Tuesday, August 24, 2010

08/24/10 Hermana Christensen

Hermanas Christensen & Story
Thanks to Sue for the great idea with the subject line. :) thanks!


My goodness gracious. Wow. When I sit down to write--although my head has been swirling with things to say to you all week--I can't seem to think of anything to say. My heart is fulllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll of gratitude for you! Seriously, so thank you so incredibly much for being so wonderful and amazing. I feel SUCH joy hearing from you! I agrree with bro's letter thing that you scanned in for me; my family and friends are EVERYWHERE to me. It is unreal how much I think of you all. But, I was once given some very wise counsel from a great human who told me to think on it (and all you), smile, and keep pressing forward. I'm trying. I really am.

It has been... a good week. It really has been. But it's been hard. Bro is so right about this being the most confusingly addictingly difficult work to do. It's hard, but as we press forward we see INSTANT results (and miracles! and tms!) and we want morrrrrrrrrrre of that! So we just keep going. There is no other way to describe it. I can't get enough of it, but it's so hard.

Loved ones, I need your help. I am struggling--I don't know what to do. I feel so inadequate for this work and for what I'm doing. I don't know how to do it all. I can't do it all. I feel so incredibly pressed for time--there is never enough. Everyone always says that, but, as mobat sisters, we don't get study time. THIS IS KILLING ME. Most days we'll have time for the majority of our personal study time but not comp study and certainly not language study. This is so hard for me. I don't feel like i'm progressing. And i failed to notice before that the white handbook specifically states that I can't wake up early to study... I ALWAYS have to be with my companion. Plus I'm so tired in the morning, even when she's willing to wake up early so I can study, I don't hear my alarm. Preach My Gospel outlines the need for us to not just master the language in the gospel but to master the language--that the Lord may have called us to learn this language to bring about his work at a later time of life. I have been so incredibly discouraged as of late because I'm in an English ward, giving English tours, and getting minimal amounts of study time. I'm not progressing. I'm not learning spanish. I try to speak and it's just so broken. i dont' get the chance to be swallowed up in Spanish, to be forced to learn it. Ah. I don't know what to do. Yesterday morning I was wishing so badly I could talk to you, to get some advice, some counsel, some wisdom, because I need it and I need you.

Fortunately the Lord is gracious enough to grant me little pieces of revelation--I can always continue learning Spanish.. the end of my mission isn't the deadline, right? To master the language? I just feel so bad. Bro, I almost envy you, being in Chile, being forced to learn it. But I feel like it'll all be alright. The Lord called me Spanish speaking so it'll have to all be alright. I sat down and made hardcore goals yesterday that I think will help, and I do feel better.

I always heard of miracles happening on people's missions, but I never thought it would happen to me. Yesterday, we were going through our massssssssive ward list with the elders and the phone rang: Carina was calling. Backup--my first week in the chula ward, hermana introduced me to a cutie named Carina. She's maybe 23 ish and was invited to church by her boss. Last week, hermana had this revelation that maybe Carina wasn't baptized. So on Sunday we asked ward council and everyone was unsure. Ha ha, what? So we asked the girl how she was liking church, and she said, "Oh I love it here! It's like family. I've been coming for about nine weeks now, yeah, nine weeks." She'd just been counting how long she'd been coming for?! Ha! She lovvvvvvves it here. She's all over pictures on the bulletin boards because she comes to the rs activities and considers this ward her family! Okay okay okay anyyyway, she calls yesterday, and she literally said, "Hermana Christensen, so I want to get baptized, but I know I have to do some things first; I need to meet with you, right? Can we do that?" Ummmm, no Carina. Nope, we can't do that. We dont' have time--we dont' have time! to baptize you! HAHA. family. she literally FELL FROM THE SKY. She has already been to church TRIPLE the amount of times needed for her to be baptized... and she's READY! She WANTS IT! She is a CONVERT BAPTISM! So! We're meeting with her tomorrow! Pretty unbelievable huh? Hermana was telling me a few weeks ago that stuff like this just happens... that the Lord prepares people and we find them. What if Hermana hadn't been listening and just assumed that Carina had been baptized? What if we didn't ask in ward council? I mean, how long would she have continued coming to church--waiting for someone to notice she needed to be baptized?! There are miracles happening all around us. It's unreal.

I feel real blessed. I'm trying to see the hand of the Lord in my life more. I'm trying. Earnestly and sincerely. It helps, especially when I get down about stuff like Spanish. Really, even now--just emailing you!--I feel better. It's not really of eternal significance. All I can do is all I can do. That's what the Lord expects of me. I'm going to have a good attitude and just keep pluggling along. Unreal. So blessed.

Thank you SO ETERNALLY much for going to Jean's reception! Ah! She looks SO beautiful! Saturday was a hard day, too, a little. Just knowing that I was missing that incredibly beautiful moment of my best friend's life... but--once again and like always!-- the Lord reached out in love. We were assigned to work outside the temple on saturday morning like visitors center people. There were a lot of weddings going on, and I felt like that was literally theeee closest I could be to Jenn and her pinnacle of happiness that day. i watched brides and their families taking pictures, and I just felt overwhelmed with gratitude for the temple, and that we can go there to be sealed together for time and all eternity! Ah! It's so beautiful! It reminds me of that quote I gave yall--A missionary is someone who leaves their family for a short time so others can be with theirs for eternity. that's what's going on here.

Camilla, one of our investigator's, has a baptismal date--september 4th. We've struggled with their family and getting a date, but it HAPPENED. And her less active dad will hopefully baptize her. :) and then he, his wife, and Camilla can all go to the temple and do baptisms together, and can eventually be SEALED for time and all eternity! THIS IS WHAT IT'S ALL ABOUT!

I want you to know that the other day I was literally staring at Tijuana. Don't worry, I fought the urge to just go there. President told us on our first day they'd kidnap us and chop our fingers off if we went and ransom us. Ha.

MAKE A MORMON.ORG PROFILE ALREADY! i keep looking for it! Get on it!

Congrats Kathe! she'll be soooo great thre!

Favor--please get the reflections of christ cd out of the big paper bag in my closet and listen to it. the book is near my computer--put it out somewhere you can see if often because it's amazing!! and the new reflections of christ about him in the americas is AMAZING too. we love the cd and the book is INCREDIBLE!

ah i am so out of time. again. there is never time. kaylynn and colb, sorry no time. BUT KNOW I LOVE YOU! thank you for all you are and do! i am so grateful and so blessed and i recognize that! thank you thank you!!!

vayan con dios!

your hermana

Monday, August 23, 2010

8/23/10 Elder Christensen

Elder Christensen saying goodbye to the sector
Hello to all the family and friends back there in Utahhhhh!!! Things in Chile are going great. I just recently got changed to a new sector called... El Conquistador located in the city of Maipu. Its really nice here and I love the people. My new companions name is Elder Salguero. Hes from El Salvador and speaks NO english whatsoever! Thats fine though. I´m here to learn and do the lords work. My Misison President told me that the Lord hand picked my companion for me. I trust in his inspiration and have already noticed my growth.

I´m excited to be able to be in a new place doing the work that is most important for the Lords people. The mission to me is just like the Lord said.... I never said it would be easy..... I only said it would be worth it. Thats my new change in a nutshell. Its hard but its right! I´m very happy and humble to be here and to be doing this work that is SO important.

Keep pushing forward with all that you´re all doing there in Utah. If you´re preparing to serve your mission, GET READY and strap yourself in! Its a wonderful life changing experience that pushes everyone to the limit. Stay happy, live the Gospel, be examples to EVERYONE around you. Every thing that you do.... Every decision that you make... think of Christ. Think of how this decision is going to benefit you and your family sometime in the future. Weigh the possibilities and move on!

I love you all so very much. You´re all in my prayers constantly. I´ll talk to you all next week! Ciao!!!

Elder Christensen

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

8/17/10 Hermana Christensen

Hi, all!

why is it always so hard to come up with a subject line? ha. HI! How is everyone doing?! I hope so well! Thank you for your plethora of emails! My goodness, thank you thank you! thank you for all your love and support--I seriously feel so lucky and so blessed! I want you to know that I have honestly and truly realized how much i love and miss my family. Holy hannah yes. Remember how I used to say that the MTC was every emotion every day? Ha. Well it was, but I had NO IDEA. Ha. But really. This is absolutely insane. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I knew I didn't, but I liked to think I did. I can't even tell you.. this past week has been a rollercoaster. I have felt that homesickness, that family sickness, that friendsickness, but I have also known from the gentle promptings of the spirit that I need to lose myself in this work---that's what I came here to do! Last night I had this realization that I am already forming amazing bonds with people, and that these relationships are beautiful. It seems so far away until I will come home, but last night I realized how hard that will be when it comes. But it's a long ways away, so I don't need to even worry about it!

San Diego... what a joke. This place is a JOKE. haha, I really am so happy. It has been hard and I have mosdef had my tough moments, but the Lord's tender mercies are over ALL THE EARTH. Last week we got to work at the Temple. We were just outside and we talked to people, but it was wonnnnnnnderful being there on temple grounds. What a beautiful, sacred place! I love the temple! We will go next transfer because we have the chance to go once every other transfer. :) I can't wait. But that was a beautiful experience, even with the scaffolding.

We are teaching a whole grundle of people. We have been having quite a bit of success, but now it's a matter of weeding people out who aren't ready to commit. We have been working SO CLOSELY with the ward--pmg ch 13 is SO GREAT!--and I find myself thinking of RR1st alllllllllll the tiiiiiiiiiime. We have such a great ward full of so many able, caring, wonderful and willing people! The ward here is fired up about missionary work, and I know that if our ward had as many nonmembers/less actives as we do here in the chula vista second ward, rr1st would respond to the call just as they have. Our prophet is calling this time THE RESCUE. I read elder eyrings talk from this past conference just this morning, and he says the word "rescue" or "rescuers" THIRTEEN TIMES. this really is the rescue. we are here to SAVE people. They need it. WE ALL NEED IT!

I just realized I'm using caps a lot. I'm enthusiastic to be talking to you all I guess!

I sure love my family. I cannot stresssssss it enoughhhhhhhhh. IIIIIIII LOOOOOOOOOOVE YOUUUUUUUU.

We hopefully have a baptism this week.. but I h onestly feel like we're rushing the girl into it. She hasn't answered our calls nor her door since we committed her last week, so we'll see. And Zulema is cominghome from tx this week and is excited for her baptism on the11th. in the meantime, we're working on finding people and get them progressing!

the battalion is awesome. i gave my first tour without my excperienced companion in spanish last night. it was terrrrifying but the lord provided and it ended up being a remarkable experience!

I love the gospel. I love the Lord. I am soo grateful. This has already been one of the most difficult things I've ever done, but, as I've been struggling, I truly have felt your prayers. Ah, I'm tearin up man. I really do feel them. I'm learning so much about loving through prayer, and about sustaining important relationships while I'm away. I am so grateful for all of you. I love you. Can't say it enough!

Vayan con dios mis amados.

hermana christensen

pleeeeeeease read

heb 12:1-2, eph 3:17-19, gal 2:20.

Monday, August 16, 2010

8/16/10 Elder Christensen

... Us with the President and our investigator after her baptismal interview! SHE PASSED!

Well my world officially has been turned upside down!!! We got called last night with the changes..... Out of our whole zone, I was the only one with changes! AHHHH!!! I have no no no no idea where I´m headed until tomorrow in the early morning. Everyone is throwing all kinds of possibilities at me.. I could go to the Campo and be able to bike in the mountains, or I could head to the coast and preach by the sea, or I could stay in the city like I am....... WHO KNOWS!! But.... as the song says... I´ll go where you want me to go dear lord, over mountain or plain or sea. So... I´m headed somewhere else and I¨ll let you know where in a week.
We just figured out that Richard G Scott is coming here in 5 days to talk to the whole mission!! How AMAZING its going to be. Wow. AN APOSTLE!!!!! I remember how amazing it was to hear from them in the MTC. I can only imagine what this is going to be like. It´s all of our mission and the Roncagua mission. There will be a good 350 elders there. Its like the size of our stake center where we are headed.
Anyways... My schedule is a little jacked up right now... We´re not going to shop today.. Instead we´re gonna head right back to the apartment and PACK PACK PACK!!! Then.... In the night we dont do any proscelyting... We go to the sector yes but I just get to choose who I want to visit and go say bye. Its gonna be sad/cool/Not at all cool/ awesome. I´ll be sure I snap some good pictures.
Its great to hear from you all and I´m glad all is well in good ol UT. I didn´t have time to read any of the emails you sent me plus Im freaking out a little bit still. Hopefully all will go well in the next 24 hours.. Pray pray pray hard for me please.. I´ll need every bit.
I know that the Lord only changes us when we are comfortable... So I´ve heard that I have learned to my capacity here in this sector and change... Which means I need a change to continue progressing. All though I disagree now, I´m sure I´ll see the blessings that come from this sometime here in the near future..
I´m out of time. I love you all so much and I know that the way we live is the right way. The Lord knows each of us personally and what is to come. Keep on keepin on todos. Ustedes son los mejores!! Ciao.... Elder Christensen
... Me and Elder Spencer after Divisions.
Elder Pedraza and I before our service project.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

8/10/10 Hermana Christensen

How nice it truly is to sit down at a computer that doesn't have flashing red numbers. Oh hallelujah!
So the rumor is that I have an hour to email! Crazy! But I just spent the past while reading all of your gracious emails...THANK YOU SO MUCH! Holy hannah, am I blessed or what? Thank you so much! All of you! Thank you! Thank you!

A few things, I can only email immediate family. This is hardcore. So tell my sweetest grandparents that I can't write them anymore. Tell Ikey that I straight up LOVE his emails and that I'm so grateful for his support, humor and prayers. Tell Joan and Sue that I LOVE THEM and am so grateful for them! Did Joan move in with Sue? Tell Sue I love the pictures, and thank her so much. Also tell her I'm sorta in contact with Jennica but that you're going to send me the invite. I can't wait for her! Her wedding is coming so soon! I know it will be beeeeeeautiful; my heart and soul will be there! I love that girl. Thanks ma n pa, for going to her recep for me. Anyways. Immediate fam, only! Sad day, but all is well.

I'm here! Where do I even begin?! Ahh! Okay okay okay. First day. Shoot--you already heard! Yes! My companion is Sister Story, natstar's cousin! AH! Aaaaaand the same gal we saw giving the tour; what an inspiration she truly is for me! Honestly, I don't remember a ton about thost movies that Bro Johnson soooo kindly showed us (mostly because I was horrrrriffied (sp?) by the dresses, ha ha). But Hermana Historia is a POWERHOUSE. That girl knows how to bring the spirit and touch people souls and lives in an incredible way. She relates the gospel to people and gets them interested and involved. I am learning so much from her. We get along incredibly well, too. I think I was overly sensitive with Hermana Livingston, and she's a red personality, so at times I wound up worrying that I was driving her crazy--and I probably was. But with Hermana Historia.. it's just easy. We get along so incredibly well, and we're oftentimes just on the same page. It's miraculous, really. I'm so grateful for her. I was truly worried that I'd get with a trainer who was burnt out and just not feelin it, but it's the complete opposite. She's allllways asking me what she can do better, how she can improve, and what she can do for me. She is the kinda missionary I want to be. She wears her heart on her sleeve and people know she cares! What an amazing force for good!

So. I've been asked about 26 zillion times, ha ha, no I am not in the apartment gparents took that fot of. Naw, I'm across the street in a beat up place. Last night I couldnt' sleep because I was worried those ants that were crawling all over me during planning were with me in my bed. It's pretty nascar, but I plan to do some serious work with it today. Ps, how did you know pday was tuesday? I'm glad you did! I was feeling bad when I found out tuesday was pday because I'd told you I thought it was Monday. Wow bad grammar, sorry gpa! Anyways, tuesdays! And that's a good day. Except for bro! Sad news! Oh well me-an (Anthony Wang), we'll communicate with six day intervals! asldkfjal;skdfj;asljkdf Kkkk so I'm staying in that place. All is well. I'm in the Chula Vista 2nd ward, and, unfortunately, it's an English ward. I've been distressed this past week because of Spanish. I am in the Battalion pretty much errry day either 9-3 or 3-9. Then I'm in the area for the rest of the time. (We also get to work on the temple grounds too, for the next few weeks! I think I'm doing that on Thursday! Soooo excited!) So yes. The thing that's hard is that we're not giving tons of Spanish tours, and the battalion time cuts into Spanish study. I've been distressed about this because it's different than I'd planned, you know? I've actually had less study time in the field than ever before in my life! And I can't wake up early anymore unless my comp wants to! Ah. Luckily Hermana is great, though, and willing, but what happens next transfer? Really, we don't even get to finish personal study, let alone do companion study OR language study. But, I came to the conclusion that it'll ALL WORK OUT. It always does. I was called to speak Spanish, so I'll do what I can. Learning is eternal! And even if I wind up basically serving most of my mission in English, I'm trying to do what I can in Spanish, which will help me be more comfortable with it and more able to learn it later? The Lord knows. He'll prepare away. I'm just jealous of people in South America/Mex/wherev who get their immersion. Luckies. Bro, I love ya.

You know dc 4? El campo blanco esta ya para la siega.. the field is white and ready for the harvest. In the mtc i was sorta doubtful about me, my success and my abilities to have baptisms... I just didn't know what was possible. PFFF. we already have SEVERAL people set for baptism! We have seen MIRACLES. we have seen hearts change. we have cried. we have felt the spirit UNDENIABLY strong. We found/refound this innnnnncredible woman named Zulema. She reminds me of Tina from Brenda's house. We get along great. she has been through some incredibly difficult things--that doesn't even do it justice. I can't fathom what she's been through. But she is willing to change. She has SUCH a heart of gold and loves the Lord. She came to church (!) and lovvvvvvvvved it. The sprit was killlllller and the lessons all pertained to her. And? it was the SAME CHURCH that her sister was married in twenty years ago! same church! Zulema just cried during rs because her sister was murdered three years ago. (one of her manyyyy h ardships.) she's facing some tough opposition. But she's willing. and she's trying to n otice the good things. LIKE the fact that her boyfriends' mom just gave her a $500 plane ticket to visit her sons in texas! (her sons were taken from her. yet another hardship.) There are blessings all around us! We just need to take the time to see them.

I am fresh out of time. I would like you to know that I count YOU as my many blessings. I am so grateful, so blessed, and so happy to come from such a radtizzle family. I love youguys. That doesn't do justice either. Just know that I love you and i'mso gratefu for you!!

Kaylynn, I'm glad to hear things are straightening out. I sure love you!

Colb, I HOPE THE TRIP AND ALL YOUR SECRET PLANS WERE A SUCCESS!!! skydiving anyone? i hope all the treats were alll i told you and more! haha! love!

bro, i don't have time to email you but i LOVE YOU! freakin i miss you too--dog but what an incredible time of our lives. I'll write you first next week!

ma n pa, I LOVE YOU! htanks for all the stuff! especailly the bonus box...i've been so hungry and your food SAVED ME! thank gmanpa for getting it here! you can email or letter but dont' dear elder. its trash.
tell aj/kel/der/jenn sorry i missed them! ah! my one day i was in the field!
Next week will be more solid. Just know that i love you. I'm so grateful for you all. You're in my prayers. Love you!!!!!
hermana christensen

Monday, August 9, 2010

8/9/10 Elder Christensen

READ CAREFULLY.... THAT SAYS::: DANKY!!!!!!!!! hahahahahahahah DANKY!!! Its an ice cream brand!

Well.... Yet another rapid time warped week gone. Unreal how the time just floats along like it does... SOME GREAT NEWS!!! We committed two more people to be baptized yesterday!!! We now have 4 baptismal dates in the making!! YESS!!!!
Well I just spent all my time chatting so this is going to be short and sweet! I´m happy to hear that elder LOWE is doing well. I knew he would. Its just the light of Christ that you can see in everyone.

What people need to understand is that the gospel is ETERNAL decisions. EVERYTHING we obey matters. Don´t ask questions just do it!! We have a guy who was doubting our church so he went online and read all kinds of anti mormon LIES. Now he doesn´t even want to listen to us.

How fragile the gospel is. The second we look away and put other priorities first we´re lost. I just heard one of my friends got sent home... From my group. That means its just me and Elder Monsen now..... Theres an example of a fragile thing... He let satan win... I can´t believe that happened... Just gotta work hard and be OBEDIENT and do EVERYTHING we are told!!! I love you all so much and will talk to you next week. :)

Much love, Elder Christensen.

p.s Your patriarchal blessings are amazing. I can truely see the blessings from them! Thank you for your constant prayers and support. THE WORK IS GOING ONWARD!!!

p.s.s Its shaping me for eternity!!! I don´t feel like I am different but I¨m sure I am any! -
Elder Monsen and I at Zone Conference!! WOOHOOO!
Elder Monsen and I eating a dank meal at ZC.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

8/03/10 Hermana Christensen's in San Diego!

Greetings from the California San Diego Mission!

Your daughter, Sister Christensen has safely arrived in the mission field. We are delighted to have her serving with us among the wonderful people of Southern California. In addition to the tremendous weather and scenery, we have remarkable missionary opportunities.

Thank you for sending such a wonderful missionary to our mission. We are confident that with your prayers and her hard work that she will have a rich experience here in San Diego that will bless both her and those she teaches.

I have attached a couple of pictures that were taken this afternoon at the Mission Home.

God bless you for your sacrifice in sending us your daughter to labor among some of Heavenly Father's choicest spirits.

Lee Donaldson

President, California San Diego Mission

Monday, August 2, 2010

8/2/10 Elder Christensen

Yes it is that cold in the morning. I WAS FREEZING!!! The blanket is sweeeeeeeeet!

Well I have like nooooooooo time at all. My computer shut down and we had to go and straighten some things out downstairs. Lovely! So this will be short and I apologize!!

The work here is going so well. Elder Stoddard and I are rockin it. Yesterday our best investigator named Jean just straight up agreed to live the word of wisdom with his wife. I ASKED HIM FOR HIS TEA AND HE GAVE IT TO ME!!! I gave him in return a coffee substitute powder called Coronado. But WOW what a miracle!!! Progressing so sososososo much!

Its still cold here! We just entered the coldest month.... WOOO. I wonder how it is already month 8. I feel like we just celebrated christmas and I just got my wisdom teeth out on dec 21..... Where does the time all go.

Herm Christensen is ciaowing?? (Chowing) WOW. Only 16 months left on her plate and she won´t even know what happened to it all. Its such a time warp as I have said before. THANKS SO MUCH for the pkg! You guys are awesome. The new gloves are amazing. I´m not freezing all the time anymore! Well, just know that all is well here. This would have been longer but whatever! Its Chilean technology! I will make up for it next week. Much love, Elder Christensen
SWEET new tie in my package.. THANK YOU!!
Me calling a colectivo. These are the little taxis with set routes. SWEET