Saturday, March 25, 2017


This week was AWESOME! I'm gonna skip right to the highlight:THE WEDDING.

So we have been teaching Angel and Mayra for about a month. The first time we met Mayra she was not down to listen. Actually her 3 year old invited us in...and she tried to say no but we listened to the 3 year old and walked in! She told her mom when we left "Mom don't keep inviting them back. they are gonna make you quit coffee and who knows what else!"

But pretty soon Mayra felt the spirit so strong that by the end of the week she had quit her coffee addiction and her and her AWESOME husband had a baptismal date.

They are the coolest family. Their little kid Angelo always calls me "Johnson" or "Mr. Johnson". HAHA this kid is the funniest human alive. Every time he sees us he gives us a fist bump and says "Whats up dude!" 

We have been at their house almost every day for the past month. We have gotten to know them so well. They have crazy pasts. He was a big time DJ/Dancer...and she was a party girl. And they never got married cause they never had money to do something fancy. Partying was wrecking their relationship and jobs and everything like that. So once they understood the gospel it was pretty clear the living the commandments would solve their problems. 

We were planning their baptism one day and we started teaching about being sealed in the temple. Angel says "That's perfect, in one year we can finally be married!" I was like YOU AREN'T MARRIED?! 

haha. SO we taught the law of chastity and they told us they can't get married because all of their finances and insurrance for their kids. They said it would cost thousands of dollars to change to a legal marriage. yikes. 

Within two days they decided that it doesn't matter. If God wants married couples then they would get married ASAP no matter the cost. Their faith is INSANE. 

So we planned the wedding! Pablo brought all the decorations, we set up ALLLLLL DAY, the family and some members did was awesome. And Mayra was BLOWN AWAY. She said she has never been so happy in her whole life. 

The ceremony was PERFECT. The bishop did the ring exchange, I sang I Stand All Amazed, and then there were a few talks. They looked SO HAPPY. Then they got baptized in front of like 40 non member family members. After we had toasts, dinner, and the family danced for hours. It was so funny and fun. Everyone was line dancing and swinging each other around...mean while us and the elders were just awkwardly watching haha. Everyone kept coming up to us and telling us to marry Mexicans so we can have a wedding like this.

I just couldn't be more honored and happy to know Mayra and Angel. My heart was SO FULL. Their whole life changed over night. They both can't wait to be able to serve in their church and for their two kids to serve missions. In my toast I talked about how they are going to be together forever and it hit me so hard that IT'S TRUE. They are on the road to the Celestial Kingdom! And they are going as a FAMILY! I couldn't have been happier in that moment. 

Well, That's the week! We found 6 new people to teach in the last week, so hopefully we get the ball rolling with a few of these awesome new families!a


Sorry to my missionary friends....this is long and just a gospel rant. Maybe just skip to the pics lol

Wow, can I just say that serving a mission is the BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE? I often think about who I was before my mission and give thanks that Heavenly Father saved me and brought me to El Paso. People write me all the time and ask for advice on whether or not they should go on a mission and for me, the answer is YES. We can try to pick our own paths, fill our lives with things that seem good (which I was so guilty of), but if you give it all to the Lord for just a few short months you would be so surprised at how much better His plans are. His plans are filled with HAPPINESS and JOY and PURPOSE!!! I don't even think I knew how much he LOVES his children until now! And if you aren't at the age to serve a mission, that's okay you can put your trust in God and have the same incredible happiness. Make sacrifices, keep the commandments, do His will, pray to him always, study His words, serve those around you. Then you will find that He takes your dreams and makes them 10x better. Every thing you have ever wanted goes away cause you know that everything He wants for you is beyond your wildest dreams. 

Someone in our ward shared this with me: A mission is like walking through a field of roses for 18-24 months. It is really scratchy, sometimes its even painful. You might be crying and cringing. Your legs are bleeding, your eyes are watering, and sometimes you just want to get out. Then when you are out of the field you look back and all you see is a beautiful ocean of roses. The thorns are completely forgotten and all you can talk about is that beautiful field of roses you spent so much time in. 

There are definitely hard times on a mission. But at the end of a hard day you learn the most valuable lessons. I have learned that Heavenly Father loves me. How many times do we say that and think we know what it means? It's not until I got out here, and the only person who is taking care of me is God, that I actually realized that He LOVES ME. He love ME. I am the worst! I've messed up, I've complained, I'm lazy, I've been rude to people, I've made mistakes, I've bailed on people, I've told lies.... and the supreme ruler over the whole universe personally loves ME. 

If you don't know how much love He has for you, I would recommend doing all it takes to find out. Cause once you know you will never be the same. 

There is a sure way to feel His love, and it actually is not a mission. For me, a mission just helped me realize, but this formula applies to anyone. Ready? 

The Formula:

Faith + Repent + Covenant 

That right there is the Doctrine of Christ. It is the Atonement!  I have seen those three steps change lives over night. I know it saved me from taking a completely different road, and I know it can save anyone who is willing to really apply it. 

Here are some solid scriptures that are all about the doctrine of Christ, and there are so many more than just these. 

"Know ye not that ye are in the hands of God? Know ye not that he hath all power, and at his great command the earth shall be rolled together as a scroll? Therefore, repent ye, and humble yourselves before him, lest his shall come out in justice against you." -Mormon 5:23-24

"And also that ye might know of the coming of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of heaven and of earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning; and that ye might know of the signs of his coming, to the intent that ye might believe on his name. And if ye believe on his name ye will repent of all your sins, that thereby ye may have a remission of them through his merits." -Heleman 14: 12-13

In Alma 22:15 Lamoni's father, a king, asks Aaron (a super awesome missionary who went through a crazy repentance process) what he should do to have eternal life and joy in this life. Aaron says in 16, "If thou desirest this thing, if thou wilt bow down before God, yea, if thou wilt repent of all thy sins, and will bow down before God, and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest."

Some people think that repentance is a bad thing. That if they repent that they will just be trapped in shame and guilt. But it is just the opposite! Repentance is the best feeling in the world! You can do it every day! There are so many people in the Book of Mormon (Enos 1, Alma 36, 2 Nephi 4) who had to repent. Most of the stories are of people repenting from serious stuff, but because they repent God makes them into WARRIORS and PROPHETS and SEERS and MIRACLE WORKERS. And guess what, the moment we get on our knees, give up a bad habit, walk into the bishops office, pick up our scriptures again... those prophets, seers, and warriors  are right there with us. Guess who else is right there with you? Jesus Christ. He's been there, he's felt what you feel, and he's just been desperately waiting to chose to make the change and come to Him. Just believe that He is waiting to take you into His arms, and He will. 

"Yea, verily I say unto you, if ye will come unto me ye shall have eternal life. Behold, mine arm of mercy is extended towards you, and whosoever will come, him will I receive; and blessed are those who come unto me." 3 nephi 9:14

Then the last step is covenant. That is baptism, taking the sacrament, going to the temple, personal promises (like the Anti-Lehi-Nephis). That's why the people we meet who have faith and repent, practically beg to be baptized! How cool is it to make a promise with God. He is the best person to make a promise with because we promise to keep the commandments and in return he gives us HAPPINESS, PEACE, JOY, and ETERNAL LIFE. That's not even a fair trade for Him! But it works, I've seen it and I've experienced it. 

Wow, this next year is going to be so incredible. I can't believe time is flying so quickly! I wish it would slow down. Thank you for all of the support, and for all those who pushed me to get out here! I am so in debt to all of you! THANK YOU!

Hermana Johnson xoxoxoxox

Baptisms, Birthday, Blessin's

We started out the week without a car so we had to bike everywhere. The problem was that El Paso was having a crazy sand-storm, and we had a baptism to get to and our church is way far out of our area. Well, it wasn't really a problem...just a set back. I just threw all of the food and baptism stuff in my backpack and put everything that didn't fit in plastic bags on my handle bars. It was cool until the sand blasts ripped the bag open! I wish someone could have seen us biking up hill, one handed, in the wind with a bunch of white clothes in my arms haha!

Jose and Blanca
The baptism was SO BEAUTIFUL. Jose had fasted all day to be ready, and Blanca has been waiting for the day that she could be clean since we first went to her house. They were so nervous and excited. Blanca wore her heels all the way to the font haha. Then when she got baptized she came out of the font, with tears running down her cheecks, and gave me the biggest hug. Then Jose got dunked! He said he felt at peace for the first time. It was such a beautiful experience. All of their non-member family was their to support them and afterward Jose told me that it was the anniversary of his mother's death and that he knows she was there. 

Holy cow I'm running low on time. I'm probably just going to send like 25 photos and let you look through those haha. 

Joel's baptism was so so great! When he went into the water he yelled "DANG THIS IS COLD!" it was so funny. We took a bunch of flexing pics because pretty much all he does is flexes and talks about his muscles. We thought we would play along. 

My birthday was INSANE. Thank you to everyone who did something!!!! It was such an awesome day! Nora (one of our members) did a cake and a bunch of Mexican traditions for me. Our investigator Myra gave me a locket with a note from her inside and the sweetest letter in the world. Joel gave me a present that was kinda flirty so we actually have to pass him off to the elders now (he sprayed the card with cologne hahahahha) and I came home to the COOLEST presents from the COOLEST family. My zone leaders even tried to get me a present! They called Hna Garcia and asked her what my favorite drink was and she was like....ummm water? So they got me a case of water HAHA.  It really was one of my favorite days of my whole mission!!! I felt so loved through the simplest tiniest things. 

The Temple
We got to go to the temple yesterday!!!! SO incredible. I missed the temple a ton. It is such a beautiful place. It makes me so excited to go with Mayra, Angel, Joel, Blanca, Jose, and Pablo. I can't wait for them to go in for themselves!!! We are already planning a road trip to do baptisms with Jose and Blanca! They are so excited to baptize their parents and her brother. 

Man, the church is so true. In Alma it talks about how our joy will be so great if we just bring one soul to the fold of God. When we look at it through the eternal perspective, I can see why! Each soul has hundreds on the other side waiting for their work to be done. One convert could mean a whole family tree of converts who have already passed on! I know because I have felt it. I know that the angles that are "on our right and left bearing us up" are the family of the people we are teaching. I know it without a doubt. I have felt it! Mayra even told us the other day that she heard the voice of her daughter before she was born, and waaayyy before she knew us, saying "mom, we have to follow HIM and then we can be a family.". Now she knows what that means and her little baby is going to grow up with married, sealed parents. 

Well thank you again for all of the love. I have no idea how I got such great friends and family. I feel so humbled and blessed to have you all. Getting so spoiled on the 4th made me want to work 100x harder so that maybe I can deserve a FRACTION of all the love I have received. You people are AMAZING. I don't know what I would do without you. 


Hermana Johnson xoxoxox