, the second we walked inside our apartment it starts to pour. Sis Bl taught me how to make popcorn on the stove!!! And I didn't even burn it!!! :D That's a miracle.
Disaster- I stand in the tub to wash my legs/feet off because I spilled milk all over me right after we got home and the shower head is on instead of the faucet, so I got drenched anyways. haha!

Disaster: So, it turns out that Tuesday, when I fixed my tube, I did it wrong, so it popped again :(
Miracle: We happened to be really close to Bro. Marllatt's house and he happened to be home and not doing anything. He fixed my tire in like TWO MINUTES.   -_____- Guess that rules out being any sort of a mechanic, in the future. (But he did show me a more correct way to fix it, should it happen again!)
Disaster: We head out after dinner and see that just like the day before, it's going to pour. So, we walked to the bus stop and wait there in the pouring rain, looking rather pathetic!
Miracle: A sister from the Ward happens to drives up and gives us a ride to where we're going!
Disaster: The person we were going to see isn't home and we head out in the pouring rain and get drenched yet again!
Miracle: We remember that a less-active lives nearby, and against the odds, she's home! So we teach her a lesson and then she offers to drive us home and also buys us a pizza on the way home :D

Stove-top Popcorn!
Miracle- Our investigator, J, made it to the monthly Missionary Fireside (sponsored by Pres. & Sister B) and heard some really great testimonies and also go to hear Elder Cardon from the Seventy speak!! We had also asked M, a recent convert who is struggling, to drive us, so she got to hear it too. At  the Fireside, this guy bore his testimony and he had just gotten home 4 days ago from the Bulgaria Sofia mission (that's T's mission right?! T is my cousin who is reporting to the MTC in October to serve in Bulgaria). He said that 98% of the people there were professed Muslim and that those who join the church are very ostracized by their family. He also said that recently Elder Nelson from the Quorum of the Twelve was there recently and was given like 15 minutes to speak at a Muslim University to the  Muslims. He said he took the whole time doing missionary work and testifying of a loving Heavenly Father, of his Son Jesus Christ, and of the Restoration. It was a powerful testimony and made me think of T! 

Sister B (a local member) & me. She is so good about sending these to my family!
Tomorrow we are going to New Albany, Indiana to hear Elder Cardon! He's doing half the mission today and then half tomorrow. I'm super excited. We also have zone conference on Friday!  It's kinda nice because this week's supposed to be deathly hot here.

Basically, being a missionary is great because it truly is The Lord's work that you're doing. Even though most of the time I STILL feel like I have no idea what I'm doing, as long as I rely on Heavenly Father, he leads and guides me!! I feel so blessed to be a member of this church and to have the gift of the Holy Ghost, which truly does tell us all things that we need to do. And also comforts us when we feel like life is a disaster and we have no idea what we are doing!! As long as we have the companionship of the Spirit and are doing the things we're supposed to be doing, Heavenly Father takes care of us and those around us.

Sister Galloway 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Kentucky is the Garden of Eden!!

So, I've decided that Kentucky is probably what the Garden of Eden looked like, except with tons of bugs. And cigarette butts. Everything grows and it's gorgeous!! (Mom- maybe your flowers would stay alive?! ;) 

Happy 1 year to me on Aug.  21st!!

This week we had some really neat experiences! I feel like I mention it every email, but it never ceases to amaze me how present Heavenly Father is in our lives, and how much he blesses us. I really should stop being so shocked, but it amazes me everytime!

This week we got some really great referrals!!
One was for a woman who just happened to find a pass-along card on the ground and called the number on the back and referred herself! Another man we met, has been reading the Book of Mormon off and on for about a year and a half, ever since he happened to meet and start talking to a member while traveling! Also, next sunday there's an investigator fireside that Elder Cardon's going to be speaking, so we commited J to go, which was very exciting.

This week we also visited a recent convert, Brother S, who's started smoking again :( He has been going to the church's Addiction recovery program, but nothing has really helped him. This week we felt prompted to really talk about it with him -something we'd so far avoided addressing directly because it's a touchy subject. But, the spirit definitely lead our lesson with him and we had some ideas of how we could help and support him. So far, he hasn't smoked in four days!! :)

A carton of "Scripturettes" that we made.
(Humidity Hair-do, too!)

Also, I'm pretty sure I've handled more cigarettes on my mission than in my whole, entire life. Pretty sure I'd never even held one beforehand. But now, I can tell you all about the different brands. Alcohol too. You can tell a lot about a person by the brand of beer they're drinking. #lessonsilearnedonmymission.

 I did better at talking to strangers this week. I just have to force myself to do it because then it really does become a habit. I find myself stopping my bike and saying things. And half my brain is like "No! Stop! What are you doing?! Why are you stopping?! Don't walk all the way up to their porch!!!" and the other half of me just does it. And when I force myself to just do it, I can and I do and it's fine. And no one has sprayed me with their garden hose yet -which is a new fear that occurred to me when another Sister in our district verbalized the idea. Crap. Oh well.

Did you hear about the "Louisville Purge" thing??? They had us stay in from 7:30 pm Friday night till we left that next morning. It ended up being a little  anticlimactic, which is good. Downtown Louisville is super sketch anyways. But, Sister Black and I just got pizza before we went in and ate that and watched Legacy. It was hilarious. You know you're a missionary when you watch Legacy and laugh at the acting and the Joseph Smith character, but also end up crying. It's probably the only church film I don't have memorized yet. haha!

I know that when we trust in the promptings of the spirit and courageously follow them that Heavenly Father will lead and guide us. It doesn't matter how large or small the prompting may be. Just going the extra mile and being "anxiously engaged" truly leads to miracles :)
I hope everyone has a great week!!!! Have fun at the wedding without me. Tell Chad & Makayla congratulations.

Have a great day!!
-Sister Galloway

Quote of the week:
Sister Bl: "I remember, when I was little, my mom would sometimes pick up investigators for church."
Me: "My mom picked up a hitchhiker once."

Conversation of the Week:
Today, we're going to go get Fro-yo. This was our convo with our DL last night on the phone:
DL "Doing anything exciting for Pday?!"
Me "Yeah!! We're going to go get Frozen yogurt!!"
DL "But... can't you do that any day??"
Me "Yeah... but, it's the best idea we could come up with"
DL "Can't you go do something? Like... go to the mall or do some girl stuff??"
Me "On a bike?"
DL "Could the Beckly Sisters take you?"
Me "They have no extra miles. "
Dl "Yeah, I'm glad I'm an Elder. It must suck being a Sister."
Me "Thanks, We love you too."

But, it's okay!! You know how much I LOVE frozen yogurt!!  #Whoneedsacar

Monday, August 11, 2014

ThiS WeeK's NUmBers...

2- Hurt fingers
{Sis Bl and I were biking home one night after 9, from a lesson, on these narrow sidewalks and I rammed my hand into a garbage can. And then, 30 seconds later, Sister Bl also rammed her hand into the same garbage can. Here in Louisville they make sidewalks about 3 inches wide and then put lamp posts on the sidewalks On top of that, the people put their garbage cans out on them.  The worst part is, I told our District Leader that we needed a car because I had hurt my pinky and we didn't even get a car. How rude. I just can't believe it! ha ha! But for reals, it's really not bad. Not broken/sprained/torn off or anything. So don't worry too much about me.}

-a total of scars from riding bike

46 - mosquito/chigger bites on my legs!
{ We did quite a bit of service this week. I forgot to put on spray and we were cutting bushes. There were bugs everywhere.} 


1- really, really awesome new investigator!! :)
 She has a Catholic background and just moved into our area. The Hermana's referred her to us and we'll probably have to refer her to the AP's soon since she'd be in the YSA ward, but it was really great to get to meet and teach her!! Hopefully she will read and continue to progress! I love getting to see the Lord's hand in the lives of so many people. D, for instance, said the first day she moved in she met the Hermana's and took it as kind of a sign, since she was unsure of her decision to move. She said she has been looking for a church that fits her better. 

Here's a tender mercy I had last week. Saturday night, we met up with a recent convert. She wanted to meet us at a Chinese restaurant by our apt. We had already had dinner, but like Southerners do, she insisted on feeding us. So out of my heaping pile of Chinese food, I could only eat a little bit.  BUT, I took it home to eat after Fast Sunday the next day. Heavenly Father knew I'd be hungry & grumpy so he provided Chinese food for me. ♥ #foodismylovelanguage

The 44 year-old (who crushes on me)  hasn't been to church. We've run into him a few times on the street, but it's really nothing to worry about. Trust me, we would get transferred, a different apartment, or white washed super quick if there was reason to worry! So it's fine. Don't worry Mom.

 Oh!! I had a really neat experience this week. On Thursday, I was having a rough day and just thinking about some things that were concerning me. I really felt the need to kneel down and pray about it. So I did and afterwards I knelt there and just had some very specific thoughts come to my mind. First of all, I had a few scriptures from D&C come to mind about trials. And the scripture about angels bearing you up. Then, I got the impression to picture the faces of those who love me and care about me. And the thought "it will all be worth it" kept coming to mind. That really helped because something I've struggled with is talking to strangers who act like you're just wasting their time and your time. In addition, they are sometimes rude or otherwise disinterested. Later that evening, as we were  leaving an appointment on our bikes, out of nowhere really, the one memory that I really have with great-grandma Bennion came to mind. It was the story she told at Christmas about being in the depression and the $5 bill in an envelope and how it was such a tender mercy. I felt like she was watching out for me that day and probably on many other days here on my mission. 

An Elder in my District is training this transfer & asked me to do the cover of his Greenie's planner.

Oh! We also heard that on the 25-26th of Aug., Elder Cardon and his wife of the First Quorum of the Seventy are coming to the mission to do a mission tour! So that will be really really neat!! I'm stoked. We'll be going up to Indiana and will be combined with a few other zones. He'll be interviewing 12 random missionaries too. That would be kind of like getting a golden ticket!! So we're supposed to study chapter 4 of PMG this week. Maybe you, P, H and Dad could all study it too. Because you know, Elder Ballard says members should study PMG.... :) :)

Seeing how present Heavenly Father is in other's lives has helped me to see His hand clearer in my own life. The principal of prayer is one thing that I have really strengthened my testimony of a lot on my mission!! Over time, I've noticed that answers are coming quicker, more clearly and specifically. I know that when we turn to Heavenly Father with sincerity and faith, He will speak to us. 

I hope you all have a WONDERFUL week!! :)
-Sister Ashlyn Galloway

Thursday, August 7, 2014

I'm StAyiN'

This week we got transfer news, which is always nerve-racking! I found out that I'm staying here with Sister Black so we're excited about that.
My district. (I have on my sparkly shoes here!)
I feel like I never quite know what to write each Monday because there are so many different experiences--so many ups and downs that happen each day! But, I love that I get to learn and re-learn so many things! Here is a list of things I've learned this week:

1.Former mission presidents who just so happen to live in your ward make the    BEST members to go teaching with.

2. Don't do drugs- you might wake up with a "William" tatoo on your hand and     not know how/where you got it from (or who William is).

3. The country Eritrea is next to Sudan.

4. The more you humble yourself, the easier it is for the spirit to speak               through you because you are relying on God's strength rather than your           own.

Another lesson I've re-learned this week is how aware Heavenly Father is of his children. This week it was almost time to go in for the night and we were just going to do a little bit of tracting, but  the thought came to mind to visit a certain member. It didn't really make sense because the member we were thinking of has an extremely busy schedule and is rarely home, but we decided to stop by anyway. Sure enough, M was home by herself and really needed a visit right then. It was neat to see how Heavenly Father sees the needs of all his children.  It's so easy for us to feel like someone doesn't need or want our help or friendship, but as we offer it anyway, we are able to bless God's children, and help them feel his love through our actions. A lot of the time, those that seem the most difficult to love or serve need it the most and I know that Heavenly Father will help us know what those around us need, as we simply look for those opportunities. Often it takes going out of our way at least a little, but as we become less involved in our own lives and in ourselves, we are able to do more and are happier!! Like Christ says in the New Testament, when we loose our lives, we end up finding our life. Or in other words, the more we turn outwards instead of inwards, the more meaningful and happy life becomes!

So, sometimes being a missionary is crazy because there are a lot more people like M in the church than I think we realize--or at least in KY. They are so strong though. And I feel so blessed to have been raised in the church. I don't think we realize how many temptations and trials we avoid. I love being a missionary. Talking to people and helping them is a privilege. It really makes me feel like my soul and heart are enlarged each time. It's a privilege to receive the many spiritual promptings that come when you are looking to serve and lift and bless.

Elder S in my district is "dying" this week. This is a picture of his funeral.
(Dying=going home)

Yes, It's August!!! It's amazing to think about where I was last year vs. now. I mean, I'm still the same and still have the same weaknesses and things, but I have learned so very much!! I was very selfish last year, I decided. And I didn't mean to be, but I just was. I cared so much about Netflix, the internet, what was happening in the world, social life, clothes (okay fine! I still care too much about clothes...) and other things that weren't bad, but were all self-centered! I think one thing that I always want to be sure to do the rest of my life, is to turn outward. Being around so many people  both in and out of the church has made me see how easy it is to focus on yourself and your life and to get too involved in technology or whatever else. The things that really matter in life, I think, are our relationship 1) with God 2) with others. It goes along with the two great commandments, love God & love others. Especially loving others. There's power in being "anxiously engaged in a good cause."

I love you all and hope you have a WONDERFUL week!!

Eating the BEST peach ice cream ever. Thanks
Sister Manning for the birthday ice cream treat!! ♥

-Sister Ashlyn Galloway

{Sorry for the weird spacing above. It is REALLY bothering me, but it looks fine when I go in to edit it. Sigh. ??? --Jana}

Sunday, August 3, 2014

A quick lesson in Southern...

Please tell me you pronounce



In case you don't know....

It's pronounced, "Lou-a-vul"

And that is the correct way!!
(I can tell who the transplants are by how the say the name.)