Monday, January 19, 2015

Alright so right into it. We ended up pushing Shane's baptismal date back to the 7th of February. He hadn't talked to his parents yet and he was just kind of panicking and feeling that he wasn't ready. After prayerful consideration, we felt the same way so we pushed it back. I've seen way too many times where people get baptized too fast and they end up going less-active immediately. So it should be good! He's still doing really well though and is finally back in town and everything's back to normal. He came to church and loved it, and is coming to FHE tonight and we're watching Meet the Mormons!
So we found this new guy Anil... we got a referral last Wednesday from the family ward missionaries and contacted him via phone the same day. It just so happened that there was a baptism going on that night at 6:00, so we texted Anil and said that we'd "give him the Bible" at 6:00, which the full intention of dragging him kicking and screaming into the baptismal service to watch it. We ended up being like 10 or 15 minutes late, just in time for everyone to be moving from the Chapel into the baptistry for the baptism. Well Anil just walks up to us and introduces himself, and apparently he just walked right into the baptismal service without us even being there. He's just like "yeah, there's this baptism going on let's go watch it!" So we did and it was great. Gave him a Bible and set up another appointment. We taught him on Friday and it went well, and he came to a Devotional last night and is going to FHE tonight! He's a sweet Hindu Indian guy.
We actually have added a lot of diversity to our teaching pool this week. We're also teaching this guy named Leo who is from Iraq and he's a Christian. I didn't even know there was such thing as an Iraqi Christian. Anyway, he's here studying and has been reading the Book of Mormon! So.. that's legit. We're also now teaching a Muslim guy and Shane is black. So yeah. I think we win the diversity award for the week.
I was on exchanges (again) for their lesson with Jeffrey, but apparently it went well and he finally prayed at the end! Woot! We haven't met with Gabe in forever but we're seeing him tomorrow sooo that's good.
Hmm.. well that's about all I got.
Welp, the Church is true and Jesus lives! That's all folks!

-Elder Cox
Let's see, so I guess we'll start with Janette. She got baptized! You probably don't remember Janette, but she was the one that was taking three institute classes, has a boyfriend on a mission, read the Book of Mormon a year ago and is converted to the gospel. Unfortunately, we had to pass her off because she's out of the boundaries on the weekends. But, either way she got baptized on Saturday. Wish I could say that we got to see it but we didn't.
Yeah, so ASU is finally not a ghost town anymore. Holy cow. Church was packed yesterday, which it's about time if you ask me. We got to see Shane at a devotional last night and set up appointments for us to teach him and such, and he still seems pretty solid for the 24th! But, pray for him anyway because the Devil loves to make people fall off date. He absolutely loves it. Shane is doing good though, he's read up to Jacob in the Book of Mormon which is further than a lot of converts read honestly. Solid fellowship and all, he should be good to go.
I missed our lesson with Jeffrey last week because we were on exchanges. I heard it went well though, and that he finally brought up his real concern as to why he is so tentative about baptism. Apparently his mom is like a super big anti-Mormon. Go figure, huh? Anyway, he feels like it's the right thing to do and something he wants to get involved in but he's afraid of compromising that relationship with his momma. Makes sense. We'll keep pestering him.
Jodie, our RC, has been super up and down lately --usually more down-- and recently she's back on the upward climb. She'll probably need some prayers too, while you're at it! Apparently she actually has some medical issues that make her so up and down. Anywho, she's solid again.
Gabe we haven't had a chance to meet with yet. We were expecting him at church yesterday but apparently he was in Ohio or something random. The day before school starts. So that was weird. He'll be good though! I feel like even if he doesn't get baptized he'll come to church as long as he's at ASU. He loves coming to church and loves the people here, he just doesn't feel the need to be baptized yet. We'll get him
In case anyone was wondering I'm still trudging through the Old Testament. I feel like I relate really well to it, somehow. I dunno, probably because it's crude and blunt and everyone dies all the time. I think I really like the wrathful side of God, as long as His wrath isn't pointed in my direction. I'm super weird.
Something I have been pondering lately is the "Golden Rule". Usually this applies in the sense that we "do to others and we want others to do to us", but I've lately been thinking about it in the context that Elder Holland sort-of referred to in his last General Conference talk, that is, "Do unto others and you want God to do to you." For me, it helps me be much more forgiving, merciful, charitable, service oriented, etc. Elder Holland talked about it in regards to giving to the poor, and that we're all "beggars in the sight of God", but I try to apply it to everything. Just a thought!
Welp, with school back in session you can plan on us baptizing nations. I'll let you know how that goes.
Until next time!

-Elder Cox

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Welp, here it is! . Happy New Year!

So last Monday we played basketball with President Toone's sons and sons-in-law. Fairly needless to say, they were all GIANT and really good at basketball. I'm still pretty terrible, so I wasn't much help to any of the teams I was on. It was still pretty fun nonetheless. We also "played" soccer with all President's grand kids which if you ask me was much more fun than basketball. Me playing soccer with those kids was probably a lot like those huge dudes playing basketball with me. Anyway, I got some pictures of it! Finally...

So other big news is that we put Shane on date! Woooot! We had a Skype lesson with him because he is in Nebraska or something for the break. We went over to a member's house and had a sweet lesson about the gospel. We invited him to be baptized on January 24th and he says, "Yeah that sounds great." Simple enough I guess! Yesterday he asked us what Kolob was so who knows where he got that from... but either way he's getting baptized.

We had another lesson with Gabe in which we invited him to be baptized AGAIN. Usually he tells us yes in a roundabout sort of way, but this time he flat out told us that he feels if he was baptized now that it would diminish the significance of his previous baptism. So finally the real concern comes out and we were able to talk to him about the Priesthood, etc. etc. and we're still going to work really hard with him to help him progress. As of right now, he'll probably just keep coming to church for a few years even if he never gets baptized. I guess he has sort-of a non-denominational outlook that he knows that Joseph Smith was a prophet, the Book of Mormon is true, the Church is true, BUT that other churches can be true too. So that's what we're working with. Pray for him!

With Jeffrey, we've been teaching him for a while but for whatever reason haven't invited him to be baptized! It was driving us crazy -- probably the Spirit constraining us -- but we couldn't figure out why. Well we had a lesson Saturday and found a solid fellowship for him. Invited him to be baptized and --BAM-- he said yes... but after he reads the whole Book of Mormon... so we'll see. Anyway, the fellowship is the people that we have dinner with every Sunday and they invited him over and he came yesterday! So hopefully that'll be key in his conversion by making new friends and such. Good stuff.

My companion has gotten on a real family history streak... have any of you RM's used family history as a finding tool? We're trying to figure it out to try something new. Elder Erikson found some sweet stories about his ancestors like guarding the Prophet Joseph's house, healing people, and crazy stuff like that. Pretty cool stuff. We're hoping the Spirit of Elijah can just push people into the font. We'll see how it goes!

Welp, that's all this week family. Until next time!

-Elder Cox