Week 55 – Elder Jones

Over Golden Investigator, Zone Conference and Mongolian BBQ

 

 

Tuesday: Today was just long. We biked. A lot. Contacted and tracted.
We had 5 lessons set up and only 2 happened. They were both basically
just check up lessons. Our bodies did not want to bike and move but
that’s what we did.

Wednesday: Ok. I don’t even know where to begin. Wow. Ok. So, we got a
text for a referral while we were grabbing our bikes. We read it, then
we got a call from the people who sent it. It was the SLC sisters.
Apparently they call for, a man named E****, who called the member on
Mormon.org. He said to them that he had studied the gospel for here
months and wanted to be baptized. They put him on date and called us.
We were able to meet with him an hour later. He said that he was at a
used book store or a place hat sells used books and saw a bible that
was unusually large. It was a quad. He saw all the other books in it
and bought it. And he read he book of Mormon maybe a few times, the
pearl of great price, the doctrine and covenants. And he read the
Bible a ton growing up. And he became intrigued. So he studied the
church on his own. Very in depthly. He read Jesus  the Christ and
Mormon doctrine and a ton of other things. He studied the gospel for
three months very in depth. He has read church literature than I have.
And he believes it all and the spirit has prepared him so well. He
said that it’s just pulling at him and he can’t escape. All his live
he has made choices that are in line with the church because of logic
basically. And now it’s starting to click. Since he started studying
the church, he has been having dreams about him being at a party and
him not drinking and smoking and people ask him why and he doesn’t
know besides that he can’t. He also is having dreams about him seeing
the temple and him needing to go there and going towards it and the
dream ending right before he goes there. He really wants the temple so
bad. He found out about baptism for the dead and can’t get it out of
his mind. He asked if there is a limit to how many can be done at
once. He wants to go do it for 8 hours straight he said. He said he
wants to save as many deceased people as fast as he can. So he will
get baptized probably at the beginning if the month.

Thursday: We dropped B**** today.  It just
felt so right, we went in and he had a question about the Book of
Mormon which we answered and then showed us some false doctrine he
found online and we helped resolve that. I’m the end, he just wanted
to stick to the Bible because he felt comfortable with that and didn’t
want to change. And the Spirit was there and it felt right.  He is still
friendly with us and gave us cookies and if we have questions with the
Bible we need help with, we can go to him. And same for him about he
Book of Mormon. The spirit was there and it’s all ok.
E***** called today and he was super excited because he found out his
deceased grandma was Mormon. He was so pumped and called just to tell
us that. We also set up a chapel tour with him for tomorrow.

Friday: Zone Conference today. It was awesome to see some of the
people from my first area. Elder Rawson, Elder Duseigneur and Elder
Robinette were all there and we had a blast. But Elder Rawson and
Robinette go home really soon. And my trainer in less than six months.
All my friends are going home. Hat made me realize that time is
starting to pass and I actually have been out a year.
President Ward, our mission president, is so funny. He’s awesome. A cool quote: “Tithing is paid by faith and not by money.”  Wow.
We had a referral from the Zone Leaders of an entire family. We met
them but they had to leave. They seem pretty open to us.
We also had another crazy call. Some guy called us and said he has
been studying the church on his own for the last 18 weeks. He finally
decided to get ahold of missionaries. But his wife is very anti and so
he is doing his behind her back kinda. We have to meet with him over
the phone. He talked with us for an hour and he knows a lot. He read 3
Nephi and loved it so much he finished he rest if the Book of Mormon.
Then he started at the beginning and is in the end of alma. We have a
phone appointment tomorrow at noon. But he knows a lot and loves it.
It’s a lot like E****. It’s weird that they both called in two days of
each other.

Saturday: Well, we had another lesson with J******. He said he believes
all the words of the Book of Mormon. He does have a question that is
very difficult to answer without getting  into very deep doctrine. So
that will be a tough one.
Besides that, we contacted. All day. From noon till dinner. About 6
hours. That was an adventure. We had dinner with the Baldridges. It
was awesome. They took us to Mongolian BBQ. I love them so much.
Riding back home with them in their mini van was like being with my
family and having one if my friends there. They are my favorite family
in the mission. And I’ve only been here a transfer.

Sunday: E**** loved church! He said it was a lot to take in and he was
still processing but in a good way. It all made sense to him and
connected a ton of dots! It was amazing and one of my favorite
Sunday’s out here. This afternoon we found a new investigator. He was
hang’in out with his friend, another investigator we have, and he was
there for the spiritual thought and said he liked reading and seemed
kinda interested. So we will see where that goes. His name is N*****.

Today: We went frisbee golfing. That’s what we already did. But, we
are getting lunch now. We got a good video while playing.
Luva!

Week 54- Elder Jones

Tires, Migraines and Collars

I made a goal to try to write a little bit every day. So I’m going to
try a different approach.

Tuesday: We biked a lot. We were both feeling sick the night before
and there were some leftover effects in the morning. That was a hard
morning. We rode out to a far street and T***** didn’t answer the door
for his appointment. That was the appointment that was going to get us
through the upcoming months. That’s bad. We contacted a little more
and ate lunch. Our bodies weren’t handling it too well. We went tracting on this cool street on a steep hill. We met a guy named D**** and he works on bikes. He said the JW’s come to his house a lot. We told him we weren’t the JW’s and he said he had a few LDS friends. We asked him if he knew about the Book of Mormon. We ended up on one of the coolest and most sincere discussions about the Book of Mormon I’ve had yet.  We gave it to him to read and set up a return appointment. I’m excited for him.

We also ran into a Catholic tracting. He wasn’t interested but we were
very dehydrated so we asked for water and he invited us in and gave us
some awesome lemon water, cut up a watermelon and had us eat it.  Then he gave us the rest in a bag. What a cool guy.

It was so hot that these little parts of my shoe that are supposed to be permanently glued on, came off because the it melted. It was a little bit inconvenient but I still don’t mind the heat.
Wednesday:  It was Elder Kerby’s birthday. He is 20. Happy Birthday!
I actually pretended it was Christmas and got the whole district to do
the same. Haha. But Sister Baldridge is my favorite person in the
ward. She came to give me some butter and I told them that it was his birthday and she asked what his favorite dessert was and made it. I love her. She reminds of you Mom.

Thursday: We had a lesson with this guy that really knows his bible.
He is really happy where he is but loves missionaries and will read
what we ask him to and do what we ask him to like pray about the church.
It was a really busy day today though. We hardly had any time to do
anything but go to lessons. So that was awesome.
Hey, I found out why missionaries are required to wear collars. It’s a
safety thing. They want us to stay cool. When it’s 105 out and you’re
in hill city and you’re covered in sweat, the collar acts as a cooling
towel. It captures the sweat and keeps it there and it pretty cooling.
Elder Kerby takes two showers a day. We are always covered in sweat. I
don’t mind it. I really don’t mind the heat here even if it’s 105 all
week.

Friday:

Sorry I skipped yesterday. I started to have a headache when
we were contacting people. Then my body felt off. I kept going though,
trying to push it off. But I still ended up with a migraine. It was
mostly downhill to get back home and so I thought I would make it even
though we were really far away. As we were going down the highway
that we have to ride we were going really fast and something put an
inch long gash in my tire and it blew up. So we were stranded and
none of the missionaries with cars could pick us up for a while. And I
was dying of a migraine. All cars sounded so loud. We eventually made
it back and I felt like I was going to die. So I didn’t have time to
email.
Saturday:  The day went well. We met with D**** again and were able to
teach most of the Restoration to him, but very out of order. I hope he
comes to church tomorrow. We usually have to make a lot of long bike
rides on Saturday to invite people all over the place to church. We
accidentally broke the Word of Wisdom today. There’s this sparkling
juice drink that I’ve had every once in awhile on my mission, so
has Elder Kerby and so have a ton of members. A less active gave us
some and we were drinking it and Kerby noticed that it has green tea
extract in it. Whoops. He signaled for me to stop drinking it. We both
had had like half of it though. It’s weird because my whole mission I
had no idea and neither did he.

Sunday: That was probably the hardest fast Sunday in my life. After
fasting at church, we rode all around the mountains here. We moved so
slowly. But we have been working on expecting miracles. Our miracle
wasn’t the one we expected. We had enough names lined up for almost
two hours, which is how much time we had. We normally would never
finish those names. We finished them in a half hour. And we were
moving really, slowly. That was a cool miracle. At dinner with the
second counselor, he asked if we could practice teach his ten year old
son who has been reading Preach my Gospel. Instead, we practiced taught
his family and had him teach with us like a missionary. He did such an
amazing job. He has one if the best testimonies I’ve heard in the
mission, and he’s ten! When he serves, he is going to be absolutely
amazing!
Later, as we were at Starbucks getting wifi by the curb, there was
this car right next to us and the people looked kinda shady.
Eventually one if the guys in the car asked about our bikes and we
started talking to him about bikes. One of the girls there joined us.
Eventually we talked to her about our mission and found out she is
from Chattanooga. So we clicked well and talked about Chattanooga for
a bit.  It was probably the easiest conversation I’ve had with a random
stranger on my whole mission. Somehow Elder Kerby lead it perfectly
into talking about the gospel. We offered to leave our number with her
so if she or anyone she know is interested, she could call us. I have
two kinds of pass along cards. I reached for one to write our number
down on one but I felt like I should grab the other one, with the temple on it.  So I did and when she looked at it, her eyes lit up and she said she
had been there and seen the Salt Lake Temple and loved it. Thanks
Spirit! So it was a really cool conversation. Hopefully something will
come of it. I don’t know. Something felt good about it.

Monday: We are about to go disc golfing I haven’t read your emails yet
but I’ll do that when I can. We just stopped to grab wifi.

Luva!

Week 53 – Elder Jones

Mud, Teslas and Biking

Wow, so I’m sorry but there probably won’t be much on this email. I
am probably the most exhausted this week than any other in my
mission. I didn’t start writing this till last night. It’s because we
are officially back on bikes.
So it’s pretty horrible. Imagine the hills in Nana and Papa’s
neighborhood. They are that close together. Except just make them as
steep as the hills in Washougal, and even longer than that. They are
so close together too. It took us about ten minutes to get up this one
road because it was so steep and long. It took us less than a minute to
go back down. It’s kinda like the hills over by the Rose Gardens.
That’s the best comparison I can get to it. In other words, THIS AREA
WAS NOT MEANT FOR MISSIONARIES TO BIKE! It’s a lot of fun going down the hills though. That’s a blast. But our apartment is on the top of a huge hill. I am pretty out of shape, not too bad, but still, it’s quite an
adjustment. My bike is doing ok.  We can’t do nearly as much work as before wish sucks. So I’m exhausted and my body is aching nonstop. But it started to get better yesterday. My endurance is building up again. There is a reason Auburn is the endurance capital of the world. As in they have races like every month that people come from around the world to do these races. And I’m biking in that town.

I saw Hannah and Andy Hoggard and I think Allie and Madi Cowan and
Gavin Ricks in the New Era Magazine. There was an article called “A Flood of Mud and Hope” and it interviewed a ton of youth and all their names were in it.

We had dinner with our Bishop this week. He came to pick us up……in
his Tesla. That was a lot of fun. On the way back he showed us the
autopilot and the acceleration. It was so nice.

I got covered in mud yesterday. We were going down this huge hill and
it had a little hiking trail on he side of the road. It looked like it
would be fun to take my bike on (it ended up putting about 5 punctures
in my tires, but all I had to do was pull the thorns out and spin my
wheels and the green slime on the inside sealed the tube right up with
no problem. I love that stuff). But I took that trail.  So
I wanted to get back on the road. There was this little ditch that I
could tell had a little water in it between the road and the trail.
But it was easy to clear the water. What I couldn’t see is that it was
mud all he way up to the road. So I jumped with my bike in my hands and landed in mud.  Needless to say I had to get changed. I got pics.

We have this investigator that I think I talked about last week. He loves the Priesthood Authority and how that works. Totally believes in Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. He’s hard to meet with since he never remembers when the appointments are. We are going to try putting him on date this week. His name is A****.
We also have an investigator named Thomas. He is 14 but looks 25. He really is trying to find what is right when it comes to the Gospel. We had an amazing lesson this past week and the spirit was really there and he is progressing. For some reason he always says he will come to church and always is in track for it the night before. But he hasn’t come yet. So that’s hard. But we will keep trying.

 

Week 52 – Elder Jones

Anthony, Year Mark and Fires

 

Hey y’all!

What the Heck Dad? Why were you when you visited my mission for business?  I loved those pictures from this week. They made me smile.

The work was good this week. We did get two new investigators. mostly still trying to visit all the members and also visiting less actives that we are told to. And taking advantage of the car we are borrowing. We give it back to the other elders on Wednesday. Not looking forward to that.

So the forest fires have started up again. It was in our ward this time. We woke up and there was smoke hanging over one of the valleys.  It was from a town outside of our mission. Then halfway through the day we noticed there were a lot of planes flying over head.  We saw a giant plume of smoke. We went after it and we also called a ton of people because we have no way of knowing if there was an evacuation order. We chased the fire and found where it was. We went to help any members we could reach. There were two or three members houses that almost got burned, their road was barricaded and shut off from the cops because they had a voluntary evacuation order on those streets. So we went to the members we could (we were less than a mile away from the fire at this point) and made sure that we’re ready to leave at a moments notice. Then we noticed a ton of people were out on the streets looking at the fire so we went and talked to a lot of them, about the fire and the gospel as well. They got it out before it spread way to far but we could see the flames. So that was a lot of fun.

I have been studying a lot about humility this week. It has been cool to see how much I can change. I have been able to find a new perspective on things and I am trying to see through that lens as much as possible. For me I have found that a lot of it comes down to not thinking about myself. In everything, not just being selfless, but focusing on how I can make others feel loved and wanted. There are some amazing missionaries that make you feel that way. There are two or three in this mission that just can do that every time you see them. I want to be like that. And I think humility is the key. It will also help me to make the right decisions. Humility is handing all to God and submitting to his will. That’s what he wants me to do, serve others. So that’s what I’m working on.

So I hit my year mark this week. 🎉🎊🎉🎊🎉🎊🎉🎊🎉🎊🎉🎊🎉🎊 I still feel like I’ve only been out six months. So when it came, I had all these feelings about how I’m not ready to be halfway done, I didn’t accomplish as much as I should have so far. I need to make the second half go even better. I still feel like one of the younger missionaries in the mission because I am still not good at so many things. I have so much room to improve. So my New Years resolution I guess for the mission is to allow the mission to change me more. I have been feeling like I’m good where I’m at in a way, but I need to improve more. So much more. I can’t believe I’m halfway yet, I don’t even think it’s hit me yet, but I’m going to make the best of the rest if the time I have left.

We went to Chick-fil-A and got milkshakes (Thank you Merritt for the year mark envelope you stuck in my suitcase last year) and had dinner there the next day. I don’t have anywhere to burn a white shirt so I cut a tiny piece of a white shirt off that was a few inches long and burn that because it didn’t damage anything. It’s in my journal.

If I send a letter home sometime will you put it in my Keeper’s Box. 

We had a really cool Pioneer Day stake activity on Saturday.  I know

today is Pioneers Day (the day LDS people celebration making it to the Salt Lake Valley) but they did it then. It was a big BBQ with lots of food, live music, lots of activities and desserts. I wanted to wear my cowboy hat so bad but it’s just barley outside of missionary dress code. Oh well. But it was a lot of fun.  Also, a cool fun fact, I come home on Pioneer Day. Which means they will literally celebrate with fireworks (at least in Utah).  🙂

So we met this awesome guy names A******. He is really cool. We met him yesterday and taught him a lesson. And we both wanted to put him on date and could have but we held off and decided to wait till next time so that we can make sure he keeps commitments. His last missionaries told him about Joseph Smith and he believes it all and believes the church is true. So with some work and with many prayers, he should progress pretty well. I’m excited for him.

Yeah speaking of the temple, I’m just far enough south that I am allowed to go to the temple again. So we should be going soon.

It’s definitely cooler in the mountains. It doesn’t usually get above 105 degrees, at least since I’ve been here. But each afternoon is usually around 100 degrees. So not bad. 🙂

Week 51 – Elder Jones

Auburn, Statues and A New Comp………Again

Yeah, so sorry I wasn’t able to email it off this morning. It’ll be this way while I’m in Auburn. We only have wifi if we go to Starbucks or somewhere like that or the church.

First things first, we are stuck at the Toyota dealership right now because the car needs to be fixed. It’s not even our car, we are on bikes but we are using other Elder’s car right now because they are being punished and got it taken away. But they didn’t tell the mission office it needed to be fixed so we are cleaning up their mess. There is wifi here so I can email for a little bit.

So, it’s been a very, very crazy, busy week. I got Hilcrest ready for the Sisters to take over and got them all the info they needed. We got to Auburn at 6:45 pm and had dinner, while we left our stuff in Auburn 3rd’s truck. Then they dropped us off at dinner. Not even a half hour into dinner we get a call from the APs. An Emergency Transfer was happening. Earlier that day Elder Nettleton had gotten in an accident and they took his driving privileges away. His new comp, Elder Kerby, is from Panama and doesn’t have an American license. So Elder Nettleton needed a comp that could drive. So they should have sent me over there to be his comp but they have been wanting to shotgun (put two brand new Elders in) this area for a while so they sent my companion over there and gave me Elder Kerby. So we don’t know anyone here and our info on our iPads didn’t update until last night. We don’t have connection up here except for at the church and at Starbucks. So we went in blind for an entire day. It was so hard. It’s almost exactly like being up in the hills of Washougal except replace some of the pine trees with redwoods and the hills are steeper and closer together. Actually, Auburn feels more like the Oregon coast except there is no Ocean and it’s hot.

The view from Corbin’s apartment. 🙂

So we couldn’t see where anything is in civilization or anything because of trees and hills.  We had to drive to the only member we could find and ask how to get to the store to get food. That was hard. Then we had to figure out where home was. It was an adventurous day. But I’m so glad that it happened because I’ve heard about Elder Kerby. He has a reputation for being the most obedient and hard working missionary in the mission. And I am so thankful!!!! We can work our butts off now. And wake up on time and be obedient. It’s been amazing. I can finally do all the work I want without someone holding me back. In fact, he pushes me up and if I were to shotgun an area, which I am, he’s the guy to do it with. He’s been our for three more months than me and is from Panama 🇵🇦 so he’s awesome.

It is really cold here in the mornings but by the time we leave the apartment it’s hot like everywhere else. We have a beautiful view of our part of the valley from our back porch. I do studies out there every morning. It’s so cool.

Elder Kirby is a lot like my trainer. His mannerisms the way he talks, the things he likes, it’s so weird. Its like being with my trainer again except without the stress of being green.

Right outside of our apartment complex is this dentist place. And for some reason this dentist had someone carve these 50 foot stone statues of female Amazon Warriors. And they are totally naked and not shy about it. It’s super weird.

I learned how to solve a Rubix cube this week.

We have a Chick-fil-A here! And even better, a member is giving us coupons today! I was so mad when they finished the one in Vancouver right after I left. But I get it now.

I only got to be with my original companion for 30 minutes, but I love Elder Kerby so much. We get along so great and have so much fun. It’s been a blast. We laugh and work so hard together.  It’s super crazy right now and it’s been even more so trying to meet the people we need to.

Well, I’ll send a few pictures if I have any.

Luva!

Week 49 and 50 – Elder Jones

Week 49

New Misson President, Emus and Basketball

Hey y’all!

Good week this week. Felt kinda slow but it was still good.  So I have kinda been slacking this transfer when it comes to improving. Of course, I’m always making progress and the work has been getting better, but I’ve just been going along and doing what I was supposed to. My studies have not been as in depth as they should and I haven’t been critiquing myself and focusing on how I can improve each part of being a missionary. I realized that this week and I have flipped it around. The way I talk to people is different, my quote wall has doubled, my studies have so much more of a purpose and are more effective, I find myself studying articles throughout the day any spare minute I can and my desire to work has even increased. I have been going to missionary issues of the New Era because they have a lot of good advice for people preparing to serve and those already serving. Those articles lead to some really awesome talks. I started with the May 2013 New Era and took it really slowly. A cool article from that is called “Mission life”. It explains a lot of the aspects and the things we do Day to day. It’s been awesome. I kinda have lost some of my fire while being with Elder Gardner, but I don’t want to let that happen anymore. I won’t let it happen anymore.

I did something on my missionary bucket list. We were tracting and came around a street to start. There was this Dad and his two sons playing basketball. Before we even knocked on the first door I heard the Dad say to his kids “I bet they would want to play” so I turned around and said you know what, we will. Elder Gardner was covering his eyes and saying “oh no” at this point because we both suck at basketball even though he is tall. But we emptied our pockets and untucked our shirts and played.  We creamed them. It was like that video that went around a few years back. We wrecked them and had an awesome conversation and got all their info and they said we could come and play again and so we are going to bring some more missionaries and play, and if we win, they have to listen to one of the lessons.  It was awesome.

We were tracting this week, as we have to because that’s the best way to find right now, and we were in a neighborhood with a lot of Punjabis in it. Knocked on lots of doors and one of the doors, another Punjabi family answered.  They wanted to watch the video about Christ. We were so surprised because none of the Punjabis ever listen to missionaries. We showed it to them and they loved it and said we could come back. We came back on Saturday and taught them a lesson and a half.  They want us to come back. There are a lot of people in the house and only the younger two generations listen to us. But it is amazing that they want to listen to us. And they are progressing investigators. There are almost never Punjabi investigators that actually progress. So this is amazing. We will go back this week and teach them more. Its hard to teach complex subjects to them, but they are the most promising people yet.

The area is great. We found three new investigators this week with more to come.  It’s awesome.

Elder Gardner and I have gotten really good at silent communication.  In meetings, lessons, even just talking to members, we can just look at each other and know what the other one is thinking its cool.

I was in ward council yesterday when it hit me, its fast Sunday! I had already eaten breakfast when got up and it was too late. I was kind of mad at myself. I couldn’t believe I had completely forgotten and not remembered until then. Well, I found out why later. When I got your email about Addy and Baby Salsa, I realized I had actually forgotten for a reason, so that I could fast for Addy and Charlotte. Makes perfect sense right? Cool tender mercies. I know I’m not in the midst of it, but I feel really close to y’all, all the way out here. Its weird. A good weird. I feel like I am there in a way. I have the same feelings as I have as if I were there even though I’m not and haven’t seen her or Addy or David or anyone.

It’s been really tough out here this last few weeks because there has been some things gong on in the zone ad I’ve been super stressed out and there is so much that I’m trying to work with and I’m caught in the aftermath and I’m super stressed about it.  When I woke up this morning, the second I opened my eyes the wave of stress slapped me again and I was back to worrying and stressing and having that occupy my thoughts constantly. When I found out about Charlotte, one of the first thoughts I had was “You can quit your worrying and stressing. There are worse things that other people have to go through. You are stressed yes, but your sister and family are stressed too and they now have more than emotional stress, they also have physical problems to deal with. That’s something to stress about. Yes, take your job seriously but don’t get blinded by it. God will make sure you’re taken care of. If you do all that you can, that’s enough.  That won’t be enough for your sister. She will probably be dealing with  this throughout the rest of her life. Suck it up.” So I felt comfort that my problems aren’t a big deal. I also felt like everything will be ok With Addy and that I don’t need to let it distract me either. So how is Addy? What condition is she in?  Is David handling it well? How about the kids?

We have a new mission president. President Ward. He was in Yuba city yesterday for Stake MCM.

The picture y’all got this week was from the Bests. They took us to dinner at a Mexico place and we were talking about how their son on a mission hardly writes them and they wanted our parents to have a picture of us. I’m glad y’all hopefully liked it.

Luva!

Week 50

4th, Frisbee and Transfers

Hey y’all!

I’ve been having these dreams again that I’ve finished my mission. Sometimes I tell people in my dream that I must be in a dream but they prove me otherwise. Then I wake up and restart my mission at the halfway point.  🙂

It’s so cool because somehow I have felt who Charlotte is.  Like her personality and stuff. I don’t know how because I haven’t even met her but I can tell who she is. I prayed for her and Addy and David.  It was even hard for me when I heard the news. It was actually really hard. I am so sad for all three of them. But I’ve received a lot of comfort. I’ve even had some people email me about it, trying to help. But in the end, it is actually bringing me closer to Christ.

I was thinking a last week last week about how I don’t really miss movies. Yea, if a tv is on it’s distracting but I don’t just sit there and think, man I really want to watch a movie right now. I just have not cared that much right now. Then I walked into the living room of a members house and her nonmember husband was starting to watch Star Wars. The music started playing and the words started going across the screen. Then I rethought about it. I have decided, I don’t really miss watching movies…..except Star Wars. I really miss that.

I randomly remembered this week how we used to have our “I love you more”  battles and I would always have to say: “I love you more no matter what you’re busted and not me no matter what haha.”

I Got the video of Charlotte you sent last week btw. It downloaded eventually.

We met president Ward this week. He is amazing. He is very energetic and he and his wife are so funny together. He is really straightforward and knows what needs to be done and makes sure it gets done. He is a really loving guy and he cares a lot about us personally.

I have learned a very good lesson this week. I learned that it better to choose the harder right than the easier wrong. I learned that it’s better to stand up against the wrong, even if it’s against your companion. The results are almost immediate. I was able to avoid so much trouble that I could have been in for not standing up for what is right. The spirit directed me and told me that I needed to say something and it was hard but I did. And I am in a much better place because of it. I’ve been working hard on listening to the spirit because it’s hard for me to know the promptings he gives me. But I have been able to feel subtle thoughts and whether or not it’s me I follow them because I can tell the slight difference. Usually a tiny little thought pops into my head to ask if it’s the spirit. As soon as I do, I get another feeling that just barely tells me it is and I go with it. It’s so worth listening to it.

Our car had some trouble this week and so we were on bikes for a few days that was fun. We will be getting a new car in the next two weeks.  Brand new.

Karen, the person that we had the baptism for in Citrus Heights when I just got there passed away. It was a few months ago but nobody every told me. That made me really sad.

Ok, I’m mad now. Transfer boards came in on Saturday night and we all knew Elder Gardner was leaving but when the transfer boards came out, it showed us that I’m leaving as well. And I don’t want to leave. This ward has been the best. I wanted to stay here for six months. Now I’m leaving at three months.  We are having sisters put in our ward and so I’m scrambling to write down everything that they need to know when they get here. The area book probably won’t be updated for a day or two so the will probably be going in blind. But at least I got the area I wanted. I’m going to the Auburn Zone.  Auburn, CA that is. Not Alabama thankfully. Regardless, it’s still Auburn and I will have to go in with my battle armor which consisted of my Alabama hat and shirts and keychain and everything else I have. But it’s the zone I want to go to because it’s a lot of country. Right now there are no sisters in the zone. All elders. I will live in the same complex as Elder Nettleton, the Elder that was in the MTC with me and got held back for six months. He’s out now and I’m so excited to be with him. My companion will be Elder Porter. Elder Gardner was his companion before I got to Yuba.  So another mutual companion thing going on. I’ve heard he is an awesome person. But I feel better about this one because from what I’ve heard, ElderPorter and I have the same interests and stuff. He’s a total redneck and loves Country stuff. So that makes me feel like we will get along.  I’m really excited to go there and even our apartment is supposed to be super nice.  If I’m leaving my dream ward, I’m going to an even better ward. I’m super sad and saying goodbye to people was hard, but I’m really excited to get a cool new place.

Luva!

 

Week 48 – Elder Jones

Heat, Goals and Luaus

Hey y’all!

I love y’alls emails, they make me happy.  It was hot this week.  110 degrees most of the day all week. Hard to tract in that and it kills your motivation. But I’m glad I like the heat.

It was a slowerish week I guess. We had Zone conference this week in

Gridley. It was President’s “funeral” or his last zone conference. He and the rest of the mission presidency bore their testimonies and it was really cool to see the powerful truths they shared. They had their families make a cool video in which they shared how having the Marston’s service on a mission blessed their lives. The Marston’s also made another video that was just a ton of pictures to music. It was pictures of missionaries throughout their three years of service. The video was almost a half hour but it covered every single missionary in the mission at least once. Usually more. So that was super cool. After that we sang the mission song and we all got to hug him and say goodbye because we won’t see him again. It was really sad. I’m going to miss him so much. I’m so grateful for the service he has done. He has taken this mission and turned it into a mission that is way better than it used to be. He really has changed it. He loves every single missionary and he is the best.

On Friday I was slightly frustrated with Elder Gardner on the inside, which is almost the norm but I’m working on that, for being lazy. He woke up at about 11:00 am that day and I wanted to work and it was weekly planning day.  So I tried to incorporate him in weekly planning and he would just say “whatever you think”. I had been trying to ask him what we can do to find people to teach and he would help so we skipped weekly planning and went tracting.  We found three new investigators. It was awesome.

On Saturday we ended up in Robbins and one of our new investigators that has been really hard to get ahold of had just ended up with the custody of his nephews and was looking for more of a support system and we told them about primary and stuff and they were all going to come to church but they didn’t end up showing up it was sad. But hopefully we can get ahold of them again his week and get them started again.

I got bit by Fancy again. She has been really weird around me lately. She latched into my arm this time. I’m going to have to stop holding her for a few visits.

We had a luau on Saturday too. It was the family reunion of a member of our ward for her birthday and they invited some members and the

Elder Goodman is a crossfire freak and tries to make us all eat healthy. He has been on this rant lately about how bread is poison for your body, or at least it’s just horrible. So I showed up to the church with a straight loaf of bread for lunch. This was his face when I opened the container.
We went and ate dinner at lumberjacks an they had a one pound pattie burger that elder Gardner got. The waitress got a box for him because she didnt think he would eat much of it. That hurt elder Gardners pride. He finished it all ad the fries.

missionaries to it. We helped set up and take down and took food home.

There are a lot of non members in the family and so we were talking all day with people about the church and what we do and it was really cool. Not necessarily work for our area but work for the whole country. But it was awesome. We had a thing of cookies and a small baggie of pork we were taking home, and we said goodbye to her and turned around and it had multiplied into a giant bag full of all kinds of food and at least a gallon of pulled pork and two trays of cake and more stuff like that. Wow.

This one is shorter because I didn’t start writing until yesterday. So I can’t remember much if the little things.  Oh, we got to do archery tag again. That was a blast. I’ll send the video. We won’t do it again because a lot of the zone doesn’t play and they want the gym. Even though they don’t even use the gym for anything. 

Our zone goals went well. Our goal for new investigators was 80 which think is he highest in the mission. In Citrus Heights our goal was 34 which we were proud if we could make that. So 80 is crazy. We busted that goal five days ago and made 90 instead.  We all just worked super hard. I’m so proud. So our zone leader is buying us all ice cream. He told us if we could make that goal he would buy it.

My MTC companion is coming down to Yuba because his comp needs to renew his military ID at the air force base here. So I will be able to see him while his comp is doing that.

Always it was an awesome week and I’m excited for another.

Luva!