Tuesday, June 28, 2011


This is one of the first Mormon Message videos I ever saw. To this day, it stands to be my favorite . I feel like sometimes we forget who we are.
"When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee... bring my sons from afar, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; Even every one that is called by my name, for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him." -Isaiah 43
 We are each a divine masterpiece by our Heavenly Father. Remember who you are, remember how much He loves you.  As a missionary, there isn't anything I can teach that you don't already know. Heavenly Father is waiting for you to come to Him in prayer, to build that relationship with Him. As you come to know our Heavenly Father, He helps you come to know who you truly are, what you can create, and who you can become- just like Him.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Week of Sacrifice

"[F]rom the first existence of man, the faith necessary unto the enjoyment of life and salvation never could be obtained without the sacrifice of all earthly things. It was through this sacrifice, and this only, that God has ordained that men should enjoy eternal life” (Joseph Smith, Lectures on Faith, 69).
  The missionaries in the Nashville Zone have decided to make this week a week of sacrifice. Each day we add on something new for us to give up to obtain objectives that unify the zone and draw us closer to our goal to become like Zion, "of one heart and one mind, and [dwell] in righteousness;" (Moses 1:39) Zone sacrifices for the week so far: no negative thoughts or comments, no mail, give an extra half hour of lunch or other personal time to devote to study. Sacrificing these things will help each missionary to have many of the attributes listed in Doctrine and Covenants section four: faith, hope, charity, love, temperance, patience, virtue, knowledge, humility, and an eye single to the glory of God.
  I asked one of my teachers in the MTC what he sacrificed to go on a mission. Most people think of time, money, school, and other opportunities. It didn't take too long for Brother Strong to say that he didn't feel like he sacrificed anything, because to him, sacrificing means giving up something with no expectation or anticipation of anything in return. I felt very much the same in many ways. I would rather be nowhere else than serving a mission, and although my reasoning may occasionally veer from what it should be, I continue to serve and teach what I know.
  However, I have quickly learned the value of sacrifice. Because at first I didn't feel like I was sacrificing anything, I was excited to learn from the Lord, but I didn't feel like my mission held as much value as it should. I listened to a talk by Elder Holland addressing missionaries, expressing his deep passion for the work. "My mission meant EVERYTHING to me;" he said, "it meant EVERYTHING." So why was I, especially as a new missionary, not feeling that fire?
  It has been since this new week of sacrifice that I felt that I understood. Because I wasn't feeling like I was placing anything before the Lord, because my lifestyle and mentality wasn't changing very much, how could I expect the Lord to step in and give me that added knowledge and those blessings as promised to those who sacrifice?
  My challenge to you, brothers and sisters is to find something to sacrifice for a week. Be reasonable though; don't go a week without eating. Maybe go a week without eating out. If you think of something that you're not sure you can handle, like giving up a television show or some other addiction, maybe that should be the one you do. Find something else to fill the time. Finish putting together the family photo album, get a home project finished, go for a walk to refresh your mind. You may find that you don't need that one thing after all. You might also find that the end reward is something to look forward to-like I am looking forward to opening all of my mail next week! Make it hard, but make it worth it.
  Good luck, my dear friends. Remember, after all the Savior did for us, should we not be willing to give our part back to Him?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day One and a Half

Hello Nashville Tennesee!! I am so excited to be part of a blogging mission to share with the rest of the world what missionary work and the LDS church are like. I flew into Nashville about nine days ago and it has been AWESOME!!
  Right after arriving in the airport and meeting the mission president, his wife, and his missionary assistants, he announces that we are going to do something that has never been done before. I was thinking that President H. was going to challenge us to do some real proselyting right then and there! As a greeny (brand-new field missionary), and a shy one at that, I was scared out of my mind. I couldn't believe what he said next: we were going to sing the national anthem at a minor league baseball game for the Nashville Sounds! All ten of us missionaries were so excited, especially Elder Payne- he LOVES baseball and even played a year of college ball in Arizona before coming on a mission. This was such a unique experience because normally missionaries are not allowed to attend sporting events.
  I was one of two missionaries assigned to ride with President and his wife to the field where we met the other missionaries serving in Nashville who chose to come. Before long, we were walking onto the field and away we sang. We were even allowed to stay for about an hour and a half later to watch the game. Apparently David Archuletta was there too and he talked to some of the missionaries. It's kind of surreal thinking that we performed for him. When it was time for us to go, we loaded into the cars and went to the mission home in Brentwood. There we had some small introductions and a testimony meeting before getting settled in for bed.
 The next day I woke up ready to rock! I was still a little shocked with all that was happening- flying on planes all day, going to a baseball game, being in Tennessee for the first time- but it didn't take too long before the day was rolling. The assistants to the mission president and Sister H. made us breakfast with the specialty being animal shaped pancakes! We had everything from an octopus and a girraff to a slug. I think the slug was supposed to be something else but didn't quite turn out right...
  Orientation and companionship assignments came next! Off to the stake center church building we go. There, Sister Valentine and I were assigned companions to teach in the Nashville Zone, Old Hickory Ward. Apparently it's a very nice part of town, and so far I have loved it! All of the ward members are so willing to help in any way. The area is absolutely beautiful; I think Tennessee is the closest thing I have ever seen to a jungle. I'm from Idaho... enough said.
  Sister V. and I have been so busy- we are the first sister missionaries in the area for about five years, so we have our work cut out for us. We have met with most if not all of the people the elders were teaching and we are learning the area fast. We have been lost several times, but the members, other elders, and the gps have been great help.
   I can see already tender mercies and miracles that the Lord places in the lives of missionaries. I have seen people have a strong desire to change their lives and learn more about Jesus Christ and draw closer to Heavenly Father. I feel so humbled to know that He has chosen me to be part of this great work. Keep moving forward.
  -Sister Franson