Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Pancakes, Chili & Pie

I have 10 minutes to write a big email of this week so lets start at the top. 

Wednesday was Sister Jones's birthday so we took her over pancakes with a candle.  She goes home in a transfer and a half which is SO WEIRD!  She came out three transfers before me.  Which means at the end of this transfer I only have four left!  That's nuts.  

We are teaching a 15 year old boy who is a friend of a member of our ward. His dad had cancer and passed away this week. He is the sweetest kid and this gospel will really help him and his mother so please pray for us that we can be good teachers and invite the spirit.

We also showed Judy the baptismal font this week and we had her try on some of the baptismal suits. She is really excited. On Sunday she went to her friend's congregation for church and watched the primary program. She said she loved it. She is so excited to join the church (and we are so excited too). 

We also were walking out of the church and the mother of two of our investigators was in the hallway. We have wanted these two foster kids to be baptized for quite a few months but we have been meeting resistance from the foster parents, which is understandable because they see a different side of them at home than we do.  Anyway they had a baptismal date for the 8th of October also, but we didn't think it would hold.... BUT we were walking out of the church and she said to us "So the baptism on the 8th of October will be okay but it has to be after 4:00..." WE COULDN'T KEEP IT TOGETHER- we ran outside and started screaming!  We are so excited.  I really pray it will actually pan out this time. 

We got to go to the temple this morning and I actually remembered all the words in the ceremony!  I was pretty proud of myself. I absolutely love the temple!

We also had a ward party!  It was a chili cook off and OH MY HECK- I've never seen so much chili and pie in my life.  This ward really knows how to throw a party.  I honestly have never seen any ward parties like the ones in this ward.  They are a huge hit AND we had investigators and less actives there. 

Brother S (our ward mission leader) was released this Sunday and I was pretty sad about that, but they called a new guy named Brother G.  My companion played the violin in church this week and did SO WELL. 

We saw many other miracles this week and we also did quite a bit of walking and knocking. Thanks for your prayers.  I felt them this week!

Love you all! 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

How About Today?

Jessica & Judy

This is Julie.  On Saturday afternoon I received a text with this picture.  Here is my texting conversation:

Julie:  Thank you for sending this picture of my daughter!  It made my day!  Who is she with?

Judy:  Me.  My name is Judy.  Your lovely daughter has been doing service for me.  I have needed help with some health problems.  In the process we talked and to make it a short story, I am being baptized October 8th.  

Julie:  Oh  my goodness!  Judy, thank you for taking time to share this with me and my family!  We are so excited with your decision!  I hope you have felt how much God loves you.  I hope we can meet you someday!

Judy:  That would be nice.  Your daughter is an exceptional young woman.  I love her.

Now here is Jessica's letter this week:


I'm super excited if you can't tell. So Judy worked with Sherry as school teachers.  Sherry happens to be LDS.  They became close friends and Sherry started talking to her about the gospel.  Judy was receptive and loved to learn so Sherry went ABOVE AND BEYOND.  She took her to temple open houses, she read the entire "Work and the Glory" with her, she bought her dresses for church and they went on church tours. The lesson here is simply this- DO NOT CHECK YOUR RELIGION AT THE DOOR. Be bold, and talk about what you believe with everyone.  

We have a lady in our ward right now that does just this!  She loves her religion more than anything in the whole world and she shares it with literally everyone because it is what she is thinking about all the time and she isn't scared to talk about it. I admire people like that, but you don't come across very many.  This is what I want to be like for the rest of my life. 

I've been thinking this week about the process of a mission.  According to my UVU mission prep teacher (love him- he's the best), there are people who "go on a mission" and people who "become a missionary".  The words "BECOMING" have been stuck on my mind all week and I've been praying that God will help me get over my mountains and valleys so I can become who He wants me to be.  In very personal ways, I've been given an opportunity this week to "become" even more of what Heavenly Father needs me to be.  Hopefully I can make it through with a lot of faith. I want to become the kind of person who will not be afraid to share the gospel and stand up for Christ in any circumstance and especially when I'm released as a full-time missionary.  I continue to change in my process of "becoming" and it's not always easy.   

Thanks for the prayers and keep them comin!  I could use all the help I can get! 

Love, Jess

Thursday, September 8, 2016


So this week I really studied faith and believing. I need to have more faith. Our zone leaders asked my companion and I to give a training on faith leading to miracles. I also studied faith with doubt, and faith preceding action. There are so many things we can do to build faith and yet so many things can tear it down.  The world is filled with ideas contradicting many points of church doctrine.  The church is doing better at countering these with the topic essays and other links.  However, for most active Latter-Day-Saints, it takes more than this for true conversion.  Without faith, we are not planted deep in this gospel, no matter how much we 'know'. 

Our ability to comprehend the "ways of the Lord" is inexplicably small.  We may have many unanswered questions amid all of the contention and chaos of life.  When we choose faith over doubt, we are blessed.  Faith is NOT present when we are stubborn and prideful and unwilling to admit we are wrong. Faith is NOT blind and it often requires diligent study and pondering on our part. Faith can be hard to explain to others. Faith is more than just kind of believing or thinking you know. Faith is obtained though the witness of the Holy Ghost.  Sadly too many people think that the witness of the Spirit testifying of truth to a humble soul is less powerful than a googled fact of the church's stance on (FILL IN YOUR BLANK).  Faith is the only antidote to doubt, and God made it that way on purpose.   

So there is my rant :)    

Love you all!  Jess