Monday, April 25, 2016

Van Beast

FHE "squatch" chalk drawing activity

Okay now the reason I put this as the subject title is because it rhymes with Van East which is our new zone.  This week was one of the greatest. A new car was granted unto us, 3 new investigators to invite to baptism and I live in a mansion with WWII picture books.  Plus…today Walmart had shorts that say USA on them as well.  Cool miracles of the week #1:  We simply showed up at church and talked with a kid named Ty who is investigating the church.  He is dating one of the members of our ward and we scheduled a time to come over for a lesson today.  The lesson went very well we taught the plan of salvation and brought up baptism and He explained that he has been thinking about being baptized into the LDS church.  This was joyful news and we set a date for his baptism.  He said he has received a witness from God that this is his path.  The coolest part of this baptism was the fact that we worked all week and committed to talking to as many people as we physically could, and then a “goldie” showed up right at church!  Miracle that was cool #2:  We started off this Sunday by going to church and talking with Ty before we hit the streets later that day.  We struggled finding people that would listen... this happens often!  But this time we felt impressed to take a moment break and reassess our efforts.  We decided to try the less active member list and started with the ones in the apartment complex we were working in.  The first stop by we made was a less active member that wants to feed us next  week! They simply work on Sunday's, that’s why they can’t attend church,   and they treated us like we were long lost friends.  A little tender mercy after some hard work.  The Fisher’s Landing Ward is a dream come true.  Many newly- weds that  just graduated from BYU, that love missionary work.  Tons of homes and tons of people all condensed close together in our little area.  Most of these people have no backyards.  I live in a mansion, probably the biggest home in Vancouver! Old man Jens built a house for his wife before she passed away. We live in the left wing of the house and partake of his many stores of food and his jolly countenance .  Tons of miracles, but today we have been trying to get a new car, clean the place and fix old man Jen’s AOL account.  Last night at about 4:30 AM we got a knock on our door to go cast out a devil from the neighbor’s wife.  Yes, it was success, but it freaked us out for sure.  Thank the heavens for the priesthood power to keep us safe.

Monday, April 18, 2016

See Ya Later YSA!

Elder King and his new companion, Elder Matthews.

I have been kicked out of the YSA due to excess swooning and consuming of the church supplied foods & beverages.  The bishop of the ward has requested an emergency transfer because apparently he feels it is a distraction for the ward to have me at church with combed hair & a pair of clean slacks on.  Actually, I just got transferred to another area. My YSA life has come to a close for now!  Still one YSA left I would like to aspire for. For now, I shall serve in the Fisher’s Landing ward in the Vancouver East Stake.  It is only 5 minutes from where I now live.  My new companion will be a potato picking, farm hand from Idaho, who will teach me the art of roping and wrangling.  Perhaps in the future, I will move to John JARVEY (Mom, Dad and the family should understand that one).  Elder Matthews is his name BTW. I will have you know in truth, YSA areas are a dream life for missionaries and if you have never served in a YSA ward you should try it. It has been a fantastic week full of miracles.  Let's talk miracle number one.  It would definitely be the Lord’s mindfulness of my situation.  Do you ever have those weeks or even consecutive weeks where it feels like you HAVE JUST HIT A ROADBLOCK?  Something just doesn't seem right.  Your oatmeal in the morning doesn't taste as good... Your hair doesn't flow correctly with the wind... You KNOW what I'm saying? Well I am usually too dumb to ask the Lord how I should change or what I can do to fix this "funk".  But for some reason this time, my brain must have grown a few times its normal size.  I asked the Lord for guidance and he delivered.  Let me tell you what... Sometimes we just act like our problems are so big and terrible, when it's almost like holding a pebble close to your eye.  It seems big because you’re holding it there and making it a big deal.  Throw the pebble elsewhere! You’ll discover what you thought was a big problem, is no so big after all.  Life is great and good.  There are souls to find and save in Vancouver.  Pepsi to drink!! After asking the Lord for help, I was blessed with tender mercies that only God could provide.  "Ask and ye shall receive".  Now this next miracle surely is a great one.  At FHE this past Monday we had the monthly potluck meal.  We showed up on missionary standard time, about 15 minutes late, and hopped in line next to some people we had never met.  I talked with a young man for about 10 minutes discussing which grub we should partake of and then we decided to sit down together and enjoy the potluck feast together.  He then expressed concern about the ward and his personal testimony.  A “golden opportunity.”  We walked in at the exact same time to begin talking and it was an opportunity to teach and help someone else.  He wanted to have a lesson after our feast and I am so grateful the Lord allowed us to be an instrument that evening.  This week at least  5 people talked to me about Donald Trump and 2 people asked us about Polygamy and  garments.  Overall, a pretty great WEEK!   I really do believe in this Church.  I know it is true I love being in the service of Jesus Christ. 

Monday, April 11, 2016

Pepsi Max

I wanted to start this email with Pepsi Max because I drank almost a whole 2 liter of it yesterday.  It really does have maximum taste and no calories if you were ever questioning what the bottle says.  The best way to end a fast Sunday is by drinking that sweet nectar.  This week was great.  Honestly one of the greatest.  And while I speak this very day we are preparing for a p-day bbq.  I witnessed one of the people I was teaching in Portland enter the waters of baptism and we saw plenty of miracles from striving to be a little more obedient.  Okay, let's talk about the first great thing that happened this week. I think we could say it was traveling back to Portland (where I belong) and seeing Romeo get baptized.  We found Romeo about 4 or 5 months ago looking for his neighbor and after his neighbor denied meeting with us he said "would you like to come in and study the Book of Mormon?" The beginning of that BOM study was Romeo saying "you know I think I want to get baptized".   5 months later we had ourselves a baptism and turns out his fiancĂ© is now taking the lessons and they are working to get married in the temple.  Pictures will be attached at the bottom and one of them will be in front of Izzy’s.  Izzy’s is the worst buffet the north west has to offer.  I think I ate my own barf. You may ask why we went there to celebrate a baptism?  Romeo said he liked it.  Elder Lambert standing next to me in the photo gave me excess amounts of gruff for agreeing with the post-baptism Izzy’s celebration.  Alright, this week our mission President changed a few of the policies which caused murmuring amongst a few people.  Myself included.  I was even wondering what in the world would happen if we could ONLY have dinner from 5-6?! Members are gonna get ticked because they can't always feed us from 5-6... But let me tell you THIS! We cancelled some of our dinners, and about 20 minutes after cancelling our dinner for the night we stopped in on a less active member of our ward that we have been unable to contact for about a month now.  Guess who was walking down the steps the minute we were walking up the steps to his door?  YEPPP!!  Minutes after we followed the counsel of the mission president we saw a miracle.  One of our investigators named Jordon asked us a very intriguing question this week.  He asked us "how much electricity do you think it would take to see God?"  This question puzzled us as we pondered what substances Jordan must have partaken of prior to our meeting.  We attempted to teach the restoration instead of electricity and ended up talking about black holes by the end of the lesson?! To be honest I keep forgetting what happened during the week, but I do remember the sun shining for the majority of the week and it seemed like many people had been hiding under rocks or in holes in the ground for most of the winter season.  The Washingtonians are out and about with the sunshine and they all want to get coffee at Dutch Bros at the exact same time!  Without a doubt... Everyday... At all times of the day... There is a traffic jam at Dutch Bros.  I don't see why they just don't drink Pepsi Max?! Agreed?! Have a great week.
Baptism celebration at Izzy's.

Romeo's baptism in Portland.

Monday, April 4, 2016

General Conference Greatness

Elder Andrew's farewell dinner at Red Lobster.

WHAT. A. GREAT. WEEK.  Between sessions of conference, Mongolian grill food & fiber pills it has been a week to remember. We were able to watch all sessions of conference with a member of our ward or an investigator which was awesome.  Not the same as Momma King’s conference morning pancakes & eggs, but the church is still true pancakes or not.  Let's talk fiber pills.  My companion introduced to me an amazing new invention... Pills jam packed with fiber material and laced with spiritual joy.  Needless to say my companion & I have been making periodic stops to the church building to interrupt some of our proselyting.  You may ask... Why in the wide wide world of sports would a couple of young missionaries take fiber pills?!  I ask you... Have you ever eaten out almost every single day for 4 months straight?  The kind YSA members sign up to take us out each week & we cannot deny them blessings nor deny our stomachs cravings.  If you're in need, please get yourself some fiber pills.  Okay now for something a little more important.  Let's talk general conference and how cool it was to have one of our investigators there. Skat (it is pronounced Scott) is from Cambodia and is investigating the church. He struggles to speak English at times but the spirit speaks to everyone the same.  Luckily, we have been given seer stones to help us translate his speaking. Actually, as long as we have the spirit the lessons are great.  Skat came to watch general conference at the church building this weekend, and the poor guy worked until 3:30 in the morning. But nonetheless he showed up at 1'oclock to watch conference with us. He fell asleep about 10 minutes in!  He awoke and told us he had to leave and darted out the door... We were a little sad. We had no Red Bull on hand to spare for him.  About 30 minutes later Elder Sander’s back started hurting, and so we went to the foyer to have him lay down and relieve some tension (perhaps caused by the many bowel movements due to the fiber pills) and we found Skat laying on the couch fast asleep!!! We thought for sure hehad left, but he was just in the foyer snoozing.  He woke up right when Elder Holland started speaking and listened to his talk.  Although he may not have understood any of the words Elder Holland spoke, he said it was "awesome" and when we taught him about the Word of Wisdom he said that was "awesome" too.  We had been praying all week for a miracle to have Skat come to church so he could be baptized on the 16th of this month. God is good. My favorite missionary friend left for home this week.  I miss him already. We enjoyed our last Red Lobster
outing together, where we consumed far beyond the recommended amount of cheddar bay biscuits.  Elder Andrew was one of the best Elders I have ever known.  We will return to Washington together someday and find sasquatch. By the way, the talks this weekend in conference SOOTHED MY SOUL.  I think it was a really spiritual moment for me when President Uchtdorf mentioned Chewbacca in his talk.  I really can testify I felt a witness through the spirit of God that the words they spoke this weekend were true.  Can't wait to get a chance to watch / listen to them over again.  We really are incredibly blessed to have the guidance from them.  Overall, it was the next best week of my mission so far.  Excited for another one.