Friday, November 29, 2013

11 - 26 / Day 105 As For Me and My House, I Am Serving the Lord

Where to even begin, oh man! This week has been quite a week. I found out who my new companion is yesterday.  Her name is Sister Nakamatsu, she's from Japan and is in the same class as me... so we were in the MTC together the last week. She's the sweetest little Asian girl ever, so delicate, and shy... I'm scared I might hurt her feelings or something will go wrong and she's not gonna say anything because she's too sweet. SOO I have again on FRIDAY! Yayyy!! I'll let you know how things are going with her then:) I'm excited though, it's gonna be a HUGE change. I'm literally crying thinking about leaving Sister Hale. We've seen some amazing miracles together, and she holds such a sweet place in my heart!
Sis Hale pinching my cheeks
cause she LOVES me soo much:)
I try to not focus on "negative things" in my weekly emails, but this week has been ridiculous. I never want to be sick on my mission EVER AGAIN! It's the worst thing in the WORLD.  I just wanted to go home and rest, but it's such a big deal ever to ask for permission.  By the time you've talked to your Distirict Leader, then your Zone Leaders, and then they have to talked to Sis Gillette, I would be feeling so guilty about asking for permission, that I would just say forget I'll just STAY! I was struggling soo much on Sunday feeling sick and weak, falling asleep on the computer in Guest Services, but I knew I would live and I didn't need to go home. I stuck it out! Once we got home for the day, I wasn't hungry but I knew I needed to eat so I decided to go make a green smoothie... TURNS OUT MY BLENDER IS BROKEN! I was soo upset, I just threw everything away in the trash and went to clean it out and the scrubber we use to clean the dishes was FILTHY! Everything was so dirty and gross because no one clean up after themselves there's like rotten nasty food in the fridge that one of the sisters won't throw out because she claims that she'll eat it. Omygosh, don't even get me going. hahah. All I'm going to end with is that I had just HAD IT I was sooo siiiickk of being siiick, living in filth, and having to watch other sisters be able to go home sick & I couldn't. So I just MELTED DOWN!  I had to give myself a personal coaching sesh. I was like alright Sis Hansen you've gotta fix this... so I decided to just go take a  hot shower to cool down. In my head I was thinking, "WHY HEAVENLY FATHER WHYYYYY!?!"  Then, the water turned ICE COLD, literally ICE COLD. Then, I thought okay okay okay FINE!  It's a sign I gotta stop being negative. Then, I cried myself to sleep cause I was soooo mad. hahaha. Looking back now it's pretty hilarious and soooo retarded.  My week got much better & I'm happy & fine now...  I guess the meltdown was necessary. 

After that of course everything started to turn up as it always does.  Every time things look so down, everything somehow seems to turn right back around and the miracles go insane! 

Carlos: HE WAS BAPTIZED ON NOV 23rd & had the most amazing experience! He had like 60 people show up at his baptism and he said it was soooo special. His family came to his baptism and his father was soo touched by the spirit he felt during the confirmation on Sunday that he wants to start coming back to church and Carlos is being SUCH A GREAT Missionary to his family! It's amazing! He receieves the priesthood on Sunday and is going to the Temple in a few weeks to do baptisms! We're sooo excited for him. He's an amaazzzzzing kid.

Andrew(who baptized Carlos) &  CARLOS!
Carlos with all his family!

Ben is the one in the beanie!! That's his best friend Kylie
with him, who's planning on serving a mission soon :)
David:  I haven't talked about David in a while! He's the one from England! He's going through a really hard time right now,  just found out his mom was diagnosed with Cancer. And just struggles with his prayers and having like full faith. We taught such a powerful lesson on prayer today! The spirit was soooo thick,  Sister Hale & I were just crying and David says in his cute lil British accent, "Are you two okkkkay?" hahahah! LOVE HIM! But I know the spirit touched his heart today, and I'm sooo grateful for that. He has a baptismal date on December 7th... we'll see what happens. This is his second date! He's just really struggling, and it's so hard cause you grow to love these people soooo much and want them to be happy and love the gospel, but then you don't have the perfect answer of what they need and what you should tell them to help them! It's crazy. He was sooo sad to say goodbye to Sis Hale since I'm getting a new compi! Our member present that we taught with added him on Facebook! hahaha. Soooo funny.

David from England ... apparently he sings ...
we didn't know this about him! Haha!!

I want to share about Ben, but I don't even have time!!! I've had some pretty sacred experiences teaching him! We met him from the Elders on an investigator lesson & have been teaching him for about 2 weeks now! He's come to the square 3 times and is getting baptized Dec 14!!  I'll tell more details about him on Friday!

I just want to say all the things I've learned to be soooo grateful for on my mission since it's Thanksgivvvvviiingg this week :) 
I'm thankful for this amazing gospel and how it blesses my everyday life. The knowledge and peace it brings is soooo special.
I'm so thankful to have such a loving family that supports me on this mission sooo much.  At times when I feel lonely, and I know you are all there cheering me on and praying for me... SO THANK YOU!
I'm so thankful to have my best friends all serving missions tooo.  It's such a neat thing to see all that everyone is going through and be able to help each other!
I'm so thankful for Nate and the friend he is to me!  I love that dude sooo much and am sooo grateful for the missions we're serving. They will change our lives for eternity, I know that for sure! 
I'm so thankful to be a disciple of Christ and with that, I will end with this amazing message I got his week:

I am part of the "Fellowship of the Unashamed."  The die has been cast. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I won't look back, let up, slow down, back away, or be still.  My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is secure. I am finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, chintzy giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need preeminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I now live by presence, learn by faith, love by patience, lift by prayer, and labor by power. My pace is set, my gait is fast, my goal is Heaven, my road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions few, my guide is reliable, my MISSION is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, deterred, lured away, turned back, diluted or delayed.  I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy,  ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.
I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I must go until Heaven returns, give until I drop, preach until all know, and work until He comes. And when he comes to get His own, He will have no problem recognizing me. My colors will be clear. I am not ashamed of the Gospel... Romans 1:16

I hope you all have a wonderful thanksgiving! 
-Sister Hansen 


Thursday, November 21, 2013

11-19 / Day 98 My Refiner's Fire

My most fav Sister Hale!
     This week I've really learned how much I truly need this mission in my life... to progress spiritually, to learn what it really means to be patient, to learn what the Atonement really is all about... The list goes on! But I've come to the realization that this mission is my refiners fire! One of my best mission buddies shared some pretty special things with me this week that have really gotten me through a hard time I've been having. I think as missionaries we expect ourselves to be perfect, to be able to find a way to convert every last little soul we meet, but news flash... it's not everyones time, even if I think it is. C.S. Lewis says something in Mere Christianity that I have thought about over the last few days. He says,

"Give me all of you. I don’t want so much of your time, so much of your talents and money, and so much of your work. I want you. All of you. I have not come to torment or frustrate the natural man or woman, but to kill it. No half measures will do. I don’t want to only prune a branch here and a branch there; rather I want the whole tree out. Hand it over to me, the whole outfit, all of your desires, all of your wants and wishes and dreams. Turn them ALL over to me, give yourself to me and I will make of you a new self---in my image. Give me yourself and in exchange I will give you Myself. My will, shall become your will. My heart, shall become your heart.”

This brought tears to my eyes as I read it. God can't work with people or missionaries who already think they're perfect. He will not work with hearts that are not open, minds that can't be changed! And so I've really come to know that God doesn't expect me to be perfect, but he expects me to do exactly what this quote states... just give it all up to Him no matter what it is! He asks us to do this so He can help us, so He can shape us, so He can teach us!

Although the trials stink when they come, that's alright. It's just another way God is shaping me:) No one likes the trial while they're immersed in it, but when you come out, its just beautiful what you've become and learned. It doesn't matter who I was before August 14th 2013 or who I'm gonna be after January 21st 2014, but who I'm becoming right here, right now on this mission! Yes, I find myself in days where I ask, "Why am I here? Why did I choose this? How can I even help people when I'm not even that good myself?" But I'm learning to say, "Alright Sister Hansen, you may be having a bad day today, but think of the bad days you've had in the past and all the good days that came after that bad day... who says that's not gonna happen again?" So I just lift my little sad chin up and look for the miracles, cause they ALWAYS COME!

Our investigators are doing FAB:

Carlos: Oh bless his little soul, Hes so cute! He put together all the details for his baptism yesterday with the Elders and couldn't be more filled with joy!!! SATURDAY IS THE DAY! Get ready for pictures next week... it's so weird that you get so close to these people you've never even seen before! Just shows that looks mean nothing to our Father in Heaven right :)

Paul: He went to church in Germany met the Elders there and has seen some pretty crazy miracles of the spirit guiding him since he's been there! Wish I had time to share, but lets be honest I write so much anyways that you wouldn't want to have to read even more:) ahah. He gets back in town tomorrow!!!

Bored in the Teaching Center.
hahahaah So Stupid!!
Idk who else to share about. Everyone else is pretty random and kinda new. Sister Hale and I have just been trying to contact ALL The people in our area book! I can't believe we're going into our last week of the transfer! I DONT WANT A NEW COMPANION. haha. & it's Christmas time soon! The square's gonna turn into MADNESS.

I also finished The Book of Mormon again a couple of days ago and have started it again with a whole new focus! I'm so excited about it (wow I'm turning into SUCH a missionary) hahha. I'm going to focus ALL about the Savior and how much the Book of Mormon truly testifies and teaches of Jesus Christ!

OH YA... Our mission performance was awesome THE WHOLE ASSEMBLY HALL WAS PACKED FULL OF PEOPLE:) Such an amazing spiritual experience for the investigators and visitors who came! I'll attach lots of pics!

I Love You All!
Sister Hansen

Performance Night!

My mission Grandpa : ) Elder Frost!  Just Love Him!
He's a Psychologist.  We help him keep his skills sharp!
Yay Chile!!  My fav lil' Chilean Sister Meriambo!

Elder and Sister Sharp, the senior couple who organized
The Whole Mission Performance! So awesome!!
Sis Tiritilli & I.  Couldn't live
without her in this mission!

Friday, November 15, 2013

11-12 / Day 91 God is a God of Miracles.

This week has been a little bit nuts! The whole mission is putting on a performance tonight for all the surrounding missions and visitors and so we've had crazy early morning rehersals ALL Week LONG! And of course, all The Sisters are getting wayy to overly stressed about it! So President decided he would let us sleep in this morning! 

We got to sleep in till 8, & oh my goodness did my body need that! :)

All our investigators are doing pretty good! 
Carlos: Is just preparing for his baptism! He shared his lil sweet testimony with us this past week... This is what he said,

     Carlos: "A year ago I wasn't really happy & not making the best choices, wasn't very nice, a lot      more mean. I didn't like it. I didn't like the people I hung out with, and I wasn't comfortable. When I hung out with my new friends I felt a better connection, and when I was given the BOM I felt something so special that I wanted in my life forever."

     Sisters: How have you seen a difference? 

     Carlos:  I'm SUCH a happy person now! I help my family and I'm so close with my parents! I have more peace, since I have more love!  I see a big difference in myself and a lot of others recognize it too." 
So cool to hear him bear his testimony! 
Paul: HOLY COW WHERE TO START!? He came on chat basically asking to be baptized, and I didn't wanna believe he was real cause it was too good to be true. I got all his info and we taught him for the first time yesterday! HE'S AMAZING! He grew up in Utah, but never wanted to accept the church cause he thought it was crazyy. But in the past month or so, his work schedule has really slowed down and he's had a lot of time to ponder about life and the things he believes and knows. During all his "pondering" he had the overwhelming almost annoying and nagging feelings that he needed to go to the Temple! He didn't wanna believe it cause he thought it was crazy. He opened up the Book of Mormon and started to read it again (I guess he's read it in the past).  This time he just really loved what he was reading! He was at a work conference in Boston.  Afterwards, the traffic was insane and he knew the temple was only a few miles away, so he decided to finally act on his prompting and just go sit in the temple! So he got there and told the Temple greeter what we was doing... the Temple worker told him he could just go sit in a chair in the lobby.  Paul said he stayed there for a good 3 hours just reading and reading and reading the BOM.  He got to Mosiah 7:33 and knew that was his answer! He needed to be baptized and there was no way he was going to deny the straight answer God had given him! WOAHHHH! Insane! He left for a business trip to Germany today and will be attending church there. We're going to teach him over email these next two weeks that he's gone & then prepare him for baptism when he gets back! WOW. 
The coolest part about all this was that yesterday I was reading in the BOM in Mormon 5-9 (which is my all time favoritest part of the BOM) and it talks all about how God is a God of miracles.  THEN THE PAUL STORY HAPPENS THE SAME DAY! 
Trevor: Well this girl named Claudia (FROM CHILE, soo coooool) got on chat and referred this guy to us cause he found her "mormon girl blog" haha. So we started teaching him and he's literally the biggest dork I've ever met in my life! haha. Okay, that's mean I know, but really it's almost funny how crazy he is.  But he is SO INTO THE BIBLE like he's almost Anti! He's so hard to teach cause all he wants to do is contradict and say what "he believes from the Bible" which is all a little bit crazy and sooo weird. Like not what the Bible teaches at all. Anyways this past lesson we had with him we were pretty straight up. Sister Hale put him and his place and said,  "Look, if you want to know if this church is true, you need to stop telling us what you think of the Bible. Cause it's not what we believe at all." (In the most loving way, of course) He really needed just a lil tiny push to shut up! hahaha. But his walls are SLOWLY SLOWLY coming down. We're hoping we can continue to help him, but we only can if his heart is in the right place. We'll see what happens next week!
Goodness the work is moving forward at such an alarming rate! It almost scares me sometimes cause I don't know what to make of all these crazy prepared people (well not Trevor, exactly, but everyone else).  It's like I'm not even doing anything.  God has done His job preparing and He's just asking us to prepare them just that tiny tiny bit more! 
I know I tell you all how much I LOVE THE SCRIPTURES every week! BUT OMyGoodness, my love for the scriptures has grown ten-fold. I regret so much not reading them the way I should have before my mission. I always knew the Book of Mormon was true, but I didn't love it.  I didn't know the amazing power it holds! Personal study is one of my favorite times of the day! Sister Hale & I always love sharing what we learned. I don't know what I'm going to do when she's not my companion anymore. We've learned so much from each other and honestly she's one of my best friends... like for life:) 
Other than that, I don't know what else to share! This gospel brings SO MUCH JOY into my life! I regret not living it as much as I should have before... I was truly missing out! 
Love you alllll
Here's this super cool video everyone should watch! I LOVE THIS MISSION!! haha.
-Sister Hansen

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

11 - 5 / Day 84 The First Snow!

It snowed yesterday & today!!!!!! 

All the lights are getting put up and there's snow everywhere! SO BEAUTIFUL! Sister Hale & I just freak out anytime we see them testing the lights and all that goodness! Yippppiiiiee!!

I don't even know where to begin with my week. Halloween was fun, we had a mission party that night since no one was allowed on the square and got to watch Narnia. 

But you know me... weird with movies sometimes. So Sister Tiritilli & I didn’t watch it, and just talked with the cutest Senior Couple in our mission (The Frosts) we asked them all the questions we have a hard time with in the gospel, and talked about eternal marriage.... It was such an uplifting conversation and I learned so much from them! They're like my grandparents here! Such a blesssing to have them here the whole time I'm serving.

All our investigators are moving along... sorta! We're trying our best to be good missionaries and do all we can to help them but sometimes you just don't know where to turn next!

Carlos: IS GETTING BAPTIZED NOVEMBER 23! He's so awesome. We taught him about the Plan of Salvation this week and everything clicks in his head so simply. We literally don't even have to do anything! He just loves it all and soaks everything in! He's so happy to be baptized by his best friend. He even got up in sacrament and bore his testimony! AHHH!! :)

Sydni: We met her on chat and she just recently moved to Amarillo TX from Denver where she was taking the missionary discussions... She came on asking how she could be taught again because she wants to be baptized! We've called her a few times and she's a pretty cool lady. She’s been through a lot of trials in her life and just really wants to be forgiven of everything and start anew.

David H: I've been teaching him since I like first got here. He's a hard cookie!!!! He just can't get past
the fact that he has to pray to know if The BOM is true, if Joseph Smith was a real prophet and the whole thing, ya know.  And so Sister Hale and I finally were so straight up with him and said, “David, we can promise you the only way you will know that this church is true and right for you, is if you pray specifically and ask God! And so right then we said, "David will you say a prayer right now?" He was like, “Whattt?! Noooo! Come on!” And then he did it! MOST HEART FELT PRAYER I'VE EVER EXPERIENCED! Sister Hale & I had tears in our eyes!!! One of the hardest things about teaching him is that it always feels like the spirit isn’t there. But because of his prayer we were all so overwhelmed with the spirit no one knew what to say after! IT WAS SO COOL! I can't wait to talk to him later this week and see how things went after his experience!

Buckley: Well............ he's gone! :( We had to drop him because he texted us some pretty nasty things that were like SO not okay for us to even be looking at. Pretty sad! But I really do know that we did all we could to help him. And, that it's all in the Lords hands now! We actually had to get his number blocked because of everything he did! Pretty hard to just have to let everything you've done go down the drain.

It's been a crazy week... I don't even know how to sum it up & I don't know what else to say! But I can say how grateful I am for the hard times Heavenly Father is giving me. I know he gives us trials and challenges because he sees so much more in us! I love my mission I LOVE MY MISSION! It's sooo hard & some days I don't really know what to do or what to say, but that's exactly why I'm so grateful for the spirit!!! Because without it I couldn't be doing this work!!

-Sister Hansen

Packages and pictures from home are the Besssssttt !!!