Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Birthday Boy

 Hello wonderful family! I just want to start off by telling evryone thank you for all of the fun birthday packages and notes! It made my birthday very enjoyable and exciting:) Mom, thank you for all of the BYU stuff, now I can finally have some cougar pride to match my companions Utah pride!:) It ended up being a wonderful day, full of happy birthdays and yummy treats.

This week has been a good one, we have got a good amount of referrals and have been trying to get into contact with them. We did get to go visit  lady named Rachel, who referred herself, because she wanted help bringing her husband (who is struggling) closer to Christ. We decided that we needed to teach her the plan of salvation. It was a very powerful lesson, and she had lots of questions that we were able to answer for her. In the end we gave her a Book of Mormon and asked if she would read 3 Nephi 11. She said she would, and that she would probably end up reading at least half of it by next time! She is awesome, and was defiantly prepared by the Lord. We have also tried to contact a guy named Kenny, but have not yet been able to meet with him. Earlier this week we went and saw this sweet old lady named Claudia. She is 77 years old and lives in a care center. She is really struggling and doesn't understand why she is still on the earth. She also has a lot of family problems and has been addicted to smoking for along time and wants to stop so she can have the sacrament. We have been visiting her for 4 or 5 weeks now, and each time we go we try to leave her with a gospel message of peace and hope. Last weeks lesson went really, really well! When we left she was beaming with happiness. We also had the chance to visit the Vandergriff family. They are really struggling, with the baby on the way and him out of work with his injury. They did get approved for disability which has been a great blessing. They also came to church this week! It was so good to see them. There is this other guy named Jerome that we got to go visit this week with a member exchange. He is older and loves to talk politics! It's really hard to teach him, but we love him to death! He is a strong christian man, that is striving to live his life in accordance with God's will for him. He told us that every morning he thanks God for allowing him to be on the earth this day. He is a great example to me and has helped me to have more gratitude in my heart. We also had the chance to go and do some service for an older couple in our ward. We helped them pull up all of these plant roots that had been over grown with grass. When we were done my jeans were caked in a thick layer of mud!:) It was fun to work hard and help out such a wonderful family. They actually ended up giving us all of these supplies for our apartment! It was great. Elder Partridge also got a lot of sweet slacks from them.

I want to tell you about one of my favorite members:

Brother Davis: He is 88 years old and lives alone in a tiny little house. Has two little black chickens that he takes care of. He is super into scouting and has a hundred plus cups from scout camps! He always helps us with rides and when we go to get groceries. He has two cars he picks us up in. One is this really nice luxurious car, and the other is this big Chevy fan. It has two seats in front and in the back he has this big recliner that we get to ride in:) It's quite the bumpy ride! He also already has his 100 birthday planned. He told us that he has already rented out the church, and that he is going to spend the rest of his funds for food for his party. Once the party is over, he is going to call the mortuary and tell them to come pick him up because he is ready to die:) He is a great member and always brings a smile to my face.

This week I also got to go on exchange with the zone leaders. They speak Spanish, so most of the people they teach spoke Spanish. it was pretty interesting. We started off by making doing these referral updates through the phone. The whole time we were doing them, the phone was making this high pitched static noise that gave elder Cook a head ache:) After that we went knocking doors. We didn't have much success, but it was good practice. We also went and taught this really awesome guy named Eduardo. We taught him tithing and keeping the Sabbath day holy. The lesson went great and he committed to both commandments. We also got to teach this thing called a 21 tips lesson. It's a free service the missionary get to where you go into a families house and teach there kids how to do better in school. We taught this wonderful christian family, and at the end I got  to testify about how God is the greatest teacher and counselor and how we can turn to him for help with school related things. It was a great visit and they said we could come back next week. It was a wonderful exchange. We have awesome Zone leaders! 

Well my email time is up, but I want everyone to know that this is the true church and the Book of Mormon truly contains the fullness of the gospel! It brings me such joy to read from its pages! I love you all so much!!!


Elder Griffin

Monday, September 22, 2014

Nothing better than knowing my boy is working hard, serving others and loving the gospel!

This week has been a great time of growth. I had the opportunity to do a small training at our district meeting. At first I was pretty nervous, but eventually I realized that this would only help me grow and become a better teacher. The training ended up going pretty well and lots of good comments were made. That same day I went on exchange with a wonderful missionary that I really look up to. He taught me so much and really showed me how to be an obedient missionary. On our exchange we went and visited a young boy in his area named Logan. He is nine years old and comes from a less-active family. We started teaching him about the baptismal commitment, and we read with him from Mosiah 18. As we were teaching him we would ask him different questions about what he was reading, he answered every question perfectly. The spirit was very strong. Following the visit with Logan the member we were on exchange with asked us for a blessing. During the blessing elder Peterson called him to repentance and told him he needed to be reading the scriptures more. He then went on to give amazing blessing! He is very in tune with the spirit. He was also a very good cook and made me these really good egg crepes. It gave me some fun ideas for meals this week:)

This week we also found some awesome new potential investigators! One of them is named Erica, and has lots of potential. Another ones name is Rachel. We only had a chance to briefly meet with here, but I could tell that she really is searching for the truth. I'm pretty excited to teach her. The last one was a man named Montreal. We meet him coming up a bike trail. He was super happy and said that it was meant to be that we came into contact with him. We actually brought him to church this week, at church he started going off about how he is struggling with his wife and how he really needs help. Nothing we said made him feel better, but we are going to try him this next week and see what we can do to help him. 

Also this weekend we got to go on some great member exchanges! The first one was with a recently returned missionary. His name is Josh, and he is really awesome. With him we first went and say Tracy. We taught her the third lesson on the gospel of Jesus Christ. The lesson went fairly well, but we have been wondering if she is really grasping all of the things we have been teaching her. We had to move her baptismal date back, but I still have hope that everything will work out for her:) During teaching her we had to do it outside because of some remodeling, and we got eating alive by!!:) I'll have to remember to wear some repellent next time. Following Tracy we went and say Cay. Her dog had just had puppies and they were super cute! We didn't get to teach her due to time, but we did leave her with a prayer and committed her to keep reading the Book of Mormon. She also said that her job is starting to do really well, it was so good to see her happy. The second exchange we had was with a young single man named Bro Richey. He is super nice and is getting married this December:) With him we went and contacted a bunch of referrals which was wonderful.  We also contacted a nice man on the street named Wan. We shared a quick message on eternal families and he said we could come back and see him again:) We also stopped by a lady name Ashley Head. She is a recent convert and is super busy. She is involved in a lot of plays and also works atone, so it was a blessing to get to see her. She seemed to be doing great, and it was fun to talk with her and see how she is doing. She said that she is still reading the Book of Mormon which was great to hear! Our last stop of the night was the Vandergriffs. Brother Vandergriff just had shoulder surgery a couple of days ago, but was doing great! There family has been struggling with the bills due to the fact that he is out of work because of his injury and she is pregnant. I worry about them, but know that if they rely on the Lord that everything will turn out alright. They also have this clumsy dog named Hazard that makes me laugh every time we go over there!:) He is super goofy and has so much energy.

This Sunday in sacrament meeting we had a missionary farewell talk by the Elders quorum president's son. It was very powerful and I could tell he is going to be an amazing missionary! We also had the chance this Sunday to go to the missionary President's fireside for investigators and new converts. He did an amazing job and the spirit was strong. He talked a lot about how the gospel is delicious, referring to Lehi's dream. He also boldly testified of all the doctrine that only are church has, it was powerful. I also got to see some of my MTC buddies. It was so fun to see them again!

Well my time is up, but I love you all so very much!!! Hope everyone is happy and healthy! I know this gospel is true and each day I realize more and more how amazing the Book of Mormon is and how it truly does contain the fullness of the gospel! Have a great week!:)


Elder Griffin

I have no pictures this week, but I will try to get some next week:) 

Monday, September 15, 2014

One Month Out and An Empty Fridge

I can't believe that my month mark is already hear! It is crazy how fast the time flies out here. It is so fun to finally start to adjust to my area. I can now navigate around pretty well, and am starting to understand which streets lead to where I need to go. This week the weather finally turned cooler! It has been so fun to ride our bikes in 75 degree weather instead of 100 degree weather:) I also want to say thank you for the wonderful package with my hoodie! It made my whole week:) Also I loved the package full of all of the letters from the brothers. Sounds like everyone is doing well and having a wonderful time in school. Also tell the Lloyds I enjoyed there package and letters.

This week has been a good week. I starting to realize that becoming the missionary the Lord wants me to come is going to take a lot of work! We had this District leader meeting, where we talked a lot about striving to become a better missionary. We also talked about over coming the things in our lives that keep us from being a consecrated missionary. I left the meeting determined to work on the things that were holding me back from reaching my true potential. This week I also got to go on an exchange with elder Stewart. He has been out 10 months and is an awesome missionary. He came to my area, and for the second time I have the privilege to show him around are area. On our exchange we biked a tone! We went around and tried to visit all of these potential investigators, but we did not have very much success. We then tried to go to these apartments over in Haltom, but again no one was home. Following that we decided to go and try to contact a referral we had received from the Spanish elders. It was a really long bike ride, but when we finally go there she was home!:) She is a really nice lady named Cay. She really likes to talk, and we even got to teach her the restoration and gave her a Book of Mormon. We then asked her if she would read the introduction and 3 Nephi 11 when the savior comes. It went really good, and I am excited to teach her more. When we got home from Cay's house we calculated it and we had rode around 12 miles!:) The following morning we meet with an investigator we had meet while contacting a week ago. His name is Lloyd. He is really in to family history so we brought him to the family history center. He was pretty excited and we signed him up for familysearch.org. Following that we got back together with are normal companions.

This week we also got to go on some awesome ward member exchanges. Our first one was with this really cool returned missionary named Josh. With him we went and taught the Peralta family (this is the family with the cute little girl I had the chance to baptize) and we showed a little movie about the restoration and Joseph Smith. It was really good, and we are hoping the father of the family felt the spirit so he will hopefully come back to church! Also with Josh we went and say Cay, she is the lady I was talking about earlier. Her car was having some problems, so she was in the middle of trying to buy a part for it. We didn't get to teach her a lesson, but we did ask her how her Book of Mormon reading was going. She said she had read the chapters we gave her and that she had prayed to know its true. She said the answer she got was that she needed to keep reading. The next exchange this week was with Brother Yule. He is the wife of the primary president and is a great guy. With him we went and say the Websters. They are one of my favorite families, but this week they got really offended by a situation with some of the members. They were pretty frustrated, but we visited with them and helped them feel a little better about the situation. We also went and saw this really nice young couple whose names are Adam and Gabby. We have been trying to see them for a month now, and they finally answered:)They told us that life had been pretty crazy lately, but that we could come by next Friday. We are pretty excited to go and teach them. 

This Sunday we had a wonderful sacrament meeting. This really nice younger couple named the Atkinson's gave talks. The wife told her conversions story. It was pretty powerful and strengthen my testimony of the truth of this wonderful church! Brother Atkinson talked about being a true disciple of Christ and how we need to be praying, reading the scriptures and going to church. It was simple, yet powerful. The cool thing about Bro Atkinson is that he served his mission in Taiwan just like you dad! It was fun to talk to him about it. We also got to go to this really cool family for dinner named the Morris family. They had this crazy dog that would jump all over you! It got hair all over my suit pants:) They feed us this Guatemalan soup dish that was really yummy. We also had some amazing Blue Bell ice cream! It was sooooo good:)

Well I hope you are all having a wonderful week! I love you all and pray for you ever night. Thank you again for all of your support and love.


Elder Griffin

Also here is a funny little picture we took of me sitting in front of our sad little empty fridge the day before we went shopping:) ha ha      

Monday, September 8, 2014

Dal's First Baptism!

 Yetzel's Baptism
First haircut in the field…Elder Partridge took the clippers to Dal's hair.

He said, "Super short, but it'll be nice in this Texas heat!" 

Hello greatest family in all the world! Well since I emailed kind of late last week, I don't have too much to say but there are some events I would love to share. First off, we got to go and teach Tracy this Friday. We taught her the Plan of Salvation. There were a lot of new ideas and I think it might have been a little overwhelming. but I think she is still doing great! We left her with the commitment to ask God for forgiveness of her sins in order to help her get prepared for her baptism:) Also this week I had the chance to baptize his sweet little 8 year old girl named Yetzel. She comes from a less-active home. The whole time before her baptism she was super nervous and anxious, she couldn't seat still. Then when I went to baptize her, her big toe popped out of the water:) So we had to do it one more time. After she got out of the water she was sooooo happy:) She was bouncing around and wouldn't stop giving me and elder Partridge hugs. I love their family and am very happy for Yetzel. Also this Saturday night it was raining and elder Partridge got a stomach ache so we couldn't go out and teach. So during that time I went into super cleaning mode and made our apartment spotless! It was so fun to finally have a clean apartment! It made it easier for the spirit to be in our apartment. We were also able o focus on our studies more. This Sunday night after church and dinner with a wonderful ward family named the Hills we went out contacting. We didn't' have much success until we were on our way home. We meet this guy named James. He was very open, and even accepted a Book of Mormon. He said he was looking for a church to go too, and wanted one that had it's services on Saturday. It was kind of interesting, but I can see him becoming a great member of our church! We also ran into a guy named Nick, who was giving out cards from his church that said "What does God owe you?" It was quite a silly idea, but we listened to him and respected what he had to say. He then asked us what church we were from and what we believed. Elder partridge told him about the restoration of our church and how we believe that we are Christ's true church on the earth today. At first he was kind of bashing our church, and he wouldn't accepted the Book of Mormon, but as we continued o talk with him he became more soft hearted. In the end he accepted a Book of Mormon and I left him with Moroni's challenge:) I love you all and I am so glad to hear that everyone is doing so well! Thanks for your prayers and for being the most amazing family in the whole world!


Elder Griffin

Friday, September 5, 2014

Answers to my questions and Letter Week 4

The hardest thing I had to do this week was 
Ride my bike in 103 degree weather :)

My favorite thing about my companion 
He is really good at planning and teaches with power.

For breakfast I like to eat granola.

I was happy this week when taught some investigators about the restoration.

My knee is feeling pretty good, I went on a run and it was pretty sore.

I wish my mom would send me my frisbee jersey and a hoodie.

One of the coolest people I’ve met in Texas is Brother Jorgenson and this cute family named the Websters.

If I could describe my mission president in 2 words I would say he is loving and inspired.

My least favorite thing about Texas is that I get super sweaty!

I felt the spirit this week when I helped give a less active member a blessing.

My apartment is air conditioned and has a pull up bar;)

I love my Mom more than she could ever imagine!!!

Letter than came by mail Sept 5th 2014:
Hey Family, I don't have the use of the computers today, so I thought I would write you!  This week has been great!  I got to go on an exchange with the zone leader on Tuesday.  I was kind of nervous at first, but it turned out to be great.  I went with Elder Ostland, he has been out of a year and 3 months.  The only problem was that his area is Spanish!  Luckily most of the people we visited spoke at least some english.  We started out by meeting with a man who has been reading the Book of Mormon, but couldn't make it to church due to his work schedule.  We read with him from the Book of Mormon and we talked about Lehi's vision.  After that we had the chance to go to a pizza buffet with a member. They had this really good cheese pizza! Following dinner we visited a 16 year old girl, and tried to help her develop a love for the scriptures.  She doesn't like to read because she says she gets bored.  We decided to read Lehi's vision again and show her how awesome the scriptures can be!  Elder Ostland and I read it with her and tried to make it really fun for her.  Towards the end she really seemed to enjoy it and committed to read the scriptures the next day.  We ended the night by visiting a man named Eric.  He has had a really hard past, but has turned to the gospel and is really excited about what is being taught.  Also, during the lesson we showed him this cool mormon message about finding God.  I think he really liked it.  It ended up being a great exchange.

We have lots of opportunities to do service in our area.  This week we were able to help 2 people move and cut down some small trees for a family.  It was hard work and I was sweating like crazy, but it felt good to be serving others!  One of the families we helped move is super nice.  They are a younger couple and were super grateful for our help, they are going to be a good addition to our ward.

This week I had my first flat tire! :) We decided to go to the bike shop and buy a self-sealing tube so I don't have to keep patching it up. :) While I was at the bike shop I also bought a kick stand! It has been a nice addition to my bike:) Oh, and by the way I decided to name my bike Tanto, like the indian on the Lone Ranger TV show. :) We hung up my old tube on the wall, and there it sits as a mission trophy.  

This Friday I had the chance to go on another exchange.  I go on lots of exchanges because my companion is the district leader.  Before we met up to exchange, we decided to go contacting.  We saw this man in his driveway and we decided to go and talk to him.  He ended up being a really nice guy.  He is really interested in Family History, so we set up a meeting this next Wednesday and are going to be teaching him at our Family History Center!  Following that we met up with the other Elders and exchanged.  I went with Elder Argile.  He was a pretty cool dude, he taught me a lot and made me a better missionary.  The coolest part of the exchange was when we were able to give a non-member a blessing.  After the blessing, the man really opened up about his relationship with God.  The next morning we met the other Elders at Dennys.  I got these really yummy peanut butter pancakes! Landon would have loved them:)

This Sunday our investigator Tracy came to church again!  We were very happy she came.  After church was over we asked her if we could set a baptismal date for September 27th and help her work towards that goal.  She said that would be wonderful!  We are excited to continue to teach her. 

Some other cool things happened this week were: I get to baptize an 8 year old girl on Saturday who is part of a less-active family!  We also meet a really cool family who have this goofy acting dog that is really funny to be around.  We also went and visited this crazy man who likes to act out the scriptures in his "2014 version" :)  He also told us that he is going to walk on water like Jesus some day. It was really interesting to talk to him.

Well i'm off to play B-ball, but I hope everyone is doing good in school!  Make sure to take lots of pictures! I love seeing what everyone is up to:)

Love Elder Griffin