Monday, October 26, 2015

Another Amazing Week!

Hi Everyone!

This week has been another great week. Who knew my mission was going to be so wonderful? We taught Julie and Dave again last Monday night. Before we started the lesson, Julie told us that she wanted to change her baptism date from December 31 to November 11! She said that it just came to her earlier that day that she needed to be baptized on November 11! Sister Kitchen and I are so excited:) Her daughter is also thinking that she wants to be baptized on that same day, but she's not 100% sure. We then moved on to our lesson about why church is so important. It was such an amazing lesson. The spirit was so strong and was definitely testifying to Dave that he needed to come to church. He has been letting a lot of silly reasons get in the way of him cooming to church. He told us that he doesn't have any doubts that this Church is true, he just is letting things get in the way of making the committment to be baptized and be an active member of the church. Sadly, he didn't come to church this past Sunday, but he will come some time soon.

One of our amazing members called us one day and told us about this lady who needed some service. This lady has been going through a lot of health challenges and has a hard time moving around. Her muscles cramp up out of her control and it prevents her from cleaning the house. We went over there and washed her dishes, mopped her floors, and ironed her husband's clothes. After an hour or so, she started having a seizure and managed to call her husband to come home from work. There wasn't anything we could do to make her more comfortable--it was so hard to watch. It made us very grateful to be able to do even the smallest of everyday tasks. We hope to be able to serve her more! 

We have started teaching the lessons to an older sister in our ward that has felt like she needs to come closer to God again. She called us hoping that we would be able to help her 'hear' God again. We have visited with her twice already this week and have already seen an improvement. She is so sweet and loves to give us things! We hope to help her feel of God's love again.

Our ward is having a trunk or treat party this Friday, and we are so excited! We planned to dress up as senior sisters. We asked Naoma (the old lady we teach) if she had anything we could wear. She was SO excited to help us and to find things for us to wear. She got out her old dresses, skirts, and hats from the 1930s! I've never seen her so excited about anything. We were also able to talk about baptism and about the plan of salvation. Our goal is to get her to church before this transfer ends.

We had stake conference this weekend. It was so good! Alisha was able to come to church for the first time and she said she liked it. It was very different than what she was used to, but hopefully the normal schedule of church will be better for her. The Area Authority that came to visit gave a great talk! He and his wife love birds, so a lot of his stories had to do with birds. He talked about charity and about Matthew 25:40 (And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.). He asked us if we loved and served the lest of these people. It's one thing to serve the people who are nice, and another to serve and love others that aren't. He gave an example about this principle that I really liked. He and his wife love to watch their bird feeder and see the beautiful birds that come by. They didn't like the sparrows, however, because they weren't very pretty and would eat all of the bird feed! One day, a bird ran into their clear window and landed on the ground. This bird was one of their favorite, most beautiful birds that they could only see every few years. He was so sad to see how hurt it was after hitting the window! He brought it inside and made a little nest for it and prayed so hard for this little bird. By the end of the day, the bird was able to recover and fly away again. He then had the thought, "Would you have cared as much or prayed so hard if it were a sparrow that hit that window?" He knew  God was telling him this and teaching him a lesson. We need to love and care for everyone!

I hope you all have a wonderful week! 

Sister Jacobsen

Monday, October 19, 2015

Transfer Calls

Hello everyone! 

We had our transfer calls on Saturday, and I'm staying here in Centerton with Sister Kitchen! I'm so happy! I am thinking that I will probably be here a long time because Sister Kitchen goes home after this next transfer, and I don't think they would send me away from here when she leaves. 

Every week just keeps on getting better! I went on two different exchanges this week. I love to see what other areas and other sisters are like! It's fun to be away from this area every once in a while to experience what the rest of the mission is like. Bentonville and Centerton are pretty normal, but I've never experienced anything like the other areas I visited! The streets are really narrow and confusing, there are a lot of dirt roads, the people are more of what I thought southern people are like, and the houses are all so far apart. I was able to meet one of the girls that Sarah (my sister) taught and baptized on her mission in Colorado! I was on an exchange in Barryville and she came to a lesson we had with an investigator. After I introduced myself, she told me that a Sister Jacobsen converted her when she lived in Colorado. We were both so excited to meet each other! 

While I was on another exchange in Springdale, Sister Kitchen was able to teach Kayla and Alisha about the restoration of the gospel. At the end, Alisha set a date to be baptized right before Sister Kitchen leaves. We are all so excited! Kayla is falling a little behind, but we will have her set a date soon, because she is so prepared.

We were also able to go to the pumpkin patch with a family of investigators. It was so much fun! We raced on bike-like things and I lost :( We saw cute baby pigs, an alpaca, goats, horses, and a lot of other farm animals! We also went through a corn maze and got pumpkins. They are such a sweet family! 

Thank you for all of your prayers and support! I love all of you so much!

Sister Jacobsen

Monday, October 12, 2015

The best day ever!

Hi Friends!

I had an amazing week. Well, I had an amazing weekend that made me forget what even happened earlier in the week. Sister Kitchen and I had our Friday perfectly planned out and had appointments one after another. We were so excited! When Friday came, things did not go as planned. Almost everyone cancelled or wanted to change times to meet. Even our really solid investigators that never cancel cancelled! Sister Loveland (the mission president's wife) was supposed to come out with us later that night, but everything was falling apart! We just had faith and prayed a lot that things would work out. 

We first had lunch with Julie and planned on inviting her to not have coffee for a week. When we started talking, she said that she didn't have coffee that morning and was wanting to go without coffee for the week. We didn't even have to ask her! We were so excited for her! 

We then had a member come with us to visit a potential investigator named Steve. He thought a lot about how religion played such a big role in his life growing up and how much it helped him. He and his wife had different religious backgrounds, and couldn't decide which religion to raise their kids in, so they just didn't have religion at all in their home. He needed to talk to his wife about religion again and hopefully start teaching their kids christian values. 

Here comes the best part!! We met Alisha later that afternoon to talk about the Plan of Salvation. She wanted evidence from the Bible to know that the plan of salvation is true. We tried giving her as much as we could, but told her that we don't have all of the truth in the Bible (because it was translated so many times), that's why we have the Book of Mormon and prophets to give us the complete gospel. We talked about how gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon will make learning these things easier. We gave her our conversion stories and how we came to know the the Book of Mormon was true. The conversation then led to the different ways we can receive answers. I had the thought that I should ask her how she came to know the Bible was true. We kept on talking, but I never asked that question. Sister Kitchen started packing up her bag, but I really felt like I needed to ask her how she came to know the Bible was true. It was an awkward time to ask such a question, but I did it anyway! She told us that she had always known it was true, and she went around to different churches learning about what they believe.  She didn't understand why only the people who accept Jesus in their lives are the ones who are saved. She knew that there are good people in this world that didn't have the chance to learn about Jesus or just didn't understand the importance of him.  She then paused for a few seconds, while everyone else was still packing up, and said, "Oh my gosh.... I think I just got my answer!"  The spirit was so strong and she broke down in tears. She finally understood why we have the spirit world and the kingdoms of glory! She thanked me for listening to that prompting to ask her about the Bible because it helped her get the answer to her prayers! We were all in tears and I was so happy to see God answer her prayers right before our eyes! I know that the Holy Ghost is real! I know we can receive answers to our prayers if we have the desire to really know of truth. The answers may not come in the way we want or time we want, but they will come. God always wants to hear our prayers and wants us to ask Him to help us. He wants to give us blessings and knowledge, we just have to ask for it. 

That night, we were able to visit a few recent converts and investigators with Sister Loveland and it went really well! She told me that I was surprisingly doing really well. Apparently most missionaries look hammered for the first few months of the mission. I have faith in God that He will help me get through the day having enough energy to serve Him. There is no way I could do any of this without His help! I am so grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ to help us in times of need. Through Him we can do ALL things!

On Saturday, we had a baptism! It went really well! We are so excited for their new journey!

I love you all!
Sister Jacobsen 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Another great week.....and my birthday!

Hi Everyone!

It has been another great week! Sister Kitchen and I were able to go to the square in Bentonville and see the Walmart museum! It wasn't very exciting. But we were eating ice cream while going through, so I guess it wasn't too bad. We also went around the block to different stores and shops and took pictures in front of the murals on the buildings. It was fun! Today we went to a member's house in the country part of our area with a few other sisters around here. We did a few things on their ropes course and took pictures around that area. It was really fun!

I went on my first exchange on Wednesday! I got to go to Anderson Missouri with Sister 'Alofaki. I got a taste of what the rest of the mission is like. Yikes! I am definitely spoiled here in Bentonville and Centerton! We visited Naoma a few times and talked about General Conference and prophets with her. She wanted to hear what the Prophet had to say, but didn't want to watch it because subtitles are too fast for her to read. We are going to print a few of our favorite talks and give them to her to read this week. We helped her set up for a garage sale on Saturday. She only wanted to sell a few barbies and plates. She collects a bunch of interesting things! She has so many vintage barbie dolls in the corner of her apartment! She gave one to me, and I put it on my desk at home :) We are also planning John's baptism that is this weekend! We are so excited! We were able to also see Kayla and Alisha this weekend. We finished the plan of salvation and they are so excited for when they can go to the temple! We haven't set a date for them to be baptized, but we will this week.  We have also started teaching Hannah, the daughter of Dave and Julie, and Jazlyn, the daughter of a less active. They are both so sweet!

We don't have any investigators or potential investigators for one of our wards, so we did a lot of finding this week. We spent hours tracting and asking for referrals but didn't get anything :( We set a goal to work really hard and get one new investigator this week.  It's going to happen! 

My birthday was on Saturday! I didn't think birthdays were that exciting in the mission field, but I was so wrong! My companion put baloons, a banner, and reasons why she loved me all around my desk. I was constantly getting calls and texts of people telling me happy birthday! Sister Kitchen told our dinner appointment what my favorite dessert was and they all sang to me. After dinner, we had an hour and a half of free time. I thought we would just be tracting, but Sister Kitchen took me to the office missionaries home for a surprise party! We ate cake and played games until we had to leave for our last appointment for the night. People were constantly giving me cake and candy this whole weekend! Our mission is known as the 30 pound mission, and I think I know why now:/

Conference was so amazing! We were able to go to different members' homes and watch it. I loved the way President Uchtdorf started the conference. He was so right! This gospel works! I also loved Elder Holland's talk on motherhood. All of the women in the room were crying through that whole thing. If you missed any of conference--watch it! It was all so good! The new apostles seem like such amazing people. I know that they have been called of God to be our new apostles. I am so grateful to hear from them more often now!

Thank you for all of your prayers and support! I love all of you so much!

Sister Jacobsen