Monday, October 27, 2014

Peten. . Here I come!

Yes, I love this!  (Of Course, I've been singing Christmas Songs for a couple months now!)
Fam bam and other Cache Valliers!

HOLLLAAAAA. HOPPY HALLOWEEN! I would like you all to enjoy this jolly holiday mucho because on Friday, I will be dressed up as a missionary and celebrating as well.

The big news for this week is I got a transfer!  WOOT WOOT WOOT! ME VOY POR PETEN! Alright so we had changes!  I'm going just about as far from civilization as you can go (besides Polochic, thank goodness.)  I'll be in Pup ten Peten. I am very excited and nervous. My companion is Hna Guerro de Mexico and she has the exact same time as me so that's interesting We are cleaning the area so a lot of contacting is in my future but ohhhh welll. I’m pro after this change, right!   Also, in Peten, it is  WAYYYYY HOT; like imagine el infierno times 3.  Well, that's what I hear. So I am going to sweat my fat away. Haha
Peten is 8 hours away, so I will not be coming to Coban until.. who knows. Today they told me that it is so far away that they usually keep you in Peten when they send you there becaue it's so  far away. So.. we will see.  On transfer days, what we do is we all go to the stake center and change up companions and move in with our new ones.  Apparently whereI am going to live is in one of the nicest and biggest houses in the mission. WAHOO!.  They have a little store there where I can buy stuff. Not as big and nice as the one here, but todavia it’s great.  Peten is just like another state--like Coban is another state. So we still have a district and a zone there that is far away from the office. The office will send me the stuff when it gets there, so it will take more time, but I will still get it.
This man loves the United States and we are always having chats about US history stuff.

I am sad to leave Los Campos and excited for the future!  Like I said, we have been contacting a whole lot this change! One thing that never gets old when we contact, and contact, and contact, is telling people that they have a loving Heavenly Father who cares for them SO much. Ninety percent of the time the people just shake their head and ignore this grand message I am trying to bring to them, but without fail, every time I say it, the spirit testifies to me that it's the truth. God really does care for them and for me. Also, this week we talked about how Abinidi had 0 baptisms, but ended up converting Alma; and look what he did. I’m fine if I’m just an Abinidi.
My 'mama' (first trainer) is heading home!

This week was a little bit of a chafa a week cuz’. . . . . announcement number 2. . . . I got another parasite! WOOT! WOOT! I don't know why this is happening because I never eat in the street, and I wash my hands. But I live in Guatemala andddd these things happen. So, I actually spent the whole night on Wednesday puking and the whole day Thursday sleeping. But, I got my drugs and besides being a tad tired, I am golden!  But then, the next day,  Hna Velarde was the same and had 2 parasites so.... we didn't have the opportunity to work a whole lot this week.  One tender mercy that I experienced this week from my Heavenly Father was that I had the opportunity to ask the Elders for a blessing. WE ARE SO LUCKY TO HAVE PRIESTHOOD! It was just so simple and they just blessed me that I would be well enough to work--probably 30 second blessing. But I just know that God knew that's all I needed to hear!

Well, I Love you all a lot and thank you so much for your prayers.  I’ve set a goal to do a ’40 day fast’ of not talking about ‘TIME’.  Not gonna think about the amount of time that I have already spent here--or how much I have left.  J 

 I will be writing you next week from Peten,  if I don't melt into a puddle!
LOVE YOU!  Hermana Sorensen J

Monday, October 20, 2014

Happy Six Months to Meeeee!


Well, This was definitely the roller coaster week of being a missionary. For reals, I was at the highest of highs, and the lowest of lows. But through it all I was with my Savior,  and I will always be grateful for that.
So first of all this week,  I learned a lot about agency and how great this gift is  that we have. It would be IMPOSSIBLE for us to become like our Heavenly Father without our right to choose right or wrong. This is why we have trial,s and we all know how strong our trials make us.
I am just more and more amazed at the great love that our Heavenly Father has for us! But also, let me express my deep hate for agency. No. One. Listened. To. Us. This. Week. No one people. Even our recent converts or less actives were busy! We contacted all day everyday. Everything fell through. I wanted to DIIIEEEE. We were so frustrated cuz we were working SO hard and really trying to do all we could, then at the end of the day we just put big fat goose egg zeros next to our champ goals. Aye aye... these people were not using their albedrio very wisely. I just knocked on their door and really wanted to say,  'Hello how are you? My name is Hermana Sorensen and I have for you your salvation!' But apparently people don't go for that, so I stick with leaving  the folletos (brochures), and enjoy people leaving me in the rain. Vaya, I'll see you in judgement. But at the end of the day, I am happy that these fellow brothers and sisters of mine had the CHOICE to choose even if it was wrong -- cuz’ one day they will have another opportunity!

This is me saying 'What up? Do you want to be saved?' and... Anai...
Also, another little ‘Guat’ experience that I will mention since Mom keeps asking. . . not to complain because I am totally fine and I don’t want to focus on the physical side of my life; but on the spiritual. . but,  .my hair is falling out.  A lot.  And all the Nortes hermanas say that it happens.  So, yes, there is that.  And, I have a ton of zits.  So, that is fun also. . but all is well!  Must be the humidity.  I was told to put baking soda on them (the zits. .not my hairs. . ) so I have done so and it seems to help.  I have many spider bites and that is interesting also!  But, no more lice or parasites that I know of at this time!  

This old couple--they are crazy, and I always have a lot of spider bites after our visits with them.

Heidi, Schelder and Brandon's Bautismo!
Andddd the high of the week! Hna Heidy, Schelder and Brandon were all baptized on Saturday! I was such a happy little lady here in Guatemala! Her Husband ended up coming and I about cried when she expressed how baldy she really wants ALL of her family to be members one day. I know it's going to happen. I can just see them all in the temple together someday,  and wanted to cry! I love families and the temple and this gospel!

Zone Activity to Cuevas de las Candelarias

Today we went to the Cuevas de Candelerias.(The Candelarias Caves).   It was really cool and wet and I almost died. I LOVED IT! It was also very humid and sweaty. But I love Guatemala and I just could imagine all of these cool Nephites hiking through the jungle as we were on our way to the caves. I love Guatemala. You people must visit this lovely lugar.
Welllll.... This is my life and I like it a lot.
I know that this gospel is true and So amazing! I am so grateful to be a part of it! Don't forget to use  your agency wisely this week and remember that every decisIon you make will put you that much closer to, or farther from, our Savior, even if it is just a teenie tiny decision.
Feliz tardeeeeeee!
Hna Sorensen

Monday, October 13, 2014

I Lost our Phone. . Pues, it was stolen. . but, SUPER week!

So this week went by SUPER FAST, but slow at the same time. I continue to adore my companion. I am really learning so much from her and we are working super hard and are doing AWESOME! 
Divisions and Little Children!
 My tiny miracles/tender mercies that I have found this week are that I am really learning to depend a lot more on the spirit. We read a lot in the scriptures about the authority of our calling and how really we can do amazing things with this power. Even just being a member of the church, we have authority to do things. I mean when we were baptized we took upon ourselves the name of our Savior. Holy hanna!  How powerful is that?   So, this week I tried really hard to listen to the spirit about WHERE and WHO we should talk to.  Lots of times I wasn't sure if it was just my own brain or the spirit speaking.  I read a scripture about how if we just open our mouths, the spirit will put the words there, but if we don't open our mouths and try,  our gifts will be taken away. I really tried to put that into practice and talk with everyone this week, and we really found more people who have potential!  Everyone needs to do this! Pray to get rid of your fear and let the spirit guide you!  
In some ways, this week was a little frustrating because Hna. Velarde and I felt like we have been working SUPER hard and we have been SUPER obedient, but we basically contacted new people the whole entire week. So towards the end of the week we were getting really discouraged. Well, we went to go visit this less-active brother, and he is the only member of the family. We went to share a short Mormom Message from Elder Uchtdorf,  and also Alma 27:26, to explain that if he could continue to be faithful, his family eventually would see his example. This message was definitely more for us. As I was telling the story of Ammon and his brothers before reading the scripture, the spirit testified to me that I just need to be patient. He really does have something planned for us. So we have been praying to be more grateful for what we do have. Prayer is so powerful. And who knows how this week will go, but I know that our attitudes will definitely be different.
What was the favorite cultural thing/ food/ habit/ activity clothing or thing about the country that you saw this week? Well the cortes are EVERYWHERE! But one thing I was thinking about telling you that they do here that is a little strange is that they all keep their dogs on their roofs.... I'm always afraid they are going to come flying  through the air and bite my head.
Today We went shopping in a Paca for me.. and only me... with Hna. Adair and Hna Cerrato... I think that they are feeling bad for me and my nunness... (Looking so stylin’ in my outfits.)  So yeah,  I bought like one outfit. But later we are going to get rings from the mission for 10 quetz! I will get you lovelies something. I bought the most lovely Guatemalan tie for my dear father the other day!. 
This week we had Zone Conference. It is ALWAYS AMAZING! One thing I LOVED that Presidente shared is that in the Book of Mormon they talk about A LOTof wars. There is almost always a war going on in this libro (book).   One thing I have never thought of is that today we are all in a war also; but our war is spiritual. When you look at all of the great leaders or people in the Book of Mormon,  they ALWAYS had a strategy to take on the enemy. He asked what we are doing to have a strategy and fight off Satan. That really hit me because Satan is so tricky with the people. Gah!  I wish I had the wisdom of Moroni or Helaman!
This week I also had divisions with Hna Adair. Quick story from our division. 1 I love that lady. I could talk with her all day long. 2. We went to visit these people and they would not stop talking to us. They ended up talking to us for THREE HOURS: I wanted to literally die. We kept trying to talk with them, but aye... they told us that they beieved that the Book of Mormon was written by animals and all of this other stuff that just made me want to stomp on their little Guatemalan toes!   So finally I just interrupted them, and told them we had another visit.  I asked them to pray and that I was going to have us pray,  and whoosh,  I ran away.
Any who,  life is lovely here in mission Los Campos. I love you all a lot! Have a jolly good week and take care!  Eat your veggies cuz we don't eat a lot here and I like that stuff.


A snake, Brenda and I in the rain. . . .

Elder and Sister Utt took us out to lunch.  :)

Monday, October 6, 2014

General Conference is the BOMB.COM!

Dear family, friends, animals, insects and all other beautiful living things in my blessed home town of Logannnnn,

Holy hanna! How energized and motivated are all of you lovely people to live this stinkin’ life after conference!?? Cuz I will tell you what, I am about ready to just dominate this life here on Earth. I have such an appreciation here for conference. Everyday Hna. Velarde and I woke up saying our countdown, “Tres dias mas hasta conferencia!!!”   (Three more days until Conference!)  We were a little excited, and for good reason!  People we are listening to a LIVING prophet and apostles!!  Why have I never realized the significance of this. But yeah... it was a jolly good conference and week, and I hope you are all making goals and changes in your life to be closer to our Savior after  listening to it.

Basically all of us ‘gringo’ missionaries watched it in the stake center in English, so I was just with all the other missionaries in a little room. It was really special when they prayed or talked about the missionaries....

I ADORED the talk by the Chinese guy, haha,  of course because it was about missionary work! It was so valid. We really do need everyone to help work together and bring souls unto Christ. Here in the mission I’m learning how vital the members are. I‘ve always thought that missionary work is just for the missionaries. I can’t imagine how this work would take off if everyone put in their part and we all worked together to accomplish this great work!

Also the talk by the German guy... hahah, sorry,  I don’t remember names. But he talked fast and about 7 things we should be doing. It made me realize that I need to start taking better care of myself physically here as well... no voy a regressar gorda voy a empezar a cuidarme! (I’m not going to return fat, I’m going to start to take care of myself.) (That will be a tough one, right?!)

Alright, so my companion is Hna. Velarde. She is from Bolivia (but everyone thinks she is from Japan). I was going to tell you guys that she was from China and is learning Spanish as well but... like I said I’m trying to be a better human after conference, and lying is not in-line with those goals.  She has 14 months and is a CHAMPION! People I LOVE this lady! We work so hard together and laugh our stinkin’ brains out!  We don’t waste one minute! I just like her. She kinda reminds me of T...(my best little Asian buddy at home) and not just cuz’ she looks Asian haha hahahahaha!

This week, it rained buckets. Usually this would be a time to go for our boots, but we really wanted to visit this lady. SO we literally walked through a river.  I can’t describe it exactly to you, but it was, for reals,  a river in the street. But we just did it and laughed and got to our visit, which was actually really special. SO yes.... Hermana Velarde and I  like each other and get along quite well so far. But who knows, in one week she may turn into the hulk, for now I am enjoying my little ‘Japanese’ lady!

The first week of the change is usually a little slow and also we had less lessons scheduled because of General Conference. But if you want to hear a cool story about prayer, this week we put a fecha (date) with Brandon for baptism on the 25th.   WAHOOO! But in order for him to be baptized this day,  he has to attend church three times with his mom, and we only have 3 Sundays until this date. Well his mom had work and couldn’t get it off. We prayed every night that she would be able to find a way and on Sunday morning,  like 30 minutes before conference,  she called us and said she could come! WOOT WOOT! True--prayer works people.

So this week our joy in Los Campos is the Elders had a wedding!  They threw it together in one day. It was SO special! Just like a movie! In one day they called a lady who does weddings for free here, we helped make some streamers and balloons and the bride just wore a white dress she had in her room. The Relief Society President made sandwiches and we picked some flowers from outside of the church. In all, we had about 10 people there. We sang Families Can be Together Forever , and BOOM, they were married. They are getting baptized next week. AH it was so cute!

Also this week I have been studying a lot about desires. I studied the scriptures and the general authority’s talks.   Really SO many things in our church talk about desires and how important our desires are. I know without a doubt that as long as we have a desire to do something, it will eventually happen, God wants to help us. If we truly have Christ written in our hearts, and our desires to serve him are pure, then making decisions and prioritizing things will be a lot easier because we will understand where we stand with Him and what He expects of us. I've been asking myself a lot, “What are my desires truly?!” Obviously,  I always say that I want to follow Christ and be obedient, but if I'm doing worldly things or not really following His commandments, where are my desires?

I love you all and I hope you are all like Pres Monson said-- motivated to be a little bit kinder, work a little bit harder and make a change in the next six months! (Which by the way is just about my year mark... thats SOOOO weird.)

Les ammooooo! ( I LOOOOOOVE you all.)

This little fruit is called Lecha and is DELICIOUS!!!!!!!
Thats all..