August 29, 2016

Up and Moving!

Tuesday was transfer day. Helped get the whole zone comfy in their spots and I went up to get E Griffin. We had a leadership training with the MLC and then scooted on up to Santa Monica. The mission doctor hadnt yet released E Griffin, so we had to rest for the day. We went to get Persian Desert with one of the assistants, E Kawamitsu. Its amazing what a few words in Farsi and 3 cute boys in shirts and ties will do, we walked out of there with a ton of free food! E Griffin and I spent the rest of the day at the mission home with President and Sister Haynie. We helped out with the departing missionary dinner, got to see E Sugden and then while the marriage/post-mission talk was happening we bounced and took a drive up into Malibu! #ApprovedRestDay

Wednesday morning we woke up and left the mission home and headed back to San Pedro! Its been good, but definitely slower. E Griffin has to take it easy, take breaks here and there, dont want to get a hernia! 

Alexa came to church!! She is awesome! She tried to come 2 weeks ago but got confused and went to the church across the street. This week we went to go wake her up for church, and she was already waiting for us in her car! Who waits for the missionaries for church?! She drove behind us and she made it to church. She absolutely loved it and is excited to come back! We stopped by at work, the local burger place and brought her a Book of Mormon. While we were explaining it, a co-worker came up and started asking questions which was super cool. The staff loves us, calls us "The boys" and now we get free food. :) Alexa is so cool and its been cool to see how she has warmed up to the gospel. 

We had a lesson with a man named Arturo Friday night. E Griffin had taught him the restoration on splits about 2 weeks ago and we were stopping by to follow up with the Book of Mormon and praying. He had skimmed a little bit of it, and had some great questions. We read through the intro with him and then flipped to 3N11 and read about when Christ came to America. We had an awesome discussion about how the Book of Mormon can help us and help bring our families closer together. At the end of the lesson we asked if we could kneel and have a prayer. Arturo was a bit nervous and E Griffin offered an example prayer. It was Arturo's turn and it was so special and just so sincere to see him try and mimic E Griffin's prayer. He wants whats best for his small family so bad and it was so touching to see him humbly offering maybe his first prayer ever on his knees to His Heavenly Father. So cool! image1.JPG

I think the relationship between desire, virtue and blessings is interesting. I know I have been frustrated at times when I fall short of the mark. Sometimes we do all in our power and still we fall short. Sometimes all we can do, our best, is a simple desire to believe, to do, to become. I know Elder Holland last conference said, "With the gift of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the strength of heaven to help us, we can improve, and the great thing about the gospel is we get credit for trying, even if we don’t always succeed." Christ's Atonement makes it possible, it covers us after all we can do. We have the responsibility to do all we can, and that is hard, and it is way inconvenient. 

Brigham Young said, "...the men and women, who desire to obtain seats in the celestial kingdom, will find that they must battle every day”. Although life is hard, we can maintain the peace and hope of a brighter future. We must conquer the nature man, and its accompanying desires. "The natural man desires to wallow in self-pity". While our situations, circumstances and environments are uniquely different, the gospel works for everyone. It all starts with our desires. This morning I read this from Elder Neal A Maxwell, "...when people are described as “having lost their desire for sin,” it is they, and they only, who deliberately decided to lose those wrong desires by being willing to “give away all [their] sins” in order to know God (Alma 22:18)." I know as we submit to God and allow Him to shape our lives, our desires will turn from the natural, selfish things of this world to the eternal and joyful things of the Father's plan. 

August 22, 2016

Emergency Room

This week was a bit out of the ordinary. We spent all Thursday in the UCLA ER. Why? 

Wednesday, E Griffin woke up with an upset stomach. He mentioned it, but we had a normal day. It was time for dinner, and our meal appointment fell through. It was at this moment that we both really wanted fries from our good friend MickeyD. We have been trying to eat healthier so, wasn't quite in line. So we put it into lucks hands and we played Rock Paper Scissors for it. I won, and next thing we know we find ourselves in line at McDonalds. After regretting it and feeling it, we head up to a Young Mens activity where they had hot dogs. We feel into peer pressure and ate some hot dogs as well. This is where the day ends and we find ourselves on the floor of our apartment with stomach yelling at us. 

Thursday morning, I get up, feel much better from the day before. E Griffin? Not having it. Fast forward to about 9am, we consult the Medical Binder, that tells us what is wrong and tips to help us feel better. We read 'Appendicitis' and it matches perfectly to how E Griffin is feeling at this point. Advice and Home Treatment: Contact the Mission Nurse immediately. And so we did. After a few "home tests" she tells us to get to UCLA asap. And this is where we find ourselves. :) 
E Griffin at the hospital.

After 8 hours in the UCLA ER, it was confirmed that E Griffin had appendicitis and needed to either be placed on antibiotics for a week or so in the hospital, or have it removed. #surgery Luckily, it was in no way related to what we had eaten the day before, so McDonalds is still good for you right? ... So, I left my companion in the hospital and roomed with the Farsi Elders for the night. :) It was really good to catch up and see them again. We also ran into Elder Sugden, who goes home in two days! :) #reunion 
Farsi Reunion

Next morning, some other elders from our zone drive up and I pair up with E Sleight, who was third-wheelin it in a trio with them, and the two of us spent 3 days together while E Griffin was getting his appendix removed and recovering. :) We saw him yesterday and he is doing awesome! Hopefully, he will be up and ready to get back to work tomorrow

Which brings us to transfers! Both E Griffin and I are staying another here in Pedro. Its been awesome and Im excited to spend more time here with the ward and people. We are pumped because our zone has been doing AWESOME! this transfer. In these first 3 weeks of August, we have had 8 baptisms in the zone, with 4 or 5 more next week! That is amazing down here in Torrance Palos Verdes. This zone has averaged about 4 or 5 baptisms a month for the past year or so, and this month we are killing it! We are excited because most of the zone stayed the same and we have some stellar missionaries. The Cabrillo Spanish Sisters are so on top of things and are definitely leading the pack [They will have 9-10 baptisms alone in their ward this month!! :)]!!
Palos Verde Panorama

Another Pano of PV and there is a lot of action right outside our apartment some mornings. 
The action outside our apartment!

Something that I've heard and has stood out to me at least 2 or 3 times this week is having two-way faith. It takes a great deal of faith to trust in the Lord, to trust in His timing when you want something. It also takes a great deal of faith, sometimes even a bit more, to trust in Him so much to not get what you want. God's will be done. It takes a lot of humility, patience and meekness to align or will with His. As we converse with the Lord, and share with Him our concerns and thoughts as we would a parent or good friend, He will let us know what we need to do. Setting goals and making plans with the Lord and then actually doing them, (thats the hard part) brings the power behind getting them done. Trust brings the Power. :) 

Have an awesome week! Love you all! 

August 15, 2016

Juegos Olimpicos y La Politica

Not a day goes by where we get asked about the presidential race and the Olympics. Its crazy over here, world is probably going to end. 
TPV Zone
Behind the scenes...

Another week flew by! We've met some awesome people! Here is a little bit about the peeps from this week!

Victor - We met Victor at Point Fermin Park here in San Pedro, our favorite PokemonGO spot. ;) We had an awesome seaside lesson with him about the Plan of Salvation about 2 weeks ago. Since then we've Its super cool to see how the Book of Mormon and the gospel can answer any question that Victor has had. He is an awesome young man who sincerely wants to know if God is there for him!

Paula - Awesome young girl who has been involved with another church and their missionary program. She started meeting with us because she is interested in Christ's restored church! Who shouldn't be! We had an awesome lesson with her this week and she accepted the invitation to read the Book of Mormon and when she receives an answer, to follow it and be baptized!

Patrick - Man we met at a bus stop. At first, he was a bit rude to us, a bit stand-off-ish. He kept saying how young we were and how could we possibly help him with everything he has gone through. We shared a scripture and he just threw it out for trash. A little dis hearted, we offered to say a prayer with him. He wanted to hold hands as we did, mid-prayer, his grip tightens and he starts to cry. We said amen and you could just see how his heart was softened on the spot. He quickly agreed to meet with us and to learn more about how God can comfort us in any situation. 

Alexa - She works at the Burger place down the street and we see her ALL the time it seems like. We finally were able to sit down this week and teach her our first message, the restoration. We taught it way different than we normally do, but we kept with it and she loved it! She accepted a baptismal invitation and to come to church! But she didnt... She loves her sleep, but she'll come around. :) 

Miguel - We were walking looking for Pokemon.. I mean talking with people at the park and met Miguel. He seemed a little off, but as we kept talking with him, he opened up about how his life has taken a tough turn. He had come to the park to take a breather, and was thinking about jumping off the edge of the cliff.. But as soon as we came up, he wasn't thinking about it anymore and realized everything would be ok. While he wasn't interested in our message necessarily, Heavenly Father trusted us enough to help our bud Miguel out in a time of need. 

We went on splits with the Young Men this week and it was awesome! Young men! Go out with the missionaries, it is awesome for both you and the missionaries! 

The Greenwood Family
Their backyard :)

This is the Greenwood family, they are awesome. We had dinner with them yesterday and to share a message with their new neighbors who just moved in! They are super awesome and they were so excited to share their new toy their dad built, a rocket launcher! Very similar to the one my dad built, and it brought back good memories of building rockets with the fam and shooting them off at the park. Dad, I think Bro Greenwood has got you beat though. ;) 

Its my testimony that Jesus is the one in charge of His church and this work. Although His location changed after He ascended to heaven, He still leads and guides His church through the Holy Ghost and ordained apostles and prophets today. Keep going to church! Although repentance and coming to Christ, testimony and conversion are individual, fellowship is in the church. It is a place to recharge the batteries, be with and help those who are in the same or similar boat that you are. God loves you! 
We made homemade Carne Asada tacos :)

Have a great week! :) 

August 8, 2016


Palos Verde

This week was a slow one. We've been trying to think of out-of-the-box ideas for finding and proselyting. We tried down by the beach, over at the port, harbor, and the local parks. Down in Palos Verdes there is this big park and apparently it is a big hub for Pokemon-Go. So literally hundreds of people are just mindlessly walking around tapping their phone. Great. But its become one of our favorite spots to contact because its right by the ocean, there is a nice ocean breeze and there is plenty of peeps to talk to. :) 
By the docks-Palos Verde

We had Zone Training Meeting with the zone this week. Twas good! With our new mission president, there are obviously changes. Earlier in the week we attended MLC and there was a different vibe, but a good one. Change is good! Anyway, we 
We had dinner over at Bishops house yesterday. He lives up on the PV hill. Yes, we are above the clouds in the pic.

Overall, good week! Still trekking through the mission. I love the mission, but dang its hard sometimes. Its ok to have a bad day, Whats important is the direction we are headed in! Everyone struggles, it may seem like you have to be perfect to do the "Mormon thing". Not true, latter-day saints keep trying. They aren't quitters, nor complainers. Look to God in all you do, it'll make the difference!

Have a good week! :) 

August 1, 2016

Huskies Make Friends

Ohh, the wrestle we had this week. Monday, we have a lesson with our friend Oswaldo and we had prayed and felt that he was ready to be baptized this Sunday. We show up Monday, go through the questions and behold, he was ready. He felt a bit nervous and inadequate, but we read in the scriptures and talked about the specific promised blessings of baptism and the change in his attitude was clear as day. He offered the closing prayer, first words out of his mouth were, "Heavenly Father, please help me to get baptized this Sunday." 

Thursday rolls us and we get a text. Not a good text. Basically we didn't see Oswaldo Thursday or Friday. He had gone MIA. First thing Saturday we bounce over and catch him at home. In preparing for baptism, Oswaldo has had to overcome some things in his life and its been really hard on him the last couple days. Satan was working on him overtime. We had a frustrating lesson, we couldn't seem to get through to him like we have in the past. We tried every approach we could think of but nothing. Finally we decided to watch a video about the prophet. We pull up "On the Lord's Errand: Thomas S Monson" and watch the first 10 minutes or so when all of sudden Oswaldo changed and said he was ready and he could get baptized on Sunday. When in doubt, use the words of the prophet to bring the spirit into your life! 

All went well and Oswaldo was baptized! Its was awesome. Brother Millett, Oswaldo's great member friend was able to baptize him. So so cool. After Oswaldo had changed and everything, he came out to sit down for the rest of the program and turned around and said, "Guys, Im perfect!" Haha it was awesome. Oswaldo's dad, who is not a member was able to make it and I had the cool opportunity to teach him the Restoration in Spanish while the missionary moment was going on! 

We have been working with this lady named Maricela! Super cool lady! The last lesson we had with her, her two young teenage boys, William and Jesse joined in on the lesson all on their own! So we went back with a young man from the ward and had a lesson with them! They had met with other missionaries from other churches before and felt like their questions were never answered. So we sat down and had an open Q&A style lesson. It was awesome! It was super cool to see that the gospel, even how simple it is can answer any question that someone can have about God and church. Very very cool. 

After being stressed about not being able to find Oswaldo Friday night, we walked by a house with a baby husky. Needless to say we stopped to play with the dog for a minute and the owner came out... But she was really nice and we ended up having an awesome conversation about God and the missionaries and she invited us back! #HuskiesMakeFriends

We are meeting with a member whose brother is sick and is staying at her house. His name is Tommy and he loves the Mormons, especially "his elders"! He always has something to say. This week he mentioned that Jesus Christ is in the soul saving business. Jesus is always there for us and often has to remind us, You may be done, but Im not. You may want to give up, but Im not done with you. I haven't brought you this far to just give up and let you go. Keep going! 

The mission is great! LA is weird. There is some crazy people out here. All is well. The sun comes up tomorrow and God's grace is always as sure as your day! Have an awesome week! 
When you find another country in the middle of your area.

When you try to pave a tree.