Monday, March 23, 2015


I feel like not a lot happened this week. We've done quite a bit of just trying to contact potentials and morning finding this week. We did meet with the O family (who came up to us in the van) and set baptism dates with the parents for April 11! I'm so excited for them. It's long past due that they are able to do this.

We also had a conference call for the entire mission yesterday and found out that we no longer have to report numbers in this mission (At least to our mission leaders. Of course we still have to report them to Salt Lake). Pres Heap feels like we're focused too much on the numbers to keep our DLs and ZLs off our backs rather than focused on the people in our area. I think It's really neat how Pres Heap is giving us so much freedom. We're just accountable to the Lord now, like we will be for the rest of our lives. But I think some missionaries might get lazy because of the lack of somebody breathing down their neck. I hope that's not the case. 

I hope everything is going well for y'all back home! I've been learning a lot about agency lately and how the way we grow is by exercising our agency. We can't just do what we're told, but we must always be doing good of our own free will. So keep doing good in the world and do good things for the right reason!

Elder Carlson


We had a lot of service this week. We got a total of 6 hours. 4 of them were on Saturday when we got to go help a member tear up his roof so they could repair a leak. It was exhausting trying to pry up their shingles and all the tar holding them down. We also got to go help at the YWCA here because of the "just serve" program they're starting up here now. I'm not sure if they have it there in Utah yet, but it seems awesome and I hope we get a lot more service hours because of it. We just have to figure out how we can work it into the missionary life because it's a website mostly and we don't have iPads yet.

We had an awesome miracle happen Saturday night. We were walking down the street doing some tracting before we headed to a lesson and this gold minivan pulls up behind us. It follows us slowly for a while, stopping when we stop and with the people inside watching us. Finally the lady opens her door and they start to talk to us. Apparently this family has met with the missionaries before (they've gone through about 60 of them) and their kids are all baptized (the ones who are over 8 years old). They moved to Lubbock 6 months ago and haven't seen any missionaries or found out what ward they're in since until they saw us and decided to harass us, ha ha. The parents weren't baptized because of some crazy circumstances but still have that desire. I'm so excited to start teaching them more and hopefully they will finally be able to make their first covenant soon!

I love you all and hope y'all have a great week this week. Remember how much God loves each and every one of His children and so try to serve your brothers and sisters as much as you can. 

Elder Carlson

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


So C's baptism went amazingly!! We found out at her interview with Pres. Heap that she invited 75 people to it! Unfortunately, none of them showed up. A couple would have, but tried to go into the temple instead or got lost on the way there. Her husband wasn't able to come either, but both her kids were there and loved it. Right when she came up out of the water her son yelled, "She's a Mormon now!" and her daughter turned around and said, "That was so cool!" Haha, her kids are awesome! One of the ward members she's gotten to know really well was able to baptize her and our bishop confirmed her. I was so nervous Sunday morning because she showed up late and I thought she might miss when they announced she was being confirmed! It all worked out, though. She even brought her brother to church.

We got a new investigator this week. They're an older couple who love Mormons because they've had great LDS friends in the past. One thing I've learned from them is to never be afraid to share what you believe. A long time ago, she used to live next door to an LDS woman who she became good friends with. She knew this lady was LDS, but that's all she knew about it. She was really interested in learning more about what we believe but never asked because she assumed her friend would tell her more about it. But she never did. I feel like this happens a lot with members. We feel like we're intruding if we bring up our religion and that we're pushing our beliefs on our friend, but in reality, even if that friend isn't interested, they won't be offended if you show that you love them and let them know you love this gospel and are sharing it because you want it to bless them too. 

Oh, and I'm staying in this area with Elder Evans still. This will be the longest I've stayed in an area and the longest I've had the same companion. Oh, and one more story from this week: the cops came and broke up a lesson with a less active member. We went over to see her and were in the middle of reading from the Book of Mormon with her when we hear a bang on the door and someone yells, "It's the police! Open up!" We were all a little stunned at first and the cops just came in and started questioning her husband what his name was and if that was his house. Apparently they had told their insurance company or someone they would be out of town for the week (they were leaving the next day) and so the cops were notified and since he saw someone was inside he came to investigate. Haha, it was pretty crazy.

Well, that was my week. I hope everything went well for y'all this week. I love y'all.

- Elder Carlson

Monday, March 2, 2015

Focus on the temple

So we didn't have a baptism this week, but no worries! We'll have one on the 7th!! We had to move it back a week, which was probably for the best because that would have made our week miserably hectic. Everything's pretty much ready for it now, though, except she just needs to have her interview with our mission pres. Everything will go great with that, though. I'm so excited for next Saturday!!! We get our transfer calls that night, too, btw.

The weather has been crazy here lately. We had another day yesterday where we weren't allowed to drive or bike so we did a lot of walking. Church was even cancelled for our entire stake (maybe even Lubbock North stake, but I'm not sure). I wasn't very happy about that when I found out. Back home I'd be pumped I could sleep in, but it's very different as a missionary.

I went on exchanges this week with Elder Young (the red-head in the pictures) and his area has the temple in it. He also works out hardcore and so it was a pretty intense exchange. We did some workouts at 5:30 and then ran to the stake center (right next to the temple) for morning sports with the other missionaries. I was dying on the way there(especially since he ran cross-country), but then we turned down a street and there was the temple right in front of us. That's some pretty good motivation to keep going! It reminded me of at stake conference (I'm not sure if I already told you this) our stake president was talking about how a lot of the time we focus on the wrong things. We tell the youth in the church, "You need to prepare to go on a mission!" when really we should be focusing more on the temple. Focus the youth on being worthy to go to the temple rather than serving a mission. Missions are great experiences and I'd recommend it to anyone, but it's not vital. The temple should be the real goal! Nothing can replace what you learn/feel there. Always remember that.
Lubbock Temple