Sunday, March 23, 2014

March 17, 2014 - HaPpY St. PaTrIcK's DaY

Hey family and friends!

Happy St. Patrick's day! Haha the highlight of my morning was when the alarm went off this morning and I chased my companion around the basement trying to pinch her because she forgot to wear green to bed! haha! I made sure I didn't remind her last night:) I'm such a nice companion huh? haha:) So yes, I made sure that I wore lots of green today:)

You will notice that I am emailing later than normal again..:) It's been a busy morning:) We went and had 2 visiting teaching appointments this am. (they couldn't do it any other day) So we sacrificed some of our preparation day:) I was a little bummed but it will all work out ok:) We went to Jason's Deli for lunch today which was really good! I got a chicken salad wrap which was really yummy and lots of fruit:) Haha I am trying to eat healthier overall:)

Thank you for the package that you sent me this week:) It was great:) I actually just picked it up from the post office about an hour ago because i wasn't home when they delivered it on Saturday.:) But i am so thrilled about the banana bread!! It smells so good and reminds me of home:) haha except i am much luckier now because i have the whole loaf to myself:) and my companion of course:) but.. i won't have to fight for it between 10 people now! haha oh the joys of serving a mission:) thank you for sending my crimper, a cd!, and many other great things!! I loved all of it so much!! I really do think I have the best family ever:) I'm not biased or anything:) haha

So some things from my week:) It has been kind of a crazy week:) Here are a few updates from some of the people that i am working with. First off, Rebecca!!! (one of my investigators) She is doing very well! She is going through some very extreme trials right now. It has been a very messy divorce. On Thursday, we called her up and apparently, we called at the exact moment that she needed it. She was crying and really struggling when we called. We talked to her for a little bit and asked if she would like a priesthood blessing. She obviously hadn't ever heard of this before so we explained what it was and what would happen and magically, she agreed to have one!! I was so happy:) So, we began making calls to set up a time that someone from the ward could come and do that:) Let me tell you.. Satan did NOT want that happening. This never happens, but we spent 4 hours making calls trying to get someone that was available that night to give her one. We were almost all the way through the ward list (we only had 3 names left!) and finally a kind brother in the ward said yes! Let me tell you, it was a very spiritual experience seeing someone get a priesthood blessing for the first time! The spirit was very strong there and she even said that her neck stopped hurting during the blessing and after for a while:) I think that the spirit really touched her and that things are heading in the right direction:) We bought her some Book of Mormon CDs and stuff to help her with her reading. She really wants to come to church but is struggling because she gets really sick being around any type of scents. We have to wash off all of our deodorant, perfume, etc before we go and visit her because of that...and she still gets sick most of the time because of the laundry detergent in our clothes.. so we are trying to figure out how to get past that one.. So it is a really interesting situation. Pray for a miracle that Dr's will find something to help her so that she can come to church:)

On Friday, I had exchanges with Sister Page:) It was great!! They did exchanges a little differently than normal which was nice:) Instead of both of them coming and staying at our place for the night and staying in our area, one comp went with one of theirs to their area. So I stayed in Papillion over night and through the next day:) It was really interesting being the new companion again that didn't know any of the people. It made me really appreciate how long I have been in Lakeview because I know the people so well:) But we talked to everyone that we saw and even committed someone to baptism!! We saw so many miracles that day so it just goes to show that the Lord is preparing people all over, we just need the courage and faith to open our mouths!!

I want to share a short miracle that happened this week as well. My wrists have been very painful. Don't worry tho! I am just fine! Anyways, we got a call on Saturday from the McM’s to come and do some service for them. They were doing a big spring cleaning for their house. So we went over and started working. I was in a lot of pain and so I went to a different room by myself and knelt and prayed to my Heavenly Father, asking Him if it was His will, if He could take away the pain for a few hours. Just long enough for me to work hard and serve this family and then I was ok for it to come back after again. It was a miracle. The pain went away from my wrists and it didn't hurt me one more time while I was over there. Haha it came back after but for those couple of hours, it was like there hadn't ever been a problem with them. It was a miracle! God is truly aware of us and answers our prayers as we have faith in Him.

We had an amazing Stake Conference this weekend! The Adult Session was my favorite!! They had all of the youth come, ages 12 and up, which was really cool for a change:) President and Sister Weston were both there as well as the temple president and his wife. It was so good to see them again:) At the end during President Bartlett's talk (the Stake President) he had President Weston get up and call up all of the missionary leadership that were in attendance. (Assistants to the President, Zone Leaders, District Leaders, Sister Training Leaders) He had them all standing up there on the stand with him. He then called up all of the Bishops and Ward Mission Leaders and had them all stand up there as well. He then called up all of the full time missionaries (Sisters, Elders, and couples) and had us all standing in front of the stands. So needless to say. between all of those people, there was a ton of people up on the stand and in front of it! (when you figure that there are between 4-8 full time missionaries in each ward) He then shared the account in 2nd Kings chapter 6 vs 15-17. Paraphrasing it says.."Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha." President Bartlett said, "Look! This is your army! In numbers larger than we have ever had before! But these missionaries are not the only ones in this room. There are powerful missionaries and angels all around us on the other side of the veil that are standing with us tonight. Fear not: for they that be with us, are more than they that be with them!" It was so powerful! He then had all of us missionaries and ward members up there to link arms so that we would show that we are one! He then had everyone in the Stake center stand and link arms as well. Demonstrating that we are one, called to the work! He had them sit down after and he had all of the missionaries remain standing. He had us sing the first verse of called to serve (which is always so powerful singing as a missionary!!) and then he had everyone else join in for the 2nd verse! By the end of the 2nd verse, everyone in the Stake Center was standing up with us again with tears in most of our eyes:) It was such a powerful thing that i don't think i will ever forget. When things get tough, just remember, there are many angels on the other side of the veil that are here to strengthen and protect us. I feel their presence and strength. I am so thankful! In the Sunday morning stake conference session, when he spoke he had the whole audience stand again and link arms. (This time the missionaries and members were all intermixed) and had us link arms again. Signifying that the members and missionaries need to work together and that we are one. It was so powerful!! I hope that all made sense:)

I want to extend the same commitment I gave you last week. Continue reading the conference ensign and try to get all of the talks read by the next general conference!! You can do it!! If you haven't started yet, start today! You have enough time to do it:) I love you!! I know that by reading and studying the talks from the living prophet and apostles, and then following their teachings, our lives will be greatly blessed! I know that this church is true! I can say that because I have read the Book of Mormon. I have prayed about it to know if it is true. I have also prayed about many other things. And I have received confirmation from the Holy Ghost time and time again, that this church is true. And that knowledge has blessed my life in more ways than I could ever explain. I am so blessed!

I love you all so much!! Enjoy the rest of your day!
With love,

Sister (Erica) Christensen:)

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