Sunday, August 31, 2014

Small, wonderful world...

This week we found out that Sis. Heilner's grandfather, Pres. Phillips, is the same Pres. Phillips that served as mission president of my dad--Josh Adams--in Greece over 20 years ago!  Sis. Heilner had heard about my dad because he was the one missionary they thought was going to die while they served there.  He had an acute appendicitis at the beginning of his mission and almost did die!  Small world!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Dairy Farms, More rain showers, and sunshine....FINALLY!

Aug 25, 2014

Allison and her companion, taking goofy pictures

Allison in Lelystadt

Allison and her companion Sis. Heilner

Netherlands Temple

Down on the cute

Farmer at the farm Allison went to 

Well this past week feels like a year went by. So much happened and yet, not very much at the same time. Time is weird. Honestly, this email may be all over the place but just go with me! :)

At the beginning of this week, we met with Charlie! She is so amazing! We taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ and she told us that she wants to be baptized and knows the church is true. She knows the Book of Mormon is true! She read a talk from Elder Holland and loved it!! She is doing so great! She has to wait until she is 18 to be baptized because her mom won't give her permission but she has a testimony!! She is so prepared!! Oh I love teaching her! Hopefully, she can come to church soon.

Wednesday, I went to Zoetemeer on exchanges! Turns out that our mission president was spending the afternoon working with us. It was awesome to work with President Robinson for the afternoon. We went to the Zoetemeer sisters investigator that owns and lives on a Dairy Farm!!! OH MY GOODNESS!!! It was amazing! We got a tour of the whole thing. The Farmer has about 40 cows and he runs the whole farm pretty much by himself. There were 4 calves. They were so cute it was ridiculous. The farm has been there since before WW2! It was so old. I love old things!! I wanted to explore the whole farm and find all the nooks and crannys...but I restrained myself. President Robinson is a rancher so he was in heaven. He and Wauter talked for quite some time about the farm and the differences between America and Holland. I feel like I have had the true Dutch experience now. We also drank fresh milk. It was so good. Nothing prepared me for how good it was. I don't usually like whole milk but that milk was delicious!!

A Brony...used to live in our apartment....WHY????
Later this week, we decided we were going to bike to the "Nearby" village of Dronten. Well it turned out to be quite an adventure. First, all it ever does here in Lelystad is rain and we needed to bike quite a long ways and we couldn't be drenched. When we left our apartment, it was raining and there was a massive storm cloud coming in our direction. I was so frustrated and had had enough with the rain and getting soaked every time we went outside. I began to pray that the storm would pass and that we would have sun for the entire time we were on the bikes that day. I don't know if I have ever prayed so earnestly in my life. Within five minutes, the clouds opened and the sun came out. It proceeded to be sunny for the entire day. Some may say that it was just a coincidence but I know that Heavenly Father is mindful of me and knew that we needed to be dry. I am grateful that the Lord answered my prayer and allowed us to not be soaked. Sometimes, I find myself not having enough faith in Heavenly Father. He can do anything and will do anything, if we simply ask. I need the sun this week and he blessed me with Sunshine. We all need to be willing to ask for blessings, what ever they may be, because the Lord will give us the desire of our hearts. Ask, and it shall be given unto you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. In 3 Nephi 14: 7-11 it reads "For every one that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, who, if his son ask bread, will give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father who is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?" Heavenly Father wants to give us good gifts and he knows exactly what we need. We simply must ask.

The trip to Dronten...turned out to be about 40 km or 24 miles in total, round trip. We decided it will be better to take the train from now on. We also didn't have a map of we kind of completely wandered around Dronten until we found the Streets we needed. The spirit was guiding us the whole time. We had to look up an inactive couple and was guided on a wild goose chase from a neighborhood, to a old folks home, and finally an apartment. Some how the whole day worked out and we eventually made it home. We had a dinner appointment that night in Dronten and the family said that we were the first missionaries in the 12 years that they have lived in Dronten to ever bike to their house...or Dronten. I feel honored knowing I did what no other missionaries have done...although I don't plan on repeating our 40 km bike ride. We were exhausted when we got home.

The work here is slow. We are having to re-think our ways of finding people to teach. We can't go door-to-door because there is a huge population of Jehovah Witnesses here and they hit every door at least once a week. We are going to go about serving. We are praying for opportunities and the inspiration and opportunities are beginning to surface. It is hard but we are trusting in the Lord and in his timing! I love this work! Can't wait to see what this coming week holds! We have Zone Conference, which is Always wonderful!!

Fijne Dag en Groetjes!!

Zuster Adams

Monday, August 18, 2014

The after math of a giant torrential downpour!

Zuster Adams and Zuster Heilner

The Lelystad Adventures Begin

Aug 11, 2014

What a whirlwind of a week it has been. I began the week in Breda and now am in Lelystad. Before I left Breda I got to say goodbye to almost everyone. It was really hard to leave. I love the people there! I said goodbye to Mayerlin which was one of the hardest things I've ever done. She was so sad when she found out I was being transferred. It is okay though. She got baptized on Saturday and I heard it was a wonderful baptism. She felt the spirit and it was great! I am so happy for her!!
Lelystad...where do I begin. Well I met up with my companion Zuster Heilner in the Leiden train station. While there we got a phone and two sets of keys. We had 2 bikes and 5 suitcases between the two of us. We got on the train to Lelystad with the help of the Elders going to the city next to us but didn't realize we would have to get all of our stuff off the train...alone. Thankfully, when we got to Lelystad a random stranger helped us. It was still an adventure getting everything out of the station but some how we did it. A member came and picked up our luggage, while we biked to our apartment. We got everything to our apartment! The elders who were there before us did an excellent job of cleaning up and even bought us some food! They did however...take the phone charger with them. Our phone barely survived until Friday when the Zone Leaders brought us it! The aparment is huge and so nice it is ridiculous!! The elders before us left us no investigators. We are starting from ground zero basically. We spent the next day trying to organize all the potential investigators and former investigators so we could go out and try to find people to teach. The freaky thing we discovered about Lelystad is that...they tried to make this modernized address system. It is so confusing. They name an entire area of the city and then all the streets are numbers. So for example, we have a member that lives in Schoener(the area) and she lives on street 53 in house number 43. So all the addresses are Schoener is so confusing. Plus the numbers don't go in any order. So once you get to a certain wander around until you find the right number. It is hillarious. We have gotten lost quite a few times. I don't know if I mentioned this last week but Lelystad is only 40 years old. It used to be the Ocean but then they decided to make this area now it is a city. It looks nothing like Europe...everything is super new. It is so weird.
Even though it has been a crazy adventure, we are seeing incredible miracles already! Our second day here we found 2 potential investigators, taught 2 lessons, set up 2 appointments, and recieved a referral! It was amazing! There is a set of Elders that share the city with us and they gave us one of their investigators because it is a single woman! The Lord is truly giving us work to do. It was daunting at first knowing that we literally have no appointments and knew no one but it is exciting. We are going to build up this city and see miracles happen. Our zone is pushing that every companionship will have a baptism this transfer. I know that Zuster Heilner and I can do it! This is a blessed city! I really love the people here already. The Branch is incredible and so nice. I am so excited to work with them and help them see growth! Lelystad is a family city and my dream is to bring a family into the gospel!! I am going to pray to find a family!! Zuster Heilner and I have named this transfer "A Prayer of Faith." It is going to require a lot of faith and work but I know that miracles will happen and I am so excited!!
Lelystad is amazing and I can't wait to get to work!
Zuster Adams

Monday, August 4, 2014

How great shall be your joy!

August 4th, 2014

Well turns out I am getting transfered! I am headed to Lelystaat with Sister Heilner!! We are opening the City for Sisters!! So my companion and I will both be new to the city!! Crazy!! I am very excited for a new city and new adventures! 

But my last week in Breda was the best week of my mission thus far. We have an investigator from Peru and her name is Mayerlin. About 3 months ago, Sister Spencer and I got a referral saying that there was a lady in Oosterhout(a village next to Breda) that wanted missionaries and the Book of Mormon. We were excited and went and looked her up. The first time we met her she asked us how she could be baptized. It was incredible! But in the last 3 months a lot of things have come in the way of Mayerlin being baptized. First it was that she didn't have a testimony of Joseph Smith and then her health. Most recently it was that her husband wouldn't give her permission. We were sad that she couldn't get baptized but were praying that her husband's heart would be softened and a way would be provided! This week on Thursday we were at Mayerlin's for her birthday party. It turned out to be the worst Birthday party ever...Mayerlin received a phone call that she might lose custody of her son for various reasons. It was terrible and we didn't know what to do. Mayerlin's husband came home and was very upset. They had decided before we left that they were going to go back to Peru. We left not knowing what would happen and what to expect at our lesson on Friday. At our next lesson, Mayerlin told us that they had decided to move back to Peru but that before she left she wanted to be baptized!!!!! Right then and there Bishop asked Mayerlin's husband for permission and he said she could be baptized! It was incredible! We didn't know what it would take to have Mayerlin baptized but the Lord provided a way! In that moment when we all realized that she would be getting baptized this coming Saturday, I felt the most joy I have ever felt in my life. The spirit confirmed to me that this was right. Mayerlin was beaming. My heart filled with the Joy that it talks about it D&C 18: 15-16 "And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father! And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!" We have since gone over the baptismal questions with Mayerlin and she passed with flying colors!! :) I love this work. All the hard days are worth the joy at the end of the journey. Mayerlin's new life is just beginning and I am grateful that the Lord has allowed me to see her whole journey. I won't be at the baptism because I am getting transferred but that isn't what matters to me. What matters is that she is getting baptized and that I have been able to have the joy of the journey. This work is the Lord's. I didn't do much to help Mayerlin get to this point. It was truly the Lord's work. He made all of this possible and provided a way for her to be baptized. The incredible part is that even though this is His work, He still lets us feel His joy. I am so grateful for the joy of missionary work! It is the most fulfilling work I have ever been a part of and I am super grateful. Every hard day is worth this joy that you feel! 

Zuster Adams and Zuster Morris

I am so grateful for the city of Breda! I have learned so much here and truly become an instrument in the Lord's hand. I have gone through trials but I have also seen incredible miracles! I will miss this ward a lot. They have become my family and I can't wait to see what happens here. I am leaving Breda on Fire with work to do!! 
Now I am on to my next adventure and I can't wait to see what is in store!! Look out Lelystaat!! Here Zuster Adams Comes!!
Tot ziens Breda!

Zuster Adams

Some recent photos

Nice Bike!

Allison with her new companion, Sister Morris

All you need is love

July 28, 2014
This week went by so fast! There is only one more week until Transfer Calls!! I can't believe how fast the time has come and gone!! Everyone warned me that each transfer goes faster...I didn't realize it would go this fast. :)
I am realizing that my mission is flying by. These incredible moments will not be here forever and I need to enjoy them. I have been struggling a little with my focus and motivation. When I hit the button to submit my papers it was so I could bring others unto Christ. But since I have been out those motives are sometimes overshadowed by other less pure motives. We had a zone training this week on our motivations and I decided from here on out I want tmy only motive to be my love for my Heavenly Father. I am here to love and serve him and thereby serving the people here. It was incredible the change it has already made in my work. I began to bear stronger testimony, be more open to the spirit, and much happier. When we do things for the right reasons our joy is filled and our capacity to love grows. My ability to love these people grew because I asked Heavenly Father to give me his love for the people here. I couldn't come up with this love on my own. I needed the atonement. I was filled with love!
Miracles happened after I desired to change my motive. We had a lesson with our Peruvian investigator and she had expressed to us that she wasn't sure if she needed to change her religion. She loves the Book of Mormon but wasn't sure if she really needed to get baptized again(baptized Catholic). We challenged her to pray about it. Our next lesson she said she had received an answer that she needs to change her religion and that joining the church is the path God wants for her! I almost began to cry. It was one of the most incredible things I have ever witnessed. I have known this woman since she started taking the lessons so it was incredible to see all the progression that she has made! She is amazing and in that moment I felt God's love and joy for his daughter. This is investigator still can't get baptized because of her husband but we are praying a miracle happens.
Then we had a 1st lesson with a blind man named Peter that we found the other day. It was an amazing lesson. We read for him a few verses from the Book of Mormon and he loved them. He said the prayer before we left and it was one of the most honest prayers I have ever heard. He said that he was intrigued to see where things went and that he was excited to learn. In that moment I wouldn't have been more happy to see someone trying to follow God.
I am learning so many things every day. I can see the Lord shaping me into who he needs me to be. It is truly amazing work. Being a missionary is hard at times, but when you have moments like we had this week thenevery hard moment was worth it. I love the Lord, I love the people, and I love Nederland!
Fun things from the week, I went to Maastricht and had Limburg's is the Dutch version of pice. Oh my goodness!! it was so good! It was a fresh raspberry Vlaai. It was delicious! Oh and Elder Ballard of the quorum of the 12 apostles is coming on September 11th to do a Mission Conference! I am so excited!!
Well have a great week and remember to everything with love!
Liefde is de Sleutel!
Zuster Adams

When you learn to be Humble....

July 21, 2014
Well this week has been quite a week! I am not even sure where to begin.
It was insanely hot this week. It got into the 90's with a lot of humidity. Everything felt sticky and oh it was awful!! Also, there is no air conditioning in this country so we were sweating like pigs...not my favorite thing. Thankfully, it has cooled down again!
Not a ton of things happened this week, it was just in general a good week! Although, I did learn a lot about humility and submitting your will to the Lord. At the beginning of this week, I didn't have a very good attitude about things that were happening and I was not really enjoying the work. I was getting easily irritated and it wasn't good. I decided to begin to pray to be humble. I knew that I needed to put aside what I wanted and focus on the work.
For the past little while I have been wanting to find someone and see them baptized. Almost to be able to say that I was good enough to find someone that was baptized. That is never the reason why you should want to find someone. Also, most of the people that end up getting baptized are people that we never find ourselves but people the Lord gives us. So I was thinking about all of this and it was frustrating me. I wasn't desiring what was good for the people here. I was thinking about how it would bless me. Last night, we found out that our most solid investigator that came to church every week...had dropped us. He said he didn't want to become a Mormon anymore. I was devastated. I have been working with him since I got here and he was so solid. He knew the church was true and wanted to be baptized. I was excited for him and loved him. I became very upset and somewhat angry. Why did this happen? How could this be a part of the plan? I know the Lord has a plan but why would this be? I realized though that I needed this to be humbled. I needed to realize that this investigator wasn't mine but the Lord's. He is a Son of God and the Lord has a plan. I need to trust in his plan and trust that he knows what is best. I don't know what is going to happen with this investigator. We are going to try and go by and find out what happened. But I know now, that it doesn't matter what I want. It doesn't matter if I want to find someone. What matters is if the Lord has that in mind. I am realizing more and more that I am not in charge of this work and I need to turn my work over to the Lord. Too much of the time, I want to do it all by myself. I need to be humble and allow the Lord to work through me. I need to give my will to him!
I love this work. It is hard, discouraging, humbling, exciting, invigorating, and fulfilling. I am learning and growing with every day!!
Zuster Adams