N's email 6/1/2015

area: Baytown Ward (Texas)
zone: Pasadena
companion: Elder Leftwich

This week has been exhausting! Each week I center my studies around a specific Christlike attribute and last week I felt like I should work on diligence. Therefore, my week was exhausting…

We went tracting a lot and were led to quite a few people who were prepared enough to set up return appointments and let us teach them there and then.

I loved the mission conference! Elder Nielson was super inspired because he answered so many questions of mine, both that I had consciously pondered and those I couldn't put into words. I really appreciated his comments about agency, that once you have made covenants you no longer have agency to really choose who you are, you're either a true disciple of Jesus Christ or a covenant breaker. That really sunk deep and went along with my study of diligence.

As a mission we are reading the Book of Mormon, one chapter per day. Today was Mosiah chapter 6 in case you want to follow along. But this week King Benjamin made me feel humble. Mosiah 4:5

I'm super grateful to serve in Baytown North! We had dinner with Bishop Brown and his family on Friday and they're great. I love being able to see such inspired leadership as a missionary.

Story Time:
We were going to see a less active member at about 7 p.m. and we didn't have an appointment but we felt like we should try them anyway. So we drive up and there's some people standing in the driveway next door. So we decide to go contact them before we visit our less active. We walk over and introduce ourselves and meet Rod and Rod Jr. After a minute of just small talk Rod Sr. goes inside. But Rod Jr. stayed outside and talked to us. Eventually he asked who we were. We told him about how we're missionaries or representatives of Jesus Christ and His Church. He thought that was cool because he had recently gotten out of prison and had become a "believer" when he was in there. We ended up talking to him for about an hour in his driveway, covering parts of the Restoration, the Plan of Salvation, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the Law of Chastity. He told us his life story and all the stuff that the Lord saved him from and the stuff he's still working on.

That's still something I don't get... We just walk up to people and within a couple of minutes they're giving us full on confessions... I'm 19. Elder Leftwich is 20. Can someone please explain why someone would just start spilling their guts to us boys, who are complete strangers, who are walking from house to house, who grew up a couple thousand miles away, and who are "Mormons"? The only explanation I have is that they feel the Spirit and recognize us as Jesus Christ's representatives.

Back to Rod Jr. We went back and taught him on Friday and he's super receptive! He wants to follow Jesus Christ and continue to allow Him to change his life.

My mom put my email on the blog. You can email me but I would still like letters every once in a while, they just seem more loving…

I love all of you! But I love Jesus Christ more. And this is where He wants me. So this is where I want to be.

Mom, The members in Baytown say the news is making the flooding look a lot worse than it is. Yes, it was super destructive in some areas, but in most places, you didn't even know it happened. And Mrs. Nelson's and Mrs. Hill's advice - that if I didn't say anything about it, it means I'm fine - is good advice. I don't get the news... So the only way I know something dangerous happened would be to experience it myself.
Also, the mission office promises to let you know if I am in any danger at all.
Thanks for everything mom!
I love you!