Monday, June 10, 2013

LOVE MY CAR

Jordyn's weekly e-mail
June 10, 2013
Serving in Puyallup, Washington
 
 
First and foremost I have news: The girl who can supposedly never get a tan has received a tan line in the dreary state of Washington. Dreams do come true kids! And big thanks to P-Day for that.
 
I LOVE MY CAR HERE SO MUCH I CAN'T EVEN EXPLAIN IT!!! I am driving a 2013 Toyota Corrola, it's gold (I named it Goldilocks), and wait for it . . . it has keyless entry!! And drives up hills like a dream! I didn't realize how much I was missing with my Honda. JoLynn can keep it. And, my companion doesn't like to drive so I get to drive it all the time. :)
 
And, every single person in Washington has a dog, I swear. When we're tracting we'll go up, knock on a door, and within two or three seconds there is always a dog barking. I've gotten pretty good at figuring out which houses have the big dogs because they're the ones with the fences around the front yard. Whenever we go up to a house with a fence though I always leave the gate open and figure out which route will get me out of there and away from the dog as quickly as possible--it usually involves a plan to push my companion to the dog and then me booking it out of there. Not to worry, it hasn't come to that yet. :)
 
Speaking of the companion, I don't think I said anything about her last week. Her name is Sister (Gentri) Kartchner [feel free to facebook stalk her :)]. She's from Harrisfield, which I guess is by North Ogden, she's been out since January, is 19, and is currently sitting on the computer next to me emailing her family. We get along great, and we're working hard.
 
Awkward tracting story time? I think we've knocked into five or six doors now and introduced ourselves as, "Hi! We're Missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, have you ever met Mormons before?" and then the response is "Yes actually, I am one." Ha ha, It still makes me laugh every time I think about it. Then we usually do the awkward laugh and say something about how we're both new to the area and still getting to know the members. Good times. The best and most awkward situation is when we're knocking on a door, no one answers, but then the car pulls up into the driveway of the house that we're standing at. They stay in the car because they don't want to talk to us, we walk away because no one answered the door, and no one makes eye contact because this whole situation is super awkward. Gotta love being a missionary :)
 
I think Heavenly Father is really trying to teach me a patience lesson these first couple of weeks. There's been a bunch of stuff going on with one of our investigators (more on that later), but more importantly, the drivers out here in Washington are SO SLOWWWW! My goodness, the speed limit on the freeway is only 60, and people usually go under it! Good Heavens, we were talking about miracles with some Elders last night and one of them said that it was a miracle that he hasn't flipped anyone off in a while (he's slightly disobedient), and I was thinking that it was a miracle that I haven't screamed at anyone when I'm driving because they all go so slow. And there's a TON of traffic here (like, State Street during rush hour all the time), which tends to raise my stress level as well.The roads are also super  confusing--Mom and Dad, thank you so much for the GPS, because I would be so lost and confused without it.  
 
Let's see, we had zone conference last Wednesday. It was awesome! We talked a lot about goals and planning and how when we plan something and it's in line with Heavenly Father's plan, things happen. Sister Kartchner and I have a goal for six baptisms this month, so we'll see what happens!
 
We also talked a lot about the Restoration at zone conference. I loved it, because that is my absolute favorite lesson to teach. Study JSH 1:16-17. Read it, pray about it, learn and love what happened in those verses--because it really did happen. We had to memorize it for zone conference and because of that those are two of my favorite verses now. There's so much to learn about the nature of God, how you can overcome the power of Satan, and there is a spirit and power that comes with those verses that you don't get anywhere else. After we teach the first lesson we're supposed to commit the person to baptism because the Spirit is always so strong when you read those verses, and can really testify that what these dumb nineteen year old kids are saying is true. One of our AP's was talking to us and said that we're not perfect teachers, but because this message is so true, we don't have to be.
 
Amanda and Cassidee: Some lady I was talking to on her porch brought up Safehaven, and ended up telling me the whole story. No need to see it now :)
 
And also, Washington water is gross. Like, I would take Arizona water over the water here. It also smells slightly weird (not the water), but I'm getting used to it.
 
Aight, investigator time.
 
I don't know if I mentioned anything about a woman named Cindy, but we knocked into her and she seemed super interested. Her son converted to mormonism a while back, married a mormon girl, but her dad didn't like them married because he said that his son-in-law wasn't a "true mormon" and basically ended up divorcing them. It broke Cindy's heart, but she was willing to listen to us and wanted to know why her son converted to this religion (I'm really hoping he's still active).We taught her a little bit, and set up a return appointment to teach her the Restoration! We walked up to her house to go teach, and her husband told us that she had to take her grandson to the hospital. Low blow Satan! We haven't been able to get a hold of her since, but we're praying. And calling.
 
Jennifer (not my sister) honestly has one of the most complicated situations I have ever heard in my life, and if I were to try and explain, it would take me probably an hour to write it out. So, long story short, we have her on date for baptism on June 22 (pray for a miracle!), but right now she is basically homeless, living in a motel, getting kicked out of the motel on Tuesday, and is living with a guy. She obviously can't get baptized while she's living with him, buut, neither of them have jobs, and no place to go after the motel. Sister Kartchner and I know that she has a desire to be baptized, and she is willing to talk to the bishop and sort things out. This is also why I was so grateful for zone conference. We talked about how God has a plan, and that he planned out every single day. He has a plan for our Thursday, our Friday, and our June 2013. He also has a plan for Jennifer, and now all we can do is let her know that we love her and will help in any way that we can.
 
Jennifer has the cutest kids though! I've met four of them, and when were talking about the Book of Mormon one night her little girl was sitting next to me and turned to me and said, "Jesus Christ is my Savior, because He died for me." How precious! She also said that she loves him so much. There is honestly nothing better than a child's testimony.
 
Andie Gressor is one of the funniest people I have ever met. I think I said already that she's an eternal ivestigator, but I am determined to baptize her! We've had some awesome talks about faith, trials, the spirit world--Haha, she hates the term spirit prison and is absolutely terrified to go there. She also didn't want to here that the only way to not go there is to get baptized. Talk about being stuck between a rock and a hard spot. We'll get her there though. Our zone leaders keep telling us to drop her, but I know she has a testimony and that once we get her to read the BoM and keep praying, she'll get baptized.
 
I vaguely remember talking about Trish last week. We had an appointment to teach them, but when we called them before we were coming over, Trish told us that her mom was in the hospital. Again with the hospital! We had to cancel, but we went over to her house on Saturday to see if Vernice was doing better, and we talked to Trish for a while, and . . . She came to church on Sunday! Our ward got a new bishop on Sunday so Sacrament went over (by half an hour!), but I think Trish enjoyed it. It was also two farewells, so everyone was talking about the simple things that we believe, which was perfect for Trish to hear. We're gonna go over this week and talk to her more and go over the Restoration (Yay!).
 
I love you all, and hope you have a great week!
Love,
Jordyn
 
Line of the Week:
Me: I got a tan line from p-day!
Kartchner *on the phone with an Elder*: VerHoef's getting a freaking tan! I hate her so much!
I'm officially the tannest person in Washington :)
 

Monday, June 3, 2013

First Official Letter Home Dated June 3, 2013

Jordyn's weekly e-mail
June 03, 2013
MTC, Provo Ut.


News time! I flew into Tacoma (technically Seattle) on Tuesday the 28th, and got to the mission office. We had a lunch, orientation, got new companions, and then I got news along with five other missionaries that flew out with me. I am being transferred to the new Federal Way mission. I kind of had a hard time with it at first, but now I'm super excited! And when I did my mission papers, I told my bishop and stake president that I would go wherever the Lord wanted me to. Wa-Fed here I come! . . . in July!
 
My playing at the MTC went really well. I played the violin with Sister Allred (the violin got fixed thank goodness), Elder Oliphant played the cello, and Elder Jones played the piano. Everyone said we did good, so I'm crossing my fingers that we actually did.
 
I really appreciate emails, and they definitely get here faster, but letters are probably best because I only have an hour on the computer once a week(Monday is my P-day). But whatever works best for people, I just like hearing from everyone.
 
Washington is BEAUTIFUL!!!! Oh my gosh, the first day we got here we went to Puget Sound, and the trees, and the water, oh my gosh. Breathtaking.
 
We went knocking the first night! I thought I was gonna be nervous, but most people just shut the door once they see the tag. Haha, rejection has never felt so good. We also go knocking every day from 5-7 pm (our mission so cleverly named them 5-7s) and it has been an awesome experience! I guess that tracting accounts for 60% of the mission's baptisms. Go missionary work! The ward I'm in seems cool, the people are super friendly, and I have made one meal so far because everyone keeps feeding us. :)
 
Both of the sisters in my area before me were transferred out (I guess one went home because she was so sick) so my companion and I are both new to the area and are trying to figure things out. We've been trying to get a hold of the investigators, but no one is answering. We're gonna go knock on their doors this week, and see what's been going on.
 
Investigator time?
Jennifer: Has four kids (who are absolutely adorable!), and is in a really bad situation. Like, it would take me twenty minutes just to type it all out. It's crazy to hear all of these hardships that people are going through, but what I have to share with them will help them! It's awesome to already see the change the gospel has made in her life. And her kids can't say my name, so they call me Sister V. And then they make a V with their fingers. Adorable.
 
Trish and Vernice: We met them tracting, and they were super excited to see young people out talking about God (when I say young, she thought I was a sophomore in high school. I'm in college thank you very much). We talked with them a lot about the Bible, I asked them to come to church with us on Sunday, they said they might, and we asked if we could come over on Thursday to tell them a little more about the gospel. They said yes, and Trish asked us to tell her more about Joseph Smith, and how he and Christ's Church are related. WHAT?! Of course we will Trish, of course we will.
 
Andie: Oh Andie. She has been investigating the church since 2009. She's doesn't seem like she's progressing, so my companion and I are going to visit with her a couple more times and see if she'll keep our commitments and set a baptismal date, but if not we're unfortunately going to have to drop her. I only have eighteen months out here, I'm not gonna waste my time with someone who's not interested. And my Zone Leader told me something that President Weaver told him. He said that finding the elect is more important than convincing the others. I'm here to find the elect.
Her husband is also investigating the church (we haven't met him yet), but I guess he has a big problem with Joseph Smith, and the Prophet today (but he loves watching general conference . . . ) and looks up a ton of anti-mormonism stuff online. Really? I think I see his problem.
 
We also met these kids the other day. They told us that their dad is looking for a church, and then they kind of told us what he was looking for. Guess which church they described? The catholic church. Haha, just kidding (this is honestly how I amuse myself out here). They described The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! They seemed super interested, but they wanted to get their dad's permission first. We're gonna go back there this week and see if we can talk to him.
 
I've gotta hurry, but I will definitely write more next week . . . I forgot my journal this morning and I don't want to go back and get it.
 
And pictures. My companion told me about some website that I can do to put my pictures on but I don't have time to do it right now. Next week for sure, I promise!
 
And you can send letters and packages to my apartment . . . I'll be here through all of June for sure.
 
Sister Jordyn VerHoef
13011 Meridian E #C105
Puyallup, Washington 98373
 
Love you all!
Jordyn (AKA Sister Jordyn)