Saturday, January 26, 2013

It's me again! 22 Jan 2013


Oh heavens. It sounds so cold there! I'm going to freeze when I go home! I think I've gotten used to this weather so lately it's been about 60 degrees and I've been freezing! But it's all good. I am glad you guys are all doing well, with basketball and museum activities. :) 

Mom, haha all your questions make me laugh! Let me try and answer some. The name of the town we live in is Kailua, and it's close to Kaneohe.. We cover part of Wiamanalo and Olomana. So maybe try and look for those on the map. It's the opposite side of the mountains from Honolulu. It's really gorgeous here. And it does rain a lot. I miss Aliamanu. My companion is Sister Piutau, she's Tongan and  is from La'ie! She was called to serve her mission in Hawaii even though she's grown up here. I can't even imagine. She's been out for about 4 1/2 months. Annnnnnnnnnd she says she thinks she knows of Elder Sanft! And Doctor Kinikini. Weird. I think La'ie is a bubble from what it sounds like. Everybody knows everybody. But it's been good! Hopefully she'll teach me some Tongan. :) ..To get driving privileges taken away.. Or "black dotted", I think if you wreck. Or if you drive away from your companion and leave them. I'm not sure. I heard that President doesn't black dot sisters, but apparently I was wrong. I don't know. But I am the driver here. Sister Piutau doesn't have a licence. And your last question.. Have I grown any fonder of pineapple.. Ha! Umm.. Kinda? I'll eat it, but it's still not a favorite. But you'll be surprised what I do eat now! I just don't have to like it. I ate a pickled mango at district meeting earlier. Mmhm. Be proud. :) 

Well this week has been.. Interesting. Learning a new area and new names and concerns of investos is hard. But I'm getting there. I was finding it hard at the beginning of last week to be motivated to work. My heart was still in Aliamanu and I was thinking and worrying about the people I love so much there. Heavenly Father has definitely been teaching me a lot this week. I've learned a lot about charity and how to love EVERYONE I meet. That's been coming up in my studies. 

Zone Conference was on Thursday for my old zone, and I got to go because Kaneohe zone already had theirs. It was really good. President and the training talked a lot about getting back to the basics and just going and doing it. Just get out here. For every zone conference everyone has to prepare a 5 minute talk and President picks the topic. His question was "How does exact obedience bless my missionary service?" And as I was preparing weeks before I knew that I was going to get called and have to share. I don't know why but I just knew! This happened to me in the MTC as well. I just new it would be me! So with all this emergency transfers and stuff I wasn't able to refine the talk that I was preparing and thinking about, and of course there's that little voice in your head the morning before it starts that says. "Nahh. Maybe I wont get picked.." But lo and behold, I was called. And I gave my talk, but I thought it went ok, but I don't think I gave or presented it the way I would have liked to. But I was just kicking myself that I didn't prepare better because I knew!! I was so frustrated afterwards. But it's all part of the trial and error. Now I know, and hopefully I will learn that when the spirit tells you you are going to speak. Prepare! Interesting how things work out. 

Having all these different companions and teaching with all of them is sooooo different. It's trying to find the balance I think, and be unified and one voice. Sister Wright and I, she took about 3/4 of the lesson. That's just her personality. With Sister Smoot. We were really balanced and equally taught. With Sister Piutau, it's a lot more of myself teaching. Which I don't like! I'm trying to find a way to be more unified. She's such an awesome, solid, hard working missionary! But she never went to the MTC. And I think right now she is lacking confidence. The other night we came back from a lesson and I could tell something was wrong. So I asked her is she was ok, and she explained that she's suuuuper bummed that she didn't get to go to the MTC, and that she feels like she's not as prepared as she should be, as a missionary. I tried to reassure her and comfort her. But! If you could would you please send me my orange MTC experience book back ASAP!? I want to give it to her, and then we talked about role playing a lot during comp study. Because that's basically what you do the whole time in the MTC. I love this girl, she is going to change so many lives! But I want to help build that confidence in her. And help her realize that she is a fantastic! So if you could send that to me that would be great! 

Anyways.. Everything is going good! I love being here. I love the work that I am doing. I read a talk by Elder Holland this morning that he gave at a seminar for Mission presidents. He said "missionary work is not easy, because salvation is not cheap". It's so true. I love my Savior and I am trying my very best to help other come unto Him. 

Love you all! Have a fantastic week! 
S. Nielsen  

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Emergency Transfer? What!? 14 Jan 2013

Aloha Nielsen Ohana!

I love your emails/updates of the fam each week! Dad. Awesome missionary experiences! We need more members like you! Grandma is definitely telling the truth. :) Mom. About the clothes thing, umm.. I feel bad if you have to buy new clothes. You could just send me some that I already have packed away. Comfortable shirts would be really nice. :)

.. I have had thee CRAZIEST week of my life! Well.. Kinda not really. But it's been pretty crazy! And some great learning experiences. Our investigators are doing good, Kehnie is still schuduled for the 26 and we committed him this week to get married! And he said yes! So that was good. We also committed our investo Betty to get baptized and she said yes! Feb 2nd! :) She's so solid and prepared. Her grandma in law referrel her to us.

Thursday was interesting, but so good! I was praying a lot for how to help my companion. Her last three months before she was with me she struggled with her companion, and kinda got a little lazy with some of the mission rules.. We get along great! We laugh all the time! I love this girl so much, but in the beginning I'd learned from her talking about past experiences that she does not take correcting or being critical of her very well. It stresses her out alot, she needs building and encouragement. So I'd never mention anything to her about it, but just tried to love her as much as I could, and not judge her for anything. Also, she's served on Maui for her first 7 1/2 months and when she got to Oahu, she'd gotten a sinus infection. And nobody really knows how to treat it. She's alergic to something I guess. So she constantly has a runny nose and is just tired all the time. But she wants to work and she wants to see success. It's just hard for her to have motivation. So I was praying really hard, trying to figure out what I can do to help. I really had no clue. We week planned that morning and then had to rush on to an appt so we didn't have time for comp inventory. After the appt, but both had different views of how that appt went. So we talked alot about it, and about having faith. She then opened up a lot of things that had been weighing on her mind, how she knows she needs to be better, how she wants to be, but how its just so hard to get back after you've been doing things so long, also how she is so frustrated about being sick. I suggested she get a blessing. And she agreed that she'd been thinking about that, but didn't want to. I persisted a bit,  that she would feel better and that she knows she needs to. So she did, I called our zone leaders and they came over that night and gave her a blessing. And it was the most inspired blessing I've ever heard! He talked about getting her greenie fire back, and then said that based on her faith that she would be health of any infection, virus, or disease. Just everything he said was SO perfect for her! It was so neat to be a part of that experience. Heavenly Father answered our prayers. :)

On Saturday I was was able to go on exchanges with the sister trainer on island, and it was so good! We came to my area and Sister Smoot went to North Shore. She is the kind of missionary I want to be like! I can definitely see why she is a sister trainer, she has an aura about her. She loves the work and loves everyone she meets. We had a lot of fun and I love getting constructive criticize back on how to be a better misisonary. She goes home in three weeks.

Alright now for the BIG news.. On Sunday I checked my phone after church and had a million missed calls from the assistants. So I call them back and they tell me to pack my bags and that I am getting emergency transfered and to meet them at the tabernacle in 2 hours.. I felt like I'd just had whip lash! So we hurried home and got ready. I have been transfered to Kaneohe Zone, windward side of the island. The sisters over here got in a car accident and so now neither of them are able to drive. We live in the town of Kailua and are serving in the Olomana ward. I'm still no good with these Hawaiian words sometimes. My companion is Sister Piutui.. (I think that's how you spell it.) But she is from La'ie! Crazy! She's been out for about 3 1/2 months now. Sooo.. Its so weird! I didn't get to say goodbye to anyone! Just picked up and left. I loooove Aliamanu ward so much! I already miss it. But I know everything happens for a reason. And I am excited to be here and have new experiences. It's so green. And I guess on Thursdays we do service cleaning out horse stalls! So within these 4 weeks I have served in 4 area! Aliamanu, Kahala, Waialua, and now Olomana. Idk what president is thinking. But I'll probably know this island pretty well by the end of it!

Well I better get going. I love you all! And thanks for much for being the best family ever!

Much Aloha,
S. Nielsen

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Expecting Miracles Make em Happen!! 07 Jan 2013


It's crazy how fast time is going huh. 5 months, I still feel like a baby misisonary and that I just got here. It's sooo weird. Chelsea, I loooooved all your crazy Nielsen stories from the holidays! Baha! Our family is NUTS! But I love it. I am glad you guys all have a good winter break. And Erin, I am glad to see you are making sure my pea coat doesn't get dusty. Ehem? .. It sounds like it's freeezing there! Yikes! And I have been freezing here! It's been love 70s high 60s, and I'm freezing! I never thought I would be cold in Hawaii. It's been rainy alot here lately.

This week was good! New Years was fun, we just cruized together as a zone, had a white elephant gift exchange (I got a Justin Bieber backpack. Yessssss.) and then watched the fireworks. It was cool because we were on top of a hill and you could see fireworks everywhere! The next day was a non proselyting day and we took a nap! It was the most glorious thing in the world! And much needed. I. Love. Naps. And you don't ever take them as missionaries.

We found new investos!! Through the prayer approach! This week I was really trying to focus on getiing our "windows" (or tracting time) in everyday. And so we were tracting this one street, I had picked the night before while planning just because it stuck out. And it was our last door before we headed out to dinner, it was weird because while walking down to the front door I just imagined us.. Going there a lot. Idk it was weird. We knocked on the door and the woman who answered let us right in. Almost as if she knew us and recognized us. A few minutes later the rest of the family came home, and we were able to pray with the whole family! They are SO prepared! They expressed to us how they knew members in La'ie and how you could just feel what they believed by being around them. After we invited them to be baptized  they were thinking about it were kind of shocked that their friends had never invited them to church. They never gave us a response of yes or no, conversation kind of changed, but we are allowed to go back.  It was just SOO cool! Then the Dad right before we were getting ready to go he say "You know there is a reason why you guys are here, because she (pointing to his wife) never lets anybody inside. So there is a reason." It so interesting because that morning I was studying chapt.4 of PMG and it was talking about the light of Christ, and how it is preparatory to receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. This family has that light of Christ in them! I didn't quite understand while I was reading it that morning, or just wasn't thinking that deeply about it. But when I met them I was just reminded of that! Sister Smoot said she thought they were members playing a joke on us as first. But they had that light in their eyes, I think the father was a pastor before if I am right. But I'm not quite sure.

On Saturday we went on exchanges! And I went to Miliani zone, Waialua.. North Shore. And oh my heavens I have NEVER seen the ocean as beautiful as I did that day! The waves were CRAZY! And I was driving on dirt roads for the first time in 5 months! I was with Sis. Kimmons! And she's only been in that area for about.. 3 weeks so we both were a little lost. But we had a miracle! We were trying to visit a less active and there were no numbers on this street, so we decided to just knock on someones door and ask them. There was this one guy outside so we started talking to him, and ended up praying with him and inviting him to be baptized. I'm trying to perfect the prayer approach, that that was almost perfect! I just forgot to ask for referrals and give him a card. But we are supposed to ask if there is anything specific we can pray for. And normally people don't open us to complete strangers about the hard times in there lives. So I've been trying to ask, "what are the desires of your heart, that we can pray and bless you with?" and it went well with him! He told us how his job wasn't secure, and that he's lost his mother, father and an auntie within the last 2 years. He was just going through a hard time. And he was really touched by the prayer, he started crying and said that he would be baptized. Ah!! Heavenly Father knows exactly what he's doing! It was good for Sis. Kimmons too. I guess one of the hard things she's facing with adjusting to this mission is tracting, they never did tracting on Christmas island. All member referrals. And she was excited about it! I could tell while we contact people she's nervous, but I hope she can see now that this works!! I love the prayer approach!

Well.. I better jet. I hope you all have a fabulous week! Keep the faith!

Love, S. Nielsen