Monday, June 1, 2015

Week 29 – June 1, 2015

Holy Moly, how in the heck is it already JUNE?!?! This year is just flying by! This past week has sort of felt backwards and upside down because we switched up our P-Day, which really threw everything else off. Speaking of P-Days... starting this week our P-Days are going to be changing over to Saturdays—so you can plan on hearing from me then, NOT MONDAYS. Since we work here on campus most of the time our prime time to work is very different than most other areas. Weekdays are our busy contacting time and weekends and evenings are our slower times. It's so opposite of everywhere else, but hey that's Dinkytown for ya! 

As far as my backward week goes... last Monday we decided not to take our P-Day so we spent the afternoon getting things done in the office and going out contacting around campus. That evening the ward had a bean bag tossing tournament for FHE, but Sister S. and I stole one of our investigators away for a minute so we could have a lesson with her since it has been impossible to meet with her lately. Her name is Krista and she is all for getting baptized. In fact, most people in the ward think she is a member. The problem is Krista doesn't understand the importance of baptism and she will NOT keep commitments for the life of her! So tonight we had to lay it out on the table for her and explain our purpose as missionaries is to TEACH. She has been coming to church and activities for months now but has only had maybe three lessons from the missionaries so we expressed how we really need to be meeting so we can TEACH her! Our lesson seemed to go great! I was feeling pretty pumped by the end of it. We even got Krista to pinky promise that we would call us tomorrow, after looking at her schedule and let us know a time she could meet this week. Now fast forward... sadly, the entire week we tried to contact Krista with zero luck in hearing back from her. We called, we text, we even hunted down her address and went to her house (yep—that's what we do—we are totally stalkers) ;) Then when Sunday rolled around, Krista was there at church as usual. It is so strange! Sadly, we have decided we need to drop her until she is ready to LEARN and take the lessons. She loves the missionaries and she loves church so now we just need to wait until she is ready to move forward. We all have different timetables and Krista isn't quite there... yet, but she will get there!

Tuesday, May 26th, we had a mission wide conference. Elder Clark (from the seventy) came to speak to us. So the newest thing that is happening out here in our mission is the fact that all of us missionaries are going to be getting I-Pads to help us further the work. I think most of the mission is getting theirs in about a month, however, since our area is a sort of a different situation than most we are getting ours TOMORROW! Anyway, Elder Clark had some awesome things we went over with us during our training. Here are a few point from Elder Clark:
-Tell your face to be happy!
- People need to see couples who are in love kiss!
-The thing that will make the biggest difference in someone's life is HOW they spend their Sabbath day.
-It's not about how SMART we are, it's about how DILIGENT we are!
-Don't let DUMB stuff determine your eternity!
-Keep the romance alive. Go on weekly dates! (Did you hear that Mom and Dad?) ;)
-Don't let desires become needs.
-Don't fear—only prepare!
-Account with Christ every night and tell him how you wore his name today.

It was a great training and it was so awesome to have ALL of the missionaries from our mission all together. That hardly ever happens so that was kinda cool. We filled up an entire stake center chapel. Since everyone from the mission was there that meant that our whole MTC district that came out here was all there, so of course we had to get some pictures together. Oh man do I love that little MTC family of ours. I sure miss those other elders that went to Texas. One day we will have a grand reunion with all of us!


All the Sisters in the mission.

That evening, we went to go and see Jenna. We took the new senior missionary couple with us. The last couple just left right before I got here. Now we have the Higbee's here to help us work with the young singles adults. They are total country folk and they talk way country—it is super cute! Anyway, we had a great lesson with Jenna. She has been doing a wonderful job working on her goals. She told us that she has felt like she has needed to tell her Mom that she is a member of the church. She got baptized a year ago and still hasn't told her Mom, but through prayer and the spirit she feels like it is the right time to share that with her Mom. It is so neat to see her grow, learn to listen and follow the promptings of the spirit. Before we left Elder Higbee gave her a priesthood blessing and wow it was amazing! Some of the promises in this blessings were just incredible!

The next day, Wednesday the 27th, we had a BLITZ with the STL's (Sister Training Leaders). A Blitz is when they come to our area and the four of us go out and work in the same area so we can get twice the work done in the same amount of time. I went out with Sister Cox and Sister Steadman went out with Sister Huang. We went on campus to contact. Sister Cox and I tried a new approach, where we would go up to people with a picture of the first vision and ask them if they had ever seen it before? Most of them would say no—okay all of them said no but that gave us the opportunity to start telling them about Joseph Smith and how Christ's Church has been restored on the earth today. It actually worked quite well. By the end of our blitz the four of us had contacted into several different people.

That evening Sis. S and I went to "People Serving People" where we get to go and serve meals at a homeless shelter downtown. It was so cool! Being able to help there sure humbles you and helps you remember how many blessings we have in our lives! Speaking of blessings, have I told you lately how awesome our elders are here? Tonight when we dropped off the car at the institute building (we usually park it there at night) we went inside to hang up the car key in the office and the elders had surprised us with a box of cookies they got us. Apparently, they saw a cute cookie-stand outside somewhere and thought they should get us some cookies. How sweet is that?! Now that is something that would have NEVER happened in Minnetonka. Thanks Elder Evans and Elder Chou! You're the best!!!

Thursday, May 28th, we met Arlyne. She is the girl we helped move a couple weeks back. Arlyne is a member but hasn't been active for most of her life. We met outside and about halfway through our lesson I could tell she was crying behind her BIG DARK sunglasses. It was clear that she needed this lesson. Eventually, she opened up to us and told us that she has been struggling and that she wanted to reach out to God for help. We talked about prayer and how powerful it is. She was out of town this last weekend so she couldn't come to church, but hopefully next week she will be there. A few months back, she was struggling and she said when she came to church it really seemed to help her so we are hoping she can see that God is ALWAYS there in the good times and in the bad times and that we should ALWAYS be reaching out to Him, not just when times get tough.

Today, Karem asked if we could come and visit her. Karem got baptized almost two years ago. That little lady is just the cutest thing! She is so happy and positive and full of life. Everyone just loves Karem! So tonight she simply wanted to talk and ask us some questions that she has been thinking about. One of her questions was, "What does it mean to apply the Atonement in my life?" and "How can I do that?" What good questions! We were able to have a wonderful discussion about what the Atonement is and how we can use it personally. Maybe take a minute this week to think about those questions yourself. What does the atonement mean to you? How do you personally use the atonement on a daily basis? I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on this!

The next day was Friday the 29th, which we used as our P-Day. Sister Steadman had been planning this P-Day for awhile now and of course today when we woke up it was raining but we still didn't let that get in our way! We decided we wanted to ROAD TRIP IT!!! Yep, that's right, we were going on a little road trip all the way over to WISCONSIN!!! Oh yeah, you heard me right! We were going to cross the state line... this was a big deal. Okay, it actually isn't really that far. In fact, Wisconsin is still in our area and we have lots of people who come to our ward that live in Wisconsin, but I had never been there so it was A BIG DEAL! ;)

Our first stop on our mini day trip was to Still Water, MN. It is the cute little town with a main street that runs right down it with lots of tiny fun little shops (that are crazy expensive cause they can do that). We walked up and down the main street and enjoyed doing some window shopping. Then it was time to cross the Mississippi River and hit up Hudson, Wisconsin. Since we had driven all that way (a whole 45 minutes—which we do all the time to get to people's houses) we figured we might as well try and hunt down some less active members that we haven't been able to get a hold of. So that's what we did. We weren't having very good success and we were starting to get pretty hungry. Now the problem was, we were out of money for the rest of the month and our cupboards at the apartment were pretty bare so we didn't really bring any food with us, so there really wasn't much we could be besides just tough it out and be hungry. Our next stop was to go and find this guy Kevin. When we pulled up to the house, we said a prayer and then on our way up the driveway I turned to Sis. S. and said I'm just hoping that these kind people invite us in and feed us dinner. We had no idea who these people were. We knew nothing about Kevin! We didn't know if he was active, if his family were members, or if he even actually lived at this address. Right as we were walking up to the front door, before we even had a chance to knock, the door opened wide and we were greeted by a woman who gave us both a big hug and welcomed us in before we even had a chance to get a word out. Turns out they were members. Kevin didn't live there, but they mentioned their son was going to the YSA ward. The next thing we knew, Paul came walking up the stairs. We totally know Paul! Oh my goodness, crazy how this all happened, but then not even a minute later they invited us to come in and have some dinner. They had already ate, but asked if we were hungry and soon they were making each of us our very own personal pizza. Talk about a tender mercy! Not only did they feed our bellies but they gave us about 30 names of young singles in the area we could try contacting about getting them to come to the ward. Coming to that house was nothing short of a miracle! Heavenly Father thanks for always watching out for us! We sure are blessed!

Yup, that's who we are. We're the FUN SISTERS!

Welcome to Wisconsin baby!

A view of Still Water.

On the way home, we decided to stop by one of the people on the list they gave us. We were going to visit an AJ. Turns out, AJ had moved but we met his ex-girlfriend Gina who happens to be amazing! Once again we were led to that house for a reason maybe not for AJ but we will definitely be going back to see Gina.

I have to say one of the very best things about our little trip was the simple fact that we were able to leave the city and get out to some REAL country! Oh it felt so good! You could breathe! It was truly breathtaking out there! I'm already looking forward to our next time to go out there!

Saturday, May 30th, we were able to go and teach Iris the second half of the plan of salvation. Early in the week we came by and gave her a BOM and then today we brought her one in Chinese, hoping it might help her comprehend what she is reading. Iris is amazing! I love teaching her. It is very different to be able to teach someone who comes from having zero background of who God and Jesus Christ are. But she is learning quickly! My favorite is being able to hear her pray to Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus Christ. It's so neat to be apart of this process with someone.

That evening our district leaders had a baptism for one of their converts (a 14 year old boy by the name of Oustin). We invited Ranelle from our ward and her non-member boyfriend Jordan. We figured it would be a neat experience for Jordan to be able to see a baptism. It was a wonderful service and Jordan seemed to really enjoy being able to be there.

The baptism was right by the temple so we to enjoyed an evening walk around it.

After, the four of us went out to dinner and were able to talk with Jordan some more about the baptism and the church in general. Ranelle has done a great job teaching him. He comes to church most Sundays and they even read the BOM together. How cool is that?! It is looking like Jordan is ready to start meeting with us which is super exciting! So next week will be our first official lesson with him.

Yesterday, was another good Sunday at church. We had a lesson on the Sabbath day and how we should try and remember to be reverent while we are at church. Later we went out with the Higbees to try and find one of our members by the name of Hope. We were able to find her house. She wasn't home but her sister Ann, who just got here from Kenya, was there and we were able to set up an appointment to come today and visit them. We are so excited to be able to meet with them! Yay for new investigators!

Then we finished the night off with our weekly planning. I have so say, Sister S. and I did dang good this last week with our goals so here is to another awesome week!

Goals baby!

Scripture of the week- Mosiah 4:9-10
Love you- Sister Larson

PS- Theo and Uffda made it official and tied the knot this week. Aren't they just the cutest?! This next week they will be heading off to their honeymoon. Stay tuned for pictures ;)

Theo and Uffda!

You may kiss the Bride.

Thanks Bree Bree! I ALWAYS love getting surprises in the mail!

Hanging out with Bob the Bear.

I sure miss that girl.

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