Monday, December 29, 2014

Hello, everyone, and a Happy New Year!

I just want everyone to know that I have the best family in the world, and only a mission would keep me away from them for 18 months. I love them so much, and I'm grateful that we can be together forever if we stay faithful. They also informed me that of the 4 of us Murdoch kids that have served missions, I have the most boring emails ever sent ;)

So this week I have a fun mission story for you :)
Last week Sister Seamons and I went to visit a woman we're teaching. Her brother was in the hospital, so we went to go support her. We got there and found the waiting room filled with people. She introduced all of them... turns out that she has 11 siblings :)

We sang "Away in a Manger" to them, taught them about Jesus Christ and His restored church, then passed a stack of cards around the room and invited them to learn more. It was so much fun! I felt like one of the missionaries from years ago, teaching to a room filled with children of God.

To redeem myself, I will tell a short one. Yesterday a 9-year-old girl we're teaching came to church for the first time. She suddenly got very nervous, and extremely stubborn, right before Primary. She absolutely refused to go anywhere. I was kind of wishing that I could carry her right inside, because I knew that she would love it if she would just try.

Much like the GPS story, the Spirit reminded me, "What do you want her to remember?" I knew that I'd rather have her remember walking inside, not being dragged inside. Long story short, what actually got her inside was a 3 Musketeers from her teacher - good, old-fashioned bribery :) It was a great "parenthood" lesson for me to learn before I actually become a mother. Guess what? She LOVED it! I knew she would...that sounds like a mom, too, doesn't it? :)

I love you all! I pray that you have a wonderful new year and that it's filled with tender mercies, blessings, and lots of happiness!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, December 22, 2014

Hello, everyone!
Remember how I had asked for prayers for the Christmas conference? I have one of the funniest stories to tell you :)
We were carpooling with some other Sisters in the area, and it is about a two hour drive to the place we had the conference. We asked the Sisters if they had put in the address. They replied that yes, they had. Both Sister Seamons and I wanted to check the address, but decided to trust them instead.
We drove the two hours, and I was getting more anxious the closer we arrived to our destination. Sister Seamons had made a couple comments about how we had passed certain places and it didn't seem right, but the Sisters insisted that we follow the GPS. So we trusted them again.
By the time we reached our destination, we would have been just in time to practice before the conference... but the wrong address was in the GPS! It turns out that we went into the Indianapolis mission... two hours away. (For the record, I like the Cincinnati mission better!) We missed all of the musical pieces and arrived at the conference just before lunch, which is definitely one of the best parts ;)
Haha! I had worried all week about the songs. I practiced several times a day and dreamed about them, too. I'll be honest: at first I was really frustrated. I wondered why we had trusted them so much and thought that we should have done things differently.
Then the Spirit asked me, "How do you want these Sisters to remember this experience?" After that thought, it was much easier to laugh. We took pictures and recorded the event so that we'll never forget it.
I learned several important things, and I want to share two of them with you:
1 - It's important in the moment, sometimes even critical, to respond properly. Your reaction makes all of the difference in somebody else's life.
2 - We need to always be checking ourselves on what our destination is. If we have the wrong address, then we need to change it.
I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior when we're on the right path and fighting to stay on or on the wrong path trying to find the right one. I love you all and wish you a Merry Christmas!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, December 15, 2014

Hello, everyone!

Again, my time is drawing to a close. This needs to be short.
Sister Seamons and I have had so many adventures, from ministers trying to convert us, to families with kids running around and screaming. Heavenly Father loves all of His children, and I'm grateful to be here to serve many of them.

I'll be accompanying a few Elders at our Christmas conference on Thursday... prayers on our behalf would be greatly appreciated :) I'm excited and terrified at the same time. Being a missionary at Christmas time makes the calling feel more special and the season more magical.

I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. He is our friend, support, and advocate. He saves us every day. I love Him, and I know that He loves each of us.

Love you all! Have a wonderful week!
Sister Murdoch

Sister Yokum (MTC Companion), Sister Murdoch, and Sister Seamons (current companion)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Hello, everyone! My time is short, so I just want to share my testimony.

I love our Heavenly Father. He is my best friend and I know that He hears all of our prayers, spoken and unspoken. I love Jesus Christ. Without any doubt, I know that He is the Savior of the world, our King, our friend, and our strength.

Joseph Smith is the prophet who was called to restore the full and complete organization of Christ's church. There is a prophet on the earth, Thomas Monson. I know that by following his words we will be blessed beyond measure.

The Book of Mormon is the word of God. It brings us closer to our Savior, and it brings peace to our souls. In it we find revelation for us and our families today.

These things are true! I love you all, and pray that you remember that I know this labor of love I help with is truly the work of the Lord. You make a difference in someone's life. Share the gift with everyone you can.

Love you!

Sister Murdoch

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Happy first day of December, everyone! It's already off to a fantastic start for us :)

On Saturday, a woman we've been teaching got baptized. Her name is Darlene Arellano. Her daughter joined the church at the age of 18 many years ago when she lived here. She wasn't active for years, but started coming back and referred her mom to us.

Darlene has so much faith, and it's very childlike. She has been such a treasure to us. She loves Heavenly Father and wants to do good and be good. (Yes, to all of my silly family members who love to tease me, I just said do good)  :) We sure love her!

We went to the festival of trees in downtown Fort Wayne with our Sisters from Kendallville and Fort Wayne earlier today. A couple Sisters from our ward drove us there. We had a blast looking at the trees, eating donuts, and then going out to lunch. I love Christmas time!

This was a very difficult week for me personally. I have had more opposition than ever before, but I've also had more grace. I know that Heavenly Father hears our prayers and knows the desires of our hearts. He loves us and He wants us to be happy. He has heard my prayers countless times and I've seen His hand guide me. I love Him, and I'm grateful for His mercy and love.

I pray that you all have an experience this week that will remind you of God's grace. He loves you! I love you all, too. Have a wonderful week!

Sister Murdoch

Check out this video about our Savior, Jesus Christ: "He is the Gift"

    "You'd better believe that we gave Santa a card :)" (pass along card)

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I am so grateful for your prayers and for the answers that come from our Heavenly Father.

I am grateful for my family. I love them SO much! I am grateful for the Book of Mormon because I have found peace and instruction in it. I am grateful for prophets today as well as in the past. Mostly I'm grateful for Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. I am eternally grateful for the love and purpose that I have because of the Atonement.

I am grateful for good things to come because of our Savior.

We have a huge initiative to spread the news that "He is the Gift." The December Ensign should have 9 cards that you can give out. I would invite you to do that, to spread the good news with someone you care about. I promise that some good will come of it and someone will find peace through your testimony. Never deny a generous thought.

I love you all and I'm grateful for you! Have a wonderful week!
Sister Murdoch

P.S. Sister Seamons tried frog legs for the first time in her life and we had an epic zone fun day at the park. Hooray for Turkey Bowls!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Hello, everyone! This has been such a cold, and intense week for me, not just because of the weather.

We had a zone conference on Friday. It was life changing for me. I had the opportunity to sing "Jesus, the very thought of Thee" and I felt my love for our Savior grow as I sang. Elder Wilford W. Anderson was there. He's a member of the 70 (which means that he works closely with the apostles). As Sister Training Leaders, Sister Seamons and I were blessed to be in a small meeting with the other STLs and zone leaders. I learned so much! I wish I could tell you all about it.

I want to share something with you that I learned on the almost two hour drive home following the conference:
It is not enough to just exist. I am here to save souls. Because of that, I have declared war against Satan. Believe me, since the moment I made that decision, much more opposition has faced me.

Yesterday I didn't feel very good when I woke up. More often I get to test my faith in Christ and my patience with others. These are just a few of the things I've experienced. It's not easy to fight against the adversary, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I fight with Jesus Christ. Then why not go forward with courage and determination? I feel like a different person. I feel like I trust my Savior more than ever before.

I love you all and pray that you will be strengthened in this war we fight together. If you're exhausted, hungry, or in pain, then you are certainly in the best of company, because you follow Christ. May He bless you this week! Love you!

Sister Murdoch

Panda Express with Sister Stone, Sister Christiansen, Sister Murdoch, Sister Seamons
 Exchanges - Sister Seamons, Sister Murdoch, Sister Elmer and Sister Dunford

At Zone Meeting - Sister Porter, Sisters Seamons and Murdoch, and Sister Anderson

Monday, November 10, 2014

Hello, everyone! My time is nearly up, so this will be short.

Sister Seamons and I rode our bikes to the bike trail this morning and took some pictures by the pond. It was beautiful, but freezing! It's a good thing we went today. It's supposed to snow soon.

Our zone just had a pretty intense week. We're all facing opposition in many different forms, but also seeing miracles every day. Please keep the families we're all teaching in your prayers! We have a great work to do and there is little time to do it.

Love you all! The Lord is my light, and my hope (Isaiah 12). I pray that you have a fantastic week full of light and joy!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, November 3, 2014

Hello, everyone! Happy November to y'all! :)

This month has started off on a wonderful note. Two families in our zone were baptized and confirmed this week! One of them was the family the Spanish Elders were teaching. A woman that we've been teaching came to it and really felt the Spirit. I truly know that the Holy Ghost witnesses of truth no matter what language is spoken.

The family that we've been teaching is struggling right now. They have been going through more trials. They're getting baptized in a couple weeks, but things are getting harder for them. Satan is a sneaky one. Please keep them in your prayers!

I'm now working with Sister Seamons. She's from Preston, Idaho. Yeah! Another spud sister :) She is such a hard worker and has helped so many people here already. I'm grateful for her strength and example of diligence.

Before I go, I want you to know that I have a deep and personal witness that our Heavenly Father loves us. He wants to bless us. That is His joy! I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that He knows what we feel, face, and desire. He carries us through our trials. I love my family and I know that if we all keep our promises to Heavenly Father that we will be an eternal family.

I love you all! Have a spectacular week!
Sister Murdoch

P.S. I know what you'll think when you see this picture, and I just want to state that we did not coordinate our dresses :) Meant to be Sisters!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Hello, everyone!

This is the first time in a year that I will stay in one place longer than three months :D That's right, I'm staying in Fort Wayne! Whoo! I'm sure going to miss Sister Parker, but I'm grateful for the fun and growth we've had together.

We went to the Columbus temple last week. I am forever grateful for the experience I had there. I know that it is the house of the Lord. Through His power families can be together forever.

I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. I know that everything we experience is for our improvement and change for the better. I love our Heavenly Father and know that He watches over us. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet, that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, and that Thomas Monson is the prophet on earth today.

My time for emailing is up. We're going to go carve pumpkins and eat Halloween candy as a zone now. Happy Monday! I love you!

Sister Murdoch

P.S. I have loved having a ginger for a companion :D

Sister Parker has changed my life in so many ways!

 At the Columbus Temple

Monday, October 20, 2014

Hello, everyone!

I have very little time, but I want you to know that I love being a missionary! I am so happy! Yesterday a family we've been teaching came to church. It was the first time for some and third for others. I was so happy to be there to see them take the sacrament. This is what it's all about: helping families come closer to Jesus Christ. I love being part of the work!

A woman in Maryland referred her mother to us, and now we're teaching her. She is so full of faith. She's preparing to be baptized in two weeks. Please keep her and the family in your prayers! You make a difference every day by asking Heavenly Father to bless His children.

I love you all! Have a wonderful, autumn week!

Sister Murdoch

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hello, everyone!
Sorry I forgot to warn you that I actually have my preparation day today.
We had an amazing Sisters conference in Englewood, OH yesterday. All of the Sisters (about 94 of us) were there. We as STLs had the opportunity to train the Sisters and have some fun, too. Sister Porter will probably have pictures on Facebook soon :) I love being able to teach and learn from each of the Sisters. It was such a special experience for me!
Brother F was indeed baptized this weekend :) I wish I could show you a before and after picture, comparing the first time we met him and where he is now. It literally is night and day, like the prophet Moroni wrote in Moroni 7. He is so happy and looking forward to receiving the priesthood.
My family and friends, Jesus Christ is our Savior. He loves us so much! Heavenly Father loves us, too. He sent me a protector this week when the adversary tried to harm my spirit. I am a witness of the love of our Father. He will always provide a way for us to be happy and we only have to accept it and use it; it's called the Atonement. When we are baptized by His authority we receive full access to the Atonement. I know this because I've seen it.

I love you all and wish you a happy week full of colorful leaves and rain!
Sister Murdoch
                                        Me, Sister P, Brother F, Brother K
Vegas Waffle for breakfast! (ice cream, strawberries, whip cream, and maple syrup) You'd better believe I ate every bite :)

Monday, October 6, 2014

Hello, everyone! Happy October :)

I have so much to say, but no time to say it. I just want to let everyone know that I'm grateful for your prayers. The man we've been teaching now knows that President Monson is a prophet, so he will be getting baptized this week. Pictures next time!

I know that we are so blessed to receive guidance from Heavenly Father. Sister P and I have been led to places just for one person, and it is amazing how He knows where we need to be. He loves each of us so much and will always answer our prayers.

Love you all! Have a fantastic week!

Sister Murdoch

Leadership Training Conference at the Mission Home

From Mom's letter: Oh wow. Being on the council is one of my favorite things ever! When Elders are called to be zone leaders and Sisters to be sister training leaders, every month we go to the mission home and have a meeting. Driving from Fort Wayne to Cincinnati takes about 3-4 hours, so we kind of have a 3 day event if we stop somewhere to spend the night with other Sisters. It's a party :) I have learned so much and received a lot of revelation in those meetings, and so I am humbled and grateful to be there with the cream of the OCM.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Hello, everyone! Happy Monday :)

We are so excited for General Conference this weekend! Did you know that we have a prophet today? Heavenly Father loves us so much that He gave us a prophet to help our families through the trials we have today. I know that Thomas Monson is the Lord's prophet.

Yesterday one family that we've been teaching came to church. Yay! We thought that the dad wouldn't be able to come, but miraculously at the last minute he did. I cried as I watched that beautiful family take the sacrament. The Atonement is for everyone and brings us peace. We access it completely by being baptized by the priesthood and then keeping our promise to obey and follow Jesus Christ.

I love the gospel! The word gospel means "good news," and It truly is the "good news" we have today. Jesus Christ is our Savior. He saves us every day. I love Him and I love you. Have a wonderful week!

Sister Murdoch

P.S. I'm sending a couple pictures because my little Elder Murdoch is putting me to shame ;)
I don't know the order, but one of them is the view over a pond we biked past this morning, one of them is what Sister P and I look like after a long bike ride, and one of them is Captain America and me showing our muscles :) 
You'll be impressed to know that Sister P and I went about 44 miles on our bikes last week. *cue theme song from Rocky*

Monday, September 22, 2014

Hello, everyone!

This might be strange, but despite the fact that I have so much on my mind I have so little to say. We had such a wonderful week full of grace and miracles. My heart is full of gratitude for a loving Heavenly Father who directs us and strengthens us daily. I just want to share one thing with you.

Yesterday a woman told Sister P and I that we are wrong and she's sorry that we're going to lose our souls. She said some horrible things to us and condemned us for our beliefs. We stood there and listened and then we testified of the truthfulness of the things we teach. Then we parted ways.

It was such a simple experience, but I felt so much power through the Holy Ghost. I felt like Ammon, which was great, since he's my favorite missionary. I guess today I just want everyone to know that the things I help teach are true.

Heavenly Father loves us. Jesus Christ is our Savior, and He has restored His truth to the world. Joseph Smith was called to be a prophet and today the prophet is Thomas Monson. The Book of Mormon is another witness of Jesus Christ and truly testifies of Him. Our families can be together forever if we are baptized by the authority of Christ and then sealed by that same authority.

May this simple email be my witness to you that these things are true. If nothing else, know that I know these things are true. I witness of these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Sister Murdoch

Monday, September 15, 2014

Hello, everyone!!

I'm sorry that I didn't really get to write last week. We had fun at the game, even though the Reds totally got creamed. It's funny, but once we got there, I didn't even care about getting a hot dog or watching the game. Sister Parker and I didn't sit down until maybe the 6th inning. We just gave everyone who would accept one a card and extended baptism to new investigators instead. I later realized that is because my desires have changed. I'm grateful for the Atonement that made that possible. Best finding day ever! :)

We have had the hardest few weeks that I can remember. There has been so much opposition. A man we've been teaching since I got here is getting baptized this Saturday. Please keep him in your prayers. He has overcome a lot, and even though things have been harder for him as well, he's holding strong. His faith in Christ increases mine.

Yesterday we taught the 13 year old Sunday school class. The subject was obedience and how we're blessed by being obedient to God's commandments. As we prepared, I was humbled to see how many blessings come when we keep ourselves spiritually, mentally, and physically clean. I know that Heavenly Father loves us. I know that he gives us commandments so that he can bless us. That is His joy!

I hope you all have a fantastic week! God bless you as you are obedient.

Sister Murdoch

Monday, September 8, 2014

Hello, everyone!

So STLs (Sister Training Leaders) don't get a lot of life... We're on our way to the Cincinnati Reds game, so I have to go. Next week I'll hopefully have more time :) Look for us on TV! ;)

Love you! The church is true and Heavenly Father loves you!
Sister Murdoch

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Hello, everyone!

My heart is full today. I wish I could explain everything that I've learned and experienced this last week. We switched preparation day to today. Monday, as you probably know (we as missionaries need reminders for holidays), was Labor Day. We took chalk to a large bridge in downtown Fort Wayne and drew the plan of salvation in chalk. As people walked by, we taught them about it.

There was one young woman who had tons of questions. She was really confused because there were a lot of things that she had never heard of before. We taught her about Jesus Christ and how He set up His church. When we told her about Joseph Smith's experience and how Christ restored His church, she started to cry. The Spirit was so powerful. She asked how she could learn more and be baptized so that she would be clean. Sadly, she is not in our area. I love her with all of my heart and know that what we taught her is true.

I want you all to know that Heavenly Father loves you. That's the first thing we teach as missionaries. It's beautiful, it's simple, it's true. In modern day revelation He invites us to look to Him in every thought (Doctrine and Covenants 6:36). I have learned for myself that He really does want us to do that. I have witnessed how it's changed my life. That's how we pray always - we think to God. He will always hear us and answer us.

I share that witness with you and invite you to experiment on it. Try thinking to God in all that you think about (whether it's being thankful, grumpy, or cheerful). See if He won't speak with you more and love you more. He will because He loves you.

I love you, too! Have a marvelous week!
Sister Murdoch

The pictures are us when I first got here. We were completely soaked by the time we got home :)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hello, everyone!

Sister P and I are now known as the spud Sisters :) Proud to be from Idaho! Indiana is sure beautiful and it feels a lot like home. The only differences: it's flat and has corn instead of mountains and potatoes.

I have to go, but I want you to know that Heavenly Father loves you! He told me some very personal things that I needed to know. It's amazing how much He knows you and me. He loves to help and give us reasons to be happy.

With all of my heart I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Jesus Christ's restored church that He promised to bring back (Acts 3:21). I know that everything happens for our growth. I know that families will be together forever when they are sealed by the priesthood power of God and are obedient.

Love you all!

Sister Murdoch

P.S. I'll send stories and pictures another day.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Hi, y'all!

This needs to be short, but I want you all to know that Fort Wayne is spectacular! We saw so many miracles happen. Our entire zone hit leadership standards last week. We're pretty sure that we're the first zone to do that since the mission was reformed last July. Yay! We love grace :)

Sister P and I have had the most incredible experiences here. I wish I could show you how much I love being a missionary. There's nothing like it. I realized that Wednesday was my half way mark. It made me a little sad, but also anxious to have a better last 9 months.

I love the gospel. I love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I love the Book of Mormon. I am grateful for my family at home and here in my mission home. Your prayers make all of the difference in the work. Please share your testimony with others. You have no idea what kind of impact it has on those who hear it.

Love you all! Have a wonderful week!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, August 11, 2014

Hello, everyone! I only have a few minutes, so I'll tell you briefly how amazing mission life is.

I am now in New Haven/Fort Wayne, IN (first time out of Ohio!). I absolutely love it! The people are so nice. This is a bike area/we still have a car. I haven't been on a bike in over five years, so riding 8 miles to the church this morning was fun :D

Sister P and I are working together now. She was in my second zone, so I was thrilled to find out we would be companions. She's an outstanding missionary! I'm grateful to be here with her.

I just want to let you know that the priesthood is one of my favorite things ever! I know that the priesthood is on the earth again and that it is the power of God. It can heal, comfort, and strengthen.

Gotta go! I love you all and hope that you have a spectacular week!

Sister Murdoch

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Hello, everyone!

Oh, I wish I could just tell you everything!!! This week was absolutely incredible! Two families that we've been teaching (one a part member family and the other a new one we started teaching last week) both came to church yesterday. I was so happy. These families can be together forever, and coming to church is one step to reaching that blessing. I just sat there looking around, feeling the joy of helping them come this far, and then I felt a tinge of sadness. I knew that Heavenly Father wanted me to go somewhere else.

Earlier today, President Porter called. I have been asked to serve as a Sister Training Leader. I am a little overwhelmed at the thought, but also extremely excited :) I just hope that I will be helpful wherever it is that I am next week. I'll be sure to let you know of course. I'm really going to miss everyone here, especially Sister A. I sure love her and have learned a lot with and from her.

Because of my scrambled mind right now, I don't know what else to say except this: I love the gospel! It is the most wonderful thing in the world because it is centered on Jesus Christ and designed to give us eternal happiness with our families. With every feeling of my soul I know that this is true. I know that Heavenly Father loves us and always directs us. I  know that Jesus Christ is the son of God. I know this because of the feelings and thoughts the Holy Ghost gives me. These things are true. I know it. And that makes me happy :)

Never forget that miracles happen to you daily. Keep your eyes open for them! They will be there. It is always possible. Love you!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, July 28, 2014

Hello, everyone!

I wish I could show you just how excited I am about what happened this last week! It was just overflowing with miracles! New investigators, a few people at church, answered prayers, miracles truly have not ceased!

The woman that I told you about last week is so amazing! She has come so far in just two weeks. Yesterday morning we woke up with a message from her, saying that because of some things that were going on that she wouldn't be able to come to church. Sister A felt prompted to leave her a note. We gave her some oranges ("Orange you glad we met?") and told her in the note that this was some of the opposition we told her would come. She thought about it all morning, and when we stopped by later to see her, she had decided to go. Church was a wonderful experience for her again. We saw her this morning and she is so full of light!

I just wanted to cry when we were with her. Her experience only gives me greater conviction of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. There is no doubt that because of Him we can become new and start over with a clean slate. I love this woman with all of my heart and I know that even when she didn't believe in herself that Heavenly Father saw great potential in her. Sister A and I see it, too. For everyone who's ever asked, that's the best part about being a missionary: seeing the Atonement change people and learning how to use it to change myself as well.

Love you all! Have a fantastic week full of rain storms and sunshine!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, July 21, 2014

Hello, everybody!

We just had a fantastic week! It was full of miracles in many different forms. Sometimes it was just showing up at a member's home who needed some comfort, sometimes it was delicious ice cream :) I want to share one of my favorites.

One morning I lost my planner somewhere. I never lose my planner. I was really worried about finding it. Sister A and I were retracing our steps looking for it. A woman called us to tell us that she found it. She was surprised to find out that it was mine. Every morning she goes for a walk and happened to walk a different path. That's how she found my planner. When we met her to get it, I thanked her and felt like it was supposed to happen. As she was walking away, I quickly told her that we're missionaries and we're here to help teach people who have been going through hard times and asked her if she knew anyone who was going through trials.

She told us that she was going through hard times. She has had so many trials and was starting to give up hope. She told us that she felt like God wanted us to meet. We saw her later in the week and had a special experience with her. After bearing testimony of the power of the Atonement, we invited her to be baptized on a certain date and she accepted. She came to church yesterday and really enjoyed it. This morning she called us to tell us that instead of watching the news that always depresses her, she turned to her Gospel Principles book from Sunday school and read about repentance.

Wow! Miracles happen! I know that Heavenly Father loves all of His children. He never gives up on us, and we can have hope because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ (Moroni 7:41). I hope that y'all have an amazing week full of miracles!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, July 14, 2014

Hello, everyone!

I don't have a lot of time, but I want to let you know that Ohio has awesome rainstorms! We pretty much got drenched the other day, but at least the lightning didn't hit us :) We have seen a lot of miracles everywhere. Some come in the form of service projects or finding people to teach. I just found out that a woman Sister W and I saw once when we went to help her clean is getting baptized. I'm so glad we followed Ammon's example and served her. Sometimes that's all it takes to open the door.

Sister A is super great with kids! One day while we were outside, she started blowing bubbles for some kids to pop. We met one of the mom's who wants to learn more. It's amazing how the small and simple things change eternity. I know that Heavenly Father is in the details of our lives. I know that He loves us and lets us experience rain and sunshine because He loves us.

Have a wonderful week full of miracles!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, July 7, 2014

Hello, everyone! Happy (late) Independence Day!

We had an amazing week! It was full of miracles and wonderful experiences. On the 4th, our zone went to a huge event called Americana, which is like a large fair that covers several blocks. We drew the plan of salvation in chalk on one of the parking lots. As people walked by, we would walk them through the plan, testify of it, and give cards or pamphlets. Several families want to learn more. It was so much fun! I'm not an artist, but I do have a testimony of Heavenly Father's plan. It is designed to make us happy and to be with our families forever. I know that we all have the opportunity to accept and follow this plan. It is the whole purpose of life. Have questions about it? Ask the missionaries, they can help you! is helpful, too :)

Twice during the week we had just a few minutes before we needed to go in for the night. Both times we stayed out, and both times Heavenly Father let us meet people who have been so prepared to learn about the gospel. It really strengthened my testimony of obedience. When we obey the commandments Heavenly Father gives us, we are blessed. It's a simple and powerful truth. I know that He gives us those rules because He loves us and wants us to be happy.

Sister A is a fantastic missionary! We have both grown so much this last week. I can't believe how quickly time is passing. I'm so blessed to be serving in Miamisburg with her. I know that Heavenly Father is involved in the details of our lives and loves all of us. 1 Nephi 11:17
I wish you all a week as special and fantastic as the one we'll have here!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, June 30, 2014

Hello, everyone! This has been such a crazy, wonderful week for me! I hope that in all of your adventures you find much happiness in the little things in life.

I am now serving with and training Sister A. She is amazing! She is an incredible artist, loves to be outdoors, and is so good at teaching children. It has been so much fun being with her! We've had a lot of new experiences... mostly silly ones like getting locked out of our apartment this morning when we went to do laundry :) That was hilarious! She's a good sport, even if I sing to her in the morning to wake her up. We went a few days without a GPS, and I just have to say that maps are a little more difficult to navigate, at least for me. We got lost a few times, but for the most part we were pretty good.

One highlight for the week: we received a referral for a woman who wanted missionaries to come teach her. Sadly she's not in our area, but we first contacted her to teach her about the Restoration. It was a powerful experience and she really wants to read the Book of Mormon. While we were talking outside, a man pulled up to ask for directions. Being the mean trainer that I am, I handed a card to Sister A and told her to give it to him. She tried handing it back, but then took it to him :) She's so great!

I love being a missionary! Many people have recently told us to our faces that we should stop what we're doing because we are wrong. I just want everyone who reads my blog to know that I do know that what I am sharing is true. I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith. I know that he was called to be a prophet and that we have a prophet today, Thomas S. Monson. I know that the priesthood is on the earth and it is the power of God to bind our families together. No one can convince me otherwise because it is through the Holy Ghost that I know these things. I also know that anyone who truly desires to learn if these things are true will find out that they are true.

I hope that you all have a magnificent week! I hope it's full of sunshine and wonderful little things to make you smile.

Sister Murdoch

Monday, June 23, 2014

Hello, everyone!

I have to send a super short email. I just found out that I'm staying in Miamisburg, Sister N is leaving, and I'm training a new Sister. I'm basically freaking out, but I know that it will work out somehow.

Fun story: We've recently been running into people who only speak Spanish. I don't remember enough Spanish on my own to talk to them, so I asked one of the Elders for a greeting and simple testimony. A few days after he helped, a new number texted us... in Spanish! I texted back what I learned and asked if we could send his/her number to the Spanish Elders. No response yet, but there are never accidents :)

I hope that y'all are having lots of wonderful things happening in life! I know that Heavenly Father loves us all and helps us individually. From personal experience I know that He hears every prayer and answers it when it is right and in the right way.
Psalm 147:3-4 ~ "He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds. He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names."

Have an incredible week!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, June 16, 2014

Hello, everyone!

This week has been super busy and super amazing! It still thunderstorms like none other, and often it's pretty much like being in a carwash. Once in a while I make sure to run right through the deep, humongous puddles :) No wonder it's so green here!

A set of Sisters in a neighboring area met a young man who lives in our area. They told us Friday that he was expecting a visit... on Friday. We hurried over to see him. We just saw him before he had to go to work - miracle! He asked us to come back on Saturday. We took a young woman with us and taught him about the Restoration. He loved it! In fact he wants his step-father to join us when we go back tonight. Pray for all of us! I know that it will be a good experience. I'm excited to share the Book of Mormon with him.

It was still a simple week, as busy as it was. The investigators are still progressing in their own ways. I have improved a lot in talking to everyone and testifying to them according to their needs and I still have so far to go. Sister N and I have had interesting experiences, hilarious moments, and days full of miracles in the shape of raindrops. I love the gospel! I am so grateful for the blessings of the priesthood, eternal families, and especially knowing how to apply the Atonement of my Savior Jesus Christ. I hope that you all have a week full of miracles in the form you want them, rain or shine!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, June 9, 2014

Hello, everyone!!! :D I am just so happy today! I hope that you are, too!

We had an amazing week! It was really hard, but full of miracles. I've started carying cards in my pocket when we exercise in the morning. I've found that for some reason people are especially friendly when they're outside walking their dogs. It's getting much easier for me to talk to people. The Sister training leaders have helped with that a lot - I love exchanges! The husband of our couple we've helped teach came to the adult session of Stake Conference. His wife was again unable to come because of her health, but he came anyway. Prayers on their behalf would be greatly appreciated. I would also ask for prayers for the young woman we've been visiting. She's trying to decide if she should be baptized or not.

Fun story: this week is a "mini mission" week for the young men and women who want to see what it's like being a missionary. There are 6 boys and 3 girls that all came to the mini Missionary Training Center on Saturday. Sister N and I were asked to teach about chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel, how to develop Christlike attributes. Halfway through our last class, the stake president and Elder Falabela of the 70 came to join us. Awesome! I about died, but we made it through somehow :)

Elder Falabela spoke at conference about families and family history and temple work. It was a wonderful lesson to be taught about. I know that because of the priesthood, our families can be together forever. I know that my family is sealed by that power. I am so grateful for that very special blessing. Thunderstorms continue to rain blessings on us. I love how sudden and powerful the rain comes down. It's very much a reminder to me of the blessings Heavenly Father gives us. One of my favorite things to say is, "My cup runneth over," and I've certainly said that to myself a lot recently.

Y'all have a wonderful week! I wish you thunderstorms enough to fill your barrell with blessings.

Sister Murdoch

Monday, June 2, 2014

Happy June 2, everyone!

June is bringing us many spectacular thunderstorms and lots of heat. The lightning bugs are out! :) It's so beautiful here and I love the people. We've met all sorts here, and I have too many good stories to share. I want to tell you two of my favorites though:

I think I've mentioned that we're working with a couple. The wife has been learning for several months, and just recently her husband agreed to start taking lessons, too. We had a chapel tour with them (we show them the rooms they'll use, especially the chapel, and the baptismal font) on Saturday. She has been extremely ill, and requested a priesthood blessing. It was a very special experience for both of them. She said that she has been wondering if this is the right place to go, and in the blessing she felt like she was home. She knows this is true and was crying tears of joy. We asked her husband what he felt. He said that he felt peace and that he wants it in his home. He wants to keep learning and is preparing to be baptized. Because of her health, she was not able to come to church, but she insisted that he still come. It was a joy to have him there!

A member in Georgia is friends with a woman here in Ohio. They have been good friends for many years, and because of it the friend is starting the lessons. She invited us over to have lunch with her. She asked great questions and it led right into the Restoration. When Sister N shared Joseph Smith's experience, the woman was in tears. She said afterward that she thinks that we need to know that we have a personal relationship with God. It was a very special experience.

I know that we all face hard things. I know that everyone has unique concerns and that Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father understand. I know that they both love us beyond what we can comprehend. We have been blessed in different ways because we can help those around us, family, friends, neighbors, strangers, etc. I'm so grateful to be here! Words can't express what I've learned and experienced. I hope that you all have a wonderful week, full of sunshine and flowers as well as thunder and clouds :)

Sister Murdoch

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Hello, everyone!

This week has flown by like crazy! I have to tell you that yesterday was incredible! President Porter was inspired to change our preparation day to today because of yesterday. As you know, yesterday was Memorial Day. Since families were home from school and work, we were asked to go out to find people. Sister N and I have started a game of sorts: we are trying to talk to as many people as possible when we're outside. I'll be honest - it's absolutely terrifying! I love meeting people and teaching them, but the initial contact is the tricky part. We decided that by making it a game we'll be more successful.

We had lunch at Dairy Queen yesterday. We talked to a few people in line, but that didn't last long. As we were leaving, we saw a family eating their ice cream outside. We stopped to visit with them for a few minutes. Before we parted ways, we explained that we are missionaries and we get to help teach about how our families can be strengthened. They agreed to let us see them this Saturday. Please pray for them! They have 4 kids and I just love them so much!

I have come to appreicate the power of prayer even more in the last week. It's amazing how Heavenly Father loves us! He wants to help and bless us. A woman we're teaching recently said that she is angry with God because of how He has let her experience so much. I know we all get caught up in the trials we have, but think about it - there's no learning in the comfort zone and no comfort in the learning zone. If He didn't allow for us to have hard things happen, we would basically be extremely simple. The trials we have might hurt and stretch us more than we want, but they add a depth to our feelings, to our hearts. I'm grateful for my weaknesses, crazy as it sounds. I'm grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who allows me to be scared and unsure. He has blessed me so much and I know that He will bless you as you turn to Him.

Have a wonderful week and don't forget to pray!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, May 19, 2014

Hello, everyone! This week flew by, and everything is SO different!

I'm now serving in the Miamisburg ward in the Dayton stake. This is the first time I've been outside of the Cincinnati East stake, so things are tremendously different here. I get to serve with Sister N, who just finished training. She's amazing! She doesn't give herself enough credit with how much she knows. The people here love and trust her. I see it everywhere I go. She's a hard worker and just wants to get things done. I love her so much and look forward to the adventures we'll have together.

Sister W and I were actually doubled out of Loveland. That was really hard for Sister W. We never completely understand why it happens, but I know that the Elders will take care of our family there. I'm already gaining family here. I have no idea why I'm supposed to be here, but there have been many times where I meet someone and just know that we needed to meet. A couple people have told me that I look familiar. I love hearing that! It just further proves that Heavenly Father orchestrates the little things. It's been amazing to be here.

Yesterday we taught a man who has only been taught the restoration lesson. He had great questions and had put an honest effort into working for his answer to know if he should pursue this course. He said that he is content in life and decided not to learn more. Of course I felt sad, but I also felt strongly that more will come later for him. When we bore testimony of what was shared with him the Spirit was strong. It was the only time he didn't talk. Someday the seeds will grow. Alma 32:41-42

I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Jesus Christ's church. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God and another testimony of Jesus Christ. I know that there is a prophet on the earth today. I know that my family is bound by the power of God, and nothing can break that bond. I hope that you all have a wonderful week full of miracles, as mine is sure to be. I love you!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, May 12, 2014

Hello, everyone! Hope y'all had a wonderful Mother's Day yesterday. I know I did :)
I have some remarkable news: Sister W and I are being doubled out. We were doubled in three months ago, so hopefully we improved things in the time we spent here. I'm grateful for the time we've had here in Loveland, OH. Sister W has changed my life in many ways, so it's going to be hard to say goodbye. Companions are the best!
We had another media split day on Saturday. If you check out the Ohio Cincinnati Mission facebook page you'll probably see pictures of us doing a variety of activities that missionaries do. It was fun, rain and shine. It's amazing how much I've come to love the people here. It's hard to imagine going somewhere else, but I'm happy to go where I'm needed.
Life is wonderful! It's full of trials, growth, change, and joy. I am experiencing these things daily and I have come to appreciate how each of them mold me into a better me. Sometimes I imagine myself as a ball of clay, being pulled and shaped. Sometimes I start hardening at the wrong time or place, then I get shaped differently. When I'm hard it hurts, but when I'm willing to be shaped the changes are welcome and more wonderful.
I love you all and wish you a week full of sunshine and rain and happiness!

Sister Murdoch

                                                            Skyping on Mother's Day!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Hello, everyone!
This week was spectacular! Mostly because one of our investigators came to church yesterday. She loved it, and by the end of the meetings she was telling everyone that she would see them next week :D She has so much spunk; she really livens up the meetings. I love her so much! She's starting to call herself our granny, even though she doesn't look old enough to be a granny.
We had a lot of hard things happen to us last week. It's amazing how it was probably the hardest week, but when we looked at the results it was our best this transfer. We were reminded by a friend of a scripture in the Book of Mormon:
"Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith. Neverthelss--whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day."
~ Mosiah 23:21-22
Often in our greatest trials we see the hand of the Lord. We were tremendously blessed in our own afflictions. We have found families and individuals who are ready for the gospel. We have started to sift through people, which is hard and sad, but helps us find those who are ready.
Thank you for your prayers and support! I love you and share my witness of Heavenly Father's love. He loves you! Have a spectacular week!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, April 28, 2014

Hello, everyone!

I hear that it's still snowing in Idaho. That seems so strange to me as we just had an outstanding thunder/lightning storm! It's fun when it rains here because it comes down in buckets for just a few minutes and then stops. It looks beautiful with the vibrant green trees and pink, white, and yellow blossoms covering the trees. We love our morning runs with robins and cardinals singing to us. My intention was just to paint a picture of what it's like here, not to make you jealous. However, feel free to be jealous :) I love Ohio!

This last week was like a roller coaster. Our most progressing investigator dropped us. He said that it wasn't wasted, so we did make a difference even if he's not ready to be baptized. It was disheartening, but we just kept going. Heavenly Father is helping us sift. Those who are ready will change, and we're here to help find them.

We've seen miracles happen despite the opposition. We've been led to those who need us. We've had a lot of opportunities to serve, from weeding to helping put sinks back together. Thanks again, Dad! :) Yesterday we changed our approach for meeting people outside, and because of it we have two families who want us to come back this week.

What changed? We testified of a living prophet. It's so simple, but it's one of the greatest gifts we have, and it's powerful. I know that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God and that he leads us today. I'm grateful to be on the Lord's errand and be a witness of Him and His prophet.

I hope you have a week full of spring showers and joy! Love you!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, April 21, 2014

Happy Easter, y'all!

I had such a fantastic Easter! I hope that everyone else did, too. It was wonderful to talk to people about the Savior on such a beautiful and special day. I have come to love my Savior more than before. I know with even greater conviction that He knows how each of us feel in our hard, trying times. Time after time I need reminders, but it never ceases to amaze me how He's happy to help me remember.

We colored eggs with a family and received Easter baskets, but my favorite part of Easter was partaking of the sacrament. I was in need of a specific answer, and after praying for some help, I found my answer in the scriptures. I know that the Bible and the Book of Mormon are the word of God. They are here to help us come to Christ and I love to study the words in them.

Gotta get going, but I just have one more thing to say:
MY BROTHER IS COMING TO LOUISVILLE!!! :D (Jason called to Kentucky Louisville mission-Sept. 3) Apparently the mid-west just needs more Murdoch's. I'm glad to be a missionary and servant. There's nothing like it. I love y'all and hope this week is full of joy and new beginnings!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, April 14, 2014

Hello, everyone! I thought that I would have more time to write, but it turns out that Sister W and I are going to run soon, so here's what last week was like in a nutshell:
Miracles! We found a family of 3 kids and the parents to teach. We love them! We found several others, too. Sharing Joseph Smith's experience is my favorite thing to do as a missionary. We did that a lot as we opened our mouths. I love that they are filled if we will try!
We had a specialized training meeting that helped us learn how to teach better. We've seen amazing things happen. Please continue to pray for the people here. I know that they're changing, and that brings greater challenges. Every prayer helps and they need it. Thank you for every prayer you've already prayed! I know without a doubt that they make a difference.
Oh, I guess I should mention that I'm no longer a teenager. YAY!!! I don't know how it happened, but somehow the ward found out that it was my birthday and I was given a lot of gifts, but honestly the best gift was a priesthood blessing after a full day. I love the priesthood and I know that it has been restored through the prophet Joseph Smith.

I love being a missionary! Wishing you a happy spring! You'd be jealous if you could see it here :) I'll send pictures next week. Until then, have a wonderful week!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, April 7, 2014

Hello, everyone! I know that I only have a minute. Let me just rejoice for that time.

We have a prophet!!! Do you know how amazing that is?! Heavenly Father still talks to us through a prophet. He talks to us personally. He loves us so much that He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to be our Savior.

We have temples! Our families can be together forever. In a very real way we will never be parted if we keep our promises we make there.

We have the priesthood! Joseph Smith was called to be a prophet, and one of many wonderful blessings is that we have the power of God that can bless us if we are obedient.

I'll be honest - this was a very hard week for us here in Loveland, Ohio. However, Heavenly Father has seen fit to try us, prove us, love us, and challenge us. I love Him for that.

Have a wonderful week and remember who you are!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, March 31, 2014

Happy Monday, everybody!

For the first time I have some unique news: I am not getting transferred this time! I feel like I have a ton of free time today now that I don't have to pack :) I was really certain that I was leaving, but Heavenly Father has a different idea. I'm glad. I feel like I still have a lot to do here. And being with Sister W makes me so happy! She and I have been through a LOT of hard and wonderful experiences. I'm excited to see what adventures and trials we'll face in the next six weeks!

This week we started teaching a woman who has been so prepared to hear from us. She used to think that Mormons were a cult, but when we knocked on her door, she immediately knew that it wasn't true. She has loved everything that she's learned and finds a lot of peace and joy with the truth she's finding. Some things have never occurred to her, but she said that it all makes sense. She's a sweetheart and we love her so much!

I loved the women's conference on Saturday! What I walked away with from that meeting was very special. We are supposed to be united and to serve each other. I also left with greater love for my mother and grandmothers. I know that I have been extremely blessed to be part of my family. I want everyone to know that I have such a spectacular family!!!

Mosiah 24:14 We're given trials to be witnesses of God. I know that He loves us. Wishing everyone a happy spring! Be grateful that I'm not home for April Fool's Day :D Have a wonderful week!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, March 24, 2014

Hello, everyone! I'm writing this one first because I have SO much to say! This week has been absolutely incredible! We have seen a lot of miracles happen daily.

One of my favorites was when we had the prompting to call one of the sisters in the ward. We did so and asked if we could visit her later that day. When we went to see her, she asked why we called at the time we did. She had been having a very hard day and needed someone there to simply give her a hug and help her. It strengthened my testimony of how Heavenly Father knows each of us and prepares a way for our needs to be met through others. I'm grateful that we called her.

The most amazing thing happened halfway through the week. I briefly mentioned the gentleman that we've been teaching who gave us his coffee last week. He had a long, wearying battle against the adversary. On Wednesday he faced his greatest turning point, and we had prepared long and hard to help him. He made a commitment that he has struggled with for a long time. By the end of the lesson, he was full of joy to do that one thing. He was baptized and confirmed this weekend. He has become such a dear friend and I've been inspired by his faith and determination. His baptism was beautiful and very special. I'm so blessed to know him.

I've probably started to be annoying, but I just have to say that members make the difference! Our lesson wouldn't have happened without the sister who once had to make the same decision before her own baptism. The members bring such a special and powerful testimony that brings the Spirit in full force. When opportunities come to help the missionaries, I would exhort you to help in every way possible. I know it takes sacrifice, but the blessings outweigh the sacrifice.

I know that this church is Jesus Christ's church and that He is at the head of it. He expects us to share our testimonies with others and promises that as we do so we may help bring salvation to them (3 Nephi 18:32). I hope you all have a week full of miracles and wonderful experiences!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Goodness! One of these days I'll write the long email first! We only get an hour total to email. Sorry this one will be short, too.

The temple and zone conference were absolutely incredible! I really loved both. Questions are answered through scriptures and prayers. I'm grateful for that special gift.

Story for the week: A man that we've been teaching is getting baptized this Saturday. (Please pray for him!) He whimpered when we taught the word of wisdom. He actually thought that we were kidding about not drinking coffee. He hid his face when he handed it over as he said, "If that's what I gotta do, then it's what I'll do." His faith has strengthened me so much.

I love y'all! Have a wonderful week and I'll try to write more next week!
Sister Murdoch

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hello, everyone! I'm super excited to write to you! We're about to go to a mission fun day with President and Sister Porter, so this may be a bit short.
Miracles abound! We have had some rough days, but we've had some wonderful days, too. One woman threatened to call the cops on us... That was fun :) We had a powerful lesson on the front porch of a man's home. He is going to read the Book of Mormon and come to church. Another man has only had a copy of the Book of Mormon for a few days, but in that short time we've seen more light and joy in him.

I want to share my witness of Jesus Christ. This week I have literally leaned on the Atonement more that I can remember ever doing before. Psalms 37:3-7 have meant a lot to me in the last few days. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior. He is my strength and the difference in the things I cannot do. I know that His love is endless and perfect. I love Him so much. How grateful I am for Him!

Your prayers have been felt and are greatly appreciated. Along with the fun day today, we'll have a zone conference and a temple trip. This week is going to be incredible! I hope that y'all have a week just as great!

Sister Murdoch

Monday, March 3, 2014

Hello, everyone! This week has been full of so many miracles! Sister W and I have been tremendously blessed since I last wrote. We are teaching four families and several individuals that were put in our path. One man wants to be baptized, but he's slow getting to it. Please pray for him!Sister W is super amazing! She and I are as opposite as we can be, but that just makes us more able to help people here. :) Both of us have changed so much in the last week. That's probably the greatest miracle of all. When we forget ourselves and just keep working, we see the blessings almost immediately.
Yesterday church was only one hour long because of a storm that came. After we got home, we decided that we needed to go out despite the weather. We tried meeting a few people. It was freezing, so most people didn't want to talk. We knocked on one door at the end of  the street in a neighborhood. (That's always when a miracle happens.) A man answered and immediately invited us in. He said that his neighbors always talked about Mormons knocking on their doors, but that he'd never had it happen to him. He is SO ready for the gospel! The Lord has prepared him to meet us. He and his family want to come to church and read the Book of Mormon.
I wish I could list all of the miracles I've seen just in the last week. I know that Heavenly Father has blessed us for our obedience. Ammon said it perfectly in Alma 26 when he said, "And we have suffered all manner of afflictions, and all this, that perhaps we might be the means of saving some soul . . . Now behold, we can look forth and see the fruits of our labors; and are they few? I say unto you, Nay, they are many . . ." That's true even especially in Ohio!

Have a wonderful week! Keep up the missionary work!