Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Thank You!!!

   Wow... I am a SLACKER!! I'm sorry y'all, it's been a few days since I've posted anything new here... But hopefully I'll make it up to y'all with an AWESOME post today!... Well, hopefully. :) For the past few days I've been really thinking about gratitude and giving appropriate thanks. This idea of saying thank you to each other in some places seems so natural and in others it feels so difficult and uncomfortable. But I think giving a recognition to one another and to God for what we receive is VERY important.

    In the Old Testament, the Children of Israel, in the Law of Moses, were given as a commandment, to make specific offerings and sacrifices. Some of these offerings had the sole purpose of giving thanks to God. Many times throughout the Old Testament, after a miracle was performed or when the people attributed a great success to God, they would of their own free will, offer sacrifices as a token of gratitude for what God had done for them. I think it's really interesting... What can we do to show God our gratitude? Have we shown God that we are thankful for what he has done for us?... Just a few questions to think about.. and perhaps comment on?

   Another story of gratitude that sticks out in my mind is found in the New Testament. (Luke 17: 12-19) When Jesus healed the 10 lepers, only 1 of them returned to thank him. Thinking about this, yes being healed is a great thing, but it meant SOOOO much more than just being healed! At that time leprosy was almost untreatable. There wasn't a whole lot that the people could do for you if you were a leper. Having leprosy basically meant that your life was OVER. You couldn't really work, you couldn't go in the towns, and pretty much the only people who would associate with you were other lepers... who, coincidentally, also were at a HUGE social and economical disadvantage. You were the outcast and there wasn't anything anyone could do about is. When Jesus healed these men, he gave them their LIVES back. They were now able to do everything that they needed in order to be a part of society again.

   Keeping this in mind, why would only one person come to Christ and show him that gratitude? Would we ourselves be the one to return and thank Him? I think we all say we would, but in today's world, I've seen that showing others our gratitude has become less and less common.

   Applying the story to us, I'd like to ask a few questions and invite ANYONE and EVERYONE to leave a comment! How often do we show our gratitude to those around us? Why do we do it? Why don't we do it? Who do you feel that we should thank? Is there someone that you need to thank in your own life? If so, I encourage you to do so!

   Going along with my own invitation, (I'm not really going to invite anyone to do anything that I myself am not willing to do) I would like to thank a few people... I'm not going to name very many by name, just because I know that if I do I'll FOR SURE miss a lot and I don't want anyone to feel left out. First, I would like to thank all the friends I have made on my mission. All the people who have shown their love, their support, and done so much for me; I sincerely thank you. Next, I would like to thank my parents. Mom and Dad, thank you for sticking with me. I know I was NEVER the easiest child to raise, and I'm sorry for all the struggles, and the hurt that I put y'all through. But really thank you for all that you two have done for me. I'm eternally grateful. Lastly, I would like to thank Jesus Christ. I'd like to thank him for spiritually healing me. I know that Christ has suffered all things for me. I know that He has made it possible for all my sins to be forgiven and for my burdens to be made light.  I know that He made it possible for all mankind to be raised from the dead and to receive His Father's kingdom. I am eternally indebted to Him.

   I would ask y'all to please leave a comment showing your gratitude to someone in your life or a short story of how someone's thanks has helped you personally. Thanks y'all for reading this! Hope y'all have a WONDERFUL day, and I hope y'all enjoyed this post. God Bless Y'all!


Thursday, March 24, 2011

I Will Not Leave You Comfortless

    Today, my little message for the world is one that INDEED has helped me personally... Even today in fact! Jesus Christ told his Apostles in John 14: 18 "I will not leave you comfortless..." Today, that really helped me out. I was in the process of getting an MRI, and for those of you who aren't familiar with how that is done, you are inserted into a tube horizontally.. kind of like you're laying on a bed, but you are surrounded by the machine with barley 3 or 4 inches in ANY direction except for out of the machine... I am, embarrassingly enough to admit, claustrophobic... As I'm lying in this tube, the first thing that comes to my mind is... "OH NOOOOO!!!!" After a few minutes, I calm down and tell myself that it isn't that bad. I'm going to be ok. So I am able to remain calm for a little while, but about half way through the MRI, I start to panic again. I'm supposed to be holding very still, but all I can think is, "I'll bet I have just enough room to shoot my arms up and pull myself out of this thing!!" So I began to pray.

    Just as Christ told his apostles 2000 years ago, He will not leave us comfortless; which, oddly enough is the scripture of the day! I began to pray for help. I prayed for COMFORT. I prayed that I would be able to remain calm until the test was finished. As I prayed, I felt the Holy Ghost. It brought me feelings such as, "love, joy, PEACE, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith... meekness, temperance..." (Galatians 5: 22-23" I felt the Lord help me in my own moment of weakness.

    But what I want now, is to hear how YOU have had answers to your prayers. How God has sent the Comfortor to you... If you have a story, that isn't too personal, I'd like y'all to leave it in a comment for the world to see! Thanks y'all! God Bless Y'all!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Safety for the Soul


sorry I couldn't find a clip that had both parts in it... but I love this talk by Jeffrey R Holland. He is an apostle and a member of the quorum of the Tweleve Apostles.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Soooo What's Next?

   Today was transfer meeting... For all of y'all who don't exactly know what that is, it's when we are either moved from the area we're at into a new one with a new companion, or we lose the companion we've been with and get a new one. Today, my companion Elder Kato has actually left. He's moved on to bigger and better things. I'm still here in the Cumberland branch in East Nashville. So now I'm partnered up with Elder Hyde. Elder Hyde is from Idaho. He's a good guy. I think he's been on his mission for about 4 or 5 months now...

   I don't really know what to say now... I'm kind of at a loss of words. Everytime I get paired up with a new person, I go through this phase where I'm almost not exactly myself.. I kind of don't know how to function. It's almost like a part of me is gone. It's weird. What I think it is, is that I'm with a person for a while and I get to know them and I get along with them, and when we get switched, it's almost like I glitch. I have to almost re-boot. I feel like there is an adjusting period.. But I'm not for sure if that is what it is or not... Leave me a comment and tell me what you think it is! Anyone and Everyone! Please! Its almost a struggle or a trial of some sort.. Please help me out with this!

Sunday, March 20, 2011


   Today, while I was sitting in sacrament meeting at church, I was thinking about what I should put up here for my blog post today... And I had the idea that I should talk about weakness. We are all weak in one capacity or another. Some of us have little weaknesses like chocolate or like not being able to say no when food is offered to us.. (that would be my greatest weakness!!) Others have really big weaknesses, even to the extent of an addiction, like pornography or alcohol. Regardless of how big or small our weaknesses are or how much they effect us, we ALL have a weakness... Isn't that WONDERFUL?!! At this point, you're probably thinking something along the lines of, "Yeah... This guy is nuts!" But because we all have these imperfections, we all have the opportunity to be uplifted and strengthened by our Savior.

    Jesus Christ has suffered for EVERYTHING that we can and ever will experience in this life. I know that Christ has done this because I have felt the healing powers of His Atonement in my own life and I've seen how it has helped those around me. This brings us to our scripture of the day! (2nd Corinthians 12: 7-10 see tab) I LOVE this scripture! This is the great apostle Paul speaking to us; and in this particular section of this epistle, he is showing us that even he has a weakness. Paul, the apostle who wrote the majority of the new testament, has a "thorn in the flesh". What really gets me though is he tells us that the reason that he has been given this thorn and this messenger of Satan, so he will NOT be able to do everything on his own. But through this thorn he is able to rely on Jesus Christ; and when we trust in God and do as He as commanded us, we can have the power to overcome our weaknesses. Another great scripture that talks about this is Ether 12 in the Book of Mormon. I'm so grateful for the opportunity we all have to trust in Christ and rely on Him. God Bless Y'all!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Becometh As A Child, For Of Such Are The Kingdom Of God

   Today Elder Kato and I were invited to come to a primary activity for the branch. It was GREAT!! I realized while we were there that I really do miss primary. In case you're not sure of what that is, Primary is the Sunday School class for the kids from age 4 to about 12. Primary is so cool because while the kids are in these classes, they learn about our Savior Jesus Christ. They sing songs, read stories, and have little lessons and activities specifically designed to help their young minds learn of The Savior.

    While we were at this activity, I was thinking alot about what Jesus says about becoming as a little child... Obviously, we are not all supposed to wander around the playground and eat dirt like a small child would, but Christ is telling us that we are to become as the children are and to be loving to all we come in contact with. We are to be innocent, just as the little ones are. We are to trust our Father in Heaven just as we trust our parents here; and in turn, how our children will and do trust us. It's really quite amazing that we are commanded to revert back to this state of love and innocence. I, personally, am especially amazed when Christ says that (speaking of the children) "of such are the kingdom of God".

     That's the reason for the scripture of the day. Watching the kids today at the park; how they talked, how they played with each other, just their innocent state and how happy they all were, reminded me of what Christ has asked us to become and emulate. God Bless You All!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

"Oh How Lovely Was The Morning..."

   Man oh man!! Today is a BEAUTIFUL day!!! I know that this blog is for spiritual experiences, so bear with me for a minute. The sun is shining, it's about 65 degrees (Fahrenheit), slight breeze is blowing, awesome day! :) Elder Kato and I walked to the library this morning and I couldn't help but notice the amazing world around me. It was a great experience to take a few minutes to just see and consider all of God's exquisite creations.

   Yesterday, Elder Kato and I had the opportunity to take 8 hours and actually practice our teaching. This was a little different than the normal practice though. Yesterday we were practicing teaching with the Spirit. We were really focusing on having the Spirit with us as we were teaching. We were really trying and striving to understand and then follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost as we taught. It was a VERY spiritual experince... Probably one of the most I've ever had. I know that God loves us and wants us to learn and follow Him. I know that we can recieve inspiration from the Holy Ghost. (see Moroni 10: 3-5) I love y'all! Hope y'all have a wonderful day as well! God Bless Y'all!!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Christ Can Help

  I'm sorry that I've been kind of a slacker for the past few days! Elder Kato and I have been so busy, I barely have time to stop and think, let alone write anything!! But I'll do better I promise!

  On Sunday, Elder Kato and I had the great opportunity to give 2 more priesthood blessings! (If you have any questions regarding the priesthood or blessings either see the previous post or shoot me a message via email/facebook/ or leave a comment on this post) I'd like to quickly reiterate the fact that I LOVE being able to give others a blessing. It's a humbling and very spiritual experience. Church was also very good on Sunday. We had a very interesting lesson on the Gifts of the Spirit. (feel free to visit lds.org to learn more) I think it's a very interesting topic personally. But, unfortunately, on Sunday we also had some discouraging things happen to us... It's nothing too bad or nothing that we can't handle, but honestly, sometimes missionary work is frustrating. Hence, the scripture of the day... (see tab at top of page)

   The scripture of the day is from a prophet by the name of Alma. Alma is testifing (around 83 B.C.) that Jesus Christ would come to the world and suffer for all humanity. The reason I've chosen these verses as my scripture of the day is because what it says Christ has suffered for us.. Pains, afflictions, temptations, sickness, infirmities, sins, transgressions, and death... Honestly, ANYTHING and EVERYTHING we can and have suffered in this life, Christ has suffered also. The scripture also tells us that he did suffer all these things so he will know HOW TO HELP us... As I said earlier, being a missionary is definately the hardest things I have ever done.. But it is also the best and most rewarding thing I've ever done. When things in this life are not as we feel they should be, we can turn to our Savior Jesus Christ and He can help us through our trials...
   I'm reminded of a story, there was once a man walking through life. His walk was represented as a walk down a beach. At the end of his life, he and Christ are looking back at the path he has taken in this life. The man notices that sometimes there are 2 sets of foot prints and other times there is only one. He asks Christ, "I thought you said you would always be with me. I thought you would never leave my side. Why? Where did you go? Those times when I felt so alone is when I needed you the most, and you left me... Why?" And Christ wraps his arms around the man and says, "Those times when there is only one set of footprints, those were all the times I carried you."
   Moral of the story is our Heavenly Father and our Savior Jesus Christ are ALWAYS there for us. They love us and they have done ALL things for us. They will never forsake us. I know that this is true because as I struggle with my day to day problems, whether they be big or small, I can feel of their love and I know that Christ is carrying me through them now. Thank you all for reading this! I hope y'all have enjoyed it! Please feel free to post any questions, comments, concerns, complaints, or constructive critisisms! I'd really appreciate all the help I can get! I'll post some more spiritually uplifting messages tomorrow! Have a Blessed Day!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

When ye are in the Service of Your Fellow Beings..

   Today Elder Kato and I had the awesome opportunity to do some service! Hence the reason for the new scripture of the day! (see the tab at the top of the screen) I love, love, LOVE doing sevice! Especially on my mission! (it gives me the chance to get out of my white shirt and tie) We were asked by our Elder's Quorum President to help him and a few other people from the branch move one of the members. We, unfortunately, weren't able to make it to the home until about noon. But when we got there, it turned out that all but one person had something come up, so they weren't able to make it out to help... But that was fine! We helped for about 2 hours. I love helping others, especially when they can't help themselves. It makes me feel more love for the people I serve. It makes me feel good. As Christ said in Matthew 5:40 "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these, my brethren, ye have done it unto me." I love following the example of Christ and serving others because of the great feelings that follow. That was the best part of my day!

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Sure Foundation

    Today, Elder Kato and I have had an AWESOME experience. We have been so busy today! We have been teaching, preaching, expounding, and exhorting... But the best and most spiritual experience we had today was the opportunity to give a young man a blessing..

    In the book of James, in the fifth chapter, James is speaking to the sick and the afflicted; he asks if there are any of the saints who are sick, to "call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil, in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick..." (James 5:14-15) Giving a blessing is a SUPER spiritual experience. We, being elders of the church, have an authority, called the priesthood. This allows us to do as James says we will, that is, anoint the sick and afflicted with oil and bless them. The blessing is something that our Father in Heaven gives to the sick through us. Its a really cool experience, because while we are giving the blessing, the words we speak are completely guided by the Spirit. We are speaking the words as given to us by God to speak to those whom we are blessing. Its a super humbling experience to be able to perform that kind of service.

    The reason for the scripture of the day is because the gentleman who requested the blessing was in a position that his trials and afflictions were really bringing him down. But because of his faith in Christ, those things don't seem as bad to him as they would to most. I know that God lives and that He loves His Children; and I know that Christ is the ONLY sure foundation in this constantly changing world.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Some Ideas... Any Thoughts?

   So my companion, Elder Kato, came up with an AWESOME idea last night! He had the cool thought that sometimes when we're posting up on our blogs that we don't really feel "real".. So, he and I are going to try to start posting an occasional video! Instead of posting a written summary of the day and what we did that day in our missionary work, we would actually show y'all!... Kind of... We're still working on the details for that but, I think it's definitely something worth looking into.

    Last night, Elder Kato and I had a GREAT discussion with some of the members at dinner. We talked alot about judgement. Mostly how we as people judge one another. Jesus told the world in His sermon on the mount, "Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgement ye judge ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." (matt. 7: 1-2) Judging each other is extremely harmful. It not only harms the feelings of those we judge, but in turn, we also put ourselves in front of the great stumbling block of pride.

    We also talked about Christ and His atonement.. The scripture of the day (numbers 21: 7-8) might seem a little strange, but I think it is a REALLY cool scripture. When the Children of Israel were wandering in the wilderness after leaving Egypt, we are told that fiery serpents came to them and bit them. People were dying so they inquired of Moses of how God would help them. This is what Moses is told to do. I think it's really cool because it is an allusion to Jesus Christ being lifted up on the cross. With Christ being lifted up on the cross, as we see His sacrifice, and turn ourselves toward Him, He can heal us of all our pains, weaknesses, afflictions, trials, and everything we suffer. Just as the Children of Israel were healed, so can we also be healed.

    Tonight we're going to have dinner with our Elder's quorum president! That'll be great! Then we're seeing our baptismal dates! :) I'm excited for that! Please pray for them! Thank you all for your prayers! As always, please, please, PLEASE leave me any questions, comments, concerns, complaints, constructive critisims, ect. I'm looking any kind of feed back as to how I can make this better! Tell your friends to check it out too! I'm looking for any and all suggestions on how make this blog to the best of my ability! Thank Y'all for your love and support! God Bless Y'all!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


    Me and my companion, Elder Kato, are coming to the sad realization that there literally is NOT enough time in the day! Each day that passes by I have to seriously stop and ask myself, what did I do today? I feel like the whole day has just slipped by us and we have almost nothing to show for it! Now, realize that yes, in fact we do have evidence of our labors, but honestly, I just feel like there is so much more we could be doing... if we only had a few more hours in a day. But I digress; the time that we do have is so important! We have an AWESOME opportunity to teach God's children the Gospel! Today, we had a meeting with some of the missionaries here in the Nashville area. We actually just got out of it about half an hour ago. So we've planned on working here on the computers for a while and after this we're going to go have dinner with some of the sweet members in the branch.
     Today in our meeting we talked alot about sacrifice. Sacrifice is a very interesting subject. If a sacrifice isn't difficult, then it is NOT true sacrifice. I've been thinking alot about the sacrifices that we as missionaries make compared to the sacrifices that Jesus Christ made for each and every one of us... Christ had it MUCH worse than we do. Not only did Jesus die for us, but He also LIVED for us... Every day of His life He was perfect. I think that anyone can say they would die for another, but to truely LIVE for someone is much more difficult... It is much longer and requires much more dedication and perserverence... Thinking about this makes me feel so much more love and gratitude to our Savior. What more can we sacrifice for our Savior? What more can we do for Him? Just some questions that have been on my mind.

     Please!! Feel free to leave me questions, comments, concerens, complaints, and any constructive criticism... I hope that y'all are having a blessed day! May God watch over you all!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood!!

Yes, today is a BEAUTIFUL day!! The sun is shining, there is a light breeze, it's not too hot, not too cold, not to humid... actually it's borderline perfect! Yesterday was kind of hard honestly, it hurts when all you're trying to do is help others and it's like they tell you they don't want your help.. (sigh) oh well. We've just gotta keep on trying... keep on working hard and doing our best. Today is great so far though! We just got finished practicing our teaching skills with some other missionaries. That is a VERY valuable experience.. And after this we're going to see a man and his wife that we're teaching.. We are actually planning on extending a baptismal invitation! :) I really hope they accept! PLEASE PRAY FOR US!!! Also, pray for my companion... He's a good guy. Got some stuff that I think he's worried about... Nothing serious, but he might need the help.. and I know FOR SURE that he deserves the help. Then later tonight, we're going to go out with our Elder's Quorum President and see some of the less-active members of the branch. That'll be great!  Well, I'm sure that I'll be updating this again! God bless all of you! Tell your friends and family to check out this blog! Leave me some questions, comments, and concerns!! I LOVE feed back!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Opposition in ALL THINGS

Man, yesterday was kind of a downer... No one came to church with us!! Oh well, I know that It'll be a better week this week. We had a great day other than that though! Church was still really good.. regardless of the fact that no one came; there were really good lessons and sacrament meeting was super spiritual.. as usual. After Church, we met with a recent convert and her husband and they fed us dinner! It was fantastic! So I guess knowing the bad or having the disappointments helps me more fully appreciate the good... (see 2nd Nephi 2: 11,23) This week will be great though! We're actually planning on seeing one of the guys we're teaching in about half an hour... hope it all goes well! Pray for us! God bless y'all!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Rain, Rain, Go Away!

It is raining here in Nashville... It's actually kind of cold today! So far it's been a pretty good day. Elder Kato and I go to go up to Madison and practice teaching with some other missionaries this morning! That was cool. Then after that we tried to go see Allen. We pulled up and he said now wasn't a good time, but hopefully he'll still come to the dinner appointment he was invited to tonight! That would be AWESOME!! Then we stopped by a members' home. We had a great discussion and we read Alma chapter 7 with them... That's one of my FAVORITE chapters!! It's a prophet testifiying that Christ would come into the world for us... Read it if you want to! I'll post it at the bottom. Tonight we're planning on eating dinner with some members and hopefully Allen and his wife, Sonya... Then we'll be going to see Erik! He's our baptismal date! He's awesome! He's being baptized on March 19th... Exactly 2 weeks from today! :) I'm excited! Until next time, God bless you!


Friday, March 4, 2011

Just another day...

The past couple days have been so busy I've barely had time to think! Yesterday, I had a doctor's appointment to get a shot... I hate NEEDLES!!! So while I was there I was CONSTANTLY praying for help!! Yes, thanks to the goodness of God, I was able to get my shot and survive because of His help.. Really, I'm deathly terrified of needles.

Then today me and my companion had an awesome lesson with a part member family we're teaching. We had planned to teach the whole Plan of Salvation, which answers the questions "where did we come from?", "what are we supposed to do here?", and "what happens when I die" or "where do we go after this life". It's one of my favorite lessons to teach actually. Alot of people can't answer these questions, that's why it's my favorite lesson to teach! Because of the restoration of Christ's church and His gospel, we CAN answer them!! But, we were only able to teach half of it today, they had some really good questions and alot of great insight. So we're going to plan on teaching the rest of it next time!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Day 1!

  So I've actually really wanted to make this blog for a long time, but for the first 18 months of my 2 year mission, I've only been allowed to use a computer to email my parents once a week... But that's just changed! :) So now I can tell the whole world how and what being a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is like! Hmmm where to begin.. Well, I'm actually kind of short on time, but there will be more to come! God Bless us All!