Monday, May 27, 2013

My Week + Pictures :)

Hey Mom, and Everyone else!

This week has been pretty nuts. So first of all, there are some people that could use some prayers.  Aubree is going to get baptized next week, and is super solid, but we think that the adversary will mount a big attack. Troy is also getting baptized, but I think he will need some help as well.  Thea is in the hospital so she definitely needs help.  James could always use some help and prayers to feel the spirit.  Anthony has been coming to church and we need some prayers so we can get ahold of him, and the same with Toby.  Thanks all!

So, on Tuesday, Elder Steiner and a bunch of other people had a training meeting to go to in Salt Lake.  So, I got to go on exchanges with Elder von Kampen and Elder Faulkner.  Elder Faulkner has the same type call as mine (he is from West Jordan), and Elder von Kampen is also very new. in fact, between the three of us, I think we had about 2 months of mission experience.  It was interesting to say for sure.  I got to bike around on a lousy bike, but it was fun.  We got to contact a lot of people who need to start coming back to church, and we did see a lot of them.  It is pretty cool to feel the spirit when you get three guys who are just super excited to do the work, but have no idea what we are doing.

That night was also crazy because we had a lesson with Aubree (which was great) on the opposite side of our area from another lesson with Troy.  We ended up being almost half an hour late, and it was bad.  Both lessons went great though, and the spirit was definitely there.  They are both getting excited to be baptized.

Wednesday was hard because all we did was contacting less active members.  The worst part was that we went all day, knocking on over 30 doors, and at least 8 of them had moved, and not a single one was home.  It was great to narrow down the list for the ward, but it wasn't a lot of fun.

Thursday we had a great district meeting.  Our district is such a hoot.  They are always making jokes, and the way we choose prayers is by using our fingers as guns, and whoever has the most guns pointed at them prays.  A little odd, but definitely fun.

Friday and Saturday got interesting because we are basically out of miles.  It is bad.  We walked all of those days, and will probably be walking the next few.  We didn't even have the miles to drive to the church to play basketball, so we just ran (yuck) and did our own workout. I give a special thanks to Trevor here for the jump rope.

Church was crazy as usual, and we had most of our investigators at church.  We also had an emergency speaking opportunity when we got about 10 seconds notice, at least I did.  Elder Steiner got to prepare while I spoke.  It was actually pretty fun, and a huge testimony builder because the spirit spoke to them, not me.

Pray for me to be able to get what we need to do on foot!

Love you guys a ton!

Elder Beckstead

P.S. I hope you guys can get the pictures! One is of me and my companion

 another of me and one of my WML after a color run activity
another of Emily and her baptizer with us
another of my apartment
and one each of Elder Faulkner
 and Elder von Kampen.

  Also one more with Elder Jackman and Elder Mbawa

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Running right out of the gate

Xane arrived at the Salt Lake mission home around 8am May 8th. There were 24 other missionaries new to the mission that same day, so it was a beehive of activity. We stayed long enough to see him put on his missionary badge and then we hugged and kissed him goodbye. The adventure has started!

We received an email from the mission president saying how they looked forward to working with Xane. Here is a picture:

President & Sister Winn and Xane (1st day)
We did get to talk to him on Mother's Day and he sounded great. He is excited to be working hard and to learn the in's and out's of being a missionary.

Here is the first letter he emailed home:

Dear Everyone,

So I am stationed up here in Layton/Kaysville/Fruit heights and I am loving it.  I cover so much area because my companion (Elder Steiner) and I cover the Young Single adult Stake as our area.  It is very exciting, and there is a ton of work too be done here.

I will tell you a little bit more about my companion.  He is from Texas, although he was born in North Ogden, and went to two years of school at Weber State before his mission.  He is about 5'5" and reminds me quite a bit of my old roommate Graig. He has a bunch of experience training (I am actually his fourth son) and has been out for 20 months. The best part about him is that he is a worker.  He loves to just go, go, go, and with me as a companion that is exactly what we are going to do.  In fact, he has worn out a few of his companions pushing so hard, so he is just the man for me.  I'm glad that I had the faith to believe President Webb when he said not to worry, and Elder Steiner is an answer to prayer.

Elder Steiner and Xane
Not much of a height difference :)
I am living in this quaint little apartment with another set of Elders, despite the fact that it is really only barely big enough for two people.  In fact, the other Elders are kind enough to let Elder Steiner and myself have the beds, while one sleeps on a couch and the other sleeps on a love seat out in the living room.  After sleeping on our hard mattresses lying on the floor, I am starting to understand why.  Although it is cramped and there is not nearly enough desk space to go around, we get by.  Showering also has turned out to be a little interesting (I have an average time of about 5 minutes in the bathroom), but again, we work it out.

Elder Steiner and I were white washed into the area, meaning that we were both new and didn't know any of the contacts, investigators, leadership, or anything.  However, despite that, the Lord has really blessed us so far, and provided many miracles in our behalf.  We currently have two super solid young ladies on date for baptism, Emily and Aubree, one this next Saturday!  Emily is an incredible young lady and her sister is a recent convert with her mission papers in.  Together they make quite the pair, and have an immense amount of faith and trust in the Lord. I am so excited for her.  We will be meeting Aubree tomorrow.

We have a couple investigators that we have met, who are all great.  One named Caitlyn, wouldn't meet with the missionaries for two months because she didn't want to be pushed into getting baptized.  She wanted to investigate the church at her own pace, and had a tentative date for baptism set for October.  The sisters met with her once, and that date moved up to August.  After we met with her, she was thinking the end of June.  I really hope we can impress what a blessing it is to have the holy ghost and help her receive those blessings as soon as possible.

I have to give a shout out to all the people who have helped me prepare for my mission.  Elder Steiner has been impressed with my knowledge, and the experience you all helped me gain has been a huge help as I meet and teach new people.  All those mission prep classes, All Stars teaching experiences, and Sunday School lessons have really helped my confidence in talking and explaining concepts to complete strangers who have become loved friends.  I promise that the preparation will be a great advantage to all you priests and young men who are getting ready to go.

I wish I could show you a picture of my companion, but I can't get the pictures off my camera (My computer doesn't have an SD reader, and my cord is packed deep in the recesses of the suitcase I have been living out of).  I suggest you go to the blog because I'm sure Sister Winn took some.  Ask my mother for the address for that. 

Welcome to the mission field Elder!
Thanks again for all your support!

Elder Beckstead