Monday, July 27, 2015

"Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."

This is a scripture from Mathew 11:28. It has been on my mind this week a lot, the idea of finding rest and relief in Christ. It´s as if He´s saying, ¨Come. You are hurt, or sad, or tired--come to me. I will take your burden, I will carry it for you. Just come.¨ And it is painful to think that, after all Christ did for us (suffering EVERY pain we´ve ever felt, every sin we´ve ever committed, and dying for us) that after all that, He still says, ¨Let me carry your burdens.¨ He deserves more thanks that what we give Him. Really, He deserves our complete obedience.

This week was an awesome, incredible week--but it didn´t feel that way. Here, as the sister training leaders in Alicante, we have to do exchanges with 9 pairs of sisters each transfer, and we have to travel to get to almost every one. Since there are six weeks in a transfer, that means one or more exchanges each week. An exchange lasts one day (we usually do it from lunch time one day to lunch time the next day). I (since I´m new to this area and don´t know it as well) go to their area and one of the sisters from that area comes here to Alicante to be with Hermana Merrill. They are super powerful experiences. Miracles ALWAYS happen on the exchanges, so it´s actually great for Alicante and for the Lord´s work....but it is exhausting. I enjoy traveling, and I LOVE that I get to see so much of Spain, but I always get to Alicante so tired afterwards, and we still have a whole afternoon of work ahead of us.

So, that´s what´s been happening this week. On Monday, we had our preparation day, and then worked a bit in the night. We found 3 new people to teach, so that was super miraculous. Tuesday morning we had a district meeting, and then we did an exchange with the other sisters here in Alicante. It was a lot of fun, and very tiring because we were running everywhere and super busy. The next morning was more of the same, and then at lunch time I went back with Hermana Merrill, my companion, and we worked the afternoon Wednesday. 

Thursday morning was weekly planning, and honestly, it was not the best, because we were both really tired and had way too much on our to do list. but it was fine. We worked that afternoon and the next morning, and at lunch time I took a bus to Murcia for another exchange. I caught up on my Book of Mormon reading (I´m trying to read the entire Book of Mormon this summer) and made some calls. Murcia was really fun, but wow, HOT. It was 42 degrees there (in Celcius--I don´t know what it is in Farenheit but I was dying and got a bit sunburned). So, my time in Murcia was really fun, and the next day I got on another bus to come back to Alicante. That afternoon (Saturday) we worked here, and at like 10:20, right before we were going in, we met this guy in the park who had known the missionaries before. He said he would come to church with us the next day (!!!) and so we made plans to take him. 

Sunday morning was church, which is always crazy. It´s hard, making sure all the people we invited come and that they enjoy it and make friends with the members and feel the Spirit and don´t feel weird and that they don´t get lost or anything...crazy. But four of our friends that we´re teaching came to church, and it was such a great experience for all of us.
Sunday afternoon was Sunday, it always feels like you have the whole week on your shoulders (as my old companion said). It was a hard day, and we worked as hard as we could, but it was rough. Both of us were exhausted haha. 
But, that night, our leader called us to have us report on what we did that week, and afterwards he said, ¨Wow, Hermanas, you two are incredible. You did so much, and found a TON of new people to´re an example for us.¨ That really struck me. This week, when we´ve felt completely exhausted and yet still worked hard, has been one of the best weeks of my mission, numbers-wise and work-wise. It was touching to me to realize that the Lord, in all His mercy and kindness, helped us to move His work forward, even though we couldn´t have done it by ourselves. I know that, in many of those hard moments this week, my Heavenly Father was sustaining me, so that I could be more than I am. I am so grateful for Him, for His help, and for this amazing work. I love being a missionary!

I miss and love you all!!! Have an amazing week,
Hermana Jones

Saturday, July 25, 2015

"Cast out into the deep"

Jesus Christ said this, in Luke 5:4. It's become sort of a motto for us here in Alicante. He said it right after Peter and the rest had been fishing all night, and they hadn't caught anything, and they were sad and going home. But he said, paraphrasing, "Try again. One more time. Cast out into the deep. Trust me and keep going." So they did, and He blessed them with so many fish that their boat couldn't carry
them all.

There are some days here, when everything fails us and we have been walking for hours with no one who will even listen to us. Some days the sun is so hot and it's super humid and you don't want to continue. But the Lord knows us, and He know our potential, and He knows how far He needs to push us before we are capable of receiving all the blessings He has to give us. They will come, but we need to follow that voice that we hear, that says, "Keep going."

This week was a wonderful week. We had Missionary Leadership Council, which is in Malaga, and from Alicante to Malaga it takes about 8 hours. So, we left early Monday morning, and got there at like 3--and wow, it was super hard because we drove through my old area and it made me miss Malaga SO much. But then, leaving the next morning, we got back to Alicante at 11 at night on Tuesday. But THEN we realized that there were no buses that ran that late, so we had to walk home
(which was ok, because we had been sitting all day). We barely got home before 11:30, the time when we had to go to bed. It was a long day, but I learned a ton. We also had zone meeting, and we had to give a talk, and then we did exchanges and I went to Elche, which was cool.  There are a lot of palm trees there...they say it's the palm tree capital of Europe. We talked to a man in the street who was from Italy. He had just gone to visit the "imperial Palm" (I don't know what that is). And the coolest thing is, he was talking in Italian, and I could understand him!!! The gift of tongues for missionaries is real haha.

So yeah. This week went by really fast and was kind of a blur. But it was a good week, and I'll send pictures :)

Love and miss you all!

Hermana Jones

Displaying image1.JPG
Displaying image2.JPG
Displaying image3.JPG

"Are we content with just having left Egypt, or do we want to get to the promised land?"

This is a quote from the stake president here in Alicante. I liked the analogy of the Israelites leaving Egypt, and it's true that sometimes we are content with a lot less than our potential happiness.
Well, this week was awesome. It was crazy and strange to be in a new area...I don't know how missionaries do it, moving areas. For me it is very difficult to adjust. But the people in Alicante are really nice and really friendly, so I'm doing just fine :)

I got to Alicante and found out that Hermana Merrills old companion, Hermana Herrera (the missionary who trained me those first months in Cartagena) was supposed to go open a new area for missionaries. BUT, it was very fast, so they still didn't have an apartment there in her new area. Her companion got there to Alicante, and they stayed with us for a few days. I got to go out working with Hermana Herrera, and she's incredible. I learned so much from brought back a lot
of good memories, to be able to work with her again.

So,'s great. It's big and there are a lot of people who are interested in Christ. Oh, but one night, we got home and found a note on our door saying that we need to knock on our neighbors door. So we do, and it was like 10:45, and she said, "go knock on the people right below you, they say that there is water falling on them." We hurried down there, thinking, oh no, something in the bathroom exploded or there's a leak in the floor...when we knocked on their door, they told us that the air conditioning unit had been leaking on them, and that we should fix it. So we go back up, look at he air conditioning unit...and it was ALL dry. There was no wetness anywhere near it. Eventually we figured that the bucket that collected the water must have overflowed earlier and dried up (which is very probable, because it gets to over 100 degrees there). So that was an adventure.
Anyway, I don't have too much to share about my week...those were a
few highlights. I really do like Alicante, and I'm excited to serve
Love and miss you all,
Hermana Jones

We found this awesome graffiti in our says Hermanas :)

Displaying image1.JPG

Saturday, July 11, 2015


Well, I think I'll start with the fact that I'm getting transferred! I'm going to Alicante, and I will continue being a sister training leader, which is great because I'll be able to go on exchanges with my
"granddaughters" in the mission.  AND I'll be with Hermana Merrill! We have been in the same city our entire missions, except this past transfer when she went to Alicante and I stayed here in Malaga. I'm so excited for the chance to serve with her, and I here that Alicante has an AMAZING ward. Yay!
But, I think it very well might break my heart to leave Malaga...I love the people here so much, and I feel so blessed to have had the chance to meet them and serve them.  It's been hard for me to leave my areas...and I think the major reason is because I've been here for so long, and I was in Cartagena for so long, that I get very accustomed to the area and very accustomed to the people, and I really do love them.  But, change is good, change means that you're growing. Okay, so that is exciting information.  BUT, the best best best thing that happened this week was by far more important than me getting transferred, more important than anything else.  Our friend, that we've been working with, Frank, was baptized!

"This is a gospel of joy, of happiness. If it´s not that way, you´re missing something."

This is something that a member said a few weeks ago in his talk in Sacrament meeting.  It was a great talk, and it really touched the heart of our investigator friend.
It was a WONDERFUL week this week.  Our friend, Frank, that we met last week, is seeing MIRACLES in his life, seriously.  He was introduced to the church by his girlfriend, who is living in Mexico, and who is a Mormon.  Whenever I talk to him, I think about that quote that Ruth says to Noemi in the Bible, that ¨Your God will be my God.¨ It really defines him, and it´s incredible to see how much he wants to know about God and follow His commandments.  He has smoked his entire life, but now, with God´s help, he´s been able to quit from one day to the next.  It´s not easy, but he´s doing it.  He´s incredible.
I don´t have much time, but some highlights would be:

1. Today we went and hiked a mountain and played soccer and volleyball with our mission president and his wife.  Super fun!
2. We have an AMAZING ward mission leader here (a member whose calling is to help the missionaries, and be a link between the missionaries and the members).  The rest of his family moved here from paraguay, and they are just the best.
3. A less active family that we´ve been working with has been coming back to church, and it´s incredible to see their change.  It´s very humbling as well; it´s not easy to admit your mistakes and come back to God, but they are doing it, and it humbles me to see how much humility and courage and love they have for God to do it.

Anyway, that´s been my week! I´ll try to send pictures soon haha
Love and miss you all,
Hermana Jones