Called to Serve

Monday, October 28, 2013


Well Hey There!
I cannot believe Kylie went through the temple!! Crazy.  Well let me tell you a little bit about this crazy week! So first off I had my first district meeting as a district leader! The sister missionaries in my district told me how they have had trouble with knowing what to say when they talk to people on the street and when they knock doors. They said nothing they are doing is working. So I decided to devote my district meeting to this concern. And since I have a new found love for acronyms I decided to develop one that i could use to demonstrate. SALSA! ha ha ya...let me explain.  So this SALSA acronym goes over 5 things that need to be done when contacting a person  for the first time. The first is S-short and powerful statement. This statement should include the restoration of the gospel. Then A-ask questions. This helps to get the person thinking. L-lead into testimony. PMG says we should always testify to invite the spirit. S-set up a return appointment. A-ask for referrals. Its important to ask everyone you speak to "Who else do you know that we can teach this message too?" So in district meeting we went over that and role played it a bit. And then we made home made salsa!! ha ha I called Sis. Berkheimer the morning of the meeting and asked for a salsa recipe. She gave me one and said I could go over to her house and get the ingredients. So I did and chopped up the onions and all the other stuff and put them into 5 ziploc bags and then after the meeting I had everyone get a bag and put their ingredient in and explain why it was important and then we mixed it up and had some chips and salsa! It was pretty awesome. I just thought I would spice things up a little bit. (no pun intended)

That night we had an appointment with a church of Christ family where their dad has been a minister for like 20 years. So when we get in there, we say an opening prayer, ask if they have any questions, and then first thing his son does is go over to the computer and pull up a site called We knew we were in for one at that moment. So they just started ponding us with these questions about this stuff they have read and frankly I didn't know what to say. So then I just said "Well we see that you have looked up stuff on exmormon and other MAN MADE websites but how has your Book of Mormon reading been going. It was"so shocking"when they told me they haven't even read a chapter of it yet.

Cool Story: We have a recent convert who is the coolest dude ever. Me and him have gotten to be really good friends. Before his baptism he had drug problems and just a couple weeks ago he slipped up again and ever since then he has been avoiding and the church. We have prayed constantly to know how we can help him. Finally last friday night we were driving around and all of the sudden the spirit came over me really strong and so I pulled over and we prayed to figure out what it was all about. During the prayer all I could think of was this newly baptized member! So we went straight to his house and he let us in for the first time in 2 weeks. The first things he said was "I'm so glad you got my text." We told him we never got a text from him though. He said he sent one right before we came over, apologizing to us and asking us to come over. He looked at his phone at the text never sent. So I guess Heavenly Father decided to send me a spiritual text! ha ha it was crazy though because the spirit was able to direct us at the exact moment where we needed to go. What a blessing! 

One of our investigators is awesome. He is 26 years old and  He is almost done with Alma in the Book of Mormon and he quit smoking in 3 days after we taught him the Word of Wisdom.

Chris and Jess are my favorite people in the world. They made brownies for the wards last baptism and Chris went to the stake priesthood meeting in Little Rock with Bishop. I love the experiences out here. O love the people I meet everyday! More then anything though i love how involved Heavenly Father is in this work and in our lives. I am beginning to understand a little bit of what my Heavenly Father is like. I know he loves us all more than we can comprehend. I know he wants us to know truth. And ACT upon those truths!!

There is only 7 missionaries in my district! Being a ZL is a lot more fun but its still cool. I didn't get a jacket yet. elder Boyer left his so I just wear it. where did cammie move too?

Chris and jess and so awesome Mom. They are people I can truly say I love on my mission. I am pretty sure they have grown my testimony more then i have grown theirs. ha ha So we had missionary sunday yesterday right? and i was kind of in charge of the whole thing. and then 2 hours before sacrament meeting I hear our main speaker president oliver, president petersens counselor, cancelled on us! it was pretty hectic yesterday but it worked out!

They made me sing in a musical number with all the sisters! i protested it in ward council but everyone voted against me! and then after sacrament everyone came up to me and asked why i looked like I didn;t know what I was doing. so annoying. Me,  elder spencer and the sister missionaries. me and elder spencer have the worst voices. its a rule in our mission that we sing a hymn together every night before we go to sleep and you should hear us sing! ha ha it sucks. but ya this week should be good. we got some investigators going to trunk r' treat. Bishop is going to hire Chris at Bike city too!!
I Love You All and Miss You! Thanks for everything you do!!

Monday, October 21, 2013

These pictures crack me up! I didnt get one picture with him in it! Maybe next week!

Elder Udall's Study Desk

Elder Udall's Wall

Sign Elder Udall made for his investigators.
He said people always walk in and out of their house during lessons.
They told Elder Udall they use the sign even when the missionaries arent there.

Hey there!
So it sounds like yall have had a pretty good week. Mine was one of the better weeks I have had on my mission, and one of the harder ones. It seems like those always go hand in hand.

Anyways this last week has been full of ups and downs. So last monday we were planning on having a lesson with our investigator that night about repentance and why his baptism needs to get pushed back a little bit due to some issues. It was kind of a make or break deal. He hates talking about it so I was worried he would get offended or lose hope or something. So I fasted that day that the Lord would prepare him for what we had to tell him. I was so nervous for that lesson! I was pacing around everywhere in our apartment in fear of getting dropped by an investigator that we have gotten so close too. Well when we got to his house, right away he just started talking about how grateful he was for this gospel and the chance he has to start over. He told us that he was willing to do anything for it and he was pretty much just teaching us the lesson we had to teach him about repentance. So when we told him about the probation stuff he understood and was ready! The Lord completely prepared him for that lesson! It was awesome.

So he has to wait a little over a month before he can get interviewed by Pres. Petersen to get baptized but he is doing good! His wife is doing good to! Last week we brought her the 15 step no smoking program, cinnamon mouthwash, grapefruit juice, and a kool aid pie! The first 3 things were for her to quit smoking. The kool-aid pie was just to cheer her up! And not to toot my own horn but.....I make a pretty mean kool-aid pie! Anyways She can get baptized just as soon as she quits smoking!

Elder Spencer and I have had so many tender mercies this week! So on Wednesday we had an appointment to teach this girl, and I lost the address to her house! I knew the general area though so we went over there and decided to just knock every door until we found it! Well the first door we knocked on wasn't it, but the lady who answered started talking to us and I asked her if she had ever heard of the Book of Mormon and she said that she has read it! So then I asked what she thought about it and she said she knows its another testament of Jesus Christ! This completely took me off guard and so I said "wait.......what?" and she was like "well isn't it?!" and I said ya it is! ha She is a methodist but we are going to go back and teach her more this week!

Elder Spencer and I have made it a goal to talk to everyone we see this week no matter what! No matter where we are or what the situation is and how awkward it might be!.....and believe me sometimes it has been awkward. ha ha but awkward moments make for good laughs!

Anyways...a lot has happened this last week. I wish I had time to tell you all of it. Elder Spencer is learning quickly and is starting to come out of his shell. The Searcy area is just awesome. Tonight we are having dinner and a lesson with an investigator family we found last week and tomorrow night we are teaching a friend of our Stake Presidents inside his home. It was awesome because President Berkheimer went out with us saturday night and all of the sudden he pulled out his phone and called his friend and asked him to come over to be taught by the missionaries and the friend accepted. Good stuff! Anyways I love you all and hope you are searching for those missonary oppurtunites everyday!

P.S. I got a letter from Semore! it was pretty cool. it has been getting pretty cold here at nights now. I am getting myself a jacket today for sure.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Elder Udall and Elder Spencer

Elder Boyer, Kevin Berkheimer, Elder Udall

Kevin Berkheimer. the stake presidents son. He is going in his mission pretty soon! He always goes on splits with us and stuff and we eat at his house like 3 times a week. 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CAMZ!! How was it? Did ya do anything crazy? Did Grandpa call you and tell you that you're grounded?

 My week was pretty dang awesome! Elder Boyer left me and got transferred to Hot Springs. On Wednesday I went to North Little Rock where I picked up my son!!! His name is Elder Spencer from San Diego Cali. He is a pretty cool dude! He is like an exact twin to my former roommate Ty Stroupe. He is really smart......electrical engineer major.....robotics team captain....the works! Its crazy how smart this guy is! He also knows his stuff about the Gospel so that's nice. So on Wednesday when we got back to Searcy we went straight to the apartment and dropped off his bags and then went straight to work! So Elder Spencer is kind of a shy guy, and he was like in a trance his first day. So naturally the first thing we do is go out street contacting. The first house I take him to is Brother Williams, for the sake of tradition. Brother Williams and I pre-planned this. So I tell Elder Spencer that this house was a referral and that the guy here is known to be a little crazy. So we walk up and Elder Spencer knocks on the door and then Brother Williams comes out with this huge samurai sword and yells at us and I take off hoping that Elder Spencer would run to but he just stood there all brave and what not. He wasn't even scared!

 Anyways the rest of that day we went walking and talking to EVERYONE! This was pretty hard for Elder Spencer because he is just really really shy but he stuck it out. There was one instance on that first day where it was pretty awkward. So everyone told me before I started training that no matter how awkward it gets when my greenie is talking to someone (or in my case not talking to someone), that I can't intervene because he has to learn how to do it himself. So at this one door we knocked on this person that opened it and asked who we were and then it was just silent......for like 30 seconds.....and I was just standing there looking at Elder Spencer....and he didn't say anything! ha ha so then the lady just closed the door. ha ha Elder Spencer has been doing so good though! He has been working to overcome his fears and has really improved! I love training. It has taught me so much already and has pushed me to know the doctrine better and be completely focused. Elder Spencer's testimony has strengthened mine and he has definitely helped me! We have absolutely nothing in common but I have already learned to love the guy and am grateful for the chance I get to help him! 

 Our investigators are doing good though. Chris and Jessica are the bomb!! I love them. They have progressed so much. They read the Book of Mormon on their own together and they always talk about getting sealed in the temple now. Last Tuesday me and Chris had a mormon rap battle and it was sweet! The video of it is on Elder Boyers camera though so you may not ever get to witness my skills.

 One of our investigators named Patrick was supposed to come to church yesterday but didn't. Then he texted us at 4 in the afternoon and said see ya at church! ha ha He thought the service was at 9 at night instead of 9 am. So i just told him we had a service at 6 pm that he should go too. So he ended up coming to our mission prep class night for all the priests! He was so confused! But we ended up teaching him the Plan of Salvation afterwards and the spirit was able to testify to him! We are now trying to help him prepare for baptism by helping him quit smoking. Its the best thing ever to watch the spirit change your investigator! Nothing could make anyone happier than helping someone find this gospel and use the atonement. (Alma 29:9) Thanks for the letters you have sent me! Thank you for everything. I love you all and appreciate the support. Austa!

Part of an email to DAD:

Kylie is going to be such a good missionary. I saw a picture of Ryan and he
already looks so much different.he looks way older. its alright though
because i can still beat him up. training is crazy. its fun and it has
helped me become a better missionary. So when are you going to sell the cows soon? are you still
really busy at work?
I gotta go. I love you. thanks for eveything. can you keep my investigators in your prayers for me? I really want them to get baptized.


Monday, October 7, 2013

You Gotta Be From Arizona!


So we beat St. Johns eh? BOO YA! That's good stuff. Tell Ryan Good job on the game!

Well this week...was something else! So we had zone meeting on wednesday and that was pretty good! President wanted us to focus on chapter 3 and chapter 10 of PMG for it. So for the first part Elder Boyer and I decided to focus on the D&C 11:21 and the importance of studying chapter 3 everyday so we know the doctrine. To demonstrate the importance of this we made a huge maze in our cultural hall with a little gate on the other end which represented "the straight and narrow gate of baptism." Then we had 2 volunteers, one representing the missionary and one representing the investigator, we put blindfolds on both of them and told the missionary to lead the investigator to baptism. It was so funny! They were both just running into everything. So then we went over the importance of knowing the doctrine in and out because otherwise its just the blind leading the blind. It was a fun meeting! Not a lot else happened this last week though.

Cool story: We went to an appointment in a neighborhood 2 days ago and the appointment fell through. So Elder Boyer told me he felt impressed to walk up the hill and knock on this one door. So we did and this girl answered and looked at me and said "you gotta be from Arizona!" And I said ya how did ya know? She said that she knows a lot of Udalls from Arizona. Apparently she lived in phoenix and tucson and went to law school at U of A! So we talked about good ol' AZ for a bit and then she started telling us how she had a lot of friends that were returned missionaries but she was methodist and had been her whole life. So we introduced the BOM to her and gave her a copy and we are going to teach her on Wednesday! I'm pumped for it!

Also this week Chris and Jessica told us they are both ready to be baptized!! That totally made my week!  Jessica watched general conference yesterday and said she cried during all of President Monsons talk. Its amazing how sensitive she has become to the spirit. She has come such a long way!! is the low down on the transfers! We got the call this morning and Elder Boyer is out! And I am training here in the promised land! ha ha I am pretty nervous about it though. I am finally going to get to drive so I am excited about that! I just hope my son is ready to work! It has been fun serving with ELder Boyer. 3 months is a long time to be with someone within sight and sound 24/7. We had our little tussles here and there but we made things work with each other. He may end up being my ZL next transfer so that would be pretty sweet!

Its getting cold! I will probably get a jacket this next transfer! Tony is doing good! he watched one session! he has got work to do but he loves the BOM! his favorite character in it though is King Laban because "he goes hard." He liked how king laban took all of nephi's treasures and still kept the plates.  he still has work to do.

I gotta go pretty soon! Elder Boyer and I are gonna go play risk with a part member family today! ha ha so last night we came home and our kitchen and bathroom were flooded. the girl living behind us overflowed her washer and it flooded our place. not cool.

Anyways....... thanks for the package Merrils!! It was awesome!!! And thanks Christie and Trev for your package!! That Truman G. Madsen disc is bomb! My mind was blown within 5 minutes of listening to it!  Thank you for everything. I love you all. Next time we talk.......I'LL BE A FATHER!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Book Of Mormon Is A Ball Of Light!


So ya this has been a crazy week! I know what you are thinking......its Tuesday! But President had a funeral to go to so instead of having Zone Leader council on Tueday he made it on monday and so all the zone leaders have their P-day today instead.

This past week has really been amazing though! Last Tuesday Elder Boyer and I went to the District meeting in Lonoke and it was good! After that we went on exchanges with them so I got to stay in Lonoke with Elder Wheatley, one of our district leaders. It was sweet. He told me he wanted to focus on finding, and so we started doing that right off the bat. We were able to get some referrals from some great members there. We also did some spiritual harvesting and set up a couple of return appointments. Probably the coolest part about being a zone leader is exchanges because we get to go work with other missionaries in our zone for 24 hours and meet new people in a new area. Elder Wheatley is from Provo and he is a really cool guy! My mission has helped me to learn to love meeting new people. I am really starting to love just talking to people I have never met.

Anyways Wednesday night was awesome! Bro. Brown invited Tony, our investigator, and his girlfriend and kids to come over for dinner and FHE. We were able to teach them the first lesson and it was great! After that we took Tony to the church to play some ball with our members. We were able to get 12 non-members out to basketball that night. They were so good too. Next step:get them there on Sunday!

These last couple weeks Elder Boyer and I have become much better friends. We have become really close to each other and to the people in Searcy, to bad transfers is next week! Anyways, like I was saying, we were able to go to zone leader council in North Little Rock yesterday. It was so good! Our mission hit our goal of 56 baptisms for the month! That might be low for other missions but thats something thats never been done in the ALRM! It was sweet. At the meeting we set a goal of 60 for next month! The meeting was so awesome. President has that same effect on people that Coach Semore had. He makes you want to work as hard as you can and reach your full potential. After that meeting I just wanted to pull a King Benjamin and get up in a tower and talk to everyone in Searcy!.....but I couldn't find a instead I went to a chinese bistro.

Story time: President told us that he wants all missionaries to carry a little blue copy of the Book of Mormon EVERY WHERE we go in our hands. So When Elder Boyer and I got back to Searcy we went to this chinese bistro that everybodys been raving about and sat down and ate. This guy came and sat down at the table next to us and I started talking to him about the church. As I was talking to him I opened up my fortune cookie and this was my fortune "The book shall be a ball of light in one's hand." It immediately reminded me of the BOM I had with me and so I was able to introduce it to him and give him that copy! Ever since I have been carrying it a copy of this book everywhere it really has been a "ball of light." I used to hesitate about talking about the BOM to some devout church of Christ people when I contact them on the street. I would try to relate to them by explaining that we believe in the Bible and stuff. I don't know why I was like that! This book is a "ball of light" to ANYONE who will sincerely read it! It has really changed my life and I realize now how much people need this book to get to know their Savior, to find a remission of their sins. (2 Nephi 25:26)

Anyways.....after zone leader council my buddy who is a ZL in Mississippi said he put in a good word with Pres. for me to go there! So i thought I would probably go there next transfer. But after the meeting I went up to President and just asked him what is happening ot me at transfers (not really expecting an answer), he looked at me for a good minute and're training. This totally took me by surprise. I said " searcy?" then he hesitated for a good minute again and then said "Yes!" It was weird because it seemed like he just kind of made that up on the spot but thats what he told me so I may be training here next transfer! Who knows!

Anyways hopefully this email works today! Thanks for the letters Grandma and Grandpa! There is and Elder Rushton in this mission to! Crazy! Mom thanks for the cookies and everything! They were so good! I love y'all!

I can't wait for Kylie! she better be studying PMG and the BOM everyday! she will be a great missionary! Anyways.....i gotta go but I love you! have a great week! next monday we will know if i am getting transferred or not!
The Johannsens! They live out in Beebe and they had us over for dinner! Sister White put a whole bunch of pics of us on fb i think so maybe you can find them there who knows! Our ward is the coolest though! Mom......thanks for getting me out here. This mission was necessary for me. I love this work. I love you and our family too. I hope you are reading every day with each other.
 Fell out of my chair!
 Elder Boyer in front of our favorite Donut Shop.  They gave us free donuts!!