Monday, September 26, 2016

Our problems are temporary, God is eternal.

Hello my loyal subjects! I hope everyone's week was really, really good!

Mine was fun :) You don't always get lots of those on your mission but it really just was a fun week. We had zone conference on Thursday, ah it was so good. I just love missionary meetings. There is nothing like them. All the missionaries coming together to learn and be taught by the spirit, united with one purpose: to bring souls to Christ.

Also, that evening we went out to Outback Steakhouse with a less active family in our ward. That was my first time eating there, holy cow. I think I ate 2 days worth of food in that meal. We had some good bread to start us off, followed by an appetizer, entrée, and 3 desserts! Man oh man. was good. So that's all that really matters right? Ha just kidding. Won't be doing that again.

The rest of the week was really good, we had Bao's baptism on Saturday! Oh it was so good :) Her husband baptized her and they were just so great. A lot of their family came so the entire room was filled! They also brought some tasty homemade egg rolls for us to snack on afterward. But they just looked so happy. One of the coolest parts about it was that Seng's brothers and cousins were just watching it all and taking it in, and telling their wives to pay attention because that would be them next. Allen and Elizabeth got married this week so Allen should be able to baptize Elizabeth next month :) ah families. Ha I told Elizabeth a while ago that I wanted Allen to teach me how to do a head spin, because she told us he knew how to do one. So at the baptism I played the piano, and afterwards Allen came up to me and said he thought I played the piano really good and he told me that if I taught him how to play the piano he would teach me how to do a head spin. Haha so just be ready for that when I come home.

One of the family's little boys had a birthday party yesterday so we went and ate some fuh. It's an Asian noodle soup. It's pretty good. You just have noodles and broth and then just add a bunch of meats and vegetables to it. So I just started throwing stuff in and unknowingly stuck a handful of jalapenos in it. My mouth just started burning a few bites in, and I just started stealing everybody's water around me. But, I still enjoyed it despite the spiciness.

Ah I just love being a missionary! I loved the Women's session Saturday night and how they taught all about the doctrine of Christ and faith. It's so amazing what we have. We have a tendency as humans to see all the things going wrong in the world and our lives and get discouraged and depressed. But we don't need to be. Because we live in the fullness of times! The gospel has been restored to the earth and we have the power of the atonement to work in our lives! We have the gospel of Jesus Christ. I'm so grateful for it and for the power of the spirit. Thanks everybody for all of your support. I love y'all so much!
Hope you have a blessed week!

Sister Johanson

What, pictures?!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Peoples opinions do not change the mind or essence of God.

Hey there! Short email sorry!

This week has been grand! We are still staying busy as ever. This next week will be just as packed! We have zone conference and exchanges, and womens session and Bao's baptism! We are now starting the procession of the Hmong village baptisms. More to come in the future :D usual my mind just draws a blank. It's always so hard to remember the things we did because every week is so different!! But they are also all the same. So by the end of your mission your weeks just don't seem to vary very much. Unless you really go back and look at all the things you have done.

I guess this week you just get to know that I'm excited to be a missionary! This is the best work on earth and the best place to do it! I hope you guys have been striving to do missionary work in your lives. Simply because I know that life can be stressful and I know that it can be hard and so missionary work will just bring you some of the best blessings and the fastest and easiest to recognize. I love you guys! I hope you have a great week!!

Love Sister Johanson

ps. I'll try to improve on my emailing next week.

Friday, September 16, 2016

God wants full custody, not weekend visits

Hey everybody! Another short email this week but you should know that I am doing great!! The work here in Spartanburg has never been finer. Neither has it been in South Caroliner.

First week taking over the other sisters area, was pretty good. Not too stressful. Oh! We got to teach my recent convert John Williams this week. No worries, he is still my favorite human ever. They are doing solid and we just unloaded on him all the things he needs to work towards: Melchezedik priesthood, patriarchal blessing, temple baptisms, temple sealing etc... Luckily he was just stoked about it all.

Yesterday we had a linger longer at church, all thanks to the ward missionary department. Just got to eat plenty of food after church and talk with members, which is just my favorite thing ever. As well as we got plenty of leftovers so that's always a plus.

This week we visited a less active family and we talked about the importance of the atonement. And one of the family members said, "Without it all of this is pointless" and it just struck a cord with me. Because it is so true. Like one..or several of the general authorities have said. Everything in our church is centered on the atonement of Jesus Christ, everything else is just appendages to it. The plan of salvation is only possible because of the atonement and so our very existence would be pointless if we didn't have the atonement. And I came to the conclusion that our lives are meaningless if we aren't using the atonement in our lives everyday, and the reverse of that is: our lives are the most meaningful when we use the atonement in our lives every day. I've seen that so much on my mission as I've learned more about how to use it each and every day. And I just feel like I'm accomplishing my purpose here in life when I'm using it to overcome my shortcomings and weaknesses and faults and to repent of all my mistakes. I am just grateful to have the gospel in my life so that I can use it.

Love you all! Hope you have another fantastic week!

Sister Johanson

Monday, September 5, 2016

Does life stink? Well God has a pew for you.

Hi everybody! This week has been cracy! Sooo much going on. It's okay tho, craziness is fun while it lasts. And now it is over and I'm glad of that. 

We are again the only set of missionaries in the Spartanburg 2 Ward. So it'll be an adjustment to again be taking over the other area. But it will be fun. I am excited because now I get to teach my recent convert John Williams again! Yay :) 

Transfers are this week but guess what? I am staying in Spartanburg with Sister Hill. Going strong. It's good because we are planning on seeing some major miracles the next few months so we have to stay together for that to happen. We started teaching some more families in the Mong family so that's been cool. Everybody is getting set on the idea of getting sealed in the Oakland temple in a year. Sister Hill and I are stoked because then we can just road trip out to Cali and go see all of the Lor family get sealed in the temple. Will definitely be the best day ever. Will most likely be more excited for that than my own wedding day ;) 

Today's email is gonna be short. But something that I have been doing lately is studying all the talks given by Pres. Monson since he has been the prophet. I got the idea from some talk I was reading a few weeks ago. It talked about the different role each of the prophets have played in the church and what they have taught us. I also read a talk the other day that said that the most important counsel and scripture for us to study is that of our current prophets most recent address. So I've been trying to read all of his talks since 2008 and highlight the different themes found throughout. And I just love Thomas S. Monson. He has really taught us all about having an attitude of gratitude and being grateful for our blessings and for our lives. He has taught us how to be happy throughout our lives, because that's what this life was made for. God wants us to find joy in the small miracles and moments that happen throughout each day and each week and each year.

Quote from Pres Monson: "If ingratitude be numbered among the serious sins, then gratitude takes its place among the noblest of virtues." 

That is probably the biggest thing I have learned to cultivate from being with Sister Hill. She is such a good example of that. I'm so happy to be with her for another transfer in Spartanburg. Ah! So many  miracles coming. Woo hoo! 

Love you guys! Hope you have a great week! Keep your chins up! Life is grand :) 

Sister Johanson