Saturday, July 30, 2011

7/30/2011 Elder Christensen

Hey everyone,
Well here I sit once again. Writing to all the people I love. I´ve been thinking a lot this week about conversion.. How we are ALL in the process of conversion.. I´ll get back to that one in a sec. This week we had interviews with President and Hermana King. I can honestly say that they were the BEST interviews I´ve had on my mission. THE BEST. I love those people so much honestly. President King is like... The smartest man ever and just makes me feel good as a missionary... When Sister King is just full of love for everyone and everything. What wonderful examples we have as mission presidents. Anyways, Sister King asked me a question that really got me thinking... She said... "What is the greatest lesson you have learned in your mission up to this point, and how is it going to help you to not return to your boat afterwards?" (Parable about returning to fish after Jesus asked the fisherman to leave their nets) I stewed about it.... and stewed about it... and came to this result... One of the greatest things that I have learned is what I call "The vision of constant progression." As missionaries we are ALWAYS supposed to be growing. If we get changed to a different sector, well... Its TIME to grow up and adjust to your surroundings... Or in other words PROGRESS. If we have to be leaders over other missionaries, we not only have to progress, but we have to HELP them progress.. We always have to be progressing and becoming better. That is now my idea on life.. we should ALWAYS have that same vision you know? The problem comes when people take their missionary plaque off. They suddenly think it´s okay to sin?? Or something?? I CANNOT DESCRIBE it. WE as missionaries have taken upon ourselves the higher law. Have have humbled ourselves to the dust. We understand what it is that we need to do to obtain eternal life... SO WHERE IN THE WORLD DOES THE SIN COME FROM. HOW CAN SOMEBODY GO INACTIVE!?!? How can somebody just... Take the plaque off and say... WHAT´RE YOU WAITING FOR? WHERES THE PARTY? It´s something that has never frustrated me more in my life before. I feel like in these modern days, the church is making US true converts to the church. Then, once we understand, we can help the rest of the world understand and pass through the same thing. So... How... having been special witnesses of Jesus Christ in faraway places... do we FORGET that... and better yet.. WHY!?!?!? Anyone who does that simply doesnt understand the doctrine. They just left on a two year vacation and didn´t learn anything. It is so important that we are always progressing... because once we´re not.. we´re either going nowhere or we´re moving backwards. Whichever one, THATS NOT FOR ME. I hope we as members of this marvellous church understand this.. It´s so simple.. You can not get sick of the church.. You can not ever understand all of the scriptures. You can´t EVER get to a point where you are fine. There is ALWAYS something we can do. I want everyone reading this to please just understand it. I mean honestly where in the process of conversion do we stop growing? Is it when we get lazy? Is it when we think we are better than the commandments? Is it when we let the natural man take ahold of us? THESE ARE THE LAST DAYS PEOPLE. You just put your seatbelt on. The rollercoaster ride just started. Why take off the seatbelt when you KNOW whats waiting for you down below? It´s something that I just don´t get... So... The vision of constant progression is for us. We need it to really keep up the momentum that we have gained up to this point. That is what will help me to NOT return to my boat. To NEVER go back to who I was or change for the worse. If we let Christ take ahold of our lives and submit ourselves to his will through our obedience... We already know that that is a sturdy foundation. I could be a bankrupt man with NOTHING and still be happy.. Because I get it. The message is clearrrrrrrrrrrr. Obedience=Blessings. Disobedience=TEMPORAL JOY and false dreams. That is when satan takes ahold of us with his chains and we fall off the rod into the darkness. I honestly feel like I cannot describe myself through words in an email. I can´t. What I feel now is something that no man can give me. What no earthly item can lend me.. It´s a feeling of sadness.. a feeling of... maybe anger I don´t know.. God has granted me knowledge. He has granted me a testimony. He has shown me the way and said... My son..... the path is set.. Follow it and you will surely succeed. To those of you who as well see the path but are choosing to NOT follow it... Shame on you. Understand who you are. Understand WHY you are. The definition of repentance is so amazing and I love it.... " A change made in the heart of a person and their way of thinking. Which entails adopting a new attitude regarding God, ones self, and ones life in general." Think of your weapons of war. Think of something you are doing or maybe that you are NOT doing that is against what the Lord has commanded us to do. Then repent. Make a change. Choose to dedicate yourself to this work and this way of life. I love each and every one of you so much. I want the best for everyone. That is why this MUST be clear. I won´t ever forget what I told Sister King.. Why? Because I am going to be putting it in practice every day for the rest of my life. I want each of you to please do the same. Help those around you to understand the true and full doctrine of Jesus Christ. EVERY member a missionary. The mission is going great. We are still busy and working hard here in the office. We are all just worrying about those around us who are maybe taking the commandments a little lightly. Who are maybe putting themselves in front of God and his commandments. And that........ Scares me. We are the elect. We are members and representatives of Christ´s church. So lets act like it. I love you all and hope you have an excellent week. Until next time,

Elder Christensen

One picture no mas...

We ordered 32 pizzas for a meeting. Sweet one right?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

7/26/2011 Hermana Christensen

welllllllllllll well well! happy 26th everyone! can you believe it's already come again? best days.

want to give a quick shout out to kaylynn: HAPPY BDAY SISTA!!!!!!!!!!!! HOPE IT'S BALLIN!

It is an exciting time! we're having some mid transfer changes! president and sister clayton's daughter was set apart as a missionary and she's paired up with a battalion sister and they are going to open an area RIGHT BY THE BORDER. i'm so excited for them! and becuase it's just a three week thang, they're going to be shacking with us. PARTY! it's going to be a blasty! can't wait. i love my life.

okay. so lets just get real. how was everyone's pioneer day. what better way to spend it than AS a pioneer?! haha. i just feel so incredibly grateful (for so many things! but especially) to have such incredible heritage of pioneers and modern day pioneers. I just feel so proud. so proud. but. pioneer day was so good. we were at the battalion (honoring our antepasados!) and then we had a SICK stake party at the park right by our stake center. an hour before the picnic started there was an activity for the primary kids with like butter shaking and making, quilting, etc. and guess what the rama was in charge of? straight up tortilla making. hahaha i'm pretty sure that wasn't a part of the story but you know our stake loves mexicans and their incredible talents to make unbelievably rica food. and it was a hit! they'd even brought rice and beans to top off the homemade corn tortillas. haha. it was the best. but actually only the second best because my rama did not fail to amaze me with their love. we invited one of our new investigators who is friends with the sweetest member who is one of the most incredible women ever. (he member is dora medina and she is the mexican version of joan. she's so faithful. she walks and rides buses to church and the temple. she's been working on this friend of hers forever and she's finally coming around. we added her last week as an investigator and hna medina gave me a HUUUGE hug and had tears in her eyes. she gets it. and her friend's GONNA GET BAPTIZED i just know it!) ANYWAY. they came to the party and the rama... words cannot describe what happened. they just, they literally surrounded her and made her feel SO WELCOMED and SO LOVED. it was stunning. by the end of the party she'd invited several people over to make deeeelcious dominican food (hopefully us too! hah) and they were all just long lost friends and family. my words don't even do the situation justice. it was just... it was so neat. these people understand the gospel and the need to share it and how to make others feel loved. they are SO good at what they do. and they are examples for me and for everyone. i will forever be different for serving in such a celestial branch!

our baptism and confirmations fell through. we have been down about it, not gonna lie. satan little s is attacking these people from all angles right when they're so ready. one of our investigator's husbands just won't, WILL NOT, let her get baptised. he's catolico until he dies. and she WANTS to get baptized. so we're praying for a softening of several hearts in that familia. pray for miracles. i KNOW that heavenly father wants them to get baptized. and He WILL provide the way!

sunday. we went over in the morming to despertar an investigator so she and her less active mother could partake of the sacrament, but she wouldn't get up. we got to the church and president morgan greeted us and could tell instantly that something was wrong. i promptly burst into tears (it had all just piled up, you know? so many good people, so much potential, so much falling through. breaking my heart!). he held and patted my hand and said, with tears brimming in his eyes, "it's no wonder that as you are called to represent Jesus Christ, you feel what He feels." and i did feel a tiny portion of that... ouch, that... that loss that... disappointment, that hurting and aching for these people. yearning for them to change and feeling broken because they wouldn't. i.... I feel so grateful. I feel so grateful to be given this chance to represent Him in some small way because it helps me understand the worth of every soul. i feel like that's my quest.. to understand that. the worth of EVERY SOUL IS GREAT. Anyway. Ah. it ended up working out; one of our investigators that vanished into the depths of tj reappeared after a month, and the girls house that we were at that morn and her mom showed up JUST as the priests were covering the bread and switching over to water, but presidente morgan told them to take the sacrament to our investigator and her mom personally. wow. it was just tears of joy at that point. i will never forget when the meeting got started and our numbers were few and i was feeling so sad when in walked investigators and their family and members and their non member friends and hna lewis said, "redemption!" haha. it truly was. i feel like I physically CAN'T get sad for too long because heavenly father just LOVES to bless me!

the work is rolling forth. it is the best thing ever. i am so thankful to be here. i am happier than ever before. i want this time to never end. and i know it won't because i'll forever remember what i've learned here. and these people! oh, i love them! and i cannot wait to enjoy the eternities with them in the mansions of our father. until then, we will all continue, enlisted in the cause of truth. may we all press on and press forward!

i love you! get those profiles finished! set a deadline and DO IT! we saw a miracle using two of them yesterday to ENGLISH MEMBERS so don't act like i don't need YOU to do it because i was called spanish and am serving in a spanish branch. NOT TRUE. i need you more than you know and i need you to do it NOW.

mi amor

hermana christensen

ps. oh yeah. elder ballard is coming on saturday. no big deal. he's just our mission president's wife's dad. whaaaaaaa?

JILLIAN FRITZ IF YOU ARE READING THIS ASDLKFJAL;SDKFJA;LSDFN;ASLKDFJ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i about BURST with your letter today! i actually cried, literally tears! i am SOOOOO HAPPY FOR YOU!!!!!!! CONGRATS GIRL!!!!!!!

joan bourne glad i heart you! sue sent pictures and you look beautiful! thank you for smiling! i'm praying for you!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

7/23/2011 Elder Christensen

NEW COMPANION!!!!! Dream completed!
Subject: Letter July 23..

Generic letter subject title? I think so! WHEW so ya.. Changes are oficially OVER. Supppppper stressful and full week that happens every change. This one was by far the most difficult out of all of them though. Every change we have to send home those missionaries who have finished honorably as well as pick up those missionaries arriving. This time, the group leaving was extremely.... Well.... Ready to leave lets say. It made me really sad actually. They always sleep in our apartment the night before just because we have to go to the airport early. But out of the ten missionaries that left, I would very easily say that 6 of the 10 were already there in their minds... One of them was my old companion... To be honest though it drained me. Being around these missionaries who have already forgotten about their SACRED calling. A few have been my leaders as well and the change in them was OBVIOUS. We just had to separate ourselves from them and keep our heads in the game. We got to bed around like 12am.. At 12:30 the assistants got a call because a sister missionary had a seisure and needed to be in the ER immediately. They were gone in a split second and we were all still worried and wide awake. With it all said and done I would say that we were in bed falling asleep at 1am. At 3:30 (!), we got up and got ready to leave. Even the hot water from the shower didn´t seem to wake me up. We were in the airport by about 4:45am waiting in line to both check the missionaries in and weigh their luggage. WOW THIS WAS SICK THOUGH! Elder King (Taylor King mom, The one who went to the Manti Temple with us) is the secretary for the Chile Santiago North Mission. WE RAN INTO EACH OTHER AT THE AIRPORT! Wow... None of us had a camera except for Elder King´s companion. He took a SICK pic of Elder Poulsen, King, and I. I still don´t have it though. I hope he doesn´t forget to get it to me! I just thought that was AMAZING to see a good friend off in the boonies in Chile. After the whole airport shinanigains, we went home and slept for 2 hours before going to the change conference. There, we picked up Elder Monsen and were OFF to the MTC here in Chile to pick up the new missionaries. There are 16 new missionaries total.. Including 3 from the USA. The rest are from various places around the world. These Elders are SO ready to just rip apart the WORLD with this gospel we are sharing! It was such a huge difference the spirit in those leaving the mission from those coming in now. They have the fire and I´m really excited for them. After that, we were OFF once again to President King´s house to train them. All this fancy shmancy stuff about visas and chilean currency. It´s always a blast to be at the mission home though. I love it every time.

Despite our business we managed to get out into the sector a couple times. We had one cita with a family that struggles with the Sabbath Day. They have had some really big trials and they wonder why.... They do many of the things that are hard for any member of the church and they aren´t even MEMBERS! They fast all the time, pray, have FHE, they are SUPER faithful and wonderful people. But the church attendance lesson is what God wants them to learn. We layed it down on the table. IF YOU DON´T GO TO CHURCH, GOD WILL NOT HELP YOU. PERIOD. Done. End of Story. We were all in tears afterwards when we gave them blessings of comfort and left. It was amazing. I don´t know if I´ve ever said this but sometimes when you´ve been in the office for like 3 days straight, you feel spiritually weak.. So it feels AMAZING afterward when the spirit´s presence is obvious. I have learned so much about teaching with power in the office. Your words need to be heartfelt... Since I get out in the sector for like 3 hours at a time, the things I say and the things I do are crucial. I´ve grown to LOVE the power we have as missionaries to just... Call the spirit to where we are. I´ve noticed it recently especially.

Well I have to wrap up so let me finish with some thoughts for YOU mom. About your lesson for RS these upcoming weeks. We just so happened to have a SICK talk in our ward from a member about how to make ourselves true disciples of Christ.. Here are a few little things I jotted down for you. They are in blue.... " The true meaning of conversion is to ACCEPT the will of God in all things and DO it." ....... "The natural man can be put off and born again through Jesus Christ and the principles of his restored gospel"............ "While we become true disciples of Christ our example helps others to do the same.".......... "Those who KEEP MY LAW will be called my servant. Those who are not obedient have no place on my side" ............. John 8:31-32 If you persevere in the word of God, you will be his disciples. You will know the truth and it will set you free.... 3 Simple reasons to become disciples of Christ... 1.) To Change our lives. 2.) To be spiritually healed 3.) To progress and help others achieve eternal life.

This guy gave a KILLER talk. I was so impressed by his power as well as the perfect timing of his topic. I hope these thoughts can help you somewhat in your lesson. Okay everyone. I LOVE YOU tons. Its been a great week. Busy but great. All is well. I couldn´t be happier than I am and I hope that you all feel the same. I only attached two pics but they are SWEET! This... is our NEW addition to the office. ELDER MONSEN. BOOM! So sick. Have a great week.

Elder Christensen

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

7/19/2011 Hermana Christensen

we went to the pier last week and it was stuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuunning!
the sweetest part was when sister park showed up and we passed a
 sweet rato juntas. sure love her!!! (here are your pics sissy. love you!!!)
are you anxious or what?!!!!!!

haha. we're staying. BALLIN!!!!!! LA MESA IS THE BIZZLE!!!! sinseriously loving my time here. sista lewis and i feel like the luckiest misioneras on all the planets in the infinite cosmos because we recognize what a celestial branch we have and HOW MUCH POTENTIAL there is in la mesa. holy hannah. so yeah! yay! staying! :)

it's been a beautiful week. but aren't they all?! i seriously looooooooove being a missionary! can i just tell you about yesterday? well, we had interviews with president, which was
wonderful. and then we OH WAIT. okay okay back up. so on sunday night we were winding down on time and we prayed about where to go; we had two ancient investigadores that we could've gone to. hna lewis felt like we should try felipe. so off we went and no one was freakin home. we'd driven out to the boons for that brown person (our area is way spread out because there is a super low density of latinos) and we were feeling all frustrated but (of course!) it was NOT in vain. as we were leaving, hurrying back to our car because groups of black people were yelling out to us (i feel like this is all sounding so very racist) and we thought our chastity was at stake... then a girl called out to us from out smoke cloud--"sisters!" ah! turns out she's a lost sheep needing to be rescued... hasn't been visited in over seven months and is super less active. she started crying as we told her that GOD HAD SENT US THERE FOR HER. she said the sweetest prayer and we set up a time to come back the next day (yesterday. gestern. ayer). sooo yesterday after entrevistas, we headed over there to her house, read that AMAZING talk from e perry from conf about sacrament and the sabbath and then invited her to church. quickie. she then went on an hour rant about why she doesn't go to church and how the profeta is evil and all this stuff and we were BLOWN AWAY. i have NEVER heard anyone say that anytime they look at the prophet they see an evil person... wow... but, through the spirit, we were able to ask some inspired qs and found out that she's tooootally against prop 8. and that was all part of her speal... and we sat there. and then. i don't know what happened but i felt the spirit PULSING out of me and i kinda rebuked her! kinda? ha. IT HAPPENED and it was hardcore. we brought EVERYTHING back to whether or not the church is true. WHO CARES about prop 8 or WHO CARES about what those people are doing and then blessing the sacrament WHO CARES what he or she calls you or how you got offended... the ONLY thing that matters is IF IT IS TRUE and if it is (AND MILLIONS KNOW THAT IT IS!!!) then YOU NEED TO GET BACK TO THE ORDINANCE OF THE SACRAMENT!!! the spirit was strong and she was quiet. we prayed and left and she texted us later saying she'd gone to see the bishop and feels much better. we will see what happens. but THEN. we were able to meet up with a member who isnt used much in the obra misional for some odd reason.. i have a real strong tug towards this guy... i love him a ton and, even though he's kinda vain and vulgar, i love his guts. he's got a way strong testimony of the restored gospel. so we took him over to an investigator's house that we haven't seen in aeons and guess what? MILAGRO!!! both the ma and the pa were in home! they wouldn't let us in, but we stood on the porch and talked about the wise man and the rock and the house that stayed and how the truth and what they are looking for is KNOCKING ON THEIR DOOR (LITERALLY!!!). then the member bore his testimony and did it SO perfectly so the husband could see that religion isnt' just for girls, and it was amaaaaaaaazing! but then, at the end, they still weren't interested. and it broke my heart! broke! ripped! destroyed! i could not believe it! even after allllllll that--even after how amazingly strong the spirit was and how perfect the situation was and how OBVIOUS it was--they STILL weren't interested? i'm tellin you. feeling this tiny portion of heavenly father's love for people makes me wonder how He does it. how does He take the rejection? how? and then! we got lost but were suuuper close to another antiguo investigador so we dropped by and knocked her door and found a skinny white guy with his shirt off. wrong. so she'd moved, but they guy was an exmormon. and he was ADAMANT that it's not true. he said he "figured it out" when he was 13 that the church wasn't true and he hoped we'd figure it out soon. i was STUNNED by his flagrant disregard for what we said and for how SURE he was that it wasn't true... it baffled me and i had no words. and it LITERALLY hurt me. like... hurt my heart! so we walked back and got into the car and i knew i hadn't done my job... so i asked sis lewis if we could go back and throw down a little. so we did. and i looked him straight in the eye and handed him a card that says, "is there more to life than this?" and i told him, through tears!, that THERE WAS. sis lewis was so bold and told him there IS A GOD and that we are happier than we've EVER been and that he could have that same happiness too! he was taken aback by our boldness but didn't care. he kept saying, 'that's great. that's great" but kept his stiff neck held high. i begged him to remember that incident when he went looking--REALLY LOOKING--for the truth. he didn't say anything and we walked away. and it felt better. i read alma 30 today and was so incredibly impressed with how the anticristo was handled. alma let him talk, he let him get his garbage out of his system, and then he THREW DOWN! "there IS a God! do not tempt me or him because you've had signs ENOUGH. everything testifies of Him!" i want to be like alma. what a solid missionary who didn't worry about doing anything but what the father wanted. what a diligent, bold, daring, brave, FORWARD missionary. there was no wondering! but there was love. and i love that about alma. anyway, after that whole thing with mike we met lyn, a female racecar driver, then tried to find a few people who don't exist, then had a WAY intesnse convo with a less active who basically told us that she knows she's going to come back to church but doens't want to yet because she felt restricted growing up. i read THAT in alma 30, too. people think the church raises us to be "ignorant" or "naive" or whatever it may be. so far from the truth. anyway, it was a huge milestone in her journey and we are going to help her every step of the way. people just have to lay aside their dumb carnal desires (like worrying about prop 8 or not wanting to give up coffee or bringing up blacks and the priesthood or polygamy) and just focus on the TRUTH and what God wants them to do. and He wants them to participate in ordinances necessary for salvation. if you're not going to church, GO BACK. if you're not baptized, GET BAPTIZED. if you haven't entered the temple and you should've, GO TO THE TEMPLE. it's so simple. life is one straight, direct, narrow course back to Heavenly Father. we are the ones that make it complicated. SO UNCOMPLICATE IT!

that was one day in my life as a missonary. i love this. i love love love love LOVE it. and love doesn't even describe it! I LOVE being here. what a blessing. not even a sacrifice at all. so many blessings. so much happiness. no words.

thank you for your support and your love. i love you all. will you please continue to take out the clutter of life and uncomplicate things and return to the sweet and simple?

hermana christensen

I just need everyone to be knowing something. no longer will you need to worry about me always taking long showers. even though my hair is five feet longer somehow my showers are 26 times shorter. i'm down to three minutes. soo... yeah. believe it.

it's been awhile since i've given my shout out... on sunday i flipped open the ensign while eating lunch at the battalion and i saw "by small and simple things...!" haha. and i (of course) thought of all of you. YEP. that is STILL something that the church wants all of us to do! i know it's a pain but will ya please do it? paaaaleeeeeeaaaase!

so this chair was at a famous ice cream place we've heard of for three transfers and finally went. um? sit at your own risk? haha. obesity!!!!!

ps. this week we're focusing on the christlike attribute of patience. it's AMAZING. seriously. i think this is such a good habit to get into, trying to develop a different christlike attribute. so i wanted to incite all of you to do the same!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

7/16/2011 Elder Christensen

Captain Moroni balla!
This week I don´t feel like I have a ton to say... Kinda like Hermana said last week. I have one really great experience to share though.. GO!

Yesterday night Elder Speakman and I only had one cita planned. It was with an investigator that we´ve had for awhile now. They have had various doubts but up til now they have been resolved. Yesterday we planned briefly and decided that we would teach them about la vida eterna. Just something short and simple you know.. We started out talking about that... the lady began to launch all kinds of questions at us. She had read all of 2 Nefi 9 and really wanted answers about that.. After awhile we got over to the topic repentance.. How it is SO necessary... We had to explain really what it was and how one can actually DO IT. I prayed in my head several times during that cita that we could have the spirit with us... That we could teach with unity... That SHE could understand and really feel the truth of what we were teaching. After that we got over to baptism.. She started asking about other churches... as well as talking about tons of other forms of baptism. So, RIGHT THERE we cut from baptism to authority... We talked all about the Priesthood.. What it is. Who has it. Why we have it. How we can use it. After thoroughly explaining all of that, we jumped RIGHT back to baptism.. After talking for about ten seconds, she cut us off.. She said that she understood it all perfectly. My companion put her to the test and said... "Alright then, if you understand, how many baptisms are there?" She thought... then she said. Well.. There are many baptisms.. But there is only ONE that is correct. Oh it felt so good to hear those words. SO good. I just wanted to share that because it was honestly one of the best lessons I´ve been able to be a part of.. At first it seemed rocky.. the spirit really wasn´t there.. but then we just hit a home run honestly. I loved the feeling we had leaving that house. Honestly amazing. The spirit lead us to all those different topics and FILLED our mouths.. This person was touched by the spirit and in turn understood what she needs to do. She still cant be baptized because she isn´t married... But at least now she knows without doubt.

I´m runnin out of time. It´s been a great pday. The mission is honestly the best thing ever. I feel like the Lord continues to mold me and help me to see even more clear with every day that goes by. The path is set. It´s now up to us to use our agency and follow it. Its a SUPER easy principle to understand but it´s really hard to apply. Lets make ourselves more like the savior. Lets become his disciples. I´ve got so much animo and I´m looking forward to another week of hard work here in Santiago. I hope you can all find something in your lives to better. To build up. There HAS to be something. Nobody is perfect. Remember the basics... Scriptures.. Prayer... Service... Journal Writing... Church attendance... You fill in the gaps with other things that make you become more like Jesus Christ. Before you know it you will be changed. That´s how it works. There are changes this week so we´re gonna be busy bees!! I´ll talk to you all next Saturday. Thanks for everything! Much love,

Elder Christensen

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

7/12/2011 Hermana Christensen

some 4th of july action at the battalion.
I'm not even really sure where to begin seen as how tomorrow is JULY 13TH. no words. absolutely unbelievable. this transfer has flown by! even though it was a week longer because of the change, it still feels so short! and then this next transfer just being five weeks... what is going on?! but. with each passing day i love my mission MORE AND MORE!!!!!

i don't really have anything huge to report on. hm, no. nada mucho. just a few thoughts i guess.

i'm not entirely sure how it's happened, but somehow, during the course of my misson, i've become quite scatterbrained. i feel like i used to be really organized and on top of stuff... but lately i've been losing EVERYTHING. and like.. important stuff. stuff that's made me ache. stuff that's important to me. stuff that i've used my whole mission. it's upsetting. on sunday i lost a really important folder where i keep all of the legit papers for all the battalion sisters and schedules, etc. oh and my planner. you bet. my transfer planner. lost. anyway, that night i went to bed just feeling so... so so so sad (it sounds dramatic but you know it's a culmination of a LOT of things, but you also know that stuff is pretty important). i got into bed and of course couldn't sleep--what's new. but as i was just chilling there forever, i could literally feel my heart change. like, i felt this shift where i knew that heck, sure, it was a let down that i'd lost all that stuff, but the work was going to roll forth and i was going to keep breathing. ha. i remember distinctly thinking, "as long as i've got my libro de mormon, mi predicad mi evangelio, my nametag w/bro's sticker on the back, my testimony and my companion... i was going to be okay. and then i fell asleep. it made me think about my pbless where it says, "continue to place your highest priorities and emphasis in your life upon those things which are eternal and which will continue with you beyond this life. this includes.... worry less about the things of this world which will be left behind when you are called to leave." so let's all just re-evaluate. what are the things we are focusing on that really aren't 100% essential? lets focus on the weightier matters. bottom line: it was a reality check and a blessing for me to see what REALLY matters.

and i love this work. so much.

our area is so bangin. i seriously love la mesa. we will see what happens tomorrow, but cross your dedos that i'm in it for the long haul. we'll see what the Lord wants. it's been an interesting week. we found out one of our less actives is a prostitute. um? shes like... not real skinny. no one is knowing. i just don't want to believe it. ignorance is bliss. also. ready for the milagro? okay. have i ever told you that la mesa doesn't get referrals? like.... zero. zip. nada. null. cero. haha okay but seriously. there just aren't a lot of brown people. but so last week we were up at the temple doin work and these two cute ladies came up and we offered to take their picture. the older littler cuter one came over to me and said,"hermana soy miembro pero soy inactiva..." aka sista i'm an inactive member. and then she started crying as she held onto me for support. it was like this instant connection with this adorable woman from venezuela; she told me about her life--not sparing any details, as you can see from how open she was with me from the get go--and about how she wants to come back to church. so we told her we could easily help her with that and asked where she lived. "en la mesa" she said. and then it was my turn to cry because i knew we had this connection and this instant bond and love for a reason. :) to make a long story short, she did come to church on sunday and she LOVED it, and she's probably coming to dinner and the battalion with ustonight. :) BUT. the thing is that we added her daughter as an investigator, who is also awesome and PURCHASED (unnecessary!!!!!) a libro de mormon from the temple because she wants to read it. we had a lesson with the two and talked about the sacrament and it was powerful and beautiful and then the daughter prayed. it was too good to be true! as we walked out to our car she kept talking about her girlfriend and i said, just to be sure because she couldn't possibly be talking about THAT, "oh so just one of your good friends?" and she said, "no my girlfriend, my wife, my lover." ___________. ay ay ay. but she DID come to church on sunday. so. we're not reeeeeeeeally sure how to handle the whole thing, but we'll just go for it.

we have four investigators with a baptismal date. four. that's great but it's also so sad because NONE of them are progressing. one of them even told us she'd only committed to do it because she knew it would make us happy. ouch. big time. huge time. eternal time. YOU DON'T GET IT!!!! so that's been a little discouraging, mosdef has kept me up until the wee hours thinking about how on EARTH we can get these wonderful souls to GET IT. so i'll keep you posted. this morning we read this part in the manual misional that says, "you and your comp are assigned to a specific proselyting area. you represent the lord in this area and are responsible for obtaining His direction in carrying out your assignment and blessing the people there." it was like i'd never read it before... it hit me so hard and was like this chastisement for being too prideful and not relying on the Lord enough to do His work by His way in His area as His representative. I feel like EVERYTHING IN MY LIFE comes back to pride and humility. i think Heavenly Father is trying to tell me something......!

So. bottom line for that. Like you said Kristen (and i'm mosdef going to gather some thoughts about the disciple lesson!) we are ALL disciples of Christ! We have taken HIS name upon us (being baptized) and then we made covenants in La Jolla (what president donaldson always said..aka the temple)... and so we have a responsibility to DO HIS WORK IN HIS WAY IN HIS AREA NO MATTER WHO OR WHERE WE ARE!!! we are ALL disciples! so THINK aobut that one and lets depend on Him more!

Humility.. that's what it's all about.

Well, I love you. I got emails from many of you and i can't wait to read em. I feel like i am the most blessed human being int he world... plus the fact that i'm a missionary andi have your support and your love and your blessing and your ... everything. i love you. willy, i hope you get feelin better. what a blessing that you are okay!

love you all. sigan freakin adelante even though the storms are a ragin. remember the weightier matters and to depend upon the Lord this week. capeesh?

mucho amor

hermana christensen

joan b glad. i hope your place has a WAY COMFY COUCH FOR ME!!!!!!!! love you dearly!!!!

at mission bay... we taught a LESSON THERE!!!! that's the ocean!
 hahahha my life is such a joke! how BEAUTIFUL IS THAT?!!!
sassar. i loved your letter. only read the first part of it but i can't wait to read it. and freakin youd better BELIEVE i'll be writing back don't you DARE tell me not to! LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

7/9/2011 Elder Christensen

Us with Carlos before his baptism
Here we go again. Somehow its pday and I´m doing email again! Woo! Its been a busy busy one though.. Lots of time in the office this week. We have a bunch of new missionaries coming in this change so we have a lot to get done before they actually get here. We DID have a baptism last week though! I will attach pictures no worries. This is Carlos. The kid I told you was SUPPPERRR prepared.. It was a really happy day for all of us. There was as well an 8 yr old girl named Raiza who got baptized that same day so we had a pretty good turnout. We´re really excited about Carlos and his future in the church.

Also, our recent convert Ximena is getting her patriarchal blessing today! WOW! Amazing how fast people can progress. She´s already got a calling as well. The Lord really does choose his chosen children. Love it.

Today we went bowling with the Kings for a Pday activity. Way fun. Come to find out the President does WORKKK bowling like a 185 and a 175 back to back. Super good. Just a POWER HOUSE. He used like a 16 weighted ball haha. It was a lot of fun.

The office crew at the Bowling Alley!
 Well.. I wish I had more to say but the truth is that it doesn´t even feel like a week has gone by. I´m just glad to know that you´re all okay and healthy. Especially Dad after having his "Procedure" Haha. Gotta respect that one. Though it is a short letter, I have attached a decent amount of pics. So don´t be too mad. We should be really busy again with this week being the last full one before changes. Crazy where the time goes. I expect to be here on my computer for a fair amount of it! The gospel is true. It is the best. Everyone can change their life... Everyone can find the peace they need as well as the solutions to this lifes problems. I´m grateful to be blessed with such amazing friends and family. I know I say that a lot but I can NEVER say it too much. I hope you guys all have a great week. Keep trying to find more and more ways to keep the spirit with you. Let it be your guide in all of your dealings as well be an example to the rest. Take care, Elder Christensen


My companion and I at our 4th of July Grill! Sick!

Ellie, Sister King and I

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

7/5/2011 Hermana Christensen "Happy 4th"

to my dearest darlingest familia.

shorty today.

i hope all of you are well and fighting the good fight.

it's been a good week. bullet points, shall we?

• we got our new mission president--president and sister clayton. they are woooooooonderful. i love the donaldsons, but they really stressed the need with us of switching out loyalty fully over to the claytons. it's been hard, but i LOVE the claytons. so much. so so so much. they are amazing. they are so humble. they are meek. they are smart. they are selfless. they are caring--about the ONE. they are here in this grand labor of love with their whole heart on the line. i feel like they are more parental figures... they just treat us more like their children. they love us and worry about us and are there for us. and they have the keys. so we're excited to get to know them more and keep going forward in the work. :)

• president clayton asked us to read jacob 5 and put ourselves in the position of the servant. as i did this, i was struck by how many times the lord of the vineyard says, "let US." let us. the Lord is working with us in this, here, His vineyard. Why do i not depend on Him more? it's His work! i love how He gives the servant specific directions about where to go and when and what to do--to dig, to prune, to hew down, to wait... he says "spare it a little longer..." He's involved in the details and knows what's best for our specific part of the vineyard. and he cares. He cares SO much. you can just feeeeeeeeel the master's aching when he says, "what more could i have done for my vineyard?" ah. but He tells the servant to work with Him and to be diligent and keep all the commandments so that the vineyard can prosper and bring forth fruit. it was so valuable. and I would like to invite all of you to read it and put yourselves in the position of the servant. will you?

• on sunday, we were able to eat dinner in our own apartment (that never happens. we normally don't eat or eat pretzels in the car or something). but this day we were able to make a dinner and eat it in our apartment before heading out. as we crossed the street there was a lady waiting at the crosswalk and we asked if she was headed into the mormon battalion; she said that she didn't speak english. so sis lewis asked if she spoke spanish, and it was like this sigh of relief came out of her when she realized she could communicate with us. she told us that she was lost--she'd gotten separated from her family in old town, and, because it was sunday and the weekend of a holiday and old town was super busy, she couldn't find them .she was shaking and was so scared and nervous.. and she had no cell phone and couldn't remember anyone's phone number. so we stood there with her, trying to decide what to do, and turned out she did have someone's phone number and i called them and found out they were relatively close, so we walked with this lady, elpidia, over to them. she was SO grateful that we had come to her aid. she said she'd been praying that someone would come and help her, and that was right when we walked out of our apartment. wow. don't worry, we got her info and we're going to send her a bom, but it was just the neatest thing to know that we really were her angels, and we really were guided and directed to help HER specifically at that time, this sweet, gentle daughter of God who really was lost! and we helped her. i still love being a missionary. nothin better.

• 4th of july already? unreal. i remember last year like it was yesterday. freaking mtc ... they kept us encarcelated so we wouldn't hear the stadium of fire but we got to watch the fireworks... oh it was sooo fun! and last night we got to be at the battalion and watch the fireworks on coronado island from the tower... and then we took smores into the "campfire" room and sing patriotic songs and just have a blasty altogether being so grateful for our country and our freedoms, especially the freedom to preach the gospel.

• la mesa is amazing. we have several people who are preparing for baptism and it's so blissful. that area is thriving. there is so much potential. we will now officially meet n the cultural hall every week-=-it's growing so much! and sister lewis is doing wonderfully and soaking up the pilot program and all is well. and next week is transfers. we'll see what's up. no clue. just happy and grateful and excited for whatever may come my way.

i love you. i'm thankful for your support. i'm praying for you.

hermana christensen

Saturday, July 2, 2011

7/2/2011 Elder Christensen

Elder Poulsen, Jorgensen, and I at the Bowling alley last week!
Hey there everybody! It´s been another superrr fast week. Not really sure how the time went by like that. Once again! It´s like Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Saturday again. The in betweens don+t really exist I don´t think.

I don´t really have a ton to say today actually. One really cool thing. We have our Baptism tomorrow! Carlos! We´re all so excited because as I have explained recently, he was definately prepared from before. It´s awesome how the Lord works and just has people ready to make covenants.

Elder Monsen and I sporting our sick ties mom! Nice work!
We´ve been working a lot on trying to get two less active ladies to bury their weapons of war already and turn their WHOLE soul over to the Lord. We went by last night and read Thomas S. Monson´s talk last conference about temples with them. It was JUST right for them. It talks all about how we must change our lives and stop ANYTHING that would keep us from being worthy to enter into the temple. It´s one of satans tricks to slither into our lives... Through music, movies, and other forms of entertainment. Once we think it´s okay to do certain things, we are already slowly being blinded by the adversary... Just like these two ladies though! They are such sweet people. We LOVE to go there honestly... We see them as having SUCH great potential... yet they hold themselves back because they dont WANT to lay down the habits of their fathers. Its SO sad. The prophet has said... As members, the GREATEST blessing that the church has to offer us come from temple worthiness and attendance. It should be our HIGHEST goal to not only go, but to maintain ourselves worthy to do so. It´s SO clear my goodness.

I honestly love what I am doing..... I have said a couple times that while helping others, I have been strengthened overall.. I know that to be true. I find that I can see the spiritual side of things and continue to do what the Lord wants me to do. I hope we can all maintain that vision.

Me in a sweet reflection pool outside of our apartment. Looks like Chile! haha!
I´m grateful for all of you and for all that you have done for me. I know that I have been SOOOOO blessed to have great friends, parents, and examples that I have... The mission makes us have the vision clear. There are a lot of great people out here, I´m just happy to be one of them. I only have a couple pictures this week. Once again, I hope you enjoy them! I´m praying for all of you! Hope you have another great week. Ciaoooo!
That´s all I left uncovered while sleeping. My eyes and nose! BRRRRRrrr!!
Elder Christensen

Have a great week!