Tuesday, December 13, 2011

12/13/2011 Hermana Christensen "you are no longer an american. you are a LATIN american"

so we met this lady named zelda gave us these slippers because
we helped her move a rock.. hahah they're so funny!
hello beauties.

what a week.

this is us after a devo blowing out our candles
well, i must say that there is absolutely nothing in the world that could possibly physically even come the slightest bit close to the indescribable beautiful incandescent translucent full complete eterno love and happiness i felt on friday night as i sat across the room from my chilean father, armed in the robes of righteousness, making covenants with our heavenly father. it. was. BEAUTIFUL. i got to sit next to his sister, dearest sister peterson, and we just giggled and cried and held hands and rejoiced together. i don't think our feet were on the ground as we floated in the celestial room together. a bunch of his ward members came; i loved seeing those familiar faces and feeling that love and unity and gratitude for our father's plan that unites us all. ahh. so joyful.

a funny: the session started at 8. do you realize what that means?! we were looking at sealing rooms at 10:15 at night. HA! uuum.. we got outta there fast. (don't worry, president knows.) but as we were drivnig home (not speeding!) we saw a utah license plate on the car next to us. now, normally i would've flashed my fellow utahn the black badge of honor and glory to foster some instantaneous camaraderie (sp?) without palabras... but imagine that! missionaries cruising down the freeway at 10:20 at night! hahahah. needless to say we just smiled at her innocently.

look familiar? surprise! paulita as the soldier!

oh, i forgot the sweetest part of all. we got to also be in the session with our members who got sealed on saturday. they received their investiduras that same session and it was stunning to be with the rama, too. on saturday, after their sealing, there was a fiesta at the capilla. they had a guy come and do mexican tacos and oooooooooooooooh were they good! they are so happy, it was unreal to see them and the great difference they've made. they'd invited a ton of friensd and we were able to get things set up so they can also have that joy. ah. and also, what was so neat, and sis mccullough and i talked a lot about this afterwards, was the FEELING of their "reception" you could call it. it wasn't a utah, mormon reception. ew no. boring. it was a celebration. and it ws for the RIGHT REASON. it was that this family (mom, dad and two kids) had been united for ETERNITY. that they'd changed their lives and they were one with god. it wasn't about the dress. it wasn't about the ring. it wasn't about the colors or the decorations or the hair or the bridesmaids or ALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL the garbage that it ALWAYS is about. it was simple and plain and about this family. and the spirit was strong. and it was just beautiful. i was so inspired and uplifted!

Hermana C with Paul, Angela, & Grandma Judy
 on thursday we went on exchanges. i'd talked with one of the sisters who's struggling with her companion, and we'd kinda plotted that i'd go out with this struggling sister to help her realize that she actually does want to be here and doesn't want to go home and that this is the GREATEST WORK AND TIME OF OUR LIVES EVER!! but i was sad that day man. i was just way bummed out because our area's kinda struggling and i'm feeling like a really small little missionary doin nada buena. so what went down? well so we go on this exchange, and this sister... holy cow. she just... she transformed. she lifted ME. she boosted ME. she helped ME remember. we taught people and made THEM happier.. and it just.. it wasn't about us. it was about losing ourselves! and as we did, holy hannah. it was pure bliss. both of us rejoicing. and we saw milagros and had way bomb lessons and added people and just felt so guided by the spirit. it was incredible. that's how the Lord works. he answers our prayers as we just get to work. as we serve him. as we forget ourselves.

this is one of our sweet members. she made us
straight up pose with these hats in front of her
tree... in frnot of the fireplace.. i've got like 500
 more pictures from this photoshoot.
she was so into it.
 ps. something about that that touched me: the rs pres was going to come out with us, but she couldn't. so what did she do? she didn't just say, " no lo siento hermana otro dia" freak no she FOUND SOMEONE ELSE! i was blown away. this is coming from one of the branches with the highest baptisms in the US. and why? beucase the leaders GET IT. this is about ETERNAL LIFE AND HAPPINESS AND SALVATION. they get it. and that's one of the many millones de reasons that i'm grateful for my mission. in some small way, i GET it now. i get it a little more and i want to ALWAYS be a missionary and ALWAYS be building the kingdom and ALWAYS be striving to share the gospel.

does the lord bless us or what? on sunday we had FOUR SEPARATE INVESTIGADORS AT CHURCH!!!!!! the room was FULL!!!!! the ramam is creciendo! it was sooooo cool! ah! and one of our investigadores committed to live the word of wisdom and is reading and coming to church and saw the baptism on saturday and AH! we're going to invite him to get baptized THIS WEEKEND so pray hard for alberto to accept the invitation to move his date up!

i'm sorry this is long and i've got soo much to say! it's just been a great week!

on sunday night it was my last spanish charla foganera. i wanted to go SO badly! but. we didn't have an investigator going. now we could've gone anyway to sing in the choir, but we KNEW that god would bless us if we sacrificed. so we didn't go and we found a new investigator and one of our investigators (who's ebeen coming to church for 11 years but WON'T GET BAPTIZED) CALLED US!!!! we were SO bold and invited him to get baptized. it was just amazing to see how the lord truly does provide when we sacrifice.

i have some great homework for you and me, it's going to be fun! in the liahona this month, there's an activity for the jovenes to make a list of 100 things you're grateful for. it's right at the beginning and it's going to be EEEEEEASY and way fun. will you do it? it's on page like four or something, right after e eyrings message.

this is us settin up the christmas tree. willy
you would LOVE IT! it's a huge, full tree!
last night we watched the joseph smtih dvd with another investigadora and her novio who's islamic. huH? well, it was SO AMAZINg. the spirit in that movie is UNREAL! and they FELT it. i was just flooded with emotion. i am so eternally thankful for the clarity of the restored gospel of jesus christ. it is SO CLEAR. it always has been! it's so simple! there is NO OTHER WAY to be happy. there is no other way! tha path is clearlyu outlined; got wants to answer our prayers and he WILL tell us if the bom is true if we just READ IT and ASK. as i gave them my testimony i was so overcome with the realization and gratitude of the profound blessing it is and has been to testify on the daily that there has been a restoration of the truth, that god never leaves us alone or confused. i am so thankful. i love being a missionary more than i could possibly put into palabras. i feel such deep gratitude for my savior and for his sacrifice. i love him . i love his gospel. i am more sure than ever that there is no other way to everlasting joy than by living his restored gospel and the making and keeping of covenants through his restored priesthood power. i know that joseph smith restored that poiwer, that he's a prophet, and that tomas s monson is the profeta hoy en dia. i know that god lives. i know that jesus is the christ. i love him. i love representing him. i will always and forever be grateful for this sacred time of my life that iv'e been able to draw ever nearer to him and my father in heaven. i love this work. it's his. he's at the head of it. his spirit directs us. let us always follow him and ALWAYS share this message of great tidings and glad joy with the world.

i love you. so much. and i thank you for your continued support and prayers. have a beautiful week!

hermana christensen
the solanos sealing. :) kristen, she's wearing the
pink crystal earrings!