Sunday, December 21, 2014

Dec 15th- I am Singing in the Rain!

Aloha Family!! 
 
I have  officially graduated from being a student missionary. I got a real name tag. I have never felt so relieved in my entire life (no I am not dramatic). Here are some random things which made up my week.
Wednesday Sister Carter was practicing for a musical thing for zone conference. (she was going to be practicing LIKE ALL DAY) I usually get ornery when we don't do missionary work for long periods of time, so she sent me out on an exchange with another sister! We taught a lesson to a part member family. The mom is less active and the dad is a VERY opinionated non-member. Needless to say, I like him a lot! The SPIRIT WAS SO STRONG. You could almost feel it in the room! Even though he told me he refuses to take the discussions... I am convinced that he will. (YOU CANT DENY THE HOLY GHOST) (well, actually you can, you will just go to outer darkness) (but I am not making a final judgment) 
 
Then, that same day, I called someone to confirm a dinner appointment, the lady said, " is this sister Carter?" Me... "no." Her... "Oh, you just don't sound as chirpy as usual, so I figured it was Sister Carter." The two of us couldn't figure out which one she was insulting. 
 
Thursday was zone conference! It was an extremely emotional day. I guess that is what happens when you feel the spirit! We had to leave early because sister Carter had a doctors appointment. but we discussed the basics of the gospel; Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost, and Joseph Smith. President and Sister Russell are amazing. 
 
Friday we had the Ward party. Stressful, yet awesome. As a missionary you feel the need to talk to everyone in the entire room, but you can't. We are only one person. I say that, even though there is two of us, you are still basically only one person. You can't stray too far from each other. 
Saturday we taught an interesting lesson to Joey and Rachel. They are 11 and 8. Joey has ADD and ADHD. Use your imagination. As crazy as you are imagining this lesson in your head is how crazy it was in real life, trust me. They also have a dog which I am convinced has ADD and ADHD as well. It bit Sister Carter in the bum. Yes, that happened in the lesson as well. *sigh* life as a missionary, there is never a dull moment. Well, the dull moments are few and far in between. 
 
Since it is Christmas we have been going caroling with our district! It starts to get dark at four, and by the the eight o clock rolls around, no one wants to talk to you! Caroling is a great way to find late at night! It is amazing to watch family come together, their faces light up, and little kids get giggly as we go around singing. No one even get mad we are on their front porch! IT IS SO MUCH FUN! one day it was pouring rain, it just added to the adventure! (Also, right now it is snowing outside. Winter has officially started)
 
Here is a good quote I came across this week! "Remember that casualness in spiritual matters never was happiness. Make the Church and the restored gospel your whole life, not just a part of your outward or social life. Choosing this day whom you will serve is lip service only--until you actually live accordingly." -Elder Klebingat. The gospel only works if you embrace every aspect of it and implement it into your life!! We need to choose TODAY where we stand! "Choose you this day whom ye will serve.. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15)." The gospel is true! I love it with my whole heart! I am honored to be serving the Lord!
 
Asta maƱana! (Why did no one ever tell me Asta lavista means see you never? I say that all the time! I will see you all again one day :)
 
Sister Jones 

PS.Here are the two of us testing out Skype. We are both making our
CLASSIC faces. Haha love sister Carter!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Dec 8-Testimony Reconfirmed

Hello!

Funny story of the week: on Sunday sister Carter and I could not find
the keys ANYWHERE. We literally were ripping the house apart trying to
find them. We needed to go to church so we decided we would walk to
church, lock the door, then break in after church and find he keys. We
walked outside and guess what we're still sitting in the lock on the
outside of the house? That is right, the keys :) Glad that the car
didn't get stolen.. Or that anyone broke into the house...

The beginning of the week was rough, our one semi-solid investigator
dropped us :) haha but then we had a miracle packed day on Saturday!
We found some new investigators and taught the majority of our
lessons! Our area is starting to progress and sister Carter and I love
each other :) I have no complaints!

It is amazing how God puts you where you need to be. This week sister
Carter and I had a feeling to go to the church and we weren't sure
why... But away we went, and a sweet old lady showed up and asked for
sister missionaries! It was such a testimony to me that God is aware
of us!

This week we got to go to the temple! Amazing! It was such a special
experience to go and sit in the house of the lord! I had a lot of
questions answered in the celestial room. I know the gospel is true
with all my heart,but occasionally I ask again so that I know what it
is that my investigators are going through. A flood of memories
flashed into my mind.. Countless nights reading my scriptures and
feeling gods love, the overwhelming spirit of peace I feel as I
recount Joseph Smiths first vision, the knowledge which came to be as
President Monson spoke that he is God's messenger, and countless other
testimony meetings. I want you to know that I know AGAIN this is
Christ's church. I LOVE THE GOSPEL.

 


Sorry these aren't super detailed, we aren't allowed to use the
computers anymore and it takes a lot more time to type on the iPad!

Love,

Sister jones

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Dec 1st- I know they said lock your heart, but...

My Lovely Family!!!

I don't have a lot of time to write today! But it has been a crazy week!

Thanksgiving was so much fun. We played a lot of sports, I was so sore
the next morning! We played sports, weekly planned, had thanksgiving
dinner with the ward mission leader, and hung out with the sisters. I
love you all a lot, but I wasn't homesick. Sorry of that offends
anyone ;)


The sisters in mah zone. They are the funniest! (Notice how my name
tag still looks ridiculous?) also, this is my apartment!

I will tell you a quick miracle! So there is a 12 year old boy named
James we are teaching which is the most adorable little thing! He
reminds me a lot of Braydon. If I wasn't a sister missionary I
wouldn't stop hugging the cute kid! His mom is less active and doesn't
plan on coming back soon, but will help us teach her son. He READS THE
SCRIPTURES ON HIS OWN WITHOUT ANYONE EVEN REMINDING HIM. Who does
that? Sister jones didn't when she was twelve... We asked him if he
wanted a children's Book of Mormon and he said,"No... I like this one
right here." He wants to come to church really bad but his momma won't
let him because she said they need to go back together. He said, "you
better wake up for church tomorrow mom." I promised him that if they
came to church I would change my talk I had prepared and speak on
whatever they wanted me to! :) they didn't come, but I think James is
he most adorable little thing.

I know they tell us to lock our heart, but... I love all the people of
Oregon!! For instance, little James! My heart aches and yearns for
these people to learn about the gospel! We are still working hard to
find people to teach and turn the area around! I am still praying
daily for how to best help sister carter! I push her to be a more
obedient missionary, which she doesn't always take super well.... Oh
well :D

The church is true!! Mwa love you all!

Sister Jones

Nov 24th- K-Falls. Miracle Pit. (2)

Family, Friends, Siblings, and all ya'll,

SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED THIS WEEK. I want you to know up front that I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY and am in REALLY GOOD SPIRITS despite everything that has happened :) I just don't want mom to worry about me, so I am saying that up front. 

MY NEW COMPANION: If God were to make a clone of me, keep the height but click the opposite button, you would have Sister Carter. It works out well because one of our personalities clicks with basically every single person which we meet. We have all ready discussed how opposite we are and laugh about it, but here are a couple of examples. I love pink. She loves black. The ward says, "The new missionary is a bubbly one!" Sister Carter suffers from depression. I have one idea of what it means to be obedient, she has a completely opposite idea. Around 6:29 every morning I am yanking her out of bed kicking and screaming :) She cracks me up! There is a lot which I have to learn from her! 


 Our pizza we made!


 
MY NEW AREA: Klamath Falls 3rd ward, here comes Sister Jones. The white and blonde Sister Jones. I took the place of the only other Sister Jones in the mission, who was black. It is pretty funny because I will introduce myself to people as Sister Jones and little kids get so confused and so, "No you aren't." HAHAHAHA. Plus it doesn't help that I lost all of my name tags... so mine is a little make shift name tag. Don't worry, I ordered a new one. Anyway, I came into this area and it is a DISASTER. The areabook is basically non-existent, Sister Carter has been here for a transfer and hasn't meant BASICALLY all of the investigators, and the missionaries in the past had burned a lot of bridges which need to be repaired. I came into the area and said, "Sister Carter, are you ready to find, teach, and baptize?" That is what I plan on doing. Under God's direction of course :) We spent the first half of the week cleaning everything up. Then I was out of the missionary force on Friday (tell you about that in a second), and we worked SO HARD to find on Saturday and Sunday. By the end of the week, we had found more new investigators than they had THE ENTIRE LAST TRANSFER. We also met with a lot of LA's, and Sister Carter kept saying, "That is the best lesson we have ever had with them!" I was a little confused since we basically just asked a couple of questions to figure out where they were with the gospel, but I  just kept saying, "It's all because of the faith of my family. They pray and fast for me a lot." SO THANKS SO MUCH FOR YOUR PRAYERS. KLAMATH FALLS= MIRACLE PIT. It also has started snowing and our heater was broken, so our apartment had been around 40 degrees! But it got fixed Saturday, I am forever thankful for heat!
Here is us studying by our little heater.
 
So Thursday night I went to bed and my stomach hurt a little bit. I didn't think anything of it. The next morning, it kept getting progressively worse through studies. Then we went to district meeting, and I could hardly sit still. We are serving around a lot of missionaries, which is different from Coquille but a lot of fun, and they all wanted to go out to lunch for burgers. Granted, I did not feel like a burger, but you go where your companion goes :) I ate this giant burger and we headed out to do missionary work. About 15 minutes after lunch my stomach felt like it was eating itself. Sister Carter made me call the mission nurse and she said, "you have the stomach flu. Whatever you do, DON'T EAT ANYTHING." oops. had a burger. So long story short, I spent Friday throwing up and curled up in a little ball! Food has looked disgusting to me ever since Friday, but I am forcing myself to eat enough to stay alive :) 
 
We really have seen so many miracles over the last week. We have found a couple new 'gators and a lot of solid potentials! On Sunday in Relief Society we had a lesson on Elder Uchdorf's talk, "Being Grateful in Every Circumstance." It was a huge answer to my prayers. People go through HARD THINGS in life. I have seen a lot of tough situations on my mission. But what is amazing is that we really do have the capacity to be grateful, not matter what. This is such a good season for that! God has commanded us to be grateful, and not just during the easy times. In 3rd Nephi 10:10 it talks about how there is mourning, weeping, and wailing, but that did cease and people turned to PRAISE and GIVE THANKS to the LORD our REDEEMER. Because of Christ we will live again! We can be redeemed! We can have hope! We can feel peace! That alone is enough to be grateful for. I am grateful for my mission, good and bad, the people which I have met! I am grateful for Christ and the atoning sacrifice which he made for all of us! I am grateful for my sweet family and friends who have helped shaped me into the person which I am today!
I am also really thankful for heat.

LOVE YOU ALL! SERIOUSLY BEING A MISSIONARY IS THE BEST!

Sister Jones

Nov 17th- TRANSFER CALLS.

Dear Family,
 
It has been a long and exhausting day, but I made it to Klamath Falls! Klamath has basically the same weather as utah... so it is going to be in the negatives and really really SNOWY. I will have a white christmas at least right? Remember the blubbering mess I was the day before I left on my mission? Well, I was the same blubbering mess last night after saying goodbye to everyone in Coquille. I AM TEARING UP JUST THINKING ABOUT IT. But I am looking forward to new adventures!

 
 
IT WAS THE MOST AMAZING LAST WEEK IN COQUILLE EVER. Which made it even harder to leave! We spoke at church on Sunday, and I basically got up and bawled for ten minutes! A couple people in the ward told me I made them cry as well, so I think they understood what I was saying for the most part. That or they felt so bad I was embarrassing myself ;) But the man who spoke after me talked about how for his job he helps people get in shape. When he wants someone to grow and get in shape the fastest, he makes them work until they physically can't lift weights any longer. When they can't lift the weights any longer he will "spot" them, and they will keep working until he is bearing most of the weight. He compared this analogy to God-he wants us to grow the most. So he gives us a load, we carry it until we CANNOT carry it by ourselves anymore, then instead of taking the load, he helps us to bear it. It was a very inspiring talk which helped me realize that we are suppose to have loads laid on our backs!! 
A lot of AMAZING things happened this week... but I am going to focus on one! We had been doing service with Suzanne. I don't know if I ever told you about her, but a couple weeks ago she started asking us about the BoM. We answered her questions. the next week she asked if she could have one. I guess. The next week she said, "I know you are busy, but could you squeeze me in sometime?" This week we went and taught her one of the most spiritual lessons I have had on my entire mission. We were planning on teaching the Restoration, but the spirit whispered, "plan of salvation." It was exactly what she needed. by the end of the lesson Suzanne, sister jones, sister vance, and the member were all bawling! Her heart has been prepared to receive the gospel! I know I was sent to Coquille to bring the gospel to Suzanne! 
 
I never want to leave an area ever again.. but it is a little bit of a miracle I am going to Klamath. Kersha's long lost brother lives here, and I am going to find him :) sorry I don't have a lot of time, but I had a piece of chocolate cake and a veggie burger for breakfast, and it is time for food :) :) :) 

LOVE YOU ALL. 

Sister Jones

Monday, November 10, 2014

Baptisms, Identity Crisis', and Southern Drawls (2)


Nov. 3

I always try to think of a creative title to my email so people will actually read them. :)

HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 

We had a fantastic Halloween  carving pumpkins at district meeting... and then we took some Halloween treats around to our investigators, which was a good excuse to go and see them all! On our route we pulled into an apartment complex and their were cops EVERYWHERE. Uh Oh.. we know basically everyone in this aparment complex... we were praying it wasn't anyone we knew. It was. We have another investigator in jail. #bummerdeal but I guess things like that happen when you are serving in the meth capitol of Oregon. (No worries mom, all the people are still really nice.) We also had a ward Halloween party that A TON of our people showed up to! 

There are so many miracles and tender mercies which happen in missionary work I never know where to start! It is truly through opposition that you come to understand HOLINESS. 

But I think I had the FUNNIEST lesson I have EVER had on my mission this last week, with a sweet old lady named Linda! Linda has a wild rabbit which just hops around her house. It isn't potty trained either... so you have to be careful where you step. Randomly, throughout the lesson, it will dart acrsoss the living room. She also has a "handicapped" or "disabled" cat. It can't walk in a straight line and is constantly falling over/ tripping over itself... it just hobbles along. She also has a parrot which likes to make comments while you are teaching. Just the situation itself is enough to make you laugh!! Anyway, we were re-teaching her the restoration, and it finally clicked.. Linda said in a really gruff voice, "So YOU are telling ME I have to be baptized mormon?"(linda was baptized Catholic)
INSERT LONG AND AWKWARD PAUSE.... 
Me: "Yes."
Linda, super nonchalantly, "I don't have a problem with that."We then committed her to specifically pray to know the Book of Mormon is true and in her prayer she said, "I already know the book of mormon is true." HAHAHAHA SHE IS THE FUNNIEST PERSON EVER. Sister Vance and I usually leave the lesson laughing hysterically, and Linda is just happy that we are happy :) 

We also have been teaching a little girl, Maddison, who is 11. She LOVES church. Whenever we teach her, she invites all the little kids on the block. So, we end up teaching a heard of little children! Madison will say, "Damion, who is 5, needs to know about God. Can he sit in during our lesson?" What a good little missionary all ready! They are  always super exciting lessons :) All the little kids say their parents are ok with it, but can you truly believe a two year old explained to their mother they are meeting with mormon missionaries? OH WELL :D 

This week Sister Vance felt strongly that there were two new investigators who needed the gospel, so we tracted DOUBLE what we normally tract. Our VERY LAST HOUSE of the week let us inside, and we taught a FAMILY! It was a mom, a dad, and their seven year old son. As I have been studying the Savior's life I have noticed a common theme.. DESPERATION. For example, in the story of Peter walking on water, the disciples rowed until the "fourth watch." The winds were contrary to their rowing, their little boat was being tossed to and fro on the water! It wasn't until the fourth watch, 3-6 in the morning, that the Savior appeared to them. This is often how God is in our life. He allows us to grow. He allows us to stretch. He makes us exert ALL our efforts, until we can't go in more before he steps in and helps us! God is there, he is real, and He wants what is best for us. However, He loves us enough to allow us to FAIL, but He will never allow us to become a FAILURE. It is through trials, tribulations, and exerting our own strength that we grow, and can become the disciples which he wants us to become.


Love you all!

Sister Jones

p.s. the gospel is true. 

Oct. 27-Need strength? FAST

AAAAANNNNDDDD Another week down! :)
Remember how I said the Oregon rain started last week? I lied. It
started THIS week! Everyone keeps telling us this is nothing, but I
don't believe it. Sister Vance and I are constantly laughing
hysterically as we are in the pouring rain with the crazy strong
winds! We think it is hilarious, we must look ridiculous. People keep
saying,"what are you doing outside in this weather?" Well, let me tell
you about this cooool blue book....

Best thing of my week/day/life: Kersha. Last week about half of our
investigators dropped us. Sister Vance and I had been in denial... But
we finally accepted the facts :) however, we had a lesson with Kersha
on Monday and that makes IT ALL WORTH IT! We have started teaching her
son, miles, and her daughter, Mariah. They are adorable kids who love
the missionaries. Mariah always brings her little friends by when we
are there, points at us, then whispers, "look. We have missionaries
who come to our house." However, Kersha's husband (well, hopefully
husband soon... Boyfriend as of 14 years) doesn't want anything to do
with the gospel. He won't even be in the same room as us! Kersha and
her kids came to church, have been reading diligently from the Book of
Mormon, and are getting along well with everyone at church. Sunday we
had the primary program, which was all about families. I couldn't stop
thinking about Kersha, her family, and the blessings which POUR into
our lives as we live e gospel. I know that she will have a forever
family one day, and that God is capable of miracles to soften Tim's
heart.




Wednesday was such a fun day! A lady which we know in the community
called us up and asked us to paint the shop windows for Halloween.
Suzanne is a lady who asked us if she could "borrow" a Book of Mormon
a couple of weeks ago. When she called us up tomato us to do service,
she said, "also, I have been reading the book you gave me. I know that
you are super busy, but could you squeeze me in some afternoon to come
by and answer some of my questions?" I guess... It is such a burden to
our schedule... ;) haha we were super excited! During the service
opportunity Suzanne took a BUNCH of pictures and posted them on
Facebook! I will send them to you!

One of our investigators, Avril, is SUPER dying from cancer. She keeps
saying, "this requires too much energy. Can't I just accept before I
die?" I laugh and tell her heck no! She always is sassing me so I sass
her right back :) poor girl.

This week, my testimony of fasting has grown SO MUCH. I realized that
it talks about fasting all over in the scriptures, but I somehow would
always just skip over that word! Alma and he sons of Mosiah are such
great examples of how we should be living our life...

2 Now these sons of Mosiah were with Alma at the time the angel first
appeared unto him; therefore Alma did rejoice exceedingly to see his
brethren; and what added more to his joy, they were still his brethren
in the Lord; yea, and they had waxed strong in the knowledge of the
truth; for they were men of a sound understanding and they had
searched the scriptures diligently, that they might know the word of
God.

3 But this is not all; they had given themselves to much prayer, and
fasting; therefore they had the spirit of prophecy, and the spirit of
revelation, and when they taught, they taught with power and authority
of God.
Alma 17:2-3

They gave themselves to much prayer AND fasting! In conference it was
said,  "I cannot think of any law, any commandment, which, if kept
faithfully, is easier to keep and which provides greater blessings
than the law of the fast." Sister Vance watched how it strengthened us
AND our investigators this week! The crazy thing is that in order to
go 24 hours, and have a deep and meaningful fast, you have to rely and
Christ in order to make it! We need Christ to help us fulfill EVERY
aspect of our lives.

All things are possible through Christ's atonement :)

Sister Jones

Oct. 20th- Numb Fingers, Dead Squirrels, and Polygamist Colonies

ALOHA!!

This week has been extremely... interesting. But, THE OREGON RAIN HAS OFFICIALLY BEGAN! It is actually a little bit exciting to be trudging through the rain sopping wet. As long as it never gets cold right?? :)
 
 
 There are a plethora of thrift shops in Coquille which are super fun to look through :)


The majority of our lessons fell through this week, which happens sometimes. Let me tell you about all the interesting things which happened still. 

1. I shut my finger in the car door...then I couldn't get it out! TALK ABOUT EMBARRASSING. My finger was huge, cut up, and puffy. It looked like the tip of it was practically squished flat. That was last Thursday, and after all the swelling went down, I am left without feeling in the tip of my pointer finger. It is the weirdest sensation. I asked a nurse in the ward about it.. she said either 1. My finger will regain it's feeling in three months or 2. the feeling will never come back and I will just have to be aware of it when it starts to get cold in the winter and make sure to keep it safe. Kind of a cool mission story one day if you ask me. Sister Vance is probably really annoyed because I can't stop poking her... but it just feels so weird that I can't feel anything!

2. I did something horrifying. I was just driving along.. and a squirrel planted itself RIGHT IN FRONT of our moving car... I screamed and cried after hitting the poor little animal.

3. A member in our ward told us a polygamist colony was camping out by her house. She told us they were super nice and wanted us to go and visit them... so we did :) Sister Vance and I put on our longest skirts and then put in a braid in our hair and went and talked to them (we fit right in.) They were the NICEST people who have devoted their lives to God! One man teaches everyone in India about Jesus Christ! It ended up being kind of weird though because we were trying to convert them and they were trying to convert us... But it was a fun experience. and I got a tour of their gypsy caravan. 

BUT Kersha is still doing fantastic. She is the reason why Sister Vance and I are serving in Coquille :) Also, we hadn't seen Mindy in a couple of weeks (she went to the doctor and found out she has a broken back) but she still showed up at church, despite all of the pain!! We are so proud of both of their progress :) 

MIRACLE..we gave a lady which we do service with a copy of the Book of Mormon because she asked if she could borrow one. She called us and said, "I have been reading through your book. Whenever you have a free afternoon, I have some questions for you." Watch out Suzanne, you are feeling the spirit! :) 

Even though a lot of hard things happened this week, I know that it has pushed me to grow. As we were sitting in sacrament meeting, someone played a BEAUTIFUL melody of "Nearer My God to Thee." There is a line which says, "Nearer, my God, to thee, Nearer to thee! E'en though it be a cross That raiseth me." Tears welled up in my eyes as it hit me.. When we go through hard things, when we are "bearing the crosses of the world," we are growing closer to God and Jesus Christ. We understand a SMALL PART of what Christ must have gone through. President Holland states, "When we are spit at, mocked upon, we are standing soldier to soldier with the greatest life who has ever lived." I testify that the Savior is real, and that we have to walk some of the path which he walked in order to truly understand everything which he went through for us. We can cast our burdens on him and receive strength to, "Bear up our burdens with ease" as he did for the people in Mosiah ch. 24.

The gospel is true! I am so honored to be proclaiming it to the world!

Sister Jones
 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Oct 13- FYI: THE BOOK OF MORMON IS TRUE.

Great story for the week!

We were out tracting and a man we were talking to told us he wasn't
interested and went inside. We heard is son say, "they were really
pretty." "They were, weren't they?" #itsthespirit #awkotaco
#mormonglow

Also, for the first time, Sister Vance and I attempted Facebook
tracting! Super creepy, but I am actually undecided about what form of
missionary work is the most creepy... (Stalking your cyber self or
your real home... Hmmm...) you basically find people within your area
and send them a message. No success yet, but it is to be continued...

President Russell is awesome and had every zone throw Olympics! Here
is our lovely pic to document the moment :) love these people! And
yes, the segregation is real :)

 We had a pretty good week. There is a SUPER prominent lady in Coquille
who we are friends with, (named Pam Smith) and we do a lot of service
with her. She introduces us to EVERYONE in the town as her friends
(she isn't interested in the gospel, but we meet so many people
through her we keep in touch.) We are always out in the community
cleaning up, meeting women on the city council, on and on... A couple
weeks ago we were doing service and one of Pam's friends started
asking me questions about the gospel. We aren't allowed to proselyte
while serving, but if people ask questions we can answer. Anyway, I
answered all of her questions and honestly didn't think anything of
it. This week, we did more service, and her friend told me... "I have
been thinking a lot about what we talked about. For the first time,
Mormonism makes sense. People use to always tell me that you had the
Book of Mormon, then when people started to question, you decided you
also believed in the bible. From what you told me, it sounds like you
were questioning the bible so then you needed the Book of Mormon to
clarify. So anyway I was just wondering, could I borrow one of your
books? I promise I will give it back after I read it." Umm... We only
loan them out for a month, so could you please have it read by then?
;) #godisgood #thisishiswork

Another miracle! Julie is another lady we had been meeting with. Our
lessons with her are always SO SPIRITUAL. She always just cries and
cries! One day she told her mom that she was meeting with us, and her
mom got SO MAD. (granted, Julie is like 50) Her mom told us a lot of
horrible things about us. Last week she called us and told us she
doesn't want to meet with us anymore. She wanted to start going to
church because she remembers the spirit she felt there, but just not
our church. We were devastated, but had a large print Book of Mormon
we wanted to drop off anyway! We went to her house and started talking
about the Book of Mormon and how she felt when she read it. She
explained to us that she felt closer to God while reading the Book of
Mormon, and it helped her a lot in her life. (THAT IS THE SPIRIT) We
got talking some more and we felt impressed that she needed to pray
about the Book of Mormon right then and there. She was apprehensive,
but eventually did anyway. It was the most POWERFUL PRAYER I have ever
heard/felt. Looking into Julie's eyes I understood what "holiness"
means. She was a little taken aback as well! However, she still is
going to attend a different church, then come to our church and make a
final decision. I testify, however, that the power of prayer is real.
We can all continually receive that confirmation that the Book of
Mormon is true.

I love you all!

Sister Jones

P.S. Sorry, I didn't get to send this to everyone because I am sending
it from my lovely iPad. In the states we are spoiled ;)

Oct 6- Have a problem? LISTEN TO THE PROPHET.

HAPPY OCTOBER EVERYBODY!! We got transfer calls and I am staying in Coquille with Sister Vance! WOOT WOOT! Coquille is my home away from home, and I never ever want to leave! 

Kersha is still AWESOME. She alone makes everything worth it! In the past as she has met with missionaries she has had an issue with tithing. This week she responded, "I was thinking about it... and actually tithing isn't that big of a deal." She wants us to make a list of all the things she needs to start working towards in order to be baptized :D She cracks me up! 
 
Tell Aunt Cheryl that banana slugs are definitely real!!!

This week we had a hilarious lesson with a less active. We showed up and the entire house was in upheaval... She was swearing at her kids, and everyone was screaming. I went into "fix the situation" mode and made everyone in the house sit down. Kim instantly started telling me about everything which was going on and I stopped her and said, "Tell me something postive." She replied, "I can't think of anything positive." As she was telling us her stories Sister Vance and I started pointing out positives and yelling, "DING DING! THERE IS A POSITIVE!" We started twisting EVERYTHING into something positive and everyone in the house started laughing at us! By the end of the lesson everyone was on good terms and the spirit was back into the house. It was a really cool experience to watch how drastically people can change once we accept and listen to the Holy Ghost! 

Conference was seriously the best thing ever. Sister Vance and I were SO EXCITED Saturday morning.. you would have thought it was Christmas. Really though, I think that conference on a mission is the same thing as Christmas back home! Sister Vance and I were convinced that President Monson had something SUPER HUGE to tell us since everyone was talking about "listening to the prophet," but I was pleasantly surprised by his message that we all just need to live "Christ-like lives." That is the answer to this crazy turmoil of a life! 

My favorite talk was in the Saturday morning session when they talked about, "Which way do you face?" Our mission president has challenged us to study 10 of the Saviors miracles before December which has been a really amazing experience for me. Something which stuck out to me while I was studying reiterated this point. Throughout Christ's ministry he would always say, "Tell no man" after performing a miracle.  During the height of the Saviors fame, there was a group of people were going to force Jesus to be their king. The Savior ran away into the woods. (Let me confess a sin... if a group of people wanted to make me Queen, I probably wouldn't run away.) Christ wasn't looking at gaining worldly fame, he did EVERYTHING to appease the Father! He never, ever, did ANYTHING to glorify himself. If everything we did was ALWAYS to please God, a lot of the problems in our life would vanish. Are we facing the world, or are we facing God?

I love this gospel! I love being a missionary! I love you all :)

Sister Jones

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sept 29th- Laman and Lemuel Were Right

 MY WONDERFUL FAMILY!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Sept 22- Almost Went to Jail


HEEEEY FAMILY!!

This week has been very... interesting. 

The beginning of the week was fantastic! We were teaching Stephanie and her daughter Emily the rest of the Restoration. At the end of the lesson, we asked the usual question... "Will you read the book of Mormon and pray to know that it is true?" Stephanie responded.. "Well, here is the thing about that." (What do you mean? My stomach dropped in my stomach.. not after we had such a spiritual lesson on the atonement! I was waiting in anticipation..) She nonchalantly replied, "I have all ready read the book of Mormon and know that it is true." (Spiritual fist bump) Her and her daughter accepted a date to be baptized in November :) This just goes to show that the Lord is preparing the hearts of his people. 

Then, Wednesday, Sister Vance and I were planning on talking to a couple people about progressing toward the temple. We showed up at BOTH of their houses and they BOTH told US they have a goal to make it to the temple. 

We found another GOLDEN investigator. Holly also knows that the church is true. (Where have all these people been the first three months of my mission? ;)

Anyway, moral of the story, there are a lot of miracles taking place in Coquille! So many people that Sister Hamilton and I had been trying to teach are finally agreeing to meet with us. Sister Vance is a miracle worker! :)

Then, on Friday, I get a phone call. Joanna, one of my FAVORITE investigators, calls to tell me that her husband, Michael, wanted to ask us a favor. We show up at her house and she tells us that Michael is in jail and has requested us to come and visit him. He is allowed to see "clergy" and we counted as clergy. Um.. I had no idea if we were allowed to visit people in jail or not. We called the AP's and they said that I could go see him if I brought a member, and sister Vance would have to go on a split with someone else. We made all the arrangements, called the jail, and then president called! He didn't think it was a very good idea for us to go and talk to someone in a room full of convicts. Don't blame him! But that is the story about how I almost got to go to jail! :) :) :) It is really depressing when your investigators go to jail. Especially when they are progressing. Bummer. Michael also used to make us really great prime rib steak and shrimp. 

Mindy, (our investigator who is on date) has a slipped disc in her back, but she still came to church. Wow. I was really impressed with her commitment! She has such a sincere heart. I said, "Mindy! I am so impressed that you still came to church with your back problems!" She said, "Girl, I have tried everything else to fix my life. This church is the last shot that I have." HAHAHA if you knew Mindy you would be laughing at that comment! 

There are so many good things happening in Coquille. I have grown to love the ward and the people. Coquille is so small that you get to know almost the entire town! It is amazing to watch people take steps of faith, and to watch the blessings start to flow into their life. Sometimes a blessing isn't a bigger house, better conditions, or greater income. These blessings come in the form of HAPPINESS, KNOWLEDGE, AND HOPE. I promise that as we follow the Lords plan, he WILL hold up is end of the deal, and everything will be worth it! 

The gospel is true. 

Sister Jones

p.s. Sounds like everyone had fun at the Ogden temple dedication! :) I am so jealous, I can't wait to see it all finished! 

p.s.s. Gabriella, you should read your homework assignments without being asked by mom! 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sept 15th- HOLA! (Don't be deceived, I actually DON'T know spanish.)

Things are going great in Coquille! We had a really slow week. For example, Saturday, 7 of our 7 appointments fell through. Actually I should 9 of our 9. Our dinner appointment and correlation fell through as well! Luckily Sister Vance is the best and we just laugh everything off :) 

We have started to be convinced that EVERYTHING has an underlying gospel message. For example, in High School musical, the song "We're all in this together" is about members doing missionary work with missionaries. It is a real thing. I crack up just thinking about how funny that is! (also, I think you know you are a missionary when your source of humor is finding gospel analogies in the movie High School Musical. Does anyone in the real world think that is hilarious?) Here is another example. We re-wrote the words to the song "Magic" by B.O.B. The way it was supposed to be written goes like this.. "I got the magic in me, The power I get from reading a book once made out of Gold.. pick a verse, any verse it will enlighten your mind!" Too much? 

We had some great things happen this week as well though! Mindy has accepted a baptismal date on October 18th :) :) :) THIS IS HUGE PEOPLE. Mindy has felt the spirit before and really wants to change her life around! It is pretty funny though, we need to start back from ground 0 because she doesn't remember anything that we have told her (she was drunk during her first lesson) We will stop by her house and she will be really frustrated because she can't find Nephi in the bible. We try not to laugh, but it is cute how hard she is trying! :D Keep her in your prayers! She came to church which was GREAT! Also, Mary Ann spoke in sacrament. I had a proud momma moment! She acts like a lifetime member. She told a cool story about how she receives answers to her prayers whenever the sisters come over. For example, the other day we stopped by and as we were leaving she walked us out to the car. She gasped and I asked, "What is it Mary Ann?" She exclaimed, "I saw a shooting star!" I replied, "That was just for you!"

One of my favorite scriptures is in Mosiah 7:33. It states, "But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage." This is a scripture I usually share with people struggling with addiction. This week it hit me though.. we ALL are in some type of bondage, whether it is complacency, feeling inadequate, being lazy... It is in each of our lives. Being in bondage is our biggest WEAKNESS as well as our biggest STRENGTH. It is a strength in the essence that it requires us to rely holy on the lord. We have to TRUST IN HIM, and SERVE HIM with ALL diligence of mind. It is only through doing this that he can heal us of our inadequacies. Dallin H. Oaks said, "Healing blessings come in many ways, each suited to our individual needs, as known to Him who loves us best. Sometimes a "healing" cures our illness or lifts our burden. But sometimes we are "healed" by being given strength or understanding or patience to bear the burdens placed upon us." I testify that through Christ we CAN all be healed by his power! Our pains can be soothed! Our worries can be encompassed by his peace :)

The church is true!

Sister Jones

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Sept 8th- Another day in Paradise!

Familia,

I can't figure out how to send group emails via iPad! Yes, I have had
an iPad my whole mission... It is probably my best friend. Next to all
of you of course. :)

CRAZY WEEK. hahaha. So since I am the senior companion I get to drive
the car.. (Scary music in the background) we have a tiwi which tracts
EVERYTHING we do, it sounds a little bit like the things which all of
you have! So far since driving, (keep in mind it has been a week and a
half) I have 1. Forgotten to lock the car multiple times. We aren't in
Morgan anymore. 2.left ALL of the windows completely rolled down 3. I
left the light on all night 4. Tiwi gave me an aggressive driving! I
was just going over a speed bump.. We are only allowed to get three
total our ENTIRE mission. 5. For the biggest adventure of the week..
Refer to the story below.

Last Monday was a glorious pday! We got everything done we needed to
then headed over to some members house for dinner. They gave us some
little flashlights to carry around with us since it is getting dark
earlier. We eat dinner, then leave to go and see a couple of people. I
lock the car, close the door, and start walking. Miracle #1 of the
night, I checked to see if I had the keys. I didn't, the keys were
sitting safely on the front seat of the car. (People always talk about
how silly sisters are... For the first time on my mission, I was THOSE
sisters.) we called the mission leader, the zone leaders, and then
finally the senior couple who is in charge of the cars. (Miracle #2.
sometimes they aren't the happiest of campers since missionaries do
silly things. Luckily a couple days previous I had gotten on their
good side.) miracle #3 when the lock smith finally came, it was dark.
He couldn't see what he needed to in order to get into our car. WE
BOTH HAD FLASHLIGHTS! So we safely broke into the car and were able to
drive home. We rolled into our driveway at exactly nine o clock.
#justanotherdayinthelyfe

It was a really good week! We taught a lot of new investigators! No
one came to church, but there is a lot of potential in this area! We
are working hard to help people progress :) earlier this week we had
stopped by a former investigators house to check on her. Last transfer
sis. Hamilton had a feeling we should stop by and the lady was just
about to have her baby. Anyway, we stopped by since she has had her
baby to talk with her and she said," I really need to be taking lessons
from the missionaries again!" (Her husband was the one who made them
stop taking lessons about a year ago. Miracle, he is in jail.) we
taught her the restoration and the spirit was so strong! Stephanie
cried and cried! It was one of my most spiritual lessons on my mission
:)

Being a trainer is stressful, but I am relying on God! Neither of us
really know what we are doing most if the time, but we are figuring it
out! My comp has been struggling with homesickness, and I try to my
sympathetic because I remember how she feels! Everything about
missionary work is weird and awkward (we knock on strangers doors and
rejoice when they let us inside) but after a while you learn to roll
with the punches! I love being a missionary so much, this is such a
great work! (I can't really remember what else happened this week
because I forgot to bring my journal.) I can feel all of your prayers,
I really appreciate that you are praying and fasting for me! It gives
me a lot of strength!

Love you all,

Sister Jones

P.S. So this turtle.. one time I thought that it was real. I had to take a picture next to it since it is most definitely not real! Everyone always teases me about it :)

P.S.S. Our email time is cut short today, I only read the emails from
the three of you and then Wrote this email! Today I don't have time to
write you all back individually but I want to! I love you all and
laugh and cry when I read your emails, keep up the great work! Love
you all.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Aug. 31st- My Sweet Family!


Aug. 25th- I AM TRAINING A NEW MISSIONARY!

Howdy!

Refer to the title of my email. Now freak out. ;) President called us on Friday night! We new that something big was going to happen because normally President doesn't call to relay the message. He said, "The only thing constant is change." The first thing that flashed through my mind was.. "OH MY GOSH HE IS GOING TO MAKE ME LEARN CHINESE." (they are making a giant push for Chinese speaking missionaries in the OEM) But then he said I am training a new missionary which ties my stomach in a knot just as much as learning another language! I still don't know what I am doing 80% of the time, but I know that Heavenly Father knows where we need to be and who we need to be with. It will be a huge learning experience, and I know that whom the Lord chooses the Lord qualifies! 
                       Here's a selfie of Sister Hamilton and me with Mariah. I love this girl!

On Tuesday Elder Nielson of the seventy came to visit! It was such a spiritual experience! I couldn't write fast enough to keep up with all of the wonderful things which they were talking about! Sister Nielson talked to us about finding holiness in everyday life! She talked about how holiness can only be learned in opposition. We need to change our perspective on things in order to see the GOOD which is in everything! (She gave the example of.. instead of looking at her disastrous house as a young mother and becoming upset, she would be grateful that there was someone in the world who cared enough about her children to buy them clothes, toys, and feed them so they don't go hungry.) My favorite thing Elder Nielson talked about was what it truly means to have faith in Jesus Christ. We aren't suppose to have faith in prayer, in fasting, in blessings, but faith in Jesus Christ. If we have faith in Jesus Christ then we believe that he has the power to answer prayer, the power to heal through fasting and blessings, but we also understand that if we aren't healed that our faith is still in Jesus Christ, not in the healing itself. (for example, he asked, would you still believe the church was true if an apostle feel away? He boldly declared, I would! My faith isn't in the apostles, it is in Jesus Christ! It would be sad how many peoples conversion would be affected, but it wouldn't affect his.) All around it was just a very uplifting experience!

That was probably the highlight of the week! We had an interesting lesson with a man named Robert who wears ski goggles everywhere and is constantly talking about something scientific. It would probably be HILARIOUS to watch Sister Hamilton and mine's blank faces! Something about citric acid? But he read Enos and is convinced it is a prophesy of his life, which is fantastic! Needless to say we are handing him over to the elders.

We got to meet the man walking around Coquille with a cow on a leash. That is pretty exciting since he is pretty famous. 

Other than that I can't figure out what happened this week since every day in my journal I am either writing anxiously about transfer calls coming up or freaking out that we got transfer calls. Things are going great though, I love coquille, my mission, and all of the wonderful people here! The church is true!

I will let you know if I am still alive by the end of next week ;)

LOVE YOU ALL!

Sister Jones

Copy of Advancement Letter

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Aug. 18th-BEST SUNDAY EVER.

Family,

Do you want to know what is CRAZY? When we teach the gospel the day goes so much better. Crazy right? Who knew that was the secret! Some days NO ONE will listen to you, then other days EVERYONE wants to talk to you. This week was significantly better than last week in the fact that we talked to a lot more people about the gospel!

We also had some fun experiences this week! Our favorite investigators, Michael and Joanna, got married this week! We wrote them a "wedding toast" on a piece of paper that we cut out to look like a piece of toast. #WHYAREWESOFUNNY???? 

Also, one night I was showing Sister H my circumvallate papillae (that is a type of taste bud on your tongue) and I accidentally licked the sick nasty counter. Gross. Thought you would want to know that since it is such an inspiring little story :) Share the gospel? 

Last random story. There is a ward missionary in our ward whose son is about to go on a mission. We stopped by their house and were talking to the family. The son hasn't been coming to church, and he whined, "I have worked everyday last week." I said, "Oh ya? I work everyday from 10-9." He then said, "I fight forest fires." Then I replied, "I FIGHT SATAN." Their whole family started cracking up over that one. 

THEN... WE TAUGHT SISTER MCLEOD. Things perked up after this point in the week!
She left the church when she was 14 years old, and let me tell you she left with a BANG! She also has read every anti-mormon literature that is physically possible to get a hold of! She also asked to get her name removed at one point. Missionaries have been going over there forever, but she is really hard to teach! Anyway, one day she said, "it just hit me that I don't know what you teach to new investigators." WELL LET US TEACH YOU SILLY GOOSE! So we taught her the restoration! She paid really close attention! She kept commenting, "I believe that.. makes sense.. i believe that..." Finally I practically screamed, "Sister McLeod! That is a testimony!!" She bashfully replied, "I know." She is going to pay her tithing and read her scriptures. This is huge! She came to church and told us,"I don't want to leave because all my friends are here."

Intimidating marine man finally read Alma Ch. 36! He texted us his favorite scripture verse!

I went and saw a less active this week.He told me that he doesn't come to church because he doesn't fit into his pants. His suit jacket is too hot. He can't handle a white shirt. His wife then told us that she wont buy him new pants, he has to lose the weight in order to fit into the pants he has now. (ARE YOU KIDDING ME?) I got so frustrated with Brother Hyde I almost started crying! Eventually we just said, "YOU WILL COME TO CHURCH. SEE YOU SUNDAY." He came to church.

We taught Mindy. She was drunk.But don't let that fool you! Guess who came to church? We haven't had an investigator to church in weeks, but Mindy came! She has been an alcoholic for five years, yet she told us she has been sober for four days. Her husband told her he was proud of her for the first time in years! Her daughter started talking to her again! She all ready can see the blessing flowing into her life that come from living the gospel :) She was shaking before church started she was so nervous to be there, but she told us she was coming back next week!

Mary Ann has been smoke free for over 24 hours!

We gave talks in sacrament meeting and they went great! 

We got two new investigators! 

Here is the thing. God gives us SO MANY miracles in our lives. His hand is an active participant in our missionary work. I fully believe that we saw so many miracles this week because of the prayers of our family! As a missionary, you can do everything right, but success doesn't come because of anything that I do, it all comes because of the Savior. One day we will stand before God and it isn't going to be about what we DID or DIDN'T do in our lifetime, but it will be about what the Savior did for us to make up the difference. Because the Savior suffered for us, we will be granted celestial glory!

I also have a testimony of the "least likely." We didn't expect to see the people who progressed this week progress. It just goes to show that only God can see the thoughts and intents of someone else's heart. 

Love you all!

Sister Jones

p.s.(Also, we handed out a Book of Mormon to a man who said something about Mexico invading and Israel being taken over? huh. No one has mentioned that. Needless to say the gospel will bring peace right?)

p.s.s. We have transfers next week. I am having anxiety because I know that Sister H and I are probably gong to be split up! AAAAH! 

Aug. 4th- Mariah's Baptism

MARIAH WAS BAPTIZED THIS WEEK! I consider her a little sister :) She is painfully shy, and will really only talk to me and Sister Hamilton! Love her so much and I am so proud of her! Her baptism went really smooth. She was super nervous that she would have to get baptized twice... which she almost had to because her feet came up. They didn't make her do it again though! Her grandpa, who baptized her, was just baptized in January. Her grandma was baptized when she was super young and hasn't been active since, but was just recently reactivated. They are my favorite people and are on FIRE with the gospel!

A couple months ago I told you about a miracle we had running into a 3 generation family in the middle of nowhere who are so prepared to hear the gospel! Well, last Monday we had the opportunity to teach Tanya, the 50 year old grandma, the first lesson! She is GOLDEN! Her husband, MIKE (just like everyone else in coquille) has Alzheimer's. He always remembers Sister H and I though and introduces us as, "My girlfriends are here!" He asked if he could go and get baptized in the river. He must be really in tune with the spirit. No quite yet mike, but soon!

Everyone pray for Mary Ann! She got baptized last month and has started smoking again. She told us and BAWLED. She is so frustrated with herself and feels horrible. PMG says that it is normal for people to relapse, so I take comfort in that thought. :D 

A dog pooped on me at Mariah's. OK, it was just wet mud that looked like poop. BUT I did have to walk around with it on my skirt for the rest of the day. 

The other day we were driving down a giant hill, and I remember thinking.. there is no where we are going to be able to drive back up that hill. I was right. Our car skidded out of control and we LOST TRACTION. My life flashed before my eyes. (Don't worry, we survived. Also, it probably wasn't wasn't as dramatic as I make it sound.)


It is amazing to me the way that the Lord has a hand in the missionary work! The other day we were walking down the street and had a thought to turn around. We ran into a boy named Kevin who the elders have been looking for for weeks.We set up a dinner appointment with a LA family who has been dodging missionaries for MONTHS! The other day we brought our scriptures to a lesson which fell through.. but then last minute we went to a LA ladies house who let us in, and we happened to have our hard set of scriptures for her lesson (when we walk around we normally just use the scriptures on our IPAD) This LA happened to have just hired a potential investigator who we have been trying to get a hold of for months. We went to the potential's house to tell her this and she let us in FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER. And gave us popsicles. (SCORE!) One time we were driving through town and randomly thought.. lets go and see Kim! It happened to be RIGHT during a time when she needed help desperately. Because we stopped by her house when she needed it, she bore her testimony for the first time in sacrament since becoming a member three years ago! It was the purest, simplest, most beautiful testimony I have ever heard!  I have started to notice all these tender mercies everyday! They are little whispers from a loving Heavenly Father that he loves and is aware of us! I know that we all have instances like this in our lives everyday if we look for them. 

I LOVE YOU ALL! THE CHURCH IS TRUE!

Sister Jones

p.s. MOM AND DAD! Elder White, a missionary in Coquille, went on exchanges the other day and ran into Roy Avery's dad! Small world :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

July 28th- ADVENTURE IS OUT THERE!!

Family,

Life wouldn't be life without a little adventure eh? I have gone on so many crazy adventures. This week we solved our ant problem and the exterminator came over and cleaned the place right up, so that is one less adventure we have to conquer everyday! This weeks real adventure happened after I went to the bathroom at a members house. I reached to unlock the door... TO NO AVAIL. It would not unlock! Shoot, I was trapped! Luckily Sister H was watching the door. She noticed my struggle and tried twisting the handle from the outside. Brother Dubay exclaimed to sister H, "Be patient! She will come out when she is ready." We both were laughing to hard to explain our situation. I was laughing to hard to cry out for help, and Sister Hamilton was laughing to hard to ask if he had a key. Don't worry, I eventually got un-locked in the bathroom. 

We stopped a lady on the street to share the gospel with her which she was pretty open to, when all of a sudden she stopped and asked.. How old are you? Well, 19 and 21 ma'am! That got her pretty frazzled and said, "I should be talking to someone my own age about all of this!" We set up an appointment with her and didn't think anything of it. She called us in about 20 minutes yelling and wanting to talk to the leader of our church. She was SO MAD our church would send young kids out into the world! She somehow got our bishops number and chewed him out as well. In response to that Bishop told us, "I am sure that Joseph Smith got the same kind of reaction." I loved that response, and was a little offended this random stranger didn't think I was up to the task! :) 

Missionaries love yard work, pants, and Pam Smith! I got to experience all three of these this week! Pam Smith is a lady who takes it upon herself to fix up the community. She is someone we tracted into, and the next morning she called us and asked.. Will you help me fix up the street corner? We were ecstatic of course! We spent the next morning weeding and whacking on a busy street corner in Coquille with a lot of people who are in high positions around the community. Pam   introduced us as her friends, the missionaries, and we got to know a lot of members of the city council. It was an amazing opportunity, and we have had people commenting on seeing us do service all week! I testify of the power of serving! 


KRISTY, a young mom, read six chapters out of the book of Mormon for the first time this week. Watch out SATAN!

Also, we have these favorite investigators, Joanna and Michael, who are getting baptized this week! (also, I told sister H I am going to convert everyone named Michael because of Dad, and seriously everyone is named Michael now :) They are about to get married (YES! NO ONE IN OREGON IS MARRIED) and asked us, "could the two of you marry us? Heck, I don't even care if we get married Mormon!" They are the greatest people and I love them! 

 
We had the wonderful blessing of going to the temple this week! I had no idea the weight that was on my shoulders from listening to all the hard things people go through! I left the temple feeling light and lifted :) We road down to Medford in a van full of 10 elders, and I was shocked to know that a van full of elders is really just a van full of 18 and 19 year old boys. They did, however, at some point start singing hymns, and it was so POWERFUL. Sometimes I am just overcome by how amazing the gospel is! :)
 
 
 
Something which I have been thinking a lot about lately is what it means to be a TRUE follower of Jesus Christ. I run into so many people who say, "I have faith in Jesus Christ and just try to follow his life the best that I can, so I don't need a religion." As I have been pondering what it means to be a true "follower of Jesus Christ," I cam across a scripture in John 6:65-67 which struck me. It reads, "And he (Jesus)said, Therefore said I unto you, that no man can come unto me, except he doeth the will of my father who hath sent me. From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him." Once the Savior required something of his followers, once they needed to ACT on the things which they had been taught, they didn't want to follow the Savior anymore. The goal of this life is to prove we want to be a part of Gods kingdom more than anything else-and bring as many people with us as we can! The gospel is true, we all should do a little bit better acting on the things which we are told!

Love you!

Sister Jones