Week 92 – Elder Jones

The Lost Keys, Almost Dying and Mother’s Day

Monday: We went fishing today! Borrowed some poles from a member and went! We also almost got hit by a car, we were going through a parking lot and a car came through several parking spots and didn’t stop. I swerved to get out of the way and he didn’t stop. He slowed down a little at the end but I got away. Almost died….. 😉

Tuesday: We had interviews with Pres. Ward today.  He complimented me on being “mellow”. He said I could take a lot of stress and craziness without freaking out, handling it calmly. He also complimented me on being a good teacher, he said he had heard I was anyways. Not sure how that came about but I am always willing to take a compliment. We talked about making prayers better because mine have been slacking. We talked about how I can be a good example to Elder Robinson and how I can help him. It was a pretty good experience overall. I liked it a lot. Great interview.
Wednesday: So we have been searching for some keys for the last 5 days. The church and mail keys. It was a learning experience. Sometimes God answers prayers in the way he wants, not how we do. We had been prayying forever to find the keys. We never ended up finding them. After 5 days, we decided to get a new mail key and see if we could get a new church key. We ended up having both of these in a matter of hours. It should have taken a lot longer than that. But God provided. Definitely a miracle.
Tonight we went to the park because they were having mutual there (and we were picking up the keys.) but they were playing Dragon ball. Basically kickball. so we hopped right in. I went and got to know all the youth better. We are never in the second or third hour of 3rd Ward church so I don’t know the youth hardly at all.  This was very good. We killed in in the kickball game.
Thursday: A member did a magic trick on us. After 5ish so minutes I figured it out and started playing along with it. Elder Robinson couldn’t figure it out. It was so funny. Then when we got home he was so disturbed by it that he couldn’t think about anything and he was almost acting schizophrenic in a way. It scared me. So I told him after he stressed out and almost had an anxiety attack. He felt dumb afterwards.
Friday:  We planned today. It took us an hour to figure out when and how to make our calls home.
We had a lesson with ******. It was mostly organizing her baptism. It was fun and I’m excited for her. Elder Green will be there and will even confirm her. Tonight we went to **** and ****’s and had a little lesson about repentance. Then we had our usual hours game. We played Clue. Fun fact: the way we played Clue growing up is very wrong. The way you actually play is much more organized and complicated. If you use yourly brain power, you can figure it out quick. It has a lot of adding and subtracting and manipulating. It’s fun.
Saturday: We went a planted some hedges this morning. Then we went and helped with a service project, demolishing some old Wells Fargo building so it could be turned into a community center or something.  Then we knocked random doors and ran into ***** and found a thing or two to help them with. For dinner, we had **** come to the ********’s.  He now has a family in the ward he likes! Yay! For studies at night, we watched this broadcast about using members for missionary work. It was so good. Some cool stuff it talked about it really getting to know the member so they trust you.  Also about involving them in the work. If you involve the members in the work, not only will they trust you, but they will be more missionary minded themselves because they will have the drive and hype for it. It was a great broadcast.
I loved talking to y’all yesterday. It got me more scared to leave and also more excited. Weird mix. It also showed me how much I’ve grown. It was cool because I still fit in the family. 🙂
Scripture of the week: Mosiah 5:2 ​”And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty ​​​change​ in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do ​​​evil​, but to do good continually.”
The Holy Ghost can guide us. If we turn to God, we can change ourselves to become who we want to be and be the best us we can be. We can be a help to others that we never could be.
Luva!
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Hadley, Bryson and Tess birthdays! Addisen’s Graduation, DC, Cookie Therapy, Hadley-a!!!

THINGS THAT DIDN’T WORK:

Dixon thinking he was helping everyone by “cleaning up” their rooms.  On random days he would go to each of our rooms and rearranged it to “look good”.  It was hilarious as he explained why it looked so much better.  He was super proud of himself and we just went with it, then put it back together later.  🙂

“Cookie Therapy.” Tess explaining to me that I eat too many cookies at once (only like a dozen in a day) and that I need to go in to a doctor and get therapy for my cookie issues.  She says she will bring cookies to my grave instead of flowers.

Dixon wearing my summer hat so that when he fishes the hook won’t stick to his head.  He forgot that it can swing into his face still…. So cute!

Dixon calling out for anyone in the family:  “Hadley-a, Royce-a, Mom-a.”  It’s so funny.  It’s like he’s adding a question to the end of the name.

Our friend Leslie Waters passing.  We went to her funeral and it was so heartbreaking, but also such a blessing to get to hear such intimate details about her life.  She is such an example of how to intertwine the Plan of Salvation into all parts of our lives.  My heart hurts for the family left behind and all of us that will miss her.  Misty Myers talk was so fantastic. I had her send it to me and we read it to the kids for FHE.  It was extremely inspiring.

Merritt finishing a huge puzzle that Royce had been working on.  She put in the last five pieces!  Needless to say, Royce was not happy!

Starting a no sweets/treats challenge with some friends (obviously I need it, considering my cookies issues).  It’s been over five weeks and I feel great.  So balanced, which is really boring and sad.  The goal is to make it three months.  I plan on continuing it and just having a dessert each weekend. 😉

Royce:  “Although I’d be a perfect person to be a Hallmark movie actor, I don’t want to kiss all those different people!”  Ha!  I think he’s been watching too many movies with us…. 😉

Hadley and Merritt getting braces!  We have four people in our house with braces!  It’s crazy. That’s seven mouths down and only two more to go….. 🙂

Turning over our Huntsville, Alabama house.  It was a bit of a nightmare but things seem to be going well now. It’ll be interesting to see if we end up keeping it as an investment or selling eventually.

 

THINGS THAT WORKED:

Ordering caterpillars again.  It was such a cool metamorphic process.  Letting them go was awesome.  Minus the one that didn’t form it’s wing correctly but we still had to let it go…. 😦

Getting to have our wonderful McReynolds over for dinner.  They are our forever Home Teachers.  🙂

Fun Family Home Evening dinner with friends and then family volleyball at the church.  It was a blast!

Royce talking to me about how sound vibrations work in our ears, then communicating it to our brains.  He declared “Heavenly Father must have more than a Master’s Degree in college.”  🙂

Erin Johansen and I running our homeschool group with a lot of laughter.  We have so much fun that we have to try to discipline ourselves and remember to actually teach.  I’m truly thankful for this fun year of learning with our kids.

Royce getting to race his car at the Pinewood Derby.  It was so well run and super fun!

Ordering a fun new math supplement.  Math Beast is amazing.  We’re all learning new ways of looking at math and it’s through cartoons.  We still do our regular math books, but add a couple pages of this too.

Hadley getting to go to a Girl’s in STEM day.  She loved it!  I was so proud of her going in by herself to a school she didn’t know.  She found some great girls to hang with and even knew some people from sports, etc.

Getting to go to the temple with the girls and for Jacob Hill’s sealing.  We love getting to see our YSA get married.

I made them smell the hyacinth after our YSA baptisms.

Fun night watching Star Wars on the projector.  When the lady took her ship and flew through the bad guys Royce said:  “Now that was satisfying!”

Watching the epic General Conference .  It was amazing how many changes happened and the strong Spirit of unity that was felt.  We love President Nelson so much and Tess said:  “Pres. Nelson and I could be friends.” When we were half way through Dixon announced “Half-Time!”

Kevin fixing our dryer after it broke two times.  I’m so thankful for all that he does, even when he travels so much.

Awesome Easter Egg Hunt at the church in the dark.  They had multiple tunnels with neon glowing sticks in the eggs.  So fun!

General Conference fell on Easter Sunday.  It was so special.  After it was over we got to go to my parents house for dinner.  It was just a perfect day!  🙂

Getting to talk with our Kaitlin as she watched General Conference at Addisen and David’s apartment.  She just returned from her mission and is absolutley glowing.  We love you Kaitlin, Addy and David!

Getting texts from Corbin’s mission.  It just fills this Momma’s heart right up.  If you ever see missionaries, take a picture and send it to their Mom, you’ll make her day.

Merritt getting into National Honors Society at Washougal High School. This is a big deal for us considering she is home schooled.  We were laughing when she was nominated and decided she should try (she takes one math class at the HS).  It seems that the application was as detailed as doing the Eagle Scout Project paperwork.  Crazy!  But alas, it was worth it.

Going to Addisen’s college graduation!  It was such a great trip.  Kevin flew into Salt Lake City and stayed with Addy and David, then drove up to Rexburg.  I drove the four youngest kids and met up with them.  My parents flew in and Kevin’s parents, Bryson and Dihana came on graduation day.  We were sad Tess couldn’t join us because of school tests and work.  We are so proud of Addy for finishing her degree, despite hard circumstances this past year. Kevin and Royce made an hope chest for Addy’s graduation.  I gathered as many memories as I could and we went through them in the hotel room.  It was actually hard to part with it all, but wonderful at the same time.

Hadley and Bryson’s birthdays while we were in Rexburg.  They are ten years and a day apart.  Hadley wanted to go do baptisms at the Idaho Falls Temple and loved it!  It’s such an amazing feeling to be around these two fabulous children of ours!

Getting a box of books that my Great Grandma handed down through the family. My Aunt Ann sent them to us as they close an era and sell their home that they raised their kids in.  The kids and I are so excited to get to read and smell them.  We love the smell of old books!  🙂

Kevin and I getting to go to Washington DC!  We haven’t been able to take a trip together for three years.  Kevin works in DC each month, so I jumped on a trip with him.  I LOVED getting to meet some of the people he works with and watch him deliver a workshop.  He is truly talented.  The entire room laughed and oooohhhh and awwwed through the workshop.  The highlight of the trip for me was riding bikes through the monuments/memorials at night.  We had so much fun! There was such a sacred feeling at the Lincoln Memorial.  I LOVED the Congressional Library and American History Museum. We also got to spend some time with some of our dear friends Lynne and Sterling Nielsen!  Oh how we laughed and laughed, then they ended up at the same ward as us on Sunday.  The meetings there were amazing!  I went to DC expecting it to feel like New York City, but I was so impressed with how kind everyone was.  It was so clean and spread out.  It truly is an beautiful city.  I was very ready to get home and not be on my feet anymore, but still wanted to be alone with Kevin.  He took such good care of me and it was amazing to see how easy it is to just get up and out the door in 15 minutes when there aren’t kids around.  A huge thanks to my parents who helped for a few days and the girls who did the rest.

Kevin getting called to Elder’s Quorum President.  There were a lot of changes during General Conference.  One of them is that all the Priesthood is together now.  So they called new EQP’s.  I was also called/assigned to be the Stake YW Camp Director.  We’re both super excited for these changes.  It’ll really help when we get released from our Stake YSA callings.  At the same time, we will miss working with them.  Since we moved here, we have had all our callings together, so this feels more normal to get back to separate callings.

Spring arriving!  I can’t get enough of all the Daphne, Camelias and Lilacs. The smells everywhere and sunshine makes me just want to celebrate.  🙂

Prom for Tess!  She went to Mormon Prom with Carter Rodgers and loved it. Then the next night she went with Braeden Harness to Washougal High Prom.  She loved her weekend and felt like she had waited all her life for it.  So cute!  We were so thankful for these two gentlemen that took such good care of her and provided a great experiences.

Spontaneous days/dinners with family and friends for the last two months.  We love getting time with people that fill us right up and make us laugh. 🙂 

Tess starting her CNA job!  One night one of the patron’s daughters pulled her out into the hallway and asked her what her last name was.  She said Jones and the person said, like Kelly Miller Jones?  She was the sister of my high school best friend.  She could tell Tess was my daughter just by her mannerisms and personality.  Amazing!  My kids may not look like me, but it comes through in some of their personalities. 🙂

Tess turns 17!  I just can’t believe it.  She ended up having a really full day, so we had to squeeze in time to celebrate.  Love my Tess!

Merritt and Tess playing tennis and Hadley running track.  It was so fun to watch them all season, but boy am I glad that it’s over.  I think I lived in the car and was spread pretty thin.  Despite Kevin’s traveling, he still got to see them play.  I love the lessons that sports teach kids.

Getting my bike  (a Christmas present from Kevin).  Kevin bought it off of Bryson because I love it so much.   We had such a fun ride last weekend around Round Lake in Camas.  I love flying down the trails and going off small jumps. I seriously scream like a little girl and people stare at me.  It’s truly elating.  So if you happen to see an older lady on a bike screaming, just know she’s super happy.  🙂

 

Week 92 – Elder Jones

Elder Robinson, BBQ and Star Wars Day

Today we got up and cleaned and shopped and did
everything and went fishing for a few hours. So relaxing. We didn’t
catch anything had a couple fish on the hook but they got away.

Transfer Tuesday. I got to see several missionaries I haven’t
seen in a while. I slept in Rocklin at a 6 Elder apartment.
Comfy floor. I was with Elder Pugmire and Brazier. We cleaned the
apartment.  Then Elder Robinson got here. I like
him a lot. He reminds me of Elder Haddock. He’s great. We went and
introduced him to people.
Wednesday: Had a blast today. Still in the trio. We had district
meeting. I had way too many 7 layer cookies. We made some with a less
active and I had 8 of them today. So bad for me. Then we went to a
lesson with ***** and that went well as usual. Then comp studies and
another lesson in Elder Coman’s ward. Then dinner with the Baumgatners.
Always a blast. Another lesson after dinner and now I’m here! At the
apartment.
Thursday:  I had Texas bbq for dinner. Biggest burger I’ve ever had
and very delicious!
Friday: Happy Star Wars day! We went a little crazy. We planned for most
of the day. We made a few Star Wars videos with Elder Pugmire and
Brazier and even got ***** in on one of them. They are amazing. We
were recording one and Elder Pugmire slipped super hard. We got it on
camera. So funny. But yeah, we had a lesson with *****. She bought
Star Wars popsicles and a puzzle and some other stuff and we
celebrated. We had a lesson about baptism and she is still super
excited.  Then we went around and visited people. We helped ****** move some brick. She tripped over it and hurt herself. But she is doing better now.

Saturday: We went to give a blessing to someone this morning.  We ran around and met some people for Elder Robinson and we went to
the Higginson’s. We helped them set up for a prom date they were
hosting or something and ended up running home to let one of their
kids borrow a tie from me to wear to prom. It’s a snazzy tie. We went
to dinner and there was a surprise there. It wasn’t planned but I
walked in and there were two people from my Citrus Heights there!
Apparently the family we were eating with is the wife’s parents. So it
was awesome to catch up with them. Like seeing old friends after a
long time.
Then we went to an game night with Dusty and Jay. Lots of fun.

Sunday: So I’ll probably report on Elder Robinson for today.  I
really like him a lot. Remember Elder Haddock? One of my best friends
on the mission? The one I’ve always tried to be companions with? Elder
Robinson is basically like him. If I am not looking at him and he is
speaking, he sounds just like him. He has some cool board games and he is really fun. We clicked right off the bat. He is a blast. We really like each other and he is really comfortable here. He warms up to people really fast and is really comfortable with people he just met. He is From San Tan Valley, Arizona, he has been out six months, came
out with Elder Farley. He just came from Redding. He likes anime,
played baseball in high school and is an artist.

Weekly scripture: Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, and let us reason together,
saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white
as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”

This is Elder Robinson’s favorite scripture. It talks of healing and
forgiveness. I love how we can be forgiven and forgive other as well.
I have been able to forgive so many people because I have been
forgiven.

Week 91 – Elder Jones

Transfers, Getting Fat and Goodbye Elder Green

Wednesday: Yesterday I was on Exchanges with Elder Brazier! It was a blast. We got so much done and we really learned a lot from each other. Both talking to each other a lot and taking what we can from each other. We visited some people that I already knew even! Kinda cool. Had a few great lessons. Oh yeah, on Monday we rode an 8 person bike for pday! It was cool.

Today we great. Kinda. Ok maybe it was a really off day. Elder Green woke up with a migraine and so he slept until we had to go help these non members move. We moves some of the heaviest furnitures in my life and then they got us In-N-Out. We met them up for other missionaries.
We had another lesson with ******. It was a spiritual one, she had a lot of questions about different things. We taught her about justice and mercy and how all that works. How Christ was able to pay for our sins. The she got us Baskin Robbins. 🍦 We went and saw people and went to dinner then we found out that like three of our investigators or less actives or members were sick or injured. So we went and bought a ton of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream and some other stuff and spent the evening running it around to them. Those are the best nights.
Thursday: It’ll be a short one tonight. I’m so tired. Elder Green is on day 3 of his migraine. Horrible for him. We went and saw ***** again this morning and said goodbye for Elder Green. Then lunch and then we went to 7th ward. We stopped by *****, the lady that we met at the ward bbq. She invited us in and we ended up having s 2 hour discussion on a million things. Everything from temples to trials to Joseph smith, to polygamy to the Book of Mormon and everything in between. It was one of the best discussions I’ve ever been in just because she was so sincere and wanted to understand and had such good questions. She also was saying things that I learned a lot from. She made a super cool analogy that I’ll use for my scripture of the week. She just soaked everything in like nobody else has. It’s not like she is looking to change religions, but she wanted to know more about what we believe because she didn’t know before, except all the false rumors and such. Now she understands more. But we shared several scriptures from the Book of Mormon and she loved them. We gave her a copy and she is going to re-read the scriptures we used, read the introduction and start reading. She is amazing. She invited us to her bible study class and that’s great!
Friday: We taught seminary this morning. It was a blast. We taught the gospel of Jesus Christ and used the tea bag lesson as well. We taught it super Mario style, it’s a way of comparing it to Mario. It was great.
Friday:  We started out the morning running some errands and checking up on people. Then we went and gave ***** a blessing. That was a cool experience. The Lord really directed me to say things I wouldn’t have on my own.
Then we went and did a little weekly planning before having a lesson with the amazing *****.
Saturday: Awesome day! I had 5 meals before dinner.  We met up with the Baldridge’s for lunch, but we didn’t eat really eat, but I loved getting to see them. They made Elder green and I matching T-shirt’s from the picture they sent you last time. Then we went to *****’s place and she had a few other couples there, including the one that we helped move. They all just asked us about the gospel and about the church. Amazing questions again. And they had lunch as well. We ate more. That lesson lasted over two hours and and we see stayed longer because we were still talking and answering questions and arranging stuff. Then they prayed over Elder green. Then we went back home and Elder green packed. Until now. It’s been a long day. But great.
Sunday: Said goodbye to a few people and had church. I’m going to miss Elder Green so much. What an amazing friend. He really is one of my best friends.
Transfers; I’m keeping both of my wards thank goodness. Been praying for that. The mission is smaller now. I’m getting Elder Robinson. He is from San Tan City, Arizona. He has been out for 6 months now or so. Don’t know much about him but I’ve heard he is cool and that I’ll like him. I’m excited.
LUVA!
Scripture of the week: Alma 36:6 For I went about with the sons of Mosiah, seeking to destroy the church of God; but behold, God sent his holy angel to stop us by the way.
Elder Green was telling his story of how he went from being a bad person and doing bad things to coming back to the church to someone. After he told his story she came up with an analogy. It’s kinda like(and it’s the same with Alma) when someone is really a bad person they are manure. Literally poop and anything bad. But, when they finally turn their life over to God, god uses those things to help people. They know where the vilest of sinners have been and can help them out of the holes they are in. It’s like fertilizer. They take the manure and mix it in with the dirt and use it to grow beautiful plants. So the bad is used for good. That’s how it went for both Elder Green and Alma. So I thought that was cool.

Week 88 – Elder Jones

Temple, Elder Moon and Baldridge Family

Yesterday was cool. We went on a hike around a lake. There were some
questionable people that said some even more questionable things to
us. Hmm. Oh well. It was a cool hike. We bushwhacked most of it
because why not.
Today was awesome. We were in an apartment complex and the two people
we tried weren’t home so we were walking and Elder Green said “I don’t
even know where I’m going” and neither did I. So I looked at an
apartment building and said “I want to knock that one” because I felt
good about the one in the top right corner and at the same moment he
was saying the same thing about another apartment in the same
building. So we knocked them both. The first one they answered and
said they are Christian and Pentecostal but said we could come back.
Yes! Then we knocked the other one and they were kinda accepting and
she said they are Christian and we said we taught about Christ and
they weren’t really looking like they would let us in.  Then we told them
we could stop by and share a video with the kids.  She said that they
could watch one now and invited us in. She is going through a tough
time and Elder Green talked to her while I showed the kids gospel
videos. Then we did an object lesson and in the end she said she would
try to come to church. She said that she usually wouldn’t let have
let us in, but she’s been having a rough time and decided to. They
need it. So wow. That was amazing. I like this way if tracting more
than what I’ve been doing.
Oh, also, we got smartphones today. They don’t have service till next Thursday, so for now they are like small tablets. It’s Samsung and I don’t like it very much. It’ll be much better than the old phones we have, but I’ll probably only use it for calling and texting. Besides that, I’ll just use my iPad. It took forever to set up and it crashes
a lot and I don’t like it anywhere near as much as the iPad. But I’m
grateful that we have it because the phone aspect will be so much
better. When that happens.
I just looked on Facebook and **** (the guy we just baptized in Gridley)
and ****** got engaged! Yeah! So happy for them.
We fasted today for Elder ****. He came out with me and I love him.
But he has had some back pain for the last few transfers. He woke up
one night a week or so ago in a lot of pain. He and his companion
prayed and they felt like they needed to make it to the hospital,
fast. They went and he had some major problems. It’s bad and we’re sad.
Wednesday:

Awesome day! We found a new investigator today! Her name is
****. It was going well on the doorstep then we started talking
about one of her favorite Christian bands and she got pumped and it
went amazingly from there. She is excited for us to come back and talk
with her! We ran into several others and got a lot of solid work done.
Very busy day.
Our dinner was the Baldridge Family! They came down because they all work or go to school on Rocklin. So they came to Lincoln and took us to
dinner. It was amazing we had a long time to catch up. Even brother
Baldridge was able to make it. It made my week. Month even. They are
seriously some of my best friends. I love them so much. I can just be
me around them. We took picture in downtown Lincoln afterwards because
that’s where we ate. Then Sister Baldridge and I got talking about
raptors again so we took some raptor pictures. I’ll send them.

I found the Loch ness monster.

Thursday:

We got to go to the gym this morning and do a good
workout. Our apartment is having more problems. We did some service
for a lady and picked her up as a new investigator. We also found
another new person to teach tonight, just walking through the rain.
We had a great lesson with *****. She read Jacob 5 and was very
confused. So we popped some popcorn and got some candy and watched the
seminary videos about the olive trees. It made more sense after that.
Then we went over the baptismal interview. ***** is amazing. She
would make the absolute best missionary the world. So it was a great
day.

Friday:

Mostly Planning today. But we had three lessons. One with a
lady that won’t get baptized because she is scared of water. She is so
sweet. She has great questions.
Then we studied and planned for hours. Elder green and I get a little
psycho when we are cooped up too long.
We had a lesson with ****. She is really cool and has a lot of
potential for progression. Her heart is in the right place and she is
willing to do the right things.
The after dinner we had a lesson with the **** family and it was a lot of fun. We did some magic tricks and an object lesson. I like them a lot. Lots of
fun. They will be at church.

Saturday:

We got to go to the temple today! A member that Elder Green helped reactivate went through for herself and Elder green is the only missionary that is still in the mission that taught her so I just tagged along. I really needed it. The whole time, all I wanted to to
was get into the Celestial Room. In all the other rooms I could hardly
stay in my seat because I just wanted to be in the Celestial Room. Not
my best moment for patience. But when I finally made it in there, I
just loved it. I learned a lot. It’s weird with me, I don’t get that
internally excited about things like this normally, but I really was.
It was a big change for me. I’m really relying on the gospel more than
I used to.

Sunday:

We taught a lesson to a recent convert/less active today. She
and her friend are our age and so it was fun and relaxed. She
looks so much like someone I know so it’s really weird. Sometimes I
have to remind myself it’s not her. Haha. That went well though.
Then we had a lesson with the people from last week. There was a lot of
family stuff going on and he just was falling apart. We let him talk
it out for an hour then we all ended up happy we gave him a blessing
and it helped. Love them.

Elder Green and I are doing great! Last night we stayed up until
1:00 am talking. We had a really deep conversation. I have so much respect for him. He has come so far. It’s really insane how much he has changed and sacrificed and worked to be out here.  He is such a good missionary.  He loves the people so much and just wants to help them.

Scripture of the week: Alma 17:24  “And it came to pass that King Lamoni
was much pleased with Ammon, and caused that his bands should be
loosed; and he would that Ammon should take one of his daughters to
wife.
25 But Ammon said unto him: Nay, but I will be thy servant. Therefore
Ammon became a servant to king Lamoni. And it came to pass that he was
set among other servants to watch the flocks of Lamoni, according to
the custom of the Lamanites.

What I love about this is that Alma comes in and serves the people.
That’s cool. But the really amazing part is how Alma converted an
entire nation.  The plan from the beginning was to convert people
yet he passed up a major opportunity. Alma was offered the kings
daughter in marriage. If he had taken that, he couldn’t been been
influential. He would be in a place of power, just under the king, and
influenced others because if his position. Yet, he refused. He wanted
to be the servant and we to be a Shepard. Probably the lowest position
he could get.  Through that humility, he was able to convert the
entire nation. It was his humility. Wow!  Look what humility can do!
Now, how I relate this to myself is that I love where I’m at! I just want to help others and this is the position from which that I can the best. It’s so great.

Luva!

Week 86 – Elder Jones

Conference, Love and Easter Miracles

Love this picture of these missionaries. 🙂

Wednesday:
Yesterday we met with the second counselor’s family, the Wrights. Funny connection again. The Bischoffs gave them their dog. They knew the Bischoff when they lived in Spokane. They were talking about their dog and said someone gave it to them and happened to mention the name Bischoff. I asked if it was Sharon and Brent. It was. So cool!
Today we had district meeting and had worked on organizing some lists and saw a ton of people. It was a good day and we got in some doors that haven’t been the friendliest to us. I would say more but I’m exhausted.
Friday:
I’m sorry. I’ve been horrible about writing this week. We have been able to meet with a lot of people. We teach a lot of lessons here. We seem to be able to fill time very easily. We just start doing one thing and get led to doing very meaningful work. Today we met with ******, an investigator of ours. She is awesome. She has some amazing questions and understands things well. She prays and that’s key. We were about to go home for comp study tonight but we wanted to contact a little bit first. After we knocked on somebody’s house, we were walking back to the car and saw an open garage with a 50s Rolls Royce in it. We told the guy it was cool as we walked by and he said that a cooler one was coming in 5 minutes and invited us in for water and soda and wanted to talk to us. It was amazing.  Then the car got there. It was a newly restored 1965 Cobra. It had a brand new engine, brand new everything and was very fast. So beautiful. So we all marveled at it and stuff. He said to come back another time (we had been there for almost an hour) because he had to buy it. So we will go back later. Wow. Miracles and an amazing car.
Saturday:
Well, General Conference was amazing.  We went with Elder Pugmire and Brazier to a lesson after the priesthood session then to ice cream at McDonald’s. We talked about it and it was cool. President Nelson is definitely the prophet. He came in and changed some stuff and it was smart. We talked about how his talk in the priesthood was him kinda throwing down a little, basically laying down what our responsibilities are, then ending it amazingly. He made everyone feel the worth that they have by Priesthood office when everyone stood up and then said that we would all sing together a hymn he wanted to. Then he said amen and sat down and we sang the closing song. I have never felt such a personal connection with a prophet or apostle in this way. In that moment, I could really feel his love and I could feel the unity of the Priesthood and the church. More importantly, I could feel Gods love, through him.
The other sessions were amazing!  The talk about fathers was amazing. I’m sure Dad loved that. My favorite so far besides the talk by President Nelson in the priesthood session was by Elder Bednar about meekness. He said some things about meekness that I didn’t get but could see how they could be true with more study. Like how he said that meekness is active, not passive. What? What does that really mean? There was so much depth to that statement. Holy cow 🐄. I need to do some serious study about that. He also said that meekness is strong, not weak. That was cool. So many amazing talks, can’t wait for more tomorrow.
Sunday:
There should be enough for today to make up for the lack of writing this week.
1. Conference was amazing. I will send you my notes as a separate email. It was so good. Elder Green and I have been on a “rant” for lack of a better term, about LOVE and how it’s integrated to missionary work. Of course, I’ve been in this “love” spree forever, but Elder Green is right there with me and we have been figuring it out and applying it in so many amazing ways. I heard the word “love” in today’s sessions more than I ever have in a conference. Then when Elder De Feo gave his talk about love, it was perfect! That was my favorite talk in all of conference. Here are my notes from that talk.

“Pure love is a requirement of every true disciple of Jesus Christ.  Love indeed is the true sign of every true disciple of Jesus Christ.  True disciples love to forgive.  True disciples know that blessings aren’t always what they want, but what the Lord wants.  Wherever they go they bring the love of the Lord and peace to the people.  The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of love.”

Best talk ever!  Loved that talk. We realized that we had kinda been set up the past few weeks to implement these principles in our missionary work. Not only that, but the new changes are set on loving the people and serving and taking care of them, rather than rules or numbers. Man, it truly has been a revelatory conference.

2. So we have our investigator, who is the super amazing.  She will be baptized in May.  She came to conference at the stake center where we watched and she came for the last session. You know you have a solid investigator when she comes to the stake center for conference and brings her missionaries cheez-its. 😊 We had another miracle happen with her family too.
3. We were in a lesson with a part member family and we were talking with them about gospel stuff. As Elder Green was talking, this was right at the beginning of the visit, I got this subtle but clear prompting that I needed to challenge the husband (who is the less active member) to read the scriptures. His wife is reading almost a chapter a day. But I knew he didn’t read the scriptures almost ever, and it seemed like he wouldn’t want to. Anyways, the moment to challenge him to do that want right then so we kept visiting and at 8:45 he says that they needed to be off to bed soon and asked if we had a message. Elder Green looks at me and I pull out 2 Nephi 32:3 and talk about how the scriptures lead us and how it shows is what to do and how to come closer to Christ and testify of him. Elder Green tells a story and testify. Then I challenged them both to read at least one verse every single day. (At this moment the spirit reaffirms to me that that’s what he needs). They both accept the challenge and are on track for that. So that’s all great. I followed the prompting and knew that I did what needed to be done. But when we get in the car, I tell Elder Green that I had the prompting to do that. His eyes got a little wide and he tells me that when we started to talk about the gospel stuff, he started to think about what we should say to them. He got a prompting that told him “Elder Jones has got this. Leave it to him.” What!? Wow. We are definitely unified as a companionship. We listen to the Spirit well together.
So yeah, it was a good day.
Luva!

Week 85 – Elder Jones

Lincoln, Elder Green and Sick

Tuesday: Wow. What a fun day!  So, I packed up last night and I went off to Lincoln this morning. Elder Kelson is on his own. Had a tender moment in parting and I left. Had a great drive. I’ll miss Bro. *****.

It was hard to say goodbye to all the other missionaries yesterday. I love everyone. Goodbye!

But anyways, Elder Green is awesome. We will have a lot of fun and work hard. He’s a great missionary.
Wednesday:
We came around to help the other elders. We did finding and had a lesson as well.  Then stopped by several people and one of them had a cat and I got the worst allergic cat reaction  in my mission. My throat still hurts so much it’s hard to talk.
Thursday:
I woke up very sick this is morning. Not exactly sure what with, a lot of it was from the cat allergies, but there might have been more. My body was achey and I couldn’t stand. Elder Green had a bad migraine. So we took a few hours to be sick. But by 10:00 am we were working. Both of us struggled along.  It was bad all day. I still can’t function well. But we just went a worked. It hurt, but better then staying home.
Friday:
Weekly Planning. Good stuff. The Baldridge’s from Auburn ward in Rocklin, which is like ten or so minutes away, were at a friend’s house here in Lincoln, so they stopped by the church and we talked for a while. They gave me some candy and stuff. So great to see them.
Do you know Kylene Pratt? She is a friend of Sister Baldridge’s and your Facebook friend. She lives here in Lincoln apparently. It was so great to see the Baldridge’s. I even got to meet one of their daughters that was off at college while I was there. Another Baldridge! Haha. But it was so awesome to see them.
The Baldridge’s coming to visit.
We have a lot of the information on the smartphones we are getting we should have them in the next two weeks. It’ll be crazy.
Saturday:
Did a lot of contacting. Good stuff though. We had interviews with President Ward. There was a language training meeting going on at the same time in the same building so I got to see Elder Kite, Macdonald, Stevens, Marsh, Kelsey, Sister Fuller and Sister Taysom, even though I didn’t think I would see some of them again. So great.
The coolest part though was that there are some Sister missionaries going to Taiwan that are in this mission until their visas go through. They were there at the language thing. I started talking to one of them and find out that she is actually from our stake. She has been over to our house, I think for a YSA thing. So it was really cool to see her and I’m still blown away.
And of course it didn’t stop there. We stopped by a member and they asked where I was from. Turns out, it’s the Kanooth’s daughter. And not only that, the Kanooths were at their house last night, making a stop before they went to Disneyland. They will be back to see them on Saturday, so after our dinner, we will stop by and I will say hi to the Kanooths. Wow. Crazy day full of people from home.
Sunday:
We visited a part member family and they are awesome! It’s kinda an older couple, *** and ***, they rock! She wasn’t interested really but was fine with us stopping by. We gave them a Book of Mormon that was big enough for them to read and to our surprise, she reads a chapter a day! And she likes it! That was amazing.
It gets weirder and weirder every month with how people go home and get engaged. There are several people that finished their mission, that I never saw together, that are now dating, engaged or married. So weird. And we end up seeing the pictures of everyone home, married, engaged and dating and such because we can get pictures so easily.
I guess this email wasn’t as spiritual centered because I don’t know anyone and I’m getting used to everything and we saw a lot of people. Next week should be more normal. But this week has been a blast.
This area is just amazing. I love it. The people are amazing and the work is really amazing. Just an amazing last area.
Now for my companion. Elder Green is from Ogden Utah. He and I are kind of mirror images when it comes to how we do missionary work, how we act and a lot of things. We get along very well.  I don’t think I’ve ever laughed with a companion so much. We have the same sense of humor and we teach very similarly as well. We agree on just about everything and it’s been amazing. We know how to get what we need to done and have fun at the same time. It’s just been a blast!
Scripture of the week: Deuteronomy 20:4 For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.
This is Elder Greens’ favorite scripture. It’s amazing because the Lord will fight for us, if we let him. But there is nobody else that could be a better protector. Not only will he save us against our spiritual enemies, but our physical, mental and emotional enemies too. There have been so many times I’ve been struggling emotionally and didn’t know if I could take it anymore. But because I had Christ and Heavenly Father fighting for me, I was able to make it through.
So everything is great here.
Luva!