Tuesday, October 29, 2013

10/15/13 Lessons learned

Oh my dearest family how I love you so. So I am just going to tell you lots of lessons that I learned this week.
the first is how the spirit speaks to everyone, and everyone is entitle to receive revelation.
So we were super privileged this week with a visit from Elder Kopischke, a member of the quorum of the 70. He was holy tolito, just super incredible. He is from Germany and had an awesome accent, and he shared tons of cool stories. But one thing he had us do in the very beginning was write down questions, of what we wanted to get out of the conference. I wrote my questions very personal to me, and it was incredible to see that throughout the conference, my question was answered multiple times. I received so much revelation specifically for me. Sure I could have gone to that conference and learned a lot about what he said just from his words, but Because I wanted to learn something, I was able to receive personal revelation. It was awesome. Everyone in this church is entitled to receive revelation. So don't forget it. And just oh my goodness Elder Kopischke just blew my mind. He was awesome.
another thing I learned this week was the importance of being obedient. We met a family this week who was taught by the missionaries a couple of years ago. We asked them what they liked the most about meeting with them, and they told us that they just had a lot of fun, and they would cook and laugh and have a good time. So I guess these missionaries were super disobedient, and set us up for failure! This family has completely false expectations of us. We had our first lesson, and they started out by asking all these strange questions like who is heavenly mother and just crazy things. So we taught the plan of salvation, and they had CRAZY questions during that. Well we ended up having an 1 1/2 hour lesson, and then after she wanted to feed us! But we were already late! so basically, I am super mad at these old missionaries who were super disobedient and now we have a family who probably wont progress. We invited them to church and they said, oh no we don't go to church. They were taught for 2 and a half years and never went to church? what. Okay well I will keep you updated on this family.
The last amazing experience we had this week was that we got to go to the Los Angeles Temple visitors center with our Investigator Miguel. Satan really did not want us to go, and he put every single obstacle in our path, but we got there. We got there very late, and we drove with a member who doesn't have a license (don't tell anyone), but we made it. It was such an incredible experience. We ended up going with a member, Hermano Lico, a less active, Hermana Dominguez, an investigator, Miguel, and then two other people who are not members, or investigators. They no like nothing about the church. It was amazing though, because the hermanas at the visitors center did such an amazing job with them. The spirit was super strong, and it spoke to all of them differently. You see? The spirit speaks to everyone!! We watched that families are forever video, and it had me, Hermana Hadley and Hermana Clifton all crying!! oh man, when the missionaries have a break down, that's when you know you are doing a good job. I am just so happy to know that my family is eternal. It makes everyday out here in the field worthwhile.
Other things that happened this week:
We went to yogurtland!! we earned that ice cream!
I got bit by Aisa pastors hamster. Rude.
I had a breakdown on Thursday, and so did Hermana Clifton. Good thing we have Hermana Hadley to play doctor phil.
We had a super rad zone activity and carved pumpkins!
That's about it. I can't really think of the things we did this week. But it was a super amazing week. I love you all, and I am so grateful for all of your amazing examples to me!!
Love Ness
pics; yogurtland, Elder Kopischke, pumpkin carving, temple

Bodas, Baptisms and a bike 10/28/13

okay, so here is the deal, this week was awesome and super fun!! I am just going to start out by saying we lost Hermana Hadley. But she didn't go too far! she just got moved to the bike area in our district. So surprise! she is still in our ward! which is good, because she needs to be there for Miguel's baptism!! which is next week!!! WOOOO!! he is doing so good. I will tell you about him in a minute. So yes Hermana Hadley is gone. So now it's just me and Hermana Clifton. also, the elders left for argentina, but not before elder Pennington treated us to PF changs! last Monday. Yeah he is the greatest ever! We got a few new people in our district, and it's a bit different, but it's going to be fun!
Let me tell you, being with just 1 companion is super different! but Hermana Clifton is fun. We have a lot of fun together me and her. We have nominated ourselves the fun companionship of this district, and it's so true. one thing that is a little bit hard with her though, is she doesn't like to work quite as hard as I do. She is at a really high stress level right now, so she gets overwhelmed pretty easily. Sometimes I feel like we don't work very hard, and it is a bit frustrating, but I am learning patience. This is the transfer for patience I tell you what!! Patience, Love, and Lots of laughs!!
Okay so this is what has happened this week. Friday, we had a crazy day! we had 4 member presents, all back to back! (in missionary language, that's a HUGE DEAL!!) Saturday we got to go to a Boda! for my little greengos out there, that means wedding. Ruebin and Yessenia got married, and then on sunday, they got baptized!! how cute! the wedding was so good. It was in the church, and the ward came and there was a little after lunch. Our ward is so good to do that for them. Me and Hermana Clifton made up a rap to sing at their wedding, it was in Spanglish and pretty legit. I was proud of it. But we decided not to. Also, because Elder speth's rap was way cooler than ours. Dangit I hate losing in rap battles.
So yeah on sunday we 3 baptisms in our district!!! what!! that is unreal. None of them were our investigators. that's next week! also, we had stake conference, and it was super awesome! Miguel came and he brought his friend Javier! (javi hated it.. but he is hilarious.) man Miguel is just on fire! He is talking to all his friends about the gospel, and inviting them all to church. The other day, we texted him to remind him not to drink, and he said no way hermanas, I'm not going to fail you! oh I just love him every day!
Okay so we are a little bit on the blonde side sometimes. So stake conference was in Van Nuys, which is a little ways away. So we didn't realize we were almost out of gas, so because we didn't want to buy gas on sunday, we spent the day as BIKE HERMANAS!!!! WOOHOO!! seriously. I want to get put onto bike SO bad! it was so fun! I was just laughing my head off all the way down the street. But boy golly my booty is hurting right now! man. This week was just a blast! I tell you what family, the church sure is true. And even though this work is hard, it is so worth it. There is nothing on earth I would rather be doing right now. Family I love you so much. Keep being the great members I know you are. Heaven only knows the church needs good members. Us missionaries would be nothing without you members! thank you for everything, and I love you with all my heart!
Love Ness


Hey family! how are you all doing?! I hope you are all so so happy.
So I have been staring at this computer screen for like 5 minutes, and I just can't figure out with to write about. okay I think I got it. 2 things. Finding and Hermana Hadley. So as you know we got transfer calls, and our dear Hermana Hadley is leaving us. Which is absolutely terrifying!!
I cant really tell you my favorite part of the week Just that we did a lot!! our week was packed! we did lots of normal missionary stuff, then some not so normal missionary stuff. But the weekend was amazing! okay so you remember that family that had super disobedient missionaries? yep? well we got that taken care of. We set our purpose so good, there is no way they are going to not progress. The trick will just be getting them to church!! We had an incredible lesson with Miguel/the whole house. We got everyone in on that cita! We got Miguel, Hermana Dominguez (side note, she is my absolute favorite!!!) hermano Dominguez, who is incredibly less active, the mother in law, the neighbor and the two little girls. And then we rocked it with the restoration. it was awesome!!! the only one we didn't get was Giovani, but we'll work on him. Might have to use the flirt to convert strategy with that one... haha but Miguel is doing so great! He is going to be baptized! loving him!
Saturday we had a blitz, and that is where we all get together and go knocking in one area. (our area:)) so all the elders came to help us find new people! can I just say, I love elders. Okay not like LOVE but I just respect them so much. They just work so hard, and seeing them all knocking the doors of our area was amazing. We just happened to send them into cholo land (gangster area) but hey, better the elders than us right? ha! seriously I am growing to love finding so much!! I love being out and walking around. Okay get this, so right after our blitz when we went to all meet back up, this woman comes up to us, and just stops. she stopped to talk to us!! that never happens. She is interested. You just wait, we are going to teach her!! oh and mom, we took some of the pumpkin bread to the blitz, and the elders LOVED it!! haha they all say thank you and they love you!!
Okay so saddest ever, Hermana Hadley is transferring out. it's going to be so incredibly hard, but I know it needs to happen. Because Heavenly father knows I need to grow. I have been kind of naughty and hiding in her shadow. she is an incredible missionary, and I have learned a TON from her. She has left a huge impact on our ward. I can see that she loves all the people with her whole heart. She has an incredible testimony, and she listens to the spirit so well. Even though sometimes she is difficult I am so greatful that she has been my companion these past 3 transfers. But I know that now that she is leaving I am going to have to step up. I am not living up to my fullest potential, and I know I need to grow more. So I need to learn how to love more, how to talk more, and how to teach better. I will miss her greatly, and I know it is going to be incredibly hard without her, but it's going to be amazing!!
okay dearest family, so sorry my email was not the best thing you ever read! ha but I will pray hard for a good miracle to tell you next week! Never forget how much I love you, and you are always in my prayers!!
pictures: the elders are leaving for argentina!
I ate a hamburger as big as my face! yumm Fuddruckers!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

5 Months in the Mission!!

Wow happy anniversary to me! (and Hermana Hadley of course, because we celebrate our anniversaries together!) I can't believe it's been 5 months! Holy tolito next month I will only have 1 year left of my mission! Eww Gross!!
Okay holy tolito did anyone watch general conference? talk about spiritual explosion! Wasn't it just INCREDIBLE!! oh man i'll tell you some of my favorites. David A. Bednars talk on Tithing was amazing! who would have thought? oh man he's great. Uchtdorf's talk was just stellar. I wish all of my investigators were there for that one. D. Todd Christofferson's on the moral authority of Women? wow. Mom are you helping your boys become priesthood men? S. Gifford Nelson's on how to be a member? haha I can't wait until I get home so I can be a MEMBER! haha wait isn't that a little backwards? JEFFREY R. HOLLAND. Absolute favorite. this life is super hard for sure. The only assurance we have is that we were promised a savior. Oh although his talk was directed to those who have depression, I really think it can help us all. Henry B. wow. Saddest ever I didn't get to much from Thomas s. Monson because Miguel came and we watched that one in Spanish. One that I loved a lot that surprised me was Kevin S. Hamilton who talked about attending all 3 hours of church. That one impacted me a lot. But okay I lied Holland's was my 2nd favorite. I loved the most elder Nelsons. Wanna know what I am working on? Self Mastery! Holy tolito it's hard! But one day I am going to have to stand before Jesus Christ and give an account of what I did with my precious gift of a body that he gave me! So I better be taking care of it now!
Alright enough about conference, I am sure you all watched it and loved it. Probably not as much as I did though ;) a couple things that happened this week was Hermana Hadley had a meltdown on Thursday, so we spent the whole day doing a lot of nothing. The next day though the elders made us Goobs! (aka one of my most favorite treats!) Friday was Hermana Clifton's birthday!!! That was a super fun day. Hermano Miguel is great and he bought us dinner and a cake:) Okay Hermano Miguel. Boy do I have a story for you!!!
So hermano Miguel. He has been having ups and downs. He didn't make his baptismal date for the 29th so we switched it to the 13th. so he has been having some struggles with coming to church for all 3 hours, and Conference sunday was just rough. So he promised us he would come at 9, but he showed up at like 10:15 only to hear like 2 talks. He loved them, but missed most of conference. Then he promised he would come for the afternoon session, but when we texted him he said he was far away in van nuys so he couldn't make it. It was pretty frustrating. But he invited us to come over for dinner that night. Well our did not go as planned because his house was crazy. The people that live in the back were having a birthday party, and his brother was drunk and pretty much going crazy, and his sister was way too stressed out to cook us dinner. He told us some crazy excuse for why he couldn't come to conference, and then he left the room for 2 minutes and his sister told us he was lying to us and he drank yesterday. Aye Hermano Miguel! So we were praying super hard during this lesson. Even though we were in the middle of a party, and backstreet boys was playing, and there were all sorts of fowl words coming from the drunk brother, the spirit was there. He was feeling it. And we were very straight forward and direct with him. We asked him if there was anything he needed to tell us, he said no. We asked him if he had had a drink recently, he said no. He told us he was still on track to be baptized. So we left that house SUPER discouraged. It was rough.
Well, here comes the happy part. The next day, we have a lesson with him, (yesterday.) and here is how it went down. Right after he finishes the opening prayer, he says to us, Hermana's I drank yesterday. WHAT! okay whammy right there. But of course we were ready for it. We didn't say anything for a while and we just let him talk. he told us how he felt bad, and never wanted to disappoint us. He is going to keep reading and coming to church, and he is going to be baptized. One thing though that he said that made me so proud was that he said, I prayed last night and I asked God to forgive me. We had an incredibly spiritual cita with him, and he decided that he is going to pray, and him and the Lord are going to decide together the day that he will be ready to be baptized. So we are going to figure that out today.
One thing I have learned from this whole ordeal with Miguel is Patience. Yes I am sad that Miguel isn't getting baptized on sunday, but it's okay, because He needed to have these experiences. He is gaining a testimony. He is changing his life, and the Lord is working with him in his own time. Maybe I won't get to see Miguel be baptized in this transfer, But he will be baptized, and when he is, He will have a testimony of the gospel. Here in the great California san Fernando mission, we don't just baptize, we convert people unto the Lord. I know this church is true, and I am so grateful for every single day that I have to say "I am a representative of Jesus Christ."
I love you all so very much! Keep the faith, rise to the call of the brethren, and work together with the missionaries in this great work of salvation.
All my Love,

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

October 2,2013

Dearest Family of mine! okay well, it's been so long that I can't even remember what has happened!! Okay lets see I will just give you some highlights if I can remember them.
-We met a 96 year old woman from El Salvador who is still kicking. She is hilarious and makes me laugh like crazy. She is our new investigator.
-umm Miguel bought us all Italian food last Monday, and it was amazing!
-we had the relief society broadcast on Saturday, and Hermana Hadley sang, and me and Hermana Clifton were her backup singers, but freaking Hermana Clifton made me laugh in the middle of the song and then we ruined it.
-umm Violeta's birthday was on Thursday, and I accidentally sat on my piece of pizza, and then we had cake which may or may not have had real coffee in it.... and then monica called us to come to dinner, so we had double dinners that night... yikes we were super fat missionaries this week!!!
-I offended a member because I don't know how to speak Spanish and I guess I told her she needs to wear a skirt to church, and she got offended...
-yesterday we met a crazy woman who offered us some medical marijuana from a crayon box! haha "okay we are going lakers at 7! yellow and purple! we want the rainbows. we don't want any of that devil stuff." Oh man it was quite a riot!!
-we got Monica and her whole family to do family prayer! (except for Fransisco he wasn't home :( but still, that was a special experience. In her prayer she said, "I am grateful we could be here to do family prayer which is actually starting to be kind of fun! haha oh Monica, she is a doll.
Now let me tell you about today! today has been amazing. This morning we were so very blessed with the opportunity to go to the temple! I haven't been to the temple in over three months! oh man how I have missed it. But I tell you what. The LA temple is absolutely gorgeous. And the rooms are all amazing. oh man. We are totally going here when you come to pick me up. it was an amazing experience! Then! after the temple, we decided to be so sneaky, so we blindfolded Hermana Clifton, and took her out to lunch at her favorite restaurant! PF Chang's! it was super duper yummy, and I loved it a lot! It has been an amazing day!
Okay now that you are all jealous of the swanky life I live as a missionary, I am going to share a tender mercy of the week. So I have really been struggling with finding people. In the beginning of my mission I loved talking to people. I would talk to everyone. Well I don't know what's wrong with me, but I sometimes just feel like I don't have the energy, or I don't want to talk to that person. so me and the Lord have been working on it together. So yesterday we were doing personal study in the Laundromat, and there were two Latina women there also. I kept getting the impression that I needed to talk to them, but I didn't want to, because I didn't want to bother them and yada yada. But heavenly father was just saying to me, Janessa, just trust me, I need you to go talk to those people. So I ate a big piece of humble pie and went to go talk to those ladies. Well we ended up having like a 30 minute conversation, found out she is our neighbor that lives like a street behind us, and then got a return cita with them. That was incredible, and I am so happy the Lord let me be a part of that special miracle. Talking with everyone. You just wait I am going to come home and be the chattiest Cathy you have every known!
Well family, I hope you are all doing so super wonderful! I love you all oh so very much! Be good to each other, and remember I love you all with all my heart! Enjoy the pictures!
Hermana Clifton's Birthday surprise!