February 24, 2014

Feb 23, 2014 - "Pay her no mind. She's been havin a mully-grub day..."

Here's the latest from Sister Jacobs. ~Lisa

** Disclaimer: Sis Tanner and I have specifically been working on using Southern talk. So. If you find any from here on out, don't judge. But feel free to laugh :) **

Family and friends!!
This week has seriously flown by!! I can't even believe that it's Monday again! Wasn't it Monday yesterday?! Haha.
Well. We have more updates on investigators! Yay! We finally met with K. again and she's golden!! She's been reading from the Book of Mormon on her own and has committed to be baptized the end of March. So... as we're working with her, we're trying to find a way to get the rest of the family on the band wagon as well. We normally just teach her, but we're gonna teach all of them (7 kids ranging from 13 to 18 months...) on Tuesday! Ah! :)
And M. Our dear, sweet M. We taught her this week and she's keeping all of her commitments. All of them! Now, what kind of 15-yr-old reads 5 verses every day before she does homework? I'll tell you what kind, an elect one! :) She's awesome. As we taught her the plan of salvation, she told us that Heavenly Father has been showing her what being a Mormon can mean for her. She is probably one of the most prepared people I've ever met. She has also committed to be baptized the end of March :)

One of my favorite things ever is watching the progress of those we work with. Like the R. Family. They're a less active family. Bro R. grew up LDS, but just kinda stopped, and Sis R. was baptized at 12 with her family but wasn't ever really active. The sister missionaries have been working with them since July-ish. And the coolest things happened this week. We went by to see them on Wed morning and they were still in bed. Their 4 year old answered the door, haha. So Bro R. came out and told us to come back later, when we hear from the other room, "No! God sent them! Gimme a minute and I'll be up!" Haha. Oh yeah. And Sis R. has a broken rib, among other things. So it was kind of a big deal :) We got to talk to them and teach them a bit. Then on Sunday we had our regular visit and Sis R. opened her BofM with us to read. She's never done that before. We asked them if we could pray before we left and she, "Alright. Kids, come'ere! Kneel down and fold your arms." Then her husband proceeded to choose someone to pray without us asking him to. It was so cool! :) It's the little things that make a big difference.

Quote for the week: "The highest form of influence is to be a model, not a critic; a light, not a judge" It's so true!! So go out and be a light! :)

I forgot about T. How, I dunno!! Okay. So remember how ever single day last week we were on foot from the storm, we saw T.? Well. she described to us where she lived and every time we were in that area, we'd take a couple of minutes and try to find her house. And we finally did!! We didn't have her number or nothin, so we just popped in on her and taught her. We taught her the restoration and after that she proceeded to talk to us for 30 minutes about how the first time she saw us, Heavenly Father told her that we were His servants and that He was going to show her His glory through us! What?! :) Talk about elect! :) Anyway, she's cool. When we asked her to kneel in prayer about the Book of Mormon and about Joseph Smith being a prophet, she said, "Well. I will. But I already know the answer!" Wow! :) I can't believe I forgot to write about her! She's praying about being baptized. :)
Anyway. The work is going quite nicely! I've never been more busy my entire mission! :) A lot of missionaries told me things about this area... mainly that it's a "dead" area. But it's not! There's no such thing as a dead area!! Remember that! Where ever you are, there's no such thing as a dead area! :) Find those that are ready! Because they're there!! :)
Love y'all!!
~Sis Jacobs.

The froggy friend we found while doing service.

 It was in the 70s again this week. So pretty :)

February 17, 2014

Feb. 17, 2014 - "I'm sittin' on the stool!! I don't got no time to talk!"

Hey y'all!!

Okay. This is gonna be a quicky. Just the highlights. Which will be hard because this week has been full of miracle after miracle!
First, to answer your question... the snow was fantastic!!! :) We parked our cars and bikes on Tuesday, but we still went out, and that was fun :) While we were tracting, people kept asking us if we had our extra milk and bread. Milk and bread? Haha. It was funny. :) Wednesday was another SNOW DAY! President told us to stay inside unless we felt like it wasn't icy in our area. We got lots and lots of snow and ice. It was rather exciting. :) Thursday morning it was too frozen to drive, so we got some walking done and just stayed close to home. We tried to see if we could help shovel someone's driveway or side walks or something... but guess what? They don't have snow shovels here!! Or rock salt. Our landlord covered the sidewalks in sand. Like... sandbox sand. Not sure if it worked... but it was nice of him to take care of us! We never lost power or nothin, so that was good. Even after the earthquake! Yup! There was a 4.1 earthquake Friday night! And I survived! Haha. Over the course of my mission, I've survived a tornado (that happened my first week out...), a snow storm, an ice storm and an earthquake! Sweet! :)
On Friday we went on an exchange and I ended up going to another area for the day. That night we saw a less active who was super sweet. She's been to church for the last like... month or two, but she's still working to find her testimony. She's read like 167 pgs in the Book of Mormon in the last 2 days. She's really serious about finding her testimony.

She asked me if I'd ever asked Heavenly Father how much He loves me. I told her no, but shared an experience with prayer I had a long time ago. I told her I haven't had a prayer like that since, but it was a cool experience. She asked me why it changed. I told her that it was because I'd never been able to put myself in the same mindset I did then. She asked if I thought that He changed, too. Well... no. He doesn't change. And that was her point. No matter how we pray, Heavenly Father never says, "Meh. She's only putting in 50% tonight. I'm only gonna put 50% into her answer." I felt like she was teaching us! So I asked her how she has such a strong testimony about God's love. And, to make a long story short, she said, "Because He heals temporal pain with eternal power." Woah. That made me think. The next day she wanted to help me with something for a minute and after she helped me she said, "Sis Jacobs. I want you to know something. The question that you asked me last night made me really think. and I know. I know that God loves me, I can't deny it. I know that the Book of Mormon is true, I can't deny it. And I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet, I can't deny it." Sis Blaylock looked at her and said, "I always knew that you knew!" and she said, "Yeah... but it's different to be able to finally say it myself." The church is true!!! :)
Love y'all! Have a blessed day!
~Sis Jacobs.

Snow storm in Hartwell, Georgia!

My cute little snowman. I love him!

Happy Valentine's Day!

February 11, 2014

"I play the gui-tah and the pianah!" - Feb. 10, 2014

My dearest family and friends.

Considering Valentine's Day is this week, I have a confession. I'm in love. With Hartwell, GA :)

Once again the week has flown by!! I can't even believe how quickly the time has gone. Transfers are NEXT WEEK. What?! I just got here!! Sister Tanner and I think that we'll both stay because she got here mid way through last transfer, so we're both pretty new to the area. *crosses fingers* We dunno though. I'll let you know when I find out next week :)

Our investigator, K., is doing well... we think. We had 2 appts set up for this last week, but they both fell through because she has had lots of doctor's appointments. Sooo... more on that next week! :)

We taught also taught another investigator, a guy named J. this week!! We met him my first day with Sis Tanner, but we couldn't go back because we're girls, haha. So we finally got our team-up to come out with us and that was a really good lesson!! A few minutes after we started teaching his nephew and his friend came over. So we taught them too! J. and his nephew were super receptive aaaaand their friend thinks we're a cult. So that made the lesson very interesting. But the member who came with was so good! She got baptized about 6 months ago and is probably one of the most solid recent converts I've ever met. After the friend shared his interesting opinion, J. completely disregarded it and said to us, "I can learn from you and your book, and you can learn from me! I'm always open to learning more" *phew!* Tender mercy, indeed :)

Aaaaand then there's a girl named, M.!! We tracted into her on Tuesday. She's a 15-yr-old who is just adorable. Her mom answered the door, but then had her daughter, M. talk to us because her mom is deaf (...still trying to figure out how she heard the door...) AAAanyway. They're currently going to another church in South Carolina because they accommodate deaf people there, but M. doesn't really believe the things they teach. So we set up an appt and taught the restoration by watching the Restoration DVD with ASL. I love the Spirit!!! We asked her how she felt afterwards and she just said, "Wow. That was so good. I can't describe how good that movie was. And I just feel so good!" We challenged her to read from the Book of Mormon and the next day she told us how much she loved 3 Nephi 11 and how good and happy it made her feel. Go Spirit! :) We're really excited about that. We're in the process of trying to find an ASL interpreter for church and some lessons... which is rather difficult in a branch of 30 active members, haha. But! We have faith! :)

Something that really stuck out to me this week was while we were tracting. We referred a man to mormon.org to look up an old acquaintance and he said, "I knew a him many, many years ago. I don't even remember the guy's name, just his life." May we all live lives like that.

Love y'all lots!!
Til next week,
~Sister Jacobs      

February 3, 2014

"You dirty possum!" - Feb 3, 2014

Hey, all!! :)

Man. The weeks are seriously flying by. I feel like for the last several weeks Sis Tanner and I have both been shocked that it's Pday again! So fast. But that just means that the work is chugging along quite nicely! :) Time flies when you're having fun! And I am having a blast! :)

Guess who has an investigator?! Woo hoo!! We met a lady named K. my first day in Hartwell and she invited us back whenever. It's hard to follow up when they say to come back whenever... but about a week later, we felt prompted to go back and she let us in. The first thing she said to us was, "I've been waiting to hear back from y'all!" It was exciting. :) We taught her a first lesson. We went back the next week, and showed her the Restoration DVD. Every time I watch it, my testimony that Joseph Smith was a prophet is strengthened. Super cool :) We challenged her to watch it with her husband (who used to be a preacher of some sort) and when we went back a couple of days later, they had watched it together and her husband had started to read the Book of Mormon. He mentioned to her that they needed to come to church and pray about it... and we haven't even met him yet!! We invited her to be baptized and she said, "Actually. I haven't been baptized and it's been weighing on my mind a lot lately. I really do want to be baptized." Oh. They also have 8 kids. Woo hoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :) Keep them in your prayers, yeah?

Another exciting thing was Sunday. I don't think I've had a better Sunday out here. I didn't know what to fast for, so I just had a gratitude fast. An idea from my previous companion Sis Sullivan. And it was so great. Man. Best day ever. Okay. So before sacrament meeting started, Pres Rownd (the Branch president) came up to us and was like, "Rumor has it that you're fluent in Spanish!" Fluent? Haha. Thanks Mom. Not quite :P Anyway, apparently there are like 3 active Hispanic members and about 117 that just don't come. And I guess they're all related somehow. So Pres really wants to work on activating them. There's one person in each missionary companionship that can speak Spanish so he's putting together a "game plan" of sorts and we're gonna get that all up and running next week! So he told us all of this before sacrament meeting. After the sacrament, a young lady, (the 17-yr-old daughter) and her parents came in... with like 15 other people! They wanted to bless 2 of their children. So Elder Elder blessed them... in Spanish!!! I was all sorts of excited.

The father of the children who had been baptized shared his testimony about being inactive for 12 years due to the language barrier, but that he knew he needed to be at church and that he wanted his kids to be raised with the Gospel in their lives. Both he and one of the less active ladies that we've been working with touched on the fact that God doesn't "do" things to us. But that people have their agency and that's why we suffer. And then Heavenly Father helps us through those things. This sweet sister also shared that the Gospel has filled a hole in her heart that she didn't know was there. She and her husband are going to have their kids blessed next week. Woo hoo! 

There's a summary of yesterday for you. I wrote like 4 1/2 pages in my journal last night... but those are the most exciting details :) Everything has just kind of clicked together this week. 

On Tues, as I'm sure you heard, "IT SNEW!!!" (It snowed) Well. In terms of southern people... haha. We got a call from President saying that we had to be back from our meetings by noon and that after that we needed to proselyte on foot. So we did! We were actually teaching K. when we got a text from the zone leaders, "Game over, Athens zone! Go home til further notice from President." So... after our lesson we started walking home in the snow. Which was so fun. I love snow :) So we were walking home when a nice older lady pulled over and offered us a ride home! She told us, "I recognized y'all as servants of the Lord from behind and I couldn't stand to think that y'all were out in the cold. And y'all are smilin like it's been sunshine all day!" I don't think she knew how much we were loving the snow. :) We talked to her a bit about the Gospel and offered her a Book of Mormon as a token of gratitude. To which she said, "Hallelujah" and "Praise the Lord"  I love Southern people!! We're not perfect missionaries... and we failed to get her number or address. But on Wednesday we were still forbidden to drive, and as we were walking, she drove past us and honked! :) I like making friends out here :) It was weird to have a "snow day." My first snow day ever. And maybe my last? But anyway. We're all safe and sound. It was so beautiful to see the snow. Definitely a tender mercy. And rumor has it, there'll be a bigger storm this winter.

Well. My heart is just so happy. And this email is a novel. But I love y'all. And I love it here. I wouldn't wanna be anywhere else doing anything else. Til next week! :)

~Sis Jacobs.

Things you hear tracting... 
"It don't tickle my fancy... you know? It just don't start my tractor." 

Have I ever mentioned that I love these people? Yeah. A whole lotta love! :)

"It gets my heart all warm and gushy!" - Jan. 27, 2014

Helloooo!! :)
It's a beeeautiful day! I've never had such a warm January! Today both Sis Tanner and I are wearing short sleeves. What?! I still feel like it's September. I can't decide if it's because of the weather, or because I'm in denial about how long I've been out, haha :)
This week we got a special package from the mission office... desks!! :) Thanks to my little baby tool kit, we put them together! and it was so satisfying!
The next day, we were able to help a sister who had just moved in to the branch. She was all unpacked, but wanted help with moving her furniture around and hanging things on her wall and putting her printer together and all that jazz. Which was also surprisingly therapeutic! :)
That same sister was super kind and gave us a ride to Stake Conference! We got to talk a lot on our 90 min drive there. And back, haha :) Stake Conference is the best! I dunno if I've ever explained how much I love meetings. But I do! They're the best!! I love having that opportunity to just sit and wait for the Spirit to speak directly to me.
For the Saturday Night session, they had a panel of members to answer questions about... missionary work! Surprise, right!? :) Well. One of the questions was, "Are we here to cast seeds or reap harvest?" And as members they all answered BOTH!! Some of us are here to plant seeds, others are here to *cast* seeds. One mother talked about how having family prayer and scripture study was more of casting seeds and then seeing her kids use the scriptures was more of reaping harvest.
Another panel was 4 full time missionaries and one returned missionary. The question was, "What was the best thing your parents did to help you prepare for a mission?" Their answers were... Sharing missionary experiences. Setting an example by doing missionary work. Being excited about missionary work. Hearing conversion stories. And I agree with all of the above! :)

One speaker talked about Hastening the Work. Dispensation after dispensation the gospel was restored and then lost. Just like a relay race, the other dispensations were a "leg" of that race. Starting with the final Restoration that began in 1820, we are the final leg. We have all been saved to participate in that final leg! How exciting!
Other favorite quotes:
"The task ahead is NEVER greater than the Power behind you"
"Temple going youth become temple going adults"
{Go. to. the. temple. You'll never know how much you'll miss it til you can't go. 8 months is far too long}
One last analogy. Promise. Okay. Another speaker talked about being musicians in the orchestra of missionary work. We all play different instruments. And as we know, different instruments serve different and specific purposes. The melody and bass lines are very different, but their parts are equally important to the beauty of music. That was his analogy. And this is my insight. In every music group I've ever been in, it has taken time to get to know my director. But as the semester goes on, I am able to learn how to read my director. And as even more time goes on, I learn the style of each director. I am able to anticipate where to breathe, where to hold over, which words need more articulation etc. Always watching the director, of course, but I can learn what to expect. We need to know our Director!! We must learn how He speaks to us, how He answers our prayers, and then we can learn what He expects of us! It will become a natural thing to follow those promptings. :) I love music. I love the Gospel. And I 'specially love putting the two together :)
The work is good! I'm loving life! And I don't think I've ever been happier!! :) Isn't the Gospel amazing?!
~Sis Jacobs.

"...Do you have a boyfriend? ... Am I making you uncomfortable?" Jan. 20, 2014

That awkward moment when your companion gets hit on by a potential... over the phone. HAHA! :)

Well... This week has been pretty interesting! :)

We had our interviews with President and that just rocked. I love the Wolferts so much. They both commented on my enthusiasm for this area. Why? Because I love it!! I can't even express to you how much I love this little branch. It's adorable :) 

Also, tracting with Sis Tanner is probably my favorite thing. Because the houses are so spread out, sometimes we bear our testimonies to the cows. Unfortunately it doesn't "count" for anything as far as numbers are concerned. If they did... man. Our #s would be through the roof! But hey. As long I get to bear my testimony, I'm a happy camper :)

A midst all of this joy and happiness, I made the mistake of praying for the ability to accept others' agency better. Well. People definitely used their agency this week and I did lots of praying and I know things will work out the way they need to. Moral of the story: Heavenly Father definitely answers prayers :)

But Heavenly Father also loves us... so he blesses us with little miracles at Chinese take out places. Lemme 'splain. Sis Tanner and I don't get very many dinners with members in this area. It's been really fun to actually cook dinner :) We avoid restaurants and fast-food. Most of the time. We were doing a special fast for one of our investigators on Saturday and were both really, really hungry. Sooo we thought we'd splurge. We went to this little Chinese place (It reminded me of Rice Wok) and saw a member there! So we talked to the member for a bit. They left and we waited for our food. As we waited, our cashier asked us where we were from and why we were in Georgia. Her sister was actually a member of the church and she remembered going to Young Women's at some point. By the time we left, we had her name and number and we knew that we were both craving Chinese for a reason. The Lord works in mysterious ways! :)

This week at church, I learned something that I really liked. A kid from another ward came to the branch and spoke about making good choices. He said something along the lines of, "If you want to be happy, do things that happy people do. If you want to be depressed, do things that depressed people do." And the Spirit said, "And if you want to be a successful missionary, do things that successful missionaries do." I feel like this applies to all of us! If you want to be a successful mom, dad, student, employee, brother, sister, husband, wife, visiting/home teacher, Sunday school teacher, pianist, football player or whatever else... do things that a successful (insert title here) does!

It really is a different world out here. I love it so much and I can't wait to see what the Lord has in store for this cute little branch :) Hopefully I'll have some more crazy stories next week!

Love y'all!!

~Sis Jacobs.

"Com'ere right quick!" Jan 13, 2014

Howdy y'all!!

This week has been so great!! I got a couple of days to say goodbye to the people I love in Paper Mill... and then I headed out to Hartwell, GA! This area is the biggest geographical unit in the mission... but the smallest branch in the mission! We have like 40/50 people come to church on average a week. If y'all are lookin at it on a map, it borders South Carolina. Sooooo I moved pretty much across the entire mission. And lemme tell you, it's a completely different world out here. A world that I have fallen in love with! :)
Sister Tanner is my new companion. She's from New Plymouth, ID. She's been out 3 months and I absolutely adore her! She's like a combination between Andrea Jacobs and Jessie Judson. So... she's adorable. Obviously :) We get along super well and we talk. A lot! It's so great :) Every day we find more quirky little things that we have in common. It's really fun :)
My first day in Hartwell, I met a lady named J. She's a super sweet lady that the sisters have been working with for like 4 months. Oh yeah. She got baptized on Saturday :) The weather was pretty bad, but nothing was gonna stop her from getting baptized! Not even tornado warnings! Being the out-of-the-loop missionaries we are, we didn't realize the weather was tornado worthy til we got to the church and heard the news from members. Don't worry, we're all safe. And most importantly, J had her special day :) The service was so wonderful and I asked her how she felt (my favorite question) and she said, "I wanna jump up and down, but I'm afraid I'll break somethin!" She compared her baptism when she was 13 to her baptism on Saturday and said that it's different because this baptism didn't mark an end, but rather a beginning! She's looking forward to the temple and callings and getting a patriarchal blessing. I sure love her :) We're gonna start teaching her granddaughter, next :)
There were so many fun adventures that we've had this week! Like tracting my first trailer park! :) We found an older gentleman who seemed pretty uninterested, but when the conversation turned to Utah, he stopped and said, "God told me to go to Utah, but I didn't. I'm supposed to be there." That really hit him. We're going back on Thursday to teach him more :)
Sunday was so great! I love my new cute little branch! We have 6 missionaries serving here, too! We have a set of Elders, Sisters and a senior couple named the Elders. So we have the Elders, the Sisters and Elder Elder and Sister Elder. Confusing, right? :) I love it here. I love visiting members, less actives, investigators and recent converts and teaching them about the infinite love that Heavenly Father has for them. I adore these people and I'm so excited to learn what Heavenly Father has in store for this wonderful branch :)
Love y'all!
~Sister Jacobs

Allelujah, He is my Savior! Today He is born! :) Dec. 30, 2013

(Vocal Point's Lead Thou me On. Track 5. It's my favorite EVER!) :)

Hello one and all! :)

Sooooooooo... This week rocked. Am I right? Haha.

For Christmas Eve, we were able to go over to a Member's home where like 3 families from the ward joined us! We had dinner, and then we all reenacted the story of Christ's birth. There was lots of singing and kids running around and jumping and being the best angels, and sheep they could be :)  After that, the father of the family read Twas the Night Before Christmas and we all joined in on the parts that we knew. It was perfect :)

We were able to visit some less actives that day and it was wonderful :) We indeed fell asleep with the vision of sugar plums dancing in our heads :)

Christmas was FANTASTIC! :) We got to visit some members before our Skype and that was just lovely. Christmas time is simply magical :) Of course Skyping was magical, too! To see all of your bright smiling faces and to hear your happy, happy voices :) Thank you so much for making my Christmas so wonderful! :) We were able to go out and do some work before our Christmas dinner :) It was so fun to be with the Frandsens, to share a Christmas thought and then to make cookies and ornaments for their neighbors :) 

We received some awesome news this week!! Remember D.? He got baptized a couple of weeks ago. Well he and his girlfriend (who introduced him to the church) are engaged!! :) They're waiting til next December to get married so they can be sealed in the temple :) It's so amazing when recent converts really do understand how important the temple is :)

This week as we were tracting, we knocked on a Jewish lady's door. She was about to close the door when we just simply asked her about her beliefs. While we were talking, her son's friend showed up, so he went into their home to hang out while we continued talking. We had a lovely conversation and then as we were saying good bye, Jared (the son's friend) said, "Hold on. Can I talk to them?" So then we talked to him! He has a lot of questions that through prayer and study, we're excited to answer! :) The Lord works in mysterious ways :)

We're just gonna keep finding and teaching and praying and working and some day one of these seeds is gonna sprout :)

Thank you so much for all of the support! I have truly felt an outpouring of love from my family and friends this season :) Now that postage has settled down a bit, the mission office would like all mail to be sent to them, and then it will be forwarded out to us missionaries. That address is...
Sister Ashley Jacobs
Georgia Atlanta North Mission
1150 Cole Dr. SW
Lilburn, GA 30047

Love y'all lots! I'll email you next year! :)
~Sister Jacobs

Oh there's no place like home for the holidays... Dec. 23, 2013

... for no matter how far away you roam. If you want to he happy in a million ways, share the Gospel and you'll feel at home sweet home! :)

Hello one and all!!
This one is gonna be a bit short. Why? Because I get to "see" you on WEDNESDAY!! AH!! :) Oh man. I'm a little excited! It'll be like... Christmas!! Haha! :)

Update. The skype "call" (what do I even call it? I'm already losing what little technology knowledge I have!) will be at 1:30p GA time. So what, that's 10:30a Washington time? Just make sure you're awake and on some sort of something with a webcam. Papa's probably already got it figured out. Buuut, I just thought I'd bring it up.

Aaaaand this week was good! The highlight was the Mission Christmas party. I love loving people! And I love seeing friends who haven't seen each other in forever reunite! It's a blessing, really truly. I love this ward and they make me feel right at home :) Nothing can beat a rainy Washington Christmas with the family, but a rainy Georgia Christmas with the ward and mission family is a close second :)

Last night we went caroling with some families and it was the best feeling in the world. I almost forgot how much I like to sing! We weren't spectacular, but we had testimonies and we shared them through song. :) 

Other than that... the M Family is doing great! Actually... they're sick. But they're progressing with the Gospel! Haha. And our 3 other investigators are doing well, too. We haven't gotten in with them too much because of the holidays... but we keep in touch with them and they're awesome :)

Ooooh wait. Guess who I saw on Saturday?! E! An investigator from my first area! She was at the church for a party and Sis Sullivan and I had to grab something at the church. So we did, and we bumped into her! We both screamed a little bit. It was a tender moment. :) She's not taking the lessons anymore, but she keeps going to church and I'm sure she'll come around someday :)

Okay really though, that's all for this week!
Merry Christmas and I'll see some of you in a couple of days!! :) :)

~Sis Jacobs.

You gottta keep your head up - Dec. 16, 2013

Hello one and all!! :)

Can you believe it's been another week?! Wow! Monday again... time sure flies! :)

First and foremost... the our investigator, L. update! :) She's alive!!!! We called her and got some stuff worked out. She's out of town til the New Year but wants us to come over and teach her again after that. We'll probably start from square one again to make sure that she really understands what she needs to. But til then... prayers are always good! As Sis Sullivan and I talked about it later, we realized that we both felt a little off about giving her a baptismal date so soon (the 14th). Obviously that was the Spirit. So. While that was a tough way to learn that lesson... I also learned that this really is the Lord's work and we can't frustrate it! "Remember, remember that it is not the work of God that is frustrated, but the work of men" (D&C 3:3) No matter what we do, as long as we're doing our best, Heavenly Father is gonna make sure that whatever needs to happen, happens! We also learned to really listen to the Spirit this week. We had some really cool experiences!! I'll share those in a bit. 

On Wednesday night we were on our way to visit a less active and I thought of a potential to stop by. She wasn't home. On our way out of the neighborhood, I remembered another potential that we needed to follow up with. Sis Sullivan asked me if I was avoiding the less actives, haha. I told her I didn't think so, but that these names were just coming in my head. We knocked on the door and they gently declined us. No big. As we walked back to the car, the mom opened the door, and her daughter came out to talk to us. Sooooo we talked to her for a good 15-20 mins, gave her a Book of Mormon, and she seems really interested! Vamos a ver! :)

On Friday we had another Spirit Scavenger Hunt! We were doing our tracting, and Sis Sullivan goes, "Um. Let's not do this door. I just heard the word 'go'". So we skipped it. Then she said, "Okay. This is super weird. But I think we should go to Harbor Pointe." (A complex near ours) Ooookay. So we got in the car and started to head out. But then we both felt weird about going there. So we pulled over and prayed. Sis Sullivan said that she imagined a member's face. And I thought of their house. Sooo... we went to that member's house! And they didn't need anything. But. The point is, we were listening to the Spirit. I think Heavenly Father was teaching us to follow Him better. It was cool :) I'm really excited for the day when we get to see why we have silly promptings. It's comforting to know that someday I'll know. And right now, I don't have to :)

Saturday was a special day! We went to visit a less active family and they weren't home. So we decided to knock on some doors around their complex. And that's when we found a mom and 2 kids. The mom was going to gently decline, but then the daughter asked if we wanted to come in! Haha. We got talking to them and ended up teaching a first lesson. It was a-ma-zing! We're going to see them again tomorrow and they're so excited for church.

Sunday was.... *drumroll* One of our investigator's baptism!!! Yay for him! :) It was so wonderful. It was simply perfect! After it was over, I asked him how he felt. He didn't say anything, but he just looked at me and beamed the most pure smile I've ever seen in my entire life. It was so amazing to be a part of teaching him and helping him to come closer to His Savior. And gosh, he and his girlfriend are just so cute! haha. :)

Missionary work can be hard. And missionary work can be incredibly joyful! This week, I more clearly understand that this is the Lord's work. I know that He simply lets us be a part of it because He knows how much joy it brings us. I know He loves me. He loves you! What a wonderful message. His love is truly the message of Christmas :)

~Sister Jacobs.

Dec. 9, 2013

And we won't go until you answer, we won't go until you answer...

... we won't go until you answer, so open your door! :)

My dearest family and friends!
Today's email is gonna mostly be full of thoughts and things I learned this week. I hope you don't mind :)

Lesson One. Stop worrying about who you're 'supposed' to be, and just be who you are!! I needed that. Maybe one of you needs that, too. *shrug* Either way, I needed it :) 

Lesson Two. One day while we were tracting, a man asked me if I died today and Peter at the pearly gates asked me why he should let me in, how I would answer. I thought for a second and answered slowly. And something really cool happened. Heavenly Father answered for me. I said things I'd never thought of before. Like, "because He wants me there" :)

Lesson Three. This isn't my mission. It's the Lord's. But it is up to me how I spend His time. 

Lesson Four. Sometimes priesthood blessings don't work immediately. But they do work :)

We did lots of service this week. We tried to do one project with all 6 of the missionaries in the area, but some things fell through for the others. 4 hours and 13 bags of leaves later, Sis Sullivan and I conquered the yard! :) We've been so busy that it was really good for us to be able to work together, get to know each other better and laugh. :)

Our investigator, L, was probably the hardest lesson I learned this week. For various reasons, she doesn't want to get baptized anymore. We're going to continue to work with her and help her to understand exactly what baptism means and why it's important. We'll see what happens. The lesson learned? We have to respect others' agency. And even when it breaks our heart, we can know that our heart isn't the only one that hurts. I know that I have done everything in my power to be the best missionary to her that I could. I love her. I pray for her. I fast for her. and I will always think about her. Heavenly Father knows that. And I feel that He does. But an Elder here told me, "You planted a very deep seed in her heart. And when she comes around, she will remember how she felt when you entered her home and taught the truth." I hope so :) The other lesson? I'm the best seed planter in the mission :P

On a brighter note... yesterday was great!! :) Everything that was said, was exactly what I needed. Paper Mill is my little, I mean, BIG family here, and I love them :) 

After church we visited a less active sister who really wants to get back to church, but she's scared. We've been working with her a lot and she's definitely progressing. She's been to sacrament meeting once, and calls us whenever she needs something. Which is a huge improvement from when we first got here :)

Did I tell you about another lady we met a few weeks back? I think I did. She was the one that we tracted into. We opened up the Book of Mormon and shared a 'random' scripture and it was exactly what she needed. Anyway. She let us come back on Sunday and we taught her a proper lesson. She had read the chapter we left her and I'm really excited to teach her more. She has to work every single day til the first week in January, so we're gonna keep in touch and heart-attack her apartment door and stuff. :) I'm excited for her and her 2 cute boys :)

And that Christmas devotional! Was that not the best thing you've ever seen?! So perfect :) My favorite part was "What happened next?!" Why? Lesson 6: We can't control what happens to us, but we can control what we're gonna do about it! So maybe L. isn't quite ready to embrace the Gospel, but what happens next? We go out and teach whoever else is willing to listen. Because this is the Lord's mission, and that's what He would want me to do :)

I love y'all!
Have a blessed day! :)

~Sister Jacobs.