Monday, March 28, 2016

Celebrating Easter and 2 Months in the Mission with completos!

So this week! Rollercoaster again! I really do feel like my Spanish is regressing.... but I am trying so hard to be so diligent with speaking it! But I am not too concerned. I know it will come! My comp tells me how advanced I am like every day but I want to be so much better!!!! Anyways! The work this week was a little rough... I felt like I was doing everything by myself basically. All the finding, all the planning, all the leading, and I had to remind my comp to make all the calls and stuff, but it’s all good! It´s just letting me learn how to be a missionary super-fast! Ha-ha, I love talking to the people. That´s the best part for sure because when I am talking to the people I am not thinking about myself at all! And I feel like I am actually starting to build relationships with people!!! This is good, I tell you!!! 

I know everything happens for a reason and God has a perfect plan! I see his hand in my life every day! For example, we were late to an appointment this week, so we got out of the house a little later, but it was okay! Because we got outside and I started riding my bike, and this guy started talking to me in English, but like really good English! It totally caught me off-guard, but It turns out this Chileano had lived in the states for years and married a woman from Vermont. Anyways, they are in Chile right now for a couple years for work, and he explained that they already have their religion and everything but his wife gets lonely sometimes, and like wants to talk in English to Americans so he asked if we could stop by sometime just to talk to her and be friends and we were like YES!!!!!!! And especially me because I´m like “Sista ,I know what you are going through!!!!”  Yeah, so we are going to visit her in a couple days!!! God´s timing, man. He knows!!! He always knows!!! 

I had a great Easter yesterday!!! And two-months- in-the-mission birthday! So double whammy!!!! Ha-ha, Soooooo good!!! We had a really spiritual relief society lesson! Just what I needed to hear! God knows me so well, man! He´s always looking out for me! Ha-ha- But the best thing was this lady in our ward wanted to have the missionaries over for completos last night! My first Chilean completo! Best way to celebrate the special occasions, right? So that was fun! We laughed.... oh, we laughed.... so hard!!!! It was good for the soul!!!! But really, I am so glad I get to testify of my Savior and his suffering, death, resurrection and atonement every day! Because for me, It´s like Easter every day! There are always chances to testify!!! 

Okay Mom, a couple things! First of all thanks for the valentine you sent me!!! I absolutely loved it! And tell the little Crabtree boy thank you for his card from cub scouts! It was so sweet!!!! Also, MOM YOU ARE GETTING SURGERY?!?!?!?!?! WHAT THE HECK?!?!?!?! YEAH DUH, I WILL BE PRAYING FOR YOU!!!!! But you got this! Ha-ha, I am so glad they found it early!!!! Also, I want a copy of your Women’s Conference talk when it’s done!!!!! You inspired me, so I am staring this little notebook of little victories and mini miracles so I can carry it with me and write down the little things I am grateful for everyday!!! All the mini miracles!!! So thank you!!!! 

Okay questions!!! 
1. Yes I am happy!  Well, most the time! But the mission is going great! It´s really hard sometimes, but it´s okay because I am learning and growing! I hope! But I am really grateful to be here right now, and have the chance to be a part of this great work! 

2. Compy is good! She’s a good listener which is great for me. She’s not super organized, but it’s all good! We had a good inventory and we are going to be super workers this week! I’m pumped!!! 

3.Okay, our investigators! We have two progressing right now, M. and R.  R. has a date for the 9th of April, and he is super awesome! He was out of town this whole week though, so we didn´t have the chance to teach him, but his is still praying every day and still has the desire to be baptized, which is great! M. is progressing well, and she explained that she wants a testimony of her Savior, Jesus Christ before she commits to baptism.  Which is great, because she really wants to know for herself!! The problem with her is she likes to attend the other ward with her aunt, and she has problems with one of the young women in our ward too, which is a bummer. But we are planning a Noche de Hogar with some other investigators around her age, which should help get her excited! We have other investigators but I don´t know much about them yet, hopefully we can help them progress this week! It´s a lot of contacting with not very many results half the time, but it’s good! We have been helping lots of menos activos. Oh and Hermana S. ! I love her with my whole heart! Please put her name on the temple prayer roll if you can! She is a widow, with 4 younger kids, and she is SO STRONG!!! I love her!!! But she could use some prayers!!! 

4. Okay, the language! Well! I am getting better at using the subjunctive! But overall I kind think my Spanish is regressing a little bit and I need to use it more. This week I have a goal to speak Spanish always except for the hour in the morning and hour at night that we have to get ready. Hopefully that will help me progress! It’s just so hard when my comp talks in English all the time to me but I tell her I want to talk in Spanish. But it’s okay, I will learn!!! But don’t worry! I am getting there!!!! 

But that’s like it for now I think! I am SO excited for General Conference!!!!! 

I am so so so so SO happy that you guys are all having great lives!!! I love you all so much!!!

And thank you for sharing about Aliyah’s baptism!!! That’s so cool! That makes me so happy!!!! 

Thanks Mommy! I love you!!! I am learning and growing and changing and happy. I love you!!! 

Fav scripture find this week:  Jacob 4:7 “Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is by his grace and his condescension unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things!”

All my love, 

Hermana Christensen 

Monday, March 21, 2016

Give me mountains to climb! :)


Wow, what a week!!! I decided that mission life is the life for me!!! That´s for sure!!! I love this place more and more every day!!! VIVA CHILE!!!!

That being said, this week was definitely a rollercoaster!!!! Like my favorite EFY song, the Lord is definitely giving me "Mountains to Climb!" Ups and downs all the way!!!

It all started with last Wednesday at zone conference, President takes us into his office and SURPRISE!!! Special changes!!!! So what happened was.... A creepy old man was creeping on one of the hermanas, so she and my trainer got switched, so now I have a new trainer that doesn’t know my sector at all, so I have been leading her around and introducing her to members and investigators, and leading the planning sessions after one week! haha and I don’t speak Spanish but hey it’s kinda fun!!! But who would have thought!!! haha

My new comp is taller than me! Hermana Darley from Cali! She’s pretty awesome!!! And we get along great!!! Things are good in Machali C! After lots of tears and sad goodbyes, many happy times are ahead!!!
Sporting matching Chile beanies with Hermana Flores

This week I feel like I have really started connecting with people and getting into the mission!!! And my personality is coming back!! haha I felt kinda like a lost puppy the first week, but now that I can speak better! I’m the same old spaz once again! No wait... a more spiritually refined spaz... ;) hahaha

I don’t have lots of time, but if there´s one thing I’ve learned while I’ve been here it is that God’s plan is perfect, He knows me perfectly, and everything that happens, happens for a reason! Even if we can’t see it right at first!!!! Basically, he's the number one homie! :)

Funny moments from the week:
I am officially known as Fruitillita :) That is my name! Hermana Fruitillita... 'cuz I guess I’m just a happy lil' strawberry!!! :)

We were taking a picture with Hermana Flores and our investigator and, and I’m kinda really tall down here... and my head got cut off in like half the pictures!!! hahaha, good stuff man!! :)

I have a new best friend, she’s two, and I know we are best friends 'cuz she’s being potty- trained right now, and in the middle of lunch she brought me her poop to show me! hahaha  I was dying!!!

My theory.... if you don´t understand what they are saying... just laugh it out!!! Works every time!! But people are starting to catch on so every time I laugh they now think I don’t understand!!! hahaha

Well this little missionary is doing great down here in Chile!!! Hope you all have a wonderful week!!! And remember...
"Be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you" 1 Peter 3:15


All my love,
Hermana Christensen :)
Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Wow!!! LOTS has happened!

***In this week’s letter from Ashley she just answered all the questions that I asked her and that took all of her time, so is what her letter consists of!  One thing that she didn’t mention in this letter, but I read from a journal entry that she sent me, is that she committed someone to baptism on her first day!  His name is R. and he is dating a member of the church and he has gone to church several times, but hadn’t ever received the missionary lessons.  So that was an exciting first day!

WOW!!!!!! LOTS has happened!!!!! These past two weeks have been some of the hardest of my life, but so good! Weeks of learning for sure!!! So much learning! Okay, so were to begin!!!! It was so sad to leave the MTC!!!! Aw man, it was sooooo sad, but so exciting at the same time!!! And man, missions are like so different from what I thought, but it’s all good!!! Our proselyting day at the CCM was awesome!!!! We got contact information from some people, and I gave out my first Book of Mormon when we did street contacting!!!!  I went to the Santiago Sur Mission to proselyte. But I am so glad I am in Rancagua and not Santiago Sur because Rancagua is WAY prettier!!!!! Aw man, I love it here! It’s so, so pretty!!!!

So to answer your questions!

1. YES! I am happy! And feeling good! There is no doubt in my mind that I am supposed to be here in Rancagua Chile. My mission president says EXACTLY what I need to hear and he has already helped me so much and it hasn’t even been a week ! But wow. Missions are crazy!!! I have already learned so much about the gospel, the atonement, and Spanish too! And people in general!!!! The people here are so nice! Most of the time! They are very generous and always give us water or juice on hot days!
And guess what?  I’m in a biking sector! So we get to wear these pretty stunning helmets and wait for it.... Construction reflector vests after 5 o’clock!!! Dang. We are good-looking, that’s all I have to say!!!!
Hahaha but yes!!!! I am happy! And I am doing well!!! The Lord is helping me!!!! I can see him shaping me into the person I want to be! It’s quite amazing if you ask me!!!

2. My area ROCKS!!!!! I am in Machala C.  It’s like a little suburb of Rancagua! And my area is pretty big!!!! That’s why we have bikes!!! But it’s so pretty!!! We ride our bikes on the little path and I just look at the nature and fields and smile, because this area is perfect for me!!! And my companion is probably this sweetest little Peruvian I ever did meet! (Emphasis on the little... hahaha).  Yeah, she’s tiny!!! But so full of faith! She is a great teacher, really good at expressing her love for me, and I have already learned so much from her! I hope I can be as good as a missionary as she is someday!!!!! Aw, I love her!!! She’s such a little spaz!! She’s 19 too, and she calls me Fruitillita!! (Little strawberry) Ha-ha, I love her!!!

3. Language. Wooooo. I was like first day.... I GOT THIS and then we got in the lessons and talking to people and I was like… I DONT GOT THIS!!!! Ha-ha, but its okay!!! I’ve probably learned more this week than in the whole CCM experience!!! Ha-ha, it’s good! Little by little !!!! I keep reminding myself it’s the first week, but my comp makes me talk in lessons and contacts so lots of embarrassing moments, but they are all for my benefit!!! Ha-ha

4. My apartment is SO NICE!!!! It’s actually a house in this cute little neighborhood!! So funny, here they have neighborhoods, and they build the exact same house like 50 times, and that’s the neighborhood! Ha-ha, so I have the same house as like 50000000000000 other people in my neighborhood! It’s soooooo nice though! A cute little thing!!! I also live with Hermana Cook from D7 in the CCM and her comp, Hermana Almalki!!! LOVE THEM!!!! And I'm so glad I do! Hermana Almalki speaks amazing English and so that’s super helpful!!!! because my comp hardly speaks any! But no worries! I'm training her!!! We get to use the dictionary a lot to communicate between each other! Hahahaha

5. Please pray for M. Dominguez, she is supposed to be baptized next week but didn’t come to church this week! But that’s all I can think of at the momento! She has such a difficult family life, so that would be helpful!!!

Okay and some things I would like to say, Ecclesiastes 3:5 was written for missionaries... It’s so funny please read it!!! Hahahaha

And some other random things about my area: There is a TON of dogs here!!!!! Gotta love it!!!! I only almost die like everyday... Its fine!!!! Hahahah! Oh yeah, and all the men say hello and try to hit on us because I'm obviously gringo.... hahaha, it’s super funny! We will be riding down the street and some guys will say something to us and my comp is like, do you understand? And I’m like no, and she’s like, it’s better that way!!! Hahaha! Oh, I love Machali! So funny!

Oh, and they feed us SO MUCH food! I never eat dinner and sometimes not breakfast cuz they feed us so much! I’m pretty sure I’m going to be fat.... Haha, but you only misiĆ³n once right? Ha-ha!

Okay that’s all I have time for! Love you all! Have a great week!!!!!

All my love,
Hermana Christensen

Also read 1 Peter 1 because it’s my NEW FAV CHAPTER!!!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

I got to Rancagua safely!

Hey Momma!!!!

I just have like two minutes here!  I just wanted to let you know I got to Rancagua safely!  My president is awesome! I am learning that I don’t speak any Spanish, but my comp is super nice and she’s from Peru. She only speaks Spanish so I will learn quickly!  We’ve got lots of appointments today so I gotta go, but I love you! The adventure begins!  Haha! We’re gonna invite someone to baptism tonight!

 Love you Momma! And fam!!! Keep the prayers coming!!!!

Ashley & one of Glenn's co-workers daughters in matchy dresses at the MTC!

Ashley with President and Sister Warne as she begins her mission in Rancagua!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

D7 Straight to Heaven

WOW!!!!! What a week!!!! Can't believe this is my last week in the MTC!!! But this week has been the best one yet!!!! Annnnnnnnnnnd guess what? That's right, YOU'RE LOOKING AT THE NEW SISTER TRAINING LEADER!!!!!!! hahaha Isn't that cool? I thought it was pretty cool! After the other group left President called us to be sister training leaders!!! It's so fun! We don't actually have to do much but I LOVE SERVING!!! It’s great!!! 
Ashley and her comp with 2 of their MTC teachers!

Her district with one of their MTC teachers

Some of the sisters with another one of their MTC teachers

So some highlights from this week.... our new roommates won't let us speak English!! haha so funny! I have had several near-death experiences with stray dogs at the park.... Seriously, the Lord is testing me.... haha  I won three games of speed with the missionaries though one day, so I still got it!!! I saw a friend from Jr. High at the temple, she's serving in the Santiago West mission!!! Our district motto is “D7 Straight to Heaven” (Oh yeah... who came up with that?) We have an ice cream count in our district to see how many ice creams we can eat before we leave... It’s been 4 meals and we are over thirty... haha Great goal, amiright? I have the BEST COMP EVER!!! BEST PRESIDENT EVER!!! BEST DISTRICT EVER!!!! BEST LIFE EVER!!!!!! Yep. Living the dream!!! 

I don't have much time this week but I love you all!!! I can feel myself learning so much and I love this gospel with all my heart!!! Remember guys! It's all about Christ!!! And go look up D&C 75:17 because it says my name in the scriptures!!!!! Pray hard and the Lord will take care of you!!! 

 ¨At home or abroad, on the land or the sea, as thy days may demand, so thy succor shall be¨ 

Love you all! Have a great week!!! 

All my Love, 
Hermana Christensen 

**And since her letter was shorter this week, I am going to add her responses to questions that she was asked for our ward’s Missionary Month:

1.  What has been the hardest part of your mission so far?
 Hardest part so far..... I think the hardest part for me so far is feeling inadequate.  It’s hard to speak a new language and try to learn everything you can about the gospel at the same time and I had a hard time at first because I  didn't feel like I was good enough.  But you just have to remember you are called of God and He is sending you angels all the time to help bear you up! Everyone here in the MTC is here to help you and even when you are feeling down, the Lord is always on your side!! 

2. What could you have done to better prepare for your mission?
READ THE SCRIPTURES!!!!!!! That seriously is like the number one thing I wish I would have done more!!!! Learn to love the Book of Mormon because it is the greatest book in the whole entire world!!! The scriptures always bring the spirit and help answer and support so many questions!!! I am constantly drawing upon the scriptures for strength! They are the greatestl!!! 

3. How has your mission changed you?
Wow I've only been out for a month but I feel like I just am a whole new person!  I am learning for this first time how to REALLY be converted to the Lord and what it really means to have Christ engraven on your countenance.  I have felt my heart change completely! All I want to do is serve the Lord and make Him happy! That's all I want to do! And I am working as hard as I can to share Christ's love and bring others to him, because this gospel is so true!!! I just am so happy!!!! The church is so true!! 

4. What can you tell our youth to help encourage them to serve a mission?
 Everyone should go on a mission!!! Oh my heavens, this is the best decision I have ever made in my life!!! I am really learning how to be the happiest I can be! Nothing will bring you greater joy than serving the Lord!!! And besides that, it's so fun to learn from different cultures and meet so many amazing people!!!! I have such a love for everyone I am serving with!!! 

5.What are a couple of fun facts about the area you are serving in?
 Fun facts, They eat yogurt with their cereal instead of milk, and they loooooooove hot dogs down here in Chile!!!! Hot dogs with everything!!!! The seasons and school year are completely opposite down here so we are in the middle of summer here in Chile!!! 

Sporting a fancy hairdo!