Wednesday, June 28, 2017


Dear Family,

I am currently in Nampa! We are emailing at the family history center, just like the greenie days. And why am I in Nampa? I'm training! Both Sister Soelberg and I were taken out of Baker so that we can train. I am going to train in Middleton.  Sister Soelberg is going to Meridian to train. So we are here in Nampa for tonight and we will be here tomorrow for the new missionaries coming in and all that implies. It has been a crazy day, we have been riding the transfer van for the majority of it, then figuring logistics is always a headache. We have a trainer's meeting tonight at 6. I am super excited!

But, really, I am heartbroken to leave Baker City. I was in Nampa on Tuesday because I was on exchanges with a sister going home tomorrow and she had her departing interview at the mission office. The assistants came in and one of them told me that we were both being taken out. So we had more time than usual to get ready, which was nice. I thought I would be able to stay in Baker until at least August, but I am sure the Lord has all sorts of things that He wants me to learn. 

Our last week was busy!  We got to teach many of our investigators, which was a blessing.  One of them is still on to be baptized on Friday. I am not sure if I will make it, we have to get a ride from a member to go. I am just praying that it will all work out, I would just really like to be there. We went to Halfway for the last time on Saturday and taught our investigator there. Sunday was hard because that is literally when you say goodbye to everyone. But we got around to everyone and I didn't have to stay up too late to pack, another big blessing. 

On Thursday, we were leaving our house for an appointment and we locked our car keys in the house. Usually, we just walk down to the landlady's house and get a key. But she wasn't home and didn't answer her phone. We got a ride to our appointment and had transportation after that until about 3ish. We were dropped off at home and just started updating records in our car (we had left it unlocked, just didn't have the keys to start it). We texted T., our recent convert, asking her to give us ride to our appointment at 4. She came right away and was like, "We are going to break into your house!" T. is a former police officer.  We had one small window unlocked, so she showed us how to pop off the screen then she boosted Sister Soelberg through. It was really funny. 
Locked out!
We are limited on time so I am just going to wrap up and respond to as many people as I can. But just know that even though I am really sad to leave Baker, I am so excited for these next couple of months in Middleton! 

Sister Jensen   

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Do It!

Dear Family,

While it was not super fun losing a P-day last week, it was fun to open my email today and have many emails. I am really thankful for everyone who takes time out of their lives to think of me and send an email. 

So much has happened since the last time I wrote! After our P-day on Friday the week before last, we had an amazing lesson with the C. family.  For this lesson we just wanted to focus on baptism and inviting her to be baptized. At the beginning of the lesson we told her to try to notice to the promptings of the Spirit. We then showed her a video of Christ being baptized and shared lots of scriptures. At the end, when we asked if she thought she needed to be baptized, she adamantly shook her head yes, then told us that she had received her answer during the lesson. She said that when she was watching the video, she heard a voice say, "Do it!" and knew that she needed to be baptized. We have a date set for the very end of June, and we are so excited for her. The family really has taken quite the journey over the past year.  It was the elders teaching and baptizing their son last year that really changed their hearts. I love their family so much. 

On Monday was our conference with Elder Mervyn B. Arnold. It was an amazing meeting, if not a little intense and overwhelming. First we had a meeting with the other sisters about self-esteem. Then we all met with Elder Arnold for the first half of the meeting. We talked about so many things.  I am trying to rack my brain for what is most important. I guess it was his emphasis was on how we can be more effective in our missionary work and how we can bring many to Christ. It was a little hard to take because he pretty much asked us to change everything that we are currently doing. After reflecting, I have realized that I have gotten into a groove of doing missionary work, and that I am not looking for those unplanned opportunities to teach people. He put an emphasis on talking to everyone, doing more walking, and working with the members. It was a good day, if not super draining. The meeting ended around 3 then we drove back to Baker. The Sunday before this meeting we were teaching in Halfway, and then we had planned on driving to Ontario, which is two hours away from Halfway and about an hour away from Nampa, where the conference was. When we punched in the address in Ontario (we stayed with some other sisters) it did not direct us back to the interstate but took us this crazy windy back way. It was a beautiful drive, and Sister Soelberg took some good pictures. 

This past week we haven't had as many appointments as we usually do, but that has allowed us to try out some of the techniques Elder Arnold taught us. Usually, when we go try to visit someone and they are not home we just get back in our car and go somewhere else. Well, Elder Arnold committed us to never do this again. He told us how the Lord inspired us to go to that person for a reason, and if they are not home it could be someone nearby that needs us instead. So he instructed us to try the members in the area, and to walk so that we can talk to more people in the street. Now I have this fear of street contacting that I have been trying to get over, but Heavenly Father has helped me out so much. One way that he has blessed us is with a girl in one of our wards who just got home from her mission in Peru. All she did was pretty much street contacting, so we went out with her one day and she helped us out. It has been something that has been on my mind my whole mission so I am grateful for this push from Elder Arnold. 

As we head into the last week of the transfer, I am trying to be mindful of the fact that this could be my last week. I don't think it is, but there is a possibility that I could leave. I want to do my best to use every second I have been blessed with here in Baker City. And I always want that to be attitude, never letting a second of my mission pass me by. I love my mission. I love the gospel. And I love my Savior, Jesus Christ.   

Sister Jensen 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Baker Investigates

 Dear Family,

It has only been a few days since I updated you last, but fortunately we have had some good experiences in these few days. 

When I first got to Baker, there was a family that the sisters had been regularly visiting. They are all converts. We actually got to watch a session with general conference with them, which was fun. Well, we stopped by on Tuesday night and to our great surprise one of them answered the door and welcomed us warmly in. He told us he was just about to text us and tell us to come over since he was feeling so much better. It was just a little thing, but he texted us later that night and told us how much it meant to him for us to stop by. There really is nothing sweeter than following the prompting of the Spirit in answer to someone else's prayer. 

On Wednesday we had another lesson with one of our most progressing investigators. We had it at a member's house.  This was good because this member just had surgery and hasn't been able to get out much. We taught the Plan of Salvation. This time she was saying, "I pretty much already believe all of this girls." She is still considering the commitment though.  When you are in your later years and you have lived your whole life a certain way, it would be hard to suddenly change. But she understands why it is important and will continue to pray and read the scriptures. She really is one of the funniest ladies, I just love visiting with her and teaching her the gospel. 

We also visited another couple on Wednesday night. I really appreciated hearing their story because it really does attest that there is no missionary effort that is wasted. The wife has been a member her whole life, but the husband just joined a couple of years ago. He first started learning about the church in high school. He saw one of those commercials that talked about this book that makes your life better, so he ordered it and two missionaries showed up with a Book of Mormon. He started taking the lessons with his girlfriend. He is from the East and he told us about how one time the missionaries took him over to the ward mission leader's house in Belmont and how nice it was. Then he said, "Oh yeah! It was Mitt Romney!" Anyway, he decided not to join the church at that time. After going through several trials, he finally decided to join the church in 2014. I am sure those missionaries who first worked with him many years ago have no idea that he eventually decided to get baptized. All work that we do here as missionaries is important, nothing is wasted. 

Last night we had an amazing lesson with yet another investigator.  Before we started we just asked her to listen to the promptings of the Spirit as we taught about baptism. Then we watched the Bible video of Jesus Christ being baptized by John the Baptist. We went along with our lesson, reading lots of scriptures about baptism, then at the end asked her if she thought it was necessary for her to be baptized, and she violently shook her head yes. Then she said, "I got my answer tonight. As we were watching that video I heard a voice say, 'Do it.' So I am going to do it." We then set a date for her later in the month.

Today we are going to have a BBQ at a member's house then go play some board games at a game store some other members own. Life is just really good here in Baker City, what can I say? I love this work and am so grateful to be out and laboring with the Lord. 

Sister Jensen 

Boise Idaho Temple

Dear Family,

This week was great, it went by really fast! It honestly kind of scares me how fast time is passing me by. But I am just grateful to Heavenly Father for the time that I've had on my mission and the time that I have left. I have met so many precious sons and daughters of God, and I have been blessed with the opportunity to help them on their journey home to Him. It really does make me excited thinking about the time I have left and the people I have yet to love and serve. 

C.'s baptism went off without a hitch! Friday was kind of a crazy day. In the morning, we were in Middleton, Idaho because we stayed the night after my temple trip (which I will write about momentarily). We drove the two hours home to Baker, then a couple of hours after that we drove an hour to Halfway for a couple of lessons. We taught an investigator, whose grandma is a member, along with one of her friends. Then we also taught another one of our rock solid investigators there. She has a great desire to be baptized, and told us just how much learning about the Plan of Salvation touched her. After our lesson, we headed back to Baker for dinner then went to the baptism. I love baptisms, but I am also really happy when they are over. I just get so stressed before and during them. Especially when I have to play the piano, like I did at C.’s baptism. I played the prelude music and forgot to get pictures with him before he was baptized. But it’s really no big deal, I am just happy it went through and he felt so good about it. Then he received the Gift of the Holy Ghost yesterday and bore his testimony. That is the third time I've had a recent convert bear their testimony soon after their baptism. I feel like I have been really blessed to teach solid people, which is exactly what I wanted before the mission. I didn't necessarily want tons of baptisms, I just wanted to find and teach people who would be truly converted. And I feel like I've found them so far :)

I went on my halfway temple trip on Thursday! It is weird that I did that because I just got here on the mission a couple weeks ago. No complaining though, because it was the temple. We drove down that morning and I went and had lunch with Sister Shurtleff in her area in Nampa :) It is always the best to see her. We met at the mission office with the rest of the missionaries who were going. Only two other sisters went with me, they are both Spanish speaking. President and Sister Sorensen took us in their car, which was fun. 

Sister Sorensen kept on telling us how obsessed she is now with cows and farming, showing us pictures of Oreo cows and being really excited about it. President was just rolling his eyes the whole time, it was pretty entertaining. Within no time we were at the temple! We took some pictures then went inside. 

I can't describe what it was like being back in the Lord's house after such a long absence. It was just the most peaceful and wonderful feeling. We had a chapel session with one of the counselors and his wife, and it was good to hear from them. They made me think of grandma and grandpa, and all the hours that they have spent serving in the temple. The session was good, and then of course the Celestial Room was my favorite part. I just spent my time pondering and praying and reading the scriptures. Eventually, most everyone in our group filtered out. I thought to my, "Please, can't I just stay a little longer?" It is pretty customary for the missionaries to take a question to the temple seeking answers. I didn't really have a specific question, but I just wanted to know what I lacked yet. I wanted to know how I could make this second half of my mission the best it can be. Well, as I had this thought of staying a little bit longer, my mind went to Christ when He was visiting His lost sheep in the Americas:

3 Nephi Chapter 17

1 Behold, now it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words he looked round about again on the multitude, and he said unto them: Behold, my time is at hand.

2 I perceive that ye are weak, that ye cannot understand all my words which I am commanded of the Father to speak unto you at this time.

3 Therefore, go ye unto your homes, and ponder upon the things which I have said, and ask of the Father, in my name, that ye may understand, and prepare your minds for the morrow, and I come unto you again.

4 But now I go unto the Father, and also to show myself unto the lost tribes of Israel, for they are not lost unto the Father, for he knoweth whither he hath taken them.

5 And it came to pass that when Jesus had thus spoken, he cast his eyes round about again on the multitude, and beheld they were in tears, and did look steadfastly upon him as if they would ask him to tarry a little longer with them.

6 And he said unto them: Behold, my bowels are filled with compassion towards you.

As I thought of this beautiful image, the Savior looking upon the people, seeing their tears, perceiving their desire for Him to stay, and having great compassion for them, I knew that it was the Savior Himself that I have to look to in my service. I need to study Him, His life, His teachings, His attributes. I need to serve Him and His children. I need to bring people to Him, help them receive the healing, cleansing, and changing power of His atonement. And I need to represent Him in all that I do and say. I am so grateful for this opportunity to go to the temple, and now I look forward to participating in the Meridian Temple open house and dedication. I love my mission, I love the gospel, and I love the Savior, Jesus Christ. 

Sister Jensen