Serving in the Mississippi Jackson Mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

I didn't know it was possible to love so many people...

HI Y'ALL!! :D 

Not sure how to even begin this email or what to say. Just like most of you of guess, this week has been a range of emotions. After serving here for a good minute, these people have become my family and my area, kind of like my child. I've grown to love them and love the gospel so much more. Each area has taken a big piece of my heart. I stay long enough to love it, then get moved again. I didn't know it was possible to love so many people, to the point that I never want to leave them. I keep telling myself I'm just getting transferred to a new area, that I'll go serve in another ward and meet more wonderful and amazing people, that I still have at least 6 months left, and it still doesn't feel real. I remember when I first came out, I thought it would be forever till I went home, and that I had plenty of time. I can't believe its been 18 months.  It honestly feels like I've been out just 6 months. One of the best ways to describe it is very bittersweet. My heart is breaking to have to leave my Southern family here, and I wish I could stay longer. I wish they could just all come with me, and then y'all could meet them:) Sorry if I sound dramatic y'all, but I'm just expressing how I feel. And how much I love and am going to miss the people I've met.

So I only have time to tell y'all about a few things that happened this week.  First off, we had a awesome week! And I'll tell a lot more about it in a few days.

Some people we just barely started teaching are Kayla and Mary. Mary is the mom, and Kayla is the daughter. We stopped by and saw them last week. And at first when we were talking to Mary she told us she wasn't interested and that didn't want to learn any more. Well, the Spirit being the wonderful companion it is, we felt prompted to share why Mormons are called Mormons. It’s this little drawing that explains the history of the Book Of Mormon. Anyway we started to explain using the picture, and Mary had a ton of questions for us throughout the whole time. By the end of it, Mary and Kayla were very interested and wanted us to come back. It was really funny because Kayla has a Book of Mormon and has read a little bit of it, and her mom was telling her it didn't have Jesus in it,  and Kayla was defending it. So when we said it was centered on Jesus Christ and showed them 3 Nephi 11, Kayla pointed at her mom and said "I told you so!" haha I love them, they’re really awesome people! :D 

Sorry this email isn't very long y'all, there's a member feeding us lunch and she waiting for us at her house. Words don't even begin to describe how grateful I am for my mission and all the Lord taught me. I'm so grateful for all the experiences, trials, people, companions, and friendships I've gained. These past 18 months have been the hardest 18 months of my life, but the most rewarding. My mission has taught me the importance of always keeping our lives centered on Jesus Christ and his teachings. It’s taught me how to study and feast on the words of Christ, and that by applying what we learn in the scriptures we can find peace, comfort, strength, and hope. It’s taught me that through heartfelt prayer every single day, studying, trying our best to live the gospel there's nothing we can't overcome. I know that we can find answers to our questions or problems through the scriptures and the best part is we can feel the love our Father in Heaven has for us. It is so real, and he loves us so much. I know that he loves and knows each one of his children.  He's aware of our struggles, flaws, sorrows, burdens, and pains. He knows when we feel weak or frightened. I know he has helped me through all of the challenges I've faced in my life, and if I turn to him, he will make me strong. As we draw close to him and try to understand who he is and what he's done for us, he will change our nature and we will understand who we truly are as sons and daughters of God. I'm so grateful for the Plan Of Salvation.  Because of it, I know what Heavenly Father expects of me and who he wants me to become. I know that I have a purpose in this life, and Heavenly Father has a plan for me. Because of the hope we can have in Jesus Christ, we can make it through trials and challenges having the reassurance that they’re not given to us to torture us or be mean or cruel, but to help us grow and become like him. By myself I am weak, frightened, and scared, but with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, I can do anything. Before my mission I didn't realize how much I needed them in my life, and I took being a part of the Lord’s kingdom for granted. I didn't understand how much there is to life, to the choices we make, or even how much there is to the gospel. Now I understand more how important our everyday decisions are. I understand that the decisions we make now will influence and determined who we want to become, our children, and so on. My mission has helped me understand that a life committed to Christ doesn't accidentally happen. It’s something we have to work at all our lives and as we rely on the Atonement to find peace, healing, grace, and turn desire into action. Our Savior and Father in Heaven can make so much more out of our lives then we ever could, if we give it to them they will mold us, shape and change us. Through the Atonement of Jesus and sincere repentance we will find eternal peace and joy. I am so grateful for my Savior who has make it possible to overcome my flaws and weakness and made it so I never have to go through this life alone. My mission has forever changed me, and I pray that I will always remember my mission. I've loved it so much! And will always be a missionary, whether or not I have the name tag. I may not wear a physical name tag for much longer but it will always be engraving on my heart.

Thanks y'all for everything, for the prayers, support, and encouragement!!! I'll see y'all in a few days!!!

Love, Sister Keables
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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

I will send one last email next week!

September 19, 2016

Hi Everyone!

So to start,  next Monday I plan on sending one last email, mostly because today we didn't have time to email hardly at all. Also thank you for all the emails! I love hearing from everyone and getting lots of emails!:D 

A few days ago we met this guy named Johnny,  and he's really awesome! Sister Rueckert did the door approach and she started with asking him what he thought happens after we pass away. He told us that if our heart was in the right place and we accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior then we would go to heaven, and if not we would go to hell.  Then Johnny asked us our opinion.  We started telling him about the Spirit World. At that point he asked where it said that in the Bible and invited us in. Sister Rueckert looked for the scripture in Peter while I stalled. lol Thank goodness Sister Rueckert was able to find it and asked if we could say a prayer. Thanks to the Holy Ghost, it helped us explained it to him to where he could understand what the Spirit World meant. It was amazing to see how much of a difference the prayer made.  Before me and Sister Rueckert had felt unsure and not confident. After the prayer, we both felt peace and felt the Spirit guiding us. By the end, Johnny had one last question and that was why are there so many churches? We told him we had the answer and would love to answer it at that moment, but Johnny had been in the middle of something and told us we could come back and share that with him another time.  Anyway, were excited to go back and see him, and he seemed very open:D 

Sorry y'all like I said, really short email, but love y'all and I promise I will send one last email next week! 

Love, Sister Keables


 I found a street with one of my old areas on it! :D





Wednesday, September 14, 2016

I know that the Book of Mormon is true...

September 13, 2016

HI Y'ALL!!!:D

So this week was crazy because we had several meetings and exchanges. Yesterday we had Zone Conference in Shreveport and lasted it most of the day, which is why I didn't write y'all yesterday. Part of our Zone Conference we had the opportunity to go and talk to everyone. Each companionship had an assignment and ours was to invite people to church tours!:D We went door to door talking to people for about an hour.  We met this lady named Aaron and she was really nice, not interested, but nice. Then we met this guy named Joe Miller, super nice and very open. Turns out he doesn't work because of a severe accident he had back in January. He broke his legs and his back and just barely got out of using a wheel chair. Really nice cool guy, which he was in our area! Anyway, we talked to him for a few minutes, getting to know him and then invited to him to come to a church tour. He told us he'd like to come to one of the services and learn more about what we believed. We asked for his information and gave it to the Elders serving in that area. One of the things that was talked about a lot was how important it is to talk to everyone and how Heavenly Father places choice spirits or people in our path and how it's our purpose to be bold and determined to talk to everyone we met. It was all so good!:D

A week from last Saturday I lost by mini quad! for a full week! Never will I do that again.  It makes a huge difference in your week when you can't really study, study. I wasn't happy and I didn't have that extra layer of spiritual armor that I needed. It's amazing how much it affects you and how you respond to challenges. I know that the Book Of Mormon is true and that we need it not just to read but to study, apply and give us the spiritual strength and power to overcome trials and work through problems that we face. Not having my scriptures for a week helped me realize how much I need them, and how critical studying brings the Spirit in our lives. Without that study every single day, our faith is weaker, we fall easier to temptation, and we're not happy. And so much more. Studying everyday is something I plan and will do at least for an hour each day.

Sorry y'all that this email is so short! We had trouble finding computers to use because the library was super busy and the family history center was being used. Also next p-day will be on Monday so just to let y'all know:D

Love Y'all!!!!

Love, Sister Keables

Cutest Sisters in the MJM!! 









Amy & Eddie's Girls Got Baptized!!!


August 22, 2016
Look how cute they are!!!  

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

This week has been sooo GOOD!


August 22, 2016


Selfie!! 

Hey Y'all!!!

This week has been sooo GOOD! We have seen so many miracles and tender mercies! First off, I've been given the opportunity training a new missionary!!! My comp's name is Sister Rueckert, and she's an amazing missionary!! She's taught me a lot so far, and I'm pumped to work with her the next 6 weeks! I found out that greenie fire is real, and I love it! She is determined to work hard and to be exactly obedient! She's from Salt Lake City, Utah. 
There's been a ton of rain the last 3-4 days somewhere around there. But none of it is really affecting where we live.  Yesterday our bishop announced that next weekend they need members to go to Baton Rouge, Louisiana to help with the flooding. 

Just going to go over the highlights from the week. 

Tuesday: Not a whole lot happened because that was transfer day, so I was waiting for my new comp most of the day. Sister Williams my previous comp was there all day as well, so I got to talk to her and spend time with some other missionaries.  Sister Rueckert arrived at 4:30 and that's when they told me I was training her. We had to travel home, which takes a little over an hour because Queen City is far away from everything. We went and saw this family that's semi-active and had a good visit with them. By the time we went to bed we were both so tired!

Thursday: We finally caught Dock and Diane at home! We talked to for a bit, just seeing how they were doing and then asked if they had read the chapter we left with them last time. They told us no, so we read with them and asked them to finish the chapter. Later day we went tracting and met this awesome guy named Peanut! We started with asking him questions and getting to know him and then shared the Restoration.  The Spirit was super strong and amazing! Peanut is great and very open and teachable. We set a return appointment for the next day. 

Friday: Had a really good lesson with Liz about the healing power of the Atonement and how it helps us to let go of the past. I love it when I feel like the Spirit is really speaking through me; it's the best feeling ever! The Spirit was really strong, and at the end of the lesson Liz told us she felt great and that she could conquer the world. 

Sorry y'all, a lot more happened this week, but I've run out of time! I'll tell y'all more next! I wish I had time to tell y'all more about the great week we had.  Let's just say for now the work is really picking up:D Love y'all and have great week!

Love, Sister Keables

Monday, August 15, 2016

I got to shake Elder Anderson's hand!

August 15, 2016 

HEY Y'ALL!!!

Good news! I'm not getting moved!!:D I don't know who my new comp will be, but she better be ready to work hard and to kill it here in the small town of Atlanta, Texas! 
 Nothing super exciting happened this week, so sorry if its not too long. 

Tuesday. We did service at the library, and on the way there our bishop and his daughter saw us and offered to take us to the library.  Of course, we said yes mostly because it was really hot outside. Later that evening, we went and saw Alma and Mario because it was Alma's birthday and most of her family was there. They fed us dinner, and we got a chance to meet some of Alma's kids that we hadn't met before. I love their family!!!!:D They've pretty much adopted us; Alma calls us her girls and told us that her is our home. lol 

Wednesday. We had Zone Training Meeting and we talked about teaching to people's needs. It was so good!! I learned so much, and it was really cool because they had members come and pretend to be nonmembers so that we could practice teaching to someone's needs that we just barely met. We learned more about how to teach to people's needs and the importance of listening to them and then trying to discern what they needed to hear. 

Thursday. There's this place called Rebecca's Food Pantry, and we've been meaning to go there and see if we can volunteer, so Thursday morning, to save miles, we biked to it, and it helped me remember why I don't love biking. It wasn't too bad though because i'ts a little cooler in the morning. They told us to come back next Thursday and they'll find something for us to do, so we're excited:D The best thing that happened Thursday was when we met this lady named Trish. We were tracting, and for the first 30 minutes only a few people answered, and one let us in. We got to this one house, and there were a two older guys outside.  We went up and started talking to them, but mostly talked to one of them. I don't remember his name, but he told us he was Southern Baptist, but he had a friend who didn't go to church and needed God in his life. His friend was actually in his backyard, and he asked us if we wanted to go talk to him.  We said yes, and he led us to his friend. As you can tell, I have a hard time remembering names. Anyways, we talked to his friend for what felt like hours, and he told us he was Catholic.  He told us about his life and how God had helped him. We ended up talking about the Book Of Mormon and we offered him a copy. He said yes, and told us he would read it. Sadly, he doesn't live in Atlanta or anywhere close, so we couldn't really set up a time to come and see him again. After that, we walked back to the other guy who introduced us to his friend, and he asked if we wanted to talk to his wife and mother-in-law. We told him we would love to meet them, and he took us inside their house. He's wife's name is Trish, and His mother-in-law's name is Teddy. When we first started talking to her, she had the look on her face like, "Why are you in my house?" We talked for the first few minutes, pretty much about everything: about the hard things she's been through, including a divorce that she went through that was awful really, really hard for her. She talked about how her and her husband don't go to the same church and she really wanted that. She also told us she wants her family to be closer. At that point she really opened up and the Spirit really took over from there. We shared the Restoration with her and she really seemed to like it. A huge part of it was that the Spirit was helping us teach it to her needs and concerns. I am so grateful to the inspiration the Lord gave to our sister training leaders and our zone leaders because it really helped us to be better tools in the hands of the Lord. When we got to the Book Of Mormon she asked for a copy and was pumped to read it! It was awesome lesson, thanks to the Spirit!:D 
 
Running out of time, so i'll have to tell y'all more next week! One last thing before I go, Liz wasn't able to come to Stake Conference:( But it was really good, and I got to shake Elder Anderson's hand!! The members that took us pretty much hustled us to him and told him they wanted him to meet their sister missionaries. lol I love them!
Anyway, that was our week or at least most of the highlights!:D Love y'all and have a great week!

Love, Sister Keables
 Some awesome members gave us a ride to Stake Conference! 

We walked for days trying to save miles...

August 8, 2016
Hey y'all!!

This transfer sped by! And in answer to your questio,n transfers is next week. I'll most likely sta,y but you never know what could happen. This coming transfer will be my last, which is so weird to think about. I feel like I've been out 6 months and still have plenty of time, but I'm determined to make the most out of the 7 weeks I have left!:D 

This past Tuesday we went on exchanges with some other sisters in our District, Sister Anderson and Sister Ausen. Sister Anderson came with me to Atlanta for the day, and we had a great time together! She's a wonderful missionary and she taught me a lot. While I was with her, we went and saw Shortly and Carolyn. They're potential investigators, me and Sister Stephens have only taught twice before, but it had been a while. We followed up on the Book Of Mormon and asked them if they had read, but Shorty and Carolyn hadn't read much and didn't seem to remember it very well, so we went over it again, but this time from a different angle. We talked more about the history of the Book Of Mormon and why we need it. We invited them to pray about the Book Of Mormon and if it was true specifically. Me and Sister Stephens both felt the Spirit very strong when we testified of the power and truthfulness of the Book Of Mormon and how it could bless their lives if they are willing to let it. We have an appointment with them tomorrow.  Pray it goes well!:D

Tuesday morning we had a really good lesson with Liz. We talked to her about obedience and following the Prophet. Something Sister Anderson is really good at is following the Spirit and using the scriptures when she teaches. She pulled out a few to help Liz understand and it really clicked for her. We also told Liz that a Apostle is coming to Stake Conference next week and invited her to come to it and pray about Thomas S. Monson being a prophet. She seemed excited and really wants to come! The apostle that's coming is Neil L. Andersen!!! It's going to be in Shreveport, and i'm so excited! Plus Elder Anderson wants to have a special meeting just with converts and investigators so Liz might get meet him, not just see him!:D 

Exchanges lasted from Monday evening to Wednesday lunch time because we had district meeting. Sister Anderson has only been out 7 months, so she's not new but not old or ancient like I am. lol It was fun being with her because it reminded me of some things I need to work on or should start doing. I was able to help when it came to things she wanted to work on.  All in all, we both learned lot:D 

Thursday we walked for days trying to save miles, met several people walking, and there was this old couple who said we could come back, so that was cool. One of the members actually picked us up on the way home and called us crazy for walking in the heat. Haha! This member's name is Sister Nelson, and she's probably the funniest member in the ward. She was telling us about a friend of hers named Taylor and that we needed to go to her house and teach her. Sister Nelson asked what our plans were for the next few hours, and said she would be willing to take us right then to go see her friend. Sister Nelson drove us there, and we got to talk to Taylor for a few minutes. She wasn't feeling well so we weren't able to stay for long. 
 Early in the morning we had planned on walking to Liz's house, but instead we talked to this lady named Janine. Me and Sister Stephens are both working on talking to everyone even if it might be awkward. lol Janine was mowing her law,n but we went up to her and talked anyway. At first we were talking to her about our church then hers and then her family. She invited us in to cool down and she also gave us some Gatorade. We got to talk to her for about an hour and she told us we could come back. 

Sorry this email is so confusing y'all, but i'm a little scatterbrained today:D Love y'all and have an amazing week!!! Promise I'll write a better email next week!


Love, Sister Keables

Our District!  We all word black because it was Sister Stephen's last District meeting!


 Only in the South someone writes scriptures on our car! 



 Went into a lesson and found this on our car! 

With Liz :D