Monday, November 9, 2015

11/10/15 Best Christmas Present Ever!!!!!!

So transfer calls were on Friday and (drum roll please)............ I AM TRAINING!!  Ahh... I am so excited!  And to top that off, I even got my wish of staying here in Jyväskylä for the next transfer (Christmas, New Years, and Mission Conference).  Seriously it really was like the best early Christmas present ever.  I definitely am really sad that Sister Allen and I won't be companions anymore, or even in the same zone, but it has been so great to serve with her.  She too is really excited about transfer calls.  She'll be going to Kuopio, which is a little north east of here to be with one of her MTC companions.  It will be great!

So as for the rest of the week though...

TIISTAI-- We went and got Sister Allen's hair cut.  It definitely is interesting when the Finns who cut your hair don't speak a lot of English.  You just have to kind of hope that they understand "not too much"  and "just a trim" haha, or you use the words you think are right in Finnish and pray you aren't wrong.  Luckily though, it turned out alright and they cut her hair really well.  Did I mention... Haircuts here are like 40 £.  It's crazy that I used to get my hair cut for $12 or less.  They do a good job though and they sure are serious about their haircuts and hairstyles here.  So then that evening we had another lesson with one of our investigators.  We brought a member along and we read with her in the Book of Mormon again.  I think that it's helping, but I just am not really sure.  I'm kinda stuck at the moment with what to do to help her to progress.  I don't feel like this is not helping, but I'm not exactly seeing any super big progress either.  Any suggestions??

KESKIVIIKKO-- We had our very last District Meeting with this same District.  Then we ended up spending most of the rest of the day in an area pretty far out with member families that don't get visited very often.  IT WAS SO MUCH FUN!  We ate lots of yummy food and shared spiritual messages left and right.  They were all so eager to see us and shuffle us from one house to the next, so everyone could have some time with the missionaries.  The one family we went to, they practically live on a (farm) zoo.  Kind of like Pam does.  They have horses, cows, goats, a HUGE dog, chickens, and I think pigs too.  Then they grow all these vegetables and all kinds of things.  It's really cool.  They even have their own webpage where you can schedule times to come out and do workshops and have sleigh rides in the winter.  It was like I was right at home, when we got out of the car and this big 'ol dog just comes running at me.  Definitely the highlight of my day.  I sure miss the dogs at home.  But it was a really great day!

TORSTAI-- We tracted quite a bit and went to do service for the one less actives wife that we go to each week.  I love their family and she always gives us such yummy treats before we leave.  We had pannukakku again this week! YUM!!

PERJANTAI--MOST NERVE RACKING THING EVER.  We got to give a school presentation to about 30 high school kids (15-18 yrs old).  That was pretty scary to say the least.  I can't say I understood everything and the members that were there helped us on some of the questions that we didn't understand them ask us, but other than that, I would say we did a pretty good job.  Definitely isn't something I'll be praying to do in the near future, but it was a good experience.  We also had weekly planning and found out that one of the Elder's investigators is now ours.  She is the one that we taught for them a few times, a couple of weeks ago when they had to go to Interim training.  She might be having to go back to Spain at the end of this month and she's been investigating since July I think.  She has a baptismal date set for close to the end of the month, but it's hard to communicate even in English with her.  So we are finding ways to be creative to help her understand better and hope that we can continue to teach her, and possibly even baptism before she goes back to Spain.  That would be really awesome!   We also practiced a song with the Young Women that they will be singing in church sometime soon.  It's really great to be able to play the piano to help so many people!  If you're thinking about quitting... DON'T!  Then we also had a chance to visit our recent converts house.  They are doing great and we had to tell them that Sister Allen will be leaving.  We all had a family prayer together and it's just awesome to see how much they continue to progress.  The home teachers have already been over there, and the ward is doing such a great job to stay involved and help them feel welcomed!  It's awesome!

LAUANTAI-- So for times sake, I'll just tell you about the evening.  The Elder's had planned a lesson with this investigator who now would be ours, for this night.  So we took a bus and headed all the way over into their area and to her house.  Well when we got there, no one was home.  We knocked about 5 times, but still no answer.  All the lights were on, but no one home.  So then we decided to wait a bit, and then even walked around the  back side of the apartment to look in the back windows.  I was scared out of my wit.  It's a really sketchy area and I've never felt so scared in Finland before as I was being in that area.  We never got to have a lesson with her which was a bummer, but hopefully we can meet lots this coming week.

SUNNUNTAI-- We had Stake Conference.  It was broadcasted to our church.  President Watson and his wife spoke and I am just so impressed with how well they do.  They gave their whole talks in Finnish.  They are amazing!!  Sister Watson is always so happy and is the kindest, sweetest person I know.  I love them!  Then we practiced with the ward choir and Sister Allen said all of her goodbyes.  It reminded me of leaving my first area and I sure was sad. I love Marjaniemi so much! So then in the evening we were able to visit our cute old lady again.  She talked all about how much it means to her that we come and visit and how lonely she is. It has been such a huge blessing for her to have us come once in a while.  Her testimony is so strong and she is always so willing to share the gospel and make it known to others how much she has been blessed.  She pretty much does missionary work just like we do.  She has her own stack of pass along cards and pamphlets, and everyday on her walks she talks to people and passes them out.  It's so great!

Well that's about it for the week!  I can't tell you all how excited I am!  I feel so privileged to be able to train.  Sister Wunderli, one of my MTC companions is training the other sister that is coming in, and so we'll get to see each other quite a bit in the next few months.  I haven't seen her since we both first got in the country.  I can't wait!  It will be lots of fun!  We also have a mission conference in December which means the whole mission will get to be together.  It only happens once a year and it's so exciting.  I CAN'T WAIT!

As I walk the streets of Finland or get emails from friends or family hearing about their trials or those around them, I am just so impressed with all the people in the world who can do hard things-- whether it be having a physical or mental disability, or illness, or whatever it may be, I am so impressed with their determination to move forward and upward, to be happy and to love life despite challenges.  I just wanted to end with this quote that I really like:

"The best paths in life are rarely the easiest." (Elder Carlos A. Godoy)

Remember that trials, if handled right, make us stronger, more wiser, more understanding, more charitable, more loving.  They help us become more like our Heavenly Father-- the beautiful amazing people we are capable of becoming.  I like you have to remind myself of this often too.  I love you all and I am so bless to be here!  Have a wonderful week!

Sisar Jordan
Last Picture of these two wonderful sisters before transfers !!!!

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