Baptism Nov 7 2009

Baptism Nov 7 2009

Monday, December 27, 2010

66th week in Spokane

Sorry about last week, we had zone conference on Monday and so our p-day turned to Tuesday and so we didn't have as much time to email. But we had a very good first two weeks of the transfer. Elder Tamblyn is great, we get along really well. He only has ten weeks left on his mission so we made a goal that this will be his best two transfers of his whole mission. It's gonna be great, hopefully I'll be able to stay with him another transfer to see that goal to the end. He is from Phoenix, Arizona and is loving the cold! Zone conference last week was really good, it was focused on our purpose and finding. Then at the end we had a little Christmas program and a testimony meeting, it was a spiritual meeting. Like I said before, every companionship in the zone got switched up so its been fun getting to know the new missionaries. For Christmas Eve we had dinner and a little program at a members home, it was fun, there were tons of people there, all family, so it made me feel like home. Then Christmas day we had brunch over at a members home and then we called home, it was really nice to be able to hear everyone's voices, that's always a special treat that we get as missionaries. We also saw one of the families we're working with, the Stolleys, and had a really good visit there. Then we went and had dinner at another members house. It was a good weekend! The work is moving right along, we're working with some really great people and are excited to watch them progress in the gospel! I love this work and I'm growing more and more each day! Love ya!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

65th Week in Spokane

Elder Burns was in a Zone Conference on Monday and couldn't email until today. He had a very short time so wasn't able to make a blog entry. There will be one next week.

Monday, December 13, 2010

64th week in Spokane

This week went really well, it was our highest teaching week all transfer. So I guess I'll start with the updates. With the Compton family (the Diest and messianic Jew couple) we went over and had dinner with them. He read in the book of Mormon all the introduction and testimonies and a few pages into first Nephi. she started to read the intro and then went to the plan of salvation pamphlet that we had left with them. They both had lots of questions and we were able to expound on a few things. We are going back there this Saturday. With the Stolley family, we found them again! She moved back in with her mom, so we are excited about that, she still wants to get baptized so we will be meeting with them this week. We met with Eddy Madden last night, I don't know if I've talked about him before but we've been going over there for a couple months now. Its been cool to see him come to grips with what we teach. He's realizing that everything we teach, he already believed, but not from another persons teaching, from his own study and he said that whenever he talks about those things people call him crazy and give him a hard time. But last night we had a really good lesson with him. He told us that if he received an answer to his prayers that the book of Mormon is true then he would get baptized! We met with this other lady named Jeneen, she is probably more devoted to Christ than anyone I've taught. we had a pretty good lesson with her, she has a few concerns which we were able to address, but overall it went pretty good. We are going back this week. We met with Milt Kenny, the JW, and there wasn't much desire to change, he basically just wanted to argue his point and wouldn't address our questions. So on Saturday, we attended two Christmas parties. One for the community and one for the ward. In the one for the community, a member organized it and so they asked us to have a part in it. Elder Westwood read a poem. I read Luke 2 and also sang with three others “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day”. It was fun and we were able to get some good face time with the community. The ward party went really really well too, there were about ten non members there and a bunch of less actives, so that was really good! Alright, now onto transfers... Elder Westwood is getting transferred to be with Elder Akaka in North Spokane. Elder Akaka and I lived in the same house when I was in beacon hill. I'm staying in Bonners Ferry and my new companion is Elder Tamblyn. and I don't know hardly anything about him. But I am excited to take over the area and I'm excited to see what this transfer is going to bring! And in the zone, every single companionship is being switched up so its gonna be fun! Love ya!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

63rd week in Spokane

The work was kinda slow this week because Elder Westwood was sick for two days and we were in Spokane for a day too. But some pretty good things came of what time we did have. We were able to do a lot of service too, a whole lot of shoveling snow and helping people get unstuck.. things like that. We were able to find a few new people to teach so that was good. One guy named milt.. I can't tell if he is a Jehova's Witness or just has studied a lot with them. But anyways, we're going back over there tomorrow night so that will be good. we were also able to find a new family named the Comptons, he's a diest and shes a messianic jew. Pretty interesting conversation with both of them. But they both agreed to read from the Book of Mormon and invited us over for some kosher hot dogs! So the update on the Stolley family.. we keep going by there and her car hasn't been there and their driveway was never plowed or had tire tracks and her house sits pretty far back from the road. So we decided to go ahead and hike in (thankfully I've got my nice sorrel boots!) and when we got up to the house, everything inside was gone. So they suddenly moved out and disappeared. but that's OK because this is the second time that this has happened and if the Lord can lead us to her twice, I'm pretty positive that He can do it again!! Well, I suppose that's all I got for this week. Love ya!

Monday, November 29, 2010

62nd Week in Spokane

I hope everyone had a good thanksgiving!! For us, we only had two meals, a lunch and a dinner, and then a dessert. I was good this year and ate very little at each place which is a huge improvement over last year! This time I was just sufficiently full when last year I thought I was gonna throw up! We made only four stops for the whole day and ate just a little at each one.. it was good! And it was my birthday so that made it extra good! Well, we were able to find new people to teach this week, pretty solid ones too. One of them, Tiffany, said that the night before she had a dream that she got baptized and that she was full of light while she was. so we're working towards baptism for her which will be really good! With the Stolley family, we haven't had any contact with them for over a week, they just disappeared so hopefully they will reappear so that they can get baptized on Christmas day! So last week we got A LOT of snow! right now there's about fourteen inches on the ground. and for two days straight it didn't get above five degrees but instead stayed about -5 degrees.. so.. it was cold! Its no Mongolian or Canadian -40.. but it was still cold! So the wells family is doing really great, we met with them twice this week and the mom came to church again this week and said that during sacrament meeting she received an answer to her prayers. So things are going really great here, love ya!!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

61st week in Spokane

Sorry about last week, we ended up taking a last minute trip to the temple which takes place of our p-day so we had no email time last week. But the temple was awesome, it had been over a year since I went so it was really nice. So the past two weeks have been pretty eventful. We ended up chopping lots and lots and lots of wood! But I actually used a gas powered splitter one of the times and that was interesting.. I think I prefer the old fashion way. We've been on four exchanges the past two weeks so we've been staying busy that way. It was cool though, for one of the exchanges I went to Spokane to be with my old companion, Elder Moleni, for a day, it was fun, it brought back a lot of memories. Kinda weird its been almost a year since I was companions with him. Anyways, he covers the singles ward (which covers my very first area) so we were able to go try people who I tracted into a year ago. I was able to see Natasha (my first baptism) and invite her to start coming back to church and Elder Moleni is going to get the singles ward relief society president over there to meet her. We were also able to see Jessie Torkelson (my fourth baptism) she was excited to see me, and I was too. So that was a good exchange. Jennifer is doing really good. Kinda crazy story that happened, we taught her that night, after my last email, and she was way receptive and we set a date for her to be baptized, and her son too, then the very next day her husband died. So it was a really tough week for them but they were very grateful that we had found them when we did to help them get through it and they recognize the Lord's hand in it. Another miracle that happened this week is with a lady named Charlene Wells. We sort of just happened onto her, we accidentally drove down her driveway and figured since we were already there we might as well knock on her door. Well she came outside before we got to her porch and said "what are you doing here?" and we told her it was kind of by accident and she just stood there quiet for a second and just said "wow" she told us that she had been trying to get in touch with someone from the church to get a book of Mormon, well we just so happened to have one with us that we gave her. Anyways, long story short, she was baptized at eight but stopped going when she was nine, and she wants to take the missionary lessons and have her family take them with her. So we are starting that tomorrow and we are excited about that. Things are going really well in the zone too, nearly every companionship has people that have set a baptismal date within the next six weeks. So things are going really well here, I hope everyone has an awesome thanksgiving! Oh ya and you can go ahead and think of me while you're eatin that turkey cuz I will be turning 23 that day!! Haha just kidding.. love ya!!

Monday, November 8, 2010

59th week in Spokane

This week was awesome! Probably one of the better weeks I've had in this area. We were able to find six new people to teach and a few really strong potential people that we set appointments with this week. Still no one that has set a date to be baptized, not yet anyways. so just a couple stories from this week. Yesterday for dinner we got fed burgers, not just any burgers, they took a one pound package of hamburger, made it into one patty, homemade a bun and fed it to us.. this thing was massive! My companion finished it but I couldn't! It sure was delicious though! Also, we were in Libby, Montana on Friday and the elder from over there and I were out knocking on doors together and there was an old man that came to the door, you could tell that he wasn't quite all there and he couldn't speak all that well. But all he kept saying was "I'm Catholic!" So we tried talking to him a little bit but that's all he would say, then he took us both by the elbow and escorted us off his porch! That was a first for me, it was kinda funny! Then we said "Have a nice day!" and to that he turned around, struggled to get words to come out and blurted "YOU'RE FAT!!" and turned around and walked inside.... pretty sure he had turrets! So things are going really well here, one of the ladies that we're excited about is Jennifer, she is one that the Lord led us to, someone that we were supposed to find. We have our first lesson with her tonight, and she's got two kids! Well, that's about it for this week in our area, in the zone, there are two new people preparing to be baptized, so we are excited for that! Well, that's about it for this week, till next time.. Elder Burns

Monday, November 1, 2010

58th Week in Spokane

Sorry I didn't get a post out last week, I didn't end up having much of an email time. But there's really not a whole lot to update on, the work has slowed down considerably. The family that we've been teaching, the Stephans, they decided it was too hard to quit smoking and coffee and decided to go to a different church. that was pretty heart breaking. We were able to find a couple new people to teach though so that's good. Its been raining non stop for the past two weeks and so whenever there's a slight break, we just end up doing service, chopping and stacking wood mostly, its fun. There's this one guy named mark, he's pretty cool, somewhat interested, well he owns a lot of land and he has a horse that he got shipped from England, the Excalibur breed.. they're the horses that the knights used to ride, they are pretty stout. not real tall, but way way stout, he's also got a goat that he got shipped from Jerusalem, I forget what the breed was called, but they are the type that grow the horns that you can cut off and use as a bugle, they're pretty sweet.. goofy lookin too! We had zone conference last week too and that went really good, it was all on the Book of Mormon and how we can use it more effectively with our investigators. We were also all given a blank copy of the Book of Mormon and as a mission we are all reading it from cover to cover and finishing it by Christmas and marking along the way every reference to Christ and all the words He speaks and His attributes and things like that, the activity is from preach my gospel, page 114 I think, its the last page of the Book of Mormon chapter and its the third bullet point under mission president, its pretty good, you should check it out. It has made so many things make so much more sense, even though they already made sense.. its been awesome reading it all the way through with a focused purpose. Well believe it or not, transfers are today and... I'm staying in Bonners Ferry with Elder Westwood!! We were excited about that. We had stake conference here yesterday, it was super good, about strengthening our homes and families and then afterward we got to have a meeting with our stake presidency and mission presidency and discuss how the work is going in the zone, which covers the whole stake, and about how we can improve and have a better unity between us and the members, it was really good. Well, I suppose thats about it for now, oh ya, last week we had a sewer line break and it took like four days to fix so we just showered over at the church, it was pretty sweet.. kinda stunk too. Well, we have a lot of really good things about to happen here and we are excited that we are serving here and at this time. Love ya!

Monday, October 18, 2010

56th week in Spokane

Well, this week is going to be a pretty short one. I was in Spokane all week having meetings and we got pretty much zero proselyting time in our area. The training was excellent though and we are excited to be able to apply it in our own area with our own investigators. I heard some way good news though! In my first area in Spokane, we found, taught, and baptized a mother and son named Cheryl and Tristian Millmaker, well, I found out this week that the husband is getting baptized next week!! So now they will be able to be united as a family and will have the blessing of having the Priesthood in their home!! Also this week, Elder Westwood and I both gave a talk in sacrament meeting and that went pretty good except for the fact that I tend to be long winded and didn't leave Elder Westwood very much time! But really that's pretty much it for this week, we just had meetings!

Monday, October 11, 2010

55th week in Spokane

We had somewhat of a rough week with all our investigators who are working towards a baptismal date. Satan has been working double time to keep them from entering the waters. We were only able to meet with the Stephens family once this week because they kept calling and canceling and they are still having problems with the word of wisdom and so they can't be baptized this week. Its all been very frustrating. But on the upside we did find some sweet new people to teach this week. One of whom is Ricky, she's way interested, has tons of questions, and has a whole lot of potential. We also found a new family, the mom has been taught before but she is re-interested and has two kids that she wants to learn more about God and the scriptures. So we are looking forward to seeing what comes from that. We have been getting a lot of requests to split wood for people and so of course I love doing that. As for the zone, there was a baptism this Saturday, a guy named Calvin. So that was good especially since there hasn't been a baptism in the zone since August. Next week there's another baptism on Sunday. so things are looking up, we just need to have people quit holding cigarettes higher than they hold God, which is exactly what they are doing. So there's been a lot of questions about the responsibilities of a zone leader. So basically it works like this.. two missionaries make up a companionship where there is a senior companion who is accountable for that companionship, a few companionships make up a district where there is a District leader who works closely with all the missionaries in their district, especially the senior companion, and is accountable for the companionships in his district, a few districts make up a zone where there are two zone leaders in a companionship who work very closely with the district leaders and are accountable for the all the missionaries in that zone, and then there are two assistants to the president in a companionship who work very closely to the zone leaders. So that's how leadership in this mission is broken down. So as far as responsibilities go, there's not a whole lot different then any one else, other than we work very closely with the stake, or stakes, in which our zone covers, meeting with high councilmen and the stake president and helping to ensure that the missionaries and the church leaders are on the same page with everything. So as zone leaders we have meeting with the stake, we also go to the district meeting within the zone, we meet once a transfer with all the other zone leaders in the mission and the president in whats called a zone leader council, which just so happens to be tomorrow. We also have a conference call every Thursday night where all the zone leaders and the president are all on the same line where we give some sort of accountability and receive direction from the assistants and the president. there's also whats called a zone conference that happens every other transfer where all the missionaries in a few zones meet together where we receive direction and training from the president, then we split up and receive training from the assistants and then the zone leaders give trainings after that. Then there's also one more thing that's fairly new, called leadership training, I went to it as a district leader in July. basically its where we receive training from the president for four days, eight hours a day and all zone leaders, district leaders, and trainers are invited to that..Its pretty intense but its so awesome at the same time and that just so happens to start tomorrow too. So for this upcoming week I will be in Spokane from Tuesday morning to Friday night. so I'm looking forward to that, it will be fun. So I don't know, that may sound like a lot, but its not. Well I'm looking forward to reporting on this week next time. I love you all thanks for all you do!

Monday, October 4, 2010

54th week in Spokane

Things went well this week, what could be better then to end it by listening to the Lord's Prophet and Apostles?? We were able to teach a lady named Mary this week and invite her to be baptized Oct. 23rd and she accepted! The zone has also been really blessed this week with two more people who have accepted a baptismal date. That makes six for the zone! That's more than the zone has had in the past six months, so things are looking up here. We were able to meet with the Stake President this week and talk about each ward individually and set up some goals with him. There's definitely a feeling of anticipation here as the fire is being lit in the stake and in the zone. I am grateful for the talk given by Elder Nelson in the Priesthood session talking about how the members of the church need to be missionaries as well. Especially since that is the gap that's missing here, as in the majority of the church as well I'm sure. If that gap can be bridged between the members and the missionaries, the world will see miracles. We need to be the tools used in the Lord's hands as He ushers in His second coming. We need to do our part. As the Prophet began to speak in the welcoming to conference Saturday morning, my testimony was again confirmed and strengthened as the Spirit bore witness to me that Thomas S. Monson is God's Prophet on the Earth today. I know this is true. that's why I am serving the Lord, to spread the good news.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

53rd week in Spokane plus 52nd week (late)

This is the post that was missing last week, following this is the post from Monday Sept 27, 2010, consequently this is a doubly long post but well worth the read.

52nd week in Spokane
Well first off, we got our transfer calls last night and Elder Mudrow is staying here but I am being transferred. I'm going from one of the most western parts of the mission to one of the most eastern parts. Bonners Ferry, Idaho! My new companion will be Elder Westwood. I will be junior companion. I'm excited, I know elder Westwood from past leadership trainings and zone conferences hes and awesome missionary. In fact, he's a zone leader. Which actually makes me a zone leader too! It's going to be a great new chapter in my life. I'm excited! We had a great week! On Tuesday we taught Jessica about the law of tithing. She didn't really like it, shes already cut way back on her work hours because she took off Sundays and she has to pay for school and help her parents pay for rent and other things and has to get a car since she's going to school. So she wasn't very happy learning that she's gotta give ten percent to the Lord. But by the end she committed to paying a full tithe. We promised her that if she puts tithing as a priority right when her pay check comes, before paying bills or anything else, that the Lord would provide the rest. She said she would. On Thursday she was interviewed and on Friday she was baptized! The baptism service was so good. That's one of the things I'm gonna miss most about being on a mission is going to convert baptisms. There's nothing quite like it. The power of God is always manifested. Jared was able to exercise his Priesthood and baptize Jessica. The first attempt you could tell that he was pretty nervous and he didn't push her down, just let her lay back so she barely even got wet! But the second attempt was golden. Jessicas parents were able to show their love and support and they came to the baptism. In time I believe their hearts will be open to the gospel as they see how it helps out Jessica. On Saturday Jared went to the temple and performed baptisms for the dead. We didn't really get a chance yet to follow up on that but from what I hear, he was glowing at the temple. Jared also gave his first talk in sacrament meeting, it was on his conversion. It was cool being able to hear more from him on how the gospel has blessed his life and has been able to bring light to his shadowed soul. Jared is solid, it has been a great privilege to be able to be part of his conversion. Jessica was also confirmed during sacrament meeting and that's always a special thing to witness and be a part of as well. Going back to tithing.. Before Jessica's interview I gave our zone leader a heads up that she was struggling with tithing and asked him to pay attention to that part and bear testimony on it. Well he did and again she committed to be a full tithe payer! Because she exercised her faith and accepted that commitment, the very next day she received a letter in the mail that said she had been given two grants for school and the money is enough so that she can pick up two more classes and also will have enough left over to help pay for a car! She recognized it as being from the Lord as a blessing to her making the decisions she has. Because of this miracle my testimony was strengthened a few different ways. If we keep the commandments of the Lord then He will pour out His blessings. As the Lord fulfills promises made by His servants, of this He said "whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants it is the same”. Its always neat to see the promises fulfilled that we His servants make. Its a wonderful responsibility that we have been entrusted with. I will miss it hear in East Wenatchee but the Lord has called me elsewhere and I'm excited to see what the future holds with this new assignment.

53rd Week in Spokane
Week one in Bonners Ferry went really well. First off, the transfer day was forever LONG! Distance wise I got transferred further than any one else in the mission. From East Wenatchee Washington to Bonners Ferry Idaho. I left East Wenatchee at 9:30 and got to Bonners at 7:30.. it was a long day! But it was fun too because I got to see a lot of people that I hadn't seen for a really long time and it was fun catching up with everyone. Well, Elder Westwood is my new companion. He's from Houston Texas. I'm grateful that I'll be trained as a zone leader by him, he's an excellent missionary, I've learned a lot from him. Bonners Ferry is a little town with trees and hills all around. It reminds me a whole lot of Beuna Vista Virginia, except a little bit smaller. The people are surprisingly nice so I like that. Nearly everyone here has a wood stove for heat for the winter so I'm gonna be doing a whole lot of wood chopping! We also cover the surrounding areas, basically the Canadian border and the Montana border and a little further west of Bonners. Another cool thing about the area is we get a truck! a Chevy Colorado! I'm not exactly sure yet where all the zone covers, I know it at least covers from Sandpoint Idaho to Libby Montana. so pretty big geographically but small in missionaries, there's only five companionships including us. As far as the work in this area and zone is concerned, its been pretty dead recently. There hasn't been a baptism in our area since may. But Elder Westwood and I plan on changing that around pretty quickly. About a year and a half ago this zone was on fire and baptizing like crazy, but it has dwindled. and we're pretty sure we know why. So we are in the process of repairing and lifting and rekindling that fire. We plan on working very closely with the stake leaders to ensure unity throughout the stake where currently it feels like there's not so much. It may take a little bit of time to get all the wards and branches in the stake on the same page. But luckily President Palmer likes to keep companionships together longer, especially zone leaders. So we plan on turning this zone around and making it once again the hotspot of the mission. We are meeting with the stake president tonight to get things kicked off! This last week we had the blessing of putting a family of three on date to be baptized on October 17 so we are very excited for that! We are also working with a few others that are very very close and will more than likely be getting baptized in October! My first Sunday here was alright, I don't really like first Sundays on missions because you don't know anyone and everyone is bummed because the last missionary left and they miss him because he's just so great.. and during all the meetings that we missionaries have to go to they talk about a hundred different names that you've never heard and you just really don't know whats going on. But oh well, that's life. We cover two wards, and so does each companionship in the zone. So we go to church from seven to three. that's eight hours! It makes it difficult to stay awake! So this week I was reading in the last conference Ensign and in the talk that I was reading it said that we all should study the atonement. So for my personal studies this past week I've been doing just that. Also, Elder Westwood is working on memorizing The Living Christ. So I told him that I would help him out with that by memorizing it too. I've been working on that this week too. From studying about our Savior and His Atonement, there has been such an added Spirit throughout the day that I cant ignore. The Savior suffered so much, such immense pain, all for us. All so that we wouldn't have to suffer, if we repent and follow Him. I'm so grateful for that. I'm grateful for this opportunity to be able to serve Him. He is our Savior and He does live and direct this Church.

Monday, September 20, 2010

52nd week in Spokane

We had an interesting week, nothing too successful, mostly just all our appointments fell through. So last week our bishop runs an idea by us about having Jessica confirmed the same day as her baptism because the next day the ward is having a youth temple trip and so we all thought it would be cool to have her get baptized and confirmed on Friday and then on Saturday have her go to the temple. And that way
she and Jared could go together for both of their first time. So we both said we would work on getting permission for that. Well a couple days later the Bishop calls us back and says he got the permission. So we told Jared and Jessica about it and she said she's fine with it. So we taught her this last week about the temple and baptisms for the dead. She really liked it because she has a brother that died a long
time ago. Well, we got everything lined up for her to get her baptismal interview and also to get her temple recommend. So just as a side note, it is a rule that an investigator has to come to church 3 times in order to be eligible for baptism. Before this week Jessica came twice. Once to Sacrament meeting and the other time to all three hours and she just loved it. In fact, her first time going to relief society they challenged everyone to read the Book of Mormon in 100 days and gave out a chart of what to read every day to make it by 100 days. And Jessica committed herself to do it! So she has been working on that! Well, Jared always picks her up and brings her to church every week. Well this Sunday Jared came but with no Jessica, so we were pretty bummed because technically she cant get baptized without being at church 3 times. So we called her and she was just super sick, she could barely say two words without coughing like crazy and not only that but she sprained her ankle really bad on Saturday, so she didn't come so we didn't announce her baptism or anything at church but we did call our mission president to see if we could get permission to go ahead and baptize her as planned since she was just sick and not flaky. So finally we were able to get hold of him and he said that if the bishop approves then he approves. But as I explained the situation to him he said that she shouldn't get confirmed on Friday but needs to be confirmed on Sunday, which means that she can't go to the temple. So we let everyone know and made a bunch of phone calls to invite to the baptism. Jessica was kinda disappointed that she wouldn't get to go to the temple especially since we already taught her about it, but she was excited that she could still get baptized as planned. And so are we.

51st week in Spokane

We had an interesting week, nothing too successful, mostly just all
our appointments fell through. So last week our bishop runs an idea by
us about having Jessica confirmed the same day as her baptism because
the next day the ward is having a youth temple trip and so we all
thought it would be cool to have her get baptized and confirmed on
Friday and then on Saturday have her go to the temple. And that way
she and Jared could go together for both of their first time. So we
both said we would work on getting permission for that. Well a couple
days later the Bishop calls us back and says he got the permission. So
we told Jared and Jessica about it and she said she's fine with it. So
we taught her this last week about the temple and baptisms for the
dead. She really liked it because she has a brother that died a long
time ago. Well, we got everything lined up for her to get her
baptismal interview and also to get her temple recommend. So just as a
side note, it is a rule that an investigator has to come to church 3
times in order to be eligible for baptism. Before this week Jessica
came twice. Once to Sacrament meeting and the other time to all three
hours and she just loved it. In fact, her first time going to relief
society they challenged everyone to read the Book of Mormon in 100
days and gave out a chart of what to read every day to make it by 100
days. And Jessica committed herself to do it! So she has been working on
that! Well, Jared always picks her up and brings her to church every
week. Well this Sunday Jared came but with no Jessica, so we were
pretty bummed because technically she cant get baptized without being
at church 3 times. So we called her and she was just super sick, she
could barely say two words without coughing like crazy and not only
that but she sprained her ankle really bad on Saturday, so she didn't
come so we didn't announce her baptism or anything at church but we did
call our mission president to see if we could get permission to go
ahead and baptize her as planned since she was just sick and not
flaky. So finally we were able to get hold of him and he said that
if the bishop approves then he approves. But as I explained the
situation to him he said that she shouldn't get confirmed on Friday but
needs to be confirmed on Sunday, which means that she can't go to the
temple. So we let everyone know and made a bunch of phone calls to
invite to the baptism. Jessica was kinda disappointed that she wouldn't
get to go to the temple especially since we already taught her about
it, but she was excited that she could still get baptized as planned.
And so are we.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

50th week in Spokane

"Serve with all your heart might mind and strength" We certainly
magnified this portion of our calling this week! We did so much
service its ridiculous! We laid a hard wood floor, we painted, we
helped some one move, and we cut down and cut up a tree! I have
definitely been able to use my own gifts to help out others so its
been good, I love doing service, we're always looking for some to do.
Not only does it give us a chance to wear something other than a shirt and tie but it of course makes us feel good to know we helped someone out. When you're in the service of your fellow beings you're only in the service of your God, right? Right. So cutting down the tree was pretty fun, we did it for Jessica because they depend on firewood for heat since they live clear in the boonies and have no electricity or
running water. However, both her parents have gotten injured and can't do anything to help with the firewood so we decided to go up there and help em out a bit. We were exhausted by the end of the day because that morning we helped someone move. Another fun thing about that day is see, Wenatchee is just this big valley in the middle of no where so we gotta drive up the mountain to get out. so coming back its all downhill and this road is especially steep! So.. We rode our bikes back down it! It was cool because it was dark so Jared, our recent convert, drove right behind us and had his lights on haha he said that our top speed was right around 50!! Speaking of Jessica, she is doing really good, we were able to teach a way good lesson with her and we also taught her about the Sabbath Day, we invited her to ask work off for every Sunday and she was really scared to because she barely has any hours as it is and she needs money for school but she said she would because she said if shes gonna jump into this shes gonna do it one hundred percent. She's solid. She asked work off and got it off and is getting baptized September 17! We are excited about that! Well, thanks for everything you do I love and miss you all!
-Elder Burns

Monday, August 30, 2010

49th week in Spokane

"You receive no witness until after the trial of your faith" the miracles come if we prove our faith and always endure through. This week was filled with miracles and tender mercies from tbe Lord. It started off with Francisco. When I first got in this area, about five months ago, Francisco was one of my first lessons we taught here. Unfortunately he moved out after about a week and we never saw him again but we decided to go back and try him again. Turns out he's back home and wants to meet with us still. So we taught him the restoration. Francisco is at a point in his life where he needs a change. He is tired of the life he lives now, he feels very unstable and unsure about everything. We assured him the if we put our faith in Christ, He will be our rock. We shared with him Helaman 5:12 and promised him that he will find stability and direction and purpose in this Gospel. Promised him that if he puts his faith in Christ, he will be able to start a new life and be forgiven of everything he's ever done. Told him that his family needs him to step up and be the example so that they too can feel of the Savior. We soft committed him to be baptized which means WHEN you Know these things to be true, will you be baptized. He said yes but he didn't want to set a specific date, but at least he knows our purpose as missionaries and knows what direction he needs to go. In the mission field worldwide we are refocusing on getting our investigators to pray vocally with us present, because without that how can we know if thy are praying on their own, or if they even know how to pray at all? So I've made a personal goal to never take no for an answer and to never compromise. So with Francisco he offered the ending prayer and it was so sweet because he gathered his kids around to pray with him. Tender mercy number one! Next is Deicy. Deicy is Ashton Couch's girlfriend. Ashton was baptized about a year and a half ago, he's 17. We've known Deicy for a while because of Ashton but she's never been interested in learning more about the church until now. She asked us if she could be taught and so we taught her the restoration. She really liked everything that was said and believes it could be true. We gave her a book of Mormon and invited her to read from it. We invited her to say the closing prayer. She was very hesitant. We went over how to pray but she was still unsure. One thing that we do as missionaries when we invite someone to pray, we immediately fold our arms and bow our heads. It shows that we have faith in them that they can pray. So we did that and waited as the silence filled the room. Missionaries get real used to the silence! Well, Deicy was still really hesitant and suddenly we heard Sister Couch praying instead of Deicy. So when she said amen, instead of ending, we said thank you sister couch for showing Deicy that perfect example of how to pray. Deicy, will you now pray for all of us? She was still hesitant. So we asked her if you could thank God for anything, what would it be? If you could ask Him for anything, what would it be? You just said a wonderful prayer, now will you say it again but this time address our Heavenly Father and end in the name of Jesus Christ? And she did. And what a sweet experience it was to listen to her first uttered prayer! Tender mercy number two. She said that she would come to church and when we saw her again she had already read to 2nd Nephi 13! Next is the Espinoza's. We were able to meet with them twice this week and it was really good because the first time we were able to focus on Rose, 9, and the second time we were able to focus on Lily, 13, Rose wants to get baptized and we are working towards September 18. In the second lesson with them they were both kinda hesitant to pray, even though rose already has, and so when invited to pray she didn't want to and pretty much the exact same thing happened as did with Deicy. Sister Espinoza gave the prayer instead and they thought they were off the hook! But we re-invited lily to pray and asked the same questions we did Deicy. She prayed. Then we did the same to rose. She prayed. So hear we have a mother that is trying to do everything she can to help these kids along the right path and trying to get them to come and be interested in church and in Christ and all three of them this night said a beautiful prayer out loud as a family. Tender mercy number three. Next is Jessica. Jared was baptized about a month ago. Everyday he gives Jessica a ride to and from work. so throughout his conversion he has been talking to Jessica about it. She agreed to meet with the missionaries to learn more. We had a way good lesson with her about the restoration and Jared helped teach a lot of it. He is solid! Well as we got to know Jessica and she opened up to us it was evident that this is the time in her life that there needs to be a change. There's a lot of things that have happened in her past and a lot of things that are happening now with her family that has made her very humble and teachable, which makes her susceptible to feeling the Holy Ghost. She accepted the invitation to be baptized on Sept 17 and we are all working towards that goal. Same story with the closing prayer, she was hesitant but she did pray. It was a beautiful heartfelt prayer and I am certain it was her first time to ever pray out loud. Tender mercy number four. She came to church, we met with her before it began to teach her about the sacrament meeting and she read to 1 Nephi 10!  Neither Deicy or the Espinozas ended up coming to church. but Rose and Sister Espinoza did come and watch a baptism on Saturday and that is always good. A member on Sunday brought a guy to church named Raul. We talked to him afterward and he said he really enjoyed it and would like to learn more. We are meeting with him this week so I will look forward to reporting back on him next week. It has been such a wonderful blessing to be able to watch as these children of God come unto Christ. It is truly a miracle. The miracle of conversion. I am so grateful to be able to be a tool in the Lord's hands as He prepares and guides His children to follow Him and follow Christ.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

48th week in Spokane

We had another really great week. To start it out, we went and did some service staining a fence. They gave me the sprayer to use and I was a little bit hesitant to take it, but of course did anyways. Well, I got done staining one section of the fence fairly quickly and then moved on down to the next section, got about half way done and happened to look through the fence and noticed the neighbors ac unit was covered in stain. So I ran over there and started wiping it up when I noticed that not only was the ac unit covered in stain, but so was the house! So a staining the fence service project turned into everyone for two and a half hours cleaning and scrubbing the neighbors. I felt so bad! It was horrible! But the week got a lot better and we met with Sister Espinoza and shared more with her about the book of Mormon, answered her questions and she committed to read it everyday. They are progressing along really well and it has been a miracle to be able to watch them come closer to Christ. She told us with tears in her eyes that her wild three year old autistic son had knelt down with her to pray and that he actually was reverent and seemed to understand who he was talking to. I love being a missionary! So I forgot to mention, the other week the church and community had a big clothing exchange in the gym at the church so of course we had planned on going. Well we ended up going to the chapel the night before to take a bathroom break and as we walked by the gym we saw all the clothes spread out all over the gym, there were clothes EVERYWHERE!! So since we were early we had the first pick on all the clothes, don't worry, we got permission! And I found two suits that fit me! Which is good because with winter coming up soon we will have to go back to wearing a suit everyday so I was already planning on getting a goodwill suit, but nope, I got two suits for free, and get this, one of them is machine washable!! Well, my last companion in Spokane, Elder Moleni, was called to be the new assistant to the president. The already existing assistant is Elder Zohner, and he was my zone leader back in my first area. He was with me when we taught Jessie Jones (when I gave my pentecostal type sermon) (14th week in Spokane) the point is, I know the assistants really well. So this week they called us and asked if they could come work in our area for a couple hours and then sleep over at our house. We were excited because Elder Mudrow has served around both of them a whole lot on his mission and so anyways they came and we were able to split off and Elder Moleni and I were able to teach a few lessons together again, just like old times! It was fun. Then the next day, yesterday, they drove us to Moses Lake where we were able to receive training from Elder Christiansen of the seventy. Like usual, it was a very good experience that we were able to hear from and get to know a general authority. He was very personal and took the time to shake hands with and talk to each individual missionary. One last experience from this week. A couple weeks ago I was asked to give a talk on the last Sunday of the month. When I was given the assignment on paper the paper said that it was on the 22nd. I figured it was a typo and decided to wait until this week to fully prepare. I did however write down a few scriptures that I wanted to use. Well, this last Sunday we were sitting in the congregation and I noticed that there's only a youth speaker sitting on the stand. So I checked to see who the speakers were that day and sure enough... Elder Burns was listed to give a talk. Unfortunately I didn't bring the little notes that I had and so I quickly wrote down a few scriptures and a few thoughts and by that time it was time to give it! I thought it went alright for an impromptu performance haha anyways, funny times being a missionary, luckily I've gotten pretty used to having to give talks at last minute, this wasn't the first time and I'm sure it wont be the last! Well, we are finding new people to teach all the time, but very few end up progressing. However we still press forward in this, the Lords work.

Monday, August 16, 2010

47th week in Spokane

This week turned out pretty good. We were able to meet with Sister Espinoza and had a way good lesson with her about the Sacrament and why its important and she committed to coming on Sunday. and then she showed up! I admit I had my doubts that she would, which is bad, but she pulled through! And she brought one of her daughters that's nine years old so that was good too! Well, Brother Harvey moved out this week to another ward in the area so the other missionaries are going to take over there, it was a way good experience to be able to watch him progress. He quit smoking and is working on progressing to receive the Priesthood. Jared is still going way strong, he is attending YSA activities and coming to church each week, and the ward has him lined up with a home teacher. So this week something amazing happened. We went over to a member's house for dinner and they made the most amazing rhubarb crisp I've ever had, I loved it so much that they gave me like half the pan.. It was amazing! Therefore I will work this week on getting the recipe and will be sending it home pronto! We also had a way good meeting with our new stake president here and he talked to us about sacrifice and consecration. Really good stuff and he bore strong testimony. I've been working hard to see how I can better, more fully serve the Lord for the last year. As far as doctrine and learning the scriptures I feel like I've learned and progressed to where the Lord wants me to be knowledge wise. So now to make the most of my last year I need to focus and continue to refocus my efforts to better and more fully become consecrated to the Lord because that's when the miracles will begin to flow. Well I love you all and mom and dad, you can be looking for that recipe in the mail!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

46th week in Spokane

I'm gonna have to apologize in advance because today's email is going to be really short. There really wasn't a whole lot of action this week. Last week we had set up a whole bunch of appointments for this week and every single one of them fell through, Brother Harvey we found out is moving so we won't be able to teach him any more. The Espinoza's didn't show at their appointment and then called us and said that they would be at church but then didn't show up there either. So pretty much it was just one of those weeks. But a highlight of the week was that Jared received the Aaronic Priesthood on Tuesday so that was really awesome. Also this week there was another fire up the hill by where we live that was HUGE and came about 100 yards away from burning down a whole subdivision, everyone had to evacuate. Luckily they were able to control it and get it out before it got to the houses. We've had some big lightning storms here that have started just tons of fires. The other day we could barely even see the valley the air was so thick with smoke. So this week was just a trial of our faith and we got our transfer calls last night. Yes another six weeks has gone by and I am staying in east Wenatchee with elder Mudrow. So we are excited to be able to stay together, Elder Mudrow is a great missionary! I love you all!

Monday, August 2, 2010

45th week in Spokane

We had another great week. I spent Tuesday Wednesday and Thursday in Moses Lake receiving training from President Palmer and from Brother Bothell from the missionary committee in Salt Lake. Only the leaders from the bottom half of the mission came so there were only like twenty missionaries there so we got to be pretty familiar with each other and with President Palmer, it was a way good experience. They are changing the way that missionaries are trained in the MTC and so they want us to be trained the same way so that we can be on the same level as the new missionaries coming out. I think its probably safe to say that it was a life changing experience for me, just the way that I view missionary work and also a few other things as we discussed about certain aspects of the gospel. Well this week we were also able to teach the Espinoza family and we invited the girls to be baptized. One of them said yes and the other said she'll think about it, they didn't come to church like they said they would which is always disappointing. And some other GREAT news... my drought is finally over!!! Jared got baptized Saturday night! It was an awesome service and yesterday he got confirmed and received the Holy Ghost! Then on Tuesday he is going to be receiving the Aaronic Priesthood. It has been a great blessing to be able to teach Jared and watch him progress and grow in the gospel as he follows the example of our Savior Jesus Christ.

Monday, July 26, 2010

44th Week in Spokane

We had a pretty crazy week! We live at the Merrill's, they are in their 80's. anyways, Thursday morning Sister Merrill wakes us up at 2:30 in the morning and says, "Wake up Elders, the neighbors house is on fire and so is the field behind our house and its getting closer, we may have to evacuate!" So of course that woke us right up! We looked out our window into the back yard and all we could see was flames and smoke. So we got dressed quickly and went outside. Fortunately the neighbors house wasn't on fire, it just looked like it from our house, but the field behind and all around it was and also our fence around our house was on fire. By the time we were woken up there were fireman already there and trying to contain it. they were able to get it completely out by about 630, it was a pretty crazy night! Also this week we were able to meet with Jared a few times and he was interviewed for baptism and he will be getting baptized this Saturday!! So we are very excited for that, and its been good because with every lesson that we've had with him has been in a member's home so it has gotten the members excited again for missionary work and that's been cool to see happen. Also this week we were able to tract into a part member family that hasn't been active in a long time but they said that they would like to start coming back to church so we asked them if they wanted to take the missionary discussions over again and they said that they would. So we are going to be working with them plus they have two kids that have not been baptized, but luckily we know how to fix that! We've been working with a guy who was baptized years and years ago that hasn't been to church in years but we have set goals with him to stop smoking and to receive the Priesthood and he has been coming to church regularly now and this week we went over the stop smoking workshop with him that's a fool proof way to quit smoking in 7 days, if you hold true to the 15 steps it covers. He has been going at it strongly for five days now and he says he feels better now then he has for a lotta years. The program has to do with your eating habits and also a lot to do with prayer and faith and relying on the Lord. And yesterday he met with the Bishop and set a date to be able to receive the Priesthood!! Just one more thing about what we did this week.. on Monday when I got out of the shower to dry off, a massive spider fell out of my towel, so I ran and got a jar and put it in it. Well all throughout the week we kept looking for more spiders and we ended up finding eight spiders! We put them all in the same jar, hoping that they would fight but they never would. We wanted to see who was the toughest spider, so we named them all.. jameson, petey, thor, the judge, thing one and thing two, jose, and bertha. the first to die was petey, then thing 2, the judge, jose, and thing 1. So all we had left was the two biggest, jameson (the one in my towel, a wolf spider) and thor (a hobo spider). and then last night we found bertha. she was bigger then both of them, and it looks like she's pregnant too. So we put them all together to see what would happen and immediately thor and bertha double teamed on jameson, it was a crazy intense battle!! And then while thor was chewin on jameson bertha very sneakily snuck around and latched onto thor's back! So the winner is bertha! Then this morning we found a massive centipede that we will be having fight bertha today at noon! Well that was our week, I hope you enjoyed the spider chronicles, I hope you tune in next week to receive further updates! I love you all and I'm excited for the work thats goin on here in east Wenatchee!

Monday, July 19, 2010

43rd Week in Spokane

This week was good, Jared is progressing really well, coming to church, reading from the Book of Mormon, going to institute and young single adults and meeting with us three times a week. He is pretty much the definition of a golden investigator.. He is still going strong for July 31.. he doesn't even consider himself a visitor any more, he says he's already a member! We taught him this week about the word of wisdom and the law of chastity and he said that he has lived that way his whole life! With every lesson that we've had with him we have taught him in a member's home, so his whole conversion is pretty much text book. As for the rest of the work in the area, its been pretty slow the past couple weeks, we've been knockin on doors like crazy with no luck there. However, we did get a lot of return appointments so hopefully those will lead somewhere. Last night we were tracting at about 8:30 and we knocked on this guys door who has M.S. who said he's not interested unless we could heal him. So we taught about Priesthood blessings and read from James 5 and then gave him a blessing, it was a cool experience, he asked us to come back tomorrow. Well we keep working hard and have faith that the Lord will bless us with miracles as he already has and continues to do so!

Monday, July 12, 2010

42nd week in Spokane

I hit my one year mark last week! Its all down hill from here. Its gone by really fast and everyone keeps saying that the second year goes by even faster, we'll see about that.. Its hard to believe that it has already been a year, now when I look back and say "what was I doing a year ago from today?" now I would already be on my mission, kinda weird. But this year has been so good, I've learned and grown more this one year than I have the other 22, it seems like it anyways. And yet, there's still so much that can be learned. that's one great thing about the gospel, there's no end to learning, there will never be a point in this life where I can say "I've learned it all" I love reading the scriptures because each time I do I learn something new, even if I've already read it a hundred times. During this first year I have read the Book of Mormon three times, the Doctrine and Covenants, the Pearl of Great Price, the Old and New Testaments, and half of Jesus the Christ. It has been an awesome experience! I've also listened to and read the two general conferences. In the Book of Jacob in the Book of Mormon, it says "For, for this intent have we written these things that they may know that we knew of Christ and we had a hope of His glory many hundred years before His coming and not only we ourselves had a hope of His glory but all the holy prophets which were before us. Wherefore, we search the prophets, and we have many revelations and the spirit of prophesy; and having all these witnesses we obtain a hope, and our faith becometh unshaken, insomuch that we truly can command in the name of Jesus and the very trees obey us, or the mountains, or the waves of the sea" This is why we are so blessed as Latter Day Saints because we have all these witnesses that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, our Savior and Redeemer. So many people are afraid of the Book of Mormon and afraid of the idea of a prophet in these days, but we rejoice in them because it is all just further evidence that He lives and loves us and still speaks to man today. He is the same yesterday today and forever, never changing. He speaks to us today through prophets, I know with all my heart that thats true. And with all these witnesses we obtain a hope, a hope in whats to come, a knowledge and a security of whats to come. All these witnesses give us direction and purpose in this life insomuch that we are not tossed to and fro when Satan sends forth his mighty winds, we have a foundation, a foundation that cannot fail because it is built upon Christ. Because we have all these witnesses our faith becomes unshaken and we can know of a surety, just as we know that five plus five equals ten, that God has a prophet on the Earth today and that Jesus Christ leads and guides this, His church, the church of Jesus Christ.
    Last Sunday a member in another ward brought her friend to church and he absolutely loved it so he wanted to come back, so he came to our ward this week because he lives in our ward. After church we sat down with him and got to know him. His name is Jared Heath. We taught him the restoration and he said that it all just clicked with him and that it all makes perfect sense. We then shared with him a couple verses in Alma 7 talking about baptism and we invited him to be baptized, he said he would and that he never really understood the purpose of baptism like he does now. So he is getting baptized July 31!! It was a great blessing to be able to teach him.
    This last week we had zone conference, it was really good, it was exclusively on the Doctrine of Christ. The Doctrine of Christ is our purpose as missionaries, to invite all men to have faith in Jesus Christ, repent, be baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. We learned at zone conference that there are a lot of changes that are going to take place, some immediately and some not until next year. We will no longer have interviews with the mission president or zone conference every transfer, We will have them every other transfer so that it can give the mission president more time to work with us individually in our own areas. And all these changes are for the church world wide, not just our mission. Also they are changing the curriculum in the MTC. There will now be a set of eight lessons that are going to be taught, and this will start in may 2011, but we will receive training on those eight lessons sooner then that so that we can be ready for the new missionaries. The lessons that the missionaries teach aren't changing, but how missionaries will be taught will be different, more effective. Because the whole purpose is to truly convert the missionary and have them know and understand what it is they are teaching so that they can teach it according to the people's need, adjust it to meet them. With this new change in curriculum and especially with this last general conference, I feel like there is a sense of urgency to strengthen ourselves, to increase our faith, to learn more fully the gospel and use and apply it in our lives. We need to do it now. The Lord needs strong faithful disciples in these last days as He is preparing us for His millennial reign. No more procrastinating, we need to become His Disciples, all of us, we need to prepare ourselves inwardly to be able to protect us from the outside influences. Satan's most powerful tool is that of complacency, do not get complacent. Always always look for ways to improve, always search for ways to better serve the Lord. I feel this sense of urgency to bring people to Christ, bring them to His flock so that they can be prepared for whats to come in the very near future. The prophet and apostles are no longer talking to us about food storage, now their focus is on strengthening us from the inside, spiritually. So listen to their guidance, search the prophets, search the scriptures. These witnesses are here for us so that we can be prepared, so that we can obtain a faith that is unshaken. We cannot afford to take them for granted any more.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

41st week in Spokane

We had a way good week, Elder Mudrow is awesome, this is going to be a great transfer! He is way hard working and obedient so I'm excited to be able to work with him! Also this week I held my first district meeting so that was fun! It was Elder Mudrow's 21st birthday on Thursday so we celebrated and went out to McDonalds for lunch! So here's a funny story. On Saturday we were tracting at about 8 o'clock at night and we come to a house with a lot of cars parked outside so we figure that there's probably a party going on so we walk up and there's big windows we have to walk past to get to the door and when we did people inside started yelling "Mormons" and yelling "no" and telling us to leave, but we didn't and we went up to the front door then we here someone say alright alright I got this and he answers the door and is drunk but eventually invites us in for a few shots and some pizza, my companion said no we can't and they kept trying to convince us and then he went back inside and these two girls came out and told us that everyone in there would never again at any time ever listen to anything that we have to say, but tonight they might actually listen so I said alright we'll give you ten minutes but then we gotta get going after that. so we went in and there was about 20 people all in their 20's and everyone shouted for joy when we came in, the deal was that we would play ladder golf, or redneck golf, for ten minutes while we talk to a couple of the guys there. So we did and then the score got to 19 to 20 and you win at 21 so by then everyone at the party had gathered around to watch the Mormons play and we wagered a bet that if we win then the two guys we were playing would have to come to church the next day and if they win then we would have to stay and play another round of redneck golf. So the bet was on and we lost so we stuck around and played again with some of the other people there and it was cool because the whole time we were there we were just answering questions and teaching about the church. We ended up staying at this place for about an hour and about twenty people learned about the church that otherwise wouldn't have and now hopefully one day they will let the missionaries in again. So on the fourth of July we didn't really do anything special since we have curfew before it even gets dark so we were already home when the fireworks started going off but we do have an awesome view of the whole valley so that was kinda cool. Well we were able to find a few more people to teach. This one couple, the Cramers, seem to be somewhat promising, When they answered the door they invited us right in and we were there for almost an hour getting to know them and teaching about the church so we are excited about them and we'll see what happens, our next appointment with them is tomorrow. Well that ought to do for now but I love you all hope you all had a good fourth!!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

40th week in Spokane

Unfortunately I was sick all this last week and so not a whole lot of work got done like we were hoping. I had something like strep throat with mono type symptoms where I just had zero energy and I completely lost my voice. But its all good now, I'm on the down hill of whatever I've got. Well, we got our transfer calls last night and.... I am staying here and Elder Andersen is getting transferred to Post Falls Idaho. My new companion is Elder Mudrow and I know absolutely nothing about him so I guess I'll find out tomorrow! Our district leader here has finished his mission and went home today so I've been asked to be the new district leader so I'm excited for that, it will be a way good experience. Something funny that happened this week is we were riding down the hill on our bikes and Elder Andersen was ahead of me when all of a sudden a car pulled out in front of him and so he had to slam on his brakes, his back tire came up over the top and he went over the handle bars, his helmet hit straight into the guys tire and he banged up his knee and hand pretty good. Well the guy got out of his truck and came to see if everything is alright and Elder Andersen was like ya I'm fine I'm fine, would you like to hear a message about Jesus Christ? And so he got his information and we went over there yesterday and taught him and he seems pretty promising haha he's Spanish though so we are giving him to them to teach but pretty funny situation I think!! Sometimes the Lord leads you to people and sometimes the Lord leads people to you, and apparently sometimes he lets you run your bike into their car to get their attention! Well I hope and pray that I will be able to be the kind of leader that the Lord wishes me to be. I love you - Elder Burns

Monday, June 21, 2010

39th week in Spokane

HAPPY FATHERS DAY!! We had a really good week this week, we had the opportunity to receive training from Elder Pearson of the first quorum of the seventy and he really based the whole thing on the power and authority of our calling. It was really good, he explained too how its important to first explain to people their true relationship with God.. That we lived with Him before this life and that He is our literal Father and we are His literal children and as soon as we comprehend that relationship then our prayers become more meaningful as we pray to our Father. The area is doing really good, we got a couple people that are still progressing and working towards baptism. This is the last week in the transfer though, kinda crazy. Doesn't seem like it has been that long, but time just keeps on flying by faster and faster! Well I love you and never forget that we are all sons and daughters of God; identity determines our destiny.. so live up to your identity as a child of God.

Monday, June 14, 2010

38th week in Spokane

Things this week were kinda slow, only found a couple of new people to teach, we mainly focused on getting in touch again with all of the people we have taught within the past month or so. Its hard trying to catch people home! Well Kyle is doing good, we were able to meet with him again this week, that went well. Corson is doing well too, we met with him and watched a movie on Joseph Smith and that went way good.. He just needs to start coming to church now! There's one lady named Eva, she is super nice, her son got baptized in November so we see them a couple times a week. I gave a talk in church this Sunday so she came and listened to that which made me pretty happy! Hopefully it had some sort of impact on her. Sorry it was so short today, like I said it was a pretty slow week, lots of people dropped us, but that's alright, it just means that the next missionaries will be here when they are ready, and means that we need to continue our search for those people that the Lord has prepared to receive His Gospel!

Monday, June 7, 2010

37th week in Spokane

We were very blessed this week in our finding and in our teaching. We've been working with this one guy named Corson for some time now and we were able to break through some ground this week. We explained that our goal as missionaries is to help others come closer to Christ by helping them receive their own personal testimony that the Book of Mormon is true and how everything falls into place after that. So we asked if this is something that he would like to have and he said yes. So we went over with him the process of revelation and gave him an outline to follow and he set a goal to read half the book of Mormon by this week! So we are excited to see where he will go with this, we introduced him to some of the young single adults in the area because he's 23 and they hit it off pretty good so we are trying to get him involved with them which will be way helpful! Also we tracted into this lady named Brenda a couple weeks ago, shes old and not too healthy, she's on oxygen and just had heart surgery but she's super nice and she said that we could come back so we did this week and we taught her the restoration and invited her to be baptized, she said that she would have to think about it more and invited us to come back! Now the miracle story of the week is we went over to the Couch's house for dinner Friday night. Well one of her son's friends randomly showed up and so he ate dinner with us. His name is Kyle, he's 21. After dinner we all were just talking and then Sister Couch asked me for a plan of salvation pamphlet. Sister Couch got baptized about a year ago. We gave her the pamphlet and she taught the entire lesson and we were just there for moral support I guess! It was really good, Kyle really enjoyed it and he said he wants to learn more, we invited him to be baptized and he said he would! So he came to church on Sunday and he thought it was a bit long but he liked it! So that was a really good experience, kinda shows to me that the most effective missionary work is from the members of the church, not so much the missionaries from the church, every member a missionary right?? Well anyways, I hope everyone is doing good, I love you all!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

36th week in Spokane

This week turned out to be pretty good, we still haven't been able to make much contact with our new investigators but we have been able to continue to find new people to teach so that's good. We spend at the least about four hours a day tracting that usually results in one or two people willing to listen and wanting to learn more. Elder Andersen is a way good missionary, he's got that desire to never stop working, so we never do! Its been really good.. This week and from now on we plan on just asking everybody that will give us just five minutes to listen, to ask them if they will follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized! After all that is our purpose as missionaries! We had a way good lesson with one of our investigators named Corson, he said that he wants to have that confirmation from the Spirit that this is true and so he set up some goals and we are excited about where that will lead, if he holds up his end of the deal! Last night we held a three ward youth fireside that us missionaries put on, it was pretty fun, we just talked about missionary work and why its important and then we shared the message of the restoration and that went way good and then then we had each of them write down a list of names of friends that they know and pick one or two that they will invite to next months youth fireside that we will put on again! So that was a lot of fun talking to all the youth!! Well that's about it for this week, nothing too out of the ordinary happened but I love you all and thank you for your support!

Monday, May 24, 2010

35th Week in Spokane

We had a good week, we found a lot of new people to teach! We did a whole lotta tracting. A lot of tracting! And we will continue to do so to find those people that the Lord has prepared to hear His messege and come into His flock! My new companion's name is Elder Andersen, he is from Carlsbad, New Mexico, and he is fresh out of the MTC! Its been a really cool experience so far being able to train a new missionary! He is WAY more prepared than I was and he is so ready to get out and to find and teach! And we're pretty much the same height and same build, so that's pretty nice! So we talked to this one kid named Anthony on the street, taught him about Joseph Smith and the Book Of Mormon and said that as missionaries we simply teach and invite and when you come to know that these things are true by prayer then we invite people to be baptized, so then we invited him to be baptized and he said yes that he'd prepare for it! It turns out he's 16, he looks older... but kinda cool! There was this other lady, she was older, like in her 70s and she was out taking a walk so we gave her a card and she started walking away, well I decided to follow her, so we walked along side her and taught her the restoration and all about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon, and all she could do was just walk and listen cuz she couldn't get away from us! It was pretty cool, we kinda chuckled a bit afterwards, but we fulfilled our purpose to teach, testify, and invite, it was fun! Well I'm afraid that's about it for this week, we had a lot of really good teaching experiences, our teaching pool is constantly growing and we are loving every minute of it!

Monday, May 17, 2010

34th week in Spokane

Well this week definitely had its ups and downs. I guess I'll just start with the downs.. If you remember, Isaac was on board to be baptized this last weekend, well that didn't happen. Its hard because he kinda flipped a 180 on us out of the blue and said that he doesn't want to be taught any more or go to church or anything, its pretty sad because we all got pretty close, but its his decision and we gotta respect it. We haven't given up entirely and we will still go and visit him and all that but its just different now. So onto the ups of the week.. We had our stake conference here this weekend and they re-organized it and called a new stake presidency and all that. So because that was goin on, Elder Steven Snow of the Seventy Presidency came to Wenatchee to call the new stake president. He flew in Friday night. Well Friday morning we get a call from our zone leaders, who live with the stake president, and they say that elder Snow and the stake president wants to meet with the Frodshams! So we were pretty blown away and we set it all up and everything and they came and met with them Friday night! So that was pretty cool.. Turns out that they basically just wanted to see how we were doing as missionaries, I'm pretty sure we passed because we never got chastised or anything like that! And he seemed very happy when we got to talk with him. anyways, I thought it was pretty awesome that he wanted to go and see them. Also another up for the week, there's a guy named Corsin that we have been teaching for a while and I really feel like this week we really broke some ground with him so that was good! So I can't believe it but another six weeks has gone by and its now time for transfers.. Elder Errico is getting transferred from here in East Wenatchee across the river to Wenatchee, so he's only going a few miles away! As for me, my new companion is coming to me straight out of the MTC! He's a brand spankin new missionary! So that will be exciting, I'm lookin forward to that!! Well it has been a good transfer, a lot of things happened here in the area, a lot of good things. I'm looking forward to see what the Lord has in store for us this next six weeks!

Monday, May 10, 2010

33rd Week in Spokane

Happy Mothers Day!!
Well nothing really too exciting happened this last week, we did the normal thing of tracting, teaching, and tracting some more. We were able to find a few more people to teach so we are grateful for that.  The work here is progressing as we are continuing to get the ward more involved in missionary work and as we continue to find and teach the people in East Wenatchee! I've got a good feeling about this coming week, I know there are going to be some good things that happen and I'm excited to be able to report on those things next week. also this week will be the last week in the transfer and we will find out on Sunday who is getting transferred, Elder Errico thinks that he will be leaving, I feel like that is probably the case, but I also can see me being transferred too just because lately I've only been staying in an area for just one transfer, so we'll see what happens, it will be interesting because there are about twenty missionaries going home and only eight coming in, so they are going to have to close a few areas so we'll see! Isaac is still as golden as ever, he is getting baptized this Sunday on the 16th! He has a tremendous amount of faith and he is accepting everything we teach and is always up for more! Its truly humbling to be able to watch him give his life to Christ, and for it he will be able to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. I testify that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. I know that Joseph Smith was His Prophet and that he truly translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God and that it is the word of God, written for us in these last days before the second coming of Jesus Christ.

Monday, May 3, 2010

32nd week in Spokane

The Lord definitely has a hand in this work, because it is His work. We have had such a good last few weeks. When I first got to this area the teaching pool consisted of only about five people. We have spent more time tracting than in any other area where I have served. Because of it we have been able to increase our teaching pool to over 30! We have been working extremely hard, hitting our pillows at night exhausted. We were able to find 15 new people this week that want to be taught about this Gospel! I can't possibly tell you about all of them but I do want to tell you about one. His name is Isaac. Isaac is one of those golden investigators that the Lord leads to the missionaries, instead of leading the missionaries to him... Isaac some how got hold of a Book of Mormon and began to read it. In doing so he wanted to check out the church service so he went over to the other building in Wenatchee and went for two weeks over there and the missionaries there got his information, found that he lives in our area, and sent us to go visit him. When we got to Isaac the next day we were able to sit down with him and teach him about the restoration. He understood and took everything in very well. When we started talking about the Book of Mormon he said that he already has one and that he was to about page 300! So we shared with him Moroni's promise that any who reads, ponders, and prays about the Book would receive a testimony that it is true. Then we shared with him a scripture in the Book of Mormon about baptism. We then invited him to be baptized and he accepted! He will be baptized may 16! We met with him a total of three times and taught him the plan of salvation and the gospel. then he came to church yesterday. He is soaking it all in and loving it! Isaac is married and has a four year old daughter. he got married to his wife about seven years ago in Wenatchee, unfortunately she is from Mexico and not legal. They decided that they wanted to do things the right way so tried starting the process of her becoming legal. That caused her to be deported and he is still fighting the battle to get her back in the US with him. He says that in a large way he is doing this very much for his family and not for him. I know that the Lord will bless him for making the decision and commitment to follow Christ for the rest of his life by being baptized. I know that the Lord will provide a way for his family to be reunited in the near future. This is the Lord's work, there's no question. Its such a blessing to be an instrument in His hands and be able to watch as He takes over and touches the lives of His children.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

31st week in Spokane

I've decided to do something a little different today. I'm sorry but there will be no updates this week. This week I need to bare my testimony. "Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of Him to declare His word, that they might have everlasting life." My purpose as a missionary is to bring others unto Christ. But first I have to be completely converted to be able to teach truths and through the Holy Ghost. I want to make it absolutely clear to everyone that comes across these words that I know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. That He is my Savior and Redeemer. I know that "there shall be no other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ, the Lord Omnipotent." There is no question in my mind that He lives. If He were to appear to me, I wouldn't know any better then than I do now that He does live. I see His love manifested in the people I teach. I see His Atonement take affect on those that turn towards Him, its a very real power, and a truly humbling experience. I know that God, our loving Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ appeared to a 14 year old boy named Joseph Smith in answer to his humble prayer. I know that through Joseph Smith They restored Christs church again on the Earth by calling twelve Apostles and by restoring the Priesthood authority to baptize and perform other saving ordinances. I know that the Book of Mormon truly is an ancient record of the people here on this continent from the years 600 BC to 421 AD. I know that in it contains the fullness of the everlasting gospel. I echo Joseph Smith when he said, "A man will get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts than by any other book." I know that Joseph Smith translated this ancient record by the gift and power of God. "Joseph Smith, the Prophet and Seer of the Lord, has done more, save Jesus only, for the salvation of men in this world than any other man that ever lived in it." I know that this is true because I know that the only way to return back to live with God is found in this church and this church alone because this church is the only church that has the Priesthood authority to perform all the sacred ordinances necessary to make it back to God's presence. I have studied the scriptures and they have been opened to my understanding and the mysteries of God that are contained in them have been revealed to me through the Holy Ghost. I understand the reason and purpose of my life. I understand why I have gone through the trials I have been through and the situations and places I've been put in. I understand why it is necessary for me to serve here and now. I am so grateful to have a Prophet on the Earth today to let us know Gods will concerning all of us that live here on the Earth, because he is not just the "Mormon prophet" he is God's prophet to all the world. His voice of guidance is for each of God's children and we each need to listen to him. I know that Jesus Christ will come again. I know that this church, His church, has been restored to prepare the world for His millennial reign. That time is coming quickly and we each need to prepare ourselves physically and spiritually. Do not procrastinate the day of your repentance. Come unto Christ, follow His example by being baptized by someone holding that Priesthood authority of God. I have said things that can be taken to be pretty bold, but "do ye not suppose that I know of these things for myself? Behold, I testify unto you that I do know that these things whereof I have spoken are true." I have studied these things out for myself then I have asked God in the name of Christ if they are true. God does answer prayers. He has answered mine in the affirmative that the Book of Mormon is true. And with that everything else follows. I you do not have a personal testimony of the Book of Mormon it is time that you step up and find out for yourselves if it is true. The world is going to get worse before it gets better and by the time it gets better it will be too late. Find out now. The Devil hates you and wants you to fail. It is absolutely necessary that we each have a testimony of the Book of Mormon because without it we will fall. Nephi said it best as his dying testimony about the Book of Mormon, "hearken unto these words and believe in Christ, and if ye shall believe in Christ ye will believe in these words for they are the words of Christ and He hath given them unto me and they teach all men that they should do good. And if they are not the words of Christ judge ye. For Christ will show unto you with power and great glory that they are His words at the last day and you and I will stand face to face at His bar and ye shall know that I have been commanded of Him to write these things notwithstanding my weakness. And I pray unto the Father in the name of Christ that many of us, if not all, may be saved in His kingdom at that great and last day. And now my beloved brethren, all those who are of the house of Israel, and all ye ends of the Earth, I speak unto you as the voice of one crying from the dust: Farewell until that great day shall come. And you that will not partake of the goodness of God and respect the words of the Jews and also my words which shall proceed forth out of the mouth of the Lamb of God behold I bid you an everlasting farewell for these words shall condemn you at the last day. For what I seal on Earth shall be brought against you at the judgment bar for thus hath the Lord commanded me and I must obey." I have been commanded by God to speak and bare my testimony boldly and to cry repentance unto each of His children that I come in contact with. "Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of Him to declare His word, that they might have everlasting life." I say these things with all the authority given me by Jesus Christ as His disciple in His name, Amen.

Monday, April 19, 2010

30th week in Spokane

One thing that comes along with being a missionary is the blessing of meeting all sorts of new people; no matter how normal, or strange they might be. And let me tell ya, I've met quite a few strange ones! But we met a man this week that tops them all a hundred fold! Let me introduce to you Terry.. When we first knock on the door Terry cracks it open and says "who is it?" When he saw who it was he closed the door. My companion and I looked at each other just long enough for the door to re-open and out walks a man who is wearing nothing but sweat pants, he's about 6'3" 240 pounds, he's not fat, not skinny, pretty broad, about 45 years old, has a long scraggly beard and long hair. I immediately knew that this was going to be a fun door! He starts the conversation by comparing himself to Job because of a skin infection that he has, and in the process of showing us this skin infection he seemed to think it was necessary to show us his butt. Then he proceeds to make a real quick reference to how he has died before, in paradise, but has risen again. Then he started to get extremely excited, raising his voice and waving his arms around and immediately he commands us to name off all of the ten commandments and he squatted and listened and waited. We were caught so off guard by it that we kinda stammered and slowly named them off and as we said them he would get all sorts of excited and when we would get one out of order he would completely tense up shake a little, almost angry like and would try to calmly correct us and then would say continue. Well we ended up talking to him for a little over an hour because to be honest, at first it was amusing to watch him get all excited and prance around and I figured I'd never get a chance to talk to someone this weird again, so I took advantage of the opportunity at hand. I'll try to make this as brief as possible while still getting the gist of it so bear with me. After further questioning we found out that terry was working in Hawaii (paradise) while he was jumped and beaten to "death" he said he was dead for three hours. But then he rose again, but what came back was not the old Terry.. he said that his "death" is what caused his eyes to be open and he understood so much better the Bible and he found all sorts of these codes hidden inside of it (he twisted so many things around it was seriously eerie). All of his searching and all of his twisting made him come to the conclusion that he is Jesus re-incarnated. Because he came to this conclusion he decided that he needed a body guard so he prayed for weeks on end for a body guard to come to him, and that's when he found Moses re-incarnated. Moses is a Mexican guy in his early twenties, he described him as good looking, perfect skin, beautiful long black hair, had all sorts of tattoos that to him symbolized a lot of different things that he twisted around from his bible searches. Anyways, Terry couldn't prove that this guy wasn't Moses, so therefore he is Moses re-incarnated. Terry said that he poisoned them both to prove his theory. Terry died and rose again for the second time but Moses never died.. Anyways, I was starting to get a little mad by this point because now he's putting other lives at stake. So his conclusion was that he and his Moses friend are the two witnesses that it talks about in revelations 11 and that they were going to go over there very soon. The prophecy about the two witnesses for some reason has always intrigued me and so I have done a lot of research and study on the subject so I quizzed him about it and of course he got stumped and changed the subject. Anyways how this encounter ended was by him telling us a story about how he was over at someone elses house (because he goes around preaching like we do) and he said that one lady was in complete tears because what he told them was frightening her and so she said that he was a lier and that he is twisted and then she said that she denies his god, so he "prophesied" that because she had denied his god that someone close to her was going to die. By this point I was sick of hearing his blasphemous remarks and without thinking I just opened my mouth and said I deny his god and I'll deny it three times, so I did. I told him I do not deny my Father in Heaven, I do not deny my Savior Jesus Christ, what I deny is everything that you have said, its not true, you have twisted the truth. He had a very frightened look on his face and he acted like I was the plague, I told him we were leaving and I stretched my arm out towards him and he ran down the stairs to try to get away from me, it was quite the sight. I felt pretty sick for the rest of the day, it was from the fact that I allowed myself to be in the presence of such an evil spirit, one of the many lessons learned from that is to leave much quicker next time we run into another "Terry"!! But, God is aware of His missionaries and as soon as we left from there we ran into a guy that was walking down the street and we taught him the restoration! Sorry to start off with such a weird story, but i just thought I'd amuse ya a bit! In spite of Terry, this week actually went really well. the work here is starting to pick up quite a bit. We found five new people to teach and the Frodshams made a lot of progress! We also had zone conference this last week and that went way good, we talked mostly on the importance of prayer and the importance of getting the people we teach to pray. because that's the great thing about being a missionary, we don't do any of the converting, all we do is teach and invite and then we step aside and let the Spirit take over. As we applied what we learned from zone conference we were able to witness a few miracles take place. The power of prayer is real and is essential to our progression in this life as we each make our journey to come closer to Christ. I know this is true.

Monday, April 12, 2010

29th week in Spokane

Well I'm still tryin to get used to the new area, things are going way good though. My companion is awesome, Elder Errico, he's a pretty goofy guy so it makes for never a dull moment so that's good! There's definitely a whole lot less teaching going on here then in my last area, our teaching pool currently consists of about 4 people. One is Francisco and his girl friend Tammie. Last time we met with Francisco we talked a lot about baptism and he said that he would pray about a date. Another guy is named Jeff. He lives in an RV next to a house that he's remodeling, he understands and realizes a lot of things that most people don't when it comes to religion and the origin of most faiths so that was cool. Anyways he's a really nice guy, said that we could stop by any time but he said that he would never ever go to church. So we will just have to work on that.. We gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon and he said he'd read it. Next is Monwell.. They tracted into him about a week before I got here and he said that they could come back so Errico and I went and taught him the restoration, he didn't seem to have any objections and he seemed to understand it just fine. He hates reading though so we gave him a restoration DVD to watch for homework. Alright so I saved the most exciting one for last. Their names are Steve and Tiffany Frodsham, they have three kids.. amber is 14, Josh is 11, and Ashley is 9. Tiffany's brother was living with them but just moved out last week, the other Elders before me taught and baptized him before I came, but his conversion story is really inspiring. Anyways Steve and Trish and their family are still investigating the church, they are just about there too, they just have a hard time accepting a prophet and the book of Mormon, but everything else they're good on. They are pretty much Mormon already I mean they even love jello! So please, please pray for them! Well a little bit more about the new area.. It really reminds me of home, there are mountains all around us, Wenatchee is just this big valley with the Columbia river running through it. We actually live on top of one of the mountains so its real fun to ride our bikes down, not so much fun riding them back up though! For all you Utahn's. picture Draper and Suncrest.. Basically we live on the very top of Suncrest and we cover all of draper so its basically one giant hill. So I'm hopin that I'll loose a few pounds while serving here! But we do have a car from Sunday to Thursday so we are only on our bikes Thursday Friday Saturday. So because we are starting out with a little teaching pool we have been spending a whole lot of time tracting and trying to find new investigators. So all is well here in Wenatchee Washington, I look forward to reporting to you all next week! I love you!
-Elder Burns

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

28th Week in Spokane

HAPPY EASTER!! we had another way good week! We got a whole lot of teaching done! General conference was awesome! It hit way hard on families, it was good. on Saturday Grandma Chris got baptized!! It was such a good service, the spirit was way strong! We made an agreement that as soon as she got baptized then she could adopt me as her grandson. She adopted me, two other missionaries, the bishop, and brother Watson! It was a good day! We all took a picture together with her and all her grandsons! Also on Saturday, in between conference sessions, we went and saw Brian and Dusty.. Dusty was baptized a few years back.. We had a lesson with them, we read 3 Nephi 11 together and then we invited him to be baptized and he accepted! He is shooting for April 24!! Alright well we got transfer calls Sunday night and.... I'm getting transferred to Wenatchee, its about 2 hours west of Spokane. My new companion is Elder Ericho, he came out on his mission in October, he came out with Elder Moleni, they were actually companions in the MTC together so that's pretty cool. Well at first I was pretty upset that I was getting transferred because it seems like I just got here and it feels like there's a lot more I could still do here, we have four people that are ready to be baptized that I won't be able to see. But what's important is that they are getting baptized! I am excited though for the new area, it will be a good chance for me to grow and to help out the people out there, it will be good. Oh ya! Elder Moleni and I played out an April fools joke on the other two missionaries we live with, it was perfect! We built it up over three days so it wouldn't be obvious that it was a joke. What we did was whenever we were around the other missionaries we would act like we completely hate each other and we did that for three days and on April 1st we escalated it to where we were just yelling at each other and I took the phone, went outside, and acted like I called our mission president, but instead I called another elder that sounds like our president, talked to him for a bit, had him talk to Elder Moleni, then Elder Moleni came back in and said that "president" would like to talk to everyone and he said real calmly, "Elders, April fools." Then he hung up. Their reactions were perfect! They were in complete shock.. It took them like two days to finally get over it! Also that's the day that I received my Easter package with my bike in it! Thanks so much to the Lydes for providing that! Its perfect! Well I'm looking forward to the new area, its in the boonies so it will definitely be different! I love you all and hope you had a Happy Easter!!

Monday, March 29, 2010

27th week in Spokane

Well we had quite the week! We helped these people move, we did all the work, filled and unloaded 4 U-Haul truck loads! It was a good experience because it was these peoples first exposure to missionaries and they just fell in love with us! I got a funny story that happened this last week. First off we were trying to catch this one lady home and as we were walking up to her door her next door neighbor started yelling and cussing at us, he was dead drunk.. at 2 o'clock in the afternoon.. telling us to get outta here and yellin and cussin and he walked up to us and then his two friends came up with him and started asking questions like how did you get so brainwashed and corrupted and so Elder Moleni and I separated, he taught the drunk guy and I taught the friends.. it was awesome, we stood our ground, we testified, we confounded.. they were humbled and by the end they were huggin, praying, and told us to keep up the good work! It was pretty sweet! Then we tracted into this guy who thought he knew it all and as soon as he answered the door he started calling us liars and deceivers and all that good stuff.. so we ended up talking to him for about 45 minutes or so and he would just keep going in circles and wouldn't accept anything we said and it started to get frustrating, then he made a few comments that boiled our blood so we decided we were done with him and started testifying all over the place and the spirit completely left him confounded and so we left it at that! We were biking down the street, for some reason we decided to take the long way to our next appointment, well we ran into this guy who was in an electric wheel chair and as soon as he saw us he started yelling and cussing.. it was half at us and half at God. He was a little bit drunk but just a little. He kept saying how God had left him confined to his wheel chair and for about ten minutes he kept goin in circles with what he was saying.. how he doesn't have the physical strength to get home and that not even God could give him the power to get home. So finally I realized what he was saying.. his wheel chair had run out of power and he couldn't move because of it. So I told him that God can get him home and He sent us to do it and we got off our bikes and pushed him home. He was completely shocked. Think of the movie Forest Gump and how uptight lieutenant Dan was and then all of a sudden he came to peace with God and was happy. That's the kind of transition that we saw in this guy, it was a neat experience. We had another experience that was pretty interesting. We talked to a guy for an hour and twenty minutes.. he was the most knowledgeable and accurate person I've talked to so far concerning the gospel and its doctrine.. outside the church.. he had some amazing insights that I had never heard anyone outside the church talk about. He was off on a few, important things, but his heart was so shut it was impossible to get him to think of something outside of what he already knew. The interesting thing is even though he was speaking truths and making true inferences, the spirit just wasn't with him, and whenever the spirit would present itself to him he would completely reject it, as if there was another force in play. Interesting is the only word I can think of to describe the situation. But a very cool thing happened.. he told us that he wants us to go home and pray and ask if I have been deceived, if I have been worshiping the wrong God.. and he promised me that I would get an answer. But I didn't have to wait until I got home.. as he was issuing the invitation the spirit confirmed everything. I know that there has been no deceiving. When I received my answer that the church is true, that the book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith was and is the prophet of the restoration of the fullness of times, that he was called with the mission to prepare the hearts of the children of men for Christ's second coming.. when I received that answer, it had nothing to do with logic or anything intellectual.. God spoke to me through the Holy Ghost. His Spirit spoke to mine and absolutely NOTHING can tear that away, that bond is sealed.. it has turned from faith to knowledge. I KNOW everything we teach is of God and is true. That same conviction that I received is just waiting for all those that diligently seek it. So seek it.