Tuesday, April 28, 2015

My posterior hurts like crazy....

So, JS still couldn't make it to church. He had to go to Fargo for a doctor's appointment... But, we're going to go to his house before he leaves for his surgery (gallbladder removal) and say a prayer with him. He's kinda worried. Didn't have any contact with L&S since his job is doing all of it's big changes this week. He got promoted!! D is working like crazy, so we only get to see him once outside of church.
This week we did a lot of tracting, and a lot of contacting. We rode our bikes this week! I'm just gonna buy E. Edwards from him when he leaves, cause the one I have is just a cheap Wal-mart bike. My posterior hurts like crazy.... the seat it came with is the devil... but it was nice to be on a bike again!

There were a lot of people that wanted to Bible Bash with us this week, asking us to "Prove it in the Bible" and i've noticed a common trend. First, proof does not convert, only an open mind and a contrite spirit that is willing to listen to the Holy Spirit bearing witness to you of the truth can cause you to truly believe. We can show them Bible verses that "prove" that what we say is true, but they won't believe it because they don't want to. Second, it's all the same. No one is that creative. they all ask the same questions, give us the same bible verses, and say "see, that proves that you are wrong" to which we respond "we believe the Bible to be the word of God, not just part, not just what we want, but all of it. Lets flip to [fill in the black] where Christ sheds some light on what is being said here." to which, they will respond with "oh, well when he said that, he didn't really mean it that way." So often we are accused of not believing the whole bible, yet when we give them the answer in the bible, they throw it away as if it doesn't matter. We had someone give us a verse, and before we could say anything, the person next to them says "ope, looks like you guys will have to cross that verse out of your bible since you don't believe it". And then, as we try to enlighten them, they refuse to listen and change the subject to another verse in the bible that seems to "contradict" what we believe. Interestingly enough, during one of those sessions of bashing, there was an innocent bystander, K, who knows very little about the church, who would try to get them to calm down and actually listen to us, and they wouldn't give her the time of day to say anything. After it was all over, they left, and we stuck around a little longer talking to K. After a little, she turns to us as we're about to leave, and says "I don't know how you guys do it! It is just so amazing! You just spent 2 hours being yelled at, not being given the time of day to defend yourselves and plead your case, and you stayed completely calm the whole time! Don't get me wrong, I love those 2 to death, but there were times that I wanted to just dive across the table and shake some sense into them, and I had no idea what they were talking about half the time! You guys are just so amazing, and they don't realize it!" we were beat red when she finished. I've never felt so bashful in my life! But, it's amazing to see what other people notice, that even if you didn't pay that much attention, they did.

Well, that's about the only adventure I've had this week! Here are some quotes! I don't remember If I shared any of these in the past....
"We cannot do the Lords work in the worlds way. 
"A vague creed can only come from a vague God.  the Ten Commandments didn't say 'thou shalt be a good person,' it was specific."--Elder Neil A. Maxwell

"Is it any wonder that whenever we face the bitter endings of life, they seem unacceptable to us? There seems to be something inside of us that resists endings.
Why is this? Because we are made of the stuff of eternity. We are eternal beings, children of the Almighty God, whose name is Endless‍ and who promises eternal blessings without number. Endings are not our destiny.
The more we learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ, the more we realize that endings here in mortality are not endings at all. They are merely interruptions—temporary pauses that one day will seem small compared to the eternal joy awaiting the faithful.
How grateful I am to my Heavenly Father that in His plan there are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings." President Dieter F. Uchtdorf.
There are way more coming for the weeks ahead, I just need to better organize them so that I can put them on in an orderly manner!
Love you all and miss you loads!
Elder Carter V

Saturday, April 25, 2015

"Well, nothing changed, but the Lord called, so I must answer."

Alright, so I failed to clarify things again.... Sorry! 
So, our investigator that watched Conference, who moved from Iowa and was taught by the missionaries there. We are teaching him, and he will be baptized in the beginning of May!!! We got a call from JS Saturday night, and he asked us if he could come to church with us, and of course we said yes, but when we went to pick him up, he wasn't home and his phone was off. We stopped by after church and he told us he was in Fargo and his phone had died, but we had a good chat and we are gonna meet with him on Tuesday. He is super solid and has an amazing foundation on Jesus Christ and his Atonement and who God is. I don't know why he attends the church he does, cause he doesn't agree with a lot of things they do... L and S are amazing! S knows so much! She could teach most of the lesson and we could just sit back and watch! L is doing so good. I don't remember if I said this, but L came to church last week after telling us he wouldn't be able to make it. When we asked what changed and how he was able to come, he said "well, nothing changed, but the Lord called, so I must answer." So, that essentially sums up L! He came to church again this week and he is soaking the Gospel in like crazy! 

So, the Langemo's lesson went pretty good, but not exactly how we thought it would. We had given them the Restoration pamphlet to read in preparation for our lesson, and when we got there, BJ (the mother) said she had some questions. She essentially told us she was raised to be a skeptic, so she is being just that. She asked if anyone was there to witness the vision Joseph had of God and Jesus Christ, and of course we said no, and she gave us that look, than later asked what happened to the Gold Plates that the Book of Mormon came from, and we answered they were taken up to heaven, which she gave us that look again, so I asked her "BJ, if I were to put the plates on the table right now, would you believe then?" to which she responded with "Yeah, I would" and I gave her that look that all parents give over their glasses when their kids lie to them, and than she said "well, no I wouldn't". We testified of the truth of our message, and told them not to take our word for it, but to read the BoM and pray about it, just as James in the New Testament says. Gene, the father, said he would, and M, their 13 year old daughter asked if she could have a copy of the BoM too. Than, when it was BJ's turn to respond, she simply said that she doesn't want to be rude, but she won't read it because she is comfortable in her ways. Than M, with a bit of a grin on her face, turns to her and says "well that's your problem. You can't change if you are comfortable." So, the lesson may not have gone the way we had expected, but it went pretty good. the spirit was there, and that is the most important part.
Well, something else I have run into a lot out here is the people who when you mention a prophet leading a world wide church, they always talk about how "no matter how pure he may seem, he is still a man, and unless the church is led by God himself, it will have the impure hands of man on it and things will be done wrong." That is what is so amazing about the Restoration. Throughout the Great Apostasy (the time ranging from the death of the Apostles up till 1820) man had his hands aaaaaallllll over the doctrines taught by Christ. The book of Romans in the New Testimant was a letter from the Apostle Paul to the leader of the church in Rome. For those of you who have read Romans, you will know that Paul is rebuking the leader who that letter is to, talking about changing doctrines and Ordinances (such as baptism and it's essential part in our salvation. see john 3:5). Over centuries, doctrine was changed, and there was no one like the Prophets of old to lead the church with direct revelation from God, someone who had the authority (or Priesthood) to make the changes that they did. That Priesthood was restored through a Prophet, just as God has always done throughout all of time. He called prophets like Adam, Noah, Moses, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and even (or should I say especially) Christ himself, to straighten out the false traditions of their fathers. When man gets a hold of something, they change it to fit what they want. When God calls a man to guide us, it is "for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;" (Ephesians 4:12-14) There was never a time that needed a prophet more than today. Who God calls, he qualifies. God has always called men to guide his church, and he has never been wrong. Not to say that the prophets he called didn't make mistakes, but they never led the church astray. That is how it still works. "God is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Hugh B. Brown once asked a man why God doesn't speak to man anymore like he used to. He continued by giving a few answers to his own question. He said, in essence, "Maybe it's because we don't need him. Or maybe it's because he doesn't love us anymore. He has abandoned us. Maybe it's because we have to fend for ourselves and just figure it out by wandering around in darkness." All of these are not the case, because he does speak to men again today. Pres. Uchtdorf said "Compared to God, man is nothing; yet we are everything to God." He would never abandon us, nor would he allow us to be led astray by the "sleight of men, and cunning craftiness whereby they lie in wait to deceive". Than, some might ask "no God that is loving would make only 1 church true. he would never do that." Christ said "Straight is the gate, and narrow the way that leads to eternal life." (I believe that is also in John 3? Can't remember off the top of my head) And that also is a great question. God wants all of His children to return to him, but he knows that that can't happen, because he has given us all our agency. that is why this church is a world wide church. That is why there are 86,000 missionaries in the world today, preaching the good word of God to all nations, in all tongues, to all people. Never was it easier to find truth than it is today, as long as you search with all you've got. God is not the author of confusion.
And, there I go again. Maybe next week i will have time to share some of the quotes I found! I've got a ton now, since it's been a few weeks since I shared any....

Hope all is well, I miss you all, and love you loads!
Elder Carter V

Thursday, April 16, 2015

That chick is gonna turn into an amazing dog one day isn't it?!

So, to answer some questions about the beautiful spring we are having up here, Valley City (is well named first off) is probably the only place in ND that has a ton of trees and a ton of hills. But once you leave the 3 sq. Miles that it takes up, you have grass land and farm land as far as the eye can see. But up until this week, the grass has been dead, and the trees still haven't bloomed.

This week has been an eye opener. The last little while, we have been struggling to find people to teach, but we know that if we put forth the effort, the Lord will bless us, and He did!! In the last 2 weeks we have found many people being prepared to receive the Gospel, and some people that we have taught in the past have received an answer to their prayers and are making those changes (I'll go into more detail about that in a bit)! We found this guy JH as we were walking past, we decided to go up and talk to him while he was having a smoke on his porch, and as we walked up, he said "I knew it! I knew you were gonna come talk to me! I saw your car pull up down the street, and thought 'These are messengers from God, come to tell me the good word!!' What have you got to say to me? Cause God told me to listen!!!" He is super funny, and we could hardly get a word in edgewise cause he told us his whole life story, that apologized for doing so, and said "God has just been so good to me and I can't help but tell everyone I see about it!!" We're meeting with him tomorrow! He's a swell guy! We met a few other people that said they were interested, but didn't have the time right then, so we're looking forward to teaching them!
So, found out that J might be moving to California (quite possibly San Diego), but he has been so busy we haven't been able to meet with him or hardly even talk to him, so we'll see what happens. L is doing amazing! I don't remember what I've said about him before, but essentially, when we first met with him, and we asked about his religious beliefs, he basically said he doesn't believe in a God, but he has seen some good changes in his wife as she has been coming back into activity in the church, and he wanted to see why. S, his wife, was in Idaho at the time and had no idea he had been investigating the church. He went to pick her up, and while they were there, their 5 month old daughter was blessed in Sacrament meeting. Apparently L felt the spirit testify to him, and when we had our 2nd lesson this last Thursday, we asked how reading and praying to know if the Book of Mormon is true has been going for him, and he said "Well, you know, I haven't really been praying specifically about it, but I have noticed some.... 'coincidences'. Since I've been investigating, everything is going my way, and nothing ever goes my way." then he gave us a huge smile, told us many more "coincidences", and with each one, his smile got bigger. As we taught the lesson, he bore small testimonies here and there about God, and how kind and loving he really is. It was amazing to witness!
A few weeks back we tracted into the super nice family, and we've been back 3 times now. the first time (obviously) we were unexpected, so we shared a quick message than set up another appointment. The next week, when we got to their house, they fed us dinner (which hardly ever happens with nonmembers! It's usually the members that feed us!) and we ran out of time, so we shared another brief message about Easter, since that was the week of Easter, and then this last week, we went over and G wasn't home from work yet, so we sat and talked with the rest of the family, and waited for him to get home. We had a great time getting to know them, then we saw that it had been an hour since we arrive, and thought we should head out and not overstay our welcome. BUT!! this next week, we are going to share the message of the Restoration no matter what, cause it'll all work out this time haha!
We also taught A again this week, and I realized something while talking to him. First off, Christ said "My peace I give unto you, not as the world giveth give I unto you". That peace doesn't mean there will be no war, no contention, as the world would have us believe. That peace comes as we understand the role of the Savior in our lives, but His role loses power if we don't understand vital points of doctrine that had been lost through centuries of apostasy, such as where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going, and most importantly, a true understanding of who God is. Starting with the where from, we are all sons and daughters of the Most High. We were born, in spirit,of a perfect being. Like things beget like things. A man was gathering the newborn chicks in his coop with his young daughter, when he looked at her and said "that chick is gonna turn into an amazing dog one day isn't it?" The girl looked at him with a look like of impatience, then said "no. It's gonna grow up to be a chicken." Then the father smiles, and says "yes. You're right. Chickens beget chickens. Dogs beget dogs." That is an eternal principle. We were commanded by the Savior to be "perfect, even as my Father in Heaven is perfect." Thus, we know it is possible, because God gives "no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them." (1 Nephi 3:7) Aaaaaand in enters The Christ. "The Way" for us to "become perfect, even as [His] Father in Heaven is perfect". Now, jumping to who God is, if the Savior and Heavenly Father were the same person, the submission that Christ showed as he atoned for our sins completely looses its strength. He cried out, asking God to "remove this cup from me. Never the less, not my will, by thine be done." If he were the same person or being as God, he no longer is being submissive, but doing his own will. Now, to why we are here, we wanted to come here, to gain a physical body, so that we could become like our Father. We had progressed as far as we could, and now, it was time for step 2. We knew we would experience pain, sorrow, affliction, temptation, but that is how we grow. Now, no unclean thing can enter God's presence (where we are going), so we needed a Savior, a Mediator, someone to pay the price of our sins so that we can be made perfect. We are here on earth to experience trials, but most importantly to overcome them. As we rely "wholly upon the merits of Him who is mighty to save", this is all made possible. Now, that is a quick and poorly summed up tangent, but that's the way my brain works (as you probably know). When we come to know these things, we can experience true peace, lasting peace. While teaching A, he would tell us to "Dispense with those things", which are the things that bring that peace that the Savior promised. He is so scared of so many things, but in the same breath tells us that none of it matters, because death is just a beginning. He has tried to find peace "as the world givith", but it cannot be found there. As we come to know our Savior, and our Father in Heaven, we can have that peace, that despite what happens, we can always rely on Him, because we know who they are, and who WE are, and that They will never abandon us. 
Well, food for thought. Wish I had more time to organize my thoughts better, but that is about all the time I have dang it..... Sorry I didn't put the references for most of those quotes from the scriptures... again, didn't have the time.....
I love you all very much and miss you greatly!! Sorry if I'm all scatter brained!
elder Carter V

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Every day, Every day, Every day

Alright, General Conference was fantastic. Can I get an Amen? My favorite talk was either Elder Ucthdorfs about "Grace" on Sunday, or the guy that said "Every day, Every day, Every day" (I can't remember his name....).
So, the mission office address is 2525 West Main Street, Suite 311 Rapid City, SD 57702. So, from now on, mail everything there, just in case I'm transferred (which won't happen for probably 3 more months at the earliest)
This week has been pretty darn good, but it's kind of jumbled due to conference.... I'm still kind of hung over from it..... Nice weather for part of the week though! Than back to the 20's and 30's. J is doing the same.... He is still J. Got a new job and loves coming to church. We helped a guy sheet rock his basement, and while we were doing so, he told us that we are "worse than any other religion, including Muslims and Jews, because we are so close to the truth, but we contradict important parts in the Bible", and, instead of getting defensive, which is my natural tendency, I actually felt like he meant it in the nicest way possible. Maybe the reason it didn't sting, or make me want to correct him, was because he was wrong about his responses, and we had the answers to his questions, and hopefully we can come and answer some of his concerns. He knows the Bible like no one else I know, but, the coolest part about having a religion that is led by Christ himself through a prophet, is that there can be no contradictions since God cannot contradict Himself. that was a pretty common theme in Conference too! There will always be unanswered questions, but don't doubt what you already know to be true just because you don't know the answer to something you can't yet understand. Perspective is vital. If we can keep an eternal perspective, all things will be "meted unto us".
Well, I don't really have much to say this week... hopefully next week my brain "un-fogs" and I'll be able to think strait again haha!

 General Conference quotes (just some quick ones haha)

“Be rooted in the Gospel and regular in its practices.” [Elder Oaks]
“Be bold in speaking FOR Marriage.” [Elder Perry] 
“The Plan of Happiness is an enabling plan” [Elder Christofferson] 
“God cares about who we are becoming, not who we once were” [Elder Renlund]
“The Family strengthens our ability to follow the Savior” [Elder Cook]. 
“Temples are a place of beauty, order, respite and peace; the blessings of the temple are priceless” [President Monson] 
“There will always be questions with no answers, so focus on what you know” [Sister Wixom] 
“On Easter the destiny of all of God’s children changed. Grace is an endowment of strength” [President Uchtdorf] 
“The faithful use of agency depends on Religious Freedom” [Elder Hales] 
“The Lord is doing His own work” [Elder Andersen] 
“The Sabbath is a perpetual Covenant” [Elder Nelson]

Love and miss you all!!
Elder Carter V

False alarm hehe

So, I am still in VC, which means, unless something crazy happens, I will be here for another 3 months, maybe 4 1/2! Crazy! We do have to watch our miles, we keep track of them monthly. We are given a certain amount of miles for the month, and we thought it would be a good time to go to the towns around VC! 

So, I've done some thinking, and anyone that sends me something should send it to the mission home, just in case I get transfered, they will know and will send it to me. I'll send the address next week haha! I don't have it with me right now...

Alright everyone, I'm sure you don't need a reminder, but General Conference is coming up soon, and it's going to be AWESOME!!! I was listening to a talk by Elder Holland (I think) and he talked about what people used to do to hear a prophets voice. They would travel for miles, just at the chance of seeing the prophet. So many people came to hear Kind Benjamin that they couldn't all fit in the Temple, so they built a tower so that more could hear, and then they realized that there were still people so far away they couldn't hear him, despite being packed in super tight. The King had scribes write down his words and read them to those people. They brought tents so that they could just stay the night and hear his words the next day. After Christ's death, despite the persicution from the Roman's AND the Jews (which was practicaly everybody), when an Apostle was in town and called a "conference", hundreds came. And we, in this "dispensation of dispensations" get to sit at home on a couch in our PJ's wrapped in a blanket with our whole family, no matter where we are in the world, and we get to hear every word and get to rewind and review. Isn't this the coolest time to be alive?!?!

Well, J came to church this week, but S couldn't cause she went to New Orleans to visit his family. He still struggles with prophetic council, and not only today, but the stuff of ancient times. Long story short, he takes what he wants, and disposes with the rest. He sees the blessings of keeping the commandments that he does so he keeps doing those, but doesn't want to do keep those that he... well, doesn't want to keep.

The new Easter video is out! Check out Helives.mormon.org !! It's awesome! super good!
Other than that....... there really isn't anything else going on here. Lots of finding, tracting, etc. Most people just aren't interested in watching a short 3 minute video about Jesus Christ that can only help build your faith in him, which I still find crazy. We did go to a Lutheran church on Thursday and watched a Passion play, called "He's Alive". It was something I have never experienced before, but it was kinda fun to meet the people there.
Well, here is a quote for the week. Just something to think about as we get closer to conference:
"35  And now, my beloved brethren, if this be the case that these things are true which I have spoken unto you, and God will show unto you, with power and great glory at the last day, that they are true, and if they are true has the day of miracles ceased?

36  Or have angels ceased to appear unto the children of men? Or has he withheld the power of the Holy Ghost from them? Or will he, so long as time shall last, or the earth shall stand, or there shall be one man upon the face thereof to be saved?

37  Behold I say unto you, Nay; for it is by faith that miracles are wrought; and it is by faith that angels appear and minister unto men; wherefore, if these things have ceased wo be unto the children of men, for it is because of unbelief, and all is vain." - Moroni 7:35-37

Love and miss you guys loads!!
Elder Carter V

Am I gonna be transferred?!?! Take a guess!

Wow! This is transfer weekend, we get the call on Saturday, and I may or may not be transferred!! We'll see what happens! If I'm not transferred then, I'll most likely be in Valley city another 3 transfers (each transfer cycle is 6 weeks, so you can do the math haha) but WHO KNOWS!!!
In answer to some questions, J just turned 40 (we celebrated his birthday and got him some Hawaiian punch haha. He loves the stuff), we didn't have a specific appointment with B, and he said this week would be really busy, but next week he should be able to meet.
This week we got to go up to Cooperstown and visit a family that struggles getting to church (cause, you know, it's about an hour, hour and a half drive..... crazy) and it was great! They are super nice people, and Cooperstown is a nice little place! Other than that, we didn't get to see much of the town though. We only got to visit the family than had to head home due to other appointments. We are planning on going back up this week and stopping in some of the towns around the area to visit other members that we don't get to see very often, and maybe do some service or tracting in the areas. We haven't quite decided yet, cause most of the towns are pretty small.
Our ward boundaries are huge.... We go 30 minutes East of Valley City, than an hour West from Jamestown, which is about an hour from Bismarck. I don't know actual distances, just time haha! It takes about 1 1/2 hours to get to the southern and northern borders from the center of the boundaries, pretty much no matter where you are. I think it might be about 100 mi x 100 mi, but that is just a ruff estimate haha! It's huge....
Oh yeah! I am the driver now (no worries, I haven't sratched the car too bad.... except for the light pole I hit ;) And just to be sure no one misunderstands, that was a joke haha).
Well, this week wasn't too eventful... Knocked some doors, visited some people, tried to find something different to eat at home, the works. Something that was exciting! The Adams were out of town on P-day, and asked us to take care of their animals (guinea pigs and a turtle). But, on top of that, they let us play Foosball on P-day, so we have a crazy Tournament (between the 2 of us haha)! It was by far the best P-day yet! There isn't a lot to do in Valley City on P-days... we're hoping it'll warm up again so we can go play tennis or something!
J is doing about the same, nothing new, except that he is trying to get his girlfriend to come to church with him! That's super cool! S (that's her name) is awesome. One of the nicest people I've ever met. J has been talking about Baptism, but he wants to wait so that it can be a family thing. Other than him, we don't have many people that we steadily teach. We try to contact people but everyone got busy all of a sudden.

My studies this week were booming with goodness!! A lot of them are taken from the same talks, so if you are feeling like reading or listening to a really good talk, check them out! Here are the quotes I picked:

"Those who never give up will find that God never gave up and that He will help them." - Elder Henry B. Eyring "The True and Living Church"
"If anyone is foolish enough or misled enough to reject 531 pages of a heretofore unknown text teeming with literary and Semitic complexity without honestly attempting to account for the origin of those pages—especially without accounting for their powerful witness of Jesus Christ and the profound spiritual impact that witness has had on what is now tens of millions of readers—if that is the case, then such a person, elect or otherwise, has been deceived." - Elder Jeffrey R. Holland "Safety for the Soul"

'For one and all—ecclesiastics, historians, and laymen alike—the issue is still the same. Are the heavens open? Does God reveal His will to prophets and apostles as in days of old? That they are and that He does is the unflinching declaration of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to all the world." - Elder Henry B. Eyring "Prophets, Seers, and Revelators"

"Whoever heard of true religion without communication with God? To me the thing is the most absurd that the human mind could conceive of. I do not wonder, [that] when the people generally reject the principle of present revelation, skepticism and infidelity prevail to such an alarming extent. I do not wonder, that so many men treat religion with contempt, and regard it as something not worth the attention of intelligent beings, for without revelation religion is a mockery and a farce. … The principle of present revelation … is the very foundation of our religion.” - “Discourse by John Taylor,” Deseret News, 4 Mar. 1874, 68

"Think of the heart as the figurative center of our faith, the poetic location of our loyalties and our values; then consider Jesus’s declaration that in the last days “men’s hearts [shall fail] them.” - Elder Jeffrey R. Holland "Safety for the Soul"

"It is my duty to say to you that the need was never greater [for] new revelation than now.” “The doctrine of inspiration is lost. … Miracles, prophecy, … the holy life, exist as ancient history [only]. … Men have come to speak of … revelation as somewhat long ago given and done, as if God were dead. … It is the office of a true teacher,” he warned, “to show us that God is, not was; that He speaketh, not spake.” - Louis Cassels, quoted in Howard W. Hunter, “Spiritual Famine,” Ensign, Jan. 1973, 64.
"As you come to understand that the only way to light, intelligence, strength, capacity, peace, contentment, grace, knowledge, power, happiness, mercy, joy and every other good thing, is to follow Christ, then you will want to follow him because it is the only intelligent thing to do." - Elder Lawrence E. Corbridge

“It seems to me a[n] … unreasonable thing, to suppose that there should be a God … that has so much concern [for us], … and yet that he should never speak, … that there should be no word [from him].” - The Works of Jonathan Edwards, vol. 18, The “Miscellanies” 501-832, ed. Ava Chamberlain (2000), 89-90.
"Everything that you have to give to the Lord, has its origin in Him, except one thing: your will... It is the only gift you have to offer that He does not already have.  And so when you give yourself, you truly give everything to him." - Lawrence E. Corbridge

"When the Prophet Joseph was murdered, the enemies of the Church thought that the Church would die. They thought it was the creation of a mortal man and therefore would perish with him. But their hopes were dashed. It was the true Church, and it also had the power to live on, even when those chosen for a time to lead it died." - Elder Henry B. Eyring "The True and Living Church"
Sorry my letter was mostly quotes. Not a lot happened this week, and we spent a lot of time in the car driving from one place to another. Hopefully something exciting happens this week! and I hope you liked my spacing this week. I realized that I struggled to read my own letters since I couldn't tell the difference between paragraphs! 
Love and miss you like crazy! Don't have too much fun without me!
Elder Carter V


The weather this week has been absolutely amazing! Loved being able to walk around without a coat, and enjoying every minute of it haha! Well, just a fun little tidbit, I learned a new word this morning!! It is "Bewray"(I think that's how you spell it haha). Go look it up! I thought it was interesting. Not like I'm going to use it in my everyday speech, but I thought it was kinda cool!!

J is doing good! He loves coming to church, and he invited is girlfriend to come to church with us! She said she would, but it'll be in a couple weeks cause she is a gymnastics coach and they have competitions the next couple weeks. The "Epic U-turn guy" has disappeared. Haven't seen him since that day, and he hasn't called us either.... But, we did talk to a really cool guy named B that is super interested in learning about the church! We didn't set up an appointment, he did! And that never happens! Other than that, we have been tracting and street contacting out the wazoo.... Hardly taught any lessons this week. Most people when we knock on their door say "we already have our own church" and when we try to tell them that the message we have to share isn't denomination specific, but that any christian would love it, they just say "not interested" and close the door. I think my favorite response is when people talk to us for a bit, say all the things i just mentioned, so we offer to leave them with a card that has the link to the Easter video (which is awesome, by the way. It's called "Because of him") they tell us they will just tear it up and throw it away. Why people are like that, I don't know, especially when they claim to be strong in their faith in Jesus Christ, which is all that the video talks about.
As far as referrals from members, we have run them completely dry. every once in a while they have someone that they want us to see, but other than that, not so much haha! Church this week was amazing though! Completely focused in every aspect on the Atonement of Jesus Christ! Super powerful lessons and talks! And on the way to church we listened to General Conference tapes form 1998, and J loved them! He loves listening to the speakers. He constantly says "Now, these guys have a whole lot of wisdom. They've been around the block for a while, haven't they?" 
Well, aside from that, nothing has really happened...

Quotes for the week (I've got a lot more this time!)
-"Every challenge you face, every hard thing you confront, every bad thing that happens to you, every unfairness, every conflict, every sadness, tragedy, every disappointment and heartache, every temptation and every opposition happens for 1 purpose only: to give you opportunity to respond by applying in your life the teachings of Jesus." - Lawrence E. Corbridge
-talking about the Book of Mormon- "No wicked man could write such a book as this, and no good man would write it, unless it were true and he were commanded of God to do so." - Jeffrey R. Holland "Safety for the Soul"
- "Friendship is a sacred possession." - President David O. Mckay
- "Spiritual needs can be met only by spiritual means."- President David O. Mckay
- "Suppose for a moment someone told you these three facts about a New Testament personality and nothing more: first, the Savior said of this man, “O thou of little faith” ( Matthew 14:31 ); second, this man, in a moment of anger, cut off an ear of the high priest’s servant; and third, this man denied knowing who the Savior was on three occasions, even though he had walked with Him daily. If that is all you knew or focused upon, you might have thought this man a scoundrel or a no-good, but in the process you would have failed to come to know one of the greatest men who ever walked the earth: Peter the Apostle.
Similarly, attempts have been made by some to focus upon or magnify some minor weaknesses of the Prophet Joseph Smith, but in thatprocess they too have missed the mark, the man, and his mission. Joseph Smith was the Lord’s anointed to restore Christ’s Church to theearth." - Tad R. Callister
- "An invitation that is born of our love for others and for the Lord Jesus Christ and our desire for the happiness of these friends and family members will never be seen as offensive or judgmental." - Jeffrey R. Holland
- "30  But this much I can tell you, that if ye do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe the commandments of God, and continue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of our Lord, even unto the end of your lives, ye must perish. And now, O man, remember, and perish not." - Mosiah 4:30
- "Good leaders, like good parents, take action because of love. When they act in love, the Spirit will guide them and help them understand that each person requires unique care to help them gain the joy of life lived in the Lord’s way." - Russel M. Nelson
- "A knowledge of truth and the answers to our greatest questions come to us as we are obedient to the commandments of God." - Thomas S. Monson
- "In the Church we talk about being called to positions and set apart to teach Sunday School or in other priesthood auxiliaries. The priesthood sometimes prides itself with having the power to do the teaching. They don’t come near the power that’s given to a mother. The greatest teaching in the Church is done by the mothers." - Boyd K. Packer
- "The essence of the Lord’s work is changing, turning, and purifying hearts through covenants and ordinances performed by proper priesthood authority." - David A. Bednar
Hope all is well back home! Love and miss you loads!
Elder Carter V