California to Kennewick.

California to Kennewick.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Sister Gresham in Pendleton Oregon... (April 27 2015)

Only for a day...more on that later...
Monday: So, I went to the Chiropractor. Hes a member and does missionaries for free, so thats awesome. He saw right away how weird my body is lol and it working on my twice a week to help. We dont tract at all right now cuz its been killing me. So, we just try to talk to people we see on our way to lessons. Its been working ok.

Taught a super less active member named Q. His job as a bouncer makes him see a lot of sketch stuff and he has to make tough calls sometimes. We talked about how Heavenly Father can give us direction thru the Holy Ghost. He says hes not coming to church, but he hecka loves us and will ask us questions then say "do we believe that?" lol.
Bro, Eternal Happiness is coming your way whether you see it or not! lol

and this joke emerged while talking with a member and has stuck ever since...

"in the Kitty Resurrection...."
" Sister thats doctrine for a later lesson..." LOL.

the Kitty resurrection...its the real deal bro.

That night we drove to Hermiston, OR to do an exchange with the Sister Training Leaders. I went to Pendleton with Sister Johnson from Kansas.

Thursday: The day of the exchange.
We were reallyyyy excited to do a church tour but the guy bailed. We've been invited and trained on doing church tours a lot.

We went to talk to a potential investigator and he was talking about how all these things have been coming up on facebook from friends that say stuff like "its a sin to hear women sing" but when he heard on of our womens choirs he was like "it sounded like angels" so he was confused and said hes nervous about coming to church because their "is a hit" on his head, because he left his white power gang...not uncommon here. It was intense. But we taught and testified a lot and he clearly felt the spirit and said he'd come to church.
Also, theres a TON of Llamas in Pendleton! LOVE <3
And we taught kids how to pray. It was awesome. I love teaching children <3 Especially that they are children of God and can pray to him. Thats one thing, if they understand, no one can take away from them.

My one year anniversary of receiving my Endowment! It had me reflecting a lot. In general I've been thinking a lot about my own conversion and I can see how God had spent my whole life preparing me. Its super cool. I know He is doing that all over the place and that people are ready to receive the Gospel if we (ALL of us) will but open our mouths. 
That night we had our last pre-baptism lesson with June and Shaude. It was the best. And made me feel lots of feels. lol.

JUNE AND SHAUDES BAPTISM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tears...tears everywhere.

They were so prepared and sooooo excited.
When I saw them in their baptismal suits, I lost it. I have been seeing them in my head in those since day one. And it was actually happening. When they got baptized, man, the Spirit was sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo strong. Like, I could barely think about breathing, my heart was so full, it felt like my chest was going to explode. But, ya know, in a good way. I cried a bunch. When we shared our message in the middle, when I was inviting everyone to read the Book of Mormon and testified of its power, I lost it again. Because I've seen that power in action in their lives. How they went from struggling with a variety of things to being soooo happy and full of faith, the spirit and a desire to serve, all because they read and prayed. Its really that simple. When people read and ask God with a sincere heart he really makes it known unto them that He loves them and that the Book of Mormon is true. ITS AMAZING! I LOVE IT SO MUCH!! I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! AND I LOVE HEAVENLY FATHER AND JESUS CHRIST SO MUCH!!!! :D 

Inline image 1
Before the Baptism

Inline image 2
After the Baptism with their daughter Jade, the man who baptized them, Brother Thorten and his daughter :)

BEST DAY EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
This is what its all about. What makes every door slammed in your face, every "You're going to hell" every tear shed for people when they drop us, all of it, for this. Seeing people you love so much, who God and Christ love infinitely, make covenants with their Father in Heaven. Its amazing. No words can really describe the joy and love I feel for the Tarkong family. The Gospel has changed their lives sooooo much and I'm excited to see them grow more and more. I know that God have amazing plans for them <3

We fasted for a recent convert who is less active and a woman who wants to get baptized but doesnt have a testimony of the Gospel and is sort of scared of religion, but feels the spirit tell her she needs to get baptized...also, she has some mental/emotional health issues, so we don't know how accountable she is. I love being able to go to God for help. These are HIS CHILDREN. He knows them so perfectly and what their needs are and He guides us as we are faithful, diligent and obedient. Its awesome. 
June and Shaudes confirmations and blessings were so beautiful <3 I know they will be powerful additions to the Ward and building up Gods Kingdom :D
Their first Sunday as members, they fasted, paid fast offerings and tithing, and donated to the General Missionary fund and set appts to meet with Bishop to get their Temple Recommends to do Baptisms for the Dead! :D They are so full of faith. They are already making plans to receive their Endowments and get Sealed. I cant wait to return for that <3 Also, Jade keeps saying, "when I grow up I want to love and help people by being missionaries like Sister Gresham and Sister Faulkner" bahhh *weeping* Love her so much! <3

Life is great! I love missionary work!

You are all soooo loved by your Father in Heaven! Reach out to Him!!

Talk to y'all next week.

With lots of love,
   Sister Gresham <3

Sister Gresham in W. Richland - April 20 2015

Life is awesome. Being a missionary is the best. Everyone should do it. lol.

So, on tuesday we were walking down the street and a man pulled over and started talking to us...this is all that matters from that convo...
"my brother is an episcopal minister...somethings wrong with that guy...he stole my painkillers and pot...whats he going to do when I'm dead...?"
Sis F: "painkiller and pot wont save your life..."
we also oym'd him thru his dog and he said his dog, Red, is a devout catholic...
"well, Red, we believe in Jesus Christ too...and thru the book of mormon..." lol.

as a missionary, people feel reeeeally comfortable and will say anything and everything to you...
"this one time, when I killed a man..." its interesting sometimes...haha but also really cool. I think whether people recognize it or not, they can feel that we are called to be representatives of Christ and can feel our love for them.

Wednesday: we taught G. I love her and she reminds me a lot of myself when I was learning about the church. She wasnt raised with faith and isnt sure yet if God is there, she knows deep down but its new for her. And she struggled with the Priesthood and feelings of inequality in the church. I made sure to shut that down. I've been there and its tom foolery. Womanhood is awesome. Jesus Christ is the greatest Advocate for woman and the brethren are His special witnesses and think we are super great haha. Anyways, shes great and has lots of horses.

I always try to take pics with horses (they are everywhere<3) and

Inline image 4Inline image 3

We go sing hymns and read the bible with dementia patients. There is a man named Merle, who can only repeat all or part of what was just said to him. He perks up sooo much when we read and sing. This time he felt the spirit so strong he had tears coming down his face. It was powerful. After we thanked him for being awesome and said that we know his kids were blessed to have a great father who taught them about God and he said "I try" it was was seriously, so amazing. The spirit every time we are there is craaazyy strong. I am grateful to being able to serve them. I feel so blessed.

After we went street contacting and went up to a biker gang...cuz, why not? haha. All left but one, who stayed and talked to us, hes a self proclaimed Odinest and kept winking at me and licking his lips. bahhhh. but we was listening! so, we kept talking haha and he committed to watch "Because He Lives" hes totes gonna see that Jesus loves him, get baptized and have eternal joy.

During weekly planning...we made a friend..she just wandered into our apartment.
Inline image 1
I taught Hermana Patas La Restauracion Del Evangelio Jesuchristo (Translation: I taught Sister Paws the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ) 
I cant speak more spanish now! :D

June and Shout are having their baptismal interviews tonight and get baptized on sat! They are sooo prepared. June and their daughter Jade (6) came to a baptism on satuday (in the Columbia ward, where I served before and I was reunited with people I love there and it was magical!) and they both felt the spirit soooooo strong! Jade keeps saying that she "wants to be a missionary like Sister Gresham and Sister Faulkner" SO MANY FEELS! I'm soooo excited for them!!

So, we are teaching lots of aaaamaaaazing people. But, June and Shout are the only ones who have read and prayed every day and their progress is BANANAS!!! Its really strengthened my testimony of prayer and scripture study. WE do not convert a soul. We are peoples guides and  invite them to act in faith, when they do, the Holy Ghost teaches and testifies and they are changed. Its sooo incredible!!!

Yesterday we went to Prosser to visit M, a YSA who is on date. We saw to women stranded on the side of the road with a flat tire. So, Rowdy, a recent convert leaving on his mish 2 weeks pulled over and fixed their flat tire while we taught them and gave them a book of mormon! :D

it was pretty out so i took a selfie...lool

Inline image 2

Life is awesome!!! Being a missionary is so amazing <3
I used to get suuuper nervous about talking to people on the street and stuff(I still kinda do) but I feel Gods love for them. Sure, some are mean. But how can I not share?! I have been called by a Prophet of God to share the most glorious message and happiest news in the world! These are ALL gods LOVE Children! How can I keep my mouth closed?! I cant! Life is good.

I love you all!!
Go read and pray about the Book of Mormon. It changes lives when done with a sincere heart. I promise.

Sister Gresham in Richland. April 13 2015

Hi world!
How are you all?! I'm great the work is mooooving! Miracles are abounding!!
Heres the lowdown on who we are (primarily) teaching
June, Shout and Jade.
They are a poly family and we love them to pieces!!!!
June and shout are married and jade is their 6 year old daughter. June was a referral from a friend in hermiston OR. We started teaching her my second day here and she brought her whole fam to church and they loved it. Then they came to conference and loved it too!  We had our first lesson with shout on monday. We decided to put them on date (invite them to be baptized on a specific day) we decided onmay 2. But when asking God if that was right I felt like it should be April 25. So, Sis F said it was all me. ah. lol The spirit was soooo strong and I invited them and they accepted! It was sooo cool. Shout, who was being taught for the first time but had been reading with his wife kept saying how he felt that he was told the Book of Mormon is true and that the Prophet and Apostles are really that! and It was AMAZING!!!! After inviting them to be baptized they said that the 26th (when they'll get confirmed/the Holy Ghost) is their anniversary! We taught them about Eternal Families and how they could get sealed for time and all eternity a year from then and their eyes lit up!! I love them soooooooooooooo much! Whenever I see them I automatically see them in the Temple <3 Also. Their daughter is the cutest thing ever. Shout keeps saying he wants her to go to BYU and be missionaries like us so she can help people too <3 feeeeeels!
She also gave me this <3
Inline image 2

J is a recent convert and is super awesome but struggling with the Word of Wisdom. Please pray for her.
M is a ysa who we recently put on date. Hes quit smoking to be baptized and got to go to the Priesthood session of conference in SLC with a Recent Convert, Rowdy, who is preparing to leave for his mission to Virginia next month :D He really enjoyed it! We had a cool lesson with him where we read with him from The BOM and taught law of Chastity with an emphasis on how it helps us have strong eternal families. It was super powerful. I seriously saw the spirit testify to his heart and see him just get it. He is also getting baptized on the 25th.

Awkward moment of the week...
We had two missionaries return to our family ward.
We were talking to the young man about going to lessons with us and a leader in the ward came up to us and jokingly chastised him for flirting with the missionaries then put his arm around me and kept talking about how awesome I am but that I'm not on the market...but then really I am cuz I can always leave the mission to get married -_- sooooo awkward.  shenanigans.
ummm...what else...?idk i always forget once im here
but things are great! I love being a missionary! I'll write more with my pic emails

Love you all bunches!!
Go read the Book of Mormon!
  Sister Gresham <3

Mon, Apr 6, 2015. Sister Gresham in Richland...

and W. Richland and Prosser and Benton City. The joys of serving in a ysa branch! We cover the whole stake! :D
This week was great! things are awesome! miracles all over the place!!
First time getting to write the baptism symbol on someones teaching record! yea buddy!

On Tuesday we do service for a lady with a farm and I got to pet her horses! What a joy! and it always feels good doing service :D
We have a ysa kid getting baptized in a few weeks. We had a great lesson with him on wednesday night. We read some Book of Mormon with him and had a moment where he realized that he knows its true and it was awesome! We also taught him the law of chastity with an emphasis on the temple and eternal families. It was reallyyy powerful...I may have cried a littlle...maybe. But really, I am soooo grateful for Gods commandments they are gifts hes given us to be safe and happy and be prepare for eternal life with him :D
We do bible study with elderly people who have dementia. Its really powerful and the spirit was reeeeeally strong <3 I love them. Its a gift to spend time with them.
We made easter eggs as a lunch time activity this week lol
Inline image 3

"That was the best conference EVER!!!!" - Direct Quote from President Ware lol
It really was! I feel sufficiently rebuked, guided and uplifted. The spirit really testified to my that I need not be afraid of being bold. Elder Oaks said "you have to be willing to take the risk...thats where faith comes in...its supposed to be hard" BOOM! There it is. I love testifying of truth but often worry about offending or being pushy, but i realized that there is a difference between that and being bold with love. And seriously, we have like the least offensive and most joyful message everrrr!!!
God loves His children, He sent us here to learn and grow, but knew we would mess up and disqulifiy ourselves to return to him, so he sent Christ to atone for us and be our perfecr example. And thru Him we can find earthly and eternal joy and peace. Seriously. Awesome!
I was also reminded a lot about how the principles and skills I'm learning as a missionary can be transitioned into, or used in motherhood and it was really awesome haha
I'll send more quotes later.

Had dinner with the Branch Presidents wife and she gave us these <3 sooo sweet! we are crazy spoiled! lol

Inline image 2

Love you all!
Missionary work is hard, but THE BEST!!!
Sister Jennifer Gresham

Mon, Mar 30, 2015. Sister Gresham in...

RICHLAND! AGAIN! I am serving in the Desert Hills Ward (accurate description) and YSA Branch, which covers the Columbia, WHERE I SERVED LAST TIME!! Soooo crazyy and awesome and I love it!! We were visiting a Recent Convert who lives in the columbia ward boundaries, driving around there gave me lots of feels. BUT, then it happened, I realized that I had knocked his door before! I was told not to, people said he was mean, but when I was on exchanges I said to my self "even if hes mean, he needs to be invited, hes still Gods son" so we did, he was nice and accepted our invite to go to! I hadnt heard from him since. But, he was baptized! He blessed my sacrament!!! How crazy is that?! It really reminded me that we never fully see the fruit of our labors, their is sooo much that happens and we will never see. What a loving God that let me see that!
Ok, rewind...

Inline image 6
(our first apt)

So when I flew in, it was awesome! Presidents wife, Sister Ware hugged me forever and we cried and she said it felt like a homecoming <3 It was reallyyyy sweet! They both kept coming over to me the rest of  the day hugging me and freaking put hahaha I felt loved. When I met with President he kept saying that he knew I would come back and the Lord has revealed big plans for me in the mission but that I have to do some stuff first. Bahh. I wanna know! lol But hes great! I love them soooo much!
My comp is Sister Faulkner. She is from Tucson and Pheonix and is super awesome! Like, such an incredible teacher. I seriously am in awe of her. I am grateful to have her as a companion. And her pet dragon as our dashboard peyt lol. President released her from being a Sister Training Leader to finish my training. Shes been excited cuz shes been praying to train again but didnt think she'd get to :D She will mostly likey end her mission here with me, since she only have 2 transfers left. Womp womp.

Inline image 8
Pizza from members = our manna from heaven cuz we both have no

We lived in a members house for 2 days then moved to an apt that was occupied by elders 5 months ago...Its been an experience...

Inline image 9

all our water is brown and nothing is helping....LOL. oh also, I was attacked by a coyote and survived...nbd...and people say stateside missions arent interesting??
Inline image 12

Sisters in our apt complex gave us clean water to drink!

Inline image 11
But onto the more imporant stuff. The work is great!
We went tracting right when I got here and the second lady damned us to day. Like, she reeeeeallyyyy hated us, which was sad, BUT it didnt hurt me, it was weird/cool. Last time that would have killed me, but I just kept on going. Blessings. Other than her, we've tracted into and street contacted some reeeally nice people! We've turned lots of OYM's (open you mouth) into lessons, like in the middle of the street or on their porches! Its been great! We've really been focusing on inviting people to watch General Conference (I invite all of you as well) which helps us segway into the lesson on the Restoration of the Gospel, and how just like Jesus Christ called apostles when we established His church during His mortal ministry, we again have living Prophets and Apostles! What happy news! 
We are teaching some cool people.
Ginny: Shes stuck on women not having the priesthood but after a lesson on the Restoration and talking about the divinity of womanhood, and the sacred unit of family, shes more comfortable. And she reads a bunch!
June, Shout & Jade were referrals and they are AWESOME!!! Shout, the dad is usually at work, but June and Jade (who is 6 and the cutest thing ever) are loving the lessons. June accepted the soft baptismal invite and says she knows she needs to be. They came to church yesterday and loved it! I'm sooo excited! They are wonderful. I often see them dressed in white going to the Temple <3
On satuday we had the Baptism of Joy Wells. A really sweet woman who has really overcome a lot and she knows how important that covenant is and and is sooo happy!

Inline image 3

Theres so much more to share but I dont want to bore you guys but there is a really powerful experience that happened yesterday that I want to share. We had 2 ysa girls come with us to visit potential investigators. We went to this house to meet with a woman but she wasnt there, but J was, who happened to be one of the girls uncles. He has struggled much with the consequences of breaking the commandments and is living a reeeeallyyy hard life. He is the kind of man with vulgar tattoos, really big scars, wife beater shirts and empty alcohol bottles all over his trailer, that I cant tell is really harshly judged by the world. He seemed really beat down. But the whole time we were there I felt so overwhelmed with love for him. I didn't see him as a person who made stupid choices and is suffering, but rather as a beloved child of God who is an important part of His plan, who was broken and needs the Savior so badly and that Christ is reaching out for. I could barely speak when I bore testimony of how Christ can heal him. Its hard to really explain how I felt but it was VERY powerful and I am grateful that I got to experience it. I am such an imperfect person. I don't know this man, his heart, what hes been thru or what he needs. But God does. Jesus Christ does. I feel immensely grateful that even in all my extreme flaws that God used me, spoke thru me, a no one, to help this man know, that He is a Child of God and that Christ CAN and WILL heal him, if He only reaches out. Its brings a scripture from the Book of Mormon to my mind.
 Alma 26:12 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.
I know that is true. I am weak, in body, mind, spirit and in knowledge. I cannot heal anyone. But Christ does. Christ changes hearts. Because of His sufferings for us, we can have peace.

...And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people....And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities. 
Alma 7:11-12
I testify that that is true. Christ suffering in the Garden of Gethsemene allows Him to know how to perfectly succor (to give assistance to in time of want, difficulty, or distress) us. I am grateful to be able to do HIS work full time. This is not my mission. It is HIS. His work is the work of peace and salvation. My job is to serve Christ by bringing people unto Him. To help them by inviting them to reach out to their savior <3 How weak is the servant, but oh how great is my calling! :D


With lots of love from the never green of the evergreen (only half true),
Sister Gresham

My comp Sister Faulkner:
Inline image 2
After being home for almost 9 months on medical release...

My process of returning included:
 -Getting written permission from my doctors saying my body was healthy enough for missionary service
-Meeting with my Stake President
-Writing a letter stating my desire to return sent with a letter from my Stake President and the note from my doctor to the missionary department.

Then a couple weeks later I got a call from my Stake President saying I was approved. They extended me a day to return, then a week later I had a mission call type letter (but much shorter) saying I would be returning on March 24th.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

May 21 2014 - July 3 2014 Pictures. MTC & Richland WA.

At the Park across from the MTC before the drop off.

MTC District at Provo Temple.