back ground

July 28, 2014

Don't forget to pray

Hej venner! 

Time is back to its normal LIGHTNING speed. I guess God decided I passed His patience test? 
Let me tell you about some of the beautiful things He blessed me with.

On Monday Yvonne texted us and asked if we could come over and teach her a lesson that night. No need to ask us twice! I love surprise lessons. We happily squeezed her into our schedule and planned a little lesson on the way since we hadn't studied/planned for her that morning. We were able to help our friend understand that even though she was baptized before in a different church, it is important to be baptized by the right authority. Yvonne has a lot of faith and she really trusts God. We invited her to be baptized by Christ's authority, and she said yes!!!!! She knows that if this church is true, God will let her know. 

Sister P and I were just so happy that we practically skipped and frolicked to our next appointment with our atheist best friend where we had a little monday night FHE like always. After our lesson and a fun game of Scum it was time to go. I half heartedly invited him to say the closing prayer. (We've invited him to pray a billion times before.... and he always kind of laughs and says something like "why would I talk to a wall?") But to my astonishment.... he said ok. 
And for the first time, he bowed his head. And closed his eyes. And spoke to God. 
I've never felt so warm inside and my heart has never been so happy. 
I've said it before and I'll say it again... The best moments of my mission have been moments I haven't actually seen.

One day we met up with our Bulgarian friend. We were teaching him about the plan of salvation, when he decided that he wanted to tell us his life's story. To put it short, it wasn't a very pretty story. His past is haunted by drugs and gangs and darkness. But none of that meant anything to us...
Mistakes don't define us. They refine us. Everything can be made right through the atonement of Jesus Christ. 

Its not about where you've been. Its about where you are. And even more importantly- where you're going
Its not about who you were, but who you are, and who you have the potential of becoming.

Its the most beautiful thing when you learn to look through heaven's eyes and see that you and everyone around you are children of God with the potential of becoming like Him.

Some other highlights from this week include:

  • Learning how to strum "You are my Sunshine" on the ukelele and singing to people on the bus with Sister Wright in Odense.
  • Feasting on bowls of CINNAMON TOAST CRUNCH at District Meeting. (It was quite obvious which missionaries had been out the longest based on the different levels of excitement over the American cereal that Elder Ockey's awesome mother sent....)
and speaking of delicious food.... 
  • eating almost nothing but canned beans all week because teaching Yvonne on Pday was much more appealing than grocery shopping. It was a taste of my future as a starving college student/ young married couple.....
  • Throwing a beach party and calling it missionary work!
    (We invited all of our investigators to the beach where we read the scriptures while eating watermelon and potato chips, and then played soccer and had a water balloon fight! There are so many fun ways to invite others to come unto Christ.)
  • Our investigator saying the most sincere prayer. "Thank you God for Eminem. He is a great American who is spreading a lot of love. Amen."
One last story for today! Its kind of a sad story so I can't actually include it in the highlights haha......
Rado texted us and said "My prayer week is over!" (Last week we invited him to pray every day.) 
So we asked him how his prayer week went...
And he said "Great! I prayed every day. Except for Monday. And on Monday I got hit by a car. Twice."
Poor Rado showed up to our appointment that night limping and sporting bruises and scrapes. (don't worry though! he's ok!)

Moral of the story: DON'T FORGET TO PRAY! 

Have a good week everybody! 
Jeg elsker jer. 
Sister Rogers

July 21, 2014

The most important things

Sister Pearson and I have this thing we do where every week we pick a Christlike attribute (chapter 6 in PMG) that we want to grow in, and then we study it/work on it all week long.
Now let me just say, 
I bet you can guess which attribute we were working at....
Did you guess Patience?
You were right.
It hasn't been a bad week... not by any means! Its actually been wonderful. Just incredibly unbelievably unfathomably LONG. The days seemed to draaaag and I thought the week would never end. 
What I've learned from this experience is that in order to help us become better and stronger, God sometimes makes things harder.
I've also learned to think twice before praying for patience!!

Well because this week equaled the length of an entire year, a year's worth of wonderful things happened! 
So now I'll just try YOUR patience, and see if you can stand to read about it all :)

God is just so nice to us. He's blessed us with so many great friends to teach and help and take care of. A jetpack would have been nice this week.... Sister P and I are burning holes in our shoes from racing to appointments with our friends all over town. 

We met with our lovely friend Yvonne, and she asked us a beautiful question.
"I know that Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. But WHY did He do that? Why would He suffer so much for OUR sins?" 
That was the best question anybody has ever asked.
We told Yvonne all about our Savior Jesus Christ, and how His atoning sacrifice is what enables us to be strengthened in our trials and to be forgiven of our mistakes and to overcome our weaknesses. We told her how His death and resurrection is what makes it possible for us to live again. That's why He suffered and died. And He did it all because of His infinite LOVE for each of us. 

We made a new friend from Columbia. I don't know if she was speaking Danish or English or Spanish.... I don't think she knew what she was speaking either. But she was hilarious. And she fed us some berries that looked potentially poisonous. They were like green grapes with long furry hairs growing all over them. But we're still alive so thats good :) 

We also met up with one of our Atheist friends this week. He told us how science and religion can't both exist because they completely contradict each other. 
You wanna know what I think?
Truth is truth is truth is truth. All truth is TRUTH. 
TRUE science and TRUE religion don't contradict each other at all. 

Check out this BEAUTIFUL video where a renowned scientist testifies of our premortal life, our divine Creator, and the limitless perspective of eternal life.

Saturday was full of Service and Smiles and Songs. 
We went down to Odense to help the Sisters kick off the new transfer. They've been having a difficult time finding new investigators in their area, so we thought we'd dedicate the day to finding new friends! 
Lately I've found a lot of inspiration in the quote that says something like 
"To get somewhere we've never been, we must do something we've never done."
So thats what we did. A bunch of things we'd never done. 

I got to spend the day with my favorite sister mish fish SISTER HADLEY (My last comp!) 
It was a blast being together again :)
That morning I had studied Chapter 9 in Preach My Gospel, which is all about finding people. A line jumped out at me that said- 

"During His mortal ministry, the Savior took upon Him the form of a servant (philippians 2:7) and went about doing good (Acts 10:38). As you follow His example, you will find those who will receive you."

We decided to follow His example. Because PMG promised us that if we did, we'd find people who would receive us. 
So we put on our service clothes and ventured out into the Saturday morning sunshine looking for people to serve!
We knocked on some doors and talked to anyone who was out doing yard work, offering to help and serve them. Most of the people we met didn't accept our offer, but they thought it was wonderful that we were out serving people and so they were willing to chat with us and open to hear about our message. We gave out some cards and even got a referral!
We walked down one street where a very tall hedge separated us from a young man who was pulling weeds on the other side. We stood on our tip toes and talked to him over the towering hedge! He was a little bit puzzled at first, but he said we could come help him! He gave us some garden gloves and let us weed with him. He told us about his family, his job, his travels. We told him about our missions, our church, our message. He even shared his water with us and let us say a prayer with him. He was totally open to meeting with us, and thought it sounded fun to come to a church activity. 
Service rocks. 
As we spent the morning following Christ's example by taking the form of a servant and going about doing good, people did receive us. And they recognized us as disciples of Jesus Christ. 

After lunch Sister Hadley and I met with investigator Jamine in the shade of a lovely tree. He (Jasmine is a man.... His sister named him...) has a lot of crap going on and is in the lowest of lows. The moment I saw him I could see how distressed and depressed he was. But I could tell he was a wonderful person and I just really enjoyed talking with him. We talked about the Plan of Salvation and the hope and peace God's plan gives us. In the middle of our conversation he just stopped and said that I made him happy! That for some reason I kept making him smile. I don't have a clue what I did.... I didn't do anything really. Maybe he could just tell that I really appreciated him as a person and that I was genuinely interested and grateful and glad to be there with him. 
And I don't even know the last time something has made ME so happy... as knowing that I helped someone else (someone who has a huge load of trials and problems and reasons to cry) SMILE and feel happy inside. 

That night we met up with 4 of the other Sisters and went down to the city center with a guitar and a uke and hymn books and Mormons bogs, and we made ourselves a little band! We sang about Jesus to all the Saturday night strollers and passer-by's. Some people took pictures and videos. Some people came and talked to us. Some people took Books of Mormon and pamphlets and pass-along cards. It was AMAZING. And we all had SO much fun! 
Singing is GREAT. Because you can sing about the restored truths of the gospel. You can sing about God's love. You can sing about the Savior of the world. People love listening to music. And when they listen to ours, they end up hearing about the gospel while they are at it. (We're sneaky. We know.)

So there you have it. Service + Smiles + Songs = best Saturday ever.

Do you see what I mean about this week being forever long? We haven't even gotten to Sunday yet....

Our purple-haired less active friend came to church again! 
Yeah! One more Sunday = tic tac toe 3 in a row she's REACTIVATED.

We spent sunday funday afternoon contacting former/potential investigators and finding new friends. Then we met with our friend Rado at the park. Rado rocks. He brought us cookies and orange juice and we had ourselves a little Sunday night picnic :) But Rado seemed way down when he met up with us. And he told us how its been a way hard summer. All he does is work and sleep, and he feels empty like something is missing. 
He asked us about our missions. "Isn't it hard? Don't you feel restricted? I mean you can't go swimming or watch movies or any fun stuff like that."
We told him how we don't feel restricted at all. Not doing certain things actually GIVES us so much more. More opportunities and more possibilities. We just do less of the less-important stuff, and more of the more-important stuff. We told him how that's the secret we've discovered to being happy and not feeling empty. 
Rado asked us why we decided to go on missions.
Sister P told him her story. 
And I told him mine.
I was in college, taking TONS of classes and working 2 jobs. I went to school and work and my days were completely full, but somehow I felt so empty. I knew something was missing. I wanted to serve a mission.... I wanted to be a missionary SO bad, because I had gained such a strong testimony of the gospel and the atonement, and I wanted to SHARE it. Because I knew that would be so meaningful and worthwhile. But I couldn't. Because I was only 19 years old, and sisters had to be 21 to serve missions. So I just kept on being empty and feeling incomplete. But I prayed to God every day for missionary opportunities. I prayed for guidance and direction and I prayed to find the missing piece. 
The moment the prophet announced the age change all my prayers were answered. 
Now I'm a missionary! My life has never felt more meaningful or worthwhile. I've never felt less empty. My heart has never felt so full. My life has never been so complete. 
But its not being a missionary that fills in the emptiness and confusion. Serving a full-time mission is not the missing piece. 
Its when we realize God's plan for us, and when we choose to follow it, that life becomes meaningful. Emptiness goes away when we accept Gods love into our lives and when we SHARE it with others.
The best way to feel happy and loved is to give happiness and love away. 
And when we try our complete best to follow Jesus Christ, we become complete. 

I loved talking with Rado. I think we really cheered him up. 
(And by we I mean He. And by He I mean Heavenly Father. We were just His little instruments.) 

Nothing could have finished off my long long week better than Rado's smile. 

My mission has really taught me what the more important stuff- and the most important stuff- really is. 
Smiles are included in the "Most Important Stuff" category.
We should ALL do less of the less-important stuff and more of the more important. 

Less stress. More happy.
Less TV. More family.
Less social media. More quality time. 
Less contention. More peace. 
Less selfish. More service.
Less worldly. More heavenly. 

Like President Uchtdorf said, 
"We would do well to slow down a little, focus on the significant, lift up our eyes, and truly see the things that matter most. Diligently doing the things that matter most will lead us to the Savior of the World." (In case the first beautiful video wasn't enough)

Happy Monday everybody!
If you're reading this.... Congratulations! You've got a lot of patience.
jeg elsker jer!
Sister Rogers

​I did the world a service by wearing Sister Hale's pug t shirt on Saturday morning service day. 
Just thought I'd share this pic with y'all. In case you need a reason to smile. 

July 14, 2014


Summer rocks. 
Let me just tell you why.
My sistermissionaryswag maryjanes are giving my feet a wayyy cute tan line. 
And I've got a zebra stripe on my arm from my wrist watch. 
And fresh Danish strawberries can be found in plentiful amounts.
And the beach is a great place to teach gospel lessons to your friends.

Summer time is great as a missionary, because EVERYONE loves summer time. Everyone and their dog is outside. And everyone and their dog is happy. Its like a dream world over here. 

I've ALWAYS loved summertime... The smell of sunscreen is on my list of top 10 smells because it reminds me of summer. 
My favorite summer activity is camping. Because in case you didn't know.... I'm kind of a hippie. I like to hug trees. I'm obsessed with nature. A weekend with crickets and starry skies and camp fires and marshmallows just makes the summer complete.

I got this picture of my fam at our cabin last week......

And oh how my soul longed to be there....
You know, the only down side about a missionary summer is that you can't go camping!


Our two best friends Sister Hale and Sister Bishop came to hang out with us this week. And guess what they brought with them.....


We pitched a tent and roasted mini marshmallows over mini fires.

And now my summer is complete :)

I got to spend the next day with Sister Hale!!! (AKA my favorite person on the planet earth. What a shame we were only companions for 7 weeks.....) Oh but it was just like the old times. We took the guitar around with us the whole day long and sang songs about Jesus to everyone we met. 
Our appointment with our sweet friend Lisbeth ended a little early because we may or may not have accidentally sung her to sleep....
Haha so we had some extra minutes, and the thought that popped into my head went something like this:

 "The second best Pastry shop in ALL of Denmark is a two minute walk up the street!"

​As a missionary, I've gotten REALLY good at acting upon all the good thoughts that I have. 
So naturally, we headed right on up that cobblestone street towards Medalion Bakery!
It was quite heartbreaking when we arrived to find a sign posted to the door that read "På Ferie. Tilbage i August.
Ultimate let down. 
As we were walking grudgingly away, we saw a young man walking down the street. 
"He's going to accept the gospel," says Sister Hale with an incredible amount of certainty. 
And guess what?? He did.
We ended up having a 20 minute lesson with Jon right there on the street corner by Denmark's 2nd best bakery. And now we have a new eskimo friend who wants to learn more about God.

Wherefore, all things which are good cometh of God, (Moroni 7:12)
For there is nothing which is good save it comes from the Lord. (Omni 1:25)

Including thoughts about bakeries and pastries.

Sister Hale and I then went to visit our friend Maja, who hasn't been to church in a lonnnnnnnng long time. Its been kind of difficult to teach her about the gospel because she has ADD and a lot of other disorders that make it hard for her to focus or concentrate. So Sister Hale and I decided to try a new swing on things..... 
We sat in a circle with Maja in her little apartment, each of us with a Mormons Bog in hand. 
And we sang it. We sang The Book of Mormon
Sister Hale strummed on her six-string while we all traded off singing the verses of 1 Nephi chapter 1.
It was one of the best times of my whole mission. Can I go so far as to say one of the best times of my life??
And the best part is, that for the first time in the 3 months that I've been visiting Maja, she accepted our invitation to come to church.

Sister P and I spent a day up in the beeeeautiful city of Aalborg where I got to go on exchanges with one of my MTC comps. What a dream come true!! Sister Hall and I spent our 15 monthiversary together. I thought back on the very first day I met Sister Hall, exactly 15 months earlier. It was AWESOME to be back together as old experienced professional missionaries. Can I just say that sister Hall ROCKS. I remember thinking she was so brave and bold when we were back at the Empty Sea.... and that was nothing compared to the rockstar missionary she is now! 
We visited Annette, one of her inactive friends, and taught her a lesson about keeping the sabbath day holy.
"What does Heavenly Father want us to do on Sundays?" -Sister Hall
"I know what He wants me to do. Heavenly Father wants me to go to church." -Annette 
And what Sister Hall said next really struck me hard...... 
"Annette, you know what God wants you to do. So why aren't you doing it?" 

What my awesome MTC comp boldly declared should be directed to us ALL. 
If you KNOW what God wants you to do, WHY would you not do it???

District Activity at the beach
BBQ. Ocean. Guitar. Squirt guns. Football. Jellyfish. And best friends. Life doesn't get better than this.

One of the best things about a mission is all the AWESOME friends you get to make. 
One of the worst things is when transfers happen and your friends all get ripped away.....
Horsens District being torn apart is even more sad than when the Backstreet Boys broke up. 

But on a happier note... We had 3 investigators in church yesterday and we were way stoked about it! 
After Sacrament meeting we hung around for a while with Ruslan and Ankhaa to answer a bunch of questions that they had about the church. The elders stayed too and we just had this big discussion lesson thing.
It went from the doctrine of the Plan of Salvation to the reasoning behind the Word of Wisdom, and then somehow escalated REAL quickly to the church's stance on homosexuality. 
In the middle of this big long heart-to-heart about challenges and testimonies and commandments and temptations, Ankhaa turned to us missionaries and said something that really struck me hard...

"You guys are all so strong. You're just so strong."

In that moment it just kind of hit me that our investigators look up to us like we're superheros or something. 

But the problem with that is that a superhero is something that the rest of the world can't ever be.... 
Super powers are reserved for people with capes.

My missionary friends and I aren't superheros. 
The strength we have is not reserved for people with nametags.

The super strength that we have is available to EVERYONE. 

It isn't found in kryptonite. Its found in daily prayer and scripture study.

The words of Helaman 5:12 echoed through my head. 
It is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.

And so I bore my testimony to my friend Ankhaa. 
That the strength we have is Christ
And that He can strengthen her as well. 

Well friends and fam. I hope that wherever you are your week was as sunny and happy and wonderful as mine. 
Remember that "you have within you the power to increase the sum total of the world's happiness by giving a few words of sincere appreciation to someone who is lonely or discouraged."

Try to make at least one person happy every day, and then in ten years you may have made three thousand six hundred and fifty persons happy, or brightened a small town by your contribution to the fund of general enjoyment.

Jeg elsker jer! 
millions of Xs and Os,
Sister Rogers

i shall call him squishy. and he shall be mine. and he shall be my squishy.

life's what you make it. lets make it rock.

 my companion decorated my hair pretty.

In the beautiful city of Aalborg

July 7, 2014

Cherries and freedom and holy ground

Kære Y'all,
How's it goin'? Let me tell something to you right now...I'M SO STINKIN' HAPPY!!! We just got transfer calls five seconds ago, and I found out that I will be with my twin SISTER PEARSON for yet another transfer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 3rd times a charm! I could just die and go to heaven. And then I get to stay here in the magical land of HORSENS for the remainder of my mission!!! HURRAH. Well... this just became the cherry on top of a week that was a hot fudge sundae. 
Let me tell ya about this fabulous week my friends...

Speaking of cherries on top. Its CHERRY SEASON. I love cherries. We ate fresh ones with our friend Elly while we taught her about good ol' Thomas Monson. Elly really is just the birds wings. and all that jazz. We decided that we needed to invite our dear one-legged friend to be baptized. So, we popped the question.... and SHE SAID YES! She's going to the font on the 1st of November!! #WOOT

So...HAPPY LATE FOURTH OF JULY!!! One of our investigators called us up on the morning of the fourth and said "I don't really know what to say... but Congratulations with this day!" 
I hope that y'all had a splendid day full of hot dogs and fireworks. 
We spent the day in Århus (Denmark's #2 biggest city) on exchanges with the Sisters up there. They rock. They made us red, white, and blue pancakes for breakfast. They even tasted American.

We officially celebrated July Fourth on July sixth. We threw a little BBQ at the church with our best friends Yvonne, Laurent, Ankhaa, the elders, and Daniel. Because why not celebrate America's birthday with 2 Africans, a Dane, and an Asian? (America is a melting pot anyways right?) We feasted on baked beans, hot dogs, potato salad, chips, and this here beautiful fruit pizza...

We jammed on guitars and also played some ping pong. It was a BLAST. 
As missionaries we are to always be inviting others to come unto Christ, so Sister Pearson and I got to share a spiritual thought with the gang. But amongst all the hubbub of making the food for this shindig and planning a patriotic party, we forgot to plan for THE MOST IMPORTANT PART. So, when it was time to share the Spiritual thought... we had to pull something from up our sleeve. 
Sister P started to talk about Freedom and Bravery, because well ya know- Land of the Free Home of the Brave... The tricky part was tying that into the gospel! I asked everyone if they'd ever had an experience where they had to stand up for what they believe in. 
"When I was in high school I had long hair and everyone was telling me to cut it. But I liked my long hair. So I stood up for what I believed in and didn't cut it." Thanks Elder Oakey. Thanks for that.
"I was hanging out with my friends and we were trying to decide what kind of Pizza to buy. I stood up for what I believed and ordered bacon." Another golden answer..... way to go Dan.
Meanwhile Sister Pearson was racking her little brain for some scripture to tie into all this.... Naturally she thought of Moroni. Because Moroni loves freedom. So she flips open to the first scripture she finds and has me read it....

"And it came to pass that he rent his coat; and he took a piece thereof, and wrote upon it- In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children- and he fastened it upon the end of a pole."

We were dying because this might have been the WORST spiritual thought that we'd ever given. But you know was a good humbling experience. "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear." If you read between those lines it actually says "if ye are not looketh like an idiot."

On a more successful note.... we were able to go to two Zone Trainings this past week! 
Sister Pearson and I had planned to plan our training, but we were just so busy that we didn't get around to it until the night before! Procrastination at its finest. But it all came together. And let me tell you, it wasn't us that planned our training.... It was most definitely the Lord.

We taught about the Key Indicators that us missionaries are supposed to focus on, and how they aren't just numbers. 
Those numbers represent people. 
Those people are our friends, they are our brothers and sisters
We talked about our own families and asked everyone to think about theirs... Think of someone you love, someone you miss. What if you were walking home today and saw your younger brother coming down the street. Would you stop and talk to him?! DEFINITELY. What if you were sitting on the train and your Grandpa came and sat beside you. Would you talk with him?! ABSOLUTELY.
Well the people we meet walking down the street and sitting next to us on trains are our brothers and sisters too. Whether we can remember it or not, they are our family. And we love them.
The amazing Elder Hawkes sang 'If the Savior Stood Beside Me' for us, and the words of the song and the beautiful music brought a very special presence into the room. 
We then did a role play where each companionship was to teach one of their investigators a lesson. As if the Savior was beside them. 
That was the most reverent, spiritual role play that I've ever been a part of. 
As Sister Pearson and I were watching these missionaries teach, we were filled with an immense love for them all, and we could truly feel the presence of the Savior.

What if we loved everyone we meet as we love our own brothers and sisters? 
What if we taught every lesson and served every day of our missions as if the Savior really was beside us?

We closed with the words of the Savior himself, from D&C 100:

"Behold, and lo, I have much people in this place, in the regions round about; and an effectual door shall be opened in the regions round about in this eastern land.
 Therefore, I, the Lord, have suffered you to come unto this place; for thus it was expedient in me for the salvation of souls.
Therefore, continue your journey and let your hearts rejoice; for behold, and lo, I am with you even unto the end.
After we were done with our training, the Zone Leaders decided to set goals for how many baptisms and reactivations the zone could have within the months of July and August. 
We weren't putting numbers down though.... They were to be names. As names started to be shouted out, an amazing feeling flooded the room. At the end, the board was full of the names of people that everyone loves. The names of our brothers and sisters that we would help come unto Christ, so that they can have eternal life. 
I've never felt so much love in my whole life. The Spirit was tangible. It was an amazing experiece. 
I felt the same way as President Sederholm when he said that "This is one of the days that I can count on my 2 hands.... Today we have been on Holy ground."

But that's just it.... we can be on Holy ground ALL the time- If we walk beside the Savior. 
He's promised to always be with us. Even unto the end. 

So think about that this week....

If the Savior stood beside me, would I do the things I do?
Would I think of His commandments and try harder to be true?
Would I follow His example, would I live more righteously?
If I could see the Savior standing nigh, watching over me.

He is always near me, though I do not see Him there.
And because He loves me dearly I am in His watchful care.
So I'll be the kind of person that I know I'd like to be
If I could see the Savior standing nigh, watching over me. 

I love you all! Thanks a billion for all of your prayers and your love and support. You're the birds wings. and all that jazz. 
And once again, Happy Independence Day! I don't really know what to say... but Congratulations with this day!

Jeg elsker America. 
Jeg elsker jer. 
Ha' det rigtig godt! Hej Hej.

Sister Rogers
 Patriotic melting pot party.