Monday, October 24, 2016

Week 56: October 24, 2016

Happy Happy Happy Monday!!!!!

            This past week has been awesome!!!  Elder Barnes and I have seen so many awesome miracles this past week!  We did a lot of knocking doors like we normally, and his past week we saw so much success!  We actually knocked up someone who met with missionaries from our church about a year ago and had found our card the night before and said he was going to call us the day we knocked into him.  So he felt like us knocking into him was a sign.  We felt inspired to go to his apartment complex and his building.  It was awesome to see how God answers prayers.

             Ah, one other new thing is the weather isn't hot.  It actually is kinda cold in the morning and at night.  We have a high of 79 most days for the past couple days.  It has been awesome.  I don't sweat too much just standing in the sun, I love it!

           So I'm kinda out of time to email, but I hope y'all know that I love the gospel and I love my savior.  I hope y'all have a great week.  Remember the church is true and that god loves you!


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Week 55: October 17, 2016

Happy Monday!

       It is not possible but another week has passed by.  I'm not to sure if I like it but hey that's how it works I guess.  Time flies so that's why I just need to work harder and harder while I still have time.  First off transfers are here and I'm staying in the Fort Caroline area and staying with elder Barnes so I'm excited for that.  It should be and awesome next 6weeks!

         One thing that I have realized over my mission is that there is no such thing as a bad week.  The past couple weeks have really taught me this.  They have been hard but never bad.  One thing that really been awesome this week was how many people we were able to set up for an appointment for this next week.  A lot of them were still catching up from the hurricane but we excited and glad that we stoped by to see them so a lot of them told us a specific day that we could come back.  Another awesome thing is this past week we have made a solid relation ship with a lot of our ward members and the stake president.  When we went out with them this weekend they greatly appreciated our help and our enthusiasm.  We have seen this help as we have asked some members to come o with us and now they are a little more willing because we were able to serve them and serve with them.  For me this Hurricane has been a great blessing!

       I just want all of y'all to know how much I love this gospel, so far my mission has just been incredible.  I love our savior and I want y'all to know that.  He has been everything for me, he has been the friend who has never left me.  He can be the same for all of y'all, I know he lives.  And he loves us!

Have a great week!



Week 54: October 10, 2016

 So first of if y'all haven't heard we had a class 3 Hurricane come through named Matthew.  So that's pretty much all I'll write about in this email since that's all that has happened this past week.  So it all started off Tuesday, we found out from random people that there was a hurricane that formed down by Cuba and Hattie.  We don't watch the news as missionaries since we are too busy so we had only heard about from other people.  Then people started to freak out more.  While it was down by Hattie is was a class 4 which I pretty big from what I've heard, (I'm no hurricane expert) and so people were kinda getting scared.  So Wednesday and Thursday was pretty much just us helping people Prepare for Hurricane Matthew.  So that was a lot of fun, we were able to help a lot of people and it was great, I love serving people.  Especially when they themselves are not capable of doing i themselves, I truly felt the love of Christ during this whole experience.
           Come Friday we were told to stay in all day because that's when the hurricane hit.  Elder Barnes and I were told to evacuate to another missionaries apartment more inland since ours was 6 miles from the coast.  So while at the other elders apartment on Friday we did our planning for the next week and then when about noon hit we lost power.  Luckily we were stocked up on water and non perishable food.  But it made the rest of the day long and boring.  The wind outside was crazy fast and there was a lot of rain.  But the apartment we were in didn't receive any damage.  There were a lot of limbs down in the complex but at was it for us.  We tried to come up with some creative games to pass the time away but it still went slow.

            Now for the past 2 days and this morning we have done nothing but service.  The hurricanes damage was mostly in fallen trees.  There were a lot of trees that fell in yards, on cars, of houses.  So we have done a lot of work all of Saturday and Sunday and this morning to help people who had severe damage.  It has made me very tired the past couple days but somehow i am still able to continue.  God has blessed us all with strength to serve and with peace of mind that all will be ok.  It has also be great to see the churches humanitarian effort first hand.  The church sent a semi truck with supplies like chainsaws, wheelbarrows, shovels, and other necessities that people need.  With many all around e affected areas wearing the Yellow Mormon Helping Hands shirts it has been great to see how God has inspired church leaders with this wonderful program at assists in crises quickly.  I'm so grateful for all the blessings that God has given me, especially with safety this past week.  He has helped calm my mind and proceed us as we kept the instructions of local leaders.  I thank all those who prayer for me and for all those affected by Hurricane Matthew.  

Love y'all, have a great week!


Week 53: October 3, 2016

Hello y'all,

          This has been an incredible week.  Plus time is going by too quick, it felt just like yesterday I was send my Monday email.  But just got to keep moving strong.  So one of the awesome things that happened was general conference.  Where we got to hear the words of the prophet and apostles.  It was an awesome incredible experiences.  I learned so much, and really felt the spirit.  I love general conference, it was so awesome!!!!!

     For example this past Saturday we had a elders quórum BBQ before the priesthood session, we had 2 less actives come!  Both were invited by a member when we brought a member to the lesson.  It was awesome for both of them and a big eye opener for them.  We are excited to see them start coming back.  One of them committed to be at church next Sunday so that will be awesome!  The elders quórum president said, hey we need you and you need to be back in activity and that struck a chord so he is coming back.  We also had a great lesson with our investigator Nate who is awesome.  He has so many great questions about the restoration and is soaking it all in.  He read 3 nephi 11 at least 4 times before our return appointment so that he couple understand it.  And he accepted the invite to baptism, he doesn't know when yet because he has some family issues but is continuing to progress.  It was great because we had the bishop there and bishop came up with a perfect fellowshiper for Nate.  I truly have a testimony of having members at lessons.  The more I involve them the more comfortable the investigators feel, and it's so much greater when the member extends the invite.  Members are key.  As missionaries we get moved around so if we can help these people build relationships with the members who stay that will help them always have a friend there.

       I'm kinda confused why the font just changed on my as I have been writing but oh well.  Anyways I hope y'all have a great week.  I want y'all to know that I know Jesus Christ is our savior.  That he loves each and every one of us.  One thing that was talked about was that the atonement of Jesus Christ has no bounds.  No matter how deep the hurt, or big he sin through Jesus Christ we can all be clean and healed.

I hope y'all are able to remember this throughout the week!


Prayer emoji socks that I found for $1

6 racks of ribs cooked for us by some members.  Yummy Southern food.

Week 52: September 26, 2016

Good afternoon!!!!!

            This past week has been awesome, elder Barnes and I have seen so many awesome miracles.  First off i will say this past week has been has been hard, but has not been bad.  A lot of people have not been home this past week, or they have been sick.  So that happened, but we did see many miracles.  We had a little bit of a slower week as we are implementing some more things in the mission to help us be more effective and better at teaching lessons and finding people. As always, change takes time to figure out and get into a good grove. It is so wonderful how when we get comfortable, the Lord gives us somthing that we can work on and change to become even better! We had so many miracles this week. We have done a lot of Less Active and Inactive Member finding! We have been doing at least an hour and a half each day! That being said, we found a few people that weren't very happy to see us, but we always found someone that would let us come back and want to meet with us! We had an incredible lesson with an inactive member last night. It was kind of scary... I have been working on being bold and loving. With the Spirits help I was able to do that with this member. We brought our awesome Elders Quorum President with us. We were all bold and loving! He is going to come to the Priesthood Barbecue Social on Saturday and then the Priesthood session of conference after! It was so Great! We met wit an investigator who we met with on Thursday, he told us that he has been reading from the Book of Mormon and that he loves it!!!!! He asked us for another chapter to read and he is having us over for dinner tomorrow night!! We are having a lot of miracles happening here in this area! It is on fire! I can't wait to see what will keep happening! This next week is General Conference. I am so excited for it! It is a perfect time for us all to feel the spirit and have guidance of what the Lord wants us to do in our lives.  It is when we have the opportunity to listen to the words of the prophet and the apostles and other church leaders. I would invite and highly encourage all of you to watch it. Even if you can only catch a little bit of it. I can testify that is has helped me in my life. It is this Saturday and Sunday, you can find out the times on  It is one of the reasons why I am out on a mission and has helped mold me into who I am today. I know that those men and women are called of God and receive revelation and inspiration to help us. I love y'all so so much. Please watch general conference and tell me what you thought. I hope y'all have a great week!

The missionaries in the Jacksonville beaches area

Week 51: September 19, 2016

Happy Monday!!!!!

           That weird phenomenon for missionaries, the rest of the world dislikes Monday's and loves Friday's.  But then Missionaries love Monday since we get to write emails home, and dislike Friday's because we have our weekly planning.  Fun stuff.

            So this week has been great, we had a lot of miracles.  So we have done a lot of knocking this past week so that has been great.  I honestly love knocking doors, we meet so many awesome people when we do.  Some nice, some not as nice, and some just plain interesting.  I love southern people, they are so great.

         One really fun thing that happened this week was when I was on a companion exchange with elder Peterson.  We were abut knocking doors and had walked just over a mile away from the car when we heard this loud roaring.  We turned around and here was a wall of rain coming towards us.  I have never seen anything like it in my life.  So we got drenched.  We ran for cover but not in time.  So we ended up just walking in it.  It was so much fun but we got so wet.  Man, but it was fun!

        So that's it for this week, I'm so grateful for all the many blessings that I have received over the past year of my mission. It's crazy to think that it has been that long already but I'm grateful for the opportunity to serve and to continue to serve.  Have a great week!


Week 47: August 8, 2016

Happy Monday Y'all!!!!!!

            I can't believe it is Monday already again, that's so crazy that it is Monday already again.  Time just goes by too quick, but hey that's fine, just keep pressing forward.  So first off I might have resent last weeks email by accident so if I did I apologize.  

          So now on to the week, first off is the weather is crazy.  We have a tropical storm commin through possibly this week.  It's shouldn't be nothing but a lot of rain, and that will be fine since this week I will be in a car full time.  So it should be too bad, I'm actually excited.  I love rain so much, so this should be great.

            Also a big change elder Bladen my car map ion right now finishes his mission this week.  I'm excited for him, sad to see him go though.  He leaves wednessday, he is going to Utah state.  The funny thing is I don't know who my companion will more to come on that front.

           This week has been an awesome week.  We were able to see many awesome miracles.  One of those being a family we met while walking through an apartment complex.  The father Ben, has a brother who is a member here in Ocala.  They had just moved here to be closer to family and were interested in learning more about the church.  It was awesome to see them desire to learn more, and the spirit working in them.  We were able to give them both a copy of the Book of Mormon and hey said they would love to read it.  They have a young 12 year old son who the mom when talking about him said that they don't push religion on him but just let him make the choice.  When their son came outside we started talking and I brought up the youth group, and mutual on Tuesday night.  He looked over at his mom and told her that he wants to go.  It was an awesome little miracle and I'm excited to continue to see them grow.
            Here is the scripture of the week,

2 Nephi 22:2
2 Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation.

              I love my savior and am so grateful for all he does for us!

                I hope y'all have great week and I'll talk to y'all next week, see ya!

Week 46: August 1, 2016

Gooood afternoon,

           This past week has been crazy all over the place, but amazing at get same time.  So first off I've had a car full time very day all day for the past 6 weeks.  This past week we received a call that we will be in a car share.  Which means we share the car with some other missionaries, so we bike half the week and then have the car the other half of the week.  So  we biked a little his past week which was good, I need to lose a little bit of the weight I've gained.  Then the other interesting change was transfers his past week.  Elder Bladen and I were going to stay together and get a new companion with us.  So we would be in a trio.  We left up to Jacksonville on Wednesday to get him, we picked him up and headed back down.  Mind you this is a 2 hour drive one way, when we got back to Ocala we got a call from the mission president saying he needed our new companion somewhere up in Jacksonville actually.  So we got back in the car and headed back up.  So, that was crazy.  We spent about 8+hours in the car Wednesday.  Fun stuff.

            Anyways the rest of the week was fast pace, I loved it though.  We knocked a lot of doors his week which was great.  People here in Ocala are really nice so we usually don't have any problems.  So that was awesome.  But the best part is some of our friends who are investigating the church who are progressing really well.  We had a couple people coming to church with us.  They are loving it so much and feel the spirit.  That is probably the best part of missionary work, seeing the spirit work on those who excessive faith and read the scriptures, prays about it, and comes to church.  We can't convert them, but the spirit can.

          Another thing that has happened this week is I haven't felt the best, my stomach has just been killing me.  Oh well, but to make up for it we had a lot of food donated to us which is great!!!  We had a lot of Mexican food donated to us as well as sandwich meat, cheese, and pork.  I love it, I have also been eating a good amount of tilapia.  I love fish, it is not as good as fresh fish from the north west but it's good.

So here is the spiritual thought for he week, this scripture comes from a revelation given to Joseph Smith, the first prophet in these latter days.

Doctrine and Covenants  112:13
13 And after their temptations, and much tribulation, behold, I, the Lord, will feel after them, and if they harden not their hearts, and stiffen not their necks against me, they shall be converted, and I will heal them.

I love this because as we endure through trials and be humble and turn to he lord, he will heal us.  And that is a promise to all those who do this, I have experienced it myself and know that God can heal us.  I'm so grateful for him, and everything he does for me.

Alright that's it for now, have a great week!!!!!!


Here is a photos of the St. John's river up in Jacksonville

Week 50: September 12, 2016

This week has been incredible!!!!!!

          So I'm back in Jacksonville, I'm so excited to be here.  It has been such a blast so far.  So first off my New Companion is Elder Barnes.  He is awesome, he is from Idaho so right next to my homeland.  So that has been awesome.

          So I don't have too much time to write but here is something I want to share.  This past week we have done a lot of knocking doors.  And it has been hot and we had sweated a lot.  So during one of our hours while knocking we set a goal to meet 2 new people that we could come back and meet with.  So we prayed about it and continued knocking.  By the end of the hour we had found nobody yet.  But then at then end the last door we met an awesome lady who invited us to come back the next week.  And then just a few minutes later as we walked to our car we met another man who was really interested and we taught him out in the street for 30 minutes.  And then he invited us to come back.  Our prayers were answered!  I'm so excited to see the wonderful experiences that will come this next week!

So that's it for now!  Have a great week, I'll try to write more next week!


Week 49: September 5, 2016

 Happy Labor Day!

          This past week has been awesome, crazy, and everything else.  I have so much to report on but not too much time.  First up is transfers, I'm being transferred!  Guess where??  Remember I started my mission in Jax beach.  Well in that district there is the Jax beach ward and Fort Caroline Ward.  I'm being sent to Fort Caroline (which is in the east side of Jacksonville) as the district leader.  I have the opportunity to serve 7 other missionaries and help all of us grow and work together to do the lords work.  I'm super excited to go there, I know a couple of the ward members and will have the opportunity to go on trade offs in Jax beach and see a lot of my old friends.  

            Next as some of you may know there was a hurricane this past week that went up the east coast.  It didn't touch us luckily here in Ocala.  We receive a lot of wind and rain but the hurricane itself didn't cross directly over us.  So it wasn't too bad, we just received a power outage for a couple hours.  So not too bad.

          Also since I hit my year mark in a week I had he opportunity to go to the temple here in Orlando.  It is such a beautiful building and I really felt the spirit there.  It had been a while since I had gone and I had really missed it.  I'm so glad for all the wonderful blessings that come through the temple.  Especially the knowledge that through marriage in the temples families can be together forever.  I'm so grateful for that knowledge, and I know it's true because I have felt the spirit testify to me that it is.

         Alright, before I go I'll leave y'all with a little thought.  I was reading a talk by a past prophet, President Kimball, about leading like the savior.  One of the things he said really struck me, it said...Jesus Christ ran a "do as I do" program, not a "do what I say".  It really struck me that everything he ever asked us to do he did himself.  That is true leadership, I know that our savior Jesus Christ lives and loves us.  That we will truly be blessed as we follow his example.

I hope y'all have a great week, stay safe, 


Orlando Temple

Most of the missionaries I came out with.

Week 48: August 29, 2016

Happy happy Monday!!!!

           This past week has been awesome, we have been able to see many mighty miracles.  I will talk about some of them near get end of my email.  But to start off there are a couple big announcements, this Saturday is the transfer call.  I find out if I'm staying in Ocala or if I will be moved.  I have a feeling that I'm staying but I have no idea.  

          So one thing that I'm super excited about this coming week is I have the opportunity to go to the temple.  I'm so excited, while on our mission we get to go twice.  One at our year mark and another at the end of our two years. It is crazy that I'm already at my year mark.  It doesn't feel like it should be.  Oh man it is going by too quick.

         So here is one amazing miracle that happened this week.  This actually happened yesterday, as missionaries in Ocala we set a goal to be bold and be urgent in inviting people to be baptized.  Yesterday we met paten, we started talking to him about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  He said he had grown up in a Christian church but stopped going.  Since we were being bold we asked him if he would be baptized if he came to know the message was true.  In being bold he said yes, we actually found out that he had not been baptized before.  We were able to set a baptismal date with him in November.  I'm so grateful for the spirit building us to him, and also the spirit testifying to his heart of the truth of these things.  I know the gospel is true, and that baptism is the gate to our progression to eternal life.  Baptism is not the finish line, and I'm so grateful for the gospel helping guide me to the finish line.

          Alright I hope y'all have a great week, God is good all the time and all the time God is good!

All the missionaries in Ocala!

Week 47: August 22, 2016

Happy happy Monday!!!!!!

          I hope y'all had an amazing week, this past week for me was amazing.  It has been crazy busy but it has been so worth while.  This week we were able to met with a lot of amazing people.  People who not only are interested in learning, but those who have a desire to grow closer to God and our savior.  One of them, Ben, is really progressing well.  He has felt the spirit as we have met with him and has really taken big steps of faith.  He is reading the bible and the Book of Mormon everyday.  He reads any pamphlets we leave with him.  The next step is for him to come to church and then get baptized.  And he really wants to, so he is taking the steps necessary to make that covenant.

          So today all he missionaries went bowling, oh man am I trash.  The first game I did decent.  I was able to get about 120ish but the second game I was just trash.  I got  88 points.  Man I got destroyed!  But it was tons of fun to get out with the other missionaries and just have some relax time.  I'll include some photos from that in this email.  Right now we are at he church playing bball, and emailing.  

         Well one thing that I don't think I have mentioned in any of my weekly emails over my mission but seriously needs to be addressed.  Apparently in Florida you have to own a dog to live here.  Well not really but it feels like everyone has a dog, and when we knock doors it feels like they bark like they have never barked before.  And sometimes that makes he owners mad.  But it's fun, I love dogs still.  Just not when they bark, when we knock doors, and it's late at night.  But hey that's life!  

       Some other awesome things that happened this week is we had a zone conference.  So all the missionaries in the Gainesville area and lake city areas got together with the mission president and talked about how we can improve and things that are going great.  One of my favorite trainings was given by Sister Lee (the mission presidents wife) she trained about how sometimes we think we are inadequate.  How sometimes we feel like we are not good enough or we compare ourselves to other people.  As one of he missionaries put it comparing our bloopers to someone's highlights.  But then sister Lee. Said somethings profound that struck me.  I think this is how she said it, How could a child of An all loving Father in Heaven not be good enough!  I know this is true, even when we feel down we have to remember that we are sons and daughters of an all knowing loving God.  I hope y'all know that, and always remember that God loves you!

Have a great week and have fun!  

Trio life, elder spencer the one driving, and elder hardy the one sleeping.

The Gainesville zone with President and Sister Lee

The missionaries in Ocala