Sunday, February 5, 2017

Jan 30, 2017 - New Stuff All the Time

From Josh:

WOW this week was full of craziness, we had a zone conference with Elder Ardern of the first quorum of the seventy He told us about how a missionary needs to fit the message that he preaches, so think about how great the message of the gospel is, being a missionary we need to be a constant example of it and life it in our lives so we can be the deliverers of such a beautiful message.

Also! The missionary schedule was changed worldwide, instead of planning the night before we plan in the morning and study as companions at a time of the day that we decide, its basically changed to increase our agency so that we can be better emissaries of the Lord, also we used to track a lot of key indicators but now there is only 4, Baptized and confirmed, baptismal dates, sacrement meeting attendance and new investigators, its an adjustment but its a good thing. 

There are a lot of ups and downs in our lives especially as a missionary, at one moment you may be on a spiritual high and the next in the deepest despair, but I take comfort in Gods admonition to Joseph Smith that "all these things are for your good." 
This week has been full of adventures as I have said, we go door to door talking with people and some doors I feel so in tune with the spirit and I seem to say everything right and others I am completely bereaved of thought, I can hardly stutter out that we are missionaries. and its such a learning process to learn how to adapt to those different feelings and situations, because everyone is so different and each needs something different as well. I find that it is a combinations of the spirit and our own personal agency.

Confidence when founded on Jesus Christ is perfect, when we put our trust in the Lord he directs and guides us to places and people in which we need to touch and inspire, When Jesus stated that he is the light of the world he was inviting us to look to him for guidance, so whenever you are at a point in your life that you are confused you can find that Jesus Christ and the Gospel can be that guide and comfort.
Elder Ardern when he came had us practice teaching with descriptions, when we present The Book of Mormon we can simply teach by saying " here is The Book of Mormon it is a_______ (Guiding light, a message of peace, a vessel for greater knowledge)" and it literally is all those things, when you are confused or lost in life then turn to The Book of Mormon, it answers questions of the soul, fills an empty part of ourselves when there is something missing. and I know that it is true.

The other day we were able to come in contact with this lady who stated that she was a Jew and we would not be able to convert to our religion, she had a book of mormon and she had no questions, but she was open to answering questions about jewdaism, and had the unique opportunity of learning about someone elses religion, I asked about why there wasn't a temple in Jerusalem (because they can't have sacrifices until there is one because they are still living the law of moses) she couldn't answer... but from things I had heard and learned I was able to answer for her, it was interesting to meet someone where I knew more about their religion then them... but that isn't the point, because we took an interest in her, she thought of a ton of questions for us about what we believed, we were then able to testify and teach a lot from just questions she asked and spent over 20 minutes sharing with her about what we believed, it was a great experience. it is important to take an interest in others because that is when they open up and trust you more. 

I love you all so much, that was my week and I hope your week has been good and this next week will be even better. 


Josh

Some pictures this week! 

The second ones hair style is courtesy of the wind that day

  


Sam and Joshua Email Exchange

Sam:

Dear Josh

I was reading the Book of Mormon you sent in your christmas package and just realized you had sent a letter in the middle of it with a character drawn on the other page. I've been finding it difficult to think up a name and bio for the character. Anyway, on Friday the 20th, I decided I was wasting all my time on my Ipad and not doing anything productive, and decided to start a month media fast (ending on the 19th of February) and just today, Mom decided for the rest of the family to join me. For a week that is.

For the past week Grandma and Grandpa Bruce came over to help out with the house and basement. Slowly through the week Grandpa wired the entire basement with lights and light switches. I now have a light switch in my room and don't have to turn the light off at the bottom of the stairs on the other end of the basement. We also got Ben's room up and drywalled as well as the food storage room framed.

On the Thursday Cody and Benson came over for the weekend. I do have to admit, that while they were here I did relax a bit on my media fast. But now i'm full swing back into it. Okay, the weirdest thing happened last week after choir after church. Bro.Weeks walked in with a PS4 game in his hand. As I looked at it I realized this it was TitanFall 2.(a game that Dad wouldn't let us buy) and he said this it was to me and Ben as a belated christmas present from an unknown messenger. Who we later guessed that is was Calvin who wanted bad enough to play with us that he came to Devon to give us a game that we couldn't buy on our own. And, through Ben's convincing to Dad, we could now play it with the cousins. But, I'm on a media fast. It's ok though. I started this media fast so I won't be distracted with the world of online anything.

Last week on Tuesday I started Guitar lessons. And they're so much fun. I love learning to play guitar. My lessons are weekly so I've only had one lesson and i'm having my next one tomorrow. As time goes on, we'll see how far I go with guitar. Hopefully I go as far as I can, but we'll see.

I love you Josh with all the love my heart can give to my older brother.

Josh:

Sam! I totally met one of the developers for that game! a guy came out with a titan fall 2 shirt on and we asked about it and it turned out he was one of the main guys who worked on it throughout the game, that is so crazy, I miss you a ton Sam!

Guitar lessons eh? gonna snag a lot of girls that way you know. ;) 

Media fasts are good they help you sort out what is important, focus on studying for knowledge and looking for ways to increase your testimony, pray fervently and with real intent for the Lord to teach you the ways of the gospel, there is so many things to learn about it, and as you put your trust in the Lord he will guide you, in Romans it says that nothing can separate us from the love of God, so no matter what the obstacles in life you have to break through them and gain a firm conviction and conversion to the gospel, focus your studies on The Book of Mormon, and also read the new testament so you can study Christs life directly, as you do it will effect everything in your life, your confidence in yourself and you will be able to make decisions more clearly with a better understanding for life, don't ever give up on yourself. and never give up on the Lord. 

I love you so much Sam I look forward to the day we can see each other again and be bound in brotherly love. 

May the Love of God shine more brightly in your life

Josh

Sam:

Mom really wants me to learn BlackBird by the Beatles. I want to learn If You Could Hie To Kolob, it's one of my favorite hymns. Do you have any song suggestions?

It's funny because in seminary we're doing the New Testament. I'm loving seminary just as much as my first year.(which is alot). It saddens me to see other youth not enjoy seminary as a spiritual boost and a way to learn about the scriptures. I'm also reading the Book of Mormon at night before bed. So I'm doing the best I can with the New Testament, the Book of Mormon and Preach my Gospel study with Dad on Sundays.

Josh:

Learn some romantic love songs for those dates! ;) 

Its good that this year is new testament! it is so important to learn about the savior, and revelations contains a lot of prophesies of these days so its important to understand and learn about that. 

Also remember to learn about other religions as well, its important to understand where people are coming from as a missionary so you can better teach to their needs. 

Sam:

Makes sense. Remember the bunch of gift cards you sent us? Well, I used the prepaid Visa to buy a card game on Amazon called: Exploding Kittens.
We played it at Christmas with the cousins and uncles. Its a funny and very fun game.

I'm going to need to listen and learn all those romantic songs. Maybe I could compose my own. Who knows?

Josh:

Haha Maybe, that would be pretty cool, then I would probably steal it for any date I went on, make up words and sing some pretty sweet stuff. 

I am Glad you are putting those to good use, just make sure to have as much fun as you can. 

Sam:

Speaking of fun, I'm trying to put together a youth party at our house on Feb 17th. We'll see how that goes.

I love you Josh, I'll try to get an email to once a week.

Josh:

Just as long as you are working on being close to the Lord, remember Jesus Christ's counsel to Peter "When though art converted, strengthen your brothers" so as you grow in testimony and knowledge make sure to bring others around you along, be an example and not only an example but someone who speaks out their testimony always standing as a witness of Jesus Christ, so that those kids who don't want to go to seminary will feel the spirit working in them and in turn want to come closer to God. That is your duty Sam, to improve the lives of others in your everyday. 

Thanks for thinking of me little brother. I love you a crap ton. We are in this together to the end. 

I found the triforce by the road the other day!

 

Mom:

It's sunny but windy. We're just hanging out in the library discussing life. 





Josh:

Wow, I miss my brothers a ton! Ben is sure stylin it up in those jeans!




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