January 26, 2015
Family and Friends,
I hope everyone had a memorable week. I wish I could report a single event that was amazing this past week, but there really is never a dull moment about missionary work. The whole experience in itself is quite amazing! Transfers are coming up and everyone is beginning to become frantic to find out if they will stay or go. I always thought transfers were quite depressing because you have to leave several people who you have built a strong relationship with. It's always a bitter-sweet experience.
I heard a lot of amazing quotes this week so I thought I would share a couple of them just for kicks and giggles. I just really love hearing a good quote!
~"When you judge others you do not define them, you define yourself"
~"God does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through a different person that he meets our needs"
~"The only people you should try to get even with are those who've helped you out"
~"A candle that lights another candle loses no light itself"
AREN'T THOSE GREAT AND APPLICABLE TO ALL OF US!
All of these quotes reflect charity is some way. Like the scriptures state, charity truly is the pure love of Christ! If there is nothing else we can do for someone else, we can always demonstrate a little bit of charity. Let us provide light to someone else's day so that we can shine brighter and brighter.
All of our investigators are doing well and we have been very blessed. The Fernandez family attended church again for the third time and have a strong desire to be baptized. We are hoping they will get married soon. Please keep them in your prayers.
Sending all my love and good wishes.
January 20, 2015
Hola Familia y Amigos,
I hope you all find yourselves well during this wonderful new year. The weather outside has been quite frightful this past week as we witnessed a fairly large amount of snowfall in Washington. Evidently, I'm not accustomed to snowfall due to an experience I had. It was late at night and the other Elder's gave my companion and I a ride home. Outside of our apartment we found this snowman that formed a giant hill of snow. "Hey Elder Smith, I dare you to go tackle that snowman," said the other three elders. Of course I couldn't turn this opportunity down. I ran at the snowman and with all my strength tried to take it down. BOOOOM! To my surprise I had the wind knocked out of me and fell to the ground. I had just tacked a giant tree stump. WOOPEE:)
This week I gained a strong testimony about attitude and how it corresponds with missionary work. It seems as if when we push forward with a good attitude and faith, everything works out great and we find success. If we slack off a bit and are negative, we witness an opposite affect. I'm so glad to be a WKM missionary because the guidance we are given is truly allowing us to apply the doctrine of Christ and become better! The gospel is all about change and improvement.
Also, I heard a quote today that pricked my heart. It reads, "Teamwork makes the dream work." Missionary work truly is about teamwork. When I think about the team we are playing for it really allows myself to realize the magnitude of my calling. What team am I playing for? Am I giving my team all I can to allow our team to win? Am I putting all of my heart into the work to find new teammates? We should all strive to be on the Lord's team and strengthen his team by living the law of obedience. I'm so grateful for the opportunity we have to continually strive to become better and improve together as a team.
I love you all so very much and hope you have a great week!
January 12, 2015
Family and Friends,
I send you all my love from Washington this Monday morning and hope your week was full of joy. Our week here in Quincy, Washington has been exciting and full of several strange situations. I think that may just be one of my favorite parts about my mission, the awkwardness at times. It seems as if awkward situations have followed me since day one of my mission. However, as the saying goes, "It's only awkward if you make it awkward!" There is a ton of truth behind that statement.
First off, I have to state how grateful I am for the members who feed us here in Quincy. They are amazing and I love their desire to serve and make sure we are well fed. This past week, I had two different members accidentally lean over and let out some flatulence towards me. I simply couldn't hold in the laughter and neither could the members. "Whoops, sorry I had beans for lunch," one of the members claimed. It's amazing how even something like that can allow you to build strong relationships with the members of the church. "Moments are molecules that make up eternity."-Elder Neil A. Anderson. This was definitely a memorable moment.
Another memorable moment this week occurred when we knocked on the door of one of our potential investigators. As we knocked we heard several loud voices coming from inside the house. We thought it might not be a good time, but we knocked regardless. To our surprise, as the door opened we found a group of 10-15 people sitting in a circle around a statue of Christ. "Well look who it is, come on in," they said to us. (All of this is in Spanish btw) Initially, I was terrified because I thought they were going to scrutinize our church and "bash". They began their session my standing around the statue and reciting this long prayer as my companion and I both stood awkwardly. They finished and began reading out of the Bible. We all testified of the power of Jesus Christ and it was very powerful. Entering into that house, I could sense that they wanted to argue, but by simply testifying of our Savior they softened their hearts immediately. One woman in particular began crying because she claimed she is far from perfect. We bore simple testimonies of the power of our Savior's love which brought comfort to her heart. Although the situation was slightly awkward at first, it was powerful. I just sat and thought to myself, "Where am I?" haha
Also, this week the Fernandez family came to church for the second week in a row! WHOOOPPEEEE! They are amazing and we are praying so hard that they get baptized. Please keep them in your prayers.
I love you all so very much and hope you have an amazing week. Talk to you soon<3
January 5, 2015Loved ones,
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
I hope everyone had an amazing week of festivities and all fingers are still in tact. It truly will be a year of new beginnings and a time to reflect about the previous year. I love starting off a year with a clean slate and striving to set goals for the year to come. Thomas S. Monson stated this concerning a new year, "At the advent of a new year, I challenge Latter-day Saints everywhere to undertake a personal, diligent, significant quest for what I call the abundant life—a life filled with an abundance of success, goodness, and blessings." I am convinced that the abundant life referred to by President Monson is a life centered around Jesus Christ. If we constantly make an effort to become more like our Savior and apply his teachings, everything else will fall into place. (Success, Goodness, Blessings) By simply recognizing our faults and correcting them, we take small steps to a life of happiness. Prophets have admonished us to look at everything with an eternal perspective, not simply focusing on the "here and now." We must always have a change of mind and heart to eternally progress.
The Lord is pouring down miracles upon us in Quincy this week. We had the opportunity to put an amazing family on date for baptism at the end of this month. This family means the world to us therefore if you could keep them in your prayers it would be greatly appreciated. We had a fantastic lesson with them in which the spirit testified strongly. In addition, they came to church this past Sunday which shows that they truly have an open heart and a desire to learn more. Also, our Ward Mission Leader has attended church for a month straight now! We have been blessed to watch him recently return to church and make a goal to attend the temple soon. It's amazing how the Lord really does soften his children's heart's.
Also, this week we got the cold shoulder a ton of times when knocking doors and some interesting responses. For some odd reason, and it's probably bad, I get a kick out of the rejections we get! It's hilarious:,)
"Hi we're the missionaries........."
"You guys are SICK!"
"Well is there anything we can help with?"
"YOU GUYS NEED HELP" (Door Slammed)
My companion and I really got a kick out of that one!:)
Well I hope you all have a great start to the new year and make 2015 a memorable one. I love you very much and miss you greatly.
December 29, 2014Family and Friends,
What an amazing opportunity we've all shared this week to commemorate the true meaning of Christmas. As presents were given and families gathered, we truly felt the Christmas spirit blossom. I'm thankful to have come to the conclusion of Christ's Divine Mission this past week. The divine mission of Christ is too show comfort to his Brothers and Sisters. The embrace of our Savior Jesus Christ is both indescribable and undeniable. "And whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up" (D&C 84:88). I hope we all felt the comfort of our Savior this holiday season through the joy of loved ones, family, etc. The Savior demonstrates comfort in various ways and forms.
My first Christmas in Washington was warm and relaxing. My favorite part of the holiday was seeing my families bright faces for the first time in several months. It's always exciting to hear about home and talk to those who matter most. I now understand the reasoning behind skyping with family only two times a year. I'm confident I would most likely get home sick if it exceeded two times;) We also ate dinner at two different homes, the Manley's and the Yeate's. I'd better start exercising harder or else my belly is going to have a watermelon inside. As I was skyping, the members kept bringing me food periodically as I scarfed it down in front of my family. "Wow, they just keep bringing it and you just keep eating, hard life!" said my family. It's true, we do get outrageously spoiled here in Washington with the delicious food that we constantly consume. The rest of the week was just as wonderful. We are having an amazing time in Quincy and will be staying for at least another six weeks. Elder Caskey and I were excited to hear the news. Hopefully this next transfer we will find success and focus on our purpose to our fullest capacity. I love the mission because there is always room for improvement and always room to change to become a more consecrated missionary. It all begins with putting everything on the altar of sacrifice. The mission has truly proved to be the most life changing thing in my life.
I send all my love from Washington and all my best wishes this holiday season! I hope your holidays were full of our Saviors comfort and his embrace. I love you and I miss every single one of you immensely.