Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25th, 2013

Dear Family, 

We had the most amazing weekend!!! I felt the windows of heaven opening upon us!!! I literally felt the spirit being poured over our area. Specifically hoopa!   This week was our monthly sacrament meeting in Hoopa and after weeks of coming out here trying to find and invite and teach the best we can... it really paid off. It was a huge turn out! We had over 50 people show up! Over thirty of them were from the hoopa area!!! It was amazing. People just kept showing up!!  I will tell you what. There is not a better feeling out there than seeing weeks of work and effort and frustration and persistence in teaching and inviting and finding , pay off in a single moment. All our solid investigators came to church today. We had eight!! We picked up two new investigators at the meeting afterwards when we taught them and set a return appointment for Tuesday! All the less actives we have been teaching and calling came to the meeting! And the members who we have been doing our best to work with brought friends and family that aren't members. What I saw in hoopa last night was a glimpse at what missionary work is like when all are equally yoked!!! The members, the missionaries, the spirit, all acting on our faith in Jesus Christ and his gospel!!!

And that is only the beginning. One of our members from hoopa, bro Joseph gave a powerful talk and testimony on the Book of Mormon. Elder scalese and I followed it up with a short lesson on the Holy Ghost and it's role in teaching us truth! The spirit was powerful! Hearts were softened and faith was strengthened. it was one of the best if not the best moment on my mission up to this point. In fact as I type I feel so full of love and gratitude for my savior and Heavenly Father who have guided us and directed us as we have gone about his work. It is because of them that all this happened!! I'm just so thankful he has given me the chance to be a part of it. I really can't describe in words how I feel. My cup is overflowing today.

So yeah It was awesome. This week should be sweet. Especially when we go out to hoopa. We might have to start going twice a week if we are not able to meet with all of the people we need to see. So that is exciting. With that many people attending each month I think a branch is in the future! That is more than the Miranda branch has and it has been there a long time!! I was down in Miranda on exchanges this week. It is a teeny building. It would be a whole different experience to serve in a tiny branch that is for sure!

 Love you!! 
Elder nelson

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Halloween with Sister Williams/James (Investigator and his kids)

Herbal tea-time with Elder Cartwright

November 18, 2013

Dearest family, 
      Today I want to share with you some of the miracles that I have been Part of this week. 
       First, I went on exchanges with Elder dale who is a new missionary serving in mckinleyville. While I was with him we found not one but two new families and picked up five new investigators! One was just a door that we decided to knock and the other was a potential investigator they had been trying to see forever but could never catch. 
       The first family was Native American and initiallythey were not going to talk to us. it was funny because we  introduced ourselves and talked briefly anout why we were there and we asked her a question about her beliefs. she said she wasnt interested because she was native american and believed in her whole culture thing with her tribe. so we brought up the Book of Mormon and testified to them that it was a book from god and that it was a record of their ancestors! She thought about that for a second and then said, "we'll actually come on in I want to learn more about that." So we came in and introduced her and her two daughters to the Book of Mormon and answered their questions about it! One of the daughters asked for her own copy so she could read it! It was totally awesome. It was cool how we found them though because we originally came to that street to find a potential but they weren't home. So elder dale asked me what I wanted to, do, either tract or go try to see someone else. He said that usually they would just get in the car and go to the next person in their list. So it was a great teaching opportunity for me. I told him that one of the most important things that I have found to do on my mission is to leave time in your plans to be guided by the spirit. Yes we plan activities for every hour but you have to be flexible and ready to submit to the will of the spirit. I asked him why we came to this area. And he said to see a potential. I said we'll he wasn't home so obviously we weren't supposed to come here to find that potential. Why are we really here? God put us here for a reason. When you planned by the spirit to be here at this time it wasn't for nothing. So he tight about that and said well I think we should go knock on this door. I said okay let's do it. And then we found a family! It was awesome! Talk about being guided! 
       Because of that experience It opened a door for elder dale and his missionary work. He then looked over his plans and said you know I have had this family on my mind and I think we should go see them but we don't have them planned in. I said we'll that my friend is the spirit lets go see them. And we found another family. 
        This second family just like the first was initially going to shut us out as well but then we asked if we could just have a few minutes and they let us in. It is just funny how busy people think they are so by asking some good questions and asking for just a few minutes they let us in even though they are sooo busy.  It usually works but as soon as they let us in its over ......bring on the spirit. 
      We taught them the restoration simply and clearly and powerfully and they told us we could stay longer because they had questions! Elder dale is an excellent teacher and it was a totally spirit guided lesson. Probably the second best lesson I have ever taught when it comes to unity and simplicity. And because of that the spirit was powerful. She accepted a baptismal invitation and wants us to come back! It was awesome. I hope I helped elder dale understand the importance of the spirit in our work. 
       The next thing is a past experience that is now paying off in a big way. Do you remember that picture I sent you of the Facebook conversation I had with that girl named sky? Well this week we taught sky and she is so ready for the gospel. Her biggest concern is that her parents won't be able to come inside the temple for her marriage....and she isn't even baptized. To remind you of who who she is she was the daughter of two people that elder rouse and I contacted on the street. They mentioned as we talked that they had a daughter that lived in Erda for a time and I told them I was from gville. Which gave us a very significant connection. It was significant because when we ended that contact, they were not interested.but I asked if I could add their daughter on Facebook. They were a little weirded out at first but took my name and told me they would let her make the decision. She messaged me the next day! 
      It took awhile but we have now taught her. The reason my being from grantsville was so significant is because when we taught sky she told us that her parents said that the only reason they were cool with her adding me was because I was from Grantsville and had that connection! Otherwise they would not have passed on the message. So God placed us in their path and because of Facebook I was able to find an elect daughter of god who is sooooo ready for the gospel. I just wish I could teach her haha she will be in YSA. But elder Cartwright is the man and will take good care of her. Besides its all the same team. It's all for god and Christ. 
      So yes those are some of the miracles. We set two new baptismal dates this week and picked up a few new investigators that look promising because they have solid member friends. One of them was brought to church by our bishops wife and we taught her afterwards and it was sweet. She is 22 though so she is YSA. Seriously man I have found so dang many golden college students. ySA is blowing up with awesome people to teach and my companion and I found all of them Haha . Just kidding only a few but still! Send me to YSA president! 
        I know that God is a God of miracles. From the small to the great. He blesses us with them as we are faithful and as we need them to grow or learn, he also with holds them so we can grow and learn. I have found on my mission that what Gordon b hinckley said is true. He said something along the lines of "work hard do your best and be obedient, then leave the harvest to The Lord." Something like that. 
      You better enjoy this letter its like forever long! Now next week I only have to write a teeny little bit haha. 
     Well that is all for me I think. Nelson out!!!! I love you! 
Elder Nelson. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

November 11th ,2013

We had a good week. When we went out to Hoopa we invited this awesome family to be baptized and set a date with them in December! It was an interesting invitation. It is amazing when you invite some one to be baptised,  no matter what you find out what concerns the person has and you then know pretty much what you need to teach and what commandments they need to be living. We found out that they aren't married, that one smokes and one is on some pain meds that make her not able to focus as much. Michelle, the girlfriend, is still married to another guy who got put into jail like a few days after they were married so tracking him down so they can get divorced is going to be a struggle. So for them to get baptized they have some mountains to climb. But I think they want it. I can tell they really want to change and be better for their family. They love church and the members and what we teach and they want to get baptized. But learning all that was interesting because as they told us these things I felt my faith falter. I started to doubt and feel sorrow because I thought they were much closer to baptism. Basically what I thought was, how will they be able to overcome all that! Not to mention tithing...that will test them. They are not wealthy. So I almost inside thought great  They won't make it. But then as I thought that the spirit chastened me and the thought came to my mind, "where is your faith?!" I then realized that even though there might be mountains to climb the purpose of this gospel is to help us climb them. I then came to understand that if this family really desires it and does their part that even though it will be hard, the spirit will testify to them and will strengthen their faith which well then enable them to make the necessary changes to bring their lives into harmony with gods will. It was a cool moment for me. I know the gospel is true and that it can change anyone if they let it. I know it can change Isaac and Michelle! With faith in jesus christ all things are possible! 
     Our zone is doing great! We are stacked with great elders and sisters. In our weekly call we hardly had to spend any time talking about the struggles of missionaries because everyone is doing great and working hard and doing their best!  
      We had a blitz here in Arcata this last Saturday. Every Saturday in the past  we have been blitzing a different area. So it was our area this time. Everyone came down except for crescent city and we blew up Arcata! We probably talked to over 200 people in two hours of work so it was pretty legit. We have a ton of potentials to go see now for both us and YSA so it was very successful! I think the thing I was most impressed with was that everyone was so excited and full of faith! I don't foresee our zone having trouble raising their expectations. But then again  blitz always is exciting and day after day in your own area can wear on you. So it is our hope that the fire and excitement that were present at our blitz is the same fire that is with everyone in their own areas! 
        So I have to tell you a little bit about Elder Cartwright. He is the man. He is My Zone Leader Companion and like the best friend of my life! We have so much fun and seriously the past two transfers would have stunk without him around. After we are seperated I dont know how i will be able to enjoy the rest of my mission! We have that much fun! It is the best. He is awesome. If I go to BYU I am living with him for sure! We are going to try and talk President into letting us serve together next transfer...that would be awesome!! We are a lot a like and have the same interests. We have been getting up at 6am to work out for a half hour before we go running at 630 and we have been making healthy shakes in the morning and at night we have tea time haha we have been using sleepy time tea but we just got back from this hippie store and we got some cool herbal teas and we are excited about that haha so we have a lot of fun and I love him! He said he is going to come hang out with you when he gets home. He can have my room! Plus sister floyd our bishops wife wants to adopt me after my mission...I told her you might have a problem with it mom but then I thought about it and i realized you would probably be glad to hand me off haha we had a good laugh about that. 
     So I know you will probably be putting together a Christmas box. I have some things that i want so I'll make a list and let you know. Anyways, I love all of you.  
     Welp That is all for now! I love you all! Talk to you soon! \
Elder nelson 

Monday, November 4, 2013

November 4th, 2013

Well I don't have to much to report this week! It was a little bit slow because of transfers and having to drive down to Santa Rosa and then Halloween was this week as well and so was Zone Meeting. So we were busy! My new companion is Elder Scalese from Maryland! He is a visa waiter and was originally going to Brazil. But since he doesn't have his visa he is here in Santa Rosa until he gets it! He will probably get it pretty quick though. At least that is the word. Also He spent a semester at BYU-H before he came out here on his mission! Which was 7 weeks ago. haha. So he has been trying to sell me on it by telling me why I should go there. Pretty funny! He had quite the experience there.  So he is cool. It should be good.
     We had a couple of really sweet lessons this weekend. We taught Michelle who lives in Hoopa and she agreed to be baptized! We introduced her to the book of Mormon and read part of the first chapter with her. It was super spiritual. It was one of those lesson where the spirit takes over and you get in the car and drive away and say, what did we just teach them?  Pretty cool. We also had a good lesson with two other people we are teaching, Quinton and Kelsy at one of our members homes after dinner. We talked about the plan of salvation. Unfortunatly the members who were with us talked way to much about things that didn't matter and the lesson got derailed but we managed to save it and have a good ending. It is hard to teach more than one investigator at a time especially when they are at different stages and have different concerns and needs.
    We had four investigators at church on Sunday! It was great! one of them was a new investigator that we just picked up this week! His name is james.
In gospel Principles class on sunday we had a pretty funny experience. We were talking about agency and the ability to make choices so I asked everyone to shout out some examples of choices that they made this morning. One of our investigators, Quinton, said, " I chose to smoke pot!" It was a funny way to find out that we need to teach him the word of wisdom! Also it was funny because the look on my companions face was one of shock and disbelief! He didn't know what to say haha It was funny! I love training new missionaries!
another funny thing that happened was when I was out contacting people with two elders in our zone in mckinleyville. As we were walking they said that we should stop by this one house and see if one of their potential investigators was home. So we did and a girl about our age answered. She was pretty and not very modestly dressed but we asked her if Katie the person we were looking for was home and she said no. So we asked her wen she would be back and blah blah but then We asked her how she knew Katie and she said oh she is my partner!!! From that point on it got reeeeeally awkward!!! One of the elders I was with tried to start talking but didn't know what to say and only weird sounds came out of his mouth hahaha so I told her who we were and why we were there and invited her to learn more about the church and she said yes! So Those two elders are now en route to have the most AWKWARD law of chastity lesson ever!!! So that was funny as well.
Things are going great I love my mission! We are being blessed everday! thank you for your prayers! I love you!
Love elder Nelson