Friday, April 27, 2012

Another week has come and gone

Hello dearest family and friends!
The days are long but the weeks are fast! It seems like I just emailed you a day or two ago. This last week has been really great! The work is still slowly pushing forward, but the spiritual experiences I've had this week have been profound =)
Let's go back to last Thursday. We tract (door knocking) in a building that was mostly Chinese people who either didn't speak English or who weren't interested.  The very last door we went to in that building a cute little couple answered the door.  I said, "do you speak english?" they both nodded their heads no. I said and motioned that I wanted to give them a card (a pass along card with an offer for a finding faith in christ dvd). The next day we received a call from a man named Pauel. We figured he was in that building somewhere. He wanted the dvd and we were the ones who would deliver it. When we returned and got in touch with him it was the old man who I didn't think knew English.  He only knew a little bit, he mostly spoke Vietnamese. It was so cool for me to see that we never know who the Lord is preparing. Nothing more there for now, but it reminded me that our message is for everyone. We should share it with everyone and those who are ready will respond.
On Friday we did a Blitz in the Zone Leaders area. A blitz is when all the missionaries in the zone come together and help generate contacts and potentially people for the missionaries in that area to teach.  Each week it's in a different area for a specific companionship.  This weeks was the most fun I've ever had with it.  We were on a very busy people traffic area.  It's on Fordom and Webster. We set up on all four corners of the intersection.  On two of the sides we had signs (cool official church ones) and mini tables that had pamphlets and Book of Mormon.  I enjoyed this blitz because of all the people we were able to talk to. Plus the weather was nice and if people weren't interested they could move on and two seconds later we could be conversing with someone who is interested. Also, it was fun to be out working side by side with all our other friends in the zone.
Saturday we had a lesson with a man from Guatemala. Anyway he's a great guy.  During the lesson I was really able to analyze and start improving my teaching skills.  Furthermore, there was a part in the lesson where I was telling about Joseph Smith and the restoration-the vision he had. After I told this experience I asked him how he felt. When we were discussing his thoughts and when I connected it back to my testimony I felt the spirit so strong! It was an amazing experience.
Sunday Sister Tu'akalau and I decided to fast.  We fasted for our investigators we are currently working with. I also fasted for the work and for guidence.  I felt I needed the guidance regarding our goals as missionaries.  I had a powerful experience with fasting on Sunday. It was as if everything that was said that day was direct revelation to me.  I'll share what I learned on Sunday, but before I tell that (because it's long lol) I'll tell about the rest of the week.
Monday Sister T. and I tracted a building where one of our members lives and we found a few potentials! And talked to a few characters as well ;)
I was so tired after wards because there were 12 floors we tract! hah Anyways that's part of the work =D
Yesterday we got juked (stood up) twice and then taught two other lessons. In between getting juked and our actual lesson Sister T. and I split some appetizers at Applebees lol.
Today we are going to have a zone unity activity and play kickball! We're going to the field in front of Yankee Stadium.
Tomorrow is the Sisters Lunch In! All the Sister missionaries in the New York New York North Mission get to come together at the mission home to socialize, have lunch, and be spiritually uplifted! I'm pretty sure it happens like every 6 months. No matter, I am excited :)
Then on Sunday Sister T, Sister Denison (the older missionary couple in our ward), and I are going to be speaking in Sacrament meeting about missionary work and how the members can play a bigger role.  So if any of you are going to be in the Bronx this weekend make sure to check out the Kingsbridge 2nd ward! haha
Ok on to what I learned and felt at church
Over all conclusion
"By small and simple things are great things brought to pass."
The butterfly effect-shows the science of how small and simple things do make a difference.
We all interact- Love people and keep your covenants.
The rest of Alma chapter 37 talks about how the Lord's small ways of doing things confuses people who think they know better.
We need to arise and shine forth
There is a specific work that God needs us for that only we can do.
The Lord needs all of our help in his kingdom. It doesn't matter how long we've been working in the vineyard
(in relation to life long members or recent converts) There are things only I can do.
Be a reliable instrument in the Lord's hand, no matter how simple or complex the task.
The best way for us to shine our light and be a butterfly effect for good:
-Keep the commandments
-Live with high standards
-Be an example to the world
Specific details of the church service that helped me reach that conclusion.
First I'll go over some of the pieces that impacted what I learned and then I'll concluded with how it affected me.
-The Relief Society president who had just been released talked about a talk by Elder Uchtdorf that he shared about a pen that he had as a pilot.  The pen could click between different colors and it never failed him.  He used that pen for everything-big and small. The pen never told him what to write or decided it knew better than him,  He likened that pen to being an instrument in the Lord's hand.  Are we reliable pens in the Lord's hand? Do we allow him to write what he desires? Do we accept whatever he needs us to do-Big or small?
She talked about how she knew she wouldn't be in this ward long, but when she got the call as Relief Society president she wanted to help do the Lord's work.
-Elder Denison (the husband to the woman speaking with Sis. T. and I)
Shared an incredible talk! I was so impressed by it. I also knew my Dad would Love it!
He started by saying how we are all unique.  There are things we were brought to the earth that only we can do. Furthermore, the way we live is an example and we affect billions of lives. Thus we need to be a light to the world. "Arise and shine forth, that thy light may bee a standard for the nations."
He referenced a hypothesis by Edward Lorenz in 1963. He presented it to the New York Academy of Science. This hypothesis was that a butterfly could flap its wings and set molecules of air in motion which would move more molecules of air eventually capable of starting a hurricane on the other side of the planet.
The Science Academy literally laughed out loud. They thought it was ridiculous, but fascinating.  Because of the ideas charm and intrigue...the so called Butterfly Effect became a staple of science fiction.
More than thirty years later physic professors working in colleges and universities worldwide came to the conclusion that it was accurate and viable. It became known as "The law of sensitive Dependance Upon Initial Conditions."
Science has shown the Butterfly Effect to engage with the first movement of any form of matter, including people.
The examples he gave were so profound to me. I asked for a copy of his talk. So I'll type the specific examples that he gave so you can see how people really do impact one another.
Friday April 2, 2004
ABC News honored a man who at the time was 91 years old as Person of the Week.
Norman Borlaug.
In early 1940s he hybridized high yield disease resistant corn and wheat for arid climates.
From the dust bowl of Western Africa to our own desert Southwest to Siberia across Europe and Asia.
His specific seed product flourished and regenerated where no seed had ever thrived before. 
Through the years it has been calculated that Norman Borlaug's work saved from famine more than two billion lives.
But perhaps the person of the week really was not Norman but Henry Wallace.
He was vice President to Franklin Roosevelt
Wallace was a former Sectary of Agriculture
He used his power to create a station in New Mexico whose sole purpose was to hybridize corn and wheat for arid climates
He hired a young man named Norman Borlaug to run it.
Norman won the Nobel Peace Prize and Presidential Metal of Freedom. Or should it have been Henry Wallace for recognizing Norman's light? 
But then maybe it should have been George Washington Carve who was person of the week.
He was known for the Peanut
When Carver was 19 years old and a  student at Iowa State he had a professor who on Saturday would allow his 6 year old son to go on botanical expeditions with the brilliant student.
The student was George Washington Carver who took the young boy and instilled in him a love for plants.
It was Carver who taught the young boy Henry Wallace and pointed him in a specific direction in agiculture.
George Washington Carver shined his light with the peanut.
There are currently 266 things he developed from the peanut that we still use today. He also shined his light with the sweet potato.  There are 88 things we use from the sweet potato today.
Or maybe it should have been a farmer from Diamond Missouri who was Person of the Week.  Moses and his wife Susan lived in a slave state but didn't believe in slavery. This was a problem for the Quantrill's Raiders. (He described the Raiders but I forgot exactly-so look it up if you don't know)
One a cold January night they came to their farm, burned the barn, shot several people, and dragged off a woman named Mary Washington who refused to let go of her infant son.
Mary was Susan's best friend. Mary was shot and died and the Quantrill's Raiders kidnapped the baby.  Moses knew he needed to get the baby back. He arranged to meet with the outlaws and in the middle of the night he met four of the Raiders. Flour sacks over their heads, Mose traded the only horse he had for the baby which they threw him in a dirty burlap sack. The baby was almost dead but Mose held him close to his chest to keep him warm.  Walking home that night he sang to the baby and promised to raise him as his very own son.
Who became George Washington Carver.
Maybe it was the Farmer from Missouri that saved two billion people.
Let's continue to another example.
A poor Scottish farmer was working one day trying to make a living for his family. He heard a cry for help coming from the bog and found Mired to the waist in black muck was a terrified boy
Farmer Fleming saved the lad from a terrifying death.
The next day a fancy carriage pulled up and an elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and said he was the father of the boy he had saved.
He said I want to repay you for saving my son. The farmer said it wasn't necessary.
The farmers son stepped out from the house.
The nobleman said let me give him the level of education my own son will have.
Farmer Fleming's son attended St. Marys Hospital Medical School in London.
He became known around the world as Sir Alexander Fleming the discover of Penicillin.
But that's not the end of the story.
Years after the same nobleman's son who was saved in the bog was stricken with pneumonia.
What saved his life?
The nobleman's name is Lord Randolph Churchill and his son is Sir Winston Churchill.
The best way for us to shine our light and be a butterfly effect for good:
-Keep the commandments
-Live with high standards
-Be an example to the world

Last contributing point is when we studied the talk The Laborers in the Vineyard in Relief Society Sister Denison made a cool point, we could think of the workers as members of the church. Some have been working for a long time. Others have just come, but we should not compare ourselves to the others. We are all here to do the Lord's work.  The Lord has called us at specific times to do a specific job that only we can do.

I Love all of you and hope you see the goodness of God in every single day.
Turn out and do as the Savior would do.

Peace and Blessings!
Peace and Blessin's!

Sister Emily Johnson

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Starting 2nd Cycle

Hello Friends and Family!

I am officially not the newest missionary in the New York New York North Mission! lol  It's a good feeling :) I'm learning the area better,  I'm not afraid to talk to the people, I'm feeling the spirit more as I listen to the people and pray that the Lord will guide my words.  Something I've learned so far on the mission is that if you open your mouth the Lord will help you find the words.  He never promises they will be well constructed sentences.  He never says it'll sound like a scholar.  However, I know as we speak from our heart and even fumble what we are trying to say the Lord's spirit will be there to bless those that hear us. And through the spirit we will be able to get our message through to those who are prepared to hear it.  Plus the more we open our mouth and just go for it, we will improve as we have opportunities to practice being guided by the spirit.

So that's pretty much my life here in the Bronx.  I talk to a lot of people, some going better than others, and I being myself as I share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  We don't need to be afraid to share the Gospel with others. It's an amazing thing. We just need to be genuine and share with love. And be respectful of wherever they are at this point in their life.
So this last week was pretty good =)

It's the start of a new cycle so there are new people, new goals, and I am working my hardest.  It's cool because it's like seeing one chapter close and another begin.  Over the whole mission I'll have 13 of those chapters.  Just enough time for me to evolve in my journey of who the Lord wants me to become.

I don't have much time to email this week, so I wanted to highlight some of the main points.  First is the new Sister in our apartment (companions with Sister Vanderdose) is Hermana Ortega! She is so awesome =) We've had a lot of fun together! It's going to be a great cycle I can tell!  I'm still adjusting to some of the other changes from transfers, but it's just a matter of time and getting to know the missionaries in our zone.

We had an appointment this week with a less active member who just had knee surgery. She is one of the coolest people ever! She is a fashion designer, loves to skateboard, and she has so much positive energy about life.  She was so uplifting to talk to even though she has plenty of reasons to be frustrated, namely the large cast on her leg! haha. One of her dresses was in an episode of One Tree Hill. Her website is
She had been released but due to medical negligence she ended back up in the hospital! I felt so bad for her.
We actually tried to go visit her in the hospital Tuesday night but we went to the wrong hospital. Hah that sucked.  So we called and apologized.  Then I got frozen yogurt from a frozen yogurt truck! Yes a truck! Well van more or less. It's just like an ice cream truck but for frozen yogurt.

It has been so hot here lately!!! I'm very worried about the summer!!! I'm pretty sure I'm going to die lol. But Sister T. said everyone looses weight in the summer because of how hot it is. I'm hoping to loose weight and let the humidity rock my natural curl lol.

I'm almost out of time on the computer at the library so let me just say one last cool thing. Earlier we went to an appointment and realized we had no way of getting into the building because we didn't know the person's last name. There are more details to the story, but the point is I was saying a prayer out loud that the Lord would help us get inside and right after I asked for that I opened my eyes because a guy had opened the door for us! That was definitely the fastest prayer I've ever had answered! haha

I love you all!
I hope you are doing well and finding joy in your life.

Peace and Blessin's
Peace and Blessings!

Sister Emily Johnson

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

General Conference, Bed Bugs

Hello Everyone!
Sorry I didn't write last week.  It was crazy! For reals.
Anyhow, I hope everyone had an amazing General Conference. I loved it! If you didn't get a chance to check it out you should check it out on
I had a really cool experience when we got a lot of the missionaries involved for a service project at an apartment of one of our investigator's apartment.  It was a beautiful sight to see everyone serve selflessly to meet the needs of a family in an underprivileged circumstance.  I was filled with the spirit and of love.  That's how I decided I wanted the scripture Mosiah 2:17 on my missionary plaque.
As for this week
We had bed bugs in our apartment.  Only the Spanish sisters were getting bit. Anyhow yesterday was a huge hassle because we had to take ALL of Our CLOTHES, towels, pillows, bedding, and anything with fabrics down to the Wash And Dry down the block and dry EVERYTHING. Then we bagged it all up, brought it back up the hill, and sprayed our apartment down with some chemical formula. We then left to go to a dinner appointment and had to stay out of our apartment, windows open, for 6 hours.  We returned that night to reassemble our lives. It was a LONG day!
Today is Transfers! With officially means I am no longer the new missionary! Yeah for that :)  It was cool to be on the other side and do the cheering/greeting rather than the one being cheered at lol.
And I received a package from my mom with pictures printed out from my whole Utah trip visiting Tristan! Thank you sooooo much Mom =D
As for the recent spiritual experiences
First was a lady named Dorothy who I met on the bus.  It was on Monday after I found out one of my really good friends, Elder Richards, was getting transferred upstate and would be leaving on Wednesday.  I was super bummed out about this fact and I was talking to him on the bus.  I'm convinced Heavenly Father knew it'd be hard for me to talk to others that day so he put people in my path who would help me continue to do missionary work.
I was sitting across from Elder Richards and the lady next to me tapped me on the shoulder.  She asked me what we do. I was like, "Hi! We're missionaries!" It was a total 180 from what I had been feeling.  I was able to share a little bit more with her but her stop was coming up so she quickly gave me her address.  It was such a cool tender mercy from the Lord.
The other spiritual experience that has been the highlight of this week was when we went on Monday to visit a less active.  I had met her two weeks previously at church. When I talked to her I felt the spirit so strong!  I knew I needed to visit her.  We set up a time/day for us to come by but that fell through.  The day after I met her, Monday at zone conference, I was talking to one of my zone leaders about getting permission to visit her since she wasn't in our area.  When I was telling him about my experience with her at church again I felt the spirit so strong. I told him I was feeling the spirit and how even though I wasn't sure why, I KNEW Sister T and I needed to visit her.  This last Monday we had the chance to go see her and it was one of the coolest experiences.  Heavenly Father helped me see her for all that she is and showed me the ways we as missionaries can help her.  We're going to start visiting her and her granddaughter on Mondays to read the Book of Mormon with them.  There is a lot more to the situation but I am so impressed at the person she is.  She's pretty rough on the edges, but she has such a big heart!  I love it =) I have so much love for her! I am thankful Heavenly Father directed us to help her through my impressions of the Holy Ghost.  I know that as we work with them the growth that comes will be incredible!
The last spiritual experience I want to mention is from the other day.  I asked Elder Richards to give me a blessing of comfort.  Missionary work is hard and I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve around righteous examples who can help lift me when I am down.  Blessings to me are so cool because you can really feel the Lord's spirit as the person giving the blessing mentions things or says things that hit home to the heart.
All is well out here in NY! Our Transfer theme is Obedience.  The transfer them is something Sister T. and I do in our companionship as a goal for us.  Last cycle it was Diligence.  The days are long but the weeks are fast!
I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the way it can transform our lives little by little, day by day.  I am thrilled that the Lord has something amazing in store for me that he is shaping me into.  He has a plan for all of us! He knows what we are capable of becoming.  May we all strive to let him work in our lives and shape our existence into something better than we can do ourselves.
I love you!
Peace and Blessins'! Peace And Blessings!
Sister Emily Johnson
Special shout out to those I heard from recently
Thank You!
Mica for the package! I loved it! I will be writing you soon!
Olivia for the letter.
Tristan for your constant letters and package.
Ethan for the postcard
Mom for everything you send

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Super Busy Week!

 Hello Family and friends =)

This week has been splendid but extremely busy.

We did a really cool service project and helped the family we're teaching. I can't remember what photos I uploaded. So enjoy lol.
I hate to be super lame but I got distracted talking to the
Elders and now I'm out of computer time! lol
But you will hear from me next week!
I'm working hard, the people in NY are sweet, and I'm having fun!