Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

July 18, 2016 Aika Rientää


The last one!!   This is it.  This really is it.  I cannot believe I am saying this right now.  As sad as it sounds and as much as I hate to admit, I remember just a little over a year ago crossing off each day on the calendar and thinking to myself, "It will never end."  And now here I am just 4 days away from it all being over and I'm looking at that same calendar and thinking, "It can't end. No it just can't."  I have come to love these people and this language and this culture and being a missionary more than anything in this world apart from my family.  They are my family.  My family on the other side of the world, up there in the north…..The family that will always be so dear and sacred to my heart.  I have been blessed with one of the most amazing weeks of my mission this last week.  I plan on telling you more about it in my talk this Sunday, so I'll save most of it for then.  But just want to express to you my love and gratitude for my Heavenly Father.  He has heard my prayers and been so aware of my desires and wishes.  I know that He listens to our prayers and that He truly answers-- be it in His own way and time, according to His will-- but He does answer.  This past week we were able to get three new investigators and set two new baptismal dates.  It was awesome! I saw miracle after miracle.  
There's much still to be done here and I have the rest of my life to tell you about everything that has happened over the past 19 months, so I'll keep this short.
I want you to know that I know that God lives.  Jesus Christ is His Son, the Savior and Redeemer of the world.  They love us--each one of us, no matter the struggles, the weakness, the temptations, or the mistakes we have made or experienced.  They want us to return to them. They have created a plan, a Plan of Happiness to ensure our return.  This plan is now and through it and by it we can experience the greatest happiness not only in the future, but right now.  I know that our Savior Jesus Christ is central to this plan.  Through him, our lives can be changed.  I know that this is His restored church on the earth today.  Joseph Smith was the worthy vessel through whom He restored His church and brought forth the Book of Mormon.  I know that this is God's work.  He is here and has been here each day helping us to bring His children back to Him.  I love my Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ.  I love my mission.  I am so grateful for all I have experienced the last 19 months and I know that God has had a hand in all.  I am so grateful.  I know these things are true and I say them in the sacred name of Jesus Christ. Amen. 
I love you all so much! Thank you again! Have a great week! 

Sisar Jordan

Picking fresh strawberries for the last time with Sisar Airaksinen! 

Some of my most favorite ladies in the entire world!


Tuesday, July 12, 2016

July 12, 2016 Make Every Little Bit Count

One more week.  One more precious, amazing, sacred, humbling, faith building, amazing week here in Finland.  That's it.  And. I can't believe it.  I can't even fathom really the idea yet of going home.  So. I'll just tell you a bit about what's been going on here.  So the really amazing investigator that Sister Jacobsen and I found, who has a baptismal date... so we taught him about the Word of Wisdom this week.  To be honest I was a bit worried that it wouldn't go so well.  It definitely always smelled like smoke in his home and it was clear that he drank alcohol as well as coffee a lot by the way his house was decorated in packages of coffee and beer bottles.  There are no judgements, it's just a different life style than I have.  But I definitely knew it would be a problem when it came to living the Word of Wisdom, so long story short, I was worried a bit.  But... we taught it.  And he's ready to live it.  This guy drinks 4 cups of coffee, smokes at least 10 times a day, and drinks whenever he feels lonely.  So.. there's a lot to work on and right now we're in the works of a really awesome plan for him.  But yesterday he told us that he's thought a lot about his baptism in 7 weeks and about the whole word of wisdom thing, and he knows it's a good thing and he really wants to be baptized, so he's going to do it.  Ahhh.. this is the best.  This is THEE very best-- seeing lives changes because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Nothing beats it.  Nothing in the world, not even winning a state basketball championship... and let me tell you-- that's exiliharating (not sure if that's how it's spelled anymore sorri).  This man is amazing.

This week was my very last zone meeting.  I had to bear my testimony since I'm aparently a "departing missionary".... so I was already pretty emotional when we sat down to sing the closing him, which was "I'll go where you want me to go."  Sitting in the chapel with all those amazing and powerful ministers of Jesus Christ, I was taken back to the night I decided to really serve my mission.  I was reminded of the choice that I was faced with at that point in time and how badly my heart hurt with either decision that I made.  But I remembered that that night the words to that same song rang through in my mind and that's when I decided that I would serve my mission-- that I would go where God needed me to go.  And I did.  And it has been the best decision I have ever made in my entire life.  Thee. very. best.  Doing the will of God isn't and hasn't always been easy.  I'll be the first to admit that my mission and i'm sure no one else's is ever what I would consider "easy".  But is it worth it.  YES. YES. and Yes.  It is worth every single hardship and trial, success and failure, happiness and despair you will ever and I have ever faced.  It is worth it all, but didn't Christ promise us all that-- "that it wouldn't be easy, but that it would be worth it?"  And it is.  And He and our Heavenly Father are here with us every. single. step. of the way.  Every one, whether we choose to notice that or not.  I know it.  I have felt their love and guidance influence more times than I could ever count.  I love them.  I know that they are real-- God is our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ is His son.  They love you.  They love us all.  This is their gospel their plan for each of us to return and live with them.  OOOooohhh.. It's glorious.  It's beautiful.  It's miraculous.  It is... pure love.  I want you all to know how much I love you!  I am so appreciative of all that you've done and all you've helped me to accomplish through your uplifting emails and letters as well as all the prayers on my behalf.  Thank you all so much! I'll be seeing you all too soon! Have a great week!

Sisar Jordan

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

July 5, 2016 "Now When We Were About To Turn Back...."

The honest explanation of this week really is gratitude. Simply put, Sister Jacobsen and I have really been struggling to make things happen here in the last two weeks. We feel like we've been doing everything we can to be obedient and to work hard, but it seemed like every lesson fell through, every member we could think of was out of town for vacation, and no one on the street wanted to take the time to listenl. Then at MLC this past week I felt the urgency of finding and I just felt pretty stressed inside that we were to add to the statistics that had dropped so much in finding recently. I was really starting to get frustrated. What were we doing wrong. AND... I started to feel the hopelessness again and the "something must be wrong with me and I just am not capable of doing this." That dark feeling of wanting to give up, to give in and just quit crept in, and I was panicking. But then... Heavenly Father in His loving goodness heard my prayers and knew how desperate I was. Yesterday was SUCH a good day. It just seemed that everything seemed to fit into place and people listened and we set up appointments with people and our investigators were progressing and returning from trips and members were coming back and it all just seemed to go right into place. I can't begin to explain the enormous amount of gratitude I had for Heavenly Father at the end of yesterday. He is so good. He is so aware of our circumstances, of our desires, and our righteous pleas. I know that He is with us each day and He truly wants us to succeed. I love being a missionary. I love Finland.

Time is winding down quickly.  Just want you all to know how much I love you and how much I love my mission!  I am forever grateful for the lessons that i have learned here and the people I have met.  I love my Heavenly Father and for the many blesses that I am granted each day.  Keep trying and keep working hard, whatever it may be that you are striving for or working on.  I promise God hears your prayers and in His time and according to His will, He will be there.  He will answer.  Hope you have a great week! Love you lots!

Sisar Jordan

P.S. For anyone who might be reading this... My homecoming talk is on the 24th of July 9am 1350  E 200 N at the Stake Center in Beaver and you are welcome to come! I would love to see you there!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

June 28, 2016 Another Week Down on My Sprint To The End

Wow what a week.  Another great and amazing wonderful week! Gosh I just love it so much!  I just love Finland.  I love my mission, and I love the Gospel.  There is no where else I would rather be, no other people I would rather be with (sorry family)!  I just can't even quite explain it with words, other than just that it is the best!
Tuesday we taught one of my mos favorite investigators of my entire mission.  We've been teaching him since I got here.  Definitely it's a slow process and he has changed a lot A LOT of things in his life, and still has a lot ahead of him, but he's a champ.  One of my most favorite things about teacing him, is seeing that true humility and childlike-ness that the gospel brings about in us.  So you have to know, He has the biggest muscles I have ever seen and tattoos all over.  I was scared to death the first time I met him with Sister Powell.  BUT... we've been teaching a lot about prayer and how important it is that we pray sincerely and with real intent if we really want to receive answers to our prayers.  Well on tuesday, we went to his house to teach him and we followed up on how his prayers have gone.  It was so cool to see just how excited he was to tell us about how his prayers had been answered.  I've never seen him just so excited to tell us something before.  He could hardly wait to have us say the opening prayer before he burst out telling us about his prayers and the answers that he had received.  You can guess just how grateful I was for Heavenly Father in that moment and just sent up my own prayer thanking him for answering my pleas to answer this investigator's prayers.  It was such a moment of gratitude and thanksgiving to my Heavenly Father.  I know that He is always listening and wants to answer our prayers.  I also know that He answers them in His own way and time, because this is definitely something that I have been praying for for quite some time now.  And it happened.  At just the right moment.  And it was amazing and special and beautiful and sacred.
Wednesday we had a pretty long evening.  Sister Jacobsen and I headed to the train station about 9pm to pick up the Sisters from Vaasa that were coming for splits.  We got there and waited until about 9:45 when we decided we better call and see where their train was.  Well come to find out, the train wouldn't be there for another hour because of a delay of some sorts.  So we decided to walk home and grab our jackets and a snack so we didn't freeze or starve waiting for them at the train station.  Then we sat and waited... and waited.... and waited.... and then we got another phone call saying that it would be even longer.  So long story short, the Sisters didn't end up getting in until about 12:50pm.  It was definitely a long wait.  Thank goodness it's always light here, so we didn't sit one bit in the dark.  So then after walking home and getting ready for bed and finally going to sleep about 1:30pm, we woke up the next morning for splits.  We were all pretty tired to say the least, but we had a pretty busy day scheduled and it kept us awake and busy.  Then Friday morning, the sisters' bus left at about 5:45, so we all woke up about 5am and got ready and walked to the train station to help them catch their bus.  Well I've never sent sisters out on a bus before from here, or taken one, so I wasn't quite sure where it left from.  So I went to where I thought they all left, and we waited.  And there were two other buses that came, but neither one of them were the right one, so finally about 10 minutes past when the bus should've come, I decided to ask one of the other bus drivers about where the bus would be leaving from.  Come to find out, it left from the other side of the train station.  So.... the sisters got to stay with us for a few more hours and leave on the next bus at 11:40.  Let's just say, we were all PRETTY tired.  But I learned now where the buses leave from and we won't be making that mistake again.
Saturday was awesome!!!! We set a baptismal date with another investigator-- the one we met two weeks ago at the door, who said he was athiest and didn't want to listen at all! Miracles happen.  They really do.  Every. Single. day.  And... he came to church again on sunday!  And.... he's the one asking us for more "homework" he calls it from the Book of Mormon.  Never did I think that my investigators would be the ones asking me to give them more commitments.  He's nuts.  But he's so great! He's amazing, and I am humbled everytime that I teach him.  It's such an amazing feeling to know that the work that you're doing is paying off.  All those doors that you knock on, and all the times you try and try to be as persistent as you cacn and people still don't listen or accept, it really does pay off... and you find people like him, who are ready for the Gospel.  And it's so cool.  It's the best.  It really is.

Well those are all the exciting things for the week.  This week we fly to Helsinki for MLC.  That means we'll get to go to the temple and see President and Sister Watson, and eat all of her amaing and yummy food.  MLC is so great! Can't believe how fast the weeks are winding down.  WAY.  WAY. WAY too fast.  It sure hurts my heart.  God is so amazing.  God is so good.  I know that my Savior Jesus Christ lives and loves each one of us.  "I Stand all amazed at the love" He offers me every single day.  The peace that He brings to my heart when I am stressed or nervous or afraid.  I know that this is His true Restored Gospel and Church on the earth today.  Believe it! Live it! Love it! It's just the best!   Please keep praying for me that I can finish strong and we can continue to experience miracles here! I love you all so much! Have a super week!

Sisar Jordan
The Beach!

SPLITS!!!!  Me and Sister Roberts.  The two red-heads!

Us.... Just waiting at the train station at 11pm at night. 

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

June 21, 2016 Another Week!

So... I've been thinking about what to tell you all about this week because there's been so much.  After writing my mission President, I just felt like this part of what I told him, is the best explanation of this last week....
It's been a long, fast, happy, frustrating, exciting, miraculous week. I'm not exactly sure just how else to explain this last week. We were tracting about a week or more ago with member and we met this man at his door. He said he was atheist and was rather grumpy and didn't much want to listen to us. He was about ready to close the door when we told him to wait and we just kept telling him about how this could improve his life and why it would be worth it to learn. Then he finally says, "okei fine you can come back." Well this last week on Wednesday, we went back with a member at the time we had scheduled with him. He was home. And.. he let us in. His house was definitely not in the most shining shape, and it was clear that he smoked quite a bit. So we sat down, and started our lesson. It was a pretty awesome first lesson and we were able to invite him to be baptized. He wasn't quite sure about it, but definitely didn't say no. He just said that he really has been looking for something or someone to help him improve his life and he feels like this may be it, but he wants to learn a little more before he makes any sudden decisions. Ahhh... talk about ready to hear the Gospel!! So then we went back the next night and he had already read 6 chapters in the Book of Mormon and said that he had really been thinking about what we talked about. He already believes that the Book of Mormon is true and he applied everything that he had read into his own life-- better than I could have ever done. It was unbelievable! Then we taught him for the third night in a row, and it was just another really awesome lesson and he committed to coming to church. And then on Sunday, what do you know?! There he is sitting in church! As I sat there in church on Sunday, I couldn't help but think about how God really does work by small and simple means. There me and Sister Jacobsen were doing missionary work and being persistent with someone who said they didn't even believe in God and within less than a week, he has read the whole book of 1 Nephi and come to church! I am constantly counting my blessings everyday, because there are just so many and my eyes fill with tears when I think about how much Heavenly Father is blessing us. Even when Sister Jacobsen and I as a companionship had a hard time this week, because we were trying to solve things and trying to do our best regardless, Heavenly Father blessed us. And He continues to bless us as we do what is right, as we are obedient, and as we work hard, and give of ourselves to Him and to helping His children receive the Gospel. I can never say in words how grateful I am for my mission and for the amazing people and places I have met and taught and seen.

Time is definitely winding down quickly.  Baptismal dates holding and setting them hasn't exactly gone as we had planned or expected, but we're patiently working through it all and continuing to try and do our best. I know as we continue to work hard, Heavenly Father will bless us as He does everyday.

I'm so grateful for all the emails and letters of support.  Thank you all for making my mission be the most sacred and best time of my life. I love you all so much! Hope you have a great week!

Sisar Jordan

SPLITS! Sisar Christensen and Sisar Bradbury in Kuopio! I must say... that is probably one of thee most prettiest cities in Finland.