Monday, September 9, 2013

I'm officially a WEEK old!

Lets just all take a sec and think about the fact that I have been in Iowa for a week and 3 days now. It's kind of a miracle.  My first couple days here I didn't think I would make it this far but I am glad I stayed. :) This week was just another chill one. We are still working with Tyler and preparing him for baptism and we are hopeful. He is only 12 so he doesn't really talk, but he listens so we know he gets it. On Tuesday, we found another investigator! Her name is Miki and she is just incredible. We have taught her the restoration and the plan of salvation and she is understanding it so well. We have faith that she will be baptized soon. So now we have 2 investigators and life is good! I have to ask though, for those of you that have served, what were some of your favorite door approaches?? Me and Sister Barker really struggle with tracting cause we just don't know what to say when they answer the door. All suggestions are greatly appreciated! I realized this morning that I have really not told you a lot about my mission but I want to. So here goes the random facts:
- So I live with the Price family. Aaron and Lanae and they have 3 kids. Levi who is currently serving in Arizona (kind of fun) and has been out since July.  Ashton who is 15 and she is just awesome. She is like my little sister. She lives downstairs with us. And then Brooklyn who is 11. Darling girl. She loves owls and cats. Haha like she is obsessed with them. I love her! They are really an amazing family. Such a great example of the family I want one day. They sometimes invite us up for meals which is just great. Yesterday we had lunch with them after church. Ribs, corn, and potato salad. Kay, HI. Does it get any better than that?? I think not. They are just awesome!
-My ward is incredible. We have about 400 members but almost 250 are inactive. So, there is alot of work to be done here which is good. :) MY Bishop is just great.  Definitely not your normal "Utah Bishop." He has got a handle bar mustache, drives a Harley Davidson motorcycle, and wears cowboy boots to church every week. Haha so funny... So he is a convert to the church and has been a member for about 40 years. He shares his testimony every Sunday and it is just so powerful. I love my ward because at least 75% of the people that come are converts so the testimonies and the lessons that they share are just remarkable. I love hearing their conversion story cause it really testifies to me the power of the work I am here doing and how much lives are effected by just baptizing ONE person. Also, I have found my ward mom. Haha her name is Sister Tunney and she is awesome. So down to earth and just funny. I'll write more about her as time goes on.
-FUN FACT: The Des Moines Iowa Stake (my stake) has the most baptisms in all of North America. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?? I just get so much comfort from hearing that. There are people here I just need to find them!
-Iowa is known for 4 things. Covered Bridges, field of dreams, John Wayne birthplace, and cornfields. We have 3 of those 4 things in our area. Can you say spoiled much?? We are excited to hopefully visit them on our p-days. :)
-Me and my companion, Sister Barker, are literally soul sisters. We quote constantly, we both love music and are constantly singing or humming, and we spoke in a British accent for 37 minutes last night. Go ahead and try to beat that. I'm pretty sure its impossible. We work so well together and I am so grateful that I got a companion who is so easy to love!
-Every Thursday we have district meeting, but before we do that, we all eat lunch together at the Jordan Creek mall. (The biggest mall in in our area. So rad.) It is so hard for me though because they have the most amazing theater right by the food court. Haha If you know me you know that going to the movies is one of my favorite things to do. I have to restrain myself every week from looking. I am having withdrawals big time. But, me and Sister Barker are convinced that after our mission we are going to come back and stay with the Prices, and spend a whole day in that theater. We are excited!
Well, that's kind of all the cool stuff I have to say. I am just livin the life. I will have more cool stuff to say as time goes on. Like tonight, some sweet members are taking us to Mt. Piska (I think that's how you spell it.) so I will write about that next week. We will do more work, and I will have more to tell.  
I really am feeling better about being here. As I continue to study and pray, I am coming to realize just how much God has prepared me for this. We have been studying the Pre mortal existence lately and it just gives me so much peace knowing that I accepted the call to come to Iowa long before I received that little white envelope. I know that I can do this because I decided I would before I even came to earth. I am learning to love the people here and how to see them as children of God who just need the Gospel in their lives. I am learning how to use the atonement to heal my homesickness, to make up for my weaknesses, to repent, to find happiness. I am learning that the atonement covers it all. I feel the love of my Savior Jesus Christ more than I ever have before and it is remarkable. I am learning how to love being here. I miss you all more than words describe but, this is where I need to be. I need to spend the next 18 months serving the people of Iowa. And I am loving it.
I hope that all is going well and that you are loving life. Always remember that God is aware of you and he wants you to be happy. He has given us ways to find happiness. Treasure those things. Also, remember that mail is encouraged. Haha Hearing from home is so great and I just love it. I love and miss you all!
-Sister Jensen
"Is this Heaven? No, it's Iowa."

Hangin loose in the fields of Iowa. I think I'm pretty cool. :)

We constantly have Nacho Libre smiles on our faces. I'm pretty sure we don't remember how to smile normal anymore. It's fine. No shame.

I made a resolution that I would not drink Dr. Pepper on my mission.  Well...I have failed miserably.  We needed a "pick me up" after a hard day and stopped at the gas station.  I have a feeling they may know us by name by the end of our time here. Haha  So good!