2 Nephi 22:2

This week we had a missionary broadcast, and there have been some exciting changes in the missionary world. First of all, our schedule changes: we now leave at 10:00 every day (even if we are training or learning a language) and we have more studies in the middle of the day. We no longer have daily planning in the evenings, so that missionaries who need more sleep can go to bed earlier (or we can study more. I love it! The other cool change was with our "key indicators." We used to have 9 statistics to report every week, but now we only report: number of investigators baptized, investigators with a baptismal date, investigators at church, and new investigators. I am a huge fan of these changes, I love how much the leaders of the church care about the missionary work, and I know that they are inspired!

This week I was able to go to Reno again on exchanges! It is so weird to see how quickly an area changes as missionaries come and go, and investigators are dropped and found. It was amazing though, because I was able to see several people that I love. Going to Reno made me appreciate Fallon even more though, I definitely think that I have the best area! (of course, I'm going to think that about all of my areas...)

Last Saturday there was a baptism in our church building. We invited everyone we could think of, and Pedro ended up going, so we decided to go as well (we can go to baptisms if we have an investigator there). It was a good service, but the whole time I just did not feel good about being there; I felt like we needed to be doing something else. We finally decided to leave about halfway through and go look for one of our investigators. She didn't answer, so we tried her mom's trailer (just two trailers down). She wasn't there either, but her brother, William answered the door. He said that he had just moved from California that morning and he was looking for a church to go to! We were able to invite him to church, and he accepted a copy of the Book of Mormon. I am so thankful that I listened and left the baptism when I did, or we probably wouldn't have found William. 

Have an awesome week! Make good choices.

-- Hermana Nielsen

D&C 58:27

What an exciting time to be a missionary! Spoiler alert for those who are reading this before the missionary broadcast on the 25th... but they are changing the missionary schedule! Our mission has already started the new schedule, and it is very weird, but I love it! 

We have had another week full of miracles! We met a former investigator yesterday who loves the Book of Mormon. We have no idea why she was dropped... the best we can come up with is that she lives so far away, but she is so prepared! 

We had a lesson with a less active this week, Carlos, who is trying so hard to change! He has been reading the Book of Mormon every day, and he doesn't drink or smoke anymore. He didn't come to church yesterday, but he felt bad about it so he told us "What is your favorite chapter in the Book of Mormon? I'll read the whole thing!"

Other than that, it's just been a good week! We've been keeping busy, which is all that a missionary can ask for. Hermana Adams is doing so well, she is so easy to train (I was worried I was going to have another Hermana Nielsen XD)... I really don't feel like I have to train her at all! She's just my companion, which is how it should be!

I love Doctrine and Covenants 58:27! We can never wait to be given direction "in all things." We can certainly have the spirit with us at all times, but our heavenly father expects us to WORK! 

Have an awesome week, les quiero!

-- Hermana Nielsen

-I love the Fallon sky!

-One family made us scotcheroos this week! I felt right at home haha!

-We woke up to some more beautiful snow this morning!

This has been such an exciting week I don't even know where to begin!

So, Hermana Adams is my new companion! She is fresh out of the CCM and ready to show Fallon who is boss. She is from Minnesota (but she doesn't have an accent, she says that it's a myth) so she's been enjoying the snow here. It's only been a couple days, and I already keep forget that I'm supposed to be the one training her. 

Hermana Adams and I have already seen some great miracles together. One evening we went looking for a less active family, but apparently they moved, so we started talking to a woman named Maria who lives there now. She started to turn us away, because she is Catholic, but we asked if we could do anything for her and she asked us to pray for her son. We got talking to her for a bit, and eventually she invited us to come in! (She said that she never does that) and we were able to sing "Grande Eres Tu" (How Great thou Art) for her, and she said that she could feel something while we were talking with her, (clearly the spirit!) She still didn't want us to come back, but hopefully she will be more prepared in the future when missionaries come by again. 

Very exciting news: Our investigator Pedro can finally get baptized! He has been taking lessons from the missionaries for over a year now, and he has such a great testimony. We are so excited for him to take this step forward!

On Saturday, Elder Christofferson came to speak to our mission! It was the first time ever that our entire mission has gotten together. I was able to see all of my favorite missionaries, including my trainer Hermana Martinez! (We had to get a 3-generation picture of course!)

We had the opportunity to hear from Elder Christofferson, Elder Pearson and Elder Larkin. It was an amazing and spiritually uplifting experience (of course!) At one point he held up his scriptures and showed us that he didn't have a single marking in his scriptures (at least his traveling ones). He told us that for him, it makes him think about the scriptures more each time he reads them when they aren't marked. I think one of my favorite things that Elder Christofferson said was that "Our Heavenly Father is very easy to please, but very hard to satisfy." I know that our Heavenly Father is pleased with every righteous choice we make and every step forward, but he cannot be satisfied with where we are because he knows our potential. I know that as we continue forward in this life, we will be able to reach our full potential (maybe asymptotically, but that's what we have eternity for!) 

-- Hermana Nielsen

Ha nevado en Nevada!

-Missionaries: defenders of the truth!

It's been such an exciting week! I don't even know where to begin...

It snowed this week! We got more snow than Fallon has seen in years. It was so bad that on Thursday night, the mission president told us that we weren't allowed to drive after 6pm; we either had to stay home or get member rides. Luckily Hermana Castro from the ward was able to drive us to a couple lessons! By Sunday morning there was black ice everywhere, so our meeting was delayed until 12. Most wards actually canceled. Last night, though, we just got rain, and the temperature is back in the 50's, so it looks like it never snowed! 

Speaking of snow: this week I realized that "nevada" is really close to the past participle of "nevar," which is the Spanish word "to snow"! So now I say that "ha nevado en Nevada!" (It has snowed in Nevada!)... I think I amuse myself too easily. 

I got to do exchanges in Reno again this week! I loved being able to see some of my old investigators. It has finally gotten to the point, though, where Fallon feels more like home than Reno... so it was good to come back to the cows.

This week one of our investigators, Adelina, told us that she stopped drinking coffee! That might seem like a little thing to some people, but before my mission I never realized how stubborn some people would be about the word of wisdom. I am thankful for Adelina, because she is truly prepared, and I love to see an investigator repenting!

We had an awesome/ weird miracle this week: Hermana Escobar and I were in Fernley (one of the farther-away parts of our area), and we were trying to decide what to eat for dinner. We started driving towards the town, and the first thing we saw was a Chinese buffet, so we decided to at least look at the prices. Before going in, we said a prayer, and Hermana Escobar prayed that we would eat "where [God] wants us to eat." I thought that was an interesting thing to ask, but we ended up eating at the Chinese buffet. We blessed our food, and then just started talking to each other, in Spanish. Our waiter came up to us and said "A cuar igresia van?" and we were both really confused, because we assumed that he was speaking to us in English with a really thick Chinese accent... and then we realized that he was speaking Spanish with a really thick Chinese accent. And he was asking us which church we went to! We got the address of the church from the Elders in Fernley and gave it to him, and then we had a conversation with him in Spanish. The weird thing is that his Spanish must have been much better than his English, because he wouldn't respond when we spoke to him in English. We never did quite figure out how he knew Spanish in the first place... but we were able to talk to him a bit, and he said that he wanted to go to church (maybe just to learn English, but either way it would be awesome!) So there we were, Hermana Escobar and I, having a conversation about the gospel in Spanish, with a man from China, in a Chinese restaurant, in the United States... missions sure are full of weird experiences!

Finally: Transfer news! Hermana Escobar will be going to an English area! Her English is improving so much, she is going to do so well! She will finish training a new Hermana who was called Spanish speaking, so they will be able to learn the language from each other. I will be staying in Fallon... and I will be training! I am so excited (and terrified!) for this opportunity to serve as a trainer. In the mission field, we say that I am having a "daughter," and I think that analogy makes a lot of sense... I will love her, and I will need to teach her and be an example, and I am going to worry all the time about whether or not I am a good "mother." But in the end it isn't about me at all, this time is for her to learn and grow and love missionary life!

-- Hermana Nielsen

-Exchanges with Hermana Servin and Sister Balbuena!

-More snow!

Ether 12:27

Happy New Year, everyone!

It's been a long week, but a good one! It has been hard to see investigators because of the holidays, but we have been able to have several great lessons this week. We had two (very) less actives come to church yesterday! One of them has a husband who is a non-member, so we should be able to go visit them soon.

Preparing for the new year, we have been reading the talk, "The Fourth Missionary," which is probably one of the best missionary talks of all time. I would encourage each of you (non-missionaries included!) to read the talk, because it teaches principles that we can apply to every phase of our lives, not just the shortest 1.5-2 years.

I think it is special that the first day of the year fell on Sunday this year. The Sabbath day also happens to be the first day of the week, and I have come to realize the significance of that fact. Each Sunday we have the chance to partake of the sacrament, renewing our covenants and commitment to follow the Savior. I hope everyone has goals for the new year. I have come to appreciate how setting goals can help us achieve our greatest potential. Just remember that it is not requisite that we run faster than we have strength, but if we humble ourselves before the Lord, he will make weak things become strong unto us. 

-- Hermana Nielsen

-Some elders must have helped this family with their driveway a while ago!

-This is in a member's home. I don't know why I thought it was so funny