Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Fin de Julio

Hey mommy!! How's the adventure goin? Alrighty so I have a few items
of business haha. I want you to know beforehand that I'm healthy as an
ox and happy as a clam 
I don't want clothes for my birthday. Let's be real, I'll just have to
lug it around haha.
I got my hair fixed the other day.. I couldn't handle how bad it
looked. So yeah that took some dough cause the only place we knew of
was ulta. Sorry bout that. It felt super nice though. I figured a lil
primp up is nice every once in a while haha.
Would you mind checking on the money on the card? We are going to wild
life Florida next week and it shouldn't cost cause a member owns it,
but I would like to be sure.

I'm running low on time today, I apologize!  we're all talkin and
chillin in the chapel after district pday haha. Plus these iPads just
don't function like computers. First world problems right? Hahaha hey
I heard they're taking iPads to 120 new missions!! Does that include
Spain?!
BUT please send everyone my love and assure them that I'm happy as can
be! I couldn't be more grateful to be here. And I couldn't love my
situation any more knowing that you and papa are doing most of the
same things in EspaƱa. This week in gospel principles they asked us to
think of someone who has sacrificed. I thought of Christ, I thought of
Joseph smith and others. But I thought of you and Papa and sure
appreciate the attitude in which you chose to accept such a big call!
We (my companion, me, the English sisters and the English elders in
the ward) also got to talking while reading in the Book of Mormon for
the day on Sunday. We read in Jacob two and were talking about the
influence of parents. Your influence has been incredible! I hope you
know how blessed I feel to have been born to goodly parents  this
Book of Mormon challenge has been the best thing to happen to me. To
read aloud and share insights every morning is the most special thing.
I'm growing tremendously out here. Like yeah, I'm still pretty
immature haha but I feel different inside at least. I'm continually in
awe of this sacred calling. How did I get so stinkin lucky?! Imma send
a message that sister brooks' dad sent her and let her share with me.
It's beautiful. Anyway, love y'all so much and hope everything is
great! Imma try and respond to the dearelders today! I love em!!

CON MUCHO AMOR, tu hija Hermana Jackson


While we lived in the pre-mortal life with Our Heavenly Father all of
us spiritual children wanted to be like our Heavenly parents. We
wanted so much to be like them that we were willing to leave their
presence, on the chance of not returning through choices of agency,
and come to earth to gain a body with which we would make choices and
in-act the Atonement. We knew that it was Father's plan and that our
Elder Brother and Savior would implement this plan. We all agreed, at
least all of us that are here upon the earth. And when we decided on
the plan i am sure as is usually the case by common consent, we raised
our arm to the square and witnessed that we would accept this plan of
salvation. Sometimes we raise our arm to the square only for ourselves
as individuals, as in the temple ceremony and also when we sustain
leaders or those to new callings we raise our arm to the square not
only as individuals but as a ward or as a church. In the temple after
having received our own endowments then  we go on behalf of others we
raise our arm on and in their behalf. I believe that in the grand
council we all raised our arm for us individually for Father"s plan
but then most important on behalf of every soul that was coming to
this earth that we would sustain and lift up and assist all of
Father"s children from the prophet to our bishop from our bishop to
our earthly families. But what i think we sometimes forget in  our
selfishness is that when we raised our arm to the square before this
earth came into being we raised our arm to support each other. Yes
every soul that would come to this sphere. That means i raised my arm
for those who are drunkards, rapists, homeless,the sick and afflicted.
I raised my arm for what we call the dregs of society as they stood
next to and with me in that grand council. I raised my arm for those
who would be fatherless and the widows. Those that suffer depressions
and addictions, those with genders differences. These same individuals
stood next to me and raised their arm high in that council to support
me in my earthly trials and now i cannot, no i must not forget them. I
once loved them and i must learn to and remember to love them once
more. As you go forth in your labors as a called and set apart servant
of the one who has set the plan of salvation may you look upon all of
His children as those we stood next to and with in the council in
Heaven. Every contact, every referral and every member, we raised are
arm for. This has helped me as i go forth in my calling.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

An email from the Grovers

(Hermana Grover is from Orlando, and is serving in our mission - currently serving in the Canary Islands. She and Megan had an art class together at BYU. One day in the spring, Hermana Grover said to Megan, "I received my mission call!" When Megan asked where, Hermana Grover told her it was to the Spain, Madrid Mission. Megan of course told her that we were here, serving, and would be her Mission Parents. A few weeks later, Megan got her mission call, and when she told Hermana Grover, she said, "That's where I'm from!" The Church makes the world much smaller!)

President and Sister Jackson,

We've been waiting and waiting for the opportunity to meet Hermana Jackson while she's serving here in Florida.  Since it was beginning to look like we might not ever have the privilege of Spanish-speaking sisters assigned to our ward, we asked President Berry if it would be okay if we sort of took matters into our own hands and traveled to her!  President Berry was characteristically accommodating, and okayed our getting together in Kissimmee (only about an hour away from us).

What a delight it was to meet your daughter and her companion, Hermana Day!  We had so much fun visiting over lunch.  They even took the time to prepare a spiritual message for us.  As we're sure you know, you have every reason to be proud of your daughter.  She appears to be serving valiantly, carries the Spirit with her, and represents the Lord and your family extremely well.  She is a special young woman.

Here are a few photos from our visit today.  In a following email is a little voice recording we made for Hermana Grover that we thought you would enjoy too.  Thank you for sharing your wonderful daughter with us here in the Florida Orlando Mission!  Thank you, also, for taking such good care of our daughter there in the Spain Madrid Mission!

Blessings!

Bob & Melissa

video







Monday, July 21, 2014

Servicio!

Yep, you better believe it was another fabulous week around these parts of Kissimme/ St. Cloud (we technically cover both areas since we're spanish). The theme this week was service. We saw a recent convert last Sunday night and he kept apologizing for his lawn and said he can't get ahold of the guy to come do it. So we mowed it the next day! It was actually super fun using that monsterous weed wacker thing and we finished just in time for the rain to pour. His face when he showed up right as we were leaving :) priceless. 
Tuesday we were up in the St. Cloud area and had planned to stop by a member's house who had been through a rough family situation recently. She couldn't think of anything for us to do, but we insisted. So we mowed her lawn too! haha We had to borrow some clothes and shoes, but it was so great to help her out a lil bit. After that we asked her how she's been and she started to vent. I started getting worried about time (I want to be sure I'm using time wisely) when I all of a sudden got such a feeling of peace and confirmation that we needed to listen to her. DUH, that's what Jesus would do. We recieved a text from her not long after leaving that basically said that he day was "blugh" before and that she had said a prayer right before we arrived that she could feel better. The Lord loves us and surely answers prayers. I'm happy I was a means to answer hers in a small way.
Wednesday we had service with the english sisters at Mimi Larson's house (Gary's mama!). Joey had us spanish sisters go cause Mimi knows me and that would open the door for the english sisters. We shared some great videos that she and her house helper, Phylis, LOVED. We sang 2 songs (yeah, SIster Moffitt has the voice of an ANGEL! It's incredible) and it really brought the spirit. After eating a smorgasborg(sp?), we planted some branch things and they taught us tons. They were the funniest ladies ever, we were laughing the whole afternoon. 
Friday night we got a call from the ZL's to do service the next morn for a guy that speaks spanish! It ate our miles, but it was SO worth it! We did some hard-core digging and such (#myarmsstillkill haha) and then we taught the restoration and invited him to the baptism that night! He came and loved it and said he would come to church.. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but  we're praying for him and hoping to get by there again. 
Gotta run!!! I'll have to tell you aout the temple next week. It was AMAZING!!!
LOVE YOU!!

Hermana Jackson


Mowing a forest for a recent convert 
 Yeah I actually used a monstrous weed wacker thing! way fun.
Never gets old

Cause we could without skirts on :)


Dad, how do you like that shirt? We wore her clothes cause we didn't have our work clothes with us 
The new thing. They'll next be converted to earrings 


Service day at Mimi Larson's!! 
A nice afternoon in the rain. Thank goodness for those lovely hats she lent us ;) 
spe-ider. Irracnus deathicus... name the movie. Still one of my fav's. hint: it's one of Scotty's too. But it's not How to train a dragon. 

That Mimi sure is a HOOT! We had a blast with her.
And we really did work. Made a nursery actually. We learned lots of new stuff! And got mangoes from her tree :) 


TEMPLE DAY!!!! 

Sister Barattiero woke up at the crack of dawn to take us and then took us to a way yummy breakfast! 
Service on Saturday morn.. Got my first red ant attacks haha worth it though cause miracles came from that service!! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

The plan of the Lord is incredible.

Que tal?! Man, these weeks are always so filled with cool stuff, i get pretty stressed trying to fit all the goods in! Here it goes:
1. Luis. Remember the guy that we came out of a lesson and he was sitting on the front porch listening to the BOM? Yeah, he's the bomb. He keeps asking really great questions and seems to be super interested. One minor detail though: in his excitement to learn more, he discovered anti Joseph Smith stuff on Youtube. But we basically told him that he's gotta have an open heart and search the correct sources. He's reading in the BOM and unfortunately couldn't come to church yesterday, but this week for sure!
2. We saw Maria Mejia earlier in the week and had johanna share her thoughts from her baptism- that brought the spirit perfectly. After saying the closing prayer to our lil lesson, I felt prompted to tell Maria that I know she knows this is all true and that she's ready for baptism. We got to the bottom of her problem which is Ernesto who is living with them. He's still married to a woman in Honduras and she won't divorce him until he gives her money. He also hadn't had a job for a month so Maria was getting worried. I told her we would start praying for him to get a job. I also asked her to pray this week until we see her this friday about a baptismal date. The girls and us (she can't cause she has diabetes) are going to do a fast tomorrow. BUT the next day when we saw them again, she told us Ernesto got a call and now has a job! Wooo, the hand of the Lord!
3. Stopped by the house of a couple from the DR that we've seen off n on. She's pretty interested and he's definitely closed off but loves us. We are going to do a temple tour with her next week cause shes super interested in the temple. We're excited. Her name is Korina and she seriously has a strong testimony. 
4. We're starting to really do english classes this week, so last week we put a thing on FB and on the website of El Sazon (our favorite Mexican hole in the wall) and then put a lil flyer in their restaurant. They're the coolest couple that own it and they're helping us out tons with getting people to our classes. We've been inviting them to church for a couple of weeks and this week we finally cracked down haha. They said Sundays are their only days to clean the reastaurant n stuff, so we insisted on coming by this Saturday to wash the cars and help them out so they'll come to church! We've been able to take advantage of lots of service opportunities lately that we're super excited about! We still walk with Louise every other day and this morning I mentioned the lessons she agreed to have. She's not stoked about the elders (assistants) coming by, but we'll keep tryin. We and the english sisters are going by Mimi's (Alley Larson's grandma) to do some service in her yard. We got special permission cause she's english but doesn't want to be threatened by missionaries she doesn't know, so we're hoping to open the door for the english sisters. 
5. A recent convert in our area, Carlos Utitiaj, is the coolest! He's on fire and wanting to come out with us and is inviting tons of family and friends to listen to his very first talk in church :) He's really excited and is taking his talk so seriously, I LOVE IT. We're going by to mow his lawn tonight and we told him the way he could "pay" us is to keep sharing his testimony and providing references, wooo! solid deal, I'd say. 
6. This 100 day reading "challenge" is the best thing that's happened to me! We're reading it out loud as a companionship and I'm learning so much and it really enriches our teaching. President wants us to be focused on the promises of the BOM and how we can use those with investigators. This morning we were reading more about the promised land... I really can't even begin to explain my thoughts. The plan of the Lord is incredible. I sure hope y'all are doing this challenge as well! If not, today's a new day and you can start! Repentance is real haha. 
7. This Friday is our temple day...! I'm SO excited to go to the temple as a missionary and to receive guidance for my area and my people. I'll letcha know how that goes. Last time I didn't tell you, but the night after the temple we were weekly planning and I had the most horrible feeling come over me. I couldn't even explain what it was, nor can I now haha but I'm pretty sure Satan was trying to attack me after such a spiritual high at the temple. I got a sweet blessing that night from Elder Bevans, a senior missionary. I've learned on the mish that Satan works like that though. 
Well yall, I'mma send some pictures I've been slacking to send. I hope you have a wonderful week!!! Lizzie and da homies should be partyin this week- don't forget to send the Hermanita some pictures! ;) 

Love, Hermana Jackson (stink)

MMM yeah. Maria sure knows what she's doin! 
I think I'm pretty clever and hilarious. 

the tiniest froggy 
What a surprise we found in our apartment this morning.......... BAAAA! We're safe and well cause my companion's tough.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Maketh me melt like a popthicle on the fort of the lie.

Man, what a WEEK! I got a new comp- Hermana Day (nailed it) and she's super great! It's quite an adjustment switching companions and such, but we're enjoying ourselves. Before I forget, Sister Brooks and I already have jobs lined up for after the mish - so money. Check out Echo water. The owner lives in our ward here in Kissmmee, the Barattieros. They're the coolest! 
So the 4th just ain't the same as it is in Utah haha. BUT we got to go to this huge festival right by a lake where we had a mormon.org booth and there were about 10 missionaries per 2 hour shift where we just got to talk to EVERYONE and get referrals and such. Every missionary's dream.... Minues the stand 2 away selling marijuana and the crazy loud worldly music.. Yeah, kinda odd. I heard Sister Berry was doing some dancing and when President Berry said she couldn't she goes, "Hey, I was a dance major, I've gotta dance!" hahaha she's a hoot. We actually got tons of spanish contacts as well, sop definitely well worth our time. We were on the night shift so at 9 we got to watch fireworks!! 
We have a new senior couple in our ward that uncle Bob knows! Elder and Sister Bean from Kaysville. I guess he and Bob were ski instructors at the U. They're super cool though and gonna be way helpful. 
We went to visit a less active Hermano Marroquin last week and he was painting his walls. We basically insisted we could help, but he turned it down. However, we shared a message and invited him to church. He didn't come cause Colombia was playing in the world cup. So this week we went by and talked about the importance of church and everything, and I ain't gonna lie, we were pretty blunt. But his non-member wife was there and was probably more excited to come to church than he was!! They came to the ward party on Saturday but only stayed a few minutes cause their young son wasn't too stoked to be there. Then yesterday they didn't show up and wouldn't answer our call!!! NOOO. Why is it so stinkin hard to get people to church!? Whatever, unphased. We'll get them there this week for sure. 
Maria Mejia has been fallin through tons recently as they're having to move and their life is getting crazy (Satan's tryin em). She bore her testimony this week and it was the sweetest thing! Our members are pretty great to welcome her and everything too, so that's helpful.
2 weeks ago Sister Scheckman who's been so helpful with Maria called and had us clean the house of one of her friend's names Louis. Louis speaks all english, so we can't teach her. The Lord must want me to learn something, because we keep getting in situations to clean the craziest houses. We were happy to do it, but man, I promise I will always be clean! We spent 3 hours cleaning it and it looks tons better! We dropped by last night cause we were in the area and we shared a video and a thought. We asked her what she thought her purpose in life was and she said, "you know what, I DON'T KNOW!". We went over the plan of salvation briefly. She went to church yesterday but didn't seem to love it cause she said she wouldn't go back. When we invited her to be baptized she said, "I will NOT be a mormon". We asked her what we could pray for and after a long pause, she told us she wants to lose weight. We asked if we could work out with her every other morning at 6:30 and she was so excited about it! haha so this morning we rode our bikes over and walked with her for a bit. Hopefully we can soften her heart a bit and gain some trust. 
We were given a "challenge" this week to read the BOM in 100 days!!!! YESSS! We've already started and it's the best thing ever, I'm so excited about it. So I want to invite yall to do it with me :) You'll just be a few days behind. The Book of Mormon is incredible and such a good way to receive answers! The promised within it are so powerful and so TRUE. I know that it's the word of God.
I love yall and wish you the best of luck :) Have a wonderful week!!

Barattieros 

festival 

Don't worry, I'm in Zion!! 
teeniest froggy