Sister Jessalyn Harrison

Sister Jessalyn Harrison
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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Aug in finding or finding fun?

This week was full of finding fun in the work. My district leader
challenged me to have fun this week, he is funny! So as we walked from
Buccanan all the way to Sturgeon in  Winnipeg (look it up on google
map its pretty far) we did lots of different things to have fun. We
asked people what they like about summer since it finally seemed to get
here this week with the humdity at 88% at one point and the sun
always out and blazing! We ran into these two boys twice and started
talking about bible camp and asked them to sing one of the songs for
us... they politely declined, what a shame! I'm sure it would have sounded
good. We pretended to be lost all day so we could ask for directions
and then invited people to learn more about Christ (it is more
successful than you would think). We also ate on our adventure at a
place that was kind of like cafe rio.. its called burrito speldido...
it was pretty good!
Then we moved to walking by the church because we felt we needed to be
there before a relief society activity on canning (still dont know how
to can one bit but im a really really good sampler) and after no
success of finding anyone to do a tour with we went in to ask one of
the members if we could just pracitce our skills... well it just so
happened that one of the members brought a non member with them and
we did a church tour with them right on the spot... talk about member
presence as we had six members ready to share their testimony on the
sacrament as we ended in the chapel. it was super powerful!
We roasted marshmallows with an investigator for family home evening
after having her show us a candle analogy... and yes we did roast them
on the candle... but you should try the analogy... okay so put a
little bit of water on the plate so it evenly covers the plate but
doesnt drown it, then put a candle in the middle of the plate and
light it, now for the best part put a cup (perferably NOT PLASTIC... i
would use glass) on top of the candle and see what happens.... it is
an analogy about the atonment... the plate is us, the water is our
sins, the candle is our savior, and the cup is repentence.... let me
know what you think. I'm not going to give away what happens but i can
bear my testimony that i know the atonement is really and that we can
rely on our savior for anything.
Okay so now we are at the day of a baptism for an 11 girl from a part
member family in our ward... SUCH AN INCREDIBLE SERVICE! but we
decided to street contact and part contact around the church to
conserve miles on our car. So this one lady tried avoiding us... a lot of people
try, not many succeed anymore, and this time it was the elements that
stepped in.... her bike hit the curb wrong and it sent her flying! The
poor lady was probably in her sixties and we helped her up and just
'happened' to be by the church... we offered to go and clean her up so
we can send her on her way and she agreed to that... although she
declined our card saying she already had a religion she was
really appreciative of our friendliness and it was a great positive
contact for the church in that ladys life.
Okay last highlight of the week. There is this fifteen year old girl
who comes every sunday on her own to church... She lives a good 20
minute drive away from the church and an even longer bus ride. As she
started coming more frequently i knew she needed to be taught...
unfortunately due to areas we were unable to teach her so the Waverly ward
elders took on that responsiblity for us but without fail every sunday
she asks me to sit by her, tells me what the elders taught her, and
her best news this week was she is getting baptized and wants to get
baptized in the St James ward! Her date is set for september 7 and we
are all thrilled and working hard on making sure she is comfortable
and taken care of... she was seeking truth looking for temples on road
trips, asking questions, reading the book of mormon, and attending
church and she knows for herself its true... its so incredible! I LOVE
love you all have a great week and keep me updated on all the fun
things you are up to... it makes my week!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Aug 19... talents

So this week it felt really hard to be an effective missionary because
we had found no one new to teach and none of our investigators
attended sacrament. We had spent hours tracting and street contacting
trying to find individuals who are prepared and desirous to hear about
the restored gospel. When I was talking to Elder Hatch (my new
district leader, who is amazing) He asked me what I liked to do. That
question really threw me back and when I asked "you mean now or when
I was at home." He told me to tell him what I 'Jessalyn Harrison' liked
to do when I was home. I couldn't remember.... I couldn't remember what
brought me the most joy when I was at home and that kind of bugged me.
I knew that being with my family and friends doing the things they
liked to do really made me happy. I could remember going rollerblading
with Kade right before I left because he wanted to take me for my
birthday or being on a tube with Jace as his smile (goofy as it is)
was enjoying every minute on the water. I remember cooking and eating
as a family and the happiness I felt being together and the love that
was there. I remember going shopping with Kaylynn watching her try on
so many clothes because new stuff made her feel good and sun bathing
with Summer as we enjoyed the lovely vitamins that came from the
beautiful round thing in the sky. I remember playing basketball with
dad and watching the proud papa smile come out when one of his kids
succeeded in something they did.... That stuff makes me happy. When I
tried to apply all of that stuff to missionary work I got a little
stuck. I couldn't go tubing with investigators as much fun as that
sounds. Trying on clothes is a pday thing and i don't really even have
time for that on my own let alone to find some poor soul in the
changing room and ask them if they want to receive the restored
gospel. I am cooking and eating but that can only go so far before my
waste band gets bigger and no one wants that to happen. All in all I
was stumped so I decided to take it to the lord. All week I have been
studying about gifts and talents and these are the references I have
liked the most... I encourage you to read them but I will explain a
little more why after them so don't give up reading just yet :)
Matthew 14:15-20 (the lord feeds 5000)
D&C 46:11-33 (Gifts of the spirit)
D&C 60:1-3, 13
Matthew 25:15-30 (parable of the talents)
3 Nephi 14:9-11
3 Nephi 13:19-21, 32-33 (seek ye first the kingdom of god)
Matthew 5:14-16 (let your light so shine)
It all started with the story of how the lord feeds 5000. I heard an
interpretation of this story that I hadn't heard before. The lord was
able to do miracles but when he told his disciples to not turn away
the crowd so everyone could eat the disciples had to show their
limitations. They had to tell the savior that couldn't feed the crowd
with what they had. It was only when they turned everything to the
lord that EVERYONE was able to be filled. We may not have to feed 5000
people physically but spiritually there is a world to feed and we have
limitations. There is only so much we can do on our own but through
god and through our loving savior we can do anything. We are capable
of miracles that could and will feed millions of people! So I
continued on my search to find what gifts I was able to give back to
the lord. In d&c I found a few gifts that stood out and that I know I
have experienced in my life. But I began to fear that idleness of not
knowing how to show my talents or use the gifts god has given me. I
didn't want to be as the servant with only one talent who got it taken
away because he hid it. That's when 3 Nephi really helped. I learned
that if I set my sights on the kingdom of God first, if I rely
completely on my savior I will not fail! I may not be the light of the
savior (matthew 5:15-16) but I am a mirror. I am a precious mirror the
lord has prepared to be able to show light. It is only when I get
closer to my savior and understand what he has given me that I will be
able to allow the light of Christ to reflect off of me and warm the
hearts of others. So make sure you point out peoples gifts and
talents. Complement others and improve your own skills because we are
all mirrors that have been sent to reflect the lords light. We are all
sent to be lighthouses to help others come home to their heavenly
kingdom and we will feel the light ourselves as we help others get
Love you all.... Have a fantastic week! and remember you are special,
you are important, and you are truly dear and near to my heart. Thank
you for making me happy!

Aug 12...another week of change

As a missionary we are always on our toes... This week was transfers again and I swear they are coming by faster than they are starting, time just SOARS when you are on a mission.
    This week i have officially deemed myself the preteen missionary. We got a new investigator this week as a referall and low and behold she is 13. That means more than 75% of who I am teaching are under 16 years old. I guess working with teenagers is something i have a skill in but i think I need to find out what it is so i can be more helpful to these wonderful girls! I love each of them so much and the one we met this week speaks french, they all have different stories and different backgrounds and the gospel will help them differently just like everyone else but it never changes and it never will! they will always be loved by a father in heaven!
   We still taught some of sister rush's investigators this week and with all of these young investigators we have had to get creative with our teaching. We played a matching game that talked about the blessings the gospel brings to the family. it had like for example love, with a picture of hearts, or wholesome recreational activities with fun things to do... and so on and so forth. They really enjoyed it and they were able to state the blessings back which is better than normal :) games are the way to go when teaching those with short attention spans (no wonder i have been learning so much haha)
   We had dinner at a members this week and she couldnt decide what to make so she made two dinners. We had chicken and mashed potatoes as well as spaghetti.... it was delicious!
   Then transfer days came and me and sister christensen dropped off sister rush who became the first walking sisters in the mission.... i dont want that job no sir!!!! me and my lovely car zerek will just go on our way happy and healthy!
    We did ride the bus this week though... that was interesting and SUPER FUN! We met some nice people who had mercy on two 20 year old girls who had NO IDEA what they were doing! We made it with little trouble due to our helpers to down town where we had lunch with a member and her coworker who is looking into the gospel. We met them on the 18 floor and they were determined that i should look out of the window because i dont like heights and low and behold i took a picture of it...but i left my cord at home so i will send it another time. We then went to a poutine factory where they added so much to their poutine im not sure it was poutine anymore. Mine had chili, sour cream, quacomole, jalepeneos, fries, cheese, and gravy... it was the weirdest mix ever... probably wont ever do that kind of poutine again but it was a fun experience. On the bus we met this girl named nasra... We then saw her again at mcdonalds and we followed her in and she asked us to eat with her and her parents... We talked for a little bit and gave her our number, we hope she calls one day, she is from india or something but her family was really nice and we dont think its a coincidence we met her twice.
   We got a car full of supplies for the office... Zerek was all the way to the ground, way too full but we are all so grateful for the generosity of the members.... we might just use trucks not cars from now on.
    We had lunch with the ysa sisters and we got bored the night before so made a nice fancy set up for it! It was a lot of fun we have decided to start doing it regularly to help with friendship between sisters.
   We taught relief society and had to do the impossible task of combining lesson 13 and 14... that was hard but it seemed to work out okay because the spirit was there.
   We met a guy who was a theologist and tatoo artist and old religious book collector and protector... It was an intersting conversation and he said he would read the book of mormon and pray if we gave him a month... i guess we will see how serious he was in a month.
   At church there is this girl who comes ever week. She is fourteen and she comes on her own from a different ward to go to church. She wants to take the missionary lessons and even looked for a temple when she went to texas... She is incredible and we hopefully will have the proper missionaries over there this week! She is so great and she said she was even coming next week to church.... SO GOOD!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Aug 6...being creative

So I know that this week is on a tuesday instead of a monday... yesterday was a civic holiday so all the libraries were closed which is slightly unfortunate but it just means i have more to add to the letter this week and it might be a little smaller next week :)
   We had FHE with a part member family this week and that was a lot of fun! We played Book of Mormon bingo and it was such a neat way to get use to the names and all the different things included in the book of mormon. Since a majority of our investigators are kids right now we are getting better at keeping things fun and simple and book of mormon bingo is a great way to do that.

   We had a miracle story this week with a lady named F***. She is a former investigator (meaning she was taught by missionaries and for her it was like 8 years ago) we have been calling her once a week and asking if there is anything we can do for her and usually end up saying a prayer with her on the phone. We then were able to stop by and give her brownies and she let us set up a time where we could come back and teach her. We have taught her twice since then and have another appointment later this week! Its been great to see the lords hands in this work!

   We have been working with one of sister rush's investigators and I LOVE HER! Her and her family are so great! This week we learned how to follow the prophet and played prophet says... kind of like simon says but with a prophet.... and it stuck with them which was great! We also went to teach just the mom so me and sister christensen got to play in the spray pad with the kids for distraction... it was a lot of fun! She also attended a baptism with us and seems to be progressing from the daily contact we have been making.

   We have been working with a couple of less active members that live on the northern part of our area! One of them had a stroke over a year ago and still seems to be recovering from that, the other we have been painting her ramp (sister C****) i have actually talked about her a lot. Well they both came to church this week it was great! sister C*** actually gave the other lady a ride, the ward mission leader called me sneaky and gave me thumbs up for getting two sisters there with one ride :) .... It was great to see them at church, it really made my day!

   We found a unique way of finding this week. We drew the plan of salvation in chalk at the park and actually walked a guy through it teaching him each part and then giving him a book of mormon and a pamphlet. It was such a different way of looking at things but it was really fun! I got a video of it that i will send home the next time i send my card home. We did this when we had exchanges with sister kunzler and we also celebrated sister christensen's birthday this week... lots of colorings and treats you would think i was in primary again.

       I had exchanges with just sister rush and we were able to find my momentum again so im ready to go to work and not ever give up! While on exchanges we taught one of my spanish investigators and luckily sister rush was with me because we found out her mom was sick and she was leaving for el salvador for a month. She said she was going to take the book of mormon with her on the trip so hopefully she is ready to be testified to by the spirit because it is such a powerful book! Sister rush also mowed a lawn in a skirt for service as a finding activity... we were able to talk about baptism with the lady whose lawn it was but it was still funny to see grass up and down her legs. We also met a chiropractor name dr. bob. I was able to relate the gospel to his work because i knew what he did. It was the neatest thing and i know that the spirit was truly talking because i cant even remember my phone number for my mission phone sometimes.

   I have a new tracting area... its called charleswood in winnipeg and im really excited for this. I havent been able to actually work there yet but i know that the lord will bless my efforts where ever im at as long as i am obedient and do good things with my time.

   We helped with a member baptism on Monday and the dad doing the ordinance forgot to pull out the plug.... one of the people helping said i should be able to do it so i offered to help and realized there was NO WAY i could do that without getting soaken... that didnt stop sister rush. She jumped in, pulled it out, then realized all her extra dry clothes from pday activity was in the car..... she can be crazy sometimes but at least she has fun doing it.

    Learning to have fun is the key! Fun can be found everywhere if you just look hard enough. there was a quote that says laughter is the shortest distance between two people and i want you to know that as you send things that are funny and make you laugh, I feel closer than I know I am! thank you for everyone's encouragement and love! you are all incredible!

July 29...exchanges

This week was full of adventures! Sister Rush joined our
companionship in the last couple of week so we get to do exchanges as
she goes around and trains the other sisters. I feel like every day
this week has been different due to exchanges which means there is a
lot to tell you about :) im going to try to seperate it by exchanges
and events thats how crazy our week has been.
   The first exchange we did was with sister bennette who is serving
in gateway/london ward! she is so cute! She is a hard worker and always
has a positive attitude. We went tracting because we are just trying
so hard to increase our teaching pool and we tracted into a phillipino
man who let  us teach him. We read the introduction to the book of
mormon and said we could go back (spoiler alert he no showed the
appointment) but it was super good to be let in and be able to testify
to the truths we go around and knock about to share. We also got to
have dinner with President and Sister Thomas! That was an experience
in itself... there were a lot of elders and sisters there (s. wu, s.
kunzler, s. bennette, s. christensen, me, e. crake, e. olguin, e.
moojalsky, and e. barfuss) It was nice to be in a home where the
spirit was so strong and to be able to spend the night listening to
Presidents stories of meeting president Hinckley and talking on the
phone with elder Holland and his first date with sister Thomas! Our
mission president is truly incredible. Then we got to do the daunting
task of TEACHING president and his wife since my companionship was the
only ones who came prepared with a message.... talk about intimidating
but everyone left with a smile on their face so we must be okay
   Then I went on exchanges with the ysa sisters so it was me, sister
kunzler, and sister wu! they are incredible sisters im so glad i got
to spend 24 hours getting to know them better since me and sister wu
are only a transfer apart and sister kunzler is going home this
transfer.... the thing about transfers is you always end up wanting
them to last longer but it just makes you appreciate the experiences
you have. We got to have an appointment with this chinese girl. It
was their first appointment with her and i got to sit in. She was
street contacted because Elder Nelson went and played the violin on
the street to advertise for the musical fireside (thats a whole nother
story in itself) but the point is she came to church because of it and
now is being taught. On the first lesson she commited to being
baptized and her date is set for aug 25!!!!! She went to church again
this week and even bore her testimony is RS. She is super prepared its
incredible to see the lords work. We also went street contacting for 5
hours because the YSA sisters cant tract because they cover the whole
city and everybody elses area. But it was so much fun! We met some
people who talked about wanting to come to the fireside, met a former
who hasnt been taught since he moved, and probably passed out way more
than 50 cards! I really enjoyed myself. While we were
tracting we saw this chalk board, it was a before i die chalk
board.... i wanted to write my wishes on it so bad but there was no
chalk :( but I will put it on my blog instead
Before I Die I Want.... to get married to someone for time and all
eternity, that or learn how to fly!
Kind of a classic wish but oh well what can you say the spirit
testifies to the truth haha!
We also were on this bridge that was a combined walking/train bridge...
different parts for the different
moving objects but still pretty neat and on our way back over it a
train went right by and it shook the WHOLE BRIDGE! It was so great!!!!
I probably looked like a 5 year old on christmas but having that train
pass going so fast and me being able to slow down and watch it really
brought me peace. They also took me to McDonalds and we got a happy
meal in the goal of getting a minion toy with no avail! it is just a
shame... i want a minion!
    Then it was zone conference day and WOW talk about spirit. I
encourage everyone to watch "mountains to climb" such a good mormon
message that brought tears to my eyes! Missionaries need zone
conference to remind them that they are enough! that they are called
by a prophet of god! and that it is our job to go to work and make it
all worth it! If i could sum up zone conference in one saying it would
be "If not YOU then WHO? If not NOW then WHEN?".... It is me and it is
now and i get better and better at it. I got to spend a
lot of time with Elder Barfuss too (make sure his dad hears that he
has an incredible son and i also attached a picture for both families
so mom if you could work on that that would be great!) He gave me a
blessing to help out with some stress (it just comes with the job i
guess... thank goodness for the priesthood), he polished my shoes and
oh was he so proud of them, he claims me as his cousin and we got a
picture together to prove it... Elder Barfuss is one of the new AP's
and he is just so sweet... its kind of a shame he is going home super
soon i was enjoying getting to know him, but when i make my trips to
waterton he said he would come see me and say hi! YAY FOR FAMILY
    Then it was a day with sister rush as a normal companionship which
was rare in itself this week. We had a good heart to heart and now we
are working better together and we are excited for the miracles God
has just sitting there for us as we be obedient. We also got in a car
accident... everybody is okay it was just a little fender bender (i
wasnt driving!) it wasnt until the next day when we finally had a night
to relax that we realized how sore we were. We heard that for the
winnipeg harvest (that service project that we spent so much time on)
we raised 101,000 pounds of food as a manitoba stake (having stores
match us of course) but still that is incredible! Its like skylines
canned food drive on steroids!
    Now let me tell you about sister hutchinsons day.... It started
out great we got lost on our way home SHOCKER! i really need to figure
out how to work on my directional skills. Then we stayed up super late
talking because it seemed like it had been forever since i had seen
her, but it was all worth it! I love her so much... we are going to be
friends for a long time! She came with us to a member who decided to
give us some adorable night gowns...
they were like long sleeve, to your ankle night gowns but we had a
smile on our face as we accepted the gift someone gave us. It was a
sweet gesture, who doesnt need a good night gown :) . Then we went to
a stake picnic... i got called an elder because i was able to throw a
football and play catch in a skirt ( im learning how to do a lot in a
skirt) ... but still im a sister, just a sister who can throw down! We
also helped one of sister rush's investigators organize for a garage
sell and me and sister hutchinson got to teach together again... just
like old times! but the investigators little kids, who are adorable by
the way, pounded a WHOLE CARTON OF STRAWBERRIES! Ive never seen them
be eaten so fast... green things and everything! We stopped by a less
active to see how her week was going and make sure she was coming to
church! She had an amazing experience with prayer and we were truly
blessed to be able to hear such a strong testimony.
    The musical fireside is something we have been putting a lot of
time and practise into! It turned out really good... so many people
showed up and the spirit was super strong! I wish i could have just
recorded it for you but my favorite numbers were go ye now in peace
and the hearts of the children... speaking of music mom the trek
nashville tribute cd is super good... jace would love it!
     Church was good! We are loving our ward and they are finally
getting to know us pretty good! For the talks there was a hawaiian
cowboy from idaho and he used to protect president monson! he did his
entire talk as song lyrics and it was so incredible, he didnt sing it
which is good but i was impressed with his rhyming skills. We also
went to services for the salvation army in the hospital to help out...
that was such an interesting experience and it shows that little
truths are every we just need to help those who are looking for the
full truth, the restored gospel of jesus christ. It was a good week! I
love my mission and I love all of you! be good have fun and remember
God is always there!