Monday, September 30, 2013

Happer Camper...Just a Harder Trail

To start off, still no package. Sorry. 
Secondly, let´s just get to it. I´m still in Quilicura, but we had random transfers and Hermana Ceccon went off the the sector next to mine...Lo Zonartu. (She thinks that this happened later than typical tranfers because they both had chicken pox at transfer time and that her Pres. had intended changing them then) My new companion is Hermana Diaz from Honduras. I´m Senior companion. We had intercambios this last week with our sister leader and her newbie......which was more than just a little bit of an interesting experience. The day before we had surprise transfers we literally had the best day EVER. We started using bicycles too......
But it kind of all went out the window. My companion doesn´t use bikes. I´m trying to get used to a different companion, and she´s really is great....but it´s NOT the same. And I dont like being senior companion..... before there really wasn´t a difference we just worked together. I didn´t know what to do, and she had an idea. She didn´t know what to do, I had an idea, and when we both didn´t know what to do we it´s just me. me and the guidance of the spirit and it´s super hard. She doesn´t know the sector, we teach differently, she´s used to doing things differently!!! It´s a really hard trial that he´s given me. . I´m having a pretty hard week, ....and what not but I´m doing ALL that I can to have a good attitude and be happy always. I know that I can´t do it. I literally know that I do NOT have the ability to do my mission...and the things that are required of me right now. I literally know that I CAN¨T do it...but I know that HE can. And I also know that I´m relying on Him to do it and he´s picking up my slack....the MANY things that I´m not able to do. 
Thanks for your prayers, and remember that you´re in mine. 
This week we had to let go almost all of our investigators. We completed with the mission BUSCAD goal ....we actually almost doubled the mission goal, which was a great blessing. I´m hoping to be able to continue completing with these mission goals. We found an investigator of GOLD.....and I can´t stop thinking about him. I always love EVERYONE here in Chile, and think about them and about how I can help them. but E*.....our new investigator, He is amazing....but it´s a big trial to work with him because he doesn´t believe in the power of men (I'm thinking she means God), he works a lot in his brain too....he started reading the book of Mormon though and I know that if we teach with the spirit he will be able to feel it. 
also there was a spider the size of a 50 cent piece that I found on my BED....and it was the poisonous kind. Great right!? 
Sending my love from Chile....I know that I´m in HIS will and HIS work and for that I´m happy. I´m a happy camper....I´m just on a trail with a bit more terrain and switchbacks. I love you all!!! 
Hermana Alex Johnson

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Angels and Children

To start off, I´ve never had a worse week regarding my numbers. We completed with our buscad, but barely. And as for lessons? ZERO with members. Zip. Nada. ...the last week we had a number in the CLOUDS....but I guess that´s just how the mission goes. It really is a roller coaster.

One of our only investigators, T* (the cute little grandma who´s 77 years old) is doing great!....with her health. So she´s going off to the southern part of Chile, where she has family too. I´m happy for her...but it´s SUUUUPPPER frustrating. This week, as well as everything else, everyone who had a baptismal date.....lost it. Chao. JOY.

For pday we wanted to go to the zoo. But the zoo is closed mondays we were like HEY! How lucky, we have pday tuesday this week! .....when we got there it was closed for maintenance. Haha....yep. So we visited the tourist trap, but must see, cerro san cristobal. It was super pretty and great fun!....but the hike was a KILLER. 

Hermana Ceccon accidently deleted ALL of my photos....lucky for me Patricia put them all on her computer to do something with all the photos that we have together. So I´ll get SOME of them back at least. 

For Chile´s independence day this week, basically busted us. There was almost NO ONE in the street 18, and 19 LESS because everyone drank it up and then they all crashed....there was almost no one in the houses either. All the members left for vacations! We were lucky to have a few loving members invite us for lunch...lots of missionaries didn´t even have that. And I was able to learn how to make empenadas and enjoy some chilean celebrations all the same. 

But hey, I´m still a happy camper over here! Although our numbers were sucky, we have some great upcoming lessons this week, and we received lots of references to contact! and that´s our mission focus right now! 

Hermana Ceccon and I are even better friends!!!

And last, but DEFINITELY not least, the Lord blessed us with a great Stake Conference. President Essig, and Sister Essig spoke as well. Sister Essig spoke in great spanish, about her grandson....who decided to read the Book of Mormon before he was baptized.....and when he read it he knew it was true. That story sounds pretty familiar doesn´t it!? haha. Elder Juan Carlos Barros of the seventy came and talked to us. He´s in charge of our area and I very much enjoyed his talk. At one point he invited the children to go up to the stand. All of their parents stood where they were....and they had them sing "Teach Me to Walk in the Light".....just how we always sing it together. I literally bawled it was so beautiful. I felt like I was flying on CLOUDS.....then I looked up and I literally saw angels above. I literally saw them watching as they sang....touched by how innocent they kids were....they were with our father in heaven, not too long ago.......let´s just say it was an UNFORGETTABLE experience. I received answers to many questions, and I felt very blessed. 

So that was this week. Praying for you guys always. I love you all to death:) And thanks for the advice mom....SMILE.

Love, Hermmana Alex Johnson

Thursday, September 19, 2013

On the Road Again...Well, in the Street is More Like it!

First off! Sorry that I didn´t write y´all yesterday. I didn´t know we were going to have a zone capacitation tillSunday night cause we have slug bug leaders or something haha. But...for the record, it was a great meeting. And I didn´t die, which is what mom was apparently worried about haha. You guys never have to stress about that one. I know I´m not going anywhere. 

Well we started out the week still stuck in the house, but it went fast all the same. When we finally left we still had some after effects of the chicken pox, and really sore bodies, but at least President Essig and Sister Essig know why we didn´t "bring in the bacon" this week. That´s okay, we´ll just have to kick butt THIS week......even though it´s gonna be a tough one. This week is the week of 18 de Septiembre....their independence day. And they celebrate BIG time. It´s their biggest holiday here, and EVERYONE doesn´t have to work for the whole WEEK almost. It´s all drinking, parties, BBQ, ....and vacations. So it´s hard to even get the members to open their doors, let alone investigators, ....and LESS for door contacts. But we´re gonna set this place on fire! We´re rolling out the red carpet! We´re bringing out some combos! We´re....we´re working hard. HA.

We are eating lunch with a different member now and the family is really great! They´re very REAL and always happy. They´re all members, besides the dad,...but the mother is the only one active in the church. All the same, the family is very supportive and super amiable. The father works more in one week than I thought possible....12 hours in the day 12 hours in the night....oh yea....that´s all day!!! He works A LOT. But with this week he was able to have a little bit of freedom, so that was good. We were able to have lunch with him and it was great to be able to talk with all the family....even some of the cousins! He even sang for us! 2 songs haha.....of course with the condition that I sang as well, but hey. I sucked it up and it went well! 

I finally sent dad´s bday present. Just so you know....before I forgot...

And F* was confirmed on Sunday. It was amazing to see everything come through to the finish line. he just has to keep up the good work ...forever!

Well!! I´m loving the mission, as always and wishing you a happy and FUN filled week! CHILE! 
Hermana Alex Johnson
Ps! Chia? You can eat it! I eat it with yogurt or juice every morning! 

Chilean BBQ.....DELISH.

HEART ATTACKS. ...Attack number!

Attack number, the car! Not so crazy haha

R* danced well that the little girl wanted to take pictures and dance too haha!

Again? These missionaries really ARE crazy!

Mi gemela de Argentina.

The two girls in the middle are wearing typical dresses de "guasa". like what´s up...but not haha. 

NDH with C* and the family

OH the weather outside is frightful (cause it was hot) but the ....nope it´s just hot. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The "UP´s" of Life

Ït´s so very true that the mission is ALL about the ups and downs, but it´s also about how you take it. I remember riding rollarcoasters and just bawling my eyes out.....I took it bad. But I think I get it better to take the bumpy rides. How to give thanks for the ups AND the downs, and learn from both. This week was yet another week of ups and down´s, but that´s okay. Because I know it´s going to be that way all of my life! ...but at the same time, if I´m grateful for everything, than I think EVERYTHING should be an up, even when if it´s a down. ....if that makes ANY makes sense to me at least haha.
Well, as I told mom just a second ago, I was very lucky to catch chicken pox this week! Hermana Ceccon as well! One of the girls in our district class caught it...she´s from Utah and had the vaccinations too. I´m pretty sure chicken pox here must be different. Because I KNOW I got that vacination like 20 million times with all the shots mom made me get haha. But we´re pretty lucky all the same. We both had the shots so we have a very soft case (UP). Less than 50 spots, and not many days with a fever. And I we got lucky cause I have LOTS of spots on my back and upper legs, but not too many on my arms or neck or FACE! Sweet right? The health is´s the not being able to leave the house. We didn´t even go to church yesterday....we barely got permission to go to our own baptism, and to write you guys!!! .....and as a missionary, it´s not like I can use the computer or watch movies all´s read. play uno. listen to haha. That´s what we did. ...and we´ve already watched the approved videos in our mission like 10 times each haha. We played all the games we could think of with pen and paper....but playing those games and uno gets pretty boring 4 hours every day haha. But hey! The good news is...
HERMANA CECCON AND I ARE STILL COMPANIONS FOR ANOTHER TRANSFER HERE IN QUILICURA!!! (UP) And it´s a hard thing to come by in this mission, although the chicken pox is really lame, we have it for a reason. Maybe it was the only thing that was gonna help us stay together! Well, it worked! we will have 6 months total by the end of this transfer....a quarter of the mission. I´m a happy camper. That´s for sure haha!
About the package, I haven´t gotten anything. But neither has anyone else. NOBODY is getting I really don´t think it´s lost, it´s just stopped. To be honest. It´s just frustrating ...cause birthday´s and Christmas are coming up and I already had another package I was gonna send and I´m not able to! Dad´s package is allll ready but I checked last week, and I´m still not able to send anything. Oh well! The good news is you´ll all get stuff colectively haha! (UP)
But I think one of the biggest "Up´s" for me was yesterday.
F* GOT BAPTIZED! FINNNAAALLLLYYYYY! It was absolutely beautiful how everything worked out! We were in the house all week, so Hermana Dodds and Hermana Silva went and taught him the day before he had his interveiew, and we prepared everything we could in the house. BUT I was NOT gonna miss the baptism if the world ended. Not in a MILLION years haha. Felipe felt great, P* was happy! The whole FAMILY was happy! I don´t think I´ve ever had so much joy!....the mission is the GREATEST! (UUUUUUUUUUPPPP)
I need glasses.

Well, life is full of "UP´s" And I love them all. I love them ALL. Miss you all and love you to death!!! Hugs and kisses!

Hermana Alex Johnson

 We found out that we were going to have another transfer together and went a little crazy....!

F's Baptism!!!

What happens when Chicken Pox hits!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Attitude, Attitude, Attitude

Well heeelllloooooo! I´m here in Chile...and I can´t believe that everyone is about to start or has already started school! I literally can´t believe it. Time has never flown so fast in all of my liiife haha. 

I figure I´ll start out with the bad so we can finish off the best haha...I had a hard day this last week. I kind of shut down....not really shut down but everything that happened that day was miserable. I don´t know why it was such a bad day because it was a pretty normal day! But I think that just made it worse. One of the biggest problems was that I felt like God wasn´t answering my prayers. That he didn´t listen or care. How dumb is that? ...but an even bigger problem was my attitude. Last week I received an email from Matt and from Jema. With the same scripture. D&C 123:17 which says 
"Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, when we are in even the most troubling of times, let us CHEERFULLY do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed". OH YEA. You have to do things cheerfully!! ....Jema also reminded me of the story in 1 Nephi 7. Where Nephi is bound by his brothers. When he prays he asks the Lord to give him enough STRENGTH to break the cords.
Then in verse :18 the Lord didn´t do that. He LOOSED the BANDS. He didn´t give him strength. Sometimes we´re not gonna get the answers that we want. But we´re always gonna get the answers that we need. the Lord will always provide for us and he knows what we need more than what WE know. I love that.
And don´t forget: Attitude, attitude, attitude. (This is something that one of my ZL's used to say to me... and I shared that with my girls as they grew up- Lisa) Nephi could have thought....GOOOSH! Why does God never listen to me!! Or he could be greatful, thank God for the miracle he received and understand that we don´t always get what we ask for in the way that we want. It was a really great experience for me to be honest haha. 

We had a great week, as always (because one ALWAYS has a good week if they look at it with a great attiiitttuuuude). F* didn´t make it to church but P* did! She came to church alone for the first two classes...till she absolutely had to leave to get to work. The last 3 weeks she told us she wasn´t gonna be able to make it to church and then BAM! She´s great haha! We were able to talk to her this last week a little bit and she said something that really made an impact. She told me that if  I worked my hardest but I didn´t see anyone else get baptized, or maybe I felt like I didn´t have success in my mission....that all I had to do was think about what I did for her. That for YEARS she stopped going to church, and for YEARS she wasn´t able to take the sacrament. But now she´s a happy camper. Now she´s happy and she´s not planning on changing. She looked me in the eyes and said, YOU made this impact. And one of the reasons specifically was that she was able to know us for who we are....the good and the bad. WAHOO! I don´t have to be perfect haha. 

But we also managed to extend a baptism date to someone this week. our investigator T*! she´s suuuuper catholic but an absolute DOLL! She came to church with us this week too. She´s a lot like Grandma in a lot of ways. It´s makes me super happy, but she´s sure lived through a lot. She´s truly amazing...She´s 77 years old and she still gets all dressed up, she leaves every day to go on a walk and she loooves DOING things. She came to church with us all dressed up and she offered to make us lunch haha. Next week we´re gonna eat lunch with her. It´s been amazing to see her progress, to see her cry, see her joke and laugh, and ENJOY. 

This week FINNAAALLLLY F* is going to get BAPTIZED! YES! We doing some MAJOR planning, but I´m stoked. It´s about time haha!

Last but not least we had an awesome day of door knocking....literally all day long we just knocked doors. .....door after door, after door. But I really actually enjoyed it! We don´t have too many appointments, but I know that as we complete with OUR part, God will bless us. Enos 1:27 says that God has already given us everything. It literally says that we are already promised MANSIONS in the next life, and who knows what else....
God trusts US...we just have to do OUR part. 

Well, that´s all for this week. I´m a happy camper...literally! 
I love you all and pray for you CONSTANTLY! 
Hermana Alex Johnson

ps. we have transfers this next week.....and Hermana Ceccon and I already have 3 transfers´s a lot. Pray that we can have one more!!!