Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Helping While Healing

Hello family. This week I wasn't able to go out a whole ton because of the gum surgery. It was pretty cool. Elder Terry was helping out as Brother Mischler's assistant. It was a pretty neat experience, but unfortunately I was on a liquid diet for the next two days. That was interesting (haha). I wasn't allowed to smile. I wasn't allowed to talk for those two days or smile. I'm not really supposed to smile, so I'm trying not to, but I'm not perfect. It seems to be healing really well. I was inside for a good part of four days letting that recover.

We did get to see a couple of people. There is this one guy – I think I talked about him last week or maybe not – but anyway, he accepted to get baptized. He is going to take that jump of faith and do the things that he needs to prepare himself for that. So we are going to help him, and we made him a little calendar that has a scripture for every day leading up to the baptism. We are going to help him do those things he needs to do to get baptized.

We also had a neat experience where I felt prompted to go to the mission home to help Sister Beesley out to avoid smiling, and let my companion go on exchanges with some of the elders that were there helping Sister Beesley. So, Elder Terry went with that elder to go visit a part member family. The other elder that they brought ended up clicking really well, and they ended up inviting the Spirit. The invited them to basically do better (haha). We kind of figured out that they are converted to missionaries. So we need to help them get converted to the Lord. If there are missionaries that are bad or lazy, they will just hang out with them and not progress. If the missionaries are good, they don't really like the pressure to do good. It is kind of tough because they want to be excused from everything. We figured out it is because they are mostly not converted to the Lord, just the missionaries. So anyway, the missionaries had a really neat spiritual experience teaching them and invited the Spirit. Hopefully that helped motivate them to do good and to stay on track and progress, and not get complacent.

We had a lesson with another investigator who is preparing for baptism as well. We talked about conversion a little and what baptism is and about baptisms for the dead, and how he can extend the blessings he has been given to his deceased ancestors. His mom passed way, so he seemed pretty touched that he could be sealed to his family and to do the baptism for his mom. That was a neat experience.

We had stake conference this weekend. It was all about Christ and the Spirit was there. They had two sessions. We went to the first session and then we were able to get another person to come, so we went to the second session.

One thing that happened the week before was we got to go to the temple. I neglected to mention that. It was a really neat experience.

I will continue to try and heal, and not talk too much and smile too much. Hopefully I can do that pretty soon because it's hard to put off bad if you're never smiling. Hopefully I'll be able to still smile with my eyes; I still haven't figured that out yet (haha). President Beesley kind of messes with me. He came up to me and gave me a great big smile and then said, “don't smile.” Of course I can't help but smiling. So yeah, he's getting me there and messing with me (haha). That's okay, it's funny, but I'm not supposed to laugh.

I hope all is going well with all of you. I love you. I'm having a wonderful time up here in Alaska helping people. I pray that I can continue to do so and be close to the Spirit. I know the Church is true. I know the Book of Mormon is true. I'm glad I get the chance to share that with others. I am grateful for the Lord and how He strengthens us and helps us to become what we can't on our own. I know He has a big part in our lives and in the work, because it's His work. I say that in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Love, Elder Record

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Surgery Went Well

Elder Record had oral surgery to fix a problem with his gums on Wednesday, 20 March. He is doing well and says he is healing quickly. He is not supposed to talk for the rest of today, and may need to rest more depending on how his mouth heals. Thank you for your concern and prayers on his behalf.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Our Unfailing Friend

My thoughts are all basically in my weekly to President Beesley, so here are some excerpts. And thank you again for always being sensitive and private with the names of these wonderful people. Hope you all have a good week. =)

Elder Record and Elder Terry. A special thanks to the Fabers for taking such good care of our missionaries.
I’m very happy with the progress of some of our investigators. It makes it all worth it to see hardened hearts soften, even if it’s only a little. [Name withheld 1] is one of our investigators. He’s getting close to marrying his girlfriend, sister [Name withheld 2]. They both used to be pretty big partiers, but they’ve cut significantly back. I think it’s because they are parents and are awakening to their duties. [Name withheld 1] is a fairly humble guy and an honest seeker of truth. He wants good in his life and he wants to understand. I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to be able to talk with people like that. Even though he is caught in the world, and we hardly ever catch him when he’s not high from marijuana, he notices that something is missing and he wants to find it. We had a really good lesson with him the other day. We caught him right as he was done working out. The spirit was present as we discussed the plan of salvation. It was awesome because we were just “discussing”, not talking at him but with him, the things that will truly make us happy and about our eternal potential as children of a Heavenly Father who loves us. I hope we he will continue to allow the Lord to make a difference in his life.

[Name withheld 3] is doing very well. The Lord provided a long awaited miracle. It seems they will be able to get married because the insurance will work better now if they are married than if they are not. We will do all we can to help him make the right choice and take that leap of faith to progress towards baptism.

It is interesting to me that as often as we turn to the Savior, His hands are outstretched towards us. He is unfailing. He never leaves us, even when at times we desert him. As often as we come back, He lovingly welcomes us in. Even if it’s only for a short time, He takes us in for as long as we’ll stay. I love the Lord! I know He lives. I know He is our unfailing friend. I’m reminded of verse 16 in Alma 34; “And thus mercy can satisfy the demands of justice, and encircles them in the arms of safety, while he that exercises no faith unto repentance is exposed to the whole law of the demands of justice; therefore only unto him that has faith unto repentance is brought about the great and eternal plan of redemption.” He is mighty to save. His mercy is profound and I love him for that. In Helaman 3:27-28 it says,

27 Thus we may see that the Lord is merciful unto all who will, in the sincerity of their hearts, call upon his holy name.
28 Yea, thus we see that the agate of heaven is open unto ball, even to those who will believe on the name of Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God.

I’m grateful for all the learning opportunities I’ve been given. I know that all my challenges and experiences have been for my good. I know that He wants to make me into something better. I pray my heart will be humble enough to accept His will and do what He would have me do, act how He would have me act.

Love, Elder Record

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Masi Samoa

This is a video of Elder Matthew Wright and Elder Record (on the right) while in the Samoan ward. They are singing a song called Masi Samoa. Masi Samoa is the name of a coconut cookie the Samoans make. Regardless, this is a fun video. Before his mission, Elder Record would never have consented to performing something like this. He has come a long way. He also taught himself how to play the ukulele.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Feeling the Spirit

Hello everybody. This week at church, sacrament meeting was way awesome. The Spirit was there really strong. It was probably one of the best sacrament meetings I've attended because the Spirit there was so strong. They started with this younger girl. She was like fifteen or so. She was talking about how she joined the church. Then, Elder Terry got up and spoke. He bore his testimony and talked about why he served a mission and how much it's meant to him. After Elder Terry, one of the ward members got up and talked about how to do member missionary work. He talked on that conference talk by Elder Russell M. Nelson. After that, they had this musical number, and the lady was an awesome singer. She had perfect control over her voice and it was steady and right on pitch; it was awesome. It was just very calming and peaceful and the Spirit was there. Brother [Name withheld 1], who hasn't been to church since I've been here, came that Sunday, and all that was happening; and it was awesome (haha). He was tearing up after the song, and after that one of the ward missionaries spoke. She's awesome, she's a returned missionary, and she just has tons of energy. She had the Spirit with her while she was talking. She talked about Christ and how to bring people closer to Him basically, and how that's the focus of missionary work, to bring people closer to Christ. It was a really good day.

That same day, we ended up picking up the elders at the Cordova airport, because they were flying in to go to their zone conference. We ended up figuring things out and spending the day with them. We have had a lot of missionaries that were sick in the zone, so we ended up doing some exchanges to help them out so that their companions could go to some of their lessons.

We have two 18 year old missionaries in our zone, and one 19 year old sister. There is only one other 18 year old missionary, but he's not in our zone.

We had a couple of neat things happen this week. We found these members that moved in. The sister is a recent convert. My trainer, Elder Johnson, actually baptized her. So we've been teaching her and her husband. They are excited about the gospel and have a lot of positive energy in the right direction. We are continuing to strengthen them and help them grow. We just got a referral today that I'm excited about; some people that want to meet with the missionaries. That will be fun.

We had a lesson with [Name withheld 2]. His mom is a member – so is he, but he hasn't had a lot to do with the church. We were able to break the ice with him more. He is thinking more and more about praying and God. So that's exciting to see and went really well.

I also had something happen that was kind of neat. My gum line is receding, which isn't good. I was worried about it and praying about what I needed to do. I was asking Heavenly Father to heal that. That was a couple of weeks ago. Yesterday at Church we ended up talking to one of the members, who is a dentist, about dental work. I ended up mentioning that I was worried about my gum line receding. He took a look and said I would need surgery because the resilient part of the gum was gone, and I was just brushing the rest away. Anyway it was an answer to my prayer because I found out what needed to happen and he offered to do it for free. I'll go in on Wednesday the 20th and get it done. I'll be out for the day to give my mouth a chance to rest. He'll take a skin graft from the roof of my mouth and graft it to my gum. Moral of this story, don't brush too hard =) and that the Lord loves individually and looks out for His children. Love you all! =) Have a wonderful day.

Love, Elder Record

Monday, March 4, 2013

Changing Apartments and Helping with Iditerod

So, another week! We switched apartments with the sisters because apparently there are some sketchy neighbors where they were at, so we are getting put there (haha). But, that's okay. It's a very nice apartment, and we get a dish washer. They are in our apartment, which is a fairly safe environment. It's a win-win. I mean we probably won't have any problems with the sketchy neighbors. Anyway, I'm happy because we get a dishwasher! This is the first time on my mission that I have ever had a dishwasher. It's convenient. There is a lot of work out equipment too.

We went to that CES broadcast the other night with Elder David A. Bednar speaking. It was really good. I liked it a lot.

We were able to go on exchanges this week. While I was down with the Elders in the Huffman Ward, we had a baptismal interview. That was cool because this person is really prepared.

Elder Terry doesn't feel good. He's feeling like he is about to puke. So pray for him. He will probably survive. If not, then you will know why I get a new companion.

Life is good, studying is fun. I love the Book of Mormon.

I didn't get accepted into BYU (Provo), but I did for BYU Idaho. So at the moment, that's the plan. So I'm going to set it up to go there I guess. I'm planning on electrical engineering. I think the other things I wanted to do were just on a whim. This would be something that would be really fun to learn about. I think I am going to just stick it through and go through with what I originally wanted.

Elder Record: Elder Terry do you have any profound words to say?
Elder Terry: [Someone] of the Seventy said the way you serve the Lord on your mission is the way He will serve you for the rest of your life.
Elder Record: Profound. Words from my dieing companion.

It's really sunny. Good, nice, beautiful warm day. I mean there is snow everywhere, but it's nice.

Oh, we helped direct traffic at the BLM facility at the finish line of the ceremonial start for the Iditarod. I finally got to use my ham radio skills in using a radio to help in the coordination. =)

Talk to you all next week, bye.

Love, Elder Record