Monday, December 29, 2014

Hey y'all!
This week has had many ups and downs. I had many opportunities to learn about discernment and how to follow the spirit =)
Skype on Christmas was fun! The allotted amount of time (49 minutes) went by super fast! Christmas didn't feel as much like Christmas this year. Maybe that was partly because we talk about Jesus Christ 24-7 as missionaries already that it was less of a reminder and more of a reinforcement =) 
Two of our investigators are so solid that it almost seems like they came right out of The District DVDs! Debbie is Ben's aunt and they both have baptismal dates for January 17th. Debbie gave up coffee so willingly this last week and Ben is giving up smoking. They both recognize the blessings that the gospel bring into their lives on a daily basis and they are very excited to be baptized! 
We went on exchanges with the Sister Training Leaders this week and it was so much fun! I got to go serve in Garland for a day! Sister Kerr served there right before being double transferred into Dallas 6 to train me. Everyone there was still talking about her and I got to brag that she trained me =) The exchange was really fun because none of our plans came out as we had planned them and we had some crazy lessons with a lot of opportunities to laugh afterwards. We also got a flat tire, it was punctured by a screw, so that was also an adventure. 
Hope y'all had a merry Christmas!
Sister Melina Lillie Jones

Christmas Day Skype

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Hey y'all!
I have settled into my new area, The Colony, pretty smoothly! This is a great area with a great ward and plenty of work for us to do! Unfortunately many of our investigators are out of town for Christmas or sick so we have had fun doing plenty of tracting. =)
Sister Terry  has been out five weeks now and I am back-up training her! It seems like just last week I was getting back-up trained, oh wait, that is because I was!!! So far it has been very humbling as I realize I have a lot to learn about love for a companion and how to serve and teach someone who is different from me. But I really do love Sister Terry and we are making a lot of progress. She is from Cedar City Utah and also just graduated from high school. 
I have learned a lot about trusting the Lord. I was a little nervous when I found out about transfers, but I am no longer nervous because I know that this is the Lord's work and so long as I am obedient, He will qualify me. 
We have nine baptismal dates, but of the nine, I am guessing only two of them are solid. Nevertheless, two solid dates is great!!!! 
Merry Christmas everyone!
Sister Melina Lillie Jones

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

New Address & Info

5936 Sandhill Circle
The Colony, TX, 75056
Her new companion is Sister Terry and she is back-up training already!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Last Day in Dallas 6th ward!!!

Hey y'all!
I am getting transferred! It came as a huge surprise to everyone in my zone, but I had kind of been feeling it for a few days and just didn't want to say anything because I didn't want it to be true! I came into this area with Sister Kerr and now I leave this area with Sister Kerr. I am so grateful that I was able to spend two transfers with her and be with her as she finishes her mission and prepares to go home. I love her so much, she has truly become my best friend (besides my family)! I light-heartedly blame her that I am leaving. In her exit interview she apparently told President Taylor that every sister should get the opportunity to serve with sister Greenall and I so of course the Lord told him to separate us as soon as possible =P Sister Kerr went around in church yesterday saying goodbye but little did everyone know that I would leave too! But I know I am needed elsewhere and I trust the Lord so I will happily leave. I have really grown to love Dallas 6 and all the members and investigators so I will really miss them! 
We had a great last week as a trio! The other night we went to an event that was going on at the park near us and Sister Kerr and I did a soapbox (we stood on a wall and addressed the whole crowd and shared a quick message) while sister Greenall passed out cards in the crowd. =) It was super fun! 
We also got to do member exchanges and teach two lessons at one time! I went out with a member to teach a Spanish lesson with a translator and sister Kerr and Greenall taught someone else. We had planned to split three ways and teach three at a time but one of them fell through. 
I got to sing at our Ward Christmas dinner with a sweet 9 year old girl who has recently decided to serve a mission because she got to go out with us =) We had 10 total investigators and less active members attend the Christmas party! Another reason I am so sad to leave the area because the work is on fire out here!
 I also get to sing at the transfer meeting tomorrow in front of the whole mission! Sister Greenall is going to sing a cool harmony part. =) 
I really appreciate the advent calendar quote thing that the Rice family sent, thanks to all who contributed to that! 
I have learned so much from this area and the missionaries and people I got to serve around =) 

Quote of the week: "how did you feel when you prayed?" -me
 "I felt like chocolate"-9 year old investigator =) 
The fruits of the spirit are sweet! =) 

Sister Melina Lillie Jones

Zone with the Blakes - Carrollton, Texas

Monday, December 8, 2014

White Christmas

Hey y'all!
Hal had a white Christmas! He was baptized Saturday! He was really nervous and didn't sleep a wink the night before his baptism or confirmation! It went perfectly though. We had an extra helper in the font because the baptizer couldn't pull him back up on his own. Hal bore his testimony afterwards about his theory of miracles, his spiritual prompting to donate crazy books to the church library, and the Spanish Inquisition. It wouldn't have been more "Hal" any other way. He was too nervous and self-conscious to get a picture before he was baptized so we have no pictures of him in white, only afterwards. It was a miracle we could even get that one! There were like 12 elders there who taught him in the past who came to support him. I don't know if I already told y'all but Hal calls me sister pinkie and he calls sister Kerr sister Bubbles because of our personalities =) 
We had exchanges this week and I got to stay in our area and drive! Driving an automatic car felt really weird since I am so used to stick shift. 
We had five investigators at church this week and a TON of less active members there as well!!! Even though there are three of us and we split up in sacrament meeting, there weren't enough of us to sit by all of them! Luckily we have some good members that we asked to friendship them. 
I was reading in 2 Nephi 29 and thought about the Book of Mormon in a new way: When people reject the Book of Mormon because the Bible is enough for them, they are saying they already have an Oreo so they do not need any milk.
Sister Melina Lillie Jones

we were sitting on fake presents and there was a fake christmas tree behind us. there are no conifers in Texas! =P

my mission vision

I wanted to send you my mission vision and what Becoming One means to me. It is what I put in my email to president Taylor this week.

So my mission vision is:

Identity: I am a rough stone, a daughter of God, and His servant

Purpose: To change, to serve God, to smooth out my rough stone, and to help others change for the better through Christ-like love

Destiny: Eternal change and progression, increased love, a larger ability to serve, the ability to give more of myself, selfless wife, mother, and teacher (for special needs), continuing to be the Lord's investigator my whole life through study, prayers, and new commitments and promises to him. 

Summed up in two words my vision would be "eternal change." Change is not always an easy process but it should be a continual one. Some people, myself included, feel uncomfortable with change sometimes, but I try to step back and realize that change is the essence of God's plan for us and it is the only way we progress. Change is repentance and I want to have a constant repentance process even if I do not have to repent for major sins all the time, I do have to improve all the time. 
Becoming one to me means that I am united in the purpose of change. The Savior's purpose on earth was primarily the atonement, so in order to become one with Him I will constantly utilize the atonement to become more like Him.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Plenty to be thankful for

Hey y'all! 
I received some great letters that made my week! (thank you weights, both grandmas, and mom) I Also got a packet full of notes from some of my favorite high schoolers! Some of the students from the special education class sent me notes that made me smile! =D Thanks Morgan Larson for getting those to me!!!!!!!!!! If you want to know how happy I was, just ask my companions.
So Sister Kerr, Sister Greenall and I had this master plan to get up at 4am on black Friday and go contact the mobs of shoppers. We even got permission to get up and leave early to do it. We got out there and found that we had a flat tire and then when we fixed the tire and got to the shopping areas there was no one there!!! people around here must not be very materialistic! We talked to one person before we headed back to our apartment and slept another 30 minutes and re-started the day. =P That one person must have really needed the card we gave them. 
That night there was a Christmas lighting ceremony in the park across the street from us and we went and talked to 339 people in that one day making our weekly contacts number 549!!!!!! That has to break some kind of record besides just my personal record. =) People are so much more receptive to the message around Christmas time, especially when we share He is the Gift (#heisthegift, christmas.mormon.org
We had a super awkward and funny lesson the other day. Sister Kerr compared the Book of Mormon to a cake (you have to try it to know it is good) and then Sister Greenall compared the frosting on a cake to something else and then I compared prayer to a sandwich (Three basic parts to a prayer) and then the investigator asked if we were hungry and then sister Greenall said "no, we are just on a roll!" 
Hal passed his baptismal interview!!! If all goes as planned it will happen this Saturday and it will be my first baptism!
Also we were let in a door while tracting for the first time on my mission! The couple was from southern Germany and they had really cool accents! 
The picture is of our commissary. We wrapped all of our Book of Mormons and pamphlets to give out as Christmas gifts! 
Sister Melina Lillie Jones
What can I give him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
yet what I can I give him:  give my heart.