Monday, July 28, 2014

Unusual as usual

Things here are unusual as usual. 

Hey Family!! Sounds like things are as usual back at home. Things here are unusual as usual. My companion Elder P is getting transferred which means I will have a new companion come tuesday. I was super bummed! I learned a ton from Elder P He was much more organized and way good at planning which are my 2 biggest weaknesses. Now I will just have to apply those things he taught me. He would always say "The kingdom of God or nothing!" to which i would reply with Brigham Young's quote "Work hard or go to Hell!" haha We both really buckled down. The only time we weren't doing missionary work was when we went to bed. During lunch we would make a quick pb and j and spend the rest of the time scheduling appointments and calling members to come out with us. At night we would spend an hour planning and then the last 30 mins before bed we would cram down some food brush our teeth and maybe write in our journal (ususally not haha) . 
  It's funny I don't look at food the way I used to. When I eat now its simply to just fill up the tank. We bike so much it is almost disgusting and by the end of the day I am completly drained. That's why it is so nice to have members come out with us cause that means we get to ride in a car for a short while. Of course that is not the real reason but it is certainly a plus.
   Tomorrow I reach my 6 month mark!! I know that really is not to long, but everybody says your first 6 months are the hardest. Looking back I honestly can only remember the good times so I am definetly looking forward to the year and half more of swell times haha.
   I have found the secret to being a happy missionary is talking to everybody. It is never easy to do it and I can't say I am 100% proficient at it, but as we try to improve the Lord blesses us with the ability to do it even better the next time.

   Well thats all the news that is news hope all is well love "Yall" ;) -Elder Wagner

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Elder Swagner

hey hey hey hey!! We run into a ton of spanish speaking folk over here. One day I was just so frustrated, so for personal study I tried to pull a Kolly Pokie and read from the spanish Book of mormon and then translated from the english copy. I did it for like 10 mins and gave up haha. I have a couple of different phrases memorized though! Like how to get their information, where the churhc is at and that I don't really speak spanish but I know missionaries that do. It is actually pretty effective we give the spanish missionaries a ton or referals. I don't ever know if they go anywhere though.
    This last Sunday Reginald was sitting next to me at church and someone was giving a super powerful talk and whispers to me in his cool accent. "What does it mean when you get goose pimples? I was like HOLD THE PHONE YOU ARE FEELING THE SPIRIT!!! and he was like "But where does it come from?" Me: "It comes from Heavenly Father" And I then showed him a ton of sciptures about it. I don't know if he really understands it yet, but he knew that he felt something and he knew it was significant. I can't tell you how grateful I am for that moment, because for the first time it really hit me that I am not alone in this work and that a power far beyond understanding is at work in this gospel.
     Later on that day we talked to a lady who was a sevent day adventist and my companion asked her why she was a member of that church and she had 2 reasons that just baffled me. 1.) I'm a third generation adventist my Grandpa was converted in Africa. 2.) I am comfortable with their teachings. Honestly in my head I was thinking those are some pretty silly things to base your testimony off of. Most people don't even consider the possibility that what they believe may be incorrect. That is one of the things that I love about this Gospel, the challenge is always to read and pray to find out for yourself and inquire to the source of all truth to find just that, truth. "Seek and ye shall find" Open your heart and the spirit can enter. And thank heavens Reginalds heart is open enough to be recpetive to the guidance that the holy spirit provides. I have high hopes for that guy and Heavenly Father has higher.
      As far as other stories all the youth in the ward call me Elder Swagner I pretend like I don't like it, but I secretly do haha. This ward is really cool about 30% of the ward can't tell anybody what they do for a living, because they work at DC in things like the Secret Service, CIA, and Homland security. It's pretty cool. Apprarently the governement likes to hire Mormons because their backrounds are as clean as a babies bottom haha. Maybe I'll work in the CIA one day ;) just kidding it's way to humid over here. Anyway all is good over here hope all is well there! love-Elder Wagner

Missionary work is fun and super and enjoyable

   This week has been very unique. I think I told ya in my last email that me and Elder Y were staying together. Well come to find out that the zone leaders forgot to call him so half way through p-day that he was getting transferred. We were both super bummed. I don't think I will ever have a companions who has so much in common with me. He will be missed. I have a new companion now named Elder P. He is the opposite of Elder Y in a good way. Me and Elder Y were always the kind of go go go kind of people which is good but sometimes we were a little disorganized. We would spend all our time doing missionary work and never ever doing any of the paper work. Which made us lose track of a lot of things one of those things is the people we met and what we taught them. So Elder P is helping me to slow down and stay organized. I'll send a picture of him next week 
   With Elder Y gone that means I am taking over the area which is I was completely unprepared for. As soon as he left I realized that I really didn't know the area very well haha. While biking around town I had always just tucked my head down and tried to keep up (Elder Y was insanely quick). However I am starting to figure it out so no worries.
  There is not to much more to share about events that happened, but I have been thinking about a quote lately which I will probably miss quote haha. " That which we persist in doing becomes easier; not because the nature of the thing has changed but our ability to do has increased". I don't know who said that but I whole heartedly believe it's true. Missionary work is fun and super and enjoyable, but it also incredibly taxing. When I come home the only thing I want to do is sleep and when I do it takes like 10 seconds and then I am out I guess that's a good thing though. I constantly have dreams about my investigators. The other night I had a dream that Reginald Wanted to be baptized and I was sooo happy and then I woke up.... haha. All good things in time. Anyway love you guys and love the pictures! keep me updated on everything love Elder Wagner

Rain doesn't stop anything

My companions  is everything you would expect a long distance runner to be. Funny, Goofy, Hard working and stubborn haha. Just like me!
   Soooo this week was interesting as usual. I had guy tell me that I was going straight to hell because of Joe smith and that blasted Book of the Norman. I don't know why its so difficult to say Mormon... But most of the time that's what black folk call us. Fortunately I learned my lesson last week and simply bore testimony and humbly thanked him for the conversation and we left on good terms besides the fact that he prayed that are wayward souls would come to know who Christ truly is. But we didn't get mad or defensive like I did with the other guy so I gave myself a pat on the back :)
  Also for the first time I had the chance to teach the law of chastity to a family to which it would actually apply. It was pretty intense as we talked and discussed I realized what a blessing it is to have parents who are not only married but also ceiled in the temple. It is such a comfort that I am truly grateful for.
  We have one solid investigator who I might have talked about a couple of times. His name is Reginald. he has been attending church and meeting with us like 3 times a week. And just this last Saturday he attended a baptism. He liked it and He said that he felt the spirit. Me and Elder Yardley are staying together another transfer so we have faith that Reginald will get baptized before next transfer.
   This week I learned that rain doesn't stop anything. No matter what the weather is we are always warm and wet. I would rather be wet due to water than to sweat so I actually like it when it rains it also helps get inside peoples houses ;)
   That's about it for the weekly report Hope all is well, stay strong and carry on love -Elder Wagner
 p.s. I like receiving pictures to even of the boring stuff so don't be afraid to send some my way :)