Monday, September 1, 2014

September 1, 2014 - Labor Day

Hey there family, 
So this week has been a good one. Sister Petersen and I have been working really hard to prepare things for Brandon's baptism, and so far so good! Yesterday we had a bit of a scare though, Brandon was in Arkansas going to church and he parked his truck in the grass/cement at an elementary school right next door to the church and after church when he came out to leave his truck got stuck and sunk down into the mud and broke part of the cement. So we were all worried that this was going to delay his trip and work schedule and that he wasn't going to be able to make it back on time for his baptism but he was able to get someone to tow him out thank goodness! He also had a really great time at church, a few days ago I called the Branch President there to let them know that Brandon was going to be at church and he said that they would look for him and also let the missionaries know. The missionaries really helped him to have a positive experience at church and in the gospel principles class they were talking about the Word of Wisdom and Brandon said that he was able to share a bit about his past and how much his life has changed since he has been living it. This helped the elders out because they had an investigator there that struggled with smoking and Brandon was able to talk to him and about how he was able to quit and some tips, it was really nice of him. Then after church that same investigator was saying how he always wanted to drive in a big truck and so Brandon gave him a ride in his and then of course when they got back is when he got stuck. But Brandon was really positive about it and the elders ended up staying out there with him for a few hours waiting for the tow man to come. Brandon really enjoyed them which is good. He told us that the elders said the were jealous that we got to use Facebook and iPads haha but maybe one day they will too. Mike was also supposed to come to church yesterday but he didn't end up coming, it was a bummer and he kind of keeps flaking on us so we might end up dropping him soon which is sad because he is so cool. But we will see how things go this week. we also got dumped as I would call it by two of our other investigators, Kelly and Daniel. That was a bummer but I guess they just weren't ready. But that's ok I know that the Lord has more prepared people ready for us! We are going to start teaching a family this week, the Nelsons.  Joanna Nelson the mother is an excommunicated member of the church and the rest of her family are not members. But her father is an active member in the ward and he suggested that we go and visit her and so we have been trying to stop by this past 4 weeks or so with next to no luck. We had met them once before like 3 weeks  ago but wasn't able to set anything up with them because they were sick and then after that we just could never get a hold of them. Then about 2 weeks after that we went over and Joanna was home and sick with something else and so we couldn't go inside, but she was telling us about how stressed she was and that things are really hard right now but that she really wants to get back into church. We were able to share Mosiah 2:41 with her and talk about how King Benjamin asks his people to consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandants of God and how they are blessed both temporally and spiritually, we then promised her that as she makes the efforts to keep the commandants and come closer to God that she will see the blessings in her life.  She asked if she could keep the Book of Mormon we were reading out of and if we could mark that scripture for her so that she could share it with her husband. We then had no luck for about another week contacting them until last night we went over and they were home and really not in a good state of things, they hadn't eaten in days and were just really struggling with all sorts of problems. but Joanna was excited to show us that she has a ecig now and that it has been helping bot her and her husband lower their raving for smoking. They also were telling us that they are not going to give excuses anymore but that they really want to change their life and come closer to God and strengthen their faith which is really wavering right now. So we set an appointment for Tuesday, so hopefully that goes through. We were also able to contact this awesome less active family that moved into the ward, the Conkrights. They really liked us and said we could come over anytime. The children seem like they could become active again no problem, but Sister Conkright is the one who is struggling with it right now, its because she smokes though and she doesn't want to be judged at church. She does have the desire to come back though. I think it will be fairly easy to help them back into activity which is good. We will also go and visit Genette this week. I can't remember if I told you about her, but she is a sweet lady, we have only taught her the restoration so far and she really felt the spirit as we were there. So I think things could work out good with her. She also struggles in every way possible as most people out here do. She really is just looking for peace and the hand of the Lord in her life. She will find that as she keeps the commandments and comes closer to the Savior. That is pretty much all the news for this week. I was reading through the email I sent you last week and I realized that I make tons of grammar errors and that half of my sentences don't make sense. Sorry about that, I am typing so fast to get it all down for you that I don't have time to fix it haha oh well. Talk to you next week! Love you! 


 I miss Utah picture

Sister Jamison, the spider killer
Where missionaries eat :)

Monday, August 25, 2014

August 25, 2014

Hey Family, 
How are you today! I hope really good, wow time is flying by, I feel like I just emailed you yesterday! This morning Sister Petersen and Sister Thomson and Sister Conger and I got to go over to one of our members houses (Sister Davis) and help her to paint some lawn furniture and her potting shed shutters it was fun, but I am all tired out now and way dirty! Sister Davis is really great though, her poor husband is literally dying and she needs a lot of help with things, and so it was nice to be able to go over and help her and help her get her mind off of things. This week has also just been full of miracles. The work here is progressing and Heavenly Father is blessing us so much! We started out the week with that amazing zone conference that I told you about on Tuesday which really gave everyone a second wind to go out there and do his or her best. Me especially, haha every time I go to things like that I feel like I need to repent and work so much harder, and then when I do I see so many miracles. Gosh why can't I just be super all the time, well still working on that of course! haha On Wednesday Sister Petersen and I were out in good old Beverly Hills trying to visit some of our potentials investigators and nothing was really going that well. And as we were walking down the street we saw this older man and lady sitting outside smoking so we decided to go and talk to them. Well we ended up staying for about 30 minutes and talked about what we do as missionaries a.k.a HTBT ( how to begin teaching) for those of you who understand what that means! And the man Kelly's grandson Daniel ended up coming out to listen and then Daniels Cousin who is married to the lady Kim who was sitting there also ended up coming home and sat in and listened, it was so great! But any who, Daniel is 20 and is a youth minister at the Church of the Nazarene, his cousin Jim was also a Pentecostal pastor for 9 years locally, and Kelly was a pastor of some sorts in his days as well, so as they were telling us all this you can only imagine that I got a little nervous but it all worked out ok! Haha we just did an overview of the restoration and they were all interested in having us come back and talk to them more. The old man Kelly really liked us because he thought that we were young, cute and really knowledgeable about what we were preaching and he appreciates when people actually know what they are talking about haha in his words. Kim wasn't as interested but she sat and listened for a little bit. But we were able to give them a Book of Mormon and we invited them to read certain things before we were to come back and also the pamphlets that we hand out and they said they would! Well when we went back the only one who had read was Daniel, and he wasn't home at the time so we decided to talk more to Kelly and he was telling us all about his preaching days and all the other weird stuff he used to do (exorcisms and stuff) kinda weird, but he started to talk about all these different things and he kept saying oh don't worry Daniel will be back and you can teach him, I'm too old to convert anyways. But I do appreciate talking to you ladies. Well so in my mind I am all worried and thinking to myself, Heavenly Father what on earth am I supposed to say? He's got me so confused and I am struggling to figure out how to bring the spirit into all this madness.  Well then perfectly at that moment Kim asked a question about the "after life" and what was going to happen to her because her back ground is catholic and I guess they teach a lot of things about who is going to Heaven and Hell and she's all worried because people always tell her that she is going to Hell and all kinds of crap and she had also wondered what happens to the people that never get the opportunity to hear about Jesus Christ and do they go to Hell? And we told her of course not, God would not be a just God if he did not give them the opportunity, and she was like that's what I would think, but that's not what they tell me. Well then Daniel walked up and unfortunately Kim went inside, but Sister Petersen and I felt so strong that we should teach the Plan of Salvation. So we ended up doing just that and was able to show them both in the Bible about how the gospel is preached to those that are dead, and she and Kelly were just going off about how that made so much more sense than anything they had ever heard before and yadda yadda and as we were teaching and using the Book of Mormon and Bible together they kept saying how it made so much sense to them and how that is the closest thing they had heard to the truth than from anyone else. It was so great. We then left them with some additional things to read, and Kelly said that we had really peeked his interest with the knowledge that we had and that he was going to have to read the book of ours. It was so cool to go from you're not going to convert me to I wanna read your book. And then Daniel was just awesome because he read what we had asked him to last time and prayed as well. I am really excited to go and see them this next week and teach them more. They seem really promising! Haha I don't know what it is about me and preachers but I always seem to find them! Anyways Brandon is doing so well this week too it’s amazing! So we had a lesson with him on the Word of Wisdom and it went perfectly, he didn't have a problem with a single thing on there and he was telling us how he used to have problems with smoking and drinking and tea, but that he decided a long time ago that he needed to kick those habits and so he really had no problem accepting them. It was a miracle. We also taught him about the importance of a prophet and being obedient and how it will bless our lives and he really did well with that one too. I am so happy for him! My only concern with him was that we were going to have to really remind him and sort of beat into him haha that he HAD to go church these next two weeks or that he couldn't be baptized and I was really worried about how I was going to help him understand how important it was. Well it was totally another answer to prayers, because when we met with him he is the one who brought it up and said "Man sisters I really need to find a church this week so that I can be baptized." Ha he is so good! And so he was able to find a church this week and he went in Flagstaff, AZ and he loved it! After church he told us all about the things he learned and the questions that he had, and what a good experience he had. We were so happy that he was able to find one. Haha poor guy though, the ward he found was a YSA ward and after church he messaged us and said, "That ward was so different, I'm pretty sure I could have been most of their dads, I felt really old." Haha and so we explained to him that it was a Young Single Adult ward and that not all wards are like that. But he enjoyed it anyways and was asking us if we did as many activities as that ward does. We said not exactly, but we do have activities haha I was so glad that he was able to go to church though, I have been praying all week for that! So he just has to go one time and I hope that he will have the same luck being able to local a church so easy like he did this time. I am really so shocked all the time that this is even happening, I never in my life thought I would be teaching the gospel over the internet like this, and not only that but find someone who is ready to be baptized and receive the gospel. The Lord really is hastening the work right now and I am so glad that I get to be apart of it.  With the Internet we have the capability of flooding the earth with the gospel as Elder Bednar says and now is the time! We are so lucky that Heavenly Father is providing us with the tools, now we just have to use them for good. It is amazing what a simple message will do to spark someone’s interest, and not only that it is so easy to be a missionary online! No more worrying about awkward moments with people, or feeling like you don't know what to say. The Internet solves so many of those
issues that members have when sharing the gospel. Haha I mean I still am awkward everyday of my life and I have to go knock on peoples doors, but that's just part of being a missionary, but you all have it so easy! Take FULL advantage! When Brandon get's baptized on September 6th, that will be the first in history Florida Orlando Mission online investigator who lives within our mission boundaries to get baptized, and all because of the internet. I can't even believe that it is happening with Sister Petersen and I either, I see so many great missionaries in this mission and I think they so could have done better than me at this, but I guess the Lord saw otherwise. I am just as grateful as can be haha I feel like I just need to extend my mission another year or so, so that I can catch up on all the Internet MIRACLES I missed in the beginning! 
Everything else here is going well right now too. Mike our other investigator is doing pretty well, he doesn’t really understand some basic things and so we are working on that with him. Hopefully we can help him understand. But then again he isn't so super on keeping his commitments and so that has a lot to do with it as well. But we are just working with him. But we are already going into week three of this transfer and I cannot believe it, time is going by so fast, ahhhhhhh... I don't even know what to think haha I feel like I am going to be such a weirdo when I get home haha
Well I love you all and I hope that you have a good week! 

Sister Jamison

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

August 19, 2014

Hey Family,
Sooooo you are probably wondering why I didn't write yesterday haha well the reason is, is because we had a member of the 70 come and visit our mission for a mission tour and we had a conference with him and with his schedule it had to be on Monday, and so our P-day is on Tuesday this week! So all is well!
This week has been really good. We got to meet Brandon in person for the first time and that was great! He was home for a few days from his driving and so we got to have a lesson with him at the church and it went great! Brandon is so cool in person haha it is weird to have a relationship with someone online and then finally meet them, I just feel like Brandon is a real person now! haha But we were able to have a really spiritual lesson with him on the Gospel of Jesus Christ and we talked a lot about why we must live the gospel and how living the gospel enables us to use the power of the atonement in our lives. Brandon didn't realize how the two connected before, but after the lesson he said that it all made sense to him, and of course it does it's true! We also invited him to be baptized on September the 6th and he said "of course that's what I want, let me look at my schedule and see when and if I will be home," and then he said "that should be great, I actually have to be home that weekend for a doctors appointment!" Wohoo! Miracles!!! So we are going to work really hard with the ward council so that we can make an activation and fellowship plan for Brandon so that he stays active after his baptism. Which I don't think will be hard because he already does so much without being asked haha
We also went on exchanges again this week and I got to be with Sister Thomson again my MTC companion, so that was really fun! We were able to teach a man that I had talked to the night before and it went great! So let me explain haha we were at dinner with the Clay family and it was their son Aarons 30-something birthday and so there was a lot of family and this and that there and we were in a loud karaoke restaurant and everyone was singing and having a good ol' time. And we had been there for a little bit and after dinner we decided that it was time to go and for some reason we just felt like we should stay, so we ended up sitting there for another 40 minutes almost, and we started to feel really bad and finally we decided that we needed to leave and right as we were leaving a man walked in which happened to be Sister Clays brother and Sister Clay yelled at us "talk to my brother he needs Jesus!" So I went over and introduced myself and it was really loud and I was able to get his number and address and I told him that we would be by tomorrow to see him and he said ok. So then the next day Sister Thomson and I were able to meet him at a McDonalds and teach him a little bit and invite him to learn more about the gospel. He has hesitation about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith, but that he was looking for a way to have the spirit in his life and I was telling him that he could have that from reading the Book of Mormon and living the gospel, and he started to go off about how its not the Bible and blah blah and I pretty much stopped him dead in his tracks and asked him "Well Tony, how do you know that the Bible is true? Have you ever seen the original copy?" And he stops and thinks for a second and says "Well.... Gosh you've really put me on the spot with that one." And so we explained to him that he knows because of the spirit and that he can know if the Book of Mormon is true by that same spirit. He agreed that was true and we invited him to church so that he could feel the spirit and learn more and that we would be there to help him. And he actually came to church the next day; it was a miracle.
We also had a really great Tri-Zone Conference on Monday, Elder Hamula from the 70 came and spoke to us about the faith to find new people to teach. I wish I could have filmed it for you hahaha it was SO good. Really got me pumped about increasing my faith hahaha and just being better.  Then that night we had a lesson on the Plan of Salvation with our investigator Mike and it went really well! He is so ready to receive the gospel its crazy! Mike agrees with everything we have taught, and he always says things like "I would have stopped you along time ago if what you were teaching was false, but you haven't taught me anything that's not true." And of course I get nervous in the Plan of Salvation lesson talking about the Kingdoms of glory because so many people have a problem with that, and before we could even get to that point, Mike says this (and this was after we taught about judgment and resurrection) " You know after you die, it's like being at a wedding banquet. And you want to sit at the very front where the light is and where all the action is happening, but if you get there late you have to sit further back, where it's not as bright, until you are at the very back of the banquet and you are in the dark. And that's only the people that make it to the banquet, some people aren't even going to make it to the banquet and they are going to be in darkness somewhere else." And we said yes that's right! And we showed him a visual of the 3 kingdoms and how Paul compares them to different degrees of light, and Mike of course just agreed with it all, and everything we explained he would say "I know what you are saying is true." And then he said "You know in my mind my brain would be telling me that I need to go back down the street to the Church of God to Pastor John, but you know I just couldn't do that because in my heart I would know that isn't right, and my spirit would know that, that isn't right. It just wouldn't sit ok with my spirit if I did that." It was so amazing! So we invited him to come to church and he said that he would do his best to make arrangements to make it there and that he was really going to read the Book of Mormon and pray about the things we are teaching him. He is so prepared and I am so excited to see him progress in the gospel! Well anyways I have to go now haha, but I love you all and I will see you soon!

Sister Jamison

Monday, August 11, 2014

August 11, 2014 - Lecanto again

Hey Family,
                        How are you all this week? I hope well, it sounds like everything is going well for everyone! Well I am going to be staying here in Lecanto with Sister Petersen for another transfer. I am not going to lie I was hoping that they would move me somewhere else, but I guess the Lord had other plans for me I just have to figure out what those are. I think it will be ok though. We have made good plans and goals for this transfer and if we work hard we will see the blessings come and time will zip on by. I mean I only have 12 weeks left and that is like nothing! I am a little freaked out that it is ending so soon. I get anxious thinking about coming home ha-ha I don't know what to do with my life. But I guess I will figure that out too.
                         Well let’s see this week was pretty good. Our relief society had an activity at the church where they were doing canning and sewing little bags. Sister Petersen and I went because there were a few members that brought their non-member friends and so it was a good opportunity to meet them. Sister Waller in the ward also taught me how to make a little handbag type of thing. It came out pretty cute. Sister Petersen made some like pouch thing, I'm not actually sure what it is but it was cool. This week we are going to have dinner with Sister Whitman in the ward and she is going to invite her friend, the same one that she brought to the activity. I am glad that she is starting to be brave and invite her friends to the activities at the church. We have been working with her lately to help her do missionary work.
                         We also have been contacting a lot of less actives this week. We are having good luck I would say haha. There was this one less active that we have been trying to get a hold of forever and we went to her house the other night and she always has the gate closed. So I just hopped over the gate to go peek in the window to see if anyone was there because it is always so dark, and as I was walking up the ramp I could hear her talking inside. So I hurried to hope back over the gate hahaha then we just stood there and yelled for her hoping that she would hear us but we got no response. We just have to try again later. We did however meet this family who said that they would like to meet with us, the mother is a less active and the rest of them are non-members. So hopefully that goes well.  They ladies father is active in our ward and he said that they can be pretty flaky, so I am crossing my fingers. We also got a media referral this week for a guy named Bryan which was pretty sweet, we stopped by and was able to do an over view of the restoration with him and give him a Book of Mormon. Hopefully we will be able to meet with him this week, but his wife wasn't exactly down for that so who knows what will happen!
                            Richard is still doing well; he was sick last week so he didn't come to church, but he was here yesterday and feeling better. Nathan is also doing well. He wrote me recently and told me that he was able to go out with his home teaching companion and give the sacrament to the elderly members in the ward. He is so excited to be serving in the church. I am really happy for him.
                                My leg is doing ok; I have a hematoma and a blood clot or whatever in my leg. The mission doctor has me wrap it up so that it is tight to see if that will help the bump go away. If it doesn't in 2 more weeks then he says I will need to go and have someone poke at it and drain it, which I really don't want to do. But he said it shouldn't get to that point, but we will see.
                                   There isn't really anything else interesting happening right now haha, hopefully I will have a good story for you all next week. Love you and see you soon!

                                      Sister Jamison