Monday, October 27, 2014

"Last Transfer-Staying in the "Togo!", Baptism on Sat, Fasting for Investigators, FB Teaching, & Eat More Ice Cream!"


Hello hello hello.

October is almost over... and so is this transfer. Hello what just happened? Was I not just beginning this transfer? I am not happy about this speeding up of time. It is really just not working out for me. But anyway, my final transfer as a missionary starts this week. Oh wow. That just kind of sank in. My final transfer. bah. So here's the news on the transfer.... SISTER MASON AND I ARE STAYING IN 'TOGA! So not a very eventful transfer call, but I am excited to finish here. So many good things are happening. In a small twist to the plot, I am no longer a Sister Training Leader. What??  I know. It's weird for all of us. President actually told me all this on Friday when we were in Utica for Return and Report. He proceeded to announce to the whole meeting that I had been an STL for over a year, the longest of anyone in the mission, and then afterwards he called me over and told me that my service was done! haha. At first I was a little bummed, (hello no more MLC car trips!), but after considering it, I am grateful to be able to JUST focus on normal missionary duties my last transfer. Oh also, our zone split. So now we are in the Albany North Zone.  (Although we are pushing for it to be called the Saratoga Zone) and the Zone Leaders will be in our unit. So that's kind of fun.

Now onto the good stuff.

1. GLENNNNNNN IS GETTING DUNKED THIS WEEK. Very excited about it all. On Saturday he had his baptism interview. He just kept telling us how much more ready he was for baptism this time. And how he is grateful for the extra time he has had to prepare. It's so true. There is an enormous difference in him this time. Plus he has been reading the Book of Mormon like mad. He is almost done with Helaman. We are so so excited for this Saturday!

2. Also, the Less-Actives that we are working with are doing SO GREAT.  One of our favorite Sisters came to church this week. It was such an amazing blessing! Another Sister also made an appearance AND Sister M came last week. Just, so many good things happening in that respect.

3. AND we found an investigator on Facebook! I think we are the first to do it in the mission, so that was very exciting! Props to Jeff for giving us the idea to message people who like "the Bible."  We messaged about 10 people, and we got a response back! We are now teaching this lady over Facebook. Hurray for modern technology!

4. To be honest, a lot of our investigators and recent converts have really been struggling this week. Those who were really progressing and doing well are now avoiding us. It's kind of frustrating. We continue to work hard and have been fasting and praying for a miracle in their behalf. It's really a bummer to see. But as we were fasting for our investigators, we got back in contact with one of our Recent Converts, and we found a new investigator who seems really solid... So prayers are answered. Sometimes in different ways than we expect.

Anyway, I am just grateful for all that my mission has been. Yesterday we got to teach Young Men and Young Women's. It was cool to share my experience of choosing to come on a mission and then what my mission has meant to me with them. I would never change my mission for anything! SO GRATEFUL for this month and a half I have left to serve!

Well... its probably time I go...


One quick President Wirthlin Quote....

"Music sooths the soul... and so does ice cream. Everyone eat ice cream."

Sister Langford

Monday, October 20, 2014

"Pumpkin carving, B of M inspired verses, investigator miracles, & never let go of the rope & endure to the end."


Hello everyone. Welcome to the blog. I think this week will go down on record as the fastest week of my life. I feel like I just woke up and it was like "oh hey. You just experienced a week. A lot of really cool stuff happened! Oh.... you don't remember it?" I feel like that was me this week. Yesterday I sat down and reflected on the week and I was like "WOW so much happened." It's nice to actually have basically a full week of working. Ok let me give you some of the basic deets.

Random stuff....

1. We carved pumpkins on Monday as a district. I was pretty proud of my pumpkin if I do say so myself. I mean, this pumpkin party had nothing on the classic Langford gathering that takes place around this time of year, but it was still pretty fun. You may now enjoy this photo of me with my pumpkin. Sad news about New York though is that my pumpkin has already molded beyond saving. What do you do?

2. ZONE TRAINING MEETING WAS SOOOOO COOL. It was a pretty cliché idea I suppose. We did the activity where you are blind folded and then led to hold onto a rope. We had like a 20 minute course all around the church parking lot. It was weird though because along the way there were other missionaries, ones that I'm pretty good friends with, directing us. Of course there were many of them who were trying to deceive us and get us to let go of the rope. But, President Wirthlin told me to never let go of the rope, so I clung on. There were a few times that I was almost tricked.... but I never let go. At the end of the rope they had set up this room with Christmas lights and a ton of pictures of Christ. It was really awesome. As I was sitting there and reflecting on the experience I just thought that, you know, even though I clung on, and never let go, it was still kind of tricky. There were times when I ALMOST let go. But it made me feel even better when I got to the room and saw all the pictures of Christ and knew that I made it. Afterwards I was talking to the other missionaries and it seemed like almost all of them let go at one point or another. But eventually they all made it back to the room. I guess I just realized that even the very elect (missionaries :) ) could be deceived and confused. BUT, because of their strength, they all made it back. Anyway. it was a really cool Zone Training, probably the best I ever went to. It was all focused on the Book of Mormon. Plus, we got to watch Meet the Mormon's again. So that was fun.

Onto the cool stuff.

1. Well, like I just said, Zone Training was on the Book of Mormon. For part of it, we practiced reading the Book of Mormon with an investigator. When we role played it, I pretended to be one of our investigators, and two of the elder's taught me. During it, they invited her to say the opening prayer and ask for a spiritual experience. It was really awesome. We had a lesson planned with an investigator that night and we felt that we should do that very thing in our lesson. So we did. We told her we wanted to help her have a spiritual experience, then invited her to say the opening prayer and ask for one. She prayed, and we read. Afterwards, she told us how the first 3 verses of the chapter we read were EXACTLY what she needed to hear. How she felt like it was more than a coincidence that we read those verses. We could tell these had a deep affect on her and she was really thinking about them. She then told us that she had planned to write the elder's who had taught her before and tell them she was done. That she didn't believe there was a God.... and all that jazz. But she thought she should wait until after our lesson to see how she felt. She then said simply, "I think I am going to have to change that email." It was so simple, but such a powerful moment. It was amazing to see how Heavenly Father was reaching out to her, right at her breaking moment. Such a powerful example of God's love for us.
2. Brother G. Then we taught him, and did the same thing. We invited HIM to have a spiritual experience while reading the Book of Mormon, and then we read. IT WAS SO POWERFUL. For probably the next 3 times that we met with him after that he just kept saying "I still feel like the spirit is stronger with me!" So great. He is VERY excited for his baptism on the 1st!

And seriously, I have so many other things I could write about! Picking up investigators who seem very prepared. Our investigators progressing like bosses! Putting into action a very inspired plan to work better with members. Just... so many great things are happening here in Saratoga. And the thing is, they are a very different kind of great than in other areas I've served in. It's hard to explain how its different, it's just.... what the Lord needs here. This week we find out about transfers. I seriously don't know how it is that time again. There is a strong part of me that hopes I just finish out my mission here. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has sent me here, and for all the ways that I have learned and grown. There are days when I just hope that growing pains will be over and I can just be happy with where I'm at. I have those days where I just think, man it would be nice if I wasn't aware of my weaknesses and struggles today.... but especially this week as I have made it my focus to get to know my Savior Jesus Christ better, I have seen a difference in my outlook and strength. I know He loves me and helps me.

Ok. I know I know. This blog is already long and boring as it is! Haha!! Well I will said adieu for now. Keep being cool friends.

Sister Langford

Monday, October 13, 2014

"Upcoming Baptism, Great Investigators, & you must learn "Hymns Made Easy" before Mozart."


To my dear friends and family,


Missionary life is going quite well. This week was kind of an interesting one. We were out of our area for the majority of the week, so I do not have too many interesting stories or incidents to report. Unfortunately it was just kind of a ho hum week. Well... it was actually pretty fun. Ok. seriously though, how many times can I contradict myself within one paragraph.

But I digress. Let me hit you with the updates.

(Remember the girl who I talked about last week who just appeared at General Conference).  We have been able to teach her twice since our initial meeting. She is seriously too cool for school. We taught her on Monday, the Restoration a little more officially. It was a really powerful lesson, and she seems really open to learning. After we prayed, we asked her how she felt. She said she felt "Weird. A good weird, like nothing I have ever felt before." It was awesome. We are so blessed to just keep having all these awesome people just fall into our laps.

Glenn: FOUND AN APARTMENT. You guys, this is the real deal. Glenn is moving out. He found a place and will for sure be baptized on Nov 1st! Such a blessing to see these little miracles coming together. He has such a desire to do good and learn and grow. It's awesome.
GA: Still a boss. We weren't able to see her all week, but rest assured that she is the coolest.
Another Fav Investigator: Also doing well. We got in a little bit of a heated discussion regarding the women's position in the church and whatnot. I think the main thing that we just keep helping her understand is that there may be things she doesn't fully understand, YET. It's because she is trying to learn the Mozart before she has mastered "Hymns made easy." You have to know and love and live and breath the basics before you can understand the more in depth parts of the gospel. She is so great though.

Bah!  I love everyone we teach.

Sister M: Is someone that I most especially love. She is a returning Less-active. Every time we visit with her I can just feel her strength and her desire to do good. She is amazing.

Like I said, not too many crazy awesome stories or miracles this week, but there were a lot of small and significant tender mercies from heaven. Sometimes I think those are much more important.

We also went on our very long exchanges this week. It was so so fun to work with Sisters Jorgenson and Stewart. I learned a lot about humility and love while I was with those chicas.

...and let me tell you my favorite quote from the exchange...

"If you guys weren't Mormon's I would ask you to get high!" -Their investigator.

ahhhhhh.... gotta love the ghetto.

Unfortunately, I don't have much else to say. I know, I know. My emails are boring these days. But let me tell you, I am learning a lot, and I know that Heavenly Father is helping me everyday. I know that Christ lives! I know he loves me.

Have a blessed fall week home skillets.

Sister Langford


Monday, October 6, 2014

"Not winter yet!!, Cool people eat sushi, Watch Meet the Mormons, Loving General Conference & Awesome Investigators!"


Hello everybody! Let me tell you a story about New York... it is getting COLD. I'm trying to understand why winter is already trying to make its way into my life. It's kind of ridiculous. Anyway, this has been a very interesting week... So let's talk about it.


1. Guess what I saw this week? "Meet The Mormon's!"  You guys, it was so awesome. I highly recommend everyone go and see it. We were able to watch it at the mission office the night before MLC. It was really fun. The assistants pretended like it was a real movie theater. They were like, "I'm sorry, seating for the movie will not start for another 10 minutes." It was hilarious. But it's an awesome movie, and an even more awesome missionary tool! Everyone! Take advantage of it!

2. Also, I ate sushi this week. I was bullied into it. Surprisingly everyone, it wasn't terrible... but it didn't taste like much. I think everyone only likes it because they think it makes them cool.

3. and OH MY GOSH GENERAL CONFERENCE. General Conference was awesome this time around. Well, I guess it's awesome every time around... but whatever. I noticed a couple of really big themes. First of all, the theme of not getting distracted. Did you notice how many people said that? Don't get distracted by Satan, whether it's through discouragement, media, doubt, whatever. Just keep your eye on the prize. There was also a lot of talk about listening to the prophet and following him. There was a really strong emphasis on that one. As well as finding out the truth for yourself. It was a super awesome conference to have investigators attend. We had quite a few of them show up, as did the elders which was AWESOME!

Speaking of investigators showing up...

Cool Story of the Week...

During the final session of general conference, we didn't have any investigators come... which was kind of disappointing, but whatever. So the session ended and we were supposed to go teach a potential investigator... but he texted us to reschedule. So... our evening was now free. Just then, one of the elders comes up to us and says, "Hey sisters! There is someone here for you to talk to!" What? Well best surprise ever! There is a girl, around our age, who is a college student at the near by school, Skidmore (same school Alina goes to). Well she is in a religious studies class at Skidmore and for an assignment they had to go to a religious service different from their own. She was raised Catholic, but this past summer had gone on a study abroad to London where she met a bunch of students from (guess where?) BYU! So, due to those interactions, she decided to check out the church... on General Conference Sunday! So awesome! Anyway, we gave her a church tour and taught her a bit of the restoration and she was sincerely interested. We invited her to start taking the lessons and she said she would love to! So we are meeting with her again tonight. Coolest blessing of the week by far!

Investigator update:

G: Came to all the Saturday sessions of General Conference and absolutely loved it. He called it his "Mormon day" haha. He is also super stoked about his baptism for Nov 1st. He keeps saying that this time he really thinks it's going to happen and feels super great about it! VERY happy!

GA: This girl is just a champ. She also came to a bunch of conference and she even came and helped us teach. During the lesson with the other investigator we were teaching, I mentioned that she was planning on getting baptized in December and she said "for now..." We are hopefully assuming that means she wants to be baptized sooner. That girl is so solid.

A: Also came to quite a few sessions of conference. During the Saturday evening session it seemed like every talk was perfect for her. At the end, we asked her what she thought and she said it was "interesting."  We then asked if that meant "good interesting" or "what you say when your friend gets a bad haircut?" She confirmed that it was good interesting. So... that's always encouraging. We dropped her baptism date, but she has made a goal to finish the Book of Mormon by the end of the year! hurray!

Those are the main people I feel to update on! :)

Anyway, like I said it was an interesting week (probably bad hair cut interesting). Quite a few ups and downs. I think a lot of random stresses are just starting to set in. I must say I am very thankful for the direction and wisdom of modern prophets that we receive through General Conference!

This week we are going on our 3 day exchanges! So I will be in Glens Falls a large portion of the week, (that is Jimmer's home town), so it should be exciting!

Hasta la pasta friends.

Sister Langford