Tuesday, May 26, 2009

May 26, 2009 Preparing for Elder Bednar's visit

May 26

Mom and Dad-

That is so cool that you guys all went to the airport for Brett. Was he really pretty quiet around you guys? That’s a little strange haha. Do you know if Dan got a chance to record his homecoming talk, or has that not even happened yet? That is so cool that he is back. Ray only has a couple months left, and then I will be around 8 months after him. Ray really wants me to go to BYU Idaho with him, but im really not sure what I want to do yet. What does Brett have planned to do as far as school goes? Thanks for the pictures by the way, I enjoyed them. I have been taking a lot of pictures lately and I am definitely planning on sending them home early this week. I just need to buy some padded envelopes and then I will send the chip home.

This last week was a little tough to get too much work done because of all the rain we had. There was a weird little tropical storm type thing that was over us for about three days. We also had Zone conference which made it sort of difficult to do anything that day. A couple of our investigators that we thought had some good potential ended up dropping us later on in the week, so that was a little bit disappointing, but it will all work out. We still had some good stuff happen. We did some tracting and found a couple of new people to teach. On Sunday, a new part member family moved in and the husband, who is a non member, said that he wants to start coming to the investigator class every Sunday. We have been having some cool experiences with random people just randomely showing up and wanting to be taught. I think I might have told you about the lady named Casey that we are starting to teach, or maybe I didn’t, I don’t know. Anyways, this lady has been investigating the church for over a year now and she has read both the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Book of Mormon cover to cover. There are some members in our ward that are selling puppies, and this lady (Casey) called to buy one and a conversation about the Church sprang up somehow, and now she wants to take the lessons. Some of these people have just fallen into our laps, its pretty amazing.

We have been doing a lot of knocking on doors lately. We want to start working more with the active members and help them to invite their friends and neighbors because it seriously works so much better that way. We have a lot of investigators right now, but they are pretty much all from tracting, so they don’t really have any connection with the Church members and that makes it difficult. Its been fun though, just trying to think of all the different ways we can find people. It is getting so hot out here. The other night, the humidity was up to 93% and we aren’t even in June yet. The Weather is supposedly supposed to be crazy this year. They are predicting over 16 named storms to be coming in this area, so that should be fun. I don’t know where they come up with those estimates though.

Im so excited for Elder Bednar to come to our mission. We get him for about 3 hours. Im scared though, because I think that we might have to role play in front of him, and I might poo myself if that happens. Elder Bednar told our mission to prepare by studying two of his talks, “Ask in Faith,” and “Seek Learning by Faith.” I definitely recommend you guys reading “Seek Learning by Faith.” I really got a lot out of it.

So I really don’t know what I want to do as far as school. Are you guys stressing out about where to move? I think, as much as I would love to have a couple months off when I get back, it would probably be best to get right back into school while im still fresh. If you’re still in California at that time, I would probably just go to FJC. But I really don’t know. I have 10 months to think about it, so I think ill be ok. Around this time President Summerhays starts asking us about school, so I will try to get some opinions from him. Eveytime I have an interview with him, he tells me that I have a very bright future ahead of me, so that gives me some hope haha. Oh yeah, my release date is April 15.

Well, I think I have to go now, I love you guys so much. Thank you for your emails every week:) I love you Mom, I love you Dad! Tell the Family I love them!
Love, Josh

Monday, May 18, 2009

May 18, 2009 This transfers off to an awesome start!

Hey Mom and Dad-

It sounds like you guys had a fun time out there with Tracey and Dan. Is their new place pretty nice? Those sea doos sound like they are pretty fun, and it seems like every time you go to the lake, the water is perfect! I Bet Dad really liked that Star Trek movie, everyone out here says that it is really good, and I know how Dad loves Star Trek. I didn’t get the pictures of the Horses that you sent, I only got the one of Parker. That’s awesome that you were able to see them again. Does Brett really come home this Thursday? That is really weird! I bet Dan and Tracey couldn’t stop talking about it. That is going to be so much fun.

We had a pretty good week this week. It started to get really hot, but then the last couple of days have been a little bit cooler so we will see how the next week goes. We have been finding some real quality people lately. We are just starting to teach this lady named Cindy who has been looking for a church to go to. For the last month or two she has been settling into a Presbyterian Church, but she said she is still searching. We gave her a Book of Mormon, and shes been reading it, and we had a really good lesson with her this past Friday. We also had another really good lesson with that young part member family I told you about on the Phone, the Murphy’s. Kay Murphy is the non member and she took Friday lesson really well. She has been coming to church as well, so we are excited for her.

We realized last night that we were one short on our goal that we set for new investigators for the week, so we picked out a street on the map and went tracting. The first door that we knocked on, this lady named Maria came to the door, and told us to come in. She said that she had been looking around for the right church for her, and that she was tired of getting lied to by so many different pastures and ministers. She was praying that she would get receive some extra help in her life, and so she got really excited when we came to the door. We told her all about the Book of Mormon, and she was very interested and wanted us to stay and read with her. The spirit was so strong, it was really neat. She said she felt really good about it, so we are going back to teach her again on Sunday. We had a couple other lessons this week that went really well, so we were happy about how this week went.

The Spanish Elders got transferred this wee, so the second ward elders are moving in to the apartment next door, which means we get a two story apartment all to ourselves for the next six weeks! Its going to be so nice. Its really fun having four missionaries in an apartment, but its really easy to loose focus also, so itll be a nice change.

I don’t have too much more to tell you about this week. It was just a really great week. This transfer is off to an awesome start. We have seen some definite miracles this week. Investigators that we haven’t talked to in months have randomely just popped up and are interested again, random people calling members out of the blue and wanting to take the discussions, and just all sorts of really cool things. Im pretty excited to be here for another five weeks. Well, I hope you guys have a great week I love you Mom, I love you Dad! Sorry I didn’t have to much to write about this week, ill do better next week, I promise. I love you Everyone!!

Love, Josh

Monday, May 11, 2009

May 11, 2009 Great talking to you guys yesterday

Hey Mom and Dad
It was so great talking to you guys yesterday. Everyone sounds like they are doing so good. I loved hearing Sadie in the back round fighting with Murph Durph. So I cant really think of any other exciting stories. We just got transfer information and we are definitely staying for one more transfer so that’s good. Its supposed to rain all week long so hopefully it doesn’t keep us in for to long.

Im sorry this is going to be such a short letter! I told you everything yesterday, and now im all out. Thank you so much for the money. Thank you for everything I love you guys so much. I promise to send pictures soon. I know ive been really bad at that. I love you Mom, I love you Dad! I will have more for you next week

Love, Josh

Monday, May 4, 2009

May 4, 2009 Tornado watch, 5 new people to teach, eating healthy

May 4

Mom and Dad-

So yeah im pretty excited to call home this Sunday. We willHey guys pretty much have as much time as we want because weekends are free so the mission isn’t worried about the cost too much. As far as time goes, I really don’t know yet. We have Church from 11-2, but that mean when I get out, you will just be getting out of sacrament. So maybe I will have elder Gooch call first or something. Don’t miss church though, or like you said at least go to sacrament. Ill probably call in the morning right before we get picked for for PEC. So that will probably be around 7am for you guys, and then I will call after depending on when Elder Gooch is calling.

Slap Brett when he gets home for me, he has sent me a one sentence e-mail every week telling me how much time he has left haha. That’s going to be fun for the webs to have him up at the lake. I cant believe Ashley has a boyfriend but she wants to go up to the lake with them. I really hope Brett isn’t all for that. Will you tape record his homecoming talk for me please? I would really like to here it. Do you know exactly when Ray is getting home?

There is a Tornado Watch right now in Fort Walton. I just looked on the weather sight and it said that for the next 2 hours, the conditions are favorable for tornados. But we have already been here for a while, so I I love the Weather outthink we are going to bike back soon anyways here, but you can definitely tell that summer is coming back. It has been getting pretty humid lately.

This week was another good week for us. We found 5 people to teach, most of which we found through tracting. We had lessons with Reed and Faren. The lesson with Faren was pretty interesting. He is really smart and knows the Bible as well as anyone else in the South. He has agreed with us on pretty much every point concerning the apostacy and the Restoration, but once we started teaching the plan of salvation, he had some problems. He has a really big problem with the doctrine of our relationship with God. When we taught him the pre-earth life, he disagreed. So we read out of Revalations about how Michael the Arch Angel and his angels fought against the dragon and his. We then explained to him that we were those spirits. He has a big problem with the thought that God has any type of body and that He, his Angels, and us are all part of the same human family. I don’t know how anybody can here that and not feel so good about it! It just makes so much sence. I got pretty worked up in that lesson and I probably shouldn’t have. It just frustrates me that people harden themselves against such great knowledge. On Friday we met this super cool less-active member named John Chapman who back in the 90’s was the #3 kick boxer in the world. We didn’t really believe him at first, but then he showed us a magazine and some newspaper clippings with him on them. Oh yeah, so we were tracting the other day, and we ran into thi lady in a trailor park who looked really depressed. We talked to her for a little bit, and she told us how she has a three month old baby and that her house just got renovated and so she and her boyfriend and their baby have no place to live. She started to cry and said she wasnt interested in our message at that time but that she wanted us to pray for her. Well, the next night, we were around that area, and a man with a stroller walked by us and said that his girlfriend told him that she talked to two missionaries the day before and that she felt good about it. So we started to talk to him, and he said he was looking for work and that we could teach him (David) and Shawna (the girl) and that they needed all the spiritual help they could get. So we found out that Shawna works at the bowling alley right by our place and we went in and gave her our number and said that we were going to ask around the ward and try to get David a job. She almost broke down in tears. I guess they have lived together for 9 years, but could never afford a marriage, so were going to help them and try and see if the Bishop can work with them so that they can be an official family. We are really excited for them. Theres another guyPlease pray that he will be able to find a job named Alfred Page that we are working with who is less-active but really misses the church and wants to come back. So weve set some goals with him to where we can get him to the temple to do baptisms for the dead. Anyways, we are having a great time working with some of these different people.

That’s pretty cool that you guys both got iphones. Are they complicated at all? I know some of the more hi tech phones that yall have gotten in the past have been a bit iffy. Im sure that you guys have heard of this whole swine flu thing, is it really as bad as everybody is saying? I heard that Its pretty bad in California. Im not too worried about it.

Eating healthy has been great. Pretty much all we have been eating all week is raw fruits, vegetables, and grains. I have had tons more energy, and really excellent poo’s. Seriously, it all just seems to fall right out, its pretty amazing. I feel like a new man. I still don’t know why you guys never told me how good all these different vegetables are. Its like all my life I have been missing out! If only I knew! Jeez.

So anyways, im probably going to go now, its pouring down rain out side, but I think I will survive. I love you guys so much. I cant wait for Sunday. For right now, I don’t know exactly what time, but I have all day, so don’t worry about missing church. For now, all I know for sure is that I will call you guys early in the morning before you go to They don’t really tell us who wechurch, and we can set up a time then can and cant call, but im assuming on mothers day, it will just be family. I love you Mom! I love you Dad! Ill talk to you this Sunday!

Love, Josh