Monday, April 23, 2012

Create Success

Hello everyone-
A few personal notes- and a couple of successes this week:)
That is so crazy to hear that Matt already is an AP.  He is a great missionary!
That's crazy that James is serving so close to his family on his mission! He too will be a great missionary.  Hard work and service makes you happy.
I'm excited to see the pictures of the building! I'll be praying that you are able to move in this weekend! The office will do great there and I am sure dad will love the 2 minute drive or walk to work.
Oh something else I can think of that I'd like is Gummy worms. There is a gas station off of the 215 and Gibson. I think it's a speedee mart. it's right over there by Cassy and Evan's place.  They sell these gummy worms in a plastic bag with paper at the top. I can't remember what kind they are, but I LOVE those ones. I can't find them here anywhere.  Also, Could you maybe see about finding P90X in a paper form? possibly with photos. I am trying to look for something that I can do to work out that will cut down on my fat. The bottom of me looks great, because of the bikes... while the top is.....
This past week was a really great one. On Tuesday I went on Exchanges with Elder Crawford. He's a new missionary. We had one of the funniest experiences! HAHA This little girl probably 8 or 9  comes creeping up to us like crouched down and was acting almost like gollum off of Lord of The Rings. She was hunched down and in a loud whisper voice she said "You punched my friend in her face! I'm going to RIP you apart!" then we said "What?" and she said again in the same creepy loud whisper voice "YOU PUNCHED ..... IN THE FACE!! I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!!!!" We looked at each other and said "We didn't do anything." then she stands up and in a normal voice she said "OH! oh! Sorry guys!" then she ran off! HAHAHAHA it was the funniest thing!
This last weekend we had I.....'s  baptism, Saturday. It was great! Elder Rose baptized her and then on Sunday I confirmed her. She was so cute on the stairs before she went into the water she looked up at elder Rose and whispered "I'm nervous!" It was really exciting to see how happy her family was for her to get baptized.
This Next weekend we have J..'s baptism on the 29th after Church on Sunday. He is so ready to get baptized. He knows the gospel so well! I can not wait.
I can't think of anything else that has happened.
I'm dying from allergies here. It is getting really bad.
Elder Marshall
PS here is a talk ans a thought :)

Create success
                                                                Elder M. Russell Ballard
     Our time in the mission field is short but eternally important. As we examine the mission field, we see that some missionaries succeed to a great degree and others seem to stumble along, trying to stay enthusiastic, but somehow not obtaining the results which they desire. What makes the difference between a highly successful missionary that baptizes regularly and a missionary that seldom baptizes? Through examining the trends in the missions, we find that it is not the area, it is not the people, and it is not the time of year. Instead it is the attitude of the missionaries and their ability to utilize and apply the talents that they possess. We know that a missionary with a good attitude produces good results; fair attitude, fair results; poor attitude, poor results. The missionary with a good attitude works with the people and not through them. 

     Ability means nothing to a missionary if it is not used. The greatest men came to the top because the strength that grew out of meeting resistance. Self-deceptions are responsible for more then three-fourths of all the so-called “unexplained failures” in the mission field. Many missionaries in the race for success explain their shortcomings as they do in the game of bowling. If they fail to win, something was wrong with the ally, the pins, their arms, their members, their companions, their areas, etc. etc. The trouble is never themselves. Of all the distinguished failures, those who deserve the least sympathy are the ones who gather in foolish little cliques, praise each other, deceive each other, criticize others, and fool themselves. They say, “I am not appreciated.” “I have had bad luck all my mission. Others have had a better chance.” “I wish I could have the fortune of Elder ‘success.’” A fireball missionary starts when an investigator says “no!” This is a plain and simple concept but very true. 

     Do not be a missionary who complains about his companion his leaders, and his burdens. Instead be a missionary who can be placed in any area and in any set of circumstances and be relied on to set things right. Become a creator of circumstances instead of a creature of circumstances. 

     Success does not depend on the message, but on the messenger. We each learn that failure and excuses go together, so we must learn to get away from excuses. Dull or slow months are for dull missionaries, so remember that sharp missionaries don’t have any. 

     This is why success is not luck. It can be predicted and followed each day into a successful week, year, and mission. Live one day at a time as though it where a building block. Do each day what should be done that day, and do not under-work, because that brings on the “bad luck” and slumps. 

     By being able to control what we put in this mind of ours, we determine our own lives. “as we sow, so shall we reap.” We can see how important it is to sow the right beginning thoughts. Another interesting fact about our minds is that we can only entertain one thought at a time. Therefore, your destiny may be determined by one single thought, and it is up to you whether you make it positive or negative. Think baptism and you will baptize. Your actions, attitude, mission, and life will be directed by your thoughts.

     Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. If you can’t see yourself baptizing, then you probably never will. A desire does not come from practical knowledge, but it comes from compulsions and obsessions. Desire leads to a goal, and it is the starting point of all achievement. The power of definite desire is beyond all practical goals that use no emotion. We need to get involved emotionally in our goal to baptize. Who will baptize next? The mission field is successful only to successful missionaries.

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Chapel is Such a Spiritual Place

Things are good here in Midland. :) We have had clouds tempt us but nothing hit the ground. We need rain so bad here in this area.

Are y'all taking pictures of the new office? I can't wait to see the changes.

Grandma seems to be having a hard time. That has to be terrible for her.  Give her my love.

It's hard to read the Book of Mormon for the first time through. I know, but as long as Austin keeps pushing through it, whether he enjoys it or not just get it done. The second time through it is much easier to read. I know we read it all of the time as a family but it is so important to read it on your own.  Then pray.  Soon you again a testimony and reading it becomes a part of who you are.

Congratulations Tyson and Brittany! I'm so happy for them! :) Happy Birthday to Cassy, Byron, Angie and Peter.  I can't believe Peter is a year old.  I bet he is getting big!

So I don't have a ton to write about. My bike is in the shop for the week... My back tire so so out of alignment that it was dragging on the brakes on both sides. It's probably going to cost about 60$ but they are giving me a discount and loaning me a bike for free. They are also going to take care of all the problems it has with out extra cost on my part. What a blessing..

Oh where can I get a copy of my priesthood line?

Also I need some work outs printed out... I need to get into shape. My legs are rocks, but... the rest of my body is... ummm... not... hahaha I am  about 200 lbs now and I don't look like I've gained weight, but apparently I have. My clothes still fit!

This week was pretty great. Well, It had it's really high ups, and it's very lows. Wednesday Sister Wilkey in my district got transferred to help some sisters in another area. She is super great! She is always high energy and fun to be around. So it was really sad to have her leave. She made a huge difference in my mission.

Elder Rose and I lead the zone in our key indicators. We worked so hard this week I was taking naps almost everyday to catch up on my lack of sleep and from exhaustion form work.
We are teaching J... He is one of the most solid investigators!

There's a story President Augustin tells about a man at temple square that would walk back and forth between the gates from the side walk back onto the temple ground. This man had done it about 100 times and security finally approached him and asked him if there was a problem. The man replied something along the lines 'Yes, can you feel that?'  We had a really special experience with our  investigator J... We took him on a church tour so we could get him to church this Sunday.   When we were showing him around we finished with the chapel. We bore our testimonies to him while we were in there.  As we left the chapel into the foyer he turned around and walked right back into the chapel. He stood there for about a minute and then back into the foyer.  He walked in and out about 3 time then said something along the lines of "Wow, I didn't believe in that, but I can feel the difference from just walking in there."  We told him that was the spirit and he could have that after baptism all the time.  It was so neat to actually see someone feel the difference, something that we tend to take for granted. The Chapel is such a spiritual place.  He expressed that he couldn't wait. MAN! that was so exciting!

Something else exciting! We got chased by a pitbull this week! It almost cornered us between him and a major street! We were so scared! haha

Well I don't have anything else to really talk about except all of the wonderful naps I took this week :) I did work hard to deserve the naps!

I love you, and I hope everything is going great!
Elder Marshall

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Atonement is a Blessing

I enjoy church music so much more now that I've been out. I use to hate it! I thought it was terrible... hahaha Now I enjoy singing it :) It's pretty clever of you to have used church song phrases to want us to obey :)

That's great to hear that Austin has been gaining weight. He's not the only one.... haha Kidding! I don't know how much I weigh. due to the fact that I haven't seen a scale in almost a year.

I'm glad to hear that Austin is more than half way through the Book of Mormon, and didn't leave Lehi's family in the wilderness. I am loving reading out of the Book of Mormon. I have a miss cut copy, and everyone thinks I should have just sent it home and kept it pristine, but it's only worth as much as you've put it to use. Kinda like if you buy something really expensive and never use it. that would be a waste. We should be putting the Book of Mormon to use daily, and not just reading a couple verses and calling it good. We should be testing it, questioning it, and really studying it.  We shouldn't walk away from it unless we've prayed about what we read. There's a quote "If you don't feel like praying, pray till you do." We should be applying that to our studying of the Book of Mormon to be, If you don't feel like reading, read till you do. I find myself captivated in reading it. I love the Book of Mormon.

That's sad to hear about Grandma not doing well. I hope as sad as this may sound that she passes soon, I am sure she would rather be with Grandpa than having the troubles she is now. I know that I'll miss her, but I also know that I will be able to see her again. The other day Elder Rose and I were teaching the Great Plan of Redemption, or the Plan of Salvation. What a blessing this is for all of us. We had finished teaching J.., the sickest investigator! I was bearing my testimony about the Plan of Salvation which I wasn't sure if I had a testimony of, and I said I know that our families will be able to return to live together again, and I was in tears. I now know of the truth of the Plan of Salvation. I know with out a doubt that it is true. I can not deny it. I look forward to seeing Grandpa again.

It's great to hear about how well the building is going. I am excited to see pictures of it! I really excited for dad! I bet the day he says it's done he's going to sleep for a week! hahaha :) I really miss dad too. We have had some great talks driving in the truck to and from work and some really good laughs! :)  I love you Dad.

For Easter in sacrament meeting while listening to the talks I was really thinking about Christ and what he did for us.   

Omni 26. And now, my beloved brethren, I would that ye should come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved.

This scripture really stuck out to me. What a blessing the atonement is for each of us. That is our main message as missionaries. I know that the restoration is important, but the atonement is what brings the faith, the opportunity to repent and be baptized so we can receive the Holy Spirit, and it is what gives us the hope to endure to the end. There would be no hope for us no purpose to live with out the atonement. I am forever grateful for that.
I love you! I hope your week will be great! :)
Elder Marshall

PS  Our area is huge! and we're a bike area! I don't know if you can look up ward boundaries on Lds.orgbut if you can look up Midland 3rds It's fetching intense!
I love my Companion! He's super great. He's a lot of fun to serve with. Once he came out of his shell he became a loose cannon! haha He is great!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Brain Dead

Hello Everyone
Midland is one of the bigger areas I have been in, there are 3 wards, a Spanish branch and a singles branch.
Will you ask Brittany and Tyson to send a wedding announcement I would love to see it and a picture of her baptism.  I am so excited for them!
This week went pretty well, it was hard to get a lot done because of conference, and weekends are the best time to proselyte. Most people are home or out where we can see them!

I can't seem to remember a thing I did this past week. I'm BRAIN DEAD from conference. I've never paid attention so much to conference than I did this past weekend. I think the one I liked was one of the people who spoke at the last session, Brother Wilson?   I can't seem to figure out how to pull it up on the computer. I will have to try next week.  Maybe it is too soon to check....oh....if you read on LDS.ORG you can see it will be there on Thursday....I guess I am brain dead!

I was worried you forgot to send me a letter….oh here it is….It's okay I wasn't too worried about it…. :)  I see you forgot my Pday changed to Monday.....

I'm sorry I can't think of anything to write. I don't have any recollection of what happened last week.... like nothing. I keep going through my planner and looking and nothing.  I am sure we were busy but my brain is on overload.
The church is true.  What a great spirit conference bring. 
I love you so much. I'm so grateful for all that you do for me.  Thanks for the letters!
Elder Marshall

PS Happy Easter!