Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Life is good

February 1, 2016

  • Teach The Gospel,  Listen to the Spirit
  • Food...
  • The Trio's down to Two
  • Poster companionship
We were able to find seven new people to start teaching this week. That was a miracle all in and of itself. The true reason we found 4 of them was checking on individuals whom were previous referrals that had asked for missionaries to come by but they were not home when we talked to them so we felt we should knock doors and the first door we knocked was a guy whom was watching a tv show that I loved to watch back home so we chatted about that for about a minute or two and he let us in. His brother came in and said "ahh, I'm just going to listen" but heck, he was more involved than his younger brother. The other individuals just barely got into Christianity and were interested in what we spoke of,  little did they know that this started their conversion process to I the Gospel of Jesus Christ in its fully restored form.

One thing that I have a hard time grasping however is when people say "when Jesus Found me".... The concept of Jesus not knowing who you are and having to search for you after he remembered you so well he suffered for everything negative and fe;t every positive moment in your life kinda has me curious... Wasn't Jesus already there and you just didn't fully recognize it so when you do you think "he found me!" I do not know... Maybe someone can enlighten me on that topic.

We had been cooking with flour for the past two weeks and Elder Tanner decided to look at the expiration date because it tasted funky.... We have been cooking with flour for the past 2 weeks that has been expired for the past 3 years.... Hmmm... My stomach is hurting.... Maybe that's why?

As being the district leader I have (or I should say had) 4 other missionaries I looked after and helped (if I could) with their mission work and questions, and many of the times they helped me with mine. But, the trio (all 6 of us, or 3 sets of missionaries) is down to two, and all of us are sad but we know it was needed.

Our zone (group of 30 or so missionaries) won the weight loss challenge for the month of January (where we as a group averaged a loss of 5 lbs per person). I lost 5 for it and I am not dead yet! My companion and I both say we are the poster companionship for the weight loss challenge (he is 6'5" and 155 and I am 6' at 124) so we are skinny beasts! We got free Pizza and were happy to be able to eat our weight in food again.

No pictures for this week but Life still is great.

I know that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ Live and love us.  I know that we have been given agency (the ability and opportunity to choose) by God and he will never take that away from us, we can only take it away by our choices. I know that The Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ really did happen and I love learning more in the Words of the Prophets every day as I read and listen to them.

Elder Day

Snow Day

January 25, 2016 

  • Transferred?
  • Snow Day!
  • Mendez Family mission plan
  • Mission wide conference

This week wasn't that adventurous besides neither my companion and I are not moving, so after one year on a mission, he is the first missionary besides my trainer I have been with back to back. 

Also the Mendez family is awesome. Brother Mendez is the branch mission leader. We created a mission plan for the branch and it was probably the first mission plan I have been a part of in a while. (Like a year). 

We got a foot of snow and our cars were grounded...... We had a blast contacting everyone by foot , because no one wants to be out when. It snows!

The bread section of the grocery store before the storm. 
Mission wide conference was where we were instructed by the leaders of the church how to be better missionaries by teaching as Jesus taught "teach repentance"

Pday fun- sporting storm trooper masks. 
this is the bread aisle right before the storm, and above that is elder Clarkson and I sporting some storm trooper masks as we drove around on pday

Cotton Pickin' Captain California

January 18 2016 

  • Exchanges in the peanut capital of the world
  • Doorstep baptism
  • Zone conference 
  • Zone leaders excursion
  • Surprise!
  • Blessings from Heaven.

Captain California (the hat) 
Wakefield is the capital of peanuts in the world and within our jurisdiction of group of elders Wakefield is our ministry site. So we went on an exchange with the Elders down in Wakefield. Again. But hey, it was awesome! We had some of the greatest peanuts that I will ever have in my life, and peanuts will never be the same again.

We were knocking doors, and there is a man named Steve who we talk to you on his doorstep so, because the lesson was going well and the spirit prompted us to do so, and is now going to be baptized on February 13. I have realized wherever I go there's always someone that is prepared and knows that this is the work of the Lord.

Cotten Pickin'
Our zone leaders came down and worked in our area for a few hours and before we had a group of 30+ missionaries for learning on how to better be examples of Christ as well as how to be able to teach his doctrine simply. We also were able to visit an individual who had been taking missionary discussions for a year or two and the missionaries had dropped him and we felt to stop by with a member of our congregation. Turns out he was looking for the truth and all of his previous mishaps were taken care of- so he is ready to learn more and is starting to seek the truth. We have told him that find the truth needs to seek it himself. He's reading the book of Mormon and praying to find out for himself if it truly is the word of God. 

After that member took us back to his home where their family through that member a surprise birthday party and it was really funny to see his face dreading all of the people but loving all of the food that was made and brought.

We were also able to give a few individuals blessings and it was really cool to see the spiritual experiences from such events.
I continually recognize how important it is for us to understand that the only thing we really give back to God is our ability to choose. I pray we choose what God asks of us and listen and follow that council.

Pokemon on a mission? Miracle of Jeremy

January 11 Week
  • Medical Adventure
  • Exchange central
  • Baptismal interview 
  • The miracle with Jeremy? 
I recognize how horrible I am at sending out a weekly email so I wish to make amends this year. 
Last Monday seemed so long ago.... Well I was in the hospital for most of it and that was quite the adventure.... No worries though,  it was just for more of my medical records to be understood from what I could explain and one or two tests to figure some other things out. Nothing big at all, in fact, I met a less active member who wants to be sealed in the temple to her spouse and kids for time and all eternity!
As a District leader I have the privilege and opportunity to go on "Exchanges" with other missionaries in their areas and they swap for a period of 24hrs. So basically one comes to our area and either me or my companion go to theirs for a day and we work and learn more about each other and find better ways to teach and learn. Plus, getting out of our area is a good adventure and it feels like we get a breather and rejuvenation. So I went on exchanges with Elder Wolfersberger up to Appomattox and then within the same week I went to Wakefield (the nut capital of the United States, and possibly the world) to exchange and be with Elder Burila. Both were fantastic and Elder Tanner had a blast with both exchanges as well.

When in Wakefield, I was able to interview a 9yr old and 11yr old for baptism. They made me feel old (and I am only 20!) because they said things like " oh you won't know what we are playing with or movies we are watching" so I asked them and they said it was Super Mario bros movie and they were playing Pok√®mon...  Well for anyone who remembers me and my love for Pokemon and Mario and Nintendo things in general I immediately said "I remember watching those when I was your age" and they immediately looked at me with awe and wonder and the older kid said "word of wisdom, you're old"..... Thanks Kids who are 9 and 11yrs younger than me...

Well they both passed their interviews and they passed with flying colors of good things. The 9yr old was sweating because he thought he might not know the answer to the questions and started sweating Bullets when I asked him about what he can do to keep Sunday a special day. His response was something that even I needed to hear and understand more. He said (to an extent) that we need Sunday to be a better person. I had him Elaborate and he talked about how we need, at minimum, one day a week to make sure we can plan to be with the most important thing to us,  our family, and make sure we can be with them to help them out always. Coming from a 9yr old being raised by his grandparents due to family situations, this kid's testimony of the importance of families and the eternal perspective is phenomenal.

Well the miracle with Jeremy is not the miracle of the one writing this email. Elder Tanner and Elder Udy (Elder Wolfersberger's companion) found, while on an exchange, a family whom the father's name is Jeremy and he has been seeking for scripture that His family can use that will help his understanding of the bible and give new help for his life. Well guess what the Book of Mormon does!!! That exact thing! Especially 2 Nephi 3 in discussing the power the Book of Mormon has the power to not only sustain the Doctrine of Christ, but also to confound the false doctrine of the false prophets mentioned in Matthew 24. 

I know that Bible to be the word of God, as far as it is translated correctly, I also know the Book of Mormon to be the Word of God. And I know that Jesus Christ Himself leads this work and the prophet at the head of the church and that the blessings of God can and will be felt as we continue to seek God's Revelation by seeking personal Revelation through Prayer and reading and studying the Word of God. I know that God and Jesus Christ have called modern Day Prophets to be a beacon during this tumultuous time of the Latter Days. I know I, as well as the world can and will find peace by studying the Bible and Book of Mormon you will find peace, and reassurance Jesus Christ is the Son of God, Our Heavenly Father Loves us, He will never leave us without revelation to come closer to Him and His Son.

The photo is of me and Elder Burila taking a photo right before our exchange ends
Elder Burila and I during an exchange 
Elder Day 

too lazy..here is my video

January 4, 2016 Too lazy to write-
Elder Day

Tried to load this 26 second video about contacting and teaching but it didn't play for me.  Maybe you will have better luck