Monday, February 23, 2015

So many miracles!

It's been an amazing week this week! So many miracles! C finally wants to be baptized!!!!! We had been trying to set a baptism date with her for Feb 28th and yesterday she finally said she'd be baptized then, yay! We're not sure if she'll be able to because she had a drink of alcohol yesterday so we may have to bump it back a week. If not, though, this will be a hectic week trying to get everything ready for her baptism this Saturday! Please pray that she will stay strong until then and continue to have the desire to be baptized.

Another miracle was meeting our new investigator, M. He was born and raised Catholic and is the fiance of one of our other investigators who we were meeting with before. We finally met him and he loves it! After our first meeting with him he was saying how we already have him converted and was asking how he can join our church?! I think it's the first time I've had to actually tell an investigator to slow down toward baptism rather than dragging them towards it, haha! Unfortunately, he wasn't able to come to church this week because of the weather.

Also, a really funny experience from last week, actually, but I forgot to tell you about it. So we were at C and J's meeting with them and their 4 year old was showing us the papers they had colored in Primary that day. At the bottom of one was some lines where you finish sentences and one said, "The Savior helps me..." and he wrote, "button my pants." Hahaha! Kids are awesome!!! No wonder Christ wanted His disciples to let them come to Him.

Well, that was my week. It was great, as you can tell, other than when the weather went from perfectness to snowy, icy, cold in a day. I also had to give a talk in church, which wasn't too fun. I still hate to speak in front of a lot of people, unfortunately. Love y'all and miss y'all! 

-Elder Carlson

Monday, February 16, 2015

Seek revelation

Yesterday was pretty eventful.  C and J came to church again (only for the last two hours, though)! And Elder Evans had to give a talk. This less active member we've been working with came to church! And we found out he's gone the last two weeks as well just to a different ward!!! We were super excited! Not too much happened for the rest of the day, though because Evans wasn't feeling good so we just went back to the apartment so he could rest before our appointments we had to go to that night. He's feeling a lot better today, though, luckily. 

Oh, and we got new investigators this week I'd like to tell you about. We've been meeting with them for a while but we just haven't counted them as investigators until now. We knocked into them (I may have told you about them) and they were so friendly at first we thought they might be members we just hadn't met, haha.  They are super active in their church but love meeting with us. I still don't know why they let us in in the first place, but they just said they wanted to learn more because they didn't know much about our church. It's amazing how the Lord works because before now they used to avoid Mormon missionaries like the plague. Now C is reading the Book of Mormon and they ask us all sorts of questions, hungry to learn.

Oh, and here's a picture of me and Evans. It's not the best, but it's the only one I've got so far.
We are super close with C to setting a baptismal date with her! We brought it up with her and she didn't freak out as much as we thought, but she didn't want to set one because she says she's still not sure.  She's progressed so much! It's amazing how much of an impact going to church has on people. 

This Sunday we had ward conference and it was really good. One thing that stuck out to me was our stake president said, "don't run on old revelation". We need to continually get new revelation every week and even every day. If we always have a prayer in our heart and keep our hearts open to revelation we can be guided by the Holy Ghost even more. I have been thinking a lot about how to be a better missionary and during ward council yesterday I got an answer that I need to focus on asking better/more questions while teaching. The more I get the "learner" participating and show them how to find their own answers the more converted they will be able to become and they don't have to be spiritually dependent on me. 

During zone conference this week we talked about the Holy Ghost and how he communicates with us. There are so many different ways we can receive revelation and it's cool to think how even our "conscience" is a form of revelation. A lot of the time I think we focus more on the revelation that's like hearing a voice or someone says exactly what you need to hear, when it's much more common that God will give us revelation through our common sense and just things seeming right to us. I'm not sure if I worded what I wanted to say there right, but it makes sense in my head. I just don't know how to say it.

Anyway, that was my week. Oh, and signing up at the hospital as clergy this week went good. We haven't really done anything with it yet. I guess they're just supposed to give us a call if we're needed, but I'm not really sure how this works. We have sweet official badges, though, haha! I love you all and hope y'all will continue to seek to build your faith every day and search for revelation to guide your everyday actions so you can continue on the path toward eternal life!

Elder Carlson

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Small miracles

It's been a really awesome, busy week this week! It doesn't even seem like a new transfer because I didn't have to pack up my bags and move, haha. We've had a lot of people to try and keep contacting this week so we've had back to back lessons some days, particularly this weekend. It's been awesome, but we've kind of been slacking on finding new people that are prepared to hear the gospel.

A pretty neat little miracle happened this week. Our investigator J has been having a hard time recently. He doesn't have a job and so his dad's paying for his apartment and someone stole his car and phone and he lost his drivers license and pretty much all identification he had. But then on Saturday we were out trying to meet with some potentials and this random guy calls us. I have no clue how he got our number, but he was wondering if we knew someone who needed some money that could help him move some office cubicles out of this office building. J was so happy to be able to get a little money to be able to get him back on his feet long enough to get a solid job. Plus, after we told him that, he said he wanted to start coming to church! The Lord works in mysterious ways. 

Oh, and C and J were both at church this week with their kids. I think it's the first time their entire family has been at all 3 hours of church since I've been in this area. Also, we found out today that there's a Cabelas here in Lubbock! Elder Nelson bought an elk bugle there, haha! Poor Elder Hastings isn't going to have any peace and quiet this transfer. I can't remember much else exciting or interesting that happened this week. Love y'all and I hope y'all can see God's hand in your lives this week. Keep looking for those small miracles that happen every day.

- Elder Carlson

Service and Sacrifice

I'm going to do my best to remember what happened this week. We got transfer calls but Elder Evans and I are both staying here. Elder Geverts is leaving to Ruidoso, though and so his companion, elder Nelson, who's still in training, is getting a new companion, Elder Hastings.

It also snowed here this week, but now it's all gone and warm again, of course. We did some service this week, which was great! We helped this member's daughter move in one day and later on we got to go to a less active member's house (the guy who's house I skyped you at) and helped him dig up his backyard. We were looking for his sewer line and dug up almost half of his entire yard looking for it but never actually found it. 

We haven't had too much progress with any of our investigators. We got in contact with J again, finally, but he still won't come to church for some reason. M only wants to talk about the super deep doctrines and isn't really progressing because he's so focused on that. C, on the other hand, is doing great! She's been trying super hard and is keeping all of the commandments we've taught her. She has had a couple hurdles to get over, but it's amazing how much it helps when investigators have great member support! She was our only investigator to come to church this week again, too.

Yesterday in church we talked about sacrifice and service a lot. The Lord sometimes requires a lot of us; more than we think we can give Him at times; but I know that everything we have is a gift from Him. All we have to give Him is our hearts and be willing to serve Him. I know when we do give up our time, energies, and/or possessions to more fully serve the Lord, He will bless us with exponentially more than we gave to Him. I love y'all and hope you have a great week!

- Elder Carlson