Monday, August 31, 2015

A year down, 6 months to go, and it keeps getting better!

Our cute girl has been on her mission for a year. Hard to believe a whole year has gone by and I haven't hugged her once!! We sure miss her.....but looking back on her pictures, her letters, her experiences and seeing how much she's grown is incredible. She has truly become more converted, more compassionate and empathetic, more grateful, more tolerant and less judgmental and is exactly where she should be at this time in her life. She told me today....

We met some super cool people, we met some CRAZY people.. oh man.. this one lady totally like told us we were completely deceived and that we are of the devil.. but she kept 
saying I am only telling you this because I am a Christian.. it was something else.. I bore my testimony so strong that I was shaking, I had tears in my eyes, and man.. I felt like
every emotion ever! that was interesting! I was... haha man.. I couldn't handle it! It was weird I didn't really "confound her" If you could say that, but she didn't say that she loved us either though.. which was okay. haha 
I don't like it when people interrupt me either and she totally did! :O but after I bore my testimony of truth we told her that we were going to leave and that it was nice to meet her. 
haha but then on saturday we met these people that had been "taught" about us that day in church.. haha they said that we don't believe in Jesus and all this stuff and as soon as we
talked about the God head and showed it with the scriptures they stopped talking about it. That was a really cool moment! They were very different, I felt like with them there wasn't 
as much contention I felt like the first lady just completely hated us.. it was so weird! Those moments are so crazy! But I know why I'm here and I WILL defend my Savior!

That is what it's all about, and we are so proud of her, even though we miss her! Here are some pics of her MTC day...we love and miss you, but are so proud of her!

August 31

Hey everyone!! :) 
I am just about out of time today, but I had a great week! The work is hastening, I love missionary work!!! :D So craziness.. I hit my year mark on my mission this past week and after a little bit of reminiscing about the MTC, my crazy year as a missionary that I have had and everything I have learned one of the greatest things I have learned is the principle of remembering!! :) We have so many awesome opportunities to grow each and everyday but if we experience something great and then we forget about it, then it was almost not even worth it to have the experience. In Helaman 5:12 we learn...    And now, my sons, remember, remember that it isupon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son ofGod, that ye must build your foundationthat when thedevil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts inthe whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty stormshall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you todrag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo,because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is asure foundation, foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall. 
But one of my favorite parts of that scripture is when it says to remember!! 
We must always remember tender moments with the spirit, we must remember moments that we are close to our Father in Heaven. They will help us become more defined and strong. This week as we went about working hard, I was reminded of all the tender mercies the Lord has given to me and how much He truly loves me. We had a great lesson with our investigator Ian, us and the elders and a couple members were there because we are handing him over to them soon. We had a mini testimony meeting and the spirit was so strong. I was grateful to be reminded of some of those moments that have helped me learn and grow. We really never know what kind of help we can do as we share our testimonies and as we remember how we felt! 

We also had a really neat experience when we met a guy named Lucas this week, he shared his testimony with us about how He came unto Christ. It reminded me a lot about how we all have our own individual journey to Christ and that we must always strive to help others in theirs.
The gospel is true! I love my mission, I know that the effort I am performing is not wasted and that truly the Lord is in control of all things! :) 
Keep smiling, keep remembering.. keep being awesome!! :) 

 Trade off's with one of her favorite sister missionaries!
 Dinner at a members is one of her favorite things!
 Sister Chizzy celebrated her year mark this week! She made pancakes (with a candle)  and a yummy smoothie to party it up!!! She is so cute!

Today as she was emailing us, she said it was so foggy....yeah, I'll say! She says Michigan weather is funny sometimes!

Love Sister Chisholm! 

August 24
Hey everyone!! :)
Yesterday in relief society we were talking about elder bednars talk from general conference and our teacher asked this question , "What matters most?" 
As soon as he said those words two things came into my head. I want to center my email on those things today, and then invite all of you to pay attention to those things in your lives that matter most to you! :) 

The very first word that came into my mind was..
Family! Without even thinking about it that was the very first thing that came into my mind. So then I asked myself why. There are so many reasons why I love my family, they truly are my angels here on earth. They are my examples and they truly stand by me in everything I may be going through. I have received a deeper love for them as I have been away from them for about a year. I am so SO grateful for my family, I am grateful for their devotion to follow the commandments and to be the best they can be. I am thankful for their testimonies and their love. Most importantly I am grateful for their love of the gospel. Their testimonies have helped me get to where I am today, and I am so grateful for the gospel and the truth it brings that families can be forever. :) I am grateful that my family has been such a great model of the future family I want to have. I am excited for that! :D

The next thing that came into my mind was my testimony. 
This morning as I studied I decided to look up what testimony means, in the dictionary it says, a declaration or affirmation of fact or truth. Evidence in support of a fact or assertion, proof. A public declaration regarding a religious experience. Then I read over bearing testimony in preach my gospel is says a spiritual witness and assurance given by the Holy Ghost. One of my favorite songs is called "Witness" It's from a play about Joseph Smith, this is part of the song, it's about the 3 witnesses of the Book of Mormon. I love this..  
"I know what I have felt. I cannot deny my heart. Though memories melt this burning will never part. The voice of the spirit or a witness more vivant than sigh that if we are faithful we will live with our Lord Jesus Christ. I bear record it's true, I know what I have felt." 
My testimony means the world to me. I know things of myself because I have studied, prayed and pondered on many things. I know that Jesus is The Christ. I know that My Father in Heaven loves me, that he loves each of us perfectly, many things draw from this one fact. He loves us so he lets us have trials so that we can become more like Him. I know that Joseph Smith truly did see Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and that the priesthood keys were restored through him! The gospel is true! :) I know it for myself.

My family and my testimony mean the most to me! :) What means the most to you?!?! I love this work!!! Have a wonderful week! 
Love Sister Chisholm! <3 

Our last day on bikes.. for a couple weeks!! :) 

 Senior missionaries are the BEST!
 A sweet lady she is teaching, Vanessa.
One of Jen's favorite families' back home sent her this package....they are AWESOME! Thank you Christensen's!

 Apparently a member she visits has a full on throne at their house....Sis Chizzy was happy to be queen for a minute!!
Sister Chizzy and one of her favorite investigators, Johnathon.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

It's not easy but it's simple!

Aug 17
Hey everyone!! I hope you all are enjoying these last few weeks of summer! We sure are! It's definitely a different kind of heat over here with the humidity, but I am loving it!! :) Will miss it on those freezing cold days in February again! I hope all is going well for all of you! :D I am amazed at how quickly time goes by! This week just flew by, I really do believe that on missions we get to see a little bit of the Lords time, because honestly I never know what happened to our time! It's so crazy!!

So this week I want to share a really cool story that happened! :) Well I will share a couple cool stories! The first one was yesterday! Church was amazing, we had 5 of our less actives that we are working with come, that was great! The Delong family has come 3 weeks in a row now, they are incredible! :D We talked about temples and it was amazing, the spirit was so strong. I love Sundays, they truly are a delight! We were able to teach a girl that one of the members in our ward brought to church afterwards, she has read all the way to Mosiah and is still reading and she told us she believes the Book of Mormon is true!! It was SO cool! :) She will get baptized, she is moving to Indiana this week for school, but she is already hooked up with the ward out there and everything, member missionary work, after the lesson Sis Hannibal the member was like, oh my goodness I just feel like she is a baby in the gospel and I have to help her right along. I want everyone to help her too. :) That is how I feel. All my investigators are just babies, they need to be guided along, the need the help and strength that the gospel brings. I can't wait to be a member missionary again too! :) It is always needed! So that was great! 

Wednesday was insane... I mean really though! I will write some of the things I wrote in my journal from that day! "This day is exaclty what the scriptures say.. They were filled with exceeding great joy.. even shed many tears of sorrow.. did raise their voices and give thanks go God.. filled with pain and anguish for the welfare of their souls." Mosiah 25:8-11. It was quite ironic that I read that in studies wednesday morning and then literally I felt all those emotions throughout that day! We taught some of our awesome investigators, they are all doing so well. I have been so blessed to teach them, the hard part is that they live in Wyoming 3 area. The then we did service for one of the members in our ward, we were able to help her out because her son comes home this week from his mission! That is exciting!! :) So then we were supposed to teach a less active but she called and had to cancel, so we were trying to decide if we should knock in the same area we had planned even though it was far away or if we should just stay close. We still both felt right about staying in the place we at previously planned to knocked so we went there, and it was incredible! We were able to meet Tyler, he is this incredible guy that had met with missionaries before and right now feels like he is lost and away from God. I strongly testified to him that I knew God sent us to meet him, and that he had not forgotten him and that he loved him more then he could even imagine. Through his sunglasses I think I saw a tear, the spirit was so strong. Those moments are life changing, the gospel is life changing. It was incredible. An email really does not show you the feelings I felt, or the spirit that I know he felt. We truly are able to be instruments in the Lords hands. Later that night we found out that we need to give all of our investigators that are in Wyoming 3 area over to them.. It's been really difficult trying to figure out exactly what to do, but I know the Lord has a plan. If it means giving all our investigators over and pretty much starting over, we will do it.I just can't believe they want us to! 

Anyways, life is good! :) my time as a missionary is quickly passing me by, but I know that it really is only the beginning of a lifetime of service! :) We are all missionaries, we are all called to mourn with those who mourn and stand in need of those who need comfort. I know Jesus is the Christ, I know the gospel is true. I know Heavenly Father has a perfect plan and that He answers our prayers! Have a wonderful week!!! 

Love Sister Chisholm! <3

throw back to MLC with some great sisters! :) 
( I didn't take like any good pics this week.. Sorry! ) 

Aug 17 (some excerpts from my own personal letter. Sometimes the letter to everyone is kind of vague, I always ask her specific questions and sometimes its fun to hear her "normalcy" still is there! I love it!

So I will answer your questions now! I love that you ask me all these, they help me actually form an email! haha :) 
Our apartment is good! It's hot so our beds are pretty close to the kitchen so we can get the cooler on them! haha that is fun! :) I like our apartment besides that it is FOREVER away from everything.. It's weird how far away from the church and the library and everything it is.. Makes life without a car hard! that is for sure! :O We have neighbors, they are pretty nice, the people under us are nice they smoke like crazy, which makes the hallways smell bad but they are super nice! They borrowed our vacumm one time! Then I told Jaemon the story last week about the guy that lives above us that came in a Viking outift and talked to us! haha that was pretty funny! It's pretty great, besides the smoke smell! 

We had lunch yesterday with our Bishop  and his family, I love them! <3 Seriously he is such a great bishop, he reminds me a lot of dad. Like a lot, a lot. It always makes me happy when we get to go there! :) We had waffles, and eggs and bacon made me feel like I was home for our sunday dinners! :D That was yummy! This upcoming week we have dinner appointments every night, so that will be fun! I love dinners! We are having thanksgiving dinner with all 6 of us missionaries and then 3 others families tonight.. haha that will be an adventure for sure! :) Hmm.. strangest thing.. I am not sure.. We haven't ate any too weird of things recently. I will have to think about that one! Most of the time, we get really good food! 

Most of the members homes are clean, in Lansing that was a whole different story! haha one time we had a lesson and dinner with these members, and it was well.. let's just say I barely ate anything! That story will have to wait until I get home.. :) haha I just will have to describe it to you! ;) I love the Bishops house, I have realized a ton on my mission what kind of house I really do want. It's how my house was growing up pretty much. I have noticed more and more how great out house was, and how the spirit was able to be felt. I want my house to have pictures of the temple, our family, the proclamation, but clean and just a place where the spirit can be felt. In my patriarchal blessing it talks about making it like a temple, and that's exactly what I want. I have thought a lot about my future family actually recently, I am really excited. :) It's going to be amazing, I just know it! 

The whole car thing.. blah... We have been stressed like crazy all week because of it. It's super stressful trying to get rides everywhere, and being on time and making sure people are picking us up and blah blah blah.. but we are doing it! :) So that's what matters, we get our car back on Wednesday and I couldn't be happier! The work still happens, it just really hinders it too.. But oh well we are okay! :) We rode bikes yesterday and I just wore leggings, it may have been like 95 degrees with a billion degrees of humidity but we did it! :) haha this super nice guy gave us water though, so all was good! and we got this way cool potential that we are going to teach on Tuesday so it was all worth it! haha 

The youth in our ward are AWESOME!!!! Seriously, there are like 28 young women, they are great! And then the boys are super great to! Seriously, this ward is just rocking it over here! It's the "zion" of michigan as every one here tells me! haha but it's a great place! They have a bunch of activities like they went to Lake Michigan this weekend and played games and did a bunch of fun stuff, they have bishop firesides, I remember those. They were always so good espeically with Bishop Stanton! We actually taught the young women this week for mutual about preparing to serve a mission, I talked about being worthy and then also having a strong testimony of the Restoration and of Joseph Smith. It was really good! :) We had fun doing that! They are having a youth fireside in a couple weeks here, I love the youth. They rock!! :) 

Hmm.. something funny! Well recently Sister Guest and I have been laughing a ton!! Like I don't even know why but the littlest things get us to laugh! We saw "L" again and he was drunk that was pretty funny! We actually have to give him over to the elders because he is in their area.. :( But we taught him and he was drunk, that was pretty funny! he kept repeating himself and doing weird things! I have never really seen anyone drunk before so that was interesting! haha :) Also "I" this week has been taking a bunch of drugs for his leg and so when we taught him I think he was a little high.. which was also pretty dang funny..  Some other funny ones are just when we are out door knocking, someone will answer the door right when we are saying sometimes, or they will not even answer the door but they will peek out the window!

 At a fun place got "Steak and Shake!"
 Jen said this dog "totally creeped us out, it just sat there staring at us and didn't ever move...." we got a huge kick of that. Be scared really scared...its coming for you............TERRIFYING :D

This is one of my favorite pictures of Jen and one of her investigators so far. It makes me happy to see this guy (Ian) want to know more about our church and how awesome it is that they are such great friends. Love the diversity. 

August 10
Hey everyone!! :) I heard this quote and really loved it so I thought, might as well share it! :)
So I have a couple great stories to share with all of you this week! :D We are seeing so many miracles here in Wyoming! Sis Guest and I will be together another 6 week, I know we are going to see some awesome miracles! Seriously the work never stops hastening! It's amazing to me, despite all our imperfections The Lord still knows how to make things happen! :) 

First cool story, we picked up a new investigator this week named Fernando! Door knocking, it truly brings miracles! I feel like almost everyone we are teaching right now all were found doorknocking, it's amazing actually! My faith has grown a ton in the principle of going out and knocking on doors! So anyways we taught a great lesson on prayer, and then set a return appointment and left him with a pamphlet. When we were walking out we were like oh darn, we forgot to warn him about anti.. it seems like everyone out here gets an-tied and then they NEVER talk to us again. So we felt bad. We do our best to warn people that satan attacks truth but sometimes we don't do as good as we should. But the Lord is merciful. Later that night, while we were fixing our bikes with some members Fernando texted and said, can you call me? I have a couple questions. So we did and he goes, so I read some stuff and then proceeded to ask us about polygamy and about all these things he had seen or heard. It was amazing to me! We were able to talk to him and address his concerns and then he said he will still be willing to meet with us! :) I thought that was so cool. We always have another chance. 

Yesterday we were able to go and have lunch with a recent convert and she invited her son Luke that has come to church a couple times. We had a great lunch and then a powerful lesson about prayer with him as well, he has only been to church like 9 times in his life and he said the closing prayer for us at the end of the lesson. It was amazing. He wants to learn more that he can feel more comfortable at church. He said that he feels like he was thrown into a super elite class that he knows nothing about, but if he understood more he would feel much better! :) I agree, I think sometimes church would be super way overwhelming! That's why I love what we do, it's so personable! So he is super solid, I can't wait to teach him more! :D 

We were able to meet with the Pendergrasses again as well!! They are on date to get baptized!! :) We are way excited! Thank you all for your prayers, I know that prayers are answered. Even if they aren't always how we want them answered, they are answered! :D 

Well life is good! I am so happy to be staying in Wyoming!! :) It's such a great place! We are going to have 3 sets of missionaries in our ward starting thursday! Holy cow! It will be so nice! We had a GIANT area for the past 3 weeks I am excited to see what will happen. 

Well I hope you all have a fantastical week.. that word comes from my dear comp sister morrison! ;) Make it great!!!!! Love ya!! 

Love Sister Chisholm 
us and the holland sisters at holland state park!!! :) 
I love the beach! 
Don't worry we only played volleyball! 

Monday, August 3, 2015

Happiness, not just pleasure!

Cute girl is doing great these last two weeks! We love her!!!! She says its HOT and humid,but today she is buying some very warm winter boots in anticipation of a cold winter to come!
She also gets to go to a big pday activity where they are playing beach volleyball on Lake Michigan! I told her Missionary life doesn't sound too shabby! 

Aug 3

Hey ya'll!! This week was amazing! :) Well that's just how missionary life is! But seriously, it's just great! So my subject this week is happiness not pleasure and it came from reading the Jesus is The Christ book this morning. I read about how true happiness and true joy come from being converted to the Lord and then how pleasure if the worldly happiness. It was really cool, I have seen that become so true as I have went about my short life! :) We receive real happiness as we keep the commandments, do the things that qualify us for the spirit and as we serve others! So get out there and be obedient to the commandments! :)

We had some incredible experiences happen this week as we did the Lords work. One of them was that we finally got in contact with some of these less actives in our ward. They have 9 kids that haven't been baptized and like 5 of them want to learn and be baptized. So we finally got to meet with them and the 3 kids all want to be baptized and we are going to help them to learn about the gospel and to come back! So if you want to say a prayer for the Pendergrass family that would be wonderful! :) They are great, but it makes me think of Elder Andersens talk when he talks about how we much have our spiritual masks tight before we can help others. This truly applies to all of us, we can never help anyone else if we don't have our spirituality in play. It's so important to have your own conversion. That is what will help us withstand the temptations all around us! :) 

We met some super interesting people this week! You honestly never know who you will meet, this one guy answered the door and told us he had read the book of mormon and didn't believe it, and then as we kept talking and testifying he said, that he would be willing to learn about prophets and the priesthood and then let us in and gave us some water! It's amazing how the Lord prepares and softens peoples hearts. I know this truly is His work. There is no doubt in my mind. He is our great Mediator, He is our Redeemer and He is our Savior. I am grateful to be His representitative. 

Have a wonderful week everyone!! :) Go and read over conference talks, go and read your Book of Mormon, go and pray and thank your Heavenly Father for your blessings. He loves you.
also.. go and feed some ducks! :) haha  

Love Sister Chisholm! <3 

July 26
Hey everyone!! :) I sure hope you all are doing well and that you are having a wonderful day! I sure am! This week has been great! It's been full of learning experiences, I have decided that even though sometimes those are hard and that we don't like them in the moment they always are for the better!

This week I have thought a lot about prayer, and the Atonement of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. How grateful I am that truly He truly understands us, no matter what. He has bourne our griefs and has carried our sorrows. A lot of the time we can't understand or comprehend all that He truly did for us but as we remember that we are children of God and that we are here to learn and to listen to the promptings of the spirit we can come closer to Him and feel His grace and love more fully. We are teaching a lot of people right now that feel like they aren't loved, that they can't change, they don't know who they are, where they are going or what it is they want to accomplish in life. This has helped me to reflect on 3 very specific questions I want to bear my testimony to each of you these 3 questions that I know are true, and how I know that they are true! 

1. Who am I? 
This is a question that I have definitely asked myself before, just as I know we all have. I know that each of us are sons and daughters of a loving Heavenly Father. He knows us, He knows our name and He cares about us more then we can even understand. He truly does answer prayers and He wants us to succeed. We are all Children of God. I know this because of the moments of darkness I have experienced and how I have been able to come out of them by prayers being answered and from the spirit encircling me! 

2. How do I understand Jesus Christ?
This is a good question as well, I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior, Redeemer, Brother, and truly the only way we can receive eternal happiness. We must strive each and every day to become like Him. I always think of the Primary song, If the Savior stood besides me, would I say the things I say. Would I do the things I do? Would I be the person I am? If those questions are not as I want them to be it's exactly the place I need to start. I know that as we partake of the sacrament each and every week and reflect on Jesus Christ and His life, His teachings and everything in between we will come to understand Him better and apply His Atonement more fully in our lives. 

3. How do we strengthen our faith?
I feel like I get asked this question all the time. I have come to realize more then ever that truly we strengthen our faith by doing the small and simple things. Prayer, scripture study, reading  conference talks, receiving priesthood blessings, going to the temple, serving others, doing all of the things that Jesus Christ would do. It's a process, it can't all be done at once but as we strive or even have the desire to strengthen our faith I know that it can and will be strengthened! :) 

Well I love you all! I hope you have fantastic weeks!! This gospel is true! It's real, it's life changing!!!! :D 

Love Sister Chisholm! <3 
Two of our favorite Office missionaries came to our ward yesterday!! We love them!! 
Missions are the BEST!!! :D 

 A less active member they've been teaching that really responded to their lessons!
 A beautiful Michigan sunset!

 Our family went to California this past week and when we saw Pooh and Tigger we had to get a picture of our favorite missionary with them! Tigger is her absolute favorite!
 At their fun half mission pday!
 Helping a friend paint for a service project!