May 31, 2010

Letter to Shanna 5/31/2010

This week has been kind of a hard one. We have worked and tracted all week without any success.  It has been very discouraging but I know that we are doing our best in everything we do, so I know it will get better. Me and my comp have decided to just put on a smile and go out and do the work. This is a joyful message that we share and if we are not happy no one will be drawn to us to see what it is that we are so happy about. The doors where I cannot stop laughing is where we are most successful is usually the door that lets us in or that will listen to us. I love being a missionary! So laughing and smiling is a must! In my first area with Sister Johnson we got laughing about something she didn't mean to say so hard that we couldn't even say hi when the door was opened. I was about to pee my pants and then the man starts to laugh and ask why we are laughing and we try to explain but it makes us laugh harder and we just told him to forget it. But it opened up a conversation and he let us in and we taught him about 3-4 times before he dropped us. But it goes to show you that a happy face shows the light you hold more than a frown. (although laughing is not always approprate)

So that has been my week. I struggle but that's ok. It's part of learning. Plus I got a package from Mom with clothes and a family tape and CD's. There are so many stories that are funny that I want to tell you but I think i'll just send a tape becuase i stink at typing and they're better over (I was about to say over the phone, ahhh, I forget sometimes) the tape. You two are so fun together. You are going to be the best parents someday! I tell everyone how much I want a marriage like you two and Mom and Dad. It's just so cute and fun and two just work together so well through it all no matter how hard it gets. Communication, hard work and love and play is the key, especially putting God first before it all. that is the real key. Thats what I have learned more than anything in my mission so far. God makes everything better. I love being a missionary!!!!!!!!!!
I love you and Adam so much!

Love your favortie sister missionary~

Happy Birthday & Memorial Day! May 31, 2010

Mommy and sweet Daddy~

I got the package and I loved it! Some of the clothes don't fit, but thank you so much for them. I was telling Shanna that I don't have restrictions on what I wear so I can wear anything. The skirts are too long for summer but I'll try to make them work. Here you sweat everywhere; in places I didn't know you could sweat. But you get use to being wet all the time, so the thinner and shorter the skirt the better. I wear skirts just past my knees and it's appropriate because when I sit my knees don't show.

I'm so happy that you and Dad had so much fun and I'm sorry but happy late birthday!!! I still need a list of birthdays. I'm missing them. Sorry. I loved the tape soooooooooooo much!!!!!!!! It was totally perfect! This week has not been going so good so the tape cheered me up so much! I love it! My package I know is super late but it's hard trying to put a package together when you're a missionary. You'll see why when you get it. I don't have as much free time as it seems. P-days are still as full as any other day. But I promised myself that this week it will be out. Hope there is not anything you want me to send you. This package is for the family but mainly for Christopher and his Christmas, birthday, mission, just because I'm excited for him to go. I love my family soooo much.

I'm sorry that this letter is going to be so short but nothing has really happened this week at all. We run tract everywhere! We have taught 194 lessons this week and nothing! But I have decided to be happy! I love you!!!!!!!

Thank you for everything!!!!!!!
Love your sister missionary~

May 24, 2010

Aloha!! Thank you.. May 24, 2010

I love you both so much! Thank you for everything and I’m so thankful to have you in my life. I loved your letter Mom and I’m sure that Dad would just say dido to most all of it. I love you both sooooo much; you both know me inside and out and I’m so thankful for that because you show me what I seem to miss a lot. I realize that I’m hard on myself but it's only because I know that i can be better and I want to do so much more. 
We had the best opportunity to hear from three quorum of the 70’s~ Elder Anderson, Elder Lawrence, Elder Rasband (president of the Quorum of 70) and then of course Elder Russell M. Nelson who is one of the twelve Apostles! He really is! He is an apostle of God and i love him so much. He is so funny and so sweet but blunt. Out of all of the missions in Florida he came to see us and we have been preparing since I first got here for him to come and speak to us. (I shook his hand! and he said my name and smiled) I wander if he could see into my soul... It made me nervous but at the same time I knew he could talk to all of us and meet all of our needs. It was so amazing!  I don’t have my notebook with me but they talked about a lot of things. Our mission president talked to us and his wife bore here testimony and said she is asking for an extension no matter what here husband wants and then Elder Nelson said "well I don’t see that happening since I just signed and sent off a letter releasing you and congratulating you for the wonderful work you have done, you'll receive it in two days." lol he was so funny. President Newman said this to us "Don’t just write these words down to hide away or to be stored up like some fantastic artifact but use these words to light a fire to move your feet and work your hands." I loved that!!! And I will continue to try and use those words.
It was just a friendly and family felt meeting. Like parents really just counseling with there children. Elder Nelson while he was talking said "Your not suppose to think about after your mission and the wife or husband you will marry but think about it... You are preparing here for that moment you will be married and have a family and share these experiences. The missionary you are on your mission will be the person you will be after your mission." then he went on to say, "wouldn't you love to have a husband or wife like President and Sister Newman? They love each other and hold hands and continue to do so because they love God more than there spouse so that they have a greater capacity to love each other more. When you put God first and in front of everything you receive ten fold." I have found that on my mission that when I put God first and love him more than anything else I have a greater capacity to love every person I meet teach and serve with.
They touched on a lot of things. But mainly this is what I felt. I have a tough time figuring out what I’m doing wrong and why I didn't have success in the past and what's going to happen at the end of this transfer when our new mission president takes over, and how I can testify more boldly and with such power that they cant turn away, and how I can keep the one's I have from leaving? I had a lot of other concerns but they were all answered through all the talks given. My answer was given perfectly by Elder Nelson when he said, “Stop worrying about it. Don’t look back and continue the work that you are doing with prayer, reading and obedience and everything will come. So I guess I’m freaking out too much and I need to just chill out. I need to still work my tail off and continue to do better but stressing and wishing and hoping will get me nowhere. I just need to work my feet move my hands and concentrate my mind to the desires of my heart. Then hit the pavement running, literally. I love run tracting. Sometimes it's hard when it is so hot outside but I love it. I really feel like I’m working and giving it my all. Then when i get home I want to pass out and do a lot of the time. You know you pray a lot when the most comfortable position to sleep is on your knees, that or you have fallen asleep a lot on your knees. In that case they are both true statements.
I love you both sooooooooo much and am thankful for parents that taught me hard work, and that scripture study and prayer are key and how I should follow the spirit so that i’m not wasting anytime figuring out the basics and i can just work. Don’t get me wrong those basics become a lot more intense on your mission so it's like you have to relearn them all over again in addition to all the new things but I’m loving it! 
I just found my cord so here is a picture of my super hot comp. to go along with your super hot weather in Hawaii!!
I love you and Hope this letter sounds more positive. I'm sorry, the mission makes me crazy with emotions because i love the people so much here and want the best for them and then they run from me, some times literally and I think I’m doing something wrong which sometimes is the case so i constantly check myself and make it better because that is what I want. A better everything! I love love love you both and you show me everyday what a marriage is suppose to be like. Love it!!! 
Ok i got to go. 
With love from your sister missionary~

P.S. lol, Wow sorry about the dislexicness (oh wow if you didn't know before that i couldn't spell you know now. and i can't even spell what i have. Who ever thought of that word was not dyslexic.)  
[I edit her spelling so you don't get to see it, but this was funny so I kept it in! Isn't she great? She cracks me up.]

May 17, 2010

The Promised Land!!! May 17, 2010

So I'm in the promise land!!! Oh my gosh! I pulled up and I was like "You have got to be kidding me! This is not where we live!" We open up to a gated apt. complex called Coventry park. Look it up. It's amazing! There is a pool, an indoor basketball court, gym, game room with a pool table, big screen TV and foosball, there is a dining area with two big screens and kitchen for parties plus it has a built in movie theater! Like a real movie theatre with the seats and everything plus popcorn always made and you can bring in any movie that you want so we could watch the Testaments in there if we wanted. Our apt. is on the third floor with a cute kitchen, washer and dryer, and all new appliances plus a big bathroom with a walk in closet. Can I say I'm in heaven? Oh and we have a balcony with a screen on the outside of the ledge so bugs don't come in so then we can have the door open all we want. It is so nice! I really feel like we are in heaven. The person in charge of this place really takes care of us and he is sooooo funny! His name is Ben and he has a wife and two little girls. He is so funny. He takes care of whatever we need. So amazing!

My new companion's name is Sister Mitchell and everyone loves her! I love her too. You know that fiery red head that elder Bruton told me to watch out for when I got on my mission, the one that dated his brother? Well that's my new companion and she is so cute! I love her to death. She is all her own and a major power house! We have clicked right away and we have so much fun. We are still figuring out how each other teaches but we are both at that point where we want to be better than we are and become more than we are. She is 21 and she is from a small town in Utah and her family owns a farm and she is beautiful! She has bright blue eyes with her red hair that is so long that it hit's her bum and it is so cute, it just fits her.

My ward here is amazing! They are all supportive of the work and our ward mission leader although a little funny, is very much into baptizing the whole world, as he should be. My bishop here reminds me of the bishop in Whitehouse and seems pretty cool even though I only spoke with him for a little bit. The ward is much bigger than my other wards and there is a lot of older people verses younger but that is only because a singles ward is close by and there is a Spanish branch that attends in the same building with us but at 9 so we have church at 1. It's really different having church so late because I'm use to having it at 9 but it gives time for us to check on our investigators and see who is really coming to church and find other people to bring. It will be fun trying to adjust. I think I might like it better this way because it takes away most of the stress.

Honestly I don't know why I am here. Most missionaries get sent here at the end of their missions because it's close to the mission presidents home and the AP's are in our ward too so I will be serving with them all the time. I will be teaching in front of them and learning with them and from them at least twice a week instead of once a transfer. It will be a huge learning experience but I am worried I won't have as much to contribute here with all the best! I know this is meant to be a huge learning experience for me because I have so many people to learn from. I want to be so much more than I am, so much more, I want to burn with fire, with the light of Christ so that people are compelled to change. I want to teach like the AP's. I just want more and I will get more I just need to figure out how to get there. Scripture study is the key but not just scripture study but a true change in my heart, empowered to change me and power to change others. You know what I mean? Just so much more. 

I'm so excited to become what the Lord wants me to be. So the new sister Pedersen is on her way. It will take time and maybe my whole mission but it needs to happen so that I can do God's work. This is His work not mine and I need to mold into whatever God needs me to be. Sorry this is not that exciting of a letter this week but the letter next week will be so much more. I promise. I love you all so very much and I'm so thankful for your support.

Love you all,

Your sister Missionary!

May 10, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!! May 10, 2010

I love you so much but I wished I would have stopped talking for awhile enough to really hear all of your voices and memorize them. I forget what people sound like and then it takes a bit to recognize who I was talking to but then it sounded familiar and it felt like home, I loved it!!! I was thinking about that and I think that is what it will be like when we hear the Savior's voice. We won't recognize it at first then it will sound familiar and then we will know and it will feel like home. I have been thinking about the second coming a lot because when we talk to people here that's all they want to talk about, I think they watch too much TV instead of reading there scriptures, but I'm excited! I'm so excited for the second coming. The more I read the more I want to be here when it happens. I love the scriptures so much! There is so much information in there and it only makes me more excited to learn more and understand more. I know this wanting to learn comes from my Father in heaven and in wanting to do what it right but also from parents that have shown me the way to better studies. I'm doing better at my studies but I could do so much better so if you have any tips for me, let me know. I love you so much and I loved hearing your voice and I hope you keep my message I left on your phone. Oh P.S. I sang your mission song to my comp and she loved it but I want to hear it again from you because its better when you do it with the piano so maybe you can put that on the tape? That with Kenny's piano. I love you so much!

~Your sister missionary~

Pictures of the Work!!

These are some pictures of Chanelle in her last area in Georgia, and her new area in Whitehouse Florida. She says about this little boy, "DeShawn, The cutest little boy I have ever seen. He loves me and I love him. We are going to get married when he grows up!"
Top left her companion in Georgia, Sister Johnson who she loved working with and the rest of the pictures are with her present companion, Sister Joslin who she absolutely adores in Whitehouse Florida. She grabbed the phone while we were talking with Chanelle yesterday to say that Chanelle is the "bomb" and the most amazing missionary! She said she is so bold and not afraid to say it like it is. haha.
Chanelle is being transferred again!  She and her companion are being whitewashed from the area once again. She has had great success in this area and is sad to leave, but excited to find out where the Lord wants her to serve next.
It was so fun to be able to hear her voice yesterday!! She sounds so happy, she is just giddy (as only Chanelle can be) and loves the work. She expressed great sadness that it is going by so fast.

May 5, 2010

Re: Loving you from Arizona May 3, 2010

So I'm hoping that you will be back for Mother's day because I want to talk to the entire family too. Oh and I have decided not to send out the package until after mother's day cause heaven knows what else you will want me to send plus I don't know if when I send you pictures the videos will come over with it, if not then I'll need to send you my cards. I already have two cards full of pictures.

Transfers are on Thursday of next week! Can you believe it! I feel like I just got started here. I will probably stay here but my companion is getting transferred for sure cause that's what our President told her last time he talked to her. We get the calls on Saturday so I can tell you all about it on Sunday when I call. I'm so sad that my comp. is leaving! I'm going to miss her like crazy! I love her so much! We already have plans for after the mission. We get along so great. You would love her, she is so much fun and so sweet and loving and way strong and independent. She has taught me a lot about being a missionary. When we tract doors we run to every door, cleverly known as run tracting. haha.

There weren't any baptisms this weekend but there will be next weekend. There are two guys we are teaching. Rusty Poore, a big white ice cream man that is 26 and very sweet, he has changed his life in a way that God has now prepared him to be baptized and Derelle Meeks a 22 year old black gang member who is changing his life in order to be baptized. He has done everything under the sun and has stopped it cold turkey and is doing good. He is very sweet too. He knows what is right and is trying to be an example to his cousins who just got baptized the Sunday before last. They are both amazing and I'm so excited for the changes that they have made in their life so that they can be baptized this Sunday. It's going to be amazing. They are both so solid! I hope they stay strong this entire week and never give up the fight. There are so many people who are strong everyday of the week right until Saturday and then they freak out and backslid. They had one more day! I'm speaking of one person we are working with right now; her name is Kyara colonal and she hasn't been confirmed yet because she will do well all week and we will see her everyday and then the night before after we have already seen her she will do something stupid and have to wait another week. I hate it!!! People can be so stupid sometimes. They know everything we teach is true; they read, pray but yet they won't get baptized! AHH it makes no sense at all. If you believe everything we teach and you know that this is the only true church with the fullness of the gospel, then why wouldn't you want to be a part of it? No sense at all. But I guess it's in the lords timing and it is for me to be patient and keep teaching them and help them understand, because there are usually bigger issues underneath. It's all in the Lords hands.

I'm so excited for Kaitlin~ Spanish! I would love that but I'm happy where I'm at and wouldn't want to be anywhere else. Molly is going to England! I can totally picture that and I bet Darren is going crazy. He would love to know that she is serving there even though it probably won't be close to him but they could use great people like Molly there from the letters Darren writes to me. Missionary work is very hard their but I don't doubt that she will do amazing along with Kaitlin.

So Arizona huh? Christopher, that lucky dog. He has gone on more trips than all the kids have put together, but I love him so I guess that's ok. So find any cute skirts......;)

Tell everyone that I love and miss them too and that Tyler should write me and I hope that he got my letter i sent him. I just sent it last week. OH, you need to send me everyone's birthdays including some cousins and grandparents cause I made a list before I left and I lost it now I'm afraid I'm missing a lot of Birthdays and I hate it so if you could do that for me that would be great!.

I'm having so much fun and success here in Florida and it is nothing but the Lords hand in all of it. I don't know why he is blessing me or what I have done to deserve this but I'm thankful every day that he prompted me to go on my mission and then kicked me out the door because it really doesn't get much better than this. I agree with Tyler when he said it was the best decision of his life and no matter how hard it gets he will never regret it or waste a day of it. I love my Heavenly Father so much and I'm so thankful for everything that he blesses me with and the trials he gives me in order to make me better. I love him and I love it here.

I miss you all so much but I'll talk to you Sunday so think of questions, everyone.
I love you~

~Your sister missionary~

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