Saturday, June 27, 2015


It was weird saying goodbye to so many people this week. Sister Rawlings and my trainer both went home, along with many other sisters.  
Like I seem to do with every new companion, I got sick this week :( I wasn't stressed or anything, but I guess I wasn't really looking forward to getting another companion for the same area again. What's so great though is that Heavenly Father knew exactly what I was feeling. I was ready for change, and so he gave me change in the form of Sister Miller.

She very well may be the last companion I have, and so I'm looking towards this as being the sum total of everything I've learned and become on my mission. I want to take all of those things and use them with Sister Miller to have the best companionship and area possible.
She is exactly what I need to do this. She pushes me to be better, but also loves me for who I am. Shes been out 10 months and is a brand new Sister Training Leader. She's from Manti, Utah. She's working towards a landscape management major at BYU and loves plants. She's also a stellar missionary. :) she loves finding new investigators, and I love working with members. So between the two of us we should have lots of success in the area!
I feel like these last 3 months will be a time of truly finding myself as I lose myself in the work.
We've already invited a drunk man to be baptized, so it's off to a good start! ;) But really though, things are happening in Nolensville. We just found out yesterday all of the new stake boundaries and changes are taking place! 
We will have our own Ward (not shared with other missionaries) and we will be in the new building. We are losing some members and getting some new, but it will still be called the Old Hickory Ward.
Our proselyting area is going to be much bigger now, and I'm a little nervous but excited to have a Ward to myself! The members were so excited to see me stay though, I'm grateful to keep working with them.
This place has become home to me. Like... I really and truly pray I can raise my kids here someday because I just love everything about it. I love the Christlike people, I love the schools, I love the houses, I love the weather, I love the community, I just love it!
The town is bustling with the excitement of a new church opening, and we have found so many new investigators this week that want to come check it out! :) do you remember back at the beginning of my time here when all we did was knock on mansions? We are finally seeing the fruits of those labors now and people are opening doors and hearts up to the gospel. Even less actives are coming out! One of my favorite families we have been working with told us their son was now wanting to serve a mission since we've been coming over :) ahh!

We are working with two families right now who I really want to see enter the waters of baptism. Nancy Lara's family, and the Martin family. We went and taught the Martins today, and they agreed to come to church on Sunday with us! :) Please pray for the Martins and Lara's!

This week we thought that one of our members was having their daughter’s baptism and we knew we should go because there would be non-members there. The elders got to the church first, (we were all running late) and ran into the room and sat down amongst a crowd of many people. Looking around, they realized they didn't recognize a single person in that room. People sort of looked at them, until they realized.... The baptism wasn't until next week.... They had totally just busted in on a meeting! Hahaha I laughed so hard when they told us.

Sister Miller’s first night we went to the Smartts for dinner. They have their foreign cousin from Venezuela living with them and taking the missionary discussions right now. She is so cute because she made us really good cookies and had to tell us the story behind them. So apparently in Venezuela, their cookies are crunchy. When she came to America, they were all soft and she thought they were still raw! Her aunt had to explain to her that we Americans like soft cookies. It struck her that this whole time, whenever she would get cookies from subway in Venezuela they were soft! She had always not eaten them because she thought they had gone bad/ were stale. Now, handing us a very doughy plate of cookies, she proudly showed us how she had come to accept American cookies, and even thought they were pretty good. Not stale. ;) lol  We got to have Mission Leadership Counsel this week which was so awesome. Looking around me, I realized I've now been a sister training leader longer than any of the other sisters.... Gah! I feel so old!
Most of the girls I've served with have either gone home or been released. It's so crazy how much time has gone by. But hey, I'm still not done and I still have time to do this! :)
I would love to share lots of fun insights from MLC and my studies this week but I really need a haircut so I've opted for using my time for that instead. Haha.
Last night I was praying and I had this moment of feeling so much bliss. I was overwhelmed with gratitude for how wonderful things have become in my life. I couldn't understand why though, because I don't deserve so much happiness. I make mistakes on the daily and really shouldn't I be punished or chastened because of my sins? But then I remembered what Elder Sheffield said in his talk in church: that God's purpose is for us to be happy!  I realized that He isn't here to punish me and make me learn the hard way.... He wants me to be happy and enjoy myself, so long as I do it righteously. I know God wants all of us to find joy in this life, that's why He restored His gospel! And as long as we try to live this gospel, even if we aren't perfect at it, we will still be blessed :) 
Love you all!
Sister Hochstrasser
Our mission home has moved, so we have a new address as of the middle of July! Please write me at 

Sister Jennifer Hochstrasser 
Tennessee Nashville Mission
1646 Sunset Road
Brentwood, TN 37027

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