Monday, March 7, 2011

I can count on two hands how many days I have left in the Netherlands...WOW!!!

Monday, March 7, 2011
Dear Family,
I don't know why but I had extra excitement today to read your e-mails! You sound so good and your words were so touching! Usually I don't but today I had to quickly scan through each e-mail that I received just to know how you are doing. Thank you so much for all of the time you give to write. It means everything to me!
So, it has been a fabulous week and I don't even know where to begin! I feel like every wish that I have ever had on my mission is coming true! On Monday after we got finished with our normal p-day activities we got a call from Zuster Navarro and she asked us if we could come and help her move a couple of shelves in her home. That was a miracle! We always want to serve people but nobody dares to ask so when she called I couldn't have been happier! We were able to help for a little while before we went to our dinner appointment with Familie Bidjai. We had a wonderful evening there and then finished off the night with Familie Navarro and Felicia doing a FHE. The lesson went so good! We taught about the Holy Ghost and Felicia gave all of her attention. At the end of the lesson she just asked question after question about the church and baptism and what she needs to do to be baptized and why she needs to be baptized. It was so cool! Sadly enough, she is actually moving tomorrow to an actual center for foster children. She and Angelica went to a fireside with the youth in Amsterdam on Friday and church yesterday. I don't know if we will see her again but I hope that she will remember how she felt and especially that she is a child of our Heavenly Father, he loves her, and she can always go to him in prayer. I love her and will continue to pray for her!
On Wednesday we were able to fast with Victoria, Brother Scherf and Silvester in behalf of Silvester. We had an appointment with him that night and he said that he knows now that he needs to be he has got to pick a date! We were able to brake our fast together and that was a very spiritual experience. I hope that this week we can firm up a date with him. I have come to recognize that some people just need more time than others but the salvation of a soul is worth the wait and the patience!
On Saturday we had our first appointment with Anita at Familie Scherf's and it was so good! She is the sweetest girl ever and her desire to really have a testimony of her own is so strong. Marije and Rachelle were at the lesson as well. Marije is one of the young women and Rachelle is one of the leaders. I am so thankful for their help with the lesson. They really brought the spirit with their testimonies and personal experiences! Anita is from Rotterdam so the missionaries in Rotterdam are actually going to go and visit her mom within the next week. Her parents gave permission for her to be baptized so we are thinking about April 9. We will continue to teach her every time that she is here in Den Haag, so for sure every Sunday.
She is super active in the ward already. She also went to the fireside on Friday and to church on Sunday. Every first Sunday the young women are with the Relief Society for opening exercises and Anita gave the thought during opening exercises. She told about how she wants to be baptized and why. Her testimony was so amazing! On Saturday after the lesson we baked cookies with Familie Scherf and Anita because they wanted to learn how. It was a lot of fun! I wasn't able to make cookies yesterday because it was fast Sunday but I am thinking about doing it for this next week...the only problem is that it is Stake Conference so that would mean 1000...don't panic! I don't really think I am going to do it!
Yesterday I had one of my first of many farewell dinners. The members and investigators are so nice! I think this week will be full of emotions but I think it will be great as well! I am looking forward to seeing many more miracles!
I love you so much and I too can't wait to give you a great big hug in just a week and a half! The church is true! The Lord loves us!
Love, Zuster Sharp

Monday, February 28, 2011


Monday, February 28, 2011
Dear Family!
I am so happy right now! It is like I have the best of both worlds! The work here is going great and I am so happy about that and then I am so excited to think about seeing all of you soon! I can't wait! Heavenly Father seems to be pouring out many blessings right now and I am so thankful!
Thank you so much for your e-mails! I have to admit...Over the past couple of weeks I have become the worst letter writer ever! My p-days have been a little busy and I just want to give all of my time to serving so I hope that you know that I love you and I am thankful for your letters even if you don't get one in return. I figure by this time I might see you before a letter gets to you!
Dad, I want to put your questions as first priority so here it goes! I am so thankful and excited about the plans that are going down. I just get giddy thinking about being here with you! I think that it would be best to fly in and out of Amsterdam. It is pretty central in the Netherlands and especially to Den Haag, Zwolle, and Groningen. I would love to stay a couple of days in each city if that is at all possible. It's so hard to say...but if we did two days in Zwolle, two in Groningen, four in Den Haag, and then a couple of other free days...maybe 10 to 14 days? But I don't know what you are thinking. 2 weeks would give us a good amount of time to make our way around. But we could also stay up to a month or two...just kidding!
Well, we have seen a countless number of miracles this week! We found 3 super positive new investigators and they are all under the age of 16! I love them so much! I am so thankful that I am finally back to full health and that I was able to work a whole week! It is such a blessing! I had such a wonderful week. I feel like Heavenly Father is blessing Zuster Jeffs and I so much! We got two new investigators on Monday night. Their names are Felicia and Angelica. They are both foster children and Felicia just moved in with Familie Navarro, an active family in the ward. The family invited us to do a FHE with them last Monday and it was so good! We just started out simple with the girls because they are 14 and 16. We did a lesson on prayer and they were so interactive during the lesson. We also baked cookies with them afterwards and they loved that. They came to church last week and Angelica came to church yesterday. We will be going again tonight to do a FHE with them again. I feel like they are just in the best situation to learn about the Restoration. And it turns out that their biological father lives in America and he is a member too!
Our other new investigator is a 14 year old young woman named Anita. She came to the church for the first time a couple of months ago with her grandpa who is the only member in her family. She has been coming consecutively for the past couple of weeks and is really being accepted by the ward and especially the young women. Yesterday we went to a members for lunch and Anita was there. She came up to Zuster Jeffs and I and said, „I really want to get baptized. What do I need to do in order to do that?“We were so excited! We explained the process to her and set up our first appointment to teach her this Saturday at the member’s home. Her parents know about her desire and are very supportive. So cool! We'll be setting a baptismal date on Saturday!
We have decided to give Suleyka a little time to decide what she wants to do. We had a couple of appointments with her this week but she is just not making progress and we feeling like we are just having to pull her along. It is hard to give someone back to the Lord but I know He will make sure that when the time is right, things will work out.
On Tuesday we went to the doctor’s appointment...and I am totally normal! He did say that my iron was a little low but nothing he is worried about. This week I have been feeling a lot better and I contribute that to your prayers. Thank you so much! The doctor just told me that I demand too much of myself and I need to take it easier. Zuster Jeffs started to laugh and said, "Zuster Sharp that is the 50th time you've heard that from 50 different people. Are you finally going to listen?!" I am trying to listen. I am really trying!
Tuesday evening we made dinner for Jolanda and Jeroen to thank them for everything they do for us! We made a rockin’ raspberry bread pudding...I can't wait to make it for you in a couple of weeks! We also had a lesson with Brigitte and she gave me the most amazing African skirt as a going away gift. It is awesome!
The consecrated hour project is going so well! So far we have contacted 350 people, found 10 potential investigators, and 3 new investigators. The faith of the members is working miracles! The ward is fired up about it!
We had a Zone Training on Thursday! I love being with all of the missionaries. It was sad to know that that was my last. I had to give my departing testimony. It was a great opportunity to stand and bear my testimony.
On Friday we had lessons with Silvester and Mary. Silvester is really struggling to make a decision so we are going to fast with him and Victoria and brother Scherf on Wednesday. I hope that he will have a strong confirmation of the truthfulness of these things. Mary is doing about the same. She came to church yesterday!
You might think I am crazy but I couldn't pass up the chance to bake 300 cookies this week for the members after church! I was a little smarter about it and I started on Saturday instead of Sunday. They ended up being a hit again! I also gave a sort of "farewell” talk in church and it was wonderful to be able to express my testimony, love, and gratitude to these wonderful people!
I am so looking forward to this coming week! I hope that you know that I love you! I know the Savior lives and I love Him!
Love, Laur

Monday, February 21, 2011


Monday, February 21, 2011
Hello Family!
Thank you so much for your e-mails and your prayers in my behalf! You won't believe it but...I was sick another 3 days this week! WHAT?! I know, I was wondering the same thing! But I am now feeling better and even though I was sick we were still able to do so much work and see much success! The Lord poured out his blessings upon us!
By the way, thank you so much for the Valentine's package and cards! LOVED IT! The headband and necklace and earrings are adorable and the chocolate was delish! And your words of love and care meant the world to me. Thanks for always being so thoughtful and taking the time to do little things that just brighten my day! I hope that you had a very special Valentine's Day. We were able to go to the home of a recently divorced mother member and make dinner for her and her 1 year old son. Afterwards we went to Penninah's Bible Study and it was so cool! We sang some awesome African hymns and we had such a wonderful discussion with her and other church members about the Bible. On Thursday we went back and shared a first lesson with Penninah. It was a wonderful teaching situation because she was open to sharing her beliefs and we were open to sharing ours. Although she didn't agree immediately with what we believe in, she committed to pray about the things that we shared. It was so great to bear testimony. And then, she came to church yesterday! We were so excited to have her there. The members did so well at making her feel welcome and building up friendships with her. I believe that all of these small things will have a great impact in her life! I am excited to have another appointment with her this week and continue to share with her the message of the Restored Gospel.
Anyway, back to the beginning of the week a bit. On Tuesday we went to District Meeting in Leiden and on the way back I started to feel really crumby again. I couldn't believe it! But I pushed through and we went to our appointment with Gida with Victoria as our joint-teach. Gida ended up not being home and I think that was a blessing because by that time I was ready to lie down. We went back to our apartment and I crashed and didn't wake up until 5:30! I couldn't believe that I had slept that long but my body needed it. We rushed to our dinner appointment with Familie Peschier and made it through dinner but I was done after that. I slept through the night and tried to get up and start working the next day but I just didn't feel good. The Elders came and gave me a blessing and Sister Brubaker was updated on everything. She wanted me to set up an appointment with a doctor to get checked out because this was the third time that I was sick. Jolanda gave me a recommendation for a doctor and I called up and tried to get an appointment but because I have no Dutch insurance they wouldn't let me. I didn't really want to go to the doctor anyway because I feel like the reason I keep getting sick is not because there is something wrong with me but because my body is just tired! Anyway, by that time it was already 5:00 so it was too late to get a hold of another doctor. Luckily Zuster Jeffs was able to go to a couple of appointments with Victoria and another member, Carla van der Walt, came and stayed with me. The members do so much! On Wednesday night a new senior couple, the Evertons, who had just arrived the day before, came to visit and check on me. Sister Everton is a registered nurse and the sweetest lady ever! They brought beautiful tulips and chicken soup and just brightened our day. The next morning I was debating over whether or not I should try to get another appointment with another doctor. I prayed and told Heavenly Father that only if he arranged it I would go...I am so stubborn! A few minutes later we got a voicemail from Victoria and she told me that I had an appointment with a doctor the next day at 9:15. I couldn't believe it! Heavenly Father really made an appointment for me! I was able to work most of the day on Thursday. We had an appointment with Suleyka and things are going well with her. Friday I went to the doctor with Zuster Jeffs and the Evertons. The doctor couldn't find anything wrong but he sent me to the hospital to get blood drawn. I should find out the results tomorrow morning. I don't think that there is anything wrong...just keep praying for me! By Friday afternoon, after another appointment with Suleyka, I was worn out. We stopped at Zuster Navarro's to drop something off and I crashed again for 2 hours. What is going on with me! I get so embarrassed sometimes but I just have to laugh about it! Saturday we had a busy and full day and found lots of potential investigators! When we got home Saturday evening I got an itch to bake...and between Saturday evening and starting at 3:00 Sunday morning I was able to bake 250 cookies to share with the ward members after church again...CRAZY but so much fun! I love being able to do things like that every once in a while!
AHHH...I am out of time! I am feeling better now! I love this work and I am so excited for all that is taking place! I am also excited to see you in 3 weeks! I love you so much! I love Zuster Jeffs asked about her! She is the most amazing companion ever! and of course, I love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ! Have a great week!
Love, Laur

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Monday, February 14, 2011
Dear Family,
Oh, how I love you! I hope that you have a fabulous Valentine's Day and that you get to do something special to show the ones that you care about that you love them. Just know that I love you so much and I am so thankful for all that you do for me out of love! Jordan and Kristin, thanks so much for the cute little package! I loved everything and that was such a pleasant surprise, especially when I was sick! Brandt and Kelly, CONGRATULATIONS!!! I am so excited for baby number 4...and even more so because I know that I will be home for the delivery! YAY! Britt and Marianne, thanks so much for the e-mail and the cute picture with the chocolate it! Car, thanks for the pic of the, it is getting short! I am excited too :) And thank you all for the wonderful made my Valentine's Day extra special!
Well, I was sick for a little longer than I had expected! It was just about the same as last time! I wasn't able to work a full day until Friday so the week didn't quite go as planned but I learned a lot (hopefully I finally learned my lesson from being sick...I don't want it to happen a third time)! But the members helped us so much again and I just can't thank them enough. On Monday night we were supposed to make dinner for Jolanda and Jeroen because it was Jolanda's birthday but because I was sick they actually came and picked us up, made dinner for Zuster Jeffs while I slept on their couch, and then brought us back home. On Tuesday I stayed with Zuster Navarro while Zuster Jeffs went with the Elders to Leiden for a District Meeting. I had high hopes that when she got back I would feel well enough to go to all of our appointments that day but it was quite the opposite. We ended up staying at the Navarro's until 8 that night. Then when we left to catch the tram to get back home I started to feel really weak and woozy, so we went back in and waited until Zuster Peschier could come with her car to give us a ride back. It was so sweet of her! By Wednesday I had enough strength to go out to two appointments but that did me in. On Thursday I did a little more and by Friday I was able to do a whole day! I was just about going crazy lying in bed for those couple of days so I am so thankful that I can finally work again! Thanks for all of your prayers in my behalf!
Despite being sick the whole week, we have seen quite the miracles! We found a new investigator, Gida, and she is amazing! She is from Angola and she has 3 little children and a husband. We have already taught her twice and we are going again tomorrow! We can hardly wait. She has such a sincere desire and hunger to know that truth. I really think that she will progress. We also had an appointment with Silvester and he told us that he knows that Joseph Smith was a prophet who restored the church and that the Book of Mormon is true! I am so thankful that he was looking down at his Book of Mormon when he said that because I think I would have scared him with the look of excitement on my face. My jaw dropped and I was speechless! He knows the truth! Now he is praying to know if he should be baptized on March 5th! WAHOO!!! We didn't get to teach SuleĆ½ka's boyfriend because I was sick but that will hopefully happen this week.
Yesterday was pretty much one of the best days of my whole mission! We went to church and Mary and Suleyka attended as well. Afterwards we had lunch with Familie Gaster, the cutest little Dutch elderly couple in the world. Then we went to do a consecrated hour in the Lobelialaan, a street that Zuster Akkerman had chosen for our ward project. It was amazing! We knocked on a door and a young woman from Rowanda answered. She welcomed us right in and we had a most amazing 40 minute conversation about faith. The Spirit was so strong and there was a very immediate and special bond between us. We tried to share a scripture from the Book of Mormon with her but she was a little hesitant about it and asked if we wouldn't mind sharing one from the Bible instead. We were a tleast able to explain what the Book of Mormon is and what it means to us and then show her that we also believe in the Bible. At the end she invited us to come to a Bible study that she and her friends from her church have every week. We are going tonight and we are so excited! I know that Heavenly Father will bless us to know how we can share the message of the restored gospel in this situation! After our consecrated hour we went to dinner with the Elders at Jolanda and Jeroen's. We then finished the night with a sisters fireside at Familie Navarro's for all sister investigators and new members. Zuster Jeffs and I were in charge of the fireside and minutes before we still didn't really know what we were going to do but felt like we had done our best to prepare the whole week. The Spirit surely stepped in to help us and it was one of the sweetest experiences that I have ever had! It was one of those moments you never want to end! I loved it!
I am out of time! I love you and hope you can feel my excitement! The church is true!
Love, Zuster Sharp

Friday, February 11, 2011

Ik heb mijn toetje gekregen!=My dessert has been served!

Monday, February 7, 2011
Dear Family!
How are you doing?! Time is just flying by! I am almost already a week into my last transfer and it's just going faster and faster every second! I LOVE MY NEW COMPANION!!! Her name is Zuster Jeffs and she is from Arizona! She is my little blessing sent straight from Heavenly Father to make my last 6 weeks the best ever! I picked her up on Wednesday at the train station and we just clicked from the moment that we met. It is like a breath of fresh air! She loves to be obedient and she loves the Netherlands and she loves the people and she loves missionary work...and I love her! We have been workin’ our little hearts out since the minute she got here and we have seen so many miracles! She can already speak amazing Dutch and we are teaching as a team. I know that she will be so prepared in 6 weeks to take over Den Haag and I put my full confidence and trust in her!
Well, on the down side, I have been hit with the flu again! I feel like I am reliving what happened 6 weeks ago when Zuster Hill arrived and I just can't believe it! On Friday and Saturday I started to not feel really well-really weak and shaky. Then yesterday morning I woke up quite nauseated and with a fever but I didn't want Zuster Jeffs to miss her first Sunday like Zuster Hill did so I just pushed through. I made it through RS and then I taught the lesson for sharing time in the second hour but by the time Sacrament Meeting was starting I was done. We stayed for the sacrament and then we snuck out and went backto our apartment. I climbed into bed and didn't come out for the rest of the night. We had a couple of appointments that we had to cancel but there was one dinner appointment with an inactive family that I didn't want to call off because it was our first one with this family and we really feel good about working with them. I began to say a prayer in my heart that we would be able to find some members to help us out if that was the will of the Lord. I texted one of the Jovo's and asked her if she had time to go to the appointment with Zuster Jeffs and she replied quickly with a resounding yes. I then texted Jolanda and asked if she could stay with me and she also quickly responded. I am so thankful for the willingness of the members here! Zuster Jeffs said that the appointment went really well! Since today is just our p-day I stayed in bed until 7, took a shower, and then climbed back into bed. Zuster Brubaker just wants me to take it easy today, and that is exactly what I am going to do. She counseled us to stay in tonight, which is hard, but if it will give me the energy I need for the rest of the week then it is worth it! Keep me in your prayers that I won't be in bed for 5 days like last time!
Like I said, with Zuster Jeffs, miracles are taking place! We started the member consecrated finding activity on Tuesday, the first of February, and it is AMAZING! We have already found 2 new investigators during our hours and we have many potential investigators! I feel like Heavenly Father is just opening the windows of heaven and pouring blessings out! I am so thankful for the faith and the prayers of the members. We keep receiving more and more cards in the mail...I think we have about 45 now and I think they'll just keep coming! Our investigators are doing okay. Silvester ended up cancelling our appointment this week because of work which was a bummer! Suleyka came to the JOVO Centrum on Thursday with her boyfriend and another friend. She is doing some awesome missionary work! Her boyfriend came up to us at the end and said that he wants to receive the lessons from us. MIRACLE! We are going to teach him at Suleyka's on Tuesday night. We also taught Mary on Friday with Shaila and she came to church on Sunday. We are being extremely blessed!
I hope that you are doing well and feel the love of the Savior as you go throughout your week! I love you so much! I love this work! I am so thankful for this extra time that I get to serve! I feel like there are some trials that are coming up (being sick) that I wasn't expecting, but that is always a time to grow and come closer to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Thanks for everything!
Love, Zuster Sharp

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Lord is so merciful!

Monday, January 31, 2011
Dear Family,
I received a call from President Brubaker last night and found out that I am staying in Den Haag for my last transfer!!! WAHOO!!! I was so nervous about transfers because I have already been here so long and I was so relieved when I found out that my time on my mission will end here. I was quite shocked when President asked me to train again too! Actually, the past couple of days I had a lot of thoughts that I might be training again, and as I was talking to President it became clear that this is what Heavenly Father really wants. President said that he has had very distinct impressions over the past two days that I need to train this sister. He then expressed to me that he and the Lord have complete and full confidence that I can do it. It was a very humbling experience. I am up for the challenge! Zuster Hill has been the best thing for me over the past 6 weeks to keep me working and doing my best because I wanted to make the beginning of her mission the very best for her. I know that the new sister who will be coming on Wednesday will do the same. I am excited to see what the next 6 weeks will bring!
Silvester came to church yesterday!!!! That was the greatest miracle of the whole week! Since we started teaching him back in October we have been trying to get him to church and he just kept finding reasons not to come. On Saturday night I sent him a text, like I do every week, to remind him once again (in case he forgot) that church begins at 10:00 and he is ALWAYS welcome to come. He replied and said that he was coming! I was jumping up and down and Zuster Hill couldn't figure out what had gotten into me! Once she found out, she gave the same reaction. We actually went to his house Sunday morning and rode with him to church. He loved it! I really think that he is getting closer and closer to baptism! Suleyka is doing okay...still really finding it difficult to put the gospel as one of her top priorities. But it will come! A couple other highlights of the week include a consecrated hour where we taught 6 lessons (that never happens...but it did this week), making dinner for Familie Nwankor (an inactive family), and receiving lots and lots of cards from the members for the consecrated hour project. We are starting that this week!
I just want you to know that I love you and that I know this gospel is true. Have a great week. I love you!
Love, Laur

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Count your many blessings!

Monday, January 24, 2011
Dear Mom and Dad,
How are you doing?! From skimming over your e-mails before printing them I can tell that you have had a great time in Oregon! I am so happy that you have been able to spend some good quality time with Grandma and the other Oregonians! I am praying that you will have a safe trip home and a wonderful week!
Things here are going great! We got all of our cards sent out for the consecrated hour activity (we sent 100 of them) and it is already producing so much enthusiasm about missionary work! Yesterday at church everyone was talking about it and it was actually mentioned in every lesson and talk given! The members can't wait to see the miracles that come from it and we can't wait either! We still are struggling with our investigators and we just can't seem to find any new ones. We are hoping that this activity is the key to really getting a big boost. No matter what happens, I know that Heavenly Father is aware of the efforts the members and we are making to spread the gospel and that all things are in his hands!
I love you so much and I hope that you have a great week! You are always in my prayers! Tell the fam I say hello!
Love, Laur

These are going to be the best 2 months of my life!

Monday, January 17, 2011
Dear Family!!!
How are you all doing!? Thanks so much for the inbox full of e-mails this morning! I am so excited to go back and really read them to know what is going on at home right now. Thanks for all of your love and prayers and support. I really felt it this week unlike any other time in my mission and I am so grateful for that. Prayer really works!
Well, this has been another great week! I don't think I have ever had a bad week but they just keep getting better and better! Investigators are doing okay. I don't know why but we are just struggling to find those who really are ready and prepared to take the necessary steps to baptism. But we will find them! And we are still trying to help Suleyka, Mary, and Silvester take those steps! Suleyka is still doing really well and is still positive that she will be baptized but we still haven't been able to arrange an appointment with her and the Bishop to talk about tithing. We hope that we can arrange that soon! We know that Satan is really throwing things in her path to stop her from coming closer to Christ through the Restored Gospel. She just got hired for a job with which she has to work most Sundays. She also just started dating someone really seriously. It's not that either of the things are bad, it is just that she has to make choices as to what takes first priority in her life. I hope that she'll stay strong and choose to come closer to her Heavenly Father! We met with Mary on Friday night and it was a really good appointment. She is just difficult to meet with regularly because she is a mother of two, with a job, going to school, and having relationship problems. I hope that we can also continue to help her and we are really relying on Heavenly Father to know how. Silvester is doing great but we just CANNOT get him to come to church! We are thinking that we might let him rest for a little bit of time and see if that will kind of re-boot him and get him excited again about the gospel. We are also pouring our hearts out to Heavenly Father that we will be able to find new investigators! We can't wait to see what this week will bring!
On Thursday we had a Zone Conference in Breda and that was really great! It always is! We talked about being more effective with finding and how we can find new investigators. That is what we are struggling with as a mission right now. Well, President started something new to get us more enthusiastic about talking to people. He added a key indicator where we have to report the number of people we contacted that week. I am so excited about the new addition to the key indicators! We started counting on Friday and within 3 days we had contacted a total of 166 people! It was really cool because every time I felt satisfied with the number of people I had talked to during our consecrated finding I would think about a video clip that President had shared at Zone Conference. It was from some football movie that came out when I was already on my mission. There was one of the players that the coach wanted to do the death crawl to the 50yard line blindfolded with a teammate on his back. He didn't think that he could do it but with the encouragement of the coach and mostly through his own will power he made it to the end zone. That really touched me and motivated me. I would begin to ask myself if I had really done my best and given all that I had to give. Well, every time I was able to push myself above what I thought I was capable of. On Friday during our consecrated hour we contacted 30 people and I was pleased with that. On Saturday I wanted to push myself a little harder and we were able to contact 34 people. Yesterday, because we had to do a double consecrated hour, I had a goal to contact atleast70 people. But when I realized at the end of our first hour we had contacted 62, I decided to move my goal to 100. We ended up contacting 102! I was so excited and had a fire to keep talking to people. I am excited to see how many we contact this week!
Zone Conference really got me fired up about being creative with missionary work! I have had an idea in my head to get the whole ward here involved in missionary work by getting all of them to help us missionaries pick consecrated hours (special hours when we go contacting) and pray for us as we go finding. Well my idea is finally coming into action! We have 100 families or members who are active or positive towards the church. We have decided to send a letter out to each of them with an assigned date and invite them to pick a street, neighborhood, or area where we can go finding every day in the month of February. We are going to have a ward fast on that fast Sunday that we will see miracles. Between the three sets of missionaries here in Den Haag we hope to do a total of 100 hours of consecrated finding. I am so excited about it and I know that the Lord will assist us! I will let you know how the plan comes along! We'll be sending the letters to the members this week!
I love you with all of my heart! I love this work! I fall in love with it more and more every day as I meet more and more of God's children and come to understand a little more God's plan for us! You are in my prayers always!
Love, Zuster Sharp

This is the Refiner's Fire!

Monday, January 10, 2011
Hey Mom and Dad,
How are you doing?! I hope that you have had a wonderful week! As I was glancing over your e-mails before printing them I can see that things are going pretty well...YAY! I love hearing that you are happy and healthy! I am praying for Grandma and Grandpa and I hope that Grandma gets feeling better and gets to come home from the hospital soon! All of you are always in my thoughts and prayers!
This week of missionary work has been awesome! We had 2 appointments with Suleyka and she came to church on Sunday. She is really getting so well received by the members and she says that she is feeling so much at home. She is changing so much and she said this week that she knows that she will be getting baptized in 2011 but she doesn't quite know when. I hope sooner than later but I know that Heavenly Father has a time for everything. She is going to be having an appointment with the Bishop this next week so that he can help her resolve her concerns about tithing. I think that will be really good for her! We also had 2 appointments with Silvester and he is going with us to Victoria's tonight to watch "The Testaments". He also says that he imagines himself getting baptized and he also brought up the baptismal interview. There is only one little problem...he has never come to church! We have done everything we can think of to help him but we just don't know what to do now. We are just trying to help him develop a desire within himself. Florence came with us to the Jovo Centrum on Thursday and she couldn't be happier and more excited about the gospel! It is difficult to set steady appointments with her (Africans are difficult to make appointments with) but we know that as long as we keep trying, it will come! Sophie is a sad story! We went there on Tuesday with a member, Nadeline, who speaks Spanish. Well, Sophie had invited two of her friends over to listen too and it just ended up bad! The two friends said that we were a sect and that Joseph Smith was not a prophet and it was getting pretty heated, but it was all in Spanish! We didn't know what to do but Nadeline took care of it and although she left in tears all of our testimonies were strengthened from it. I hope that one day Sophie will come to know that truth for herself! We also had many members that came on joint-teach this week for the first time! That is always so exciting! The work here in Den Haag is amazing and the Lord is pouring out his blessings upon us!
I love you so much and I pray for you. I know that God lives and that we are His children. I know that He loves us! Have a great week!
Love, Laur

Monday, January 10, 2011


Monday, January 3, 2011

Dear Family and Friends! Happy New Year! I hope that you had a wonderful time welcoming in 2011 and Mom; I hope you had an especially great day! Happy Birthday to you! New Year's here is crazy! They do TONS of sounds like a war zone and it can be almost as dangerous as a war zone! Because of that, we had to be in our apartment at 4pm on New Year's Eve. We were well taken care of by the members, Familie Jongejan, who so kindly made an "after 4 pm" survival kit for us with alcohol free drinks and oliebollen (the traditional Dutch New Year's treat)! Zuster Hill and I enjoyed dinner together, used some of the time to set some goals and do some planning, and I ended up baking 234 chocolate chip cookies (I don't really know what I was thinking...I guess we're stocked for the year :)! All in all it was a good night and we enjoyed the millions of fireworks from our window!

I just have to take a minute to thank all of you! Thanks so much for the e-mails and the cards and the gifts and the packages for the holidays! They sure made my holiday season so bright! I can't wait until I get home and I can do something really special to serve all of's gonna be great!

Well, I have to be honest; this was one of the greatest preparation days of my life! I know, you're probably thinking that I went to a great museum or I saw a really cool monument or! I folded laundry, did the dishes, and vacuumed the floor! I don't know what it is but I just miss doing those little things for other people. So, last night as I was biking and thinking I had the idea to call up Zuster Broekman and ask her if I could come and to a few things to help her out while Zuster Hill wrote letters. I knew that Zuster Broekman had been sick all of the last week and that her 4 little ones
were going back to school today and I just figured that she could maybe use some help getting her house back in order after the holidays. When I called her up she declined at first but after I told her that it was something that I really wanted to do and that it would actually be more of a service for me, she approved! I loved it! It was so fun to be able to serve someone again in that way! So save up all of your laundry, dishes, deep cleaning cause I am coming home to help you with all of it! I am such a nut!

I hate to tell you this again but missionary work was kind of on hold once again this last week! The holidays just put a stop to almost everything! But we had quite the miracle yesterday! We went to lookup a potential investigator yesterday who we had met on Christmas Eve during our consecrated hour. We had given her a copy of “Joy to the World” then and she gave us her address. Well when we went by yesterday she was so excited to see us and she welcomed us right in. She comes from the Dominican Republic, her name is Sophie, and she has two young daughters (9 and 11 years old). She believes in God and attends church every week but mentioned that she still has a hunger for more. She wants to continue learning more from God's word and she wants to come closer to him. She was divorced a few years ago, just after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She is very humble and at a point where she is open for the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. Zuster Hill and I had such a good feeling about her. We told her that God had placed us in her path to share His love with her. We asked her if we could come back 2 or 3 times in the week and teach her more. She then asked us if she could come to church with her 2 girls next Sunday! We are really looking forward to our appointment on Tuesday!

We also had another new investigator in Sacrament Meeting yesterday. We found him on the bus and he gave us his phone number and address. We texted him on Sunday morning just to let him know about church and he actually came! His name is Ramanapaul. We have an appointment with him, Silvester (who we thought was Cevesta), Suleyka, and Mary this week! Oh, and we also had an awesome appointment with Florence! We finally were able to have an appointment with her on Friday and she had read the whole Plan of Salvation pamphlet. We brought little cutouts of the Plan of Salvation to help her understand it a little better and she just took all of the pieces and laid it right out in
order. She is moving along so great!

We had another baptism here on Tuesday. Barbara was baptized! The Elders did most of the teaching but we had gone by a couple of times to share a lesson. It was so great to see the change that has taken
place in her life since she has received the gospel and to see how happy she is. That is why this work is the greatest work ever!

Well, I hope that you know that I love you but just in case you ever wonder I'll tell you one more time...I LOVE YOU! I love this gospel too! I know that the church was restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith. I know that Christ lives! I know that the Book of Mormon is true! I know that 2011 is going to be a wonderful year and I look forward to all of the experiences that it will bring! Have a great week and enjoy January!

Love, Zuster Sharp


Monday, December 27, 2010
Hey Family! It was FABULOUS to be able to talk to you! I really don't think that it could have been better! After I got off of the phone with you I felt so uplifted and happy and pleased with our time that we had to converse with one another. Thank you for always making it such an awesome and special experience! And thank you for all taking the time to come together on the busy Christmas day so that I can talk to each one of you. I am so thankful for that! I think that is was definitely easier to hang up this time (and with a lot less tears:)) because I know that I will be seeing you in a short 12 weeks. Then I will have all of the time in the world to talk...I am so looking forward to that! But until then let's make the next two and a half months of 2011 the best ever!
I just have to thank all of you for the wonderful Christmas cards and presents and money and support that you gave. You made Christmas so special for me and I could feel of your love! I hope that Sinter Klaas will make a stop to West Jordan soon with a special delivery for you all!
I had a great 2nd Christmas in the Netherlands! Yesterday, for the2nd Christmas Day (yes, the Dutch people are genius to have two official Christmas days...just more time to celebrate and be together)we had a full and busy day! We started out with a breakfast with the four other elders at Familie Scherf's. We had food galore and we really enjoyed our time together. There was definitely a special Christmas spirit there. We read the Christmas story together and then sang Christmas hymns around the piano. At 10:30 we headed out the door to church and we just had a Sacrament Meeting/Christmas Service. It was wonderful to be together with all of the members, especially on Christmas and especially after missing church last week. Suleyka came to the service so that was really great! After church all 6 of us missionaries and Quincy (a member who was baptized in June) went caroling. I had wanted to do it the whole month and I finally talked all of the other missionaries into it. We started at Familie Scherf's and then went next door to the Navarro's. We got spoiled by the Navarro's-they let us in and gave us turkey sandwiches, Christmas bread, and warm hot chocolate! They then gave us a referral-they sent us to sing for one of their neighbors around the corner. When we showed up, he invited us to come in and sing for all of the family and their guests, and then they referred us to someone else and it just went on and on for 3 hours. It was awesome and some of my favorite finding ever! Because of the Christmas season people are more open and we were able to share the Christmas spirit! At about 5 we went to a dinner appointment (yes, our third eating appointment in one day...I don't ever want to eat again!) with Carla van der Walt, a member who was baptized about a year ago. She treated us like royalty and we enjoyed every minute with her! We sure were spoiled this Christmas and no matter how much we tried to serve other people, we ended up receiving so much more in return!
Investigators are doing pretty good. We have had contact with all of them over the past week but still because of the holidays things are a little crazy. We already have a few appointments for this next week with them. I am looking forward to it and I will keep you posted on their progress. Thanks for your prayers in their behalf!
Well, I don't have too much info from Zuster Fritz and Zuster Pierson but I'll give you what I've got:
Zuster Jillian Fritz
South Jordan

Zuster Emily Pierson
1974 West 8660 South
West Jordan, UT 84088
I hope that you can get in contact with them. I know that they would love it!
I want you to know that I LOVE YOU! You are the best family ever and you are always in my prayers! I hope that you have a very happy new year and a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM! Thank you for your love and support!
Love, Zuster Sharp