Tuesday, December 22, 2015

CHRISTmas

Merry Christmas everyone!

What a wonderful time of year to share the gospel and to testify of Christ!
Wow. When I was emailing today I was reading what I was saying at looking at all these little cheesy phrases I was throwing in my emails. I have come to the sad realization that I have become that weird missionary that I swore I would never be. But I have come to terms with it because this really is the only time in my life that I can be spiritual and super close with my Savior. So I'm just going to roll with it and soak it all up!

What a week! I think... I can't really remember. Bahaha. What else is new. Sister Anderson and I have had a glorious time strutting the streets of Yucaipa, boldly testifying of the birth of our Savior. Here is something wonderful, but also stressful, about Yucaipa: pretty much everyone goes to church and believes in Christ. There are seriously about 7 churches down the main road here that takes about 5 minutes to drive down. Yupp. Everyone just really loves Jesus. So that's a real blessing because it's really easy to start testifying of Christ, the hard part is getting them to take the Book of Mormon and let them know that this is the only true church on the earth.... So basically we just testify of Christ all the time and just let people know that they can come closer to him when they read the Book of Mormon. Because that's true. And that's what I am here for.

Our ward is so awesome. There are always several nonmembers at church on Sundays. President Van Cott's counselor lives in our ward and he has this ward doing missionary work. Actually, some days I kind of feel like they don't need me. They are seriously so awesome. But they do need me so I will stay :)

I am so excited for Christmas Eve. President Van Cott has asked us to go in at 6 so we can have plenty of time to study Jesus Christ's life and the true meaning of Christmas. I have really felt the Savior's love for me the past week. There are a lot of really REALLY great missionaries in my mission that are working some pretty wonderful miracles, and sometimes I kind of feel like I am doing something wrong, or I am not living up to my full potential. But I have really been studying the Atonement a lot this week and reading in 3rd Nephi. I have always compared myself to others my whole life, but I am finally beginning to realize that I am who I am and that God really does love me. The thought has often popped into my head this week, "Sister Olsen, why on earth would I suffer everything I suffered and gone through everything I went through if I didn't love you?" And I know that's not just true for me, but for all of us. And that's something that I am really thinking about this Christmas season. The gift that Heavenly Father has given us, his only Begotten Son, to suffer for everything that we have done wrong and any bad thing that we have experienced. I know that if we are ever struggling, we can just lean on him because he has struggled with the same thing. I have known this my whole life, but I think sometimes because we talk so much about it in church it gets overplayed and it stops loosing it's meaning. Maybe not. But I do know that God is fully aware of everything in my life. The tricky part is just letting him take it and stop worrying about things outside my control. He wants us to be happy. We just need to make that choice. And we have every reason to be happy.

I think once you take away all of the wrapped gifts and all the treats (which unfortunately we have still had plenty of...) and all the parties, you really focus on the true meaning of Christmas. I think that's something that I really really needed in my life and I am grateful for the gift that we have received to be free from guilt and experience lasting happiness.

Merry Christmas! I love all of you! I know you all are sharing the true meaning of Christmas with those around you that might not know who their Savior is. If not, I can promise as Christ's representative that nothing will bring you greater peace and happiness.

Love,
Sister Olsen

Merry Christmas!! I've loved 
marking everyone's favorite scripture; it's really helped me feel the true meaning of Christmas. Thank you all!!



Tearing up carpet for a family in our ward.



video

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