"Wherefore, whithersoever they shall send you, go ye, and I will be with you; and in whatsoever place ye shall
proclaim my name an effectual door shall be opened unto you, that they may receive my word."
- Doctrine & Covenants 112:19

Monday, November 24, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!


This week has been a great week.

We had a special speaker come to our Relief Society. Clayton Christensen, the author of the Power of Everyday Missionaries. He is way cool! He told us all about the missionary experiences he and his wife have. They are great missionaries. I took some notes that I will return to when I go home, to help me be the best member missionary. I wanted to share them with you since you are all member missionaries...some of those things he said were:

-People will learn when they're ready to learn, not when we're ready to teach.

-The door into the Book of Mormon isn't the beginning, it's the answers to their questions (he's saying that we should help them find places in the Book of Mormon to read that will answer their questions, not necessarily starting from the beginning, so they can gain a testimony of it).

-If you help them learn, they can teach themselves and us. (For example, he told us how he invited a friend over to meet with the missionaries in their home, and he gave his friend assignments to complete. He gave him reading assignments and had him write essays about what his answers to his questions were. When he returned to their home, they were asking if he was able to do the assignments and he said yes. One of the questions he had was about the age and means of baptism. When they asked what answer he found, he said something profound that taught the Christensen's. He said, "It makes God mad when infants are baptized because it trivializes the Atonement of Jesus Christ." Holy Cow, so cool!)


Use these things in your missionary work. Invite people over for dinner and ask if you can also invite missionaries to share a brief message with them. You just never know :)

We got to go to Savior of the World again this year! I think it was better than last year. It's really good. The people in charge of it were so nice, they gave us tickets for every night of every performance that we can give to investigators! Such a cool missionary tool to show people about our belief in Jesus Christ.

I don't know if you remember the Recent Convert Cesar, he got baptized last November. Well, he entered the MTC this week! How cool is that? He is serving in Las, Vega Nevada, where the missionary who found him is from. He will be such a great missionary.

We've had some really good missionary experiences this week. We found some new investigators and were able to teach more than we were able to, not really sure how we did that haha but we were so grateful we got to. We talked to some awesome people when we weer at our desk assignments and felt the spirit as we tried to uplift members.

Paul is doing SO good it's crazy. This morning, he texted us and said, "How do I prepare myself for baptism? I believe that I am a sinner, Christ died for my sins, Joseph Smith was indeed a prophet of God that did see Jesus and God the Father, that the Book of Mormon was inspired and is another testament of and to Jesus Christ, and we are the Restored Church of God. Is this sufficient?" Haha we died. All we could say is NO WAY haha. He wasn't able to go to church on Sunday because he was with his wife and daughter at a restaurant and they came in one car but he said that he is going to start riding his motorcycle when they go to lunch so he can go to church after. He also told us that he thinks tithing is really a blessing and a chance to be an example to other people. Yesterday he told us that he went to the gym and was reading the Book of Mormon on the elliptical and some lady walked up and asked if he is LDS and HE SAID YES haha. He is so funny. Turns out she is an inactive member, and he invited her to church and is being a missionary to her. Oh man, he is so cool! We are so excited to see his progression.

This week, I have been focusing on the Book of Mormon. I've been reading it at every chance I have. During studies, meals, after planning, during prep time, etc. and it has been so cool. My love for the Book of Mormon has deepened when I didn't think it was possible! I'm trying to finish before Christmas. I just finished the book of Helaman and it's so cool to read. I love hearing about the war chapters, how they prayerfully do things to protect their freedom and family and religion. It's sad to see how wicked people can become, but how quick Heavenly Father is to forgive them and remember their sins no more if they will just choose to repent. This church is the best!!!

It's been cool as I've been reading to see how I have changed, and how my Gospel knowledge has changed. I really don't know how they let me come on a mission, haha I didn't know anything. Not that I know tons now, but I have grown so much in my understanding and love for the Gospel that it's just been neat to see the way that I understand the Book of Mormon now, and how I can apply it to my life. It's so cool to me that the scriptures apply to each of us as individuals in our personal lives even though there are billions of members of the church. The coolest thing is that learning is an eternal thing in this church. We will learn for the rest of our lives. Good thing we take knowledge with us when we die haha.

We are really excited for Thanksgiving. We get the chance to go to a family's house for dinner up in Bountiful! We are going to get so fat haha. I hope you all have a Happy Thanksgiving and think about President Uchtdorf's talk on being grateful in every circumstance. Heavenly Father is so good to us.

Last Preparation Day we had a Zone Activity at the Moore's (mission secretaries) house. It was way fun! We got to make turkey hats for hospital kids and eat BBQ (oh man my favorite). It was the best! I'll attach some pictures.

Chenwei (the one I taught in Ohio) is coming this week for Thanksgiving!! I am so excited to see him! Hopefully he will be able to watch Savior of the World. He is doing so good and I can't wait to see him.

Oh, I got to see Sister Malloy this week!! (My companion my first transfer in Ohio, I refuse to call her by her first name haha) It was so good to see her! She is doing so good. I'll send pictures of that too.

Well I think that's about it. The lights come on on Friday, which means our new schedules start then, which means we have to be done by Thursday with the schedules, which means Sister Asay and I should have time this week to not be in our office! We are so excited about that, we are going to tear the square up. Haha and we get to be in West Gate when the lights come on so that will be way fun. Well Happy Thanksgiving! Have the best week ever!


Monday, November 17, 2014

A Blind Date

No way has it really bee a week since I sat here. Haha it's so weird how fast time flies. The transfer is already halfway over an I can't even believe it!

This week has been a really busy week for Sister Asay and I. On Thursday, we had to give a training to the whole mission about what to do on the square during Christmas time. So naturally, Sister Asay and I looked in our closets and found matching outfits and put on Santa hats. Then, we decided to do an elf yourself video to have a fun intro for the training and hopefully to get people excited for Christmas. So we made one of people who are in the Office. It was the funniest thing I have seen in a long time! I am like dad and cry when I laugh, so when we watched it for the first time, I literally had tears streaming down my face. Something about seeing your Mission President dancing is just so funny! Here is the link so you can see it:


Everyone loved it! President Poulsen even requested his own copy of it haha.

But the training went really well. There was a lot we had to talk about and thankfully, we only forgot one or two things. President Poulsen is so sweet. After we finished, he got up and came to the front and said, "can you imagine being in these sisters' position? Imagine all that they do. They work so hard. Thank you so much sisters." and then sat down. Gosh it was so nice! That's my favorite part of this calling is working closely with the mission president. It's really neat. He has some really cool things planned for us to do for Thanksgiving and Christmas, I am excited to tell you when it gets closer!

Like I said, this is a super busy time for Sister Asay and I. It's always busy in this calling, but not usually this crazy but because of Christmas, we have double duty schedules. Amongst the trainings, we have to create a new schedule for each companionship because everything changes after the lights come on. Preparation day changes from 1-9 to 10-6, we stay on the square until 10 PM, and we add about 8 new Christmas things to the schedule. So we put in about 15 things to 80+ schedules, all the while working around current assignments, preparation days and companionship studies. Over the weekend, we had gotten a lot done. We had spent days filling in almost all the Christmas assignments. We were probably about halfway through. Then we realized that we should have started a different way, and that it was becoming a big headache because we probably wouldn't be able to fix it so we had to start over from scratch. Haha. But actually it made it a lot easier. It's been more smooth to figure it out and to make it more workable in people's schedules. Honestly, it's been a learning experience for me in many ways. I am so grateful I can serve the sisters and it's stretching me in different ways. It makes me super excited for teaching, that whenever I get to get out of the office, I feel like a 5 year old, I want to run around haha. But we have seen so many miracles! We always make time everyday to go and teach and whenever we do, we always see awesome miracles.

For example, Paul is doing so well!! He went to church on Sunday, and the missionaries are coming over tomorrow. He's been reading the Book of Mormon and even left it on top of his laptop, hoping his wife would pick it up and read it. He is trying to convert her haha. I won't type up his texts again but I can't even explain to you how prepared he is. He talks about his faith and his testimony of the restoration and the Book of Mormon and he sounds more converted then some members! We have been ITCHING to invite him to be baptized and we finally got to call him today. He was in a rush so we answered questions he had and shared about the Holy Spirit. It was really good! He said he had to go, so we just blurted out a baptismal invitation because the spirit was there and we couldn't wait any longer. He said, "I don't have any objections." So he is working towards getting baptized on November 29th!! He even said the closing prayer, and prays like a champ! We are so excited for him.

Here is the embarrassing moment of the week to make you just laugh about as hard as I did with the elf yourself video...So the secretary came to us to schedule a tour request she got. It was from a blind guy that wanted to take a blind girl on a tour as a date (literally a blind date hahah). We thought, oh that would be fun, so we decided that we would be the ones to take them around (also because we wanted an excuse for more teaching time). They walk in the North Visitor's Center and we immediately know it's them because they have their blind sticks and all. In that entrance, they have to come down some stairs. The guy starts coming down them and the girl runs into the railing straight on. We were like oh ummm go to your right a little....then the guy gets to us and says hi I'm Jim, and sticks out his hand. So I shake it and say nice to meet you. Then, the girl says, I'm Jessica. So I STICK OUT MY HAND and say nice to meet you. After about 5 seconds I realized that she CAN'T SEE my hand hahaha Oh man I was like 'oh shoot' under my breath. While everyone in the NVC saw that I actually did that haha. Oh gosh. Then we start the tour and take them to the Christus because we wanted them to feel the prints of the nails in His feet. Turns out he is atheist and she wasn't really interested. So the whole Christ thing wasn't very applicable no matter how hard we tried...so we start going to the Tabernacle so they can hear the acoustics and there was a sign in the middle of the walkway we were too late in warning them about, but they were fine and we kept walking and guiding them, all the while I try to make conversation by asking them how long they've been blind... Then we realized the door we were trying to go to wasn't working so we had to walk all the way around the entire tabernacle to where we started....It was a little rough because they kept accidentally tripping us with their sticks and we weren't very good voice guides so they kept going off the sidewalk, but finally we got to the Temple Grounds for our last location and started talking about the Temple and it's significance. Jim's said that he didn't want to learn about religious stuff, but that they had come for the history. He also said some more things about God that were really sad but we just testified and I felt impressed to tell him that a time in his life will come when he won't know where to turn or what to do, and that he will remember our invitation to him to pray and that when that time comes, he should pray. That was the rest of the tour. I hope he will pray and give it a chance!

Hopefully that gave you a nice laugh. It seemed like something Michael Scott from the office would do gosh...haha.

We also go tot meet up with Saige. She is doing a lot better thankfully! She has broken through her clouds of doubt and is enjoying the sunshine that is God's love.

Well sorry this is so long! But thanks for the prayers and support. I am so excited for Christmas and can't wait to tell you about all the cool experiences!!


Monday, November 10, 2014

Orange tabs...

Week of miracles!! We have some really cool stories to tell you about :)

We called Lauren and she is doing so good! She told us that she has been reading the Book of Mormon. Usually she has a bunch of questions, but she didn't even have questions because she likes what she has been reading. She told us more about her job. She's a truck driver, but because she isn't a solo driver, she is in the truck moving 24/7. So when she isn't driving, she's in the back sleeping and her partner is driving. She really wants to go to church but can only go on a day off which she doesn't get very often. So she wants to do that soon. We talked with her more about prayer, and why we pray and how it is special to us. She has been super hesitant to pray because of her past history with Christian churches, but at the end of the lesson, she said she would try to do it! That was such a huge step for her! Right before we were about to end the call, she said, "I don't know how long you continue to call people, but if it's okay, I want you to keep calling me." We were like OF COURSE! haha it was way cool. She even got some sasparilla for us, and wants to bring it to us if she ever gets to stop in Temple Square. She's way awesome!

We also got to talk with Cameron. He is still on Probation so he hasn't been able to be baptized. But, he is doing really well. He has changed a lot since we first met him in May. He told us all the things he wants to be better at and how he is going to do that. Hopefully he will be able to be baptized soon!

Frank is doing really well! We have met with him almost every day since Tuesday. He's kind of crazy haha really eccentric is a better way to put it. But anyway, he wants to return to the Temple and get his life back on track. He's been working with the Homeless Veteran's Association to find housing too. He came to Music and the Spoken Word with us on Sunday and attended church in a local ward too. On Saturday we finally had a break-through lesson. His whole eccentric personality was pushed to the side as we showed him the presentation God's Plan and talked about the Temple and having goals in his life. Finally we were beginning to see that 'broken heart and a contrite spirit.' I think the Spirit really hit him. Hopefully we will be able to help him as he fully returns spiritually and physically to where God wants him to be. The Temple is SO special. I love the Salt Lake Temple because of it's symbolism. It's so neat to me that the Lord teaches us through symbolism. It really makes us think :) As I have been a missionary, the importance of the Temple has really stuck out to me. We are so blessed that God would let us, imperfect people, make covenants with Him in His house! Like Elder Anderson said,'making and keeping covenants with Godgives us the power to smile throughhardships, to convert tribulation into triumph, to “be anxiously engaged in a good cause, … andbring to pass much righteousness."' Remember the power of your covenants! :)

Ah the coolest thing happened to me this week! We were in West Gate when this guy walked up to my window. His name is Paul and he is fro Colorado. He was talking about missionaries, and then he said, "They knock on my door, so I figured I'd come and knock on theirs." We were like no way right now....haha no way!! So I started talking to him while Sister Asay was talking to someone. He was way interested in the symbolism on the Temple exterior. He said that he had been reading all about it (on some bogus site called moroni.com or something...) so I was like, oh well can I show you a website that has a lot of helpful information? (So I showed him mormon.org haha hopefully he will go there now) And I showed him the features of it, he really liked it. Then he was like well thanks bye! Before we could say anything else. oh man! I was thinking, I want to teach this guy, come back! but he was gone. About 5 minutes later, I looked up, and there he was! I was like no way... so I started talking more to him and explaining the Book of Mormon and asked if he wanted one. He said yes. We talked a little more and I was just thinking, I can't let him leave without inviting him to act on his faith, and without him having a chance to learn more because he is so prepared. So I just said, "Paul, here's the thing. I want to share more with you about how this all relates to you and your family. Here on Temple Square, we actually get to call people all around the world and teach them more, without it being as invasive as knocking on people's doors. Can we call you and share more with you?" And he was like yeah, do you want my phone number? It was way awesome! Then we set an appointment with him for the next day, and when we called him, he answered and said, "is this sister Ferguson and Sister Asay?" We said yes and he said that he had been reading the Book of Mormon but that when he shared his experience with his wife, she said absolutely not. She is baptist and feels like it would ruin their family relationship. Well, we can't mess with that, so we told him that we want him to have peace in his home, and that we respect him and his wife, and gave our phone number for if he ever has anything we can help with and told him the importance of reading and praying about the Book of Mormon and ended the call. I was way sad because I knew he had been prepared for us and I felt so strongly we needed to teach him! I kid you not, less that 15 minutes later as we were going home, he texted us. His text said, "The minor things fade in comparison to the reading of the Book of Mormon, addictive, and meditative." and yest again, Sister Asay and I were like NO WAY haha. Then he said, "I want to find a way to worship indirectly with other Mormons ie through the radio/internet. I know the church we have been going to broadcasts over the Internet do Mormons?" and then he said, "If I ever went to the Temple [where I am from] would I be able to go into it or do I need an invitation/sponsor?" We answered all these questions and told about the preparation needed to enter the Temple and why we need it. He then said he was going to listen to the broadcast of Music and the Spoken Word as he was driving the next day. He is so cool!! I don't know if we will be able to teach him or what will happen, but I know he will be baptized one day because he is so prepared, and is recognizing truth so fast. It is amazing to see the work of the Lord! In my scriptures, I use an orange tab to mark all instances of miracles. If I had to do that even just for the time period of the mission, I would run out of tabs really fast. Haha. I love this mission so much because you see so many miracles. Even Sister Asay and I see so many, and we are in our office almost all day! It's unlike any other mission in the World. I can't even believe I am so blessed to be one of the few that get to serve here.

Well that's all the time we have. Look for the 'orange tabs' in your life this week as you remember the power of your covenants. I hope you have a wonderful week!


Monday, November 3, 2014

'The Plan would be frustrated'

Well it was a great week! :)

We have been doing office stuff all week though so we haven't been able to teach as much as we would like to but we have had great experiences nonetheless. I don't have a lot of time left so this is going to be really short but that's okay!

Joelle and Alissa got baptized! We got to skype Joelle's baptism. It was way cool! She is really strong.

I had a neat experience on Saturday. We were at our desk assignment and right when we were about to leave, I started talking with these three people. One was from Puerto Rico, and I always like talking to people from there because Dad served there. We were small talking and the daughter and I started talking while the father and other lady were talking. She told me how she wanted to go on a mission but got married instead, and her husband is inactive and she questions whether she should have gone on a mission or gotten married. I had found a scripture the day before that popped into my mind so I shared it with her: "And thou didst hear me because of mine afflictions and my sincerity; and it is because of thy Son that thou hast been thus merciful unto me, therefore I will cry unto thee in all mine afflictions, for in thee is my joy; for thou hast turned thy judgments away from me, because of thy Son." And she just cried. She said that she hasn't been going to church lately because it's just easier to spend time with him and doesn't want to create tension but I just testified of the importance of doing the little things, going to church, praying, and reading. She said she was going to go to church this Sunday and I told her I would pray for her husband and her. She is way sweet and I hope that things will start to work out!

For Halloween, we got to have dinner in the Church Office Building (we had a potato bar) and then go to the Temple as a mission after. It was way cool, I've never had an experience like that. It was literally so full of sisters, it was the neatest things to see 180 sisters dressed in the Temple. I don't know how we all fit into the same session but we did! The spirit was so strong and it was way cool to have President and Sister Poulsen there too. It was the best Halloween ever.

Funny story...yesterday in Staff meeting, we were talking about our Christmas Schedules and ideas we could incorporate and we were talking about Caroling every night and he was asking if they would just sing without music and my companion was joking around about beat boxing and my mission president started beat boxing (by saying boots and cats and boots and cats) we all DIED. Literally one of the funniest things I have ever seen!! He is in his 70's and he's beatboxing haha. Today I asked him if I could record him doing it and he laughed so hard and said yes. That will be the best video ever!

On Saturday, we were serving in the West Gate booth when this man walked up. His name is Frank. He was asking whee he could get a warm meal. We told him that there were shelters around, but that we didn't know too much information. He then told us how he is inactive, and all the horrible trials that happened to him. He bore his testimony to us! We were able to give him a bishop's number and talk for a long time about the Gospel. It was cool because he testified of the Word of Wisdom and how he knows he needs to live it. We encouraged him to go back to the Temple and gave him a quote about why bad things happen to good people: "[these things happen] to give you opportunity to respond by applying in your life the teaching of Jesus Christ. As you do so, you are changed to become more like Him...without opposition, the plan would be frustrated." I'm not sure if I have shared that before but it was perfect for him. We shared also, "the best paths in life are rarely the easiest" and told him to look up the talk 'I Will Not Fail Thee, Nor Forsake Thee' by President Monson and to read a chapter in the Book of Mormon. It was the neatest thing to see because his countenance was completely changed from when he walked up to the window. The spirit really spoke to hm and he was so happy when he left! We are looking forward to talking more with him and helping him become active again.

Well that's about all the time that we have. I just want you to know how important the First Vision is to me. I am so grateful for that account. I know that Joseph Smith was a humble servant of God that actually saw God the Father and Jesus Christ in answer to his prayer. He was called to be a Prophet, to teach the people what they need to do in order to be happy, and to teach them that there is a God and a Savior of the World, and that there is a plan for us. Through him, keys and ordinances were restored that make it possible for us to be with our families for eternity. Heaven wouldn't be heaven without my family. It's possible through Jesus Christ. I know that we have a Savior that knows us! Because of Him, literally nothing is impossible. (Watch this video!) I am so grateful to know that this Gospel has been restored. I know we can see the miracles that come from it every day.

I invite you to tell someone this week how important the Restoration is to you! :)

Have a wonderful week and tell me about the experiences you have when you do that!


p.s. attached are pictures from the halloween dinner!