Here we are the dynamic duo! The winter decided it’s not over yet, but the weather changes every day, so we’re always changing our layering and coats.
Hello family and friends!
It’s been another great week here in Jyväskylä doing the work of the Lord! But it’s definitely been one of the biggest changes of my mission as well. This week I said goodbye to Sister Jordan Tuesday morning, I worked with Sister Christensen (traveling from Tampere to Kuopio with a stop in Jyväskylä) for about 7 hours, and then welcomed my new companion, Sister Yost into my beautiful home. It was a busy day, and the moment Sister Yost got in we were off to the post office to pick up three boxes of Book of Mormons and a a package of pamphlets and pass-along cards. Boy were we glad that a member had consented to put all of her luggage in their car and meet us at the post office to drive home our packages as well. I love the ward here!
Well, on the way to the post office Sister Yost turned to me and said, ”You look really familiar.” I laughed and said, ”That’s because you visited my Finnish language class at BYU when you had your mission call. I’ve talked to you before!” She was astounded at the irony and said, ”Wow! I remember now. You look nothing like your Valo picture!” (Our mission monthly newsletter.) That moment was the start of a great companionship. It’ll be a great transfer!
Well, here are some highlights of the week:
Tuesday night I saw firsthand where Sister Yost’s priorities are as I told her we had a lesson in about an hour and a half and asked if she wanted to eat, unpack, or go over the lesson plan. She immediately opted for preparing the lesson. Brownie points for being an awesome missionary! It wasn’t even a test, but she would have passed if it was. That night, I was pretty nervous to be completely honest. I was so worried that I would get us lost, suddenly realize I didn’t know what I was doing, or being successful on a much lower level than those Kuopio missionaries, but when we taught the lesson to that wonderful old woman, we taught in near perfect unity. All of my fears and doubts flew out the window and I relaxed into being able to teach the gospel. Sister Yost had no idea until days later, but this experience is a testimony to me that we are supposed to be together as companions right now. Heavenly Father spoke peace to my soul, and at the end of the lesson the investigator prayed! I believe in miracles, and this was certainly one for me.
Important correction from last week! I meant to say that our investigator’s baptismal date was 10 WEEKS out and not 10 months out. Unfortunately for me it is the weekend right after the next transfer when I will likely change cities, but I am just so excited for her, and even if I don’t get to be there in person, it’s more important that she makes a covenant with God. 🙂 But, you never know, she could move her date up! 😉 We had two excellent lessons with her this week–one at a member’s house with treats afterwards.Tonight we are teaching her about the importance of service and she organized an event all by herself so we can all bake something together and then she will go out with some members and drop off cookies for people. She’s really progressing and changing her life! God is so good.
The recent convert family we’ve been working with (they were baptized while Sister Jordan and Sister Yost’s previous companion, Sister Allen, were here) is doing great! For the first time ever the father blessed the sacrament in sacrament meeting this week. Wow. It was so good to see him up there. It has already been a week of miracles. We taught them later that night and talked about the covenants we make at baptism, and read the sacrament prayers. The wife said, “Isn’t this what you said in sacrament meeting today?” to her husband. He said, “Yes,” and we got to congratulate him on blessing the entire ward with the opportunity to renew their covenants this week. President Hinckley was absolutely right when he said activity is the genius of the church.
In other news, we’ve trekked around a lot of areas of Jyväskylä this week and although I had my nose in a map book everyday, we haven’t gotten lost and we don’t intend to! I realized most of the time I didn’t even need it. It’s amazing what you realize you can do when you are called upon. God has definitely helped me and continues to do so!
Lastly, we’re working a lot more with the ward now. We have a new program where we teach members in the evening during “Koti Rauha” (maybe I mentioned this last week) meaning “Home Peace.” It’s the hour from 8-9 pm when we aren’t allowed to tract and it can be hard to find people out and about, so we’re using it more effectively as an entire mission now, and it’s already helped become much closer to the members. I’ll update you all next week.
I just want to close today by saying that I know that there is a God in Heaven. He lives and He loves us. Although life may not always be easy, and sometimes it seems like it’s too hard to bear, the Savior of the world has experienced it all. I know Jesus Christ loves each one of us. He lives. In this week as well all celebrate Easter, please take a moment to ponder what it means that He rose from the grave so that we might live again. I know He can help us through anything we face. Come unto Him for His yoke is easy and His burden is light.
Below is the video we are sharing for Easter this week. Take a few minutes and watch it!
I love you all so, so much! Thank you for your support! I couldn’t do this mission without the help of all you and the Almighty Creator of the Universe, our Father in Heaven. Thank you all for your updates on life, please keep them coming and if you haven’t written in a while I’d love to hear from you! I’ll try my best to respond to everyone in my limited time. Love you lots!
Happy Easter! Remember the reason for the season!