Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Week 73

Hi Family!!!

I hope all is going well with you all! :) I want to apologize right now- this is going to be a short one. I ran out of time today.... I hate that! 

Well, all is well with my toe- it was healed last week. No worries about that. :) But this week, I was totally sick. First time in my whole mission! I got this really nasty cold. Luckily it only lasted a few days and I am totally better now. DON'T WORRY!!!! 

But the big news of the week- BOB GOT BAPTIZED!!! His baptism was on Wednesday and it turned out so great! We were so excited for him. I am not going to lie, I was totally sick that day. Who cares about me though. :) He was so nervous- it was hilarious! I will have to tell you all of the details next week.   

I am so incredibly sorry that this email is so horrible. I promise to do better next week! I love and miss you all! Have a wonderful week! :)

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor

Monday, September 17, 2012

Week 72

Hi Family! :)
I hope you all have had a wonderful week! It's always great to read your emails and be able to tell you about my amazing adventures here in Bergen Norway! :) Everything is going so well right now! We just found out earlier this morning that Sister Pace and I will be serving together for another transfer here in Bergen and we both almost cried tears of joy when we found out. :) We are having so much fun together and I love her to death! We work like a well-oiled machine and it has been great fun. I look forward to being able to finish my mission with her. :) The only thing that is a little gloomy is the weather. It rains ALL OF THE TIME. My new shoes and my rain boots have been destroyed and we are going to go buy ourselves some new ones today. :)

I'm sure you are all wondering about why the title of this email is what it is ("Ducky Down")... Some of the pictures I have attached will explain. On Friday, Sister Pace and I were doing our every-morning work out of 500 reps with a jump rope. I was about 50 in when I smacked my foot with the rope. Mind you- this next part all happened within a split second. When the rope hit, my 2nd toe on my right foot curled under and then I landed on that curled toe and heard a nice crack. OH MY GOODNESS- it hurt so bad! I had broken my toe!!! Well, no I hadn't, but it sure felt like it. I was laughing so hard because it was so ridiculous, but wanted to cry because it hurt so bad. Well, I continued my workout with some sit ups and push ups (trying to look hot, you know? ha ha!) and then I just started praying that Heavenly Father would heal my stupid little ducky. I figured that if He had done miracles for the people in the scriptures, He could easily heal my toe so that I could keep doing His work. Let me just tell you- even though there have been many symptoms of a broken bone, the bruising is almost completely gone and the pain is at a minimum. It's a miracle!!! Ha ha! The pictures are the best way to see what happened. They look like they were taken weeks apart, but really they were all within the last 72 hours. I thought that was pretty cool. :)

Well, that's just a funny little story... Now for the important stuff! Bob still isn't baptized, but here is the next miracle... He passed his interview and will be baptized on Wednesday and confirmed on Sunday!!! :) The last few weeks with him have been so stressful! We have done everything in out power to help him gain a testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ, Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, and Thomas S. Monson. The gospel of Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon were relatively easy. It was the connection of the Book of Mormon to Joseph Smith that was the next issue, but we tackled that one with the Joseph Smith Movie and a whole lot of testimony. Thomas S. Monson was the most difficult thing ever! We watched talks and showed Bob the movie about his life, but nothing helped. We didn't know if he was going to be able to pass a second interview... But yesterday morning, before church, we met with him and then he had his interview... and PASSED! We were so excited and happy and relieved that we had to step into a classroom and cry for a minute. This has been, by far, one of the hardest preparations for baptism I have ever experienced and, it is going to sound horrible, but I am so glad it is almost over! :) Bob is so great and I can't help but feel that the reason it has been so difficult to help him see his answers is because he has great things ahead of him. :) I am so excited to see how he feels with the gift of the Holy Ghost! He is a champion! :)

We have been teaching this guy named Jarle who lives a long ways out of the city. He is only in town once a week to get treatments for MS. I met him on the street a couple of weeks ago and taught him about the plan of salvation. We met with him last week and then again on Wednesday- he is way cool! In our first teach, we were able to point out the Holy Ghost and how it feels to have Him around. That was super cool. But even cooler was what happened in the teach we just had. He told us that he decided to just open randomly in the Book of Mormon and start reading. He opened to 2 Nephi 2 which is all about opposition in all things and about the Garden of Eden and Jesus Christ. He loved it and told us that he felt the Spirit as he read it! WOW!!! That is a miracle! :) So we went on to teach him God's plan in more detail and it went great. He just felt like it was right. He has a soft commitment to baptism, but no date yet. He wants to know more before he goes that far. He is such a cool guy. :) I'll keep you posted on him!

Well Family, that's about all I've got for this week. I hope, again, that everything is going well for you all. I love you all tons and tons!!! Have a fantastic week! Ha det bra!

 ♥- Søster Jessica Taylor

Monday, September 10, 2012

Week 71

Hi Family!

I hope you are all doing so well! :) Thanks for the letters and emails. You guys are amazing!!! I love you so very much! 

This week has been really, really, really stressful... Oh my goodness! So Bob didn't end up getting baptized... It was really sad. :( I don't even know what to tell you on this matter. On Monday, he came to our appointment and was not sure if he was going to do it. He made a pros and cons list with us and his desires were totally in the right place, but he still had some hang ups... We told him to pray and study and figure it out, then let us know on Tuesday. We had to know if he was going to get baptized because we had to plan it before we left for our sisters conference on Thursday. Oh man... He didn't say anything on Tuesday for a long time. I was a hot mess! There was so much pressure because we had so little time and so much to do. When we ended up talking to him, we decided to postpone it til next week. Thankfully, that chilled some of the stress we were experiencing. 

Our sisters conference was absolutely AMAZING!!! It was so good to be with all 11 sisters in the mission. :) We just talked and socialized and relaxed! Sister Evans had everything so relaxed, we felt like we were in heaven! Each companionship prepared a presentation on a certain phase of missionary work and ours was on understanding the Spirit with our hearts. Let me just tell you, it was BOMB!!! Everyone cried and it was so precious! :) I absolutely loved being there with everyone! We got to eat amazing food and Sister Evans let us stay up late and sleep in... WOW!!! :) I just love president and Sister Evans so very much. They are so amazing! :) 

When we got back to real missionary life, we met with Bob and tried to get him prepared for his interview... But he failed... And he knew he was going to because he straight up said he didn't have faith in certain things.... ARGH!!!! We have done everything for him... except taking away his agency! So now we are going to push his date back AGAIN. It has not been easy. AT ALL. I've shed a few tears over this... 

On a happier note- we met with Kari... I hope you remember me telling you about her... She asked us to come and visit her. She is having such a hard life! We went to teach her and for the first 30 minutes, she just cried and told us her story. We felt so bad, but we were able to teach her about the Atonement and how she could use it. It was a powerful teach! Afterwards, we invited her to be baptized and she picked her date for the 13th of October! Yahoo! :) She is having surgery later this week and we are praying that everything goes well... We love her so much! 

So it has been a bitter sweet week. We are just trucking along!!! :)

Well, sorry for the depressing email... I'll try for a better one next week... Ha ha!

I love and miss you! Have a great week! 

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Week 70

                                          This is from Oslo! Frisør means hairstylist ;)

Heisann familie!

It's just me again. :) Thanks for the emails- I hope you are all doing so well and that life is going good!

This week started out great, got kind of stressful, then turned out ok again. Ha ha! Sånn er livet... (That's life... basically. Ha ha!) Sister Pace and I are having a great time together. We are working super hard! :) Bergen is such a great place! I love it here (expect that it rains all of the time... At least it makes for a warmer winter!) Ha ha!

We were able to meet with Victoria- that amazing contact from last week. Oh man! She is incredible! She told us after we taught her that she just wants to go out on the streets and share the Book of Mormon with everyone she can! She has had a rough life and is actually from one of the countries that broke off from the Soviet Union, but I can't remember which one...something-stan. Ha ha! I'm lame, sorry! ;) Anyways, yeah, she is really searching for the truth and is completely willing to do everything thing she can to find the truth. Unfortunately, she couldn't meet with us after our first meeting because she called called into work everyday and she couldn't come to church either. That was a pain... Oh well. We have good daily contact with her and we will be meeting with her this week! :)

As for Adele, she is on a downhill spiral. She is having a hard time accepting everything we are teaching her. We try to emphasize how important reading from the Book of Mormon, praying, coming to church, and getting a confirmation from the Holy Ghost are, but she just isn't taking it in. I hate agency... Ha ha! But really... Anyways, she was still willing to meet with us and what not, but then she got really sick with perpetual migraines and hasn't been able to meet. I feel super bad for her- that has to be miserable! We are still talking to her and we will meet with her this week as long as she is feeling up to it. Sad part is that she had to come to church yesterday to be able to make her baptismal date, but she didn't come so now her date is off. Så trist! (So sad!) I have a feeling she'll make a new date though- she has the desire and that is where it all starts (Alma 32:27).

Kari, the referral from the Andersen family, is having a really hard time right now. On Tuesday, she text me and asked me to call her so, of course, I did. She is really sick and has to have surgery in a couple of weeks. On top of that, her kids are giving her a really hard time. It was so sad talking to her! We set up a time where we could go out and visit her, but she got really sick again and we couldn't go out there. Yesterday, she was so upset that she couldn't come to church because she felt so sick again. I called her and she thanked us for being her friends and she just said over and over again how much she loves and needs us right now. Oh man! It made me feel so good! :) We are going to visit her on Wednesday morning to teach her again. It's going to be great! :)

Now, BOB. Oh boy. This kid is going to kill me! He is so cool and so nice and so honest and real, but he might want to push his date back! ARGH!!! Have I told you that I hate agency??? Well, I do! We have worked so hard this last week to solidify his testimony of Joseph Smith and when we finally got him to express it, he told us that he wasn't sure if he's ready... Oh how that broke my heart!!! He is so ready! We have been fasting and praying for this kid so much- Heavenly Father has got to be tired of hearing it from me! :) Yes... We still love Bob though. He is going to be a great member... and possibly a missionary! He came out contacting with us this week and actually did an amazing job! He has no fear and was stopping people and talking to them. He even gave me some tips! He's a champion. (Our district leader always says that every time we give him a report on our area- "That Bob's a champion!" :) It's great!) But yeah, we are meeting with him tonight and we are going to find out what he has decided to do. Who knows... We might still have a baptism this weekend! :)

We are so stinking excited- on Thursday and Friday we will be in Oslo for a sisters conference! Sister Evans (The mission president's wife) has put in so much planning and it is going to be a big sleepover part for 2 days with good food and training with the girls... It's going to be AWESOME!!! :) Sister Evans has asked me to give a little presentation about hair and humidity. Ha ha! I have no idea what I am going to say... It was be funny! I'll let you know how it goes! :)

Well, I hope you all have a great week! I love and miss you all tons!

♥- Søster Jessica Taylor