Tuesday, December 28, 2010

12/28/2010 Hermana Christensen

Christmas Day!!

Digging in to the Presents!
 my sweet family!

MY GOODNESS, HOW MUCH I LOVE YOU!!! this past week... my oh my, what love and joy is just bursting out of me for you! everything, all of it! it was PERFECT. i'm sorry i had to rush off the phone; please know that i love you and that was DEFINITELY the best christmas present i received! you are SUCH a priceless bunch of people, and i absolutely second broseph's notion that forever families is what it's all about. ah. i am just transcendentally happy and so grateful for you all. i hope christmas was SO GOOD and that you felt my uber love for you! (ps. so maybe the tradition won't catch on for willy and colby of note writing, i totally feel ya kay, but IIIIII will be doing it. so count on it! :))

okay so let me answer willy's questions. the area where we're at now is la mesa. it's north east of sanD slash mobat slash home and it's pretty rad. yeah, it's called "The Table" but hey, i like it. It's green, hilly, and really palm tree-esque. It's not really uber humble or anything, it'd just... i dunno, it's just normal i guess. the branch is poquita but SOLID. the members are right on and so awesome. it's home. there are so few of us that we all just bond and love each other so dang fast. i dunno, they're awesome.

we've been thinking so much about how we can help fortalecer a la rama. it's been rough because we have so few investigators, and they're basically dead (never answering the phone/door/nada) so we just don't really know how to use our time. but there's a section in pmg about going about and doing GOOD, and we've been trying to prestar servicio and lift where we stand. we helped the rs president, hermana garcia, buy something online and make cookies for christmas, and she was SO GRATEFUL it was unreal. we did service.. and it was FUN for us! ha ha but she was so grateful. we want to build up the members, strengthen them, and help them gain confidence in nosotras para que puedan uhhh so that they'll give us referrals. it's comin. it's slow, but heavenly father is blessing us. it's humbling for sure, but i am SO grateful. honestly. that's all i am these days. my journal is just so full of, "i am just so grateful... so grateful to be here, to be a missionary, to serve here or there and do this or that..." even when it's rough, or even when creepers ask me out at the batallon or when members are WAY RUDE in the battalion--i'm just grateful. hermana adams and i are trying to find joy in journey EVERY MOMENT!!! it's our comp goal for the transfer. so we spend a lot of time laughing. :)

life is beautiful. i am so happy. so agradecida. tan contenta.

les amo mi querida familia. no hay palabras. no puedo expresar como me siento, ni el amor que tengo para todos de ustedes. yo se que esto es donde yo necesito estar, y que este mision es para mi a darme cuento de CUAN MUCHO les amo en realidad. tan agradecida!!!

se que esta es la obra del senor. el esta tan interesado con nosotros. el evangelio es la respuesta a todas las problemas, preguntas etc que tenemos. me encanta a mi padre celestial y a nuestro salvador y por este tiempo del ano para reconocer y recordar que es de lo mas importancia en nuestras vidas... LA FAMILIA Y EL EVANGELIO!!!

i love you all! have a great new years! be safe and drink some bubbly for me!

jk i don't know why i said that. you know what i mean though. maybe have boot reer floats? ( love ya mikie! thanks for the christmas notas!!!)

hermana christensen

ps  i'm sorry this is so lame and short but i have zero time!  i just want to say THANK YOU. for writing. for CHRISTMAS. for all the LOVE, support, help, packages, prayers, emails, ahhh for everything! you two are such great fans! speaking of which, are the shirts too smalll? muscle shirts?! sorry dad they didnt' have xl! but i hope they still sorta work...

it was a great christmas. it made me really think about my family of course, and how much i love you, but i feel so blessed and upheld and focused. it wasn't hard to hang up because things are just so good with us and it was like id talked with you the day before and like i'll talk to you tomorrow. that's practically the case! time doesn't exist! but i'm so thankful to be blessed with you and i'm thankful for all you are and do. i almost feel like that doesn't mean anything to you anymore because i say it so freaking much. ha but i mean it! i'm taken care of here. christams didn't feel like christmas though because it wasn't full of family time. it just felt like i was a missionary spreading the most important message to the world and i happened to get a lot of sweet garby AND i got to talk to you. ;) life is beautiful!

don't worrry. just be happy and live and love and keep going and find joy int he journey! you're both such good examples of that. so just know i love you! smile big! talk to you next week!  tu hija

Tawny & Joan 5/23/2010

PS: JOAN!!!! i sure love you!! i hope your christmas was BEAUTIFUL and that you're loving the gorgeous utah mountains at this time of year! :) i hope you know how much i love you! i've been thinking about you a lot; how is the book coming? i hope you're taking time to breathe and relax and read a good book! and sue, i hope you're doing well, too, and that things are going well! let me know if i can do anything for you two. i loveeeeeeee you!!!!!!!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

12/27/2010 Elder Christensen

Christmas Lunch

Santa delivers in Chile!
Hello Family and Friends...

Christmas Breakfast!
I find that yet again some how we´ve been shortchanged on our email time... However thats okay. We were able to talk for an hour on the phone yesterday so I´m satisfied. Its been a great P day. We didn´t play soccer because my comp doesn´t have money to get to the plaza of Maipu. I was content to FINALLY just sit around all day and write... Listen to music... Hang out!! Enjoy my DESCANSO!! My REST!! Man it was really so nice yesterday to hear all of your voices! I can´t lie after 7 months of nothing verbal it was kinda weird to hear my own mom say.. HELLO. I´m also so happy that you guys got my package and that its all in decent shape! I know you love that marker on the back of the ties!! Just know that mine says the same! Merry Christmas tie 1 of 3! ;)

Its been a great Christmas.. When I started the mission I figured that Christmas here would be bland..Sad... Terrible... Yet... I LOVED IT!! I had my family in my heart the whole time.. I made our traditional breakfast too! Of course it didn´t turn out as good... I don´t have Dad´s talent to make hash browns and eggs or moms talent to burn the bacon... But hey it was still really good! Actually... A couple of times I FORGOT it was Christmas... I don´t really know how to explain it... You just get LOST in the work.. You start visiting people and you listen with love... You end up Forgetting that its the 25th of December... But I enjoyed it. I listen to SO much Mannheim Steamroller and Amy Grant that I´m sure even Dad would have been sick of it haha.

Mom remember what Hermana King said? About a white Christmas? We had one too! That Baptism we had on Sunday was SUCH a miracle... He just fell out of the sky one day and showed up at church... Now? He´s made covenants with our Father in Heaven and is on the happiest path that a person can find. THE TRUE PATH! I wanted to give you guys a challenge this week... I know you share about the gospel.... You´re all so smart! But... This week.. Share about the atonement... Share that there are 3 parts... The suffering in the Garden of Getseman√≠ ( I forgot how its spelled in english) The death on the cross, and the resurrection. Share with them... Mosiah 16:5... THERE IS NO REDEMPTION for the person who doesn´t take hold of the atonement........... Because our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ conquered death, EVERY SINGLE person here on this earth will too.. However.. If they do not accept the gospel, they will have NO redemption and will have to suffer for themselves what he suffered for us.. I know this gospel is true!! I know that the teachings we have... The principles and the ordinances we apply... HELP US! They keep us safe from satans fiery darts... And most of all.. I KNOW THAT I¨M DOING WHAT I NEED TO DO TO LIVE WITH MY FAMILY FOREVER. I´m so happy that we don´t have these problems like the people here in the mission do. I´m so grateful for Orem Utah. That I was able to start in the gospel and to get going early on in life... I love you guys so much. My family means the whole world to me. Thank you so much for the best Christmas ever. Keep on keepin on. Much Love, Elder Christensen


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas 2010 Poem

 A Missionary Christmas

I skipped the sales after Thanksgiving, the thrill just wasn't there.
No pictures taken with Santa Claus, my decorating has no flair.
His presents are shoes, shirts and ties, two suits and socks...no fun.
I've bought him all white clothes because….This year, I'm giving Christ my son.

I've spent more time in the temple, my testimony stirred.
I've reread November’s Ensign, felt strength come from His words.
I pray more frequently. My tears are quick to run.
Abraham seems closer because, this year I'm giving Christ my son.

I wonder how those Lamanite mothers gave their sons to war.
Or how the pioneers chose Zion, their sacrifice was so much more.
My loss will be his presence. I'll miss his smile a ton.
For two years I will pray for him, I'm giving Christ my son.

I stare at his face when he's not looking. I memorize his eyes, their shine.
He's always hungered for the part of him that makes his soul divine.
The stories and lessons he always heard, His choice and mine are one.
I'll put my faith in God's hand, this year, I'm giving Him my son.

Past gifts have lost their glitter; I think I finally understand.
Christ's birth should be celebrated by giving Him a hand.
It's because I know Christ lives and reigns, that all his packing's done.
My gift has taken years to make, this year...I'm giving Christ my son.

I know there’s One who understands, the sacrifice I’m making.
Who knows the gift I willingly give, the toll it will be taking.
For He has done it all before. Greater love—there could be none.
For years ago God gave to me, His only begotten son.

The hands I washed, the hands I held, the hands I taught to pray;
Now knock on doors to find the ones who will listen to what he’ll say.
Because I know Christ needs him, until all the gathering’s done.
My gift has taken years to make. This year…I’m giving Christ my son.

(Plus one very special daughter who is SO much more than a Plus one!

Author Unknown

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

12/21/2010 Hermana Christensen

Hermanas Park & Christensen

i literally cried yesterday morning when i opened up day 20. hermana adams and i just sat there crying, thinking of all the good we could do with that. we went to wally world (ha bro) today and got stuff for a family we dearly love. unbelievable. you are unbelievable.

and the headbands? i highly doubt i could've chosen better myself. NO JOKE! call kaylynn master!!
but seriously. thank you SO much. i cannot even... wow. i do not have words. i love you all so much. so so so much! i love my family! holy hannah!

what a week! yeah, dad you're right on. 75 year round in san diego my EYE. we literally cross a river to get the battalion. ha. it's been so dang rainy here but i have LOVED it! this morning we were soaked from head to toe as we ran around the state park and i looooooooooved it. half of me wanted to just lay down in the road and feel the water run over me... oh man, staish and i did that once, but we weren't missionaries then. gotta represent! anyway, it's been a straight up solid legit bomb week. ha, it's actually been pretty rough, but i mostly just remember having a dang good time. we had mte--aka president did a mini mind blowing sesh and then i got to go to our area with a trainer and let me tellllllll you--hands down the funnest day of my mission so far. i have a six pack from laughing so hard. and we saw TONS of miracles!! what in the world! heavenly father just loves His children. hardcore. so many miracles and little tender mercies all over the place. we've been caroling lots, and believe me when i say that caroling in spanish in the rain is the BEST. our himnos are all watery but we love it. we are happy! and let me tell you--i love the rama. i love them SO DANG MUCH! oh hey uber tm--a family in my ward (the marquez family) have a son serving in vegas... she showed me a picture of petie and i flipped. she was all teary; in sacrament they announced it and said (basically), "we send one missionary out and we get another one back!" or something, and everyone was just so touched by heavenly father's love in this small and simple yet telling way. how neat. anyway! tell peter to take GOOD care of him! what a stud. the world is so small! ------- i feel like i'm just exclaiming randomness (there's that word again! haha) all over this email and maybe you all have headaches now but that is partly because i am SO happy, another part because i get to talk to you in like .26 seconds, and i am SERIOUSLY JUST SO GRATEFUL FOR YOU. in all seriousness, i want you to know that i am seriously so thankful for where we are all and where we've all b3een and where/what we've come from. our family is where it is today because of the things we've faced and overcome. my heart is just so full of gratitude for you all! i love you so much!

(i know it's not reading. i love words but sometimes they just fall short. just know i love you!)

i hope this email has made even a poquito of sense. i'm sorry if my last week's email was uber triste aka desanimado what? i mean sad. ha! it's been a hard change, but it's been SO good and i already love the rama muchisimo. it's the best. i know heavenly father's got a plan for it and for us and that this just a little snippet of it. its neat being in such a fun little branch because we get to know everyone personally and deeply because EACH PERSON is important and plays a special role. but in reality, that's how it is everywhere--even in a ward of 900 people. i've been pulled in and filled up with love so fast there. i'm so grateful!

la vida. estoy tan agradecida. se que estoy donde Dios quiere que este y que El tiene planes para TODOS INDIVIDUALMENTE y que podemos tener toda la felicidad! yo se que nuestro salvador vive. ah, este tiempo del ano is BIEN HERMOSO! tengo tanto amor en mi corazon para ustedes y mi padre celestial.

les amo MUCHISIMO! hasta.... DOMINGO!! HOOORAH!

hermana christensen

ps thank the ward UBER! from hermana christensen. today my mail consisted of: gordy, heinz, johnson, holts. i have SO many people behind me and so much support. tell them thanks so much!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

12/20/2010 Elder Christensen

Hey I love you mom. I´m planning on this sunday at 6 o clock. Talk to tawny tomorrow.. If there is some problem CALL or get ahold of Elder Cummings IMMEDIATELY and let me know whats up... Maybe they would even let me call in the mission office.. Who knows... I´ll plan on coming to this little internet place sun at 6.. I´ll call the home phone.. Love you very much. gotta run. CIAOO!! Picture on the way!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

12/14/2010 Hermana Christensen

Hermanas Christensen & Adams
So i was told that border patrol has a stamp for latinos no mexicanos and its "otm: other than mexico." that's the distinction? ha ha.

HEYYYYYYYYYYY!  so hello there!

well, where do i begin? my heart is full. all is well.

i was transferred from chula my friends. and myyyyyyyyyyyyy oh my. ah. i'll spare you the drama, we all know what happens. ----- i absolutely loved my time there. it was beautiful. it was so full of feelings and love and hard work and GOOD people. i absolutely fell in love with the people; i learned very valuable lessons there, and I will be forever grateful that i got to start my mission there.

i'm in a spanish branch now. there are about 40 people in it. it is so different than chula. i think the lord is trying to remind me to rely more on him. i'm tryin! my new companion is sister adams--funny.. we've been out the same amount of time and we're total buds. it's a blasty being with her, and i know we'll see a lot of good come. we're tyring to making changes and really create super trust so we can build and strengthen the rama. it's like starting from scratch though. we're not really sure how to find new investigators, and there's a pilot program going on there where we don't knock doors. so basically it's down to the members. we're just going to get to work. i don't know what else to say.

i once asked sister story why everyone says the mission is hard. i'm realizing it's hard in ways i didn't expect... in the ways i least expected actually. leaving home was hard, leaving the mtc was hard, leaving my first area was hard, and i know that leaving this area will be hard, and it's all for the same reason:

the people.

this truly is the savior's work because it's all about LOVE. love love love. i feel such love for the people i have come to know over the past 6 months. i know that this is what it's all about.

the worth of souls is so great. i'm grateful to be here. onward ever onward.

i hope everyone is well and happy and stoked for the christmas. i love you all so much. i've felt and feel your prayers, this past week especially. thank you. thank you endlessly!

con amor,

la hermana christensen

Hermana Christensen in her Orem East Stake Virtue Scarf!

Monday, December 13, 2010

12/13/2010 Elder Christensen

How are you guys all doing? The reason why I´m sending an email like this is becuase nobody is responding!! Freak!!! But thats fine.... Its all part of the work of the Lord... We have struggles!! Elder Hernandez and I are doing great. We are working hard and getting along better than ever. Today we ate... Lasagna and completos for lunch.. SO HEALTHY!!! Also get this... Our neighbor gave me a recipe for cheesecake... EASY... and I made it.. It tastes SO yummo.. Then we are gonna put strawberry jam on top. I don´t know about you but I´m excited! As for the work... We had a few new families show up at the chapel this week and we´re hoping to be able to work hard with them and get them progressing! Mom I need a few things.... First... The moccassins I sent home from the MTC? I need them!! the reason I sent them home is because the inside was tearing out... So I wonder if you might be able to try and fix them/re-inforce both of them and send them here? I bought a pair of slippers that already are destroyed.... I can´t find another pair anywhere! So...If you can fix them and send them? I´d love you.... Look at the lining inside... Another thing... We´ve asked around here? And... things are closed up on the 24th and the 25th... So lets try to organize our conference call on the 26th to be the safest?? Sound good? Another thing.... I heard the Scorpions... I´m still lovin you the other day?? SO GOOD!! Just wanted to say that I love you all and that I´m working hard to do my best and find those chosen people who are ready to receive this gospel... keep praying for me and I´ll do the same for you.. I know that it is helping us be better people and begin the work of the Lord!! I don´t know where you all were but I hope we can talk next week. Enjoy the Christmas season!! Ciao!!
Your son and brother,

Elder Christensen

P.S... Remember I don´t want a ton of Book of mormon disks!! Just the one with lehis dream!! Love you all! CIAO!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

12/07/2010 Hermana Christensen


alllllllllllllllllllllllrighty. so guess what? justin woody LEGITIMATELY got BAPTIZED! Yep. And after his gpa did the ordinance of baptism, he literally swam out of the font. i mean it. he swam. he wanted to do it even though it was only like three feet deep. I know! Bless his heart. I'll include fots. ( ha. colb.)

Well hello. the baptism seriously was a special little event. It was done with the primary baptisms, so we didn't have to do too much planning--which was unusual--but it was perfect for justin to be baptized with kids his own age. His dad is coming back into activity and we really feel like Justin getting baptized is the key to all of them coming together and finding the happiness God wants every family to have. I really love the Woodys so much.

Transfers are tomorrow. Yep. I don't even know what's going to go down, but I can honestly say that I feel still. It's been so beautiful being in Chula with hermana historia for these past four months (somehow that long whaaaaaaa)--and I'm grateful. That ward is like home to me; I love the people there. I know if I get transferred it'll be a little rough, but es la vida. I'm here to find teach and baptize, so the sweet relaionships we've fostered with these people have got to take second place to my calling from the Lord. So.. I'll go where you want me to go, dear Lord. I'll let you know next week.

It's been freeeeeeezing here. seriously. it's a different kind of cold than utah.. it's like moist and so cold. funny that bro is dying in heat!

so the killpacks came in this past week.. twice! they are SO nice. thank you so much for the goodies!!! my goodness! i hope you enjoy the ornament. :) i'm so excited about it! that was a tm that shelb popped in for a second--somone had just barely given me that ornament! stick it proudly on the tree. :) a woman here made it.

at district meeting last week someone shared a story about a lady who got baptized and received her patriarchal blessing. it said that she would have been baptized 40 years earlier had the missionary accepted his call. THIS WORK IS SO IMPORTANT FOR THE LIVES AND SALVATION OF OTHERS!

I have an immediate assignment for everyone within hearing (sight) of my voice (words): Go and read "Candle of the Lord" by boyd k packer IMMEDIATELY. I read it this morning and my mind literally exploded. Not really, but it's sooooooooo good. So so so good. Please. Go and do. Like Nephi.

"Y ahora quisiera que fueseis humildes, que fueseis sumisos y dociles; faciles de persuadir, llenos de paciencia y longanimidad; siendo moderados en todas las coasa; siento diligentes en guardar los mandamientos de Dios en todo moment; pidiendo las cosas que necesiteis, tanto espirituales como temporales; siempre dando gracias a Dios por las cosas que recibis. y mirad que tengais fe, esperanza y caridad, y entonces siempre abundareis en buenas obras." alma 7:23-24. mosdef been a theme scrip as of late. i have been thinking SO MUCH about humility since i got to sanD. I feel like EVERYTHING comes back to humilty (or the lack thereof). and same with meekness--it's something i don't really understand, but i'm praying for it.

I LOVE this quote from Brigham Young. It's so neat that this historic site, with all the descendants of the mobat coming through, are direct fulfillment of this prophecy!

"Bretheren, you will be blessed if you will live for those blessings which you have been taught to live for. The Mormon Battalion will be held in honorable remembrance ro the latest generation; and I prophesy that the children of those who have been in the army in defense of their country, will grow up and bless their fathers for what they did at that time. And men and nations will rise up and bless the men who went in that battalion. These are my feelings in brief respecting the compnany of men known as the Mormon Battalion. When you consider the blessings that are laid upon you, will you not live for them? As the Lord lives, if you will be live up to your privileges, you will never be forgotten, without end, but you will be held in honorable remembrance forever and ever." -Brigham Young

Incredible. I love serving here. I have learned so much... it's so different than i thought it would all be, but i am profoundly grateful. I know that this is God's true church, again established on the earth, and that we really do have living prophets leading and guiding us today. I love the words of God, and am soooo grateful for the scriptures and for modern day revelation that bring me suuuch peace and comfort and guidance. I know that Heavenly Father has placed us all where we need to be, and that we pass through certain experiences for a wise purpose in Him. this is His work. He's involved. He's overall. I know it.

Life is beautiful. I love you all. I pray for you. Thank you for all you do. I hope you have a wonderful week! Hasta ver la proxima.

Hermana christensen

Christmastime at the San Diego Temple!