Monday, February 4, 2013

Memorize in Dutch, Bell Ups, Friets and This Book is Really Interesting!


First off, I would love to wish the best little brother ever in the world a VERY GELUKKIG VERJAARDAG!!! You are so old kro!!! What does it feel like to feel old? I sure love you and hope you have a great birthday....also, did you get my letter? You and Dad should have gotten one each!! Happy Birthday!! Don't have too much fun....ok?

This week has been full of miracles!! We have seen a lot of cool things this week, and also a lot of frustrating things....which I guess that is what missionary work is like, isn't it?

On Tuesday, we had our first appointment with Ans as a new member of the Church!! So cool!! She is really progressing even more that she has been baptized!! I love being able to watch how much she changes between every appointment we have with her!! It is truly amazing!! The coolest thing though, is that Tuesday, we set a tempel day with her to receive her begiftiging....or endowment. And as long as she stays on the same path as she is right now, I will be able to go through the temple with her next Februari!!!! Wow huh?!?! I think that is so amazing!! We made a calendar for her with different temples every month and we set a day for her to go to the temple every month with the young women and young men so that she can start to get her family names through the temple!! She is truly amazing and has just embraced the gospel and everything that it is about!! We really love her!!! I don't ever want to leave Den Haag because of her!! I would be happy just being able to teach and learn from her for the rest of my mission!! She is an example of faith to me!! I love her!!

On Wednesday, I had the opportunity to go to Brussels, Belgium....because I had to fill out three whole papers for legality. Fun huh? BUT we got a full day trip out of it!!! We got to see some of the cool sights down in Brussels....I felt like I was in a different world because everyone was speaking French and also, the buildings are a whole lot older in Brussels than in Den Haag. I guess that is normal though because Den Haag is a relatively new city. Anyway, I got to ride down to Brussels with Elder Bryan Andrews, Elder Van Over Beek and Zuster Noguiera!! It was a party and we had a good 6 hour drive total that day!!! Let's just say....that we know each other way too well now!!! :D I got to see my entire MTC group again!!! That was super exciting and we were all able to kind of relax a little bit because we realized how much better we are actually getting at the language and alles!! I also got a Belgian waffel!!! proud!! It was delicious!! And we ate this super huge sandwich for lunch. I have no idea what it is called's a french name.

But it was truly delicious and the friets(fries) in Belgium are like a million times better than the ones in Nederland. Weird right? But it was a good day!!

On Thursday, we saw some really cool miracles with our less-actives that we are working with!! One, is Sabeta Salik. She is from Suriname and has some issues with depression and anxiety. But she really likes us sisters becasue we are the coolest, so she has us over a lot. This last week, we went over and she had a friend over. That was weird because...she doesn't really get out very much. But he sat in on the lesson with us. His name is Alvo....and guess what?!?! He is now a new investigator. We had an appointment with him for this last Saturday but he got called in to work at the last we were literally there with him and he had to leave because he got a page. So we have another appointment with him this next week. It was so cool in our lesson with him and Sabeta though, because we just went with what we had planned for her that day and we gave them a scripture to read out loud and then we were discussing it and we asked Alvo a question and he said, "sorry, can you ask that again....I was still reading....this book is really interesting!!" I thought,"Why yes it is just the truth after all!!" SO COOL!!

Another Less-active that we have been working with since we came here came to church again this next Sunday!! Her name is Giang and she is really making progress!!! She just had a baby and her husband is not a member of the church but she has made the decision that she really wants to be an example for her son and be able to raise him with the gospel!! And she is really working on developing her habits of church attendance and scripture study!! It's so cool to see someone realize why they joined the church again!! And to be able to see why it is so important to keep going with the simple gospel principles!! Too cool!!

Unfortunately, we saw most of our appointments this week fall through. That is really frustrating....because you think that you are going to be able to do so much good one day, but then your plans change all of the sudden and you don't feel as productive. We are working a lot on finding people now because we don't have any progressing investigators this week. We have a lot of potentials and a lot of investigators but we don't see them every week or our appointments fall through with them. I guess it is a good thing because I am learning how to be able to communicate through bell-ups(It is ridiculous how hard it is to be able to understand people when they speak through those things!!) and I am getting really good at contacting on the streets!! It is a life-long skill. I know Jake, you will love it when I get home because I won't have to send you to go and talk to the cashier....or will I? I might only speak Dutch when I come home!! :D But we are just working really hard everyday so that we can find and do our part so that the Lord can bless us. I have learned that principle really well here on my mission. The Lord really can't bless you until you get out there and work. I like what Zuster Robinson says,"You need to pray as though everything depended on the Lord and then you need to get up and work as though everything depended on you." That is when the Lord is really able to bless you and help you!! I have seen that with my language skills. President Robinson challenged me to memorize the Preach my Gospel lessons in Dutch, and I have been working my best to do just that and I have seen how much the Lord has blessed me with my ability to speak the language!! This morning, we read an article in a Liahona that is a billion years old, and I could understand almost everything!!! That is a HUGE improvement!!! So I am here, and I am doing my best to work hard so that the Lord can help me become who I need to be!!

I kind of had a little bit of a scare this last weekend. Mom, please don't be concerned. I had super bad abdomenal pains, and Zuster Robinson thought that it could be apendicitous....(sp?) So she took me in to the hospital. They did a lot of tests and they found out that it wasn't my apendix, but that I had a super weird reaction to the milk products here and that my kidneys and intestines are having a hard time processing them. I guess that this happens to a lot of people and it shows up in everyone differently. But it was starting to be an infection, so they gave me some antibiotics and they told me to watch how much dairy products that I am putting into my body. They said that if I take it slow here for a while and slowly build up more milk and things that I would be able to handle it but that I just need to be careful so that I don't have this problem again!! I am feeling much better right now and it gets better and better everyday. I just am letting you know, I am fine, don't worry.

Rachel, I am SO PROUD OF YOU!!! I am so happy that you made it into the show choir!! You are going to LOVE it!! And also, you are a wonderful example of a great swimmer!!! I wish I could be cool like you!! I hope Elizabeth is loving choir!! I wish I could play words with friends with her!!! Elizabeth, make sure you practice really hard because I am really good at that game!! Mom, I don't know.....any of the seniors besides Jake this year. I am sorry that I don't have any ideas for a musical number!! And Dad, I am so happy that you watched the Super Bowl!! I wish I could have been there and eaten the delicious food!! You are a beautiful family and I love you so much!!

Oh, and this transfer, I get to go on exchanges this transfer with....drum roll please.....ZUSTER STOUT!!! It is going to be a party!!!

I am loving missionary work and I am just loving it here!!

I love you guys!!

Tot volgende week!!

Zuster Israelsen

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