N's email 4/25/2016

area: Lake Houston YSA Branch (Humble, Texas)
zone: Summerwood
companion: Elder Ericson

This week was good. We started off without many people, so we went finding and we found! We found an awesome lady named Onjanea at Lone Star College and she's really interested! We also met a young man, Raul, who's grandma is a member and he believes everything, the Book of Mormon, God calling Joseph Smith as a prophet, all of it. He just needs to come to church and that's a bit of a struggle for him. We're going to work with him though!

Transfers came and went. The new members of the Summerwood Zone are awesome! We prayed for hard working missionaries who have good attitudes and our prayers were answered.

I love being a missionary!

Thanks to all those who sent letters recently! It really does mean a lot. I'm trying to write some today and send them off.

I love y'all. But I love our Savior more. And this is where He wants me. So this is where I want to be.

N's pictures from transfer #12 - Humble/Keech & Ericson - 3/1/2016 to 4/19/2016

area: Lake Houston YSA Branch (Humble, Texas)
zone: Summerwood
companion: Elder Ericson (Elder Keech too for the beginning)

entering THE Mission 3/1/2016

leaving THE Mission 3/3/2016

Elder Combrink, Elder Keech, Elder Ericson 3/14/2016
(These were taken by a mom of one of the young men in their YSA Branch - thank you Sister Fugle!)

Elder Combrink, Lawrence, Elder Ericson, Elder Keech 3/27/2016


Elder Ericson and Elder Combrink 4/2/2016

removing things damaged from flooding

 entering THE Mission 4/18/2016

leaving THE Mission 4/20/2016

one of Mom's emails to Nathan during the flooding

Hi Nathan,

I'm still going with the, "no news must be good news." I haven't heard anything from your Mission President, so you must be okay.

I often check your weather, and on Sunday I noticed that you'd have a lot of rainy days ahead, but that seems normal for your weather reports, so I didn't think anything of it, until I'd heard that radio news report Monday afternoon! Since then, I've been stalking your flooding conditions.

Hopefully, you are safe, in an upstairs apartment, possibly bored, hopefully not hungry. I thought these snippets of articles from LDS Living Magazine site would be okay to send you. Maybe you can share them with your Zone.

Stay safe!
I love you!

Photos: Temple Grounds Flood After Major Storms in Texas, Temple Remains Miraculously Untouched

by LDS Living     April 19, 2016

...In the midst of these violent storms, the Houston Texas Temple has miraculously remained untouched by the flooding, though water is lapping around the temple grounds.

In a post on Facebook, Friends of Houston Texas South Stake reported that the temple is "high and dry." In fact, it said this storm might not even be the most severe the temple has weathered. In the past, flood waters have reached the front doors to the ancillary building, according to the post.
Despite the temple being safe, it has been closed on Tuesday, April 19 due to flooding on the roads to keep temple patrons and workers safe.

In addition, they posted a letter from the temple presidency, saying the temple is safely 8 feet above the water line.
Here are more photos along with the presidency's message:
The temple will continue to be closed - see letter from temple presidency below.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
We extend our deepest love and gratitude to you all for your faithful and devoted service in this special and holy place, the Houston Temple. We know that many of you and your co-workers have expressed concern and interest in the status of the temple in light of the serious flooding that has occurred along the Cypress Creek water shed. Access to the temple from virtually every direction is impassible; all of the parking areas on the grounds are at least partially flooded; and we have continued concern about the ancillary building.
The temple itself stands safe and secure at least 8 feet above the water line. It is a wonderful sight to behold! We think it is a strikingly beautiful image and reflection as captured in the special photo attached, produced by one of our wonderful ordinance workers, Bob Boyd. Thank you Brother Boyd!
According to our best projections, it appears highly unlikely that we will be able to re-open the temple before Friday. Water levels will remain high through mid-day tomorrow. We do not anticipate access to the temple before Thursday at the earliest; and even then, will require clean-up and preparation efforts.
We would ask that you share this information with the temple workers on your respective shifts that the temple will not be open either Wednesday or Thursday of this week.
Attached are a couple of photos taken earlier today of the temple. We hope that the "creek doesn't rise" any further!
In deepest gratitude for your patience, service, understanding and leadership. You are in our prayers. We know there are some of you who are suffering from losses associated with this devastating flood event. In addition to help and service through your Priesthood leaders, please let us know of opportunities to reach out to any who have been affected.
Houston Temple Presidency,
Marshal W. Hayes
Albert E. Haines
Harry D. Eulitt

(When I showed the kids this picture, Jessica oohed and awed over the pretty reflection, but said she didn't remember there being a lake in front of the temple. I told them it's not a lake - it's the flood waters.)

(Here's a picture from Elder Hobb's blog)

N's email 4/18/2016

area: Lake Huston YSA Branch (Humble, Texas)
zone: Summerwood
companion: Elder Ericson

Hi everyone! This week we tried a new finding technique and it flopped. We feel bad about it but we've repented and we think we know how to improve it. We went to a few other missionaries, took their iPads and went into the Area Book on them and referred every 18-30 year old over to our area, and then we spent the rest of the week trying to contact them.

We've had a lot of revelatory conversations this week. We feel good about this upcoming transfer. Oh yeah, I'm staying!!! I'll get to spend 6 months here! I'm so grateful for that.

I love y'all. But I love Jesus Christ more. And this is where He wants me. So this is where I want to be.

Your favorite missionary, Elder Combrink

N's email 4/11/2016

area: Lake Houston YSA Branch (Humble, Texas)
zone: Summerwood
companion: Elder Ericson

This week was a good one. Rene, a YSA member, brought his friend Brittany to Family Home Evening on Monday. We were able to reach her afterwards and she received it very well! Rene gave her a Book of Mormon about a month ago and has been sharing things about the Gospel since. She finally was able to get off work and come to the church so we're really excited to get to teach her.

Tuesday we had Mission Leadership Council. That took 6 hours, then we were up in Kingwood but one of the other companionships needed help so we hurried back down here for the rest of the day.

Then Wednesday we were on exchanges, I was with Elder Rasband in their area and Elder Keech came went with Elder Ericson in ours. We were able to teach a young part-member Samoan couple. They're super humble and willing to receive the fullness of the Gospel in their lives! We taught them about repentance and they were excited to apply it. Thursday we spent planning for Zone Meeting. We did have a couple hours of proselyting though.

Friday was Zone Meeting and it went well. A little long but it was needed. I was able to lead a discussion about the importance to pray to develop a relationship with Heavenly Father. The Spirit was really strong as we learned about that. We also found this awesome new investigator, Regina. We had this awesome lesson but she has a child so she needs to go to the family Ward.

Saturday we went up to a summer camp and did service there as a Stake.we got to put in a new flag pole. That was fun. Then we went to a BBQ for lunch at one of the YSA's house. Lawrence took a video of us sitting  around there. He put it on YouTube under Oneop Mormon (he's from the island of Oneop). We spent the rest of the day down in Pasadena and Broadway.

And on Sunday we had great church meetings, then we took a priest with us for the rest of the evening and we weren't able to really teach anyone but we were able to contact quite a few people.

I love being a missionary! I love this area! Elder Ericson is a great companion!

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

Your favorite missionary, Elder Combrink

N's email 4/4/2016

area: Lake Houston YSA Branch (Humble, Texas)
zone: Summerwood
companions: Elder Ericson

Dear... everyone!

This week has been crazy! Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were fairly normal. Except on Wednesday President Drake came and did a companionship study with us. We talked a lot about planning and he told us exactly how he wants it done.

Then on Thursday we had weekly planning and it took 7 hours to get it done! That's a long time! Normally it takes 2 or 3 hours but we've been doing it wrong the whole time. We made a list of all the people we want to visit next week and it turned out to be 150 names! Then we made plans for what we are going to teach them when we see them. Then we inserted them into a slot of time for next week. We are so excited for next week!

Friday we went on exchanges in Liberty.

Several days ago there were major floods along the river that separates Texas and Louisiana. The water level raised 35 feet! On Saturday we went out there with some members of our branch, 1,000 members of the church from the Houston area showed up and we helped clean up 140 homes in several small towns. Our group moved sand bags at one house, about 400 of them. Lawrence, our recent convert came with us and he loved getting to serve with the Church.

Sunday was conference and our Branch President had all the local missionaries over for breakfast and both sessions of Conference, and fed us lunch between. Then they fed us dinner after.

I love y'all. But I love Jesus Christ more. And this is where He wants me. So this is where I want to be.