Monday, June 8, 2015

New address:

Elder Dylan Cox
2155 E Liberty Lane #126
Phoenix, AZ 85048

Well weird story, I was asked to be a zone leader again for a little bit.  Transferred back into Tempe zone, but we're now in Awahtukee which is just south Tempe where all the rich people live.  For the first time ever I'm covering two wards, the Awahtukee ward and the Mountain Park Ward.  This is also the first time I've seen ANY hills on my mission because we're right next to the mountain in the foothills area, like I say, fancy part of town.  Anyway it's pretty much been super legit so far and absolutely everyone we've talked to has been WAY friendly and it seems like they love us.  My companion is Elder Wallentine who is my mission "brother" because we were both trained by the same person.  He's also Elder Erikson's trainer (my longest companion when we were in YSA).  I lived with Wally last year when I was with Elder Francis for the second time and we had a blast.  So we're super stoked to be companions and this will be his last transfer and I'll follow about three weeks after.  Luckily we're both pretty focused and ready to tear it up.  He's been in the area before so it's been a little easier that way.
Oh yeah, whitewash #7.  Woopie.So far we haven't been able to really get to know anyone too in-depth... we've only been here since Thursday and we have two wards so I've had to try and remember twice as many names.  One part-member family we met on our first day the non-member husband plays bass.  Pretty much only a matter of time before he's in the font.  I didn't actually meet him but we talked to his wife and I saw all the basses laying around.  He also has a brand new 2015 Mustang and I jokingly asked the wife if we could take it for a spin.  She said "yeah go for it!" and I was really bummed because it's against the rules.  I'll have to come back here and burn rubber.I saw some of the biggest houses I've ever seen in this area.  Some of the richest people in Arizona live in Awahtukee.  There's some of the pro football players, all the best lawyers and businessmen, etc. etc.  The good thing though too is that there's tons of apartment complexes in the area too which provides plenty of more humble and willing people.  Also more transient so we don't talk to the same people that the previous missionaries have talked to for like 10 years straight.  It seems like a super sick area.  Because of a lot of businessmen and things, the ward leadership is stacked.  One of the wards actually goes TRACTING.  FOR US.  The Ward Mission Leader like once a week just goes with a Ward Missionary and tracts.  What the heck?  Also one of the counselors in the Stake Presidency is in our ward and he wants us to have members with us Tuesday-Thursday from 6-9 every week and he's really pushing for it.  Anyway... super legit.  I'm pretty stoked to be in this area.  Like I say, not a ton to report on because I don't know anyone, but we have several prospects that are looking pretty good.  More to come in the near future.  Until then, we have MLC on Thursday which is usually decent, and tons of missionary work in between.  I have a car again which is the biggest tender mercy ever now that we're getting into the hotter part of the year.  It's still actually been surprisingly nice the past week or so.  By "nice" I mean 95.  95 is "nice".Anyway, love y'all and have a good week.  The church is true, hope you never have any questions as to whether or not Elder Cox has a testimony of the Restored Gospel.  It's becoming more and more blatantly obvious to me that Jesus is the Christ and that he speaks through his servants the prophets.  

Love ya,     
Elder Cox

Monday, June 1, 2015

The time has come.  It's been procrastinated for about a month, but yesterday we shot up to 108, or so I was told.  Mom you said "bring on the summer" in your email and I slightly resent you for it.  It's been alright though, staying plenty hydrated and such it's not too bad. Just really sweaty.  Really really sweaty.Yesterday we had the 5th Sunday presentation that was given to us to talk about missionary work.  Not only did we have 3rd hour, but 2nd hour as well.  The WML was mainly in charge but he asked us to speak on a couple different things.  I spoke about social media and such, which is funny because I still completely suck at using Facebook.  Anyway, I showed some conversations I've had with people online and examples of good posts, etc.  It went pretty well I thought.  

No transfer news yet, I think they've officially decided to wait until Tuesday night to call for transfers, and then have transfers on Thursday.  It seems like it changes every time but I think that's what they're settling with.  So again, I could be in a totally different place next week but I won't find out until tomorrow night.

Not a whole ton to report this week.  I left plenty of white space so it looks like I wrote a lot more than I did, but maybe I shouldn't give that away.  Everything's all good down here in Maricopa.  I'm always sweaty and always working and I won't stop.  I was pondering what it means in the scriptures when it says don't run faster than you have strength, but be diligent.  I think the conclusion I came to is that sometimes you sprint, sometimes you walk, just move forward on the straight and narrow and don't ever stop.  Pretty catchy little jingle, huh?  I'm proud of it.  Anyway, keep moving forward.  Love y'all
-Elder Cox

May 25
I guess for starters I interviewed a guy for baptism that was RLDS.  I didn't ever expect that to happen on my mission, but it did.  He was baptized Saturday and by some miracle Hunter and his family showed up.  They seemed to like it, and after the baptism Hunter's dad tuned up our bikes for us.  They still didn't come to church despite them telling us that almost nothing would keep them.  Almost.  Anyway, the baptism was good and it was cool to see that anyone and everyone can gain a testimony of the gospel.
So the most recent development with Matt is that he doesn't really believe in the Atonement.  You'd think that'd be something he would've told us sooner, but he basically doesn't really believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.  *facepalm*.  But he said if it came down to it he'd side with the believers.  He clearly sees that living gospel standards is a better lifestyle, or a "better way to live" in his words.  Anyway, he'll still be a long time coming.  I'll probably be long gone by then.
We were out biking one day and this guy says "hey" to us, so we stop and ask him if he needs help because he was moving this huge wardrobe in his garage.  So we help him and he tells us that his friend has been trying to get him to the Mormon church for a long time, that he's been previously quite a bit.  Sweet!  So we teach him a quick lesson about the Atonement after he tells us about some of his life struggles.  As we leave we ask him who he knows that we could visit and he tells us that he has a friend that lives down the road.  He gives us the last name and we realize that his friend is one of our other investigators!  Bingo!  So now they'll be able to fellowship each other.  Hopefully that'll work out.
We were biking along one day and a car drives by that looks at us and tells us to stop, so we do.  Turns out it's this guy Trent who used to by the EQP at the ASU ward I served in.  He is in Maricopa selling solar door-to-door and he tells us about some people we can stop by.  So yesterday we go by and find a TON of less-active people who live there whose records aren't in the ward directory.  Also way too coincidental is that one of the ladies was baptized a couple years ago in the Chandler ward that I just served in.  Weird!  So anyway, we're working with them and we're going to teach some of their other roommates who aren't members, etc. etc.  Kinda cool miracle.  Just so happens that two different people have connections to wards I've been in previously.. anyway, you get it.
Man, we do a ton of stuff all week and when it comes time to write home, I forget everything that happened over the past week.  I swear the last 6 months have just been a blur.  Did any of my brothers get the same feeling nearing the end of their missions?  It's like it's just one big day.  Anyway, not much more to report other than the church is still true, so that's good.
Love ya'll, do good and stuff.
-Elder Cox

May 18

Welp, to start off, Hunter fell of date because, yet again, they didn't come to church.  Not sure where to take it next, but we'll figure it out!  We had zone conference last weekend and President's training was on getting people to church and teaching about the importance of the sacrament.  We applied the training as much as we could but it still hasn't worked for them.  We'll keep trying!
Speaking of zone conference, apparently it was my last one.  They asked all the missionaries that will be leaving before the next zone conference to stand up.  I look at one of the assistants with a confused face and he nods at me.  Wait, what?  That time already?  Weird.  So I got to say my final "departing testimony" if you will.  So that's weird.
Got to teach this guy about the Restoration.  We've been trying to teach him forever.  Yesterday our appointment fell through so we figured we'd drop by again and sure enough he was outside just chillin.  We taught the restoration and I got the feeling to tell him about eternal families and sealings.  That pretty much won him over and now his mentality is that he needs to find an answer so that he can be sealed to his family.  In his mind baptism is just the next stepping stone before he can be sealed, which is the right mentality to have.  Pretty sweet!
Still teaching Matt.  We took him to the Mission President's Devotional yesterday and he said "[it] was nice".  So... that's good?  They had two recent converts that were confirmed THAT DAY speaking to us.  It was so legit.  These ladies that spoke last night were SOLID.  I thought it was perfect for Matt to hear from a different perspective, but I don't know how much it really affected him.
Hmm.. other than that we taught a bunch of less-actives or recent converts.  Those have been going well but not much to report in detail.  I don't think we did anything crazy this week either.  OH.  Except that we got DUMPED on!  Friday night we were about 2 miles away from home making a last stop before we head home.  We knock on the door and talk to the dude but nothing came of it so we hop on our bikes and start heading.  It had already been sprinkling on us on the way towards the guy's house, but as we left God opened the windows of heaven and started to flood the earth again.  So we just start BOOKING it faster than I've ever biked before.  We bike on the shoulder of the highway heading home and within two minutes every inch of me is just drenched.  I screamed like a schoolgirl in pure delight.  There was lightning flashing RIGHT above our heads and every time I would just start screaming like a child.  I imagined the confused faces of all the cars passing as they see this thoroughly soaked missionary with the biggest smile on his face.  I don't think my companion was quite as amused.  We got home and had to strip down in the garage.  I thought my silk tie was toast but it turned out alright.  Anyway, we don't have pneumonia so that's good!
Life's still good down here.  Weather's been good because of the rain, but that won't last long.  Hope life's good up there.  See you in no time!