Saturday, October 12, 2013

Antwerpen for Conference, Government Certificate Says I am a good member of the church cleared and ready to preach, and WOW! Its been a year!

Hey Family!!

I just love getting emails from everyone!!  I love being able to see and hear about everyone and how their testimonies are growing!!  I loved, loved, LOVED conference!!  We were only able to see three sessions because the last session is broadcast over here from 10 to 12 after my bedtime!!  But I loved all of the talks that I was able to hear.  I am so glad that everyone had the opportunity to be able to go to the conference center.  I know that at the MTC whenever there was an apostle present, you could just feel the spirit that they brought and you knew right then and there that they were called of God.  I can't imagine what it would feel like to sit in a room with all of them at the same time!!

I think that my favorite part of conference was how much everyone emphasized how important it is for the missionaries and the members to work together.  We are all a team out here.  On my certificate thingy that I have from the prophet that lets the government know that I am ok to be here.  It says that I am a good member of the church cleared and ready to preach.  That is what everyone is.  I think that people forget sometimes that the missionaries are also members of the church!!  We need to work together.  Sister Clement and I were just talking yesterday and said,"If every single of the 15 million members gave just one referral to the missionaries by the end of the year, we could easily see another million members by the next general conference.  It is teamwork people!!  

That was also really comforting, I have been worrying a little bit about what in the world I am going to do when I get home.  Mostly because we had interviews this week and President asked me what my goals were for the end of my mission and what I was planning on doing when I get home.  I think that was kind of rude to do when I still have 6 months, but at the same time, it is only 6 months!!  I think that now is the time that we can all become huge assets in the Lords army whether or not we wear a name badge.  

So, this week has been pretty interesting.  My companion got really sick so we were stuck inside for a couple of days.  I always hate that.  I never feel like I am able to get anything done if I have to stay inside, but it is also important to let yourself heal.  But what was cool was that we were able to see that the Lord was still rewarding us for our work and our efforts in the apartment.  We have an investigator who wants to be baptized so badly.  He is also really addicted to cigarettes and alcohol.  So...obviously, that is a problem.  And apparently it is also really hard to gain the motivation to be able to stop.  But this week, he took a step of faith.  He went and signed up for a fitness center and he has gone every single day of the week.  He is still smoking, but step by step he is getting closer!!  It is those kinds of things, things that we don't ask them to do, that really show us that they are beginning to become converted to the gospel!!

Like I mentioned before, we also had interviews.  I always love interviews because I get time to talk to President and Sister Robinson!!  We hardly ever get to see them down here in the boonies, but it is always a treat!!  

We also have been working a ton with Isaac this week.  He is planning to be baptized on Sunday.  But there is one catch.  He is a refugee, and he may be thrown out the country by the end of the we are praying really hard.  But it is ok.  We have been able to teach him and prepare him to take this step and it doesn't matter where he gets baptized, just that he is able to be baptized!!  I love seeing the changes that come in peoples lives.  Those changes that you see, even if it is just that they smile more, they make all of the difference.  They make you remember that the atonement is real and that the Lord loves every single one of His brothers and sisters!!

We went to Antwerpen to watch conference and stayed there over night for our P-Day activity with the entire Zone!!  It was a blast and we also ate some janky shoarme(don't worry mom, we can go there when you come)

Also, we held our family history activity on Wednesday night!!  It was super cool and really successful.   One thing that I noticed, was that it didn't matter how many fliers that sister clement and I handed out, or how many people we talked to, the only nonmembers that came were those that were invited by the members.  We had 5 nonmembers there!!  They loved it and are planning on coming back for the next activity on the 9 of November!!  The work is easy!! You just have to invite!!

It is crazy to think that I have been out here in the field for an entire year now.  It seems like just yesterday I was sitting in the living room opening my mission call.  I feel like I have changed a lot, but at the same time, I wonder if I really have.  I have seen my desire to serve grow.  I have seen my love for the scriptures grow.  I have started to see my true conversion to the gospel of Jesus Christ develop.  I know that this gospel is true and I am using every moment that the Lord has given me to be able to serve his children here in the Netherlands and Belgium.  

I love you all!!  I hope you have a great week!!

Zuster Israelsen

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