Thursday, March 28, 2013

Just another day in.. Paradise! 25 Mar 2013


Wowza! Thanks so much for sending the pictures! I LOVED THEM! You guys never send me pictures. And Erin, you look freaking GORGEOUS! Ahh the pink blush dress looked dang good! I was showing some of the Elders here and they said "you guys are twins." Not the first time I've heard that. But I'm ok with it. You're gorgeous girl. :) Oh and you looked good too Cody! Workin Dad's suit. Mmmhmm. Wouldn't expect anything less. I'm glad you guys had a fun time. It's so weird that it's prom time already. Is time flying or is it just me?

Summer.. How are you doing? I'm sure you just as happy and smiley as always. Carly, are you enjoying school? Ready for summer? Adelaide, I am so happy you remember me! I miss you little rug rats!

We had a good week here in Ewa Beach. We're working a lot on finding the prepared. We have some investos.. But they are not as solid as the elders before said they were. But I know there is someone in this area ready to be baptized. And we're going to find him!

With our finding efforts I've really felt impressed that we need to work with members and get member referrals. We have a really nice area and tracting isn't as effective as it was in my last area. So in every dinner appt we're really making an effort to remember to ask for referrals. Sis. Hudson is really good at. But it was really interesting.. Last night we had dinner with a young family and they invited some other families in the ward over for dinner. All of the wives were return missionaries. And everyone was in and out, by the time for us to share a message it was just two of the wives and their children. So we showed them the Doc. of Christ DVD and then asked if they knew anyone who needed the gospel. And these two women, have been missionaries before, they know the importance of missionary work and sharing the gospel. Yet they struggled with our request. I know that life takes over when you go home, and that they have their families to worry about, but I was really disappointed. How many times a day do we interact with nonmembers. Stay at home moms not as much.. But they do have neighbors! Why are we afraid to just open our mouths? I had a Zone Leader always say "Fear is the first defeat of a man" I may have already told you this before because I really like this quote. But I then was thinking about Katherine, she was a member referral. I don't even know if they were really great friends, but she knew that the gospel would help her in her life and all she did was talk about how the church would help and if she would meet with the missionaries. I'm just learning a lot of things of what I want to do when I go home. Be anxiously engaged in missionary work. Maybe I just have high expectations because of Dad.. Either way. I need member referrals.

Sister Hudson is so awesome. She is so solid and so prepared for this work. Her testimony is going to change lives! Training is good. It's different than I expected, but I am learning just as much as she is! It's helping me remember the basics, and fundamentals of missionary work. 

This last week I was a little frustrated with my new zone. Both our Zone Leaders are really new to their calling, and I was getting frustrated because things just weren't as focused or.. Idk. I just came from an awesome zone with dedicated zone leaders, and they are going to hit high water this month. I've definitely learned patience this last week. I've also been praying on how to be a better leader, and how I can be the best trainer for Sis. Hudson and help Heavenly Father develop her into the missionary he sees in her. I read a talk this morning from last conference that was SOO perfect for every situation I'm in. Help Them Aim High by Henry B. Eyring. Read it. I was just so perfect. Heavenly Father is so good and answers our prayers.

Well I better go. But I love you all so much! Have a wonderful Easter! He is risen. :) So the rest of us will live again.

Much aloha and LOVE! 
S. Nielsen 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Life and Adventures in Waipahu. 19 Mar 2013


Happy Birthday Dad! I'm glad to hear that you had a good birthday Dad! Are you now 49 or 48? I really can't remember. Sorry! Don't worry though, everyone will still mistake you for a 17 year old. ;) But it sound like you guys all had a good time in Utah! Cody's going to prom!? He's not old enough yet.. Is he? I don't even want to think about that. Mom: I got your letter! Thanks so much, I'll round up all the accessories from the camera and then do.. everything that you said. 

I am now in the Waipahu Zone! Which is different than anticipated. I am still on Oahu, but after this transfer I'll have at least been in every sister's area in Oahu for one day. (Counting exchanges.) Waipahu is known to be the most ghetto out of everywhere else. Lots of language wards, Samoan, Tongan, Marshallese, Philippians people.. And there hasn't been sisters in the zone for a while. Our area is nice though, a lot of town houses. We're whitewashing into the Ewa Beach 2nd ward. Opening up a new sister area. I white washed with Sister Wright, but I don't remember it being this difficult! We've gotten lost a million times. And our area book (in picture) is a disaster! Apparently the elders before had 5 with date, but I have no idea who they are because nothing has been recorded.  So this last week has been a lot of cleaning our pad (the elders said it was clean.. But it wasn't), and trying to get our area book in order. Our ward/Bishop is all gung-ho about missionary work and is SO excited to have sisters. The whole ward is. But they do "ministering" every tues. wed. and thurs. nights. Meaning like splits with the ward. Wowza! It's so awesome, but I don't know how to handle it! I feel like their trying to run but I'm still trying to figure out who everyone is! So different from Aliamanu. 

I have a new baby! Her name is Sister Hudson, she's from Toole, Utah and kind of Oklahoma. And yep she's 20! Our Bishop keeps calling her FOB- Fresh off the boat. She's so awesome! She's got greenie fire in her and is ready to work! It reminds me of when I first got here and was so excited about the little things. We're going to see miracles happen. I just know it. 

Soo yesterday was ZLC (Zone Leader Council) and since I'm a sister trainer I got to go. And Sister Wright is a sister trainer as well so she was there too! We actually picked her up from the airport Sunday night and she stayed with us. It was sooo fun! Oh my goodness we had SO much to talk about. Her hair has gotten really long. I can't believe it's only been 3 months that we haven't been together. But so much has happen since she's left! It was so good to see her. ZLC was good too! It was interesting to be in a room with all the leaders of the mission. But it was really good!

They just changed the email policy, Pres. Monson sent a letter to Pres. Dalton and we're now able to email, basically anybody. Except those of the opposite gender living in mission boundaries. Craziness! I don't know if I like that.. I enjoy getting and writing letters. But if it's from the prophet I guess he's got a reason for it. :)

I love you all! I hope you have a fantastic week! I love being a missionary, this work is so great.

S. Nielsen 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

I'm getting a baby! 11 Mar 2013


Holy cow.. I really can't believe it's March. Where you guys talk about the weather and how it's kinda starting to warm up it reminds me how long I've actually been out. Weird. Stink, tell me about how you got asked to prom. Pretty please. :)

Well.. It was a good week for us here in Hawaii! Lorenzo got... Drum roll please.. BAPTIZED! It was crazy how much the adversary was trying to stop this from happening. We had no way of trying to get in contact with Lorenzo because he didn't have a phone and was living in a homeless Men's shelter. So he would call us if he found a phone, but he called us on Tuesday when we were at the temple so we missed it. And then he called again on Wednesday and said he wanted to see us that morning. But due to some miscommunication we never met. I thought he said meet at this plaza but he was meaning the church. :/ Stink. So then he calls again on Thursday. (I was so happy he was so persistent!) And we FINALLY get to meet with each other at the church. He's just moved here from Arizona and has taken all the lessons there, he wanted to be baptized but some obstacles make it so that that couldn't happen. And then he moved here! So when we saw him we briefly reviewed all the lessons and prepped him for his Baptismal interview. Then our district leader came interviewed him and he was good to go. The only problem now was his schedule. He's trying to get a job and he had an interview Friday and he didn't know if he was going to have to work on Saturday  So he was trying to push it to Monday or Tuesday morning. And morning time is hard because our bishopric has to work. Soo I really didn't like that idea. So we were to wait and see what happen during his interview and if he was to work on Saturday. He called us Friday evening and said that the interview got moved to Monday! Hallejuiah! Then after talking to our Bishop, he said he found out that the shelter he was living in was in another ward. So I talked to President during my interview on Friday and he gave me the authority to make it happen in our ward. So we whipped everything together and had a baptism Saturday Evening. Small things, but Satan was trying really hard. But it happen! And Lorenzo is BAPTIZED! He's so solid. He had the desire and has such incredible faith. 

Some exciting things are happening this week. It's transfers again! 11 New full pros sisters. That's nuts. And I am leaving the Aliamanu ward and training a new missionary. I'm excited! But I don't think that it's actually hit me that I am leaving.. I love this ward. And I've learned a lot in this area. With covering to wards and everything else. Next email I might be on a different island! Which will we fun, I'm definitely needing a change. I haven't lived somewhere for 7 1/2 months straight in a long time! But all will be well. :) The Missionaries in my Zone are guessing that I'm going to Big Island. But we'll see. A lot of new sister areas are opening up. And we have 3 sisters who've only been out for 5 weeks who are training. Sister Wright's group is the oldest sisters in the mission now! That's so weird.

Well.. I don't know if I have much more to say either. I am learning new things everyday. My perspective is changing about the little things that matter. One thing that's been on my mind lately is why are obedient and keep the commandments. And I've learned that there is 2 reasons. The first is duty, we feel obligated to, we do things because we feel like we HAVE to. And we probably are grumbling the whole time. Where as the second is because of love. We love our Savior and we WANT to follow him. And keep the commandments that He has given us because we love Him. And we understand the scripture, "If ye love me, keep my commandments." Our Bishop just got called to be in the Stake Presidency, but he has not been released as bishop and it's been about 2 months. And I've wondered why.. And I think it's because there are so many priesthood in our ward that are military, but also who are not fully committed. They are sitting the bench and would rather watch someone else work and sweat then becoming a starter. But in the end, your team still wins, but you didn't have to do anything. Maybe I'm wrong..  But just things that have been on my mind. 

I love you all so much! Make this next week the best week of your life!

Much Aloha! 
S. Nielsen 

This is Lorenzo's baptism. No we didn't even plan to match! And our matching skirts that 'grandma' made. The elders in our zone have matching ties. :) 
Love you! S. Nielsen 

Monday, March 11, 2013

I Love To See the Temple. I went inside .. today! :) 5 March 2013


Wowza! So much mail to read today. But that's ok. I do enjoy mail. :) I'm sorry to hear that you lost the games, sounds like it was an awesome season though. And that everything is going well! Is it really prom season already? And Erin.. You're graduating!? What the what? When did that happen?.. Hmm.. Well I'm happy you found a dress! Be sure to send me pictures! I never get to see anything, remember I can't get on facebook. :) You guys are great!

Weeeeeellllll I feel like this has been such a long week! But good things are happening! We had a guy come to church these past few Sundays, he just moved here from Arizona, he's taken all the lessons, and wants to be baptized! I don't know why he didn't do it while he was in Arizona, but I'll be happy to baptize him! So.. I'm crossing my fingers, but I'm hoping it happens this weekend. He lives in a homeless shelter, and doesn't have a phone. So it's been kind of hard to get a hold of him and try to set up a time to meet. His name is Lorenzo. Yep. Just like the prophet. :) Other than that we don't have a lot of people we're teaching. We baptized everyone. :) So a lot of recent convert lessons and tracting.
Goodness, I feel like so much has happen. But I just can't think of anything to say! I went on exchanges this last week with the Kaneohe Sisters (my old 3 week area) and it was good! I still don't really know how to be a Sister trainer besides being an example. So with exchanges and evaluation and comp reports are all still new to me. Guess we'll figure it out as we go! But we have awesome sisters in this mission. I really don't have to do much 'training'.

My two areas, and two companions are good. Still crazy and will always be crazy. But at least we always have something to do! Yesterday I was really feeling burnt out. I love my companions, but with them being international sometimes I have to do a lot of everything. And sometimes people don't understand them. But today we were able to go to the temple! Oh. My. Goodness. I LOVE the temple SO much! It was exactly what I needed. I feel like I hadn't gone in so long. I've been waiting all transfer for this. In college I tried to go every week. So every 3 months seems like forever! But it was just so great! There is nothing like the feeling of being in the Celestial room. Baptisms in the basement are great, but in the Celestial room is incredible. I think it's Heavenly Fathers way of giving us a little bit of motivation to just keep going. That's what we get to have for eternity! If we keep our covenants  I learn something new every time I go. Ahh. The temple is just so great!

Well I better get going. Thanks so much for the love and prayers! They are felt over here on the island. Transfers are next Wednesday. So we'll see what happens. I really have NO clue what's going to happen this time around. I've been in my greenie area forever. But idk! We'll see.

I loooooooooooove you all so stinkin much! Have a fabulous week! Do good things! (<-- Like always. :) )
Much aloha,
S. Nielsen