Colorado Fort Collins Mission

Colorado Fort Collins Mission
Colorado Fort Collins Mission

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve in Loveland, Colorado

He is the Gift and baking cookies

December 22, 2014

This week was difficult. Our lesson with the Hernandez family ended with them telling us they were comfortable where they are at but that we can come over and discuss Christ whenever we want. We had 1 or 2 lessons with our other investigators, and the rest didn't answer their doors or were busy. We found 2 new investigators when we gave them a He is the Gift card last night. They seemed very open, receptive, and thankful, so we will definitely be re-visiting them.
We moved this week since the people we were living with are having their teenage daughter for a few weeks during Christmas. I now have a queen size bed and finally enough space for everything. I'll send a picture next week.
I had a dilemma last night during my prayers. I said I wasn't going to stop praying until I either 1) felt the Spirit or 2) fell asleep. During my prayer, I was getting a little tired, but nothing I couldn't handle. The next thing I remember is waking up in my bed. I literally have no idea how I got there. I don't even remember falling asleep or getting close to it, and I don't remember crawling into bed. I'm still a little disturbed by it.
On Christmas there is a chance of....rain. Yeah. I don't yet know how I feel about that. 

This week we are going to be baking cookies and taking them to our investigators to hopefully show them that we really do care about them. Bribery into the baptismal font? Maybe. But whatever it takes, right? Just kidding.
We were able to sing Christmas carols at the old folks home this week, and it was awesome to see how happy they were for that. My weeks go by the Fridays because of Aspen House.
I hope you all have a great week, and Merry Christmas!

Gotham and American Fark

December 15, 2014

Who still reads this?
Other than some of my family and a few other choice friends that I'm guessing read it, I'm trying to decide why I write these. Maybe I'm just being brought to a perfect remembrance of my guilt for not having exciting weeks.

Let's was literally 68 degrees outside this Friday. That was amazing.

I would encourage you all to look up "Mary, Did You Know?" by Pentatonix. It will blow your mind. 

We had an impromptu lunch with a ward member, and after when we were in a food coma sitting on the couch we were watching the TV. The TV, not like TV shows. I don't know if that's technically banned or not. Anyway, the Roku logo was bouncing back and forth on the screen (standby mode), and then we wondered if it were possible for it to hit the corner. The member looked it up on Youtube and it is, indeed, possible. Then we thought we saw it hit the corner but had to make sure, so we spent the next 10 minutes watching the Roku logo bounce. Then someone hit the remote and we all had mini heart attacks.

That member also told us that his friend recently had a baby and said "it doesn't feel real yet". He replied "it'll feel real when you're getting up at 2 in the morning to make him stop crying". Then he replied "I'm considering naming my kid 'Gotham' so that when my wife comes in and wakes me up she can say 'Gotham needs you'". That was probably the funniest thing I heard all week. 

About 1 in 5 times that I say I'm from American Fork someone says "American Fark?" and laughs at their own joke. It's driving me insane. I might just claim Lehi as my hometown soon.

We haven't been able to meet with the Hernandez family since that one first lesson, but we went over last night and there whole family was there having a party. We set a return appointment for tonight, so we're going to teach the Plan of Salvation and see what happens. I want to get excited about teaching them, but it's hard when we teach a first lesson, the Spirit is definitely there, and then we never see them again. They avoid us, won't answer there phone, tell us to come back later, whatever it is. It's hard having investigators and then none of them progress, and I still don't know how to help them progress sometimes with the language barrier. I usually self-proclaim myself to be on keep-the-kids-from-killing-each-other duty when that's applicable, and I actually love doing that. 

K, that's all I have this week. Have a great week before Christmas week everyone

Monday, December 8, 2014

Glorious, spicy squid jerky, and ward Christmas party

December 8, 2014

This week the missionary work was slow...we only found 4 new investigators while tracting! It was awesome. Elder Farnsworth and I got a request from a returned sister missionary to come with us to an appointment we had, and we told her it would be great if she came. Her mom drove her to the appointment, it fell through, and since we had nothing else to do, we decided to all go tracting (I can't say that I'll ever be off my mission and say "Well, I have nothing else to do, so I might as well go tracting, but who knows). Basically, we blame our success on her faith and diligence, and we are thrilled to say the least.

It wasn't all like that, though, since more than one door was shut in our face. I love it when people tell us no, and then they shut and lock the's not like we're going to kick the door down or walk in after you. Locking it is just that extra rejection that we, of course, love to receive.

There was actually one lady that might have had a good reason to lock her door after we left. We found her tracting, she's almost totally deaf, her first language is Japanese, and no one else lives with her. After trying to teach the first lesson while literally yelling at her so she could hear, and even that didn't do much good, we said we would go and get a Japanese Book of Mormon for her. The next day, since I knew she was almost deaf and the TV was on really loud, I knocked about as hard as I could on the door. After 30 seconds when she didn't come to the door, I started banging the door again and...she opened it right then. Yelling at her after that so she could hear probably didn't help her opinion of us, but I wanted to make sure that she remembered us from last time. We ended up giving her the book and leaving since we didn't want to try and shout the second lesson.

At our ward Christmas party, we had to do a skit for the Elder's Quorum since no one else would volunteer, but it actually turned out really well. My comp might put it on youtube, and if so I'll send the link. Also, the kids were more excited to see the Elsa and Anna than Santa, but that's just a sidenote. We also are going to be singing What Child is This in our zone Christmas devotional, so I'll send that link if it turns out well.

The other glorious thing that happened this week was that song, Glorious. I discovered that my companion has it on his USB, so we probably listened to that about 100 times this week. It's such a good, uplifting, happy, easy-to-try-to-harmonize-to song. 

I have nothing else to say other than I am half excited and half dreading Christmas. I know Christmas itself is going to be awesome, especially if I get packages and/or letters from people *cough cough* (after all, it would only take about 3 to make the room under our tree full. And yes, those are missionary pamphlets that we used to prop the tree up. Word of Wisdom for the win), but the week after I think is going to be quite depressing, getting back into the swing of things and all of that. We'll see how it goes I guess. Maybe if we have some more of this 55-60 degree December weather I'll stay content. Hope you all have a great week and enjoy the pictures!

Sunrises are frighteningly gorgeous.

Typical trailer park, atypical success

Our wonderfully magnificent Christmas tree

Ghetto grocery store=Spicy Squid Jerky

 Ugly sweater contest (which I should have won)/Ward Christmas Party with Santa, Elsa, Anna, and the missionaries

Monday, December 1, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

December 1, 2014

Most of this is going to be pictures. Not a whole lot happened this week. The English-fast has made my head hurt like crazy each night this week, but I have also progressed a TON in Spanish. I can now speak at the level of a 4 year old native speaker.

We found almost the perfect family last night half tracting, half using the area book. They are a super spiritual family, they accepted all of our commitments, we left a Book of Mormon and a Restoration pamphlet, and they are just awesome. The only problem is that they are very active in the Catholic church (which isn't exactly a problem, since they do a lot of service and are just great people, but you know what I mean), which as my companion said, is the second hardest church to prove wrong...but I'm so excited to see where it goes! I also said the doorstep approach which was basically "We're missionaries, we have a message about Christ, can we come in?" And lo and behold, they let us in! For the first time in my companion's mission, he said, has he been let in the door tracting, and all that was necessary was to just straight up ask.  But hey, that's all I knew how to say, and it worked. It's amazing how I can accidentally include things in our lessons because that's what my vocabulary is limited to and yet they are what they need to hear, like how we forgot to mention baptism in the near future except when I said "we are on earth to make covenants like baptism". 

Missionary work is actually pretty awesome when stuff happens and you see people progress. It makes me want to work harder to get those things to happen. Everyone has their agency though, and it has been hard to find people, but we'll see what happens. 

Here are a lot of pics. Hope you enjoyed Thanksgiving! And just so no one sarcastically asks, yes, I was warm in my puffy coat that makes me look like a fat spaceman.

A member that graduated from Good 'ol AF High. (Brother Biggs).

Cupcakes made Turkeys

Thanksgiving with the Mickelson's! (And that's GuaranĂ¡, not Mountain Dew, I'm not "apostate" as some missionaries would claim it makes you.)

Christmas lights

Dope tree house

The Fort Collins temple under construction!

(PS, I asked Kennon which is the first hardest church to prove wrong and he said he actually meant first hardest church!  I think we should pray for this family and for Kennon and his companion).

Staying in Loveland for 6 more weeks.

November 24, 2014

I don't have a lot of time, and this week wasn't incredibly eventful, but here we go:

We have transfers this Tuesday, and I'll be staying with Elder Farnsworth in Loveland for 6 more weeks. We are also going to start a fast from speaking English wish me luck and send your prayers for that. Also, I'm glad I'm with him as opposed to the other 4 guys in my MTC district that are all training each other...

We had zone meeting this week, and that went well. There were a lot of great lessons learned from that.

We had an awesome dinner lesson with a member family last night, from which we got 3 referrals, more than we've gotten in an entire lesson thus far. 

That's really all I have this week, so I apologize. I hope you all had a great week, and talk to you all next week.

A dragon statue carved directly from a tree.

An awesome bidet in a member's home.

Winter week and Elder Baxter of the Seventy

November 17, 2014

Winter is here. Like 6" of it, and record cold temperatures. On Wednesday it didn't get above 10 degrees Fahrenheit, so that was quite the change from the 65 degree weather we were enjoying just 2 days earlier. It also freaks me out just wondering how cold it's going to get in Cheyenne or Scottsbluff since I'm in the warmest area right now.

Sometimes, my desire to go tracting or do missionary work in general follows the weather all too well: hitting zero or even dipping into the negatives. This was also coupled with, strangely enough, growing least, I think they were growing pains. I really don't know what else they could have been. One day it was my right leg and the other my left that was on fire for no reason, so I'm not sure. Buuuuuut....we went out and did our best anyway.

This week we also did 7 hours of service one day, which was awesome. The food bank needed new shelves in, so we moved all of the food off, rearranged the heights of the shelves, made some new shelves entirely, and then loaded all of the food back on. It was interesting to note that I was in less pain after doing hard physical labor for 7 hours than I was during the days that I had growing pains for no reason and didn't want to do missionary work. Lesson: God sustains those who are doing his work.

The other highlight, but not really, of this week was that I accidentally chastised someone...We were talking about the Book of Mormon, and I said that if someone hadn't received an answer about the Book of Mormon, it's because they don't have the sincere heart it talks about, meaning that they'll act on that answer. Then I found out that that applied all too well to him, actually being a nonmember married to a member...but!!! The Spirit was definitely present in the lesson, even when I said that, so maybe it was what he needed to hear....I'm just trying not to worry about it.

It's things like that that really make me doubt my ability to be a good missionary, but then at mission tour, we were told by a member of the seventy that when he and 9 others were called, they referred to themselves and the WS 10: The Weak and Simple 10, like from the scripture in D&C 1. It is the weak things of the world that will come down and thrash the mighty, and God can make weak things become strong through the race of Jesus Christ (D&C 1:19, Ether 12:27). Rely on the grace of Jesus Christ to sustain you, for all things are possible to them that believe.

Hope everyone had a good week! Pray for warmer weather/the work to be hastened in Loveland Colorado!

 Mission Tour with Elder Baxter of the Seventy and his wife along with our mission president and his wife

Sometimes life is good, like a good lunch in a warm house on a cold day