Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Hello, everyone!
Oh, this was such a miraculous week! It was filled of some of the happiest moments I've had in my life! It was not without it's trials to be sure, but God's grace abounds.
I attended what is called a Legacy Meeting. The missionaries that will be returning home in the next six months go to this meeting to discuss what we can do to continue a legacy in our mission of faith in Christ and power. When we reached the end of the meeting, we had the opportunity to share our testimonies. I found myself practically running to the podium :) I am so grateful to be a missionary, and I have found joy in the work!
Saturday we went to the temple with a gentleman who was recently baptized. They each had the opportunity to do baptisms for the dead (1 Cor. 15:29). It was a blessing to go with him, but for me the extra blessing happened when I saw Sister Belnap, and then I saw who was with her:
The Gonzalez's!!! I cried. I have only two other times in my life that I can remember feeling such joy as I did when I saw them. Despite all of the opposition they had during the week, they came to the temple. Sister Gonzalez asked me if I knew that they were going to be there. When I told her that I didn't, she asked,
"Is this a coincidence?"
"No," I replied. "There are no such things as coincidences."
I believe that's true! Sunday we went to the stake center for a devotional that recent converts speak at. They share their testimonies and stories about how it all happened for them. I was delighted when they both shared their stories. I have been truly blessed to be part of their lives!
Being a missionary is hard. I have experienced first hand the opposition that comes in bringing others to Christ, but I will go through it all of my life so that I can experience this joy for eternity. For the rest of my life I will wear out my life and bringing others to the light (D&C 123:12-17). That is my purpose now, and my purpose forever.
I love all of you! Thank you so much for your prayers and your love! I hope that you have a spectacular week and that it is filled with God's grace.
Sister Murdoch

     I love my amazing companion, Sister Mickelson, and my beautiful Indiana home!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Hello, everyone! I hear it's a little dry out west. I will pray for our thunderstorms to come that way :) Well, here is some delightful news I have:

I'm in the Columbia City ward! Sister Mickelsen is my Sister now. Funny thing, Columbia City is the ward right next to Fort Wayne. In fact, we technically live in Fort Wayne :) Wow! I already knew several people here, so this was a fun transition to make. I have fallen in love with the people and the area already. I love it!

We have had so many blessings from this last week. We found many new people to start teaching. This Saturday we're going to the temple with a man who was recently baptized. He has a family name that he is going to be baptized for, and we're thrilled to go with him!

Oh my goodness! I wish I could explain the feelings of my heart. I learned a lot during our meetings at church yesterday, and it was remarkable to receive so much revelation. I know that Heavenly Father loves us. To quote Elder Holland,

"God expects you to have enough faith, determination, and trust in Him to keep moving, keep living, keep rejoicing. He expects you not simply to face the future; He expects you to embrace and shape the future—to love it, rejoice in it, and delight in your opportunities.God is eagerly waiting for the chance to answer your prayers and fulfill your dreams, just as He always has. But He can’t if you don’t pray, and He can’t if you don’t dream. In short, He can’t if you don’t believe."
~ Elder Jeffrey R. Holland "This, the Greatest of All Dispensations" Liahona July 2007
I know this is true! I know Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to turn to Him so that He can bless us. Turn to Him always. I promise that He hears and answers every prayer.
I love you all! Have a fantastic week!
Sister Murdoch

Monday, April 13, 2015

Hello, everyone!

I have news! I'm getting transferred away from Fort Wayne. Sister Belnap and I both knew it would happen. I'm really going to miss my Fort Zion! I have learned and changed so much here. It really feels like home.

Funny story: A man we met gave us a referral for his neighbors across the street. We went to meet them. As we walked up to the door, we heard a man inside yelling profanity. We knocked on the door anyway :)  (One change I've experienced - I'm more bold.)
He answered the door, upset, and explained to us that he was "correcting" his son. I'm pretty sure that isn't the correct word to use...

At first, he was just ticked off and didn't want our card. We talked to him for a minute, and he calmed down. By the time we explained the message of the Restoration, he had a change of heart. When we asked if we could leave our number, he said, "Yes. I'll take your card." His wife came out to talk to us, too. I think she was surprised by the sudden change in his attitude. They are allowing us to come back to share more.

Yesterday, Brother Gonzalez received the Aaronic Priesthood. When he was sustained by the ward in sacrament meeting, I cried. He and his family have changed so much! They are happier than they ever knew was possible, and it's only the beginning. I have never been so happy!

I have seen the gospel bless so many people. I have seen it bless families, and I've especially seen it bless my family. Heavenly Father truly loves us! I know that He sent His Son to be our Savior, and I know that He wants us to prepare for a day when we can see Him again.

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

                                  Indiana is beautiful after a rainstorm!
                                        We met a family that had pet ferrets!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Happy Easter, everyone!

Cool thing President Porter taught us this week: Everything that we do has to do with Easter. Because we are always changing, always overcoming weaknesses, we are applying the doctrine of Christ in our lives. Easter is every day!

We spent a lot of time traveling and being in meetings this week. We had a specialized training and also went to the mission home for another leadership council. I learned a lot personally about how we can be better missionaries and better servants.

I want to share with you two things that have changed my life. 

First thing: About 8 months ago, Sister Parker asked me if I love my mission. At the time I honestly couldn't say yes or no. I certainly didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either. The question stayed with me since then. On the way home from Cincinnati, I looked out at the moon and the stars between the clouds, thinking of everything that I had learned that day. All of a sudden I felt this overwhelming amount of love for my mission: the people I've taught, the missionaries I've served and served with, the Porter's, the flat lands of Indiana, the rolling hills in Ohio... it just clicked. I love my mission!
I don't know why it took me this long to learn that. I am eternally grateful for my mission. I have come to know my Savior so personally, and my love for Heavenly Father has deepened.

Second thing: General conference was this weekend. Heavenly Father gave me some very special personal revelation. The rest of my life will be spent in building the kingdom of God, and now I know what to do.

I know that Heavenly Father loves us! I am so grateful for the message of Easter that I get to share every day. It is the good news! Today marks 185 years of Christ's restored church being on the earth. That has blessed all of us beyond measure! I love my mission, and I love you! 

Have a marvelous week, and look for the signs of Easter, of the doctrine of Christ in your life!

Sister Murdoch

                                    On the way to Bubble Hockey!
 What we do while waiting for Monday morning conference calls - Spree hockey!