Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Second Summer in San Antonio

June 12, 2017
Hi everyone, 

It was a great week here in San Antonio. This week we were able to see the Holy Ghost work in a couple of the people we are teaching. 

One of them was a less active member name "Nathan".  Sister Humphries had met with him back in November. When they met him the first time, he felt the Spirit. Sister Humphries described the experience as if he had been wrapped in a warm blanket. You could visibly see the relief. In the months to follow, we could tell that Nathan wanted to make the necessary changes in his life. However, by himself he didn't have the strength or capacity to do so.  In last couple of weeks, he has been praying, reading The Book of Mormon, and coming to church. The Holy Ghost has come into his life more and has given him the power to overcome temptations. He is so much more happier. He testified to us of how he has come to know the Savior. As he has turned to God and repented he has been able to be filled with Joy. It hard for me to me to adequately describe the change that we have seen in him. It is night and day. It is truly miraculous.  In his words he has "tasted of the fruit (The love of God and our Savior) and it is so delicious". I know that this change was only possible through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.  

We were also able to meet with Bryan again this week. He has been busy working and hasn't been able to meet/ go to institute since his baptism. We really want him to continue to strengthen his testimony. He told us that since receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost, he can tell when he makes a bad choice that the  Spirit leaves him. He wants to have the Spirit with him because without it he feels empty and incomplete. His experience has increased my gratitude for the gift of the Holy Ghost. We can't always be with him to tell him what choice to make. However, the Spirit can always serve as a guide and a warning so that we continue to keep the commandments. 

I am so grateful for all of the experiences that I have everyday that teach me how I can become more like my Savior. I am learning so much and I can see how the Gospel is able to improve every aspect of our lives. 

Hope y'all have a great week!

June 19, 2017
Hi everyone, 

It was another great week in Texas. I have been in Texas in for 1 year now! This week we were able to have many opportunities to serve our members and other people in the community. We helped clean out a garage, get ready at scout camp, and teach about personal progress at Mutual. We also helped a family move. His sister is a member, but he has never been to interested in learning about the church. She thanked us afterwards and said that it is the little service opportunities that missionaries have given that have helped to soften his heart. 

This week we were also able to have zone conference. Elder Cornish came and told us the secret to life. He said, "The big things are actually the small things, and the small things are the big things". This means that the big headlines today will be soon forgotten.  However, the little things, like reading our scriptures, staying true to the gospel, and serving others is what really matters. The small things are what have potential impact generations in a positive way. He also said, "The second your life is all about you, it will feel hollow".  

We were also able to help Jasmine after zone conference, here is what happened from the words of my amazing companion, Sister Humphries, 
"We were back at the church building where we'd heard from Elder Cornish earlier that day, and a teenage girl wandered up to us in the parking lot and asked for help. It sounds as though she ran away a few days ago and now needed to contact her sister to pick her up. She doesn't know her sister's phone number and communicated through the Messenger app. Just then our stake president pulled up (for a meeting with Elder Cornish) and she used his phone to send her sister the address. Fast forward an hour, we're still at the church with Jasmine, and she wants to use the phone again to see when her sister is coming. We find our stake president - thankfully there was a break in the meeting - and he hands us his phone to give to Jasmine (who's down the hall). So we walk past our mission president holding the stake president's smart phone, and needless to say he gives us a slightly confused look. I'm glad President Polley trusts us.

The best part:

We talked with Jasmine about God, and looked at the pictures inside the church building. Where before she was sad and frazzled, at the end she was smiling. I know that as we simply testified of Christ that she felt the Spirit, and most importantly she felt loved. We'll probably never see Jasmine again, nor did we gain a new investigator after sitting with her at the church for an hour and a half, but we helped a precious daughter of God feel her Father's love for her. I know this is an experience that will stay with her."

I know that as we continue to reach out and serve others that we can find true joy and happiness.  I hope y'all will be able to experience that joy by also looking for ways to serve and show kindness to those around you!

Have a great week!
Sister Olsen 

(Animals of Texas...adding a little country to my city girl;)

June 26, 2017
Hi everyone!

It was another great week here in Texas!  We received a call from President Polley this morning asking us both to be trainers! We will be both be getting new missionaries. I will be staying in Encino Park ward and Alamo 1st YSA ward. The sad news is this means that Sister Humphries will be leaving and serving in a different part of San Antonio.

 Sister Humphries is amazing companion. After serving with her for the last 6 months, I have grown quite attached. However, I know that this will be a great opportunity for both of us to learn and teach the new missionaries.  Sister Humphries has helped me in so many ways. To name a few, she has helped me to rely more on the Spirit and the blessings of writing in a journal. 

This week we had a wonderful time working with the members. We were able to visit a couple different less active members with other members from the ward. I love having the members with us because they are able to connect with the people that we are teaching. 

This week I was also able to go on exchanges with Sister Giles. She was trained by Sister Martin after I left Stone Oak. She is an amazing missionary. I loved her testimony of how the Savior is able to give us hope and help us all progress. We were able to teach a new investigator in the YSA ward while we were together. 

I look forward to this next week and being able to meet my new trainee!

Have a great week!

Sister Olsen

July 3, 2017
Hi everyone!

So much has happened this week! Sister Humphries and I worked together until we got our trainees on Thursday! I will miss her so much! She is an amazing missionary and 
I have learned so much from her these past six months. We had so many wonderful memories together. It has been an adjustment leading out the area without her.  However, Sister Swarts and I have already seen so many miracles. 

Quick background on Sister Swarts. She is from Draper Utah and loves whales.  She has an amazing testimony and is doing a great job adjusting to the hot Texas weather.  I am looking forward to this transfer with her.  I know that we have a lot that we can learn from each other!

Saturday we got a text from a Less Active YSA member who wanted to come back to church! She was baptized a couple years ago and hadn't been able to attend for a couple years. We were able to meet her at Kneaders. Her family isn't supportive of her going to church at all.  However, a member was able to take her to church yesterday and she really enjoyed it!  She is so sweet and admire her faith and courage to choose the right even when she is facing opposition.

Also, Saturday night we were able to meet a man street contacting. He never had heard anything about the Church. I found that a little weird most people have met a Mormon at some point in their life. Anyways, I proceed to teach him about the Book of Mormon and the Restoration. He was really interested so we invited him to church on Sunday. AND he CAME! It is not everyday that we can meet someone and that they come to church the next day. He really enjoyed it and we have an appointment with him tonight. 

So basically, Sister Swarts and I have already seen so many miracles. I am excited to see what else is in store for this transfer. My testimony has grown so much this week. I know that the Lord can strengthen us and that as we rely on him we can see tender mercies all around us. 

Have great week and a Happy 4th of July!

Sister Olsen 

July 10, 2017

Hi everyone! 

It has been another great week here in Texas! On Tuesday we had interviews with President Polley. He invited us to talk to 10 new people a day. We have spent a lot of time this week walking and talking to people that we see as they are outside.  I love Texas because everyone is really nice and friendly.  A lot of people already go to church so they aren't always interested, but are always really nice. 

This week we ran into one of Sister Swarts' Mom's high school friends. It turns out that he lives in our family ward boundaries and was just up the street from our dinner appointment.  They have friends that are members here in Texas too and have been trying to find Sister Swarts since she got here.  They aren't members of the church so they invited us in and we were able to answer a lot of their questions about the church. 

Last week we were able to visit a new YSA that moved into the ward. She was baptized a year ago in Wyoming and recently moved to San Antonio a couple months ago. We were able to visit with her last week and help her get reconnected with the YSA ward. She came to church on Sunday and really enjoyed it. We look forward to working with her more and helping her increase her testimony of the Savior. 

One of my favorite scriptures this week is 2 Nephi 32:9 " But behold, I say unto you that ye must pray always, and not faint; that ye must not perform any thing unto the Lord save in the first place ye shall pray unto the Father in the name of Christ, that he will consecrate thy performance unto thee, that thy performance may be for the welfare of thy soul". I know that as we pray to Heavenly Father that he will strengthen and support us. 

Have a great week! 

Sister Olsen 

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