Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Week 37 ~ January 27, 2014

Oh my this is a busy emailing time. Everyone just wants to chat so this might be a short one!! Sorry :) Well this week was good. Nothing too exciting happened other than the fact that i love my new companion. SHe is so much fun. we are starting to work with less active familes and part memeber rfamilies here in moscow she said that they havent done too much with them since she got here and there are always people to baptize when you teach those people. i love doing that kind of work. well is was not a big number week but it was just so much fun. my district leader and his companion are hilarious they call us every night for numbers and stuff and we just laugh on the phone with them for like 30 minutes every night. they are like the goofiest goof balls in the world but they are funny. then me and sister hoffman were making fun of her old companion for always stepping in dog pooop.... Karma is a real thing. i stepped on the biggest poop ever!!! haha i just kept walking i figured it would come off eventually. but yeah we were just laughing i cant remember much other than the fact that we just walked and laughed every where. we went on exchanges on friday night to saturday night and it just made me appreciate sister hoffman that much more. i got stuck with an airhead dumb girl who stinks at planning. 6:30 comes around and we use ALL of the plans that we had for the entire day. i was lik eoh my gosh i could strangle you. haha so yes i still cant handle dumb girls but its okay i am learning patience. i am still not perfect though. i was thinking how president mullen is truely inspired on who he puts with who cause me and sister hoffman make the best companionship. it makes it a lot easier to be a missioanry when you have a good companion too. but yeah thats just the highlight of this week i am sorry nothing reall yhappened. but i hope you have a good week!
Love Sister Johnson

Week 36 ~ January 21, 2014

Welll I would have you know that Moscow, ID is a lot different than Colbert Washington. Haha they are like polar opposites and i love it. so this is my new area and it is a mostly walking partly car area. I love it here because it is a college town and so people are just walking around everywhere so there are always people to talk to. I love street contacting people. Sometimes they are rude. well rude is an understatement but yes you get the picture and sometimes you get some very unique people. and sometimes you get some good gospel conversations with people. I love it. you never know what you are going to get. So my new companion is Sister Hoffman. She is waiting for her Visa to Brazil but she has been waiting a while. like almost 9 months since she put in her Visa information. poor soul that would stink to never get sent to your assigned mission. Its the Lord's will though it will all work out. anyway she is awesome. We are always walking down the road laughing our heads off over something. She has learned that my greatest comfort is my retainer and that i cannot sleep with out it. she thinks that is funny. haha shes weird. anyway she is learning Portuguese and some missionaries were talking to people from Brazil so we just picked up a couple new investigators from Brazil and she is suppose to talk to them in Portuguese but she doesnt know it very well so we are going to start talking it a lot more. who knows, maybe i will come back home knowing Portuguese. that would be cool but it probably wont happen. She is so cute and we are always laughing. its nice to have companions you can laugh with. This week has been one of the weirdest weeks of my life. Sister Hoffman said that she hasnt had this many weird or awkward experiences her whole mission until she became companions with me. I think it might be just me. I feel like awkward and weird just follow me around every where I go. I love my new area right new especially because of the fact that these people here are so humble. the rich part of this area are like the poorest in Colbert. It has been way humbling to be eating dinner with the people in this ward compared to my last. Most of the people here are going to school at the University of Idaho or they work at the college or the are doing something that has to do with the school system. so they are just living happy humble lives. It put things in my life into a little more perspective. The reason i titled this email Break through week is because i finally made a change in my life. previously i DREADED eating left over food. But i have now had a change of heart. Left overs arent half bad. i actually like having them because that means that you dont have to make new food. you just have to throw it in the microwave and then you are good to go. fast, easy, not as delicious but still okay, food!! so yes mom i now eat left overs. I will admit that i probably wont want them after my mission because i have decided that i am going to be living at home for a while so i can get back into the swing of things of my mother making me dinner and breakfast every morning and often times lunch too. thats what i prefer. so mom... i love you and i miss your food but i have learned to eat left overs for the  time being :) <3 other than that it was a great week. i have had some crazy fun, funny experiences but you will just have to read my journal after the mission for these ones :) I love you all so much! thanks for all you do for me! 
Love Sister Johnson

Email from Ward Mission Leader (Talk about some PROUD parents!)

Brother and Sister Johnson,

I’m the Ward Mission Leader in the Colbert Ward – where your daughter, Sister Johnson, is currently serving.

I’ve been the Ward Mission Leader for just about two years now, worked with a large number of missionaries, and just wanted to let you know how grateful I am that your daughter is serving in our ward.

She’s amazing. Her love for the people she teaches and her ability to communicate that love – along with her testimony – make her a great missionary. As I’ve worked with her for a few months now I’ve been able to see how eager she is to be obedient as a missionary and how zealous she is to share the Gospel. Those she teaches find her very kind, personable, sincere, and very easy to relate to.

She (and her companion) have been able to truly work miracles in our ward as they have worked hard and sought to do the will of the Lord.

I have no doubt that she is literally helping the Lord Hasten his work, and she has been a great asset to our ward. It has also been my (and my family’s) privilege to get to know her a bit while she has been serving here.

Thank you so much for having such an awesome daughter and sharing her with us.



I can't tell you how much I love receiving emails like this.  thank you for being so good to Sister Johnson.  it makes it a lot easier to have her out there serving the Lord knowing there are people like you there to help her.

Sister Johnson,

Sending the email was really my pleasure. Sister Johnson is getting transferred out of our ward today – I’ve already heard from a number of families how sad they are. She really has blest the lives of SO MANY people here. She’s hands-down one of the best missionaries I’ve had the privilege of working with.



Week 35 ~ January 13, 2014

Well This is about almost my half way mark of my mission. i have 13 transfers and i have made it through 6. so time is just flying on by. I am finally getting out of Colbert. It was a great ward and i loved it there but it was time to leave. Like SO beyond time to leave. I had served there and done all i could do and now i am ready to leave. The ward is going to miss me though :) i already know it!! 
So this week has been definitely one for the books. I was told that i was part of a cult about 5 days in a row which is weird because i havent been told that for my whole mission. i dont know why but i think it is strange because the actual definition of a cult is any organization so i guess the true definition is yes we are a cult but well... everything is a cult. but i know thats not what they meant. i am part of some crazy religion that forces people to leave their homes and try and make people get baptized!!! haha just kidding thats not true either. i love being a missionary. if i didnt like it i would have been home a long time ago!  Then the funny things started happening. No one knew when transfers were coming up but everyone started giving me stuff. not Sister Stratton just me. like I got a home made rug. i got some Horchata its the best! and jsut little things here and there that they didnt give to sister stratton. i was laughing so hard. i think that was Heavenly Father telling me that i was for sure going to get transferred. My new area is going to be in the Palouse River ward. I heard it is a very rural area with a few small towns all together. i am not really sure much more about it. i dont know if it is in Idaho or if it is in Washington still but its some where around there. My new companion's name is Sister Hoffman. I dont know anything about her either. anyway then on friday i show up to a zone training meeting and we only have one zone leader. come to find out my zone leader got called to be the new assistant to the president. so now both of the AP's are my old zone leaders. i have been trained well! its exciting. i love all the changes that are going on around here. The most exciting thing that happened this last week was on saturday. Elder Anderson of the quorum of the 12 apostles was around spokane somewhere and he wanted to meet with us. so we gathered our whole mission together (which is the first time that has happend) and he came and spoke with us for 3 hours I am sure my dad has already creeped the picture of it on our missionary blog :) He was so funny. i love being able to meet the apostles like that because at conference they are all on their best behavior and then with us they kind of  show us who they really are and they are a lot more fun to be around. but He taught us about repentance and how it is a process not just an action. which really stuck with me. i like that because if you just repented then you would be perfect instantly but we are just humans. we are a little bit slower than that. so we need to repent. change a little bit. repent again change a little bit more and just make it  a whole process not just poof your done. and then he talked about the atonement. which is exactly what i needed. he said that if you think you understand the atonement even a little bit then you need to be humbled and you need to realize that you dont know anything. he said that the atonement can never be understood. ever. until we are dead maybe. but still that brings me a lot of comfort to know that even an apostle of the Lord doesnt even understand the atonement and how it works. i have been thinking about that a lot lately. everyone says that the atonement can help you out just use the atonement. and i am like what you think i am stupid i am trying but it doesnt make sense so i have figured out that it will never make sense i just have to try my best :) one last thing that i learned while i was there is how real the savior is. He is literally the head of this church. he is telling the apostles and prophet what to do and how to run this church. i love knowing that. i love being a missionary for the lord and i love doing this work. and work it is!!! i love you all have a good week!Sister Tori Johnson

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Week 34 ~ January 6, 2014

So its a new year! Cant believe it!! I am super excited for what 2014 has in store for us. We had such a great week. it started out with a new investigator and ended just as exciting. we have a new investigator her name is Renee. She is so great. She has had a few trials just recently in her life that i feel like set her up perfect for the gospel. she got laid off and she had a daughter pass away and she is just at a point in her life where she is making a lot of changes and so what better time to make a change than to be baptized :) she has a lot of potential but we have only met with her once so i will keep you guys updated on her progress :) People were pretty busy this week cause of the holidays. luckily school is back in session and life will start to slow down again for our investigators and we will be able to meet with them again. New years was great. we got to come home at 7:00 and then we fell asleep early that night. if you dont know already, any extra sleep a missionary gets is like the best thing in the world. i sleep any opportunity i get. which is not very often. i love sleeping as you may have known before my mission i would sleep about 12 to 13 hours a day/ night so since i have been deprived of that, my body has gone through withdraws. i can still sleep whenever nad where ever though so dont you worry about that. the ping pong table came in my room came in handy this past new years day too. we went over to a memebrs house and we were playing ping pong against each other. i totally trashed everyone in the house so that was a lot of fun. well miracles are happening every single day. i love being here in the work. i dont know what i would be with out my testimony of the book of mormon and with out my family who loves and supports me in everything i do. you are all so great!!! 
Love Sister Johnson

Week 33 ~ December 30, 2013

Well a new year is just around the corner. I cant believe I graduated almost two years ago i still feel like a little kid. Sorry! So this past week rocked! the people here are so great!!! We just went house hopping both christmas eve and christmas day. I fell pretty hard on Christmas eve i already told my family this but it was pretty funny it needs to be said again. So we were leaving this house and they have a really long drive way and we parked at the end of it since we knew there were going to be tons of people there and i didnt want to back sister stratton up so we were walking down it and there was another car who left right after us and they were following behind us with their head lights. well one important detail is that there was TONS of ice EVERYWHERE and so we were trying to walk fast and the whole time we were trying to walk a little fast to get out of their way as fast as possible. so right before we get to the car i am trying to rush out of the way and get to our car anyway i slip and land flat on my back it knocked the air out of me and i wacked my head pretty good too and the people behind us jumped out of the car and i am like SO embarrassed and hop up as fast as i can and am dying laughing it was so funny. sister stratton almost fell from laughing so hard. it was so slippery so now i walk like two miles an hour everywhere i go. not going to risk that again. and so now we are just havning the after effects of chirstmas at our house we are not about to take down our christmas decorations any time soon we have snowflakes and paper chains everywhere!! its awesome!! then it snowed again yesterday and sister stratton is about as experienced in driving in the snow as i am. and she tried to climb a mountain that was completely covered in ice haha it was so funny i got out of the car and said welp good luck!! anyway i literally pushed the car to flip it around to go down the hill facing the right direction. its a good thing i am buff. well... use to be. not so much anymore. but we picked up another investigator this week. he is a nine year old little guy it is so cute! I LOVE teaching children way better than adults. they are way more humble that the old farts ;) haha well this week has been great thanks for all the Chirstmas Packages you all sent! i love them all especially the scarfs and the warm gear!! they are much appreciated! hope you have a good week!
Sister Johnson

Week 32 ~ December 23, 2013

Well well well. its the Eve of Christmas Eve!! I Love the Christmas season so much!!! Seems like everyone is in the right mind frame of coming to church!! I love the Christmas excitement too. all the children have been on pins and needles waiting for Christmas day. I love it so much!! But as a pre Christmas Present Heavenly Father sent some snow our way. It was such a blast. Sadly it is starting to melt away i hope it sticks around long enough to still have a "white" Christmas or like a nasty brownish white Christmas will work for me too. This week has been fun though. we got a few gifts for some of our ward members and for our ward mission leader we got him a kit kat cause i guess those are his favorites. anyway sister Stratton said that we should ding dong ditch it and so we dropped it off and took off running and there was tons of snow on the ground and as we turned the corner my feet decided they didnt want to stay underneath me and i landed flat on my back. We were laughing so hard!! For those of you who dont know me very well it always turns out to be when i do anything exciting I usually end up on my face or my back at least once before the night is over. It didnt hurt at all though. It was nice fresh powder so I was still good. Then the lessons have been a little snow because of the crazy busyness of everyone with Christmas so close but we have just been walking the streets and talking to people plowing their driveways. I love talking to people. Everyone has their faith and the things that they put all their trust in and its cool when you can tell that they are looking for something and we are there to offer a tid bit of how much God loves them and how he has shown us through a living prophet that we can live together with our families not just here but for ETERNITY! I love thinking about that. I feel so blessed to have the knowledge that i can be with my family for forever. Makes the trials in life not so stinky cause i know that it is just a small fraction in Heavenly Fathers time. It also helps encourage me to do all i can here so that when i do die i wont regret anything!! Its been great. Well i Love you all so much!! i keep you in my prayers and hope that all is going swell in your lives. Dont forget about your savior this Christmas the gifts dont matter just the birth of our savior. I Love you!!
Sister Johnson

Week 31 ~ December 16, 2013

Good afternoon everyone! Hope the warm weather is hitting you too! it Rained this week instead of snowed!! Tender Mercy of the Lord. He knows me very well! Well this week has been incredible!! It started off with a lesson with one of our most awesome part member families. The Boyd's are like my all time favorite. There is the mom who is a less active member coming back to activity with a non-member husband and then they have 3 daughters who are the most adorable things in the world. We love them so much! We taught them the plan of Salvation. The dad hasn't shown too much interest but he just wants to know what we are teaching his children so he has been sitting in but in the Plan of Salvation he was trying not to act too interested but we had a map laid out all over the floor and he was moving trying to get a good view of the map. When we caught him looking he had to pull his phone out so that he could act not interested :) It was good. Then they came to our ward Party on Friday and I think they enjoyed it. The dad hasnt come to church yet but his girls are loving it! Then there has been this girl coming to church the past couple of weeks and the friends of the girl said that she was ready to take the missionary discussions and get baptized!!!! MIRACLE!! I have never seen something like that in my life! So we are going to start teaching her soon :) she is so great! i am so stoked. It just strengthens my testimony that this is the Lord's work. I can Work and work and work and work and nothing will happen. but as soon as i turn my success over to the Lord is when he starts blessing me with people to share the gospel with. so there are always super prepared people and then there are also those people who just want to bash with us... we had one of those this week too it was so funny :) there was this guy who was a youth pasture for some religion. and he had a paper full of quotes and book of mormon scriptures to try to prove that we dont believe that it is by grace that we are saved and idk all of this crap it was quite funny he was bound and determined to stump us. needless to say he just looked stupid. we had brought this young man with us that just got back from his mission a couple weeks before and so we had to leave and the lesson wasnt really done yet so the kid that just got back from his mission stayed there and didnt argue with him but argued with him for another hour and a half. haha i thought it was so funny. its been good to have people who will go with us to lessons. like that. Well i am almost out of time but i love you all thank you so much for all that you do for me! Merry CHRISTmas! and a happy new year! :)
Love Sister Johnson 

Week 30 ~ December 9, 2013

Well its official I am not ever going to get married!!! Way to much work! haha just kidding i will get married. i will just make sure that i actually like him. haha :) thats my life lesson for the week. Other than that it was a pretty normal week beside the fact that it has hovered around 10 degrees all week!!! it was too cold to even snow! thats what they said or something idk. when it did snow it was just like dry powder on the ground and it blows away and doesnt cause ice on the ground which is quite nice!! i loved that part of it. well okay this sounds lame but this week was very uneventful i am sorry i dont have much to say but nothing really happened. we have just been working with our less active members. there was a random guy at church yesterday and so we introduced ourselves and he was a non member and he is from nevada but his wife is a member and so he just wanted to check it out. which is really awesome that never happens!! haha but yeah i am doing great. this week i promise i will have a lot more things to say. its going to be a good week this week!! well i love and appreciate all you guys do for me!! Happy early Christmas!!!
Love sister Johnson

Week 28 ~ November 25, 2013

Well hello everyone!! things here in colbert are going great!! Tuesday will be my first baptism!  We have been teaching a little 9 year old her name is sophie and she is just the cutest thing in the whole entire world!! she is so excited to be baptized so on tuesday we will have the blessing to watch her get baptized!! this past weekend we have been teaching lots of people we got a lot of lessons last week and then we even got to do service for one of our old investigators and there was 8 elders and 2 sisters me and my companion but it was so much fun. you could tell the elders that grew up actually having to work and do stuff and then the ones that grew up in the city and dont know how to work. its funny how different circumstances affect people so much. obviously i was taught to work and so i was the one splitting the wood with another elder. haha then there was an elder with a chain saw and then another splitting wood and the rest were just gathering the wood and taking it to sister stratton to stack in the truck. we did a lot of wood it was so much fun! i loved every second of it. getting wood back at home isnt half as fun as it is when you are a missionary... sorry mom! :) but yeah it has been great to be a missionary. Meeting Elder Oaks was the best thing that has ever happened to me! When you saw him you can just see the light of christ radiating out of him. he is so kind and you can just feel the love he has for you and the savior and you can just feel how much heavenly father loves you when you see him. thats what i got out of it. i was so happy to shake his hand!! we have just been rockin it out here. i love being a missionary so much. these next couple weeks i am going to try and work on being more loving like elder oaks was! I want others to feel a glimps of what i was able to feel with him. well i love you all so much! thanks for all your love and support! i appreciate all you do for me! 
Love Sister Johnson

Week 27 ~ November 18, 2013

Well hello everyone!! It was great to get all your emails! Thank you so much!! So this week has been another great week! It started a little shaky but things picked up nicely! Thursday we had a zone conference where three different zones get together and they give us this huge training. So yes it was very exciting and i feel like all i want to do is go out and teach people about jesus now and baptize them! haha but anyway in the training we learned about how we are held to a high standard. as missionaries and as members of the church. we focused on the missionary one at the meeting. but Pres. Mullen told us that the lord is hastening his work and that he has a new vision for the mission. So President Mullen told us that he had received revelation for the mission and he said that we can be bringing more souls unto christ. he said that last month we had 35 baptisms throughout the mission. he said that the lord wants that doubled and that we can be having 3 lessons per day with 4 of our investigators at church every week, our church attendance up by 10%, AND last but not least he said that each companionship can be having a baptism every week! So I am letting the Lord have me and he can use me as his instrument. so from me he will be getting one baptism a week. i have so much faith that is very much possible and that i can live up to this standard that the Lord has for me. its so great! i can just feel the excitement that the lord has for his work!  so that night after the training we picked up a new investigator! then saturday we got another investigator ( we will have to pass him off to the ysa sisters though :(  )  but then saturday morning our ward mission leader called up me and sister stratton and had some very exciting news!! he said that he and his wife have been working with this person and that she has agreed to go to church and that she wanted to learn more about our church and so we are now going to teach her the discussions is our ward mission leaders home!! so its just like things are falling into place to succeed!! its so exciting!! :) Saturday we also had a lesson with some less actives that think they are active but never come to church so we called them unto repentance and they were at church yesterday! :) saturday was jsut a day full of miracles! then on sunday we had like 4 less actives at church and 2 investigators so we are slowly getting to our goals! that is less than one week of the announcement of the Lords new vision. The members are starting to see that we wont leave them alone until they get us people to teach so it has been so great!! i love it. This is the Lords work and he is doing it! i love this time that i ahve to be a missionary! :) i miss you all but sorry im not coming back anytime soon ;)!!!
Love, Sister Tori Johnson

Week 26 ~ November 12, 2013

Okay i will try and write this out before i get too busy at the end haha but oh my it is a great time to be a missionary ESPECIALLY in washington. one the 24th of November we are having a special stake conference where elder Dallin H Oaks is going to come and speak to us and we were given strict instruction to not plan anything right after the conferecne because he wants to meet us and give us some help. OUR STAKE ONLY ;) tender mercy of the Lord!! the other missionaries are going to be so jealous haha but yeah i am excited for that! then there is rumors flying like crazy!! i guess elder ballard gathered all of the stake presidents and our mission president together in our mission and told them that our mission needs to step up our work. He told the stake presidents to gather all the Return missionaries together and so president Larson (our stake president) came to sacrament meeting on sunday and made an announcement to all the return missionaries to come up to the stand after the first meeting was over and told them that they need to do more for the Lord. they are all returned missionaries and know what it take so he told them that they needed each find one person for us to teach before Christmas. there are like 60 RM's in my ward. I feel like the work is just on the edge of an explosion! like no joke. my whole out look on missionary work changed when i heard this. i HAVE to be here. i dont want to be anywhere else. but in the Allegory of the Olive Tree in Jacob 5 it is like the final stage of the work. Heavenly Father is going to send forth his best servants to prune and help the vineyard one last time and try to bring forth good fruit one last time. This is it! Then He is here! I am so excited to be out here. this work is way bigger than me and way bigger than any of us. we are just suppose to do our part to get someone to teach. its vital they hear the message of the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I hate how is has taken me this long to figure it out. We are having a zone conference again on thursday and we are going to get training on what elder ballard taught Pres. Mullen when they had that meeting. its going to be awesome. rumor is we are going to be pressed to have a baptism a week! big goals but i have total faith that if that is what heavenly father wants that is what i will do. Other than all my excitement for missionary work I am doing so great!! I have started a Fast with our ward. for 40 days one member of our ward will be fasting. i myself wanted to participate so for 40 days i gave up sweets and treats and candy. its been so great! just from this fast we have seen so many miracles!! but i also have been gaining weight so this will be good for me i have been on a health kick! i love it. i just feel so much healthier and happier. its been so energizing! i will come back home and everyone will think i am weird but hey, thats what a mission does to you right? im suppose to come back awkward and weird haha. i can promise you that will happen. if it doesnt than we will have bigger problems. I love you all so much and appreciate you all so much! stay strong and know that Jesus loves each of you so perfectly! 
Love Sister Tori Johnson

Week 25 ~ November 5, 2013

Well well well what do we have here. SNOW! thats what!! crazy i know!!! i was not expecting that either! so my email is on tuesday this week because i went to the temple this morning. wonderful like always and very uplifting. Satan has been working on me and Sister Stratton a lot these past few days. But its great because thats when I can expect something incredible to happen. 
Halloween was great! we had a trunk or treat with our ward. that turned out great and we had one of our investigators there and then a few less active families there. i love things like that were it is easy for those people to come. then daylight savings hit.... i can honestly say i do not understand the point of switching my clock an hour back! it just seems silly to me. especially since it is now completely dark by 4:30 in the afternoon now. seriously they should just quit doing it if you ask me. well i dont have much time now everyone keeps emailing me back really quickly and so i get distracted but we are having a baptism on the 24th of november there is a 9 year old girl that we are teaching. her dad is a member and so she is a little late on getting baptized but we are excited for it. teaching the law of chastity to a 9 year old isnt really that fun. i made sister stratton do that part and i did the work of wisdom :) hahahaha it was classic! she didnt do it very good and i wasnt about to reiterate the things she missed so i just kept going haha she is 9 we just skipped that part! haha anyway things are oging great here in spokane! i love it here and the people are great! life is wonderful and i love and miss you guys!! I pray for you all often! 
Love sister Tori Johnson  

Week 24 ~ October 28, 2013

Well i made it through another week. dont worry i didnt die! but i am actually doing great!!!! i had a bit of a cold the last couple of weeks and so i am starting to get over that. but this week we have really started to get our ward more involved in the work! I love it when we are able to get our ward members excited about missionary work! this last week we were able to teach a young man who is dating a less active girl in our ward. he is so great! he has gone to church with his friends his whole life practically and really just wants to learn and grow! I asked him last night if he wanted to be baptized and he said he does more than anything he just wants to make sure he is doing it for the right reasons. well he is 22 years old so guess what... He gets to go to the ysa ward!! SO LAME!!!! he is so prepared! but that is okay it is all the same work! but I am doing good fall is beautiful I love it out here! winteris just around the corner though! I am mentally preparing myself for the worst! I love and appreciate all you guys do for me! I will keep praying for you all and I hope your all praying for me! I need all the prayers I can get :) haha I love you!
Love Sister Tori Johnson