Friday, February 13, 2015

February 13, 2015 My Last Letter as a Missionary

                                               A braid Sister Hunt did in my hair

                              How a Local Business showed Breast Cancer Support


El Ultimo!

Wow! This is my last Blog of the mission!!!  It's so crazy to think that I'll be back in Utah in just a few days! It's starting to hit me more now as a reality. My ward had a farewell party for me and that made me realize even more that I'm getting the boot! Going home is kind of a reverse of going on your mission, you have butterflies, you imagine what it will be like, you are preparing spiritually for what lies ahead. In the mission there is funny lingo we have. When you come into the mission you are "born" in the area where you start, and when you go home you "die" in that area you end in.  Welp, I'm an old lady now on the mission field and I'll  be dying in a few days. I have a better understanding now of how the elderly feel I think. (: But I can say that the mission has been such a wonderful part of my life and it will continue to be something that I will always have with me throughout my life to guide me!

This week has been a wonderful week of service to others, strengthening friendships and saying our goodbyes. You know, what if everyday was like a goodbye? All of the wonderful things we say to each other at the end are so happy and make you feel good. Maybe people don't want to be mushy all the time and make you cry, but it's so great! Telling people you appreciate them and you are happy to know them should be said everyday, I want to work towards doing that more often. Appreciation is often overlooked but it is such a great thing!

I have a big testimony of service being a great friendship builder! I have gained so many strong, long lasting relationships that have started and grown from serving others and having others serve me! It is such a sincere show of love that it endears you to them quicker than any other way. All of us want sincere, loving friends, and what greater way to show that than serving one another? Its so great! And it makes you feel good to! The more good, solid friendships, the better! I have gained so many great friends from all ages and all races and I love it! I learn so much from all of them that makes my life so much fuller and happier. There is something you can learn from everyone!

I am grateful for the opportunity to have served a mission in Minnesota, even though it is pretty dang cold here, my spirit has been warmed from all of the wonderful souls I have had the privilege to meet to both learn from and teach.

Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are such great guys! I'm really grateful that we're related! And that they are not only watching out for me, but everyone in the world. They really do love everyone no matter what, it's so cool!

There have been so many blessings of going on a mission that I am so grateful for, and if anyone is thinking about going on a mission, I would say a big YES to going. It is the biggest spiritual adventure you will go on! There is nothing that will so thoroughly build a sure foundation in the gospel in so quick of a time than a mission will. There are so many blessings and benefits that come from serving the Lord! In reality, giving up your time and energy is not really being given up, it's being given to put to the best use you can in a year and a half/ two year time span. It's the best investment you will ever make!  I'm so happy that the Lord trusted me enough to do this work because it is indeed a blessing!

I've been able to take just a little of the path that Christ and his disciples took. Developing the attributes of Christ takes effort but it is so much fun!

I want to bear my testimony that I indeed do know that the Church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints is the Church of Jesus Christ on the earth today. That the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ and that we have a living Prophet who has the same priesthood that Christ had to bless and teach and guide the people. I'm so grateful for the plan of salvation so that I can be with my family for eternity, and I'm grateful for the commandments that keep me on the strait and narrow! I know that we are sons and daughters of God and He loves us!

And I love you all to! See you soon! Have a great week!  

Love Sister Kaylani Jo Ficklin

Monday, February 9, 2015

February 9, 2015 Only 9 Days Left on my Misson...

i cut my hair!!! do you like it?? me and sister hunt got matching hair cuts and dyes (: comp unity!

                                             ajulu beads all of this stuff! so cool!


                                                        gateway to heaven


This week has been so wonderful! We have had so many spiritual lessons! I'll have to give you the short version of everything because I'm short on time today, we have Zone P-day in Rochester today :P

                                                  driving back from Rochester

                                                                  ice fishing! 

This week Serious told us that she wants to go on a mission! And Hailey wants to get baptized! She is praying about March 14th

odonga oballa and serious jackson 

And Brother Kumar wants to go to the temple! He has to take the first step of course and get baptized, but he's got the goal in mind!
                                                              Brother Kumar

And we had a Less active come to church who hasn't been in forever! So cooooolllll!!!!
 This work is so much fun!!!! 

I cant wait to go home and do more missionary work! (:

Last night we had a Presidents fireside in Rochester and Brother Kumar and his friend came to it and it was wonderful to hear the testimonies of those who have been recently converted. It was really great to hear what they had to go through to find the true church as well. 
I know that this church is true and I love it! I'm so grateful for the restored church of Jesus Christ!
Love you all! See you soon! 
Love Sister Ficklin

Monday, February 2, 2015

February 2, 2015 Some Things I've Learned on my Mission

Happy February!!!

Well this week has blown in with a snow storm that white washed to whole town! 

                                                               our church

The weather also dropped from 30 degrees to 9 degrees :P Gotta love Minnesota! The roads have been fun to drive on haha my companion is glad that I'm the one driving seeing she's from Arizona and never driven in the snow before. She was happy though because she hasn't had a real snowy winter yet! Now she gets one and wants to go out and shovel everyones driveway!

Man, this week seems to have gone by so fast. Last Monday we went bowling with our district and that was fun (: we also had our volleyball night and it just ended up being us missionaries, Megan, and one of our investigators show up. We ended up playing basketball and playing with play dough and eating fruit snacks and animal crackers from the nursery, it was actually really fun! She also told us she really wants to be baptized!! (and no, it was not because we have play dough and fruit snacks) We are super excited for her!

We've had some really great lessons this week. Most of the lessons, were actually lessons that I learned. That's one thing that I really love about a mission. You are by no means the only person teaching. In fact, you do very little of the teaching. It's kind of cool how it works.

God is teaching you, while you teach others what God teaches you, and then the people you are teaching are teaching you at the same time and they don't even know that they are teaching you valuable life lessons! It's one giant circle of teaching and learning.

I've learned that I am very very grateful for the opportunity to serve a mission. Although I still don't know everything, and won't ever know everything in my lifetime, I've learned so many quality life lessons from others that have changed my whole perspective on how I want to live life in the future. And forever for that matter.

I've learned that I've been blessed with so many things that I've taken for granted and now I really treasure them. The gospel of Jesus Christ for example. I've grown up my whole life with the gospel of Jesus Christ. And I didn't realize what I had until I saw the difficulties of life without it. I want everyone to have what I have in life because it truly does bring joy into the hearts of every human soul. I love this gospel because it makes me happy. true happiness is what everyone searches for in life. And all of us have the freedom to choose our own degree of happiness based on our choices. We can learn to make good choices, in fact I think that is a big part of life, learning to make more of the good choices, and less of the bad. As soon as we figure out what the good choices are it's like a light bulb moment and you think to yourself, "I knew this all along, I just never thought it would actually make me happy."  

Living a missionary lifestyle kind of did that for me. After a year and a half of living missionary standards, breaking away from the world for a while helped me take a step back, take a breather, and reevaluate the way I live my life. That was kind of a shock for me because I thought I was doing alright in life. And I was, life was alright.

But nothing compared to how I've lived my life the last year and a half. True, living the gospel of Jesus Christ is challenging, it is not the easiest pathway to take in this world, you will make mistakes. It stretches you, pushes you FAR out of your comfort zone, and you do things that the world doesn't necessarily deem to be the "in thing" to do. There has been no greater strength and learning in my life than the last year and a half being a missionary. Having the things, people, and comforts that I love around me gone.

I thought about what is really important in life. And everything that I love, I mean truly deeply love, when it all boiled down, was Heavenly Father, and my family. And by family I don't just mean my mom and dad and brothers and sisters back home in Utah, although I do love them so much more than I ever thought. I also mean the people I've met here, and those back home. I really love them and want them to have the joy which comes through living the gospel. It's not because I want them to become "Mormon." That isn't what makes me happy. I know plenty of Mormons who don't live the gospel and aren't happy. Having the title Mormon does not automatically make your life perfect and full of nothing but good. 

Knowing what I know AND LIVING the gospel because I am a member of the restored church of Jesus Christ is what makes me happy. And I want that for everyone. And I'm not afraid to show everyone, member and non member alike that this is what has brought me happiness. And I don't ever want to lose that because of fear or unpopularity or whatever else it may be. 

I love this gospel and it's a part of me that cannot be separated from who I am as a person, because there is no difference. I am who I am because I am a child of God and I know it and I will live it, and forever love it. And I love everyone else the same. We are all children of God and we all deserve to know that. I've promised to live my life as an example of Jesus Christ and I will always strive to live up to that promise. It doesn't end after we are baptized or after we are a missionary. That's what I love about this gospel, you never have a limit to progression, or a limit to happiness or joy. "We are made of the stuff of eternity!"

Love you all! have a grrreeeaaattt week!
Love Sister Ficklin 

                                                               haha my comp.


Monday, January 26, 2015

January 26, 2015 What Being a Professional Runner has to do with Going to Church

                                                                 P-day bowling! 

Hola Amigos! We had a great week this week, the sun has been out and proudly shining and its been in the twenties and above, which I am very happy about (: (: Pray that it stays nice the next three weeks!! Well as time is narrowing down for me, the missionary work here is speeding up! It's been wonderful and as we've been working hard, we're seeing miracles, again! woohoo!
Our Doctor investigator quit drinking coffee! altogether! He's succeeded in overcoming an addiction! That takes strength and commitment! way to go!!! He also said that to get more energy, he's going to start exercising more! We had a lesson on the law of chastity this last week and he thought it was great! We all showed pictures of our families and talked about how they have been great examples to us of the blessings that come from living the law of chastity and bore our testimonies on the strength that has given us to remain chaste as well! So many good things from living the law of chastity! Self-respect, love, trust. what wonderful blessings to have in our lives! 

We've had a lot of great lessons on the law of chastity this week actually with people of every age. from 13 to 60! It's so cool to see that the gospel applies to you no matter what age you are at.

This Sunday we actually got a Less active to church which was awesome! and, he brought a non member friend! The gospel is true guys... so this is what happened. we learned that you have to spark their testimony even before they set foot in the church building again.
So this Less active is African and a professional runner. We have been working with him for months to get him back to church and even take the gospel seriously because when we are in the lessons he would just lay slumped on the couch looking bored and casual and ask questions that would go around in circles. really frustrating.
well finally I got sick of it and I got really serious with him and I asked him what you have to do to become a really good runner. he explained that you had to work really hard, eat well and have a good trainer. bingo. so i asked, what would happen if I didn't work hard before a race and I ate really bad. he said that I wouldn't be a good runner. Right. So I told him that he is already a physical runner and now we are going to make him into a spiritual runner. you should have seen him. he finally sat up straight, and was curious, listening intently. we told him that the gospel is the same way. we have to work at it, and we have to listen to our trainer (God) in what he is telling us. and we asked what he thinks he has to do to become a spiritual runner. guess what the first thing he said was? go to church. and we said Yes! exactly!  anyway, we went through all of the things he needed to do to become this spiritual runner to win the race. prayer, scripture study, etc. but it finally clicked in him what he needed to do. and he finally said it, he said "I want to go back to church." yessssssss!!!!
well, he didn't come the next week, or the next, or the next.
but we didn't give up and we slowly and patiently worked him up every time we went and taught him and kept reminding him of being a spiritual runner, until the last lesson we talked about the 10 commandments and focused on the importance of keeping them and the joy it brings in our lives, and he turned to his friend who was there and said, "lets go to church." and they did!!!  woohoo! Now for the next step, helping him gain a firm testimony, and be a strong spiritual runner to where he can run the race until the end- to keep coming to church! stay tuned!
Okay, everyone: please look up and listen to "the missionary next door" I hope that at the next general conference this will be a new commandment added to the list.
It is a girl who talks about how they did missionary work as a family, in very simple, easy ways. she bears a very strong testimony on how we are all missionaries. In fact, the set apart missionaries cannot do their work effectively without the members. As a missionary myself I can attest to that. Members make all the difference! Take time to check it out! 
Love you all! I hope you have a wonderful week! Keep up the missionary work! 
Love Sister Ficklin

(Note from Kaylani’s mom – I don’t think this is “the missionary next door” clip that Kaylani meant – I haven’t found it yet, but this one was still good!)

More photos from our lesson on samuel the lamanite gone wild!