Tuesday, October 4, 2011

10/4/2011 Hermana Christensen "Perpetual Pacific Smile!"

this is elder stanley and e debaltzo, the missionaries for the branch!

literally ALLLLL WEEKEND LONG, anyyyyyyytime i thought of you guys hanging out with my la mesa friends, i couldn't help but beeeeeeeeeam! and giggle! AH!!! how was it?! aren't they soooo great!! thanks sooo much for letting them stay at the house! i cannot cannot cannot WAIT to see pictures and read your emails! i actually just met hermano chavez for a sec at the battalion and he gave me the fritos. hahah tapatillo! but he was just... wow. he was so full of light. he pulled out his camera and showed me alllll the pictures of you guys and even a video and wow. SO NEAT! i cannot telll you how much i loved seeing all of those i love SO DEARLY together!! it made my DAY! and my weekend! and my LIFE! hahah!

but seriously. this weekend, as i sat and watched conference, knowing that they were there, staying with my family, in my house, and in that moment in the conference center... i just felt so grateful. six months ago sister mendoza and i asked hermano chavez to take notes and listen intently to conference. we fasted. but not just us, our WHOLE DISTRICT fasted so that THAT MAN could get his answer. and after the sessions, when we pulled him into a classroom to let him know we, as a district, were praying and fasting for him to get his answer, he told us he was fasting too. the spirit was so strong in that room! and then we knelt and he offered a beautiful prayer of gratitude. and then he hugged all of the missionaries and there was this mutual understanding... even for those who couldn't speak spanish. and there was such LOVE. everyone just desired SO BADLY for that man to finally get baptized! and so sitting there this year, hearing the speakers talk about BAPTISM and remembering looking over excitedly to hermano chavez six months earlier, hoping he was getting it, but this time realizing he is a MEMBER..? wow. there is no words for that kind of love and gratitude and joy. i. love. my. mission.

one of my very fave sistas, sis kearsley. :)
conference was... beautiful. i loved taking specific questions and getting specific answers... in the first session! it's so true--knock and it shall be opened unto you. it was such a feast. really. love the talk about hope from elder hales. hope for the future, hope in facing challenges, hope in the Savior. "el esperar en el senor requiere fe, paciencia, humildad, mansedumbre, guardar mandamientos, y perseverar hasta el fin. Hay que esperar en El y tener confianza en El. Hagamos todas las cosas que deberiamos hacer hasta perfeccionarnos. Confiemos en El y en sus meritos." ah sorry english. you can translate that. i just love that it went on to say it's hard to have hope, especially when we don't understand his plan. pero it comes line upon line precept upon precept little here a little there. lets pray for paciencia to be able to bear it all. in his time the answers will come. his blessings are ETERNAL.they are more than we can even realize. Hope has the power to change eternities! And i hope to be able to bless these people here with my knowledge of the gospel. ah. i just loved that talk so much. it was so comforting and direct answer to my concerns. i love general conference.

so not only is the battalion helping to preach the gospel to every nation, language, kindred and tongue (including mandarin now!), but there's a new addition! the last few months of jesse's mission he served in the mtc referral center where people can get online and ask to chat with representatives to answer their questions and request more information. well. because of this delightful mormon.org campaign (where are your profiles?!) it's EXPLODED. and so? the referral center missionaries can't do it on their own. they've asked for historic sites and visitors center misisonaries to be trained so that we, too, can participate in online chat work. We are SO excited!!

things in the branch are going well! we are having a baptism this weekend. so blessed.

...long story. she asked me to color the sky blue..
all i had to use was my scripture marker... ummm.
i just read part of my email from you mom. tell sue i love her so much. joan was... wow. she played such an important role in my life. i love her so much... ah. i am so thankful for her. and for the plan. and for knowing that she's now able to garden all day everyday and read books and walk freely and not have to worry about sick gluten waffles... haha. there are no words for joan bourne glad. what a saint. what an example. i love her so much. sue, i'm praying for you and yours. thank you so much for always being so selfless and such an example of constant service. i love you and your family so much! please let me know if there's anything i can do for you all.

i guess here's where that hope talk was even more meant for us, huh? hope. we have to hope that things will all be okay and that we'll be able to manage without joan and with all this change. we can hope and have faith that heavenly father has a plan. i know that He does. i know that He loves us. I love him so much. I love Him for the deep, eternal kind of love that he has for each of his children, and for how freely he loves us. He's so constant. He's so aware. He's so present and involved in our lives. Let's be better this work in noticing how involved he really is.

i love you all. thank you for the love and the involvement in my life and my mission. thank you so much for your support and prayers. i'll be thinking of you during the funeral on thursday. sigan adelante.

hermana christensen

ps. staish. read dyc 137. i read it this morn and thought of you.

jean i love you. thanks for bring joan into all of our lives. :)

mal. 100% considering it. ttyl hags.

mikey glad to hear the branch is growin. you've done such selfless work for that branch for so long! thanks for writing!