Monday, April 27, 2015

Week 32 - I'll go where you want me to go

Hello All! 

Well today I come bearing some news :( Last night at about 10:30 president Brinkerhoff gave me a call, and informed me that I was being emergency transferred to Star Valley Wyoming this afternoon. While I am so excited to serve in Star Valley my heart is broken!!!!! the simple thought of leaving Ammon is tearing me apart! This is my home, and I don't know how I will survive and function anywhere else!!!! I love the spirit that abides here, I love my companions, and I most of all love the people, I love them more than I ever thought imaginable!!!!!! 

As I packed last evening, and early this morning I took a lot of time to just really ponder and think about all that is happening. As president called last night I of course began to cry, like I said my heart was broken, he talked to me and tried to comfort me in saying  that only the ones he really trust get serve in Star Valley (mostly because it's in the middle of no where and we have no supervision), and that he trusts me even more to even include me in an emergency transfer, he said most of all the Lord has great trust in me. That might sound like I am bragging, and I hope you know I am not, but this is what he told, and while it somewhat calmed my soul I found an even greater peace in a promise I have made to the Lord. As soon as I turned in my mission papers I made the promise to go where ever I was needed. Whether that was Africa, Europe, or the great stake of Idaho I was going. I made that promise, and I lived up to it when I came out on my mission, I have truly gone where the Lord wants me to go. But as I thought about it more and more this morning I realized there is so much more to that promise I made then just coming to Idaho. It's a promise to follow the spirit and go and knock on that door, or to go to that neighborhood you've tried and found no success in a million times, and in this case for me it is leaving my beloved Ammon to go to Wyoming where the Lord wants me to go. I don't know what my purpose in leaving is, and I don't why it had to be today an not three weeks from now, but I do know that this is what I am meant to do. As I have been on my mission I have found that the Lord truly does work in mysterious ways, we never completely understand why one thing happens, but I know that it is always for the best. My path is unwritten, but I know that as I walk the Lord's path he will show me the way, he will write my path for me, all I simply must do is follow, which I plan on doing now and always!!!!!! Well I have I to go, Star Valley is kind of a long drive. Thanks for all your love and support, and know that I love and miss you lots!!!! talk to you on mothers day!!!! Don't let the elders at the house use everything to ​Skype! I have to be able to to!!!!!! 

P.S. Late night packing stinks!!!!!! 

Love Always, 
Sister Kaycie Sondrup 

Week 31 - The Advesary

Hello All!!!! 

OK so this week goes something like this...AHHHHHHHHHHHH WHAT THE HAY?! It was nuts!! So good, and so interesting....

Well to start we found an amazing family and committed the four old enough to be baptized! Then, we found out they don't live in our area, awesome! But it's alright the missionaries who cover their area have been praying for a miracle, so hey we were instrumental in helping the Lord bring one to them, so I'll take it!!!! It doesn't matter which missionaries help teach them, because ultimately they are being taught by the exact same spirit, and as long as they can feel that spirit, and feel their Heavenly Fathers love for them,  and enter into the covenant of baptism, I don't care who gets to watch them do it, just as long as they do!!!! It would only be my pride if I said anything else. I think that's one major thing I have learned here on my mission, just how prideful the natural man is. I HATE IT! But something I have been able to realize that it once you grow true Charity for someone you don't care how or rather who they receive the Gospel or greater happiness from, just as long as they do. I have a true testimony that charity and pride can never go together, in order to have Charity for others we must lose our own pride, and truly make that weakness become a strength. It's hard to do, and I am still working on improving it myself, but it is a true and great testimony I have that I can be done, that with God nothing is impossible, we can truly do all things!!!!!! 

So on top of going finding we had a crazy week!!!!! The mission has set out to reach a goal never before reached in May! As a farewell gift to our mission president, and a launching pad for the mission we have set out to reach the standard of excellence in the month of May, if, or rather I should say when we reach this it will mean just under 400 souls will be coming unto Christ and partaking of the ordinance of baptism in the month of May!!! Some may say it's crazy, or that's it's impossible, but I say that if we do all we can do, and we follow the Lord's will, there is no reason we cant reach that, or even exceed it! The mission has set this goal, and it has been becoming more and more clear that we will achieve it, but it has also become more and more obvious that the adversary is working harder and harder against us. It reminds me of this quote. 
I think we will witness increasing evidence of Satan’s power as the kingdom of God grows stronger. I believe Satan’s ever-expanding efforts are some proof of the truthfulness of this work. In the future the opposition will be both more subtle and more open. It will be masked in greater sophistication and cunning, but it will also be more blatant. We will need greater spirituality to perceive all of the forms of evil and greater strength to resist it. But the disappointments and setbacks to the work of God will be temporary, for the work will go forward.
 James E Faust

I love how it says these setbacks will be temporary, the work will go forward, for truly it will! How could the Lord's work not?! This week we as a companionship, a zone, and a mission have seen some set backs, but we have also seen some of the most amazing miracles!!!! The adversary is working hard against us, but our Lord is working even harder for us. We see opposition in all things, but we also are able to see the miracles in all things as well. The question that must be asked though is are we looking for them? Our we looking for the good, or simply seeing the bad? It requires a whole change of mind to look past the good to see the bad, but I know it is possible, no I am not perfect at it, but I am getting better, and I know without a doubt that there is good in all opposition, and that the Lord is continually providing miracles at all turns!!! We must simply look for and see them! Talking with the mission president he simply said the degree of difficulty has increased, but what pattern can we see from the scriptures when their degree increases? They all pass through hard times, Nephi got beaten how many times? They burned Abinadi to death, The sons of Mosiah were put in prison how many times? The Army of Heleman faced how many? All of these and then some are increases in their degree of difficulty, but what happened to all these men when they endured their trials? The Lord provided a miracle! Nephi made it to the promised land, Abinadi's message touched Alma's heart, The Sons of Mosiah converted thousands, the army of Heleman all survived. All because they trusted in the Lord, they faced difficulty, and though it was hard they kept the faith, and looked for the miracles that were destined to happen. So it is in our life, we can learn from their great examples, yes our degree may increase, but just as we see in the scriptures we can expect a miracle to happen, because the Lord will always provide for his followers!!! The adversary is real, and it is strong, but the Lord is stronger, and we can truly overcome all things with him! Hope you all have had an awesome week!!!! Love and miss you all!!!! and just remember no matter how hard it gets, no matter how much your degree of difficulty increases, as long as you endure, and endure it well the Lord will provide!!!! 

Sister Kaycie Sondrup 

Week 30 - PING.................Pong

Hello All!!!

Well this week was exceptionally crazy! Monday and Tuesday were nuts trying to cover 2 areas, and then Wednesday was crazy trying to get my new companions! Jeeesh! We were riding the struggle bus hardcore trying to get 6 suitcases into one tiny car!!!! Thankfully the zone leaders were able to take 2 of them and drop them off at our house so everyone got everything they needed, but it was dicey for a minute!!!!!! My new companions are crazy! HOLY LOUD! and HAIR so much hair!!!!! It's a little gross, but hey they make up for it! I cant tell you the last time I laughed as hard as I have the last couple days! Not that life is sad, they're just that hilarious!!!!!! They are both Tongan, one from Tonga, and one from California, they are seriously a hoot though!!!!! And they work so hard! They make me look like calm in comparison!!!! 

This week we were able to find 4 new investigators! WOOT WOOT!!!!! So exciting! They are progressing like crazy, and we set a baptism date with them on the first visit! Can you say miracle of the Lord? Because I can!!!! Sadly though they don't live in our area :( but they are attending with our members and have problems being taught by Elders, which is who they would be taught by, so we're seeing what president says for where they should be taught, is it bad that I hope he gives us permission? I know they should be taught in there area, but I already love them so much that I want to teach them!!!!!!! But we'll see what the verdict is later!!!! For now though we're just excited we were able to set another baptism date! That makes 2 for May now!!!!!! The whole mission is striving to reach the standard of excellence (2 baptisms an area) in May as a departing gift to President and Sister Brinkerhoff, it's a very lofty goal, but it is very achievable! I know anything is possible when we put our trust in the Lord, and I know that that is what I am doing, trusting in the Lord. I know that through mine, and my companions hard work and diligence, he will provide miracles, people to teach, lives to change, and relationships to build with there Heavenly Father. I don't know how, or rather who we will have to help us meet the standard, but I have no doubt that we will, and that is because my faith is in the Lord, not the opinions of man. 

So this week was so loud! Just loud! and it's crazy to me how much the Poly culture sticks together, for example,  we went to walmart on transfer day, and this person whom I've talked to a trillion times, but is never interested in listening, walked right up to my companions and gave them a huge hug and kiss (and by association I got one as well) and they instantly became best friends! I've only been with them for like a week and everyday it's the same thing, makes me super jealous but I am so grateful for it, I am learning about a whole new world and a phenomenal culture just by being in the passengers seat I love it!!!! My companions have also started teaching me Tongan, and oh my heck it's so many vowels!!!! That's the craziest part to me, there's like no consonants, like NON!!! But it's super cool, Last night we had a jam session singing Tongan Hymns with the one and only Sister Tu'akalau playing the guitar, it was way cool!!! They said I pronounced everything pretty right but I think they may just be being nice, I am to palangi for that!!!!! But it was fun all the same!!!! 

So we have had a ping pong table in our basement the whole time I've been here, but we never set it up, this week we asked the people we live with and then we came home that day and BOOM ping pong. I would say it's been a distraction but it's actually been way great! We made a game out of it with the Gospel, we'll take a topic and we only have as long as we can keep the ball in play to teach that topic, and lets just say I've gotten really good at teaching the Gospel in 10 seconds or less! Yeah, we kind of stink at ping pong, but we're improving and so are our teaching skills so it's a win win!!!! The first night we had it we were playing when our district leader called to follow up, I feel really bad because there was so much screaming going on! it was an intense game!!!!! What's super funny is he was playing ping pong to!!!! He and His companion are just way better because the only way you would have known is if you took time to listen to the quiet bounce of the ball on the other end. It was impressive to say the least. 

Well this week has sure been nuts, so many moments and memories made already! I am so excited for the work we have ahead of us! The Lord is truly preparing a way, but it's up to us to listen to the promptings of the spirit to find it!!!!! Have an awesome week and know that I love you!!!!! 

Tu'ofefine La'ato
(Sister Sondrup) 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Week 29 - Another One Bites the Dust


OK this has been the longest week ever! Monday seems like it was years ago!!!!!! But hey I don't mind it one bit!!! NOT ONE!!!!! In all honesty as I am yet again sending another companion home it really freaks me out at just how fast the time goes!!!!! It's like a huge shock to my system to think one day that person will be me!!!!! SAY IT AINT SO?! What's even crazier is that I have been out on my mission for 7 1/2 months! 7 1/2!!!!! By the time next transfer comes around I'll be half way done!!! Where did time go? I don't know but I sure as heck want it back!!!!!!! There is still so much work to be done, and so not enough time to do it!!!! What would you say if I decided to serve another mission right after I get home? Really that thoughts been going through my mind...who needs a man anyway?!

Well on top of my sudden realization that time is way to short, we got to go and teach like crazy this week!!!! IT WAS AWESOME!!!!!! So many new and wonderful faces!!!!!! I even taught a lesson from inside a car this week!!!! So funny story...well creepy kind of, but hey if you do something out of love people will always notice right? Anyway Sister Hervoyavich and I were driving and nobody, and I mean nobody was home!!!!! It was ridiculous!!!! So I stop at a stop sign and a guy is out walking his dog, we make eye contact, and we both smile and wave. No cars are coming so I drive away and I am pretty far down the street and the spirit is like "go back" I wont lie I had a small argument with the spirit at that point, it went kind of like this "I don't want to go back that will be so awkward!" "Sister go back" "I'm not going to do it, I am driving away" "Stop being petty and go back" "I'm not petty that's creepy" "I'm not saying it again" "FINE I'LL Go BACK" So then I did, and it was of course awkward as junk, pulling up like some creeper and having nothing to say. But thankfully, the spirit that guided me there in the first place helped me out and we had a great conversation, it wasn't horribley awkward, but there were for sure moments, and we found a new investigator! Sadly he was only visiting Idaho, and is from Colorado, but hey, we got a new investigator for them, and who knows maybe they have been praying for this? We never know how the Lord will answer our prayers, and what comes around goes around right? The Zone Leaders and District Leader were impressed that we didn't even get out of our car to teach a lesson though, it was kind of cool when I think about it, and it was an amazing learning experience so I'll take it!!!

So conference...DANG IT WAS AMAZING!!!!!!!!!! I love conference so much!!!!!! I will admit though the first session being all about family was a little awkward as a missionary...yeah, but I guess that's something to look forward to right? AHHHH I don't want to think of that! But it was a great weekend! So many answers to questions, and so much revelation received!!!!! I just love conference, and one of our investigators got to go down to the conference center to watch, and it was amazing!!!!! I am so glad she got to go and feel of the spirit that is there!!!! Truly amazing!!!

OK so I have so much more week to talk about, but no more time! I have to go drop sister Hervoyavich off! But I will end with this, my new companion, or should I say companions... Until 10 minutes ago I was going to have one, and now I'll be having two, don't you just love last minute changes? I'll be having Sister Tuakolao (that's almost definitely spelled wrong) and Sister Kolo, that's two Polynesians for me! Our Zone Leader has so graciously pointed out that I need to stand in the middle so we'll be an Oreo, he also said I need to gain more weight so that there'd be more cream in the middle, double stuffed he said, but I would prefer not to do that! Anyway I am super excited to have them, they are great missionaries and I know it'll be an awesome transfer!!!!! Hope you all have a wonderful week!!!!!!! Sorry to cut it short! love and miss you all!!!!

Sister Kaycie Sondrup