Quote of the week:

"The Lord doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called"

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Week 4 MTC

Moroni 8:16

...Behold, I speak with boldness, having authority from God; and I fear not what man can do; for perfect love casteth out all fear.

I firmly believe that any man's finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle - victorious.
-Vince Lombardi


This has been a pretty great week! Times goin fast and I got to see Capella in the cafeteria
and I saw Lindsey today too! SO GREAT!

Thanks so much for sending me that package! I loved everything inside! That pillow looks totally sweet too! The cupcakes were DESTROYED, haha but I still ate them. And the ipod was perfect except....no carrie underwood singing How Great Thou Art...I might send it home just for that one song. Seriously!!! haha but I'm so lucky to have such a supportive family!

Last week my companion, Elder Christiansen fell on his wrist during soccer, so we got walk off campus to get x-rays... but TODAY we got driven to a doctor over by Provo HS! We got out of "jail" for like an hour and a half! Haha It's weird cuz, when you're outside the gates of the MTC...you're a missionary...and people look at you like you're a missionary. Ha! We didn't stop and preach to anybody, but while we were sitting in the waiting room, a couple walked in and guess what...THEY SPOKE SPANISH. So...we talked to them. :) They spoke really, really fast. haha but We actually had a conversation with them. They asked where we were from and where were goin and for how long and stuff. The lady actually knew some friends that live in Rosario! She referred them to us! Totally got my first referral. haha!!! We got her friends' names and number so I'm gunna keep that safe until I get down there! My companion is okay though, just got a little brace for his wrist.

Oh, so my comp and I changed rooms this week and moved in with Elder Thompson and Elder Landers. Pictures are comin in the mail. Before movin in with them we had a room to ourselves and it got a little boring at times, so now it's fun to hang out and chill with the other Elders. We say a lot of religious jokes in here, haha they get pretty funny cuz we cant really joke about anything else!

The devotionals were great this week! Elder Zivic and wife spoke to us on Tuesday! They're from ARGENTINA! They both had really stong accents but got the message out perfect in English. Sister Zivic spoke first and gave "motherly advice." It was such good stuff. She had a few amazing quotes that she said, that I loved. She said, "Happiness comes from circumstances, Joy comes from God." I think this is spot on perfect. Dad and I always talked about how joy is something special. It's a level of happiness that is long lasting. God is the difference. It's the eternal perspective knowledge that gives us joy. We are so lucky! Sis Zivic also said, "nothing is impossible to the Lord." Once again, spot on. I love all the scriptures that give me comfort, that I can do anything, through Christ and Heavenly Father. (Alma 26:12, Phil 4:13, 1 Ne. 3:7) Elder Zivic gave an amazing talk as well. He said that we choose every day what were gunna put into life. He said that life is like an echo, what you do and say is eventually going to come back at you. He told us to give our very best for the next two years for, "total dedication is complete vistory."-Ghandi and he alse shared a sweet quote by V.Lombardi that starts "I firmly believe that a mans finest hour..(mom look that up please :)" He told us to not settle for less than our abilities. Take it one step at a time and rely on the Lord. Faith + Works = Miracles.

My favorite scripture during personal study was in Moroni 8:16. I like the last sentence when it says, "for perfect love casteth out all fear." If we love like Christ loves, and come unto Him, we have nothing to fear. His love far out matches us. I'm so grateful for my Savior and the comfort I feel when I'm doing the right thing.

So, this week I finished the Book of Mormon! BEST BOOK EVER. I seriously was glued to it. I felt so good every single time I read it, I didn't want to put it down. I didn't want it to end either! I know that anybody that reads the Book of Mormon can and will feel the comfort of the Holy Ghost. It's another testament of Jesus Christ and the love He and Heavenly Father have for us. For those who dont know about the Book of Mormon, It's a record of a group of people that left Jerusalem around 600 bc and were led by the hand of God to the Americas. The book has different accounts of their dealings with God and also tells about when Christ came to the Americas, after He was resurrected. He said that he was to visit "other sheep which are not of this fold." Those sheep, or people, were visitied by Him and taught by Him. The Book of Mormon can answers any of our questions, and silence all our fears. I know that the Book of Mormon is true because I've prayed and received an answer that it is true. It has changed my life!

So, I'm almost out of time but everyone should read Alma 32, it talks about faith and acting on our faith.

Real quick... this week I said somethin pretty funny when my comp and I were goin to get a drink. I said, "Vamos tomar un bebe" I tried to say "lets go get a drink" but didn't know what drink was, but the verb is beber, so I took a whack at it. We started laughing because it sounded like I said, "lets go take a baby." haha we got a good kick out of that one.

K well I love you all so very, very much and and so grateful for you and your support. I'm one lucky missionary!

Elder Hjelmstad

Quote of the week: "Happiness comes from circumstances, Joy comes from God"

-Sister Zivic

p.s. mom can you please send me the monson quote I taped up under my polo plaques in my room and some pics of me playin polo and Jeds Highs and lows poem, and tell tyler sarber to write me. and KELLIE.
dad- can you send me come back stretches and neck stretches? Thatd really help!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Week 3 MTC

Doctrine and Covenants 130: 20-21

20 There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated-
21 And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated.


DANG! I cannot believe I've been gone for 3 weeks already! Totally insane. K so this week was great! I'm totally in the swing of things here at the MTC. Never seems like we get enough sleep though. haha but its fine. The language has been comin along slowly but surely. The tenses are stickin a little bit more each day and my vocab is increasing as well.

We taught 3 different lessons to our pretend "investigators." I always get wayyyy nervous right before them because I wanna do good but once we get in the room the spirit just carries the conversation and Spanish comes and it's just so amazing. We are teaching Pablo and Rodrigo right now. We've taught Pablo the whole first lesson and got him to Pray for us out loud, which was so awesome because he said he'd never do that. Rodrigo is praying about if he believes in God, so we'll see where that goes. It's fun and challenging! Learning to teach in spanish is so much different than english, cuz its ALL basics, nothing too crazy cuz I don't know the words to elaborate! haha

So my district is so awesome. 2 of us are going to Rosario, 2 to Mendoza, Argentina and 4 to Asuncion North in Paraguay. We just had 3 Elders from our district leave this morning to switch over to the Dominican Republic MTC though. We have a ton of fun! They are all really great guys and it's fun cuz were all in the same boat for the most part. I'm really close to Elder Thompson, he's from Boise. We have a lot in common, so we talk a lot. haha We both miss our families like crazy! I would allow him to write Jenee... but hes got a girl. haha So ya, everybody thinks Jenees cute. It's hilarioussss. hahah

k my favorite part of the day is GYM because we get to run around instead of being inside! I play either bball or futbol. I somehow score every time we play soccer. TOTALLY LUCK every time. haha but but it's way fun! On tues we we're playin futbol and Elder Christiansen, my comp, fell and hurt his wrist so WE GOT TO GO OFF CAMPUS! haha We walked down the street to the BYU health clinic to get an x-ray. He's fine! Just swollen so that’s good!

K the devotionals were SO GOOD as usual. On Sunday, we learned about the definition of a successful missionary. He had a bunch of different definitions, but what I got out of it was, that a successful missionary does his absolute best at all times to work hard and be a tool in the Lords hands. He shared some great examples of successful missionaries, like the sons of Mosiah and Alma. The other devotional stressed that we are Children of our Heavenly Father, who loves us, and we love Him. He talked about how blessed we are to have a Heavenly Father that wants us to succeed and has provided a way for us to return and live with Him. We're so lucky to be able to pray to Him and feel of His spirit. I was reminded of the quote, "Two people can do anything as long as one is God." as long as we obey His commandments, He will bless us. d&c 130:20-21. I think... we should have an apostle coming soon! Oh and read the Hymn, Lead kindly light and Nearer my God to thee.<--- That’s my favorite one right now. :)

haha So I've still been readin the Book of Mormon like crazy. I LOVE IT. It is such a comforter in my life right now. I don't want it to end! I love learning from them and applying them to my life. We can all liken the scriptures to our lives if we read and apply them. 3rd Nephi is amazing and how it describes Christ coming to the Americas and visiting His "other sheep." Everyone should read it.

Oh so my companion, Elder Christiansen is also going to Rosario and Elder Lynn is going there too. Elder Lynn left our district 2 weeks ago though so we're not a trio, I think I told you that but I dk. Oh, I saw Jordan Brown and Jon a bunch this week! I seriously know so many people here it's awesome!

And YAY KELLIE!!!! I'm so happy for you! WRITEEEEE MEEEEE!!! Dear Elder is awesome!

Thank you so much for all of your support and everything that you do for me!!

I love and miss every single one of you!


Elder Hjelmstad

p.s. I don’t get dear elders on sat or sun, so it's either Fri before 11 or Monday. Just letting you know.

LOVE YOU so much and miss you a ton!

Lead, Kindly Light

Lead, Kindly Light, amid then circling gloom: Lead me on!

The night is dark, and I am far from home; Lead thou me on!

Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see

The distant scene- one step enough for me.

I was not ever thus, nor prayed that thou Shouldst lead me on.

I loved to choose and see my path; but now, Lead me on.

I loved the garnish day, and, spite of fears,

Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years.

So long thy power hath blest me, Sure it still Will lead me on

O'er moor and fen, o'er crag and torrent, till The night is gone.

And with the morn those angel faces smile,

Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Week 2 MTC

The FIRST ever Elder Hjelmstad!

Hey guys!

2 WEEKS!! WOOHOOO! Haha I cant believe its already been two weeks. craziness. First off Last week when I emailed you saying I hadnt seen Jon, well I saw him like an hour later after dinner! I saw him down the hall and yelled ELDER LYON really loud, probably not okay, but he heard me and then we embraced. haha its fun seeing him around! whenever I hear "HJELMSTAD" I know its him!

THANKS YOU SO MUCH FOR THE PACKAGE! That was so fun! I loved every single part of it! Right when I opened it up I looked at the picture album. Btw I cry every time I think of my family... but well get to that later. So anyways, my district wanted to see you guys, so I started showin them the pics and of course started crying. haha so annoying! But the Granola is AWESOME. toffee is AMAZING, zone bars were hilarious, and LETTERS WERE SO GREAT! I was chompin at the bit to read them asap but I had to wait until night. They were so fun to read!

So, my spanish is comin along... I'm pretty good at vocab, so I'm just workin on tenses and all the weird rules that the spanish language has. Its hard but NOT EVEN close to how hard it would be to learn chinese or somethin crazy. I just keep tellin myself to take it little by little and itll come. It already is.

So, this past Sunday was like the weirdest day of my whole life! Ultimate roller coaster day. Testimony meeting was amazing. Elders can bear their testimonies in English or Spanish, and they were all fantastic. Towards the end of the meeting I was crying and couldnt even sing the last song cuz I was crying...so annoying! Once again, I'll come back to that later. haha! So ya testimony meeting was GREAT! Then we had lots and lots of personal scripture study time and also had a mission conference where the MTC pres talks about stuff. During personal study and the conference I was just super depressed and down for some weird reason. I was overwhelmed and stressed out and I couldnt get rid of it. I kept doubting myself all the way til the Devotional at night. The devotional was on faith and was so GOOD! I said a prayer in the middle of the address and all of a sudden felt better than ever. It reminded me of the anology of the heart monitor and how we know were alive when the line goes up and down. Sunday turned out to be great though!

OK so my district thinks that I cry a ton and that I have a story about everything. haha gotta love that reputation! I seriously cry almost every time I bear my testimony or talk about my family. haha Ive never been a cry baby until now! But I keep everybody intrigued with my stories I guess. I told them I was colorblind and how I broke my leg sledding. They liked those ones! haha

So, today we were in the temple and this cute old lady came up to my companion (the white one-Elder Chrtistiansen) and I and another companionship and asked where we were goin. The other elders said they were goin to Paraguay and that they were better than us. She replied and said, "ok well, THEY are HOTT!" while she looked at us! I was dying laughing! I love old ladies! hahaha

In my personal scipture study this week I've just continued to read the Book of Mormon and I'm loving every minute of it. If anybody has questions about the Book of Mormon, they should pick one up and read it for themselves. No words can explain the comfort that It brings me. I've been underlining stuff that I like, but the two words that I circle the most are JOY and PREACH. And thats what I'm doing! I'm preaching joy! Joy that I have had my whole life because of the gospel. To me Joy is more than happiness. It's a view of life and a way of life. I'm so grateful for the gospel in my life!

So the spanish word I found out this week that was my favorite was "ESCONDIDO!" It means "hidden!" I was so surprised when it found out! I just thought it was cool for some reason. haha

I was so sad to hear that Gramma had to put down Yogi! :( She needs a new dog PRONTO! Please let her know that Im thinkin about her and love her!

Lastly, I just wanna thank everybody that has written me! You guys are AMAZING! I get so many letters! I have the best fan club ever! haha but seriously they mean a lot to me. They are all so uplifting and I love hearing what's goin on in your life. Come up with some questions that I can answer cuz I never know what to write you guys about!

K Mom I dont need a sleeping bag and I'm pretty sure Ill be fine without a rain coat. And could you send Dee's emails to me through dear elder?

Dad- How do you shine shoes? haha you never showed me!
How's Travis doin? Tell him to write me with some MTC advice, please.

I'M SO EXCITED FOR KELLIE!!!!! That makes me so happy! I sent a letter home to Linds and her before I found that out. Please get it to them if you can asap and tell Kellie to write me.


Elder Hjelmstad

Wearing it proudly!!!!

Argentina is a long way from Temecula!!!!!

Can't wait to get there... 7 more weeks!!!!

Josh's District

Josh and other spanish speaking missionaries

Josh's first two companions...
Elder Lynn, Elder Hjelmstad and Elder Christiansen

Elder Lynn setting up in Josh's room at the MTC

The famous MTC bunk beds...

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Week 1 MTC

Hey Family!

So since Saturday I have been doing great. We've had 2 AWESOME devotionals, one on Sunday night and one on Tues night (It's the same every week). On Sunday Brother Swenson taught us about love. It was amazing. I don't have my notebook with me right now, so I cant remember the quotes he said, but he talked about how we need to love each other and also how Christ loves us personally. I will send you more info in the Letter. On Tuesday Elder GERALD LUND (aka work and the glory author) spoke to us on Faith and how we can help other people take the leap of faith. He said that people gain testimonies from listening to testimonies. I'll send you more info on that in my mail too.

So dad asked about the food... The food isnt that bad! They always have fruit, so I take advantage of that and I always try not to have a ton of carbs because we sit around for 8 hours a day. I eat pretty healthy except they have cookies that are really good with milk.... haha. But they also have really good chicken salads that I usually get for lunch.

Sleeping is kinda tough. The pillows not very nice and the mattress isn't any better. My back hurts every day so I stretch it a lot and that seems to help. I miss my chiropractor! It usually takes me a while to fall asleep, but thats kinda expected. I go through phases of that at home too.

So its Thurs night and I havent even seen Jon yet! I look for him everywhere too! Ugh! Maybe Ill see him at dinner.

The trio companionship I was in is now a regular one! Elder Lynn moved up to the Advanced spanish class, so now its just Elder Christiansen and I in our 4 person room! Elder Lynn was a good guy. He was good at spanish and was on the Ballroom dance team at BYU. ha! He reminded me on C3PO by the way he walked.

Jackie sent me a package this week with little candies and REALLY good cookies. That was a nice surprise! I always look for her or Andrew to drive by when Im playin soccer out on the missionary field.

Thats fun to hear that the girls are up at the Foleys! What Are they gunna do there? When are they comin home? I love the Foleys!

So, I absolutely LOVE getting the DearElder letters! I look forward to them everyday! I could never get enough, so keep em comin! I can only write back on my p-day though(thursday). Thanks for all the letters though! I have to try not to cry every single time! haha but I'd rather get dearelders than emails for the next 8 weeks.

So Andrew told me about how he read the Book of Mormon every day of his mission and I'll probably do the same. I love everything about it. I find comfort from it every single time I pick it up. It's my stressball when Im overwhelmed. I started the day I got here and Im already in Mosiah 8. I look for every opportunity to read. I know that if anybody picks up that book, they will see a difference in their life. I have gained a stronger testimony of the Book of Mormon in just the last week. I know it contains the word of God, is an alli to the Bible, and testifies of Christ. Read 3 Nephi 11.

Im gettin into the grove of things here at the MTC and having a good time! My spanish is comin. I make flashcards when I don't know a word, which is pretty much the whole entire day. I can read Preach My Gospel in spanish now, which is pretty cool. I can't wait til I can just speak it without thinkin so hard. Tenses are really hard from me but I know a lot of vocab.

So here's my testimony in spanish without my notes:

Mi testimonia es simple. Yo se que el Libro de Mormon es la palabra de Dios. Yo se que el evangelio de Jesucristo estaba restaurado mediante Jose Smith. Yo se que la expiacion de Jesucristo estaba por mi pecados, mi cargas, y mi dudos. Yo se que tenemos un profeta en la tierra que habla con Dios. Yo se que Dios ama nosotros.

I'm thankful for all the support that I have been given so far. These 8 days have gone by pretty fast! I heard an elder say that the days go by slow but the weeks go by fast. I couldn't agree more. I love you all so much and think about you every day. I miss you so much... but know I'm in the right place, doing the right thing.


Elder Hjelmstad

P.S. So I found out I can't email pics in the Mtc, so I just went to the bookstore to print off some to send home for you guys to enjoy. and tell Jenee to write me! everybody has except her!