Tuesday, April 26, 2016

April 26, 2016 the UPDATE

So I have been pretty awful I guess you could say about writing everyone and giving you an update on really what is happening here with me.  I apologize for that.  I should be better at sharing all the spiritual stories that are happening here with Heavenly Father's children and I haven't done that as well as I should.

Right now, Sister Powell and I are teaching about 7 people.  Two of them have a baptismal date.  One is a Finn and the other one is from Kenya.  The investigator from Kenya we actually just set a baptismal date with this week.  IT WAS AWESOME!!!  So we've been so busy lately that we've had the chance to do quite a few member splits-- where Sister Powell goes with one member to a lesson and I go with a member to the other lesson.  Well because of how our area is set up and the time and transportation and everything, on Sunday evening, Sister Powell and one of the members went to a lesson with one of our investigators while I and the other member sat in her car and called our investigator from Kenya and held a lesson over the phone with him.  Let's just simple say that this investigator has been super busy and his job permits him from making it to church.  Simply put...it's complicated.  But he is more ready than anyone I've seen.  He pretty much could be considered a member of like 5 years if you didn't know better.  The only problem, is that his job makes it so he can't come to church on Sunday,which therefore means he isn't ready niether can he be baptized.  Well long story short, we had a really powerful lesson and at the end with a lot of thought and strategy figured out a way that he can be baptized in the summer on JUNE 11th!!!  Ahh!!! I don't know that I can say that I have favorite investigators, but this one is just really special and it has been so fulfilling to teach him and even learn from him.  I'm super excited for him.

This week we had zone training meeting.  Guess what that means?!  Yep.  I had to speak in front of people.  BUT... that's alright. That's what the Gospel and life is all about right.  Progression.  Improvement.  Overcoming fears and weaknesses.  It was awesome.  And honestly, it went pretty great.  It was neat because President Watson was able to come to this one with his wife.  It's always such a privelage and a blessing when we have the chance to hear him and his wife speak.  All I can say is wow.  Talk about feeling the spirit in a large dose and being uplifted and inspired.  I definitely am blessed.  We as a mission are blessed.

Right before Zone Training meeting, we had a short lesson planned with one of our cute old man investigators.  Sister Watson came with us. It was perfect.  It's the first time I've had the mission President's wife on a lesson with us and it was so much fun.  She was able to bear her simple testimony of our Savior in Finnish and it changed completely our whole lesson.  She brought the spirit so strongly in a way that neither Sister Powell or I ever could have.  It was a reminder and a lesson to me of how little it matters that I speak Finnish well or how much I know.  What matters is my worthiness and my humility to want to touch and change the hearts of others-- to want to bring them back to their Heavenly Father and their Savior Jesus Christ.  I sure love Sister Watson.  She is kind and charitable and humble, and I have so much yet to learn from her.

This week something that I have really learned and seen actually work, is prayer. Sincere and engaged prayer. Last Sunday, a lady talked in church. She did a really neat schenario with one of the Bishopric in our ward about a teenager praying to Heavenly Father. It was supposed to be somewhat of a replica of what most of our prayers usually are. We just send up pleas to Heavenly Father and thanks just without much thought always, but do we really listen? Do we really talk and engage in conversation with our Heavenly Father? It really made me stop and think about the way that I pray. Maybe the reason why some of my prayers aren't answered always, is not because Heavenly Father isn't telling me, but maybe more that I am not listening. I'm just telling him everything I want and asking him everything, with no thought to just sit and listen to Him speaking back to me. It has completely changed my prayers this week. Especially my prayers at night. I feel more in tune with my Heavenly Father than I think I ever have. It has been amazing. And the things that I have prayed for have been answered and Heavenly Father has been able to direct me and help me. It's amazing.

Well hopefully that's a better update.  I know that the work that we're doing right now is more important than anything else.  We are bringing the sheep back into the fold, and I know that God and Jesus Christ are right here with us.  I love you all!  Thank you much!  Have a wonderful week!

Sisar Jordan
Our excursions with Sister Watson

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

April 19, 2016 Our Heavenly Father

So I'll just apologize first-off that this week is short and not too informative.  But it's been another wonderful week.  God sure is blessing Sister Powell and I.  I just love Sister Powell.  She is amazing.  Everday I am literally blown away by her ability to love.  Her ability to accept it and show it towards others.  I'm influenced by her ability to help others feel God's love and know of His eternal plan for them.    I've never met someone who is just so willing to accept God's will and to do it.  I am learning so much about my relationship with God and my accountability to Him through Sister Powell.  God sure knew that I needed her in my life.  Oh what am I saying.  Of course God knew. He always knows.  I just didn't know it, and I'm grateful that God has helped me to realize how much I have and still do need her.  I have needed every single one of my companions.  They have shaped me in the most unique and beautiful ways.  I have a sure testimony that God places people in our lives or in our paths for very specific reasons relating to our eternal destiny our earthly lives' path.  How good He is.  How much He loves us and is aware of us.  And blessed I am to have the opportunity to share this knowledge with others.  I'm grateful for the time that I have here in Finland.  I know that the Gospel is true.  It's the only thing that really holds us together when our world falls apart.  I know that God is real.  He loves us.  He is our Father in Heaven.  I know that Jesus is the Christ and that through Him we can return and live with our Father in Heaven and receive that fulness of joy.  I know they want us to succeed and have given us the tools to do so.  We just have to find them and use them. I love missionary work, even though (yes I am willing to admit it) it is hard, one of the hardest things I've ever done.  But I love it.  I know that as we turn outwards in our moments of trial, that God blesses us with happiness and lifts us beyond what we could do ourselves.  I have seen that in my life and know that it is true.  I love you all.  You are wonderful.  You are amazing.  You are sons and daughters of a loving, perfect, all knowing, and Eternal God.  Don't forget that.  Go and Make today a great day!!

Sisar Jordan
Sister Powell and I headed out for the bikes.  

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

April 12, 2016 Oulu is waking!

Schyler is busier than ever and this is so good!  She didn't have time to write a big group email this week so I will share just a few tidbits from her personal emails home to Mom and Dad........

"Things are so great.  We have about 9 investigators right now.  One of them with a baptismal date and others that are progressing.  It's crazy how much is happening in this area right now.  Sister Powell is really awesome at what she does and hopefully I can learn even a small part of how she does it all.  I think the biggest thing is that she doesn't ever think about herself.  It's never about her, and I think that's why she's so successful.  I think that's the biggest key.  So gradually I am learning or at least trying to learn that from her."  

"Slowly slowly, some green is coming -it's still rather cold.  I have to still wear a hat and big scarf and small pair of gloves, but for the most part it's getting warmer.  And lighter... holy camoly.  At 9 at night when we come in, it's still pretty much all light.  The sun is just going down and the sunsets are amazing.  I really cannot imagine what it will be like in the summer. It's going to be weird that's for sure.  You would love it here right now.  It's just so beautiful.  Things are still kind of dead, but slowly they are coming to life.  That's such a cool thing to see.  I remember loving it last year too, when I first got here."

 "Oulu has been fantastic.  This last week was really awesome.  It's getting warmer and warmer which I'm grateful for.  We ride bikes all the time, so that is a nice work-out.  We're by the ocean and it practically runs right through the middle of the city.  You'd never really guess it's the ocean because it's different than what you think of when you think "ocean" but it's Finland, it's just unique.  There are bridges everywhere that cross over the ocean where it intersects in the city.  It's just so beautiful.  We'll see what I say of it compared to Jyväskylä when summer comes.  I don't know if anything can beat there.  Oulu is definitely bigger and busier than Jyväskylä though.  It's nice because there's so many more people to talk to, but on the other hand I really miss the peacefulness and calmness of Jyväsklyä.  I just..... ah..... I love that city, and I miss it. The sunsets right now are just amazing.  AMAZING.  Unfortunately, I have been too busy to take many pictures, but hopefully my memory will do I guess.    I'm just going going going all the time.  It's nuts, but it's good.  It will be weird when Sister Powell goes home.  Hopefully,  I'll slowly get the hang of everything.  She is really awesome though.  Very confident in what she does.  Loves to speak Finnish 24-7 outside, which is sometimes hard and frustrating for me. Let's just face it, Finnish is just still hard for me, but it's teaching me a lot, especially patience and hard work.  Thank goodness for that."

Missions are the best and I hope anyone thinking about going really seriously considers all the 
learning and growth that can occur.  Wouldn't trade this mission of Schyler's for anything in the world.  We have loved every moment along the way with her.  

SPLITS! :)  Sister Hyde is so great! 
Ainolanpolku Bridge, Oulu, Finland, Water, Reflection
So many kinds of bridges everywhere here!
Incredible SUNSETS!!!!!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

A few pictures from the internet of Oulu Finland

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Map Of Finland and Where Schyler has served !!!

These are the three areas Schyler has served in

April 5, 2016 Companions are a gift from God

Wow what a great week!  Wasn't conference so great?!  I love the Prophet and his apostles. I learned a lot about charity and selflessness.  Also this week I got to fly in a plane.  WHAT?!  Can you believe that?  We had MLC (Mission Leadership Conference) at the mission home in Helsinki, so Sister Powell and I got to fly all the way there.  It was so awesome.  One of the most uplifting and powerful times on my mission-- being with all the leaders of the mission with our mission president and his wife.  It was SO cool.  

So I want to talk a little about my companion this week.  One thing that I just love about Sister Powell and serving with her, is her ability to notice God's hand in everything. Everytime I start to think that maybe it was because I did something well or start to overlook that maybe God had a different idea of how our day should have gone, Sister Powell is always so great at recognizing God's hand and seeing that He is in our lives, in our work each day. 

One really awesome example of this was this last Friday. We had planned to have 3 member present lessons as our goal, but one of our three lessons had already cancelled. We had gotten our one lesson earlier on in the morning where we actually had ended up doing splits with the members, while I went with one member and taught a less active and Sister Powell stayed at the church with the other member to teach one of our new investigators. Both lessons went phenomenally and then we had weekly planning. During the middle of weekly planning, some of the sisters called about an investigator that has a baptismal date that just moved and was transferred over to them to start teaching, because she now lives in their area. Unfortunately, the call lasted a bit long and we really thought that we wouldn't have time to finish weekly planning on time or we'd have to cut some of it short. But miraculously, we managed to finish on time and actually having planned much more than we thought. So then after weekly planning and dinner, we headed to an area to contact some referrals and a few potentials, hoping that we could at least teach an other lesson. But as we got to the area and started to go in this one building, we glanced across the yard and to our surprise, the member that we had asked to come with us to the lesson that was originally planned at that time in that area, was riding up on her bike. Sister Powell and I just looked at each other like, "oh no... we forgot to tell her it got cancelled and she biked all the way here." Well long story short, we saw the opportunity that God had given us and decided to take advantage of the situation with this member to try and get our three member present lessons. So we went to a potential and miraculously enough, he was home, AND he was willing to let us in. What do you know? Two member present lessons and then we went on that night to teach another investigator with more members. IT WAS SO AWESOME. 3 MEMBER PRESENT LESSONS! It was such a huge lesson to me of the power of goals, the power of accountability, and the power of hard work and diligence and faith. Faith that God really can make anything happen, if we are just willing to do our part. It was such a great day. I'm so very grateful for days like that. I'm so grateful that Heavenly Father has blessed me with a companion that is so good at noticing the tender mercies and blessings that He gives us and gives to me each day. Sister Powell is wonderful. 

Well that's my miracle story for the week.  It's warming up here.  Spring is coming! YAY!!!  Love you all lots! Thanks for the support and love!  Have a great week! 

Sisar Jordan
I LOVE AIRPLANES!!!!!!!! Sister Forrest... these clouds are just for you... just a little different angle! :) 

Watching Conference.  I think it's been a long day for everyone...  

Guess what we went on... AN AIRPLANE!!!!