I am sure you have heard the saying “Spring hopes eternal”. Well, we are ETERNALLY hoping for Spring!!! We think it has arrived and then another snow storm, freezing wind, or sub-zero temperature hits us and we bring out the thermals once again! I keep looking for a bud, a sprout, a baby deer or bunny in the yard and all I can say is the groundhog must have seen several shadows because this winter is dragging on, for not six weeks, more like six months! We, as New Jersey Missionaries, are ready for warmer weather and more people to contact when they come out of hibernation!
We have done an amazing job at contacting people however. Even in the cold weather our missionaries contacted over 26,500 people this month. They are fantastic! Here’s a great story: “Two of our missionaries were walking down main-street and saying “Hello” to everyone they saw. They passed a man who was smoking and said the customary “Hello” and continued to walk on by when he asked “Where are you guys from?” We turned and replied, “Utah, but we are Missionaries.” That’s how the conversation started. He asked what church and we answered. But the two greatest moments were, in his words, “I would usually not stop you guys but something told me to stop you and also because you guys look the same and look very professional. What was that thing I felt?” We explained about the Holy Ghost. The next was when he asked about what the book was that I was holding. We explained. We got his name and number. Yay!”
I had a fun experience at Macy’s cosmetic counter. My girls had given me a gift card to get some make-up for my birthday (I need all the help I can get). So I went to a counter and no one was there. So I walked around until I found a woman who said she would send someone over. Well, she came herself and helped me, then took me to her counter to show me something else. I became brave and said, “I am a missionary and you have been so nice to help me I want to share a card that has a website on it that you would love to see and read a message about Christ.” She gasped! I thought I had really done something wrong. She said, “Oh my word, I was just telling my friend two days ago that I wanted to look into the Mormon church and see what they believe. And you know I have never gone to that cosmetic counter to help anyone. You were the first one. I guess I was supposed to meet you.” So I proceeded to tell her about the church. The next week two of our sisters were in Macey’s cosmetic area and Donna, my contact, saw them and started talking. They gave her a Book of Mormon and she said she would read it. She was reading it under the counter at work! I hope she didn’t get fired for doing that! So we will see what happens with Donna.
We have decided for the rest of our mission we would all carry the Book of Mormon everywhere in plain sight so people can see it. Our missionaries have had great experiences. A little boy came up to the elders and said, “Hey, my dad needs to read that book”. Two sisters were walking down the street and a man passed them and said, “I have that book” and the sisters didn’t get too far before they turned around and said, “What did you say?” He replied, “I have that book”. Well, they proceeded to teach him as well. In our Preach My Gospel manual we read, “Do all you can to be placed in the path of those who are being prepared.” We just have to open our mouths to help find them.
This month three great missionaries left us to return home, 4 visa waiters who left for Brazil and we received 6 new missionaries from all over the place. We were happy for a smaller group this time. We haven’t had a small group like this for a long time.
We also held Leadership Training this month. We spent two full days, training, teaching, role playing, eating, singing everything we can to help motivate and inspire our new missionaries to greater heights. We started at 8:30 am and went until 4:00 pm for both days. It is great to see how much the missionaries improve in their teaching abilities.
We also brought together all the sisters for a special training. We love being together. These young sisters are so loving and supportive of each other. Our theme was “These Shoes are Made for Walkin”.
Exercises, foot massages, training on clothing/appearance etc., and games. We had three senior sisters talk about service, personal appearance and education. Jon played his guitar and we sang These Boots are Made for Walking with a twist. Here’s the chorus:
These shoes are made for walking and that’s just what you’ll do
You preach and teach to all that the Book of Mormon’s true
Your shoes are made for walking and that’s just what you’ll do
You’ll go preach because you love the Savior this is true!
Jon and I then spoke to the sisters on self-esteem and walking with the Lord. It was a great day to be together! We love our sisters!
This month our focus is to consecrate ourselves again to the Lord. We look forward to conference with all the messages that will inspire us to do just that.
We hope you all have a wonderful Easter by taking the atonement into your life. It will help us enjoy the journey and to have a positive outlook on life. The Savior has given us a wonderful gift. May we feel in our hearts and souls, His love, His guidance and His Spirit. May we strive to be more faithful and obedient so that we can become more perfected and continue to reach our true potential. (Matt5:48).
We are having an “EGG”straordinary experience. We love it and are very hoppy!!! Have a wonderful Easter.
Love to all, Dad and Mom, Grandpa Jon and Bon Bon, Jon and Bonnie, Pres. and Sister Jeppson NJMM