Thursday, August 29, 2013

Temple Trip 8.29.2013

     Good afternoon.  Sorry this is going to be a super short email home, but we don't have much time left for emailing after our trip home from the temple.  I love traveling up here though.  The scenery is so beautiful and green.  I never get tired of it.  I really enjoyed this session, especially being able to see the new video.  Everyone was talking about it, so finally we were able to see it.  I really love going to the temple.  There is such a special peace that can be felt there.  I feel it every time.
     All of our investigators are currently doing great.  Christina has come to church the last two weeks in a row with her children, and things are just getting better and better for her.  She has made the decision she wants to make an attempt again at quitting smoking, and we were able to give her a blessing to help with that.  I know she'll be able to conquer it eventually because she is a pretty strong-willed person, and when you have God on your side, of course, nothing is impossible.
     We have had some hit and miss meetings with Chris.  He told us a couple weeks ago he was going to attend another church, but when we stopped by and talked about the Book of Mormon, he was still wanting to learn more about it,  so we are still working with him and helping him come to church.
     Tom and Heidi are still awesome.  Still coming to church, actively participating in church activities and service projects, and studying the scriptures.  I really pray things will be able to work out soon with them so they can be baptized.
     Sorry this is so short, but things are really going great and I am excited for a great week next week.  By the way, our p-day next week will be Wed instead of Mon because of Labor day.  It's super weird that it will be my last one as a missionary.  Love you all and have a great week.

Another Mini-missionary 8.19.2013

     Good day everybody.  I hope your all doing great!  This week was so much fun to have another mini-missionary with us.  This ones name was Tyler, and he was great.  I swear the youth just get stronger and stronger as the years go by.  He has a great testimony and contributed so much to the teaching of our investigators while he was here.
     We have seen a lot of miracles this last week.  One of the biggest for me, however,  is that Christina came to church yesterday, and loved it.  She has really bounced back and is beginning to progress again as we've begun to take a step back and focus again on the atonement.  President Packers quote always rings so true with me when teaching investigators that "The study of doctrine will change attitudes and behaviors quicker than the study of behavior."  I have really seen it time and time again, that when somebody understands the Doctrine of Christ, they change.  They feel impressed to repent and keep the commandments and they actually do it.
     Tom and Heidi are always great examples for me to look up to in patience.  Things just keep coming up for them that are completely out of their control at this point and it is enough to be able to frustrate anybody.  They are so patient with their trials though, reading the scriptures, praying, and ultimately trusting in the Lord.  They are still optimistic, and excited for when they will be baptized.
     We had a sweet finding miracle this week.  Our bishop contacted us and told us there was a less active in the ward (Ryan) that wanted to come back to church.  We set up a time to go meet him and when we go there, we were able to teach not only him, but his girlfriend as well.  He is super pumped about the gospel right now.  So much so that he is working on getting a Book of Mormon put into every room at the hotel that he works at.  His girlfriend (Tabitha) is not quite so excited as he is about learning, but we have been teaching her anyway.  She committed to read the Book of Mormon, and if God told her it was scripture, then she said she would be baptized.  We pray that she will actually read it.
      Thats about all the news from this week.  Next week I will not be emailing until at least Thursday.  I will be going to the temple=)  I'm super excited, this is the first time in almost a year that I have had the opportunity to go.  I love you all and hope that you have a wonderful week.
p.s.  I did get the box of cookies. Thank you so much mom.  They are super delicious.  Love you

Monday, August 12, 2013

Part Member Families 8/12/2013

     This has been another great week in Sandpoint.  Our mini-missionary, Bro. Wood, left yesterday, but the news came Saturday night that we are getting another mini-missionary from the Spokane West stake.  He will be with us for this whole week.  I think that is a great program to help the priests know what missionary work is like and get them excited for when they have the opportunity to go themselves.
     Once again, this was a good week.  Tom and Heidi are progressing still and will get baptized when they are able to.  Christina has been doing so much better this week.  She went to a ward activity this last week and socialized with the ward members.  That really helped and she is more optimistic about the gospel again.  She was talking to Heidi and Heidi was bearing her testimony on how excited she was to be getting baptized and how great of a thing it will be when Christina gets baptized too.
  We found a part member family that has some interest in meeting with us in the future.  The Jones family is a family we have tried contacting on and off when we are in the area since I got here.  We finally made contact with the husband, who is a member this last week.  We had a great doorstep lesson with him and his wife.  As we testified of the Book of Mormon, he told us he felt a desire to pick it up and read it again, so we pray he will do that.  They are out of town this week, but they told us we could come back next week.  
    We took another part member family on a church tour this week which was awesome.  Stan was baptized in November and his daughter is visiting from Ireland for 2 months.  She was pretty interested in checking out the church.  I was on exchanges during the tour, but heard that the spirit was super strong there.  She came to church with him this week which she really enjoyed.
     We were able to have President Boren, who is a counselor in the mission presidency to come to our zone meeting that we had this last week.  He had a quote that really stuck out to me from President Benson I believe.  It went something like,  "When you put God first in your life, all other things in your life will either drop out, or be put into its proper place."  I think about how true that is.  It might not make sense on paper, but when God is #1 in our lives, everything works out.  The happiest and most progressing investigators I have ever taught, have understood and lived that principle, and I have had to exercise that faith as a missionary as well.  I may have said this before, but there are many things I have been asked to do in these last two years that have been very difficult, but when I put my trust in God and just do it, things just work out.
     I love you all and hope you have a great week.  Talk to you next week=)

Elder Stacey

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Mini Mission 8/05/2013

    Hey, sorry I don't have a lot of time today.  We have been real busy today getting things ready for a mini missionary that will be with us this week.  I don't know if you remember last year, but we had the opportunity to to the same thing last August when I was in Moses Lake.  It's a pretty neat experience to have I'm sure for a priest who is preparing to serve a mission.  But like I said, we do have to get a few things ready.  
     This week has been great.  The big news for the week is that Elisha came to church finally!!!  Missionaries have been teaching her for over three months now and have never been able to help her come to church.  We were considering dropping her, and kind of did, but then we stopped by to give her something and she told us she was going to make an effort to come to church.  She did and it was great.  We pray that she will continue coming to church because she really wants to be baptized.
     Chris has been out of town and we haven't been able to contact him this week=(
     Christina has cancelled our last few appointments and we are worried about her.  She still reads the Book of Mormon, which is good, but has not been wanting to meet for lessons for a while now.
     Elder Cahoon and I have spent a lot of time finding and inviting.  It has been great, and I love working with Elder Cahoon.  He is the most energetic missionary/person I may have ever met in my entire life, and it carries over to his missionary efforts.  He loves people, he loves to work, and is constantly smiling.  It will be a great transfer.
     Thats about it for the week.  I can't really think of anything that I need mom.  I will likely be sending some stuff home fairly soonish.  One of those is my bike.  I am really hoping that there is a family that is going to Utah and wouldn't mind taking it, because UPS charges something like $150.  Other than that things are moving right along.  Things are great.  Love you and hope you have a great week=)