Monday, April 4, 2016

Why did Flori-Die?

The rain in Florida though..


that was Sister Christiansen

she says hi ;)

Hi friends and fam sorry for the awkward weekly letter/blog last week

satan decided to throw me for a loop and delete the second half of what I had written giving me like fifteen minutes to try and whip out five days worth of journaling and bible study.

long story short

Last week was bomb.  Learned about Easter from the source 

I got some rockin' packages from family

(Sweetie loves her squeaky toy lamb my mom got her.  Paul and Paula decided that the lamb is their grandchild because Sweetie is their child and the lamb is now Sweeties baby...... )


This week has been full of invitations to listen to General Conference

it has also been full of rain! WOOOO

I love it. 

Had a really cool lesson on the dock at night with a recent convert on Tuesday.  The stars were out and the water was beautiful.  I am adding that to the list of why I was called to the Gulf! 

I love the water! 
Anyway, as the lesson was wrapping up, a random man walked down the dock to fish. 
He said "don't mind me ladies, just fishin'"

Sister Christiansen: "Hey sir we are actually about to pray, care to join us?"

he laughed, and said no.  We talked to him and found out that he has a hard time with religion because 
its all hearsay, he said she said, old books, and corrupt history. 

We completely agree sir. 

We taught him about personal revelation, he told us he actually had met with missionaries from our church before.  He told us at first he thought the Book of Mormon was bogus, 
but after studying he realized it is a good book.

He stopped seeing the other missionaries because he had a hard time with Joseph Smith.

We bore testimony.  Sister Christiansen spoke with such a power.. I need not say more.  It was truly as if the Savior was speaking straightway through her.


Anyway.  He admitted that he knows running into us was not a coincidence.

There have been some interesting experiences this week.. no lie.

I have been learning what it means to put certain things on the altar of sacrifice..

because as much as I left a ton of things in Utah when I physically removed myself from it..

As a missionary it is vital that I sacrifice those things emotionally and mentally.

I had no idea this would even be a thing.  
Isn't leaving school friends family and dating to go on a mission enough? 


not nearly enough

I am learning how to sacrifice those things.  For the time being.

If I'm here.. I'm really going to be here. 

It broke my heart to realize that I cannot just:

stop thinking about how I miss my family

stop thinking about cute boys ;)

stop thinking about my best friends

stop thinking about how fun high school was

stop thinking about how fun college was 

stop thinking about what I'm missing 

I can't do any of those things by myself

what I have learned this week 

there is power in the statement


I can't 

Lord I can't

I can't cowgirl up

I can't be a perfect missionary

or even a great one

I can't throw away my pride


the fact of the matter- dearly beloved people that read my blog

(bless your soul)

the fact of the matter is that 


do all of those things that I can't do



be the missionary I came here to be

more importantly

I won't be the missionary God intends me to be

this realization

this moment of panic

led me to the question

"now what"

If I can't do what I have to do because if I don't do it I won't be able to do it right

what now?

my pride brought me low so that God could lift me high

I spent some tearful moments on my knees

I did not have a broken heart but an open heart instead

I admitted to myself and to my loving father in heaven that:

I can't

but you can

It felt so great to admit it

because I have hope

because I know that I have a loving Father in heaven

and even though I can't

He can

and because He can

I can too.

I gave it all to Him this week

I gave Him my fears, my homesickness, my weaknesses. 
I said here you go!

It feels great 

I feel free!

I learned that in order to grow we don't always have to have a broken heart, we can choose to simply have an open heart and the result is incredible. 


and it's a never ending cycle.

Thank goodness because I had to repent on Saturday for sneaking into the family history center to watch the Priesthood session of General Conference live...



(but seriously even though I was selfish, I sure got a ton out of priesthood session.. like whoa it blew me away)

but back to the point of my life rn

I love being a missionary

I love wearing Jesus' name on my heart

I love my family.

 Being here has helped me to gain an appreciation for Ryan Leslie Seth Rachel and Saul that I didn't even know was possible.

I am thankful for

daddy daughter dates

grocery store trips with mom

reading with seth

sleep overs with Rachel

and movie nights with Saul

there are many more of those to come!

I am so thankful to be here and to start to understand what it means to put distracting or selfish thoughts/feelings/actions on the altar of sacrifice

not to just physically be here

but mentally emotionally and spiritually

I'm getting really good at the emotional part

"I used to get really bugged by girls that express themselves by crying." -me to my companion 

Sister Christiansen is a blessing in so many ways in that department.

She has literally wiped my tears and she assures me that I'm normal..

She even said I'm ahead of the game with my missionary emotional maturity ;) 

I believe her because she is one tough cookie

If she can cry, I can too 

because sometimes life is not all daisies and sunshine


I'm rambling now

but on a completely different note 
was General Conference not the complete and literal best thing of ya'lls life???

another complete rando thing (thank Sister C for that new word in my vocab.  It means random but is said like rambo. Only.. rando;)

Last Sunday I was teaching a lesson (it was Easter Sunday) and it was about the Crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus  Christ

I was teaching a seven year old and a ten year old using an object lesson I stole from a Family Home Evening lesson at my Grandma Pat's..

It's an Easter Walk..scavenger hunt to gather items that represent the events over those past few days so many years ago

for example I said to them 

find something red
something made of wood
something sharp
a stone
a cloth


when I got to "something dead"

the seven year old yelled to the ten year old


and they ran off to find it


it was dead and offered as an even better item than I had anticipated

because just as the Savior, that dead phone would live again. :)

But conference.


that scripture is the theme for the youth this entire year.

My favorite scripture, 
the one on my missionary plaque, 
is the theme for most of the time I am serving here.

got to be a coincidence.

but then... Sunday morning during studies

Sister Christiansen says 
"what's your favorite hymn?"

"I have two. One is If You Could Hie to Kolob and the other is Press Forward Saints because it's based off of my favorite scripture 2nd Nephi 31:20"

so we sang Press Forward Saints for our morning studies.

When we got to the morning session of conference I was not prepared for what was about to happen

the first insane thing that happened

I have been studying the Book of Mormon by studying fathers and writing notes on why the prophets are such amazing fathers and how they feel about their children in an attempt to strengthen my relationship with my Father in heaven.  I figured the prophets and their feelings and thoughts towards their children are probably similar to what Heavenly Father feels for me as His child.  

The point is that I have been fascinated with fathers.

So when D. Todd Christofferson 
(okay quick side note.. I have been a little partial to Elder Christofferson since he gave the talk 
"The moral Force of Women" 

I just love the way he speaks.  Don't lie you have a couple favorites too;)

So he got up there and the first words out of his mouth are "I speak today of fathers." 
I about died right their in the chapel.  
I have been studying that very thing for two months as I read the Book of Mormon everyday!!!!

The spirit was so strong.  I am so thankful to my earthly dad that instilled a love for the gospel and missionary work in me since I was a wee lass ;)

Here is a link to his amazing talk on Fathers!

anyway.. imagine my complete and utter joy when I found out the Mormon Tabernacle Choir would then be singing "Press Forward Saints" RIGHT AFTER ELDER CHRISTOFFERSON

the choir sang

my heart was so full it felt like it was going to explode
(sorry for the graphic description) 

Sister C leaned over and said

"that was for you"

Whether or not all of those "coincidences" were directly for me or not, I sure felt God's love and the spirit of truth with the knowledge that I am a child of a living, loving God, and of all the titles of respect and honor given to deity, He has asked that I call Him by the title of 

All He asks me to do is

"press forward with a steadfastness in Christ having a perfect brightness of hope and a love of God and of all man... If ye shall press forward feasting upon the words of Christ and endure to the end 
behold thus sayeth the



"thus sayeth our God.  Ye have eternal life.  Hallelujah Hallelujah.. Hallelujah." 

I love you people.  I love these people.

Package from Nanny & Grandpa...Sunshine on a rainy day..

I love my nanny and grandpa for sending their love and Captain America goodies.
(Sister C's favorite super hero is the captain too, 
God knew what he was doing when he put the two of us together)

and the hi chews were gone within twenty four hours because Florida does not have them and they are delicious

Lindsey: my comp low key thinks you're insane because you sent me a lock of your hair in an easter egg. 
It's okay.. i explained to her that we are just the friend version of soul mates;) 

Elder and Sister Wilde: I love you two! and thank you for lunch. The whole district was so happy! I needed those motherly hugs from you Sister Wilde :) Take Care! Hopefully I will see you soon.

Lunch with Elder and Sister Wilde and the Elders in our District

To the rest of Ya'll 

Make it a good day. 
And tell me about the miracles you've seen in your lives.. I haven't forgotten that challenge I gave ya'll