Monday, October 26, 2015

Week 39

Hey mom!
   This week has been pretty good. We have a really awesome investigator that we're really excited about. His name is Bobby and his wife is a less active and they have a 2 year old daughter. He is super cool and we have a really great relationship. He invited us to go hunting with him like the first 10 minutes that we met him haha. He wants to take us out this Friday to try some traditional valley food. Apparently something pretty popular is hot cheetos with cheese, and yes it is exactly that, they have a little bag of hot cheetos and they put some cheese in it. They all say it's super good. Idk, people have weird taste, I guess. But yeah, and he wants to be baptized early, on the 25th, because his wife's birthday is on the 26th. She isn't super interested in coming back to church though, and that's kind of a bummer, but I know it will change with time. When she sees changes in her husband and feels the Spirit in her home again. 
   It has been kind of interesting to watch my companion realize more and more how close he is to the end of his mission. He is done on Nov 4. Today we bought his cowboy boots. Normally in this mission, people buy boots, I'm not really sure, I'll never wear them. 
   I don't really know what to write about anymore, there hasn't been like anything crazy or anything that I have to tell you... If you have any questions I guess ask, but yeah that's all I've got this week. 
       Thanks for writing me! Have a great week! I love you!

Week 38

  This week was really great, despite Grammie's passing. When I got the call on Friday that she had passed on the day prior I shed tears in memory of her but then I went right out to work and was fine. I will miss her a lot but I have a strong testimony of the Plan of Salvation and know that she will be fine. I pray that she accepts the restored gospel when it is presented to her. I only worry for Grampa, who I'm sure is not taking it very well. I will continue to keep him in my prayers as always and emailing him.

   Is Dad ok? I know that he too knows that Grammie will be fine but I know he must miss her dearly. I hope he can talk to Grampa about it and help him feel better too.
   We had a cool experience this week. Elder Johnson and I were biking down the street, going to contact a few less actives in the area, when a guy driving a little blue car slowed down next to us and asked me if we could talk to him really fast. So we went to the nearest parking lot and stopped. He got out of the car and introduced himself. He continued to tell us that we were a sign from God. He said that he wanted to make some changes in his life because at the moment he was not where he wants to be and now is the time. He had apparently done something to hurt the relationship between himself and his wife, who is a less active member. And wants to be baptized by the end of this month right around her birthday. He is super cool! We went to his house the other day and taught him the Restoration and his wife was there for part of it. We get along really well and his wife is super nice and they have a super cute little 18 month old daughter. They came to church yesterday for sacrament but then left because he promised someone he'd go hunting with them. We'll talk about that later though haha. I have lots of faith that he will improve.
    We're talking with a lot more people now and staying busy. A busy missionary is a happy missionary. 
  Thanks for keeping me updated, I love you so much! Have a great week!

Week 37

Wow! So much stuff is happening, for sure if you havent already, watch this conference. They all talk about fervent and sincere prayer. I have honestly been slacking a little bit with my prayers recently and I know that the spirit was telling me to fix that. Not that I wasn't saying them or anything, but I wasn't really listening to the Spirit and setting that time apart for a conversation with my Heavenly Father. I've really noticed a difference when I pray with all my heart and forget about time and everything. I feel the spirit noticeably more. They also talked a ton about repentance in Conference, I really liked how they talked about asking God what more we need to repent of. I hadn't really honestly done that before and as I was praying last night I asked and wow, there is so much I need to change haha. 
    Today is already a good day, we went tie digging and we got so many nice ties! Which is good because I'm trying to get a lot of nice ones so I can send you guys a Christmas gift or something. Idk what I should get you though. I have a ton of time to think about it though. That means I've almost been out a year!! I'm almost half way! Where does time go? Today when we went digging for ties I did all the talking. Elder Canfield said it's because my spanish is the best. I do feel a lot more confident in my spanish, and I dont feel like my study habits have improved. I need to work harder on that for sure.
   Everything in the mission is going super great though, thanks so much for keeping me updated. I know that things are super hard, but with the Gospel, any news that I hear makes me happy. Like great gramma, now she has the opportunity to hear the Gospel again, maybe she'll accept. And whatever trial of money or people or whatever, I ask God what I am to learn of it. The mission really has changed my whole perspective on life. I love it!
   So strange that this happened. Just yesterday I was talking with one of our less active members. She has a mother who has Alzheimer's, and she cannot come to church each week because she has to take care of her. She doesn't trust any care taker because they are in it for the money and her mom could get a rash. I shared that I have a relative with Alzheimer's and I remember visiting her with my mom and she didn't remember who she was and how devastating that is. I always think that the mentally sick are very close with God, he wouldn't just leave his children in that situation, scrambled and confused and alone.
   There was a talk given by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, and he talked of the power of mothers. How the love that mothers have for their children is as close to God's love for us as we can obtain as mortals. I think it is so amazing, and it kinda stinks because I will never be able to love my kids as much as my wife, haha just kidding. But I just want to again thank you for being such a great mother to me and Scott and Nathan. It is so Christlike, no matter what we do, you love us just the same. And the endless pain and suffering that you put yourself through for our benefit, I cannot repay the Savior for what he did, nor can I repay you, but I hope to do my best to make you proud so that it is all worth it. Keep staying strong, I love you and miss you!

Week 36

Hey mom!
  Yeah Elder Johnson and I stayed for another transfer together. I'll kill him. No really though, that's what they call it when you are the last companion of their mission, I'm "killing" him. Don't worry we get along great :). He knows literally everything, did I tell you that? It's super funny.
   Elder Canfield and I are staying together!!! At the end of this transfer we will have been together for 6 months! In the mission we called that getting "married" because, we could legally go get common law married. But don't worry that will never happen haha.  I think the friends that I've made in the mission are some of the closest I've ever had. 
    Today being P-day we went to go digging to go find some ties. It's Elder Fielding's first time going tie digging! Memories were definitely made. We bought this bail.. bale? idk.. A bunch of ties for like $25 between the 4 of us, and guess how many ties there are! 200lbs!!! It was super heavy and it will take forever to sort through, but that's pretty exciting huh? It's a mission thing I guess, no sane person in the real world would buy that many ties.  
    It's super weird that I'm going to be in Mission for 6 months, that's a 1/4 of my whole mission! It's super cool though, I'm not even mad. I know everyone in the ward super well and everyone really likes me so I go to church and just say hi to everybody haha. Our ward here has 3 missionaries going out in like a month! It's crazy, its probably cause they've had great missionaries here lately... *cough* nahhh just kidding haha. 
     But that's about everything, thanks for keeping me updated, I'll keep you all in my prayers as always! Love you! Have a great week!    

Week 35

Mama! Esta semana fue muy bien. La obra misional siempre es un placer. Aunque esta semana no fue llena de emocion, siempre estoy feliz, gracias a Dios.
    People always say that, "Gracias a Dios". I'll knock on their door and ask them how they are doing and they're like I'm doing good, thanks to God.  They all say that they are catholic but haven't gone to church in 15 years and yet still think they know lots about doctrine. I just want to ask them, imagine you took a high level math class 10 years ago and never used it until today, do you think you would still remember all the formulas and everything? Probably not. But... you have to be nice. I guess working at Cabela's kind of helped me develop that silly happiness with people, no matter if they are upset or bored, I'm always super happy sounding. I never really thought of that before now... huh..
    People here are almost always super nice though, it's great. Even if they aren't interested or anything they're like, "Hey if you guys are ever in the area and need something to eat or drink, let me know and I'll hook you up." It's super cool. 
   Yes transfers are tomorrow, I'm not sure if I'm leaving or not. But Elder Canfield is training! It's only his fourth transfer and he's training! He's going to be AP one day. That means he'll leave though, and we wont be common lawed.. sad day. I hope if I do leave, I go somewhere spanish speaking finally and in a car. Even though it will start to be a little cooler now that it's Oct. Quien sabe..
   We had stake conference yesterday and Saturday. It was really cool, we talked about multi-generational families. And how there is a cycle of how they work.       1. Baptism and Confirmation 2. Temple Endowment 3. Temple marriage 4. Have children. And they talked about how about almost all of the cycles are broken between steps 1 & 2 due to weak gospel teaching and modeling in the home. Which made me think of how hard of a life my children will have with all the crazy things in the world, gay marriage, drugs, standards being changed, etc.. And how I will be a good enough parent to teach them how to avoid things of the world. It's going to be super hard, but then again that is what I guess my mission is supposed to prepare me for. The second counselor had four missionaries do a little role play in front of everybody and two were mom and dad and the other two were kids. And they were having scripture study and of course the kids couldn't sit still and all that crazy stuff. The missionary acting as the dad was super bad, he might have just been scrambled because he was in front of everyone but it was really funny. Because every time he would do something wrong, the second counselor would correct him. Lots of things to think about. But I really shouldn't because its not important right now. 
    But whatever happens I'll be fine with it. Oh and sorry to hear about Gwyn, that's super sad. 
     I'll let you guys know what happens! Have a great week, Love you!

Week 34

Hey mom!
 Yeah I got the info from the last letter, I am fine with all the changes and everything, I hopefully will be heading off to college soon after I get home anyways so it won't be a deal breaker for me. You guys seems super excited to go back home to Maine though, that's awesome! Dad told me he has been counseled by Uncle Pat to maybe have his own business, he might as well right? He's already putting in all the necessary hours.
   The other day we had an exchange, I worked in our area with a different elder from our zone. His name is Elder Packer, I've actually done an exchange with him before, which was cool to have another chance. However I did most of the talking this time, I don't know if he just didn't want to because it's my area or I just didn't notice how quiet he was last time because I was a greeny. But we had a lot of fun. We talked to these two people from Monte Rey, Mexico who were visiting for a little while for a birthday party. They were super cool and they added us on facebook, and we took pictures with us.
        We're for some reason struggling to find new investigators as a district this last couple weeks, everybody is in school or has a job or something. Lots of times we have appointments with members after 6 until we go to bed and then the hours before that people aren't really home so it's hard to find them. But I know that there are people that the Lord is preparing, I just have to be more obedient and persistent to find them. I've been reading that book, "the infinite atonement" a little more lately. I'm almost done with it. It's super cool, today I read a part that talks about exaltation, it talks about the potential we all have to become like God, which yeah we all know as members of the church. And it had a part about how much humans change in their lifetime, thinking of a baby and how it turns into a michael angelo or a napoleon, into a great being that changes history in a matter of like 20-30 years. And then thinking of what we could accomplish in eternity! Then as missionaries sometimes we'll just sit and talk about doctrine. Exaltation is like the only option! If we dont reach exaltation, we become really powerful angels that serve other gods forever. That'd be cool to be in the celestial kingdom and all but dang! Missed it by that much! So that is really humbling and motivating for me.
   I've studied a lot about inadequacy lately because we have an investigator who feels inadequate and I found a ton of scriptures about it and it really helped me learn a ton too! Honestly one of my favorite times of the day is now the mornings when I can study for investigators.
    I'm doing pretty well except my bank card isn't working. I've used it a ton lately though so I'm not sure if that's the reason. I put like $40 worth of things on my mission card that should have gone on my personal one and so I was just going to buy groceries with my home one for a few weeks but today it didnt work so idk what happened. I just bought like compression shorts and razors and some cologne. But yeah i'm not sure if Walmart was just being weird or what.. But that's all
     Pretty much if I need anything and I can buy it I probably will, I'll just use my home card. Is that ok with you guys? Cause that's what I've been doing... let me know otherwise haha. But yeah everything is going really well and stuff.
  Thank you for writing me! I love you!

Week 33

Hey mom! This week has been pretty good. We were told by the AP's that we needed to move our beds from the front room into the bedroom where they belong. Which we told them wasn't possible because the room is too small. But they just told us, "Make things happen :)" To which I almost responded, "It'll happen when I get transferred :)" But I decided not to be apostate and rude. I am changing! Wow! Haha just kidding. So we spent about an hour or so turning our beds into bunkbeds and putting them in that tiny room, and moving our study desk into the front room. Which means we had to unbolt all the boards where we have our investigators and member's info on and move them from room to room also. It was quite the pain in the neck and now if I stick my foot off the edge of the bed it'll get clipped by the ceiling fan. But that's okay, I don't move in my sleep anyway.
   Then we are just biking around trying to find more people to teach. We find plenty of people but they end up being too lazy to change or they feel like it's not important enough. We talked to a few guys the other night and they asked us a bunch of questions and they said they liked us and everything we said made sense but they were oilfield workers and leave for 2 weeks at a time at least. But on the plus side, the people here are really nice and they usually have a pretty good background of religion. We are teaching a single mother and her two little boys and they have come to church and really liked it. We have another older guy and his brother we are teaching and then we are kind of teaching this guy and his step son but they dont really want to quit smoking weed so we'll see how that goes.
   We had a conference with our zone yesterday and President and his wife gave us a bunch of counsel. I guess a lot of the people in the mission are having a hard time finding new people because we discussed it quite a bit. Basically if you want to find new people you will. It really isn't hard, but in the long run a lot of them just lose interest. Which isn't their fault, it's mine. So I'm just learning how to keep them involved and excited about the Gospel. But its going pretty well.
   Nothing really huge happened this last week, Elder Canfield rolled his ankle the other day playing basketball and his ankle is huge and purple now. He can barely put any weight on it, but he's a missionary, you can't just take a sick day. It's not too bad though he's in a car area, he just has to walk into people's houses and back. If Canfield and I stay together for one more transfer we get "common-lawed" which would be sweet.
    Thanks for keeping me updated, have a great week! Love you!

Week 32

    Hey mom! This week has been pretty good. Yesterday we had some really awesome baptisms. There were 3 in our ward, a man, an older lady and another man who is in a wheelchair. The guy in a wheelchair got a really high fever or something when he was about 10 and it caused a ton of other problems and caused him to almost completely lose control of his body. We communicate with him through his eyes. He blinks once for no and looks up for yes. He can smile and laugh and he can move one of his arms enough that he can type on his Ipad. His name is Alan, and he is so cool. He is super funny, and has a great sense of humor and I love him. I wasn't his missionary but I was lucky enough to be one of the people helping in the font. We had 4 people in the font to help lower him into the water. He coughed a ton after he was dunked, because he can't really close his mouth, but he was expecting it. The spirit was so strong and I could see the happiness in his eyes after we lifted him out of the water.
     The older lady is a really close friend of the recent convert we just baptized a little while ago, Jerry and Juanita & Miguel. Her name is also Juanita, kind of confusing. And apparently she has a sense of humor too, she is about 5'0 or so , and when they asked her who she wanted to baptize her, she said me. So, I got to baptize her. It was my first time saying it in Spanish! I had a helper though so I wasn't really worried. 
     I hope you guys have fun on your trip, I wish I could go with you!  Tell Grammie I say hi and that I'm praying for her, Grampa too! Stay safe! Love you!

Week 31

    Yeah this week wasn't really that crazy. There was 3 day training for all of our leaders and so Elder Johnson went to meetings for about 8 hours every day so we only got to work in our area for like 3 hours a day. It was hard to get much done. But I had fun, I was in a trio with the other Elders in my apartment. A spanish area! It was really fun, I like spanish lessons because I only say what is really important. I almost like double check with the spirit haha. I really like spanish but I dont feel like I've been improving for a little while. It's because everyone in our apartment is really close so we just kinda hang out and talk when we should be studying... Repent haha

   Jerry was confirmed yesterday and given the Holy Ghost. He cried, it was kinda shocking to see him cry. He's like a big dude, 6'2" and like 250 and a mechanic from Arkansas so he's all southern. And he walked behind the place where they prepare the sacrament and hid for a few minutes while the meeting went on. It was pretty cool.

   Being a missionary on Sundays is super hard. Not only do you have to worry about your investigators coming to church, but you have to worry about the lessons and talks at church. When people go off about something stupid or wrong or whatever I have to fix it! Yesterday we had someone in church for her first time. She wants to change and we told her she'd feel the spirit and like church and everything and she came. Hadn't even taught her the Restoration yet and the Gospel Principles class was about the Millennium. Which was ok, the book keeps it pretty basic and easy. But the members went into super deep doctrine and I was getting pretty ticked. We have a few people who have been members for like 30 years and they still go to that class. After that class she walked out pretty fast, got her kids out of their classes and went straight out the door, and didnt say anything to me. I was super worried. But we visited her afterwards and she said it was just longer that she thought. Then we taught her the Restoration and BOM and I think everything is fine now. . 
    Not super exciting this week but it was great. 
          Have a great week Mom, Love you!