Monday, December 14, 2009


Dear Family,

It sounds like the Ward Christmas party was pretty fun, a little crazy with the fire alarm and all, but I’m sure that just made it that much more memorable. Thank you for sending my Ensigns. It is so good to have them as a reference. I just love looking back at all the amazing talks we get at conference. Our leaders are so inspired and their messages contain so much truth and counsel. They are great!

We had a blizzard! It was at night so we slept through most of it, but still, we actually had a blizzard! Basically, it was snowing and the wind was blowing really hard. The wind was still pretty bad the next morning, but the snow had stopped. I’m not sure how much snow we got because it all got blown around into these mountainous drifts. The drifts actually reminded me of sand dunes; the only differences were that they were white and sparkly and not quite as big as sand dunes. Another difference from Washington is that the snow doesn’t melt. So, it is a good thing that they plow the streets here. We weren’t allowed to drive for a day and a half so we got rides from members when we could and walked. I think trekking through the snow was a good bonding experience for Sister Smith and I. We had a couple people pull over and offer rides, but we said no thanks. Then we offered them the gospel and they said no thanks. I think that sums up a lot of my experiences with talking to everyone in Nebraska. Most people are nice, but happy where they are at and therefore blind to all the blessings they are missing. It’s usually the humble people that are going through hard times that are willing to listen and change their lives for the better (Ether 12:27).

My first ever snow tracting experience was great! We were walking through a neighborhood where tons of people were shoveling their driveways. We would always ask if they needed help. Most said no, so we shared a brief message and asked when we could come share more. They didn’t want us back so we’d just give them a Joy to the World pass along card. Then a man named James said we could help! We grabbed shovels and had a great conversation with him about service and trusting in God and the restoration and coming to church and eventually baptism. We have been challenged to invite everyone that is receptive to be baptized, but James got to it before we did. When we explained that we don’t baptize infants he asked “So, can I be baptized?” and we said “Sure … how about January 2nd ?!?” And he said yes and we set up a return appointment! We were so excited! I’ve determined that those that let us help them shovel their driveways or get their cars un-stuck are humble and more prepared to accept the gospel. So, snow tracting is a great way to find those that God has prepared.

Sister Bailey Mortensen

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