Monday, March 20, 2017

A Week Full of the Spirit

Tay is going to be baptized this weekend on the 18th at 5:30 pm! We finished teaching her all the lessons this week! She had her baptismal interview on Sunday. She was interviewed by E. Duerksen. He actually came out at the same time as I did but had been in the Mexico MTC.  Well in the interview he found out more of the back story of her conversion. Apparently she had been trying to decide a church to go to and she was thinking about going to the one she used to attend. Her aunt informed her that she shouldn't go to the old one because it was to big and all about the money. Well later that we week we knocked on her door... On accident when looking for a less active. I love the Spirit.

Monday we treated like a normal day because we got to go to the temple on Wednesday and so that was our actual pday. We did however email that day because the timing of the endowment wasn't going to give us any time to email. That night we went and taught Carole (the recent convert from E. Childress) While we were there a tornado storm blew over. I believe the tornado only dropped down once but it was pretty far away.  Carole is hopefully getting surgery this week on a torn muscle in her shoulder that has been giving her a ton of trouble.

Wednesday was another fabulous day. The reason we were going to the temple is because we were both asked to be escorts for some converts in our ward. Brother Johnson asked me to be his and E. Blake was Bro. Rodgers escort. We went with Brother Johnson at 8:30 to pick up Brother Rogers. He has Parkinson's disease and is wheelchair bound.  Our session started at 11:30. It was an awesome experience. One of the members of the temple presidency sat down with all of us before the endowment explained the importance of what happens in the temple. It was awesome to hear what he said. A good reminder of how amazing the temple is. There were several members of our ward there I have gotten close to and it was so good to see them in the celestial room. I love the friendships I have made out here in Kansas City.

That night we visited with Ivan and he informed us that he will be finding out on Monday (today) if he has work off on Sunday's! He said that his boss had told him that he was 90% sure he could switch from working Sunday's to Saturday. I can't remember if I told you guys this but we invited their family to fast together. Well they chose to fast last week that he would be able to have work off on Sunday so he can be baptized. Miracles happen with fasting! When Ivan does get work off he will be baptized on the 22nd of March!

Thursday was Zone Conference.... Wow.  The Spirit was extremely strong. We learned so much. One of the talks by President Hancock (2nd councilor in mission presidency) was all about what we need to do if we want to have the Spirit in our life. We walked through Daniel chapter 1, 2 ,3, and 6 and gave examples of what Daniel did. He showed examples of Obedience, Prayer, Gratitude, Faith, Boldness, Sacrifice, Fasting.  I think my biggest take away from the conference was that the way we prepare to take the sacrament is check your progress personally each week on where you are with keeping your covenants. Identify areas to improve in, set specific goals, make plans and then DO! By the time you take the sacrament again in the following week you will have began your repentance of those specific things. Then continue to work on those things until it is time to pick another area to improve. I have found that there is a greater Spirit with me as I have started doing this. You guys should try it. Maybe you already do it. How can you be more specific in your planning and goal setting?  One last thing from the conference. We were invited to study D&C 20:37 and make a t-chart. On the left side define what each thing in D&C 20:37 is and then on the right side you write examples from your own life of those things.

Lunch at Freddy's...Mmmm

Friday we met with Moriah again (lost sheep that was baptized as a teenager) Her life is pretty thick and we are hoping to just help her get in the Book of Mormon. She has a lot of confusion and we just need the Spirit to help her clean out her thoughts. She has two daughters and a husband that we are hoping to start teaching this upcoming week.

Friday night we had dinner with S. Mojica. She is a single woman who was baptized a year ago and is close to going to receive her endowments. Well long story short, she asked if she could feed us at church two weeks ago and we forgot to put in our planner. The time of the appointment came and went. We ate at home and we didn't get a call or anything like that. We literally had no idea we had forgotten. Well the following Sunday she came up to us with this smirk and gave us so much grief (as we deserved). Thankfully she was nice and sarcastic.  Well Friday was our new appointment. We brought her flowers to apologize. Definitely a good choice. She made us Pork Chops and with simple Rice and Beans. Sometimes a simple meal is just so good.

That night we taught a guy named Christian who is in his 20's. Well we went in and it smelled kind of weird. Kind of fruity.. My eyes felt kind of weird when I walked in. Then he says, "Sorry if it is kind of smokey in here. I was just smoking Hookah". Elder Blake and I had a good laugh about it after the lesson. We were able to teach him the restoration. Not sure if he is very interested but it was a very good visit. He was so nice and has a good heart. He has just heard a lot about a lot. Kind of confused himself with ideas he has come up with.

Saturday Elder Blake was sick in the morning. I did as much administrative work as I could and thankfully as I was finishing up Elder Blake woke up and was ready to go. That night we met the Johnston Family. They are members of a baptist church. She actually works there. We were able to share the restoration with them and they actually seem a little interested. They shared a little pamphlet with us from their church. Hopefully we can get over there again soon.

Sunday was ward conference! Also very good!
Golden Nugget:
- The question was asked to us. What is the price of Priesthood Power and or Spiritual power. Well when you really think about it... There is no price to be paid because the reward is so great. We are taught this in JST of Matthew 16: 27-29. "Break not my commandments for to save your lives; for whosoever will save his life in this world, shall lose it in the world to come. And whosoever will lose his life in this world, for my sake, shall find it in the world to come. Therefore, forsake the world, and save your souls; for what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" A powerful principles to live by.
There is no sacrifice because we are only gaining. Think about it

I know that this is the Lord's work. And The Church of Jesus Christ is the Lord's kingdom here on the earth. I would just invite you to forsake the world and save your souls! :) Love Elder Kelly

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

(: :)

We taught Tay twice this week.

Our "quads" are buff ;)

When we went to teach Tay this week we walked in and found a brand new full standard works quad laying on the table! She had ordered one online and had been studying from it answering the extended study questions from one of the pamphlets. It is always so exciting to see your investigators interested in gospel related things. She was able to get work off again and so she came to church on Sunday! We have been blessed to have over 20 different people help us teach her and the ward again just enveloped her. We didn't sit next to her in sacrament meeting, we didn't take her to the classes. I honestly only spoke to her once because the ward was already helping her the whole time. So fantastic to see members taking the initiative. 

Some things learned:
In Mark, Jesus Christ takes a blind man out of the city to heal him of his infirmities. Well He lays hands on the man and when the man opens his eyes he told Jesus that he still couldn't see fully and so then Christ finishes the healing and the man leaves. Well I thought for a moment about why the Savior healed by "degrees" or "stages". I feel that this is often how we are healed spiritually. Spiritual renewal is not an instantaneous thing. It takes consistent trust in the Lord. First he leads him out of the city(we may become impatient). Then he applies saliva to his eyes and lays hands on him only to find that he still cannot fully see (when full healing doesn't take place immediately we can harden our hearts and believe that the gospel of Jesus Christ is a false teaching). Then Christ again touches the mans eyes and he experiences full healing. If we are patient when working with the Lord and trust in his timing then we can rest assured that full healing will be reached. Do we have faith to endure to then end and continue trying always? 

40 Day Fast
Well since the 40 day fast has started in our ward we have seen a lot of excitement about missionary work! On Sunday we passed out a missionary banana bread recipe in RS and invited each person to make a batch to share with a neighbor with a pass along card. We will be visiting one auxiliary a week and giving them a missionary idea to try. Hopefully they will show the faith they have and put the ideas into action.

Elder Blake and I carpooled on Wednesday with Elder Taylor and Elder Conley to MLC. They only live about ten minutes south of us. We went and said hello to Patrick Murphy and then buckled down in the mission home for our 8 hour meeting. I seriously love the MLC meeting. The Spirit is always strong and I see a lot of things I need to repent of. 

Wednesday night we had our usual visit with Ivan and his family. Sister Diaz had work off that day and she made a FEAST. Seriously a feast. There were two pizzas, tamales, taquitos, shrimp tacos fruit salad. It was SO good. All of it made by hand from scratch. American cooking just does not compare. It was all completely fresh.

Feasting with Ivan and his family

Friday was Zone training and Elder Blake and I felt like it turned out pretty good. I trained on D&C 20:37. A very important verse I wish I would have been using throughout my mission to teach investigators and missionaries. You should all read it before you take the sacrament this next Sunday!

Zone Training

Saturday was exchanges with Elder Tuala. I served around him early in my mission and I was excited for exchanges again. While we were out we set a goal to have 10 unplanned contacts and to ask for 10 referrals which is very hard for us usually. By the end of the day we had 17 unplanned contacts and 16 referrals asked for. To say the least we were super pumped the whole day. We actually hit our goal of ten before noon even hit. A mission record for myself. I've been trying to get in a better habit of seeking referrals and that exchange helped immensely. 

I know that Heavenly Father lives. And wants us to be close with Him. If we feel lonely, or sad, or frustrated... just pray! He is listening! I know we all have the ability to rely on Christ so we can accomplish what God has in store; we must simply choose to!

Love you all
  • E. Kelly


February is Gone!

This week felt really long.


Tuesday we met with a woman named Mariah. She is a referral from a member in our ward. When we met we found out that she is a baptized member! She lives around a lot of members and had never told any of them that she was baptized when she was a teenager. She was very kind to us. Hopefully we can help her come back.

Thursday we had interviews with President Vest and they were really good. I felt like I was able to learn a lot and he told me a lot of cool ideas from his mission in Japan and it just made me grateful to serve with him. On Sunday we had a meeting with him and the stake presidency regarding the missionary work in the stake. Our stake president is brand new and so he wants to decide on what we will talk about in our meetings here on out. At the end of the meeting President invited Elder Blake and I to read Handbook 2 Chapter 5 so we know how the flow of information is supposed to happen. We learned that the way it is happening in the majority of the stakes of the mission is totally wrong. At the end of our interviews president talked to both of us about it and stressed the importance of us knowing how the Lord would have the church be ran. Things would go a lot better, honestly, we should all know Handbook 2. I think all of our lives would be much better :)

Saturday we met with Ivan and taught about the purposes of fasting again. At the end we invited him to fast that he will be able to get Sunday's off work. Hopefully he will try it out. As we taught, the Spirit testified to me that fasting is REAL! "Sacrifice brings forth the blessings of heaven." I know that is true.

We got to go to the VC with Tay and Georgette on Saturday night. We were able to teach about the temples and family history. Tay and Georgette seemed to enjoy it. After we learned about the temple we went downstairs. Tay went through the church history tour and Georgette sat in on the end of the a fireside that my last ward was putting on. I was able to see a lot of people that I missed and it was fun catching up briefly. The Brackett's family took us there and they are the nicest couple ever. They helped us testify of the temple and they are so solid in the church. 

On our conference call with president Vest last week he shared a really awesome talk I wanted to share with each of you. It is a talk from 1981 by Ezra Taft Benson called, "Fourteen Fundamentals in Following a Prophet". Here are the fourteen points and the talk I would invite you to check it out.
1. Prophet is the only man on the earth who speaks for the Lord in everything
2. The words of living prophets are more vital than the words of the prophets from the standard works
3. A living prophet is more important to us than a dead prophet
4. The Lord will never let the prophet lead the church astray
5. The prophet is not required to have any earthly training or credentials to receive revelation
6. Prophet does not have to say “Thus saith the Lord” to give us a scripture
7. Tells us what we need to know, not always what we want to know
8. Prophet is not limited by men’s reasoning. Isaiah 55:8-9
9. Prophet can receive revelation on any matter: temporal or spiritual
10. Prophet may advise on civil matters
11. Two groups who have greatest difficulty following the prophet are the proud who are learned and the proud who are rich
12. The prophet will not necessarily be prophet with the world or the worldly
13. The prophet and his counselors make up the first presidency, the highest quorum in the church
14. Follow the prophets and be blessed, reject them and suffer

Just thought you guys might enjoy these like I did.

I know that Heavenly Father uses prophets today and that the prophet today is Thomas S. Monson. I know that prayer is a divinely appointed way to communicate with our Heavenly Father. Through diligent prayer we can align our wills with God's and be on track to eternal life.

Love you all!! 

Elder Kelly