Called to Serve

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

only the gospel will allow a family to enjoy and endure life.

Whats up fam!

Mom you might be doing a procedure right now but I just want to let you know that your in my prayers. I know that this cancer can't as aggressive as you are because you I have seen you run bases. I grateful for your athleticism in everything that you do!

This last week for me has been awesome. I told you about the Elder Zwick experience. That was one of the highlights of my life! The rest of this last week Elder Daley and I have been working in out area a lot which has been great! Members are on fire ever since the member fireside that ELder Zwick put on. We have 5 or 6 members that have told us since then that they have a friend they want taught in their home! That right there is the most effective way to do missionary work. When members invite their friends into their own homes to be taught by their missionaries. Right now we are in the process of weeding out the teaching pool and pausing all those who just are not ready.

Have I told you about our new investigator yet? He is a man we have been teaching for a few weeks now. He is one that President was with when we taught him and Mark was having a bad day and was really mad. So President pretty much grabbed his arm and drug him over to a chair where we gave him a priesthood blessing. After that blessing he has never been the same! He is awesome. We taught him the word of wisdom and the only problem he is facing is coffee. He has been drinking coffee since who knows when and he said he is addicted. So we are working on him with that. Besides that he is good to get baptized and has a date for the 11th.

Elder Daley is the man! I love serving with the guy. This next week we have another mission council and Daley and I are going to be doing a couple of exchanges so it should be fun. Our focus for the mission right now and what we are going to teach at zone conference is repentance and virtue. So I have been studying those 2 topics a lot.

Family, thanks for your prayers. Thanks for all that you do. Its so easy to take for granted the blessing of a close family until you witness so many broken ones. I would dare say that every temptation you can find out in the world today is in someway linked to destroying the family. ONLY the gospel will allow a family to endure and enjoy life. That is one thing I have seen clearly on my mission. You never have to ask an investigator family if they have read or prayed together when you go over for an appointment because you can FEEL it when you walk in. Its s distinct difference when those kind of things are done. I love you Mom. Thanks for being the Mom that made us get up in the morning for scripture study and dragging us to family home evening. Or singing annoying gospel songs when we would fight with each other. Things like that make all the difference! Good luck.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Vist from Elder Zwick of the seventy!

Hey Mom!

Sorry i didn't write a couple of days ago. This last week was one of the busiest on my mission. We were getting prepared for Elder Zwicks mission tour and he sent a pretty thick list of things he wanted set up. That list was detailed right down to the color of markers he wants on the white board. Me and Elder Daley wanted to make sure everything was set up perfect for him so it was pretty crazy!

Monday was our missionary council meeting with Elder Zwick and all the ZL's and STL's of the mission. I was asked to conduct so I got to sit right next to him up front. The whole meeting that he wasn't up talking he would just lean over and teach me something! It was crazy! Its not everyday you get a general authority whispering the gospel knowledge in your ear so I took good notes of everything he said!

Tuesday we had zone conference in Little Rock and wedensday was zone conference in Memphis! So basically the past 3 days Elder Daley and I have got to hang out with probably the most awesome member of the seventy ever! He taught me so much these past few days! It has been one of the highlights of my mission. Last night when Elder Daley and I were leaving memphis to head back to little rock we went to say good bye to him and he gave us his card and told us to keep in touch and that he was going to keep track of us. He is awesome!
Anyways, everything is going great! Little Rock is doing really good! We are teaching some great people. Elder Daley is so awesome. He is a hard working missionary and is a lot of fun to serve with. He is a dang good basketball player too.

On sunday we got a list of people that just moved in the ward from our bishop. So that night we tried to contact as many as possible. It was about 8:30 so we decided to do one more that we felt prompted to go to. We went and it was a young couple who answered the door. After some reluctance they invited us in and so we got to chattin'. We found out they were from gilbert, AZ! They husband is a returned missionary and the wife is not a member. They thought for the longest time that the husbands mom called us and told us to go over there. Apparently the husband fell away a little while ago and the mom had been trying to get them back active. Anyways it was a great visit and the spirit was strong. The husband said that he needs to get back into church. We are going to start teaching the wife now and get them coming to church! I know we were prompted to go there because of the prayers of a righteous mother. Speaking of the priesthood of the church Pres. Packer said "They don't come near the power thats given to a righteous mother." I know thats true. Thanks for your prayers family. Please pray for Stephanie and her family. We haven't been able to teach them in a while and they mean a lot to me. Thanks for everything yall do!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

New Companion! Elder Daley

Mother dear!

Whats up? These last 2 mondays i haven't had time to take a p-day and next  monday i won't either because we are having a meeting with Elder Zwick of the 70! I am excited for that. I can't even began to tell you what happened these last 2 weeks because of all the craziness of transfers but it has been great! Elder Armstrong got released last week as an assistant an he is serving again as a zl in memphis.  I am going to miss serving with him!  Elder Daley just got called to be the new assistant with me. I can already tell he is going to be one of my favorite companions. He is a dang good missionary, he just got done serving in searcy (the sacred home land), and he is a dang good basketball player. Things are going great. I dont have time to share all the experiences but i do want to share my testimony. I love the gospel of Jesus Christ. All my life "the gospel" has just been something i heard but i never really tried to deeply understand it. On my mission though i have realized that "living the gospel" is a whole lot more than just a testimony meeting line or a bumper sticker quote. Its having the faith in Christ to change, or repent, and to make promises with God, and seek out the guidance of the Holy Spirit. As these things become more than just a checklist and are made the central purpose of our lives, our vision gets clearer and we began to live more abundant lives. No matter of its through sunshine or shadow, when we are walking the path of discipleship, we can feel peace and joy. Not just happiness, JOY. A scripture that has been in my mind a lot lately in D&C 112:13 "And after their temptation and much tribulation, behold I the Lord will feel after them, and if they harden not their hearts and stiffen not their necks they shall be converted, and I will heal them." This is the central purpose of our lives and it can always be a joyful journey. I love you Mom. Thanks for your example of discipleship.

Monday, September 1, 2014

See people not as they are right now, but as they can become

Hey Fam!

Thanks for all the birthday letters and pictures and packages! It was great! This last week was awesome. We didn't have very many meetings so we were able to go on a couple exchanges with zl's and it went great. Our first exchange was in downtown Memphis and that where my homegurl Latrice lives. She is Elder Boyers recent convert. Mom she said she is friends with you on facebook. ha ha thats awesome. Our next exchange was in Pine Bluff with the elders there. We also went to some Sketchy areas on my mission this last week. So you know thats a good week!

We also went to the Branch on Mountain view on sunday with President for sacrament meeting on sunday. He is doing this thing where he wants to go with us to all the outlying wards and branches on the mission on sundays so they dont feel out of sight and out of mind. The branch president at mountain view and his wife went to EA for school so it was cool to talk to them.

Basically, I don't have a lot of cool things to say this week but i do have 1 "call to repentance" experience I would like to share. Me and Armstrong were in a apartment complex saturday night teaching one of our investigators and this girl walked up. She was drinking a beer and was a little drunk, but she was just saying the crudest things and not exactly inviting the spirit into the lesson. So at the end of it all, we were about to leave and then she said "yall to good to  pray with me." I thought she was just trying to be all contentious and what not but we told her we would pray with her. Armstrong started to say it and all of the sudden she interrupted and said "Hold on, I know yall are Jesus people, so could you pray for me that I will be able to get a job. Because my 3 kids are in foster care and the only way I can get them back is if i get a job, and all I want is my family back again." That took us off guard. So we prayed for that and at the end she was crying and she said "thanks I needed that." Man I felt like the lowest piece of dirt there. I thought this lady was just all about herself but I realized the reason she was doing things like drinking was just to numb the pain of what she has to deal with everyday. President Monson said "We must develop the capacity to see people not as they are right now, but as they can become." President Petersen always told us "Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is, but treat a man as he should be and ought to be and he will become what he should be and ought to be." I feel like thats a lesson I have been learning over and over again on my mission. Its amazing to see how people and the world look as we try to see with our spiritual eyes. Thanks for everything yall do for me!