Tuesday, December 27, 2016

It's Cool To Be Able To See The Spirit Work Through You

Hello again!! 

it seems like it was just two days ago i just talked to you all! Its kinda weird to think that we skyped again! It was was super awesome to talk to the family again, it is always a great time. After Sunday I realized more that my family really are all my best friends. Its cool to feel so good with people you haven't talked to in a long time and after you just think back and think, Wow, that was great!  I love you all so much. 

Not much has happened since Sunday.  Sunday we ended up going to a family's house around 3 and we were there for most of the day. They really wanted us to stay and they had it figured out how to keep us. We got there and Dinner was running late. Then we ate and talked for a while then they opened some presents. They gave us Socks! best gift ever! haha it was cool though. then they told us to play some games until pie is done. so we did that and then ate pie then they wanted us to play some games again! so it was actually a ton of fun. There was lots of little kids to bug, so what else could you want! It kinda reminded me of Christmas back home going over to one of the grandparents house. So it was super fun. 

Yesterday we did a lot of finding. We didnt have to much luck with new people to find, but we did find a couple of people that might have some potential that we are going to try by again. We also taught two lessons with some less active members. We read in the Book of Mormon and explained the the story and the teachings. It was in spanish and some of the questions he asked about the exact meaning of the scripture verses and it threw my head in a loop a little bit. We were able to give him good answers though. Its always cool when you start answering and you dont have a super clear thought, but as you keep going you come up with a good answer and end up teaching them and yourself. Its cool to be able to see the spirit work though you. With the others, we watched some of the Bible Videos. He knows for sure he is coming back to church and were talking about getting his mom and daughter to church again. As we got up to leave we walked through the kitchen and i didnt see any food so i thought we were free. They almost always give us some food. Then one of the friends that were over there asked us if we wanted some tamales. then ran out side to get them before we left. so we for sure get taken care of for food everyday, even when its not planned or if we are already full, we seem to always get more somewhere. 

Today we have a lesson with R-- and A-. As of a few weeks ago there are new investigators. they are super awesome. They are the ones with the two young kids that are reading in the Book of Mormon and planning to come to church. We are super excited for that. We have some good lessons planned, a exchange and a District council. So this will for sure be a good week!

It was fun to see so many pictures of Christmas! i hope it was great for all of you. It sure looked like it was a fun one. I hope you all have a great rest of the Break from school and that you can still keep doing all those fun things that i am missing out on. It seems like when i was home we never did any of those kinds of things. But its cool to see you all the things i have to look forward to after the mission. Happy New Years!! i love you all!

Elder Mortensen

there is a few picture of opening Christmas, but here is one of them.

The other picture is us trying to weekly plan on Christmas eve. It kinda worked to plan.  

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Skype

On Christmas Day we were able to skype with Josh at  12:30 p.m.  This was definitely the best part of Christmas.  Josh was super happy.  We loved hearing updates about his missionary work and his plans for Christmas Day!  We ended our time with a family prayer.  It was a wonderful moment!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Surprise Text Message

I love surprise text messages!  This made my day!

Hello!  This is Sister Cannon from Benton City WA.  I was able to give these handsome young Elders haircuts today!  They are all awesome and working hard!  Thank you for sharing your son's with us.

Love, Sister Cannon

The Service Is What Makes Christmas As A Missionary So Great


i dont really know what to write about this week. I am just sitting here and there are way to many thoughts going through my head about everything. But i guess i can start with the area. Its been really good for the first part of the transfer. Its been really good being here with Elder Stevens. It is the first time that i have been companions with someone that i knew when we got transfer calls. All the other ones i have never served around. So its been fun. He is a great Elder. He has a lot of charity and patience so i am sure this will be a great companionship. He is a little quiet and sometimes is fine not talking and letting me do most of it. So that is something we are going to have to work on. But its not going to be a problem at all. I am super excited! It is going to be a fun Christmas. We found C-- again. i think i told you about her. She is from Guatemala. We talked to her husband S-- and he is actually a member. He has been away from the church for a long time and doesn't know really anything about it. But they are both awesome. They were headed off to another church when we were talking so we didnt get much time to talk. But they are going to be reading the Book of Mormon and they want us to come back and teach them. So they have a lot of potential. We also got a good referral from the Sisters here. His name is T--. He is on date for baptism! so we are excited to go teach him. We are planning on finding him tonight.  The way we are working the area is treating it like we are getting doubled in. So both of us being new. The area has been worked kinda weird and we feel the area has a lot more potential then we are seeing right now. So we are kinda dropping everything and doing finding. There is for sure some people we are still visiting though. Its not the best time for finding, but it still works. This week we were walking around working and we got back in the car to warm up and drove around to a new area. When we got there it said it was 1 degree! so its been kinda a cold winter here. We got a little more snow but not to much.there is a member that gave me a pair of boots. so i have stayed pretty warm.  Its super funny when you knock on a door and they open up and say its too cold we need to go find a place to warm up, but are not willing to let us in. It makes me laugh every time it happens. 

We are excited for this Christmas. Especially Skype! The plan is we are going over to the Lloyds house at around 11. So that is pretty much the plan. i have the skype from last Christmas. its the user name of bradmorty and the account i am looking for is bradandlaurimortensen.   Then it should work from there. That is at least the instructions from last year. Wow that seems a lot longer than just a year ago. 

It sounds like it was a fun week. I have to agree, Dads sweater is the best! but the thing that surprised me the most is Jaxsen! he isnt so little anymore. Weird...   But i really liked the message dad shared at the ward party. Its been cool to also talk to the members about the things they have been doing. I think it is a great idea from the church and has for sure shared a lot of light! The service is what makes Christmas as a missionary so great, and now more people have been able to do more service and i am sure it has just been a great experience for everyone that has been able to do it. 

I hope you all have a great Christmas! Its exciting to hear about all the things that have been happening this Christmas season. I love how its not just a Christmas day and done. But that it is a season. Its even more of a reason to talk about and think of Christ more. Its makes it easier to keep our promise that we will remember him always. I hope you all can continue to remember Christ and share his spirit with those around you all with your example and words. i Love you all! i will be excited for the Sunday!!  Have a great week leading up to Christmas!!

Elder Mortensen!

Elder Stevens and Elder Mortensen

Monday, December 12, 2016

I Have Learned How To Accept Gods Will And Act Upon It


This was a crazy week! The craziest thing probably is that transfers are already here! this transfer was only 5 weeks because they didnt want to have one right before Christmas. but i am still staying here! Elder Matalolo is going to Kennewick though. Its to bad, we really did have a good time here. But... Its going to be cool because i am with Elder Stevens! You probably dont remember him, but he was in my MTC district. We actually shared a room. He is from Alabama, so it is going to be a ton of fun. Also we have snow! there is like 4 inches. We were told that we cant drive to day yet until the roads clear up because there is already a crash in the mission. so we walked to the church. We got a lot of weird looks. Most people here have kinda shut down because of the snow. School is canceled today also. 

This week we went on another exchange. I was with an elder in Prosser! it was super cool we saw T--! she is the one that i baptized there! it was so awesome to see her again. She was excited too. It was weird to go there and see so many people that i knew. It was fun though. This week the coolest lesson was a lesson that in a way didnt end as we would hope, but it was a good one. We went to try to find a potential investigator, S--. We ended up finding him and his wife. We taught then the Restoration. Last week in Zone training meeting i gave a training of teaching the First Vision. Part of it was that as we share the first vision it should be memorized. We should try to use the words of Joseph Smith, then share our testimonies. As we were teaching it went pretty good. Spanish is for sure not easy for either of us but we were able to share all that we needed. Elder Matalolo is still working on learning and its been hard. But after i shared the first vision and bore my testimony he shared his. He struggled a little to share it but the spirit was so strong. to not worry about how you are going to say it and just speak and not worry about if it comes out perfect takes a lot of faith so it also invites the spirit very strongly.  As i was watching S-- you could for sure tell that he was feeling the Spirit. As we finished teaching they said that it doesn't really interest them to read the Book of Mormon that they dont really read the Bible either. But We know they felt the Spirit. We invited them to specifically pray about if Joseph Smith is a prophet. They said they will do that. So it didn't go perfectly in the end, but we really did do all that we could. it was cool to see the Spirit work with us and with them. 

Well that lesson kinda answers most of the questions. other then the one about the best thing that i have learned. That would probably be that i have learned how to accept Gods will and act upon it. its something that has been coming up a lot in my studies for some reason. It is something that isnt hard to learn, its just hard to live it. The way God helps us learn his will is his words, the scriptures, and probably more important, the spirit will tell us. As i have been in the Scriptures more and more everyday i have learned the things that i must do and as i go through out the days the spirit has told me what to do. As i listen to the spirit and act on promptings, the spirit either speaks more or i hear more of what he is trying to say. it is the most important thing i have learned and am still trying to do. the way i have been thinking about it is to move the Gospel into my Heart. To make sure that i dont just do what i need to do, but become who God needs me to become. 

So it was a great week! the funniest thing that happened was to see elder Matalolo in the snow! just think of a 6 foot 200 pound kid seeing snow and being in it really for the first time ever! its great! Haha he grabbing some snow then i started to run away because i knew he was going to throw it at me. I was coming up on the car and i unlocked it and was going to jump in. I looked back right as he lost his footing and fell flat on his back. haha then i threw some snow at him. it was super funny. It was right in the middle of the road. 

It cool to hear about all the things that are happening back at home. Its cool to hear about the Lower Lights concert! i have for sure listened to them. They have a CD that a few of the missionaries have. Its like the missionary pump up songs. They are fun to listen to. i hope you get more snow! Snow is the best! i hope you all have a great week! i love you all!

Elder Mortensen

PS: for christmas i am not sure what we will be doing probably Skype. our church starts at 9:30 so it will probably be some time soon after church. 

also i have thought some about college and that kind of stuff. In one of my areas there is a member that is a chiropractor and we talked about it a little. It interests me and has been something that has been coming to mind. I have also been thinking of SUU to start at. I dont know if that would be a good school to get started for that kind of thing or what not. But that is what i have been thinking. i would like to hear your opinion also. That  would be good help for this. 

District Council

Monday, December 5, 2016

One Thing That President White Has Counseled Us To Do Is Just One More.

Hello!! again!   

This was a pretty good week. It was kinda crazy. We had two different exchanges this week. One with the Zone leaders and the other I was with an elder in the district, Elder Yates. They were both really good exchanges. We were able to see great miracles in both of these exchanges. The exchange i had with Elder Torgersen was so cool. He is one of our Zone leaders, the other is Elder Van Wagoner, He is from Highland. He played soccer at Lone Peak. So it makes Soccer on preparation day even that much more fun. i get to beat someone from lone peak again! No, i mess with him a lot though. But the exchange! I was in there area. Which was Prosser! Not the same part of prosser that i covered when i was up there, but across the river. I will be back in Prosser in the same area i served in on exchanges this week though. We drove out to the country and stopped and prayed where we should go to do some finding. We felt we should go a little farther. So we went up farther into the country. The first door we knocked on opened right up and we had a good little conversation. He was actually pretty interested in learning. Then we walked up the street and talked to some other people. We didnt have much success. We got back in the car and felt we should go back down the road we were knocking on but the other way. So we knocked some doors up the road. It was time for lunch so we walked down to our car. As we were just getting in Elder Torgersen said lets knock one more. One thing that President White has counseled us to do is just one more. Just one more door, talk to one more person, invite one more person to be baptized, whatever it might be. So we walked across the street and knocked one more door. Then this older guy opened the door and told us to come in. He didnt really know what we did as missionaries but wanted to know. He had a stroke and had to relearn how to talk and then he found out that he has cancer, so he has a really hard life right now. We had a great conversation with him. He broke down a little and we were able to help him see how the gospel will help. We started to just talk about his family and he said his nephew is having a hard time to, just not getting put in to jail over and over again. Then before you know it that nephew and his mom came to visit. They walked in and the nephew M-- said, The Mormons! hey i am Mormon. He was baptized 15 years ago and just got pulled into some gang stuff. But long story shortish, J-- the old guy, and M-- his sister were both put on date for baptism on January 6th! They invited them over to dinner the next Friday. They said that they wanted to invite their whole family over and they taught all of them! and got Carne asada! It was so amazing to see that happen. M-- was so happy and had the biggest smile on his face when we started to talk about baptism. but the next day on exchange we didnt have much time in the morning we had a time to go help someone rake leaves. We prayed to know what door to knock on and we got out of the car and the first door opened up and we had a great conversation. her name is C--. They took the discussions somewhere in south America, i cant remember right now where. They want to learn! she invited us in but we couldnt because her husband wasnt home. But we are going back soon.  That night we finished working and we had to head back to the car to drive to Prosser to exchange back. We decided to knock just one more door. We walked past our car and knocked the house we were kinda parked by. Then D-- opened up! she is also super prepared to learn too! She lives part time in Idaho and the other part here. She said that he has been thinking of who God really is and she is curious about our religion. She has been around it and wants to learn more. Her Husband wasn't there but but she invited us back over tomorrow, Tuesday.  We are excited to go back and teach her! So it was a week of exchange miracles! it was super cool!  

We also taught J-- this week again. He is going through a divorce, i think i said that before, and its been really hard for him. Its just officially happening so he is really distracted. But he said that he feels satan is trying to make him lose his faith, but that he isnt going to loose his faith. The first time we came over he was wondering if God was really there, but now he says that he knows there is a god. He said he has been able to see him help him and his faith grow. Its been cool to see him be strengthened. We are going to keep visiting him and trying to help him. 

But yes we were able to watch the devotional with a less active guy named A-- B--. He is super cool. He is still ordained as a stake 70, from way back when they had those. i dont know what they were until he told us what they are. But it was really cool. It makes be happy to hear that you are doing the 25 days of service! We share that a lot! we have cards for it that we give to pretty much everyone! Its been cool. I really like the video and really like the ideas of service it has for it. 

It sounds like it was a great week for you all! Its so cool you were able to do the Live Nativity!! that is like my favorite thing! i hope that it went good and then no one froze! i am jealous that you got to sled on the roads!! and that you have snow!! we dont have any here. But speaking of here you did find the building i live in. Its the blueish one, The second one and its the top left room. 

real fast because this is super long already, but the funniest thing that happened was on exchanges. We went out to a dinner in the middle of nowhere. We couldnt find it exactly so we called the family but they wouldnt answer. It ended up that we had the home number and no one was home! Then we got a call form the sisters and they said they talked to this family we were eating with and they needed our number. so we got it and we called them. They said that we can break into their house and there is some lasagna in the oven. They were an hour out so we can just go eat. They told us to make ourselves at home and find and eat all we wanted. So, we did! it was so weird! it was funny though. We found some rolls and some cookies and milk! they got there right as were were finishing and we ate all they planned on us eating. So we didnt break into their secret stash or anything. Also i ate the weirdest food i ever have in my life! it was a Cow head. We walked into the kitchen and he had both hands in the eye trying to pull it out. So this meal we ate cow eyes, brain, jaw and tongue. So it was super weird, but it wasnt to bad. We both got it all down with out any problem. 

But i hope you have a great week! Sorry i dont have pictures but you do have a long letter. so i hope that makes up for it! i love you all!

Elder Mortensen

Ps i thought of something you could send in a package. my futsol shoes. i really dont know if i spelled that one right. my other ones ripped and i got some from Walmart that work good for everything except for sports. so i would appreciate that! that would be awesome. But for the other little gifts for members or what not, just whatever works really. I am not sure what it would be or anything. But thanks for doing that!