Monday, December 1, 2014


Before I say ANYTHING I want yall to take 3 mins to watch this video.

Wow. Pretty powerful, huh? My favorite part is the very end when it says “Discover the gift. Embrace the gift. Share the gift.” As a missionary I’ve come to learn that Heavenly Father is ALWAYS there for us, and if we don’t feel His presence any longer it’s because WE left His side. He wants us to discover for ourselves the truth. He doesn’t force us to read our scriptures, to become a member of the church or to make right choices. He lets us act for ourselves. It’s up to us to embrace the gifts we have—the atonement of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the scriptures, the ability to pray to Him at any given point in our day. 

In Moroni 10 we receive a promise from God:
3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
 4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

And then, once we have received, as promised to your answer, it’s our responsibility to SHARE THE GIFT with everyone. So, here comes my commitment for yall this week :) I want you to do what you can to #ShareTheGift. Put it on your Facebook, your Instagram, send it out in an email to your friends/family, ask the missionaries in your area for a pass along card and give it to someone this week….JUST SHARE IT. You don’t have to be a member of the church to feel the spirit that comes into your heart when watching this short video. Don’t get away from the greatest gift we’ve ever been given this Christmas season.  

Speaking of Christmas, I read a talk in the Ensign this week that had this quote in it:
“This Christmas, mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter. Give a soft answer.Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a  
promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologize. Try to understand.Examine your demands on 
others. Think first of someone else. Be kind.Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude
Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth.
 Speak your love and then speak it again.”

I’ve decided to do one of those sentences a day during the month of December. I know it will bring me happiness and make this one of my most memorable Christmas’s :)

Some fun things from this last week?
-          The member we live with took us to Big Bear on Monday. It’s so pretty up there! I got a little sick trying to write letters in the back while going up twisty roads. #rookiemistake
The member we live with <3
-          I, Katie Toolan, was able to help one of our investigators set up her internet so she could take a test. I felt like a nerd. I loved it. ChapMonkey, are you proud?
-          Another woman we are working with right now told us on Thanksgiving “This is the 1st Thanksgiving in 15 years that I’ve been happy. I wouldn’t be like this right now had you not started visiting me, teach me and got me to church.” Do you know how happy that makes a missionary? AH. I’ll be a-okay with being away from home on my favorite holiday if that means getting to hear that. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is life changing. It is powerful. It is true. 
-          THANKSGIVING! It was awesome. We had 3 dinners. Boy, was I stuffed by the end of the day. Full. As. A. Tick. It took some serious willpower at every house to not cram my face. We endured well :p the 1st thing we did was go to one of our favorite families in the ward and slipped on some of their work boots and went to work out on their garden/chicken pens. It was so much fun. I felt like I was at home. I miss having chickens. Those things are the BOMB. Deff want to have some when I have my own family. Thanksgiving was a wonderful day. It was sooooo much different than last year. Last year I had only been gone a few weeks, wasn’t quite sure how to be a missionary, was homesick and sad. NOT THIS YEAR :) (don’t worry…I still missed yall hahah)
The afro chicken, poofy! Caught him like a PRO
-          Sister Van Heel has started saying “Yes ma’am/No ma’am” because of me. Hahahahah that southern hospitality wares off on everyone at some point ;p 
-          Got to see some of my favorite families from Mojave River at dinner Saturday night. They came and surprised me! Oh, the things that make a missionary happy happy happy!
-          Sister Van Heel made me promise I wouldn’t get married before she gets home. Seriously, everyone from our mission that goes home recently gets married in like a week!!!! Don’t have to worry about that with me ;p 

Well, sorry this email is a tad bit lame. We are busier than ever here in Apple Valley, life is more than great. I am learning more and more how to hear the promptings of the spirit, act on them and then write them down. I know that’s a HUGE lesson that will bless me like no ones business when I get home. I am thankful for hard days. I love my companion and all of the ones I’ve ever had. My mission is shaping me into the person Heavenly Father needs me to be. I get humbled daily. I love my life. I love you. If you love me, you’ll #ShareTheGift :)
Sister Toolan
The closest I've gotten to a "man" in 13 months...LOL

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