Blue Sky And Blizzards

Hello everyone! 

I greet you warmly from the depths of a polar vortex. (For real what it’s called.)

This week was crazy! Very good stuff. 

Guess who’s getting married on Valentine’s Day 2014??? TANNEH and JOSHUA!!! To be followed by another stunning event – their baptism on FEB 22!!!!! YEAH! They are the most sincere I have ever seen them! We had an awesome lesson with them and Sis Yorgason (favorite person ever) on wednesday! Tanneh pretty much bore her testimony. She knows this is right and true. In the past she has been apprehensive and scared, feeling that she’s not yet ready. At church yesterday she spoke up in gospel principles about getting baptized. So awesome! Joshua wasn’t able to come and he has some past word of wisdom struggles but his commitment level is exciting! They are awesome! 

Sister Jenson and I have been going over to the Yorgason’s apartment in the morning to use their gym. Super nice of them! Elder and SIs Mathis bought everyone vitamin D pills. In district meeting on Wednesday Pres Ellert, of the mission presidency, came in and explained a new study their doing. He does a lot of health-related research. He gave everyone in our district this neat fitbit pedometer thing – basically to study how much physical activity missionaries in our mission get. Especially in winter. It’s pretty cool! Many of our elders are on bikes so that will prove interesting. Neat huh? Fitness and well-being all over the place! ( and Ma – Sis Yorgason is the one who works for doterra) 

A really neat thing that started this week is weekly community service! We get to volunteer at a food-shelf called STEP in St. Louis Park every week! It’s really fun! It’s basically like a bishop’s storehouse. We restock and help people bag their food. It’s a nice community effort and thus far has had a positive effect on our fellow-volunteers. I like it! And it’s INSIDE.  

We also volunteered at a soup-kitchen type place with some members, the Passey’s actually. Minneapolis – worst place to be homeless ever. But they serve a hot meal every week night and the people are very nice and appreciative. Fun stuff! Dad – it reminds me of what you said about serving at the homeless shelter at Christmas. I’m glad we have these opportunities! 

We had some good finding time this week. Hannah, a girl in our ward, is planning on going on a mission, so we took her out a lot. Give her the real-deal experience. Talking to crazy people all day. We try to get in apartments as much as we can – such funny experiences. You never know who you’re going to meet. We met some really sincere new people – two teenage girls I am pretty excited about! Leshay and Adrianna. Also a Tonda and a Todrianna. People’s names. 

Holly! A super neat less-active came to church yesterday and bore her testimony! She’s been in contact with this bishop and we met her a few days ago. It was kind of funny – we were trying to find her apt and got super lost. We asked this guy where the stairs were and he showed us the way. He led us all the way to her apt – turns out it was her husband! Super funny. And fate, timing, etc. They’re awesome and he’ll likely get baptized someday. 

Another development – Katherine had a girl’s night with a lot of the young fun people in the ward! That was awesome! We weren’t able to teach Nora and Alex this week – hopefully next week. Their mom is in kind of a rough spot right now. 

Tricia – she was baptized in December – like the week before I got here – she is so awesome!! We’re doing the new-member lessons and trying to get her home-teachers to do it. Yesterday we talked about patriarchal blessings and she got so excited!! Her husband is a member and has one, and she didn’t realize that she could get one too! They are the neatest couple in the world. Patriarchal blessings are amazing! I want to study mine more often. 

Things are good! I’ve been thinking a lot about that moment when Peter sees the Savior on the shore and jumps out of the boat to greet Him. (this thought was stirred by the talk(s) you sent me, Shell – thank you!!!!) When his eyes were on the Savior he could walk on water. It wasn’t until he looked down and began to fear, that he sunk. “Oh ye of little faith.” We need to keep our eyes on the Savior. Constantly. If we do we will not fear and we will not sink. We’ll be able to get to Him. I’m trying to change the way I’m thinking. 

I remember a talk someone gave once, and he expressed that he often didn’t feel very valuable or worth anything. It wasn’t until he started serving others that he realized that – even though he feels like he doesn’t have much to give – he could always be of service to someone else. And that’s valuable. 

I love you and hope all is well! 

Love, Sister Gessel

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