Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Week 4

AREA: North Las Vegas (Deer Springs/Waterfall)
COMPANION: Elder Steward

This week has been great, better then last week.  This week it was
when school started so everyone was out of town the week before on
vacation so we were able to meet with more people.  Right now we are
teaching g a 16 year old girl named Sarah and a 11 year old boy named
Cash, they are both interested in the church.  Cash has a baptismal
date on the 21st of September.  We have had 2 lessons with Sarah, one
on the Restoration and the BOM, both awesome lesson withe the spirit
strong.  I'm still getting the hang of teaching back and forth with my
companion but I'm improving.  On Saturday we knocked on an inactive
family's house and they were having a bday party for there daughter.
They welcomed us in and we found out that they haven't been active
since college so all of there kids weren't baptized and they have 3
kids ranging from 8-15 yrs old.  They were talking us to us for a
while and we asked if we could come by another time to teach a lesson
and they were okay with it. This will be a great opportunity to get a
family back to church and baptize 3 kids.

My favorite scripture I put on my plaque is D&C 58:27 continues to be
my favorite scripture.

Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do
many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much

I like how it says to be anxiously engaged in a good cause by their
own free will.  I like this because I try my hardest to do thing that
are right because I want to not just to make your family proud.  I
know that I am serving in Las Vegas to serve God not just to make my
family proud.  I'm doing it because I want to.  I know I came to Las
Vegas for a reason, the Lord wants me here because I know it's the
right mission for me.  I'm so excited for the future of my mission.

Kevin's mission apartment

Monday, August 29, 2016

Week 3

AREA: North Las Vegas (Deer Springs/Waterfall)
COMPANION: Elder Steward

My first week out in the field has been good. I'm serving in North Las
Vegas and covering two wards, the Waterfall and Deer Springs Ward.  My
companions name is Elder Steward and he is from Calgary, Canada.  He
has been out for 13 months.  He towers over me at 6'4 and looks like
he is 27 but he's 19 almost 20. My area is pretty slow a lot of
finding, and almost all the neighborhoods are gated so we don't have
all the codes to get in.  The second night we were street contacting
and someone grabbed our bags and said give me your bags and my Elder
Steward almost dropped him but found out it was the first counselor in
the bishopric playing around with us. Other than that we did a lot of
meeting with members and trying to get referrals.  We have had only
one lesson last week and it was with a former investigator named Joe.
He's been investigating the church for 3 years but never gets
baptized.  One of the doors we knocked on was pretty funny, Elder
Steward knocked on the door normally and a little Asian guy came to
the door and started yelling at us for knocking on the door so loud
and said we were forcing the gospel on him when we didn't say anything
to him.  He was really mad so just said sorry and left.  Yesterday we
had a guy we talked to on the street saying he has been saved already
so he doesn't need the gospel.  He also said he has died and went to
heaven and saw his mom, dad, and uncle in white robes and we're all
young, like late 20's.  And he said he couldn't talk and then he woke
up in the hospital and that's all he remembers.  Yesterday I also gave
a blessing to a member struggling with an infection.

I know I'm doing the right thing by being on my mission, there
are some days I'm struggling to be an effective missionary.  My memory
isn't the best and my knowledge of the Book of Mormon is not the best
and I'm working hard in my studies.  Everyday I feel the spirit in my
life and it's awesome to share the gospel with people even though we
have only had one lesson, but we are working on goals to get more
investigators.  I know this church is true and that Joseph Smith
restored it through guidance from the Lord.  I know our Heavenly
Father sent his only begotten son to die for us. This gospel makes me
more and more happy everyday!

Friday, August 12, 2016

Week 2

COMPANION: Elder Jensen
So first off out of the 12 Elders in my district all but 4 are going to Las Vegas West mission.  The other 4 are going to Rancho Cucamonga, California mission.  My companion, Elder Jensen, is from upstate New York. All the other Elders are pretty spread out, only 4 out of the twelve are from Utah.  All of them I get along pretty well, there are some things they do that annoy me but we have a good district.  And I have been able to go to the temple 2 times so far and did endownment sessions.

Friday- Today I didn't do a whole lot.  We had class in the morning and had really long planning/ personal study for a good 4 hours so I had a good solid hour and a half of study and comp study and took a nap for about 45 mins in my desk I was at and I woke up with both arms and legs completely asleep so I could barely walk.  It took about an hour to go away.  Then went to dinner and had pizza.

Saturday- One of my investigators for TRC excepted to be baptized, even though he is a fake investigator I believe we still strengthen his testimony.  It was our 4th lesson with him, we went over the restoration, plan of salvation, and the gospel of Jesus Christ and asked him to be baptized. Are other investigator was a Japanese lady and she believed in many Gods so it was hard to teach her but we got her to believe in one God in the end.  Someone in our district named Elder Wood was struggling in the MTC, he came out not cleaning everything up but he had an awesome testimony of our church he was just waiting to here from the mission president if he is going home or not.  We prayed on our knees as a district for him to be comforted and that the mission president can make the best decision for  Elder Woods life.

Sunday- Good day for me, it was fast Sunday and I fasted for Elder Wood that he would be comforted and come back out on his mission if he goes home.  Also today I grew a stronger testimony of sacrament and that we are renewing our baptismal covenants  with God and it just helps when you take sacrament seriously and think about all that Christ did for us.

Monday- Elder Wood got the news he is going home, but it's not end of his mission because he really wants to come back out and if he does he'll go straight out to Vegas so he wouldn't have to go to the MTC again.  I really hope he comes back out because he has gone through a lot and has a strong testimony in Jesus Christ and prayer, I know if he comes back out he will help many people in there lives.  The Lord knows what is best for us and he knows that.  

Tuesday-  We taught new TRC's(investigators) and one is Samoan guy name Kainoah and he doesn't believe in God but he wants to be happier. He always has tons of questions.  Are other TRC is Dominic and he a nice old Italian guy and he was raised Catholic but he is really interested in our church and reads the B of M and prays a lot so that's good.  For exercise today I rode on a stationary bike for 55 mins and went 15.5 miles at a hardish setting. I was sweating a ton and ended up burning 750 calories.  The workout made me feel good.  Towards the end of the day we had a devotional and Elder Anderson spoke and it was really good.  He talked about being a more effective missionary and what I got the most out of it was "be clean" "be obedient" "be busy" Three things that make a good missionary.  Also he talked about opening your mouth more to investigators because you never know if what you have to say could change their life.

Wednesday-  The lesson with Kainoah was okay, we went in thinking we were going to talk about the plan of salvation but he got stuck on prayer because he has had bad experiences with prayer so we focused on that the whole lesson.  We got him to commit to pray that night.  Our lesson with Dominic was good, he has a lot of comments and stories throughout the lesson so it's hard to get through it. Some things that happened today that was funny were me and Elder Jacobs were teaching each other to their needs.  We were trying to find a classroom and found a small little classroom and right when we shut the door we both farted at the same time and they stunk really bad.  The worst part was that 2 seconds later two attractive Sister missionaries knocked on the door and said that they were already using the room so we left the room laughing because you could tell on their face that they smelled something nasty haha. It was hard to stop laughing.  Also that same night Elder Jensen had a towel in his hand in our room and I bending over and he nails me in the balls and I dropped to the floor in pain so I got to get him back but had 3 failed attempts. So he let me punch him in the arm the next day.

Thursday- P-day, I was able to do laundry and go to the temple.  Every time I go I learn more and more and I feel peaceful and comforted there.  Wrote e-mails today.


Friday, August 5, 2016

Week 1 (Part 2)

COMPANION: Elder Jensen

Hello, I have been in the MTC for 8 days now and have been having a good time.(it feels like it's been a month)  I'm learning a lot!  I'm still getting along with my companion Elder Jensen. Thursdays are my P-day at the MTC so I will be writing back every Thursday.  What I've I learned a lot about the the mission field is that I'm here to serve the Lord, it's not about me.  I know I have been called to the best mission for me and that I will love it.  The things I'm struggling with at the MTC is keeping focused and getting to know and love the "investigators" I'm teaching.  Almost all the people I'm teaching are members but it's seems real and strive to convert them and come closer to God. So far I have taught Patrick, Braulio and Yui.  Yui is definetly the hardest to teach because she believes in many Gods and has a Japanese culture.  The best lessons have been the ones where the spirit is in the room when we teach and we come out with a smile on our face.  We have learned how to teach about the restoration and the plan of salvation.  I have an awesome district full of Elders, I get along with almost all of the them. The food is okay nothing special.  I have not gained or lost any weight.  
I have gained a stronger testimony that this church is true and that God love us all.  A scripture I love sharing in lesson is Moroni 10:3-5, it's a powerful scripture and I know if you do as it says you will receive answers from God. I love my Heavenly Father and i know he loves me and he is my friend.

Kevin sent about 60 pictures -- these are the ones that are cool/not completely repetitive.

Elder Smith's view outside the window at the MTC

Missionary glamour shots

Provo Utah Temple

Kevin's district at the Provo Temple

Kevin and his companion Elder Jensen

Elders Smith & Jensen

Elders Smith & Jensen

Hanging out at his MTC dorm

MTC classes with his district

Studying hard

I asked him to send me a nice picture of him with his missionary badge. I hope he didn't think this was what I was asking for hahaha.

Elders Smith & Hatch

It's so funny that, even on his mission, he's taking a billion random pictures of cars. His love of cars will never die. There were a few more of these random car pictures haha.

Missionary work is tiring

Drinking caffeine-free Coke because BYU and the MTC refuses to sell caffeine despite the fact that the First Presidency has come out and said that caffeine is not against the Word of Wisdom :D :D :D

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Week 1 (Part 1)

This is the short email from Kevin that he sent my parents the day he entered the MTC. Not sure if we'll be getting another one this week, or not...

COMPANION: Elder Jensen

So today when I came in I went through this maze of getting a bunch of stuff handed to me and then went to my room with a lot of other elders.  I met my companion,his name is Elder Jenson and he's cool and has similar likes and dislikes as me.  He likes outdoors activities and wakeboarding, and he hates basketball.  So I'll be happy to not have to play basketball for free time.  I am happy to be here and have no regrets.  I have a feeling I'll enjoy the MTC, and I'll do my best to focus on the teachers and focus on my scripture study. Love you guys I'll miss you so much.