For starters... Happy Birthday to the best mom in the whole wide world!!! I love you so much mom I hope your birthday is full of Love and happiness!!
My week starts with a member that was truly inspired. I met a girl named Jane who was so sweet and we started talking about my mission and when she served a mission as well. She said she didn't realize how many blessings would actually come after a mission, it was the hardest thing she ever did but has brought her the most joy. We could relate on many levels, I think as missionaries we only focus on those of other faiths but forget how wonderful members really are.
Prayer of the Heart...
So weeks ago I told you about Travis how I prayed with him on the phone and he said he felt peace. Well I've been staying in contact with Travis and checking in with him every once in a while. I felt like I needed to contact him a couple days ago and I received a message I will never forget. He said that the missionaries have come and he is really interested in what they are telling him!! And then he sent me a text and said.... Jenna i said the closing prayer last night! Tears just filed my eyes I was so humbled to be a missionary in that moment to experience the pure joy that comes from others feeling the the spirit. He then asked if i could call his friends and tell them more about this gospel. We never know what a prayer will do. I've prayed for Travis by name for a month now hoping he will receive a witness that God is listening to his prayers. What more can you ask for in life? This is pure joy.
An Asian man and his son came to temple square both doctors and very smart if i say so myself. The man was kinda closed off but Sister Phillips took the son and I was talking to the father trying to get to know him a little. I was able through the spirit to bridge to the book of Mormon and bare my testimony of Jesus Christ. I read him 3 Nephi 11.. and he just stood there and looked at me like he was trying to remember why he heard it before. I said June do you believe Jesus Christ is your savior? He replied and said my wife is the religious one not me Sister Mettra. And I said, June Jesus Christ didn't just die for your wife, he died for you and me he loves you so much. I went on to bare my testimony of what a blessing this has been in my life, to know what life is really all about. He grabbed my arm and got kinda close to me ha I was nervous for a sec. And he looked at me and said, " You are a very beautiful girl, when I look in your eyes I can see something and when I listen to you speak I feel happy I am very lucky to have met someone like you." I just smiled and said, June your feeling the spirit and the light in my eyes is the light of Christ. He smiled and said I had left an impression on his heart.
Indie Jingle Bells sure its Christmas right?
So this little indie band comes in from Seattle and totally in thrift store clothes and ha well super indie brek knows what I'm talking about. I started to talk to them and they were really funny asking me a lot of questions that they heard on south park about Mormons... ha not the best source but I've heard it all before being at temple square! I started to bare my testimony to why I came on a mission and how happy it makes me. Then i told them I was an opera singer haha bad move. They wanted me to sing with them! haha out of no where they started busting out into Jingle Bells and made me sing with them ha all the guests stopped and I just sand jingle bells with them haha. They asked me why Mormons are so happy and i explained the real meaning of who Jesus Christ was.. I'll never forget them!
Mosiah 28:3 is real
I had a moment this week that changed my mission and really my life in understanding the importance of this message! I met a guy named Brandon from San Diego. We only had about 10 min together and they were asking just about where things where on temple square. I tried to bridge something to the temple or something and for the first time i was a little intimidated ha lets just say Brandon was a really beautiful person haha. I taught about eternal marriage and they thought that was interesting, they really didn't have a religion themselves and so I tried to find something to teach about. Well the father was really interested in family search and I gave him the information he needed they were in a hurry. And when i shook Brandon's hand goodbye its almost like his spirit spoke to mine and said I want to learn why didn't you teach me. He said he Sister Mettra maybe I'll see you one day in New York singing nice meeting you....I smiled and said yes maybe... they walked out the door and almost immediately after my heart started beating fast and i was sick to my stomach... I didn't invite for missionaries! I felt so bad I actually lost sleep that night I woke up 4 times replaying over and over what I could have done different to bring the spirit in faster. I will never let that happen again! My soul really did quake and tremble after and for days later, but I had to forgive myself and promise never to let it happen again. Brandon will be in my prayers everyday for missionaries to find him!
Gift of Tongues is real!
This was the crowning moment... I met Jose last night at the desk! He spoke no English at all only Spanish and I prayed to understand him. Like many times on my mission i wished i could speak Spanish but i had to trust in the spirit!.. I ended up grabbing all of the Spanish pamphlets I could find and English ha and started teaching with the broken Spanish i did know haha. I realized very quickly the language barrier was not going to be a problem the spirit would make up for what i lacked! Jose was actually from Santa Ana! So we could relate on that level and i started to teach about El Librode Mormon. I used the New Testament gallery to help explain more of Jesus Christ. I will never forget looking at the painting of Christ being baptized and wanting to explain the authority. But I used everything I could and I said Jose don't you want to be baptized like Jesus? Now those that speak Spanish would laugh so hard if you really heard what I said ha including, Juan the Baptist e agua , mirror and so much more haha. But I took him to the garden of Gethsemane and just stood there with him and prayed Heavenly Father would just help know what to say. I ended up telling him how much Jesus loved him and that he wanted to know about this gospel. And be baptized like he was. I bore my testimony of prayer and who the Savior is to me. Tears filled Jose's eyes he understood every word I said, Jose and I were speaking spirit to spirit. I had a spanish sister make sure he could understand what he was accepting... and later the sister came up to me and said I didn't know you spoke spanish Sister Mettra?... I said no no sister Chavez i don't. She just looked at me and said, Jose talked to me how you taught him about baptism and being baptized like Jesus and when he came to the Americas and how his family can be together forever, Sister Mettra he understood. My heart was full of gratitude to be able to see this man as God sees him. And help him understand the importance of the message. You don't have to know their language to teach, you do have to trust God.
Terry Terry Terry
This man called in very angry and swearing he wanted someone that spoke English, i guess one of the Asian sisters had called him... Well i calmed him down and said Sir all she wanted to do is share a message about Jesus Christ is that so bad really?... The conversation went on and i testified of the Book of Mormon and how he could know if its another testament of Jesus Christ. He started to cry, the spirit had changed this man's heart, he was no longer angry but kept saying I'm sorry I'm sorry. Come to find out he lives in a little rock cave house and has no money. He is ashamed of who he has become and was afraid of the missionaries coming over. I said, Terry this gospel will get you out of your cave, you can be happy again I want this for you, Let the Lord help you. He just started to cry and said thank you bless you Jenna for your kindness and mercy on me.... When you love people anything is possible! We will be teaching terry this week!!
Well that's about it for now crazy week If you ask me!.. And this weekend over 100,000 people will come to the square to be spiritually uplifted by the prophet of God! I am soo excited for conference! As you watch conference this week have a question in your heart, and i promise you that if you have faith , the Lord will answer your prayer through his servants!
This week went by supper fast and honestly we were really busy with lots of people teaching. I've never had to remember so many names in my life, and usually I'm really good. But apparently on your mission you get memory block. This email will be a little shorter and more of things i learned then crazy stories this week!!
I'm famous by the way....
So we are just walking around on the square and found these two men by the temple. We started talking to them and one of them said he was a music professor in NYC. Well I said are you a theorist. He was like I think your the first person I've ever met that actually knew that's what I do. Most people ask me what instrument I play ha. Well we took them around and i was so grateful that heavenly father blessed me with an understanding of music because ha lets be honest i bridged the gospel from music and it was amazing. At a point in the tour I bridged the pitch of music to the restoration, don't ask me how the spirit did it ha. Well we had a very powerful moment in the conference center and they both felt it. I asked them if music had ever answered their prayers before. I told about an experience where a professor of mine had played Adagio for Strings and just said, I want you to feel. I don't them how it helped me feel a closeness to God. We testified of Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon, they ended up not referring but thanking us for all we did. Then at the end he told us his full name, Joseph Strous aka VERY FAMOUS theorist that writes pretty much all the music theory text books! NBD I really wanted him to be my tutor hahah.
June Robbins is back...
Called her after sending her a copy of the book of Mormon with my testimony. Ha she is the one that told me i better not send stupid 19 year old boys to her house that don't know what they are talking about ha. Well something happened in her heart when we were talking, I told her to stop looking for a sign stop looking for proof. I told her to TRY GOD. i committed her for one week to pray if God was there, i promised that God would answer her prayers. I know that God placed me here to speak to her, most people would cry or hang up the phone ha.... but i just make jokes and cut to the point. I'm praying all goes well with June!
We had a Mission meeting on Friday at 6:50 AM!! goodness I was half asleep walking there ha. Well we went to the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and viewed the NEW Joseph Smith movie. it won't come out for a couple more weeks but we saw it! Its close to the same but it says a lot more. They were inspired to make this movie, a teaching movie. So it talks more about what the book of Mormon is and how we can learn its true or not. Its all from the prospective of Lucy Mack Smith. While watching it I thought about myself being a missionary right now. That i was called by God to be right here right now to preach his gospel to everyone i meet!, a feeling of pride came into my body i knew I was where the Lord wanted me. After the movie we were able to bare our testimonies about the movie and what we were feeling. My heart was beating fast i didn't know what I wanted to say. But there was a moment in the movie that spoke to my heart, " God calls us in our weakness, but he qualifies us in the Work." That line read as Joseph Smith was baring his first child can you imagine? Tears just filled my eyes, because I learned something I did not know before, God called Me in my weakness. When I walked into the MTC some 9 months ago I was not prepared for what was to come. I knew one thing and that was I had to make it into those Doors. Since the MTC I have learned more then I would have ever thought. I love my mission it means everything to me. But I know that God called me in my weakness, to push through the pain to keep going, and to never look back. I don't know everything but I know enough. I know that Jesus Christ restored his church back on the earth today through a young boy. God doesn't look on the stature of the Man, he looks on the heart. I testify that God knows us personally. He knows our hearts and who we can truly become. He will never give us more then we can handle, and through trials we learn how to become like him. I've never felt so much love for the gospel or for the people around me. Every soul is great in the sight of god, I know that without a shadow of a doubt. God hears every prayer we say, we just need the courage to take that first step. I love this gospel and i love being a missionary. The gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored by a loving God, Through a living Prophet. Never look back trust in God and SMILE :)
I have so much to be grateful for this week words can't even express my feelings. Last week i shared the reverence that I felt with being trusted with these souls, and this week follows the same profile. I am so grateful to be in this mission, I know everyone says they had the best mission. But in no other mission in the world could you teach all over the world in so many ways and touch so many hearts. I am truly humbled to be called to serve the Lord here one these grounds. Our Mission President is very inspired to make this the most obedient and successful mission. Of coarse that itself took learning to understand why.. but I realized we don't need to know the why. " We cant go asking God to put us on the path, if we aren't willing to move our feet." Not only am I able to move my feet, but my heart is on the path the Lord wants it to be. I have grown to love trials and hard times, because I know that God wants to give us something better if we will just hold on and not let go....
Remembering Every Soul is Great in the sight of God...
Do you remember John from last week??... He was the one that came on and the start of our conversation was very interesting on chat ha but he ended up calling us and we taught him this week. He is golden like literally out of no where ha! Both Sister Anderson and I had such huge smiles on our faces the whole lesson. You better believe that A he had a BOM, talked about it like he was a member already B prays all of the time, C knows more history about the Book of Mormon then me ha. He is so prepared but like I said last week, if we would have judged and just said no he isn't sincere, this moment I'm about to describe would have never happened. Well on our second lesson to John we wanted to commit him to have missionaries to bring the DVD the restoration his reply, "oh yeah I watched that on mormon.org i love how he really wanted to know the truth and God told him." Wow ha um wasn't expecting that at all we both looked at each other with huge eyes and laughing and we said are you sure your not a member John haha. Then we started to share how the gospel has worked in our lives, what it means to us. I shared a couple experiences where I felt very alone and through prayer I was able to find peace and comfort to a very dark situation. The spirit was coming in and words couldn't really express how I felt, we both felt a prompting to invite him to be baptized! Sister Anderson did it and there was just silence, then I did a softer invite and told him the gospel will change is life and literally mid sentence I was cut off by, no Jenna what I was going to say was... Yes I would like to be baptized eventually.........
My heart started beating so fast and i couldn't speak. Sister Andersen and I looked at each other and our mouths were just wide open and smiling. He started to bare is testimony to what he knows right now, and I couldn't help but cry tears just streamed down my face I had to mute myself cause I was crying so much ( normal for me). I knew it wasn't me, Sister Andersen but only the spirit that had testified to his heart that this was true! We don't have to meet people face to face or even know them to see a miracle. As we let the spirit speak and talk from the heart anything is possible. John is a progressing investigator now and told us that he enjoys our spirits. He is our favorite! Ps he is from California :)
Do you know...
We were at the desk which has become one of my favorite places to meet and talk to people. Mainly because you have a short time and you can see miracles in seconds. This guy walks in about 30 years old just looking at the map. I walked up to him and started talking to him his name was wade and was really stand of ish actually. But I don't really care about that I'll talk to them anyways and make a dumb joke so they laugh. We started talking and I started to get the hint he was inactive. He had actually served a mission but went right away to the military so he lost his faith with everything he saw there. I could tell that his soul was lost and he needed direction and guidance. I shared a 2 Nephi 4:20 with him and told him that so many people forget that God can keep them a float upon the waters of life. And started to talk about how God is our life vest we just have to hold on. He looked around and wasn't really listening. Then the spirit helped me to pause and he said, Yeah I guess I forgot that. And I replied, Wade do you know God loves you?.... Silence tears.... No not really guess I never really have. I paused and let the moment sink in and then said, Wade he is just waiting for you to come to him he loves you so much and doesn't want you to forget him. He is your Father and will always be there by your side. He looked at me and just said, thank you, thank you so much. His feelings over took him and he left I was so grateful that I was able to uplift a lost soul that has the truth but forgot.
God be With you Till we Meet again...
Gloria called in to Sister Andersen's phone this week and she asked her if we could call her back and teach her more about how families can be together forever. Now I wasn't in the first conversation but we ended up calling a couple of hours later and praying with her. I guess her grandson was in the hospital cause he got shot! We prayed that he would heal and that things would work out for the best. The next day we got a call, Her grandson had died he was 17 years old and now gone. She just cried with us on the phone and Sister Andersen and I shared with her some scriptures and did the best we could to comfort her. The this morning is what really touched my heart. We called and prayed with her and she started telling us about all the things that had happened in her life and she just feels alone and kept asking us where did Nathan Andrew go? Where is he? We started to cry because it was so heart felt and she really didn't know. Sister Andersen testified that she would see him again and this wasn't the end. She has a stutter and sometimes cant speak but once she gets the words out we can understand her. She just kept asking, where is he? Then the spirit prompted me to sing.... God be with you till we meet again. I told her to pay special attention to the words and how she felt. I was crying through the whole thing especially when I sang , Till we meet at Jesus Feet. I have sung this song so many times but that line just came over me. We really will see each other again this isn't the end no matter what happens. She cried and said thank you thank you Jenna, you made me cry. I will never forget you, and your voice thank you. Music heals hearts I know that without a shadow of a doubt.
Fun fact!! : Abby my investigator with Sister TaraSevich.. GOT BAPTIZED! She is from England and we taught her over the phone! YAY!!
I know that God is really leading me to these people and that if I let him do that, Miracles happen. Why I titled this strength beyond my own is because, this week I may have had the worst pain in my back, then I've had since I got back. I woke up Thursday morning not being able to walk let a lone move. I prayed I would be able to walk and endure the pain. It wasn't easy but with the help of, my Deep Blue oil, Sister Rodriguez's skills, a loving comp and faith..... Miracles happens hours later. Elder Hales said, Constant intense pain is a great purifier that humbles us... Yep that seems about right. For a moment I was afraid I wasn't going to make it. The pain went all the way into my neck and temples and I laid down on the floor and started laughing cause I couldn't really even open my eyes ha. But the pain slowly drifted and that night is when we committed John to be baptized. And I would go through it all again just for that one moment. And sometimes I think that's how the Savior thinks. He loves us so much that when even one soul comes back to him, it makes all of it worth it.
This week has been tiring ha I'll be totally honest, every single day I fall asleep during lunch and dinner... nothing new for me ha! I have never felt so drained in my life, but its a good drain but man am I tired. Whenever I feel this way i read our heritage and get shut up real fast ha. So now I have a new comp Sister K Anderson from Las Vegas it is like night and day to Sister Pervaiz. All of the sudden someone else is talking during tours not just me. I told her she has to have patience with me cause I'm not use to having someone talk along with me. I have really tried to develop Charity and Love this whole month and to see these people as children of God. The way our Father in Heaven sees them, and I testify that it is possible with the Lords help. For the first time in my life, I rely solely on the Lord every minute of the day and it feels right. We need not to be afraid no matter what happens in life, The Lord is in it. I had a thought this week ... While we were covering the desk early in the morning when it was silent i looked under the desk and saw the panic pull button. That's used when we cant talk cause its to dangerous and we need help. But i thought about people on this earth, they use the panic pull to save themselves from so many things. But they use temporary satisfactions as their panic pull... But how blessed we are to know that we don't need that pull. God walks with us everyday, we aren't alone. I am so grateful to know that through prayer I can talk to my Father in Heaven and he will hear me. Sure we have hard times I will raise both of my hands to that... But I also know that they help us grow, help us become more like the Savior.
I prayed and prayed for a spiritual experience this week that would help me teach the gospel simply and teach exactly to their needs. Then we met Jianyang she is from mainland China.... If you aren't aware missionaries are not in that part of the world yet. I felt a reverence come over me i hadn't felt before, I was being trusted with her soul and I needed to help her feel the spirit. It was a tour with 3 people and the other 2 were kinda space cadets in their own world didn't really have much to saw. One was from Salt Lake and I'm pretty sure he was not really interested because his friends had invited him maybe a could of times. He said he had 5 copies of the book of Mormon. The other was really nice from Idaho but kinda kept close to the guy. As we took them through out the square I was confused on how i was going to personally touch her life, I prayed as we walked.. Father please help me to know what to say. We decided to go over to the conference center and the Lord made it perfect .. no one was there just us and these guests. The organ was light up in dark blue and the spirit was so strong. I wasn't loud and spoke very slow. Sister Anderson shared some of the facts about the Conf Center. And I didn't know quite why but I felt like I needed to bring the spirit even stronger in this room. They all were speechless at the room as it was but I decided to sing. I could barely form the words the spirit was thick and i knew they felt it. After singing we took them to the book of Mormon gallery where we had a moment I'll never forget. Jianyang looked at every painting carefully and the other two just kinda walked around not giving it a second thought. We decided to share more about the painting of 3 Nephi 11.... We asked what do you think it would mean if you knew the Savior came to the Americas... Jianyang just kinda shrugged her shoulders she hadn't really thought of it cause well she didn't know God. Again the feeling of reverence came and I decided I would read 3 Nephi 11. After reading I looked up at her and she had tears in her eyes. We said what do you think of that?... " This is truly amazing." We invited her to learn more and receive a Book of Mormon, she was calm and accepted the invite. I was so grateful that I was able to be a instrument in this amazing moment. I know that when we are reverent and speak the voice of the spirit it can penetrate any heart, no matter where they come from or who they are. We will be teaching her on Friday :) Ps she is going to school in Michigan so its safe to teach her.
Modern day Miracles...
I love chat! Although sometimes i want to cry with the things they say to me, we are here to find the elect and keep going. I've never been cussed so much in my life. I understand now why that's literally like swords in someones soul. We need to be very careful what we say to people. But on the contrary... words are beautiful and sometimes make or break a moment. We had 3 miracles on chat this week and honestly sometimes I can barely believe them myself. Brad came online he is in the military and wanted to know more about the book of mormon. Well somehow we convinced him to let us call him hehe. He is from Canada 27 years old and when we started talking I was kinda nervous cause he was super intense and doesn't joke much. But we set up an appointment to call him the following day.... We started with a prayer and he was kinda caught of guard but like I've said before.. ALWAYS PRAY. We invited him to pray the next night. and he did!! He said he felt good but that's about it and we told him that was a start! Who would have though one sec he is online next min he is praying.
2. john ... Now he has a little different story he came online to ask about the Honor code of BYU? ha he thought it was interesting that a bunch of college kids would actually follow all of those rules. And I'm grateful I went to BYU so i could help him understand how amazing it really is when we live a higher life style. Then he started to ask about morals and word of Wisdom problems. My comp was like sign off with him he is being an anti... I said Sister Anderson this man really wants to know our morals lets tell him, although some of his questions were a little hard to answer with out feeling awk we did it. Sister A said i could take this one ha. Seriously I feel so comfortable addressing these issues cause I know that when people actually follow them, their lives will be blessed. So we talked everything from sex before Marriage to porn addiction to lusting... Ha like i said never thought I would ever talk about all of this. But we ended saying we know that our bodies are temples and that when we treat them as such we live a better life. Why have the temporary satisfaction of doing bad things.. when you wake up you feel worse about yourself anyways. Well he wasn't comfortable giving us his phone number but we gave him ours and figured he wouldn't call...... 10 hours later I get a voicemail from john he wants to learn more! He said thank you for addressing my questions I've never thought about life like this before its interesting, we will be teaching him this Thursday! Always give these people the benefit of the doubt and God will touch their hearts if your doing your part
We met a man named kurt he was such an angel! And he was from..... HUSTON TEXAS!! I immediately loved him duh. Well Kurt was just passing through for business.. ( as they all think) Ha we knew differently. I was actually on exchanges with Sister Ettienne! One of my roommates in the MTC. It was an amazing contact and one that I will never forget. We asked the most soul searching questions and the spirit was there every time. He has a christian background and has a strong faith in Christ. He wanted to walk around himself... but we kinda avoided that part of his wishes haha sorry he will thank us later. Well we started with the painting of the Lord at the pool of Bethesda and how that related to all of our lives. I said, " You know sometimes we have that blanket over us we are paralyzed in darkness and we need the savior to shed some light. The Lord sees those in need, and we can see the light through drawing closer to him. Then we started talking about prophets and i read Helaman 5:12 .. he started asking about the book of mormon :) .We explained a little more and took him to some other gallerys. Then we played for him the clip of Joseph Smith and asked him how he felt about it. He said I don't doubt that he prayed, but I don't know if he really saw God. The spirit was so strong as we both bared testimony of the power of prayer. We moved to the last room to show him what a prophet today would say. He said he thought it was nice but still doesn't know if Thomas s Monson could be a prophet. Sister Ettienne then shared her conversion story, coming from the south it was perfect cause she is from Kentucky! We invited him to receive a Book of Mormon and he declined.... Then he asked me how i believe all of this. I then said something that I will never forget. As I explained how the gospel had always been a part of my life the spirit started to enter the room little by little. Then tears formed in my eyes and i said, Kurt i always believed in God never really doubted he was there. But it wasn't until i got on my knees and asked if he was there till I received an answer. I now Know God is there. It was so simple yet so clear, I know. He didn't end up accepting but i don't think Kurt will ever forget how he felt.
Many more things have come this week, the darker the circles under my eyes the more miracles ha just means I'm working hard. I know that God is our Loving Heavenly Father and listens to every word we say. Even when we feel he is far, he is listening and loves us very much. We are his children.