Monday, May 26, 2014

Hello all you people out there! 
Thanks for reading my blog and for sending my emails and love and support. I know you love me. And I love you. I know the Lord will protect you all.
Family and friends, 

This week was good. We were able to work with the word to go and search for members and help update the ward directory with names and telephone numbers. it was good to help the ward. We feel like we are helping and being more united with the ward.
HAPPY MOTHERS DAY! Tomorrow is mothers day here in Bolivia so, mom, another happy mothers day!
I am super happy with my companion. His name is Elder Jerez, from Argentina. He is just a fun guy and we get along really well.
This week, I was able to finish the Book of Mormon again. I was reading and studying of how I can be more humble, and I was able to find a lot of new answers. I know as we come closer to Christ, he helps us become more like him. 
Since I was focused on finishing the Book of Mormon, I had set aside my reading of the New Testament, and now that I have finished with that goal, my new goal is read and learn more of the Savior as I read the New Testament. I am learning more and seeing more that I ever had before. I love it, as Christ taught, he kind of taught in code, those that wanted to hear and learn, they would understand, I am now understanding more as I constantly strive to be closer to Him. 

I love the people here. I have prayed so hard to love them, and I truly believe that the Lord has helped me finally love the Bolivian people. They make me laugh. They make me sad when they dont do what they said they would do, but I havent yet lost hope in them. They are a good people, and I know we will find more people that want to progress.
That is it for this week. I love you all very much and I hope that you are all happy. If you aren't happy, come closer to Christ. I know He will help you truly be happy!
I forgot to tell you, once more winter has come to Santa Cruz. It is humid and so cold. The winds are super strong. But, thankfully in my house, we have a/c so we cranked up the heat and sat underneath it. 
So, here is a picture of 4 of us in the morning huddling together on an extra matress in the house, trying to get warm. haha. 
-Elder Jensen

Monday, May 19, 2014

Another Week

Hey there everyone! I am here in an internet cafe writing you this day and I am super happy. This week was good. My companion and I were able to get a lot done to help the ward and to get things going in my area. Plus, the Lord showed us that He will help us in the work. 

On Tuesday, we had to go to the eye doctor because my companion is blind... well, less blind than I am, but still blind. We look like two goons with coke bottle glasses, but it was good that we went to the eye doctor because I was able to buy some new contact lenses which made me super happy. 

Wednesday, we had a training conference with President Willard and all the District Leaders and Zone Leaders in the city.    It was good. We learned a lot about how we need to do things the Lord´s way so as to have the spirit and to be able to do the things that He wants, since it is His work and His glory. 

We had a couple of great things happen that I would call miracles. We had like 3 or 4 people come up to us and ask us, ¨Elders, will you teach me the lessons?¨ something that, in my mission, has never happened. I know that the Lord is helping us with his work in his time, we just have to be humble and patient and the blessings will come. 

I want to share with you all something our Ward Mission Leader taught us. He is great. Our ward mission leader´s name is Hans Raldes. He knows a lot of doctrine and is constantly reading Liahonas or the Book of Mormon. He taught us a bit about the happiness and how to be happy. We told us, ¨the secret to happiness is obedience. If we obey God, we will be happy always. Only those who obey God are happy, no one else. There is no other way to be happy¨ 
I know that is true. I know that God wants us to be happy and that he gave us the way to find true happiness. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the way to happiness and obedience is part of it. 

I love you so much my family. You are so important to me and I hope you all have the best week of your lives this week. 

Until next monday, 
Elder Jensen

Monday, May 12, 2014

Todo Bigote!

Well, there it went, the last phone call home. It was great to be able to skype you all and actually have a good camera and internet connection. I hope you all had a good time talking to me and a Happy Mother´s Day to you mom and to Brooke!
Well, like you all heard, I got a new companion. He is Elder Jerez. He is from Argentina. He has a year in the mission. We get a long great. I am super happy to have him here in Guaracal.
Everything with me is going really well. I am happy and healthy and just doing really well, working in the Lord´s vineyard. Like they say here, ¨todo bigote (all is mustache)¨ or ¨todo esta chalinga (all is super good)¨
I know that the Lord has so much prepared for us. He wants us to be happy and to follow his path to be happy. I love this gospel and I love the opportunity that I have to share this gospel with others.
Yesterday, we passed by the house of a less active. We started talking with him, but I just kept feeling like there was something on his mind, or there was something there. I just paused, and just asked the question that was in my mind, ¨are you happy?¨ He started to cry and told us that he wasnt. We shared with him the way to be happy is to follow Christ. To be humble, to do the little things like pray and read the scriptures and, then we can be happy. I know that to be true.
I love you my family. You are all great and make me so happy. I just couldnt stop laughing or smiling yesterday, because you are all just great people. I am so thankful that we can be an eternal family. I love you so much.
So, last night, after talking with you all, we sat there with the Stake President, while the other elders spoke with their families. President Enrique is from Argentina, and just like sister Tatiana showed you, we started to ¨Matear¨ or drink Mate. Mate is an herb, and is super common in Argentina and in other countries, but mostly there. They put the herb in the poro, and then put in sugar and hot water. Before, I had never liked it very much, but when he made it, it is so good. I think it was because he put lime in it. And now I want to buy my own poro (the cup). I will bring some to the states if I can. He explained to me, that to share with someone Mate, it is a form of true friendship and trust, since one cup is passed around, they drink all the mate and then the cup is refilled with water and given to another person to drink. It was interesting to learn about another custom and culture of a people. 
They also gave us pancito (bread) and palta (avacado) to eat. It was a good experience to be in the house of the Enrique family. They are great, strong members of the church.

Until next week, 
Elder Jensen.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Cinco de Mayo

Feliz Cinco de Mayo a todos! I dont know why we think 5 de mayo is some kind of holiday when none of the Latins think it is a special day, but oh well, we are just like that. Or maybe it is just special in a certain country or something like that. 

My week was great. This week, we changed a couple things around, namely we changed our pension to a member of our ward, Yuri Chavez and his wife Silvia. They are great and they make great food. He is from here, and she is from Peru, so they make good food that isnt just the same as always. I am happy about that. 

We are continuing forward trying to work harder and more united with the ward members, we still are not super united like the prophet and President Willard want, but we are trying. We are seeing progress, the most notable in the church assistance, more and more people are coming, which is great. But, still the progress in other areas of the work still isnt where it should be... Like members presenting their friends, or coming with us to teach investigators. But, little by little. 

This week, we had a powerful lesson with a less active. Martha Duran, her son that was recently baptized, Andres and her sister, Paula Duran, a returned missionary, but also less active. We taught them about the atonement of Jesus Christ, combined with our purpose on Earth and we also talked about repentence and faith. The spirit was so strong as we testified and taught about the Lord´s sacrifice and how we can use the power of the Atonement to return to live with God again. I really felt so good and I felt renewed understanding of our purpose on Earth and how we can become closer to Christ, through the power of the atonement. 

I am continually learning about the importance of humility and patience and charity. These are things that I have never been good as but, through daily study and prayer, I have been able to come closer to Christ, and thereby, I have, at some degree been able to become more patient, more humble, more charitable and more dependant on Christ. I am still not perfect, I never will be, but I know that as we come closer to Christ, our character changes. In Mosiah 3:19 it teaches us, that as we learn and strive to follow Christ, our nature changes... it isnt coincidence or anything, we literally become Saints, or disciples of Jesus Christ. he helps us as we strive to be like him. I just want to be like Him and to help others as well come unto Him- whether I be a missionary or a member of the Church, I have the responsibility to share and to bring others to Christ. Through my example, it is possible. 

I love you all so much. I know Christ lives. I love Him and I know He loves me. I will call you, dad, today to make sure Skype works, and then I will call you on Sunday at like 3 your time. If I can'
t get through, dont worry, I will get ahold of you some how. Haha. 

Please be safe. Be happy. Smile. Pray for missionary opportunities. 
I love you so much. 

I cant wait to talk to you!
-Elder Jensen