A baptism date & Zone Conference Training

 Hey Everyone,
Elder Boatright and I had a wonderful week.  For starters, we taught Alex and Trina Bates. Alex Bates is a non-member. He expressed that he feels that he is lacking something in his life and would like to take the discussions. He is scheduled to be baptized on February 18th. After a long stretch of unsuccessful experiences the good experiences will always pay off more than the bad ones. It is always worth it. We have been beyond blessed lately. This is a faith builder. The more it happens, the more faith we have that there are good thing waiting for us.
We have investigators coming out of the woodworks. We had two member families call us this week. They expressed that friends of their family wanted to speak with us. Also, we are apart of a wonderful opportunity. Two families are coming back to church. We have talked with their bishops and are close to setting a temple date to be sealed. I am humbled and feel very blessed to be apart of these families and their righteous goal of going to the temple.
This week we had a worldwide missionary broadcast. We were addressed by three members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostle and three other church officers. They announced some big changes in the missionary schedule and a  key indicators how we measure, report numbers and track success. They have moved towards letting us exercise our agency. Allowing us serve more efficiently with our investigator’s schedules and their needs. One possible problem I see, is  that there are going to be a lot of missionaries that will take advantage of this new flexible schedule. I believe this is a good change but it will be an adjustment for all of us during this transition.
We have to plan a zone training meeting for this Friday. We will model different scenarios of what works when your planning is efficient versus sloppy planning. The big thing is that I have been asked to teaching the principle of accountability and agency. We spoke with President (Hancock). He agreed the best strategy for the missionaries is to have a model area, work ethic and just love them. Currently, there is a lot of craziness going on between zone leaders and STL’s in regards to disobedience and the best way we can help these missionaries. My feeling is, they are over-complicating it. It is essential to earn their trust and follow up with sincere love for them. Then they realize their responsible for the attitude of their mission, they will want to follow our example of obedience. I saw this exact scenario in Star Valley and it should be no different here. I need to focus on how to instill in the District Leaders it is their obedience and desire that will make them effective leaders.  If the District Leaders can implement these principles they will have effective exchanges and weekly meetings. This will keep their missionaries committed. We should be able to see a shift in their desire and commitment. The only problem is, we can’t take their agency. The only thing I can do is to love them no matter what path they choose. We are excited to see what we can do in our own area with the new tools we have been given. I am loving missionary life. Things are going well and we are almost too busy. My mission has never gone by as fast as it has here.
Love you all,

The Exchange

Hey Everyone,

This has been one of the more successful weeks of my mission. We committed another person to baptism last night, 5 people attended church, not including less actives. It was awesome! We are meeting with someone tonight and they  will most likely set another date tonight. We are really excited.
We had a cool thing happen to us the other night:
We were on exchanges with the assistants the other night (we do weird new exchanges where both the zone leaders come to the assistant’s area for the day). It was a terrible day. We were rejected by antis for literally hours. It wasn’t really discouraging because we see it daily, but it was an abnormal amount of rejection. The last hour of the day, the stars aline and our investigators met together at one house. All four Elders are teaching this family. We taught in surprisingly good unity for four people. We switch the lesson to teach the restoration and it was powerful. It was as if the spirit of God like a fire was burning. One of the more powerful teaching experience of my mission. Then on the second lesson for this family, we committed the four of them to be  baptized in 4 weeks! It was very special. They received it all so well, and they know that it is true. Really good way to finish an exchange
I love you all and Im grateful for your support.

The Best Week in Pocatello

Hello Everyone!

This has been one of the best weeks in Pocatello. We have been blessed with success. We had 5 less active families at church yesterday for the first time in years. One of them has kids that are not baptized and  now they want to be baptized. They all loved church. We taught the gospel principles class. Several of them were in tears and moved by the spirit. It was a touching experience.
Also, I had an awesome exchange with one of my good friends,  Elder Horne. It was great to learn from him and hear about his experience. He returns home in March .
We had a very spiritual experience last night. We were teaching us this less active guy.  At a point in the lesson, he shared with us that he wants to take his own life. It was scary. I didn’t know what to say but a overwhelming feeling of love came over us. We invited him to change and draw unto Christ. I know that he felt it too. I’m grateful he accepted the invitation to continue visiting with us. We will do whatever we can for him.
Thank you all for your support and emails.

Elder Boatright and A New Hope

Hey Everyone,

I love this last week! Elder Boatright and I are working hard together. I really enjoy working with him. It reminds me of working with Elder Ramirez. We met with some new investigators. One of the biggest assets is the wards are cooperating more which helps us immensely. There is a lot more hope for this area.  We went to a really good training meeting last week.
I am so grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The enabling power it gives me daily to overcome my shortcomings is so incredible. A lot of people define grace as the power that saves us in our mistakes. But really it is the power that enables us to overcome our mistakes.  I use it daily as I strive to be better and become more like Christ.
I hope that all of you are having a good week.  Anything that you need, please let me know.
Love you

Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year

Hey Everyone,

This has been a crazy fast week. We received the transfer calls and I will stay in this area. I am a little sad to report that Elder Moyes will leave on Wednesday. I’m really sad because Elder Moyes and I got along really well. My new companion, Elder Boatright from Mississippi, will be here with me. He is another one of my good friends. I am really pumped to serve with him.

I had a cool experience a couple of weeks ago.  I understand what is expected from me and   the attributes I need obtain to succeed in the Lord’s work, but I was stumped in finding a solution on developing them. I went into a chapel for a few minutes and prayed with an open notebook. The plan came flowing in. I wrote it down, and received the confirmation of the Spirit that it was divinely designed for me. I can so clearly see when I apply it, I succeed, and when I don’t, I fail. That is my current standard that I hold myself accountable to. Until I have surpassed some of these trials, I will stick to it.

I love you all and hope you can apply the same principle.  “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you”. Matthew 7:7 The work is amazing. Its not mine, but the Lord’s. Hopefully I can live up to the person I need to be to help the Lord in His work.

love you,