Sunday, January 19, 2014

Happy New Year From the Netherlands! Finally Not Transferred! She Came to Church!

Bishop's Family in Apeldoorn Ward
Hello My Wonderful Family!!
Groetjes van Nederland.  Moeder....ik zal gewoon effe zeggen dat je moet een beetje meer onderzoek doen voordat je iets op mijn blog gaan zetten.  De jovos hier in Nederland, ze lezen mijn blog....en ze vinden het een beetje grappig dat het zegt dat de tempel in Belgie is.....het is de Den Haag Tempel, in Nederland!!  :D  Ik hou van je!!
This week was super crazy!!  It was New Years.  I don't know if you guys remember my descriptions of New Years last year....but it just seemed to be 100 times worse this year.  On New years eve day....fireworks started at 6 AM.  Yes, before I even was supposed to get up, I was rudely awakened by the fireworks.  We were in the house again by 4 PM, just like last year and I am pretty sure that the fireworks didn't end until two days later.  I thought that Den Haag was bad and that Apeldoorn would be a little more rustig.....but I was sure wrong!!  I went on exchanges that day and spent the day with Sister Hoff.  We had a party, ate a lot of olliebollen, watched a great church movie, read some scriptures and she wrote some letters.  It was a big 6 hours of time that I would have rather used outside with the people but it was just too dangerous.  I don't think that I got any sleep the entire night.  It was way too much fun in the attic watching the fireworks through the cieling.  I also got an opportunity to call Ans Jansen.  Do you remember her?  She was the first person that I was able to see baptized in Den Haag.  She is having a rough time right now but was realy loving the holiday season and I am sure grateful for the two sisters that are there right now because they are taking really good care of her!!  It was a super fun conversation and Mom and Dad, she can't wait to meet you guys.  Also, Scheveningen is one of ehr favorite places so we may go a walk with her on the beach one day!!
We had a really cool week of miracles.  The first of which being that I am staying in an area finally for more than just 2 transfers!!!  Yahoo!!!  We got transfer calls yesterday and I am staying here in Apeldoorn and Sister Brophy is coming up here with me.  I don't know a whole lot about her, but I have been told that she is super awesome so it is going to be a fun transfer.  Sister Andersen is going to Assen....she is going to be freezing way up in the north.
We also had a really cool thing happen.  It really actually increased my testimony that the Lord lets things happen, lets your plans change so that His work can be done in the way that He needs it to be.  We had an appointment with our cute little Russian family, and we were almost there, and they called and said that they would not be able to meet with us.  That was a really sad day and I was really bummed.  So we headed back to Apeldoorn.  A name popped into my head.  It is actually of a lady that the Elders ran into a week ago.  She is a member who moved here to Apeldoorn a year ago and has never been to the church here.  We went to her house.  And she was home.  I know that doesn't sound like a big deal, but then we found out what she does for work.  She is a doctor at the hospital and literally never is home and if she is home, she is sleeping.  We just happened to get there on a day that she had had off and just before she was getting ready to leave.  We had a very nice lesson with her and were able to invite her to come to church with us on Sunday.  And she came!!!  It was a miracle for us but also for her.  She remembered the spirit that was there and is coming every week now.  That is a huge thing and I am so grateful that the Lord made it possible for us to get to know her and be able to help her!! 
Also, this week we were caught in the worst rain storm I have ever seen!!  It was ridiculous.  I am pretty sure that the rain was coming from above, below, east, west, south and north.  It even hailed.  We were soaking in about two minutes and all 4 of us missionaries were biking to a dinner appointment.  It was truly a miracle that we made it.  But is was also fun.  It also heped me to be so more grateful for the car that I was able to use my entire life.  I miss it but it was beautiful.  Rain.  At least there hasn't been any snow here yet!!  :D 
I studied a lot about covenants this week.  I realized that I don't always realize what I have promised and what I am doing every day to live up to the promises that I have made.  It really was an eye opener for me and I was able to make goals to be able to live my covenants more closely.  I challenge you all to study about covenants this week.  To write down all of the promises that you have made, what those promises should be described as and if you are living up to what your descriptions/expectations of those things should be.  And then make goals to live them better.  Everyone does their best to live their covenants, but we can always do better :D  So do it!!  I promise you that you will come closer to your heavenly father and feel his spirit more in your life.  It is super cool!! 
I also had a really cool experience with a few families here in the ward this week.  We had a challenge to ask a question that we would all really like an answer to in our personal lives and to read for 15 minutes in the scriptures and to ask Heavenly Father for help.  We did it the entire week.  I wish that you guys could have been in testimony meeting because the spirit was super strong and the girls who did the challenge realy gained a huge spiritual experience that will help them for their entire lives!! 
Ward Christmas Story
I am super excited for the upcoming transfer.  It is going to be amazing and there is going to be many good things that are going to happen. 
I love you all!! 
Have a great week!!
Zuster Israelsen

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