Monday, February 4, 2013

...THE SUN BEGINS TO SET FOR THIS FULL-TIME MISSIONARY





Two days and counting...

February 19, 2013

Dear Family, 

Well, I guess this is it. Kind of strange to think that less than 48 hours from this moment, I'll be on a plane headed back to the U.S. I have to be honest, the stress of leaving has taken it's toll on me. I'm sick. haha Of all the times to be sick... my body had to pick now. I talked to President on the phone last night, and he asked me to wear gloves and a mask to our missionary goodbye meeting tomorrow...Thanks President. haha He's a jokester. :) He also compared my sickness to throwing up at the end of a long race. Ya... it does somewhat feel like that. BUT- I'm praying really hard that I will be better before I get home to you all. 

News this week- Well, actually I can just tell you that when I get home. :) 

I feel like I need to say something inspirational, considering that this is the last email you will get from me as a missionary. But really, I guess it still doesn't really feel real that this whole experience is about to be over. I keep thinking that I'll wake up tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that, and do the same thing I've done for the last 19 months. But to everything there is a season, and I guess the sun is setting on this chapter of my life, and will open with a whole new dimension for me. They say that all good things must come to an end, but really- with the eternal eyes that the gospel gives us they don't. It might seem right now that all of this is ending for me, but I know that these experiences and the people I've met here will be a part of my life forever. And the best part is, I don't just have to take them along as a memory- but I know I will see some of them in the near future, and better than that, I'll see them all in the life to come. 

They asked me to write my departing testimony for the news letter this week since I'm going home. I quoted one of my favorite scriptures in James 4:14: "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away." I think if I were to summarize the extend of my feelings at this moment, it would be with those exact words. It's beyond comprehension to me how quickly this experience came, and is now vanishing faster than I can grasp it. But really, I know that my life will forever be changed because of the things I have learned here- from the people, from my companions, and from the Lord. Before I made the decision to serve a mission, I feared that maybe the experience would be too hard for me- that maybe I wouldn't be able to handle all that would be required. But now, I have gained a greater sense of confidence, because I see that it was possible, and I was able to faithfully accomplish all with the divine assistance I received from the Lord. I am sad that this chapter of my life is ending, but I know that the Lord guided me here and he can continue to guide me where I need to go even after I return home.

Above all things, I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. I bear witness of the reality of His atoning sacrifice for us. He loves us, and He calls each of us to accept His gift of repentance and eternal life. It doesn't come free. It comes with our commitment and willingness to sacrifice for it. He has asked us to sacrifice all- mind, heart, and soul. But with the promise that if we do, we can receive "ALL that the Father hath." His all, is a lot more than the all we have to sacrifice. It's quite the exchange rate if we are willing to see with eternal eyes. :)  

I'll end with a scripture in Alma that I'm sure you are all familiar with: 

"Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever."- Alma 26:12

The work here isn't done. I feel confident that I am leaving it in the hands of great missionaries who will follow. Today I found out that my 1st greeny, Sister Fox- is going to be training next transfer!!!!!! :) She's going to be so great!! It's my "grandbaby" in the missionfield! How exciting!

Here are some final Pictures in Hungary: 

István and Roxann- István is the one we put on bap. date last week. Roxi wouldn't smile- so I made her. haha 



Goodbye party at the Vaczy's house- one of my favorite families here in Buda 




Andrea and I





One last pic. of my comp. and I in front of parliament 



Okay, I better end soon. I guess I'm struggling bringing this letter to a close since I know it will be my last one... That's alright. It's going to be OK! :) haha I love you all so much! Can't wait to see you this week and hug all your cute faces!!! 

LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!! 

Sok szeretettel,

Johnson Tiffany Nővér



One Final Week in Hungary

February 11, 2012 

FAM-BAM!!! 

How's it going!!? So many exciting things happened this past week! We are meeting with so many new people!-A lot of them from English class. But it feels really good to see that all of our finding efforts are really paying off. Also, we finally put someone on bap. date!!! YAY!!! His name is István. His baptism will be in March, so I won't be able to be here for it. But I am so happy that he finally made the commitment to be baptized. He has been meeting with the missionaries since last June, and was talking for a long time about being baptized this following June, as kind of his one year anniversary since meeting the missionaries. Well, this week we had a Zone Training where we talked about putting people on bap. date. One of the missionaries gave a suggestion to say a kneeling prayer with the investigator there in the program, and ask for the spirit to confirm to them that the date we set is the right one. Well, we decided to try this in out program last week with István. We told him that we really felt he could be ready before June, and told him that if he was willing the Lord would help prepare him for that date. He seemed somewhat hesitant, but then at the end of the program we suggested this kneeling prayer with him. :) We told him to ask the Lord if March 30th, the day we had decided on together, was the right day for him to be baptized. So, we all knelt down on the ground together in the small room of the branch house, and István said a heartfelt prayer. The spirit filled the room. I wasn't sure if he would give an immediate answer after we had gotten up from our knees, so I was preparing to tell him to continue to listen for the answer from the spirit. And just then, he smiled and told us that March 30th was the right day. :) How cool!! Prayer really works!! Anyways, I am so happy for him, and so grateful that Heavenly father was willing and able to answer his prayer right there in our lesson. 
Other good news, we met with Andrea this week! :) It's been a while since we've gotten to meet with her. She's been really busy with work and things. But we met with her on Friday, and she made us a delicious dinner. We had a really good program and invited her to start a study journal, where she can write down her thoughts and testimony. She loves journal keeping and seemed really excited about the idea. She also came to church yesterday as well!- and brought with her new the new study journal she had bought, and has already started to fill out! :) 
Sister Peterson have been writing our testimonies and marking all the Books of Mormon (Book of Mormons) we give out. :) This week we gave out 11! :) And got most of their numbers. We've even set up to meet with a couple of them this week! I'm really excited to see what comes of all of them. 
I sent a couple pictures...

The first is one that Sis.P snagged while we were tabling. 



This second is a member we went to visit this week Julianna and her husband (who's name I can't remember at the moment). They are really sweet. I mostly sent it because this is how most all Hungarians "smile" in their pictures and I thought it was really funny. 



The Third one is our homeless friend who is always down in the tunnel where we table. haha He really likes our singing. 




And the last one is how we lots of times teach the Restoration. :)- with cups! It's really fun! I'll have to show you how the whole lesson works when I get home. 



Well anyhow, I hope that you all have a wonderful week! Talk to you next Monday! 
Also, I got the information about the race! I am so stoked!! I haven't been swimming for over a year and a half... so this will be a big change. haha But It's going to be awesome! Dad and Holly- I'm so proud of you getting out there and getting started! 

Love you all lots,

Johnson T. Nővér 


...Two and a half weeks left in Budapest, Hungary

2013.04.01

Dearest family, 

I am SO excited about this family triathlon idea! It's going to be so awesome! We are going to rock that race! haha I'm going to need some help getting ready when I get back. 30 min. of yoga and push-ups in the morning isn't exactly hardcore training for a triathlon, but this will give me something to work towards when I get back. 
This was a great week. Sister Peterson and I spent a lot of time finding, but it turned out to be great! We had an awesome experience on Saturday! Normally we will go tabling under the Margit Bridge. Since Sis.P also likes to sing, lots of times we will sing hymns in between talking to people and handing out fliers. Well, there is a ticket booth under the tunnel where we sing. We've seen the same lady there almost every time we go. We always wave to her, and you can tell that she is listening intently to our songs. We gave her a English class flier a few weeks ago, but this last Saturday after we finished singing she motioned me over to her booth. She said that we sing beautifully and asked what exactly we do there. I explained to her what we do as missionaries- that we talk to people about our church and what we believe...she asked-"and what exactly is it you believe?". I told her we believed in Jesus Christ as our Savior, and in the Book of Mormon. I asked her if she had ever heard of the book of Mormon. Well, long story short, I ended up talking to her for a bit. We gave her a Book of Mormon, and invited her to come to church. She seemed really interested. I'm really hoping we can call and meet with her soon. And it all started from feeling the spirit through music that she heard from a tiny speaker in her ticket booth. :) I really hope that more comes from her. 
As for other news this week. We have a lot of new people we are meeting with. I'm not sure what's going to happen with them yet, but at least sister Peterson will hopefully have a good teaching pool to choose from when I leave the city. 
English class is becoming awesome!! It was something that I didn't really like in the beginning, but now am really starting to get the hang of. Our English class students are so fun! A lot of them are regulars who come every week. We have about over 30 people in the class now every Thursday- which is awesome!! Anyways, the great thing about this Thursday was, that after class we had a ton of people come up and talk with us. :) We ended up setting up programs with 4 new people!! And on the role we send around every time, we always ask who would like to meet with us outside of English class for half English/half gospel lessons. This week all but three people, said that they would like to meet with us outside of the class! How cool is that! 27/30. I'll take it. :) 
Well, I'm still trying to let it sink in that I am leaving soon, but my mind can't really comprehend it. So I figure I just won't think much about it until I'm on the plane there. haha 
I love you all so much! THe church is true. I hope you have a wonderful week! 

Sincerely, 

Sister Tiffany Johnson 

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