Monday, June 24, 2013

Reunited with MTC Companion

Hey, family & friends

So remember that one time I served with this awesome Sister in the MTC?  Remember how I served with the other Sister from my MTC district that came out with us?

Guess who my new companion is.  Yeah, my MTC companion.  Sister Barnett!!!

She was in Pocatello, training after 3 months, tearing it up in the once-slowest area of the mission.  Now her trainee is training at 8 weeks.  So if that doesn't say anything about the two of them, I'll say more: she's AWESOME!!!  We're getting work done in da Burg!

We got 4 new investigators in 3 days!!  Two are sisters, Sydney and Sarah, and they're super cute!  They both want to get baptized--it's just a matter if their dad thinks they're ready to make that decision (which we know they are; they're great!)  Their parents reactivated about a year ago, and they're just awesome!

Another is a little girl named Levi!  She lives with her grandparents, who haven't been back to church for years.  We've gone over to their house a few times before when Levi wasn't around and got to know Ace and Susan (her grandparents), so we already had a pretty good report with them when we dropped by again to meet Levi.  We talked about baptism and the Restoration, and Levi really wants to be baptized!  Then Ace mentioned that if she wants to get baptized, it needs to be a family effort and they need to get back to church.  (!!!)  So they came to church yesterday!!  Several people went over to Ace and Susan and were super excited to see them back.  It was really a heart-warming experience.
We also had someone set up an appointment with a nonmember on campus!  His name is Jake and he's married to a member.  He already has strong faith in Christ and loves the standards of the Church, but doesn't feel the same connection with the Book of Mormon as he does with the Bible.  However, he said he would be very happy to find out if this is true.

We also had wonderful lessons with So, Wele, and Katherine!  We talked to So about accepting small answers from the Spirit, and talked about taking courage with Wele, with whom we set another baptismal date after addressing her concerns about it!  It's going to happen!!  Katherine has been prepared so much, especially in the past week and a half since we've seen her.  She told us she looks at people studying the Book of Mormon and paying tithing and can see herself doing all those things, but then doubts creep in, especially about her family.  The lesson basically ended up with us helping her realize she already knows what she needs and wants to do, it's just a matter of how her family will react.  We know, though, that things will all work out.  Even though they probably won't be easy, they will work out.

Heck, I've seen that SO many times in my life, especially on my mission.  It's been pretty hard at times.  But Heavenly Father blesses you so much during and after your trials!  Sister Barnett and I were able to teach 24 lessons this week, half of those with members present (which is a very good thing), and we're planning on teaching even more this week!  It's been exhausting, but oh how I love it!  

Also, Sister Barnett and I may or may not whip each other with dish towels.  And tackle each other.  And hit each other.  And scare each other.  ....But we really do love each other, I promise!

Also, talk about a great worldwide broadcast.  Mm mm good.

This week, read Elder Neal A. Maxwell's talk "Notwithstanding my Weakness."  And your scriptures.  DAILY.

I know this work is good.  I know that the Book of Mormon is true and that God is my loving Heavenly Father, and those things keep me going!  I know that if we are faithful through trials, we will be blessed with comfort and strength, and I know that through Christ's Atonement, we can not only be cleansed from sin, but we can have someone by our side, guiding us through our lives.  

I love you all so much!  Thank you for all your support and prayers!  Know that I pray for you all daily!

Love, Sister Jacobson

Monday, June 17, 2013

Happy Father's Day

Hey, family!  

First off, HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, DAD!!!!  Thank you for being the best father a Sister could ask for.  I've loved all the grilling dates, biking dates, sushi dates, and any other outings we got to go on.  Thank you for teaching me to walk in the light through example and word.  Love you! 
So, a lot happened this week....  Sister Rye's going home!  Her stomach problems just got too bad, so she's going home some time this week.  We're so sad, but we're at peace.  It's what needs to happen so she can get better, poor thing!  We're not sure right now what's happening as far as another companion or our area goes.... guess you'll have to find out next week!
Miracle this week: this girl name Katherine at BYU-I texted us early this week and asked if she could meet with us.  She's not a member.  She's an incredible girl with a Catholic background, and had investigated the Church a little at home, but her parents didn't want her to.  So she wants to take it slow, to make sure this is really for her and that she's doing it for the right reasons, but she's amazing. So excited to meet with her more!
Also, we again taught 17 lessons while staying in for a while.  No big deal.  Sister Rye is so awesome!  And, to be honest, we had a lot of fun this week.  We got lots of work done, and even when we had to stay in, we just made the most of it!  The Lord definitely strengthened us through our trials, and our wonderful zone and district leaders, as well as the other missionaries in our district, supported us so much.  I'm so blessed to work with such amazing Elders and Sisters!
Wele and So are doing well!  Working hard to gain their own testimonies of the Book of Mormon.  
That's kind of it!  This week Sister Rye and I felt so much strength given to us from our Heavenly Father, and we talked about how thankful we are for the trials in our lives.  He is aware of all we go through, and He WILL strengthen us when we ask for strength.
Pics:  1.  A member in our stake went hunting in South Africa once.  They brought this back.
2. We saw this on BYU-I campus.  #wut2nob4ugo  (please never use hashtags ever.)
3.  Same potato field we preached in at the beginning of last transfer.  Turns out it's grain!  I was trying to go for the Julie Andrews "Sound of Music" poster look.  Close... 

I know this is the true Gospel.  I know the Book of Mormon is true.  It's the reason I volunteered for 18 crazy months out of my life!  It's changed me, and I know it can change you if you let it. 
I love you all so much!!
Sister Jacobson

Monday, June 10, 2013


Hey, family & friends!

I'll be honest, this was still a hard, week, but I didn't let myself feel discouraged!  This week, we stayed in a lot.  Sister Rye's stomach is the worst it's ever been, and it's so hard to watch her go through these trials, especially when there's basically nothing I can do to help.  As cliche as it sounds, one of my biggest trials is others' trials.  However, despite being incapacitated for about half the week, we still managed to teach 17 lessons, about 5 fewer than we normally teach!  Woo!!  She's such a trooper.  It's amazing how strong she is!

However, that left us with a lot of empty time in our little house.  I'll attach a picture log describing my time indoors.

On saturday, we taught some great lessons!  The most intense by far was with Wele!

She's still feeling something holding her back from being baptized.  We called some of her friends to come over and give her a priesthood blessing, in which we heard that she needs to be baptized and her family won't hate or disown her, but will love and support her in this decision.  (Talk about specific!)  We resolved some other concerns of hers, and she said she would go through with the baptism this saturday!  When we promised blessings, things just came out of my mouth.  It was one of a handful of experiences on my mission so far where I felt like an almost literal mouthpiece for the Lord.  I felt like that during a few or our lessons this week, interestingly enough.  I feel like the trials we're going through at the very least are humbling me and drawing me closer to the Spirit.  I feel like a more useful instrument in His hands after these two weeks.  

But then we got a text this morning saying that she still feels like there's something holding her back.  The baptism is off.  BUT!  She's close enough to the Spirit that she can listen to promptings and answers from Heavenly Father.  That's something truly admirable!  It'll be sad this weekend, but she's amazing.  It will all work out eventually.
I feel like there's a theme.  Go watch "The Will of God" Mormon Message by D. Todd Christoffersen.  Love it! 

I love you all so much.  Thank you for your support, love, and prayers.  I'm realizing more and more the cavernous depths of love I feel for you my family as well as my friends.  Have an amazing week!  Read your scriptures, say your prayers, stay close to the Savior!  He will support you through anything.  He knows EXACTLY what you're going through because He's gone through it before.

All my love, 

Sister jacobson

1.Cards with my new best friend. We'll call him blue.
2."The Testaments"!  The closest thing to a chick flick we can see on the mission.  (Also with my new best friend.) See photo at top of page
3. Saturday's the last day of bear hunting season.  Gotta get my fix in while I still can!
4. I got really good at mopping.
5. Too much feasting on the word.


Monday, June 3, 2013

Struggles lead to growth

Hey, family & friends!
Not going to lie, this was probably the hardest week in my mission so far.  I've been stressed, discouraged, down, even trunky!  Sister Rye and I had a very long companionship inventory at the beginning of the week, the work in our area was starting to stagnate, and I was upset at myself for letting these things bother me.  

But on Saturday, we found a family.  Rick, a less-active member, is SUPER funny and tried to act all hardened towards the missionaries and everything, but later confessed that he knows he needs to go back to church and take his family with him.  His wife, Tanya, grew up in an atheist household, so although she's not an atheist herself, she doesn't know anything about religion at all.  Her daughter, Hallie (we didn't meet her then, but we're going to!), has gone to church with friends for a few months and is going to Girls' Camp next week.  They're all amazing!  Oh my gosh!  He set up a return appointment with dinner and everything!  SO excited to teach them and get to know them!  They're amazing!!

And after we walked out of that room, all the negative feelings I'd had that week vanished.  They were all worth it.  

I know Heavenly Father let me struggle this week so I could learn to work through it.  Because we worked hard this week!  We worked to our breaking points!  And because we dug deep, because we stayed faithful even when we didn't want to, He 1. taught me a lesson in patience, humility, and diligence, and 2. rewarded us for our hard work.  I'm grateful for trials.  We get trials to help us grow (if we stay faithful during them), and I feel like I've grown so much since the beginning of the week!  Just.... good!!  I love it!!  And by the way, Sister Rye and I are working harder, having more fun, and are closer than we've been thus far.  I love her and am learning so much from her!  I'm so blessed to have been given two outstanding companions and friends.  And Sister Rye and I are WWIII'ing it with our nerf guns.

But trials weren't the only thing that helped me this week.  We had Zone Conference!  And Elder Don R. Clarke came!!!  He was SOOO amazing!!  He covered a ton of great material, but the thing that stuck out the most to me was being the kind of missionary that goes over to someone's house at 5:00am to make sure they don't smoke then.  The kind of missionary that makes things happen!  That works!  Hard!!  I felt like I wanted to tear down a brick house by the end.  

But I didn't.  That would be rude.

So.... chose not to be baptized this week.  Dang!!  It was pretty sad, and we all knew she was ready, but she didn't feel ready herself.  So we're going to focus on reading the Book of Mormon with her, because the Book of Mormon testifies of Christ, the reality of Joseph Smith as a prophet of God, and the verity of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  

Manuel and Julio.... we transitioned them to their respective missionaries yesterday.  Since they don't live in our area, we don't really have jurisdiction over their learning.  We had a great lesson on the Plan of Salvation with them yesterday, then encouraged them to go to the wards in their own areas to meet their proper missionaries (and gave those proper missionaries their information).  It's sad to say goodbye to them, but this is what needs to happen, and they'll be just fine.  

They got contact with Welecele's mom!  She's still not quite supportive.  We talked to Wele about having courage through adversity.  We've gotten a feeling that if she gets baptized on her scheduled day, things will work our with her family.  

There is so much to be thankful for!  I love this Gospel.  It fills my life with peace, and will continue to fill it with peace in the eternities.  I love my Savior.  He walked alone so I never have to.  The Book of Mormon strengthens my testimony of Him every time I read it.  Watch Elder Holland's testimony of the Book of Mormon "Mormon Message."  It's amazing. 

I love you all so much.  I'm so grateful I can live with you all forever!  You're stuck with me for eternity.... sorry ;)

Love, Sister Jacobson

P.s. I didn't take any pictures this week, so here are some that I didn't send:

Four Sisters that came out together from the Missionary Training Center

 Sister Rye and I...we're charmers!

 We Love getting surprise pictures of Katie with friends who run into her on the campus of Brigham Young University-Idaho!

BYU-Idaho Katie Sightings!    Abigail Tucker,(top of page)  Dan Hulse (former New York Rochester Missionary) and Lizzy Belnap