Monday, October 16, 2017

No such thing as Coincidences

Monday night, it's 8:15 and we are out of things to do, typical Monday night. It's dark outside, so we usually don't plan on knocking doors, but when all else fails, you knock doors. Sister York felt inspired to go knock some apartments in our area, so we said a prayer and choose a building to start with. A few doors in a woman answers the door and immediately invites us in. Her name is Shayla, and we talked for just a few minutes. She told us that her kids go to our church with their Nanny, and that she was very interested in what we believe. So we set up a return appointment.
We ask a member, Sister Self to come with us to the return appointment, and the lesson was one of the most powerful spiritual experiences I have had on my mission. Shayla told us that we had knocked on her door just hours after she had been having a panic attack, and she knew that God had sent us to her door. Sister Self, being the totally boss member-missionary that she is, invited Shayla to be baptized, and Shayla accepted.
Now let's take a look at this story, it could have just been a coincidence that all of these things happened, but I don't believe so. There has to have been some divine inspiration that told us to knock on Shayla's door, that told us to invite Sister Self, that lead Shayla to choose a member of the church as the Nanny for her children. God is truly at the helm of this great work!
Another seeming coincidence happened on Saturday, I was expecting to get a letter from my family on Thursday, but I checked and nothing came. Friday, same story. Saturday was transfer calls, the most anxiety filled day of the transfer. That was the day my letter came. My sweet Daddy (who has a birthday today!) sent me his talks that he gave in Stake Conference, and it was just what I needed to calm my anxiety. He spoke on 1 Samuel in the Bible, and on Raising the Ebenezer, or stone of Help to the Lord. So I took a little rock and on it I wrote the words "Here I raise my Ebenezer, Hither by thy help I've come...." From the hymn, "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" to remind me just how far the Lord has carried me.
Now, is it a coincidence that my letter came on Saturday instead of Thursday? No, God controls the mail system too!
The Lord knows us Perfectly! He Loves us perfectly, and He knows what will help us and when it will help us the most!
All my love to you,
Sister Megan Monson

Monday, October 9, 2017

If God be for us...

I wish I could say that this week was the craziest week of my mission because we were rushing between teaching appointments, but... it wasn't. Which is okay, I've learned to be okay with the constant door-knocking due to lack of investigators.
But this week I learned a lot about Grace, the Savior's redemptive power. What an amazing gift our Savior has promised us, that if we do all that we possibly can, He will make up the difference.
So I started by rereading one of my favorite talks, "His Grace Is Sufficient" By Brad Wilcox ( actually took the time to look up every single scripture it references, naturally I found some golden ones.
Romans 8:31

"What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?"

If God is for us, then no one can really be against us, and if they are against us, they're pretty much powerless in comparison to our Heavenly Father. So if we are on His team, if we are doing what He wants us to do, then we should feel secure, knowing that He will take care of us. Further down in that same chapter we read:

Romans 8:37

"Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us."

Because our Heavenly Father and our Savior LOVE us infinitely, we can truly be covered by our Savior's grace. We can truly conquer those trials that seem insurmountable, because Christ has already paid the price for us, He truly, deeply loves us.
Brad Wilcox states that "Grace is not the absence of God’s high expectations. Grace is the presence of God’s power." We are not freed completely of our end of the deal just because the debt is paid, but we can know for sure that even if we do fall short, God's power is there to cover the difference.
In the WA-TAC we sing the song "Amazing Grace" it is our mission song, the one that always makes all the missionaries start crying because it hits us with the Spirit, but the version we sing is a little different, it's by Chris Tomlin, and here are the lyrics:

Amazing grace
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost, but now I'm found
Was blind, but now I see
My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood His mercy reigns
Unending love, amazing grace

'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear
And grace my fears relieved
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed

My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood His mercy reigns
Unending love, amazing grace

The Lord has promised good to me
His word my hope secures
He will my shield and portion be
As long as life endures

My chains are gone
I've been set free
My God, my Savior has ransomed me
And like a flood His mercy reigns

Unending love, amazing Grace

I am truly Amazed at the incredible grace of my Savior, He loves us, He wants to save us, and He will, if we let Him.

All my love,
Sister Megan Monson


Why I Believe Fireside

Monday, October 2, 2017

I'm TRYING to be Like Jesus

I love this photo from the mission Instagram post. I can not express my gratitude enough for an inspired Mission President and his wife who do not give up but continue to follow promptings and serve with little thought of their own welfare and only the care and spiritual health of their missionaries. I can imagine President Leishman standing in the doorway looking upon a few of his missionaries and give great thanks for the moments he has had to spend with them and be grateful for their dedication to the Lord. This touched my heart! There are no coincidences in life, as Elder Hallstrom spoke about in General Conference yesterday. The Lord knows our divine destiny. Feeling so very blessed words can not express how much I love the Lord and how I love those placed in my path and in the paths of my children who help with the miracles we all need so desperately. Sister Lee you are one of those miracles also. How grateful I am that the Lord is a God of miracles! -MOM

out to lunch with Sister Lee between Saturday sessions

After a crazy, insane, totally full week, including a trip to the temple, exchanges, interviews, Sister York's birthday, and everything in between, I had the opportunity to relax, unwind and watch General Conference. What an amazing thing! I love that we have the opportunity every six months to listen to the guidance of our leaders and receive revelation.
My very favorite talk was by Elder Jeffrey R Holland, no surprise there. His words touched my heart and helped me to remember a divine truth. He spoke of the Savior's Sermon on the mount and the commandment to "Be ye therefore perfect."
Ouch. I am so very far from being perfect that I can hardly imagine ever being so. But that is what the Atonement is for, isn't it? Elder Holland proclaimed, "I'm trying to be like Jesus." And that is what I am trying to do too.
I am trying, desperately, to be like my Savior, and I make mistakes every day, but I am trying.
I love the words of the primary song:

  1. 1. I’m trying to be like Jesus;
    I’m following in his ways.
    I’m trying to love as he did, in all that I do and say.
    At times I am tempted to make a wrong choice,
    But I try to listen as the still small voice whispers,
  2. “Love one another as Jesus loves you.
    Try to show kindness in all that you do.
    Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought,
    For these are the things Jesus taught.”
  3. 2. I’m trying to love my neighbor;
    I’m learning to serve my friends.
    I watch for the day of gladness when Jesus will come again.
    I try to remember the lessons he taught.
    Then the Holy Spirit enters into my thoughts, saying:
  4. “Love one another as Jesus loves you.
    Try to show kindness in all that you do.
    Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought,
    For these are the things Jesus taught.”
Christ's whole gospel is about Love, and if we are able to love each other, then everything else works out. We are all trying, and that is enough, perfection is an end goal, not a singular event.
In this gospel we get points for trying, there is no first place or last place, we are all in this together! Just like they say in High School Musical! None of us are perfect, and that is why we all need the Savior.
All my love to you,
Sister Megan Monson

See Elder Hollands full talk... it's worth the reread or re listen again and again.

Seattle Temple Trip

General Conference at the Presidents Home

Sister York's birthday!

Monday, September 25, 2017

He Once was Broken too

We have a Savior who truly, truly knows what we are feeling, that is the most true thing that has ever been taught. In Mosiah 14 we learn:

3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows,and acquainted with grief; and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

4 Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Our Savoir truly understands the pains and the sorrows and the anger, everything. I cannot testify of that enough. This week my poor companion got sick. It seems to be going around. So despite caring for her, I still had a bit of time this week to just ponder, study, pray, do whatever I wanted really. After reading those verses, with my heart full of gratitude, I put pen to paper, and wrote out my feelings in verse. So I'm sorry if you don't like poetry! But this one is called "He Once was Broken too."

I feel like I'm broken,
I fall in a heap.
My life is a token
to the one who hears me weep.

He is my Savior,
the great Emmanuel,
but my life has lost its flavor
for reasons I wish he would tell.

I follow in His footsteps
He said, "Come follow me."
and my life has had some mishaps
due to things I cannot see.

I look for His hand
and I plead for His grace
He is in high demand
I simply wish to see His face.

As I ponder and I pray
a thought I come to see.
Could it be just as they say
He was broken just for me?

Could He really know my pain?
Does He really know my sorrow?
What did He have to gain
when I His blood had to borrow?

What a blessing it is to know
He once was broken too
and though my progress may be slow
He will love me through.

It never ceases to amaze me just how much the Savior understands me and what I am going through. He feels your pain, He feels the sorrow, the hurt, the anger. But He also knows the way to inexplicable joy. He loves us!
I love testifying of that truth to everyone I meet, it is the greatest joy to talk about my Savior.
All my love,
Sister Megan Monson