Friday, December 12, 2014

Plot Twist…4 transfers in Lelystad

Dec. 8, 2014

Well before I get into what happened this week, I am not getting transferred. I definitely thought I was leaving…so I said goodbye to everyone. Well next Sunday will be a surprise when I am still here. My wonderful companion, Sister Robbins, is leaving me…but she is going to BREDA!!! I couldn’t be happier for her! And drum roll…I am getting a Greenie! I will be training this transfer! I am so excited to meet her on Wednesday…she has no idea what she has gotten herself into…having me as her trainer 
  1. It was really really cold this week. It even snowed a little bit one morning. But my companion and I wore all of our clothing. I had easily 3 pairs of tights/leggings on and 1 pair of wool socks and grocery bags around our feet (they help insulate our feet).
  2. Last night I was a little disoriented with transfer news…I tried to go over a curb and struggled a bit and ended up running straight into a wall. It was pretty funny.
  3. We also had Sinter Klaas this week, which is what they celebrate here on the 5th of December. It is Santa Claus’ birthday and kids receive presents. If you no longer believe in Santa Claus’ then you make what is called a suprise. Basically, you get someone a cheap present and then put it in something strange. I made a street pole and hid the present inside. Christiaan (a member) made a grand piano and hid the present inside. Sister Robbins present was inside an oven. It was really fun! You also have to write a poem to go with the surprise. Christiaan made a pot of cookies and water mixed together for me…I had to stick my hand into what looked like poop to find a small piece of paper that said my present was under my chair. It was pretty funny! We had a lot of fun!
This week was full of miracles and tests of faiths. We lost contact with our investigator Vivian for half the week. We were really worried and didn’t know what to do. We called him on Thursday and he finally answered. We met with him Friday and Saturday and it was amazing! A few personal issues had been taken care in the time that we hadn’t seen him. He was beaming in a way I hadn’t seen before. He was so excited to tell us that he now had time to focus completely on God and getting baptized. He said that God had answered his prayer and so he needs to show his gratitude by doing what God has asked of him. It was awesome! On Saturday, we set a new baptismal date for him. He will be baptized on the 10th of January. He is going to stop smoking in 3 days and is going to come to Stake Conference at the end of the week. I was so excited and I am excited that I get to see him baptized!
We had a few days this week where there was nothing planned and that worried me. I didn’t want to be out in the cold all day with no direction really. We prayed a lot and saw miracles. We went and taught the first lesson to one of our potential investigators. In the end she said she wasn’t interested but you could feel the spirit and I know that the Lord has a plan for her. Plus, she let us in on the coldest day this week! We were able to go see a lot of members and build those relationships. We worked a lot with less-active members. It was awesome to see how we are really building good relationships with the members. We can’t do this work without them!! On Thursday, I was having a rough day. I began to doubt if I had enough faith to find people (it has been really hard to find recently). I doubted if I had made a difference here Lelystad. I was frustrated and struggling to understand what Heavenly Father’s plan was. My prayers were answered. We decided to walk around the Centrum that night in a different direction than we usually go. As we walked around a corner I said, Heavenly Father we are going to find someone tonight. The next person we talked to was incredibly positive. We had taught him a first lesson and he is a new investigator. Sometimes the Lord’s work is slower than we want but when we have faith, he blesses us. So often I begin to doubt my faith but Heavenly Father doesn’t doubt my faith or my abilities to bless the people here in Lelystad. I am learning as long as I rely in Heavenly Father, he will lead me to those that are ready to accept the gospel message. Miracles happen every day and Lelystad is growing.
Sister Robbins and I decided to make this transfer “A Season of Joy.” I can honestly say this is the most joy I have had on my mission. It was a hard transfer and a transfer of patience in terms of the work but I learned how to enjoy every moment of my mission and still be effective. This life is to be enjoyed not just endured! This next transfer is going to be fun! Christmas, my birthday, and training! Life couldn’t be better! There is a member here that has the same birthday as me and she is pumped to celebrate our birthdays together. I wanted to leave because I thought it would be weird to be in a city for 6 months but honestly this is going to be awesome! The members know me really well and I know we can get a lot of work done. Besides, Lelystad Branch is my family. I love them so much and I am so excited to spend Christmas with people I love!
Soms het leven is niet wat je verwacht maar altijd wat je nodig heft!
Zuster Adams

"Oh, the weather outside is frightful"

Dec 1, 2014

Well for having the warmest fall ever in Nederland, it has lead quickly to a frightfully cold winter. It was SO cold this week and it is only supposed to get colder. I am not sure if I will survive this winter but I guess as a missionary the Lord has promised me protection…didn’t know that included frostbite 
Funnies for the week:
  1. We got new batteries in our bike lights this week. And while that doesn’t sound very funny, our bike lights were almost out and pretty pathetic. If any of you have seen Night at the Museum, we were like the cave man discovering fire when we got new lights. We were jumping around super excited!! We looked hilarious. It doesn’t take much to make a missionary happy!
  2. We had Zone Conference this week and it was amazing but Elder Moreira (the quorum of the seventy member) was one of the most animated people I have ever met!! His eyes would pop out of his head whenever he was telling a story. It was amazing! We were laughing through the whole thing.
  3. Also at Zone Conference, President Robinson was talking about obedience and how faith leads to obedience. This past week I had coincidently studied that a lot. He asked rhetorically if any of us had seen the correlation between faith and obedience. Well because I had studied it this past week, I nodded my head confidently. So then President proceeds to call me out and say that I am probably more obedient than all the elders there…it was so awkward. I laughed about it though.
  4. We made Thanksgiving dinner at a member’s home this week. It was really fun! Although, my companion and I have never really made a pumpkin pie before and definitely not without American ingredients. We did our best. It was a really strange looking pie but it didn’t taste all that bad! We high-fived at the dinner table!
This week was incredible! As I am sitting here thinking about everything that happened, I can’t help but feel very strongly how much the Lord is working here in Lelystad. I will just explain some of the miracles we saw.
-We went and looked up a potential investigator that we had taught one lesson to a couple of weeks ago. We wanted to see what she thought of the Book of Mormon. We showed up and she let us right in. Within about 5 minutes of talking to us she said “Sister Adams, I just want to let you know that we have had really positive energy since you and Sister Heilner were here. I felt it when you were here and we felt the effects of it after you left. We put our house up for sale and it sold in 2 weeks and I know that it came from the positive energy that you brought.” It was amazing!! The energy is the spirit and it was incredible to see that she recognized it. She isn’t quite ready to take the lessons but she is amazing.
-We talked to this lady a couple of weeks ago in the Centrum and we had a great conversation and then she told us she wasn’t interested. We were in the Centrum again and she walked by and gave us a big smile and wave. It was super cool! Even though people don’t always accept our message, it is nice to know that we left a good impression and that we have friends!
-Our investigator Ursula has been super sick and in/out of the hospital. We had two members of the Branch give her a blessing. It was an incredible blessing and the spirit was really strong. We then decided to read Ether 12 with her. As we were reading, I felt very strongly that we needed to talk about baptism. So I brought it up and we went through all the baptismal questions and she realized that she is ready to be baptized once she finishes the lessons. It was incredible! Her son, who is 7, wants to be baptized too! It was really cool!
-I also talked to the sisters that are serving in Breda and found out that Wilko is investigating again and that his son is taking the lessons!!! Hearing that he was investigating, was seriously a huge answer to many of my prayers and fasts. When Wilko stopped investigating, I cried! I love that man and I am so happy to hear that miracles are happening and that he is doing good.
Okay I know this email is really long but I have so much to talk about!! We had Zone Conference this week and my mission has been changed. Elder Moreira was incredible. He told us that we needed to have more faith and confidence in our calling as missionaries! We need to become like Peter and be bold! We need to have confidence in our priesthood power. He taught us to change our attitudes and traditions with missionary work in Europe. The growth that has happened in South America can happen here, we just have to believe that it will happen. There were a lot of other things but it truly changed how I looked at a lot of things! I have no reason to be afraid of this work. I have the spirit of God with me to lead me! As Elder Ballard says “It is impossible to fail when you do your best and when you are on the Lord’s Errand.” At the end of the meeting Sister Robbins and I sang our musical number. It was one of the most spiritual experiences I have ever had. It might sound strange but we truly had angels singing with us. I can’t adequately explain how I felt but it wasn’t just my companion and I singing.
We are not alone! The Lord is with us always and his angles are around us to bear us up. We need to have faith in the Lord and in his timing but also in our own ability to make things happen. I am in charge of my agency and I can make things happen with my use of agency. I am excited to see what the future holds and how our mission changes. This is probably my last week in Lelystad. While I am sad about that, I know that the future is as bright as you make it! I will be like Peter, bold and unafraid of what the Lord asks of me!
Tot de volgende keer! Blijf warm en geniet van de kerst seizon!
Zuster Adams

The downhill....I'm halfway??

Nov. 24, 2014

Well here I am emailing again! This email is going out a little bit later today because we had a Zone P-day in Den Haag and we had a Turkey Bowl (played American football) Almere District vs. Den Haag District. It was so much fun!! I made some good completions and almost scored a Touchdown, all in honor of the Oregon Ducks! I love my Ducks! Although to be fair, I also wore my BYU shirt to represent my school.
I just want to start my saying that my companion is amazing! I love her! We laugh all day long and are crazy. I love it. I make up crazy songs on the bikes about being a missionary and she appreciates them, which automatically makes her amazing! But why I am saying all this is because we always get to the end of the day and try to think of all the funny things and can’t seem to remember what was funny…bit of a problem considering funnies are my favorite part of emailing. I do have one funny for this week though. We went to Schiphol International Airport so we could switch back companions and I read the New York Time. I was flipping through the paper and there wasn’t anything that I was particularly interested in. Then I flip a page and look down and I thought that I saw a picture of BYU campus…weird. So I look back and sure enough it is BYU. The best part is that the article is on the BYU rule against facial hair. Some kid is trying to get it changed so that men can have facial hair at BYU. But what was funny is that I am in Nederland reading the International New York Times and apparently facial hair rules are important enough to be in the newspaper. It was great.
This week was incredible!! I don’t even know where to begin. We are working to build good relationships with members right now and so we made cookies for a ton of the members this week and brought them to them. It was the happiest I’ve felt in a long time. I just love seeing people’s eyes light up when they are happy. The members loved it and it felt good to know that we had served them. I went to Den Haag on exchange and I really enjoyed it. We have an investigator named Tita and he is slowly progressing more and more. This past week, I promised him that if he prayed, read his scriptures, and came to church that he would receive an answer that the Church is true. It was a really powerful lesson. He followed through on all commitments. I don’t know if he received an answer yet. We have an appointment this coming Friday. Our investigator Vivian is doing amazing! We talked to him about quitting smoking and we brought a calendar for him to pick a day. I started to suggest Christmas or New Years. He surprised us all and picked 2 weeks from last Saturday to stop. He knows the church is true and wants to change his life. I love that man. There is a member in our Branch that grew up in Idaho and she makes Thanksgiving dinner every year I had turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing, and pumpkin pie. It was wonderful! Sunday we had a visitor’s service at the church. The Elders had three people in Church and we had three too!!! That is the most I have had in my whole time in Lelystad. Allister, Vivian, and Tita came to church. I think they liked it and the Branch members were awesome about welcoming them in. The work is going really well here in Lelystad and I am really grateful for all the progress I have seen in the time that I have been here.
This week was halfway…it is super weird but the feeling that I felt this week was peace. A lot of missionaries look back and don’t feel satisfied with their efforts but for being halfway, I feel really good about everything I have done. I have worked hard, seen miracles, and grown a lot. I thankfully, have another 9 months to go. I love being here. I love being a missionary and seeing other people change but honestly the most incredible part is seeing how much I have grown. Missionary work is based so much on the agency of others and in the end it is up to the people we teach if they want to change. But I have the choice every day to become better. I have learned so much and have become more firmly planted in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Life is good here in Lelystad! I don’t think I will be here next transfer which is good but I am really going to try and enjoy my time left here! Christmas is coming and I love how there are lights in the Centrum now. This week Sister Robbins and I are performing a musical number for our Zone Conference when a quorum of the seventy member is coming. It will be great!
Het leven is geweldig en ik hou ervan om zendeling te zijn!
Zuster Adams

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Armour of God

Nov. 15, 2014

Well it has only been 5 days since I last emailed so this will be rather short. It is amazing how much happens when you have 2 more days before you email.
We changed our P-day to Saturday because Sinter Klaas (Santa Claus) came into Lelystad Harbor today to greet all the kids and we had to see it. In Nederland they celebrate Sinter Klaas and Christmas. Sinter Klaas is more what we associate with Santa Claus in regards to presents and candy. That is celebrated on the 5th of December here. The kids put their shoes out and they wake up the next morning to gifts. Christmas is more centered around Christ’s birth. Christmas here is becoming more and more like the American Christmas but they still enjoy their Sinter Klaas at the beginning of December. So before the 5th, Sinter Klaas comes to all the cities in Nederland. It is really cool! He brings his helpers the Schwarte Peten they are black (covered in soot according to the legend). It was really fun to watch today and we really enjoyed it. I will attach the photos.
Well this week has been rather interesting. Sister Robbins and I learned a lot. One of the miracles we had this week was that we had a lesson with Vivian and he realized that he knows that the Book of Mormon is true!! It was really amazing. He still has a ways to go before he can be baptized (smoking, some weird family traditions, and church attendance) but we are getting there!! It has been really cool to see him really progress in the last few weeks.
So this week was strangely incredibly hard. Every morning I would wake up with a tread of going outside. I didn’t want to talk to anyone and I had really lost my faith. It was really weird. I haven’t felt like that since my first transfer here in Nederland. It honestly really scared me. We kept doing the work but my heart wasn’t in it. Yesterday when I woke up I prayed that I would regain my motivation and that something would change. My prayers were answered. We sat down for companionship study and Sister Robbins and I started to kind of talk about the way we were feeling. She expressed that sometimes she just really wants to go home. I helped her realize that those feelings are normal for your first couple transfers and that they go away. It was really good. But then later that day we came home and started weekly planning. I became really concerned when I looked at all the names of our investigators and I didn’t want anything to do with them. I didn’t want to plan for them and just felt really discouraged. I wanted to plan but for some reason I felt over shadowed with doubt. We didn’t even make it through the first name when I said to Sister Robbins that I was having a really hard time. We proceeded to talk for the next little bit about how we were both feeling. Turns out, Sister Robbins was feeling the same type of opposition that I was feeling. We both didn’t want to go outside. We were scared and the thing was we didn’t know why. Sister Robbins at some point told me that her mom before her mission said that you can pray for a shield to protect you from Satan’s powers. When she said that I knew that we needed to kneel down right there and prayer for the Lord to protect us. We did and the effect was immediate. We both felt like we could breath again. We both felt happy again and that we could do the work and wanted to do it. We also discussed how sometimes before miracles come we are faced with greater opposition. For a while I have been feeling like incredible things are going to start happening in Lelystad. It makes sense that we both felt so strongly the power of the adversary. Satan does not want us to talk to people. He doesn’t want us to be happy or for us to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to others. Also, sometimes the Lord allows us to be tried more than usual to see if we will call upon his help. In this instance, we did call upon the Lord for strength and protection. I feel like I can breath and that miracles are going to happen. I know that the Lord has things planned for Lelystad and the adversary doesn’t want us to succeed but as we rely on the Lord nothing can stop us. I don’t know what the Lord has in store but I know that it will be incredible and that Sister Robbins and I are stronger now and that we have the Lord’s angels around us. We have the Armour of God and nothing can stop us from bringing others closer to Jesus Christ. If you ever feel like you are overshadowed with doubt and darkness, pray for the Lord’s protection. We have been promised that the Lord will always be with us to bear us up. Opposition always comes before the miracles. I am grateful for the power of prayer and that I know I can rely on the Lord when there seems to be no other way.
The next week is going to be so busy and I am really excited. We are eating our first Thanksgiving dinner next Saturday and it is going to be wonderful. Next week Wednesday, I also hit my halfway point on my mission. I can’t believe how fast it is going by. I am grateful for all that I have learned and I am anxious for what the Lord has in store for me in this last half of my mission!
Vertrouw in de heer en hij zal je waarschouwen
Zuster Adams

Does the journey seem long?

Nov. 10, 2014

This week has been amazing as always!! 
Funnies for the week:
  1. We were at an appointment and we were teaching the Plan of Salvation. We had taught about the Kingdom’s of Glory and our joint-teach asked us to explain outer darkness. I didn’t know the word in Dutch so she told me and I repeated it a few times and the last time, when I actually pronounced it correctly, the light-bulb in the room died…thus, leaving us in darkness.
  2. We were knocking doors this week and we met this really nice father. We talked to him for probably 15 minutes and at the end of our conversation his adorable 4-year-old son screamed, “Dad, I pooped in my pants!”…Dad got all embarrassed and told us that this never happens.
  3. We were sitting on the train and Sister Otteson was with me (Sister Robbins was in Den Haag for the day) and she was asking me about the differences between Germany/Europe and America. I started explaining that the toilets were different. We talked a little bit about that and then the man sitting next to us just starts giggling because he thinks it is so funny that we are talking about toilets. We ended up having a conversation with him and giving him a card. I guess I should talk about toilets on the train more often…
  4. We had one night this week that was just plain weird…we had set up an appointment with a lady and she had given us her address. We started biking to theneighborhood that she lived in and after literally biking in circles for 30 minutes we started to think that the address didn’t exist. So we biked home and grabbed our map. Turns out that the address exists on our really old map but not our newer map. The neighborhood doesn’t exist anymore. We were lied to. But the funny part was that we went to knock doors on a nearby street and there was this seriously eerie music playing somewhere and every time we would walk up to a door the music would get louder. It was seriously a confusing night.
  5. Last night I had taken off my skirt but still had leggings on. I was sitting on the couch and didn’t know that I was sitting on top of my skirt. Well the Assistants to the President call to get a report that we had done this past week. I stood up to go grab the information and my skirt had gotten hooked to the back of my leggings…so I had a freaky looking skirt tail thing. My companion starts laughing hysterically because it looks so funny. I then begin to laugh and can’t stop. Remember I am on the phone with the AP’s…after about 2 minutes I compose myself and give them the report. It was pretty funny though. The odds…that something like that would happen while I was on the phone with the AP’s…
On to the miracles and experiences of the week.
Our investigator Vivian is doing amazing! We had set a baptismal date for him and this week he decided that he wants to push it back a bit because he has to stop smoking and he isn’t sure about a few things. Plus, he is waiting for an answer that Joseph Smith is a prophet. As a missionary, it is hard to know if someone is ready to be baptized. You want them to be baptized but you also want to make sure that they are ready for the covenant that they are going to make. I think Vivian is more ready than he realizes but I also want it to come from himself. We were going to teach him about this priesthood this week and he ended up teaching us from what he had learned in church last Sunday. It was amazing. We also taught him at a member’s home and he asked us about what happens when the prophet dies and how we know that he is truly called of God. The members explained it so well and I love seeing the gears in someone’s head moving when things finally start to click. Vivian has a little ways to go but he is doing awesome.
A bit of sad news this week, Charlie, our 17-year-old investigator, found out this week that she won’t be able to get baptized until she is 21 because of parental rights and a bunch of other stuff. We were really sad. I love her so much and want her to experience the blessings of the gospel. I pray that something will soften her parent’s hearts.
On Sunday, no one came to church. I was pretty bummed and kind of upset. In my entire time here in Lelystad, I have only had 2 people in church. I just became frustrated. I really want to bless this branch and help them become stronger. I want to bring them converts that can help them stay strong. During Sacrament, I said a prayer and just kind of told Heavenly Father that I just was frustrated that the work never seems to go anywhere and that it wasn’t going fast enough. I explained how much I have been working and just how much I desired for the members to be excited and also to see my investigators progress. Heavenly Father is so merciful. He knows exactly what we need to keep going. I feel like I get to my wits end and then Heavenly Father gives me just enough to keep going and learning. At the end of Sacrament meeting, the two girls that we had met last week in the city center walked into the chapel. I was beyond happy!! Everyone in the branch gave me looks like “Who is that?” Miracle of miracles, the youth Sunday school teacher speaks Spanish and was able to do half of the lesson in Spanish and also translate for them in Young Womens. After church I realized how in charge the Lord truly is. The Young Women’s president came up to me and told me how incredible the two girls are and how the one girl had almost finished her personal progress in one year. She was literally beaming with excitement to have these two amazing young women. The young women in our branch have been really struggling and these two girls have already brought some fire back to the hearts of the members. Everyone was so excited and I realized that sometimes the miracles don’t come in the way we want them. In fact, they never really do. This is the Lord’s work. He knows what his children need and he will place me where I need to be in order to help his work progress. In Relief Society, I shared my testimony about the power of prayer in missionary work and a lady from the Branch came up to me and thanked me for my “beautiful” testimony and then asked me to pray for her non-member husband. So often we do not notice the work we are doing and the lives we are touching. We become discouraged and we begin to doubt our worth. I am so grateful that my Heavenly Father gave me a glimpse into the lives I am touching and the work I am doing. This is his work and he knows what needs to happen and in what order they need to happen. I am learning more and more everyday on what a grand-scale this work is but how incredible significant I am in that work.  
Vergeet Nooit hoe barmhartig de Heer is!! 
Zuster Adams

Monday, November 3, 2014

I LOVE scary people!...hahaha

This week was a rather unconventional missionary week with missionary work mixed in. It was marvelous though and my new companion is awesome!! 

Funnies for the week: 
1. We carved pumpkins with a family in the Branch and their daughter spent the whole time telling me what to do...she has never carved a pumpkin before and she is about 4 years old. It was pretty funny. 
2. We cleaned the insides of about 10 pumpkins out to help out the youth. Oh my many pumpkins. We also then spent a considerable amount of time sorting the through the pumpkin guts to get seeds...our hands were so gross. 
3. Sister Robbins and I had some struggles with our bikes this week...we ran into poles, our chains fell off, and I'm sure there is more. We had to call a member to bring us screw drivers because the chains on bikes all have plastic cages around them to stop the rain from rusting we were stuck on the side of the road waiting for screw drivers to get the cage off. Then a random lady helped us put the chain back on. She got so dirty for us. Bless her soul! We gave her a card in the end...sometimes the Lord works in mysterious ways...this time it was having your bikes dramatically fall over and then both chains coming off. :)
4. So the Branch hosted a stake dance this past Friday and it was a Halloween theme. We were in charge of helping in the haunted house. I stood in a Coffin(that we made out of cardboard boxes) and scared so many people! It was amazing. One girl when I jumped out, fell on the ground and screamed. It was great!! It felt very a missionary but I guess you do what you got to do to help the members. The Elders hid underneath tables and grabbed peoples legs and my companion jumped out and screamed happy halloween as people left the room. It was marvelous. 
Me in a coffin--I think I'm a little too scary looking.

Part of our haunted house

This week was very full of miracles and now that I am reflecting upon it, I am pretty amazed! We had an appointment with our investigator Maria and she is doing amazing. We brought her a baptismal calendar this week and she really wants to get baptized. She can't come to church because she takes care of her elderly mother...but we are praying that something happens so she can start to come to church. She wants to come so bad. I love her! She understands so much. It is truly incredible! On transfer day, things got a little crazy because Sister Heilner needed to be in Leiden at 9 o'clock...but bikes aren't allowed on the trains before we were faced with a dilemma. We had planned to get help from the Sisters in Almere but they missed their train. But miracles happen and the sisters from Leeuwarden just happened to be on the train and train car that we got on. We switched companions and Sister Alduous and I went back to Lelystad and got the bike. It was a miracle because then we ended up teaching the 1st lesson to a man on the train. It was really cool. We had a lesson with Vivian this week and it went so good. He had brought us this document on his religion from Suriname. It included vodu and other strange things and I wasn't sure how to handle, telling him that he couldn't keep doing those things. We brought the Elders on joint teach and it turned out to be amazing. Vivian totally understood that it was bad. He just wanted to know if he could still join the church. He is so open and willing to change!! He then came for the first time to church on Sunday and loved it. Everyone welcomed him in and just loved him! It was truly a miracle. Fast Sunday is a miraculous day on a mission. Yesterday was amazing! We decided to go contacting in the Center of the City. I had kind of had it with people rejecting me...and had kind of said "Heavenly Father, I don't know if I can be rejected one more time." The first lady we talked to we ended up sharing a scripture with her and setting up an appointment for this week. It was amazing. Then we kept walking and we turn a corner and these three 15 year old girls start freaking out and pointing at us. They started saying Mormonen!! We were very confused and asked them how they knew us. Turns out 2 of the girls are members from Ecuador that just moved here and have been looking for the church. They were so excited to find us and finally know how to get to church. Their friend isn't a member but wants to come to church with them on Sunday. It was incredible that we just happened to decide to contact in the center at that time. The Lord is so involved and He puts us where we need to be, even we don't realize what is going on. Being a missionary is hard but so fulfilling and I am grateful to see the hand of the Lord in my life every day!!

Sis. Robbins first Stroppwafel.  I'm so proud!
My new companion Sister Robbins is my first companion from Utah! She is from Riverton, Utah and she is super nice!! I love her and she has an amazing love for the work! We have decided to make this next transfer A Season of Joy! I can't wait to see the miracles that come!

Fijne Week en Groetjes van Lelystad! 

Zuster Adams 

3 is Better than 2

This week was one of the funniest weeks of my mission!! We had so much fun with our mini-missionary, Zuster Stein! She is the most prepared pre-missionary I have ever seen! She is going to work miracles! Also, I found out that I am staying another transfer in Lelystad!! I am getting Sister Robbins as a companion. She is still a greenie so I will finish training her!! I've heard she is great so I can't wait! First time with a younger companion! It should be fun!

1. We were sitting in District Meeting and we looked down and there was a worm in the middle of the church building...not sure how it got in. We sat for the next 10 minutes trying to convince the Elders to eat it.
2. We were on exchanges and Sister Stein and I were in Lelystad with Sister Spencer. We tried to exchange back and it was terrible. We had to get to Den Haag central station and we got stuck in Amsterdam because there was apparently a confused man on the tracks...They shut down all the trains in between Den Haag and Leiden. It was terrible. So we ended up just going back to our cities and waiting until the next morning to switch back. It was crazy. I have never seen so many trains get canceled in a 5 minute period. The reader board was hillarious.
3. We have this awesome couple in our ward and they had us over for dinner twice this week and we went fishing and bobbing for fishes to get our dessert!! It was amazing! Pictures are attached. Also, we found out that the wife and I have the same birthday!! YEAH!!
4. We were in a lesson at the Library this week and I looked down at Sister Stein's skirt and there was a giant bumble bee crawling down her skirt! It was so weird. So we quickly ran out and let the bumble bee go. It was rather funny.
5. We were making pancakes at a members house this week and I was trying to be all cool and flip the the pancake in the pan without a spatula...I dropped it on the gas stove and smoked up the house...I am going to work on the my flipping skills.

This week was hillarious and it was wonderful! We saw a lot of miracles this week and I feel really grateful that I get to keep seeing the miracles here in Lelystad. We picked up Sister Stein and oh man she is amazing! I love her so much! We finally set up an appointment with a lady we have been trying to get one with for a couple weeks now so that was good. Hopefully, it goes through this week! We had 2 really incredible lessons with Charlie this week. She is so ready to be baptized. I wish she didn't have to wait until she is 18 but it is okay. The Lord has a plan. We did find out that she is moving to Almere in 2 weeks. I am really sad about that. We will see if we will keep teaching her. I am not sure if it will be easier for us or the Elders in Almere(which is 15 minutes away) to teach her. I am going to miss her though. She wrote a letter to God this week and I loved how open she was. She has her struggles but she has found the light of the gospel and it truly is a blessing for me to see how happy the gospel has made her. While we were on the train to Schiphol this week, we met these awesome girls from Groningen! We had a great conversation about the gospel and they were asking good questions. We gave them our card and Sister Stein is in Groningen all the time so she told them to find her on facebook and they could meet up sometime!! It was awesome! I love how the Lord puts people in our path. We also met this guy on the train this week who saw all of our name tags and asked if we were Jehovah Witnesses and we told him that we weren't. He started asking all these questions and then took a picture of our card and sent it to his good friend. He said that his friend is super interested in all religions. I hope his friend calls us soon!! It was so cool. We also handed out a Book of Mormon to this shop owner in town. We then went by and gave him and his two friends a lesson this week. I hope we can go by soon! He is super cool! His friend was asking how he could become a missionary. It was awesome! We had a relief society activity this week and there were 3 non-members! They seemed to have a great time. Our biggest miracle of the week was a lesson we had with our investigator Maria! We taught her the gospel of Jesus Christ and asked her if she would want to be baptized. She said that she wants to and wants to get a calendar so she can plan it out. She understands so much and asks incredible questions!! I love teaching her! She reminds me a lot of my Great-Grandma Barbara! It is really cool to teach her. We are taking a Baptismal Calendar to her tonight. The work is going really well here in Lelystad!! We have 2 baptismal dates and hopefully another tonight! We definitely need to find some new investigators but overall, life is good!!

I was really nervous for transfer calls this week. I had no clue what was going to happen but I felt a lot of peace. I know that I am where the Lord needs me and I am excited to see what this transfer has in store. My first 2 companions go home on Wednesday. I am pretty sad about that but it is okay. They are on to amazing things!!

I am learning so much of how I have to trust in the Lord because his plan is so much better than our own. We were not sent to earth to figure it out on our own. We were sent here to learn to listen to our Father in Heaven who truly knows what is best for us. I love this gospel and how much it has taught me!! We are going to see miracles in Lelystad this transfer!!

Het is de begin van iets nieuwe!!

Zuster Adams
Weird car we saw!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

"I love to see the Temple"

Oct. 18, 2014

Well I don't really have any funnies to share this week. Hopefully this next week when we get our mini-missionary, I'll have some good ones for you! Oh and next week, I will know if I am getting transferred or not. Exciting stuff!

This week was amazing! We had an awesome P-day last week. We went out to the big shopping center and went window shopping. It was fun. There is also a 17th Century ship in the harbor, that we went and saw. It was really cool!! I also heard from the Missionaries in Ghent that they saw the Burke's!! They are a family that lives in my home Stake in Germany.  They told me that they said hi! It was awesome to hear from them through the missionaries down there. Oh I love hearing from people back home! It is weird being so close to home.

We had some pretty incredible miracles this week. We went to the Temple this week. I LOVE THE TEMPLE! Not having the option of going to the Temple, has really made me appreciate the blessing of the Temple. This is the 2nd time I have gone on my mission and it was exactly what I needed. I learned so much. The spirit you feel there is truly incredible. The next time I go to the Temple is in April. I have another 6 months until I go again. But I know that the Lord will sustain me. OH how I love the Temple. We also had an amazing lesson with our investigator Vivian this week. We decided to teach him about Baptism and Confirmation yesterday. We weren't sure how it was going to go but we were hopeful to set a baptismal date with him. We had taught him about the word of wisdom in our last appointment and he had committed to stop smoking. We have asked him about setting a baptismal date before and he Always was reluctant. So yesterday, we started teaching him and explaining the importance of baptism. He told us that he understood how important it is. He also said that he has been praying to know what the Lord wants him to do and if the Book of Mormon is true. He said that he hadn't received an answer. We then explained that sometimes we need to set a date, in order to show our faith that God will answer our prayers. After a lot of explaining and discussing, he just said to us "We will just pick a date." So we did!! Vivian is scheduled to be baptized on the 29th of November!!! He said that he is going to take the next week to pray and focus on God, so he can receive an answer and also stop smoking. He knows that he has a lot to change but he wants to do it. He held up his baptismal calendar yesterday and told us that this is where he is going to start, he is going to change! Oh it was amazing. He is changing so much. I love being able to see people change their lives and become who the Lord needs and wants them to be. He is going to receive an answer!! He is going to do it!! Oh I love him so much!! It was truly an incredible day! Pray for him please, that he will receive an answer!

While we were in our appointment with Vivian, I realized how blessed I am to be here in the Netherlands serving a mission. I get to watch people change and help people come closer to Christ. I love that I get to be here serving my Heavenly Father 24 hours a day!! I have planted my feet in a mission and nothing is going to take me out!!

I know that this gospel is true and I am so grateful for it!

Vergeet nooit om in God te vertrouwen.

Zuster Adams
A weird statue in Lelystad. No clue why...there are a lot of strange things here!!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year...FALL!!‏

Oct. 6, 2014

Sorry to disappoint every
one this week but I don't really have any funnies. I do have one that my companion found funny this week.
-She was in the bathroom washing her hands and I said to her that we would save so much time if we didn't have to use the bathroom. I mean think about it, can you imagine how much time the average person will spend in the bathroom during their lifetime?? It is a lot ot time! So the trick to life is to limit your time in the bathroom...just kidding! :)

This week was overall just a good week. Nothing out of the ordinary happened. It was just good! We had a lot of appointments. Our investigators are progressing and I keep wondering how I can be so blessed. We have investigators that truly desire to know the truth. They are keeping their commitments and studying for themselves to find the truths of the gospel. I am getting a taste of what it will be as a mother to see my own children keeping "their commitments." This gospel brings so much clarity into our lives and I can't complain righ now. Being a missionary is amazing and I love serving here in Lelystad!

The most wonderful part of this week was that it is starting to look like and feel like fall. I LOVE fall!!! It is seriously the best season ever. The trees are starting to change colors and there is just this feeling of happiness in the air. I sound pretty ridiculous...but it is true!! We spent our Saturday afternoon at a member's home, gardening and picking apples! It was wonderful! The Elders were there with us and we had quite a bit of fun. The family has a trampoline so we used the trampoline to pick apples. Elder Warner said it was the most fun he has had his whole mission. Our hearts were racing and we just couldn't stop smiling. Missionaries do run across simple joys like jumping on a trampoline very often. Those minutes on the trampoline will keep me going for at least the next 6 months! It was hillarious to watch the Elders jumping together. They were laughing and giggling. It was so good to see them enjoying themselves!

I don't have much to tell this week but I want to encourage everyone if they haven't watched General Conference to watch it!! I learned so many things and had a lot of my prayers answered. The prophets and apostles are truly men of god, chosen to lead Christ's church upon the earth! I feel a lot of comfort knowing that the prophets and apostles will never lead me astray. We attain our own exaltation but we can be helped by following the words of the prophets!

We are all children of God and God wants us to attain our potential! I hope that I can attain my potential and truly reach for the best and not just the good!

Fijne Week en Tot de Volgende Keer

Zuster Adams

Attached are the pictures of our fun on the trampoline!

We need not fear, when the Lord is on our side

Sept. 29, 2014

Hello and welcome to Zuster Adams' email of the week. :)

Funnies of the week:
1. We went to dinner at one of my favorite members here, Renata. She is amazing!! She is really funny and likes to play practical jokes. We had a dinner appointment with her and the Elders and the Elders didn't know we were coming so we hid our bikes around the corner and made the dinner table only set for 4 people...then we surprised the Elders by coming out of hiding after 10 minutes! It was great!
2. We went to an appointment and the man didn't answer the door and we got a call from the Elders that a rain storm was we quickly put ourselves against the investigator's door, underneath his over hang, while it downpoured...after about 3 minutes our investigator opened the door...with us awkwardly right in front of it.
3. The Elders need an arabic Book of Mormon and we didn't want to leave our apartment to bring it to we made a rope out of scarves and lowered it off our balcony to them! It was pretty genius(my idea by the way)!
4. We went to Schiphol International Airport(the train goes there) to pick up some Book of Mormons from the Zone Leaders...the Zone Leaders parked in the wrong spot and almost got a 70 euro ticket...I felt so bad.
5. We made Elder Warner crêpes for his Birthday today!
6. Last transfer we never saw the Elders...unless it was we see them 1, if not more, times a is ridiculous!

You know every week I come to this point in my emailing where I have to decide what I want to say and it is always a struggle. You would think it would be easy but every week feels like a month so I look back at the week and I just think "that happened this week???, feels like a month ago"--Missionary Problems...

This week was incredible! We met with Charlie twice this week and wow, she is going to go places!! We had her write down her life goals and what she wants in life...She had getting baptized, go on a mission on the list, and get married(we told her she wants a Temple marriage)!!!!!! AHHHH it was incredible! Also, her friend from school wants to sit in our next lesson. She is amazing and just soaks in the gospel. I feel honored to be teaching her. We were biking along and it was about 20 minutes til' we could go home and I pulled a pass-along card out of my bag and told myself that I was going to give the card away before the night was over. We biked past the train station and I saw a kid sitting on a bench and thought "I need to give him this card." I kept biking and then I told Sister Heilner that we needed to turn around and talked to him. We did and he is awesome!! We are meeting with him later this week and I am really excited. I am glad that I listened to the spirit. On Thursday, Sister Heilner woke up feeling really naucious. We didn't know what we were going to do because we had 4 back to back appointments that day. We prayed that she would get better. She felt fine for our first appoinment which was an incredible miracle! We taught our investigator Mameyaa from Ghana. It was one of the coolest lesson ever! We taught about the Temple and how she can be sealed to her family forever. She loved the idea of being able to have her family forever. She also realized that it is only possible in the Temple. I asked her, if she would prepare herself to be sealed in the Temple(basically asking her indirectly to be baptized) she said yes!! She said she wants to talk to her husband about it and help him see why it is important! It was amazing! She wants eternal blessings!! Right after our awesome lesson, Sister Heilner started to feel sick again. Our next appointment miraculously canceled and we were able to go home and rest. She recovered and we were able to teach our other lessons that day. The Lord knew that Mameyaa needed to have that lesson so he allowed Sister Heilner to feel okay so we could teach. The Lord is in charge and if he wants us to teach, we will teach. We have some incredible investigators. One of our other investigators Vivian is going to pray this week to know if what we are teaching is what God wants him to follow! I love teaching people that are ready and open to learning.

We also taught a lesson this week where the people were not open. It was the worst lesson of my mission. The spirit wasn't there and I didn't feel the light of the gospel afterwards. I am learning that those that want to learn and progress, are humble and willing to learn. I need to be more like Christ's disciples and sit at his feet humbly waiting to learn. Rather than being one of the pharisees trying to find fault with what the master is teaching. I don't think I am necessarily a phaisee but I am not always humble and ready to learn. I am grateful that my Savior is patient and loving with me. I am learning a lot and learning that the Lord truly prepares us for what is ahead and never wants us to be afraid. We need not fear, when the Lord is on our side!

Vrees niet, ik ben met u!

Zuster Adams

Attached is the picture of the "Surviving Seven" or the "Zeker Zeven"  It is the sisters that are staying after all the other sisters leaves...we will be here as all the replacements come for all the sisters leaving...crazy! Also, of our adventure at the Schiphol International Airport--I AMSTERDAM

Transfer Number 2 in Lelystad Begins!!!‏

Sept.  22, 2014

I love Transfer Week when I am not a part of it! Sister Heilner and I were able to stay here in Lelystad while the entire mission changed. Some crazy things defnitely happened in regards to where every one went. It is always so exciting!! One amazing thing that happened this week is that my relief society president from BYU(I was her visiting teacher) is being trained in Almere which is in my district!!! I am so excited to see her!! I got a hair cut!!! My hair is shorter and I got some layers. Nothing hugely different but I like it!

Funnies of the week:
-We had a barbecue with the Elders this week...we had a little trouble lighting the coals. None of us knew what we were doing. After a considerable amount of time...we finally got a fire going and were able to eat.
-We did a look up and the front door had an over hang...the whole thing was covered in Giant Spiders! They were crawling all over. The sides of the doors, and the window next to the door were also covered in spider webs and spiders. It was terrifying! It took all my patience to stay calm and not freak out. The man that we were trying to find proceeded to throw two of the spiders at was terrible.
-We met a lady on the street from Thailand this week. She was very nice but decided to correct our Dutch. I, usually love that...but she also had an accent so we weren't sure if her corrections were legit. We asked some Dutch members...turns out her corrections were wrong.
-Also, we had a Relief Society activity this week and did facial masks!! It was great seeing all the ladies in the Branch with masks!

This week has been truly amazing and since this next transfer my companion are focusing on gratitude I will be expressing the incredible things that happened this week with gratitude to my Heavenly Father.
We have some incredible investigators that are making some incredible progress. We have an investigator from Suriname that told us this week that he knows baptism is coming. He is reading and truly wants to know. We had an awesome lesson with him about the gospel of Jesus Christ. He wants to progress!! We had an appointment this week with a former investigator. It was incredible. We shared the Restoration with him and he totally got it. He wants to read the Book of Mormon and wants to come to church! It was amazing!! We taught yesterday another one of our new investigators. It was an amazing lesson. We were planning to teach the 2nd lesson but he had so many questions about the 1st lesson that we spent our lesson answering his questions. He made the connection that we believe our Church is the only true church on the earth and that mean that a lot of people are lost, searching for the true priesthood. He also realized that if the Book of Mormon is true that it means a lot for him and that it will change his life. Oh it is incredible to see someone connect the dots for themselves. He is excited to pray and read the Book of Mormon. I know he will receive an answer!! We taught a family this week and they invited their friend to listen to the first lesson and he now is a new investigator. They also came to church on Sunday!! Our first people in church!!! Also, a random family showed up at church and now is taking the lessons from the Elders. This is just a few samples from all the miracles we saw this week. Plus, our Branch President's wife is going to ask her two friends to take the lessons this week!!  It is amazing! When I look back at where Sister Heilner and I began 6 weeks ago, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. At the end of this week, we had 7 progressing investigators and 1 baptismal date. How is that possible when we starting with nothing 6 weeks ago?? The Lord has seen our faith and is blessing us! The Lord has big plans for Lelystad. He wants to see it become a ward with strong active members. We are looking for Kingdom Builders and the Lord is blessing us. I am so grateful that I have had the chance to serve here and see the changes that have occured. Work here in Lelystad is hard and very different from other places in the mission. But I am learning so much and truly feel myself becoming who the Lord needs me to be. I am so grateful for my chance to serve the people here in Lelystad. I know that this next transfer will be one of incredible miracles!

This week I get to sing a solo at our Zone Training! I am excited! We also have a greeny here in the city and he is a wonderful Elder!! We are having a lot of fun introducing him to all things Dutch! :)

Geloof in Wonderen
Zuster Adam

Great Grandkids are like Popcorn...‏

Sept. 15, 2014

What an incredible week it has been! I went to 3 conferences from Elder Ballard and 1 of those was with Elder Bednar. It was a truly spiritually uplifting week!
One of the things that was hillarious this week was that Elder Ballard in the 3 conferences he spoke in told the audience that once you start having great grandchildren, they just start popping out like popcorn. That was probably one of the funniest things I have ever heard. 
In regards to missionary work this week, we had some incredible lessons and somehow, taught 14 lessons this week!! I don't even know how that happened considering we were gone for an entire day this week. The Lord truly is blessing us. We got dropped by one of our investigators this week. It was sad but she isn't ready yet. I hope someday she will be. Then we picked up 6 new investigators(3 were a family). It was really cool. We taught an awesome lesson to this guy yesterday. He was asking so many awesome questions about the Book of Mormon and the Priesthood. I can't wait to teach him again. We also taught 3 first lessons this week and those people all said that if they found out the Book of Mormon was true they would be baptized! It was so cool!! 
I want to share now some of the things I learned from Elder Ballard and the other general authorities.
-Sister Hallstrom told us that when the Lord knows our hearts, we secure ourselves Holiness. I want to give my heart to the Lord so that I will be holy.
-Elder Bednar spoke about bursting the bands that hold us back. We so often pray for the bands to be broken, when we should pray for the power and strength to break the bonds that hold us. I loved that!! We must pray as agents and not as objects.
-Elder Dyches read us a quote which I loved "The years teach much, that the days never know" I loved that because I look back on where I have come on my mission and every day doesn't seem like much but when I look back at the months, I can see some incredible progress. We may think that the days don't matter but the days accumulate into so much more.
-Elder Ballard counseled us to never let anyone pass us because we have to remember the worht of their sould an dthe price that was paid for them and me. We often think that some one won't accept the gospel or want to hear about God. But Jesus Christ has paid for them all and he loves them and we must love them too. Elder Ballard also told us to discover Heavenly Father and to build our relationship with him. If we do so, the Lord will discover us. 
All of the General Authorities expressed the need for simplicity in teaching and in many other things. I learned that as I focus on the simple things, my life will be easier and so will those that I teach. 
We found out yesterday that Sister Heilner and I will be staying here in Lelystad for another transfer. I am excited to implement the things I learned. I feel more ready and spiritually boosted to face whatever the Lord has in store for us. 
Miracles will happen and my faith will grow! 
Fijne Dag en Groetjes,
Zuster Adams

Side note--Same trip, Elder Bednar came to Allison's home stake (in Germany), with her Dad, Josh Adams as Stake President.  Josh and Shirlene Adams smiling behind Elder Bednar.
Bishop Emmanuel Odro from Breda.  Allison's first area.

Spiders, Smoke, and Sunshine‏

Sept. 8, 2014

What an incredible week it has been! It feels like a year has gone by since I last wrote. Time is a strange thing. 
We had so funny things happen this week: We went to across the Dyke to a little village that is a part of our branch and we tried to rent bikes and usually you just put your train pass on the bike cage and the door opens and you take a bike. wasn't working and we saw another machine inside the Sister Heilner "broke in" or I guess slid under the glass walls and tried to get the door open. She was successful but the machine inside ending up not working either...annoying. Also, The Netherlands has MASSIVE spiders EVERY WHERE!!!! It is weird. I have never seen so many spiders in my life. They take over everything. Also, we were try to warm up a tortilla and we forgot that it was in the oven and the fire alarm went off and we successfully smoked up our apartment. Rest assured we got it all under control but it made our sunday afternoon a little more exciting. 
We met with Charlie throughout this week and she is doing so good. We set a baptismal date with her for February 21st. I know it is a long ways away but she can't get baptized until she is 18. We taught her the Law of Chastity and the Word of Wisdom this week and she gladly accepted to following them. She has a few things she has to work through but she is wants to start a new life. I love meeting with her. She is so eager to join the church. I love seeing her enthusiasm. It helps me have enthusiasm for the gospel too. Then we met with Marit and we read 2 Nephi 2 with her because she hadn't read it. After reading and explaining it, she said to us that she was planning on telling us that she didn't want to meet with us anymore but after reading that chapter she became interested and decided this was something she did want. It was incredible. Sister Heilner and I almost forgot that we were going to read that with her so it was incredible that the spirit reminded us and we were able to give her exactly what she needed at that time. The spirit was so strong in that lesson. Sister Spencer also came on exchanges here this week which was awesome! I got a chance to be with one of my best friends again!! We had a great time catching up. We also taught an awesome first lesson to a woman from Ghana. She totally understood that if she reads the Book of Mormon she can know if the church is true. She told us that reading isn't a crime and that she wants to read it. It was amazing!!! The Lord is blessing us so much. We have 4 progressing investigators and 1 baptismal date. Looking back at where we started 5 weeks ago, it is amazing to see how much Heavenly Father has blessed us. We had faith that the work would go forth here and it has and will continue. I love being led by the spirit and learning every day. 
This past week has been one of learning and reflection. I have been trying really hard to find out who I am. We are often asked to make goals of where we want to be at the end of our missions and if you don't know where you are at then you can' t make goals for the future so I am studying a lot and trying to find out my unique gifts and talents. I am learning a lot and truly beginning to see my worth and the worth of those around me. 
Remember always that Heavenly Father is mindful of you and that he will give us the exact circumstances that we need in order to grow. I love this gospel and the chance I have to share it every day. 
Zuster Adams