Monday, March 26, 2012

Happy Birthday Elder!

As we've observed the birthdays of Jaren and Hailey, my thoughts have been this of Jaren (which are confirmed in his email this week):
"God gave you many gifts,
including a warm and caring heart.
& it's comforting to know
that you're out there
even though we're far apart"
Thanks for all the birthday wishes. It has been a really hard week. Ugh. It was tough. I'm excited to get a break today and a nice meal and nap :) Wow transfers are next Wednesday so mail things to the office. You may be safe if you send them today or tomorrow, but after that, you should probably send to the office. I haven't been doing good with Spanish. In Wellington, I studied everyday but i felt like I studied the same things every day. Now here, we always have appointments at like 10 or 11 and language study is at 10 so I have barely studied here. And when we bike out and bike back, i'm way too tired to study anyway. I got the insulin about a week ago. So i'm good with that. Oh yeah, i don't think I told you but remember the family I baptized in Wellington? Well a couple Saturday's ago, the father was baptized!! It's so awesome. I'm so happy for them.
We had a lot of meetings in the past couple weeks from President Anderson. He has really grown as a mission president and he truly is inspired. I love him. One time, he was talking about the BoM, and he was talking about how it is the only book ever that has been reviewed and testified by Jesus Christ himself. It's in D&C somewhere.. But that's so cool. It's that important and inspired.
Ok. So I like to think of myself as a pretty charitable person. It's even in my patriarchal blessing. Anyway, I feel like it's a pretty good quality to have. But at the same time, I've given out well over $100 in cash to people in need.. So now I'm running low. haha. Just saying. Oh, I got the cheescake. But this time, it was destroyed. Kinda sad but it was still delicious.
There's like 3 or 4 pools at our complex and I've never had a bigger desire to go take a dip in my entire life. And it's only March. And you know that swimming isn't my thing at all. Being on bike isn't too bad. Florida is quite flat so it's ok most of the time. But the area we work in is directly east of us. Idk if you guys study the weather, but the wind comes in from the ocean, so it travels west. So when we ride to our area, we're riding against the wind the entire time. It's horrible. And the wind is pretty strong so it's like riding into a wall the whole time.
Mom, remember in my first area how the Braithwaite's always had us over? Well she made this super good cinamon carrot stuff that I loved. So can you call her up and ask her for it? Also tell her how I am doing and that I say hi.
I was gonna send the recorder and sim card last week but i decided that i'll use them today for my bday so i'll send them today so you'll have some bday pics. Mom, how is nusery? The nusery kids here are so cute. Lot's of little black kids.
Alma 26:2 is a great scripture. Just reminds you to always count your blessings. I wrote that in in my scriptures right next to it. This was a bad week. But it'll get better. Thank you for all the support. I miss you guys. I love you all!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Hard, but a good week!

This week has been good. Pretty hard, but at the same time, good. A lot of our investigators dropped us... So we've just been doing a lot of harvesting. Which isn't fun at all. Eh. Whatever. We did find a couple really cool people though. Anyway, Elder Gonzalez was super good on Friday. He is super awesome and way funny. I hope he speaks at General Conference. It was like the best meeting I've had on my mission. It was a "half" mission conference so all the north zones were together and then all the south zones. So I saw Elder Shaffer and we talked about Wellington. The father of the family was baptized! He told me a couple days before and I wanted to get permission to attend, but I didn't. It's so cool. Nothing else too exciting up there. I have the sim card of the pictures of their baptisms but it's been so long because I had Bernadette's wedding photos on it so i had to wait until I gave them to her. But I'll send it today. I got the box with the water thing. It's awesome. I love it. Don't worry, I put it in a plastic bag and it's ok.
So we were teaching this lady and she had the tv on and there was like a commercial about Elizabeth Smart like being exclusively interviewed or something. It looked like she got married? Idk. It looked interesting. Guess where I ate last Tueday? Popeyes! Mmm. It's on Seacrest and Hypoluxo. It was awesome. We went to this LA members' home and it's just a single guy and he had these licorice. but it was double salted or something, and as you know, I don't like licorice in the first place. But this stuff was just nasty.

And last week, we were harvesting and like the last blessing we gave, it was to just some guy. It was in his garage and right after he went inside and said, "Let me give you some water" and Elder Ensing goes, "No we don't accept that" And I'm just like what the heck. Why wouldn't we. haha. Anyway, apparently he said "an offering" not some water. So I got four dollars out of a blessing haha. In that same neighborhood, there was kids playing outside and this one 5 yo girl kept following us around telling us to go away and stop knocking on doors. It was funny cuz she just had attitude. At one point she told us that no one likes us and they don't want us there haha. Then the next day, we went to go teach a single lady and her 12 yo son and 6 yo were there and in the middle of the lesson, there was a silent moment and the little girl just turned to me and told me I was cute. So that made me feel better about myself.

Another nice thing that you could send would be those address stickers things with the mission office address on it. Like you can still write to my apt, but it'd be nice to just stick a sticker on my letters home. We did service on Tuesday for some lady that lives across the street from that Arabic guy and so i wore my jeans. Now before my mission those jeans were just normal jeans. But now, they're skinny jeans. My legs and bum are so huge now cuz i ride bike so much. There are stretch marks on my legs. I could barely move and we were pulliing weeds so it was way annoying. 

If you go to and sign in with your lds acct, then it has a way cool geneology fan thing. Except, when I did mine, I'm not connected to mom, so my whole maternal side is empty. Anyway, you should try it out. 

Well... That lesson with that single mom was super spiritual, hopefully she'll progress well. We found a cool Dominican lady who believes in God and Jesus but doesn't think religion is necessary, but she seems promising. She commited to read the BoM last time so we're following up tonight. I hope that will be good.

K I love you all! The church is true!!

Monday, March 12, 2012


Another P-day here in Boynton Beach. My areas have gotten more and more ghetto as I get switched around. This is really the slums. Oh well. What can you do? I like the ward here, but we have NO meals. I'm thinking I'll bring it up at our correlation meeting on Tuesday. I haven't had a single meal since I've been here and they really help to find people to teach. We don't get home until about 9. Actually something pretty cool, there's a member in the ward just south of us (I think Boca Raton or something). He's like 22 and he works at Panda Express so like 3 or 4 times a week, he comes over at like 9:45 and brings us food. But as you all know, I don't like asian food... But I eat it anyway. The worst thing about being here in Florida on a mission is I can't take my shirt off. I have a farmers tan. I hate it. haha. Maybe one of these P-days I'll go tanning or something. Nothing too spiritual happened this week. We did have a baptism on Saturday. Which I forgot to tell you about him. ha. He's Jeffery Gibbons. He's 19 and lives with his grandparents here in FL. They only found him like 2 weeks before I got here. He went to church the first time on the Sunday right before I was here, and he said (we met that Friday) that he felt the Spirit when he saw someone receive the Holy Ghost. So he recognized the Spirit which is actually pretty impressive. Not a lot of people can. Anyway, he has a gf in Utah who is a member and she came down for spring break and was there. That was cool.. Ugh. There are seriously like 49 churches in the area that we work. It's so annoying. So occasionally we'll run into a pastor or reverand or whatever. Mostly they're nice, but some are super rude. Whatever.

Alright. I love you family! General Conference is just about here. Remember last conference? My first weekend in the MTC. Time is flying. Now there's even more excitement for General Conference because it's a 6 month milestone each time. But I'm super excited for conference. It's the best. I miss you guys. I love you a ton!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Week 2 in Boynton Beach

  Everything is well here in Boynton Beach. Except I HATE biking all over. And the area we work in is east of us and I don’t know if you saw it on the map but there's a huge over pass that we bike over every day. And on Saturday, the Elders Quorum and High Priests play basketball and they invited us to go. Elder Jones and I went and there were 8 other guys, about 5 Priests too. And we played super hard and I am SO sore now. Ugh it's the worst.. I like being in an apartment with 4 elders. It's a lot of fun. Unproductive at times.. But I enjoy it. The Creole elders have a car. So that's how we shop and go to church and such. Elder Ensing doesn't believe in dinner either.. But there isn't a lot of good places to eat around where we are so at the same time, I don't want to ride all the way home to eat then ride all the way back. I'll keep granola bars or something with me to suffice. Mom, the guy from NY at the MTC, was his name Bobby Jamison? Because that's the guy I taught in the MTC. I can't remember if I told you that. But that would be cool.   Now that I've been here a bit, I can tell you about our investigators. One, “B” has been investigating for like 9 months. And the main thing that has been holding her back was that she was living with her boyfriend but like the Monday before I got here, they had a fight and he moved back to CA, so I never met him. On Friday we went over and we committed her to be baptized March 10.  Last Wednesday, we were done harvesting and walking to our bikes when we receive a text from an unknown number "It's “B”. I want to be married and baptized on Sunday. Is that possible?" We were so excited it was awesome. So I guess they made up and he's back (well he has like army school in CA so he's going back on Thursday but after “B's” 4 kids from a different marriage are done with school, they'll move out there with him) But he came here so they could get married and he could watch her be baptized. The marriage was on Saturday and the baptism on Sunday. It was pretty cool. No one had a camera at both so I was the photographer... so you'll get some wedding photos as well. Anyway, that was an exciting first week. Another guy, Thomas Taylor. He's about 55 or something. I guess he prayed for God to show him the way and the missionaries knocked like 2 weeks later, about a week before I got here. He's super prepared and loves the BoM and knows it's true. He's just getting a lot of pressure from his family who are Baptist (I hate baptists... haha jk. but they're annoying.) He hasn't come to church the past two weeks because of his family. So we went over yesterday and talked to him and at 5 we asked him to come to the baptism at 7 and he said yes. But he didn't show... :( That's hard. To see someone who is so prepared but just can't come to church or be baptized. Oh well. We'll try our best. We have some other great investigators. And there are some who aren't so great.. There's one guy, Khalil, who is Arabic. Actually from Palestine I think. He lives in a house with like 4 Muslim guys so they don't like us. Anyway, usually when we teach him he just sits there quietly and listens but one time when we went over, he just was super animated about something. It's hard to understand him a lot. He kept telling us to look out the window and look at this plant and he'd say like "Look at the green" "Ok.." Now look at the greener" haha just like a crazy person. It was quite the experience. And he said all churches are corrupt and all this crazy stuff. But he wants to be baptized, sometimes. haha. We also met with this guy we blessed (a couple days earlier we set up an appointment with his daughter, who wasn't there) and had probably the most spiritual experiences I've ever had with him. We taught him the Restoration and about the BoM and he was super attentive and taking everything in and it was awesome. And he kept saying how he loved us because what we were doing and our spirit. Anyway, at the end of the lesson, we asked him to pray and ask God if the BoM and what we shared were true. And he said he didn't need to because the Spirit had already touched his heart so he believed all of it was true. I was just blown away. Like it was insane. So I said the closing prayer and after I said amen, he kept his head down for about 10 more seconds. When he looked up, he was crying. It was the best moment of my mission. We rode home and I was floating on air. Well...................... the next morning we get a text from the daughter’s phone (he said he used it sometimes if his didn't work) saying that the family came to a conclusion that they didn't want visits from us anymore. Straight kick to the stomach. It was the worst feeling. Anyway we found out that it was the daughter texting us, so we don't know if he had any say in the matter. That lesson was on Wednesday and the text Thursday. We haven't been back since. That was tough. Oh well. Life goes on. Maybe we'll try to catch him one day. Crazy week.
  There are a couple things I'd like to share as well. Psalms 37. Strength of the Lord. That one helps me. Also, the April 2004 General Conference was so good. I read a lot of it and I loved it. One I really liked was "Did you get the right message" from President Faust. Super good.
  Welp.. I hope you all had a good week as well. I continue to keep pushing. That's what you do as a missionary. All the people who say it's the best 2 years are Off their missions, haha but at the same time I'm loving it. I miss you all. I love you more than anything.