Blessed to be sharing the Gospel with the people of Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, South Dakota and Minnesota. Grateful for my Heavenly Father, His son Jesus Christ, a wonderful family and amazing friends.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

I Forgot The Subject Line

I have a question! Any and all answers would be greatly appreciated! WHY DO MISSIONS GO BY SO DANG FAST?? If you have any insights please let me know. :)


This week I was on exchanges with Sister Archibald and goodness gracious I LOVE HER! She is just herself, and when a missionary is herself she is that much more powerful! We saw so many miracles together, but I just want to share one really quick. We had just finished 3 or 4 hours of finding, and were walking back to our car, when I all the sudden felt prompted to knock on a door. One door, off the whole street, and it looked like not a soul was home! But I followed the prompting, and this sweet single mother named Jackline answered. She was speaking on the phone and seemed to be in the middle of an intense conversation. As she opened the door she looked at us, we smiled at her, and she quickly finished her conversation and hung up the phone. That NEVER happens. Usually people use any excuse they can not to talk to us! But this lady didn't. She immediately began to ask questions and they were incredible questions. She is from Sudan and has 5 children, 4 of which are over the age of 8! We shared the message of the Restoration with her and she readily accepted it and eagerly invited us to come back. She was so prepared! She is so prepared! I NEVER get tired of witnessing the miracles that come from following even just a simple prompting of the spirit.

Also this week we met a man named Hylton and taught him the Restoration on a bench while he was waiting for the bus. Well, I did not think he was very interested, but we got his number and followed up a couple of days later. Turns out he read a passage in the Book of Mormon and accepted an invitation to meet with us again! Last night we took him to the Trail Center and had an awesome lesson about the Savior and committed him to read and pray. Now he is a new investigator!

As for Robert and Kayla and Kim, we have hit some might road blocks. Neither of them came to church, and both of them are really being hit hard by the fiery darts of Satan, so just keep them in your prayers. I know that Heavenly Father is aware of them though. And I know that He will continue to soften their hearts, even if they aren't prepared to accept the Gospel and be baptized right now. Their time will come. And the Savior isn't going to give up on them, so neither are we!


I can't think of anything funny...
Sister Farmer made cookies today and they were gross, so she gave them to some Elders...
Haha that is kinda funny.
They ate them all.
Elders are so weird. 

Spiritual thought:

So Elder K. Brett Nattress of the Seventy came to tour our mission this week and we had a few awesome meetings with him. He taught all about the Savior, and I loved that! There is nothing more powerful to teach about, for He is the center of all we do, of all we teach, of who we are! Anyway, he asked us two simple questions, and I want to invite all of you to ponder upon them this week. And I would LOVE for you to share your answers with me, if you feel so prompted :)

When did you know that Jesus Christ was the living Son of the living God?
When did you know that you knew?

I love the words found in Hymn 136, and I echo the testimony which they bear, “I know that my Redeemer lives. What comfort this sweet sentence gives. He lives, he lives, who once was dead. He lives, my ever-living head. He lives to bless me with His love. He lives to plead for me above. He lives my hungry soul to feed. He lives to bless in time of need."

I love you all, and I hope that you have the most wonderful week!
Know that you are in my prayers!


Sister Bengtzen

The beginning of the end :(
Sabrina and Her new companion Sister Farmer
Hey y'all! So I have a new companion and her name is Sister Farmer and she is from KAMAS, UT! My second favorite city in the whole state!!! She played soccer for SLCC, so we get along well to say the least. She is the hardest worker, and the most diligent missionary, and I am so excited to be with her! 


This week we saw Robert and Kayla with one of our members and he bore the most powerful testimony on faith and he actually set them on date to be baptized Dec 2nd! Robert responded so positively and ended up bearing his testimony to Kayla, which softened her heart and inspired her to agree to the date. So as of right now they are set to be married and baptized on December 2nd!! We still have to work out the details with the building and the schedule, but I am confident that if the Lord wills it so He will make it all work out! I am so grateful for members who are bold and loving, and who understand that missionary work is a team effort. I am so grateful to be on the Lord's team! At one point in the lesson Kayla looked at me and said "Miss Bengtzen, what are you thinking?" And as I sat pondering my thoughts just spewed out into words and I said, "Kayla, I am just trying to recognize what Heavenly Father wants me to say..." Phrases then filled my mouth and I was able to testify of eternal families and the spirit was there. Kayla's countenance changed and it was just a sweet, celestial moment. I am so grateful that I am not left on my own to do this work. I would truly be nothing without the spirit! 
Robert, Kayla, Lay'lah, and Jai'lah also came to church on Sunday and loved it, so they are doing well, just keep them in your prayers! 

Also this week we were able to see our investigator Kim and she told us that she has read all the way through 2 Nephi 5. How wonderful is that?? She has been reading and praying every day, and even teaching her nieces to pray as well. As we sat with her she began to talk and it was one of the coolest experiences. All we did was watch her have this incredible interaction with the Holy Ghost and at the end of it all she told us she wanted to be baptized! She completely allowed the spirit in, and we physically witnessed the Holy Ghost teaching her. Again, what would I do without the spirit?? I could not do a single thing!

And if those two miracle weren't a witness enough for me of the power of the Holy Ghost, we had yet another while we were going to dinner this weekend. We felt prompted to go to Smashburger and as we were ordering the cashier ended up telling us he was a less active member that had a desire to come back, to come home! He gave us all of his information, and the moment we finished our conversation 4 or 5 families flooded the restaurant and he was busy for the rest of our time there. The timing was perfect, because it was not our timing, it was God's! 

Sabrina taking out new missionaries

Saturday night Sister Farmer and I were talking and the conversation somehow turned to daylight savings time. This is how the conversation went: 

"When even is daylight savings time?" - Sister B
"I have no idea..." - Sister F
"We should probably ask someone.." - Sister B
"Nah, we will figure it out." - Sister F

* 5:30 am the next morning 
"What the heck, why does our phone say 5:30am??" - Sister F
"It's probably busted.."- Sister B
*Both Sister B and Sister F look at each other 
"Oh crap, is daylight savings time today???" - Sister F
"I am going back to bed." - Sister B 

Hahaha we are SO out of the loop out here! But we got an extra hour of sleep and that was a pure gift! 

Sabrina saying goodbye to Sister Church and Sister Preator
Spiritual thought: 

So this week we were teaching Kim about faith and I was able to share one of my studies with her about the difference between faith and belief. Belief is like believing you have a great car that will drive you anywhere, but never getting in it to reach a destination. Faith is actually getting in the car, and driving! If we truly have faith in Jesus Chris then we act. Kim LOVED it and something clicked within her. She even used the analogy in one of our lessons later in the week to explain something else. It was so cool. It's incredible how simple the Gospel can be with the companionship of the Holy Ghost! So I urge all of you to exercise your faith this week. ACT! And look for the blessings that come. 



Sister Bengtzen 

Life is like a bouncy ball :)
It's starting to get cold again here in Nebraska, and I am slightly confused! I swear we just finished the month of May and the calendar says November starts this week....I don't know what is going on! Time is flying, flying, flying!
Sabrina and Sister's with the mini van
It has been one of those weeks here in Omaha, lots of ups and lots of downs. This is how I would describe a week of missionary work if all I could use to express myself was emojis: 😊😖😬😁😑🤔😅😣🙄😂🙂😐😮😥😱😵😩😢😢🤕😌😊😴😴😴
Haha but I love it. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else in the world right now than where I am!

Sabrina and her District
So Saturday night was awesome, we saw two of our incredible progressing investigators and both of them committed to come to church, had made plans to come, and were excited. Well Sunday morning came and pretty soon it was 8:55 am and no one was there. The clock began whizzing by and before we knew it, it was 9:03 am, still no one there. We were heart broken. Coming to church is by far the hardest commitment for our investigators to keep, and we are trying so hard to help! Anyway, sacrament meeting began and it was the primary program. We were listening to all the cute kids sing and testify, and trying not to cry, when all of the sudden I heard Sister Preator gasp. I looked at her and then at the door of the chapel, and in walks Robert and Kayla with Layla and Jayla! I could not believe it! My heart practically burst out of my chest. I was so happy. Robert works night shifts, so he doesn't get off until 7 am, and it is a huge sacrifice for him to come to church, but still he came. He gave up his sleep and he came. And I know they were blessed for it! They are still set to be baptized this month, but they are quite hesitant to rush their wedding, so we will see if they actually follow through with that date, but keep them in your prayers. They. Are. Trying!

Also this week we went to drop our investigator Jennifer because she hasn't been progressing very well at all since I got here. We walked into the lesson and both of us just kinda felt dumbfounded. All of our words came out clunky and it just didn't seem right. About 10 minutes into the lesson Jennifer's mother Kathy walked in the door and sat down. We have been trying to teach her for weeks, but she has never been open! All of the sudden we just busted into the Restoration and she sat in for the whole lesson and committed to pray and read! She soaked everything in that we taught, and was so prepared! And Jennifer lit up when she acted interested too! That's why the beginning of our lesson was clunky, that is why nothing felt right, Heavenly Father had other plans, and He just needed us to wait! Now Kathy is an investigator and she is going to progress and I pray she will help Jennifer do the same!


I met a girl named Sabrina the other day and I think my eyes about popped out of my head as I spoke with her. I tried to change the subject immediately after she said her name and ended up asking how her car got hail damage...DUH! It got hit with hail...haha. She shut the door almost immediately. 

Spiritual Thought:

This week has been a trying week for the Old Mill Ward. One of the sweetest young moms in our ward passed away unexpectedly and her family has been really struggling. Today we were able to attend her funeral and it was a bittersweet event. The spirit was strong, but there were many tears. I have just been pondering a lot this week on death, and how difficult it is. But one of my favorite scriptures has been coming to mind, and I just wanted to share it with you this week, as my simple spiritual thought.

Mosiah 16:7-9
And if Christ had not risen from the dead, or have broken the bands of death that the grave should have no victory, and that death should have no sting, there could have been no resurrection.
But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ.
He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light that is endless, that can never be darkened; yea, and also a life which is endless, that there can be no more death.
Christ truly has broken the bands of death. The grave has no victory! I testify that that is true. And one day all of us will see it fulfilled. There will be no more death, and we will be with those we love again.

I love this work. I am grateful to wear the name of the Savior on my chest, but I am even more grateful to have it on my heart always.
Love you all! Have the best week yet!

Sister Bengtzen 

Monday, October 23, 2017

Earth has no sorrow heav"n cannot heal

Hello, hello! 

I will try and refrain from freaking out that October is almost over...BUT OH MY GOODNESS!!!! That flew by so fast. WITCH month even is it?? I black CAT even believe it. GHOUL you gotta be kidding me! ORANGE you glad I am so punny??

Anyway, this week was another incredible week. I swear a mission is full of the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. We experienced both this week, but what makes the Gospel so FULL is that the we can see the Savior in both. And this week I surely did! 


So first off, NONE of our investigators came to church yesterday...and we tried so hard! No Kim, no Robert and Kayla, no Trina, no Christina and Sam :( It was a rough one. BUT miracles still came. Our recent convert family, Perry and Kelsie, came for the first time in quite a few months! And they NEEDED it! We were determined to get them there, so we showed up bright and early yesterday with breakfast in hand. We knocked on the door at 7:45 am determined not to leave until they were in the car on the road. We rolled into sacrament meeting 5 minutes late, but it didn't even matter, because they were there! It was the most incredible meeting. It was as if all of the talks were written just for them! There was one moment where I looked over and Kelsie was in tears. My heart! I know that Heavenly Father knows and LOVES His children. He knows and loves them so much! And things will get better. I have a testimony that this Gospel can heal broken families, and if they do their part, the Savior can and WILL heal them. 

But in other news, we had a really cool miracle last night with our returning member Sister Cleveland! She is now the only active member of her family, and she doesn't really have a testimony of her own yet. She has two children and is currently going through a divorce, but she is trying so hard to do what is right! As we were reading in the Book of Mormon I felt prompted to share what I studied about obedience that morning. So I followed the prompting and testified about how we can be totally obedient to all of the commandments, but still not get anything out of it! How? By withholding our heart! Heavenly Father REQUIRES our heart, and that is when the blessings come, when we give our WHOLE heart to Him. We haven't really gotten anywhere with her yet, but all of the sudden something clicked when I said that, and she stopped us. "That is me!" She said. "That is exactly what I do, I am obedient just to be obedient." We have been praying for weeks to be able to discern her need, and there it was. And it came simply through following a whisper of the spirit. We were able to immediately address it and leave her with a commitment to change, but more importantly, a DESIRE to do it! Ahh it was so powerful. It's incredible how Heavenly Father can guide us to study for others without really even knowing it. The scriptures are the MOST powerful tool in conversion! I am so grateful for my studies. It really is a time I treasure every morning. 


So we have this older couple in our ward named the Schroeders and they LOVE the missionaries. Like LOVE them. They are converts and they have just adopted all of us as their grandchildren, which is the best thing ever. Anyway, this week we were over there for dinner and they asked us to help with some service so we went outside to help. The Elders showed up just as we were finishing and getting ready to leave and for some reason Texas came up. (That is a DAILY occurrence with Sister Preator. She LOVES her state...) Anyway, one of the Elders asked what the Texas colors were and before Sister Preator could answer Brother Schroeder piped in and said "black and blue!" Sister Preator got all hyped up and said, "No, they are red, white, and blue!!" Then Brother Schroeder was silent for a minute, and quietly came back with, "Huh, no, I think they are black and blue because Oklahoma is beating the heck out of them." Hahahahaha I about fell on the floor laughing and Sister Preator turned bright red. It was so funny. Man Texans sure do love Texas! 

Spiritual Thought: 

Yesterday really was a POWERFUL sacrament meeting, and I just wanted to share a sweet and simple truth that I learned with all y'all while I was there. It came from the musical number that two of the most incredible sisters in the ward sang: "Come, Ye Disconsolate" (#115) This hymn has become my new favorite, and it is all because of the last line of the first verse. "Earth has no sorrow, that heav'n cannot heal." I can testify that that is true. I know that this world is FULL of tribulation, turmoil, distress, heartache, and disaster. But no matter the trouble heaven can and will heal us, we just have to look up. I encourage all of you to look up this week and continue to remember who the Savior really is. He is our healer. He calls to me, and He calls to you. 

I love you and hope you have the best week!! 


Sister Bengtzen 

Pics: Happy Halloween! Courtesy of Mama Bengtzen's package :)

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Put Christ FIRST!
Missions are the most incredible thing, but man they fly by so fast! SO FAST! I cannot believe it is the middle of October...and I cannot believe it is Monday again! But alas here we are....


This week was another incredible week! We worked SO hard and saw a lot of miracles. It's so cool to be able to see investigators PROGRESS! I think those are the greatest kinds of miracles on a mission.

So updates...

We saw Kim on Saturday and had the most incredible lesson with her. Walking in we had no clue what we were going to teach, so we plead for the spirit to be with us, and then sat in her living room and began to talk for a bit. All of the sudden she started asking all of these questions about what happens after we die and what life was like before we came to earth and yada yada yada. Sister Preator and I both looked at each other then looked at Kim and then started teaching the Plan of Salvation as if on cue! It was the most powerful Plan of Salvation I have ever taught on my mission, and I don't think I realized why it was until towards the end of the lesson. As we began to teach about the spirit world Kim opened up to us about how two of her sisters have passed away from cancer. As soon as she said that I felt their presence and realized that they were there with us! I was wondering why this little room felt so full. We have been praying as a mission and as a companionship to find people whose ancestors are prepared to hear the Gospel, and I have no doubt that Kim is an answer to that prayer. I know her sisters are waiting, and I pray that she will have the courage to step forward and follow the Savior's voice. I love her so much. So, so much. I am so grateful that even though we did not know what she needed when we first walked in, Heavenly Father did, and the spirit directed us to say what needed to be said.
Sadly, she didn't come to church on Sunday :( But she will come around! I have faith!

As for Robert and Kayla we had an AWESOME lesson with them about following the prophet at one of our members homes this week. Our member invited them over for dinner and we were able to come along with! Free food and the spirit...what could be better?? Nothing! It was a special night. We watched this video about Joseph Smith and committed Robert and Kayla to pray to know if he was a prophet. Robert looked at us and said, "Well I already know he was. I know he was. But I will keep praying!"
AHH I love him!! He has such a sincere heart and desire to learn.
Sadly, they didn't come to church either, which was a bummer. We aren't sure exactly what has been going on the past two days, but something is fishy, so keep them in your prayers! The adversary works hardest on those who have the most potential for Eternal Happiness!

 Also this week we found the most incredible new investigators. They are a family from Sudan and the parents names' are Christina and Sam. We taught them the Restoration and they both had the most incredible reaction to the first vision. I have never seen two people more visibly affected! Christina cried and Sam would not stop smiling for anything. It was so sweet. It is so incredible to know that there are good people out there, who desire to come closer to Jesus Christ, and who are open to feeling the spirit. I love this work!!!


This week we had a yellow jacket in our apartment so naturally Sister Preator caught it in a cup and let it loose on our balcony. Her grand idea was to open the screen door, vigorously shake the cup, and then shut it real fast. Well in part she succeeded, the bee flew out quickly, but then she got nervous and THREW THE CUP! She just chucked it! And it busted into pieces. Hahaha I have not laughed that hard in a long time. I took a picture to document it, so enjoy the attachment!

Spiritual thought:

I was pondering upon Lehi's vision of the tree of life the other day and the most interesting thought came to me. When you read 1 Ne. 8 Lehi describes what he sees and how he sees it...I never realized that the first thing he saw was the tree, and then the surroundings. I think this says so much about the way Lehi lived his life. He saw Christ first. One of my favorite scriptures is D&C 6:36. The Savior pleads with us to "Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not." I think that is one of the most difficult things to do, to put the Savior first, especially in our thoughts. I believe that is a life long pursuit, but every day we can be better. So I urge each of you to try and put Christ first this week in your thoughts. When things get frustrating, difficult, or dreary, look to Him. He truly is the light of the world and I promise if you are seeking Him you will have nothing to doubt and no need to fear.

I love y'all!
Have the greatest week yet!


Sister Bengtzen

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

It's fall y'all!

Hello hello! Fall has finally arrived here in the good ole NE and I am so excited! I finally got to pull out my sweaters. WOO HOO! It was 60 degrees today and after about 5 minutes outside Sister Preator decided it was now Winter...haha Texas girls...what are you gonna do?? I sure love her I guess I will keep her around. 

Sunday timed picture!
So I'll be quick, but what a week of miracles! 


First off, we had this incredible lesson at the Trail Center with this lady we had never met before. She was a referral from some sisters who gave her a tour at the TC almost a year ago! We felt prompted to follow up with her and now she is an investigator! Her name is Kim and Mama you would LOVE her! She just reminds me of you :) She has been through more than anyone I know, and she is still going through it all, but she has great faith and just keeps swimming. Anyway, the lesson was AMAZING and the spirit so strong, and then we walked her out to her car... It turns out someone broke into her car and stole her purse and everything in it while we were in having our lesson. Of all the cars in the parking lot it just had to be hers!! She fell apart right there in the parking lot then got up and drove off without saying anything else. It was horrible. We ended up going to see her yesterday and to be honest, we didn't have much hope, but we actually saw her and had a lesson! We talked to her about the Atonement of Jesus Christ and how He understands all that she is going through. We also testified of the light that comes into our lives when we read the Book of Mormon and how it truly testifies of Jesus Christ. She committed herself to read it that night and committed to come to church next week and to meet with us on Tuesday. So all in all it was a roller coaster of a week with her, but things are going well now! She has A LOT of drama in her life, so keep her in your prayers. 
Sabrina and Sister Mecham on splits in the rain!

Also Robert and Kayla and Layla and Jayla all came to church on Sunday and stayed all 3 hours. They absolutely LOVED it and cannot wait to start coming every Sunday! The ward swallowed them up and so far they are going to dinner at a member's home with us tomorrow, having FHE with a family next Monday, and Layla and Jayla are preparing to be in the Primary Program coming up! Robert even got up and bore his testimony and said he is "here to stay!" The spirit was so strong as he spoke and everything that came out of his mouth was straight from his heart. It was just a miracle! Seeing him up there made me so happy, and I thought about how happy parents must be when they see their children learn about the gospel and gain a testimony for themselves. What a joy that must be! And then I thought about how Heavenly Father joys in us when we come to recognize what is true for ourselves. He must love being a Father! Anyway, we had to push Robert and Kayla's wedding and baptism date back to the 11h of November :( but they are still progressing so well toward it! We taught the WOW this week and they accepted it no problem. What a miracle! Tithing is this week, so continue to pray for them! 
Sunday Selfie

We went to see one of our members in the hospital this week and as we were leaving she grabbed each of us by the hand and said, "I just want you to go home and find the love of your life, and send me a wedding invitation...that is all I want in life." Haha and she was being so serious! Sometimes I wonder if she is Betty White...if not I am sure she is her long lost twin! 

Spiritual thought: 

I just have a quick quote to share with y'all this week and it's a short one. 
"Love is what you go through together." - James Thurber
If I have learned one thing on my mission, it is that the Savior has perfect love for ALL of us, and I know that is because He has been through everything we have WITH us. I love my Savior. I love His work. I love His gospel. And I know He truly lives. 

I love you all and I hope this week is the best one yet!


Sister Bengtzen 

The miracles of General Conference!
What a weekend! I love General Conference. What a blessing it is to sit and listen to the words of the Savior from His living prophets and apostles.

The miracle I wanted to share this week has everything to do with General Conference because when it comes, who doesn't see miracles?? Our investigators Robert and Kayla and of course their daughters Jayla and Layla were able to come watch the Sunday Morning session of General Conference with us at one of our member's homes. They rolled up all dressed in their church clothes with Books of Mormon in hand. My heart just sang! The spirit was so strong as we entered our members' home and prepared to be taught. During the session Robert and Kayla sat on the couch intently listening, hand in hand. At one point Robert even jumped up and placed his phone right next to the TV so he could record one of the talks! (We later explained that he could get all of them online in just a few short days...haha) But it was just so sweet to see a family so excited to learn from prophets and apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ for the first time. Robert and Kayla are just GOOD people. And as the scriptures teach, "There are none that doeth good except those who are ready to receive the fullness of my gospel..." (D&C 35:12) So please just keep them in your prayers so that they can truly receive the fullness of the Gospel on October 28th!
Sabrina and Sister Preator with Whitney before she moved to Georgia.
As far as our other investigators go...we have three that are progressing very well!
One is a mother of 3 who is expecting her 4th very soon, and she is incredible! Her name is Trina and she is just eager to learn. She has read the Book of Mormon every day this week and we are going to set her for baptism when we see her on Thursday! She just wants to do what Heavenly Father wants her to do, and she has the most real intent of anyone I have met!
Our other progressing investigators are Jennifer and her mom Kathy. That is another miracle. Sisters have been teaching Jennifer for a while, and she knows it is true, she has just had a hard time overcoming her Catholic roots! We have been praying for her mother Kathy to join our lessons in hopes that it might help Jennifer and this week she did! Jennifer is probably in her 30's and Kathy in her 60's. But they are an awesome family! We are doing a scripture study with them tonight at a member's home, so we are so excited for that! They will hopefully be set for baptism after this week too.
Dress up?
Food coma?

Sister Preator wanted to experiment with my makeup and she got a little carried please enjoy the attached pictures. Also just to redeem myself from my last email about DQ I am attaching a picture of this fancy salad we made this week. WOO HOO! (I strategically hid the hunk of raw cookie dough, so you could not see it in the picture...)

Spiritual thought:

I have been pondering on General Conference this morning and again, I cannot truly express how grateful I am for it. Something I noticed in particular this session was the focus on the Family Proclamation, and how important the family truly is! I have a horrible memory, and I forgot my notes, but my favorite quote was "Salvation is a personal matter, Exaltation is a family matter." I have been mulling that over in my mind again and again and my heart is so full. I have been taken back to a training Sister Gardner gave us a few weeks ago and something she said has rung clear in my heart. "I can testify that we do better together." These last few weeks have been hard on my family. But how grateful I am that we are in this together, that we are a family. I can too testify alongside Sister Gardner that we do better together. I love my family. Heaven would not be heaven without them! And I am grateful that my Loving Heavenly Father has placed families at the center of His eternal plan. I love this gospel. I love this work. I love my Savior.

Talk to you soon!

Sister Bengtzen