Monday, September 19, 2016

September 19, 2016

Our area had struggles this week.  We had some very nasty people talk to us all in a row and I like to think my skin is pretty tough and that stuff never bothers me, but this week because we got hit with so many all in a row it kinda got to us both. But as the Lord gives us trials and we go through them, he takes us to the promised land. And he needed to test our faith this week apparently but we then saw many miracles!

We randomly ran into this woman, Sabrina, as she was reading on her porch and long story short, she is a member who hasn't been to church in 20 years.  There were no records of her here and so we taught her and her teenage children who aren't members and they came to church!

Another miracle is Katina and her family of 6.  We were finally able to start teaching and they came to church also! Everything is aligning in this area right "when we were depressed and about to give up."

I love it here in Muncie, it is so hard but so good! :)

I just passed a year and I feel like the whole first year I was looking forward, hoping time would pass quickly.  But already I'm looking back and trying to grasp harder onto the precious time I have left. I love this work so much and would literally rather be nowhere else than here!

Be happy! Can I give you that advice? There is something wrong and something right in everyone and every situation.  You get to decide what you look for and continue looking at though. What will you choose? I am choosing happiness :)


Elder Howland

Elder Howland having ice cream on his "hump" day...September 16, 2016.

Elder Howland and his companion, Elder Swainston.  They were also companions while in the MTC.

Monday, September 12, 2016

September 12, 2016

 Elders Quinn and Manos in the front seat; Elder Howland in the back seat.
 Coffman family; Ryan (next to Mark) was his best pal.
 The Hubner family
 Elder Manos, Mandy - we were helping her come back to church.
A beautiful Muncie, Indiana road.
September 12, 2016

Literally my favorite part of being a missionary I just realized is the studies in the morning. We have the 1 hour of personal studies and I usually start my studies 15-30 mins early because I just love learning so much! I know that the most important way I will be learning is by applying things in my life each day but I LOVE my personal studies. I have found a way to mark things (haha MARK) that works really well for me and I am learning things that I never saw before and honestly it is making me love them so much more too! I was thinking this morning that if I were to lose these scriptures I don't know what I would do! God has provided all the answers to us and I'm finding that all I have to do is find them!!

This week we had a pretty hard hit, our golden golden golden investigator Kim recieved the Book of Mormon on Sunday and was to 2 Nephi 14 by Friday Which is unheard of! Members don't even read that much ahaha but she did and then on Saturday...she broke up with us over text! C'mon!! Yeah we got a text that said please don't come by or call anymore. That was a pretty hard blow because we loved her so much, she reminds me a lot of Jana Morrison to be honest, just amazing. But she read a lot in the Book of Mormon and so we are hoping that whatever she heard about our church will be not as powerful as the truth she read those few days and that sometime in the future that truth will emerge and she will come back.

We have taken it pretty well because we have seen other miracles!!! When one door closes and what not right? :) We are super excited, we have 2 investigators we are most excited for and they both have the same name! Terrie and Terry. One boy one girl. :) We love them both and are excited to see them move forward because they both have a testimony of the Book of Mormon and now it is just helping them to commit to live it!

So much love from Muncie, Indiana! Oh and I am with my old companion from the MTC, Elder Swainston!!!

P.S.  Elder Howland's new address is:

Elder Mark Howland
1505 W. Riggin Rd.
Muncie, IN  47303

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

September 5, 2016

The power of fasting is so real! This last Sunday, 8/28/2016, Elder Manos and I fasted because our teaching pool was dwindling down even though we are working. What a miracle that was! On Sunday night, a member from another ward in the stake called us and asked us to teach a woman in our area! What an answer to our prayer! Member referrals are much more solid than those that we find on our own efforts so that was a blessing. Then on Tuesday we received a call from a Sister in our ward who had a relative that she wanted us to start teaching! And we were like what??? We thought the blessing was the last member referral! Now there is two! And then on Wednesday we got another call from a member in our ward.  She asked us to go visit her brother (who is less active but in the ward) and she asked us to go on a specific day so that she and her whole family could fast for it to go well.

We thought the blessings were amazing just after that first one... It really taught me a lesson on God's grace. When we rely on our own efforts good things happen because he gave us moral agency and power to act but the real power and miracles come by relying on the Spirit and acknowledging His power! 

Transfers are tomorrow and I am leaving, I will let you know where I am going! 

I love you!
Elder Howland