Hermana Tycksen was called to the TEXAS LUBBOCK MISSION, spanish speaking. She began her mission on April 22, 2015. She is currently serving in Carlsbad, NM.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Campus is buzzing!

Hello my dear family!

       So, not only has a week come and gone, but nine months as well! I feel like the mission is like a giant workshop and I'm clay in the Master's hands. He's got me in the kiln right now, but I'm so grateful that I'm not done yet! The mission has changed me so much already, and I am so excited for the changes that are to come. I feel like that's kind of dangerous to say, so I'll knock on wood ;) School has started up again and so campus is buzzing! Every day gets busier and busier, and I count my blessings every single night that I am able to be in such a fantastic area. 

       We had a lesson with Jessica, one of our investigators, and she told us that she most definitely wants to be baptized and not only that, but she wants to serve a mission and be married in the temple to a worthy priesthood holder! She is incredible! Also, Margie, another one of our investigators who has been out of town, is really taking a turn down the right path. We had a lesson with her and we asked if she actually wants to know if this church is true. She paused and thought about it and said, "I don't know. I think yes and no." We challenged her to ponder on that subject and pray about it and she promised she would. We are so excited to teach her again and hear how it goes!

       The ward has risen to its usual numbers once again. The members here are phenomenal. I absolutely love them. I think that most of the time, they're helping me more than I'm helping them!
Sister Matheson is doing great. She is such a fantastic teacher. We role-played teaching the Restoration this morning, and she totally opened my eyes to something I didn't even think of before. She read in Acts 3:19-21 this morning in her personal study, which talks about the Atonement and about a "restitution" that had to take place after Christ ascended into heaven. The amazing thing is that this scripture says: 
19   Repent ye therefore, and be converted , that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; 
20And he shall send Jesus Christ , which before was preached unto you: 
21    Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. (emphasis added)

       This scripture is in the New Testament, and it testifies of the Restoration and  the prophecies in the Old Testament! So cool!
Speaking of the scriptures, I learned something really cool about covenants. Another word for covenant is testament. So, the Old testament is the old covenant--the law of Moses. the new testament is the new covenant--the higher law taught by Jesus Christ. And the Book of Mormon is another testament---another covenant that fills in all of the pieces that have been lost and/or not revealed in the Bible!  Together, they contain the words of salvation. As I have studied the gospel more and more, it only reaffirms my testimony that it it true. How could it not be? 

I hope all y'all have a fantastic week :) I love you!

Love, Sister Tycksen

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Leave that snake skin behind!

My dear family,

     Hello hello! Another week here and gone, and wow what a week it was! There were so many ups and downs and I learned so much!
So this last week, a member of the ward (her name's Shayla) got back from her mission to Tallahassee. She's come out to a few lessons with us and she's just fantastic! One in particular was a cool experience. We had planned on seeing someone, (with Shayla coming with us) but they were sick, and so we went and tried another girl who hadn't been to church in a while. Turns out that the girl that we were visiting was one of the first people to introduce Shayla to the church! So the roles were kind of reversed and Shayla was able to reconnect with her too. We had no idea that they knew each other! 

      I don't know if y'all know about "Find, Take, Teach" but it's something that our stake has been asked (but rather, told) to do. So, this past week, Sister Matheson and I were able to go to the family history center a few times this week with a couple members. One of them was our recent convert, Kat, and that was really special to see her finding her ancestors and requesting the ordinances for them. I had such a fire and craving to do family history before my mission, and it has kind of died down, but I realize that it's only because I haven't been able to do it! Family history is amazing. It's one of the most effective ways to do missionary work ;) of course, that's not the kind of missionary work that I've been called to do right now, so it has to wait just a little while longer for me to dive in deep. But I can't wait! Something that never occurred to me before is to look on Family Search and to look through the memories and stories of my ancestors. They're amazing! It's incredible to be able to know your ancestors as more than just a name on a screen.
We had zone conference this last Friday, and it was all about repentance. President Heap taught us about how repentance isn't as scary as we think it is. It's not supposed to be a punishment or torturous thing. Repentance is simply, change. It's changing from the person we are now or were in the past, and leaving that behind in search of something new. It's like a snake skin. You get rid of your old self and then move on and never look back--you wouldn't fit into it again anyway ;) 

       Ooh, another update, so apparently I'm the only Spanish speaking sister missionary within a 2 hour radius of Lubbock, so I've been asked (or rather, assigned) to teach an investigator in Brownfield who specifically requested sisters, and she doesn't speak a lick of English!! I have no idea how to cope with this tremendous challenge right now, but all I know is that when the Assistants asked me, I felt a confirmation from the Spirit telling me that this needs to happen. I'll keep y'all updated!

Random thought, I just realized that I never told y'all what we do every day! Well, here it is:
6:30-wake up (unless we have morning sports, then we wake up @ 6)
7- get ready
8-personal study
9-Companionship study
10- 12 week (new missionary training)
11-lunch :)
12- either language study or we go out and work
5-dinner :)
8-language study (if we didn't do it earlier)
9-come in and plan
10:30- go to bed :) (I think that might be my favorite part of the day--you just can't get enough sleep as a missionary!)

I love y'all so much!! Have a fantastic week!

Love, Sister Tycksen

We got this picture from this senior couple--they serve with these sweet sisters and last night--January 18th--they took this picture at a YSA FHE and sent it to us.  LOVE IT!!!!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Learning to STAND STILL

Hello m y dear family!

       Well, another week has come and gone. I'm still trying not to acknowledge it ;) This week was an adventure. We spent a lot of time trying to contact less-active members and we were higgly-piggly all over creation looking for their addresses ;) (That's a reference to a Disney movie) I am proud to say that I've come to know Lubbock pretty well--even when we got lost, we weren't really lost... Everyone is starting to come back to town for school. It hasn't started yet, but we're getting pretty close! We've seen so many miracles this week. It's amazing. There is a less-active member that we're working with right now that hasn't been to church in months, BUT yesterday she came! She has really turned a corner, and told us that her goal is the temple :D Yay! We've been working with an investigator named Jessica for a while now, but the funny thing is that we've only had two lessons with her in person. She left for Houston for the break, and we've been able to have lessons with her over the phone. She is so awesome! When we first contacted her, (she was a referral from some other sisters) she asked if we had any bible study classes. We told her that we did (Institute) but that it had just ended and would start up again with the new semester. She said she'd really like to come. So, then, we said "Well, we have church on Sunday, would you like to come to that??" We were so excited! She came, and she loved it, and then we met with her twice before she left for home. She's been reading the Book of Mormon ever since we gave her a copy, and she's now in Mosiah. She's defended the Church to her friends, and she said that she's starting to think that this is the one true church! :D We love her! She is amazing. Oh yes, and in Houston, she's been attending the YSA ward there and Institute as well. She's so great. 

      Lately I've gained a stronger testimony of "being still". This week I've had more anxiety filled days than not, but the amazing thing to me is that when I trust in the Spirit and in God, it just seems to melt away. I've always been somewhat of a control freak (sadly enough) and it's hard for me not to know exactly what is going on at exactly what time. So, I've been trying to figure out how to fix that while on my mission, because in the end, all it does is cause me stress. This morning, I had a "revelation" from the Spirit. It's hard to put into words, but basically, I was reminded of the scripture "Be still and know that I am God." I'm going crazy trying to control every little thing, and the whole time, Heavenly Father is sitting there, being the patient parent that He is, until I'm exhausted, and then He goes "Are you done? Okay, good. Here's what you actually need to do." :3 I've been humbled so many times in my mission. The concept of conversion is so simple on paper, but then you factor in our fallibility as humans and all of the mistakes we make (I know that personally I'm guilty of making a lot) and it becomes a whole lot more complicated. Trusting in the Lord is a lot like swimming in a river with a strong current. We think that we need to go upstream, or to the other bank, or wherever, and so we swim and swim until we're exhausted, but in reality, all we need to do is to float and trust God because His current (His Spirit) will take us exactly where He needs us to go. 

       President Nelson gave an incredible devotional yesterday, and something that stood out to me the most was something that he didn't say himself, but the Spirit brought it to my remembrance. The second point he talked about, "Expect and prepare to do impossible things" kind of freaks me out. How can I do impossible things? I know that with God all things are possible, but that's a daunting task. Then, the Spirit reminded me of a quote from Alice in Wonderland, where she says "Sometimes I believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast." Later, she lists those things, and it turns out that they're pretty small things. They're the things that we can't explain. The "Miracles" in our lives. So, I've decided to try that out this week, and here's impossible thing number one:
We have a Savior who suffered and died so that we would live. And it worked.

I know that He lives and that He loves us. This is His church, and we are His people.
I love you all so so much!
Have a happy day!

Love, Sister Tycksen

Me and Sister Matheson :)
My attempt at a selfie back during Christmas time

Monday, January 4, 2016

Out with the Old, in with the New

My dear family,

       Happy New Year! I can't believe that it's already 2016! Now, when people ask me when I go home, I say "the end of this year" XI (<----that's a dead face) It's going by so fast! My last week with Sister Harvey was bittersweet. I was so excited for her to have this new adventure, but I didn't want to see her go, but I was so looking forward Sister Matheson coming too! How can someone feel all of that emotion at one time? So, for New Year's Eve, we had a little movie party with another companionship of sisters. We watched Legacy (which is basically the missionary-approved chick flick) and Meet the Mormons. The hardest part of watching Meet the Mormons was the Missionary Mom. Sister Harvey and I were both crying :3 I miss y'all.

      On Saturday was transfers. Sister Harvey had to be at the church at 7:45 am so that they could drive up to Amarillo, so I was companions with Sister Nichols for the whole day until around 5 when Sister Matheson got here. It was fun! Sister Nichols and I were able to try and contact a referral, but the majority of our day was in driving some sisters to and from Snyder, which is about a 1 1/2 hour drive. I felt so bad that I couldn't take a turn, we're not supposed to drive unless we're authorized. She was so tired. But she's amazing! She is one of my STL's and she's super sweet. Anyways, Sister Matheson is here, and she's awesome! She's from Salt Lake City, a little suburb called Milcreek. We've been able to have four lessons with recent converts since she got here, and they've all been so good! Transfers bring miracles, and especially training. Training brings miracles too. 

      We were finally able to drive our cars! It's a little scary because the roads are still a little icy, but don't worry! I'm keeping my wits about me. Oh, did I mention? I FINALLY GET TO DRIVE!! That's something that I was super excited about. I love driving :) On New Year's Eve, we were out and about, trying to contact someone, and we were walking for 2 hours. It would have taken a lot less than that, but there was snow and ice, and also we had to go around the highway that cuts right next to our complex until we found a crosswalk. We were on our way home, when all of a sudden this car pulls up next to us. It's this cute, sassy little black lady that was like "What on earth are y'all doing? It is way too cold for you girls to be walking!" We replied with, "Oh, it's okay, we're almost home (Which we were!)" but then she ordered us to get in her car! She said "Get in. I'm giving y'all a ride home." :) Turns out that as we were walking, Sister Harvey was praying that someone would stop and give us a ride home. She has such incredible faith, I am so blessed to have been her companion.

       I think I might have mentioned this before, but I'm going to mention it again anyway. :) Something that I've been learning the past few weeks is how the Spirit talks to me. It's so amazing and also really humbling as I've been learning this because I'm realizing that practically NONE of the thoughts I have are actually my own! They all come from either the Holy Ghost, or the natural man. I guess that that is a good thing, because that means that as I'm learning this my spirit is more in harmony with the Holy Ghost? I'd shudder to think if it was the opposite! Anyway, as I study, I'm really careful to pay attention to the thoughts I have, especially when things pop into my head after reading a passage of scripture or from PMG. As I've done this, It's been incredible. I have never felt so connected with the Spirit and with my Heavenly Father. I've also never learned quite so much. The gospel is amazing! God lives! His church is true! And I am so happy and privileged to be a part of it :)

One last thing. On New Year's Day, the very first scripture that I read was from Doctrine & Covenants 123:16-17. It says:
You know, brethren, that a very large ship is benefited very much by a very small helm in the time of a storm, by being kept workways with the wind and the waves. Therefore, dearly beloved brethren, let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed.
I just love that scripture! It brings an image to my mind of a ship being tossed to and fro on the sea by a storm, but through it all, there is someone at the wheel, the helm, steering the ship to safety despite the tempest. The Spirit speaks as a whisper. It doesn't shout to be heard. If we let it, it will guide us through these storms of life, and we will never be led astray.

I know this gospel is true. I know it, I live it, I love it! And I love all of y'all. May the Lord bless you and keep you in all your paths :)

I love you!
Love, Sister Tycksen

Sister Harvey and I on Transfer day
Our district (minus Elder Murray, who wasn't there at the time)
My "stressing" out moment on New Years Day --haha