Monday, December 28, 2015

December 28, 2015

This week has been CRAZY!

At the beginning of the week, our district
leaders companion ripped his Achilles' tendon in half got sent home
for at least 9 our district leader didn't have a companion
which meant Elder Thomas and I were being emergency transferred to
another apartment to be a tripanionship with this one Elder! Now we
are over both wards and areas which is taking a bit of an adjustment.
My companions are both super cool hardworking missionaries so we have
definitely been having some fun! We serve the Rose City Tongan Ward
and it's super cool. The whole sacrament meeting is in Tongan and
everybody is hilarious and always happy. This ward has missionary work
down, and they don't have fear while doing it. We will have members
come to us telling us they have people for us who want to be
baptized!! Straight miracles every week! Plus they over feed us! It's
been awesome.

In the Rocky Butte Ward we have a couple baptisms coming
up for this next month as well! As disorganized and unplanned as we were
for all this change, the work is progressing and it's incredible to be
a part of it!

Christmas was super cool! We woke up, threw on some Christmas tunes, and did some gift opening then departed for some FaceTime with the fam! I was glad to hear all is well and talk to my
family for the first time in a few months!!

That was this week in a much happened and we were so busy.

Yesterday we taught a
couple of classes talking about goals, particularly New Years goals. One
of the best guides to help us achieve the potential God sees we can
achieve is setting goals. Elder M. Russell Ballard said "I am so
thoroughly convinced that if we don’t set goals in our life and learn
how to master the techniques of living to reach our goals, we can
reach a ripe old age and look back on our life only to see that we
reached but a small part of our full potential. When one learns to
master the principles of setting a goal, he (or she) will then be able
to make a great difference in the results he attains in this life."
For those that want to make a great difference, for the better, of
the results in their life....they need to set realistic day by day,
week by week, month by month goals that make you stretch and that work
towards one ultimate or grand goal. You can't just say you want to get
stronger this next year without making a goal to eat healthy and
exercise more. You can't set a goal to strengthen you testimony without
setting daily goals to read the scriptures and pray, go to church on
Sunday's, and ask for missionary like opportunities. As my companions
and I are doing, I invite you all to pick a grand goal (one both
spiritual, and temporal) to pursue and then break it down into sub
goals that will help you attain that grand goal and creat due dates to
accomplish those sub goals that make you stretch. If we ask for help
from the Lord in our efforts to accomplish this, he will see value in
our perseverance in wanting to progress. That's what we are here on
earth for, is to progress. I love you all! HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Sincerely Elder Andrew

Monday, December 21, 2015

December 21, 2015

Hey!! How you all doin! This week has been great! Our focus investigators are continuing to progress and the work in general is super fun!

We had the opportunity to attend a session in the Portland temple this week which was awesome. The outside is all made of marble and it's kinda in the mix of the big city which was cool! The spirit was incredibly strong and that experience was much needed! Never can get too spiritually fed!

We had a zone conference as well and I got to see some of my past companions and visit for a while! That was pretty cool too. The hype about Christmas out here is just as big if not bigger than it is at home! We are guys probably are too! We got our own little Christmas tree and we made a tacky Christmas card. It's a party out here! This week has gone really fast, and other than what I have said already, it just been another missionary work week!

I can't stress enough how important it is to remember the ultimate gift we were given this season and to do so by praying for an opportunity to serve! Back to the fundamentals haha, John 3:16. He was and is the ultimate gift! Love you all! Merry Christmas! Let me know how the festivities were!

Sincerely, elder Andrew

They have this kinda stuff all over the place. 

The Portland Temple. 

Monday, December 14, 2015

December 14, 2015

This week has been sweet!! Transfers were Wednesday and since then I have been in the new area! It's COMPLETELY different. I'm in the Gresham stake, but technically my whole area is in Portland.

There is some extremely interesting people and places to talk to and see.

We already had a pretty cool experience the first day I came out. We were finding and tracked into a family that had just moved here from Africa(Congo). They have a really hard time speaking and understanding english, but are able if we speak slowly. We ended up coming back and teaching the restoration, and they all believe it's true! Saturday we took a couple investigators to a child record baptism and after they said they were certain they want to be baptized as well. The ward is a lot different than my last for sure. It's kind of cool to be totally caught up in one area and kind of have a formula for what you think would help the people you are serving in a specific area, and then move areas and have to start from scratch because what worked in the last area will be totally different in every area. We are determined to hit the pavement hard this transfer though and are relying on the Lord to open our spiritual eyes for how we can really boost the work in this area. Despite the contrast of needs and trials in every area, there is one thing every area, even person in the world, needs the same...and that's a savior. For those who haven't seen the Mormon message "a savior a born" , I like it because for one, I never cease to feel the spirit when I watch it(I've have seen it like 35 times), and two, it does a good job depicting that a savior was born not just for us, the American people, but was a gift from our father to the WORLD(1 nephi 10:4). I like to resemble gift giving as a representation of the great gift we celebrate and had been given to us by the Father. In the video, it sais rejoice three times(with sincerity and enthusiasm). Do we really rejoice? I will honestly say I haven't done enough to show my gratitude for my savior, and never will be able to show enough appreciation for the gift that had been given in Bethlehem. I invite you all to pray in gratitude and an opportunity to walk in the steps of our savior this Christmas season. Peace, happiness, and joy is promised if we do our best to walk as he walked. I can testify to it because I feel that as I do my best to serve him out here in good ole Warshington. Love you guys! Have an awesome coming week!


Elder Andrew

Sent from my iPad

Monday, December 7, 2015

December 7, 2015

Hey hey hey! I dont know if any of you are aware, but before the end of this next transfer, I will be hitting my six month mark! It is ridiculous how fast time flies out here. It feels like I was in the MTC yesterday. Anyways, this week has been a handful. I got word on transfers! I am being moved to the Gresham stake! Its right on the outskirts of downtown Portland across the river from where I have been serving. I will be serving as co-senior companion with Elder Thomas (came out with me). I kinda remember who he is, he seems like a really humble hard working kid, so I am extremely excited. I also heard this is one of the areas where elders gain some crazy stories, so within the next couple weeks, my emails could possibly get a little more colorful;). The fruits of our labors are finally starting to come about. We have 5 progressing investigators who are all on date for within this next month or so. I am kinda bummed to leave my companion and all of this right when it seems we are to reap the rewards of our efforts. I  guess the Lord wants me somewhere else. Elder burciaga is staying and serving with someone that came out with him and just got done being trained as well! He will do awesome! This month we get to go to the temple, I'm not sure what day though. That will be an awesome Christmas present! The  3 other elders in my apartment and me talk about Christmas quiet a bit. I told them i was gonna (if i was gonna be there) wake up christmas morning and pretend to be dad. Check to see if santa came and turn on some christmas music. hahaha, they werent gonna be allowed out of their room till I checked. (I'm gonna miss that haha) just kidding. We were planning on waking up and making a pretty good breakfast, giving each other some nick nacks possibly, than call home! I think its gonna be an awesome day! I can honestly say I have gained a strong love for my companion and the people which I serve. This charity that God has allowed me to better established has helped me magnify my calling as a representative of Christ. As the scriptures say, charity never faileth. Scripture for this week...1 Corinthians 13.
LOVE YOU ALL, happy holidays.

Elder Andrew