Friday, December 16, 2016

Driving in Seattle (Week 27)

"Transfer meeting was crazy! It was so awesome to see all of the missionaries there together in one chapel. The spirit was strong. I know that we are called of God and that we carry His incredible spirit with us. You know it's true when you walk into a room full of 100 representatives of Jesus Christ. Of course, I already knew who my companion was going to be...Sister Christensen from the MTC! So exciting! there were a ton of changes in the mission, and we are now the only sisters in our zone. Which is really weird.

Last week was full of a lot of "lasts" with Sister Orr going home. This week was full of a lot of "firsts!" I got to teach an investigator for the first time who is truly interested in learning the truth of this gospel. The spirit permeated the air at our lesson, even though we were sitting in the hallway of a noisy church building. It was incredible. First time driving in snow. First time having to figure out what to cook. First time teaching a lesson without someone who speaks good English with me. (I mean Sis. C is great, but we have a bit of a hard time haha).

 Sister Christensen and I have been having a wonderful time taking over the Russian work here in Seattle! While everything is quite overwhelming and we aren't sure how exactly to handle life without our moms, we are figuring things out together. I have finally figured out how to merge onto the freeway without having a heart attack every single time. I guess that happens when you have to drive 50-60 miles a day in Seattle. You just get used to things.

Sister Christensen and I set some fun transfer goals. The reasoning behind what we set was the become more well-rounded/balanced missionaries in general. The word that kept coming to my mind as I prayed about a goal for us was the word "Balance"
B: be obedient
A: account
L: love
A: appreciate
N: nourish
C: convert
E: expect miracles
it's a lot of fun because we choose one every day and then make a sub goal that will help us to become better missionaries! Then we account with the Lord and our leaders to make sure that we are actually accomplishing the things that we said we would do. I am so excited to be working with Sister Christensen on improving and utilizing the Atonement in our lives more fully.

I got to translate for some Russian speakers at the Food Bank. That was really difficult because there are a lot of official, governmental terms that I have no idea how to say. However, I think that they got the idea about everything.

At English class on Wednesday, I told Brother Slava that one of my favorite ice cream flavors is Strawberry. Yesterday after church, we stopped by to read a verse with him and he handed me a container of strawberry ice cream. It was so sweet of him and I am so grateful to be in such a wonderful ward, serving around such amazing members and people!

The spirit of Christmas is everywhere! We are seeing so many miracles. This week we received something like 15 Russian referrals all over the place in all 3 missions. let's just say that Heavenly Father is keeping us very busy.

We had an experience where we were going to contact a referral and there wasn't an exact address, just an area of about 15 houses. We didn't know which one it was, but we decided on a house, knocked on it, and it was the right one! it was incredible to know that we were guided exactly to the right house by the spirit. Heavenly Father is definitely watching over Sister Jenne and Christensen.

I love each and every one of you! But not as much as God loves you. Have a wonderful week and remember the Reason for the Season!
#LightTheWorld with the spirit of Christ

Sister Jenne"

Laundry In the Snow! (Week 26)

"Attached is a picture of the snow in Seattle! I heard that it barely ever snows here except maybe once or twice a year...that's more than Alabama. I thought it was pretty special because this was Sister Orr's last day here in Washington!

This past week was a hard one, but a fun one as well! It's hard to stay focused when you kill a companion, that's for sure. However, I learned a lot about consecration and trusting my Heavenly Father. I have to trust that even though I do not speak fluent Russian and I do not know exactly what I am doing that He will provide a way for me to accomplish all of the things that I need to.
I got really distracted thinking about home this week. It was so hard to consecrate my thoughts and conversations. Tomorrow is transfers, but I already know who my new companion will be. It was realllllllly scary for me to hear that Sister Truax (from Ukraine and speaks fluent Russian) is getting transferred to English work and I will be with Sister Christensen who has been out one transfer less than me. I hit 6 months this week, but I don't feel like I'm ready to be a senior companion. We cover 3 missions. It's so overwhelming. While I was praying last night, I asked how I am supposed to do this. Heavenly Father taught me that I am going to be the most Senior Russian sister for the rest of my mission and that what happens this transfer is exactly what needs to happen for me to be ready for the rest of my mission and for the rest of my life. I know it's not going to be easy BUT I am excited to learn a LOT.

I get to be companions with an Hermana today. She is teaching me a little Spanish. Maybe by the end of the day we will each know how to say a few things in our languages.

Something that I learned this week that peace is not something calm and quiet.  Peace is the ongoing comfort that we can receive from Heavenly Father through thick and thin. In Ether 6, the Jaredites are tossed to and fro on the waves. They get thrown under the water and are driven forth by the wind. Basically, it's a really rough trip that they have to go through. God didn't give them a smooth sailing trip, but he did make sure that they had the peace that comes from a continual light inside of the barges.
And it came to pass that the Lord God caused that there should be a furious wind blow upon the face of the waters,towards the promised land; and thus they were tossed upon the waves of the sea before the wind.

 6 And it came to pass that they were many times buried in the depths of the sea, because of the mountain waves which broke upon them, and also the great and terrible tempests which were caused by the fierceness of the wind.

 7 And it came to pass that when they were buried in the deep there was no water that could hurt them, their vessels being tight like unto a dish, and also they were tight like unto the ark of Noah; therefore when they were encompassed about by many waters they did cry unto the Lord, and he did bring them forth again upon the top of the waters.
And thus they were driven forth; and no monster of the sea could break them, neither whale that could mar them; and they did have light continually, whether it was above the water or under the water.
Peace is like unto a river. Sister Orr and I listened to Motab sing that song a few times this week. Peace is like a river in that sometimes there are rapids, and sometimes there aren't, but the water continues to flow on anyways. It's a perfect metaphor for life. Heavenly Father is the reason that I am able to continue to flow also the path of life. No matter what is thrown at me, i know that it's going to end up being okay. Anyways, I just wanted to point out that the Jaredites "had light continually." that's what the gospel does for us! That's why we have confidence and peace in our lives. I love it. I love this gospel and I love Christmas! It's a wonderful time of year to light the world with the spirit of Christ.


I love all of you so much! have a blessed week
-Cectpa Jenne"

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Thanksgiving (Week 25)

"Thanksgiving was wonderful! We got to spend the day eating and serving. Stuffing is really good, I've decided. They don't eat as many casseroles here in Washington and they really love yams...they're pretty was almost like a whole different version of a thanksgiving meal but it still had rolls, turkey, and mashed potatoes. I am still stuffed!

So there was a day this week. I think it was Saturday... where it was really cold and rainy where we were in Seattle...Our car was nice and toasty and it was really, really hard to get up out of the car and walk. We had to park relatively far away and so it was a 5-10 minute walk to the apartment complex, and we knew it was locked and didn't even know if someone would let us in or not. I really didn't want to get out of the car. Like really. But, of course, I did it anyways. And then the whole walk there, I was just praying that I would be able to forget myself and go to work. That I would have a good attitude and not let any negative feelings creep into the conversations that we were going to have with people. Wow, I testify that Heavenly Father really does listen to prayers! I still felt cold and wet, but I felt like I was okay. Everything was going to be okay and I didn't even think about how cold I was anymore! I can't explain it, except that I felt so much better after walking through that cold rain than I thought possible.

Christ is the reflection of our potential. If we understand Him and His life, we understand our own potential. Do not settle for less than that! I recently met a person who truly does not believe that she can ever reach her full potential. She said that she has to find a place for herself that is in between how she grew up and where she wishes that she could be. Excuse me if this sounds rude, but I think that's absolutely ridiculous! We are here to constantly become more perfected, through Christ. And while He is the only way that we can ever do this, it's the experiences and trials and good times that we have in this life that lead us along the path that we need to take. We do have control of our own actions. We cannot force spiritual things to happen, but we just have to trust that when we are following the Savior, those spiritual and joyful experiences will come, despite the painful experiences that will also come. And, we don't need to feel guilty because we somehow did something wrong that caused that bad thing to happen.

I was reading in personal study about how Nephi and Lehi were surrounded by fire and how a cloud of darkness overcame the wicked people that were trying to imprison them and kill them. And how, when they saw the light on their faces, even though it was really dark, they (the wicked people) really wanted that light too! They wanted to know what they needed to do in order to have the light. All that they had to do is have faith and exercise that faith...act...and they saw the darkness lift and realized that they were surrounded by a pillar of fire too. This touched me so much. Especially with the focus being on LightTheWorld...

(SIDENOTE, GO WATCH THIS AMAZING VIDEO PLEASE! you won't regret it! it's an amazing way for people of all faiths to do service together and become more like our Savior Jesus Christ)

...and how we are the light of the world. I so much want to find a Russian speaking person who can see the light on our faces and wants to truly know how they can also have that light. It's hard for me to understand why that hasn't happened yet and easy to assume that it's because I am doing something wrong...however, I am just trying to be obedient and trust that God has a plan. It has all worked out so far, so I know it will continue to work out!

This week we had an interesting experience where we were the ones whose door got knocked on. Let's just say we had a very interesting conversation with some Jehovah's Witnesses. It was so funny at first, but then I realized that this is exactly what it's like for people when we knock and so I humbled myself right up and tried to listen and make them feel comfortable while still sharing our beliefs with them as well. They have a light the world card, so hopefully they can feel something when they watch the video. (go watch it if you haven't!)

We went to the temple! We got to see the Armenian couple from our Russian group get sealed to each other and their 2 adult children as well. I've never had a more peaceful experience, and I am so grateful that I now that I will be with my family into the eternities.

Love and miss everyone! Have a fantastic week and don't forget to LIGHTTHEWORLD

Sister Jenne"

It looks like Sister Jenne had a marvelous week. I'm always so grateful when she sends us so many pictures. Don't forget to #LIGHTTHEWORLD this month! :))))

Saturday, November 26, 2016

My Ship Wrecked! BOOYAH! (Week 24)

""To be tested, we must have the agency to choose between alternatives. To provide alternatives on which to exercise our agency, we must have opposition." -Elder Dallin H. Oaks
How many of us are grateful for the opposition that comes into our lives? I have been thinking a lot about this week about the choice of being happy. The choice of letting Christ influence our lives in every single aspect. I could be frustrated because we haven't baptized yet. I could be down because it's cold and rainy and just downright dreary almost every day. I could have a really bad attitude because of a lot of things! But what good does that do? Paul teaches such an important lesson about the trials in this life in His epistle to the Corinthians:
2 Cor. 12:7-10
“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. “For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. “Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”

He was beaten with rods. He was stones. And yet, he gloried in my infirmities, because he knew that the power of Christ is manifest in us when we are going through hard times. I don't know if I'm at the point yet, where I feel like I'll pray for trials. But wow I am so grateful for everything that I have experienced. The good and the bad. It's interesting how it's a lot easier to pinpoint the hardest times in our lives. I truly believe it's because those are the times when we learned the most! One of the APs was giving a training at zone conference this week and he said something that really struck me. He said something along the lines of..."I imagine Paul saying this every time he has a trial...'YES! I SHIPWRECKED! Now that means I can use the Atonement! Booyah!'" Wow, not going to lie, that struck me to the center! How many people have that attitude? maybe like 0.0001% of the population. And we aren't perfect, but we need to be striving to be at that point! And the coolest part is that Heavenly Father doesn't expect anything more than us trying our hardest. It's so wonderful. Okay, the fact that this email is spaced all weird and I cannot figure out how to change it is REALLY getting on my nerves. Hope all of you wonderful people don't get too annoyed by it haha sorry bout it.

Enough preaching! This week was so much fun! We had Zone Conference, which is always a blast! Sister Orr and I got to do an example role-play in front of our whole zone! so scary, but so much fun! it's all about improving our contacting, so it's definitely important to role-play. I'll probably role-play for the rest of my life for every single situation that I encounter so as to be ready. Highly recommend role-playing in everyday life it's a great tool!

If anyone is looking for an interesting study, study Mosiah 13 and the Law of Moses in the Bible Dictionary. And then go to all of the references and footnotes in the Bible and BOM for the Law of Moses and you will find some really cool things!

Love all of you so much! Have a fantastic week, and don't forget that Saturday is always Seattle Saturday and it's a day of miracles! Look for and embrace the beauty in others. Every single person is loved equally by God. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Sister Jenne"

She didn't send any pictures this week, but I'll be sure to ask her to send some for next week!! 

Aggressive Driving (Week 23)

I totally forgot the password to this, but I just figured out how to get in! YAyy!!! 
Here's the first one we missed:

"I'll start out with some funny things from the last 2 weeks (since last week's email was a mess and I forgot to put everything in there haha). Some stories:

I went on exchanges with a Samoan sister. We were teaching a little 9 year old girl and her grandparents were there. We were teaching about what happens when we die. She asked when people die. We responded that it's usually when they get old. She looked up at her grandma, and really innocently said "sorry." We all laughed so hard. Except the grandma. Polynesians>>>

Typical Sister Missionary
You know how Sister missionaries are characterized as frumpy and just not super cute or fashionable? Well Sister Orr would be the perfect embodiment of that (haha jk only this once). She might or might not have left the apartment with one of those big clips that they use at the hair cutting salon in her hair, and neither of us noticed it until we got home. It was wonderful to make fun of her for a few days hahah.

I had to drive (really scary) and guess what? I don't know how the heck to get home, especially not in the we were in the car and I knew that we lived near the airport and so I just told the sister that I was with to put "airport" in the GPS. Well, it definitely took us straight to the airport and we drove right through the arrivals and departures and that place where you go to drop people off. What an adventure. It was pretty stressful, but really fun to laugh about afterwards. Don't worry, I eventually found the apartment, only a few minutes late to nightly planning!!

"Aggressive Driving"
Sister Jenne really shouldn't be driving in seattle. I somehow ran a red light but also skidded to a stop in the middle of an intersection ( I don't really know what happened exaclty) and so it was really scary because there were cars and I had to figure out how to get out of that intersection without dying. so the tiwi box in the car yelled at me for aggressively driving (I was swerving a lot). Sooo now I have that on my record.

This week we did a lot of fun things! Exchanges with Russian sisters! Preparing 72 hour kits for the whole mission! Leadership meeting! Meeting unexpected members who gave us water! Meeting and talking with a lot of less actives "by chance." God was guiding us so perfectly this week. We didn't find a Russian who wanted to hear the gospel, but we definitely were able to help other missionaries in their areas with English speakers. One girl has never heard of the Book or Mormon or seen missionaries! She was so hungry for the life that Christ gives to all of us. It was such a powerful experience to find her, even though we won't actually be able to teach her. I know that she will be taken care of.

Just so everyone knows, I would not be here today, alive, if it weren't for a prompting that I received. There were a lot of close calls with cars this week. We were in a parking lot, parked near the entrance. It's a mission rule that I back the car to make sure that Sis Orr doesn't run into anything by standing behind the car and telling her to stop if there's anything in the way or a car coming. I usually stand about 10 feet behind. Essentially in the middle of the road. This particulzar time, I felt a quiet thought tell me that I needed to back up to the curb, out of the middle of the road. Not 10 seconds later, a car turned the corner and zoomed past the exact spot where I had just been standing. My heart was beating so fast. I knew that I had come really close to death. Sister Orr and I just talked in awe, afterwards, about how God saved my life. There were a few times this week in sketchier parts of Seattle where I might not have felt comfortable walking if it weren't for the protection and guidance of the Holy Ghost. I bear testimony that the covenants that we make as members of the church at baptism and the temple really will protect us spiritually and sometimes even physically! Don't forget that!

An interesting passage that I have been thinking about is somewhere in 2nd Thessalonians. I don't remember exactly where, but Paul (I think?) is talking about missionary work. What I got from the verses is that even when someone doesn't want to listen to us, we still need to listen to them. Even if they want to argue, we still need to try our hardest to be edified and inspired by what they are saying.

Mosiah 2: 20-21
A good thing to ponder is how we can rejoice. I've been thinking a lot this week about how and why I am feeling certain feelings. If we want to go through that (sometimes painful) process of "peeling off our dragon skin" (narnia/c.s.lewis), we really do have to take the time for self-reflection and looking at the why and acknowledging our own faults with the intent of letting the Atonement heal us. Prayer is my favorite time to do this.

Important principle of life:
Constructive feedback is done out of love. How can we improve if we don't even love each other to give each other suggestions on how to improve? How can we expect to do better next time.

Love all of you so much! The work is moving forward, and the world is full of miracles everyday. Don't forget that if we focus on the world, we will forget about what's really important. Just like if you are driving on the loud freeway, and playing music at the same volume that if you focus on the freeway (world), then you won't even be able to hear the music (important things in life). Maybe we should all focus a little more on our families and how we can become more Christ-like. I invite all of you to choose one thing that pulls you away from christ this week to give up. I'd love to hear the difference that it makes!


Cectpa Jenne"

Love you all!! :)

Monday, November 7, 2016

You Are A Son or Daughter of God (week 22)

So Sister Jenne emailed me separately and had me go back and take out any names from converts or investigators (apparently they aren't supposed to post names online.... which actually makes sense). So I did that and some of the past posts are a little confusing now. But yeah. So any brackets you see anywhere, that's why. 
Here's our email! 

"For the first time this week, I talked to a Ukrainian man all by myself without any help. I was on exchanges with a sister who does NOT speak any Russian whatsoever (except she knows how to say goodbye). Lemme tell you, that was a pretty scary prospect, knowing that I was going to be alone in talking to people! It worked out so well! It was so amazing how much God helped me. I could understand the basic jist of every single thing that was said, and I was able to reply and testify and bring the spirit into the conversations that I had with people. I was thinking a lot about how far my Russian has come over the last 5 months (I also hit 5 months this week, which is absolutely insane!). It's incredible to see the improvement in myself. And to recognize God's hand in everything. I believe that trusting Heavenly Father's plan is one of the hardest things that we will learn in this life. There are so many aspects of life. Ups and downs. It's so easy to blame the bad things on God and then take credit for all of the happy things that happen. Or give the credit to other people. Is that how things should be? Do we truly believe that God has a perfect plan for everything that happens in this life? Something that was created from the foundation of the world? That's an impossible concept to grasp! It's something that literally takes a lifetime of faith in our Savior to even begin to understand. My journey to discovering the mysteries of God has started with my mission! I challenge all of you to work on your journey today...because if it doesn't happen today, it probably won't happen tomorrow either!

We had a really long weekly planning session this week. Like 6 hours long. Quite a long time to be planning and setting goals and being inside on one of the only beautiful days of the week (of course). We were spending a lot of time using a GPS to figure out how to be effective in our routes every day. here's my metaphor for the week. So basically we went into the abyss of our GPS's abilities. And found some pretty cool features. There were a lot of features that weren't particularly helpful. And then OH WHAT JOY! We discovered something that will change GPS usage in Russian South forever. The "OPTIMIZE" button. There is a button that will optimize your route for you! Who would have known! (probably everyone except Sister Orr and I already knows this, but bear with me please)... The GPS will do everything for us, all we have to do is load in some addresses! The GPS is like a map of our lives. We can enter in destinations in our own order and time and then get to them eventually. The GPS has all of these tools that are meant to help us find our final destination, but sometimes we put in other addresses too and so there are stops along the way. Each stop could either be a positive or negative experience. The Atonement helps us to optimize our route. it works for us and makes each stop along the way happen in the nest way that will lead us to the final destination after this life. The gap between our own attempt at navigating life (what we can do) and what we need to do, is closed. All of the features like church, scriptures, and prayer hep us to have a personalized route, but the Atonement is the best way to have the most efficient guidance. We put forth as much effort as we can, but ultimately christ has to do all of the hardest work for us. We can type in as many addresses as we want, but without christ, we don't have the eternal and overall perspective which will cause a bunch of back-tracking and driving around in circles rather than following the straight and narrow path. Isn't the Atonement wonderful?

Also something I learned: When I was praying last night, I learned something! God gave us this body, our personality, our intelligence, our strengths, our weaknesses, and our spirit! Most importantly, we are who we are as his sons and daughters. When I am self-critical, I am criticizing one of God's creations! Me! He created me. I have to respect myself just as I respect god'd other creations. Find joy in myself as a daughter of God.This was revolutionary to me!

The spirit taught me some really important things this week! sorry for the crazy email. I'll include more funny stories next week when I have more time!

Love you all!

Cectpa Jenne"

Sister Jenne had some really awesome insight this week. Hope y'all all enjoyed. STAY TUNEDDD :)

Monday, October 31, 2016

So Much Potential (Week 21)

I'm thankful for Mondays because I get to email Sister Jenne. :)

"Hello All!! From the cold and rainy, but miracle-filled city of Seattle! It's great to get to communicate with all of you through the wonderful miracle of the internet, once again! I'm in a super great mood because we all got fed Costco muffins and orange juice this morning by the mission presidency. For those of you from Dothan who might not know what Costco is, basically it's a better version of Sam's. I might or might not be turning into a west-coast person ;) I never thought I could betray the South, but I am falling in love with this place!

So this past week [one of the members from the Russian group in Bothell] actually moved back to Ukraine! It was a huge step for her. It was so sad for us, because we have become so attached to her! I think that it's going to be great for her though, because we contacted the church over there and so hopefully they will reach out to her and she will be able to go to church with her neighbors and be able to have a calling and everything. I don't know if I've ever met a person with more faith in God's plan. We could tell that she wasn't too keen on the idea of moving back because all of her family lives here; however (from my limited Russian skills and from what Sis. Orr told me later), she just kept talking about how everything was going to be great and how excited she is to see what God has in store for her!

Speaking of God's plan, this week, after having little to NO success with any of the things that we were trying to do, it was really hard for me to understand God's will in all of this. But, let me testify of the power of PRAYER! Prayer is such a blessing. It's a lot of work and it's really scary to lay our will down and try our hardest to pick up God's will even though half of the time, His plan doesn't align with how we think things should be working out. We can't just kneel there and list off a long line of things that we are grateful for and then ask for things. It has to be a conversation where we are humbly asking our Heavenly Father for help, after we have pondered and studied it out for ourselves! I'm not perfect at this, but I have seen such a difference in my sense of direction in the work as I use my resources. It's so hard when the way that I define success doesn't line up with the way that God defines success!

After a succession of failures, we found a way to find TWO HUNDRED new people to talk with. Yep, you read that right. TWO HUNDRED. God works in mysterious ways. Just when we are getting discouraged, and not wanting to move on, he gives us a miracle! It's just like in the Book of Mormon. There was never a book written more for our day!

Not much more to write this week, but I'll do a great email next week...promise!

Love and miss all of you! Have a fantastic week!
Sister Jenne"

Happy Monday!!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Space Needle or Donut on a Stick? (Week 20)

Sorry this is so late! Cectpa Jenne had a fantastic week!

"So many things happened this week! Sister Orr broke the vacuum at the car wash...we went and did some very "Seattle" things... the space gardens! It was an awesome experience. I know that a lot of missionaries don't get to do so because it's not in their area. I feel so blessed to be in the Russian work, sometimes. The view from the Space Needle was incredible (pretty sure we saw Canada). You could see Pugent Sound and all sorts of cool lakes and skyscrapers and such.

Tuesday I got to meet Sister Drake! She is the sweetest person ever and invited us to Snoqualmie Falls to meet her Russian speaking house cleaners! Such a great experience, I loved getting to meet my 1st cousin once removed, finally! Now I know that I have a house to stay in when I come back to Seattle after my mission ;)

This week one of our goals was to speak Russian to each other when we are having normal conversations every day. It's like in the MTC when they tell you to SYL and then no one actually does it because you literally don't know how to say anything in your language besides a prayer and a testimony. (I know a little more than I knew in the MTC, now though haha) We have had this goal for probably about 10 weeks now. It never works. We never end up actually doing it more than about 10% of our conversation because it's just sooo much easier to express myself in English. However, this past week we were thinking about how we can change the goal to make it something we would actually do because if you just do the same thing over and over and expect different results, you won't get them! (which is super logical, but it took us 10 weeks to figure out...) Anyways, we made it into a game/fun competition where whoever speaks English when they know how to say it in Russian gets a tally. Then at the end of the day, whoever has more tallies has to give the other a neck/back rub. Works out really well, and I can testify that it has already helped my conversational Russian a ton! I'm more at ease just talking to people now. It's kind of amazing! I can see God's hand in the past few weeks trying to push us toward doing more of speaking in Russian with each other, but I just haven't had the desire to do it! Now that I have some motivation, I am doing it and seeing the blessings! So awesome; it's a lesson that I won't forget in making future goals.

As far as food goes this week, we tried a new Russian food called Halva. It's sunflower seeds crushed up and sugar (essentially). Sounds really weird right? It looks absolutely disgusting. It's so good! It's such an interesting taste. We found a cute little shop that is full of Rusisian and Ukrainian foods. I can't wait to go back on Pday sometime and try everything. We also tried something called a "beef samsa" that was pretty yummy. Russians love to stick things inside of bread like meat and mashed potatoes and then eat it all of the time. (I am not complaining!). I also ate Falafel. Very yummy. My eating experiences have expanded a whole lot. 

Yesterday we didn't get a transfer call and so that means I'll be sending Sister Orr home and so I'll have been with her for 3 transfers. That's the second longest amount of time she's been with any companion, which makes me probably her second favorite ;) She also just got called this morning as a sister training leader and so we will have a ton of exchanges in our area. Exchanges are when a set of sisters comes over to our area for a day/spends the night and we switch companions for the purpose of learning from each other. That means I'll be going out to do Russian work with companions that don't speak any Russian at all. Lemme just say that I am super nervous about that.I know that it will be a tremendous growing experience.

Love you all! Have a fantastic week.

Sister Jenne"

Stay tuned!!! :)

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Overwhelmed By Kindness (Week 19)

Sister Jenne had a really awesome week! Here's her recap:

"I don't know if this is an experience that is solely unique to missions with a bunch of different cultures like here in Seattle, but we seriously never see Americans. Any white people that we see are usually European or Eastern European (Russiaaaa). So far I've met people from: Nepal, Afghanistan, Turkey, Ukraine, Russia, Moldova, France, China, Thailand, Israel, Somalia, Africa and many others that I can't exactly recall at the moment. It's a giant melting pot. There are a lot of people from Afghanistan and the other countries in the middle east. Most of them don't know very much English at all. This was the case with a family that we met this week. They have been here for 7 months from Afghanistan. We walked up to this apartment complex in the pouring down typhoon rain and it was the first door that we knocked. Of course, when you knock a door and they don't speak English you usually smile and then say goodbye and walk away. Give them a picture of Christ or something and hope that one day they will remember that you smiled at them.... but this time, they insisted that we come in out of the cold rain into their humble apartment. I don't know why they wanted two random American girls to come into their home, but they sat us down and proceeded to bring out tea and food. It was interesting explaining to them that we aren't allowed to drink the tea, but it worked out and we ended up with mango juice instead. Their apartment wasn't nice by any means, and they didn't seem to have much, but they gave us a ton of food and also insisted that we take it with us when we left and gave us these cool leather bags also. With the limited communication, we were able to find out that they are Muslim and that they pray. It was very peaceful when they were showing us how they pray. There was a special spirit among this family, I am telling you! We fell absolutely head over heels in love with them! There was this cool Afghani bread that the wife made. It was a little spicy/peppery and it was kind of like naan (that indian bread stuff), but it had some sort of spinach inside of it. Anyone who's been to Afghanistan might know what I'm talking about...Brother Clark? anyone? I don't know who else would know. Anyways, we were completely overwhelmed by their kindness and willingness to serve us, whom they had never met. Hopefully, we will be able to find someone who will go and teach English to them. They were so excited when we said that we are "teachers," because they want to learn English. I cannot imagine how hard that would be to live somewhere where you don't know what is going on or how to speak the language. Oh wait, actually I do kind of understand...thanks to Brother Hale my first day in the MTC haha those were fun times.

Radiating the Light of Christ
We did a day with Sister Peterson going out with us. Every time we get out of the car, we pray. So if Sis. Peterson is there, we take turns praying. She prayed that people would see the way that we radiate the light of Christ. The cool part is that after she said that prayer, a lady complimented us on how we were just "full of light." Heavenly Father answers prayers! the church is true haha.

There is a man at the Food Bank who spent 5 minutes talking with me about how I need windshield wipers for my glasses because it's Seattle and it rains a lot and I'm always having to clean my glasses. I decided that I'll just wear contacts on the rainy days that we are planning to spend a lot of time outside lol.

Miracle of the week:
We had the first investigator that we have been able to get to church since I have been here. That was a really cool experience. She said that she felt like she was at home and liked it a lot more than the other churches she has gone to because she felt comfortable and felt that no one was judging her. I feel kind of bad though, because we might have come on a little bit too strongly. She's pretty shy, and I think she was feeling a little bit of pressure from us. However, I guess that we have to be bold! If she's ready, she's ready and we have to establish those expectations so that she knows our purpose. It's just that she is a little bit shy and so we might need to be more delicate in the future. She said that she will come to church next Sunday and continue to pray and allow us to meet with her this week as well, so we have a progressing investigator! In the Russian work! So excited about that. It was perfect also because she made friends with one of our members who sometimes feels a little bit lonely! Please pray for [her!] :)

last P-day we made really cool shirts at a member's house. They have a heat press and vinyl and a huge industrial vinyl cutter. She's a graphic designer and so we could do whatever we wanted. So basically I had her do the temple and then in Russian it says "choose truth and high expectations" on it. Then I made one that was the Seattle skyline with a gold mount Rainier in the background. Everyone here is obsessed with Mount Rainier. I didn't take a picture though sooo sorry you don't get to see the cool t shirts.

Every person that we met this week (well,. every person worth mentioning...) was sooo nice and kind to us! I really really have seen God's hand in our work this week. The rain can be tiring and it hasn't been sunny which is an adjustment that I am having to make. I'm glad I have Christ to lean back on when I don't feel 100% great! Loving life and having a great time here in Seattle! I wish everyone the best this week! Don't forget that you're a child of God 

With Love,
Cectpa Jenne"

Lots of pictures this week! I love being able to see how happy Sister Jenne is. She is changing so many lives and I'm so proud. <3