Tuesday, April 28, 2015

April Photos~



Lunch with the Kinniburghs

Apollo, the Kinniburghs new baby chihuahua

Just another P-day

I love the Book of Mormon!

Forest Heights

Monday, April 27, 2015

building/planting the garden....literally

It was a bit of a slower week than we planned, but the Lord's tender mercies are EVERYWHERE. 

where to start.....Tuesday night, we got to take the two new sisters in the mission tracting!  I went with Sister Moser and Sister Trujillo went with Sister Rasmussen.  Nobody was terribly interested in the gospel, but we found some people to do service for! 
Wednesday was transfers!  I was happy to show up to the trainers meeting to see 3 of my bff's from the MTC training as well!  It was so great to see them and catch up and see how much we have all grown since the greenie days. 
Me, Sister Moser and the Mission President with his wife
We got our assignments and our new companions and (can i get a drumroll).......my new companion is Sister Moser from Logan, Utah!!!!!  It was kinda precious that we went tracting together Tuesday and didn't even know we'd be companions. :)  She's such a solid person and I've learned much from her already. 
As a missionary, there's really no "easing into it".  So first thing we did after going through our plans for the day was hop on a bus headed downtown to teach our investigator, Mary.  Sister Moser was pretty nervous about contacting and all that, but by the end of the bus ride, I think she was a lot more comfortable.  We taught Mary the restoration, and she had lots of really insightful questions.  She is MEGA prepared and the real intent is there.  We also taught her a quick lesson about baptism (definitely not planned by us,but most definitely planned by God).  We read Mosiah 18:8-10 and BAM went the spirit and Sister Moser invited Mary to be baptized.  She accepted, and is praying about a date this week.  :)  she's basically already a mormon besides the fact she's not baptized yet....sooooo...it's great. 
I got to see some of my favourite people in the whole world, the Kinniburghs!!!  Gord came into town for his patriarchal blessing, and they took us out for some ice cream. :) I just love them. 
we also got stuck downtown last night for a couple hours later than planned because the bus routes changed due to construction.....we almost resorted to sleeping in a bus shelter but finally found a bus that took us home. :)  God will ALWAYS provide a way. 

We did  A TON of service this week, we're helping a local christian church to build a community garden.  and guess what!  I got to use my contracting skills and help build the garden boxes and use the drill and it was just a huge tender mercy.  Definitely brought me back to the days of going to work with dad.  :) 
Sister Moser gave away her first Book of Mormon on the bus and my heart REJOICED.  so much joy. 
We had a couple lessons set up to teach FAMILIES on friday, we were so excited and it was going to be amazing and then they both fell through and all of our back ups failed and we had no idea what to do. We stopped and prayed, we asked what Heavenly Father wanted us to do with the time we had, and we thought we should go downtown to visit Janet.  She's a member, can't come to church because of health complications, but she's the most Christlike person I've met.  We read the book of mormon with her and sang some primary songs and my heart just FILLED with the love of the Saviour for her and for me. 
When you're seeking to do what the Saviour would do, you will never have a bad day, I can testify of that.  We're not just here to do the work of the Lord, we're here to become disciples of Jesus Christ.  One of my favourite lines in PMG is this, "Just as vital as what you do, however, is who you are." 
 "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen." [Moroni 7:48]

Onward, ever onward.
Sister Jones

Elder Barlow, Elder Orton and I were finally able to get a picture at transfer meeting (utah valley children's choir has definitely taken over alberta)

Monday, April 20, 2015

By His Grace

lots has changed this week and lots has happened!

we got transfer calls this morning and I'll be taking over Forest Heights....aaaaand I'll be training a new sister.  I'm terrified to say the least.  If I can remember the bus routes and remember how to be a missionary, things should turn out okay.  :)  

Peggy has been struggling.  Her mom is in the hospital, so we're holding things off for a bit.  

We taught George a couple times, and now he's back to work for two weeks in the oil patch.  He has such a powerful conversion to Christ, it's incredible.  We also found out that a woman in the ward who is also from Ghana, Sister Lamptey, speaks Twi!!!  The same language as George!  We're so stoked to get them connected.  George is reading the Book of Mormon and praying very fervently about it.  After he gets off work, he said he'll come to church to try it out. :)  

Mary came to church yesterday!  We taught her a couple weeks ago after a member from Spruce Grove told us she wanted a visit.  She's already accepted that she'll have to give up coffee.  It blows my mind how prepared she is for the restored gospel.  

We were able to talk to so many people this week on the bus.  Heavenly Father is too good to us, he places so many people in our path that are seeking for truth, all we have to do is open our mouths.  We had supper with Sister Lamptey, and her enthusiasm for the gospel and for missionary work is inspiring.  She just came from a baptism of someone she found for the missionaries to teach and you could just see the light and joy in her eyes!  Sharing this gospel is what brings true joy, i'm telling you!  If you want to be happy, share your testimony.  It's as simple as that.  

We get to take the two new sisters out tomorrow evening to do some tracting/street contacting for a bit, it should be an adventure!  

Sister Trujillo sprained her ankle pretty bad, and my allergies (since when do I have allergies?..dang alberta) have been acting up so we look and sound a little pathetic. *cough cough* *limp limp* but "no unhallowed hand [or twisted ankle or runny nose or irritated throat]  can stop this work from progressing!!!!"  

also, fun happening this week, I am officially getting a tan.  I know this because I noticed a tan line from my glasses this morning on my nose.  #tendermercies


i'm pretty nervous about training.  But I have found comfort in knowing that I am not alone in this calling.  I know I am just a weak little 20 year old missionary, "Nevertheless The Lord God showeth us our aweakness that we may know that it is by his bgraceand his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things."

With the Lord, I can do all things. :)  I want you all to know that I know, without a doubt in my mind, that this gospel is true.  Jesus Christ is with you, every step of the way, even when you don't realize it.   "I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." [John 14:18]

Onward, ever onward.  

Sister Jones

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

sometimes missions are roller-coasters

first of all, I'd like to give a shout out to my best friend since the diaper days for getting his mission call to JAMAICA!!!!!  You're gonna kill it Elder Boyer.  :)  (also let's just take a moment of silence for the fact that he leaves almost exactly a year after me.....so precious)
Oh man. this week. 

Tuesday night, we had THEEEE most powerful lesson ever with Peggy.  Sister Olsen came, and it was just incredible.  We talked about baptism and about setting her date for sooner (it was in June) and the spirit prompted us to set her on date for April 25th.  We went absolutely NOT according to our plans, but 100% by the spirit.  We went over the baptismal interview questions and asked her how she feels and she just said, "I dont' know...it's a strange feeling...like I just want to jump up and down!"  so much joy.
Wednesday, we got a call saying that she won't be joining the church...the adversary was so strong in her life this week, after that call, she didn't answer our calls until Saturday.  We went over to her house and talked it over, and she decided she didn't want to join, but she would still come.  She came on Sunday, and yesterday morning, we got a call from her telling us that the feelings she got at church completely changed her mind and her heart and now she's getting baptized on the 25th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Time to plan a baptism :) 
We had a freaky experience while trying to contact a less active in this super sketchy apartment building.  The less active had moved away, but the people there talked to us for a while.  When I tried to give her a Book of Mormon, she treated it like poison and wouldn't even touch it...it was awkward....but then somehow she ended up letting us in and we tried to bring the spirit, but every time we talked about the Book of Mormon, she would start praying to God to cover her ears and eyes from this evil and all that.....so finally we just left.  And missed our buses.  It was an adventure getting back home. 
We were able to contact a different less active couple this week.  We were trying to find the address, and couldn't find the house number.  We decided to say a prayer, and before I could even finish the first words, Sister Trujillo says, "IT'S ON THE OTHER SIDE RIGHT THERE!"  I think God sometimes just has to remind us who's really in charge...:)  But they were so great, we knocked on the door, they're a native couple, and she told us she has been thinking about coming back to church!  Coincidence? I think NOT!  She let us in and we had a great lesson with her. 
We found George this week as well.  He's from Ghana and speaks twi.  While waiting for our bus, he was running by with his headphones in, but we just said hello and he stopped and asked us what we do.  He has seen many missionaries back home, but he never learned from them.  So we started teaching him this week! 
also, I totally burnt my arm on the inside of our oven on Sunday...on the round, pipe looking things that heat the oven?  Yeah, my skin actually sizzled.  It looks a little like leprosy...I think. 

I have been obsessing over President Uchtdorf's talk from the Sunday morning session of General Conference called, "The Gift of Grace".  https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2015/04/the-gift-of-grace?lang=eng

"Salvation cannot be bought with the currency of obedience; it is purchased by the blood of the Son of God."
We are not saved because of our works.  We are saved because Christ loved us enough to pay the price of all our sins and mistakes.  What I really love from this talk, mostly because this is one of the biggest lessons I'm learning on my mission, is that we should obey out of our love for Him.  Not to receive the blessings he has promised, but because we love him and want to repay him for all he has already done for us. 

"Trying to understand God’s gift of grace with all our heart and mind gives us all the more reasons to love and obey our Heavenly Father with meekness and gratitude. As we walk the path of discipleship, it refines us, it improves us, it helps us to become more like Him, and it leads us back to His presence. “The Spirit of the Lord [our God]” brings about such “a mighty change in us, … that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.”28
Therefore, our obedience to God’s commandments comes as a natural outgrowth of our endless love and gratitude for the goodness of God."
I love this gospel.  I love this work.  I love the Lord. 
Onward, ever onward.
Sister Jones
Exchanges with Sister Adamson

Sister Trujillo and I

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

"then I will make weak things become strong unto them.."

Happy Tuesday everyone!
Sorry I didn't email yesterday, Canadians take any chance they can for a monday holiday, and yesterday was Easter Monday! :) 
This week was eventful, not too much for our area, but we did quite a bit! 
*we had 3 pass over lessons with the YSA elders of people we've found, and ALL OF THEM ACCEPTED THE INVITATION TO BE BAPTIZED!!!  #blessings
*I ended my 40 day fast from sweets and when I ate sweets for the first time I think my body almost shut down it was terrible.  Hahah  I think I'll do it again for Peggy, to help her quit smoking again. 
*Conference was INCREDIBLE!!!  I went with 4 questions about specific people we're working with, and they were ALL answered.  God's power is REAL. 
*I have developed shin splints that put quite a damper on things as a walking missionary.  The mission nurse is going to show me how to wrap them with athletic tape to ease the pain a bit, but the works of God CANNOT be frustrated!
*The first session of conference, Felix came!  He was one we passed over to the elders, and he loved it!  He's from Rowanda.  And totally wants to be baptized.  We found him on the bus a couple weeks ago!  Actually...we found all of the new YSA investigators on the bus. 
*Victor, another man we found on the bus came to the last session of conference!  He doesn't live in our area, but we got the missionaries where he lives in contact with him. :)

Yesterday was a WONDERFUL start to this new week!  We were finally able to meet with Henk again!  We met again at the cafeteria at his place, and invited another guy to join in on the discussion.  We taught the Plan of Salvation, and it was so great.  The spirit was there and Henk wants to continue to meet.  We're going to have his next lesson in a members home that we think he'd get along with on Thursday!  Teaching him is so humbling, he doesn't speak, so he writes everything down to communicate with us.  I just love that guy. 
Also, an update on the lost sheep we found at the bus stop about a month ago, he watched conference and loved it and posted on facebook about it and it just made my heart rejoice.  I will be forever grateful for that day at the bus stop. :)  He's coming back!!!
We also visited this less active lady in the ward, she's hungarian and she's the sweetest lady I've ever met.  We ate her hungarian food and then watched the Because He Lives video with her.  She didn't know how to find general conference in hungarian, so we set that up for her as well.  I just love her. :) 
There's an article in the ensign for this month called, "It isn't a Sin To Be Weak".  I read it and it has already changed everything for me!!!  https://www.lds.org/ensign/2015/04/it-isnt-a-sin-to-be-weak?lang=eng
We are given our weaknesses so that God can help us turn them into strengths. 
"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them." [Ether 12:27]
As I read this article....it occurred to me that personally, overcoming weaknesses is harder for me than repenting for sins! 
"We don’t just renounce our weakness the way we renounce sin. Humble disciples willingly do what’s required, learn resilience, keep trying, and do not give up. . .We start small, rejoice in improvement, and take risks (even though they make us feel vulnerable and weak)." 
Overcoming weakness is literally a life long pursuit.  We can only overcome our weaknesses as we a) humble ourselves, b) turn to Christ and c) have faith in Him.
God has made me weak so that I can be humble; God has made me weak so that my faith can grow and change me everyday into a powerful instrument in his hands to bless the lives of my brothers and sisters. 
i love this gospel. 
i love the Lord.
and I love being a missionary. 
Onward, ever onward. 
Sister Jones
I love this place!