Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Most Wasted Of All Days Is One Without Laughter :)

BOONE!!! GLORIOUS BOONE!!!! Seriously though. I love it here. So much. Too much? Nah. Not possible. It has been a really incredible week! So many miracles and a lot of things learned too.
Monday: Today I wrote 14 letters. I guess that's what happens when you leave and area and don't have a car to go anywhere. :) Tender mercy for sure! We also had dinner with the Ferrells. Super cute young family with 4 crazy, super cute kids. Sister Ferrell actually just wrote a book called, "Walking with the Women of the New Testament." EVERYONE GO ON AMAZON RIGHT NOW AND BUY IT!!!! The book is absolutely incredible. I was able to just flip through it at church, and it blew me away.
Tuesday: Today we got a new investigator named Brittney. She is 12 years old and her mom has been investigating the church for a while now. We extended the date of December 6 to the both of them and we are excited to work really hard WITH them! We also had a relief society meeting tonight. I love these people so much...
Wednesday: So today I was washing my breakfast dishes and all the sudden... the water shuts off. Haha no water (sink, shower, toilet) for a good 2 hours. You never know what you have till its gone! ;) Today we walked... and walked. And then walked some more. IT WAS AWESOME! We got to talk to so many people we would have missed if we were driving around. Sure, my legs hurt but hey... this is salvation. It's worth it! We also had coordination tonight and it went really well! Brother Ward has been the Ward Mission Leader for about months now so he is just on fire! There is lots to be done here in the Boone ward.
Thursday: District meeting! I can't remember the last time I laughed so hard.... role plays are so great. Especially when you play a blind mom named Laquisha. NAILED IT. We got to teach Alison after DM and it went so well! She is doing so good and is so excited to be baptized on the 15th. She is being such a great missionary to her family already. We also found a new investigator today named Linda. Her mom is a really cute old less active member of the church. It was a cool lesson. We taught the Restoration and they both really enjoyed it. The Gospel is true.
Friday: Today I got to go on exchanges with Sister Rogers. She is so great! I went to Ames with her and it was so weird being in a college town after serving in tiny towns for the last 14 months. We had the most hilarious dinner appt. with some of their members. Sister Rogers and I were pretty slap happy cause we ate too much. :) Then we had a really amazing lesson with one of their investigators. Probably one of the coolest lessons on my mission actually... Chelsea is scheduled to be baptized on November 15 and she is excited about it. How blessed I am to have been a part of that.
Saturday: Crazy day! Sister Rogers and I finished up exchanges with cleaning the church, finding, walking and talking, and then cleaning some persons house. Perfect day. :) Today was a little weird though because I got a little homesick for Hamilton.... it happens though. Thank goodness for the Atonement. We had our ward trunk or treat tonight and it was so fun! They had tons of cute kids in cute costumes, a hay ride, a bonfire, food, more food, and tons of babies. It was great. :) Someone invited me to ride a dirt bike at the party... I almost said yes and then my badge shimmered in the light. Thank you Heavenly Father!!
Sunday: I am pretty spoiled... I got to see TWO Primary Programs this year. I AM OBSESSED!!! The second the children started singing I burst into tears. Haha they are so sweet and just so tender as they sing their little hearts out. It was a really crazy Sunday though! I felt like I was running around the whole time. Those are the best Sundays though. :) We had dinner with the Buxtons tonight and they are just awesome! Super cool family and they made fajitas. 10 points for them!
Monday: Yesterday was a good p-day. We had the truck so we did some shopping in Ames. Then we just got to chill at home. We had dinner with the Ballards. They just moved here from Provo, Utah about 3 months ago, and they know a bunch of people from PG and Lone Peak so I got to answer a lot of "Do you know this person" questions. Brother Ballard is also deaf so I got to learn a little bit of sign language.
Well... I love it here. Truly I do. I'm so incredibly happy... like all the time. Haha sometimes it weirds me out. There is just no better feeling in the world though than knowing you are exactly where you need to be doing what you need to be doing. The most rewarding thing in all of the universe is what I do 24/7. I get to sleep, eat, and breath missionary work... the sacred work of our Father in Heaven and Savior Jesus Christ. I am sure you have all seen this video before but I encourage you to watch it again and to really understand that each of you has a BIG part to play in the work of salvation. Father in Heaven needs all his children involved. Especially YOU.
I love each of you and pray that you will have a wonderful week and a happy Halloween!
-Sister Jensen
Welcome to Halloween deco in Boone, IA. Gotta love it.

 This was after exchanges... L to R: Rogers, Me, Barney, Samford. You will just have to take my word for it since you can't actually see anything :)

We just love exchanges so much. So fun fact about Sister Rogers.... We actually went to junior high together... in Arizona. Haha she was a year older (yes Taylor... she remembers you :) ) so pretty much most of the exchange we just talked about people from AZ. It was awesome!

And best costume goes to... this guy. Gives me the heebie-jeebies.

The view out our kitchen window. :)

This is our "ahhh crap my mom yelled at me for not sending a pic last week... hurry lets take one right now" picture. Enjoy. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Boone Ya!

Can I just start off by saying that I love knowing that the Lord is in charge. I love His perfect plan that allows me to grow in ways I never thought imaginable. It has been quite the week for me... I will start at the beginning though.
Monday-Tuesday: After I found out I was getting transferred from Hamilton, I of course had some people to say bye to. Oh my goodness... It is amazing how attached to the area and the people you can become in 6 short months. I felt like I did when I left Winterset... like I was leaving my family and my home. I grew to love that place and the people in it more than words can describe. With each "see ya later", I felt like I was leaving a piece of my soul with that family. It is the worst as well as the best feeling in the world.
Wednesday: Last trip to the Temple... for now. It was absolutely incredible and exactly what I needed. I feel like Heavenly Father knew exactly what missionaries I needed around me, and to be able to sit with them in the Temple is so special to me. After the Temple, we all went to the church and played some games with the Zone Leaders. SO FUN!!! Then we all went out and had a "trunky lunch" and talked about movies the whole time. Haha sometimes ya just need to do that. :) We got the biggest miracle tonight... we got permission to have a sleepover with the Keokuk Sisters. Seriously... that never happens. IT WAS AWESOME! Face masks, hot chocolate, giant bed on the floor. Perfect end to a great day.
Thursday: Transfer day... always a little nerve racking. It was such a good meeting though! I got to see so many missionaries and got to say bye to the ones leaving... so weird. So... now is the moment you have all been waiting for. My transfer doctrine. I have been sent to... (drum roll please...)
BOONE, IOWA!!!!!! Yep, that's right. I am back in Iowa. Basically, I am already obsessed with the place. I am pretty sure this is one of the prettiest places I have ever been. The streets are lined with Fall trees and so many quaint shops. Seriously.... I have to catch my drool sometimes. So here are some fun facts about my new area:
1. It is like an hour away from Winterset. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?
2. We live in a studio apartment above a law firm. What might you ask is right across the street? A train station. And yes... trains come about every 30 minutes. I'm still getting used to that at 3 in the morning.
3. We have a set of Elders in the ward that we split the area with and they are so awesome!
4. We are in a car share with the Elders. We switch off weeks. Haha... That freaked me out a little at first but then I got thinking about how that is such a tender mercy. Who can you meet when you are always driving everywhere? Plus I have a couple treats to walk off. :)
5. We will be having a baptism on November 15th!!! Alison is absolutely incredible. She is 17 and will be the only member of her family.... Seriously. She is amazing.
Well... that is Boone so far. Now for my companion... (drum roll please...)
SISTER SAMFORD!!!! She is so great. She is from San Bernadino, California and is 19 years old. She loves to read and eat junk food. We are getting along great. :) Also... one more important thing. She has been on her mission a whopping 3 months. Yep. That's right. I am a breaker. AKA I get to break her away from her Mama. That totally freaked me out when I found out, because I feel like I am training again. But hey, growth is key.
So all in all, I am absolutely loving it here. I am really hoping I will get to finish here since I only have 4 months left. We will see though. The Lord works in mysterious ways.
So, it has been quite the week. I am so grateful for all that my Father in Heaven has given to me. Especially the time I was able to spend in Hamilton. The growth that I experienced there is something very sacred to me. It is greater than I ever could have imagined. I was able to teach some people, but more importantly, I was taught by many people. I would say that I experienced true conversion there. For that, I am eternally grateful. Now, I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve here in Boone, IA. The Lord has placed me here for a specific purpose and I am slowly but surely finding that purpose. I am just so grateful.
Thank you to everyone who is supporting me on my mission. Family, friends, and everyone in between... I love you so much. Thank you for everything. Have a happy week and God bless!
-Sister Jensen
Last Temple trip with the District....
L to R:
Top row- Sister Browne and I
Bottom row- Sister Nye, Elder Allred, Elder Bean, Sister Monroe
We decided to match today through aunty/niece telepathy.
Last compy comp pic. :) Our relationship in a picture.
I'm gonna miss this place...
Why yes. This is the bridge that Joseph and Emma kiss under in the Joseph Smith movie.
The church is true.
Elder Aston was my zone leader for a whole year straight so of course we needed a picture. :)
Sleepover say what?
I GOT TO SEE BOTHER MCCALL AT TRANSFERS!!! Total tender mercy from the Lord. Oh Winterset... how I love thee.
The new Hamilton Sister!
I got to eat my companions leftover "Greenie" hawaiian haystacks for my first couple days here. :)
All settled in! :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Change Is In The Wind

OH MY HEAVENS!!!!!!!!!!! That is really the only way to explain this week. Work wise.... it was pretty slow. Service/event wise.... it was absolutely insane!
Tuesday: The coolest thing happened today.... All the missionaries in this mission got to meet up and watch "Meet the Mormons." Guys.... if you haven't seen it, PLEASE go see it. And take LOADS of tissues with you. It is such an inspiring and amazing movie. I feel very blessed that we as a mission got to watch it, because now we can tell other people to go see it. Seriously. Go see it.
Thursday: Today we got to peel apples. For 3 hours. With Sister Trapp. IT WAS AWESOME!!! Yes, my fingers are still stained. Yes. People still stare. After district meeting today, us and the Keokuk Sisters took our car to Ft. Madison, IA because it had a recall on it. That took quite a while so we ended up walking to Savers to shop. Totally awesome girls day. :)
Saturday: We got to wake up at 5:30 am today because we were asked to help at The Great River Road Run. It was so much fun! We got to wear bright yellow vests and direct traffic. Luckily, we didn't cause any accidents. ;) That night we also had a wonderful opportunity... We got to clean the Nauvoo Temple. WHAT AN EXPERIENCE! They took us to every level of the temple including the tower on the top. They also allowed us to walk through every room of the Temple as we cleaned it. Probably my favorite part though was sitting in the Celestial room by my self. What a sacred experience. Also being down in the baptismal font. I have not been down there since Heritage Tours 2 years ago. It brought back so many wonderful memories of the beginning of my conversion... I love the Temple.
Sunday: What a great Sunday. I had the opportunity to fast, and church was incredible. I was able to hear many testimonies from people I love and I was also able to bear my testimony. I was just a sweet experience. Also, in Relief Society, the lesson was on being in the world, but not of the world. The teacher spoke a lot about missionary work. No joke half way through the lesson she started showing pictures of missionaries. And then she held up pictures of me in Winterset. You better believe I immediately broke into tears. She had found my blog and printed some pics of and I had no idea. I feel like it was a big pat on the back from my Father in Heaven saying, "Ya done good Sister Jensen. Just keep going."
I am sorry that this email is so crazy but time has run short. Haha shocker. I also need to give a shout out to my aunt and uncle Todd and Mindy who welcomed their new little boy into the world last week. CONGRATS YOU TWO!!!! I cannot wait to meet darling little Beckett. :)
I think the most exciting/scary/sad news to report is that.... I am getting transferred. We got the call this morning. I have been here now for 6 months and I have learned to love this place with all of my heart. I was a little broken when I had to leave Winterset, and this area was exactly what I needed. The people, the feeling, the Temple, the places.... words cant describe how much I love this area. It is so comforting though when you get told you are being transferred and immediately feel peace. I know that I have done all that my Father in Heaven required of me here, and now he needs me somewhere else. I just reflect on all that I have learned here.... I needed this area because I experienced unimaginable growth. My testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and especially of the Prophet Joseph Smith has become unshakable as I have walked the streets he walked. I have learned endurance through walking where those early pioneers walked. I have learned unconditional love as I have had doors slammed in my face and rude things yelled at me by Gods children. Most of all, I have learned that I am special to HIM. HE knows me. And I have come to know him. For that I am eternally grateful.
Thank you everyone for all of your support and love. Know that I appreciate it more than anything. I love you all. Have a great week!
-Sister Jensen
Third time is a charm.

Dogs in wigs? Yes please.

This is what happens when Sister Jensen gets junk mail. Freaky. I know.
I'm in Heaven. I have literally looked for this my whole mission. Found it in Ft. Madison, IA. YES!
Great River Road Run. :)

So we were just standin there waiting for the runners to come back and I look down the river and see this. Are you kidding me? LOVE IT!

:) On a "I just cleaned the Temple" high. :)
I be ridin in style.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Leap of Faith

Ether 12:6.
And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not,for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.
What a week. So many heartbreaks, and so many miracles. It was a really faith trying week... but those make for the best weeks.
1. I think the biggest news to report is the saddest... we dropped the Shallenbergers. Even as I wrote that, my heart sank a little bit. This is the first time they have been dropped in the 2 years they have been taught. What a hard choice that was... I am so grateful though that we did not have to make that decision alone. I love Herb and Carolyn with all of my heart... but this time is so precious and Father in Heaven needs us to use HIS time to find, teach, and baptize those who are prepared and ready to keep the commitments necessary to experience conversion. Although it hurts, I know that Heavenly Father supports us in this decision. Good, better, best...
2. We serve a pretty merciful Father don't we? I have no doubt that Father in Heaven completely understood how bad it hurt us to drop the Shallenbergers, and how much of a leap of faith that was... that is where Ether 12:6 comes in... We got our witness in the form of 3 new investigators. The last time we got ONE new investigator was like 5 weeks ago... so to get THREE in one week is a complete miracle. I love the law of sacrifice because as Sister Dalton said, "One cannot sacrifice a crumb to the Lord without getting a loaf in return."
3. So, our first investigator is Jesse. He is 23 and super prepared! The power of talking with everyone is real. We met him a couple weeks ago as we were coming out of an apartment building and he was walking into his apartment. He really loved the restoration and when we asked him to be Baptized... his eyes lit up. :)
4. Our next 2 investigators are a mom and daughter. Julie and her daughter Shaquayshia. (Sha-kway-ja) :) They are incredible! Shaquayshia in 10 and very in tune with the spirit. We invited both to baptism and neither hesitated. The Gospel is true people.
5. We also dropped Betty this week... again just not committed. So sad... we have no doubt she will continue to be humbled though over time.
6. GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So as you can see it was quite the week.... a roller coaster week for sure. General Conference was really incredible and helped me so much. As a missionary, I am obligated to invite you all to do things because of General Conference.... :) No worries... here are some uplifting tools first...

"The greatest blessings of general conference come to us after the conference is over. Remember the pattern recorded frequently in scripture: we gather to hear the words of the Lord, and we return to our homes to live them."
—Robert D. Hales

This is one of my favorite pictures... We have received the messages and now it is up to us to remember and apply. That is my invitation. Think about it... if you don't change from General Conference than what was the point of watching? I am asking you each to pick ONE thing to change. You all know what that one thing is. Give the Lord your crumb so that He can give you a loaf in return. Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of Heaven. RECEIVE. REMEMBER. APPLY.
I love you all and I am so grateful for each of you. Thank you for all you do for me, and for the Lord. I pray you have a wonderful week!
-Sister Jensen
It's a beautiful Monday in Nauvoo...
Auntie/Niece pic with Sister Browne. :)
Sister Temple Trip. :)
Trying to do a jumping pic... didn't work too well... memories. Sweet sweet memories. :)
Saturday morning General Conference with the Grows. :)
Saturday afternoon General Conference with the Petersons. :)
Mom.. this one is for you. :) This... is therapy corner.
People in Hamilton really take Halloween seriously... this was October 1st people. Little sketch...
Sunday Morning General Conference with the Criders. :)
Sunday afternoon General Conference with Sister Trapp. :)
We are ready for Christmas!!!! :):)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Where Can We Turn For Peace?

Woah. September 29th say what?  I love being a missionary because even during slow weeks... there are still hundreds of highlights. :) No worries... I won't bore you with all of them. Just some..
1. Sister Monroe and I got flu shots this week. As a mission we are required to get them and obedience is key. Yes I cried a little. No my companion didn't have to hold my hand this time. :) Plus, we celebrated with ice cream after.
2. I got to go on exchanges with Sister Browne the great this week. I love her... so much. She trained one of my friends from home (Sister Muirbrook) and for some reason that brought us really close. I really needed exchanges this week. We had so  much fun and we laughed the ENTIRE time. Plus, we had girl talk time. You better believe it. And we ate cereal at 10pm.
3. Dropping investigators is always a  hard thing to do... but we dropped two of ours this week. Honestly, it comes back to the principle of good, better, and best. It was GOOD to meet with them, and sometimes even BETTER, but it was not the BEST use of Father in Heavens time. He has blessed us richly for taking that step of faith though with some really amazing potentials.
4. 3 words. GENERAL. WOMEN'S. BROADCAST. Holy smokies you better believe I went through a package of tissues. How incredible was that?!?!?! The messages were so inspired and so loving. The best part though was having Carolyn sit next to me and knowing she was taking it all in. What a blessing.
5. The Warners ended their mission this week... I cannot express how much I love them. They have been one of the biggest blessings while serving here. They have taught me a lot... I will miss them.
6. As a mission, we were able to fast for strengthened testimonies of the Book Of Mormon. What a great experience. There is something special that happens during mission fasts... you feel very connected to each other in an incredible way. It was quite the experience only studying the Book of Mormon this week... that was something I will always cherish. The Book is Blue... the Church is true.
7. Our ward had their primary program on Sunday and you better believe I cried like a baby. I have always loved children and to see and hear them bear their testimonies of the Savior through song was so very special to me. Yes... it did make me a little mom trunky. No beuno.
So. Yes. Good week. Slow work wise... but still good. It has been a very peaceful week for me. I could say I don't know why but I know exactly why. The answer comes through one of my favorite hymns...

1. Where can I turn for peace?
Where is my solace
When other sources cease to make me whole?
When with a wounded heart, anger, or malice,
I draw myself apart,
Searching my soul?
2. Where, when my aching grows,
Where, when I languish,
Where, in my need to know, where can I run?
Where is the quiet hand to calm my anguish?
Who, who can understand?
He, only One.
3. He answers privately,
Reaches my reaching
In my Gethsemane, Savior and Friend.
Gentle the peace he finds for my beseeching.
Constant he is and kind,
Love without end.

We are promised in the Book of Mormon that a man will get nearer to God by abiding by it's precepts than by any other book. ANY OTHER BOOK. Can you believe that? This book... is available to you. It is in your home. It is online. It is in stores around the world. It is in your memory. It is in your heart. You have it. Do you want peace? Do you want solace? Do you want comfort? That can only come from the Savior and we get closer to Him through the Book of Mormon. I know that is true. I put that promise to the test this week and it did not fail me. It never will. When was the last time you put that promise to the test?
I love you all. Thank you for your support, love, and prayers. I am eternally grateful. Have a wonderful week!
-Sister Jensen
Sister Browne and I woke up Friday morning and decided to take a walk. Yes... that is the sunrise. Yes... that is the Temple.
The Hererra Family. :) This is one of the families Sister Monroe and I got to teach. I was lame and forgot to get a picture with them... These are their Sister Missionaries. :) It was a really incredible baptism... and the two on the end are getting baptized in 2 weeks. HAPPY DAY!!!
Goodbye to the Warners... tears for days.

Reunion with my Mama...:)
FLU SHOT....and DQ
Having fun at the Warners :)

Good ole' Sonic with the Sisters! :)

Exchanges with Sister Browne! :) :)
Monroe, Browne, Nye, Jensen
Donnie. Another family we taught for the Sisters. He is one of the most humble men I have ever met. After his baptism.. he was literally glowing. I love the Gospel.