Monday, March 28, 2016

March 28, 2016

This week was awesome!!! Okay so in the last 2 months we found Nicole from a referral from her neighbor and then we taught her all the lessons and Friday night (Good Friday) she got baptized! :) And then on Easter she got confirmed! Haha Nicole is the best, she is so funny and she has progressed so far in such a short amount of time. She bore her testimony right after the baptism and she understands so much more than I thought. She KNOWS that the Book of Mormon is the Word of God! :) We made her a big poster that says congrats on it. haha We kept giving her "homework" to read the Book of Mormon and so she gave us some homework to make her that. haha
I also received a new companion into Norwood, Elder Mc Kellar. He is from Trinidad and Tobago (South America) and has been out 9 months and has helped 12 people come to the waters of baptism... no big deal. haha We are looking forward to working hard and helping as many people as we can out here! He is an awesome missionary and I'm looking forward to learning a lot from him.
Nicole is also going to be going to the Indianapolis Temple and we are going with her so we are excited to go there for the first time! Also we should be having a mission temple trip soon where we will likely go to Louisville again. CAN'T WAIT!!! This is going to be a fun transfer! :)
I love you all so very much!

Elder Howland

Nicole, Elder Howland, Elder McKellar

Monday, March 21, 2016

March 21, 2016

This week was soooo good!

Okay so starting off with the big one. Elder Neil L. Andersen came and spoke to us! What??? So cool! Our investigators always tell us that there is something different that they feel when we come and for the rest of the day; now we have the opportunity to experience it also. I could definitely feel something different with Elder Andersen. He is so funny by the way.  It was Sister Porter's (Mission President's wife) birthday so he had all of us sing to her. He also had the whole mission come and shake hands with him; that was pretty cool. So investigators that we shake hands with now don't even know that they are shaking hands with a hand that has shaken hands with a prophet, seer and revelator of God!

That was a highlight but the lowlight is actually today. We found out that Elder Bee is leaving tomorrow and that I am staying. I am so sad! He has been great and I have learned so much from him! But I have more to learn from someone else apparently! I'll fill you in next week, sorry this is so short. But we are seeing miracles and this area is very much alive!

Nicole is getting baptized on Friday!!!

Love you all! 

Monday, March 14, 2016

March 14, 2016

So yesterday in church I gave my first sacrament talk on my mission :) I was really hoping to get away with it by sliding under the radar but apparently I could run but I couldn't hide. I gave it on the Holy Ghost and then Sister Darenthal gave her homecoming talk right after. She did awesome job and has already asked us if she could come out with us and teach. So we have some plans there. Having members out teaching with us is seriously so great. Brother Mastin is one that comes out with us often and he is an amazing ward missionary with a powerful testimony. Love love love that man!

This ward really altogether is amazing. I'm finding it out each week as I meet more and more of the people. We met this family, the Garlock's, on Wednesday and it was so much fun; we laughed and laughed with them :) It was seriously so much fun! They said that when they have missionaries over without fail the next transfer one of them goes home so we are trying to break that pattern! We are going to stay here as long as possible. I want to have like 6 more months here! I love it here soooo much!

Sorry this week is short--the missionaries are pressuring me because they want to go play basketball!

So much love! Next week I will have stories for days! :)

Elder Howland

Monday, March 7, 2016

March 7, 2016

This power is awesome! We literally can't tell you "an hundredth" of the miracles that are happening here in Norwood! We moved Nicole's baptism date up 2 weeks and so she is now going to be baptized on the 18th and she is awesome, meeting with us, reading the BoM, coming up with ideas to help Sunday School lessons! Like what?? What investigator does that?

We had a cool miracle that we wanted to share. Our media referrals turn out to not be referrals for us to go see because they aren't interested so often.  For example, one referral was a man whose friends had played a prank on him by sending us out to him. But when we asked who God wanted us to go see, there was a less active that came to mind in the area (who we had tried like 6 times before with no luck). But we went and long story short, just 5 minutes before, this less active's non-member daughter had been asking about the LDS church because she knew it was family oriented, and wanted a copy of the Book of Mormon to read. So this less active who hasn't been to church in 20 years and his daughter came to church on Sunday. The best part is that we did NOTHING! God led this daughter to the truth, the members were completely on top of things at church and now we are going to teach this girl the lessons and 2 members asked us if they could come teach with us! 

Guys, my mission has been so different in the last month, I can't even describe it. Literally every day there are miracles.  Another lady we talked to yesterday took 3 lessons from missionaries in Columbus but fell out of contact with them and moved out here and so we are going to teach her the lessons now and bring her to the truth... I can't describe everything and I truly didn't know that God could work so specifically and it is awesome.

My mindset has changed and that is a big deal. I am somewhat ashamed to say that I used to think like "ugh we have 3 more hours to fill until we can go back in".  Just being outside the apartment was proselyting time. But now it is so much more. "What can I share with who until I get back, I only have 3 hours to do it so I better hurry!" 

The best feeling in the world is that God trusts us and he is trusting us with more and more. We have to keep working harder to be able to hold all that we can for him.

I love you guys! I know that this is God's church and gospel, I know that Jesus Christ died for me and is risen again. I know that Thomas S. Monson is his prophet today and that God speaks to man. I know that the Holy Ghost is real and that I can feel God's love for me through it.  He talks to me and leads me and as I come closer to him He comes closer to me. My action is how I show my love for him and He always always no matter what I do or did has always loved me.

Elder Howland